Post-Trump North American left trends

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Khawaga's picture
Khawaga
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Jul 25 2018 14:50

IIRC, Black Rose are establishing new locals in Canada now.

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klas batalo
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Jul 25 2018 23:06
Khawaga wrote:
IIRC, Black Rose are establishing new locals in Canada now.

I'm in BRRN. Pretty sure this is not happening. If so first I've heard of it and I stay pretty up to date.

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Khawaga
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Jul 26 2018 01:39

Fair enough, I heard from a few old comrades they were trying to start a local chapter of BR, but I guess that didn't work out then.

Mike Harman
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Jul 26 2018 05:35
Juan Conatz wrote:
Mike Harman wrote:
Can someone explain the difference between First of May Anarchist Alliance and Black Rose?

Simply put, Black Rose largely comes from the generation of pro-organizational anarchists inspired by platformism and especifismo, while First of May comes from the generation of anarchists inspired by ARA and Love and Rage.

OK but didn't some Love and Rage people go on to form NEFAC which then turned into Common Struggle which then merged into Black Rose? Is First of May the people who didn't follow that trajectory then? But I found https://m1aa.org/?page_id=57 which explains it, they don't like Marx, they think Platformists are too similar to trots, they think anarcho-syndicalism is class reductionist etc.

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Jul 26 2018 05:53

Also, geographically I get the impression May 1st are all in the Midwest and BR/RN are more coastal. I don't think either group are that easy to pigeonhole politically - a few years back M1 came out with some stuff about supporting Ukraine's right to self-determination which seemed kind of yikes to me: http://m1aa.org/?p=997 but I dunno how reflective that is of their approach as a whole.
Other new kids on the block since then, as well as the DSA-LSC, include the Cutting Class network: https://cuttingclass.noblogs.org/about/ and RAM, who seem kind of like an attempt to mix anarchism, apoism/Rojavaism and stuff coming out of the black radical tradition: https://www.revolutionaryabolition.org/about/

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Juan Conatz
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Jul 26 2018 12:11
Mike Harman wrote:
OK but didn't some Love and Rage people go on to form NEFAC which then turned into Common Struggle which then merged into Black Rose?

I'm not absolutely sure, but I don't think there were any former Love & Rage people involved in the founding of NEFAC. Regardless of whether there were, NEFAC/Common Struggle/Black Rose are all very reflective of pro-organizational American anarchism post-Seattle '99.

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Is First of May the people who didn't follow that trajectory then? But I found https://m1aa.org/?page_id=57 which explains it, they don't like Marx, they think Platformists are too similar to trots, they think anarcho-syndicalism is class reductionist etc.

They have idiosyncratic politics that are reflective of their roots in 1990s American anarchism. First of May partially comes out of Solidarity & Defense, which partially came out of the Michigan-Minnesota Affinity Group, which were all former Love & Rage/ARA people (think some of them were in FRAC too).

R Totale wrote:
the Cutting Class network: https://cuttingclass.noblogs.org/about/ and RAM, who seem kind of like an attempt to mix anarchism, apoism/Rojavaism and stuff coming out of the black radical tradition: https://www.revolutionaryabolition.org/about/

Never heard of them. TBH, if it isn't posted here I'm not aware of any developments in American anarchism...

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Jul 26 2018 12:44
Juan Conatz wrote:

Never heard of them. TBH, if it isn't posted here I'm not aware of any developments in American anarchism...

Fair enough. Fwiw, I think a lot of the most interesting stuff anarchists do doesn't necessarily have red/black flags and circle-As attached - so, "what became of the solidarity network trend?" could be one question worth discussing, and similarly I'd say that up in Canada, Parkdale Organize and the Hamilton Tenants Solidarity Network seem like really worthwhile class-struggle initiatives that clearly have some substantial anarchist influence.

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Jul 26 2018 13:40
Juan Conatz wrote:
Mike Harman wrote:
OK but didn't some Love and Rage people go on to form NEFAC which then turned into Common Struggle which then merged into Black Rose?

I'm not absolutely sure, but I don't think there were any former Love & Rage people involved in the founding of NEFAC. Regardless of whether there were, NEFAC/Common Struggle/Black Rose are all very reflective of pro-organizational American anarchism post-Seattle '99.

Pretty sure Wayne Price was a founding member of NEFAC, but was definitely involved from very early on if not, and he had been in the RSL that went into Love and Rage.

Speaking of people who write and organize very publicly under their names and where it's never been an issue to mention them by name on this site (including to criticize their political activity or the things they write)...

R. Spourgitis
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Jul 26 2018 16:13

M1 and WSA were both involved in what ended up becoming Black Rose, coming out of the Class Struggle Anarchist Conferences of the late '00s-early '10s. M1 withdrew earlier owing to some political divergences and the sense that these were not being addressed (not incorrectly, as came later), WSA withdrew just shortly before the finalizing conference over what seems in reflection a mixture of personality conflicts and legitimate political differences over founding documents' wording and principles. Having been a part of that and spent a tremendous amount of time in the first two years on the BR organization, I think these were early warning signs of a very loose paper unity. When my local left it was entirely owing to a combination of internal toxic environment and a complete lack of willingness, if not outright hostility, to address different political tendencies, holding members accountable for their actions, or lack thereof, or even to generally foster critical discussion on strategy and politics -- let alone unified actions or messaging. I have yet to see that the organization has gone beyond this, while I'm not in anymore, it really doesn't seem too different than it was, more a loose federation of locals with the semblance of unity on paper.

syndicalist
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Jul 26 2018 21:35
OliverTwister wrote:
Juan Conatz wrote:
Mike Harman wrote:
OK but didn't some Love and Rage people go on to form NEFAC which then turned into Common Struggle which then merged into Black Rose?

I'm not absolutely sure, but I don't think there were any former Love & Rage people involved in the founding of NEFAC. Regardless of whether there were, NEFAC/Common Struggle/Black Rose are all very reflective of pro-organizational American anarchism post-Seattle '99.

Pretty sure Wayne Price was a founding member of NEFAC, but was definitely involved from very early on if not, and he had been in the RSL that went into Love and Rage.

Speaking of people who write and organize very publicly under their names and where it's never been an issue to mention them by name on this site (including to criticize their political activity or the things they write)...

Without getting into the name game, my understanding of the RSL-L&R-NEFAC-M1-BR trajectory is something like this.

Former RSLers are significant part of L&R. Former RSL/L&R folks who remained active in NYC
went into NEFAC, with one going into BR.. RSL/L&R Detroit into Solidarity & Def/M1, with some former NY/other exRSLers eventually into and out of M1, forming the on-line mag "The Utopian".

syndicalist
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Jul 26 2018 21:41
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Juan Conatz

WSA is/was at its lowest point membership-wise. Is that still true?

Actually WSA stands at 60 heavily paper members. Thus far we have not played any meaningful organizational role in the "resistance". Though individual members are engaged on various levels.WSA has some newer more active members who are seeking to rebuild WSA. Been an up and down road since we first formed in 1984.

syndicalist
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Jul 26 2018 22:06
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WSA withdrew just shortly before the finalizing conference over what seems in reflection a mixture of personality conflicts and legitimate political differences over founding documents' wording and principles.

This, in the main, is accurate.

Prolly on the personality part, this got exacerbated towards the end of the process. But not something I didn't see coming. If folks just left the regroupment thing alone, then there may have been some more organic unity reached. Just a shame that, in the end, some relations have taken a hit.

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Jul 27 2018 00:34

Ok, well my main point to Mike was that the simplest way to describe the difference between Black Rose and M1 is that the former is more informed by the developments of pro-organizational anarchism in the 2000s while the latter is more informed by those developments in the 1990s. If there's a better way to describe the differences without getting into lengthy quotes, readings etc, have at it.

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Jul 30 2018 13:12

And WSA the 80s. wink

syndicalist
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Jul 30 2018 15:53
klas batalo wrote:
And WSA the 80s. ;)

Yup, since 1984, with roots back into the 1970s

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Aug 7 2018 13:10

Looks like Black Rose just had its 5th annual conference recently.

It's hard to tell how many locals they have or how active they are since the website seems pretty out of date, at least when it comes to posting anything past early 2017 from the locals.

They also just put out this pamphlet: http://blackrosefed.org/will-be-free-libertarian-socialism/

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Aug 7 2018 15:34

Not exactly an anarchist organisation as such, but it seems from a distance like anarchism is a pretty significant current within the pretty explosive (it seems) growth in "antifa" stuff in the US. Also it seems like It's Going Down, the anarchist media outlet, has done very well (with a strong anti-fascist, and general action-ist focus).

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Aug 7 2018 21:29

For BRRN the locals on the site are accurate for now. Membership has doubled and more gender / racially diverse vs 5 years ago. I say this having just been at the conference and quite surprised by the change in composition, though there is still a lot of work to do. Most work is being done in the labor and prison sectors, and we are focusing on fostering more development in education and the community.

Greetings to the Argentinian Feminist Movement from Black Rose/Rosa Negra

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Aug 8 2018 12:16
Steven. wrote:
Not exactly an anarchist organisation as such, but it seems from a distance like anarchism is a pretty significant current within the pretty explosive (it seems) growth in "antifa" stuff in the US. Also it seems like It's Going Down, the anarchist media outlet, has done very well (with a strong anti-fascist, and general action-ist focus).

Yep. Not sure if you've followed the thread much, but R. Spourgitis mentions this and there is also significant discussion about the disputes in the IWW over antifascism, which arguably has some strong lessons/connections to American anarchism.

If I remember correctly, It's Going Down was initially an effort of crudo and people formerly involved in Modesto Anarcho Crew. I assume it has grown beyond that though. I haven't followed them closely due to the 'action-ist' perspective, which, at age 35, doesn't really interest me anymore unsurprisingly.

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Aug 8 2018 12:47

It's Going Down is a good source of news for IWW-related stuff, often much better than IWW.org. The podcast has interviewed members of the Burgerville Workers Union, IWOC, some of us involved around the West Virginia teacher's strike. The IWOC interview also talked about the ICL founding congress in Parma, and they've had folks on from the CNT twice to talk about the Catalan General Strike and then the Feminist General Strike.

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Aug 8 2018 12:58

Yeah, it feels like an interesting shift away from the days of very strong polarization between insurrecto/anti-organisational folks and pro-organisational/"class struggle" people.
Also, took me a while to get my head around this, but there really isn't a US equivalent to UAF/Stand Up to Racism, is there?
Also, this may be just me, but was anyone else kinda disappointed that Olivia Laing's new novel is not actually a deep dive into the world of 2000s California insurrectionism, despite the name?

bastarx
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Aug 9 2018 14:12

The Modesto Crew wrote some cool stuff BITD. IGD would be quite good if it wasn't for the pro-Rojava nonsense.

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Aug 13 2018 16:38

Black Rose / Rosa Negra 2018 Convention

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Aug 13 2018 20:56

At the risk of sounding very predictable, I think the upcoming prison strike will be an interesting marker of "post-Trump left trends" in that in many ways it's a repeat of events that happened exactly two years ago, so it'll be a chance to measure how the past two years have affected the strength of a pole that I guess we could broadly define as being at least hostile to current state institutions, if not necessarily the state as such, and focused primarily on mass direct actions/the refusal of work more than on lobbying and electoralism - as far as I can see, this seems to be mainly people from the black liberation/black radical tradition, anarcho/wobbly folks, and then some currents within DSA, but maybe it looks different from other perspectives, I dunno.