Illegalist Praxis: Notes on a Decade of Crime

  • Posted on: 3 January 2018
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)

( I am, on occasion, asked about my time in with the worlds of the lawless. And while reticent to discuss any current activities that might be construed, by anyone, as being illegal; I realize that as regards my earlier shenanigans, the statute of limitations is in my corner. Before I begin, a disclaimer or two, first I never knowingly physically harmed anyone. Material harm? Property harm? Different story. Second, most of my criminal activities were driven by survival, in some cases by desperation--the need to eat, to obtain shelter, to keep a needle in my arm. It was only later that I realized the political ramifications of these actions; their moment as a rejection of nation-state and Capital. In effect, their resonance.—pzs)

Basic Terms

Robbery- Usually armed. The use of force or the threat of the use of force to get money or goods from a store or a person. Considered sloppy, violent, usually counter-productive by most of the people I ran with. Why threaten a person or business when you can walk away unharmed by just outsmarting them?

Burglary- Breaking into, entering, and relieving a domicile, office, or business of valuable property or cash.

Burn and Return- Shoplifting valuable goods from a store and then returning them for a cash refund. The vast majority of my crime-time fits into this category.

Shoplifting- Relieving a store or business of property (during business hours). Child’s play--dangerous and stupid—would you trade a candy bar for a pair of handcuffs?

A quick philosophical footnote, money taken in crime is far sweeter than money earned. The fact that one relies on oneself, or a group, to outthink, outsmart and outbrave some stupid boss and his security precautions turns ill-gotten gains into reward beyond compare. Plus, the hours, while short and nerve wracking, are never boring.

Oddly, one of the best ways to begin a burglary is by getting a job in the store you plan to hit. In general places that have loads of cash, that deal with deposits in a lazy fashion, and that trust you just enough to let you know that the burglary alarms are,” just for show.” After a week or two of drudgery, you’re ready. The neighborhood is dead quiet at night, there are rear entrances that haven’t been used in years, and hopefully those entrances have windows. Timing is key and I recommend between 3 and 4 in the morning on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday. The cops are all changing out shifts, the security guards (if any) are drinking coffee somewhere trying to stay awake, and the neighbors are all tucked in their beds. Windows can be easily removed by breaking through the glass with a cloth wrapped hammer and steel bars can be separated using a tire jack. If the back is lit by floodlights unscrew them. For windows placed high, use a car as a boost to reach them. A quick dash into the establishment—to exactly the place where you know the days cash receipts are hid—and out. A peek in the rear view mirror to make sure you you’re clean—and gone. Like it never happened. The rewards from burglaries can be surprising, in one short twenty minute stint I walked off with almost $5,000. They can also be disheartening, one burglary took almost an hour and netted less than $300—but that was the exception.

The Burn and Return is a form of crime unique to that bastion of suburban capitalism, the Box Store. In general Box Stores need to appeal to the suburban dweller who fancies him or herself a do-it-your-self type. Therefore their return policies are insanely lax—for the time when Joe Suburb buys an 80 watt fuse when a 40 watt was needed. Further, they usually require no sales receipt, and will dole out up to $100 so long as person hasn’t had a return in the previous week. As a friend of mine often commented, “Home Depot is the junkies ATM.” How it goes is this—you saunter through a Box Store looking like a normal customer, pocket something worth about a hundred dollars and exit stage left. Drive to yet another Box Store of the same brand and return the thing. Trick is they will always look at your ID, likely a driver license to make sure that you haven’t been returning goods at a freakishly rapid pace. Luckily, in the state I was living when these nefarious goings on occurred, the drivers license number was easily changed with a red felt-tip pen, some cigarette ash and a heart of pure forgery. As an example my driver’s license number included three “8’s” and these were easily changed to “6’s” or “3’s.” I therefore had a whole universe of numerical permutations to use when returning shit I had stolen. It should be noted that when this was happening in the 90’s that none of the Box Stores kept any centralized computer records at all. Going from one Loews to another was like going from one planet to another—“take me to your return line.” I should also note that the security at these stores is horrible, one afternoon a group of friends and I, as part of a special order, decamped from a Home Depot with a bathtub, sink and mirror set—and no one paid any attention as we grumbled and pushed the heavy bathroom ensemble through a cordon of screaming theft detectors.

Finally, car theft. While this was an outlier on my experience it was important. Car theft—for law enforcement, is huge—producing its own fateful sounding charge—grand theft auto. Therefore it was only used when absolutely necessary—as in needing a car to reach a window, or to affect a getaway from a Box Store. The trick is, its pretty easy, because people are lazy. None of my friends or me had the skills to actually hot-wire a car, but we didn’t need to. At that time an incredible number of people left their cars out on the street, unlocked and with the keys somewhere inside. It was crazy. One time two friends and I walked a street in the dead of night and found no less than three cars—on a single block--we could have stolen. We only took one. It should be noted that we always left the autos, unharmed, somewhere that they would be found—and in one case even left a thank you note. A Camaro I think—it was a sweet ride.

In closing these activities occurred a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away; in the 90’s specifically, your criminal experience may vary. In my mind crime functions as a resonance between politics, desperation and fun. And what better way to triangulate insurrection? Many Happy Escapes.

Paul Z. Simons



I would just like to point OUT that Paul Z. Simons, a true Anarcho-Journalist who's been to Rojava, sent ME an email saying he found some of MY work "quite impressive." This basically makes us best friends.

Therefore I will honor him by turning his words into MEMES to be shared with short attention span egoist-communist leftists on the internet to INSPIRE them to practice hoodoo and shoot guns while wearing Soviet symbols like the Bonnot Gang whom I just summoned for a special ritual!

Learn ALL about it by becoming a monthly Patron!

I guess if cultural appropriation is considered a form of illegalism you'd be the illegalist king.

Paul is a scumbag like me but can't seem to ditch his irrational antipathy towards leftism that all you scumbags from the 90s labour under. My best guess is that there were a lot more stalinists hurting your feelings back then or something? And punching them wasn't an option for some reason? Or maybe it was all the heroin but you need somebody to blame.

Says the person responding to an article that never once mentions leftism.

Yeah, true. I'm referencing the last little circle-jerk he chimed in during. About antifascism. I'm not really a footnotes kind of guy, sorry! It went something like - I hate leftists, I hate leftists, antifascism means I have to acknowledge their existence so fuck everything, blah blah blah. My name's Paul. Basically, that's verbatim. Feel free to quote me.

Why not talking about your experiences in illegalism instead of trying to vindicate for all the harm El Errante should have cause to poor Lefitsm? Moreover, the Left only serves its own, haven't you got the memo?

Well, I keyed some cars once and put it some aggressive sounding antiyuppie fliers around the mission. MAYBE YOU HEARD OF IT.

THE LEFT and strawmanning something you perceive to be leftism, aren't the same thing.
One is the enemy, the other is psy-ops designed to keep us in our anarchist ghetto.

is my middle name. Everyone knows this.

my guess as to why El Errante's middle name is Irrational Antipasto?

There is a ‘realist’ bias (and intolerance of 'pragmatic idealism') in the up-the-ying-yang thinking of the Western Culture Club -- Boy George excepted.

clashing concepts of 'struggle' where east meets west

confusion reigns from the manner in which different people use the word 'struggle' with a different understanding of its meaning.

sir einzige tries to inject some common understanding but the division is as deep as the division between indigenous (relational) culture and Western (rationalist) culture.

relational experience based intuition (a); perceives 'struggle' as a situation-induced phenomenon, while reason (b); has one conceive of struggle as intention-driven action.


(a) "getting through the freeway traffic was a real struggle"

(b) "i struggled to weave my way through the heavy freeway traffic".

if a team of scientists installed a paint marker beneath one's car to mark its trajectory on the pavement, and went back and reviewed the trajectory when the freeway was empty, they would ask the driver; is this tortuous trajectory capturing your struggle to weave your way through the traffic? i.e. were you in full charge of the vehicle and the author of all of these swerves and curves? the driver would probably say yes, but might hesitate on contemplating the word 'author', thinking of the dog that came from nowhere and darted across and also that it was not as if he was weaving through a bunch of static traffic cones'.

in a relational understanding, there is no 'being' and thus no 'personal, self-actualized authorship' as implied in the semantic construct "I struggled".
in the physical reality of our actual experience, all dynamic phenomena are 'situationally-relationally induced' as in an 'inhabitant-habitat nonduality' [Mach's principle]. 'struggle' cannot be reduced to the pole of personal intention-driven authorship, but Western noun-and-verb language fashions semantic constructs implying such inside-outward (genetic agency driven) dynamics on a routine basis.

'struggle' as an intention-driven activity leads to 'bottom up' authorship which is operationalized in a 'top-down' organizational fashion.

eg: -- "do you want to join the workers' struggle against corrupt and abusive corporate management? Yes? ... then pick up your placard over there, join the line of protesters standing on the sidestreet and wait for further instructions".

the scientists or 'rationalists' who gathered the data on the individual driver's trajectory use a simple being-based, dualist, thought-economical model that reduces dynamics to terms of 'what things-in-themselves do', ignoring inhabitant-habitat nondualism [Mach's principle].

rationalists aka 'realists' aka 'mainstream scientists' see no problem in the imputing of a being-based source to a relational dynamic as in the semantic constructs "the struggler struggles", "fire burns", "water washes", as if 'there is a 'being' there that is the authoring source of a PURELY RELATIONAL-SITUATIONAL nondual inhabitant-habitat dynamic;

"In brief, the Western mind cannot help but think that all reality has been done away with when all "being" (form, substance) has been negated; but the East has found that the removal of the immediate and overpowering face of reality is but a necessary condition for what is really real to appear' (van Bragt, `Introduction', in Nishitani, K. Religion and Nothingness)

Nishitani critiques the adequacy of being-based logocentric representations ; i.e. his emphasis on the non-presence of simple being-based identity and meaning enables nothingness, emptiness or sûnyatâ to become a critical issue in our search for non-illusory reality.

`Unless the thought and deeds of man one and all be located on such a field of emptiness, the sorts of problems that beset humanity have no chance of ever really being solved' – Nishitani

one of those "sort of problems" lies in understanding 'struggle' as something that brews up in, and froths out from, the interior of an independently-existing human being thing-in-itself who dualist science claims exists independently of the operating theatre he is included (contained) in.

as Poincare shows, 'realists' in Western society are people who MISTAKENLY believe that 'being-based 'genetic agency' [as in predicative logic] is 'real' in the sense of the 'physical reality of our actual experience'. It is not. There are no 'things-in-themselves' with their own jumpstart 'genetic agency' to sole-source authorship of development, actions and results, in the physical reality of our actual experience.

Open the pod bay doors emile.

*flaps arms and screeches in millennial*

I no more hate leftists then I hate Christians. I just reject the elective world view which does not work for anarchy. If there's any leftist form to hate it would be the IDPols who make up the majority of leftism at this point though not quite all. There are likable leftists and I would always be on the look out for those who are beyond the regular bottle and have some redeeming qualities beyond their ideology, what they preach however simply does not work for anarchy.

Is this real or satire? Does this poster realize that leftists/centrists/middle class people have been pulling the same shit when it comes to anarchists/revolutionists since basically forever? Leftists are not just the goofy maoists of today but the AFL of the early 1900s, the cooperative abolitionists and the list could go on for eternity.

The reason we crack on people who want to be anarchists but also for some crazy reason work with the left is cause it's overwhelmingly clear you do it cause you need friends and acceptance. Like somehow you seeking out obscure Maoists is going to turn the tide or some shit. Like SDS is going to provide overwhelming muscle to battle fascists on the streets if you just have an 8 hours meeting to discuss a shared platform. Like the extra solidarity from some SF Bay cult that is cool with religious extremism cause of "anti imperialism" is gonna save your ass when the state comes for you. You can go find a girlfriend that elsewhere. We'll likely you can't but whatever.

It's a fucking joke.

For situational contexts(you can also find some of that support among the libertarian right to btw see Karl Hess and those types) does not mean you legitimize it as a part of praxis. You can find some Xian types to who will back you up and other ideologies and religions. The point is that the left makes as much sense for anarchy as it's elect based mother Christianity does.

Crime is one of many vulnerable entrypoints used by fascists to inflitrait traditionally leftist-leaning subcultures. Paul needs to be clearer regarding the political ideology that motivated his criminal career because this piece could easily be coopted by Julius Evola reading subcultural fascist creepers.

You tell 'em, fellow Portlander, Alexander Reid Ross! The central failing of these damn primmie nihilist crimelords is their worship of crime, and this is primarily how they fall into child rape apologia! Next step would be the camps! Everybody knows this.

P.S. Could you put in a good word for me with human resources? I am ready to reveal my left market transhumanist wisdom to the students of PSU to destroy this primmie nihilist fascist crime creep. Together we can keep Portland safe.

I came here for these last two comments and didn’t even know it.

I feel the same way. That was probably some of the more amusing satire I've ever read on Anews. Thank you.

I've been greeted with more then one 'watch out for that guy he's stealing' from good ordinary folk. It reinforces for me where the true source of law enforcement comes from. Recall what the nigga Max said about the police believer being worse then the police themselves. Could not be more true.

PZS's stories to that regard are closer to the Anarchist Cookbook -also temporally, for how the '80s-'90s are closer to the late '70s- than mischief and robbery in 2018. This is more dreamy nostalgia than anything else. These days it's better to cause a major precedent in a store if you wanna achieve a significant robbery, beyond just the good ol' armpits trick.

There's lotsa stuff that still works, but in the current Society of Insecurity you never know which camera system is really functional and recording, which "worker comrade" is a snitch, which car isn't the pigs. Cops are all over the place and it goes way beyond having a badge. The police mindset is seen through people's obsession with triangulating and profiling alll those who aren't in their private net of trust.

dont really comprehend what youre saying.

if someone steals from me and I tell a friend, then im a cop?

Telling others because corporate property was stolen or external rules broken is what makess you a pig, pig.

Just like that cashier lady at the grocery store who made it an issue of personal respect the fact the I grabbed a plastic bag without paying 5 cents for it. Trying to explain her how stupid that is only emboldened her righteousness.

i.e. People amalgamating their self interest with capital without having any actual vested interest are cops, because they stand in defense of capital.

Can't you dweebs post more asinine, self-indulgent shit for my passive consumption? I'm a product of U.S. consumer society and a stone upper middle class asshole going through an anarchy-phase, and I need to be constantly entertained.

Don't mind if I DO! Want to aid the INSURRECTION? Become a LEFTIST Firearms Instructor (LFI) and help comrades get their concealed carry. We NEED people to help teach marginalized AND desperate comrades the in's AND out's of SELF PROTECTION while giving them a space to practice away from judging stares.

Don't you SEE? The insurrectionary egoist communist leftist militias will TAKE back our PROPERTY by FORCE like the illegalist THIEVES Guilds of old (who I have had NUMEROUS necromantic dealings with) and the VERY anarchistic Hells Angels MC. This is Egoist Communism!

To learn MORE about becoming a Leftist Firearms Instructor to teach marginalized GUN SORCERY and to help build our egoist leftist militia of the FUTURE, become a subscriber. All the SECRETS will be revealed with your monthly CONTRIBUTION!

The ultimate in self-indulgence is to claim you are an existentialist-nihilist, then the Universe becomes your own. I ride shotgun over all and every form of religious and ideological belief systems, including voodooism and cargo-cultists with indigenous tendencies. To cap it all off I'm an anti-artist,.,

What's a cargo cult, tho? Is it like ultra-consumerists who make welcoming ritruals at the commercial port?

Yes, and it's also my proof that the libidinal economy and consumerism is not a capitalist spawned phenomena, and that fetishism dates back to the time when languages emerged as the dominant means to communicate materialist values and to codify the accumulation of capital,.,

It also gives one licence to use the intimidating ' Thousand yard stare ' on Idpol and Antifa protesters!

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