ADVOCATING A THIRD WAY OP ANARCHY - THIS IS THE THIRD ISSUE OF
) *A JOURNAL FOR FREE 77
POWER IS MIGHT, AND LUGHT ALWAYS HAKES ITS OWN RIGHT. THUS IN THE VERY NATURE OP THINGS, MIGHT MAKES ITSKLP RIGHT WHETHER OR NO. GOVERNMENT, THEREFORE, IS THE AGENCY OR POWER BY WHICH SOME PERSON OR PERSONS GOVERN OR RULE OTHER PERSONS^ AND THE INHERENT RIGHT TO GOVERN IS FOUND WHEREVER THE POWER OR MIGHT TO DO SO IS MANIFEST. IN A NATURAL STATE, INTELLIGENCE OP NECESSITY CONTROL IGNORANCE. THE STRONG THE WEAK, ^^^flfMRjl^^v. THE GOOD THE BAD, ETC. ONLY WHEN THE NA ^^^HHHBMH&^v. TURAL LAW OPERATES IS
SHIS TRUE, HOW HAND WHEN THE SUBSTITUTED LAW, AND GOV SWAY, THEN, POWER CHI INTO THE WHO DOMINATE, DEGRADE AND THE BROAD IRRECONCILABLE BETWEEN WAGE LA BETWEEN THOSE WHO PRODUCTS, AlfD THE WAGE-
EVER. ON THE OTHER STATUTE IS FOR THE NATURAL ERNMENTS HOLD AND ONLY THEN, TERS ITSELF HANDS OF A FEW, DICTATE, RULE, ENSLAVE THE MANY. DISTINCTION AND V CONFLICT
BORERS AND CAPITALISTS, BUY LABOR OR SELL ITS WORKER WHO SELLS HIS LABOR
(HIMSELF) IN ORDER TO LIVE, ARISES FROM THE SOCIAL INSTITUTION CALLED GOVERNMENT; AND THE CONFLICTING INTERESTS, THE TOTAL ABOLITION OF WARRING CLASSES, AND THE END OF DOMINATION AND EXPLOITATION OF MAN BY MAN IS TO BE FOUND ONLY IN A FREE SOCIETY, WHERE ALL AND EACH ARE EQUALLY FREE TO UNITE OR DISUNITE, AS INTEREST OR INCLINATION MAY INCLINE.
- ALBERT R. PARSONS -ADDRESSING THE COURT WHICH ULTIMATELY HANGED HIM FOR BEING AN ANARCHIST
ONCE AGAIN, THE STORMI focuses its EYE on the conflicting tendencies of anarcho-capitalism and anarcho—communism thru the lens of a radical pluralistic individualism. If the anarcho-capitalists cannot co-operate with the anarcho-communists, and vice versa, the former will be co-opted by conservatism, and the latter by commisarism. WEaTkeeps the various groups of anarchists apart and ineffective in dealing with the everyday problems caused by authoritarianism and the State are the cherished myths that create the various theologies of anarchism.
ONE HTH shared in name only by both major churches is that of The Free Society. Who has yet been able to come up with a universally accepted discription or definition of The ?ree Society? This is not to condemn idle speculation but to recognize it for what it is. Perhaps it is useful to have a vision of what society could be like in a future without the State and authority - and perhaps not. Authority is an essential ingredient for social stability while liberty ig necessary for individual happiness. The conflict between these two is generally recognized as human history; while the ideal types (located by idealists at the End of History) are Utopias of authoritarian, libertarian, or synthesized natures. It is doubtful that the conflict will ever end in Utopia thanks to the most powerful incarnation of authority yet spawned by human folly: the superstate, with the capacity to destroy, if not all liberty, all life itself I
AGAINST THB REALITY of the modern superstate another myth, that of The Revolution, is also shattered. It is not only the superior might of the superstate that needs to be reqpned with, but the ability of the state to turn revolutionary situations to its own advantage. All the superstates of the twentieth century were born in revolutionary times: the US, Prance, USSR, nazi Germany, and China. Any movement setting out to free whole societies ends up by enslaving real persons (whose, liberation is always self-liberation). Yes, revolutiq^s do improve social oonditions; they make the intolerable tolerable, satisfy discontent, and secure the reign of a new authority.
ANARCHISTS WHO WAIT for the coming of The Free Society or The Re~olution waste their precious lives hoping for a false Messiah. The struggle against authority is here in the present (not there in the future - or the past). The question that ought to be asked is how do we anarchists, as individuals and in free associations, liberate ourselves from the grip which authority has on our ideas, emotions, labors, and lifestyles. Only individuals c«n decide what strategies are best suited; groups don't decide, they can only impose. If self-liberation is the goal, then all the
possible strategies should be presented for individual consideration. 'If self-liberation is not the goal, then it is logical for those still caught up in waging the classical class struggle, rather than extricating themselves from it, to dismiss those anarchists who pursue their individual sovereignty in their seperate ways. By some process of double-think,renouncing one's autonomy in favor of solidarity becomes anarchism. In this new dialectic, the survival of the fittest is replaced by the survival of those that fit. Perhaps the fittest are those that fit, and the die-hard individualist is a vanishing species.
TrfO EXAJEPLES of "anarchist" condemnations of individual action are found in BLACK FLAG OF AIIARCHISlK from Solidarity Collective, RWC U. 10, Bristol,HI, 02809, USA) and in A1IARCHY MAGAZINE (29 Grosvenor Ave. London 11.5). BLACK FLAG vol.11 no.1 states that "Solidarity Collective believes in the class struggle and so we make alliance with only class struggle organizations; we reject fully the notion of 'do your own thing'type of •Anarchism*." Espousing Communist Anarchism and Anarcho-syndicalism as "the only alternatives... to the slavery of capitalism and state 'socialism'", BLACK FLAG must certainly have considered what it intends to do with those who will not be persuaded that they cannot choose their own alternatives!
INDIVIDUALISTS are not interested in interfering with any voluntary attempts at social^liberation. We are wary of political revolutionists who seem bent on reuizing their Utopias no matter what the cost to those who would raxner live in utopias of different designs or, what's worse for the idealists, in a real world of disagreement, disorder, and... anarchy 1 Again THE ST0R1II asserts that the freedom to disagree is fundamental to anarchism. Apparantly Jerry Cantwell, in All ARC HI 19, thinks otherwise. In "Which Way Anarchism?" he asserts that bourgeois democracy, capitalism, the revolutionary left, and the anarchist movement are all at a crisis point. Will anarchists organize and follow a path to workers power (which Cantwell does not define) or will they remain ineffective apolitical individualists, liberal reformists, pacificists, and urban guerrillaists?
An undue emphasis has been placed upon individualism within "the context of anarchist theory. Indeed in many respects, individualism runs counter to central anarchist tenets, such as the declaration for direct action, workers' control, street committees etc.... Individualism per se is a largely reactionary notion, involving a rejection of the principles of co-operation, unity and mutual solidarity.... By virtue of its own definition it cannot recognize the central role of the working class in changing the nature of society, if indeed it can even see a need for change.
Self-otyled individualists... have pervaded and infiltrated the movement to such an extent that anarchism is not infrequently associated with the doctrine that espouses unbridled laissez-faire, (page 5) Apparently, not enough emphasis has been placed upon individualism within the context of anarchism - if there are people like Cantwell who think tactics such as direct action, workers' control, and street committees are "central anarchist tenets". If co-operation, unity, and arutual solidarity are revolutionary, then so are the United States Marines, the Jehovah fitnesses, the Girl Scouts, Saster Parades, and the Republican (Democratic, Comaunist, Nazi, etc.) Party. What does Cantwell think anarchism stands for if not for individual self-determination?
COLLECTIVB SELP-DBTERLUNATIOK is a contradiction in terms. A collective has no body, no brain, no self; it is but a collection of selves who have waived their individual powers and rights of self-HFtermination when their opinions have not coicided with those of the majority. This is the antithesis of anarchy. The ideal Free Society of autonomous but federated collectives differs little from the state capitalist reality of autonomous but interlocking corporations. In both cases Individual creativity is fettered and repressed so that collective mediocrity may flourish. The quest for individual excellence is held to be competitive and dangerous to the egalitarian, or hierarchical, solidarity of the group. A sense of self-worth is achieved not by developing one's unique characteris ics and abilities, but by serving the needs of others, especially others in (the vanguard of) The Movement, or on the Board of Directors. The collectivist culture is a culture of corruption and slow death for individuals and, as history shows, whole civilizations.
IKE PRINCIPLE OP INDIVIDUALITY is that ..which gives life; and the choice is always the sovereignty of each and every individual or the despotism of one individual over ahother - individualism versus corporate society'in all its guises.
Every combined interest must therefore come ultimately to be governed by an individual mind, to be intrusted, in other words, to a despotism. It is the recognition of this law which is embodied in the political axiom that "power is constantly stealing from the hands of the many into the hands of the few." (Stephen Pearl Andrews, The Science of Society, page 34) Only those collectives or corporate societies survive and flourish which are dominated by one individual person, goal, or philosophy (the Maoist Republic of China being the latest example). The price paid for collective unity is always the subordination of the member units. Since the survival of the collective depends upon the energy it can draw from its members, the stifling of the members will prove the ultimate death of the collective thru stagnation or its dissolution into smaller parts (and perhaps China is also worth watching, now that its unifying despot has himself undergone dissolution).
SHOULD INDIVIDUALISTS give more credit to the working class and its role in changing society? After all, wasn't it the working class "2iat supported the Vietnam war and opposed dissenting students? there by creating a revolutionary climate in the Ifiiited States? And wasn't it the working class that brought Hitler to power and Europe to ruins? thereby paving the way for the triumph of communism over fascism? And we should not forget the role played by the working classes in the rise of less distant despots such as Roosevelt and Nixon; and those of bygone times such as Napoleon and Caesar. 'That, the working class is not responsible for the destructive changes wrought by these notable personnages? Then the workers do not play the central role in history, that place belongs to conspiracies of secret and powerful Individuals. The central role of the working class in history is that of collective victim of the collectivizing state.
UNBRIDLED LAISSEZ-PAIRE is the enemy of unbridled authoritarianism in all its forma; is it any wonder that a would-be anarchist leader would attack it in the name of solidarity and organization?
So, which way anarchism?... this writer's (ie. Cantwell's) feelings should be apparant - ie. the necessity to organize (and to once and for all ditch the traditional anarchist paranoia about 'authoritarian tendencies inherent in group organization') and the need to build a libertarian movement capable of dealing the lethal blow to capitalism.(Anarchy 19,p7) Is it paranoid to suggest that Cantwell is an all-tif-ooamon revolutionary elitist seeking to disarm such fears as stand in the way of his petty power trip? Is it paranoid to suggest that for Cantwell, "workers'power" means "workers' state"; and that his attack on individualism and capitalism (also undefined) serves only to bolster authoritarian and statist tendencies? Worker-owned industries is libertarian in a context of a free market, while in a political context it will lead to a dictatorship of bureauorats. Laissez-faire individualism is the only foroe that opposes both monopoly capitalism and bureaucratic socialism because it shares the ideals of neither ism. It is the philosophical expression of that traditional anarchist paranoia about group authoritarianism: the one attitude capable of uniting anarcho-coamunist and anarcho-capitalist in the endless struggle against the common foe of authoritarianism - in society and in ourselves. The history of this struggle has vindicated time and again that maxim of enlightened paranoia: ETERNAL VIGILANCE 13 THE PRICE OP LIBERT!!
HI THIS ISSUE, Jim Kernochan takes off with a new column, BARNSTOBMING. Susan Williams returns with an indictment of capital punishment; and here I must take public exception to her ideas of collective guilt. THE NEXT ISSUE will focus on MONEY:FREE AND UirPREE ; while THE STOHMl/5 will be the long awaited issue on Anarchism and Gay Liberation. J>J
LIBERTARIAN BOOK CLUB - Spring Lecture Series - Thurs. 7:30 pm -Workmen1s Circle Center - 369 8th Ave (29th St) NYC
1/13, James T. Farrell, Novelist 2/10, Paul Avrich,"Voltairine
de CIeyre" 3/10, Dwight Llacdonald,
"Recollections of an Anarchist" 4/14, Sam Dolgoff,"Anarchists in
Cuban Revolution" 5/12, Murray Bookchin,
"Environment and Anarchism"
discussion, Literature for Sale, Refreshments,_Admission_Free._ _
MINUS ONE - an irregular review ^ for anarchists, egoists, and ^ individualists - published and edited by S.E.Parker, 186 Gloucester Terrace, London W.2.(UK) L1t00 or 32*00 for_3ix_issues.__
IN JULY 1976, THE SUPREME COURT REVERSED ITS 1972 RULING WHICH HAD declared the existing death penalty laws unconstitutional. Since then, thirty five states have rewritten their laws regarding the death penalty; and after reviewing six cases of people sentenced to death under the new laws, the "Supreme" Court ruled executions may resume soon in nearly all of the thirty five states.*
1MB 1972 DECISION barring executions was partly the result of the observation that the death sentence was being applied disproportionately to blacks, applied randomly, and that "proper
discretion" was not being used by judges and juries in
imposing the death penalty. This, the Court said, was unconstitutional because it qualified as cruel and unusual punishment. However, the Court feels there are now sufficient standards by which judges and juries may be guided. Proper discretion, we are to believe, is on its way. It's not cruel and unusual punishment to execute someone if proper discretion and standards have been used.
•Georgia law requires further review, as it allows the death penalty to be imposed for rape.
though, with no coney. The next day she returned to the hospital in a fruitle ss attempt to get her money, and after returning home, discovered that her starving dog had eaten her newborn baby. The dog had not been fed the five or six days she was in the hospital. The woman had gotten the dog for protection (she was a victim of rape), she left the baby on the floor because she had no furniture. The dog was described as "docile" by the police. The baby was dead. And the young traumatized mother, under arrest. The state did drop the charges. But not before seriously considering prosecuting the case, arresting arid oharging the mother; and not before the press had the opportunity to exploit the case. She quickly became known as the woman "stupid enough" to leave her baby alone with a starving dog. In each case, the state arrested the women; they had to answer to the state; it had power over their lives; lives for which it previously cared nothing
DEATH HOW is somewhat of another story. 'Who sits on death row, and why is the Supreme Court more concerned over a piece of paper glorified as the grantor of our rights, than the people involvedin the crimes they are due to be executed for? Unfortunately on death row, the accounts of the crimes involved are not the kind that speak so directly to the hearts of most feeling people. But still, we outfit to know what's involved.
HI FLORIDA, a white middle class fifteen year old was sentenced to die in the electric chair for a murder committed in the act of rape of a twelve year old girl. Though psychiatrists testified he could be cured, they also had to admit there wasn't much chance of him getting the treatment in a state prison. So in the best interests of society, the judge did impose the death sentence. The boy is now seventeen years old from his cell on death row, if the light is right, he can see into the death room and view the chair in which he is sentenced to die.
Hi MEW XOHK, a man awaits execution for killing a cop during a robbery, one of the few things you can go to the chair for in New York, In the South, a twenty year old mental defective was sentenced to death for a v-i 1 Ung a group of five teenagers commotted. He was not even the principal killer, but the only one to receive the death sentence. In Pennsylvania, a black inmate was sentenced to death for the killing of a white inmate. Two corrections officers testified against him; seven other inmates testified he was with them at the time of the killing. He was convicted. The black inmate had been active in the cause of of blacks in prison. He was serving a life sentence at the time of the killing of the white inmate. Another case is that of a man convicted of murder, though it is admitted that the victim would not have died, and should not have died, if proper medical oare had been administered at the hospitalC of course It was not).
SOME OP THE STORIES do not appear to have such mitigating circumstances Most of the crimes are scary and repulsive. They reflect such blatant diaregs jrd for human life, that we can barely imagine blood could run through the vein° of people so cold and ruthless. People who just happened to be nurtured on great wars and war stories, violence leading to glory, and manhood as might. I cannot believe that those men on the Supreme Court, who sit in ultimate judgement of us all, have proven themselves to be any different than those on whom they are imposing the death sentence. Perhaps they are more ruthless - after all, they judge laws, not humans. They will not impose death themselves, but sit
afar off and retreat into a world of recognition and statue for the deeds they committed, tout committed at a respectable distance. The Supreme Court has given the states the power to impose the death penalty, while it remain comfortably removed from the death process. That, all, is the way the American government prefers to kill: far away as they can from their victims, be they somewhere map of Vietnam, or in an isolated cellblook in a secluded
■ i A SBORTJL TIME AGO, the New Tork Times printed on its front page a picture of three Palestinians hung to their death in public in Syria. More recently the bodies of leftists were hung, beaten and i burned in public in Bangkok as the military junta took power. Such ," publio displays may horrify many of us, for it's far more "civilized'1 } to keep that sort of thing where it belongs s in an empty room with a j viewing room adjacent; where one man puts on a black hood and robes, and another puts on wires and sits down for the last time.
PERHAPS THE SITPREMB COURT was too progressive in 1972. We have really no developed alternatives to imprisonment. We breed violence and yet have little idea how we ought to deal with it. Moral responsibility becomes meaningless. We keep thihking we can "cure" violence with nore violence, though all history is evidence to the contrary. We are, as someone once said, a society that expects television solutions -everything solved in fifty minutes. The death penalty is like that. Certainly no one who goes to the ohair in Florida, or the gas chamber in Colorado, will ever "kill again". But as long as we remain a society tolerant of state violence, legalized killing, we will "kill again" - and again. And we will oontinue in a society which creates violent people, and enforces its death penalty quite selectively against those not representing the state.
.Susan Williams and Ed Bader October 1976,
%deu 07L cCfie SXaUfh I
Letters to THE STORU! are welcome; unfortunately there isn't enough room in this little journal to print all that have been recieved. What follows is a selection, with apologies to those whose letters were not printed, or are being held for the next issue. MAS
Dear Mark,...The article which discussed anarchism and syndicalism (Anarchist Priner in second issue, ed.note) particularly interested me. I find the belief that what is good for the individual is also rood for the group a bit naive. I think you feel human nature is basically altruistic. I have a darker world vision than that. I believe cooperation and communalism has to be lonitored. The evils of big business and big government are, after all, the products of individuals who put their aspirations above the needs of thei r peers. Malevolent anarchy equals exploitation just as socialism can be the tyranny of the majority.
Joan Weibel, Los Angeles ear Joan - Your letter raises some interesting points upon which I would like to elaborate. I can only speak for myself, and not for the authors of the "Anarchist Primer", who are welcome to respond in the next issue.
The assumption that what is good for the individual is also good for the group applies only in a voluntary context. One of the major objects of anarchist criticism is the tyranny of Involuntary associations. Prom my individualist perspective, true cooperation is possible and desirable on the bases of division of labor, free exchange for mutual benefit, the right to disagree and disunite, and the right to defend one's freedom. A cooperative effort, if not aimed at a specific goal, tends to become an end in itself; and this is the beginning of the subordination of the individual to the group.
There will always be individuals who put their needs above the needs of their peers. I'm sure those who don't, come to resent their peers for running and ruining their lives."Like you, Joan, I do have a "darker world vision", I believe that power can and always does corrupt those to whom it is given. Big business and government are special cases in which a few are given the authority and power to monitor cooperative efforts. With the resultant evils , I should think one would favor unmonitored anarchy as at worst the lesser of two evils.
The whole purpose of the State is to take from some (the producers) and give to others (corporations, interest groups, end bureaucrats) on the pretext of protecting the interests of society as a whole (whatever that is). This is not malevolent anarchy) it is 3tate socialism or state capitalism (depending on who the alleged beneficiaries are). What we have is a society where most people do not look after their om interests; and the few who do, quite naturally, take advantage of the many who don't. This state of affairs will continue until the many wake up to a conscious egoism, and destroy the privileges that oppress than. Preaching altruism will not persuade those in power to give it upj rather, it encourages a weakness too easily exploited by those so generously entrusted with authority and power.
Going hand in hand with the desire to take care of others is the expectation that others will take care of you. Politicians who get elected on empty promises take advantage of this slavish mentality of the people (Carter being the most recent example). Like the ass that follows the dangling carrot mile after mile, the people will follow toy politician or demagogue willing to say what the masses want to hear.
Dear Mark, I enjoved reading The Storm! No.2, and take no offence at your differences with me. However, I am not at all in agreement with "An Anarchist Primer" by Pickett and Williams.
Firstly, anarchism is not just "anti-state". It is against all authority, including that of "the people" or "society".
Secondly, syndicalism has nothing to do with anarchism. The
rdicalist wishes to replace the State with an industrial organization ch is equally opposed to self sovereignty. What "sovereignty" can the individual exercise in an economy administered by a pyramid of councils -local, district, regional, even national and internatioral? This system may mean "workerb.' control" or "workers' management", but that is not the same thing as individual control, which is the core of anarchism.
Indeed, in his pamphlet "What Is the CNT?" (London 1972), Jose Peirats ominously records regarding syndicalist federalism that "Federation always implies freedom and self government of the federated bodies, but this does not mean their independence." (My emphasis), (over)
And this ia spelt out even more clearly in the "Rule Book of the CUT", in which ita constitution is described. Here we are told that in the CNT "We recognize the sovereignty of the individual, but we acoept and agree to carry out the colleotive mandate taken by majority decision". This olause is reinforced by others whioh state that "anarcho-syndicalism and anarchism recognize the validity of majority decisions" and that "the militant...is obliged to comply with majority decisions even when they are against his own feelings" I
This constitution was operative when the CNT was a min ..-ity organization in opposition. What its application would have meant when the CNT had taken*"over the tasks of production and distribution after the revolution" is not hard to guess : at best,a theoretically democratic federalism; at worst, an economic totalitarianism. In either case it would not be anarchism.
Thirdly, Pickett & Williams have a strange idea of "individual initiative". By emphasizing that the individual is responsible for action "within society" and that "the group" is given power -financially and morally - to determine "support" for the individual, they effectively make "society" and the "group" supra-individual entities and thus reconstitute authority in the very act of allegedly abolishing it. Salute, S.E.Parker
tty Friend, Your divorcing syndicalism from anarchism will most likely anger anarcho-syndicalist readers of this journal. I invite them, " along with Pickett and Williams, to reply to your criticisms. -M.
Dear LIr. Sullivan,... Thirty years ago, T used to call myself an Individualist Anarchist; but even then I looked on Anarchism as an ideal rather than as practical politios. The weakness of Individualist Anarchism lies in its demand for the complete abolition of state government. I have never been happy about its proposals for the organization of a judicial system and national defence. Tucker used to say that Individualist Anarchism could not be established until a majority of the oeople were Anarchists, which is about as useful as the Christian claim that if all the world adopted the Christian ethic,crime would disappear. I should say, on the contrary, that as long as there are people who are ready to fight for their interests or ideas, rather than submit them to arbitration, the abolition of the coercive state will be impossible. There is no arguing with the sword: it can be met only with the sword. And the people who take up the sword to defend themselves are likely to look with a cold eye on those who refuse to fight but are ready to share the fruits of a state judicial system ana national defence. Henry Mealen, Personal Rights Association, 31 parkside Gardens, London, SW19 5ET (UK") (editor, The Individualist).
Dear LIr. 'ieulen, Those who wish to support a corrupt judicial system and n bloodthirsty "defense" system (both of which exist solely to extend and protect the rule of a few over many) are free to do so provided they don't force me to do the same (which they do). How are those who would rather trust private arbitration or self-defense any different than those who rely on government, except that they are more consistent individualists than are you, sir? Most social horrors stem from the universal reliance upon governments to solve our problems. The sword indeed I -M.
LAST EXEHPT - My settled conviction regarding the existence of columns of "debate"... is that such productions do not hinder the enoroachments of the State one whit....Defense against the State, not millennial theories, should concern Egoistic anarchists. Head Zany of Dallas (amen)
JIMMY CARTER has been reoieving a lot of heat these days from liberals, blacks, and women. It is ironic that these people were once arch supporters of Mr.Carter. It seems that Carter, like every politician, is not living up to his campaign promises. These people are upset that he hasn't placed enough women and minorities on his cabinet and in positions of authority. We are now hearing the usual squawking by liberals who feel that the politicians they support are consistently letting them down. Personally, I find it hard to feel sorry for these liberals. They will continue to support power-hungry politicians who promise them the world and deliver nothing. It seems that they will never learn their lesson. Their main concern is getting minorities into powerful positions in government. They fail to realize that NOBODY should hold these positions. It has become apparant that these self-interest groups are just as powers-hungry as the politicians in office.
THE MEDIA has been bombarding us with all the celebrations of the Jimmy Carter inauguration. Personalities from throughout the country are performing at this disaster. If you turn on your television, you see parades, fireworks, and folk singers celebrate the Jimmy Carter reign. One event the media has failed to cover is the inauguration of NOBODY as President. The People's Inaugural Committee is holding the celebration on January 20th at the Washington Monument. It should be noted that the majority of Americans voted for nobody in this past presidential election. Of all Americans over 18, only 27$ voted for Jimmy Carter. So why is this man being inaugurated? It is also interesting to note that NO American president has ever reoieved a majority of eligible votes. But throughout our history, politicians have taken office and contaminated our minds with the preface that they speak on behalf of the American people.
MAY 21st marks anolher day of demonstrations in Washington. This day is the first anniversary of the homophobic United States Supreme Court decision upholding Virginia's anti-sodomy laws. This is a federal precedent that will adversly affect the lives of of gay people for years to come. These GAY ACTIVISTS believe that reforms in law are meaningless; changing social attitudes is what counts. They believe they can radically affect the homophobia that continues to riddle American society - by showing themselves on the steets as angry, and loving, human beings. May 21st will be a day of mass protest; and in defiance of repression they will not leave without a celebration of GAY LOVE.
UNIVERSAL CITY STUDIOS and Walt Disney are currently involved in a court case trying to ban video RECORDERS. Their argument is that home videotape reoording devices have the potential of copying televised films and other type8 of entertainment. Even though most people cannot afford a video recorder, the case is very important. If Disney and Universal win their case it could set a firm precedent for banning all tape recorders, home movie cameras, printing presses, and typesetting and photocopying machines. All these devices have the potential of copying various entertainments. The government will more than likely make a compromise in whioh they will financially benefit. They could licence all these copying devices (for a nice fee), and revoke the licences to and confiscate those machines which are used to copy,for oommercial purposes of course, any production protected by U.S. COPYRIGHT. Perhaps even liberals can see the threat to freedom posed by this government action.
I.- THE STORMI is opposed to mixing religion, in its messianic tendencies, with social doctrine, to make of political aspirations and economic demands an eschatological affair, with promises of full-meaaured salvation being at hand, with a millenium around the left corner. Not that THE STORM I is opposed to those ail-too human cravings and longings, but it relegates them to the domain rf poetry,psychology, and metephysics; it keeps them out of politics and economics
II.- THE STORM 1 demands that liberty of conscience be expanded to encompaBa liberty of conviotions and political actions. THE STORM! is is opposed to the political catholioiam of our times, which goes under the name of the Sovereign State. THE STORMI is, so to speak, for POLITICAL PROTESTANTISM, which means that it demands full freedom for the individual to form hie or her political associations. THE STORM! is opposed to the tyranny of territory and space as well as to that
of occupation and trade. People should be free to build their "solidarity" upon the solid foundation of their professed convictions. They unite with those who agree with them.
III.- In the struggle of Capital against Labor, THE STORMI takes the side of Labor. In the fight of Capital against Property, THE STORM! will side with Property. In brief, THE STORM! is for LABOR-PROPERTY as against private capital monopoly, state capital monopoly, or communal monopoly of any kind. Instead of the capitalist—trusts which we have in the bourgeois countries, and the state-trusts which we find in the socialist countries, THE STORM! advocates the building of Labor Trusts, Labor-Share-Holding Companies.
IV.- Instead of organization, THE STORM! advocates SELF-ORGANIZATION. THE STORM! is for the elimination of the differentiation that exists between the handful of organizers and the overwhelming majority of the organized.
V.- THE STORM! opposes socialism in both its varieties, as statism and as societarism. THE STORM! rejects the pretentious supremacy of society over the individual, but does not propose that people live like so many Robinson Crusoes, incommunicative on separate islands, thk STORM! is for INTER—INDIVIDUALISM, for forming associations without the abrogation of the inalienable and inviolate rights of the individuals to secession and independence.
VI.- THE STORIII opposes the monopoly of Law; opposes the cleavage existing between the few law-givers and the many law-abiders. THE STORM! is for the fusion ofthese two functions, each law-abider should become
VII.- Democracy in our times is moribund, it degenerates either into plutocracy or ochlocracy, either it is the rule of the rich or the rule of the mob with its religious revivalists and political demagogues. Instead of democracy, THE STORM!advocates 3G0CRACY.
VIII.- Given the above, THE STORtll's efforts will run along two lines: the advocacy of alternative social institutions, and the insistence upon SELF-CULTIVATION, so that the Individual may rise to the dignity and full stature of a Personality. Only then will the interrelationary designs woven be satisfactory and humane. Man is a garden which needs good care-taking. But man is a peculiar garden, she is garden and Mii gardener both in one person.
-from Abba Gordin* s THE CLARION 10/32, adapted for THE STORM!1/77.'