Archive for End Of Empire

Athens Saturday Update: Polling, Rioting, Rallying, Repression, International Attention & Meddling

NOTE: If you want to comment or contact me regarding this update please do so through Reddit or Twitter as the comment system on my blog is not really functional or useful

Might end up being a longer update. Thanks for the kind words and thanks on the last one. These past few days have been intense and busy as you can imagine.

1. International meddling in the crisis and referendum is at a fever pitch. I can’t even begin to detail the obvious propaganda aimed at Greece right now. The idea that we are having food shortages is a lie. ATM’s are all functioning with a limit for citizens with local banks. The ‘YES’ vote clearly has an international media company managing their campaign. The Youtube videos are ridiculous and look like something a USA media yuppie firm would create. What will happen next week is of course an open question but I will get to that in a moment.

2. Some truths. The air is thick with extreme tension everywhere. Even on the streets you see patience snap with fighting and pensioners upset at the money situation. There was a very depressing picture posted the other day that showed an older man crying outside an ATM. This isn’t hyperbole, people are afraid of what is coming.

3. So many foreign journalists are here. I keep running into them over and over and most are of course total idiots. Some are OK but even my friends who are journalists foreign and local are losing patience with some of them. A known holier than thou USA anarchist from USA showed up in Exarchia over the past few days and has almost gotten beaten up twice for different idiocy. This shit makes me and other internationals look bad and I beg anyone coming here to screw your fucking head on straight. Which knowing most USA radicals is near impossible.

4. The police have basically fanned out all through Athens. Acting how they did prior to Syriza being elected. Following alongside demonstrations, harassing people, checking papers, standing outside the Polytechnic gates, coming far into Exarchia in order to provoke clashes. It’s been bizarre though, the feared and hated DELTA squads are seemingly not around at night. Although yesterday a motorcycle demonstration was straight up attacked for no reason. It’s been nonsense and confusing as the police have mostly stood down the past few months. Life is scary and the air is thick. Rioting has been breaking out nightly in Exarchia and lasted till almost 6 AM this morning. There was clashes earlier yesterday on the edge of Syntagma when the motorbike demonstration was attacked.

5. On Wednesday there was a larger demonstration for YES than the previous NO demonstration. Last night there was a final NO demonstration which I guess could be thought of as a response to that YES demonstration. There were so many people, thousands and thousands.

6. The polling for the referendum is incredibly close. At this point it is too close too call but most people think the NO vote still has it. Check here for polling: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_bailout_referendum,_2015

Here is the link for the Greek elections site, if you are a nerd like me you will be able to watch them all roll in and it will be pretty clear by 9 or so Greek time what the result is
http://ekloges.ypes.gr/current/e/public/index.html?lang=en#{“cls”:”main”,”params”:{}}

Lastly, I am not going to lie. People fear what would happen if YES wins. Anarchists are somewhat split on whether to vote or not. I can personally see both sides and to be honest, my personal feeling is that most people can see both as well. What will happen after is really the question and I am not sure if anyone can answer it. Something feels different, it is in the air and to deny it is impossible. The past year in Greece has been a struggle and this may be part of the culmination. But there is a big question as to what it really means, what it signifies and how it will fit into a bigger picture.

Lastly let me wish my Greek friends luck, this isn’t “my fight” as much as it is theirs and there is no other position other than support, solidarity and risk. Fuck the international capitalists, the state apparatus and all of their supporters.

Thanks.

The Surprise is that People Still Ask Why. A Short Essay on Extreme Actions & 2014

I don’t expect and do not want people to be desensitized to murder. And of course with the police, it’s easy to point out the double standards. But, what gets me is the disbelief that throwing people in prison for decades, using solitary confinement as punishment, and the general promotion of this idea that “crime” in and of itself can and should result in death will somehow never have extreme consequences.

You see the people everywhere leaving comments about criminals. Editorializing petty crime as worth death. Property crime, “throw them away and lock the key for decades.” As a society, many of us are used to and tacitly accept this commentary. Just right wing conservative racists etc. This idea though, represents something that is far more serious.

The people making these comments are not disparate people in basements who find themselves only in dark corners of cyberspace. They are the people who vote for tyrants, who support torture and spying and what unites them in complete solidarity is a belief that “law” is pure, religious in nature. This pole is represented and accepted in American society, promoted through mass media.

There is no way to mistake the growing gulf in society, no matter your side. Consider that the growing opposition truly wants to dismantle prisons, borders, policing and at the very least change the entirety of the justice system. Middle ground between these two competing worldviews is not existent because it is impossible. This extreme divergence tearing at the fabric of society worldwide is where extreme acts are born.

New Data Shows Police At War with Citizens, Arizona Ranks #1 for “Arrest Related Deaths”

In one of the more frightening articles on police violence as of recent, this piece ranks states by the amount of “arrest related deaths” as a percentage of population. While reading this my mind kept looking for some answer. An explanation as to why this map looks how it does. The south seems to have a much lower amount of deaths at the hands of the cops. Places you would expect, with lower populations do as well. What could explain police from the southern states killing less people? Significantly less people. Whereas in the Southwest and West cops are seemingly at war with people they patrol.

The police seem to have a complicated relationship with citizens

Could it be that the data is so bad in some states that this map is way off? What about yearly, if you took a 10 year span would these results stay the same? Could this data be so fickle that Nevada an outlier, can be explained just by the fact that cops in Las Vegas handle citizens much differently due to tourism?

This map, one of the first of its kind brings up so many, contradictory questions. It seems to challenge or speak to certain points regarding race, class and immigration. And just maybe, it begins to confirm a different sort of pattern. One that you rarely hear from anyone, including radicals on the left.

Sure, maybe if you over lay this map with one regarding ex military members who are now cops, overall crime rates and other miscellaneous statistics it could paint a picture with greater clarity. Maybe it would.

The point that many refuse to acknowledge though is that the police, more and more everywhere are simply not like us. Let that sink in. Police live in different neighborhoods. They go to different churches. They hang out at different bars, eat at different restaurants, probably hang out on different websites. Who do you think represents the mega pieces of shit on mainstream news articles calling for police to arrest everyone. To deport everyone. To kill criminals on site. These are the supporters of the police, and they are also where the police come from. They too, come from different families.

How many cops do you know? How many military members do you know?

Likely, almost assuredly if you are reading this article the first answer is very, very few or none. And for the second you more than likely know at least a handful. Ask yourself how this is possible. It’s cause the cops more and more are a completely separate social caste. This isn’t unique to America either and it’s getting worse everywhere. Most likely you have heard personal stories told second hand from an older generation cop. These almost always revolve around the new younger recruits being completely different than them, in a bad way.

So my question, until a later date, what if this map speaks to a larger problem that is ideological in nature? A war that is being fought between different populations. Those who seek to impose a right wing, reactionary law and order in a highly divided area? Against a population that is changing in ways in which the normalcy of society cannot handle in an age of economic despair. Remember that a low intensity war against non white communities has been fought for decades now. It seems that, this war might just be expanding. Ask yourself why.

Our Shared Enemy, The Good White Liberal. On Accomplices not Allies in Ferguson

Peace Now Peace Forever

White liberals who spread myths about white anarchists did it for 1 reason;

Defense of their privileges. And this isn’t critical identity analysis. Just like most people will defend what they have the “good white liberal” will always call for moderation. Their politics will always reflect the status quo. Not on accident but out of defense of their own goals.

The violence in Ferguson for them, needed a scapegoat. They could of course, watch live video or look at pictures and see mostly black people engaging the cops. This of course, could never be their scapegoat as it would be racist. So, they turn to their natural enemy, the radicals whom they already distrust. The radicals that already threaten their privilege.

It is the anarchists and radicals who threaten their careers as politicians and resume builders. The good white liberals who seek justice and peace at the expense of anger do so to protect themselves. To insulate themselves from what scares them, what threatens their prospective jobs, tenure or political ambitions. After Ferguson, it isn’t even a question whether these people should be opposed and, the litmus test is simple. Who seeks to criminalize, compartmentalize and do away with anger, with resistance? The fighters in Ferguson who rejected their own “safe community leaders” should be our accomplices. And with this, we battle against our shared enemy, the good white liberal.

To me, this is the baseline of “accomplices, not allies.”

For more reading: http://www.indigenousaction.org/accomplices-not-allies-abolishing-the-ally-industrial-complex/

Ferguson Rebellions Rejection of Leadership is Frustration for Some, Inspiration for Many

The New York Times published an article today August 17th titled Lack of Leadership and Generational Split Hinder Protest, which argues that the two points of contention are possibly related. Of course as usual with the NY Times, dry reporting is the default instead of an obvious position that may scare regular readers. With that said, it doesn’t take reading between the lines to notice that Ferguson and the rejection of formal leadership is a trend increasing in frequency worldwide.

One protester, DeVone Cruesoe, of the St. Louis area, standing on Canfield Drive last week said, “Do we have a leader? No.” Pointing to the spot where Mr. Brown was killed, he said, “You want to know who our leader is? Mike Brown.”

It is nice to have an active anti-authoritarian or anarchist presence around to reject status quo leadership and politics. In countries such as Greece the leaderless but revolutionary resistance has encouraged many to practice life beyond politicians, and protest leaders. Although now more often than not we see rejection of leaders as a consistent position. People on the streets, political or not during rebellion see themselves acting as equals instead of followers. They look to one another to organize, to fight back and gain knowledge. In the past resistance could safely be managed through TV, newspapers and official channels, now resistance is led by all participants and;

Politicians, community leaders, Democrats & the acceptable opposition are unable to channel anger back towards safe ineffective demands 

There has been much written about mass decentralized media creating new forms of social, economic and political organization. The New York Times article asks if a generational gap exists. Well, of course one exists although not the one they assume. Protesters worldwide aren’t always seeking “leaders who represent their generation.” And the people on the ground who actively reject them certainly aren’t. It is not disorganization. It is meaningful. Leaders are not needed in an age when people connect instantly. There is no need for compromise when the necessity for revolution is apparent and equally recognized. Those who wish to control only possess the ability to prove their irrelevancy.

In Ferguson, there is a rebellion which shares characteristics of others worldwide. Similarities such as free association, rejection of moderate positions and above all, distrust of formal representation. It isn’t “political confusion” as the dinosaurs at the NY Times may think, it is in fact political cohesion. Political cohesion informed by all voices on the ground. Those voices have access to people fighting back everywhere. They no longer need respectable voices that intend to calm anger. In Gezi park, in Exarchia, in Palestine, in Egypt, in Madrid, in Ferguson how many people do you think fight only for longer chains? Very few. A larger cage, is no longer a political compromise worth fighting for. Our communication among each other is now direct and intention is annihilation of the cage altogether. Smashing these chains into millions of pieces.

photographer @chriskingstl

The Future is Ferguson and If You Aren’t Paying Attention…….

What exactly are you doing? If you don’t care you have an excuse, among radicals though, there is nothing more important. Nothing.

 

Collaboration with tyranny anywhere demands rebellion and solidarity

As life has been moving at light speed over the past few years it would be a lie to claim that the current revelation is any different.  During times of upheaval and tension it takes  a long time to shake out the truth.  In ten or maybe twenty years some of us might be able to talk about this latest twist with some certainty.  How do you face down the prospect that the entirety of the state apparatus of your city worked against you?  Worked to destroy you, methodically under the orders of both their immediate superiors and others.  I suppose the obvious answer is you learn what you can, move on and keep fighting.

Documents, thousands of pages detailing official police, politician and DHS correspondence in regards to the opposition movement locally have been released.  Much of it is not so surprising, at least to myself.  Most importantly you have the state, which lays out the plan and reasoning for destroying initiatives that threaten the status quo.  There are the expected collaborators, working against political organizations that threaten their goals.  There are those unexpected twists, the seemingly oblivious nature to how organizing works, confusion, lies and obfuscation even between departments.   At one point the Police claim that kids under 10 using finger paint on a sign were “teenagers with washable spray paint.” If that wasn’t enough, it was revealed that they have been sending undercover police officers into bars radicals frequent.

Of greater importance there are those spots, in the correspondence where the truth seeps through.  The piece that gets stuck in the throat of your average American who would rather hit the ignore button.  The liberal who has outrage only so far as their comfort.  The liberty minded patriot, willing to fight against government intrusion only when the opposing team is intruding.  The place in the American political landscape that is a caricature of itself.  The helpful realization that the people who struggle for change are always the outsiders, the radicals, the risk takers and the hated.  When society is swimming against you, keep moving in that direction.

” I am glad we are taking these folks seriously, when we do that, we win and they go home saddened ” 

Says Mr. Renwick, Homeland Defense Unit.  And why wouldn’t he feel this way?  Everyone who upholds the law believes the same as anyone who fights against it feels outrage.  The vast majority of people who make up the systems of control all over the world are similar in kind.  They come from similar backgrounds, they believe similar ideas and have similar goals.  These individuals make up a massive, overarching violent institution managed by the entire ruling class.  Does that bother you to hear?  If your inclination is to run away while cupping your ears and screaming, this is for you specifically.

” Which side are you on? “

There are two sides, those who fight the system is in its entirety and those who are willing accomplices.  You can choose to be silent in the face of tyranny, that is of greater respectability than those who would sell you out.  Such as the liberal activists on a quest for
“unity” intended to protect their privilege in the face of tyranny.  Always at the expense of those who struggle against it.  Unity now can only be defined as that principle in which we never compromise with those that want to destroy us.  The people who disagree are the people who condone violence, harassment, intrusion and disruption from the most violent institution in the world.  Non-violence means never working with the state, its politicians or institutions in any capacity.

Assumption, Reaction, Solidarity

The state, capital and institutions of control are taking us seriously because the future of their project demands our obedience.  And it is more pressing, the global uprising radicalized thousands in the United States.  Many people, when the time comes will be willing to stand up and confront this sick machine openly, without begging politicians or marching in circles.  The state knows this, they know that it is different now.  That time is coming very soon, war and austerity are coming.  We all know it.

Our reaction to the state revealing its intention does not have to be a loss.  We need to use this as a jumping point in any way we can.  Support your friends, challenge your community, participate and propagandize and be ready for what is coming.  Just last night, I sat down with many people and surprisingly heard collectively that this attack if anything demands solidarity.  It demands that we show our strength in the face of empire, without fear.  And that is no joke, the people I know are not afraid, they are energized.

Five thousand or so pages of documents detailing the states suppression of opposition movements here: Source Documents

 

 

Thoughts on capital and an organic need for gun control

Overall, during the current crisis a few acceptable and somewhat distinct trends are emerging in relation to the management of violence.  While these trends play out, the need for comprehensive gun control is becoming much more necessary.  The acceptable positions are as follows:

  • More guns more freedom defend the second amendment
  • Restrict citizens rights to own guns
  • Provide a greater range of mental health options

For decades, second amendment crusaders have been victorious in defending and pushing guns for all.  Or at least for most, felons are excluded completely and if you are non white you don’t want to get caught with a gun, legal or not.  But for most, the ease of obtaining a weapon is widespread and a part of the American cultural landscape.

There are many parts to this cultural lexicon with the Second Amendment being just one.  American wealth and dominance is another part, a part that is currently in massive crisis.  And within this crisis certain cultural characteristics are beginning to fracture and blur.  They are doing so out of necessity in order to maintain economic and overall social normality.

Massive concentrations of wealth demand sacrifice by those without it

If any point is made here it’s that during times of mass crises, those in power will stay in power by sapping the life of those with none.  The upper classes will use violence and propaganda in order to suppress any threat.  Let’s be real here, last week unions were stripped of their power in Michigan! Michigan, the most recent historical home of fighting unionism. The originator of the sit down strike! What was the narrative that emerged?  Violent union workers rip down tent because they didn’t get what they want.

When markets and capital are in crisis they will dictate what is needed for survival.  And when necessary, the state will follow through on these needs.

Advocates for the second amendment state that if everyone had a gun there would be much less worry for mass violent homegrown tragedy.  The acceptable gun control argument is generally hysterical, such as “we have had enough of this, its time to ban guns.”  And even though the vast majority of gun control arguments are emotional, the core element is correct:

Banning guns will get rid of gun violence

For the past 20 years the proliferation of mood altering medication has skyrocketed.  So much so that different classes of mental disease have been created.  Much of this medication and diagnosis has been designed to help individuals navigate through the modern American cultural milieu.  The problems that crisis creates exacerbates the unique problems that are already present in the average American citizen.  For the past 20 years the sink or swim, work hard, bootstrap mentality has experienced increasing strain.  And with that strain comes:

Stress

Not just stress on the average individual but extreme stress on anybody that does not fit in.  The propaganda dictates that you need to pull yourself up by your bootstraps, and if you can’t, society owes you nothing.  So the problem/solution is:

Capital dictates that if you do not fit within the markets, you have no use for society.  And it is capital that creates the solution, medication.

But now, this solution is failing, medication is no longer able to cope with the increasing stress imposed from the current crisis. More and more people are beginning to crack and with it there is an increasing strain on the social fabric that may be, at this moment in time, unacceptable.  You could make the argument that mass tragedies inject fear that is overall positive for the markets.  Although, with the quick 24 hour news cycle, tragedy is mostly just an impediment to spending.

The only solution to the question of random violence if you support the status quo, the current incarnation of American society and capital is gun control.

Medication has failed, second amendment arguments will not combat stress and you can’t monitor everyone at all times, yet.  There is no acceptable solution that does not appease the march of wealth.  There is no market for less work and more play as a means to combat stress.   Criticizing the isolation of mass technology and the extreme toll it enacts on your body is counterproductive to the American Dream.

We need to take away guns from people who can’t physically and mentally handle what we support any longer.

Voting For Tent City And Hurricane Sandy, The Democrats Consist of Spineless Unprincipled Worms

Arizona Democrats voting for Tent City

Democrats nationally voting for climate silence

You are making everything worse

You should be ignored

Forever

*PUT HANDS UP TO EARS AND YELL LA-LA-LA*

Philosophical Honey Boo-Boo

I would buy whomever came up with this a beer, thank you sir/mam.  Taking the absolute worst in American culture and fiddling with it is oftentimes the best we can do.  American culture Break-In. Reminds me of Coupon sites.

Philosophical Honey Boo Boo

Philosophical Honey Boo Boo

from Gawker