Posts tagged nonviolence

Wednesday Lazy Linking

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<li><p><a href="http://humaniterations.wordpress.com/2010/07/26/saving-our-history-books-for-the-singularity/">Saving Our History Books For The Singularity. rechelon, <cite>Human Iterations</cite> (2010-07-26)</a>. <q>Some noble soul has labored to put the two most important history books on Individualist Anarchism’s first wave in America online — and in very accessible condition.   Anyway, I felt I had to pause in my projects and distractions to let you know.  This is the shit. Eunice Minette Schuster’s...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://thepeaceablekingdom.wordpress.com/2010/07/26/what-does-it-mean-to-love-your-enemies/">What does it mean to love your enemies? Ryan, <cite>The Peaceable Kingdom</cite> (2010-07-26)</a>. <q>A question many Christians aren’t really asking. This moving video lays it out very simply. It is not wide-eyed optimism in the sense that it doesn’t portray automatic world peace and love in the face of violence. It means that to truly love your enemies you might have to receive...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://stumblingandmumbling.typepad.com/stumbling_and_mumbling/2010/07/a-squealing-leftie-writes.html">A squealing leftie writes. chris dillow, <cite>Stumbling and Mumbling</cite> (2010-07-23)</a>. <q>Tim says something that puzzles me:Human beings really are status seeking beings. The method of ranking it, enforcing it, discovering it, may change, but that there will be a social hierarchy is a given. And that’s the bit that our squealing lefties seem to forget….Simply because we are human beings...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://aaeblog.com/2010/07/27/three-from-vienna/">Three from Vienna. <cite>Austro-Athenian Empire</cite> (2010-07-27)</a>. Including an excellent anthology from my teacher Kelly Jolley, also including essays by my other teacher Roderick Long; and a Tractarian musical number. About the latter, all I can say is that he would have been better off trying to whistle it. <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://cherylcline.wordpress.com/2010/07/26/trail-of-tears-2010/">Trail of Tears 2010. <cite>der Blaustrumpf</cite> (2010-07-27)</a>. Deportation is ethnic cleansing. Nothing more, nothing less. <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://sheldonfreeassociation.blogspot.com/2010/07/remember-furkan-dogan.html">Remember Furkan Dogan. Sheldon Richman, <cite>Free Association</cite> (2010-07-27)</a>. <q>Furkan Dogan was the 19-year-old American fatally shot five times by Israeli commandos aboard the Mavi Marmara headed for Gaza -- without a peep from the Obama administration, which has time to get involved with everything else happening in the world. Dogan was a bright young man with a promising...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://feeds.boingboing.net/~r/boingboing/iBag/~3/wVz6pZKXl4M/wikileaks-releases-c.html">Wikileaks releases classified Afghanistan war logs: "largest intelligence leak in history" Xeni Jardin, <cite>Boing Boing</cite> (2010-07-25)</a>. <q>An archive of classified U.S. military logs spanning six years, more than 91,000 documents, and 200,000 pages, was today made available by WikiLeaks. The papers show a picture of the war in Afghanistan that is far more grim, and far less hopeful, than previously portrayed. The New York Times, London's...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>
<li><p><a href="http://design.canonical.com/2010/07/guadec-day-2-in-pursuit-of-critical-mass/">Guadec Day 2: In pursuit of critical mass. Ivanka Majic, <cite>Canonical Design</cite> (2010-07-27)</a>. <q>Today I was reminded of this quote by Jane Goodall: If everyone could think a little bit about small choices they make every day: What do you eat, does it result in animal cruelty? What do you wear, how was it made, does it damage the environment? When people start...</q> <em style="font-size: smaller">(Linked Tuesday 2010-07-27.)</em></p></li>

The Problems of Black Block Militancy: Milksop Liberalism is Not the Answer

A column by Clay Risen [IMC] begins with some interesting suggestions to the effect that the debate over the security fence marking off a no-free-speech zone for the upcoming IMF/World Bank protests in DC is probably something of a red herring: debate over the fence and security vs. the rights of demonstrators will eclipse the discussion of the actual meeting, individuals, and issues that they are demonstrating against. All this is very true. On the other hand, Risen quickly descends into feel-good liberal blather as he suggests that black-masked anarchists who will take direct action against the fence or other private property will cast a pall on the entire effort that peaceful, thoughtful people labored for. Predictably, he invokes the well-worn liberal platitudes about Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. to justify his sweeping dismissal of militant tactics and assumes that anyone who pursues them is simply an unthinking brute.

Well, look. A critique of Black Bloc-style militant tactics is in order. I know way too many would-be revolutionary white boys who have the time and the luxury to go to DC and throw things at police, but not everyone has the time, money, or legal protections and privileges that let them indulge in antagonism of police. But strategic use of direct action, including forceful direct action, can be a valid and important tactic. Police have proven in Genoa, DC, Philadelphia, etc. that they don’t give a shit whether you are violent or non-violent: they will beat the shit out of you and arrest you either way, and if they can’t figure out a reason they will make one up. Here, for example, the Black Bloc’s tactic of using force to un-arrest people from the police is a hell of a lot better than the passive acceptence of police state tactics urged by the liberals. Similarly, smashing barriers that keep demonstrators away from areas of wide public spectacle and media attention can accomplish the major goal of getting presence in the media (and directly in front of thousands of people) in a way that merely holding press conferences and peaceful marches will not do. Here a good example was the Black Bloc’s smashing of barriers between demonstrators and the motorcade route during the inauguration protests in DC.

We have, have, have to drop this one-dimensional mania for non-violent demonstrations and civil disobedience, along with its insipid, uncritical canonization of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. Strategic use of violence — violence in self-defense, violence against barriers which have no right to exist in the first place and which it serves a goal to destroy — is a hell of a lot more effective than marching around in a pathetic little circle with clever slogans on signs that the DC police have ensured no-one will see. Both violent and non-violent action are needed. India’s liberation was not accomplished by Gandhi’s march to the sea, but by both Gandhi and militants such as Communist workers. Black liberation in the United States, insofar as it has occurred, was not the invention of Martin Luther King Jr.; it was both Martin Luther King and Malcolm X, the Black Panther Party, etc.