What Works Against the Far Right

By Joseph Orosco (December 21, 2018)

Jason Wilson has written a good piece in The Guardian outlining how nonviolent action against far right and neo Nazi groups has been effective so far in dismembering those movements.

This has been on my mind this week since news broke that notorious Springfield neo-Nazi Jimmy Marr was hospitalized after an altercation with Corvallis activists. Marr has been in town over the past year several times to lend support to Andrew Oswalt, the OSU grad student who was recently convicted of felony hate crimes. The immediate buzz on local social media followed the usual paths: “Antifa” is a violent organization, “Antifa” is just as bad as Nazis in that they are willing to use violence against people they disagree with, Nazis will go away if you just ignore them, etc.

Wilson points out that doxxing of Nazis—identifying participants of far right protests, rallies, demonstrations, and street fights and sharing this information publicly, especially with employers—has been one successful way to disempower them. (This can go both ways though.  Apparently, neo Nazi groups have been trying to doxx the Corvalis antifa group that was arrested in the fight with Marr.  I’ve noticed this since one of the people arrested was Bart Bolger who I interviewed for Anarres Project a few years ago.  His interview has gotten significant hits in the last few days.)

Denying Nazis platforms has also worked in a variety of cases, the most notable one being Milo Yiannopolous, who has gone bankrupt. This is one of those tactics that seems to rile supporters of “free speech” who argue that Nazis have the same right to air their views in public as anyone else. I see a lot of citing of the famous Skokie case in which the Americans Civil Liberties Union defended the right of the National Socialist Party USA to march through a largely Jewish neighborhood of Skokie, Illinois. But times change. After the Charlottesville protest in 2017, the national ACLU seemed to suggest that it saw contemporary neo-Nazi and white supremacists groups in a different way and is not prepared to defend their right to the public square as quickly. The significant difference seems to be that the newest far right groups are explicitly coming to street brawl, armed with clubs, shields, armor, and guns.

At the same time, I started looking at scott crow’s newest collection Setting Sights: Histories and Reflections on Community Armed Self Defense. Crow is hoping to set up a theoretical framework for understanding and justifying the use of weapons for “liberatory community armed self-defense”. This is different than “armed struggle” which is the use of military style violence by guerilla armies or militia to accomplish political goals. Instead community armed self defense takes into “account unrecognized types of violence and the limits marginalized groups face in their ability to determine their own futures or collectively protect themselves” (p. 9) crow wants to bring out the stories of groups ranging from Spanish and Russian anarchists to AIM, the Deacons for Defense, the Black Panthers, the Zapatistas, and the modern group Redneck Revolt. In the process, he’s showing how many supposed nonviolent revolutions (such as the Civil Rights Movement) were undergird by organizations willing to use guns for self defense from white supremacist and other far right groups.  The book has a great promo video you can watch:

No Race or Gender Justice Without Class Politics

By Irami Osei-Frimpong (December 18, 2018)

Race IS a deformation of class. As gender IS a deformation of class. So if you keep class politics, but don’t go after race politics, you’ve ignored all of the ways in which class politics comes in as race politics. If you go after gender and don’t go after class, you’ll have created two different sets of “women”: aspiring/potential CEOs and untouchables.

Racial and Gender justice is late stage, metastasized class injustice; but just addressing it as class politics is like addressing liver cancer and dealing with liver cancer, when you know full well that it has metastasized to the lung and pancreas.

This is all because you have to understand, class is largely a matter of where you fit and how you are treated in the political economy and production chain. How do Black people fit in the political economy and production chain? Well, we started out as chattel slaves, how do you think? So racial justice also means justice for people doing the work the United States made Black people to do. Same with gender justice.

Now this part is very important:
Whiteness is a class statement about being exempt from a certain kind of work, or being exempt from a certain kind of work under certain working conditions.

Whiteness is the expectation to be treated a certain kind of way in your activities. And these expectations are gendered.

So when you talk to Black people who don’t have a labor politics, it means that they don’t care if Black people are doing the kind of work, under the kind of conditions, that made Black people Black, ever get justice. Those Black people are simply want a set of Black people to be treated as if they were White. These are House Negroes.

When you talk to feminists who don’t think about working class women– and there are A LOT OF THEM– and they aren’t out there arguing for nannies to be unionized, that’s a problem.


Donald Trump, Power, and the Path Not Taken

By Mark Naison (December 17, 2018)

Because of things we have in common-age, race, gender and size- I often compare myself to Donald Trump.

Why didn’t I turn out the way that he did? Why am I not, in my public persona, filled with rage and bitterness? Why is spreading happiness more important to me than appealing to people’s fears and insecurities?

It is not because I had a happier childhood than Donald Trump. For all kinds of reasons, I was a lonely and angry young man. But I had three things that ultimately pushed me towards a different path than Mr Trump- a visceral identification with the underdog, a hatred of bullies, and a longing to be loved, which I hid under a crusty exterior.

Also, unlike Mr Trump, I was never enamored with power, which appears to be his lifelong obsession And the reason is simple. Power came easily to me in sports. From the time I was 8 years old I felt it every time I hit or threw a ball. And it didn’t bring me friendship, it didn’t bring me happiness, it didn’t bring me love.

Those things, I discovered, would only come when, through the inspiration of the Civil Rights Movement, I tried to use what skills I had to help others expand their opportunities and improve their lives, whether it was by tutoring, working with tenants, or joining protests to end discrimination. Only when I started doing those things did the shell around me come down, and I became available for love and friendship

Seeking power alone leaves a person empty inside. It heightens anger and insecurity. Working to help others provides a sense of purpose and builds communities which ease the “me against the world” perspective which is the cause of so much pain

Looking at Donald Trump, seething with rage, wondering who he can trust, I am very glad I didn’t choose the path to power, which is also leading him toward a fall.


What Does the Research Say About Black Intimate Partner Violence?

By Tommy J. Curry (December 14, 2018)

Many, if not most, Black academics do not really want to solve domestic violence. Over the last few days, I have seen Black academics posting articles from Blavity, The Root, and blogs discussing domestic violence. You want to know why they post from these sources because very few Black people actually study intra-racial violence. For comparison look at Twitter and observe the threads of white scholars on these issues. What do they share? They share datasets, analyses, pages, and articles they wrote on the topic. Black academics increase their popularity by spreading deliberate misinformation about the nature and causes of intimate partner violence b/c the Duluth model provides a powerful ideological weapon against ecological accounts of Black pathology.

See many Black academics make their money convincing white liberals how dangerous and backward poor Black folk are. They want you to believe that the men and women who raised most of us are pathological. I am a first generation Black man from Lake Charles, Louisiana. I have seen domestic violence, death, police brutality, etc., and not once have I ever thought these ills were the result of the character of Black people.

You want to solve IPV/IPH amongst Blacks? Ask yourself what does the actual research say:

1. Poverty is the major driving force behind IPV.
2. Alcoholism plays a huge role in the decrease of inhibition between couples and plays a role in male to female and female to male abuse.
3. Fetal alcohol syndrome has a major role in the lack of impulse control amongst poor Black populations, maternal care and early detection of pregnancy in urban Black women is key.
4. Bidirectional abuse and murder has been documented amongst Blacks since the 1930s. We must deal with conflict resolution and female perpetration.
5. Previous trauma (child physical abuse, child sexual abuse, and neglect) accounts for IPV/IPH more than sexist attitudes.
6. Ignoring female abuse socializes children in households to accept abuse as routine. Simply witnessing IPV increases the child’s likelihood to be a victim or perpetrator.


1. Denise Hines, “Intimate Terrorism by Women Towards Men: Does it Exist?,” Journal of Aggression, Conflict and Peace Research 2.3 (2010): 36-56.

2. Denise Hines and Emily Douglas, “Predicting Potentially Life-Threatening Partner Violence by Women Toward Men: A Preliminary Analysis,” Violence and Victims 28.5 (2013): 751-771.

3. Denise Hines and Emily Douglas, “Alcohol and Drug Abuse in Men Who Sustain Intimate Partner Violence,” Aggressive Behavior 38 (2012): 31-46.

4.John Archer, “Sex Differences in Aggression between Heterosexual Partners: A Meta-Analytic Review,” Psychological Bulletin 5 (2000): 651-680.

5.Murray Straus,“Why the Overwhelming Evidence on Partner Physical Violence Has Not Been Perceived and Is Often Denied,” Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma,” 18 (2009): 552-571.

6. Raul Caetano, Suhasini Ramisetty-Mikler, Craig A. Field, “Unidirectional and Bidirectional Intimate Partner Violence among White, Black, and Hispanic Couples in the United States,” Violence and Victims 20.4 (2005): 393-406.

7. Linda G. Mills, Insult to Injury: Rethinking Our Responses to Intimate Abuse, 2003.

8. Carl C. Bell, High Rates of Neurobehavioral Disorder Associated with Prenatal
Exposure to Alcohol among African Americans Driven by the Plethora
of Liquor Stores in the Community,” J Fam Med Dis Prev 2016, 2:033.


Did Bundy Really Quit the Militia Movement?

By Jess Campbell (December 11, 2018)

  1. Ammon Bundy did not leave the militia movement. Read what he said. Read more than the headline.
  2. Even if he did leave the militia movement, he would not be a friend to any of us who are trying to build communities accountable to any standard of human dignity. He built his name off of amassing unwieldy groups of people who threatened, stalked, and intimidated whole communities, saving their worst behavior for women, folks of color, immigrants, and political opponents.
  3. The rural and poor white people of Oregon were never behind him and his crew of tacticool fools with unblemished trucks and brand new Carhartts that haven’t seen a lick of work. His support largely comes from disaffected middle class and suburban white guys who think that they’re losing their rights in reaction to liberatory movements.
  4. What Ammon has accomplished is elaborate political theater. Those of us who care about building principled social movements for justice need to help our friends and allies develop the analysis and critical thinking to see the difference.
  5. If anything about this is surprising, you might wanna read Up In Arms, which we developed from collective years of firsthand experience, in-depth monitoring, research, and, most importantly, local resistance and counter-organizing. It’s online for free here.


Notes to an Activist Feeling Overwhelm and Despair (Notes to Myself to Rise Again and Again)

By Chris Crass (December 4, 2018)

We are up against the brutality and toxic culture of oppression, the sinister and devastating divisions of supremacy systems, and in our work of building and uniting a majority for racial, economic and gender justice, how we treat each other, and how we treat ourselves, is vital.

We must build what we are for, as we work against that which we oppose, and creating liberation culture rooted in our values and in our love, is key. We come together against all that wants to destroy and divide us. We continue to fight for liberation even when supremacy systems tell us we will never win. We refuse to be used, to be pitted against each other, and instead we actively create liberation values, cultures, organizations, alliances, and strategies and declare, we will all get free, together.

For white people outraged by the racism all around us and not sure what to do. For men who want to end the nightmare of sexual violence, but don’t know where to start. Overwhelm and discouragement are prevalent, and our lives as white people and as men who want equity and justice call us into action. We need sources of guidance, inspiration and nourishment for anti-racist and feminist work, for forging new identities rooted in liberation and love rather then domination and division, and for joining in multiracial, women-led efforts to all get free.

And we declare – in ritual, in protest, in organizing, in how we cry, make love, share meals, build community, raise our children, reach out and hold on, open our hearts and raise our fists – “Supremacy systems, you cannot have us. You cannot have our minds, hearts and bodies. We refuse your logic of division and destruction. We will be free!” We find courage in past movements, we gain strength in building alliances for racial, gender and economic justice, and we remember and reclaim our power through liberation cultures rooted in love and hope. We find our place, our purpose, make meaning, in the living traditions of those who have come before us. The victories, defeats, songs, poetry, insights, relationships, brilliance, shortcomings, tenderness, imagination, solidarity, and magic of our peoples’ movements.

And we ground ourselves in the knowledge, deep in our hearts, that we are the ones our ancestors fought for and we are the ones building for the generations before us. We are not alone, and each day gives us opportunities to know more fully the power we have for collective liberation.


Bush 41: The Graceful and Polite Oligarch

By Marc Cooper (December 1, 2018)

Good grief! I just love the way liberals –and others– are now slavishly and shamelessly canonizing Bush 41 — one of the most mediocre presidents in history. And the very embodiment of POLITE Elitist, Corporate and Oligarchic Rule.

Driving home last last night I had the misfortune of tuning into MSNBC and almost driving off the road as I heard Steve Kornacki, Lester Holt and the insufferably pious John Meachum impersonate a North Korean newsreel in glorifying dear Leader Poppy. Gawd! Who knew he had walked on water?

The emerging official line on GHWB is what a nice, pleasant, and noble chap he was. I never met him but I have no doubt that is true. But Guess what? I spent a LOT of time with his son and candidate George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004 and found him amazingly charming, chummy, jovial and even funny. Sort of like Alfred E. Neuman! But what’s that got to do with policy? Has the disgusting personal character of Trump and how they treat their staff become the current primary metric for judging presidents ??

I hope not. I am going to give credit to Bush 41 for a few minor accomplishments. I applaud him as a bona fide oligarch who took the great risk of signing up as a combat pilot in WWII. As President, he gets a couple of points for raising taxes knowing it would probably be lethal to his career (it was), for supporting the ADA and for his willingness to occasionally compromise. And he publicly quit the NRA after it flipped out over Ruby Ridge.

On the other side of the scale: 41 was heavily backed and supported by Dick Nixon. We can note his 1964 vote against the Civil Rights Act while serving as a congressman. He supported Nixon during Watergate up until it became impossible to do so. He was CIA chief (what the media calls a Spymaster when it refers to any of his foreign counterparts) at a time when The Agency was up its neck in cooperating with a South American network of death squads known as Operation Condor. There is more than credible material that he had some advance notice of the plot by Pinochet’s secret police to murder Orlando Letelier and Ronni Moffett with a car bomb in Washington DC. While he was Spymaster for only a year, that period overlapped with the zenith of killings by the intel agencies in Operation Condor, all of them in communication (and more) with the CIA.

I remember GHWB as the toady VP to one of the most damaging of U.S. Presidents, Ronald Reagan. This was a pivotal presidency whose main accomplishment was turning Blatant Greed and Disregard for the Poor into American virtues.

I remember GHW Bush as the VP who, somehow, miraculously, escaped the maws of the Iran-Contra racket. Only Dan Rather had the balls to confront him directly on that murky chapter of his history and was crucified for doing so by his chicken-hearted peers.

I remember Willie Horton.

I remember his nomination of Clarence Thomas to SCOTUS.

And who can forget that early incarnation of Sarah Palin when Poppy elevated Dan Quayle (or is it Quayl?) to VP?

And, of course, I remember 41’s theatrical and totally pointless invasion of Panama that accomplished nothing except killing about 600 Panamanians. And there was, last but not least, Operation Desert Storm and the massacre of the Iraqi Army to absolutely no lasting effect — except for the horrendous US betrayal of the Kurds and the Marsh Arabs who were butchered after being abandoned.

And, just as a kicker, it was Mikhail Gorbachev, not Reagan and/or Bush that ended the cold war. That was something handed to them.

Yes, I remember George HW Bush failing in his 1992 re-election and winning only 38 percent of the vote — I think the worst showing in history by an incumbent president. I guess the American people hadn’t fully noticed his awesome job while in office.

But, I am sure, just like his son Dubya, the old man on a personal level was charming, humble and genteel. That’s what good breeding produces.