Mass, The Left, And Other Walking Fossils
This zine is made up of selections from the book Anarchy in the Age of Dinosaurs. It was written by the Curious George Brigade back in the early to mid-2000’s at the tail end of what anarchists often refer to as the “anti-globalization era.” Some of it no doubt is a little dated, but for the most part it offers a good starting point for an anti-leftist critique: it rejects the idea of “the mass,” the notion of duty, single-issue campaigns, compromise, coalitions, permanence, false unity, etc. In their place, they offer a vision of anarchy based on affinity, decentralization, informal networks, and autonomy. There’s lots of good insights contained in here!
The desire to achieve mass leads to many dysfunctional behaviors and decisions. Perhaps the most insidious is the urge to water down our politics in order to gain popular support. This all-too- common tendency leads to bland, homogenous campaign s that are the political equivalents of the professionally printed signs we see at so many protests and rallies, monotonously repeating the dogma of the organizers' message. Despite the lip service paid to local struggles and campaigns, these are only useful to a dinosaur if they can be tied into (consumed by) the mass. The diversity of tactics and messages that come easily with heterogeneous groups must be smoothed out and compromised to focus an easily digested slogan, or goal. In this nightmare, our message and actions simply become means to increase registration rolls, to fill protest pens, or add signatories on calls to actions: all measures of mass.
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