The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby JackRiddler » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:17 pm

Luther Blissett » Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:09 am wrote:During the revolution, will I be able to keep my job, apartment, and ability to feed myself whilst participating?


What if these are at risk? Those events we actually call revolutions tend to happen when people who are accustomed to what they thought was a fair and stable deal with future prospects find themselves robbed of same. You might face the conundrum of the workers who fear going on strike against proposed cut-backs, because it might result in the strikers being the ones who lose their jobs, while those who don't strike get to retain them.

I guess another question is, what is one's job? Is it the kind of bullshit job that only exists in the first place in order to keep as many of us as possible working and tied into the system. Is it the kind of job that revolutions are supposed to (and generally fail to) make obsolete, like jobs guarding drug-war prisoners, consulting to Monsanto or fracking for gas?
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby American Dream » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:20 pm

I am in essential agreement with Gilles Dauvé on this point:

Power does not come any more from the barrel of a gun than it comes from a ballot box. No revolution is peaceful, but its “military” dimension is never central. The question is not whether the proles finally decide to break into the armouries, but whether they unleash what they are; commodified beings who no longer want to exist as commodities, and whose revolt explodes capitalist logic. Barricades and machine guns flow from this “weapon”. The greater the change in social life, the less guns will be needed, and the less casualties there will be. A communist revolution will never resemble a slaughter: not from any nonviolent principle, but because revolution subverts more (soldiers included) than it actually destroys.

Gilles Dauvé - When insurrections die
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:28 pm

Luther and Jack: Yes, it depends of course on the job. If the job is property magnate or Presidential speechwriter or butler to Donald Trump or callcentre slave, then no, those jobs (those kinds of jobs) will go. People will be allowed instead to find something else, something worthy of a human being, and they will certainly not starve or be homeless in the meantime. Education and vocational training will of course also of course be expanded and liberated and of course they will be free to all.

Why not? All the tools and achievements of advanced technology and advanced capitalism will of course still be available to us, and will be used wisely and collectively to ease the transition to the post-oil era.

Why ever not?
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby Luther Blissett » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:52 pm

JackRiddler » Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:17 pm wrote:
Luther Blissett » Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:09 am wrote:During the revolution, will I be able to keep my job, apartment, and ability to feed myself whilst participating?


What if these are at risk? Those events we actually call revolutions tend to happen when people who are accustomed to what they thought was a fair and stable deal with future prospects find themselves robbed of same. You might face the conundrum of the workers who fear going on strike against proposed cut-backs, because it might result in the strikers being the ones who lose their jobs, while those who don't strike get to retain them.

I guess another question is, what is one's job? Is it the kind of bullshit job that only exists in the first place in order to keep as many of us as possible working and tied into the system. Is it the kind of job that revolutions are supposed to (and generally fail to) make obsolete, like jobs guarding drug-war prisoners, consulting to Monsanto or fracking for gas?


Right, that's a good question. There are very few sustainable actions that result in actual "livelihoods" under the current economic system, and those that we collectively deem "good enough to keep around" must be supported by philanthropy, taxes, vows of poverty, or crime. Even in my chosen career, design (which, at least in the school I'm from, was a field engineered to try to make the world a better place), I gain satisfaction only from self-initiated, pro-bono, or nonprofit work outside of my day job. I enjoy my job in higher education, and believe that in a utopia some form of monastic or institutional way to share and spread knowledge, but the cult of death culture of this particular university could/has to go.

So, in that case, I wouldn't miss this particular job, but I love my career and would want to continue on with it.

My main problem is that I was raised lower middle class and so I have to deal with the constant anxiety of having this all come out from underneath me. Despite healthy salary, I still live paycheck to paycheck, quite literally - I'm not putting any away into savings. This has to be a very widely shared existence and fear. So I guess there exists a need to better communicate about revolution, in contrast to MacCruisikeen's outline of Establishment-conditioned dread:

A revolution should bring love, joy, fellowship, romance, and community.
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:58 pm

AD, I really like that quote from Gilles Dauvé. This is also what Brand was saying and saying so well. There is nothing utopian about it (which is not to say it will necessarily happen overnight). It's a simple matter of actually implementing the Golden Rule, the one common to nearly all religions and nearly all ethical traditions throughout recorded history: Do unto others as you would have done unto yourself.* No more and no less than that. It's not rocket science. In fact it's the opposite.

Gilles Dauvé, as quoted by AD, wrote:The greater the change in social life, the less guns will be needed, and the less casualties there will be.


The most likely difficulty (but maybe we all overrate this) will be convincing some people -- most people will not need convincing -- that their routine mindset need not necessarily be MAD, as it is now: Mutually Assured Destruction. ("If any fucker dares to touch my stuff, I'll kill him." "Same here.")

Image

It means learning to treat everyone the way you treat your family and friends (presuming you love your family and friends) and learning to expect to be treated the same way.

*This of course has really profound consequences if taken seriously.
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 2:25 pm

I guess someone is going to mention primate research sooner or later, so it might as well be me. There has been some very interesting research done on that in recent years, and the evidence looks less and less convincing that violence is in any way "hardwired" (sic - I really hate that word) into "the primate brain" (sic). First of all, there are many different kinds of primates, and they are all very different from each other; and secondly, even the most notoriously "aggressive" kinds can change their culture if circumstances are right and major stressors are removed. There was a fascinating report recently about a troop of baboons that suddenly became peaceful, practically overnight -- I'll try to find it.

Meanwhile I just want to recommend Eugène Marais's astounding little book The Soul of the Ape (130 pages), written in the 30s and rediscovered in the 70s, sunk again into obscurity for decades, and now being rediscovered again. He was the first primate researcher to study them in the wild -- not in a zoo, not in a lab -- and he did so for three years. There is a brilliant chapter in that book about consciousness and instinct. I've mentioned it in the Gregory Bateson thread.
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby American Dream » Tue Oct 29, 2013 2:36 pm

MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 12:58 pm wrote:AD, I really like that quote from Gilles Dauvé. This is also what Brand was saying and saying so well. There is nothing utopian about it (which is not to say it will necessarily happen overnight). It's a simple matter of actually implementing the Golden Rule, the one common to nearly all religions and nearly all ethical traditions throughout recorded history: Do unto others as you would have done unto yourself.* No more and no less than that. It's not rocket science. In fact it's the opposite.

Gilles Dauvé, as quoted by AD, wrote:The greater the change in social life, the less guns will be needed, and the less casualties there will be.


The most likely difficulty (but maybe we all overrate this) will be convincing some people -- most people will not need convincing -- that their routine mindset need not necessarily be MAD, as it is now: Mutually Assured Destruction. ("If any fucker dares to touch my stuff, I'll kill him." "Same here.")

Image

It means learning to treat everyone the way you treat your family and friends (presuming you love your family and friends) and learning to expect to be treated the same way.

*This of course has really profound consequences if taken seriously.


Well said- and strongly agreed. There is a spiritual/ethical dimension to all this which corresponds to the essential teachings of the major religions.

As to making the change and consciously identifying as revolutionaries, many of us are ready for this. Developing what this means, what we do, is the task of a lifetime.

I do find Gringolandia frustrating though because a bunch of people here have their head up their ass, in one way or another. So where is that mythical "revolutionary subject"? Look in the mirror and look around you because we are here, in all the expected places and in unexpected places too. It really is most all of us, if we do choose to walk down that road. And to cite another quote which I love:

"We make the road by walking".
-Antonio Machado, as adapted by Paolo Friere
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 3:06 pm

Nice that you mention Freire, AD. I don't know his work well, but I was just talking about him, Montessori and John Taylor Gatto to someone else today. We both mentioned A.S. Neill (Wilhelm Reich' s lifelong friend) and Summerhill too. Reich is at the heart of all this, at the heart of everything Brand and everyone else I've mentioned is getting at.

AD wrote:There is a spiritual/ethical dimension to all this


Good to hear you say this too. For too long it's been a source of squirming embarrassment to and in the left. Trying to achieve a successful revolution without it, though, is like trying to pick a jailhouse lock with a sausage, or a baseball bat. The repeated & inevitable failure of such attempts is what causes so much bitterness and resentment and smart-assery and hatred of beauty and howling at the moon. The sterility of mere intellectuality is something Reich himself became ever more convinced of. (One of his very last books was entitled The Murder of Christ.)

Imo, we would all do well to remind ourselves much more frequently that there is another tradition in Western culture, a very strong one, a clear stream that has too often had to go underground. And I'm not talking about graphomaniacs or cloistered eggheads or ferile guerrillas. I'm talking about what we're talking about here. In many ways we're talking about the simplest and most obvious things in the world. Maybe we should just look at them instead, to remind ourselves that they exist and manifest themselves anew every day. No instructions required.

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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby American Dream » Tue Oct 29, 2013 3:22 pm

MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 2:06 pm wrote:
AD wrote:There is a spiritual/ethical dimension to all this


Good to hear you say this too. For too long it's been a source of squirming embarrassment to and in the left. Trying to achieve a successful revolution without it, though, is like trying to pick a jailcell lock with a sausage, or a baseball bat. The repeated & inevitable failure of such attempts is what causes so much bitterness and resentment and smart-assery and hatred of beauty and howling at the moon. The sterility of mere intellectuality is something Reich himself became ever more convinced of. (One of his very last books was entitled The Murder of Christ.)


Yes- and this is where I definitively part paths with the old school, orthodox, Zombie Left. How could they entirely throw out the spiritual dimension? It makes no sense on many, many levels. I say yes to the profound truths carried by atheists and Atheism and also yes to historical materialism of a sort- that said, let's leave the zombie shit for the little kids, since it's almost Halloween...
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby Sounder » Tue Oct 29, 2013 5:56 pm

Mac commented...
There was a fascinating report recently about a troop of baboons that suddenly became peaceful, practically overnight -- I'll try to find it.


Here it is.
http://youtu.be/A4UMyTnlaMY

The coercion narrative we live under is arbitrary and unnecessary.

taken from;
viewtopic.php?f=8&t=35866&hilit=Mechanics+of+power
All these things will continue as long as coercion remains a central element of our mentality.
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:18 pm

Thanks very much, Sounder. I knew I'd seen it somewhere but I had no memory of ever having seen it here at RI. (Thanks too for the link to that very interesting thread., and not only because it reminded me that I owe c2w a PM.)
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby Sounder » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:36 pm

Man, that edit option disappears quick.

I wanted to add the title to the you-tube, anyway it is;

Why hierarchy creates a destructive force within the human psyche

I miss C2W? too.
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby MacCruiskeen » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:43 pm

From that RI thread Sounder just linked to: The Case Against Competition, by Alfie Kohn (Posting this link so I can read it myself tomorrow.)

Yeah, Sounder, this board needs all its women back. This thread too.
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby American Dream » Tue Oct 29, 2013 6:57 pm

Spiritual action:



“From El Pueblo Se Levanta by Newsreel. Edited for Young Lords 40th anniversary website,
http://www.YLP40.com Young Lords Party,The People’s Church.”
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Re: The Revolution-Now Thread (Russell B. & others).

Postby Laodicean » Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:10 pm

NYPD commissioner Kelly booed off stage at Brown University

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- New York's police commissioner Raymond Kelly was booed off the stage at Brown University and did not get to speak Tuesday afternoon.

Kelly was to deliver a lecture Tuesday at Brown on "proactive policing."

Kelly was to discuss his time as head of the New York Police Department and his efforts to drive down crime in a lecture called "Proactive Policing in America's Biggest City" on Tuesday afternoon.

Before the lecture, some students and social justice activists marched, carrying signs that stated "Stop & frisk doesn't stop crime" and "Stop police brutality," to protest the Kelly's police department's stop-and-frisk policy and its surveillance of Muslims.

The department is fighting lawsuits alleging it has engaged in racial profiling while fighting crime. Kelly and Mayor Mike Bloomberg have denied the accusations.

The lecture is sponsored by the Taubman Center for Public Policy and American Institutions. The students planning the protest had called for Brown to cancel it.

http://www.providencejournal.com/breaki ... -stage.ece
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