TOTW: Well, I guess this is growing up

  • Posted on: 26 August 2019
  • By: thecollective

This week we’re taking a look at aging within anarchism.

How have your ideas of anarchism changed as you have aged? Have you experienced ageism as an anarchist? How do anarchists challenge the existent, without coming to hate the elderly that gave us this world, while also not belittling the younger ones as they are just coming up?

[Thanks to an anonymous IRC user for this TOTW idea.]

Comments

that when i was younger i was more prone to yelling at people and getting angry when they either tried to exert some control over my behavior or wouldn't help me out or agree with. Of course such a way of thinking is self-destructive so i've chilled out overtime.

As far as the GenZ's are concerned ya know just let them do what they want but don't be afraid to throw some critique at them. The old shall have contempt for the young and the young shall have contempt for the old, not much to do about that. One thing I've found about people in the Baby Boomer age group is that they will talk about how young people are so whiny and lazy when baby boomers are some of the whiniest people i have ever met at times!

Boomers for sure were the worst generation since generations started to be a sociological topic. They equally tended to view themselves as the center of human history, while being a bunch of careless manchild. I mean they fucking invented the '80s when they were in charge all over the place! So think zoomers are much less a problem and even with their carelessness, disregard for individuality and mindless addiction to shallow trends, they tend to be better humans overall. Only if they could stop having kids and put an end to generations...

(written by a GenX'er)

i was sitting on the train which was packed. an old ancient dude walks in with a walking cane and everything. i stood up and gave him my seat.
first thing he does after door closes is start talking to this freshman girl next to him. he starts asking her if she reads the bible, and if she goes to church. i don’t remember the whole convo, but later on he asks her what she was studying and tells her she should consider joining the army. all the while she was doing her best combination of polite acknowledgement and giving him a cold shoulder.

people last so long now, and in many cultures old people are supposed to be treated with deference. you see young people restraining their self expression, except for the most defiant, being outnumbered by old people everywhere in public spaces. parents and grandparents so quick to pathologize with psychobabble any defiant behavior, the threat of institutionalization with every scold.

on the other hand, babies are born glued to screens.
kids and young ones don’t wreak havok on the streets playing around uncontrolled, they stay in their rooms on the internet.

only the decrepit old people knows what it was like before tv etc. any knowledge of real cooking or agriculture or i dunno what. but they’re often the more naive ideologically still believing in religion or the myth of progress, and not the newer iterations of the narratives.

and so on. there’s more to it than that.

my parents were baby boomers, one born in 48' the other in 55'. Television was just was getting started as a cultural phenomenon for them, im actually very greatful my parents were old enough to teach me about some of the ways that modernity is changing at a sickening pace. I feel like the two generations younger than me, the genZ's and the genY's aren't incredibly different from my fellow millenials except for the fact that they have less sex and do less drugs.

gen y's are actually millennials according to the internet...not that any of this makes a difference. On thing i read/heard about as the sex/drug thing is that schools are becoming increasingly more anti-play and even more focused on testing, which is kinda another tale of corporate decadence

to your last point:

i am 33 with a little brother that just started college. he was the first era i recall that attended all day kindergarten and received homework in kindergarten. ‘hanging out’ means speaking to each other over xbox live. he’s dabbled in sex and drugs, but really has no real world experience other than that. no summer jobs. mostly internet bubble life. very smart (was offered to skip several grades at once), but in no practical sense.

i also have a sibling about to graduate highschool and they wouldn’t look pit of place as a seventh grader capacity and attitude wise

*out of place

It's full on social programming down to the minute details. Formattign the individual before it even starts to get anywhere near individual consciousness.

can confirm schools are anti-play, but when were they ever not? certainly not when my dad was being drilled on Latin grammar and hit when he got the answer wrong

are you implying more "bad influences" are needed? or bad influencers?
lil peep, mumble rappers lean and opioid epidemic. big pharma replacing big ganja.
everybody is in the business of corrupting/instructing/disciplining the youth.
can old dogs learn new tricks?
kids love to play with dogs, but not clean their poop.
can parties and hangout spots be age inclusive while not having a "family friendly" (as in traditional nuclear family) vibe?
there's a time and place for everything.
child care at bookfairs and events, elderly care too? whole life cycle is a thing, huh.
are highschoolers getting rowdy and partying? should their development be left to diy or should older peep agitate?
should older peeps keep to their own and let them do their thing? rhetorical, you can do either, both or none

Where you talking of strictly TV, or "enlarged TV" as in screens in general? If the first, I'm Gen-X and abandoned TVs like 15 years ago, thanks to all the crapaganda they broadcast it wasn't too hard a move.

screens in general, of course. tv’s being the first that was massified

though phones (without screens) applied to some generations in a way. highschool girls is the stereotype, where they would stay inside in their room for hours to gossip with their highschool friends, leaving aside their childhood neighborhood friends. if the phone was not an alternative, either they would have maintained their childhood friends (save for the many other legitimate reasons to end friendship or grow apart), or made it a point to visit their highschool friends more for face to face interaction.

the internet and computers with chatrooms, and consoles online videogames, and social media take that to another level.

I don't wanna grow up succinctly sums up my encounter with what gets called anarchism in the U.S. It's something else elsewhere, as it was in the U.S. an ever-more long time ago.

I guess the grass truly is always greener...

Especially with this scene.

When I sit on my porch and yell at nihilists to get the fuck off my lawn, I can't understand why they don't listen to me.

The young generation are lost.

In the troll genre, I find the old trolls in particular to be a whining pain in the ass!

A few years ago we had Nazima Kadir do at talk on her study of the Amsterdam squatting scene. The shocking and depressing moment for me was near the end when she said the younger anarchists ostracised anarchists reaching their forties to the point where they had no choice but to leave the squats. The only thing that saved those older anarchists from ending up on the streets was the Amsterdam municipal authorities finding them somewhere for them to live.
Yet when I was younger I always had a lot of time for older people, and by extension older anarchists. It has always been a thoroughly fruitful experience to spend time with them. Due to the secrecy required to counter journalists, state intrusion and protecting those who committed seriously illegal acts, most of our history is transmitted orally and will never end up in the anarchist media or an academic paper.
Apologies for those who have previously read my mentioning this on Anarchyplanet IRC.

I hadn’t heard this one before, very interesting, and sad.
Good you had the experience of learning from older anarchists.

pssh, we'll make our own oldies club, it'll be so cool, the unripened gonna want to chill with us, but HA! it's oldies club only, wait til u get some wrinkles and gray hair. old growth forest gang whatup

The older I get, it seem like the more radical I get. I have custody of two of my grandchildren, and I hope I'm raising them with a good foundation of values so they can try to leave the world better than it was when they got it.

i always liked the idea of leaving a place "better" (usually, cleaner) than i found it. but that was always localized to the scope of my experience. the idea of leaving "the world" a better place leans towards the "save the world" mentality of the liberal left. it denies the reality that what is "better" to you is not necessarily "better" to me. so the result is an imposition of one's "morality" (what is "better") on all. not my desire, nor my idea of anarchy.

there is no singular "right way", "better", "good values", etc. if any of my kids had lived, i hope that would be the one "value" i could communicate to them; that there is no one "right" way... context is everything.

but as an anti-moralist, i tend to be in the minority.

i was born in 1960, television was well established by then, but i only remember watching very rarely. like when the beatles were on ed sullivan, or when the big assassinations happened (x, mlk, rfk i remember). tv and its evolutionary offspring the modern internet definitely have shaped a few generations now, with the more recent internet (and the more recent generation) being the most obvious evidence. it says to me this: capitalist media will raise your children if you let it. and you might not like what you find.

age has honed my own anarchistic perspective. it has also shown me that i prefer solitude to human companionship - most of the time. most people - especially anarchists - have something interesting to offer at some level, but with the benefit of age, i can now discern what is actually interesting to me, rather than what "the group" says is interesting.

learning from experience is by the best way for me, but that does not preclude having more experienced/skilled individuals to learn from as well. fuck the traditional teacher/student, parent/child dynamic. when you are young, you have all the time in the world to figure shit out. when you hit my age and are still trying to create a life that doesn't beg for suicide, you look for any and all ways to figure shit out (that don't also beg for suicide).

my respect - much less trust - needs to be earned. age (nor oppression group, etc), hase virtually no bearing on that. the fact that someone is older means exactly one thing: they have been alive longer. period.

parents and caretakers mostly just being friends and caretakers of their children. The screens will parent your children if you let them, so just refrain from buying them any, and the tricky part is you have to avoid them yourself. This would probably entail not having the internet where you live.

Ideally, what i would consider a "good parent" would entail spending a lot of time with kids and letting them do somewhat dangerous things. This all sounds pretty impossible to me, but is also more appealing than being a "normal" parent. I guess people like me really shouldn't have kids!

For me, this separation between people who understand their world through aesthetics, identity and spectacular imagery, as in, the vast majority of people, is the main difference for my thinking. Like, that's never really been how my head works, I'm more of a pragmatist and seeking validation was never something that worked out well for me, even if I tried so I stopped caring a long time ago, for the most part.

So me and these more "aesthetic types", we'll often use the same words and signifiers but we're just not talking about the same things. We don't usually share goals or much affinity at all but there's this illusion that we do.

For me, this accounts for all the worst tendencies of radical politics; riot tourism, subcultural cliques, identity politics, just trying to get laid in "the scene", etc etc. You cancel all of that out and what's left? A very small group of people. Is this just a human thing or specific to our times or what? I don't know and speculating about it probably doesn't matter. Anyway, that's probably the biggest change for this old anarchist.

*shakes cane menacingly*

*shakes cane menacingly, whilst violently reaching for the last vestiges of Viagrismo*

With Leninist types, the question always seems to be, what's happening in the larger world around us, and how can we interact with this to try to bring about what we hope to see in the larger society around us?

With US anarchism, the question is always, how does this affect me on a personal individual basis? Why is this important to me?

This goes some ways in showing why what gets called anarchism in the 21st century US has more of a draw in a society like the US -- it's always all about me me me in complete isolation from all other concerns.

Just for clarity, are you suggesting that "interact[ing with the larger world] to try to bring about what we hope to see" is exclusive to leninism? full disclosure, I fukin hope not.

No, definitely not. I hate Leninism. The problem here is that ignoring the world outside of the powerless atomized self does appear to be the world view of the overwhelming majority of the people who like to call themselves anarchists in today's US.

With Leninist types, the question always seems to be: politburo will bring potato. But politburo kill farmer for potato. And potato is secret police.

With US anarchism, the question is always!

I hate potato Leninism metaphors!

at least potato

What disturbs me with the new generation is their renewal of the same old shitty conservative culture, the mainstream, now made more acceptable with the neoliberal principles of social identities becoming normalized all over again. The reification of the old, made new again. This is so depressing yet I usually don't bother telling the kids how everything they say and do is an overdone bunch of false solutions and fake matters.

This is why I think the efforts of projects like LBC are important, even if they don't "do shit" by themselves... they pass on ideas and knowledge to the next generations. Tho up against the brain-formatting machine of mass culture I dunno what could be done enough to sprawl a counter-current that may last for long.

The State doesn't win with punctual repressive operations but through its asynchronic assertion across time. Its timelessness is where lies its greatest might. So I say let's ask ourselves what can we do, as mortals, to help ourselves while at the same time keep opening these cracks beyond our own deaths.

The younger people need to know our history and what we wanted to achieve or why. Not just shit that happened 100 years back (please full stop and leave that one in the corner of your room), but shit that happened in the '80s, '90s, during the counter-summits, etc.

I mean ... No offense to the folks who got their butts kicked by the riot detail in the 90s but the stuff that happened a century ago is objectively orders of magnitude more badass so ... That said! Still many impressive little war stories around from antiglobalization days if you search for them... If that's your thing?

Old acidhead sez: How are all these youngins gonna "revert to savagery" (become adaptively fit) if they spend most of their free time glued to a smartphone and are acquiring no practical live-in-nature skills?

Most of my LSD/psilocybin time was way back at age 25-30. At 62, I have the same strength I had at age 40, and bizarrely fit health stats and healing power for my age (which I can document). LSD + God is the fountain of youth!
Recently I discovered lsd reddit, which has 285,000 people on it and growing. Most of them age 17-33, but some old geezers like me. There are guys in their 50's who drop with their adult sons.

i took acid my first time when i was 13. had my first real psychedelic experience on it just before i turned 15. i did it at least weekly for several years, then went through a couple other periods of high use, during my mid 20s, and then again in my late 30s. i've tripped several hundred times, easily.

i am now almost 60, and while i am in relatively good health, my strength and endurance has gone down quite a bit since i was 40. so i guess it is just that i have always rejected god/religion, is why i do not retain the same super-duper strength that bad kitty does?

I like scary stuff like datura, puts you near the edge of the Abyss, keeping it together on that shit requires super will power. Lsds for the college kids wanting some some spìce in their sex lives. Castaneda knew that.

you may have never had a real psychedelic experience on lsd - or maybe never had real, potent, clean lsd - if you think it is just for college kids wanting to beef up their sex lives. aldous huxley chose to pass from life with a strong dose of lsd to help him along. that ain't thrill-seeking.

True, I'm just messin with you, sorry wise ol dude.

I was so open to God is that I never had religion shoved down my throat as a kid. Most religion is idolatry - primarily the worship of superego projections. God is absolutely selfless.

I admire you very much Bad Kitty, and understand the psychologically awesome dimensions that lsd can open up, and I can relate to your use of the word "god", not as a clichèd religiously diverted projection, but as a biospheric mass interactive mutuality. But please oh please, because you capitalized the "g" in god, I fear that you worship an independent externalized entity.
Please tell me you don't get down on your knees and pray to a god.

I prefer Bad Bunny

He has no zen spontaneity, too constructed in his vocalization and rhythm, also, the massaging was a failure, there should have been intercourse occuring after the first application of oils within 30 seconds.
https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCmBA_wu8xGg1OfOkfW13Q0Q

For the compliment.
God (or if you prefer, Emptiness/ayin sof) is external to what I experience as myself. No, I don't get on my knees and pray to God. It is an opening, always spontaneous and often out of the blue. It just happens.
"Oh look. I'm seeing in LSD vision!" (No! It's HPPD! The Horror!)

"God is absolutely selfless."

my god is self-ful.

i too never had religion shoved down my throat. and there was a time, in my late teens/early 20s, when i explored that vague idea commonly referred to as "spirituality". never quite fit for me. i comprehend some relationship between all forms of life, at some levels. some would call that spirituality. i call it observation and experience.

whatevs. we all have our own experiences that help create the dynamic beings we are. lsd has had a profound impact on who i am. god/religion/spirituality... not so.

God is something I have directly experienced many times. It is also the source of the life-force that is flowing in me at my advanced age.

Is the state of seeing what is right in front of me far more deeply, clearly, and finely; i.e. being more present (as in Be Here Now). At a full-blown mystical state, this is unimaginable, "making what we call 20-20 vision blindness by comparison" (from my book).
LSD enabled me to receive God, so is VERY closely associated with God for me.

Gen X invented ELF. Millennials invented ITS. What are Zoomers gonna do? You ever think of that?

Zoomers invented Pokemon Go and Minecraft Twitch parties.... :-(

No, they were the consumers, not the inventors, which were older.

What ever became of 'Especifismo'?

is youth a window of opportunity, is life a window of opportunity, was the window of opportunity closed some time after or before your birth?

this is vague enough to be nonsense, but it gets at feelings. it can make more or less sense if grounded with specifics.

has your aging been characterized more by fulfilling self-realization and stacking of accomplishments, or by a stacking of disappointments and disillusionments, of failures, or failure to act, of inaction?

has your life up to know been shaped more by your own whims and designs, or by the whims and designs of others?

have you enjoyed writing your own narrative by living it, or are you currently having a writer’s block, and your story is yet to be written/lived?

I'm just curious, what kinds of stuff are the Zoomers doing outside of internet-dom? I'm asking this because i was thinking how aweful it would be if my generation where the last that had any idea how to enjoy themselves without the internet, but of course this is delusional old-man type thinking. I ask all of you cuz i'm pretty detached overall from the zoomers.

Some go to things like green scare anarchist bookfairs, rob trains, vandalize things.

that was such an early 20th century crime, the capitalists no longer haul huge amounts of cash on trains, or atleast not to my knowledge they do. If they do though, which ones?! I'll have to go and de-rail one teehee

where do you think jewlery stores get their stones etc from? hehe

Can confirm. I saw them filling a grainer with emeralds the other day.

They're into antifa, Rojava and fighting Terfs to compensate for the thin relationships they get from social media. When they're not doing that they're kicking the sh*t out of each other to compensate for their self-validation deficit. Most of them will be completely burnt out husks, carrying a plethora of physical and psychological injuries by their late-20's-early-30's.

They were into ELF, anti-globalization and fighting cops to compensate for the thin relationships they got from hardcore punk. When they weren't doing that they were kicking the sh*t out of each other to compensate for their fragile masculinity. Most of them are completely burnt out husks, working a plethora of shitty jobs and raising kids by their late-20's-early-30's.

didn't we just have this TOTW like some time ago? something about aging anarchists and being too old for the scene? maybe someone in thecollective is having a mid-life crisis?

i think they're just phrasing it a little differently because aging seems to be at the heart of aspects of living, they didn't mention the scene this time which is something i'm happy about quite frankly hehe

Yeah, complaining about "the scene" outs you as a dinosaur because kids who never leave their cyberpods don't get seen by anyone except the algorithm.

everybody is aging all the time.
you might have been old for a while now, but some of us are just recently becoming old.
how many years have you been using this site?
I’ve been around for maybe two years soon.

oh ya know… don't remember so well sometimes? feels like I've always been here! time is a flat circle

the eternal hourglass of anews existence is turned upside down again and again, and you with it!

Wow, and YOU accuse OTHERS of hitting the fartbong!!

u mad? seem mad ;)

so senileoldtroll only criticizes me when i use "nihilist" in my username, otherwise i seem to get along with the old fart just fine, many points in common!

it's just funny to me, you know, this website. Probably the least restricted anarchist website without getting continually barraged by spam, and our conversations are the most bickering, haphazard, and douschey. but that's what i like about it. If there's no trace of the dumb uncivilized nature of humanity, well what's the point?? Berzerkers in jail? No! ID RATHER BE DEAD! Don't even think i deserve that title, of the berserker :_(

Deserves a poem for sure!

imagine if instead of text, you typed absorption of vitamin d

That's one theory, another is that you've been gradually becoming less obnoxious? ;)

remarks regarding growing older and how they developed as a person without turning to gurus, 'experts' or teachers etc. Time alone and reading along with contemplation can be an excellent (and financially cost effective). Ian (on the other hand) seemed to be a serial course attender and appeared to be more interested in the details, names, dates etc of courses, gurus etc. Rambling Nettle. Love it: the rambles, part of the charm of this person's communication. Is it interesting to hear people be so rigid in their development: rules rules rules. For me , if a person 'needs' to attend another course and/or follow the teachings of another, then surely, that person is following the path of another and not their own? Yes, the younger generation ought to be asking serious questions of the older generation for leaving them with such a mess. Anarchists, maybe it isn't the State you should be attacking but rather demanding answers from your elders: parents, grand parents etc.

Yes, the ramble is the path, or some such. It is beneficial to have companions on the way with you, as it is beneficial to sometimes walk alone. Each in its proper time.

As to getting older, you either get older or you die. For myself, I want to do both well and (also) in their own time.

because different people emphasize different things, and different commenters respond each time. we do all revisit topics through our lives, right? and learn? and chat with others about what we've learned?
if it's too repetitive for you, you can always submit a topic of your own, right? or do you not have anything interesting that you're thinking about?

thecollective member .4

as long as the topics themselves aren't stupid, and it's not my website anyway. I find that in the modern era there's a tad bit too much complaining about repetition, "old", "boring", not to say i haven't been guilty of it too. It's as if we all want constant entertainment spoon fed to us out of habit.

hear hear! perhaps the real answer to at least half the complaints is … maybe turn off computer and go feel sunshine?

Should be --> Tad too much complaining---- Saying "Tad bit too much " is repeating the small amount, i.e. a "bit" is the same as a tad, or like ---- A tad tad too much, or A bit bit too much.
Just saying, its a word I use alot and I'm a tad fussy about word use ;)

> its a word I use alot and I'm a tad fussy about word use

*it's

*a lot

Its = belonging to it: This is its handle. In my usage, belonging to "tad". Tad and its use
Not to be confused with:
it's – it is: It’s cold outside.; it has: It’s been a long winter.

Alot = typo. Thx ;)

theme of the week idea: the rise of anarcho-horneyism
why's every anarchist ever so fucking horney?
can't they shut up about their fat cocks for once in their life?

publish this now fascist

horny anarchists? where?!!

for a good time, write me @
https://pad.anarchistnews.org/p/horny_anarchists

; )

.
.
.
p.s. i will not actually be checking this pad. but someone might!

old people be like: do the same thing we did til u die
young people be like: no
then they be like: ok, but i complain
then they be like old people and it's starts over again

Add new comment