The following paper analyzes the socialist debates on the national question up through 1914. I argue that an effective strategy of anti-colonial Marxism was first put forward by the borderland socialists, not the Bolsheviks. Lenin and his comrades lagged behind the non-Russian Marxists on this crucial issue well into the Civil War – and this political weakness helps explain the Bolshevik failure to build roots among dominated peoples.
Consequently, the Bolsheviks were either too numerically weak and/or indifferent to national aspirations to successfully lead socialist revolutions in the borderlands, facilitating the isolation of the Russian workers’ government and the subsequent ...........READ MORE
Killer cops and cop-killers, “police as workers” and police as soldiers, copwatching and counterinsurgency operations… these subjects and more are examined in this collection of essays by veteran activist Kristian Williams, released to mark ten years since the first publication of his book Our Enemies in Blue in 2004.
In section one, focusing in on police murders in Portland, Seattle, and Oakland, Fire the Cops!examines the relationship between working-class communities (predominantly Black) and the police, showing how police violence and impunity function to buttress the power of the State, and arguing that the left should recognize the political content ...........READ MORE
The Certain Days: Freedom for Political Prisoners Calendar comes out every year, containing short texts and beautiful artwork by political prisoners and prisoners of war, and their supporters. The 2015 calendar is now out, and this year Kersplebedeb (via leftwingbooks.net) is handling all orders (of less then 10 calendars – for 10 or more people can contact the calendar collective directly).
Certain Days is a joint fundraising and educational project between outside organizers in Montreal and Toronto and three political prisoners being held in maximum-security prisons in New York State: David Gilbert, Robert Seth Hayes and Herman Bell. ...........READ MORE
Perhaps I shouldn’t find significance in the short subtitle for JMP’s Communist Necessity essay, “prolegomena to any future radical theory” – but I do. The simple meaning of ‘prolegomena’ is prefatory remarks, but there is a more specific reference that is closer to what JMP intends. Kant’s Prolegomena to the Critique of Pure Reason was presented as the necessary basis for any future metaphysics that could lay claim to being scientific. Similarly, JMP offers this essay as the necessary ‘scientific’ basis for “any future radical theory”. He may only claim to have provided some elements of this ...........READ MORE
It has been several weeks since i have shared my readings here; it is not that i have not been reading, just that a series of misadventures got in the way of my posting them. Here they are, the highs and lows:
“There is a categorical difference, often overlooked, between trying to describe an event that has already happened … and trying to describe one that has yet to happen – and one, in addition, for which there is no precedent, or even near precedent, in history. Lacking experience to guide our thoughts and impress itself on our feelings, we resort to speculation. But speculation, however brilliantly it may be carried out, is at best only a poor substitute for experience. Experience gives us facts, whereas in pure speculation we are thrown back on theory, which has never been a very reliable ...........READ MORE
Those who visit this site more regularly will have noticed that for an anarchist project we have devoted a fair amount of attention to publications stemming from other leftist traditions. There are several reasons for this: 1. We have always seen ourselves as part of a broader left. 2. We’re convinced more than ever that a united left is necessary to combat the threats of neoliberalism and neofascism. 3. Despite often grandiose rhetoric, there simply isn’t all that much exciting anarchist material out there when it comes to the crucial question of how to actually ...........READ MORE
In the 2014 Certain Days calendar, political prisoner David Gilbert wrote that the “War on Crime” which began in the early 1970s was in fact a conscious government counterinsurgency strategy to decimate and disrupt Black and other people of color communities across the United States.
In this pamphlet, interviewed by Bob Feldman, David uses this observation as his starting point to discuss the ongoing catastrophe that is mass incarceration, connecting it to the continued imprisonment of political prisoners and the challenges that face our movements today. This interview was conducted by mail in March 2014, by Bob Feldman. A shorter ...........READ MORE