racketeerism and parasitism

178 posts / 0 new
Last post
Noa Rodman's picture
Noa Rodman
Offline
Joined: 4-11-09
Jul 27 2010 01:00
racketeerism and parasitism

I know there was a long thread on parasitism already, but some of the comments (ok, all of them) Mciver has been making referenced the issue of parasitism/rackets. As they were made in several threads, it's maybe helpful to (also) have a specific thread where the debate can be focused entirely with this matter of parasitism/rackets (I hope this suits Mciver).

Let me start the thread with some general thoughts.

There is no complete theory of rackets or theory of parasitism. Neither of these incomplete theories are valid in my opinion.

The ICC text on the theses on parasitism, actually talks about other issues besides parasitism such as sectarianism, individualism, opportunism, adventurism and putschism. It starts out with a brief sketch of these issues, which I think are not the provocative or troubling (for Mciver and others) part of the text. The rest and major part of the text then discusses parasitism. Parasitism is seen as similar to the above mentioned stuff (penetration of alien ideologies), yet distinct:

Quote:
8. The phenomenon of political parasitism, which to a large extent is also the result of the penetration of alien ideologies into the working class, has not been accorded, within the history of the workers’ movement, the same amount of attention as other phenomena such as opportunism.

As I already mentioned there isn't a well-thought out theory or even definition of parasitism. The text rather takes a historic look at the communist movement, mostly the IWA with the marxist-anarchist conflict. Comparing with the relevant passages in Mehring's biography of Marx, the ICC's portrayal of the conflict in the IWA isn't reliable (though tbh, I haven't read Fuch's appendix to Mehring's book, who didn't have access to tsarist archives). It's possible that the authors of the theses on parasitism didn't know of Mehring's account of the IWA history, but it's a small chance, so yes, this part of the text is distorting history, and without any good results to boot!, because there still isn't a theory/definition of parasitism.

It doesn't help either to look throughout other ICC texts to get a better sense of what the theory/explanation of parasitism is.

Perhaps worth mentioning is that I found in Bilan one mention of the phrase parasites in regard to political groups which was against Stalinists , who in the view of Bilan, latch onto the revolution/revolutionaries like parasites (which would I guess make Stalin the mega-parasite).

A few words about the theory of rackets.

Racketeerism, like parasitism, is caused by influences of capitalist society at large. Mciver mentions isolation in capitalist society as a source for joining rackets. Prison-gangs, religious cults, soccer-teams, trade-unions and G20 summits, everything in society is a racket and so specifically the communist groups (including anarchists) are another sort of racketeerism. Camatte claims they develop because individuals have a fear of freedom/repressive consciousness. I can see many problems with these explanations, but for now I'll leave it to the experts on racketeerism if they want to elaborate.

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Jul 27 2010 04:16

I think that you are taking both of these ideas far too seriously. Both of them are similar in that they involve creating elaborate theories to justify calling people names after a split, in Camette's case after he fell out with the ICP.

Devrim

888's picture
888
Offline
Joined: 30-09-03
Jul 27 2010 04:20

I'm waiting for reams of exciting insights from mciver with bated breath...

ernie
Offline
Joined: 19-04-06
Jul 27 2010 09:36

Noa

Good idea to have a thread that tries to discuss these questions. It would help if you could elaborate on what you mean by "not well thought out", then hopefully we can answer your concerns appropriately.

The main point about the theses and the general concept of parasitism is that it is an attempt to understand a particularly destructive aspect of the penetration of bourgeois ideology into the workers' movement. Something you underline at the beginning of the thread and which is very important. It is essential that revolutionaries are able to identify and combat such ideologies.

Another central aim of the theses is to try and provide a means for those influenced by such ideology to regain confidence in the workers' movement

On Mehring's book we did know about is existence and we discussed it in our internal discussion which lead to the development of the Theses, a discussion that began in late 86 and continued until we published in the Theses in 98. Mehring's account of the struggle of the IWMA against the destructive activity of Bakunin was and is seen as being "too even handed" and not fully understanding the organizational principles involved. I have not read the book for several years but this was certainly the impression I got from it.

The discussion on the question of parasitism within the ICC is clearly not finished given that comrade Devrim disagrees with it and as he says there are comrades who are not sure. But then that is one of the purposes of a revolutionary organisation: to discuss and clarify the lessons of the experience of the working class's efforts to develop its political organisation.

oisleep's picture
oisleep
Offline
Joined: 20-04-05
Jul 27 2010 14:32
Quote:
they involve creating elaborate theories to justify calling people names after a split

bingo!

nastyned
Offline
Joined: 30-09-03
Jul 27 2010 18:15
oisleep wrote:
Quote:
they involve creating elaborate theories to justify calling people names after a split

bingo!

There's more to it than that, the ICC called Subversion parasites and they weren't a split.

mciver
Offline
Joined: 3-12-09
Jul 28 2010 09:21

Nastyned is right re 'parasitism'. There's much more to this ICC sham than 'splits'. In the UK, individuals like MK and Luther Blisset were systematically denounced as 'parasites' over the years, and they were never associated with the apparat.

In France, Henri Simon of Echanges was also denounced, plus anybody who criticised the ICC. These critics were not ex-members either. The evidence survives, in various languages and on the ICC site. 'Parasitism' was presented as an international and global conspiracy against the jewel of the proletariat. It hasn't gone away, as the sinister post by Ernie confirms on this thread. The apparat won't just give up this trump card.

Subversion was particularly targeted because one if its members was R Weyden, who left the apparat with Chénier and others in Lille and London. His impressive critiques of the ICC's monolithic despotism and Alf's mysticism were never forgiven. He was assaulted when the ICC thugs erupted in his home in Manchester, barking for unpaid dues and bulletins. Of course he was not tortured and flayed like Devrim in the Middle East, but it was scary enough, being mugged inside your own place.

A bingo! gem from Devrim:

Quote:
I think that you are taking both of these ideas far too seriously. Both of them are similar in that they involve creating elaborate theories to justify calling people names after a split, in Camette's case after he fell out with the ICP.

Note that although Devrim plays at being even handed with 'parasitism' and 'rackets', his only example is the Camatte/Collu theory of rackets. The ICC's byzantine concoction of 'parasitism', a rabid magnus opus which apparently took 12 years to write (!!) is left untouched, at least on this post. Demolishing that garbage will take time, but it may be worth the try by someone. Ingram has already sketched a formidable critique on one of these threads, the job is not over.

Camatte's rejection of what the ICP stood for is not explored by Devrim, all is cynically reduced to a 'falling out', some sort of conjugal distancing. Noise due to temperament, thirst for revenge or uncontrolled testosterone.

Following such rich psychoanalytic insights, which enrapture bingo players, one can also say that Marx's Capital was an elaborate theoretical creation compensating for Marx's inability to find employment. A 'settling of scores' with capitalists so to speak.

This fits well with a general anti-intellectual stance found in apparatchiks and their groupies.

Noa, I'm not an 'expert' in rackets and don't care to be, whatever that may mean. I don't have the time or inclination to pursue this, although in my opinion the issue is profoundly explanatory of our present times and crossroads. You appear to be genuinely interested in the subject, I hope you pursue it, even if I don't share at times some of your ways of debating. I notice you no longer call yourself a 'left communist' and that's perhaps positive, if you really want to go beyond tribal identities (to me that one is malignant as well). You also have had some face surgery, I think it's better than before.

888, I think your pet looks wicked, or at least I assume it's not you.

oisleep's picture
oisleep
Offline
Joined: 20-04-05
Jul 28 2010 09:16
Quote:
Demolishing that garbage will take time, but it may be worth the try by someone

What value is there in doing so? What is the problem posed by it? And to whom?

mciver
Offline
Joined: 3-12-09
Jul 28 2010 10:40

Oisleep

Because, in my opinion, the Theses on Parasitism falsifiy how current ideology is produced in a society based on domination and class conflict. Its axiom simply assumes that there's a permanent 'workers movement' like in the past, and that it is under constant attacks by the surrounding environment.

A whole list of attacking 'isms' are given, as deviations from the set standard of a correctly functioning proletarian organism. Naturally, these are attacks from 'bourgeois ideology' that have to be unmasked by the 'outlaw movement' under constant threat.

But the previous permanent workers' movement with the vision and programme of the 'labour republic'. ie, the affirmation of wage labour with the presumed goal of self-abolition, no longer exists. Those who claim to be the real continuators of that dead movement are not operating in the same social time. They can't engage in building labour parties, co-operatives or trade unions. They have not done this for more than 80 years, and the 'left communist sects', to be generous by using 1968 as the benchmark, haven't done so for more than 40. They have no contact with the class they claim to be produced by, so their existence is purely imaginary, or ideological. They can't test anything from a struggle they are not leading or participating in. This is not a matter of will or Pianitsky-like techniques. The period has truly changed, and the theory of rackets attempts to explain this change. Representation has revealed to be only a mechanism of social integration and a victory for abstract labour, for a collapsing valorisation.

This isolation means that the existence of rackets is purely self-serving and circular. There's no point of reference in praxis, so it's the organisation for the organisation's sake. All is premised on 'faith', on a future re-enactement and re-awakening of the truncated years of 1917-28. So it's really a holding operation, a portable general staff awaiting for the great day. The only thing to do is to keep the fortress impregnable, disinfected, invariant (like the Bordiguist rackets), and a way to keep the spirits high is to create ever stronger defences against the immobility of society, where all that is solid melts into thin air but it doesn't really move.

The external immobility becomes tangible if it is personified, the abstraction 'bourgeois ideology' pressurising the 'outlaw' group (which represents a 'momentarily' deaf mankind) has to be exorcised, or living becomes an unbearable waiting for Godot. Thus the neurotic and permanent need for 'parasites', for enemies within or at the gates: rival clans, freemasons, adventurers, secret agents, all 'others' ('outlaws' in reverse) that have to be denounced. There's an inbuilt anti-semitism embedded in this vision, something Stalin tapped and merged with his 'bourgeois-Trotskyite-Fascist victims in his Great Purges.

The These on Parasitism extol a paranoid-persecution ideology that serves group cohesion, by fabricating constant 'outsiders'. They are by definition enemies of mankind. Some of them can be 'saved' of course, but only if the more parasitic elements are defeated and exposed. These attacks against viruses can be as virulent as needed, and more.

The sophistry that violence within the class is not to be allowed is only that. The goal posts can be changed suddenly and pragmatically by a racket -- 'rivals' and opponents which only yesterday were 'our own' are declared 'parasites' and 'agents of capital' today, and denounced as such with impunity.

The violence is mostly symbolic, were are not facing Vishinskys, but it bodes no good, one can only anticipate regressive practices, no positive and optimistic developments fostering emancipation.

Naturally, not everything written by rackets is worthless, but the foundations are incoherent and incapable of explaining reality, because of the social atomisation that exists and persists, in spite of social conflict.

Individuals will still be attracted to political rackets for a long time to come, because they promise strength through numbers, some imagined protection from atomisation and from fear of barbarism. But delusionary states have never helped anyone. On another level, the delusion survives in the promise of the transition period, where abstract labour will endure forever as it is abolished, also forever. Necrophilia appearing as biophilia has its attractions, it must be sadly admitted.

oisleep's picture
oisleep
Offline
Joined: 20-04-05
Jul 28 2010 10:59

ok, but what are the consequences of not attacking/demolishing this stuff?

who is actually effected by it in its un-demolished state?

i.e. my original question, who does it poes a problem for and why?

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Jul 28 2010 11:03
nastyned wrote:
There's more to it than that, the ICC called Subversion parasites and they weren't a split.

Yes, unfortunately there is. It is bad enough when people have a good new idea and apply it to everything even to things that it is not applicable to at all. Of course when the idea is one as erroneous as the 'theory on parasitism, it is so much worse.

Devrim

shug's picture
shug
Offline
Joined: 12-11-06
Jul 28 2010 12:29

Mciver, can you clarify? Are all organisations rackets? Is any attempt to organise doomed?Individuals will still be attracted to political rackets for a long time to come, because they promise strength through numbers, some imagined protection from atomisation and from fear of barbarism. But delusionary states have never helped anyone. Atomised, individual despair doesn't seem to offer much help either, if that's your alternative.

Cassady
Offline
Joined: 28-02-09
Jul 28 2010 15:10

Oisleep asks "why does it pose a problem". Well, the confected "theory of parasitism" has caused enormous damage through the years and continues to do so. At a time when the whole communist milieu should be marshalling its forces this ridiculous, self-serving theory not only divides us but condemns many of us, as (in ernies words) - "a particularly destructive aspect of the penetration of bourgeois ideology into the workers movement". Any notion of the plurality of debate within the communist movement disappears. Any disagreement with the ICC can be silenced and vilified, not to be taken seriously. In the years that we published the Communist Bulletin after our "split" with the ICC not once did they make a political response. As "parasites" we could be ignored. (For the life of me, I can't thing of which particular aspect of bourgeois ideology we represented - perhaps some member of the ICC can tell us.)

mciver
Offline
Joined: 3-12-09
Jul 28 2010 15:16

Dear Shug

Sorry, I have to give more time to your post, because it raises difficult issues, like Oisleep has. I need more time to clarify my thoughts.

I don't have the historical experience of the proletariat behind me, or be its interpreter, like Ernie's mates.

To reply briefly:

-- No, I don't think all organisations are rackets. Some are healthy circles for exchanging social and political ideas, good luck to them. The CBG seems to have been one. Not easy to achieve it.

-- Organise for what? It all depends on the underlying vision and goals. No, I don't think all attempts to organise are doomed.

I agree, atomised individual despair isn't an alternative. Yet we may have no choice in the long run, it depends on what the accumulated past brings forth, at present it looks like the avalanche of catastrophes is growing behind us, as we run. Still, we don't know everything, and the social-individuals' actions are also part of a changeable reality. I would tend to agree with Sam Moss on this. There's a healthy optimism in this seeming nihilism:

http://libcom.org/library/impotence-of-revolutionary-group-international-council-correspondence-moss

oisleep's picture
oisleep
Offline
Joined: 20-04-05
Jul 28 2010 15:31
Quote:
Oisleep asks "why does it pose a problem". Well, the confected "theory of parasitism" has caused enormous damage through the years and continues to do so

yep but what i'm after is something more speficic - give me an example of who it has damaged, why it damaged them, and what was the impact of them being damaged as a result for example?

Cassady
Offline
Joined: 28-02-09
Jul 28 2010 16:21

A cursory look at the history of splits in the ICC in the past 30 years will display the damage done - the comrades driven directly from political life because of false allegations of being a police spy or part of a masonic conspiracy. WR lost almost half of its members, for example, over the former episode, many lost forever to despair, disgust or plain disillusionment. Simply refusing to countenance swuch a clearly false allegation was enough to get you labelled as a parasite. Like it or not the ICC has been the major left communist presence for over 40 years. The damage it has done over the years as a direct result to the tiny, fragile left communist movement has been immense.

oisleep's picture
oisleep
Offline
Joined: 20-04-05
Jul 28 2010 16:24

and the resultant impact of that damage is/was?

if that damage had not been inflicted, how would things be different now do you think?

oisleep's picture
oisleep
Offline
Joined: 20-04-05
Jul 28 2010 17:02

racket man

Alf's picture
Alf
Offline
Joined: 6-07-05
Jul 28 2010 20:30

To return to Noa's original post.

The first question, he points out, is the general phenomenon: the 'penetration of bourgeois ideology into the mind of the working class', and the specific forms it takes inside the organised workers' movement. I had once assumed that this notion was already accepted by all marxists, and numerous anarchists. I have also assumed that what we are talking about here is no more than a general definition of ideology. But judging by many of the responses here, it was wrong to assume. So this would seem to be the first question to debate. Perhaps it should start with something that is more widely accepted, though by no means universally: opportunism. Does it constitute a real and negative force in the life of the proletariat?

The second question, as Noa also clearly recognises, is the Marx/Bakunin split. If our reassessment of anarchism means anything, it will necessarily involve going back to this key moment in the history of the workers' movement. It is well known that we have declared our support for the basic stance adopted by Marx and Engels in this crisis within the International, but this does not mean that we are closed to all discussion of the criticisms that the libertarians and others continue to make of the 'Marx party' on this issue.

Perhaps if we keep to these general themes, at least for now, we can have a discussion that clarifies things here.

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Jul 28 2010 20:39
Quote:
The second question, as Noa also clearly recognises, is the Marx/Bakunin split. If our reassessment of anarchism means anything, it will necessarily involve going back to this key moment in the history of the workers' movement.

Why? Modern anarchism is in no way 'Bakuninism'. I don't think that the split in the international is particularly relevant at all.

Devrin

Alf's picture
Alf
Offline
Joined: 6-07-05
Jul 28 2010 20:50

On the contrary, we're still living with its after effects.

I agree that modern anarchism can by no means be reduced to Bakuninism. But I would argue that the ghosts of that split in the 19th century still haunt us, even if they pre-date the more obviously scary ghosts generated by the Russian revolution.

nastyned
Offline
Joined: 30-09-03
Jul 28 2010 22:08
Alf wrote:
But I would argue that the ghosts of that split in the 19th century still haunt us, even if they pre-date the more obviously scary ghosts generated by the Russian revolution.

Slightly disturbingly I find myself agreeing with Alf here. Still, even the proverbial stopped clock is right twice a day.

Cassady
Offline
Joined: 28-02-09
Jul 28 2010 23:07

Personally, I think Alf is making a stretch too far but in any case you're on the wrong thread. The question here is about rackets and parasitism.

nastyned
Offline
Joined: 30-09-03
Jul 28 2010 23:10

Oh, he's definitely wrong on that one all the time.

Alf's picture
Alf
Offline
Joined: 6-07-05
Jul 29 2010 06:30

Cassady -are you saying I'm on the wrong thread for bringing up the dispute in the First International here? I am not clear what you meant in your last post.

knightrose
Offline
Joined: 8-11-03
Jul 29 2010 07:44

Apart from the effects that it had on former ICC members, the main result of the parasitism idea was to increase the isolation of the ICC. It led them to behave appallingly at our (Subversion's) meetings and get them banned from coming. It led them to waste pages of writing attacking us - which was weird as we never had more than 8 or 9 members! It also gave us many a laugh. We'd hand WR round at meetings to see what the latest attack on us was. We also made a conscious decision not to engage with them over it and in 21 issues only ever referred to them once.
I'm not sure what long term effect they had on groups like the CBG. I suspect very little. The main problem was in a group largely defining itself in relation to the ICC rather than as an entity in its own right.
Finally, I think the ICC secretly realises what a load of crap it was - but are having difficulty saying so. We actually have decent meetings with them now and are able to engage in discussion rather than debate in a friendly rather than confrontational manner.

ernie
Offline
Joined: 19-04-06
Jul 29 2010 18:56

I do not think the analysis of parasitism is crap, though comrade Devrim and other comrades may agree. It is an attempt to understand and struggle against the impact of the influence of bourgeois ideology. That said, it is certainly true we did use this analysis crudely at times which certainly alienated some comrades from us. This also lead to a situation where the crude application of this analysis obscured and distorted the theoretical content of this analysis.
Along with knightrose we take great heart from the fact that we are now able to meet and discuss together in a fruitful way.

Noa Rodman's picture
Noa Rodman
Offline
Joined: 4-11-09
Jul 29 2010 18:56
ernie wrote:
It would help if you could elaborate on what you mean by "not well thought out", then hopefully we can answer your concerns appropriately.

The text is all over the place, and my point is that the many historical excursions avoid an explanation of parasitism - maybe that is not the goal of text, maybe its only meant to be an illustration of parasitism in the history of communist movement, but then it begs the question of what parasitism means. Could you, or anybody who knows, give a summary of the conceptual structure of the text to help understand what its 25+ theses actually positively propose/contribute.

Quote:
On Mehring's book we did know about is existence and we discussed it in our internal discussion which lead to the development of the Theses, a discussion that began in late 86 and continued until we published in the Theses in 98. Mehring's account of the struggle of the IWMA against the destructive activity of Bakunin was and is seen as being "too even handed" and not fully understanding the organizational principles involved. I have not read the book for several years but this was certainly the impression I got from it.

Like Alf said, if the ICC is serious about its reassessment of anarchism, Mehring's book with its 'too even handedness' is exactly what is needed (I quote just a random passage) :

Mehring wrote:
One must side with our present-day anarchists when they declare that nothing is more un-Marxist than the idea that an unusually malicious individual, a “highly-dangerous intriguer,” could have destroyed a proletarian organization like the International. One cannot take the part of those orthodox believers whose skin begins to creep with horror at the suggestion that Marx and Engels might not always have dotted their i’s and crossed their t’s.

It is really necessary that in the theses on parasitism you'd have at least explained why the ICC disagrees with Mehring, who's account is authoritative and why such a figure as Mehring didn't manage to 'fully understand the organizational principles involved'.

Again, Fuchs' afterword is said to have added new information on the anarchist-marxist conflict and it generally looks very interesting, but I haven't read it yet.

Btw, the Lassalleans are also considered parasites.

mciver wrote:
Alf's mysticism

Did Alf write a text on shamanism or something? link please laugh out loud

Beltov
Offline
Joined: 10-05-05
Jul 29 2010 19:53
Noa Rodman wrote:
Could you, or anybody who knows, give a summary of the conceptual structure of the text to help understand what its 25+ theses actually positively propose/contribute.

I'm not sure if this actually answers your question, but in one of our replies to Internationalist Perspectives' "Appeal to pro-revolutionaries" April 2009 we wrote:

Quote:
...we would like to clarify what we mean by “political parasitism”, which is not simply an insult to be hurled at anyone we disagree with. You are doubtless aware of the “Theses on parasitism” which set out in some detail our view of the question, but to be brief we consider that a group can be described as “parasitic” essentially on the basis of two criteria:

1. The group defends the same political positions as an already existing organization, especially when it is a split from the latter.

2. The group devotes most or a substantial part of its energy attempting to discredit those groups or organizations to which it appears to be closest, if one were to judge from its publicly declared political positions.

http://internationalist-perspective.org/IP/ip-discussions/appeal-response.html#note-3

The rest of the correspondence explains where we now stand on IP...

I'll try to give you a better answer later. I'll have to go over the Theses again, it's been a while.

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Jul 29 2010 20:18
ICC wrote:
...we would like to clarify what we mean by “political parasitism”, which is not simply an insult to be hurled at anyone we disagree with.

Really, you could have fooled me.

ICC wrote:
1. The group defends the same political positions as an already existing organization, especially when it is a split from the latter.

2. The group devotes most or a substantial part of its energy attempting to discredit those groups or organizations to which it appears to be closest, if one were to judge from its publicly declared political positions.

At it's worse it wasn't even applied to groups but to individuals. If we take this article, the people being abused as parasites are not even groups, but individuals. It hardly fits the criteria.

On the website it says:

ICC wrote:
Political parasitism can be defined briefly as the activity of small grouplets who have no real independent political basis for their existence, and whose activity is essentially devoted to denouncing and slandering the groups of the Communist Left.

Clearly it isn't something that was supposed to apply to individuals.

..And 'subversion', well it didn't share the same political positions as the ICC, it wasn't a split from the ICC, and it certainly didn't "devote most or a substantial part of its energy attempting to discredit those groups or organizations to which it appears to be closest".

How was it parasitic?

ernie wrote:
That said, it is certainly true we did use this analysis crudely at times which certainly alienated some comrades from us. This also lead to a situation where the crude application of this analysis obscured and distorted the theoretical content of this analysis.

I think really this is a case where it is necessary to throw out the baby with the acid bath that it is sitting in. Even if there were some validity in it, which I don't think there is, it has probably been, over the years, the single most damaging thing in left communist politics.

Devrim

Alf's picture
Alf
Offline
Joined: 6-07-05
Jul 29 2010 23:07

There seems to be a widespread, almost unquestioning acceptance of the idea that the ICC has caused hostility to itself because of the theory of parasitism - the 'man running down the street stabbing himself' theory. In reality, hostility to the ICC, not just from leftists but from those who appear to share similar political ideas, long precedes the theory of parasitism; in fact, we developed the theory to try to understand some of the reasons for this hostility, to understand it as a general political phenomenon. Do you think that if we hadn't developed the theory, this hostility would not have existed?

I think we were wrong to describe Subversion as parasitic. It obviously had its own politics and was not primarily focused on attacking the ICC. On the other hand it was not averse to spreading the 'ICC are loony' argument ( I seem to recall one article about the ICC coming from another planet) and it was after one such attack in 1996 that we began to classify Subversion as parasitic, having previously considered it part of the proletarian milieu. I think this was an exaggerated reaction at a time when we had withdrawn into what we later called a 'fortress spirit' and were in general over-using the concept. But again: we didn't simply invent the hostility towards us. It was there within Subversion even if it wasn't the reason for their existence.