Spreading Anarchist Ideas

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Anonymous
Nov 1 2016 00:05
Spreading Anarchist Ideas

It seems like anarchists are generally worse than any other political group at spreading their ideas. It seems like not running political candidates is a bit absurd to start. I'm not suggesting that the system should be changed from within, but most people are only involved in the political process when elections occur. It seems obvious to me that elections are the best time to promote anarchist ideas, and to convince people to get politically involved outside of elections.

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jondwhite
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Nov 1 2016 07:23

I think anarchists do raise anarchism at election times.

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boozemonarchy
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Nov 1 2016 12:45

Best not to send mixed signals eh?

radicalgraffiti
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Nov 1 2016 13:10
Scheuerf wrote:
It seems obvious to me that elections are the best time to promote anarchist ideas, and to convince people to get politically involved outside of elections.

actually the best time is right after these been a riot blamed on anarchists

Maclane Horton
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Jul 2 2018 19:47

You are confusing anarchism with electoral organisations seeking popularity so they can get elected and can become rich and famous.

It doesn't matter whether we're popular. Sure we could jump on some current non-political band wagon - SAVE WHALES - BAN PLASTICS - GRAFFITI IS ART - whatever and everyone would say, "What nice people anarchists are"

No. No. No. Deconstruct! We are not about being popular. We are about destroying the system.

Ask yourself, "What have I done today to destroy capitalism?"

You don't know where to start. Look for a weakest link and start chipping away.

Do I have to give a clue? OK. Recently there has been a popular revulsion over gross salaries of fat cats. I put in my two pennyworth and spoke and wrote, but I fear that issue may be becoming passé.

But there's always another chink in the armour. So - deconstruct - identify - take action and destroy.

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Lucky Black Cat
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Jul 3 2018 10:27
Quote:
It doesn't matter whether we're popular.
Quote:
We are not about being popular. We are about destroying the system.

While anarchists don't want to be popular for its own sake, surely we want our ideas to be popular. And for anarchist ideas to influence popular movements.

Without achieving this, the system can't be destroyed.

Quote:
Ask yourself, "What have I done today to destroy capitalism?"

Usually I'm too busy thinking about "What has capitalism done today to destroy me." wink

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Jul 9 2018 01:00

I'm really averse to any calls for Anarchist electoralism because consistently abstaining from and critiquing other leftists for partaking in this practice has been one of the historical strengths of Anarchism. Once Anarchists, or socialists start running for office their job becomes to gain an official position in the capitalist state and if they are successful to be a steward of that state, the very opposite of struggling against capitalist institutions of power. I don't think Anarchists are particularly bad at spreading their ideas, Anarchism has seen a pretty large resurgence since the 80s as a resistance to liberalism and the failure of State Socialism. Before the second world war Anarchism was a global mass movement and was a vital part of essential labor struggles.

ajjohnstone
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Jul 26 2018 07:46

Ivysyn,

Regular visitors to Libcom are well-acquainted with the SPGB case for electoral activity and its rebuttal of your argument that it means assuming stewardship of the State so i won't repeat them but i do suggest you use the Libcom search facility to learn the SPGB position on political action and discover its difference from other parties.

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Jul 26 2018 17:57
ajjohnstone wrote:
Ivysyn,

Regular visitors to Libcom are well-acquainted with the SPGB case for electoral activity and its rebuttal of your argument that it means assuming stewardship of the State so i won't repeat them but i do suggest you use the Libcom search facility to learn the SPGB position on political action and discover its difference from other parties.

Why do you assume Ivysyn isn't familiar with the SPGB and their arguments for electoral activity? Nevertheless, you could have also provided links to useful past discussion threads such as:

New SPGB pamphlet on Parliament
SPGB and how they want to achieve socialism
None Of The Above
Workers Councils or Parliament?

Oh, and my personal favorite:

Are SPGB libertarian communist? smile

There's also this blog piece addressing the SPGB and Class War, as part of Phil's Electoralism or Class Struggle? series.

ajjohnstone
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Jul 26 2018 23:16

"Why do you assume Ivysyn isn't familiar with the SPGB and their arguments for electoral activity?"

Simply because the name did not strike a chord.

Quote:
"Nevertheless, you could have also provided links"

I was too lazy (and perhaps reluctant to encourage laziness in others)...Seek and you will find, to quote the Good Book

Quote:

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Jul 29 2018 03:25
Quote:
Regular visitors to Libcom are well-acquainted with the SPGB case for electoral activity and its rebuttal of your argument that it means assuming stewardship of the State so i won't repeat them but i do suggest you use the Libcom search facility to learn the SPGB position on political action and discover its difference from other parties.

I'm familiar with the idea of impossibilism proposed by SPGB. I've never heard their counter-points to anti-electoral arguments and I'm not going to look them up right now because I have no motivation to. I find it quite rude that you make these off hand dismissals of what I said by telling me to read something while also not even putting forth the effort to link anything. The point of these forums is to have a discussion, not make pronouncements with nothing to back them up besides "use libcom's search feature". If you are too lazy to make an actual argument, fine, just don't reply then.

ajjohnstone
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Jul 29 2018 09:55

I'm sorry that i never provided you with links. Fortunately, another forum user stepped in with a few suggestions.

As for not initiating a direct discussion with you, i think many on this forum would be very relieved i didn't as to not have to suffer another debate that they have had on numerous previous occasions and it was for their sakes that i desisted from what would have been quite a repetitive thread which they would have been spared if you had conducted your own research as i suggested and returned to the forum with specific questions or issues.

I think other forum users will inform you i am not at all reluctant to engage in argument (and you can insert my name into search to learn just how frequently i post here) but i am becoming rather critical of those who simply don't put effort into using the very easy to use facilities of forums and expect to be spoon-fed and that is me being rude to someone who appears to be easily offended by a trifling transgression of one SPGBer on this forum considering the importance of the issue in the grand order of things.

As for the SPGB counter-arguments to anti-parliamentarianism that you are not aware of, since our website is down i cannot link you directly to source material, but you were indeed referred to a forum debate on it even if you aren't motivated to follow up.

https://libcom.org/forums/announcements/new-spgb-pamphlet-parliament-09032010

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Jul 29 2018 16:22

ajjohnstone,

I should clarify that it wasn't solely for Ivysyn's sake that I suggested those past threads and blog pieces. Considering the lack of discussion in this thread, those probably would have been helpful for either the OP if they are still around or anyone else who may have came across this thread sharing those same concerns. And surely we can agree that both the SPGB's case and the counter arguments made by anarchists, leftcommers and others are all fairly represented in those past discussions. I would also suggest the discussion thread regarding the "communist electoral strategy" proposed by a member of the Communist League of Tampa, where similar arguments were made.

It is not only rude, but also a bit odd that you would make a post to this thread specifically demanding someone else to learn about the peculiar case of the SPGB's electoralism, when that organisation was not even before mentioned in this thread until your post. Perhaps, you had a special affinity to what little was said by the OP? Then you got 'easily offended' by Ivysyn's post?

ajjohnstone
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Jul 29 2018 22:13
Quote:
Regular visitors to Libcom are well-acquainted with the SPGB case for electoral activity and its rebuttal of your argument that it means assuming stewardship of the State so i won't repeat them but i do suggest you use the Libcom search facility to learn the SPGB position on political action and discover its difference from other parties.

I repeat, it was for the benefit of the many other users of this forum that i suggested - not demanded - that the OP make use of the search facility to learn more. I admit i was a bit amiss in not providing these links myself.

Quote:
"you could have also provided links"
I was too lazy (and perhaps reluctant to encourage laziness in others)...Seek and you will find, to quote the Good Book

If that above responses was considered rude, something normally out of character and something i admit when i am being so, that is unfortunate but to make it the reason not to read up further on a political position held by the SPGB which deals with an assumption made about electoral action is even more unfortunate.

Joseph Dietzgen
- " If a worker wants to take part in the self-emancipation of his class, the basic requirement is that he should cease allowing others to teach him and should set about teaching himself."

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Jul 29 2018 22:43
ajjohnstone wrote:
I repeat, it was for the benefit of the many other users of this forum that i suggested - not demanded - that the OP make use of the search facility to learn more. I admit i was a bit amiss in not providing these links myself.

By OP, I meant the 'Anonymous' poster who started this thread. Ivysyn is not the OP.

ajjohnstone
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Jul 30 2018 00:10

My mistake.

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Jul 30 2018 18:35

ajjohnstone, You seem to think that I am against doing research. I've actually read a lot on this particular issue, I just haven't specifically studied the SPGB's position. The SPGB's position is not the only position and going through the effort to respond to me and accuse me of not doing research because I hadn't familiarized myself with the positions of one organization in Britain is what I would consider rude. If that's being easily offended, then I think "easily offended" in this case is a stand in for "appropriately annoyed at another forum user smelling their own farts in my direction". I also don't really buy the idea that you said what you said to save other people the grief of another thread on electoralism vs anti-electoralism. The OP willingly posted on the topic and many other people willingly responded. I think you just wanted to promote SPGB in all honesty.

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Jul 30 2018 18:43

If Libcom was just a literature database then I would be fine if the extent of the discussion was "here, look this up". It has the advent of forums in reality where the purpose is to discuss things. I think "go read this" as a stand in for an actual argument is just a way of promoting one's own opinions in a discussion space without actually having to engage. It has nothing to do with wanting to be spoon fed. If I wanted to be spoon fed I would not be participating in a debate on the issue.

Since I have have read a good deal of Adam Buick who is a member of SPGB I'm interested to hear their arguments in response to anti-electoral arguments. I might go through the links, or look things up myself and come back with thoughts. So I guess you win on that front?

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darren p
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Jul 30 2018 20:45
Ivysyn wrote:
Since I have have read a good deal of Adam Buick who is a member of SPGB I'm interested to hear their arguments in response to anti-electoral arguments. I might go through the links, or look things up myself and come back with thoughts. So I guess you win on that front?

Their website is currently down but you can read a cached version of the "..Parliament" pamphlet here, reckon it was written by Adam Buick:
https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:rkI9U5iqJVMJ:https://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/pamphlets/whats-wrong-using-parliament+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=uk&lr=lang_en%7Clang_es