I’ve had this one in the chamber for some months now. I saw it coming because I know the radical male left — but to be honest, it never really hit me until Cathy Brennan and her friends were ambushed in Olympia, WA by self-described communists and It’s Going Down (an anarchist publication with an antifascist focus) celebrated it. The pattern has only been confirmed with the attack on the Vancouver Women’s Library where, again, self-described communists (Trans Communist Cadre) are involved. This is to say nothing of the vitriol we have seen on the Internet for years, harassing and pushing out radical feminists.
What did I see coming? Rage. I definitely saw an incredible amount of rage boiling over by the latter half of 2016. I truly expected that the male left would be distracted with fighting fascists, the Trump regime, and punching Richard Spencer. That they would be too occupied with opposing the racist right to spend any more energy on radical feminists or other infighting. After all the years of Red Scares and Green Scares, the moment has come to prove themselves, to show what they can offer to the world.
How wrong I was! They went into overdrive. What happened was shocking: the incredible narcissistic rage of the male left exploding and wasting itself not on capitalists, but on wimmin. The literal societal/macro equivalent to the husband coming home to beat his wife because he is angry at his boss. Not even lesbians, spinsters, single wimmin, or children are spared. And perhaps, as I’ll explain, he is also mad because he feels the lefty female is cheating.
It has come to my attention that feminist groups have been suffering as a result of the accusation that they are “working with the right”. This has been flying around social media echo chambers for some time — for decades, actually, if you consider previous legal work feminists have done on pornography and prostitution. It’s not a surprising response from the left, since the left will never fail to compare radical feminists to Christian conservatives. Yet for some reason, the male left decided to be most angry at this now. Feminists are being used as punching bags to sublimate the male left’s indignation and feelings of inefficacy.
They would like wimmin to live in a world of self-censure and immaculate allyship, a world where the only men and wimmin acceptable to work with are those on their own team. In return for this loyalty, the lefty female gets to feel that she is “good”, and in her own thoughts she is “better” even than the lefty male whose self and canonized heroes are riddled with character flaws and tainted track records. But the male left hates when wimmin take the dyke-ish route of prioritizing solidarity with other wimmin, not dissimilar to how racial minorities prioritize solidarity with their own collective . The male left hates more than anything in the whole world wimmin’s solidarity with other wimmin at the expense of leftist men — this is an unforgivable sin in lefty land, as evidenced by the disproportionate respect paid to black liberationists over radical feminists, because they respect oppressed groups only as long as such groups contain men. Malcom X’s birthday is consistently celebrated, while Andrea Dworkin has almost never been acknowledged much less respected. For male politicos no matter what their label, oppressed classes are only listened to and respected according to their proximity to men and compatibility with patriarchy, and to the degree they can be twisted in order to fit the patriarchal imperative and flatter male egos.
However the male left, in their outrage at radical feminists, shows gobsmacking ignorance of their own political theory and practice. This is likely the same outrage that led to the disrespect of the Zapatistas, the Black Panthers, and other liberation movements, which caused leftists to be accused of showing hypocritical racism, sexism, and even imperialism. Some leftists disrespect even Rojava as it unfolds now for not being pure enough. Yet they still tokenize all these groups. Now I understand how insulting this is. Why does the distinctly Western male left feel such a need to control liberation movements outside their walled gardens?
It’s easy to get shocked at reformist feminist groups for appealing to the Establishment for help with their cause, but that’s what reformist groups do and no one should really be shocked by that. It might make radicals uncomfortable but that’s because your expectations are not right. Also, who cares?
The tactic of appealing to the Establishment can be deradicalizing if the reforms sought are not worth it, but let’s not pretend for a second that being a radical means being against reforms altogether. It’s childish thinking to believe that accepting aid from your political rivals is going to compromise you or make you their puppet. It’s not as clear cut as that.
If winning reforms, which are inevitably temporary, defines all you do, then that is reformism. No revolutionary movement was ever won by a series of compromises. Yet this can change over time within the same organization — would anyone disagree that unions have become pretty reformist? But anarchists with any modicum of empathy and experience of being under the boot of oppression should understand that to be against reforms is to be against making life better in the short term. We are not idealists, we are materialists, and that means recognizing and responding to our material conditions.
If some people feel that to win welfare, to win the right to be viewed as a full human being, to win the right to not be executed at will, is worth working with conservatives, you won’t oppose that, will you? Then don’t be shocked when feminists do the same.
It is unacceptable and exceedingly sexist for anarchists and communists, including antifa, as well as the liberal transactivists with whom the male left collaborates, to use this “allying with the right” argument to justify physically assaulting and smearing the reputations of feminists who work to make women’s lives livable, and going as far as to call radical anarchafeminists “fascist” for having sympathies with our radical feminist sisters. In particular, the radical male left’s allyship with conservative and liberal transactivists, as well as their historical collaboration with conservatives on other issues, reveals the hypocrisy of their claims. The betrayal (and erasure) that the entire radical male left has shown anarchafeminists will not soon be forgotten. We don’t look the other way when you attack our non-anarchist sisters, either. We see what you do. And we know better than you who is acting “fascist”.
In truth, the male left deserves a full analysis on their fascistic tendencies, and that’s coming. Whether they truly qualify as fascist remains to be seen, but one thing they certainly qualify as is “patriarchal”, which is a prerequisite for fascism that radical feminists will never come close to meeting. And by wasting their energies on masturbatory fantasies of rape and murder of radical wimmin, these male “radicals” are wasting whatever use they are or were to revolutionizing the economy. I’ve given up all hope of these deluded men achieving meaningful change. Only the female left can bring us forward.
The most concerning thing in all of this is wimmin’s role in betraying other wimmin. There have been wimmin and lesbians involved in abusing feminists. To be honest, this part is not surprising either, because patriarchy requires that we are pitted against each other. But it is the most upsetting.
Of course, any anarchist or communist on the radical left is free to disown these abusers but it seems that either violence against wimmin is worth celebrating, or no one cares. Please write to me if you disagree. Over my continual engagement with the male left I have seen nothing but disrespect. We can call this a clever CIA plot to turn labor activists against feminists, or vice versa, but this wouldn’t be an issue if the male left weren’t so patriarchal. Manarchists and brocialists will always get away with abusing feminists until anarchism and communism accept their destiny to be absorbed by radical feminism, the disowned daughter of the radical left.
In November 2016, New Zealand’s prison population ticked over ten thousand. So in February, abolitionist organisation No Pride in Prisons lead a “10,000 Too Many” march, calling for decarceration and challenging government plans to expand New Zealand’s prison system. NPIP and its supporters say that instead of building more prisons when they are ineffective, inhumane and discriminatory – we should work toward prison abolition by addressing the root causes of violence.
To some women – women who walk home at night with keys between knuckles; women facing interrogation in court after reporting sexual abuse (only 13% of such cases in New Zealand result in a conviction); women who are trapped in homes with abusive men – the idea of unlocking all prison cells might come across as extreme. Over 85% of the ten thousand incarcerated New Zealanders are men, and sexual assault is one of the most common offences for…
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On the night of June 25 last year, Alex Aleti Seu sexually assaulted a young man in an alleyway and on the grounds of a Dunedin church. Seu, who identifies as transgender, has been sentenced to prison for the attack as well as that of two of his former flatmates. Having entered the prison system, Seu is now among those whose rights No Pride in Prisons (NPIP) defends through its activism, its calls for prison reform and its prison abolitionist demands.In fact, much of NPIP’s work focuses specifically on imprisoned people who identify as transgender.
NPIP is founded on the recognition that the prison system does not to function primarily in the interest of public safety, as we are lead to believe. Reoffending rates are high, and prisons are violent, not rehabilitative, institutions. They do not reduce crime rates – if that was their purpose, indigenous women would not…
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At bottom, there is one fundamental question: Why do we take prison for granted? While a relatively small proportion of the population has ever directly experienced life inside prison, this is not true in poor black and Latino communities. Neither is it true for Native Americans or for certain Asian-American communities. But even among those people who must regrettably accept prison sentences—especially young people—as an ordinary dimension of community life, it is hardly acceptable to engage in serious public discussions about prison life or radical alternatives to prison. It is as if prison were an inevitable fact of life, like birth and death.
– Angela Davis, Are Prisons Obsolete?
There are many similarities between the prison system and prostitution. The correlations with child abuse, broken families, poverty and homelessness – racism and colonisation. The dark room, sparsely furnished – a bed, and the ever-present sense of being watched; the constant…
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This is the third in a series of posts on postmodernism.
Nietzsche provides many of the ideas that are now identified with postmodernism. “I am simply a Nitzschean,” Foucault said. Derrida “not only fosters Nietzsche’s work but evolves it within the sphere of language”. Deleuze evangelised about him to Paris intellectuals in the early 1960s, via his book Nietzsche and Philosophy, while Irigaray “undertakes to interrogate Nietzsche, the grandfather of poststructuralist philosophy, from the point of view of water”.
Nietzsche’s key works cover wide areas of culture and philosophy. His lasting influence derives partly from his scholarship and exciting style; partly from his ability to discern from afar the period of wars and revolutions to come, and the issues they have continued to pose for modern society; and partly from the very general, symbolic way in which he himself posed those issues: this vagueness allows his writings to…
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Prostitution was a huge breaking factor between myself and liberal feminism. As I have written several times on my site, it is quite frustrating that liberal feminist sites are so blindly “pro sex-work,” and not just because it means supporting an institution that is inherently violent and exploitative towards women. By flinging accusations of “whorephobia” at anyone who believes prostitutes are exploited and that prostitution should be abolished, liberal feminists have effectively shut down important intersectional conversations regarding climate change, environmental degradation, and the proliferation of prostitution – all as a result of intense globalization.
In “An Analysis of Global Sex Trafficking,” Cheryl O’Brien states that “Connected to neo-liberal policies, globalization has displaced people in favor of cash crop agriculture, increasing the landless and leading to increased labor migration and urbanization, which separates families. Globalization contributed to urbanization, causing people to leave rural homes in search of work in factories…
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