Author Topic: Where my leftists at?  (Read 4108 times)

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DaleSr

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #180 on: July 10, 2021, 01:54:09 PM »
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Daniel Cohn Bendit's "Obsolete Communism"
https://www.akpress.org/catalog/product/view/id/693/s/obsoletecommunism/

and Orwell's "Homage To Catalonia"

are mandatory reading as cautionary tales of Leftist's selling each other and the Revolution out.
[close]

not even saying this applies to you F&F, but this brought to mind how many nominal "leftists" want to disarm the poor and working classes in this country these days...in other words, all of the privileged, gentrifying, hypocritical "liberals" out there are not only useless, they are absolutely in the way...that's not a safe place to be you adorable things you.

if you want to disarm the poor and working classes you are a joke of a "leftist," and need to just lay back and embrace the giddy comfort and security of your middle-class life--that's what your parents worked hard for, right? there is no such thing as a revolutionary who thinks the state should be the only one with arms.

hey, speaking of which, y'all remember when Frantz Fanon said this?

"The unpreparedness of the educated classes, the lack of practical links between them and the mass of the people, their laziness, and, let it be said, their cowardice at the decisive moment of the struggle will give rise to tragic mishaps."

Real shit, Karl said what's up.

"All attempts to disarm the proletariat must be frustrated, by force if necessary"

Also on the topic of liberals

"Who is more devoted to order than justice, who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice"


MLK had shit to say while he was in jail and the liberals of the day were scolding him for being divisive
« Last Edit: July 10, 2021, 05:31:10 PM by DaleSr »
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Freelancevagrant

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #181 on: July 10, 2021, 07:43:19 PM »
This is an incredibly long winded and I got way today o caught up typing it so I apologize for the following

Two things:

1. Love the book list idea, Iím typing up a list and will post them with links to the full text. If anyone would like a physical copy let me know and Iíll get one made and shipped out to ya. As long as it is on the Anarchist Library, I got you.

2. Iíve gotta chime in and give an anarcho-syndicalist analysis of the ďleftists betraying other leftistsĒ argument. Firstly, it semantically feels incorrect, it should be statist betraying leftists. I think that there is an allure to the power that a party represents, but that party is authoritarian and pails in comparison to the power and strength of an organized working class. Look at the bolsheviks and any other statist ďsocialistĒ party. Political partyís are a hierarchical organization claiming to want to replace the current hierarchical organization with the goal of eventually creating a non-hierarchical society. This to me seems like an unnecessary step and a formula/blueprint to be used to crush any and all dissent or those deemed to be subversive. There are many examples of workersí self management and egalitarian control of the means of production being absolutely slaughtered by the very same people claiming to have . From what Iíve gathered, the statist defense to this is that the working class canít effectively organize to seize the means of production and that it must be done by the party on behalf of the workers. To me feels like statements like this incredibly dismissive of the organizational capacity and mobility of the working class.

Secondly, and I know this is another issue with semantics, but the term dictatorship of the proletariatÖ Libertarian Marxists/council communists will argue that the phrasing itself is meant to imply that this is when the proletariat will control (dictate) the means of production (fwiw I love left communists/libertarian Marxists). However, Marx himself argued that the control of the means of production will be in the hands of the state, with a portion of earnings being kept by the state. That isnít socialism, that is state capitalism because yet again control of the means of production are stripped from the working class and given to a hierarchical institution that alleges to operate on behalf of the proletariat.

Thirdly, Marx said in certain countries where the material conditions are correct, the establishment of a ďworker's stateĒ can happen within the confines of first world representative democracy, which would eventually evolve into a classless, post scarcity society. This theory is inherently problematic in that it shows professional state socialists (politicians) are willing to work in lockstep with our oppressors with the aim to eventually usurp one ruling class with another.

No matter how noble their intentions might be, I find that embracing party/vanguard politics to be incredibly reactionary. In my view, a party working with the ruling class to eventually become the ruling class only serves to create another fissure between the working class; those aligned with the party, those against the party but seeking to have control over the means of production, and those who are in the working class that act in false class solidarity with the ruling class. Creating divisions within labor is ENTIRELY antithetical to the goal of working class emancipation.

Statists betray and oppress, leftist fight for unity and organization
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S.

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #182 on: July 11, 2021, 03:32:16 AM »
This is an incredibly long winded and I got way today o caught up typing it so I apologize for the following

Two things:

1. Love the book list idea, Iím typing up a list and will post them with links to the full text. If anyone would like a physical copy let me know and Iíll get one made and shipped out to ya. As long as it is on the Anarchist Library, I got you.

2. Iíve gotta chime in and give an anarcho-syndicalist analysis of the ďleftists betraying other leftistsĒ argument. Firstly, it semantically feels incorrect, it should be statist betraying leftists. I think that there is an allure to the power that a party represents, but that party is authoritarian and pails in comparison to the power and strength of an organized working class. Look at the bolsheviks and any other statist ďsocialistĒ party. Political partyís are a hierarchical organization claiming to want to replace the current hierarchical organization with the goal of eventually creating a non-hierarchical society. This to me seems like an unnecessary step and a formula/blueprint to be used to crush any and all dissent or those deemed to be subversive. There are many examples of workersí self management and egalitarian control of the means of production being absolutely slaughtered by the very same people claiming to have . From what Iíve gathered, the statist defense to this is that the working class canít effectively organize to seize the means of production and that it must be done by the party on behalf of the workers. To me feels like statements like this incredibly dismissive of the organizational capacity and mobility of the working class.

Secondly, and I know this is another issue with semantics, but the term dictatorship of the proletariatÖ Libertarian Marxists/council communists will argue that the phrasing itself is meant to imply that this is when the proletariat will control (dictate) the means of production (fwiw I love left communists/libertarian Marxists). However, Marx himself argued that the control of the means of production will be in the hands of the state, with a portion of earnings being kept by the state. That isnít socialism, that is state capitalism because yet again control of the means of production are stripped from the working class and given to a hierarchical institution that alleges to operate on behalf of the proletariat.

Thirdly, Marx said in certain countries where the material conditions are correct, the establishment of a ďworker's stateĒ can happen within the confines of first world representative democracy, which would eventually evolve into a classless, post scarcity society. This theory is inherently problematic in that it shows professional state socialists (politicians) are willing to work in lockstep with our oppressors with the aim to eventually usurp one ruling class with another.

No matter how noble their intentions might be, I find that embracing party/vanguard politics to be incredibly reactionary. In my view, a party working with the ruling class to eventually become the ruling class only serves to create another fissure between the working class; those aligned with the party, those against the party but seeking to have control over the means of production, and those who are in the working class that act in false class solidarity with the ruling class. Creating divisions within labor is ENTIRELY antithetical to the goal of working class emancipation.

Statists betray and oppress, leftist fight for unity and organization

Good idea. Do you know http://libgen.is ? It is an extensive archive of ebooks and journals.



Freelancevagrant

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #183 on: July 12, 2021, 06:58:48 AM »
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Two things:

1. Love the book list idea, Iím typing up a list and will post them with links to the full text. If anyone would like a physical copy let me know and Iíll get one made and shipped out to ya. As long as it is on the Anarchist Library, I got you.

[close]

Good idea. Do you know http://libgen.is ? It is an extensive archive of ebooks and journals.

I am a fan of libgen, they are a fantastic resource! Unfortunately, as it stands I am only able to print from Anarchist library, we have a hard drive that holds the majority of the AL works, but if someone requests something not on the drive we import it directly from AL.

So as it stands I can pull print there but I will talk to the collective about printing from other sources. I personally donít see that being an issue, just gotta confirm.

Also still working on my list; work, life, and homework have been kicking my ass lately
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DaleSr

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #184 on: July 14, 2021, 02:26:19 PM »
I wanted to add my part to this thread, since freelance has done so much hard work preparing detailed posts for us. I'm going to try and post some little excerpts of Alexander Cockburn's writing for all of you to enjoy, just as some light left wing fun

This passage is from Corruptions Of Empire, his collection of essays from the 70s-80s and this particular example was published in the Wall Street Journal on Oct 24, 1985 and is probably the most astute and clear eyed look at the shaky ground that California's economy was built on before all the tech freaks took over.



Karl and Fred:
Driving into the Sunset


"Riverside, Calif.  -  Halfway between those twin poles of the American Fantasy, Disneyland and Palm Springs, and 50 miles due east of the Beverly Hills Hotel is the city of Riverside where I've been spending the past few days contemplating the future of capitalism. All Marxists should pay regular visits to Southern California and ask themselves what Karl would have said about the inevitability of crisis as he cruised the freeways and sauntered through the boutiques of La Jolla with his good friend Fred.

        Riverside is a pretty good vantage point from which to observe the fortunes of the Reagan economy. The city, with a population nearing 200,000, is rich in history and cultural tradition. It was in Riverside that Richard and Pat Nixon enjoyed their honeymoon at the beautiful Mission Inn; in Riverside that a baboon heart was implanted in the chest of baby Fae; in Riverside, on the local University of California campus that Christopher Boyce, later to sell to the Soviet Union some of America's most cherished secrets of satellite communication, acquired the rudiments of higher education ; in Riverside that the shock troops of the Animal Liberation Front took the laboratories of this same campus by storm and turned loose the beasts previously doomed to the scalpels and electrodes of forward marching science.
        Today, Riverside is a boom town. Three years ago Chase Econometrics noted that population growth in Riverside and neighboring San Bernardino counties was leaping ahead of the Sun Belt magnets such as Miami and San Antonio. I drive along Iowa Avenue and see the bulldozers crunching up the orange trees as the groves and pickers move farther east. In place of these groves are rising the Type V houses - stick construction with spray on stucco to evoke the Spanish tradition - typical of the real estate boom surfing through the area.
        Who are the denizens of the new Riverside economy? Some are refugees from Rust Belt America, from declining industrial towns where they could once earn $15 an hour in a factory and who now look for jobs in the service sector of Southern California at $4 an hour. Some are refugees from real estate inflation along the Southern California coast. Others, at a lower level of subsistence, are Mexican refugees from the debt crisis, once again filling out every crevice of the service economy. Others are beneficiaries of the pulsing engine of the Reagan economy, military spending, on which the prosperity of Riverside heavily depends. In Riverside County is March Air Force Base and 10 minutes north on Route 215 is Norton AFB in San Bernardino. Each day Highway 91 and Route 60 are clogged with commuters heading toward the plants of Lockheed, TRW, Rockwell and McDonnell Douglas. Back from the aerospace and defense research and development complexes of Los Angeles and Orange counties, they return to Riverside with the dollars to sustain the real-estate boom and the service economy.
        Riverside, in short, is what the Reagan economy is all about, in bad ways as well as good. Even here, amid the boom of Southern California, these new residents ensconced in their Type V houses are groaning beneath the weight of their variable rate mortgages as their interest payments soar from the seductive 8.5% initial three month rate to 13% and 14%, as the repo-man begins to lick his lips. These Riversiders, like millions of others, are finding that through variable interest rate mortgages the burden of risk is on their shoulders as opposed to those of their leading institutions. The rate of mortgage delinquencies, across the country and even in Riverside, was higher in the first quarter of 1985 than at any time in the past 30 years, evidence of the fragility of the Reagan economy, which as Business Week remarked a year ago, rests on the financial equivalent of the San Andreas fault, a geological fissure that in fact happens to run right through Riverside County.

        How wide is the fault? Wide enough to set Karl and Fred licking their lips? With my Riverside host, Robert Pollin of the UC Riverside Economics faculty, I took a quick overview of the situation. The rate at which the non financial economy - households, non financial corporations and government - depends on debt to finance expenditures is higher than it ever has been since they started collecting the numbers a century ago. Everyone talks about government borrowing but the borrowing by the private sector, less publicly lamented, is also highly unprecedented.
        Something else that has Karl and Fred nudging each other is the fall in real wages, about which there has been some comment lately. The Fall actually began at the end of 1973 when real wages peaked in the postwar period. And of course these declining real wages are the reason the freeways around Riverside, like many other commuter arteries in America, are filled with women commuters who have left home and joined the workforce to keep the family afloat. But despite the two wage household, family incomes peaked in the early 1970s and have been drifting down ever since. According to the Federal Reserve's major 1983 survey of Consumer Finances, real median income was 16% lower in 1982 than it was in 1969, and despite an upturn in 1984 there is no evidence of a return to the prosperity of the late 60's.

        So much for the householders of Riverside. Not too many of them probably have copies of 'Das Kapital' beside their beds (always excepting those of the distinguished economics department here, where the Marxists are thick enough upon the ground to give Reed Irvine a heart attack). But if the Riversiders were to pick up a copy of Karl's book and push through to Vol III and his discussion of the falling rate of profit, they might realize the benefits of Marxist analysis. Despite the upturn in profitability in the 'defense'-led recovery of 1984, profit rates of non financial  corporations, just like households, to rush to the financial markets and borrow at an unprecedented clip.
        All this borrowing - private as well as governmental - puts increasing upwards pressure on interest rates, thus inhibiting any efforts of the Fed to push them down, even if the urge were there to do so. And of course real interest rates, despite their decline over the past year, remain at a historic high. What has emerged, with the allure of all these high rates, is the go-go financial supermarket of the Roaring 80s, where fortunes are gained and lost overnight in Aladdin's  cave of evermore baroque financial mechanisms wherewith to borrow and to lend.
        So if President Reagan were to take Karl for a helicopter ride over Riverside and the rest of Southern California he would doubtless point out the building boom, the swimming pools and all the other elements of the American Dream come true. Marx would pull thoughtfully at his beard and nod politely, but then he would point out to the president the rest of the story: long term decline, faltering living standards, a crisis of profitability in the nonfinacial sector; everywhere the signs of financial fragility, even in Southern California and the dream fortress of World Capitalism spread among Disneyland, Palm Springs and the Beverly Hills Hotel."
     



I'd like to post some more of these as I continue to slowly putter my way through this book if you guys are interested, as I too am invested in this lovely little commie thread we've created
Sinner really is making the US look like some sort of bandana republic.

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Freelancevagrant

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #185 on: July 14, 2021, 08:32:22 PM »
Hot damn, @DaleSr ! Thank you so much for posting that. Alexander Cockburn is incredible in every sense of the word. I can not confirm the validity of this, but I remember being told he was somehow related to the dude who started the burning of DC, which is fucking wild. His work deserves to be read and screamed from the rooftops. That shit stands the test of time and has aged like a fine wine. His writing is incredibly profound while remaining accessible. An all round amazing dude to have had on our side of the fight, and his presence is sorely missed.

I love the idea of continuing to post excerpts from Corruptions of Empire! I think by doing so you will get a wide range of commentary and reflection that will seriously enrich the experience of reading it. That being said, it can get exhausting so post from it as you see fit, but donít burn yourself out doing it!

Two more things to add:

1. I havenít forgotten the book list! I just keep getting sidetracked with handling adulthood and family life, but itís going to be a doozy!

2. I will officially start posting the daily events from working class history, which will be included in this post. Itís late and I figured we would start with tomorrowís date, the 15th as the first post. This way we have a full 24+ hours to discuss and reflect. Then I will start posting them around 5 am when Iím at work on the actual day of.

Iíll end my rambling with a Pete Seeger quote:

ďWhat I mean is take it easyÖ But take it
 



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DaleSr

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #186 on: July 14, 2021, 08:55:53 PM »
Hot damn, @DaleSr ! Thank you so much for posting that. Alexander Cockburn is incredible in every sense of the word. I can not confirm the validity of this, but I remember being told he was somehow related to the dude who started the burning of DC, which is fucking wild. His work deserves to be read and screamed from the rooftops. That shit stands the test of time and has aged like a fine wine. His writing is incredibly profound while remaining accessible. An all round amazing dude to have had on our side of the fight, and his presence is sorely missed.

I love the idea of continuing to post excerpts from Corruptions of Empire! I think by doing so you will get a wide range of commentary and reflection that will seriously enrich the experience of reading it. That being said, it can get exhausting so post from it as you see fit, but donít burn yourself out doing it!

I can confirm that he's a direct ancestor of Sir Admiral George Cockburn and in the War of 1812 he freed slaves on his March to the white house and enlisted them in torching the OG white house. Very cool and that's why the cover of this particular book features a burning white house.

I think the accessability of his writing is the true magic. He takes things that are complicated and he speaks about them in plain, jovial and common language.

I think the next few segments i do will be his sections on journalists. Each little entry is so delightful
« Last Edit: July 15, 2021, 09:59:17 AM by DaleSr »
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IusedToSkateMore

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #187 on: July 14, 2021, 09:16:46 PM »
this link through z library, for Mark Arax "Dreamt Land: Chasing Water and Dust across California" expresses the state of California capitalism better than anything I've encountered. Not the Reagan era, but since the founding of the state to current day. I haven't been so very much angered and informed/educated by a book in a long time.

https://1lib.us/book/5818550/ea741b
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matty_c

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #188 on: July 15, 2021, 08:50:59 PM »
This is the funniest clip, chinless cunts reaping the benefits without ponying up the dosh
Copper says, Ďnopeí

https://youtu.be/jk8AifwfgYU
listen to cosmic psychos

DaleSr

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #189 on: July 16, 2021, 10:29:56 AM »
This is the funniest clip, chinless cunts reaping the benefits without ponying up the dosh
Copper says, Ďnopeí

https://youtu.be/jk8AifwfgYU

Poor scabbies haha
Sinner really is making the US look like some sort of bandana republic.

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #190 on: July 17, 2021, 04:54:22 PM »
this shit in la got me sick to my stomach

DaleSr

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #191 on: July 21, 2021, 07:35:48 PM »

Hey comrades, I thought I would post another entry from Corruptions of Empire

This is from the section Terms of the Trade which concerns journalism and the many sordid characters populating the ranks of many of the newspapers of the time (and some who may be haunting us still to this day). On the Terms of the Trade title page there's a little illustration of a serpent and a quote that reads

Remember that the world turns slowly and that almost without exception what was true about a country ten years ago is still true today. Life goes on as usual. Bear in mind Lord Northcliffe's sage advice to journalists: 'Never lose your sense of the superficial'

Which now brings us to the first essay

The Need to Tell:
The Psychopathy of Journalism


Early in his memoirs the great Victorian journalist Henri de Blowitz refers to his 'uncontrollable desire to get to the bottom of sensational reports.' He was trying to explain why he became a journalist, instead of remaining a sober businessman in Marseilles. This was the best he could do. In a later chapter, he discusses what was in 'universal opinion, the greatest journalistic feat on record,... the publication, in the Times, of the Treaty of Berlin at the very hour it was being signed in Berlin.' Needless to say, de Blowitz was the person responsible for this triumph. But plainly he felt some puzzlement about exactly why it was such a feat.

To have published an important document before anyone else does not make you a great writer or a great journalist ... Any journalist by profession might have done what I did if he had said, 'I will do it,' and had thought over the ways of accomplishing his scheme. It was a feat in which neither talent nor science stood for anything. The story I am about to tell must not therefore be ascribed to vanity, but should merely be considered as the fulfillment of a duty to my journalistic profession, to which I am devoted.

        Evidently de Blowitz could see that detached readers might well have asked what exactly was the point of a feat in which the Times of London managed to print a document on a Saturday only through prodigious efforts and enormous expense, whereas the same document was freely distributed to every journalist in Berlin shortly afterward.
        At the heart of de Blowitz's confusion was his difficulty in confronting the fact that his sense of pleasure and triumph was that of the gossip, the person first with the news, suffused with the satisfaction of having slaked that 'uncontrollable desire to get to the bottom of sensational reports.' Such, in essence, was the duty he felt towards his profession.
        Now journalism has always been fair game for abuse and though they may have made a fuss about Spiro Agnew, most members of the profession readily concede the fact. Indeed the more seasoned of these members will invariably commend Evelyn Waugh's novel Scoop to novices, explaining that this chronicle of mendacity, idleness, venality and ignorance is a splendidly accurate distillation of their calling.
        But 'gossip' (or even 'mere gossip') is not one of the terms of abuse genially acknowledged. There are, to be sure, gossip writers enjoyed by the readers. Particularly in England a good gossip page is regarded as a sine qua non of such papers as the Daily Mail or the Daily Express or the Evening Standard. More avowedly serious newspapers such as the London Sunday Times or the Observer acknowledge the need, with gossip columns purged of excess prurience or outrageous snobbery. These responsible efforts are of course extremely dull. In the United States prurient and snobbish gossip is reserved for the huge mass circulation papers like the National Enquirer and sanitized gossip enjoys a brisk renaissance in Suzy's and Liz Smith's syndicated columns, or in People magazine or in the ever expanding column in the New York Times also called 'People'.
        But Although gossip sells papers, the activity of gossip mongering is still corralled off as an activity with which the 'serious' journalist should not concern himself. The reason is surely that gossip mongering is at the heart of the psychopathy of the trade, at the center of the 'uncontrollable desire' de Blowitz was talking about. All journalists worthy of the name are gossips, but many of them find this simple urge, central to their calling, too distasteful to recognize. They often prefer to turn matters around and talk about 'the public's right to know' rather than the journalist's need to tell. The gossip's ambition is to discover a secret and the gossip's triumph is to reveal that secret, whatever treachery in the broaching of the secret may be involved. Back in the 19th century Robert Lowe, de Blowitz's boss as editor of the Times, remarked that the duty of newspapers is to obtain the earliest intelligence of the news and instantly communicate this to the readers. Which is a nicer way of saying the same thing: 'I've got a secret, and here it is"
         All the same the exact psychopathology of the journalist is hard to figure out. No foundation that I am aware of has hired ex-journalists to promote an ongoing inquiry. Journalists themselves are notoriously repressed about the wellsprings of their conduct, merely recognizing that the occupational hazards of their chosen career include alcoholism and a meager and probably impoverished old age.
        The great de Blowitz was interested in the tricky business of extracting gossip without being explicitly forced into a relationship where publication of the secret would be interpreted as a direct act of treachery and betrayal. 'I am going,' he wrote ' for the benefit of younger journalists, to give a hint which a good many of them which I know would do well to bear in mind. When a man gives a correspondent an important piece of news, the latter should continue to remain with him for some time, but change the conversation and not leave him until it has turned into something quite insignificant. If the correspondent takes his departure abruptly, a flash of caution will burst upon his informant. He will reflect rapidly and will beg the journalist not to repeat what he has said until he sees him again. The information would be lost and the correspondent would suffer annoyance that might have been avoided if he had heard nothing. A newspaper has no use for confidential communications it cannot transmit to its readers.'
         Only the last sentence of de Blowitz's admirable advice rings oddly. It is after all plain that newspapers constantly find use for confidential communications they feel they cannot transmit. They sit on them, glorying in the possession of knowledge but deterred by reasons of libel or taste or genuflections to national security from letting the readers in on the secret.
        There are other reasons why the gossip monger's excited babble is suppressed. The editors or proprietors may simply feel he is wrong. Official censorship may interrupt the confidential communication. This constant tension between primal gossip and eventual publication is the theme of Phillip Knightly's book on war correspondence, The First Casualty. On the whole it is an interesting, if slightly dogged account of how newspaper reports of almost every conflict since the Crimean war turn out, upon examination, to be unrelievedly mendacious. There are varying patterns of distortion. Either, as was often the case during the Russian Revolution, the journalist's own powers of observation were so contaminated by class prejudice that he was literally incapable of understanding what was going on around him. Or as was famously the case in the Spanish-American War, the proprietor simply wanted a war, whether one existed or not. Or in almost all cases, the military authorities and the civil government back home did not wish to have the population acquainted with perturbing information. Against such alliances of interest, the triumph of truth - as Knightly tells it - has been rare. . . .

        . . . .The true journalistic gossip tells his secret, heedless of the consequences. But Knightley's book makes it dismally clear how easily this small pure urge to communicate is extinguished, and how easily it is compromised. Journalists may start with the pure urge to tell all, but their working lives are spent in environments profoundly hostile to this primal desire. Knightley has chosen the most conspicuous environment - that of war, where it may be simply impossible for the truth to be communicated. Readers may come away with the comforting illusion that things are better in peacetime. But it does not take long to see that then too the gossip stands in permanent danger of blunting his edge. Can he truly say what he knows about business, about law enforcement, about government? As a gossip, he has to have sources who can and will deceive him, use him for their own ends, reproach him for indiscretions, cut him off from fresh material.
        Social gossip is all very well, because subjects like to read their names in the newspapers, even attached to vaguely disobliging remarks. What about powerful people who do not wish to see their names printed in the newspapers? The gossip moves about his village, but each day faces the neighbors too. He modifies and inflects his news accordingly. I.F. Stone chose, in compiling his own splendid newsletter, a slightly different method, less amenable to contamination. He did not move along the usual gossip circuits, but preferred rather only to read source material, congressional reports, budgetary statements. And in that way he remained immune from the compromises his colleagues most invariably fell prey. Many of them had inside stories, embargoed, off the record, on 'deep background,' too heavy with 'advocacy'. They had the wherewithal to satisfy their basic lust to be first out with the secret, but lacked the freedom, or eventually the inclination, or indeed the moral passion, to satisfy it. Such disappointments do not make journalists cynics, as is popularly believed. They make them despair.
        Despair is a central part of the psychopathology. for the handmaiden of gossip is treachery: the record is always off; the tape recorder is always on. Usually the macho of the trade precludes self awareness, as did the general feeling of journalists that they were a rough, low lot without the leisure of introspection. But journalism seems to becoming a more respected or rather self respecting profession. Perhaps more self analysis is on the way. One hint of this can be found in a book edited by a journalist and his wife called The First Time, in which a number of prominent people talked about their first sexual experience.
        A couple of journalists are in the collection, giving the inside story on their first times - primal gossip again - and I was much struck by the contribution from the columnist Art Buchwald. Towards the end of it he says,


I had hang ups and guilt that didn't help I put women on a pedestal, but fundamentally I was very hostile to them. I was trying to get even with my mother. Trying to get even with your own dead mother is one of the most futile drives. There's no payoff. A lot of revenge fucking of that sort goes on. But I can't do it. I can't be cruel. I can have fantasies about being cruel, but I can't do it. I used to have a lot of rape fantasies, and my being jewish, they had to do with fucking WASPs, country club girls, the girls at Palm Beach or the girls at Smith and Vassar. My fantasies were always of making it with the unreachable, and if you got a good imagination, your sexual fantasies are always better than anyone possibly could really be

        Barney Collier says that Douglas Kiker told him that Buchwald likes him to tell stories of sexual conquest over lunch at Sans Souci. 'Art sits enthralled. When Doug pauses in his story, Art is afraid it's over too soon and goes "Yeah? Yeah?" And Doug, who wrote two long novels, prolongs the climax. 'Art loves it," Doug said, "Especially when I get to the fucking part. He keeps saying, Yeah; Yeah; Yeah."
        Its a quintessentially journalistic passage; one gossip relating the gossip of a second gossip who is himself admitting to gossiping to a third person who is quite prepared to gossip about himself to yet another gossip who is putting together a book about first sexual experiences.
        It's too early for a complete theory of the psychopathology of journalists but I would commend to investigators Heinz Kohut's essay on narcissism and narcissistic rage in Volume 27 of The Psychoanalytic Study of the Child. Kohut talks about the desire among those suffering narcissistic rage to 'turn a passive experience into an active one.' Then he reports the case of Mr. P.


       
Mr P. . . . who was exceedingly shame prone and narcissistically vulnerable, was a master of a specific form of social sadism. Although he came from a conservative family, he had become very liberal in his political and social outlook. He was always eager, however, to inform himself about the national and religious background of acquaintances and avowedly in the spirit of rationality and lack of prejudice, embarrassed them at social gatherings by introducing the topic of their minority status into the conversation.

        Although he defended himself against the recognition of the significance of his malicious maneuvers by well-thought out rationalizations, he became in time aware of the fact that he experienced an erotically tinged excitement at these moments. There was, according to his description, a brief moment of silence in the conversation in which the victim struggled for composure after public attention had been directed to his social handicap. . . .
        Mr. P's increasing realization of the true nature of his sadistic attacks through the public exposure of a social defect, and his gradually deepening awareness of his own fear of exposure and ridicule, led to his recall of violent emotions of shame and rage in childhood. . . .

New York Review, December 11, 1975



Up next from Mr. Cockburn's ghost roasting journalists from the grave

How to be a Foreign Correspondent
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Freelancevagrant

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #192 on: July 21, 2021, 09:13:56 PM »
Seeing this thread get bummed always makes my day better.

@DaleSr this was incredibly fascinating. Tremendous work as always my dude! This was insightful, but also caused me a have a mini existential crisis. The following hit me like a fucking ton of bricks.

The gossip's ambition is to discover a secret and the gossip's triumph is to reveal that secret, whatever treachery in the broaching of the secret may be involved.

Primarily because I think that this trait is symptomatic of a substantially large problem. The problem being with society as a whole, and not just limited to journalism. I think that this illustrates how willingly folks will create a feedback loop that rewards said behavior. I know that Iím guilty as hell of doing this. But what truly made me realize Iím contributing to the is issue is my very clear lack of self awareness.

That being said, I feel like it is fundamental that this be practiced on a much smaller scale, as opposed to completely restructuring mass communication. Our society lives and rotates around the 24 hour news cycle and perpetually feed us information that serves to either frighten or distract us. I genuinely think that a good practice is starting at the personal level, and ideally in the work place.

Again, absolutely loved this and thank you so much for posting this.
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ChuckRamone

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #193 on: July 21, 2021, 10:03:48 PM »
Expand Quote
I came in here to bring up imperialism and it looks like you guys just did. The way the ruling class in the West controls not only capital but also foreign policy is so fucked. They are willing to carry out unbelievably evil actions through the CIA and other intelligence agencies to maintain their power. Imperialism and colonialism never ended, they just morphed into coercive state diplomacy and destabilization efforts through the use of the military, propaganda and CIA. The capitalist oligarchs have us all by the balls in that respect, constantly brainwashing us to view the outside world as enemies. Becoming aware of this in the last few years is what's really opened my eyes to how fucked up late stage capitalism is, and has turned me leftist in my 40s when I was slightly left of center for most of my 20s and 30s. I'm going the reverse trajectory of being a commie in my youth, then a conservative in my old age. I need to read more of the relevant literature and this thread has some good ideas for where to start.
[close]

Ya love to see it! Let me know if youíd like some more recommendations, because thereís no shortage!

Just so you know, youíre not alone in your reverse trajectory. Hereís a Ted talk from Carne Ross that is well worth the watch. I heard him on a podcast, and sent this video to so many people, glad to sent it to one more!

https://youtu.be/2Hc2_jY4KhY

That was a good TED talk. Anarchism sounds like a good system in theory. When I think of the current systems though, they seem so insurmountable. How could we ever institute it? Slowly? Through a revolution?

Expand Quote
I came in here to bring up imperialism and it looks like you guys just did. The way the ruling class in the West controls not only capital but also foreign policy is so fucked. They are willing to carry out unbelievably evil actions through the CIA and other intelligence agencies to maintain their power. Imperialism and colonialism never ended, they just morphed into coercive state diplomacy and destabilization efforts through the use of the military, propaganda and CIA. The capitalist oligarchs have us all by the balls in that respect, constantly brainwashing us to view the outside world as enemies. Becoming aware of this in the last few years is what's really opened my eyes to how fucked up late stage capitalism is, and has turned me leftist in my 40s when I was slightly left of center for most of my 20s and 30s. I'm going the reverse trajectory of being a commie in my youth, then a conservative in my old age. I need to read more of the relevant literature and this thread has some good ideas for where to start.
[close]

Hell yeah, i was wondering when you'd pop in here chuck. You were a super welcome contributor in the Kamala and January 6th threads. Speaking of imperialism, i thought i was losing my goddamn mind listening to Kamala spit the most inane drivel about "don't come to the US" in Guatemala and Mexico. They should be saying the same thing to her, please stop coming to our country and fucking it up. Stop training death squads and insane NCOs at the school of the Americas. Stop trying to fucking install psycho Bible thumping freaks in Bolivia, stop trying to push Juan guiado as the "rightful" president of Venezuela, stay the fuck away from Cuba, stop smearing and arresting lula and clearing the way for bolsonaro. I mean fuck, just APOLOGIZE or at least acknowledge the reason why south Americans are fleeing here, because we've been running south America into the ground to keep drugs, cheap fruit, materials and minerals flowing up north.

America is so fucked. Both the left and the right serve imperialism. They're only different when it comes to some domestic matters and in their branding. Do either of you read Caitlin Johnstone? I follow her on Twitter and occasionally read some of her articles. Really good anti-imperialist writing.

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #194 on: July 21, 2021, 10:18:22 PM »
Seeing this thread get bummed always makes my day better.

@DaleSr this was incredibly fascinating. Tremendous work as always my dude! This was insightful, but also caused me a have a mini existential crisis. The following hit me like a fucking ton of bricks.

Expand Quote
The gossip's ambition is to discover a secret and the gossip's triumph is to reveal that secret, whatever treachery in the broaching of the secret may be involved.
[close]

Primarily because I think that this trait is symptomatic of a substantially large problem. The problem being with society as a whole, and not just limited to journalism. I think that this illustrates how willingly folks will create a feedback loop that rewards said behavior. I know that Iím guilty as hell of doing this. But what truly made me realize Iím contributing to the is issue is my very clear lack of self awareness.

That being said, I feel like it is fundamental that this be practiced on a much smaller scale, as opposed to completely restructuring mass communication. Our society lives and rotates around the 24 hour news cycle and perpetually feed us information that serves to either frighten or distract us. I genuinely think that a good practice is starting at the personal level, and ideally in the work place.

Again, absolutely loved this and thank you so much for posting this.

Oh totally, I'm a messy bitch for sure and i love to gossip, so reading this is great because it provides an opportunity for reflection and introspection. Also not being on social media at all for like 3 years has been hugely beneficial for me as well. This forum is like the closest thing to social media for me, but i appreciate that there are so many different ways it can be used and different spaces and tools available because of it
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DaleSr

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #195 on: July 21, 2021, 10:28:33 PM »

America is so fucked. Both the left and the right serve imperialism. They're only different when it comes to some domestic matters and in their branding. Do either of you read Caitlin Johnstone? I follow her on Twitter and occasionally read some of her articles. Really good anti-imperialist writing.

I'm not on Twitter but I'll totally check out her articles and see what's up. I've really not been enjoying anything coming from the Kamala foreign policy front or Joe Biden having anything to say about Haiti. This country's foreign policy arm is high key evil and any words from the secretary of state of any administration about "freedom" should be looked at with the highest skepticism
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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #196 on: July 22, 2021, 06:58:26 AM »
In response to some random joke shitty joke I made about Capitalism, my friend recently told me that we(Americans) don't have Capitalism but have a mixed economy. I admittedly never heard of a mixed economy and looked into more. I can't seem to wrap my head around how you could still argue the U.S is not a capitalist system. Is this something anyone has thought about?

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #197 on: July 22, 2021, 08:15:36 AM »
In response to some random joke shitty joke I made about Capitalism, my friend recently told me that we(Americans) don't have Capitalism but have a mixed economy. I admittedly never heard of a mixed economy and looked into more. I can't seem to wrap my head around how you could still argue the U.S is not a capitalist system. Is this something anyone has thought about?

@MorningSesh dude this is a great question! Iím on my 15 at work right now and donít have the time to provide a worthwhile/moderately in depth answer. Iím almost positive one of the usual suspects in here will provide you with valuable insight. I will make sure to pop back in on my lunch break though.

Sorry I can provide immediate assistance, my dude.

Also, donít think I forgot about you either Chuck!
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ChuckRamone

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #198 on: July 22, 2021, 09:48:03 AM »
Funny TikTok about Americans' views on Cuba:

https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMdtgTdNS/

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #199 on: July 22, 2021, 09:52:23 AM »
Funny TikTok about Americans' views on Cuba:

https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMdtgTdNS/

"Oh wait that's America?"

Hahaha
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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #200 on: July 22, 2021, 09:58:01 AM »
Expand Quote
Funny TikTok about Americans' views on Cuba:

https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMdtgTdNS/
[close]

"Oh wait that's America?"

Hahaha

This Tweet was also funny. I think it was originally in response to a guy saying the flooded subway stations in NYC look like China.

https://twitter.com/hermit_hwarang/status/1404535670765408256?s=21

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #201 on: July 22, 2021, 10:29:01 AM »
Sinner really is making the US look like some sort of bandana republic.

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #202 on: July 22, 2021, 02:00:30 PM »
So, @MorningSesh i finally got my lunch but Iím running way late and havenít eaten yet so Iíll do my best to keep this concise but thorough.

Your buddy can mean one of two things:

Option one: Within the confines of capitalism there is a tendency that develops that allows the ruling class to ensure they remain in charge. Some examples of this are tax breaks and tax havens, bail outs of privately owned business, the ability to control and dictate the distribution of goods, the ability to cut wages when business do well, and essentially granting human rights to businesses. There are a lot more I wish I could go into. What this amounts to is social and welfare programs for those who are running the world. They expect us to have money saved when we struggle paycheck to paycheck, yet cry and demand a bailout the second they feel they might not make as much money this quarter as last quarter. Despite us being forced into wage slavery and being seen only as a means to their ends, we will never be afforded the same benefits as they will. With business and government being inherently intertwined, the likelihood of us escaping (what could justifiably be called a social plutocracy) depends on the organization and anger of the working class. We are three missed meals away from a revolution.

Option two: your buddy is a conservative that believes that social and welfare programs are muddying the waters of laissez-faire capitalism. Which would be funny because that would most likely mean they liked Reagan a whole lot, and Reagan (and his astrologer) is a huge reason why we currently live in a social plutocracy.

Chuck, Iíll get to you when I can!
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DaleSr

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #203 on: July 22, 2021, 02:17:43 PM »
@FreelanceVagrant coming in with the heat. Sorry i didn't respond thoughtfully, I've been in shitpost mode all day haha
Not trying to do another long post like i did yesterday
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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #204 on: July 22, 2021, 03:47:50 PM »
So, @MorningSesh i finally got my lunch but Iím running way late and havenít eaten yet so Iíll do my best to keep this concise but thorough.

Your buddy can mean one of two things:

Option one: Within the confines of capitalism there is a tendency that develops that allows the ruling class to ensure they remain in charge. Some examples of this are tax breaks and tax havens, bail outs of privately owned business, the ability to control and dictate the distribution of goods, the ability to cut wages when business do well, and essentially granting human rights to businesses. There are a lot more I wish I could go into. What this amounts to is social and welfare programs for those who are running the world. They expect us to have money saved when we struggle paycheck to paycheck, yet cry and demand a bailout the second they feel they might not make as much money this quarter as last quarter. Despite us being forced into wage slavery and being seen only as a means to their ends, we will never be afforded the same benefits as they will. With business and government being inherently intertwined, the likelihood of us escaping (what could justifiably be called a social plutocracy) depends on the organization and anger of the working class. We are three missed meals away from a revolution.

Option two: your buddy is a conservative that believes that social and welfare programs are muddying the waters of laissez-faire capitalism. Which would be funny because that would most likely mean they liked Reagan a whole lot, and Reagan (and his astrologer) is a huge reason why we currently live in a social plutocracy.

Chuck, Iíll get to you when I can!
I really appreciate you taking some time to help me understand this. I had some apprehension towards my friend sounding like he was meaning that second option essentially. In trying to explain further he mentions ďThe main thing about true capitalism is that there is no government intervention. Everything is held by private companies.Ē He later mentioned he thinks Democratic Socialism is the way which is fine with me but now my confusion lies in the question: Isnít that take about ďtrue capitalismĒ not just a conservative-libertarian one as mentioned??

Freelancevagrant

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #205 on: July 22, 2021, 05:00:45 PM »
@DaleSr after lobbing that bomb yesterday you deserve the rest of the week off, that shit was incredible.

@MorningSesh I think that there are two points that are worth nothing:

1: Semantic issues aside, we canít allow that to distract from the main issue, capitalism. Iím very guilty of this and still do it, but Iím working on it!

2: I think the primary issue is that capitalism is every bit as much of a virus as it is a socio-political theory.

Letís look at it like this, a functioning definition of laissez faire capitalism could very easily be, ďno interference from the state or other entity in the private interests and profit of individually held companies.

At this point and to the dismay of the ruling class, the waters of ďtrue capitalismĒ have been muddied. However, much like a virus, capitalism, if allowed to flourish it will destroy everything it touches. In order to circumvent government interference in their business, they become the government. In order to ensure they maintain a strangle hold on us, they bought even more power hidden under the guise of, ďethical business or government oversightĒ. This is where my inherent dismay of social democracy and democratic socialism comes from. By allowing a coexistence between ourselves and them, we are leaning the door unlocked for them to squeeze us out again. In my view, any gains that we, the working class, are to receive is not with the aim of our autonomy and liberation. At best, it is to serve as a pacifier and make us moderately more comfortable in our state of oppression. At worst, it is a tool that can be leveraged against us and easily taken back, leaving us in a worse state than we previously were in. We canít settle for anything less than everything. If we do, we are shortchanging ourselves and replacing a boot on our throat with a hand. We deserve a mile and we absolutely must not settle for an inch.

Chuck, Iím coming for you soon, Iím typing this shit out on my phone so bear with me.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2021, 05:10:43 PM by Freelancevagrant »
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MorningSesh

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #206 on: July 23, 2021, 07:41:16 AM »
@Freelancevagrant
Noted and that virus analogy is well put. I agree completely on the need to refocus on the main issue, Capitalism. That's given me something to keep in mind for sure. I have the same questions regarding Anarchism as Chuck also.I'm stoked on this thread and looking forward to any future posts.

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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #207 on: July 23, 2021, 08:55:09 AM »
Iíve got you and chuck covered, and will make sure itís worth yíallís time. Iím getting off work early and gotta chill at the airport so Iíll have some good sources to link yíall, as well.

Iím confident in saying weíre all stoked to get some new folks in here that are curious about this stuff.
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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #208 on: July 23, 2021, 09:06:55 AM »
Iíve got you and chuck covered, and will make sure itís worth yíallís time. Iím getting off work early and gotta chill at the airport so Iíll have some good sources to link yíall, as well.

Iím confident in saying weíre all stoked to get some new folks in here that are curious about this stuff.

Always stoked to get someone that isn't just us haha.

Just started Fidel's autobiography this morning. Excited to get through this thing
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Re: Where my leftists at?
« Reply #209 on: July 23, 2021, 08:54:42 PM »
Please excuse any typos and will clarify and edit as I can but my flight just landed and Iím fucking smoked.

So, up front Iím going to be using a couple of different sources, all of which will be linked at the end of the post. Another thing to remember is that there are million different viewpoints people can have about this, and Iím simply presenting my feelings and beliefs as they have been shaped by my experiences. Some might agree, some might not.



Now, history shows that the only methods of survival that have succeeded in the long term are those that have been able to cooperate. However, before cooperation there always exists a period of unbelievable violence. This dates back to the days of early human ancestors, warring with each other out of fear. It wasnít until they working with each other and started we start to see the seeds of early society. This reflects the cyclical nature of humanity as well as the constant need to organize.

This is a slightly more nuanced approach, but bear with meÖ we are once again in a period of unbelievable violence.. The first form of violence is as follows: the ruling class canít function without our forced cooperation, this is held over our heads and we are constantly threatened with eviction, unjust firing (and being black listed out if your career) reduction in pay, cutting of benefits (and much more). These all are violent acts against us, but not as obvious as when they beat us to death and treat us as the cause of the problems they created, then using class traitors as a means of controlling and distributing the narrative they created to down play their actions.

So, because the ruling class uses violent methods to control us, they will continue to ensure they do everything in their power to retain that power. So the chances of the rulers giving up power is fucking non existent.

Am I saying revolution? Yes and no, but it is not that simple and can not unorganized. Look at January 6th: this is what happens when people who are angry but donít know why, want to do something but they donít know what, so they try to do something but donít know how. A historic and laughable bunt. 

 Berkman on bunted revolutions -
Quote
But blind rebellion without definite object and purpose is not revolution. Revolution is rebellion become conscious of its aims. Revolution is social when it strives for a fundamental change. As the foundation of life is economics, the social revolution means the reorganization of the industrial, economic life of the country and consequently also of the entire structure of society.

I think this might me the most accurate summation of my views towards the subject matter. The importance of forming and organizing now allows us to both establish a framework for post revolutionary society, but also fight for the immediate needs and demands of today.

Woodcock on anarcho-syndicalism and revolutionary unions
Quote
The syndicate is a form of union which differs from the ordinary trade union in that it aims, not only at the gaining of improvements in wages and conditions under the present system, but also at the overthrow of that system and its replacement by the free society by means of social revolution based on the economic direct action of the workers. This is not to say that it ignores the day to day struggle, but its members recognise that only by a complete destruction of the structure of property and authority can justice and security ever be attained for the workers.

Personally, I think that a general strike is the catalyst and most pragmatic course of action. However, we need to be organized and conscious, and absolutely ready to fight. The ruling class will never give up their illusion of power. We have to take that shit. I think a lot of them have become complacent or over confident because a few years have since we last rose up. But that shit is cyclical too, the world is smaller and it is much easier to organize. Give it some time and some hard work and god damn it well be seizing the factories, having billionaires drawn and quartered by their Teslaís, their homes turned into community centers and their private corporate farms returned to the people.

Sources:

https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/ralph-chaplin-the-general-strike#toc34

https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/rudolf-rocker-anarchosyndicalism#toc5

https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/nestor-makhno-the-abc-of-the-revolutionary-anarchist

https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/alexander-berkman-what-is-communist-anarchism#toc26

https://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/george-woodcock-what-is-anarcho-syndicalism
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