What's going on in AFed?

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ajjohnstone
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Jan 13 2018 07:33

I have been reluctant to enter this discussion from fear of being accused of some sort of schadenfreude or being seen as simply interfering with something that is not my concern. However, i was struck by your remark.

Quote:
Each of these tiny groups seems to want to be the leader in ideas and/ or organisation of struggle but on their own possess neither the collective experience nor material resources to achieve that role. It doesn't help if each tiny group tries to overcome this problem by an intensive inward-looking concentration on trying to organisationally achieve some artificial proportional social balance or make up for such imbalance by an energetic and time consuming programme of self-awareness to make up for it.

I think this was partly what i was trying to convey less eruditely in my own organisation's reflection on its structure and priorities

Quote:
To solve a problem we have to detect it and describe it before we can determine what the problem is to fix we require group-think. Not one person is i think capable of performing miracles and i am not sure one group of socialists are able to either.
It has been said and i don't think it has been refuted but the decline in membership, participation, and activity is not unique to the SPGB but is reflected elsewhere in what use to be called the Impossiblist tradition or the non-market socialist thin red line movement to use John Crump's description of the broader movement.

https://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/forum/world-socialist-movement/organisation-update?page=6#comment-44337

I have said to my comrades a few times that we must tap into our collective knowledge to address the malaise we face and that needs to go beyond our own Party to consult, debate an argue until we reach some sort of common consensus, and it means give and take, and not fighting over the political high ground in battles from the past.

I'm not optimistic that such a project is achievable but, as i view it, surely it should be more feasible and viable a project than establishing world socialism and all the complications and complex relationships that will entail.

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jondwhite
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Jan 13 2018 12:45

Maybe not what is being suggested but we shouldn't dispense with inter-group adversarial debates or what some mislabel "sectarianism". Lets not all come together. Beware calls for unity.

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dark_ether
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Jan 13 2018 20:51

Generally I've found anarchist and libertarian communist folks able to get on and organise without being overly sectarian.
In Bristol, for example, the IWW, SolFed and AFed regularly support each others demos and events, advertise each others stuff, even pass on propaganda produced by the others. Which may not seem like a huge deal, but I've never seen a socialist or state-communist party handing out something with a 'competing' groups name on it!

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Jan 14 2018 12:31
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Is this another AFed split?

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the button
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Jan 14 2018 12:41

Pretty sure AFed would side with the JAMMs and other Discordian elements against the Illuminati.

no1
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Jan 14 2018 13:18

How typical of admins to censor the pro-Illuminati argument and ban its proponents.

Battlescarred
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Jan 15 2018 11:12

3 new news items at London Anarchist Communists blog
https://londonacg.blogspot.co.uk/

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the button
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Jan 15 2018 14:54
no1 wrote:
How typical of admins to censor the pro-Illuminati argument and ban its proponents.

This is exactly what the admins *want* you to think.

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Serge Forward
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Jan 15 2018 18:05
Battlescarred wrote:
3 new news items at London Anarchist Communists blog
https://londonacg.blogspot.co.uk/

Good to see the new London Anarchist Communists are already getting up to stuff.

Leicester Anarchist Communists are also keeping busy with an open discussion meeting on Nation or Class coming up soon on Tuesday 23rd January. See our website here: http://leicesteraf.blogspot.co.uk/

Also, at the national level, new articles are being posted on the Communist Anarchism blog.

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jef costello
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Jan 15 2018 20:37
Battlescarred wrote:
3 new news items at London Anarchist Communists blog
https://londonacg.blogspot.co.uk/

Is rebel city available online? I don't use facebook for 'radical' stuff.

Battlescarred
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Jan 15 2018 22:17

Article on the Monarchy and the Royal Wedding at the blog of the London Anarchist Communists:
https://londonacg.blogspot.co.uk/

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little_brother
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Jan 15 2018 23:17

Yes most Rebel City PDFs here for now (temp URL): http://afed.noflag.org.uk/publications/

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Jan 16 2018 09:17
little_brother wrote:
Yes most Rebel City PDFs here for now (temp URL): http://afed.noflag.org.uk/publications/

Very temp, unfortunately. None of the links work.
I found the first three issues on libcom but they are quite old.
https://libcom.org/library/rebel-city

Battlescarred
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Jan 16 2018 13:30

It should be pointed out that Rebel City has not been an AF publication since issue No.6 and includes other anarchists/libertarians in its editorial collective, including now London Anarchist Communists.

Battlescarred
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Jan 16 2018 13:45

Two members of London Anarchist Communists spoke on anarchism to 2 classes at a N. London school today:
https://www.blogger.com

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rat
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Jan 16 2018 14:11

The link above goes to the Communist Anarchism site.

So here's the link to the London Anarchist Communists blog with the info about the talk at the school:

Anarchy in school!

Battlescarred
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Jan 16 2018 14:17

Oops!

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little_brother
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Jan 16 2018 17:28
jef costello wrote:
little_brother wrote:
Yes most Rebel City PDFs here for now (temp URL): http://afed.noflag.org.uk/publications/

Very temp, unfortunately. None of the links work.
I found the first three issues on libcom but they are quite old.
https://libcom.org/library/rebel-city

OK. Go here and replace afed.org.uk in all pdf links with afed.noflag.org.uk
http://afed.noflag.org.uk/rebel-city-7-london-afs-regular-paper-is-available-for-free-download/

Spikymike
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Jan 16 2018 18:15

Not unsurprisingly this split in the AF has attracted some unwanted interest from other of the tiny groups claiming their place in the anarchist and communist milieu - from some confused sympathy for the 'Communist Anarchism' element by members of the SPGB to outright hostility towards both sides of the split and plain nastiness from the sectarians of the 'Northern Voices' outcasts, well known for their regular misinformation and lies directed at other anarchists. Not much sign here of cooperatively tapping in to any 'collective knowledge'.

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Serge Forward
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Jan 17 2018 00:29

Much as I have my disagreements with the SPGB, at least their comments haven't been mean spirited. On the other hand, Northern Voices should really be renamed Poisonous Voices. But I suppose it is the UK anarchist scene's very own pantomime villain... only with extra added batshittery.

Tom Henry
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Jan 19 2018 02:27

From the ACF/AF/LAC/Communist Anarchist Project aims and principles:

Quote:
We are opposed to the ideology of national liberation movements which claims that there is some common interest between native bosses and the working class in face of foreign domination. We do support working class struggles against racism, genocide, ethnocide and political and economic colonialism. We oppose the creation of any new ruling class. We reject all forms of nationalism, as this only serves to redefine divisions in the international working class. The working class has no country and national boundaries must be eliminated. We seek to build an anarchist international to work with other libertarian revolutionaries throughout the world.

When we wrote this section of the ACF aims and principles in the eighties I objected to the line:

Quote:
We do support working class struggles against racism, genocide, ethnocide and political and economic colonialism.

Specifically, the support against “political and economic colonialism.”

I objected to this on grounds that it effectively constituted support for national liberation struggles, even though we also wrote that we opposed “all forms of nationalism.”

Thus, for me, there was a significant contradiction within this paragraph. One that left it wide open as to how we should approach national liberation movements – that is, movements that strove for “political and economic” independence from colonialism (decolonization).

I think that the majority view amongst those who composed the wordings of the original aims and principles (of which I was one, the minority in this instance) was that ‘the support’ we would ‘give’ would be not to the leaders of any national liberation movements, but to the ‘workers’ who made up that movement.

But, in practice, ‘giving’ this kind of support, when one is purportedly ‘anti-national liberation,’ is mired in problems. Many of us, due to the times we lived in, had experienced these problems in our approaches to the liberation [sic] struggle in South Africa, led by the ANC.

(By the way, I have put the word ‘giving’ in scare quote marks to stress that such solidarity may not in effect be real when offered by a tiny number of people in a journal read by a tiny number of people, who cannot generate any practical or financial leverage – apart from if they actively participate in bigger, mainstream organisations such as unions, political parties, lobby groups, or charities.)

If we look at the paragraph again, having acknowledged this difficulty, it then becomes obvious that the sentence I objected to all those years ago is fraught with problems in itself. The main one being the question of just what is a “working class struggle”? If “racism, genocide, ethnocide and political and economic colonialism” are being opposed by non-working class elements of society, and/or led by non-working class elements - even if working class people are part of ‘the movement’ – how exactly is ACF/AF/LAC support, or not, to be shown?

Can, in one sense, a part of the reason for the recent split in the AF be discovered in this one deeply confused sentence, a sentence that, of course, reflects our (post) modern times?

And is this confusion to be perpetuated by the LAC group? Thereby simply maintaining the footings for future ‘internal’ cracks in the walls and other ructions?

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Serge Forward
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Jan 19 2018 08:43

It's not the reason but, all the same, I think your point is interesting and worth thinking about.

Mike Harman
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Jan 19 2018 12:49
Tom Henry wrote:
If we look at the paragraph again, having acknowledged this difficulty, it then becomes obvious that the sentence I objected to all those years ago is fraught with problems in itself. The main one being the question of just what is a “working class struggle”? If “racism, genocide, ethnocide and political and economic colonialism” are being opposed by non-working class elements of society, and/or led by non-working class elements - even if working class people are part of ‘the movement’ – how exactly is ACF/AF/LAC support, or not, to be shown?

(By the way, I have put the word ‘giving’ in scare quote marks to stress that such solidarity may not in effect be real when offered by a tiny number of people in a journal read by a tiny number of people, who cannot generate any practical or financial leverage – apart from if they actively participate in bigger, mainstream organisations such as unions, political parties, lobby groups, or charities.)

Well, I think this is a serious problem with bringing questions like this down to the issue of whether to 'support' or 'not support'. Let's look at two concrete examples:

Prior to the state of emergency in Kenya and the Kenya Land and Freedom Army (Mau Mau uprising), there was a constant cycle of struggles against land enclosures, livestock culls, the imposition of various forms of bonded labour etc., by the majority Kikuyu population, known as 'squatters' in the white highlands. These were imposed both by the colonial state and the settler farmers/landowners directly. This was an active attempt to proletarianise the Kikuyu population, land rights abrogated, then livestock culls were a central measure to complete the process from subsistence farmer-> squatter -> full agricultural proletarian.

Tabitha Kanogo's 'Squatters and the roots of Mau Mau' is very good on this (covers roughly 1905-1960). When large elements of that same population took up armed struggle, they were repressed (torture, concentration camps, all the rest) not only by the colonial state, but the post-colonial state in waiting ('0000s of Kikuyu volunteers for the colonial forces and condemnation from nationalist figures like Kenyatta regardless of some early support/ambiguity when it suited for leverage against the British), and that repression continued after independence.

Kanogo is also extremely clear that this was a movement of what was mostly farm labourers (she specifically calls out Frank Furedi's (now Spiked) book as incorrectly stating the movement had a 'petit bourgeois' leadership - foreman were often inducted into the movement last on a farm as a security measure because they were most likely to snitch, sometimes on a farm several miles away under threat of death so they couldn't name any of their subordinates, as opposed to being 'leaders' and there was not a strong relationship (if any at all) with the urban middle class.

In Algeria 1961/2 there was a mass movement of land and to a lesser extent factory occupations. There was some element of incorporation of this into the programme of the FLN - but as a way to co-opt and demobilise (in a similar way to the Bolshevik integration of the unions into the state and the neutralisation of the factory committees) - the embryonic self-management was squeezed out between the private sector and nationalisations. Rachid Tlemcani's "State and Revolution in Algeria" is good on this, and is referenced by https://libcom.org/history/ours-master-own-workers-control-commune-present. The UGTA in Algeria had a revolutionary syndicalist faction that tried to set up networks of councils in opposition to, or at least to maintain some autonomy from, the state.

I would expect all of the Kikuyu squatters and Algerian factory/farm occupiers were anti-colonialism - in the sense they were opposed to both the political and economic regime imposed by the colonial state and bourgeois. However their actions brought them into conflict not only with the colonial state and bourgeois but with the post-colonial state as well - and it's really not clear if the goal of the KLFA was to construct a post-colonial nation state (I'm not claiming they were anarchists, just that it wasn't a pro-state project either - there is a really terrible article on Kenya by someone who is now a lawyer the NRA that was republished by Zabalaza that does try to do this though and completely fucks up the history, which is what happens when you try to 'give support'/adopt: https://zabalazabooks.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/anarchism_and_revolution_in_black_africa_by_sph.pdf).

In the same decade, we had Hungary '56 - where there was a working class movement in the sense of workers councils across the country, but where at least some of the fighting in Budapest was conducted by nationalist (in some cases ultra-nationalist) groups (there are CIA files on the ex-WWII officers involved for example). Both Hungarian nationalists and tankies have spent a great deal of effort painting Hungary '56 as a nationalist rather than working class struggle for obvious though differing reasons.

The question here is not whether to 'support' or 'not support' Algerian farm and factory occupations, the Kikuyu squatters prior to or during the operation of KLFA (especially 60 years after the fact), but to try to ascertain to what extent they were class movements. And not based on whether "working class people are part of ‘the movement’" but based on their actions - the question of class conflict - against wage labour, capital, and the state in its various formations (colonial or post-colonial etc.) and looking at class composition - divisions within the working class not just the neat categories of working and middle. To what extent was there working class self-organisation? To what extent were general strikes 'political strikes' organised by nationalist/opposition parties to force state concessions towards independence vs. mass strikes' representing class interests?

Glaberman on wartime strikes in the US talks about the ideology vs. actions of worker in car factories durig WWII:

Glaberman wrote:
In the nineteen forties, during World War II most of the labor movement gave a no-strike pledge. Labor leaders agreed to put patriotism before class interest and said that during the course of World War II workers would not strike. There was much resistance and opposition to this. If corporations did not agree to give up profits, why should workers agree to give up the right to strike? In one union, the UAW, this struggle' over the no-strike pledge had a very open and formal character. In the 1944 convention of the UAW the dispute came to a heading a very strange way. There were various resolutions presented, against and for the no-strike pledge. All of them were defeated, leaving the union without a no-strike pledge. The bureaucrats on the platform were thus humiliated in the presence of government dignitaries because they could not deliver their membership anymore. They did what has become traditional in the UAW, the cure for democracy being more democracy. If workers vote the~ wrong way, they are made to vote again, and to keep on voting until they learn to vote the right way. The bureaucrats said that the convention was not really representative enough (which it would have been, obviously, if it had reaffirmed the no-strike pledge). And since this is a very important question, what is needed is a membership referendum.

They had a membership referendum, which was the perfect sociological survey. Every member got a secret ballot which was filled out in the privacy of a, kitchen or living room and which was mailed back in. The secrecy was protected because both sides were represented on the committee that ran the referendum. It was a pretty fair count as these things go. When the ballots were counted, the membership of the UAW had voted two to one to reaffirm the no-strike pledge. It was rather reasonable to draw the conclusion that the cons9iousness of auto workers was that they placed patriotism before class interest; that in a major war workers should not strike; no matter what the provocation, war production had to continue.

There was, however, a slight problem. Before the vote, during the vote, and after the vote, the majority of auto workers wildcatted. What then, was the consciousness of the auto workers? Were they for or against the no-strike pledge? There is a further problem. As in most votes, most people did not vote. The majority which voted for the pledge was not a majority of the members of the UAW. But the strikers did include a majority of the UAW. Experience in a factory can give you insight into how these things work. Some guy sitting in his own living room listening to the casualties and the war reports, votes to reaffirm the no-strike pledge. The next day, going in to work, the foreman cusses him out, and he says, "To hell with you," and out he goes. And you say, "I thought you were for the no-strike pledge." And he says, "Yeah, sure, but look at that son of a bitch." To workers, workers do not cause strikes. Capitalists cause, strikes. So if strikes are to be prevented, the thing to do is to get rid of all these grievances. It's these foremen who 'do net want to get rid of all these grievances who cause all these strikes.

What then was the consciousness of auto workers? Were they patriotic or class conscious? It seems necessary to say, as a start, that what workers do is at least as important as what workers say. But much more than that is involved. The whole idea of consciousness is more complex and is a much larger totality than simply formal statements of belief, which would be sufficiently dealt with by having a survey, or that postcard ballot, or whatever.

https://libcom.org/library/working-class-social-change-martin-glaberman

Another essay I've found useful was Matthew Quest's critical review of CLR James https://libcom.org/library/silences-suppression-workers-self-emancipation-historical-problems-clr-jamess-interpreta - very short version is that James never applied the lessons of Hungary '56 and Facing Reality consistently to colonies and former-colonies.

Obviously all of this cannot be put into aims and principles, but how many words are written discussing aims and principles in the abstract (and I include myself in this, it's intense frustration with it that's led me to trying to explore the historical literature more) vs. collective self-education about historical and current movements as they actually exist - which are always filled with contradictions.

What I think we should be 'supporting' is our own self-education and the education of others, about workers self-organisation both in the present and historically against the state and capital. Bringing international and historical examples to broader attention will do a lot more to undermine 'pro-national liberation' politics than just saying it's bad/limited - the question is not if it is limited, Cabral, Fanon and others talked against the creation of new national bourgeois (but without arriving at a libertarian communist position, although Fanon did die at 36 so maybe he would have got there eventually), but why and how it's limited.

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rat
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Jan 19 2018 21:41

And the anti-colonial wars in Ireland got a bit too close to home for many Leftists to support. Although some actually did.

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Jan 19 2018 22:53

Yeah great post Mike.

Tom Henry, are you trying to say then in your comment that it would have been wrong for British workers, say, to oppose British colonialism?

Tom Henry
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Jan 20 2018 00:32

To Steven,
I am not trying to say anything of the sort of course. It would be nice if we opposed all injustice and inequality at all levels. And within that 'ideal' (for want of a better word) lies the problem that should, in my opinion, be discussed.

Tom Henry
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Jan 20 2018 07:22

Perhaps one useful way of looking at the split in the Afed and the positions of Libcom Admins (Mike Harman, Ed, Steven, at least?) is to view recent developments as being indicative of a ‘new side of history’ emerging (or rather one that has already emerged and to which the libertarian left is just cottoning-on to).

So, to use Trotsky’s famous idea: the remainers in the AF have chosen the right side of history, and the splitters have consigned themselves to the dustbin of history – according to the remainers? My question is whether the splitters have embraced the dustbin of history or whether they persist under a delusion – and the delusion is made manifest by their continued adherence to vacillating pro-national liberation rhetoric. But, like for example, Miguel Amorós (and Frank Furedi – or any defender of the rational Enlightenment), should the splitters consider that ‘the right side of history’ is not at all where they want to be?

This is the debate, as I said, that I would be mildly interested in seeing here – even though it has already happened in many political places elsewhere.

On ‘support’

Mike Harman is not clear in his rejection or not of the category of ‘support’. Is he saying that one should support or not support struggles elsewhere in the world from where one lives but should only report on them, with analysis, for the edification of the local working class and political milieu?

But how does this relate to any involvement of his political milieu with any struggle anywhere, even at his doorstep?

It feels to me like Mike Harman is fudging the issue here. Particularly when he endorses to a certain degree national liberation figures (such as Cabral and Fanon). Where is the line drawn?

Marxist superiority

Mike Harman uses two examples to make his case for greater ‘nuance’ (this appears to be a Libcom word used to obfuscate and conceal, and I use it with irony) in the analysis of working class involvement in struggles. Both express the patronising attitudes we are encouraged to have of anyone of a lower class, or consciousness, or of a different country, that we have inherited from Marxist sociology.

In Marxism we are encouraged to think that if we have the right theoretical tool box (the materialist conception of history, or Historical Materialism) then we can understand any other society and all human motivation across time and place.

Martin Glaberman uses this in his judgement of workers in the USA quoted above by Mike Harman:

Glaberman writes:

Quote:
What then was the consciousness of auto workers? Were they patriotic or class conscious? It seems necessary to say, as a start, that what workers do is at least as important as what workers say. But much more than that is involved. The whole idea of consciousness is more complex [posters to Libcom would now use the word ‘nuanced’ to push their agenda in equally subliminal terms to Glaberman - my note] and is a much larger totality than simply formal statements of belief, which would be sufficiently dealt with by having a survey, or that postcard ballot, or whatever.

Ah, these auto workers don’t actually know what they think. But luckily Glaberman can work it out for them.

Mike Harman then uses the same Marxist (now broadly sociological) methodology to patronise Amílcar Cabral and Franz Fanon:

Mike Harman writes:

Quote:
Bringing international and historical examples to broader attention will do a lot more to undermine 'pro-national liberation' politics than just saying it's bad/limited - the question is not if it is limited, Cabral, Fanon and others talked against the creation of new national bourgeois (but without arriving at a libertarian communist position, although Fanon did die at 36 so maybe he would have got there eventually), but why and how it's limited.

Poor Fanon, struggling on the road to libertarian communism! He died too young to work it out! I am sure that Fanon would appreciate your kindly pat on his shoulder hahaha,

Also, I am having trouble distinguishing between your notion that ‘pro-national liberation politics’ is certainly limited and your suggestion that since that question is settled, then we should investigate why and how it is limited. This appears as a ‘forked-tongue’ defence of national liberation. On another level, why do the libertarian left have to say anything about national liberation? What compels them?

It would also be useful for you to provide a proper analysis and references as to why you make significant your assertion that Cabral and Fanon “talked against the creation of a new national bourgeois.” Did not Lenin, for example, talk against such a thing too?

Etc:

The recent events in Catalonia as have been reported on and discussed here are also enlightening in regard to the split in the AF and related events etc.

In this thread, the Libcom member nization is given the brush off by the admin Ed for his “resentment at his own lack of relevance” (a psychological slur befitting Trotsky?) – right under some photos posted in support of presumed (?) relevancy:

This one is also worth taking a look at:

https://libcom.org/forums/general/workers-solidarity-alliance-wsa-statement-catalonia-18102017

What is the new significance or mobilising opportunity of the current conceptualisation of ‘state repression’ for the remainers and the splitters, etc, from the AF?

But I will bow out now, since this is a discussion I have hoped to re-ignite here, but have no interest in participating in. I hope to see some good debate, of course.

Battlescarred
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Jan 20 2018 08:49

Article on Marx and Engels and the communist movement:
https://londonacg.blogspot.co.uk/

Mike Harman
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Jan 20 2018 09:59

Just quickly, since you're not planning to reply and there's not really much to respond to.

Tom Henry wrote:
Mike Harman uses two examples to make his case for greater ‘nuance’ (this appears to be a Libcom word used to obfuscate and conceal, and I use it with irony) in the analysis of working class involvement in struggles. Both express the patronising attitudes we are encouraged to have of anyone of a lower class, or consciousness, or of a different country, that we have inherited from Marxist sociology.

In Marxism we are encouraged to think that if we have the right theoretical tool box (the materialist conception of history, or Historical Materialism) then we can understand any other society and all human motivation across time and place.

Martin Glaberman uses this in his judgement of workers in the USA quoted above by Mike Harman:
..
Ah, these auto workers don’t actually know what they think. But luckily Glaberman can work it out for them.

Glaberman was an auto-worker from the '40s until some time in the late '50s or '60s, he wrote from his own experience of car factory struggles. This is the exact opposite of 'understand any other society and all human motivation across time and space'.

He's not telling us what people really think, but questioning the validity of an approach based on 'what people think', because collective action produces results which can be the opposite to individual surveys - he also wrote about what happened to Leftist militants when they were elected into union positions.

Tom Henry wrote:
Mike Harman then uses the same Marxist (now broadly sociological) methodology to patronise Amílcar Cabral and Franz Fanon:..\
Poor Fanon, struggling on the road to libertarian communism! He died too young to work it out! I am sure that Fanon would appreciate your kindly pat on his shoulder hahaha,

He died in 1961, a year before independence. It's not a case of 'working it out' but seeing what happened next. I mean he could also have ended up in the administration with Ben Bella too.

It's somewhat amazing to me that you characterise the idea that people's views can change as a result of experience as 'patronising'. Same as a lot of people revised their views after seeing Hungary '56.

Tom Henry wrote:
Also, I am having trouble distinguishing between your notion that ‘pro-national liberation politics’ is certainly limited and your suggestion that since that question is settled, then we should investigate why and how it is limited. This appears as a ‘forked-tongue’ defence of national liberation.

The problem for me is that people talk about 'national liberation movements' without a clear definition then make proclamations about them. Is it only the official independence movement in colonized countries? Is it every strike and riot that happens in any colonized country? Is it also Scottish and Catalan independence politics, neither of which are colonies? Is it the fucking Assad government in Syria as the anti-imperialist left would have it? This is why I introduced two concrete examples here, both of which you ignored except to portray it as some kind of trick. It's exactly this refusal to engage with the concrete that I'm arguing against.

Tom Henry wrote:
On another level, why do the libertarian left have to say anything about national liberation?

A large percentage of the world's population was living in colonised countries until the '40s/'50s. Large sections of 'the left' still cling to Leninist ideas about national self determination a century after they were written (to support transitional development of the productive forces on the way towards communism, very important in Scotland...).

Possibly a more useful discussion here would be Django's reflections on Against Nationalism: https://libcom.org/blog/some-more-thoughts-national-question-17012012 / http://libcom.org/library/against-nationalism -

For me one of the weaknesses of 'against nationalism' is that for its main examples of national liberation movements it uses Tamil separatists and Ho Chi Minh. A lot of it is arguing against the anti-imperialist Western left (which it should), but is not really addressing how nationalism and the nation state operated internally to sabotage class struggles internally in those places but rather the question of western support for factions. With Ho Chi Minh and Vietnam there's not only late '60s American Marxist support for him against the US, but the 1945 Saigon Commune and the massacre of Vietnamese Trotskyists at the time of independence from the French. The pamphlet doesn't mention South America, the Caribbean or Africa at all. It feels incomplete. I haven't read around the other responses to it though but might take a look.

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Cooked
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Jan 20 2018 12:13

Mike are you responding to Tom Henrys opposition to the

Quote:
"We do support working class struggles against ... political and economic colonialism."

line and arguing for supporting struggles against colonialism?

Your examples and argumentation around them seems to imply that you don't support struggles against colonialism but class struggle in (post) colonial regions? This is despite claiming the opposite position? Could you clarify why and when the colonial aspect would change your analysis and flip it from non-support to support. That is compared to a similar situation in the UK.

I'm a bit tired but all I'm reading from your arguments is that you shouldn't make poor analysis lacking nuance based on limited information and that movements tend to be complex.