#J20: What Is The Point?

Aggregated below is a tweet storm by Phil Greaves today which I offer for discussion. This should not be construed as me coming out as a Marxist-Leninist. I don’t classify myself as anything but an anti-capitalist anti-imperialist vegan anymore, and Greaves calls me variously an “ancap weasel” and a “petty booj” LOL.  However I ratify any intelligent discussion of strategies and tactics and Greaves says a lot of smart things.

Among the things the absolute worst people of the internet ‘Left’ are most insistently resistant to, is any serious critique of protest politics or the motives and affiliations of the “leaders” that spontaneously emerge during the periodic upticks in this kind of activity. This resistance is all the cause one needs to regard these assholes with extreme suspicion at the very least and a strong indication of how necessary is intelligent discussion of what we do, why, and for/with whom.

QUOTE

The inauguration is the spectacular self-celebration of the spectacle, please save me from any commentary/hot takes/pointless chatter. YAWN. If your protests are being even implicitly supported by the BBC, CNN etc you should seriously make it a priority to seek out leaders & aims.

Advice for those unaffiliated, whose genuine anger is more than understandable & a good thing, even if belated &/or ideologically skewed: Little point in any individual just turning up to “the streets” without at least the nucleus of an organised leadership to work with. Why “to the streets”? What are the leaders immediate & long term aims? How are these aims commensurate with the needs of the working class? More importantly, how do these proposed aims of said leadership relate to the current situation & the ‘mood’ of the wider working classes? In the core, with the apparent increase in well-publicised protests & civil ‘events’ that often seem to perform a marketed pressure valve…..another question dying to be asked is of such ‘events’ is: where are all the workers over the age of 30??

There can’t be any general rules ofc, but as general as one can be wrt core ‘protests’, 2003 showed us that numbers are largely irrelevant. In that there can be ‘millions in the streets’ but without a concrete plan, & disciplined, organised leadership, they wont achieve anything. Masses will be where they will be, yet despite an ‘organic’, disparate and/or ‘spontaneous’ appearance, there are always leaders among them. (Even amongst the so-called ‘anarchists’ there are definite leaders, though they’d never admit that to their fine individual selves). Half the trouble with bourgeois subversion of working class dissent is that bourgeois leaders hide themselves amongst ‘spontaneous’ masses.

If like us you want leaders willing to wage war against & overthrow the ruling class then make sure they’re knowledgeable in the art of war. As it seems (often hidden) leaders in the core habitually exhaust & demoralize potential armies before they have even found formation. An army minus a general staff is already defeated, an individual protester without a Marxist-Leninist leader is a lamb to the opportunists.  As individuals & collectives we must keep in mind the imperialists consciously employ revolutionary methods for counter-revolutionary ends.

END

UPDATE

For laughs.

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88 Responses to #J20: What Is The Point?

  1. Thanks so much for concatenating the tweets; they work beautifully as an essay.

    I’d missed this – Half the trouble with bourgeois subversion of working class dissent is that bourgeois leaders hide themselves amongst ‘spontaneous’ masses – and I think it’s something that can’t be emphasized enough, particularly since it’s such an important ingredient in how the imperialists consciously employ revolutionary methods for counter-revolutionary ends.

  2. wendyedavis says:

    question, if i may. is phil greaves part of revcom, or an endorser, (oh, you silly ancap weasel)? i’m asking for a reason that’s buffaloing me, otherwise…i wouldn’t. http://revcom.us/

    • Tarzie says:

      I don’t know. I doubt it.

      UPDATE

      I just realized that’s Bob Avakian’s group. Here’s the only Greaves RCP related tweets I could find. Suggest cordial indifference. I know some of the tankies like RCPer Carl Dix.

      • wendyedavis says:

        yes, it is. with that answer, i’ll back of because: jeremy scaill at revcom?. too weird for me. but then, so much is. i have admire the tankie’s contests, though: “i’m so tankie that…”

      • wendyedavis says:

        thanks for the updates. how in the world you can dig up old tweets is beyond me. but revcom seems to equal #noFascismUSA, at least for now. Herr Trump seems to have released a hella lotta people’s anti-fascism, but i checked this morning, and….he was inaugurated.

        i like carl dix, but although i’d heard avakian’s name, knew nothing about him. his bio on wiki makes him seem radical, and i guess if he can gather jeremy scahill into the fold…/s

        i stayed at davos all day so i wouldn’t even be tempted to check in with the various marches and whatnot. but one fun thing i did find along the way was that “pierre” and a buddy are spending $27 million on ‘ethical artificial intelligence for the public good’.

        dagnabbit; sorry for all those typos earlier.

      • robertmstahl says:

        Chain mail & chainmail. Who would have thought it would come to this?

        The auto speller (android’s) does not recognize, here, the word chainmail. I hope I am fixing it now, possibly, by correcting it. Now, there’s progress…

      • poob says:

        I think Twitter is better than Facebook at the one (or two) things that it does “well” (if one can use that word for the internet): expressing or promoting oneself as an individual to the general public, rather than just to your widest social circle (whether pseudonymously or not, although the former is even more difficult on facebook); and finding and following other such individuals. I think YouTube can be better than both facebook and Twitter for expressing or promoting one self, but not if one prefers writing text to making videos of oneself. I do think they would to more for their causes (whatever that cause is supposed to be) if they got together and made a show like the Young Turks, but I don’t know if how many tankies have that many comrades in their own town with whom there would be a mutual collaborate desire to collaborate on such a thing. Some tankies are pseudonymous, others might be camera shy also (or lazy, it would take more work) and some might just not be comfortable talking to a camera. Facebook is tricky because it’s hard to escape ones circle of IRL acquaintances to find good content. I’ve barely ever managed to find any decent political content on facebook (I mean even less than what I’ve found on twitter) but perhaps I just don’t know how to search for it on there properly?

    • Hummus says:

      Hi your favorite chickpea based cardchecker here. Phil isn’t revcom.

      Revcom is a joke. “Revcom” is neither “rev” nor “com.” Revcom still cannot figure out who has been paying for Chairman Bobby’s storied and illustrious career as a revolutionary.

      • Tarzie says:

        I don’t know much about them other than that they’re a punching bag for human garbage like Molly Crabapple and that Carl Dix makes a lot of sense in interviews. Greaves obviously doesn’t feel as strongly as you.

      • Humuus says:

        “What is the point?” is the new “What is to be done?”

        If I remember correctly it’s because Greaves lives in the UK where Revcom is not a thing but I’m sure they have some local analogue/irrelevantly farcical org that probably livestreams everything to GCHQ just to save them the hassle. Chairman Bobby’s HARSH PARISIAN EXILE is right across the channel, but after what, 40 years, he’s still failed to make any impact on the EuroReds? The only one I know of who knows of him is a Finn with a twisted sense of humor.

        My only interaction with Revcom is avoiding entering their ridiculous bookstore on Lenox Ave around 130st. It’s appropriately titled REVOLUTION BOOKS (LINK SAYS IT ALL STOP THE FASCISM NOW GO TO DC AND HOLD A SIGN: http://revolutionbooksnyc.org/) and conveniently located a few blocks from a brand new Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints valiantly serving the needs of Harlem’s community. (Ah, if only we could all hie to Kolob!) If I did, I would start shit with a bunch of embarrassing clueless white fossils which would look worse for me than for them, and I’m just trying to walk to my friend’s place nearby, you know? Isn’t prioritizing arguing stupid dead people words in bookstores or the internet above all else a major issue we face? Shit, fuck that.

        One day, we’ll look back at that time Chairman Bobby talked to Dr. Cornel West and its earthshattering implications for theory, theory of which I’m steadily getting tired. Wow, it’s not like I’m the only person to which that has happened.

        Bob Avakian is the Lyndon LaRouche of Communism and I’ll swear by it until I die.

      • Tarzie says:

        I have no dog in a fight about Avakian except to observe that he arouses more animus than anything on the surface seems to merit and awful people like Molly Crabapple think it’s funny when his adherents get assaulted by Democrats as they did in Ferguson. This triggers my kneejerk defense bone. I find everyone generally just so horrible and so stupid and so ignorant — and by that I really do mean everyone at least part of the time — I can’t make him register as an object of any strong feeling whatsoever. If the worst you can say about him is that he’s a crank, that makes him better than 99% of the people holding any part of the stage.

        What is to be done is a good question. I am at pains to see any potential good in general engagement with the US Left prior to a real crisis that will shake it out of its complete ridiculousness. In my intro to Greaves tweetstorm I almost wondered aloud what Greaves thinks the tactical merits of Twitter are. The tankies like to act like they’re in possession of a political divining rod — the hard science of Marxist-Leninism — and they get a lot right, but their dedication to tilting at windmills on a social network optimized for careerist brown-nosing and circle jerking that most poor and working people sensibly ignore entirely seems really rather unscientific to put it nicely.

      • Hummus says:

        I’m not saying he’s a crank, I’m saying he’s on the fucking take to redirect people who are willing to take a look at Communism. Lure them in with all the imagery and “hey kids isn’t Communism edgy and cool and we’ll even put it on our website for those RETHUGLICANS to see” and once you hook them, at best you’ll have a Sanders voter. (Personally not a viable stopgap solution to me, your opinion may vary( At worst you additional people now drinking Chairman Bobby’s Flavor-Aid and playing assistant sheepdog. You know how rad/rev #s, I’ll take anyone we can get.

        Apologies for failing to convey that Bob Avakian is doing establishment dirty work in the last post and coming across as a rant on a niche left nobody, but he’s been a bit harmful to something that isn’t terribly healthy anyway. Maybe he’s doing us a favor weeding out the bad ones distracted by things like building their personal brands and Fiveking who cross his path first before they run into anything else? Find the silver lining!

        As for social media and reds on it, I think some of them do a great job aggregating material and putting out a perspective that isn’t straight trot or liberal, however I don’t know how they can do it. There’s a reason I’m off. If you’re getting called a tankie you’re probably doing something right. If you’re being called a Trot you’re probably not. Tradition’s purpose now is to provide a narrative against neoliberals who would divide us down and seriously entertain notions such as “Obama is a communist” and the 6th, 7 1/2th, and 9th International (reformed), as defined by them, all consisting of 2 or 3 people (CPUSA, revcom, et al.) People like Phil have been at this since before I was born, that bitterness is earned after putting a lifetime into this shit without a hope of seeing a result but still doing it anyway because a better future than this is required for generations we’ll never see. You stay in that shit for no benefit to self and you manage to do it without Fiveking or branding yourself as “the revolutionary who NEVER sold out” as seen on HuffPo. Worst I’ve seen said is Phil comes off as an asshole. Doesn’t sound like a big deal, comrade.

        The divining rod metaphor is apt. I’d like to see red/black reconciliation/rapprochement on a macro level, push out people carrying on old dead shit to no discernable benefit to anyone, push out Fiveks (I am making this a term damnit) and probably have to hide in plain sight and hold our Congress in front of talentless spoiled Baffler reporters at Left Forum so we’re all dismissed as loons.

        Then maybe we can talk about what we’ve learned over the past century and how we can best apply it going forward. Bring your most unkempt facial hair.

      • Tarzie says:

        Thanks for clarifying. I was conflating the conventional wisdom — Crabapple called the RCP The Left’s drunk uncle or something like that — with yours. As sheepdogs go, he doesn’t seem terribly effective.

        You needn’t defend Greaves’ ‘bitterness’ or personality to me since I didn’t remark upon them and never really cared about except when he’d pick fights with me out of apparent boredom. Though now that you mention it, the tankies can be every bit as shitty as the people that attack them and in very similar ways. The first disgustingly dishonest and genuinely malicious beatdown I ever got on Twitter was from tankies and pals though Greaves was not involved. It was over this, can you believe?

        I am well aware of what the tankies are practicing intellectually on Twitter and have found it useful at times. My point was that it doesn’t seem like the obvious place where a genuinely scientific approach to political practice would lead if you’re making the internet your focus. Are they on Facebook? Do they use YouTube? Why the attraction to a platform that most people don’t use and that is structured to eat away at any standards of what constitutes making an actual point like an actual adult and that gives fascists, cops and stupid, belligerent children a huge advantage?

      • Hummus says:

        No I remember that, and wrote that post knowing I was there for that, I still think it was a giant misunderstanding and I would absolutely agree the onus of this shit most of the time is on us, i didn’t see anything but celeb left “anarchists” go after reds unless they were out on Twitter itching for a fight (not a wise use of time/resources) This is the rapprochement shit I’m talking because I personally (used to) love to leap into that “you fucking booj/lib shit” and it doesn’t help and after contemplating my Facebook omerta instead of running around pitching FULL COMMUNISM NOW YOU FUCKING TROT I think “can we talk?” Is a far more realistic goal right now.

        You guys have been nothing but hospitable to me here and I’ve written before the reason I stayed here was because it was challenging, especially on the veganism, I’ve learned a lot from it, I think other reds would benefit from the exchange.

        Internet isn’t the place for this shit anyway. Gave us the ability to get a feel for who and what was out there. But after paying some kind of attention to this through the lens of social media I’m not seeing a whole lot of new blood around.

        There are probably all sorts of reasons this is doctrinairely wrong but untill we’re shutting ports down we should be quiet.

      • Tarzie says:

        Why wouldn’t we be hospitable to you? The only rule here is don’t be a troll or an idiot or a liberal. I appropriated ‘rancid’ to mean all the unsavory, back row radicals of the political scene without any sectarian exclusions. It’s the only sect I belong to at this point and really only out of habit.

      • diane says:

        Not at all a Tweeter, blogger with a website (which I certainly cannot afford – emotionally, or economically), or anything other than a human being. Like you, ‘Tarzie,’ I FOLLOW No One –particularly when it would deny the abuse I’ve personally witnessed -, even as I love a handful of humans who have shown me kindness when I most needed it, I don’t unquestionally FOLLOW them because, simply, they are not in my shoes.

        Are they on Facebook? Do they use YouTube

        Are you being facetious? are you joshing? In the scheme of things? Facebook and Google are for more Honeytraps than even Twitter.

        ‘I have no dog’ in the Red Kahina/Phil Greaves/Cordeliers [sic?] commentary, like you, I’m not prone to FOLLOW™ any single human being as having all (or: quite a few; more than most) of the answers. When I happen on to their commentary (because those not on twitter are able to read some tweets), I generally presume that Red Kahina/Phil Greaves/Cordeliers/DamnJehu [Sic?], et al, appear to have utterly no clue as to what the unconnected (Not On Line … couldn’t afford it if they even wanted to) are really living; after all one has to be there.

        BUT, siiiigh …. what to say? If you actually lived in for decades, was stuck in, Sly [Silicon] Con Valley …..you would likely understand it better.

      • Tarzie says:

        Are you being facetious? are you joshing? In the scheme of things? Facebook and Google are for more Honeytraps than even Twitter.

        No. If one is going to practice politics almost entirely on the internet — let’s put aside arguing over that decision — Twitter makes the least sense simply as a matter of numbers, to say nothing of the baked in corrosive effect of its char limit on discourse generally. Demographically, far fewer people use Twitter than Facebook — even Pinterest and Instagram have larger audiences — and usage is particularly low among people with low incomes. You know that Twitter voice? The smug, sneering, self-superior dipshit voice? That’s the upper middle class spoiled rotten 18-30-something you’re hearing. That’s who does politics on Twitter. That “working class” the tankies are so concerned for? NOT ON TWITTER! They’re on Facebook, though. Along with people over 30. Facebook also drives more traffic to source material than Twitter does. Twitter users read and share titles and shape opinions from each others farts. It’s for people who’d rather react and perform than think about anything.

        My point was that the tankies claim to be all scientific and tactical and shit, but it’s not obvious to me that they’ve put any thought into where to best put their own efforts even if one overlooks the dubiousness of the internet as a platform for daily political practice.

        Yeah, all the social networks are evil enterprises crawling with various malefactors. But there isn’t a single mitigating feature on Twitter. It’s a toxic waste dump and a time sink optimized for mobs of affluent social climbers who don’t read or think. It offers nothing to serious radicals who aren’t addicted to fighting over practically nothing and talking to themselves.

      • diane says:

        Demographically, far fewer people use Twitter than Facebook

        huh?

        I’m not at all clear on how you are using the term: demographically ?

        Actually, from what I’ve fervently read ..over the past quite a few years – since that malevolent FaceFiend IPO! .and the predictable You Tube acquisition by the even more horrid Google™ – most: oppressed minorities; generally oppressed persons; and youth, …favor Twitter, not because it is so coherent, but because: it is a slightly lessor snoopster censor evil ….. and a far, far more affordable …as to that never,… ever… mentioned … co$$$$t of Web/Net Acce$$ …at the end of the day.

        (can I ask why you didn’t mention: why no WordPress account? …which has always seemed a far, far, far lessor evil than Google, FaceFiend, or Twitter …to my mind?)

      • Tarzie says:

        Diane you really want to have a fight far more than I do and it’s making you say dumb things, like that one free service that requires internet access is more affordable than another. That Facebook use is more than two times higher than Twitter use is uncontroversial. While it’s true that a slightly higher percentage of POC use Twitter than white people — a diff of 5 or 6 per cent — Facebook use is still far higher for all races and all income levels. Though use of all social networks increases with income, the disparity for Twitter is much sharper than with Facebook. Read at least one survey of who uses what platform before continuing ok? Then read up on snooping, and find that people who think Twitter is a lesser snoopster evil are sadly mistaken. Twitter sells its firehose to data miners who provide analytics software to cops. Wrote about it here.

        If the goal of an internet revolutionary is to turn people on to Marxist Leninism, it is pure common sense to use a platform with very wide adoption, where complicated ideas can be most fully explained and where users are statistically more inclined to follow links to source material. Facebook wins on all counts. You are making an argument out of thin fucking air.

        I didn’t say WordPress because I am arguing reach, not the real or imagined virtue of the corporate owners. The one argument that I can see for Twitter is that strangers are more likely to follow each other on Twitter than on Facebook. Individual networks are potentially more diverse. But I don’t think that’s a strong argument since Twitter networks tend to evolve into echo chambers.

      • diane says:

        ‘heh,’ did you silently edit and capitalize that “P” in “Wordpress” ..as I had ‘paste/posted’ that ‘word’ with a lower case “p” in my last comment ..or was that an AI auto correct? And Yeah, for that matter, who is Matt Mullenweg [sic?] get on it cuttlefish_btc! ……

        ;0(

      • diane says:

        might I ask: Nope what?:

        1. You didn’t change the originally ‘lower case’ (caste) p to a Capitalized “P”? (yes I’m Paranoid™ and keep copies of what I post online, nothing at all personal in that; your site is the only one I have frequented for heading on 5 years now)?.

        or:

        2. WordPressAI™ (the only “AI” I’ll ever have a soft spot for is Allen Iverson ….priceless, and every nasty ass low fuckin life millionaire/bilionaire OWNER knows it) didn’t change the originally ‘lower case’ (caste) p to a Capitalized “P”?

  3. wendyedavis says:

    there’s a lot of interesting stuff to consider here; thank you all. for now, may i ask you, hummus, to expand on this? “If you’re getting called a tankie you’re probably doing something right. If you’re being called a Trot you’re probably not.” or is the gist of it: “FULL COMMUNISM NOW YOU FUCKING TROT”?

  4. No soy yo says:

    I couldn’t find the appropriate “reply” button above, and I’m not itching for an argument, but I know that at least until a few years ago, low income people in Eastern cities anyway were on Twitter — not on Facebook. Friends who did organizing w/ low income New Yorkers said all their members regardless of age were on Twitter, none on FB. When I did labor organizing a few years ago in Boston w/ lower income, non-English speakers, if they were anywhere, it was Twitter (though mostly they weren’t on social media, just did texting w/ friends/ bosses /union rep), and same was true for members in other cities. For people who can’t read or write a particular language well, and/or just aren’t used to longer form online, it’s useful. Also, on a phone at work, easier to read a tweet. So I’ve seen the demographics, but they didn’t hold true in my experience in certain areas.

    On FB you are still officially supposed to be non-anonymous and if you have additional accounts they’re supposed to be linked. They seem a bit more lax about enforcing it, but that’s the reason to be on Twitter for many: anonymity, and separating personal life (i.e., liberal family members). That’s why many of us see FB as being so much more conservative (liberal) since we go there to interact w/ liberals in our lives (yikes! Not sure how much longer they’ll be in my life and it’s only day 2 of Trump).

    It’s much easier to find like-minded people on Twitter in my opinion precisely because of anonymity and most things being public, etc. A few people have their accounts locked but that’s rare.

    But yes, longer posts, longer discussions, and threaded discussions etc. are easier on FB if it’s public and all the settings are to allow anyone to comment.
    ——
    Anyway, the problem w/ Phil Greaves Tweetstorm IMO is that there just aren’t organizations doing the larger picture stuff in the US that are truly left and not Dem. Party. So I know I end up staying home, which was best decision for Jan 21, but was it best decision for J20? Also, going to some more militant marches is definitely the way to build militancy (and a good way to separate the cop high-fiving liberals. https://twitter.com/proletariatrev/status/823004040728551428

    • Tarzie says:

      I don’t find any of your statements on who uses what where at all compelling since it’s all anecdotal and there is actual research completely at odds with it that I find more reliable. It’s cool that you discount the research entirely but we leave the the lived experience thing to the Tweeters, along with abstract poors and dark people that dutifully bolster arguments. It’s not like these statistical spreads between networks are small. They’re definitive and they show up again and again.

      Your other statements about the advantages of each medium from the standpoint of rules and structure are more compelling but only if we are arguing for which network provides the comfiest echo chamber. But that’s not what I’m arguing. Yes anonymity is nice and yes, nice to be able to block those pesky liberals. But this advances communism exactly how? Rhetorical question.

      I am specifically talking about the kind of thing Phil Greaves — who is not anonymous — does. He is a proselytizer. Therefore, the best network is the one where preaching the ML gospel is likely to reach the greatest number of people who, one, need to hear it and two, are likely to make best use of it. That network may well be Twitter but nothing you and Diane have said so far demonstrates that at all. It doesn’t even seem you’re attempting to. I have restricted myself mostly to reach. If this conversation were serious, I’d go into the extent to which the char limit and culture of Twitter are discourse killers. I’ll simply say that for over 24 hours now the luminaries of the Twitter left have been deliberating the merits of punching a nazi. That is, everyone is jumping through a hoop — arguably the nazi’s hoop — over and over and over again about trivia. Acrimoniously. I have watched people get noticeably dumber and meaner from prolonged exposure to this garbage, and armies of smart, nice, funny people leave in disgust. The fascists aren’t winning. They won.

      My God. It was an offhand comment about how someone who considers himself rigorously tactical spends entire days in a Twitter echo chamber being an object of ridicule for smug, upper middle class fascist rad libs. Do you and Diane really think this is where a tactical approach to politics leads someone with Greaves brains and dedication? No, surely not. So that makes this a pissing contest.

      there just aren’t organizations doing the larger picture stuff in the US that are truly left and not Dem. Party.

      I don’t disagree with that and I don’t think he would either so it doesn’t contradict anything he said. You seem to think his argument fails because it leads to staying home both days and you see merit in J20. But he’s not arguing backwards from your conclusion.

      • No soy yo says:

        I didn’t discount the demographics, nor did I mean to imply I think they’re wrong. I have never seen something that is more general that “has high school or less,” and race and income. It is not based on geography (city dwellers vs non-), English-speakers, reading level, etc. so I said my experience in eastern cities organizing was different.
        But I was also referring to them as organizing tools of workers, not for intellectual discussions.

        “My God. It was an offhand comment about how someone who considers himself rigorously tactical spends entire days in a Twitter echo chamber being an object of ridicule for smug, upper middle class rad libs. Do you and Diane really think this is where a tactical approach to politics leads? No, surely not. So that makes this a pissing contest, which is I guess why you’re both just pulling shit out of your asses.”

        Jesus. I have absolutely no idea what you’re referring to, or where Diane and I are even agreeing. What offhand comment?

        Phil may not be anonymous. But most of the people he interacts w/ are. And preaching w/o interaction will not get far on FB (or Twitter).

        When I said “the problem with his Tweetstorm” I wasn’t saying I disagreed or that I was trying to contradict him. (though now after my most recent conversation w/ him on Twitter, I am reconsidering). I was saying I agree with the sentiment: “find organizations” and “find leaders,” but haven’t thus far found them. And at some point having folks stay home because we can’t find them becomes questionable. I am struggling with this: I am not trying to contradict or argue, except to the extent that discussions bring about ideas. I am actually looking for answers. I don’t have them.

        Somehow you seem to think I’m a huge Twitter cheerleader. I’m not. I would certainly follow more people and/or make an effort to have followers if I were. As a matter of fact I went to Twitter during Occupy out of curiosity, and didn’t return for years until I saw a quote of a Tweet of yours on Silber’s blog. So really I went to Twitter to find you, ironically enough. Since then, I have found it to be useful to go to people’s feeds to find links on current events. When i use it for that purpose I like it. If I get bogged down beyond that I don’t. Twitter is useful for turnout of low-income workers in cities in this country who work two jobs, have limited time, and many have limited reading skills. Many people are worried about exposing themselves on FB w/ radical ideas. I have never spent a bunch of time at either location and said, “oh I’m so glad I spent all evening on X,” quite the opposite as I’ve said before.

      • Tarzie says:

        No I know you’re not a huge Twitter cheerleader, nor is Diane, so I didn’t understand why we were arguing. And why you still are. I guess this is less about the merits of Twitter than the merits of Facebook. Whatever the case, sussing out why some platforms work and others don’t isn’t entirely useless so I’ll stop bitching.

        And preaching w/o interaction will not get far on FB (or Twitter).

        I don’t think that’s true. Lurkers can get a lot from watching exchanges between others. In fact, most people online are lurkers, regardless of whether or not they’re anonymous. And even if what you’re saying is correct, I don’t think there is a lot of value in interacting on Twitter with Phil, through no fault of his. The structure and culture are hostile to radical analysis. Like everyone else on Twitter, Phil and the tankies are in a constant state of reacting to The Spectacle and reacting to people reacting to the Spectacle. So little tiny things, like an anarchist punching a nazi — which clearly served the Nazi’s interests more than anyone elses — become a huge fucking deal. This isn’t to say that people didn’t say a lot of smart things about that event — Cordeliers remarks were particularly good — but it doesn’t change the fact that they spent hours and hours going down a cul de sac of antfuckery.

        I don’t think Twitter should be ruled out altogether, but that’s not what I was arguing for. Once again: I don’t think its a good format for preaching Marxist Leninism. You make some good points about the ways in which Twitter is useful. Since it’s a format suited to announcement and little else, sending people to long form efforts is a good use of it, although research is showing that people follow links less on Twitter than on Facebook. This is part of Twitter culture. I’m quite sure most of the people who spent two years ridiculing and mischaracterizing me never read a single thing on this blog. Some of them will even admit it. “Me, read YOU??? LOL!!!” I doubt they even read the luminaries I write about But still, anyone writing long-form should at least be tweeting out their longer efforts. I never said otherwise. Twitter is definitely suited to announcing demonstrations and meetings, yes. But then, that’s not proselytizing either.

    • Hummus says:

      As someone who totally and accidentally ended up in DC yesterday

      Staying home was the right thing there is nothing remotely rad here. Plenty of self congratulation though, especially among the losers.

      • Tarzie says:

        How does one end up in DC accidentally?

        Yeah I find the idea of radicals and liberals coming together for this ridiculous. A coalition makes sense when there’s a policy issue at stake. But this was a demonstration of moral virtue on behalf of an outgoing fascist administration against an incoming one no matter how the Fiveks wanna spin it.

      • Hummus says:

        Went home to help euthanize a pet, most of my friends ended up in DMV while I was cast up north, ended up here for apolitical reasons but got to watch everyone trickle through from the women’s protest, hear conversations around me, smell people who certainly smell like they were out all day even if the sign holding did nothing.

      • diane says:

        Went home to help euthanize a pet

        oh honey, so fucking painful

        as all of us know, they are not actually pets, they are a part of ourselves ….

  5. diane says:

    I have a pertinent, logical , non blaming comment (numbered 20482, submitted at 7:46 PM EST (Eastern Standard Time™)) jammed up in spam?

  6. Amish Rake Fight says:

    Thank you for this post, and for your comment that helped crystallize my feelings about #J20 in a single sentence: “But this was a demonstration of moral virtue on behalf of an outgoing fascist administration against an incoming one no matter how the Fiveks wanna spin it.”
    I remember back in November when I saw #J20 popping up and being supported by a few radicals that I casually follow on Twitter. My first thought was, “Why would radical anarchist lefties pick THAT day, of all days, to plan a big strike and protest?” Was it not glaringly obvious that picking inauguration day was inviting terrible optics and liberal/Dem co-option?
    I’m not trying to sound like a know-it-all with 20/20 hindsight – actually it’s the opposite. I admit to being ignorant about a great deal of left politics and I am a complete novice when it comes to strategy and tactics. It’s why I so often digest the posts and commentary here and rarely contribute comments of my own. So if a self-admitted novice dummy like me can see the problems with choosing #J20 as opposed to any other calendar day, shouldn’t it have been transparently obvious to the radicals/lefties/anarchists/etc. who got on board with it early on? Or am I missing something, and once again my ignorance is showing?

    • Hummus says:

      I badly want to just write “because Anarchy Dad” and nothing else but that does nobody any favors. In the process of leaving DC right now and if someone who probably could do a better job of explaining it than me (Tarzie, No Soy Yo, etc) hasn’t by the time I can write again, I’ll give it a shot.

      • Hummus says:

        Slightly longer phone is dying answer: because the “radical anarcho/com left” is mostly composed of pretenders and are carefully curated on social media, which I believe is the chief argument against continuing focus on social media engagement as opposed to actual action/organizing in reality.

      • robertmstahl says:

        Is it not an effort to concatenate these more narrowed channels of specific events in time with the broader context of any real progress over the course of ‘all’ time, I think is very real? Time becomes the ignorance if something is not brought to light in a broader sphere, even if not, literally, but formally, such as the subject of transformation itself, justifiably under complete suspicion?

    • poob says:

      I don’t think that’s ignorant at all. I had basically the same thought at the time. But I do wonder whether it’s liberal/Dem “co-option”. I haven’t been following closely, but I just assumed that most of the participants and many organisers would be openly Democrats, including but not limited to the type who voted for Bernie AND Hilary. I also assumed that the lefties promoting it weren’t denying this, but were just arguing that they could radicalise the event by attending. I disagree with the approach regardless though. Hypothetically it could make sense to go along to try to explain to people that things were already awful under Obama and would have been under Clinton, and that a radical alternative are need, and then actually explain what the radical alternative is. However, the US left doesn’t have any radical alternatives. They haven’t come up with anything half as “radical” as veganism and other basic ethical behaviour in terms of practical advice. I think the US radical left and liberals are fundamentally very similar, in that they mainly exist so that all Americans can find someone who they think is even more evil than themselves to point a finger at, so that they can keep doing what they are doing and not doing what they are not doing with less guilt.

      • Hummus says:

        “I also assumed that the lefties promoting it weren’t denying this, but were just arguing that they could radicalise the event by attending.”

        I haven’t seen the tweets on this but it doesn’t sound out of character and the picture I did see of the burnt limo with an anarchy tag on it seems emblematic of this.

      • Tarzie says:

        One of the Psy Op enthusiasts remarked that the “We the People” on the same limo seemed out of character for anarchists and I’m inclined to agree. The biggest problem with adventurist violence and property destruction is the wide berth it gives to state-sponsored provocation. You can just never tell what’s going on.

      • Tarzie says:

        I think the US radical left and liberals are fundamentally very similar, in that they mainly exist so that all Americans can find someone who they think is even more evil than themselves to point a finger at, so that they can keep doing what they are doing and not doing what they are not doing with less guilt.

        That certainly explains some of it and alludes to the sickeningly religious character of US liberal-left politics. Some radicals are actually worse in this respect because they’ll give you a pseudo-analysis for not boycotting meat or working in a soup kitchen. In the next breath, they’ll admonish you for watching Roman Polanski or Woody Allen movies on Netflix.

        I just wish there were some solid norms for being factual, analytical and historical. I could forgive everything else.

    • Tarzie says:

      The only thing I think you’re missing ARF is that most US radicals are liberal Democrats at heart.

      There are other radicals that see the contradictions in liberal anti-Trump derangement but regard it as a possible gateway drug to a more principled politics. There are times when it makes sense for liberals and radicals to gather together in protest. But these people go wrong because they think it always does.

      It’s really the difference between radicals who see liberalism as a point on the continuum to radicalism and those, like me, who see it as the Ruling Class’s first line of defense from the left. If I’m being broad-minded, it’s both, though I think more people would go straight to radicalism if it had the same purchase on mainstream politics, but of course it never will.

    • Amish Rake Fight says:

      Thank you for your replies everyone. Nothing to add or expand on, just wanted to say thanks.

  7. rainey says:

    Hope you don’t mind me dropping in on this discussion on the nature of the J20 day of something with celebs, but I have something to add you may find interesting.
    This is an article written about the nature of mass demonstrations by John Berger in 1968 – he died recently – sadly, that is how I came to be aware of his work as I hadn’t heard of him before, but have been catching up– he got the sort of obituary from the Guardian that is reserved for Chavez, Castro etc. It is in Counterpunch – here – http://www.counterpunch.org/2017/01/20/the-nature-of-mass-demonstrations/
    This part sums up the J20 for me: emphases mine

    ‘The truth is that mass demonstrations are rehearsals for revolution: not strategic or even tactical ones, but rehearsals of revolutionary awareness. The delay between the rehearsals and the real performance may be very long: their quality – the intensity of rehearsed awareness – may, on different occasions, vary considerably: but any demonstration which lacks this element of rehearsal is better described as an officially encouraged public spectacle.’

    ‘Either authority must abdicate and allow the crowd to do as it wishes: in which case the symbolic suddenly becomes real, and, even if the crowd’s lack of organisation and preparedness prevents it from consolidating its victory, the event demonstrates the weakness of authority. Or else authority must constrain and disperse the crowd with violence: in which case the undemocratic character of such authority is publicly displayed. The imposed dilemma is between displayed weakness and displayed authoritarianism. (The officially approved and controlled demonstration does not impose the same dilemma: its symbolism is censored: which is why I term it a mere public spectacle.) Almost invariably, authority chooses to use force.’
    I thought the J20 was all about dividing the population along identity in which the ruling class control and therefore win as opposed class war which would pose a real revolutionary threat which they don’t control and may lose. In fact it reminded me of the last season of South Park when a gender war was unleashed – I wait for the ‘Wieners out for Trump’ rallies to start any day now!
    This was Sanders tweet on it –as I see it Trump is calling out to the working class – this is pure projection!

    ‘President Trump, you made a big mistake. By trying to divide us up by race, religion, gender and nationality you actually brought us closer.’

    • wendyedavis says:

      related in a way is kali akuno a9who co-authored the malcolm x grassroots 2012 ‘operation ghetto storm) and doug norberg’s: ‘Build and Fight: Beyond Trump and the Limitations of the United Front’

      ““At this time of great crisis, there are fevered calls for the Left to forge a “united front.” However, “these calls rarely take into account the inequality or lack of political parity of the ‘uniting’ forces,” or the difference between strategic alliances and the temporary or limited unity of tactical alliances. Moreover, what is to be gained from such unity, and for whom? “At best, ‘united fronts’ are instruments for restoring the status quo ante.”

      it’s long, w/ plenty of historiacal narrative as to how we got here. their focus is toward:

      “We argue, that the salvation of the human family is up to us – the revolutionary left and the people’s movements. We must find a way to align and unite our fragmented forces, and form a revolutionary, counter-hegemonic force.

      Some of the fundamental questions confronting emergent revolutionary forces are how will the developing anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist struggle be unified? How will the revolutionary political forces develop and struggle? And where should and will they aim their strategic focus?” http://blackagendareport.com/pros_cons_united_front

      @ tarzie: i hadn’t known that greaves does longer writing; good to know. and whoa, i loved: ‘the cul de sac of antfuckery’.

    • Tarzie says:

      Thanks for this, rainey. Great quote and comment.

      I totally agree on where the fault lines are. Liberals and most radicals are mad at rank and filers who are as powerless as they are. They’re wishing uninsured cancer on Red Staters. Fivek makes cracks about old people on social security.

      What I dislike most about US antifa is its overwhelming and arguably elitist focus on would-be brownshirts as if they’re the both the drivers of fascism and a necessary precondition. The absence of a traditional brownshirt contingent among Democrats is why these idiots see a political and moral chasm between Clinton and Trump, and now a nazi under every bed, despite Clinton’s extensive cv of genuinely fascist accomplishments. If you disparage this infantile, ahistoric, LIBERAL, power-worshiping drama in all but the most carefully chosen words, you’re a nazi-enabler.

  8. diane says:

    you’re heading towards Lambert™ [Correntewire™ – Naked Capitalism™] territory with the Site Owner™/Editorial Abuse. For example:

    1. Changing what you wrote in response to someone, while they’re are unable to change their responses which were posted before you changed your wording.

    2. Deleting words (‘heh’ spats lambert deletes whole phrases and then blocks any response comments; whether calm, or outraged) from poster’s comments. (I don’t mind if you correct my typos, especially since I have a funky keyboard, but why bother posting my comment if you don’t like all of it, that rather horrifies me, rightfully so, as you are actually deleting words from my mouth, which then are etched into perma pixels.

    3. Inserting your reply out of time sequence, in other words: as if you responded before the response[s] made before yours.

    4. Blocking response comments, even when they are not at all an attack.

    It’s the repeated cumulative paper cuts in life which become toxic and deadly. I’ve posted here, since 2012, with good intent , and a ton of admiration for much of what you’ve noted. I resent your treatment of me.

    You are dead wrong about those Facebook/Google demographics, and that ACCE$$ CO$T. I’m economically forced to use dial up (especially for privacy purposes) I likely could not access a Facebook page even if I wanted too. I am unable to view videos, etcetera. I don’t blame you for not knowing it, I do blame you for shutting me down so insultingly, without even bothering to ask me why I stated what I did. (By the by you should drop that Gmail account, no one well read/experienced with Silicon Valley would contact you with any whistleblowing, then again, that gives you a good excuse to be so utterly clueless.)

    As I noted above (as I post), I don’t FOLLOW™ anyone either, that includes you, I’m very sorry I feel it necessary to even write this so hideously publicly.

    Lastly:

    My God. It was an offhand comment about how someone who considers himself rigorously tactical spends entire days in a Twitter echo chamber being an object of ridicule for smug, upper middle class fascist rad libs. Do you [No soy yo] and Diane really think this is where a tactical approach to politics leads someone with Greaves brains and dedication? No, surely not. So that makes this a pissing contest.

    huh?????? ……. biological Females have never had pissing contents with penises, it doesn’t make any biological sense, just for one thing.

    • diane says:

      so very sorry, pissing contests, not pissing contents ….

      (using my old fake email addy here, I am not going to bother to Verify!™ who I am this time.)

      • diane says:

        oh shit I used the new one, I am that overwhelmed [sic?], yes

        another attempt here (hint: a green Avatar, if Successful ….

        how many are weeping along with me?

  9. wendyedavis says:

    as far as twitter being a teaching medium for either marxist-leninist thought, i’d think that if greaves or any of the others simply got a free wordpress blog or a blogger one, they could write longer, then post any new diaries on twitter. just criticizing others who don’t pass muster doesn’t seem to be working, and for those like myself who couldn’t tell a trot from a tankie, it would help.

    i will say that at least wsws.org does translate a lot of their essays into other languages to spread their messages.

    as for the anti-trump protests, boy, howdy, does it depend on the op-ed writers as to what groups and philosophies were involved. but then some are calling bernie-ites and unidentified black hoodied ‘anarchists’ radical left, so…i feel i made the right decision staying away from those two days, although one or two peeps at my home website really want to talk about it all. ah, well.

    i will say that almost everyday i get on cordliers’ account to see what he’s dug up of interest.

    • Tarzie says:

      I agree with you. Greaves is one of the few tankies that does long form. But he clearly spends more time in reaction mode on Twitter.

      Agree emphatically on Cordeliers. One of the few accounts I can’t quit entirely.

      • Hummus says:

        Cordeliers is a gift because he/she has gone for years without coming across to me as imbuing tweets with any sort of personality or ego and I mean that in the best possible way.

        I don’t know who they are at all and we need more of that not less. No brand. No glory. No Fiveking. Probably has pushed what you can do with radleft on social media to it’s furthest extent without folding or cooptation. Wonderful source of information.

        I too with my twitterless eyes still sometimes peek.

      • Tarzie says:

        I dunno. I feel a personality comes across.

        My objection to Fivek and her ilk isn’t that they have egos or attempt to be personalities. I’ve always found the “brand” talk about these people distracting and silly when the obvious problem is their shitty ethics and politics. I was fine with Fivek’s attempt to rebrand — and defended her at the beginning — until it became apparent that she was going to lie and renounce her way to broader appeal, as well as find common cause with trolling scum like joolsd and david k wayne. If she’d done the same thing without all the cutesy shit and avatar changing it would have been just as bad.

      • wendyedavis says:

        thanks for greaves’ blogsite, and the most recent one might explain a few things to me as far as why the US supports those folks, and why graeber and others love them. i did see comments about how kewl it is to see see feminists with rifles or something. but iirc, they were calling for a no-fly zone in syria as per candidate red queen as well.

        and yeah, the Imperium has fucked over the kurds eleven ways from sunday,

        but oof: that pale grey is had to read.

        hummus: “I too with my twitterless eyes still sometimes peek.” niiiice. yeah, and cordeliers even links to the trots at wsws at times.

  10. Hieroglyph says:

    I may soon die of rage. The poor troubled chumps who think they are protesting fascism, I forgive. The actual fascists who are manipulating these low-information rubes, not so much. And the manipulation is just so cynical, so malicious, I can only assume that the ring-leaders have been pre-approved due to their obvious psychopathy. Trump is likely to prove a mixed bag, because he is, at heart, on the liberal wing of capitalism, the wing which understands that much more of their lunatic sibling will result in all of them being shot in the face. But this is FDR, not Hitler, and the absurd abuse of feminism – they wore a fucking hijab for christ sake – would make Goebbels proud.

    We live in a world where the utter lunatic David Brock just spanked 1.2 billion on nothing, and the medieval weirdling, Clinton, is about to get a TV show, and this is deemed uncontroversial in CIA-media circles. Stalin committed many terrible crimes, but he would have had the decency to shoot both those fuckers, and early.

    • robertmstahl says:

      “the wing which understands that much more of their lunatic sibling will result in all of them being shot in the face…”

      I cannot help but love this.

      • Hieroglyph says:

        I’ll take a compliment where I can. I think that’s what Trump is about. I know Clinton was not.

        There is a larger, troubling, conversation about how women have supported Clinton, despite her malice. It’s not something I understand, to be blunt. Clinton is that rare breed of bigot, liar, sociopath, anti-feminist, and war-criminal, and it escapes me why women, some of them, consider her a feminist. She isn’t, never was.

      • Tarzie says:

        In what way is Hillary not a liberal feminist in the same way her fans are?

        It doesn’t strike me as different from Black support for Obama. Liberals think representation matters.

    • robertmstahl says:

      Also, FDR, Churchill, and Stalin were a team. Hitler, stood alone. Where is the southern cross here?

    • Tarzie says:

      “medieval weirdling” heh.

      I wanna kiss this whole comment.

  11. Hummus says:

    Why do the dregs constantly end up in Brooklyn?

    Fivek is out at JFK trying to Jen Caban (busy tweeting “free my liberal friends” like the way she did for Weev) her way into leadership of the #J20RESISTANCE or whatever. What is her fucking day job? This place is not cheap.

    Anyway, I’m officially retiring since “I don’t want to talk about politics” is the new “I didn’t vote.” People choosing to press the issue with me will be rewarded with charming and graphic anecdotes about children being obliterated by drones, beheadings, plain old starvation, and other crimes the Empire commits against the periphery that you were busy not caring about until you were told, an important point put far better here: http://www.blckdgrd.com/2017/01/having-proceeded-by-logic-of-your.html

    “Liberals are not brain-dead. They can figure these contradictions out for themselves. As far as I can tell from the way it has been reported, as well as occasional, actual conversations with real life liberals, they tacitly supported the groundwork laid that has led us to the president we have today. I encourage their resistance. But I don’t expect it to extend to resistance to their perceived co-liberal representatives whose resistance is even more convenient than their own. Put another way: I have seen no evidence that anyone cared about war refugees much until they were pressed to care.”

    I hope “Oh, so now you think it’s really bad?” is a trope that persists throughout the ages; I hope in the future great plays will be written and performed for centuries about the consternation and hypocrisy of this era’s liberal. They’ve certainly earned it.

    • Tarzie says:

      The best thing about Fivek is what a serial failure she is. Still hovering around 3500 followers. She’s a run of the mill snot lacking Crabapple’s taste for blood and the “assets” Crapple famously, by her own account, monetized. If she’s not a paid operative, she’s pathetic on a grand scale.

      Good question about Brooklyn. I think it’s that a critical mass of dipshits ended up there and the rest just followed. It really does have an incredibly large shithead population, across the whole liberal to radlib spectrum. Hillary, Chris Hayes, Doug Henwood, the Chapo crew, Amber Frost, Corey Robin, Sunkara…etc. A mystery why Crapple is in Manhattan. Fivek told me it’s because her sponsors wanted her close to Occupy.

      officially retiring

      From what?

      • Hummus says:

        Talking about anything remotely political beyond people I choose anywhere ever. Ever looking at Facebook again.

      • Tarzie says:

        I’ve made the same promise to myself but I keep breaking it. I feel like I am speaking a different language almost. It’s that frustrating and I have trouble remaining constructive. I had an email exchange with a family member about Trump and I’ve been afraid to look at my email ever since. I don’t know why I do this. I don’t have the stomach for the messes I get myself into. I think it has to do with caffeine levels in my blood. I should only engage when they’re low if I’m going to engage at all.

    • wendyedavis says:

      could you say who fivek is? and how linda sarsour fits into ‘one to be pwned’ in the red twittersphere?

      • Hummus says:

        FREE BRAND EXPOSURE: https://twitter.com/fivek?lang=en

        Taryn Fivek is a self professed red who I’ve not really known but from time to time posted at the same places (I think even IRCs) since at least 2008. Really always seemed to be about it, but she wrote a book under a pseudonym (Emma Quangel) which was essentially a direct attack on Molly Crabapple. Crabapple responded by doxxing Fivek: https://medium.com/@animethinktank/molly-crabapple-vice-buzzfeed-exposed-a-syrian-war-journalist-to-terrorist-reprisals-in-an-dd90ff08265b

        It’s pretty clear that in the fallout of all of this shit someone not committed to communism with any rigor suggested to Fivek that if she has to deal with this bullshit, she might as well monetize it, leading to whatever this nebulous cesspits these are: https://noplatform.org

        What Tarzie said: “The best thing about Fivek is what a serial failure she is. Still hovering around 3500 followers. She’s a run of the mill snot lacking Crabapple’s taste for blood and the “assets” Crapple famously, by her own account, monetized. If she’s not a paid operative, she’s pathetic on a grand scale.” It’s one or the other at this point, neither good.

        So comrade, if you ever read this, I remember when you went by ‘discipline’ and ‘khamsek’ and left out a bunch of shit here that can probably be chalked up to being younger and stupid, as was I, but please knock this stupid transparent bullshit off because we really don’t need this right now. You can, you know, actually work a job instead of hustling mentally ill people on the internet. And if you actually can’t see through the bullshit start reading everything here to start.

      • wendyedavis says:

        thanks, hummus. i might not have asked if i’d seen your desire to be gone altogether. as joss yould have it, when i clicked into her account, i found this: @fivek “There are thousands of militant anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-imperialist protesters descending on DC next week and they could care less.” (meaning the media, in a string of subtweets, i think you call them.)

        wish she could read this great piece by cj hopkins at CP: ‘resistance and its double’. he has a hella lot of fun showing exactly how many publications are will for the marches. i esp. loved that ‘the pink pussy hat’ made it onto the cover of Time magazine. http://bit.ly/2jML477

        dunno crabpple well, but i sure don’t care for her artwork. syria seems to be kinda ground zero for the proxy battles, though, as well as so many lies and so much contrived agitprop. for fun: “pierre” just tweeted that “we couldn’t get chavez, gotta get trump!” or close. what.an.asshat.kleptocrat.

      • Tarzie says:

        Fivek doesn’t need Hopkins because she knows better. She once said if she got favorably written up in the New York Times (a la Jacobin), she’d wonder what she was doing wrong. But if you want to make an elite-funded, partisan, liberal insurgency look like radical “resistance,” you have to make a fuss about being on the margins. It’s sort of like the monolithic resistance to Snowwald, which came in the form of lengthy hagiographies, softball interviews on network television, Pulitzers and Oscars. This is what makes whatever it is she’s doing look like a paid performance. It’s in league with calling all Soros detractors, nazis.

        Thanks for the link, btw.

      • robertmstahl says:

        One Scientific example about real margins is the Midwest, or the Bread Basket. One of the greatest wildflower gardens was overtaken by the wheat, et alia [prior to the wildflowers taking over after the”indigenous” humans simply burned down the dense forest] . Today, the railroads contain the source for seeds of, by far, of most of the originals. A margin. Just thought this one slit of light might clarify, even more..

  12. wendyedavis says:

    thanks for placing her in context, tarzie, and itmakes so much sense: “since we are beleagured by being soooo marginalized, we Must Be the revolution!” as a side note, i keep reading that the women at the marchers were *so empowered* by attending, but they never say ‘how’ they were empowered. i swear the one essay was proud to say that ‘women have stopped talking about the chirren andwrite letters to congres’. if the socialist worker did say it, it was edited out, and is at jacobin and the guardian without it. another ‘shame on you, holier than thou lefties thang. but my memory is full of holes, and it may have been another #J20 biggie.

    interesting metaphor, robertmstahl.

  13. Hieroglyph says:

    Tarzie: “In what way is Hillary not a liberal feminist in the same way her fans are?

    It doesn’t strike me as different from Black support for Obama. Liberals think representation matters.”

    I take your question as posed in the spirit of inquiry. Of course, my first answer is: I’ve no idea at all.

    My second answer is mere opinion. It’s an intriguing question. Hillary is a terrible person. Her entire life has been devoted to proving to anyone and everyone that she is an utterly vicious and horrible nothing who shouldn’t be anywhere near power. And that’s on a good day. She has never had a good day, of course. She never will.

    I’m more reluctant to damn her supporters. I’m afraid I’ve been watching InfoWars recently. The alt-right routinely call the HillaryBots zombies, and morons. And I agree with InfoWars – these aren’t bad people, but they appear to be under a spell-binding level of indoctrination that, alas, I can’t quite understand. I kinda sound like a conspiranoid, but the bizarre behavior of ‘the left’ recently does look like a kind of hypnosis. I begin to sympathize with the Germans – and that’s bad.

    • Tarzie says:

      My question was posed in the spirit of inquiry. However, I don’t think you answered it. I don’t see that being a terrible person and a liberal feminist are opposed, so long as you are not uniquely more terrible to women than men for sexist reasons. Perhaps the question is, can a person be a liberal and a feminist at the same time?

      Generally the liberal definition of feminist is one who believes in full equality for women as women. It doesn’t express anything about imperialism or capitalism. It doesn’t say anything about inequality for other reasons. Various feminists say this and that are “feminist issues” but that’s a largely subjective shoehorning of pet issues premised on the fact that they merely affect women. But so does everything. Feminist, to a liberal, clearly does not mean, care for the well-being of all women. It means gender equality. Those are two different things.

      I honestly get frustrated by these nomenclature things which are akin to “Is it art” discussions that are really asking, “is it good art.” I take people at their word. Hillary says she’s a feminist. So do her most ardent fans. Barring glaring incongruities, like opposition to abortion or birth control or equal pay, I don’t have grounds for calling them something else. Liberal feminism is a toxic waste dump and always will be because liberalism is a toxic waste dump. It is feminism nonetheless.

      • robertmstahl says:

        “It doesn’t say anything about inequality for other reasons. ”

        Therein lies the missing “accounting principle” for mankind. The first-person subjective experience, or account, is anything but unique. That is why I remain true to (among others) the late Francisco J. Varela’s Principles of Biological Autonomy (selfishly!). I have it, but, it is largely unavailable, if not completely. He, himself, did himself in, I believe, by taking the “meds ” for Hep C “needed” to kill him. I follow David Rasnik, PhD on viruses that are not, even… The ideas are that evolution has drifted forward despite these throwbacks, across the cultural landscape. The issue is one where productivity and distribution are matched. Tee hee, right?

        I could go on about what has been surgically removed from REAL progress, mainly in education, but, I defer to your awareness because I have nothing but respect, and a little baited breath. Only, after one note more, however.

        Another book out of putting for nearly 30 years now is “Handbook of Protoctista” a thick encyclopedic text about an entire Kingdom unknown in its historical makeup heretofore, now identified to be twice as old as plants and animals, AND, having produced nucleii 500 million years before nature invented the cell wall. A motley bunch, they leave “no trail” to any perception of them, such as, thru cleaning the back of your eyeballs. All research in formal [sic] academia into this vast kingdom must proceed without this work…, now for 30 odd years almost.

      • wendyedavis says:

        i know that i’ll mook this up, as i’m in rough shape after several days of being so, and this is toward the end of my day. but if by now, or ever, “feminism” doesn’t denote caring for all women, and just “equality”, what the fook is it about? as in: why didn’t any of the #women’s marchers call for an end to war by the Imperium to help women globally who’ve been driven into diaspra, killed, starved, etc.? is it because they reckon that they should be killed, etc., equally under the rules of endless terror wars and the us/nato ‘s “exporting democracy for some?

        when on the stage steinem can be glad that “in the ’60 things were worse (the kennedys, mlk’s assassinations) i’d ask worse for whom, ya twit? when ashley judd pays homage to the ovien queen and fooking condi rice as “nasty women” (yanno, pink pussy Trump pushback). when on the stage was twice clinton endorser ‘amerika ferrera’, born to honduran parents, did she consider at all clinton’s part in over-throwing duly elected leftist manuel zelaya?

        ack, i should hush my gob. this stuff is srsly harshing my mellow. oh: by the way, i was always by way of an ‘accidental feminist’, did all kinds of ‘men’s work’ in my life: carpentry, stone masonary, built a house, yada, yada, before i became a body-mind-therapist (another over-used word is ‘therapist’, imo.) sleep well, dream of a better world…. forgive any typos; my eyes ain’t seein’ all that well again.

      • Tarzie says:

        carpentry, stone masonary, built a house, yada, yada

        you’re my idol. I’m crazy in love right now with people who make/build things. Trying to be one of them.

        With ya on the rest.

      • wendyedavis says:

        kind of you, and i love that you’re learning practical skills like this. i was fortunate in tht i love(d) to work hard, was a bit of an amazon, and had teachers willing not to treat me like i was incapable of learning ‘men’s work’, mr, wd for one. good tools matter in the end, and when we built our 12-sided hogan, once we got better tools like a curve duplicator, compund mitre saws, etc., i kinda wanted to do some things over, but by then we started adopting chirren, and i went back to body work, so…not so much but dayum, just about every skill is avaiable on youtube now, including laptop repair (i’ve used the videos frequently), so i’ll bet if you get stymied on a project, you might find an answer there.

        i will admit that i ended up tearing up my knees in the end. long boring story, but i found it necessary at some point to dry-stack boulders to create several retaining walls, and cold-chisel flagstone for walkways..including three stone staircases. hefting those lunker rocks just ruined my knees, but dayum, do i appreciate what i built when i go out to the wee gardens.

        dunno if you ever have extra reading time, but here are couple short vignettes about some of my work i parked at the café when i built it. oh, and i forgot to say that i got a job doing maintenance for the city of cortez, co to earn money for massage school. can’t imagine why they gave me the job: ‘a woman’, go figure. (smile)

        http://bit.ly/2l6K269 http://bit.ly/2kybQns

      • Tarzie says:

        Yeah. YouTube is amazing for this stuff and seeing the ingenuity of regular people and their generosity in sharing info really works against my misanthropy.

        Wow you really do it all. Will definitely check out the links. thanks.

      • Hieroglyph says:

        Oh, I don’t disagree. I think Hillary is different from her supporters, though, because Hillary is evidently something akin to a serial killer, if rumours around her State Department tenure are to be believed. I do think Liberal Feminism is basically just another mind-game, being played on the hapless rubes who aren’t part of the inner circles that Knows Stuff. Those rubes are both men and women, though of women are the ones being targeted, as they would be in, say, an advert.

        And of course, gender equality isn’t the same as ‘breaking the glass ceiling’ (I hate that term with a genuine passion), or equal pay for rich female neocons in Hollywood\The Board\Sport. I apologise if this sounds condescending; I know that the readers of this thread know this fine well, but I feel it’s worth noting, if nothing else because rich, ultra-right neocon feminists make me feel ill.

        It’s not just me though. Loads of women hate Clinton, and that’s why she lost. Also – and I did Google this, a few months ago – it’s dead easy to find feminist writers who think Clinton is a hateful old warmonger, who should never be President. Gloria Steinhem is an actual CIA asset, by her own admission, so who gives a flying what she says.

  14. robertmstahl says:

    Please read “How Britian Initiated Both World Wars,” by Nick Kollerstrom, practically a pamphlet, and, tell me you didn’t change this opinion to Churchill, &c. Patterns. Fate accomplished.

  15. robertmstahl says:

    Doesn’t all of this fall under the larger heading, specifically, of Omidyartardation??? If anything has been more of a “parasitic” operation during this election cycle, something to”fight” over, it has been this mechanical style of usurpation, electrically, the dehumanizing one. What ever did happen to Indira Singh, obviously Gary Webbed?

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