What is all this "post-left anarchism" then?

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pingtiao
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Jun 3 2004 12:28
What is all this "post-left anarchism" then?

What the hell is all this "post-left anarchism" stuff that Infoshop seems to be so into.

I get the impression that it isn't the same thing as Bookchin's "Anarchism after Leftism", or our own attempts at distinguishing ourselves from the Liberal mileu.

Is it just a function of the peculiarly narow American political spectrum, or does it mark a distinct and new current within Anarchism?

What is it, exactly, and how does it differ from anarchist communism?

captainmission
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Jun 3 2004 13:51

Don't think its just an USA'ian thing- there's pleanty of people in this country that though involved radical politics don't think of themselves as 'leftist'. The IWCA, i believe, makes clear its not socialist or part of the left. Think in a large part it cos many people see themselves going through a succession of various leftist groups until they arrive at anarchism. Thus the left is often associated with these various trotskite or socialist (or even anarchist) sects that people have moved through.

but i don't think it can be described as a distinct current within anarchism cos it ain't nesseccarily a theoretical rejection that's taking place, post-leftist often still engage in the same issues as left politcs- workplace struggle, anti-war etc and are influenced by left political analysis. Think the rejection is functioning more on an experiencial or aesthetic level than a plain theoertical distincsion. Always find it quite interesting how people have expressed disdade for the left in aesthetic or viseral ways- how a certain form of politics is ugly, how being arround such and such party organisers is like being 'arround shit'. In some sense it quite heartening how people are embodying there politics rather than just dealing with it on a theortical level (not that of course those who identify with the left don't do this).

So post leftisms more one way of being critical about involvement it political movements, rather than a solid theortical body of ideas. The only thing i've noticed in common in alot of 'post-left' critiques is a rejection of 'mass' organisation- that is not of organisation with lots of people in them, but how we think about other people as a 'mass'- an undiferentiated blob of other people.

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Jun 3 2004 15:02
pingtiao wrote:
What the hell is all this "post-left anarchism" stuff that Infoshop seems to be so into.

From whre i'm standing its individualism that largely rejects class analysis politics in favour of more so called ''immediate'' outlooks, it bears a lot of similarity to post-marxism, post-structuralism post-modernism and so on.

Its traits would be idealist attuitudes, sectarianism and a nigh on millenarianist attitude in some cases.

I don't like it, but then i don't like any individualist anarchism.

john

captainmission
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Jun 3 2004 15:12
cantdocartwheels wrote:
Its traits would be idealist attuitudes, sectarianism and a nigh on millenarianist attitude in some cases.

Since post-leftism against forming polictal parties, and in some sense claims to be against 'formal' organisation how can it be sectarian?

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Jun 3 2004 20:11
captainmission wrote:
cantdocartwheels wrote:
Its traits would be idealist attuitudes, sectarianism and a nigh on millenarianist attitude in some cases.

Since post-leftism against forming polictal parties, and in some sense claims to be against 'formal' organisation how can it be sectarian?

you don't have to call yourself a political ''party'' to be sectarian, anything from parties to federations to simply groups of friends issueing ''communiques'' can be sectarian.

And as for being against ''formal'' organiosation, thats pretty pointless. How are you going to oppose the organised bosses and military power of the state without some form of organisation. How could food, labour, and so on be equally distributed and used in a modern city without formal horizontal organisation.

I mean it just seems to me the typical tendency to try and dress boring old 19th century individualist anarchism like prouhdon up in hip new clothes to make it more attractive to people.

If you like individualist anarchism fair enough, can't see oit being of any practical use personally but whatever.

peace

john

captainmission
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Jun 4 2004 13:23
cantdocartwheels wrote:
you don't have to call yourself a political ''party'' to be sectarian, anything from parties to federations to simply groups of friends issueing ''communiques'' can be sectarian.

But surely sectarian is one sect attacking another, not some indiviudals attacking a 'movement' (lestism). Maybe it can be seen as clique, bitchy or (to use wonderful SWPie retort) elitist. And such 'sectarianism' hardly the soul habitat of post-leftism, you ever tried read the letters page of freedom or loads of other anarchist publications?

Quote:
And as for being against ''formal'' organiosation, thats pretty pointless. How are you going to oppose the organised bosses and military power of the state without some form of organisation. How could food, labour, and so on be equally distributed and used in a modern city without formal horizontal organisation.

Well i don't think i am going to oppose bosses or the state without organisation, i was just highlighting what post leftist often say. Personally I find the whole structurelessness vs structure debate a bit misleading, as if we can ever escape organisation, but it does bring us on to more interesting questions. like the structurelessness of structure- how formal organisations always need to be lived out through human 'informal' organisation. Requires a different way of thinking about organisation but not one based on some division between the formal and informal. I would ask to your question- how could food, labour, and so on be equally distributed and used in a modern city without imformal organisation? tongue

Quote:
I mean it just seems to me the typical tendency to try and dress boring old 19th century individualist anarchism like prouhdon up in hip new clothes to make it more attractive to people.

If you like individualist anarchism fair enough, can't see oit being of any practical use personally but whatever.

Ok, with post-leftism we seem to be talk about two different things

1) the "stuff that Infoshop seems to be so into", which from what i can find doesn't mentaion proudhon or individualists all that much. and...

2) A general tendencey by people involved anarchism and radical politics to no longer consider themselves part of the 'left'. Personally I find this (people trying to construct a new identity away from what they consider a dead political movment and experimenting in new ways of thinking about organisation) alot more interesting than what some people are saying on infoshop.

Anonymous
Jun 6 2004 19:35

i thought it was all about recognising that anarchism had something valid to say, in the sense that it is against organisation, authority, hierarchy

but that anarchism is also associated with a lot of old-fashioned conceptions of where organisation, authority and hierarchy are located - i.e. an obsession with property/class and the state.

Surely, post-left anarchism is about trying to take the good and the bad from anarchism and making it relevant to today - reject organisation, authority, hierarchy; but also reject the simplistic view that these are only located in property/class and the state.

authority is already around us; to overcome it we need a complex rejection of all forms of organisation (including the old hierarchies/traditions that exist in a lot of traditional political movements (including anarchism))

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Jun 7 2004 23:03
john wrote:

but that anarchism is also associated with a lot of old-fashioned conceptions of where organisation, authority and hierarchy are located - i.e. an obsession with property/class and the state.

so are you argueing that their is a more active oppressor than the state and those that run it, ie the ruling class (ok lets call them the bosses, politicians, military leaders and the market-capitalists or whatever replacement term you think should be used, ...tho for me bourgeoisie works fine). Then seriously what is a more active oppressor of anti-hierarchical behaviour.

I'm not really worried about whether a theory is ''old fashioned'' or not, as that has little bearing on whether its correct or not.

Surely, post-left anarchism is about trying to take the good and the bad from anarchism and making it relevant to today - reject organisation, authority, hierarchy; but also reject the simplistic view that these are only located in property/class and the state.

noone holds that view at all, in fact most ''left-anarchists'' and marxists implicitly reject that view, instead they argue the state and the private property and class division it inherently entails are the key things that hoild back the development of society.

.

authority is already around us; to overcome it we need a complex rejection of all forms of organisation (including the old hierarchies/traditions that exist in a lot of traditional political movements (including anarchism))

how do you propose to fight the bosses without organisation, capitalism isn't just an ideology its a physical force that kills thousands upon thousands every day.

And how do you propose the people run an industrial society without organisations, in a factory with 900 workers producing say.. solar panels or train carriages, your going to need larrge structured horizontal workers organisations in order to equally distribute the labour and organise interaction with other similar organisations

peace

john

Krop
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Jun 23 2004 13:42
john wrote:
i thought it was all about recognising that anarchism had something valid to say, in the sense that it is against organisation, authority, hierarchy

Although I'd say anarchism is against authority and hierarchy, its certainly not against organisation! We need to organise effectively to make our struggles successful. If we lived in an anarchist society it would require a heck of a lot more organisation and communication between ourselves than what we're used to. And it would bring the most annoying thing of all - responsibility to ourselves and to others, - though the effect of our actions or non-action would obviously be more apparent in an anarchist society than the current one. We wouldn't be slaving away at work, having our time wasted by the state though, so overall it would be much better anyway.

What anarchists are against is being organised by others such as bosses, politicans, cops, etc. Instead, we would be organising ourselves. At the moment we might organise gigs, social centres, demonstrations, stuff at work - whatever - but we aren't helping organise a society amongst ourselves; the state has that function safely sewn up at the moment.

But this is certainly not from an individualist anarchist, more a communist one.

Anonymous
Jun 23 2004 22:55
Krop wrote:

What anarchists are against is being organised by others such as bosses, politicans, cops, etc. Instead, we would be organising ourselves.

How would we define "ourselves"?

surely we know now that to try and define one group as a homogenous group of insiders, as opposed to an alien group of outsiders, is inherently oppressive - both to the outsiders (who get excluded) and the insiders (who are straightjacketed into a homogenous group that prevents freedom of individuality/individual expression).

If 'we' organise, then, as you say, 'we' must try to organise for ourselves. However, if we reject organisation, surely each individual can flourish without the need to cohere to the rules/identities of the organisation?

Is this 'post-left'?

How about unorganised cooperation as an alternative to organisation? I.e. the non-hierarchical, agenda-less working together of individuals who don't want to oppress or be oppressed. I think this is qualitatively different from organisation.

Krop
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Jun 24 2004 00:25

Personally I'd consider it very 'post-left' to reject organisation per-se, and embrace the idea that every individual can flourish without the need to cohere to any rules, social norms etc. I don't subscribe to this however, and feel that experience of this type of organisation would (and has) led to far greater exclusivity and hierarchy than would otherwise have occurred.

Both for revolutionary reasons, and for reasons related to direct-democracy, I'd say libertarian organisation was extremely important. If things are left to 'flourish without rules' then things degenerate into hierarchical disorganisation. Cliques and failing to involve people is highly exclusive and very quickly develops into a 'them-and-us' situation. Self-organised, transparent organisation is the opposite of this.

I don't believe the form of organisation you suggest can actually exist outside a very small number of people. Perhaps on an affinity group level this is the natural form of organisation. But on a larger scale its simply elitist, and anti-mass movement. And without a movement that attracts people to it we're not going to end up with an anarchist society. I believe in free-association, but this doesn't conflict with the need for organisation. In a society where individuals have equality and freedom, they will be free to flourish. Where people haphazardly 'flourish' themselves without regard for others, we'll end up with an inability to counter the development of hierarchy and inequality.

Like I said, this is more a anarchist-communist perspective, and very old-left. red n black star

The Blast
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Jun 24 2004 09:35

Reading Anarchy after Leftism by Bob Black and the ensuing "heated debate" with Bookchin would be a good start Pintago.

I think there is something about post-left anarchy in one of the newswires here on enrager also, if you want a less time consuming taster...

blackcladmessenger
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Jun 24 2004 13:00

I'd suggest reading the 'Post Left' debate in the current issue of 'Anarchy - a journal of desire armed'. You can get it from re-pressed distribution or steal it from Borders. Not all the articles are online, but the website is anarchymag.org.

There is also an older issue of Anarchy with a post left debate, including an article by Wolfi landsreicher called 'Rejecting the Reification of Revolt', which is availble online if you do a Google search.

A lot of the debate seems to be collected on this left-anarchist site

http://struggle.ws/anarchism/postleft.html

And there is a whole section for Post Left anarchism on Infoshop.org here:

infoshop.org/afterleftism.html

Personally i wouldn't bother with Bob Black's 'Anarchy After leftism'.

As part of 'Green Anarchy' magazines free 'Back to basic' primers they did one on the left, you can get it on the web here;

greenanarchy.org/zine/pdf/GA15_leftist_primer.pdf

Or for an SAE from re-pressed.

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Jun 30 2004 00:18
john wrote:
Krop wrote:

What anarchists are against is being organised by others such as bosses, politicans, cops, etc. Instead, we would be organising ourselves.

How would we define "ourselves"?

surely we know now that to try and define one group as a homogenous group of insiders, as opposed to an alien group of outsiders, is inherently oppressive - both to the outsiders (who get excluded) and the insiders (who are straightjacketed into a homogenous group that prevents freedom of individuality/individual expression).

If 'we' organise, then, as you say, 'we' must try to organise for ourselves. However, if we reject organisation, surely each individual can flourish without the need to cohere to the rules/identities of the organisation?

Is this 'post-left'?

How about unorganised cooperation as an alternative to organisation? I.e. the non-hierarchical, agenda-less working together of individuals who don't want to oppress or be oppressed. I think this is qualitatively different from organisation.

ok, then without complex interlinking horizontal organisation, how do you propose to run a large factory with say 800 workers in which labour needs to be distributed links with other factories maintained produce sorted etc

i mean society isn't like art, society is a material machine, if every individual just runs about the factory doing whatever they decide to do at that minute nothing gets made.

Workers councils aren't flashing bursts of creativity or whatever, their going to be mostly involved in the mundane day to day functioning of society.

john

Anonymous
Jul 1 2004 10:26
cantdocartwheels wrote:
how do you propose to run a large factory with say 800 workers in which labour needs to be distributed links with other factories maintained produce sorted etc

for instance, we have an internet communication system in which individuals post their demands, and factories can feed in what they currently have in stocks. Some kind of simple calculation could then determine what production is needed. Individuals could then choose whether or not they wanted to contribute to that production.

I think this is voluntary cooperation between individuals, but not organisation. I suppose the difference is that organisation involves some kind of coercion (the organisation over the individual), whereas what I describe is cooperation because it's based on a total lack of coercion. People can or cannot choose to post information on what is demanded or what is required, and people can or cannot decide whether to respond to those demands or not.

It might not be art, but it would be free of oppression. And, personally, I believe that for that reason it would actually contribute to a greater flourishing and happiness than alternative forms of organisation .

kalabine
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Jul 1 2004 15:42

i don't really think anarchism is part of the left. but i don't bother to correct people who accuse me of being a leftie confused

tbh i don't even think of myself as an anarchist it's just a useful if lazy label, the only label that i really feel fits is working class.

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Jul 3 2004 22:09
john wrote:
cantdocartwheels wrote:
how do you propose to run a large factory with say 800 workers in which labour needs to be distributed links with other factories maintained produce sorted etc

for instance, we have an internet communication system in which individuals post their demands, and factories can feed in what they currently have in stocks. Some kind of simple calculation could then determine what production is needed. Individuals could then choose whether or not they wanted to contribute to that production.

I think this is voluntary cooperation between individuals, but not organisation. I suppose the difference is that organisation involves some kind of coercion (the organisation over the individual), whereas what I describe is cooperation because it's based on a total lack of coercion. People can or cannot choose to post information on what is demanded or what is required, and people can or cannot decide whether to respond to those demands or not.

It might not be art, but it would be free of oppression. And, personally, I believe that for that reason it would actually contribute to a greater flourishing and happiness than alternative forms of organisation .

so basically your saying in order to run a 800 strong organisation you'd use an internet forum

its not simply a case of saying what you want, it involves high level scientific organisation task delegation and work, i think internet organisation is all very nice but somewhat farcical.

Personally i think complete consensus is a hopeless means of descision making and organisational function. If for example you have a sewage plant, and you have to put it in position a or position b in your area, your bound to get disagreement, but you'll have to pick one.

Considering anarchism is scientific and based on dissent, to expect complete consensus is absurd. Thats why you need organisations to cop with comples decision making and structural processes.

peace

john

Anonymous
Jul 5 2004 15:57

these are all very 'practical' observations - and I agree that many are good points and explain exactly why it would be impossible to have an anarchist society created overnight - through some kind of mythic revolution that some people on these boards expect to occur and to save the world and the human race from itself.

The problem is that these 'practical' problems are exactly the kind of objections we hear as soon as we start talking about anarchism and anarchist societies.

My question to you, then, is what exactly would an anarchist society look like? If you accept the need for organisations, companies, the rule of the majority, and institutions to enforce the rules of the majority, what exactly is it about the present order that you dislike?

I think we need to start accepting that if we want the world to be a different type of place then we need to be able to imagine that people will live, think and act in different ways. Who said anything about 800-strong organisations? I don't want any organisations. Consensus might be impossible now, but if we are to build a non-hierarchical society then the ability to cooperate must be an essential pre-requisite - thus, once we have mastered that, then we can start to hope for the creation of a non-hierarchical society. How about position C for the sewage plant. Or position A and B? How about those people that want to put it in A put it in A, and those that want to put it in B put it in B. Why should you, or some scientist dictate that it is better in B even if they haven't convinced the A-group of the validity of their case?

"high level scientific organisation task delegation and work"

"to expect complete consensus is absurd. Thats why you need organisations to cop with comples decision making and structural processes. "

After reading this I start to have real problems understanding exactly what it is that's wrong with the world as it is now?

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Jul 5 2004 16:18
Quote:
If you accept the need for organisations, companies, the rule of the majority, and institutions to enforce the rules of the majority, what exactly is it about the present order that you dislike?

i don't except the need for companies, where did that come from, no one on here has said that! anarchist organisation implies that where at all possible decisions are reached be consensus, where this is not possible then majority rule (as oppsed to minority rule which is what there is in the present order) is used, but presumably with some sort of compromise so as to not infringe on the rights of the minority (who would obviously free to go off and do something else if they disagreed that strongly).

Quote:
How about position C for the sewage plant. Or position A and B? How about those people that want to put it in A put it in A, and those that want to put it in B put it in B. Why should you, or some scientist dictate that it is better in B even if they haven't convinced the A-group of the validity of their case?

that's one of the stupidest arguements i've seen in a long while. the phrase "a or b" is hypothetical, so if there is another possibility or a thousand others, merely pointing that out does not actually count in anyway against the anarchist nature of such a proposed organisation. and presumably there would be good reason for not having it at point A and at point B, for instance, point A could be near where people live so they could smell it, or wherever, so just letting people stick sewage plants left right and centre is pure idiocy. that's why you need non-hierarchial organisation so all viewpoints can be heard and taken into account.

Quote:
After reading this I start to have real problems understanding exactly what it is that's wrong with the world as it is now?

after reading your twaddle, i start to understand why so many other anarchists dismiss "post-left" critiques and so on, because they come across illogical arguements like yours! i don't mean to be rude, dismissive, or anything like that, but faced with your arguements there's not really any other way to react.

AlexA
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Jul 5 2004 22:31

Especially as you say you are opposed to organisation per se, but then claim that groups of people co-operating in an organised fashion is fine!

Sorry john but that is organisation, and therefore it seems like the who premise of the "post"-"leftist" stuff collapses

butchersapron
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Jul 6 2004 10:31
alexa wrote:
Especially as you say you are opposed to organisation per se, but then claim that groups of people co-operating in an organised fashion is fine!

Sorry john but that is organisation, and therefore it seems like the who premise of the "post"-"leftist" stuff collapses

Ah..he must mean - "I don't like the way *you're* organising. Stop it. My way is fine though. Carry on me and all who agree with me"

butchersapron
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Jul 6 2004 10:33

"Considering anarchism is scientific..."

Are you serious mate?

Anonymous
Jul 6 2004 18:24
Quote:
just letting people stick sewage plants left right and centre is pure idiocy. that's why you need non-hierarchial organisation so all viewpoints can be heard and taken into account.

the problem here is that you still allow for the possibility of 'letting' or 'not letting' people do things. Surely this is inherently oppressive and restrictive? I don't care if the organisation that 'lets' me do things is hierarchical or non-hierarchical - as far as I'm concerned, if it prevents me from doing something then it is wrong (and implicitly non-hierarchical).

In other words, "non-hiearchical organisation" is an oxymoron. If you have organisation to decide who can and can't do things then you have hierarchy, whatever particular form it takes.

Quote:

after reading your twaddle, i start to understand why so many other anarchists dismiss "post-left" critiques and so on, because they come across illogical arguements like yours! i don't mean to be rude, dismissive, or anything like that, but faced with your arguements there's not really any other way to react.

boring response - of course anarchist arguments sound illogical, that's because they overturn the commonsense of contemporary society. Commonsense says that societal cooperation is only possible through the state; anarchism says it's possible on a non-state, non-hierarchical basis.

If you reject an argument because it sounds like twaddle or illogical then I'm afraid you're going to be stuck in the present. It's only when you can go beyond the commonsense of today that you can expect humans to exist, think and act that are able to change the structures of today.

Anonymous
Jul 6 2004 18:27
alexa wrote:
Especially as you say you are opposed to organisation per se, but then claim that groups of people co-operating in an organised fashion is fine!

i said cooperating in a non-organised fashion. see preceding argument.

I think there is a distinction between A) voluntary and non-organised cooperation and B) organisation.

I think the former is inherently liberatory, and the latter intrinsically hierarchical.

Why is organisation hierarchical? Because inevitably we have to consider the needs of the organisation over the needs of the individual. In order for total emancipation we need to learn to cooperate on a non-obligatory basis.

Anonymous
Jul 6 2004 18:28
butchersapron wrote:
Ah..he must mean - "I don't like the way *you're* organising. Stop it. My way is fine though. Carry on me and all who agree with me"

not at all. see above

AlexA
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Jul 6 2004 22:41
john wrote:
alexa wrote:
Especially as you say you are opposed to organisation per se, but then claim that groups of people co-operating in an organised fashion is fine!

i said cooperating in a non-organised fashion. see preceding argument.

Er sorry but that's rubbish!

Organisation means being "organised". You can't co-operate and do anything without organisation. You're twisting words to fit your politics (i.e. your conflating "organisation" with "companies" above).

Organisation is as simple as two people, voluntarily saying they'll meet up and say paint a room, and one of them'll bring paint and the other brushes. That is organisation, it is voluntary. and it ain't oppressing nobody.

I find it funny how some people distort the meaning of very simple words in order to fabricate disagreements, when basically we're not disagreeing at all. What you mean by "organisation", anarchists call "hierarchical organisation".

Quote:
If you reject an argument because it sounds like twaddle or illogical then I'm afraid you're going to be stuck in the present.

That sounds like an attempt at creating a political excuse for you talkin shite! grin

Quote:
the problem here is that you still allow for the possibility of 'letting' or 'not letting' people do things. Surely this is inherently oppressive and restrictive?

Obviously not - if I prevent someone from raping somebody, anyone who calls me "oppressive" is an idiot.

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Ed
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Jul 6 2004 22:42

John, you're my favourite individualist in the whole world! This is almost as funny as the time you said you could learn to be a surgeon in a couple of days! grin

Quote:
the problem here is that you still allow for the possibility of 'letting' or 'not letting' people do things. Surely this is inherently oppressive and restrictive? I don't care if the organisation that 'lets' me do things is hierarchical or non-hierarchical - as far as I'm concerned, if it prevents me from doing something then it is wrong (and implicitly non-hierarchical).

What if you want to do something that the majority of people don't want you to do? Isn't it hierarchical of you to enforce your actions onto them? Or is it only hierarchical if someone stops you from doing something you want to do?

Quote:
In other words, "non-hiearchical organisation" is an oxymoron. If you have organisation to decide who can and can't do things then you have hierarchy, whatever particular form it takes.

What if the decisions are made by all the people involved, at grassroots level, without any higher level deciding anything for them? Is that still hierarchical?

Quote:
of course anarchist arguments sound illogical, that's because they overturn the commonsense of contemporary society.

No they don't. As much as you'd like to be your own personal vanguard, beating back the reactionary nature of most people, that just ain't the case. Just look at how most 'non-politicals' organise themselves. Also, there are certain bits of common sense that I like i.e. don't rape people.

Quote:
If you reject an argument because it sounds like twaddle or illogical then I'm afraid you're going to be stuck in the present.

We can only overthrow capitalism and the state through investing our time in cultivating the revolutionary potential of aquatic mammals. Think outside the box.

Quote:
Why is organisation hierarchical? Because inevitably we have to consider the needs of the organisation over the needs of the individual. In order for total emancipation we need to learn to cooperate on a non-obligatory basis.

So you mean voluntary organisation based on mutual aid and co-operation? Nothing different to any other anarchist. Kropotkin is proud of you mate!

Overall mate, I'd say you and your 'post-left' politics are very, very frosty. Take care.... red n black star

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Spartacus
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Jul 7 2004 10:55
Quote:
it seems like the who premise of the "post"-"leftist" stuff collapses

to be fair to the post-leftist stuff, i don't think john is in any way representative of it. i've only read a few bits of post-left stuff, and while some of it is illogical gibberish, some of it is argued perfectly logically. it's also a very wide label. you can't discount an entire group of thought just because one lone nutter claiming to be from that tendency pops up on these boards. just think, that would mean all class struggle anarchists could be assumed to be over agressive comical geniuses like revol68! grin

Anonymous
Jul 7 2004 12:55
Quote:
You can't co-operate and do anything without organisation

maybe we're talking about different things, I'm not sure. By organisation I mean established practices and ways of doing things - which presumes an element of fixity and tradition - it is this that I object to as I think it prevents the free-flowing organic development of voluntarily-entered-into social relations.

For example, if we want to cooperate through membership of this website then we have to abide by some rules in order for it to work. But I think those rules have a limiting effect on the process of dialogue and debate; and the interaction would be more fruitful without them.

Is that workable? Not sure. But I imagine it would involve something like the absence of any form of censure for hereticism. For instance, people regularly get banned from this site - censure - enforcing the rules of the organisation; I find this oppressive and restrictive, and I think it limits the emancipatory potential of these boards.

Anonymous
Jul 7 2004 12:56
Quote:
That sounds like an attempt at creating a political excuse for you talkin shite!

one man's shite is another man's reason

Anonymous
Jul 7 2004 12:59
Quote:
John, you're my favourite individualist in the whole world! This is almost as funny as the time you said you could learn to be a surgeon in a couple of days!

i'm glad to amuse - and i'm especially happy to be your favourite!

if it's fun at least it's not boring.

but to be fair, that was a total bastardisation of my point on surgeons.

If we really have to go back to that argument, the point I was making was that: most people's development is stunted by the hierarchies that impose restrictions on them from birth. If we lived in a society without those kinds of limits then the higher human skills that today we associate with 'experts' (like being a surgeon) could be accessible to many more people and be commonplace.