AK Press allegations against Michael Schmidt

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S. Artesian
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Feb 13 2016 02:35

Previous entry removed. Said all I needed to say. I'm out.

William Everard
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Feb 13 2016 05:30

In times like this, when we're being battered down by bullshit, we have to keep moving but we also have to call out our "academic representatives" when we see the shit they wallow in. The coopting of real anarchist movements by academic elites with sketchy excuses must NOT be allowed. We work way too fucking hard, and many others work harder than I do, to keep real movements churning.

For my part, I engage in real community activism and am not so easily swayed by elites claiming to be militant organizers, who either turn out to be fascists or making excuses for them. What real organizing has Lucien et al done recently? All I see is his country awoken by activism and Lucien as an elite meeting even his past comrades with silence and then excuses, failing to engage the next generation at his doorstep whom he should be encouraging. Were I to even have half that opportunity to be a mentor, I would cherish it...... instead we get infantile garbage.

I see nothing from Lucien but outdated reposts of Wobbly-style speeches about class war... there's a complete disconnect between the people close to this story and those involved in actual activism. I don't care about people forming "sacred texts" in isolation and with nothing but armchair rhetoric, and I disdain the approach of the Lucien response the more I digest it. It's a taste of bitter academia.

I'm "unsure" about you, Lucien... if you can't make up your mind about outward racism and fascism (which you acknowledge but won't "take sides" on) perhaps you're too compromised to be part of the movement you supposedly cherish. Or, perhaps, no one should care about you anyway because you're so distant from actual action and might as well be a voice from the past.

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Khawaga
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Feb 13 2016 14:36

Here we go again, the classic shitting on teachers and academics for all the faults of anarchism, leftism or whatever.

William Everard
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Feb 13 2016 15:01
Khawaga wrote:
Here we go again, the classic shitting on teachers and academics for all the faults of anarchism, leftism or whatever.

No that's not it at all. The problem is the lack of engagement perceived within this small cadre of academics, beyond punting of their own articles and books. You think I'm wrong, fine, but don't twist my words into a kneejerk reaction.

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Khawaga
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Feb 13 2016 15:54

Fair enough, my apologies then. But it's sadly a pretty common refrain. Fwiw, I do agree that a lot of academics' activism stays contained firmly within the gates of the ivory tower.

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Juan Conatz
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Feb 13 2016 21:49

Haven't posted in this thread for a while but definitely been watching it. Not counting the frankly laughable investigative inquiry that Anarkismo is attempting to solicit, there's not much more to say about this situation other than the effects of it all.

I have to admit, it has been extremely disappointing, indeed, even disillusioning to see what certain people's reaction to this has been. Not just random people on the internet, either, although those are hard to ignore. No, even some people that I've known or respected for many years, that have been part of stuff I have as well, have thrown their hat into the ring to seemingly defend MS at all costs, acting as an informal defense counsel and trying to find any possible holes in the exposé of MS.

Before the authors of the multipart exposé released them, it was understandable to have major problems with how this thing was happening, specifically AK Press. But to keep bringing up objections over process is a de facto defense of not only MS' fascist politics, but of the silence surrounding it by numerous people. This may be a strong statement, but anyone bringing up process after the point where Alexander Reid Ross had released all the entries on the MS series, I basically consider you an apologist for racism and fascism if it suits your political needs.

The broad scene around neoplatformism looks really bad out of all of this. It proves that having structure or organization doesn't necessarily mean anything when it comes to the 'tyranny of structurelessness'. If MS was some random member of one of the Anarkismo groups, he most likely would have been cast out and exposed long ago. Because he co-wrote probably the most important document for the neoplatformists other than The Platform itself, his racism and fascist sympathies were kept silent and/or defended.

ZACF, perhaps the leading purveyor in the world of neoplatformist propaganda and literature, kept silent about MS, even though they knew the majority of what came out in ARR pieces long ago. Lucien, the co-writer of Black Flame, as mentioned one of the most important books for neoplatformists, also kept silent, and uses a significant amount of space in his statement, claiming to not know who to believe, and objected to, again, the process. Wayne Price, although not in any organization, unquestionably is one of the most important people in the English speaking world when it comes to neoplatformism, and he needlessly put out a dreadful defense of MS. Plus, I've seen numerous people I personally know that are in these Anarkismo affiliated organizations go to great lengths on here or Facebook to go after ARR and/or defend MS, based on perceived ideological stakes on how neoplatformists would look.

Of course, it's not just those people either, the defense of MS has crossed over into stuff I have been more involved in, with individuals in the IWW, libcom group or Recomposition also defending MS at a point far longer in this timeline than makes me comfortable.

More than anything I can think of, this has made me question my involvement in the libertarian far left. Can I, as a person from both a Puerto Rican and Jewish background, tolerate an event in which people mindlessly defend a fascist? I am not sure.

William Everard
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Feb 15 2016 04:58

Since the tattoos have been shown to be indicative of Schmidt's white pride, we might do well to dig for a while and figure out just exactly which printer that "printer's mark" belongs to, and if it's a printer's mark at all. Though it may seem excessive, Schmidt openly lied before and omitted his lebensrune (through sloppy reading of the ARR/JS article and not looking at the second photo where it's clearly next to the "printer's mark"?)

Quote:
I have NO racist tattoos. The sum total of all my ink is: my family and a radical Chilean firefighter’s emblem (back); a Chris Achilleos siren and the slogan “No Fate” (right shoulder); the names of two life-long women friends I love, one Indian, written in Sanscrit, the other white, written in Elder Futhark (left and right shoulders); an inverted Renaissance printer’s mark in red – this is not a runic tattoo (left shoulder); recreations of the oldest tattoos known, of the Scythians from the 5th Century BC – remember, science tells us the Scythians were a blend of peoples including European and Asiatic so these cannot be construed as racial tribal tattoos (left and right upper arms and elbows); a naval anchor with the name of my brother Tauca who was killed last year (right forearm); Anarchist Black Cross – South Africa emblem (left forearm); and the line from the IWW song There is Power in a Union, “Money speaks for money; the Devil for his own. Who comes to speak for the skin and the bone?” (right forearm). All of these tattoos were done well before AK Press started its investigation. See https://medium.com/@rossstephens/about-schmidt-how-a-white-nationalist-s...). Happily, I had not started my planned tattoo of the AK Press logo of a crossed dagger and quill; I’ve changed my mind on that now – unless I have the dagger drawn as if sunk in my back!

Here is an approximation of the "printer's mark" symbol:
http://oi64.tinypic.com/2hdpt7n.jpg

I have looked through hundreds of printer's marks/devices. Databases are difficult to search and there's no centralized collection. Many printers marks bearing a cross were variants of the orb and cross (globus cruciger), with the orb at the bottom giving room for the printer's initials.

If the tattoo is a printer's mark inverted, there is one approximation I can find, that of the Society of Venetian Printers, circa 1481:

http://markzware.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/orb_cross_printers_mark....
http://fameorshame.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/02/hist-marks.png
http://higheredbcs.wiley.com/legacy/college/meggs/0471699020/html/Chapte...
http://higheredbcs.wiley.com/legacy/college/meggs/0471699020/html/Chapte...

However, Schmidt's version is missing one of the cross's arms, and is stylized to closer resemble a celtic cross.... another motif of Aryan pride and mysticism seen in many NeoNazi circles and, notably, Stormfront's logo. There are variants of Nordic runes/artwork that resemble it, but none closely enough to be worth mentioning.

I doubt we'll get much clarification on this, but I thought I'd post to keep a record and also because someone involved in antifa action may recognize it.

Anarcho
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Feb 18 2016 13:56
Juan Conatz wrote:
The broad scene around neoplatformism looks really bad out of all of this. It proves that having structure or organization doesn't necessarily mean anything when it comes to the 'tyranny of structurelessness'. If MS was some random member of one of the Anarkismo groups, he most likely would have been cast out and exposed long ago. Because he co-wrote probably the most important document for the neoplatformists other than The Platform itself, his racism and fascist sympathies were kept silent and/or defended.

Not being a neoplatformist, I do have to say this is unfair -- Black Flame may be many things but it is a good book on anarchism and the anarchist tradition (see my review). No one -- even the most critical -- saw anything fascist, racist or "national anarchist" about it. For good reason -- no such material is in there -- quite the reverse.

This explains much of what was said -- or said belatedly -- by the "broad scene around neoplatformism": simply shock because the book he co-wrote was good and an obviously anarchist book. There was no sign of "his racism and fascist sympathies" to be "kept silent" about in that work. So some context would be nice -- and less willingness to attack others (particularly for things they were not aware of).

As for linking it to "the tyranny of structurelessness", that is just strange. The problem seems to be that AK Press and others did not do a rigorous background check on Schmidt -- does anyone do that routinely anyway? If someone is trying to infiltrate the anarchist movement they are not going to be making it easy for people to identify them as such...

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Khawaga
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Feb 18 2016 15:12

That's a very strange response to Juan's post and very dismissive of the thrust of his argument.

Anarcho
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Feb 19 2016 11:44
Khawaga wrote:
That's a very strange response to Juan's post and very dismissive of the thrust of his argument.

I concentrated on one part of his argument because that part seemed unfair -- and it is. As indicated, Black Flame is not a racist book, while flawed it is (in general) a good introduction to anarchism. This in itself explains much in terms of the response of many people -- shock and disbelief given the work he co-wrote.

The bulk of the evidence produced against Schmidt come from work most anarchists -- including "neoplatformists" -- would not be aware of. As such, shock, surprise, disbelief are to be expected. It wrong to generalise from this to a general comment on "neoplatformists" as done in the post.

William Everard
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Feb 19 2016 12:38

http://www.anarkismo.net/article/29106

A few takeaways from this:

* Most of the statement is besides-the-point, and is a history and outline of the ZACF.

* A structure for these responses is beginning to emerge:

1. here's who I am/who we are and our anarchist credentials
2. condemnation of racist/fascist statements by Schmidt's as "inexcusable", "regardless of rationale", "in their own right", while being careful not to attribute them to the "real" Schmidt
3. condemnation of Schmidt only "if proven" to be racist/fascist/national anarchist by a commission
4. shooting the messengers while saying you're not shooting the messengers, "not taking sides" while taking sides against ARR/JS
5. statement that Schmidt was properly questioned/investigated in 2011
6. condemnation of Internet commentators
7. and on and on and on and on...............

* Unique to this statement is the long diatribe(s) about ARR/JS as American Eurocentrists and perhaps even racist. AK is called out on the carpet with similar accusations.

* It is far too long, and strays into sidetracking territory about "settler and nationalist historiographies". We know the draft was leaked in late December as draft #18(!), so we can only assume this version is revision #20+ and it's now obvious why it took so long. It seems the long wait is not primarily an issue of translation or democratic input, but of thesis-length text.

* The so-called questioning/investigation of Schmidt in 2011 is again used as an excuse to claim appropriate steps were taken 4-5 years ago. This is dubious on (at least) three counts:

1. The evidence that ZACF, Lucien, and likely others had in 2011 is the same evidence most strongly denounced in these statements, that of the Strandwolf/Black Battlefront blog. It sat active for half a decade, and was brushed off by Schmidt's closest comrades until brought to prominence first by ARR/JS's articles, and then by a few Internet commentators spreading the full text online (most notably, me).

2. All of the corroborating evidence was also online, a quick Google search away as well as obvious on Facebook, and in some cases linking to the Strandwolf/Black Battlefront blog.

3. If not obvious from appearance (e.g. tattoos, Nazi caps and pins), a fuller picture of Schmidt's ideology should have emerged not only from the controversy surrounding the 2008 memo, but from other political statements, like this gem from a 2010 interview with both LvdW and MS:

Quote:
MS: It is possible that, should more working class and underclass whites get involved in anarchism, they may feel the need to develop race-specific organisations to deal with their specific minority circumstances. I foresee that any such move would be condemned and misunderstood both here and abroad, because of the projection of Western social norms onto Africa’s very different conditions, and because of the false assumption that white South Africans are automatically wealthy (sometimes a version of the “white privilege” argument which, as indicated, the ZACF rejects) – but I don’t expect any such development is imminent. It is also not a tactical or strategic line that the ZACF would endorse.
http://www.alpineanarchist.org/r_i_africa_english.html

That quote was also revealed through ARR's searching, and he has a thoughtful Feb 16 post referencing it here: http://alexanderreidross.com/ideological-influence-and-the-schmidt-affai...

I started to compile contradictory quotes in the ZACF statement, but there are too many for a post here, and it's perhaps not worth anyone's time.

S. Artesian
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Feb 19 2016 16:37

I'm back just to try to make this as painfully clear to the most casual observer as is humanly possible.

1) The "position" of ZACF, LVDW, and others that they "await" the determination of an independent commission is indefensible in that ZACF, and LVDW, and probably others knew about MS's actions for 4 or 5 years and shut up about it. If it didn't require an independent commission then, why does it now?

2) The position of ZACF, and LVDW, and others that they take exceptions to how RR,S presented their investigations is indefensible in that when proclaiming their reservations they did not forthrightly acknowledge that they knew of these matters 4 or 5 years ago and shut up about it. There is no credibility complaining about the methods and presentations employed to expose information when the information has been suppressed for 4 or 5 years.

syndicalist
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Feb 19 2016 21:00

I've not read this yet.

ZACF Reply to the Misrepresentation of the ZACF by American Journalists and on the Schmidt Affair
http://anarkismo.net/article/29106&comment_limit=0&condense_comments=fal...

Black Badger
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Feb 19 2016 22:18

It contains a lot of deflection, and takes a "wait till the commission rules" position -- even after they admit that they knew something was off in 2011, and sat on the information. Not good enough. Oh, and racism.

akai
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Feb 20 2016 06:39

ln general, l think if something is contentious, a group of people can come together to make some judgment. However, in this case, a few things are a little stinky. The first is that the folks from S.Africa, while distancing themselves from these racist statements, don't know what to think about the person who made them. The second problem is that one has to wonder about the composition of said commission and how it is that people from around the world are supposed to make a more informed decision that the closest comrades of said person. The last one is that there is still no sign at all that any of these people understand the traits which are common to people who can, on the one hand belt out anarchist ideology and, on the other, be racists or nationalists. ln addition, some of those connected with MS have been known to have rather soft views on nationalism themselves.

Tranq Girl
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Feb 20 2016 20:05

It is strange how much effort ZACF put into defending thier organization and how little into addressing any issues regarding Schmidt. Do they think that anyone cares enough about a tiny sect to read 50 pages about it? Even if Reid-Ross and Stephens got some things wrong about ZACF itself, such a bizarre and repetitive analysis is unnecessary and completely beside the point to anyone outside the organization.

I doubt they are really that dense. They can read, they've seen the same things that R-R and S have shown everyone: from the sick fascist rants to the mainstream articles about reverse racism that defend white vigilantes "hunting" blacks, to the tattoos, to the continualy uncovering of new lies. To anyone who is more interested in fighting white supremacy than in defending the good name of thier organization, the evidence is clear. The fact that they have wasted what must have been months of their supposedly valuable revolutionary time to produce this ridiculous document can only mean that the real point is to, once again, shoot the messenger and redirect attention away from Schmidt. The same tactics used by every member of the Anarkismo network who has bothered speaking publicly so far (Price, Vander Walt, Bekken, the Anarkismo network itself, the IATH). So much time and effort wasted on constructing fake conspiracy theories, circling the wagons, doing damage control, and character assassination of anyone who has had the courage to actually dig into the Schmidt affair.

And it looks like Schmidt himself is happy. A commenter on the Anarkismo site posted his response to the ZACF document: "Well that's pretty exhaustive. In sum they'll stand by the decisions of the multipartisan commission, which I suspect will be formed of Anarkismo, IWA, IFA and IWW comrades, all those who organised St Imier 2012."

Looks like the fascist is still chummy enough with the Anarkismo network to have the inside scoop on thier "impartial" commission.

akai
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Feb 20 2016 21:50

Hi Tranq girl. Thank you for pointing out the comment of Schmidt. l would like to point out something, before a misunderstanding takes place.

The lWA was not an organizer of the St. lmier events. lt was invited to attend and even the organizers put the name in some places - before the lWA was contacted - since lWA members participated. Truly we see that sometimes there is a genuine lack of understanding about such issues. MS, has long been a classic example of failing to understand some basic ideas of anarchosyndicalism - for example, that we write that the Federation particpates when the Federation as a whole has agreed, not when one person FROM that Federation or even when one Section of that Federation takes part ... unless of course it is specifically delegated by said Federation.

What we mean to say is that the lWA has not received any invitation to participate in said commission. lf it did, it would have to set a referendum and ask the Sections (this includes thousands of people) whether or not we should delegate people, then there should be oversight and really this stuff should be somehow approved. Which would make our participation in this rather unpractical.

lt is one thing when you have small organizations which are used to a few intellectuals creating opinions and writing for them - it's another thing if you are dealing with a large federation such as the lWA which still has not gone away from certain principles.

So, l would not like to speculate on what the lWA Sections might say if asked, but you know, personally, if l had a choice between doing my union work, preparing the next Congress or spending who knows how long on a commission of people who l know are soft on nationalism and have been pretty shady in their previous comments, l'd rate the latter a big waste of time. Besides, whatever potential lWA involvement should rely reflect the position of the lWA Sections, not any representatives chosen by Anarkismo (not the Sections). lf the lWA needs to make any statements, it should do so independently, but l don't imagine that this would be seen as a pressing need. Besides, we do allow people to have their own opinions. l have written mine, some other comrades have written theirs.

Another possible correction is that l do not believe Bekken is a member of the Anarkismo network, although l may be wrong. Stranger things have happened.

lf the Anarkismo folks of Schmidt would like to imply that the lWA has been part of a process that it has not agreed to through a federalist form of decision making, or if they misuse the organization's name in that way, they can expect both a disclaimer and a lesson, at least on my part.

MT
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Feb 20 2016 23:57

What is this anarkismo thing anyway? I mean, are those people relevant in any way in terms of practical organizing and activity? Perhaps an offtopic, but I think it is pretty clear that MS is a weirdo (at best) and even if the flame book was whatever cool and great, why someone thinks that writing a book gives anyone any credit as a personality? There is so many good writers or artists whose work could be admired but you would never shake hands with, isn't it?

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Red Marriott
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Feb 21 2016 14:52
Anarcho wrote:
No one -- even the most critical -- saw anything fascist, racist or "national anarchist" about it. For good reason -- no such material is in there -- quite the reverse.
[...]
I concentrated on one part of his argument because that part seemed unfair -- and it is. As indicated, Black Flame is not a racist book, while flawed it is (in general) a good introduction to anarchism. This in itself explains much in terms of the response of many people -- shock and disbelief given the work he co-wrote.

But nor is the racism probably wholly unrelated to BF. Even Anarcho in his review of BF disagreed with its ridiculous partisan revisionism. Now the recent revelations about advocating a Boer-state, MS’s national-anarchism etc surely put BF’s revisionist crap about socialist nationalists like Connelly ‘being in the anarchist tradition’ in a different light; and surely that has some relation to MS’s expressed leaning toward a racialised categorising of nations?

Whatever else it did, Black Flame in part told an idealised and distorted ‘history’ that neatly fitted a preferred ideological agenda for some anarchists; http://libcom.org/forums/history-culture/new-historical-syndicalist-book...
http://libcom.org/forums/history-culture/books-italian-anarcho-syndicali...
The intellectual reverence, authority & status given Schmidt & VdW on this basis has encouraged in some – even when presented with such damning evidence - a loyalty beyond all bounds of sense and reason. And, even though some here don’t like drawing the parallel, it remains very relevant to point out that a similar dynamic was at work with the apologetics for Aufhebengate.

BF’s ridiculous partisan revisionism, inaccuracy and distortion of historical sources; this lack of integrity was present way before the present scandal which, arguably, should’ve been warning signals long before now. Due to the BF inaccuracies, even the BF admirers apparently asked for the follow up book to be peer-reviewed/fact-checked before publication. Rather than praise it as some great work I’d see it more as a cause for concern that such a seriously flawed work has been so influential – largely due to the uncritical attitude of too many anarchists. (For balance we can also note that the MS expose author Reid on this thread http://libcom.org/blog/anarchosyndicalism-against-fascism-response-recen... was similarly inaccurate as BF was about Italian syndicalism - in this case re. its relationship to fascism- perhaps pursuing their own ideological agenda.)

It’s certainly a recurring tendency in politics to want to defend an image of a group and/or ideology even at the expense of a contradictory reality – so all the praise for BF, with its misuse of historical sources seen as unproblematic/insignificant and largely ignored in favour of praise and lapping up its feel-good idealised history; and a similar reluctance now from some of those feeding from that ideological trough to face inconvenient facts that dispute the idealised view. It seems some just prefer a neat blinkered belief system rather than reality; they truly speak with a forked tongue. The level of attempted deceit in such defences suggests the defenders – even if indulging in chronic self-delusion – are as untrustworthy as what they try to defend.

Another possible parallel with Aufhebengate is that – after MS drawing the prestige for years of being BF co-author and until very recently lecturing & being interviewed etc on that basis – the ZACF & VdW statements now seek to distance him from the bulk of the book, emphasising his involvement ended years before publication. If authors want to claim the benefits of association with a text they have to stand by its content; equally, books will be judged, partly, by the reputations and assumed motives of their authors and the relation of their writing to the content of their acts. With some of the recent comments it’s almost like some have decided ‘well even if we can’t credibly save the reputation of MS the author we must save the reputation of The Great Book’. But presumably the copyright remains with the authors anyway so its reprinting could continue if wanted.

Juan Conatz wrote:
... with individuals in the IWW, libcom group or Recomposition also defending MS at a point far longer in this timeline than makes me comfortable.

More than anything I can think of, this has made me question my involvement in the libertarian far left. Can I, as a person from both a Puerto Rican and Jewish background, tolerate an event in which people mindlessly defend a fascist? I am not sure.

Well not everyone is so blinkered. But, yes, in this sense of loyalty based on reverence for the ideological authority of ideological producers, I believe that Aufhebengate is strongly related. And, like with Aufhebengate, if the boot was on the other foot and the accused party had been a rival political current, rather than their ideologically close/admired comrades, that at least some of the defenders would have been leading the condemnation. What is a greater danger than the likes of Dr J, MS etc is the tolerance of them and reluctance to admit their failings by so many who in doing so utterly contradict their own claimed radicalism. Juan Conatz is right to have his doubts.

S. Artesian
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Feb 21 2016 17:29

Actually, like Aufhebengate and like the SWP's response to the complaint of sexual abuse brought by a female member against a highly "valued," and placed, cadre. You will recall that SWP set up committee of inquiry, tasked with being neutral, and "weighing the evidence."

And all that rubbish.

Didn't work out too well then, won't work out well now, unless of course, you're looking to make the waters even muddier and exonerate, not so much MS, but those who knew about this and shut up.

akai
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Feb 22 2016 06:12

l agree with much of what Red Marriot is saying.

MT also asks is this Anarkismo thing is really important and who cares about this book. l think that BF is, in many ways, an attempt to revise anarchist history so it is more suited to the ideology of this current, so it is not so much a "good" intro to "anarchism" as it is an intro to how this current wants people to see anarchism.

So yes, people are going to turn a blind eye to things if they revere "the book".

Now, if we want to speculate about how a commission might take place, a lot depends on who will be in it. Having seen a few "commissions" in recent years, l am not at all sure that this will produce anything fruitful.

l have seen a few folks around that network in action when El Libertario was banned from Ainfos. (This is independent of Anarkismo, but the people in question where also in that tendency.) For those who don't know, EL criticized Popular Power as having statist tendencies and there was a large criticism/expose of EL as a right-winger. The "process" (LOL) was actually quite disturbing, with the jury already in before the discussion began, since EL criticized tendencies in S. America that Anarkismo supports. ln short, there was not even any attempt to ask EL for comments and probably not even any information to them that they were being banned and why. When l compare these 2 cases (ie, buddy gets a process, non-buddies do not) and when l hear all the grumbling about AK Press withdrawing BF, there is some double standard. Of course the Anarkismo network has a few hundred people, so l will not make assumptions that these people involved with the EL situation are "typical" of the rest. But just to say that this political bias creates different treatment.

On top of that, so far l have been quite underimpressed by attempts to create huge texts that essentially divert attention from the basic issues.

For Juan Conatz, l am sorry about your feelings. The fact of the matter is that we have an idealized vision of how people can behave which is inherent in anarchist ideas, but people are human and don't always behave as we think they should. Having been around a while, l have run into lots of situations which have disappointed me or made me sick. l also get so fed up sometimes that l question what l am doing with some people. You know, l also question if l should ever open Libcom, which you are part of, because l was very disgusted with shit here. But hopefully we just get through these things and manage to get around and keep true to our own ideas. So hoping you will manage to stick to your guns and manage your disappointment.

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Steven.
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Feb 22 2016 12:36

Interesting to hear about these other articles, "Menace in Europe" and "Neither Fish nor Fowl", which apparently Schmidt wrote but were rejected by anarkismo?

If this is true, and they could be relevant for this discussion then I agree with the above poster who says they should be released. Has anyone requested that anarkismo do this?

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OliverTwister
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Feb 22 2016 14:04

On a similar vein to Akai's earlier post, the IWW has not been asked to take part in any commission.

Nor did the IWW take part in organizing the St Imier congress, even if some individual members may have been involved.

William Everard
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Feb 22 2016 14:37
Steven. wrote:
Interesting to hear about these other articles, "Menace in Europe" and "Neither Fish nor Fowl", which apparently Schmidt wrote but were rejected by anarkismo?

If this is true, and they could be relevant for this discussion then I agree with the above poster who says they should be released. Has anyone requested that anarkismo do this?

Libcom user ocelot apparently asked Anarkismo to release "Menace" earlier in this thread. He or she reviewed and rejected a copy of it along with other Anarkismo reviewers, but didn't feel comfortable publishing it without their consent, which I highly doubt will be forthcoming, if Anarkismo can truly decide on anything (I'm starting to seriously doubt that).

Either ARR/JS have a copy of "Neither Fish...", or they only have excerpts; they're the only ones who had referenced it although it's been rumoured to have been published on Anarkismo for a short time then taken down. If so, it's nowhere in any Internet Archive snapshots of the website (I've looked).

Although I think disclosures are extremely important and I would like to see any and all articles/evidence relevant to this affair made available for the public, I might feel intimidated by legal threats if I were ARR/JS. We don't know what kind of correspondence they've had with Schmidt, and defamation/libel law is awful in SA....... it doesn't take truth into account -- http://mg.co.za/article/2012-11-02-00-ten-things-about-defamation

akai
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Joined: 29-09-06
Feb 22 2016 21:22

Oliver, to tell the truth, if they would want lWW or lWA to be involved, it might be better just to make a statement of those organizations. At least then everyone who know who thinks what. But rather a waste of time to drag our orgs into let.

As for libel laws, actually, the situation in Poland is exactly the same --- except in our situation these laws can become criminal cases. And we have been involved in this a few times and manage to win. That said, if MS wanted to make any case against people, l think if would just be another reason to criticize.

William Everard
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Joined: 26-01-16
Feb 23 2016 16:24

Comrades have stated that Anarkismo is deleting comments on Schmidt's articles that reference his "national anarchist" tendencies.

This article specifically has been called out
http://anarkismo.net/article/23404

Unfortunately, I didn't make copies of every single comment section on a Schmidt article, but will now. The comments would have been left after Sep 21 (last Internet Archive backup) and yesterday. Looking for more information.

ocelot -- any info about this would be great. Not sure if this is a sysadmin issue or someone with administrator access to the content management system would have done that.

syndicalist
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Joined: 15-04-06
Feb 23 2016 16:52

Never mind

Anarcho
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Joined: 22-10-06
Feb 27 2016 15:45
Red Marriott wrote:
But nor is the racism probably wholly unrelated to BF. Even Anarcho in his review of BF disagreed with its ridiculous partisan revisionism. Now the recent revelations about advocating a Boer-state, MS’s national-anarchism etc surely put BF’s revisionist crap about socialist nationalists like Connelly ‘being in the anarchist tradition’ in a different light; and surely that has some relation to MS’s expressed leaning toward a racialised categorising of nations?

I always thought their inclusion of James Connolly was driven by his well-known syndicalism rather than his Irish Nationalist tendencies. They also claimed de Leon. As for Connolly, I've never heard anyone claim he was a racist -- his support for Irish independence hardly suggests a "national-socialist" (proto-fascist) position. So I class this as clutching at straws.

Red Marriott wrote:
BF’s ridiculous partisan revisionism, inaccuracy and distortion of historical sources; this lack of integrity was present way before the present scandal which, arguably, should’ve been warning signals long before now.

Other than excluding Proudhon and including Connolly, de Leon, etc., I found Black Flame very good -- there are few serious mistakes (every book has mistakes or overeggs at times). That is why I was so surprised by the claims made against Michael Schimdt.

Red Marriott wrote:
Rather than praise it as some great work I’d see it more as a cause for concern that such a seriously flawed work has been so influential – largely due to the uncritical attitude of too many anarchists..

I have to disagree with that -- I am critical of certain elements of it, but in general it was a good account of anarchism and anarchist history. It did focus on what modern anarchism is and came from -- class struggle revolutionary libertarian socialism. I know that some people did not like its basic thrust but unfortunately for them, the book's basic thrust was correct -- modern, revolutionary anarchism was born in the First International. They were right to ignore Godwin, Stirner, etc. to focus on anarchism as a theory and as a movement.

In terms of Schimdt, infiltration is precisely that -- he would have hidden his positions in order to gain entry and trust. Unless we do rigorous background checks on all possible joiners to the movement, this sort of thing can happen. There were police spies in the Bolshevik central committee, for example.

William Everard
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Joined: 26-01-16
Mar 10 2016 18:49

Schmidt via Facebook:

Quote:
"A week for good news: a) I started working on two new jobs, one pan-African, the other Angolan; b) my Canadian publishers decided, after examining all the evidence, that they stand by me against my accusers and will continue to distribute the French-language edition of my 2nd book - with a Spanish-language edition in the pipeline; and c) my last two books - my 3rd and 4th - are about to be nominated for an award :)

http://oi64.tinypic.com/24edjyb.jpg

Lux Éditeur is the publisher -- http://www.luxediteur.com/catalogue/categorie/auteurs/michael-schmidt/

William Everard
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Joined: 26-01-16
Mar 11 2016 16:19

We need organisations to make statements about Schmidt. Locally in South Africa he's still enjoying success and, for all we know, still recruiting white supremacists behind the scenes (this whole thing may have even stoked his fires). This is the review from the Sunday Times, SA's biggest paper.

"A Taste of Bitter Almonds: Perdition and Promise in South Africa" by Michael Schmidt, 4 out of 5 stars

Journalism is supposed to speak truth to power, which Schmidt does fearlessly (and sometimes personally) in this collection of stories gathered over the course of his long career. A compendium of forgotten histories across all cultures and creeds, as well as a look at some of the stories that threatened to tear South Africa apart, this is a fascinating, if difficult, look at our shared and complex history -- Zoe Hinis @Zoe Hinis"

http://oi63.tinypic.com/2cni2d0.jpg