Eric Thayer/Getty Image from Nicole Sandler radio or not
Latest FDL liveblog running: Live Blog for the #Occupy Movement: Day 51, Occupy Atlanta Continues to Confront City & Police. (Sticking with "52", me.)
There is some Sturm and Drang in this thread at Ian's place over the emergence of the "fascist" tendencies of the OWS movement in its attempts to retain its commitment to non-violent non-cooperation.
Ominously entitled How OWS actually works, it links to an essay by Fritz Tucker that ironically turns out to be a lament against the hijacking of OWS's core values by a cabal of greedheads called the "Spokes Council," which has apparently emerged in order to basically commandeer the $500,000+ dollars in donations that the Zucotti Park encampment has accumulated.
I say ironically because the subsequent thread begins to focus on criticism of OWS attempts to purge their midst of troublemakers. This was no doubt provoked by Ian in the original post:
The question about OWS has always been how it will metastasize. That remains in the air. At the current time, one ideological fight is over absolute non-violence, and an attempt is being made by many in the Oakland/SF area to drive the anarchists completely out of the movement.StewartM writes:
Once again, the Left shoots its own left flank and does the Right’s job for them. That was true with the gay rights movement you mentioned, it was true about the AFL-CIO and its “Red” component, and from what you say it’s true of OWS.In fairness, he also makes this observation:
First of all–anarchists (to me at least) seem to be a heckuva lot saner and less goofy than libertarians as a rule. Nor should they be associated with violence per se. I’m sick of the stereotype of “anarchist” as “bomb (or bottle) thrower”.Which I completely agree with. On thing that I want to make clear is that I find that a true anarchist would have nothing to do with violence, and that the vast majority of serious anarchists are of this stripe.
Bomb-throwers are fake, psuedo-anarchists. The Raven:
Violence is inherently authoritarian, regardless of who is violent.ks:
Oh c’mon now, what does that even mean? That may sound good but it doesn’t make sense.My response:
One approach I will take will buttress Ian’s, um, “tolerance” for the occasional percolation of “useful” violence – and that one has to recognize that the firm hand of the system is indeed already engaging in a form of violence against the population, a violence that is directly responsible for the death and suffering of the un-empowered. That is authoritarian violence.What I'd like to be the take-away here is that violence and authority are inextricably bound up with one another. One cannot eschew one without embracing the other.
From the other side – a :”anti-authoritarian” rocks tossed at the establishment’s windows are open bids for an emerging, new authority. That’s the old “old-boss-meets-the-new” thing, and what must be avoided for successful revolution.
A true anarchist has nothing to do with authority. Or violence.
As to the sophomoric characterization of the attempts the movement is making to distance itself from the violent, authoritarian, disrupters of the movement's goals, I give you Occupy's Asshole Problem: Flashbacks from an Old Hippie:
3. The consensus model has a fatal flaw, which is this: It’s very easy for power to devolve to the people who are willing to throw the biggest tantrums. When some a drama king or queen starts holding the process hostage for their own reasons, congratulations! You’ve got a new asshole! (See #2.) You must guard against this constantly, or consensus government becomes completely impossible.Yes. That would be the rock-tossers... and those greedheads that coalesced around the cash in Zucotti Park as well.