1970s era left-esque cults (IWP, NATLFED, NCLC)

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MJ
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Aug 8 2007 03:31
1970s era left-esque cults (IWP, NATLFED, NCLC)

Not sure how many folks here were around back then (syndicalist and syndicalistcat?) but I'm curious about whether the paths of anarchists and communists crossed those of the International Workers Party, the Provisional Communist Party and its fronts, Larouchites, etc.

This is prompted by noticing that a paper by "Capitalist Crisis Studies" was supposedly presented at a Nationwide Unemployed League conference, which was... startling. (Two kinds of nuts I didn't think mixed?) But one of you was talking about there having been a minority libertarian tendency in the early days of the NAM so maybe this was something similar?

I know the PCP/NATLFED groups, if you ignore the Stalinist brainwashing and fucked-up social-work paradigm, typically aimed to establish mutual aid networks among marginalized sectors of the class. (They still do this...) Similarly Newman had Centers for Change before joining the NCLC which ran, according to Wikipedia, the National Unemployed and Welfare Rights Organization. Did these kinds of organizations have a presence on the ground? Were their motivations and direction they were headed obvious? And are there other similar groups and personalities I might also be entertained to hear described?

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syndicalistcat
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Aug 8 2007 06:30

The Larouchites moved to the right only over time. They started out as a rather weird left sect. NCLC actually began as a "Labor Caucus" of an SDS chapter. So you are likely to find advertisements for example for NCLC in left publications in the early '70s.

syndicalist
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Aug 10 2007 04:11

Agree with syndcat.

In NYC area we'd cross paths with NUWRO, mainly around the NYC financial crisis. But no real involvement with them. certainly not in any orgaizational way. And surely not in the way syndcat described a trend inside NAM.

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MJ
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Aug 10 2007 04:51

Yeah I knew about NCLC coming out of SDS. What were these groups like back then though? I'm also interested in NATLFED, I think I saw a mural for a group that sounded an awful lot like one of their front groups near the West Oakland BART stop last time I was there.

Mike Harman
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Aug 10 2007 10:28

eek

syndicalist
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Aug 10 2007 12:50

They were very intense leninists doing mass work. Always psuhing their paper "New Solidarity" and other publications. By the time I became very active NCLC was rapidly moving towards their weird positions. of course this began to affect their mass work and everyone became suspious of them. I was a bit too young in 1968 or 1969 (13,14) to have been around the SDS and the early NCLC.

I have a vauge recollection that some of their NURWO work attarcted poor folk. However the hierarchy was moving rapidly towards cultism and conspiracy and this was affecting their standing.

I recall there being a pamphlet entitled The NCLC, Brownshirts of the 1970s "(or something like). NCLC enagegd in some pretty nasty physical attacks against elements of the "old left", like the CPUSA and the SWP.

David in Atlanta
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Aug 10 2007 15:49

When I was living in the bay area back in '74, i witnessed a completely unprovoked attack on the SWP at a welfare rights picket line. I don't recall if it was NCLC or Sparts, a good many of the more cultish Leninist groups were involved in that crap at the time

On the Laroucheoids and left internal violence, see
http://www.publiceye.org/larouche/Mop-Up.html

Quote:
In 1973, the predominantly White LaRouche group, the National Caucus of Labor Committees (NCLC), attempted to take over the Black-led National Welfare Rights Organization (NWRO). When the Communist Party USA (CPUSA), objected and tried to assist the NWRO, LaRouche's followers in NCLC were ordered to brutally assault members of the CPUSA. When members of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP), helped defend victims of the attacks, they were added to the enemies list. NCLC thugs used bats, chains, and martial arts weapons in a campaign to establish "hegemony" over the American revolutionary movement. There were many injuries and some persons required hospitalization.
Catch 22
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Aug 10 2007 16:30

Heh a friend of mine inadvertently got stalked by the larouche provisional communist party. He got involved with a front group for migrant workers. Then found out there were no migrants but a lot of whackjobs.

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Aug 10 2007 16:44

The NATLFED / Provisional Communist Party people aren't LaRouchites. They're a whole different thing, they worship Stalin and this guy Gino Parente and do sleep deprivation style indoctrination of their cadre. They did work together with the NCLC/Larouche people for a period in the early 70s.

In our area they have the "Eastern Service Workers Association." They table outside grocery stores and I think they do a turkey drive around Thanksgiving but most of their effort is quiet. Some really good people end up pulled into these fronts sometimes but I've heard some dead fucked up things about the organization (besides its politics!)...

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Aug 10 2007 18:39

the weirdest and most horrific 70s leftist cult was of course this one:
http://libcom.org/library/suicide-for-socialism-jonestown-brinton

Catch 22
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Aug 10 2007 19:16
MJ wrote:
The NATLFED / Provisional Communist Party people aren't LaRouchites. They're a whole different thing, they worship Stalin and this guy Gino Parente and do sleep deprivation style indoctrination of their cadre. They did work together with the NCLC/Larouche people for a period in the early 70s.

In our area they have the "Eastern Service Workers Association." They table outside grocery stores and I think they do a turkey drive around Thanksgiving but most of their effort is quiet. Some really good people end up pulled into these fronts sometimes but I've heard some dead fucked up things about the organization (besides its politics!)...

hehe yes gino parente and all that craziness. My god what a bunch of nutjobs.

syndicalist
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Aug 10 2007 22:40
Quote:
The NATLFED / Provisional Communist Party people aren't LaRouchites. They're a whole different thing, they worship Stalin and this guy Gino Parente and do sleep deprivation style indoctrination of their cadre. They did work together with the NCLC/Larouche people for a period in the early 70s.

In our area they have the "Eastern Service Workers Association." They table outside grocery stores and I think they do a turkey drive around Thanksgiving but most of their effort is quiet. Some really good people end up pulled into these fronts sometimes but I've heard some dead fucked up things about the organization (besides its politics!)...

Whoa! Gino Perante....Eastern Farmeworkers Association.....Double Whoa! I know comrades who dealt directly with him when they supported him on Long Island.

Gotta run, but...
http://www.freedomofmind.com/resourcecenter/groups/n/natlfed/bestwhitnack.htm

rebelworker
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Aug 10 2007 23:22

I remember reading an article about a major bust (that I beleive happened as late as the mid 90') where a larghe underground tunnel system connecting row houses in NYC, the headquarters of this org, was raided and dozens of dazed/brainwashed volenteers, many who had spent years doing paperwork for the group 24/7 were found, alon with small arms caches...

Imagine if these people and projects would have been organised toward real revolutionary causes...

rebelworker
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Aug 10 2007 23:36

Alo wondering if the Larucheites are active where any of you are?

They are increasingly active around Montrea Universities and seem to be recruiting.

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Aug 10 2007 23:50

The Larouchites occasionally show up in S.F. doing a selling campaign for their publications. I've run into them on Market St.in the financial district., where they were tabling and button-holing people. but their public appearances around here seem very sporadic.

Catch 22
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Aug 11 2007 00:15
syndicalist wrote:
Quote:
The NATLFED / Provisional Communist Party people aren't LaRouchites. They're a whole different thing, they worship Stalin and this guy Gino Parente and do sleep deprivation style indoctrination of their cadre. They did work together with the NCLC/Larouche people for a period in the early 70s.

In our area they have the "Eastern Service Workers Association." They table outside grocery stores and I think they do a turkey drive around Thanksgiving but most of their effort is quiet. Some really good people end up pulled into these fronts sometimes but I've heard some dead fucked up things about the organization (besides its politics!)...

Whoa! Gino Perante....Eastern Farmeworkers Association.....Double Whoa! I know comrades who dealt directly with him when they supported him on Long Island.

Gotta run, but...
http://www.freedomofmind.com/resourcecenter/groups/n/natlfed/bestwhitnack.htm

That's the group! They were the folks who stalked him!

petey
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Aug 11 2007 03:16

larouchites are active around college campuses and on streetcorners here in manhattan.

Quote:
I remember reading an article about a major bust (that I beleive happened as late as the mid 90') where a larghe underground tunnel system connecting row houses in NYC, the headquarters of this org, was raided and dozens of dazed/brainwashed volenteers, many who had spent years doing paperwork for the group 24/7 were found, alon with small arms caches...

eek

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Aug 11 2007 03:52
Quote:
I dozens of dazed/brainwashed volenteers, many who had spent years doing paperwork for the group 24/7 were found,

Naw they were probably just IWW delegates processing dues.

David in Atlanta
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Aug 11 2007 04:45

I just found an interesting discussion between a group of former NATLFED cadre on indymedia
http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/11/304593.shtml

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EdmontonWobbly
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Aug 11 2007 09:58

Shit I've just read the first ten or so posts but this is fucking fascinating thanks David/

rebelworker
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Aug 11 2007 12:54

Holy HJesus, just read most of that link, fuckin crazy shite!

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Tacks
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Aug 11 2007 14:07

best subculture ever cool

Antieverything
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Aug 12 2007 07:45

I've gotta create a phony marxist-leninist organization to fund my lifestyle!

booeyschewy
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Aug 13 2007 03:02

the PCP people are in portland too. They run "Friends of Seasonal and Service Workers". It is a front group, but sucks in some college students and the like. Local IWWs have tried to make people aware of their cult shit. Has anyone else seen the stuff from some former members? There are websites I found a while back where they talk to eachother about their experiences, pretty heartwrenching stuff. They used physical torture, sexual abuse, drugs, etc. Authoritarianism is really creepy.

booeyschewy
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Aug 13 2007 03:05

this site
http://web.archive.org/web/20021209034314/http://users.rcn.com/xnatlfed/

booeyschewy
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Aug 13 2007 03:09

damn and more experiences from former cadre are here
http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/11/304593.shtml

Antieverything
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Aug 13 2007 08:00

Yep, I found those on the wikipedia entry as well. I spent all last night reading about this shit...it was actually kind of fun to piece it all together, slowly from everyone's statements...its like a series of nesting conspiracies all ironically situated inside of a conspiracy theory ('Marxist' the end is nigh stuff). And predictably it all traces back to one crazy asshole with an addiction to painkillers who was using everyone!

My favorite part is how the government would periodically get interested in them and then realize they were full of shit and leave them alone (nobody in their right mind would believe they could make a revolution with a few hundred starving cadre, some guns, apartments, a few million in assets and loans, and a few dozen labor front organizations with no real mass organizations to back them up). Even on the lead-up to their date for launching the revolution, they had to call the cops on themselves to get them to do anything (and provide an explanation as to why the revolution didn't take off)! They offed all those religious nuts in Waco for stockpiling weapons...tells you how seriously they took these revolutionaries who actually stated their intention to overthrow the government!

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Aug 13 2007 08:59

If anyone would like to create a library entry on libcom and copy + paste those discussions in, maybe putting author name/time in bold or something that'd be great. It'd be useful to have this stuff archived in case the IMC site changes or something...

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MJ
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Aug 13 2007 13:05

And this one

http://boston.indymedia.org/feature/display/21362/index.php

OK so the IWP... anyone?

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MJ
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Aug 13 2007 14:24
Jack wrote:
IWP seem to come off a bit better in the stuff I've been reading as of this thread. Or perhaps they're just better as a cult and so have less ex-members.

What? eek

I guess ex-iwp dot org is down but have a look at it through the wayback machine at archive dot org...

blackstarbhoy
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Aug 13 2007 14:57

LaRouche has been defined as a kinda modern day fascist, and not using that term lightly. Populist yet advocating a strong and enlightened leadership (ruling class), recruits Blacks and other people of color but is strongly anti-Jewish and believes in their own JOG/ZOG theory, radical yet anti-Left:

"But in 1973 NCLC underwent a drastic upheaval. LaRouche suddenly vowed to either destroy or establish his "political hegemony" over the American left. He began talking of the need for rapid industrialization to build the working class. He talked of a historic tactical alliance between revolutionaries, the working class and the forces of industrial capital against the forces of finance capital. He began developing an authoritarian world view with a glorification of historic mission, metaphysical commitment and physical confrontation. He told reporters that only he was capable of bringing revolution and socialism to the United States, and his speeches began to take on the tone and style of a demagogue.

In many ways LaRouche was adopting the same ideas and styles which took National Socialism, and turned it into part of the European fascist movement, and eventually played a key role in Hitler's rise to power in Nazi Germany. In fact, LaRouche was denounced as a neo-Nazi by U.S. Communists following a series of 1973 physical attacks on leftists. To be precise, NCLC members were likened to Hitler's violent Brownshirts. "

The Public Eye is an anti-Right, anti-Fascist website around the think tank, Public Research Associates. PRA is liberal to Left and has had several members work with anti-racists like Michael Novicks P.A.R.T. and ARA.

I think one important fact is that the LaRouchites collect and document the Left and their activities and have turned over materials to the State. they are dangerous for this reason and should be held at arms length. In Chicago during the mid 1990's they were responsible for spreading false information about anarchists being State agents, and were also involved in NORAID (Northern Irish Aid) at a time when the State was doing setups and busts. The LaRouchites try to make inroads in groups and act as agent provocateurs.

read more
http://www.publiceye.org/larouche/index.html