Class War Magazine "Touch of Class" Published

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Oct 19 2006 11:23
Class War Magazine "Touch of Class" Published

A TOUCH OF CLASS

Class War this today launches a magazine, A Touch of Class. The new publication seeks to raise new issues which will affect the class and the movement in years to come, rather than retread the stale staples of anarchist discourse like Kronstadt or the Spanish Civil War.

The inaugural issue sees Ben Franks, author of Rebel Alliances (recently published by AK) discuss anarchist ethics, a subject too often ignored by self-styled anarchists. Other articles inside examine the pervasive nature of CCTV, revealing some disturbing facts about council-run schemes; a survey of public order policing in London; and a clarion call for anarchists to reclaim ground in the anti-war movement ceded to the ineffectual Trot left.

Class War, the paper, has long raised issues which other anarchist publications couldn’t or wouldn’t touch.

Class War, the group, will continue this trailblazing tradition in the paper, and now in A Touch of Class as well. Future articles in A Touch of Class will include new ideas for anarchist organisation and the influence in the ‘real world’ of anarchist propaganda on the internet. Plus much more.

The magazine is available from London and Glasgow Class War for £2. It is a quid to CW subscribers and free to members.

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Steven.
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Oct 19 2006 11:28

Well, I'll try to have a look at this, but I don't really see why there are bizarre attacks on the rest of the anarchist movement, especially ones which don't seem to make very much sense.

CWF wrote:
The new publication seeks to raise new issues which will affect the class and the movement in years to come, rather than retread the stale staples of anarchist discourse like Kronstadt or the Spanish Civil War.

Cos that's all other publications talk about??

Quote:
The inaugural issue sees Ben Franks, author of Rebel Alliances (recently published by AK) discuss anarchist ethics, a subject too often ignored by self-styled anarchists.

What's with the daily mail lingo? Black Flag had a piece on ethics a while ago, which i thought was rubbish. The old liberal freedom used to cover them all the time didn't they?

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Class War, the paper, has long raised issues which other anarchist publications couldn’t or wouldn’t touch.

like what? the Monarchy?

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the button
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Oct 19 2006 11:32
John. wrote:
Black Flag had a piece on ethics a while ago, which i thought was rubbish.

On the ethics of whistleblowing, IIRC. wink

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Oct 19 2006 11:39

5 minutes gone and we had our first critique.

Fantastic!

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Oct 19 2006 11:44
PaulMarsh wrote:
5 minutes gone and we had our first critique.

Fantastic!

well, the original post started with this "we are so much better than others" BS so what do you expect grin

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Oct 19 2006 12:10

Sorry JDMF, it is easy to forget that year zero was actually 1936!

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Steven.
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Oct 19 2006 12:13
PaulMarsh wrote:
Sorry JDMF, it is easy to forget that year zero was actually 1936!

As opposed to 1986?

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Oct 19 2006 12:20
PaulMarsh wrote:
Sorry JDMF, it is easy to forget that year zero was actually 1936!

hey you should know how i hate talking about the fucking spain, but the ad did much more than that!

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Oct 19 2006 12:21

i will buy a copy anyway grin

red n black star

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Oct 19 2006 12:37

consiering CW is a quid, £2 for the mag is a bargain like. I'll getb on @ the fair.

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Oct 19 2006 13:01

Hi

Quote:
well, the original post started with this "we are so much better than others" BS so what do you expect

Yeah, shame on CW for not taking up the position of a victim. How they expect to get any support from the "Anarchist Movement" otherwise is beyond me.

Love

LR

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Oct 19 2006 13:06

Where’d a CW magazine come from, I didn’t hear about this?!? I thought your lot had gone a bit quiet…

I’ll have to give it a quick review for Freedom, I’m especially looking forward to seeing which issues we aren’t (I assume you meant ‘haven’t got round to?’) touching, especially around the anti-war movement wink.

Might want to revise the bit about the Civil War mind, the only reference we’ve had to it in the last two years was a couple of letters and a passing mention in our feature on the 1 in 12 afair.

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Steven.
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Oct 19 2006 14:49
Saii wrote:
Where’d a CW magazine come from, I didn’t hear about this?!? I thought your lot had gone a bit quiet…

My guess is the Red Star people?

Quote:
Might want to revise the bit about the Civil War mind, the only reference we’ve had to it in the last two years was a couple of letters and a passing mention in our feature on the 1 in 12 afair.

yup it's a total strawman.

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Oct 19 2006 14:58
Saii wrote:
Where’d a CW magazine come from, I didn’t hear about this?!? I thought your lot had gone a bit quiet…

Not quiet.

Just waiting.

Watching........

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Oct 19 2006 15:51

Good news, hope its not something thats just been thrown together because of the bookfair...

Jack_Ketch
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Oct 20 2006 17:06
John. wrote:
Well, I'll try to have a look at this, but I don't really see why there are bizarre attacks on the rest of the anarchist movement, especially ones which don't seem to make very much sense.

CWF wrote:
The new publication seeks to raise new issues which will affect the class and the movement in years to come, rather than retread the stale staples of anarchist discourse like Kronstadt or the Spanish Civil War.

Cos that's all other publications talk about??

obviously not. but they are "stale staples" aren't they. i recall the first (and last) acf public meeting i attended, in 1991, was on the subject of kronstadt, and was livened up by the presence of the nf. and this year's af bookfair meeting's not exactly about what the future holds either.

Quote:
Quote:
The inaugural issue sees Ben Franks, author of Rebel Alliances (recently published by AK) discuss anarchist ethics, a subject too often ignored by self-styled anarchists.

What's with the daily mail lingo? Black Flag had a piece on ethics a while ago, which i thought was rubbish. The old liberal freedom used to cover them all the time didn't they?

self-styled anarchists aren't necessarily anarchists, far too often they're liberal speakshites masquerading as anarchists. and all you can point to in response is one piece in black flag some time ago? point proved, i think.

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Quote:
Class War, the paper, has long raised issues which other anarchist publications couldn’t or wouldn’t touch.

like what? the Monarchy?

among other things. when did dam/solfed or acf/af raise the monarchy? or black flag? i think you'll find class war did so first, in fact before the formation of the acf.

Jason Cortez
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Oct 23 2006 09:50

Now now Jack, Jack k is a true cass warrior and cannot be expect to waste time with bourgeois subtleties such as intended meanings.

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Oct 23 2006 10:29

have to say folks, it did look like it was hastily put together, and the editorial was self congratulary without any evidence of CW being any different anyway. Anyways, i can see that CW needs to have some theoretical discussion to determine some of your basic politics and strategies.

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Oct 23 2006 12:06

i actually left my copy somewhere - but had a quick flick. Gladd to see there is some acknowledgment that CW needs a bit of umph/direction in the editorial, didn't get to the articles. I genuinely hope it does mean some new stuff from CW.

OH what a COVER BTW! fucking genius! I'd have just had the picture of the sauna and nothing else, maybe the skull in the bottom corner.

Be honest tho this whole mag was conceived cos someone saw that massage parlour and thought of the cover eh? grin

the biggest project, as i've said before, is an upadated version of Unfinished Business and the video version of the same.

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Oct 23 2006 12:32
Tacks wrote:
Be honest tho this whole mag was conceived cos someone saw that massage parlour and thought of the cover eh? grin

It took me hours of research to get that picture!

Anyway, it ties in quite neatly with some of the stuff in Ian Bone's book about (ahem) sex workers! There is nothing like going back to your roots!

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Oct 23 2006 22:54

Hi

I thought I’d knock out a few words about “Touch of Class”.

Stott’s editorial is pretty good, and shows that CW is entering into a make-or-break phase. Stott must be aware of the spectrum of views expressed by ex-members on how CW might best proceed, and must feel the pressure to deliver something positive from this latest decisive shake down.

The Mortal Combat article is totally wet, and one can understand the near apology given for it in the Contents/Themes section in an attempt to recast it as “controversial”. It need only be compared to Linsky’s “Human Rights or Class Justice” published in The Heavy Stuff #1 to see how far behind it is in terms of an analysis of political ethics.

Can’t really fault Public Order Policing, but I can’t say it really inspired either. There was a mild sense of victimisation, but it could have been a lot worse, especially compared to the next piece…

The State, War and Resistance first moans about how evil the elite are, then moans about how victimised the working class are then talks of “reclaiming the anti-war movement from the left” as if it’s a competition. In campaigning against the Trotskyite agenda, we’ll fail to address the working class. Who outside the political milieu cares about a critique of the left? I’m not the least convinced of the analysis that the STWC’s “personalisation” of the anti-war campaign is the problem at all. Ian Bone’s recent themes regarding history repeating itself via Tariq Ali and the Redgraves strike a much more vivid chord.

The article says…

Quote:
In post-war Britain, there have been two major anti-war movements, CND and STWC

Brushing aside lessons learned from a pretty decent first Gulf War, the Falklands, Northern Ireland and the Anti-Vietnam-War movements. Hmmm. A review of the “anarchist attitude” to the Falklands war and how it might inform our perspective today would make for interesting reading, at least for trainspotters like me.

Surveillance in the City could have escaped criticism by keeping to the style of Public Order Policing. However, in this article we are treated to some interesting takes on private morality…

Quote:
The couple in the picture above elsewhere have hugged or kissed, but the minatory eye of the CCTV cameras surrounding thing may deter them from any potential unseemly, subversive, public displays of affection.

Well honestly, anyone who gets put off a snog by the presence of a CCTV deserves everything they get.

Love

LR

Jack_Ketch
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Oct 27 2006 19:42

thank you for your criticism. but the point made in the article about surveillance is, in fact, borne out by research published in, inter alia, the journal 'surveillance and society', iirc.

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Oct 27 2006 20:25

Hi

I don't doubt it. I'm sure some people behave "better" when they know they're on camera. For many that might mean even more sexual exhibitionism than usual. Especially from CW members, I’d hope.

Love

LR

Jack_Ketch
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Oct 28 2006 12:54

Sadly on the afternoon the photograph accompanying that portion of text was taken none of the city workers I saw were up for some al fresco dogging behind the Guildhall.

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Oct 28 2006 13:05

Hi

You guys should organise a public sex-athon in front of CCTV cameras, demand the footage under freedom of information, compile a DVD and flog it as CW merchandise.

Meaningful action please comrades!

Love

LR

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Nov 7 2006 15:33
Lazy Riser wrote:
The Mortal Combat article is totally wet, and one can understand the near apology given for it in the Contents/Themes section in an attempt to recast it as “controversial”. It need only be compared to Linsky’s “Human Rights or Class Justice” published in The Heavy Stuff #1 to see how far behind it is in terms of an analysis of political ethics.

I suspect this article was supposed to be called Moral Combat but whoever did the headings wasn't informed ...

It's only really contravertial in that anarchists don't like talking about ethics because of its association with idealism. In my opinion this piece is a useful contribution - being a central part of Ben Franks' book Rebel Alliances which I have almost finished reading - since it puts prefiguration (means foreshadowing ends) as a central aspect of contemporary class struggle anarchism.

If anything else is contravertial it is that this should perhaps be a problem for Class War (who are fond of using the byline 'by any means necessary' - an ends based perspective which Franks relates to Leninism!) and also for those on libcom who continually make sweeping condemnations of 'lifestylist' anarchists when the truth is many of these activists do have a vision of a future society that can only be achieved through revolutionary change, it is just that the forms of struggle they are using are not so constrained by workerist fantasies.

Anyway, as I have said before I am really in favour of diversity of anarchist press, so it's good to see this coming out, especially knowing Black Flag didn't make it for the bookfair.

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Nov 8 2006 21:19

Any distribution in the US? AK Press?

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Nov 9 2006 12:18

As I said, I am positive about new publications, but having read some of the others articles again, I feel the need to say that the magazine's sniping at 'other' anarchists is really tiresome. Is this going to be a major part of the repositioning/branding exercise for Class War? - I hope not.

Firstly, the public order policing update will be useful for many activists, but why do the editors feel the need to criticise other anarchists for only having had a 'cursory glance'. Have you forgotten about the work people were doing only recently to defend G8 arrestees, which stems from accumulated knowledge of legal monitoring and advice about police tactics on demonstrations and actions. Over the years we have all had to learn about Section 60s etc. and yes we need to spread the message wider, but there seems to be no justification for a holier-than-though attitude.

Referring next to the anti-war movement article, as far I as am concerned the SWP stranglehold was able to succeed as a result a lack of a decent anarchist NWBTCW position about NATO bombings over Kosovo, that is, before Sept-11 and the war on terror (and before Bush). The truth of the matter is, CW seemed to have nothing to say about this at the time (see http://flag.blackened.net/af/org/issue52/kosovo.html ). My local anti-war group was quite mixed then, and we even managed to oust the AWL for their support of the Kosovan Liberation Army who supported NATO actions. SWP were there but they didn't dominate at the time. The point is it is a bit ripe for CW to have a go at others for attending demonstrations, now it has gone to shit as we all know, when you don't seem to have any alternative ideas. Acting together, AF and Solfed probably managed to reach 5-10% of the latest Manchester march with anarchist/NWBTCW viewpoints on the war - young 'asians' were queueing up for our leaflets and bulletins and I just hope they are influenced by some of this rather that the viewpoints of radical imams. What does CW think we should be doing to build a anti-war movement?

The CCTV article? - again, the info provided was fine, especially on the facial recognition threat, but again the self-importance comes across in dispelling ID card propaganda as 'verbiage' compared to the more important issue of CCTV in your opinion. All I can say is there is nothing in this article that gives an idea what to do about CCTV. At least the anti-ID campaigning is coming up with tactics as well as information and analysis. Local groups are meeting and producing information to help empower local people. In any case anti-ID activists continually mention CCTV, ASBOs as part of the problem and we are aware of the potential use of ID databases for law enforcement through facial recognition. A much more interesting criticism, if you wanted to make one, would be of parts of the environmental movement who are very in favour of national expansion of congestion chargingin cities, that you mentioned, and also road pricing which will involve the creation of a digital camera network across the UK.

Finally, I wouldn't get too excited about the BNP's apparent success for a small organisation. They have a right-wing tabloid press backing up their racist views that reaches millions of people a day. If you think a 'repositioned' anarchist magazine is going to make a huge dent in that on its own, then I think this is mistaken. Solidarity please, comrades!

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Nov 9 2006 15:33
little_brother wrote:
The CCTV article? - again, the info provided was fine, especially on the facial recognition threat, but again the self-importance comes across in dispelling ID card propaganda as 'verbiage' compared to the more important issue of CCTV in your opinion.

It is also bolocks, if thats what the article says. Whilst CCTV does potentially mean they can monitor everyone all the time, it doesn't mean that in practice as the logistics would be insane. Even as the most CCTVd country in the world, it isn't used in anything but serious crimes and crimes against the state, and i speak from experience. On a lot of cases where CCTV could have solced the question, the police have just dropped it instead - it appears to be an expensive, laborious exercise.

On the other hand, ID cards leaves the imperitive to dow what we're told with US. WE are expected to carry it, WE will have it checked at work, in the post office, the bank, the pubs etc. It normalises the new level of intrusion, cos even if we have no choice about carrying one, you are not oblivious like you are to CCTV. Also, although it could be used, CCTV is not used to monitor stuff like welfare to my knowledge. Otherwise why do they hire private detectives?

On the campigning for a combatative populace, ID cards are far far better - people hate the idea. A lot of people are indifferent and feel safer with CCTV around.