Monday, May 04, 2009

the anti-political communist tendency

One might have expected the anticapitalist disturbances of the 90s to have generated a voluminous critical literature with the sangfoid of the two undated, apparently online only issues of Letters Journal (whether pro or con):

"With this journal we wish to understand and analyze capitalism and crisis, attack the Left, critically engage with our own ideas and practices, and develop a more dynamic transgression from the political."

The "anti-political communist" tendency might involve a dozen people or so. It has also been articulated in articles under the pen name Monsieur Dupont, the best of which is probably the theory masterpiece Do you want to be or don't you want to be soft like me?


traxus4420 said...

"Firstly, in the present, anarchists must intervene in political debate with the intent of destroying false hopes for reform by showing how proposed solutions alter details but retain the general social relation. The role of the anarchists is that of the popper of balloons, they must be agents of anti-ideology. They must say what only they can say, they must refuse the script written for them by leftists and liberals - there is nothing to be gained by repeating easy leftwing slogans, truth and not recruitment should be the decisive factor."

so live Adornianism?

i think i prefer the "creeping socialism" of community economies and credit institutions, coupled with, i guess, protests and angry blogging.

catmint said...

The authors seem to be strongly impressed by determinism and functionalism. This isn't necessarily a bad thing per se but I would myself try to reconcile this with what is known to be possible and not possible in a commodity economy. This is the weakest part of the analysis. What impressed me mainly was the determination to avoid using "wooden language".

With Functionalism - I understand the authors work for Royal Mail, the national postal service. Do they expect to be in exactly the same position if it's privatised?

It is hard to know what would constitute a useful positive political structure. Protest, after all, is mainly negative, anti something or other. It's hard to know what would be useful because it would need to be invented, to some extent. The Owenists or the Fourierists can't all have been just chumps. It's a lot of man hours of research. Wouldn't it be wrong to rule these things out, co-ops or whatever, just on the strength of current doxa?

On the other hand if you take the deficiency of consciousness at the aggregate level as a determining factor alongside ordinary political factors, then this too brings a lot of things into play. This development of this line of argument in the articles I linked too also impressed me, even if I am drawing a slightly different conclusion.