Wednesday, 30 June 2010

A New Psychopathology of Class War "Anarchy".

When walking through London, careful observers may have come across posters on the wall and stickers plastered about on lampposts across the capital which bear the words Class War.

The one shown here, 'Only Losers Support the BNP', has a strange message though when the fighting creed of Class War, an anarchist group, is looked at.

It's as if the only reason a person would not support the BNP is because it is more the politically incorrect formula for direct action and violence against the system.

Apart from the fact that discriminating against racial minorities is bad and hateful, it is seen as deflecting attention away from the true source of all oppression-the Ruling Class.

It's difficult to see, moreover, how 'winners' would support what are often considered the amoral and deracinated scum that constitutes the (dis )organisation of Class War.

Unless, of course one had once been sympathetic to the far-right at the level of admiring its violence and psychotic hatred for 'the system'.

For Class War's co-founders were Ian Bone who began as an activist with the SWP, a far left party which extols violent revolution, and Martin Wright whose political trajectory is far more curious.

Leafing through Clive Bloom's Violent London: 2000 Years of Riots, Rebels and Revolts, is this piece of information on page 478,
'Wright had a history of teenage violence against black teachers and had been attracted by the politics of the fascist National Front ( NF ).....Both sought to harness the new organised violence of football 'firms' for political purposes. In organisations such as ALF and Class War the old antagonisms became blurred: ALF, for instance, used agitators like Dave Nicholls, a tax inspector and an organiser for the Essex branch of the British Movement ( BM ) until 1981. 'Rucks' within the BM and other neo-Nazi organisations were the sort of forum in which anarchism could attach itself to the Anti-Nazi League and also find its own voice'.
Class War was a movement that was given official status on the G20 Alternative protests lists of affiliated groups.

Whereas the existence of somebody like Wright with a background like his who was trying to be 'respectable' in the BNP would have been revealed by anti-fascist monitors like Searchlight, Class War is not subject to the same criticism.

The first reason is that Wright explicitly rejected the NF and the BNP by 1985 in a speech he made at a Class War Conference. The speech was recorded and can be watched here.

Wright makes it clear that he had experienced a conversion when in fact he rejected the NF and the BNP because they did not offer 'real change' or real revolutionary violence against a system which was becoming more authoritarian and anti-working class,
People are thinking about the working class being a load of oafs and so on and that can't change. Well, I think that all of us have changed, that's why we're here. Years ago I was fucking ignorant. I thought Enoch Powell was the greatest geezer that ever lived like, y' know..Just shift a few darkies back to Africa and all our problems will be solved, y'know, really sort of simplistic like, y'know but obviously...a really sort of right wing argument, y'know

I changed..I came into contact with other people...We've all changed and people out there will change. I hear things about the National Front and the NBP. The National Front and the BNP are fucking nothing, they're fuck all like y'know. A few years ago, yeah, they were something, they brought out thousands on to the streets....Our answer was to go out and kick their fucking heads in basically. We took them on and we beat them'
The second reason is that Class War's version of revolutionary violence is seen as politically correct because only discriminatory in its choice of hating all those who in the Ruling Class of all races and backgrounds who oppress and con the Working Class.

Those who prop up the Ruling Class by participating in the illusions of consumerism and 'Middle Class values' need to be forced out of their docility and sheeple like devotion to the system by radical 'propaganda of the deed'.

That has included agitation during the Poll Tax Riots of 1990 onwards to The May Day Riots of 2000 and every May Day since where the shops and retail outlets belonging to corporations have been smashed and vandalised by those intent on Class War.

Unfortunately for Class War, such forms of direct action have been overshadowed by increasingly sophisticated policing methods and the proliferation of CCTV cameras which make it difficult to operate without getting caught.

That has led Class War to try and resort to street theatre. An example was Moon Against the Monarchy 2000 ( M'AM ) which aimed to get 2000 people to bare their backsides at the monarchy outside Buckingham Palace and to shock the Queen Mother into dropping dead.

Unfortunately, the 'Down with the Establishment' pose has worn thin, an easy target when monarchy has become in recent years with little more than a bad soap opera anyway, the remnant of a stage set long since having little to do with propping up consumerism.

If the monarchy survives it is through inertia and because abolishing it would mean a constitution and new political settlement, something New Labour does not want because of the power of the PM. Unlike Starbucks or McDonald's, the monarchy is not a symbol of hated globalisation.

That hate symbol is now the greedy banker in the wake of the financial crisis of 2008 and the consequent global slump which has hit Britain far harder than most developed nations. Yet in the end nothing came of the G 20 Meltdown in the City protests.

More than that the Whitechapel anarchists seem to have developed a ritualistic form of cop baiting, an adrenalin rush experience no more meaningful that a bungee jump and that has about as much chance of destabilising the system.

Anarchists no matter what they do merely seem seem passe, a remnant of the 1970s and punk attitudes towards the toffs no less than the monarchy, itself. That can be seen in the TV appearances of that now ageing and doltish imbecile John Lydon of the Sex Pistols who does programmes on Crocodiles.

Such posturing idiots are easily absorbed into into the media 'society of the spectacle' through the debilitating kitsch of pre-emptive nostalgia, the hunger for the 'we were there' feeling that animates doltish rock festival fans.

Ian Bone's loathing of the monarchy is largely part of rebellion against his the system which made his father a Butler, mere toytown revolutionary politics of the sort that gets him invited on to The Johnathan Ross Show and ultimately to sell his books to film makers who want to make a profit.

Class War Anarchism sells and helps youths to work off excess energies. whilst deluding both City financiers and radical activists that there is something more exciting and interesting in their lives than banal consumerism.

The Whitechapel Anarchist media and computer blogs show a devotion to virtual anarchism in which an organised club form anarchy becomes a kind of day trip out in the City. An account of the WAG's day out to the Climate Camp 'Peasant's Revolt' starts off like this,
The day started off with us trudging down to our old haunt Bank for 12 Noon prompt, despite the usual stereotypes of Anarchist time keeping we were there bang on time, but then the waiting began. Two hours in total. The Police presence was tiny, though they did enjoy ducking behind pillars and spying on us when we met up with some more famous anarchists, though being a WAG means the police are always interested in your activities anyway. We spotted the FIT Copper from television programme Bargain Hunt who took the wisecracks on the chin to be fair. He never should have bought those stones though!

The aim was to bait the police into acting or to cause a nuisance so that the police would react and show how the police were functionaries of the system etc . Unfortunately nothing happened because in reality without the police the WAG would have no purpose. And it was a lame attempt anyway. Lifestyle anarchism.

This is a complete contrast from the anarchism of the late nineteenth century in which violent anarchists would have no hesitation in trying to find a violent strategy that was not out in the open and which caused damage to property and would kill members of the Ruling Class.

To do that though would presumably mean going to prison and an end to the fun. The real aim of WAG is a game with the police since the police have become increasingly community orientated and even join in the Notting Hill Carnival.

Rather like battle re-enactment societies the WAG tends to like hoisting banners, frequenting ale houses and staging events like Spitalfields Fair According to their 'favourite' anarchist magazine Freedom, it had 'tug of war, five a side football, and a 'plethora of stalls and entertainments'.
'Most popular though was ye old stocks, wherein many malefactors and ill doers were righteously bombarded with wet sponges'.( My italics )
Without any sense of irony, the report boasted, 'the fair drew several hundred people and to the merriment of all, no cops'.

For all the posturing about the cops and the Ruling elite, such activity is merely plebeian affectation for the pre-consumerist age on a 'Merrie England' theme. There is never any real criticism of consumerism because WAG is about self-presentation and brand differentiation.

Hence little criticism or bile has ever been directed against one of the main patrons of G 2o Alternative Summit Ken Livingstone ex-Mayor of London who, unlike the monarchy, had more than merely symbolic power.

Livingstone did ( and still does ), after all, espouse a 'signature radicalism' in supporting Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, various Islamist movements against Israel, Irish Republicanism and in general the antinomian radicalism of what he referred to as 'wicked old London'.

Yet this is the politician who supports doing more business with Communist China no less than Rupert Murdoch or Edward Heath and only lauds the attack on Western institutions; something that is not allowed in China by 'anarchist' elements.

That was quite clear when a craven Livingstone opined in response to criticism of China's human rights record in 2006 that there was a comparison between the Tianiamen Square Massacre of 1989 and the Poll Tax Riots of 1990.
"In the same way that Trafalgar Square has had an interesting history, not always a peaceful one, there's a very clear parallel. We've had some interesting riots in Trafalgar Square - I mean, only 20 years ago, the poll tax riots, and flames licking up.

If you go back to some of the early instances you will find many cases where innocent protesters were hacked to pieces with sabres - the Peterloo Massacre, for example. There is no such thing as one country with a perfect record."
No radical at the G20 Alternative has ever criticised Livingstone for that nor told him he's a fraud and that he ought to 'fuck off'. Because like Livingstone some of them espouse radical ideas whilst benefiting from London's role in servicing the Chinese super economy.

Both anarchists and Climate Camp activists have no real way of dealing with global industrialisation, China's power and huge contribution to pollution nor the Great Game for control over the resources of the Middle East and Asia.

To think otherwise is to pretend that the West matters when in fact most anarchists over exaggerate its power and ability to control global oil supplies. Control over which allows 'the system' to mollify the masses and that nothing they can do will stop that.

Anarchists of the Class War sort are in any case eclipsed and outdone by the rise of the Islamist terror fanatics who are actually insane enough to want to detonate both buildings and themselves which is the one sure way of being able to get at the target.

It is impossible for Class War to keep up with Islamist doctors who loathe the West so much that they are prepared to drive an SUV into Glasgow Airport Terminal packed with explosives. By comparison Class War anarchism looks lame.

For Class War depends on street theatre beloved by art school students of the sort that can become a banal self celebratory pageant of radical chic kitsch easily co-opted to serve the system. Nothing can co-opt the kind of terrorism that really craves the entire destruction of oneself and the world order.

Class War anarchism and that of Green radicals trying to devise harmonious modes of living free from the pressures of work and conformity are just reverting to the age-old tradition of inversion, that of the carnival that turns things upside down for a short time.

So only Islamist terrorism can really wreak the spectre of havoc and anarchy. The only real chance of destroying consumerism would be a really devastating terrorist attack undermining the system by attacking a target that was ostensibly anti-system.

For example nothing would destroy smug Middle Class assumptions more than attack that would take out a whole section of children waving Make Tea not War placards through a massive suicide bomb or controlled car bomb explosion.

An attack on an anti-war demonstration full of anarchists and leftists would also crush the idea that the Working Class can ally itself at the level of solidarity and mere sympathy with those being blown up and killed as the result of the invasion of Iraq.

Such anti-war activities are based on 'displacement therapy', the idea that a citizen living in Britain can register a protest and that this could mean something when obviously it acts as a stress release mechanism and nothing more.

The function of blowing up anti-war marchers would be show that absolutely nobody is safe from being killed no matter how hard they protest and so crush any possibility of love, peace or understanding. It would show that no matter how innocent, Westerners get killed too.

Hence the idea of love and fellow feeling to save people abroad that can easily mutate into a sentimental call for protest, instead of violent action to challenge the state, and even liberal interventionism in the long run, is one that is more dangerous to the project of 'real revolutionary change'.

Just as it has been with the 1968 revolutionaries like Daniel Cohn Bendit who supported the NATO bombings of Serbia in 1999 and who wants to see the expansion of the EU and NATO into the Near East so 'we' can have access to their oil and gas.

Let it not be said such terror would ever be justified morally. It could not any more than the bombing of innocent people from a distance carried out by Britain and America. It is merely a necessary action to ratchet up the arithmetic of death

That would be useful because it would prevent Middle Class kids believing that terror could be stopped only by tinkering with the system as they get older. Only total acceptance or rejection of the system through violence becomes possible.

For the reason that everybody who is a consumer is a part of the system that necessitates the 'war on terror' to be fought and for Britain to invade Iraq and meddle in Central Asia. Just because a person says he is against Iraq does not mean victory is not in his interests as a consumer.

Anybody who drives a car or believes they have a right to fly EasyJet is part of the problem and not of the solution. Anarchists who believe in living in the here and now free from the car divert attention from the necessity of destroying the entire system before it destroys everything anyway.

For mass consumerism also leads the masses to remain largely untroubled by the terror inflicted on other nations in their name and ultimately in their interests and for their material comfort. Most do not live in London and have become used to surveillance at airports.

Real anarchists would ally to some extent with Islamists in choosing precisely the most unexpected targets because only nonsensical and absurd terror would forces the consumerist masses to fundamentally reconsider their devotion to the world of sterile illusions.

The targets would not include the Ruling Elite nor even a tube train full of commuters who could possibly see and be seen to have what's coming to them, as when Galloway suggested that an assassination of PM Tony Blair would be 'morally justified'
I am not calling for it, but if it happened I believe it would be of a wholly different moral order to the events of 7/7. It would be entirely logical and explicable. And morally equivalent to ordering the deaths of thousands of innocent people in Iraq as Blair did.
Actions that would really undermine the system would be blowing up the Big Brother TV house live on air, machine gunning down swathes of would be X Factor Talent show contestants as they await their auditions or killing Galloway for not drawing the logical conclusions.

It would also polarise society and force radical chic consumers into real radicalism. If those who espouse left wing ant-imperialist views and who have turned into media personalities were targeted too then the real impulse to do something to stop imperialism would be more authentic.

That would entail taking out George Galloway with a sniper shot to the head on an anti-war demo, sticking a bomb underneath Billy Bragg's car or walking up to John Pilger's door and machine gunning him into his hallway.

To only ridicule and mock those espouse counterculture to sell products which reinforce the system far more than the monarchy is futile.Those who profit from being angry about the Iraq War without having real tactics to overthrow the system must be eliminated.

Galloway's assassination would be a major blow to those who think that killing Blair for ordering the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people in Iraq would be morally justified whilst claiming 'I would not support anyone seeking to assassinate the prime minister'.

Galloway's position also prevents the necessary radicalisation of his idea that it can be morally justified to kill some people to its logical conclusion and thus most importantly to act upon it. It is no good philosophising or 'explaining' the world. The point is to change it.
Such an operation would be counter-productive because it would just generate a new wave of anti-Arab sentiment whipped up by the press.
That would be one benefit of assassinating Tony Blair or any functionary who occupies a position in the military-corporate complex that runs Britain. It would force the police to come down hard on Muslims, as Galloway thinks they are already doing anyway and stimulate resistance.
It would lead to new draconian anti-terror laws, and would probably strengthen the resolve of the British and American services in Iraq rather than weaken it.
It would strengthen their resolve but luckily the much lauded Iraqi Resistance that Galloway supports at least theoretically is there to prevent that. Total solidarity with these heroes of psychopathic destruction and murder must be reflected in certain similar tactics here in Britain.

For such people as Galloway and Pilger are 'useful idiots' not to the Islamists but to the system. For they get people angry to no effect and provide them with the illusion that their hatred of the USA, when reading Pilger's New Statesman columns and protesting, will make a difference.

Only the spectre of massive violence stalking people who otherwise might think they will be immune,if they get the government to stop invading Muslim nations to control their oil, can bring about the absolute terror and panic necessary for a real demand for change.

If the imperialist state is so intent on underpinning the legitimacy of the system by controlling oil and keeping the lifeblood of consumerism going then only the greater threat to its power at home through those willing to risk arrest, injury and even death in challenging the state will work.

To do that it is necessary to encourage enough people that they have nothing to lose but their lives in not challenging the system by terrorists equipped with ever more lethal weapons and tactics more than they do in overthrowing the state by mass revolution and violence .

In any case the future of Class War depends on the have-nots taking direct action against the haves and all those who live in the West and consume are haves whose comfort depends on the immiseration of people in Africa and Asia.

But such terror direct against consumers and fake anti-system free radicals will also if successfully carried out lead to the belief in a conspiracy by the government to kill leading oppositionists. Few would believe that an Islamist or an anarchist would actually kill George Galloway.

Hence assassinating Galloway or blowing to pieces a group of anti-war marchers sporting 'We are all Hezbollah' now placards would help ramp up street attacks, riots and demonstrations that would necessitate the police to overreact and clamp down on the anarchy.

Carefully selected propagandists would spread rumours that the state had had them killed and that anyone who opposes the state is in danger of being killed. Which is why murdering somebody like David Tomlinson and claiming a plain clothes officer did it would be most useful.

It is not good enough to have self publicising journalists like Pilger call 7/7 Blair's bombs and for the anti-imperialist left to rationalise terrorism in a way that will make sense of it only to get people on marches. There must be a closer link between secular anarchists and Islamists.

Not at the level of ideology. It must be one of tactics and pure expediency in which all talk of morality is effectively made redundant and reduced to one question: the power to blow apart through acts of ultimate madness the contentment and ease of the masses under consumerism.

For example it might be necessary to brainwash a few Muslim youths to act as suicide bombers against targets selected by anarchists who see the mutually beneficial role it could play in Al Qaida propaganda as well whilst serving the agenda of destroying consumerism.

From a real British anarchist's point of view, at least those who understand what Nechaev called the 'science of destruction', the targets selected according to Al Qaida franchised operations act only to buttress propaganda justifying the invasions of Afghanistan or Iraq.

As well as the propaganda of morons like Seumas Milne that that the terrorism is caused only by Western foreign policy making elites and that mere protest instead of full hardcore terrorism against consumers is not the logical consequence of his views.

Only by selecting targets that sweep away the barriers to the possibility of a full scale domestic campaign of murder, arson, incendiary acts of provocation, and terror against consumers will enough people made insane by the system come to see the emancipatory possibilities.

If the system is not crippled from within and large numbers of deaths on entirely "innocent" consumerbots visited upon them now, then more people will die in the long run from resource wars, environmental destruction.

In alliance with Islamist comrades of convenience in Muslim lands a rapid pull out of troops from all lands in Afghanistan and Central Asia, collapsing states across the Middle East, a massive oil price shock and the destruction of the world economy will shake the earth to its foundations.

Out of this catastrophe will come a new world in which change is even remotely possible along the lines conceived of by parochial minded dolts like Ian Bonehead and Martin Wright and other feeble minded pseudo-apostles of destruction who think pranks with the police mean anything.

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