In Defense of Regicide May 5, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Anti-imperialism, Decolonization.
add a comment
Kurlander attempts to back up his claim that this was “criminal anarchist violence” by selectively citing historical examples. He cites Leon Czolgosz, the assassin of president McKinley, and self-proclaimed anarchist, and the followers of Luigi Galleani, who famously advocated for “propaganda of the deed.” It can be debated whether assassination is technically terrorism, but regardless, both these men engaged in violence for political means and Galleani advocated and encouraged the use of terrorism. It’s worth noting the majority of anarchists at the time repudiated Czolgosz’s actions. While the philosophical ethics of using violence against an oppressive state is debated today, violence against people is not. It is completely rejected by anarchists. It is seen as an immoral, authoritarian action.
The state is apparently not people; the third-to-last sentence leaves me a bit bewildered. Violence against people remains thoroughly contentious in anarchist circles.
On that note, I always intensely annoyed by all the handwringing over Leon Czolgosz’s assassination of William McKinley. Both today and at the time, most anarchists do nothing but try to distance themselves from Czolgosz. Saying ey was just mentally ill or wasn’t really an anarchist supports all sorts of oppressive narratives. If anything, we should be proud that one of our own killed the figure personally presiding over a genocidal war in the Philippines and various other colonial ventures. That’s anti-imperialism in action. I don’t want to shoot anybody, but McKinley is about the last person we should mourn or feel sympathy for. Hell, I do things on a daily basis more morally reprehensible than killing the head of a colonial state.
Terrorism Means Fighting the Power May 3, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Anti-imperialism, Decolonization.
add a comment
In case we needed further proof that some lives matter vastly more than others, Assata Shakur‘s recent addition to the FBI most-wanted terrorist list provides it. The authorities apparently cannot stand that Shakur escaped their cage. The claim of terrorism is particularly brazen and speaks volumes about what the term means. According to the official story, Shakur robbed banks and killed a police officer who stopped the vehicle ey was in. Ey didn’t bomb a crowd or fly a plane into a building. Eir terrorist designation suggests that terrorism is about politics, specifically resisting, defying, or threatening the established power structure. Any sort of supposedly objective standard for terrorism based on indiscriminate violence, violence against noncombatants, or the use of fear to condition behavior misunderstands how the label functions.
New Article Up at IEET May 1, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Technology, The Singularity, Transhumanism.
add a comment
Read it here.
Happy May Day!
Please Raise Hell at SF Pride This Year April 29, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Anti-imperialism, Decolonization, Queer politics.
add a comment
Corporate Pride events always merit a challenge, but this shit is ridiculous. To quash news that Bradley Manning would be a grand marshal in the celebration, SF Pride president Lisa L. Williams released the following statement:
Bradley Manning will not be a grand marshal in this year’s San Francisco Pride celebration. His nomination was a mistake and should never have been allowed to happen. A staff person at SF Pride, acting under his own initiative, prematurely contacted Bradley Manning based on internal conversations within the SF Pride organization. That was an error and that person has been disciplined. He does not now, nor did he at that time, speak for SF Pride.
Bradley Manning is facing the military justice system of this country. We all await the decision of that system. However, until that time, even the hint of support for actions which placed in harms way the lives of our men and women in uniform — and countless others, military and civilian alike — will not be tolerated by the leadership of San Francisco Pride. It is, and would be, an insult to every one, gay and straight, who has ever served in the military of this country. There are many, gay and straight, military and non-military, who believe Bradley Manning to be innocent. There are many who feel differently. Under the US Constitution, they have a first amendment right to show up, participate and voice their opinions at Pride this year.
Specifically, what these events have revealed is a system whereby a less-than-handful of people may decide who represents the LGBT community’s highest aspirations as grand marshals for SF Pride. This is a systemic failure that now has become apparent and will be rectified. In point of fact, less than 15 people actually cast votes for Bradley Manning. These 15 people are part of what is called the SF Pride Electoral College, comprised of former SF Pride Grand Marshals. However, as an organization with a responsibility to serve the broader community, SF Pride repudiates this vote. The Board of Directors for SF Pride never voted to support this nomination. Bradley Manning will have his day in court, but will not serve as an official participant in the SF Pride Parade.
This tells you all you need to know about the mainstream LGBT movement in the United States. It’s about disciplining rogue queers and defending the U.S. military from insult. I pray Williams’s brazen support for imperialism inspires comrades in the Bay Area to show up for SF Pride with plans of their own. I might try to make it myself. Destroy what destroys you, folks.
Dale on Zuckerberg’s Dream April 25, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Technology, The Singularity, Transhumanism.
add a comment
This is good stuff. Dale critiques Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s one-identity mantra as simultaneously creepy and confused. Particularly when coming from governments or corporations like Facebook and Google, I find the relentless drive to know everything deeply troubling. As Jaron Lanier writes, attempts to make us comprehensible to search engines and marketers entail an extreme reductionism that potentially negatively affects how we understand ourselves.
“Cautiously Toward Utopia” Up at IEET April 4, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Environmental justice, Technocracy, Technology, The Singularity, Transhumanism.
add a comment
The longstanding and growing concern over structural unemployment caused by automation highlights the absurdity of capitalism. Like homelessness caused by too many houses, poverty from mechanization looks perverse and nonsensical from system-optimization standpoint. This article briefly sketches the history of both fears and hopes surrounding automated labor in order to argue against economic status quo of coercion, inequality, and inefficiency. I recommend distributing and/or socializing the twenty-first-century’s increasingly robotic means of production while simultaneously troubling sanguine post-scarcity dreams through attention to uncertainty, ecology, and pluralism.
Read it here.
The FBI Wants to Watch You Chat March 27, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Technology, The Singularity, Transhumanism.
add a comment
In another stunning example of how the gears of progress keep on turning, the FBI apparently thinks they’ll soon be able to monitor online chatting in real time. This is a step toward the glorious posthuman future or ominous yet expected expansion of the disciplinary apparatus? We report, you decide.
Red and Black at the IEET: Kris Notaro’s Vision March 21, 2013Posted by Summerspeaker in Anarchism, Transhumanism.
1 comment so far
Some days ago, Kris published a piece sketching a sanguine future of automated production, universal popular democracy via real-time digital voting, and enhancement that leads to the ultimate acceptance of anarchist-socialism. I should have jumped into the debate then; the comment section stands out as lively. While I appreciate the appeal of the system Kris describes and acknowledge its possible utility, the idea of complete global inclusion in single decision-making institution – even a diverse federation – immediately arouses my skepticism. Totalizing structures (and theories) continue to cause vast suffering and frustration. I want individuals and communities to have control direct over their own life circumstances first and foremost. Coordination at a larger scale might well benefit from the sort of voting arrangement Kris proposes, but such coordination comes fraught with risk, especially if given too broad a mandate.
Fundamentally, I doubt that freedom will look like a well-oiled machine. I’ll be happy if we can avoid killing and dominating one another. I see greater potential in fragmentation than in trying to create a successful unified system, though these two dynamics need not exist in binary opposition.
As a side note, Wesley Strong makes a charming critique of IEET/transhumanism in the comments that demands reproduction here:
People at IEET seem all to ready to praise white elites like they are godsends. Warren Buffet is a fatcat assclown that profits from the despair of others (he profitted form the economic collapse of 2008). Bill Gates projects a positive image through institutions like the Gates Foundation, which many consider admirable, but what I would argue is just the ruling class buying alliegance from the working and underclass whilst exploiting them at the other end to the fullest extent. Don’t even get me started about Microsoft and how messed up they are. And don’t get me started on how the Gates Foundation is a giant white-man’s burden machine that is there to maintain poverty through acts of charity instead of acts of solidarity. They seek to aid so that others become dependant instead of working to create a society where they are not needed. It is the PR arm to make up for all the messed up crap that is microsoft. And Thomas Edison is a completely differemnt story. People on here are all too willing to praise capitalist elites that exploit millions while ignoring the billions that are marginalized by capitalism, some of them to death.
add a comment
Read it over at IEET. I agree with Strong’s position as completely as I agree with anything:
Therefore we must redefine what “transhuman” means and what it means to be a Transhumanist. We must seek a transhumanism that directly speaks to the social lives of billions of people, instead of relying on some future technology to fix everything for us. We must seek to transcend human boundaries by transforming repressive the very social structures we created while also developing futuristic technologies to improve our lives and our ability to connect with each other.
The comments on the piece, of course, are terribly predictable, but Strong is taking the time to write in-depth replies.