Politics Questions

So I got to thinking recently that I don’t understand the modern anarchist movement at all. Not as in a mean way, only that I’ve never really had one explain their values to me. Like any political movement, it has changed and shifted over the years, I’m sure. So what better way to find out then asking y’all!

I thought this thread could be a good place to just ask others about movements, ways of thought, how taxes work! Whatever! Google searching can be so overwhelming at times.

So, I’m mainly curious about the anarchist movement of modern day! Anyone care to pitch it?

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So, I wouldn’t necessarily say there is one single definitive movement. There are lots of different kinds of anarchists just like there are lots of different kinds of other kinds of leftists. There are eco-anarchists, anarcho-syndicalists, anarcha-feminists, anarcho-communists, etc. Personally, I find it more useful to view the many sub-tendencies of anarchism as tactics and trains of thought. To quote the late David Graeber, anarchism is something you do, not an identity.

But to get more into it… Anarchists broadly share an interest in dismantling hierarchy, but how and what that looks like differs from tendency to tendency and even individual to individual. Similarly, anarchists generally want to dismantle the state—we don’t believe in a dictatorship of the proletariat—because we believe the state is inherently hierarchical and inevitably leads to oppression and inequality. However! There are plenty of anarchists who attempt to distinguish between government and state. A state has that hierarchical component, whereas a government can be set up via federated municipalities as discussed by Murray Bookchin.

As an aside, the squabbling between Marxist-Leninists and anarchists really bothers me. They both tell each other that they’re stuck in the past, attempting to recreate failed political experiments and that neither has read the others theory… and like, Bookchin, Ocalan, and others, to me, represent the synthesis of anarchism and Marxism.

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I think maybe the one thing all the anarchist tendencies agree on (except maybe the ancaps, but let’s ignore them), other than the elimination of hierarchies, is the practice of mutual aid. Which coincidentally is an element of anarchist thought that broke into the mainstream in a big way this year, so it’s easy to find a lot of explainers, some of which even mention its association with anarchism via Kropotkin.

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So, it’s more a means towards action than a governing principle? I guess that makes more sense. I know of those two famous Anarchists who were killed by the U.S. government, Sacco and Vanzetti. What’s sad is that I only heard of them from that Metal Gear DLC, not any actual formal education on the anarchist movement in the U.S.

Also, LEFTISTS?! INFIGHTING?! I NEVER.

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I came to anarchism through metal gear too actually lol. If it weren’t for Kojima’s weird blend of nonsense with crit of the military industrial complex and strong anti-nuclear stance I probably wouldn’t have looked into things like banana republics or the actual nuances of the Cold War. I know plenty of people just played those games and moved on but for me they acted as a gateway that lead me to books and articles that were really eye opening.

I wish we did teach anarchist history in US schools… but there’s reasons we don’t. Like, at most schools will mention the labor movement and say that’s how we won the 8 hour day and the weekend, but they won’t talk about Blair mountain or the IWW or August Spies and the haymarket affair. The history of US anarchism is directly interwoven with the US labor movement and they won’t teach that because they need folk to believe labor rights were given by the government as the result of peaceful liberal protest and not as the result of actual violent struggle.

But yeah for real. Leftist infighting is old hat. What’s that quote about leftists having a meeting and then they all leave as a new splinter ideology lol.

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I think this meme succinctly sums up leftist infighting, lol

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