'Hijacked by Anarchists!'

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Sheldon
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Apr 5 2011 19:41

Is this a temporary ban or a permanent one? It does seem like a rather extreme response to what was a contextual contribution to the discussion at hand.

EDIT: Posted before seeing JK's

frank1234
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Aug 14 2011 01:48

As someone who has recently become interested in libertarian socialist ideas after seeing youtube clips of noam chomsky I have a couple of questions.

1) Do you think it is undemocratic to use another organizations march to carry out these tactics? Seems to me you are not taking into to account the wishes of others marchers if they have decided the want to march non-violently. I've seen a clip where an anarchist criticises a member of the SWP for turning up to an anarchist demonstration with a loud speaker making it seem as it was a SWP march, I think the same criticism could be leveled here.

2)How does the publicity gained from these actions promote your ideas? Granted when I have seen violent protests on TV before it has not really bothered me.
But it did not educate me about anarchist ideas and I still thought that anarchism meant no government or organization i.e a state of chaos.

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Chilli Sauce
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Aug 14 2011 09:52

Frank, there's a lot to chew on there. I'd probably start a new thread. Welcome to the board, btw.

frank1234
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Aug 15 2011 00:17

ok I will, thanks for the welcome. first impression = first place I've seen political discussions without people resorting to name calling / dismissing opposing ideas good stuff

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Chilli Sauce
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Aug 15 2011 11:26

Oh, give it time.... wink

Surtrsflame
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Aug 16 2011 00:13

Chili is right, it does sometimes get a little rough in here, but this certainly isn't revleft (thankfully). Flame wars are actually pretty rare on here considering that it's a political forum.

Anyway, here's my thoughts on your questions:

1) Anarchists and authoritarian Communists hijacking each other's marches is pretty lame on both ends. I think it makes sense for an anarchist to show up and maybe wave a red and black flag at a non-anarchist leftist march, and vice versa, but bringing a bullhorn and actual hijacking is a different story.

However, a demonstration with over 50 thousand (and certainly half a mil) is a different story, where the SWP can have their contingent and the anarchists theirs, while the main march would be technically lead by some shitty reformist group. This is not only a good place to bring some people on board, but it is really impossible for a group of people to hijack it without having a section of it break off and break some windows while fighting the fuzz in another section of town.

2) I think that such violent actions are a two-edged sword. On one hand there are many who may have anti-capitalist beliefs, but have settled on the left end of liberalism because of the failure of Communism due to the domination of Leninist Marxism. These people will hear about anarchists actually doing something and realize that it's not just Sex Pistols fans that are interested in anarchism. Such a person may read up on anarchism and even join the movement. On the other hand such actions carry a large risk of further ingraining the "anarchy is chaos" bullshit in many people who might otherwise be sympathetic to anarchist ideas. I think that for people who do feel that riotous action during a political event is advantageous, it is VITAL that the targets are well picked, and the petty bourgeois shops are left alone, because otherwise it will provoke reaction even among possibly sympathetic individuals.

gypsy
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Aug 16 2011 17:06
frank1234 wrote:
. I've seen a clip where an anarchist criticises a member of the SWP for turning up to an anarchist demonstration with a loud speaker making it seem as it was a SWP march, I think the same criticism could be leveled here. .

If its the same clip I am thinking of, its a stretch of the imagination to call that guy an anarchist even though he does claim he is one in the clip.

frank1234
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Aug 17 2011 01:23

@ Surtrsflame

yeah I see your point, as in a large protest people with different beliefs can form subgroups so it is clear who is protesting for what.

I think the problem is that people carrying out more contriversial actions eg smashing stuff speak with a much louder voice in the media as it provides something more spectacular and so can mean a small group having disproportionate attention which is unfair on other protesters whatever your views on their beliefs.

frank1234
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Aug 17 2011 01:28

also I think all the negative press is a big problem, from my view anyway, alot of people I discuss anarchist ideas with are pretty receptive but if you say the word anarchist they look shocked/ worried

radicalgraffiti
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Aug 17 2011 09:33
frank1234 wrote:
@ Surtrsflame

yeah I see your point, as in a large protest people with different beliefs can form subgroups so it is clear who is protesting for what.

I think the problem is that people carrying out more contriversial actions eg smashing stuff speak with a much louder voice in the media as it provides something more spectacular and so can mean a small group having disproportionate attention which is unfair on other protesters whatever your views on their beliefs.

thats only a problem if you believe coverage by the media is what changes stuff.

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soc
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Aug 17 2011 12:49
radicalgraffiti wrote:
frank1234 wrote:
@ Surtrsflame

yeah I see your point, as in a large protest people with different beliefs can form subgroups so it is clear who is protesting for what.

I think the problem is that people carrying out more contriversial actions eg smashing stuff speak with a much louder voice in the media as it provides something more spectacular and so can mean a small group having disproportionate attention which is unfair on other protesters whatever your views on their beliefs.

thats only a problem if you believe coverage by the media is what changes stuff.

I usually don't give a flying fuck for the media (as the media has always been hostile to any revolutionary movement, and it can't be otherwise). However, the media is stil a concern. Looking at the recent riot coverage, you could see how different is the reality and the press reports of the BBC or Guardian. That makes the media one of the priority target of destruction in an insurrectionary moment.

But specifically in this case, I agree, the media will show those banners that fits to their story, so doesn't really matter if we trying to get a certain look in the media on our demos. As anarchists, I think we shouldn't make a big deal of the media representation of things, or even better, we should try to block them as much as possible (within the framework of the demo, I'm not suggesting to trash every camera right away ofcoz).