Red and Black Telly roundup.







Privilege (for the benefit of the privileged), identity and the Class War. By Mal Content.

“We live together, we act on, and react to, one another; but always and in all circumstances we are by ourselves. The martyrs go hand in hand into the arena; they are crucified alone.

… From family to nation, every human group is a society of island universes.”

– Aldous Huxley: ‘The Doors of Perception’.

This was always going to be a personal account, anarchism is after all an extrapolation of the particular to the general. The author is an able-bodied (at time of writing), cis-male, heterosexual*, Working Class anarchist of North European heritage, self-educated with a few engineering and craft skills, living in the South of England, I don’t need a university lecturer to tell me that’s a position of considerable privilege in the modern world, and a potentially reactionary one, yet I’ve honestly never wanted anything from this society but to witness its demise. I’m also big, ugly, and in my fifties which helps when dealing with management and cops.

* I seldom use the word ‘straight’, it implies bias, and I’m not claiming my relatively banal proclivities as a badge of community with anyone.

Early on I questioned whether I was writing primarily for people more or less like myself, and dismissed the idea. Obviously it has its limitations, it wouldn’t be of much use to someone whose interest was, for example, the development of anarchism within Chinese culture. It is intended for people new to anarchist ideas, and privilege is a concept many find utterly baffling. Like reification* it’s a hard one to get your head around because it’s woven into the fabric of perceived reality, it’s largely invisible, especially if your contacts are all drawn from a narrow social base.

* Of course, privilege is a form of reification.

Privilege in this context is an absence or mitigation of oppression, seen from the point of view of the oppressed. At first sight it’s counter-intuitive, because no one ever feels privileged,* and the colloquial use of the word is a benefit of some kind, usually earned. It sounds dangerously close to the bosses’ view that we ought to be grateful for access to work, housing, health and education. It’s a demonstrable fact that the presence of any super-exploited group, migrant labour for example, depresses pay and conditions for all workers, so how does it work? How is it a privilege not to be excluded, underpaid, sexually abused, targeted by cops or attacked by bigots?

* There’s a lesson there; not even the ruling elite feel privileged, because they’re conditioned from birth to believe they deserve a bigger slice of the pie.

The liberal would claim these as basic human rights, but they have it backwards, society is oppressive by its nature, its institutions were specifically devised to divide and exploit us, so we each become acclimatised to the level of oppression we experience, and only when these lines are crossed protest that our rights have been violated. This is the liberal trap – it’s the oppression that’s normal, not the absence of it. For many these experiences are routine, and they may indeed consider it a privilege to walk home without being harassed, to apply for a vacancy and be offered an interview, or to attend and not hear that it has just been filled.

If X walks a steeper road than Y, all things being equal, Y will make more progress in a given time for the same effort. Capitalism requires us to compete by excluding others*, so as Y is ahead of X they will have the first choice of whatever they need for the next leg of the journey, and set off feeling positive and refreshed. So on through life; Y will always be where X isn’t, and X will have to work harder than Y just to avoid being left by the wayside. Y’s setbacks will be easier to overcome and of shorter duration. Believing in equality of opportunity, Y may conclude the demoralised and resentful X isn’t trying, or they may congratulate themselves on their own industry and cunning. Meritocracy is a nasty bourgeois trap, like justice, it’s a logical fallacy.

* Housing gentrification and social cleansing is a good example of this.

Read the rest of it.

★ GREECE ALERT: TWO ANARCHISTS MEMBERS OF ROUVIKONAS THREATENED WITH A LIFE SENTENCE!

Via Anarchists of London


Alert and call for support before the trial on October 13 2021!

SUPPORT FOR GIORGOS KALAITZIDIS AND NIKOS MATARAGKAS FROM THE ANARCHIST COLLECTIVE – ROUVIKONAS.

A Kafkaesque trial awaits Giorgos and Nikos on October 13th, based on false accusations. This attempted criminalisation of the social movement might result in life imprisonment for these two political activists. Their exemplary group has obviously become too disturbing for the state. A new international mobilisation is necessary.

The facts : On 7 June, 2016, a drug dealer is executed in Athens, in the district of Exarcheia. This execution is claimed by a self-defense collective named “Militia of the People Armed”, which declared that the drug dealer had behaved with threats and violence in Exarcheia, not just towards anarchist members of the social movements, but also towards other inhabitants of the district.#

Three years passed. No member of Rouvikonas is targeted by the investigation. In July 2019, Kyriakos Mitsotakis comes into power and pledges, among other things, to end “by all means” Rouvikonas, renowned all over the country for its actions of solidarity and its resistance clearly unrelated to this kind of action. Eight months later, in march 2020, an investigating judge takes over the case and charges two Rouvikonas activists : Nikos Mataragkas and Giorgos Kalaitzidis, with homicide and  incitement to murder.

But in June 2020, after their hearing at the prosecution, they are both released without bail and the lawsuits are dropped.

In April 2021, although the file against the members of Rouvikonas is empty, the State and its mechanisms of abruptly decide to charge Giorgos and Nikos, based on false accusations and their trial is rescheduled on October 13 2021!

The goal is to also harm the image of Rouvikonas and to criminalise the social movement in Greece – just as the Colonels in power did fifty years ago.

We give our full support to Giorgos Kalaitzidis and Nikos Mataragkas and we demand the immediate termination of the proceedings.

Let’s not let anyone among us be the isolated prey of power.

International Committee of support to Giorgos Kalaitzidis and Nikos Mataragkas

We are calling to reinforce the International Committee of Support: soutien@rouvikfrancophone.net (send your first and last name, and join the signatories).

We also invite people to support them and Rouvikonas financially, as proceedings are not limited to this trial: the group is frequently the subject of legal action (in total and for for now to the next coming months, the legal expenses are expected to amount to over €10,000): https://fr.gofundme.com/f/soutien-giorgos-et-nikos-athnes

Soutien à Giorgos et Nikos à Athènes organisée par Philippe Guillard

POINT INFO LE 23/09/2021. Nous venons de dépasser les 1500 euros !… Philippe Guillard a besoin de votre soutien pour Soutien à Giorgos et Nikos à Athènes

We are at last calling, for those who can, for a rally of support on the day of the trial: Wednesday, October 13th at 9:00 A.M, at the Efeteio Courthouse, 4 Degleri, Athens. Pictures of long-distance actions of support are also welcome.

Acting Locally, Thinking Globally With Rouvikonas Anarchist Collective

[CC: English, Greek, French] Unicorn Riot sat down with Thanos, a member of Rouvikonas (Greek: Ρουβίκωνας) who works as a server for a living.Since 2013, the…

Press Release: Anarchist Think Tank Locked Out of PayPal

Center for a Stateless Society

UPDATE – 9/25/2021

PayPal has gotten back to us. We’re unable to ever use PayPal again.

The reason given by a customer service rep was that “…your account is too much of a risk to continue a relationship with PayPal. This decision is final and irrevocable.” No further information was given and we were told no more information will be forthcoming about what “risk” was posed or what triggered this decision.

We will be able to withdraw the funds that are currently in PayPal accounts after 180 days, if PayPal determines that we don’t owe any of that to third parties. We don’t owe any of this to third parties, but of course it’s worrying given the lack of transparency so far that they could just make something up and keep it.

We’re still trying to figure out how to move forward but, in the meantime, we’ve set up a Venmo account so that we can take in a bit of emergency funding to pay writers, sound editors, and translators for their work in September. Please direct any donations in the near future to this Venmo account:


Red and Black Telly roundup.









Translation of a letter from a Cuban Anarchist after the protests

bentley

There is a lot of turmoil that cannot be fit into a left-right schema. It is a people who are discovering their capacity to be more than a mere mass of support for a retrograde and cynical oligarchy which uses the words “revolution” and “anti-imperialism” to legitimize an ordinary despotism hardly different from any other tyranny. They are a people tired of “revolutionary” and “socialist” inequalities and privileges.

Cuba, in addition to being a museum of the global left, is a society with a state, police, repressors, privileged & marginalized peoples and a bureaucratic military oligarchy as greedy as any other. The fact we’ve had an enlightened and humanistic despot does not excuse him, nor his lasting heirs, from their despotism. A significant portion of the people say they’ve had enough. The American blockade must be lifted, the monopoly of the Castro oligarchy must end. It will be complicated & surely “impossible”, but that’s the most honest perspective I’m seeing.

Our companion Leonardo Romero is currently missing; he is an enemy of the Cuban state for having publicly written on a sign “Socialism yes, repression no!” His disappearance is the true face of this government.

original text at http://www.polemicacubana.fr/?p=15774

Red and Black Telly roundup.













World Report 2019: Breaking the Buzzword Fighting the “Gender Ideology” Myth

Love it or hate it, ‘gender identity’ is now at the front line of Class War, along with prisons, homelessness and mental health. In former times it was antisemitism, witch-hunting, slavery or land enclosure. We don’t always choose where we fight, only how hard.

-ed

Human Rights Watch

This month we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. To mark the occasion, we have asked Human Rights Watch experts to reflect on some of the key human rights challenges in their area of specialty.

Like its buzzword brother “fake news,” “gender ideology” hasn’t taken long crossing borders into nationalist lexicons. The vacuous but dangerous term was adopted  by the Holy See decades ago to refer to a supposed gay and feminist-led movement to subvert traditional families and social values, a reaction against the rights of women and expanding protections for sexual and gender minorities.

Since then, it has developed into a catch-all phrase and short-hand for various anxieties about social change—a Hydra-like global conspiracy myth that, despite being mildly ridiculous and readily exposed, has significant traction.

In recent years, “gender ideology” has been used as a secular rallying cry against same-sex marriage in France, an alliance-building initiative between nationalists and religious conservatives in Poland, a boost to anti-Muslim groups in Austria, a popularity enhancer for Costa Rican presidential hopeful Fabricio Alvarado, and a mobilizing tool against the recent peace accord in Colombia.

Which is a lot. How can one concept have so many purposes?

In France, anti-gender activists tried

Read More

Red and Black Telly roundup.












CHILE: COMMUNICATION FROM ANARCHIST PRISONER MÓNICA CABALLERO

via: anarquia.info Translated by Act for freedom now!

In the last days of the first week of June, the Gendarmería de Chile (Genchi) carried out a massive transfer of prisoners from the Cárcel de Alta seguridad (CAS) to the prison of Rancagua, capital of the O’Higgins region, 87 kilometres south of Santiago.

The prisoners include the Anarchists and Subversives: Juan Aliste Vega, Marcelo Villarroel, Mauricio Hernández Norambuena, Juan Flores, Joaquín García and Francisco Solar.

The transfer of these prisoners was motivated by modifications in the infrastructure of the CAS, which will last approximately one year. Once the works are finished, the prisoners will be returned to the prison according to the information provided by GENCHI, meanwhile my comrades will be away from their affective and political environment. In this way, not only is the prisoner being punished, but also their friends, comrades and family members.

It is also important to emphasize that in the territory dominated by the Chilean State, free transit between regions is not allowed due to measures for the prevention of the spreading of Covid 19.

In the Metropolitan region there are at least three prisons to which they could have taken my comrades, perhaps the powerful took advantage of this transfer to isolate and further segregate the prisoners, perhaps none of the nearby prisons meets the security conditions to guard high-risk prisoners, or it could simply be just another form of revenge.

The transfer may be justified with this and other arguments. What is clear is that no movement of power is haphazard. Each change in the infrastructure of the prison, as well as the transfer of prisoners, must be carried out with caution and detail.

On the one hand, the possible changes they are making in the CAS, cannot bode well for the prisoners. I could make endless speculations on possible new control measures and I would probably be coming up short.

To foresee what could change in the CAS, it must be taken into account that this prison is not and was not conceived like any other, the CAS is the prison of Democracy. This was devised using the German and Irish model in the fight against revolutionary organizations.

In the year 94 ‘it was inaugurated as an unprecedented and good prison complex in which it was tried to implement a strict internal regime that contemplated visits through call centres, one hour in the courtyard, among others.

In addition, the prison is practically imperceptible from the outside, so achieves greater isolation and invisibility.

From another perspective it is not clear under what prison conditions or regime the prisoners will be transferred.

La Cárcel de Rancagua is a concessioned prison, meaning that a large part of its operation depends on external companies, unlike the CAS, which depended almost entirely on State entities. This translates for example, among other things, that the prison food is brought in by an external company such as Sodexo, and does not meet even the most minimal nutritional conditions. In addition to this, in concession prisons the entry of parcels by friends and family is restricted in practically every kind of food, books, etc.

Currently all the transferred prisoners are being kept locked in their cells for 24 hours, to be continued for fourteen days due to possible contagion of Covid, a completely unjustified measure since they would not have contact with any other prisoner who is not from the same module, nor would they have contact with the rest of the prison population. Faced with this scenario of total isolation and a new prison regime, the prisoners have begun a liquid hunger strike, demanding an end to the conditions of total confinement and improvements in their quality of life.

Among the mobilized prisoners are the anarchist and subversive comrades whose health condition could become more complex, as it is just over a month since they ended a fifty-day hunger strike.

With these words I make a call to all anti-prison, antagonistic, anti-authoritarian individuals and groups to be aware of the situation of the anarchist and subversive comrades transferred to Rancagua prison, our prisoner comrades can never feel alone.

Hand outstretched to the comrades
Closed fist to the enemy
Active combative solidarity

Mónica Caballero Sepúlveda, Anarchist prisoner
First days of June of 2021