Commentary
The Cosmic Privilege
“I was home with my daughter, my service dog Pono, and Rosie the chinchilla, who belongs to my daughter, Abby. When I read the alarm, I jump out of bed and grab my glasses. I run to Abigail’s room. ‘Get up honey. You have to get up right now. Right now. Grab your pillow. Go…
We Will Breathe the Ashes of the Dead for the Rest of Our Lives
Tuesday, as the world prepared to listen to the State of the Union, a small piece of news slunk out with horrifying implication. The Trump administration had withdrawn its pick for ambassador to South Korea, Victor Cha, after he privately expressed disagreement with a plan for a “limited strike” on North Korea. This piece of…
The Mutations of Freedom
“Freedom” and “liberty” are the stodgy, dust-covered utterances of academics, fascist patriots, and manipulative dogmatists; or at least they can feel that way. But behind all that cultural baggage is something that reaches deep into our experience and hopes and pulls out a fistful of primal energy and connectivity. This feeling is so intrinsic to…
Echoes of Canudos: The Brazilian State Massacre 120 Years Later
This past October marked the 120th anniversary of Brazil’s biggest state-sponsored massacre. The War of Canudos took place between 1896 and 1897 and took the lives of 35,000 people, including men, women, and children. Amidst the civilians killed, at least 500 indigenous Kiriri died. According to the anthropologist Edwin Reesink (with whom I spoke over…
The PUSH Against Prison Slavery
The prisoners are revolting again, folks. After the wave of strikes launched on the 45th anniversary of the Attica Prison riots and the August 19th strikes of this past year, inmates in Florida are planning another strike starting on January 15th, 2018 on Martin Luther King Day. On that day, in what has been dubbed…
Not the Droid You’re Looking For: Subtler Political Points from The Last Jedi
The Last Jedi, Rian Johnson’s recent continuation of the Star Wars saga, has generated many new takes. Yet most focus on debates about aesthetics, storytelling, cinematography, fandom politics, and concerns with fantasy physics rather than the social and political commentary of the movie. Perhaps it’s because the main political messages of this installment were so…
The New [Digital] Biography
Curating autobiographies, the Modernist movement, and the false promise of social media in the Trump era This essay was written during the days following the events in Charlottesville, Virginia. As a means of sorting through the benefits of social media in establishing a political stance in the Trump era, I found myself at an impasse….
Don’t Sell the Red Gold Away
San Gavino Monreale, in Sardinia, is my birth-town. It’s also the single biggest producer of the spice called saffron in Italy. We call it also red gold for its color and price. Saffron is a tradition that dates back centuries. The first bulbs (the spice is extracted from a flower) were cultivated around the XIII…
Who Are We Burning Flags For?
On October 24 a judge dismissed the charges levied against several protesters who burned the American flag at the Republican National Convention last year. The protesters weren’t technically charged with burning the flag because that might constitute a violation of free speech. The protesters were charged with one of the state’s many items in its…
When “Restorative Justice” Means Restoring Peace, Not Justice
If there’s one deep and profound disagreement with the left I have it’s a systematic privileging of collective stability or unity over individual free association. It’s a sad fact that leftist activists often hunger for community far more than they hunger for freedom. And one consequence of this is a persistent inability to deal with…
Just Repeal The Jones Act, Already!!
The Merchant Marine Act of 1920, better known as the Jones Act, is a classic example of a law that has remained on the books for decades, only attracting attention when it creates problems too big to ignore. This clearly happened this August, when it delayed shipments of aid to Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria….
Does Universal Basic Income Require a State?
Recently, Vishal Wilde advocated for a universal basic income (UBI) on the grounds that it promotes economic freedom and social justice. Indeed, UBI has long been attractive to libertarians of various stripes. However, this idea suffers from the problem that, to date, UBI proposals have generally relied on the state for a taxation and distribution…
Longview Anarchism: Transcending the Existential Threat of Freedom
Skin as Thick as Bark As asinine, cultish leaders fascistically toy with the notion of nuclear warfare, we are reminded yet again of the fragility of human life. That humans have advanced as far as we have is remarkable. It reminds me of the feeling of awe I have when realizing that we limited humans…
Restorative Justice and Sexual Violence Accountability
Anarchists take a hard stand against the prison system and carceral, punitive, and statist punishments schemas. As a result, we seek alternatives and tend to veer towards community and survivor-led accountability processes with a generally restorative and transformative intention. Restorative justice (RJ) is an approach towards dealing with harm done that focuses on repairing the…
Don’t Extend Gang Classification, Abolish It
After antifa clashed with right-wing protesters in Berkeley, Mayor Jesse Arreguin argued that California “should classify [Antifa] as a gang.” Later this month, juggalos – fans of the rap group Insane Clown Posse (ICP) – will protest their own federal gang classification in Washington, DC. Gang classification is commonly misunderstood. ICP themselves were originally amused…
Open Borders are Our Only Hope
Tribalism and National Borders Fundamental to the danger of nation-states and borders are the paradigms of nationalism and tribalism that exploit human quirks to justify violence. Tribalism is best understood in terms of the creation of teams through the dehumanization of an ‘other.’ Tribalism is mentally categorizing someone who is somehow different (however shallow that…
DSA-LSC: Anarchy in the AfterBern
Since the Bernie Sanders campaign, there has been an uptick in interest in the ideas of democratic socialism among leftists. This has played a role in radicalizing both progressives and former democrats and refocusing the left on movements for labor rights and social justice. Seeing this as an opportune moment, many social anarchists have started…
Airbnb and the Power of Anti-Fascist Markets
Anti-fascism comes in all shapes and forms. Whether it be the ultra-patriotic types harking back to the legacy of WWII, the III% who put that Identity Evropa kid in a chokehold in Texas, the black bloc protester who punched out Richard Spencer, the antifa rioters who trashed Milo’s events, the programmers who are letting us…
Reparations from Historical Slavery Could Be Used to End Modern Slavery
One of the most emotional and difficult topics in contemporary discourse is the history of slavery and its lingering legacy. A common proposal for addressing slavery is reparations, compensatory payments to the descendants of Africans who had been enslaved as part of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. The arguments for reparations are regularly met with two…
Healthcare For All: An Informal Guide to Creating An Anarchist Medical System
There is much debate in the current political climate over what to do about our broken healthcare system. Should we universalize it under a state monopoly? Should we provide a public option? Should we form health insurance cooperatives? Should we turn it over to crony corporations to reap a profit from our misfortune? No matter what…
Free Markets & Capitalism?
Markets Not Capitalism
Organization Theory
Conscience of an Anarchist