Center for a Stateless Society
A Left Market Anarchist Think Tank & Media Center
STIGMERGY: The C4SS Blog
Daily Molotov: January 18, 2017

Welcome to the Daily Molotov, all the news that’s fit to hate the state. We’re finally back on schedule and at our regular posting level again after a tumultuous – yet exciting – couple of days. Let’s check out some of our latest headlines from across the media.

From the New York Times

The biggest story right now is still that Barack Obama has granted Chelsea Manning clemency, reducing her sentence to end on May 17, 2017. The fact that Manning will be a free woman almost seems like a dream. With Billionaire Freddy Krueger about to take office, my fear is that he’s going to make Manning’s remaining few months in prison a living nightmare. There’s still work to do.

There’s definitely more news, though. Edward Snowden’s asylum in Russia has been extended. The Trump transition team has barely communicated at all with the National Security Council. Eighteen million people could lose their health insurance with the repeal of the ACA. Gambia’s current president has dug in, refusing to accept the results of a recent election. Israeli security forces fatally wounded a Palestinian teenager on Monday and it was caught on video, sparking outrage.


From the Washington Post

Secretary of Education pick Betsy DeVos has been in hearings to see if congress will confirm her for the job. So far, that road is looking kind of rocky. Yesterday, the hearing devolved into a full-on shouting match.

Thirty members of the House of Representatives are boycotting the inauguration, but no senators are following suit. They’re chasing power. Apparently one of Donald Trump’s heroes is… uh… well, read this. A buildup of hydrogen sulfide and methane gas under a manhole in Key Largo, Fla. killed three workers and severely injured several more.


From Politico

Trump claimed he would “drain the swamp” under the Beltway by removing lobbyist influence. He didn’t. Also, he will be entering the White House without much of his cabinet, and apparently he “doesn’t like tweeting.” Finally, the transition team is looking at “retooling” the State Department to focus primarily on terrorism. You know, like the other four departments that do that.

From Slate

Rex Tillerson’s confirmation may be in jeopardy. Also, Tom Friedman doesn’t know anything – but you knew that. Betsy DeVos says guns are necessary in schools to fend off grizzlies, which, I mean. Finally, student data  security at public schools is unsurprisingly bad.


From The Nation

Symbolic protest is not enough. We need to “throw sand in the gears of everything.”

From Jacobin

Joe Soss responds to a terrible New York Times article on food stamps.

From Anarchist News

Here’s a letter from a French anarchist in prison about justice.

From It’s Going Down

Denver Anarchist Black Cross has called for support of a political prisoner in Colorado, Coyote Acabo.

From CrimethInc.

“Five Principles of Direct Action,” an analysis of the 2001 anti-inauguration protests.

From the Libertarian Institute

Erik Prince’s mercenaries are bombing Libya.

From Antiwar News

Douchebags think Chelsea Manning’s freedom is a national security risk.

From the Intercept

Erik Prince has been covertly advising Trump.


Thanks for reading the Daily Molotov, curated for C4SS by Trevor Hultner. You can submit news tips to trevor@c4ss.org, tweet at us either at @c4ssdotorg or @trevor_c4ss, or leave a comment below. Your continued support of the Center for a Stateless Society means we can continue to roll out new features like this.

Want this directly in your inbox every morning? Subscribe to our mailing list below.



Daily Molotov: January 17, 2017

Welcome to the Daily Molotov, all the news that’s fit to hate the state with. 

Chelsea Manning, the whistleblower who was arrested in 2010 for leaking documents about the Iraq and Afghan Wars to Wikileaks, will be released in May after outgoing president Barack Obama commuted the remainder of her sentence.

Excuse us while we celebrate instead of post a normal blog post. Congratulations to all of the activists and supporters who pushed for Manning’s release. We’ll see you tomorrow.

From the New York TimesObama commutes the bulk of Chelsea Manning’s sentence.

Daily Molotov: January 16, 2017

Welcome to the Daily Molotov, all the news that’s fit to hit the state with. Here are some of today’s important headlines.

From the New York TimesHey, listen, we’re all screwed.

Also from the New York Times: One of the Samsung heirs might be going to jail. And Trump’s connections to Russia go back three decades.

From the Washington PostSome members of the Deep State were “NeverTrump” folks, and they’re probably gonna be ignored.

Also from the Washington Post: Monica Crowley won’t take the National Security Council job because she plagiarized from a foot doctor. Over 30 Democrats will be skipping the inauguration.

From PoliticoDonald Trump is by no means a uniter. Also, Gene Cernan, the last person to walk on the Moon, has died at 82.

From SlateThat whole overtime raise thing didn’t happen. Also, Trump at one point called Russia “our biggest problem” before running for president.


From Infoshop NewsDisruptJ20 was filmed by some nerds called “Project Veritas,” and have released a statement accordingly.

From Anarchist NewsHere are some resources for #DisruptJ2o.

From Antiwar NewsShockingly, Iran doesn’t want to renegotiate its nuclear deal.

From CrimethInc.A history of counter-inauguration protests.

From LibcomA look back on Obama’s deportation regime.


Thanks for reading the Daily Molotov, curated for C4SS by Trevor Hultner. You can submit news tips to trevor@c4ss.org, tweet at us either at @c4ssdotorg or @trevor_c4ss, or leave a comment below. Your continued support of the Center for a Stateless Society means we can continue to roll out new features like this.

Want this directly in your inbox every morning? Subscribe to our mailing list below.



Media Coordinator Weekly Update: January 9-15, 2017

Howdy, folks! It’s Sunday, which means it’s time for me to share with you all sorts of fun stuff related to the work we do here at C4SS.

MORE NEWS DIGESTS!!

In addition to the Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review, last week we launched the Daily Molotov. Here’s what we’re doing with that. For now, what you see is what you get: a daily digest of “All the News That’s Fit to Hate the State With,” but we plan on adding other stuff, including podcasts, original reporting and more. This is part of our ongoing efforts to expand what the Center does and how it functions.

The Week in Commentary

Kevin Carson’s “No Right to Free Water – Except for Nestlé” got picked up by Counterpunch, the Augusta Free Press, Dinâmicas Sul-sur, MB3-org.com, Abundant-hope.net, and mvprogressives.org. Logan Glitterbomb’s “Combating hate: A Radical Leftist guide to Gun Control,” got picked up at the Augusta Free Press.

This has so far been a really good month for commentaries, but I’m already late as is SO I’m going to wrap this up. We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that relies on your tax-deductible donations to keep rolling along, putting anarchy into the hands of folks all over the world. Come say hi at ISFLC 2017, be like the generous individuals who have already donated this month, or follow us on Twitter at @c4ssdotorg.

Questions? Comments? Concerns? email me at trevor@c4ss.org or tweet at me at @trevor_c4ss.

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 154

Robert Parry discusses bad news for neocons and liberal interventionists.

Luis Gómez Romero immigration policy.

Binoy Kampmark discusses the U.N. vote on Israeli settlements.

Cesar Chelala discusses the recent absention of the U.S. from a vote on Israeli settlements.

Marjorie Cohn discusses U.S. foreign policy developments in the year 2016.

Medea Benjamin discusses the U.S. support for the Saudi war in Yemen.

Gwynne Dyer discusses the U.N., Bibi, and Obama.

Glenn Greenwald discusses a false story in the Washington Post about alleged Russian hacking of the electrical grid.

Vijay Prashad discusses what the Israeli govt fears about the recent U.N. condemnation.

Uri Avnery discusses Trump’s cabinet and anti-semitism

Glenn Greenwald discusses false claims made about Wikileaks by a Guardian reporter.

Doug Bandow discusses why Russia today is not the USSR. I disagree with some of it, but it is useful for showing how the alleged present day Russian threat is inflated.

James Risen discusses how Obama’s war on press freedom laid the groundwork for a potential Trump admin war on press liberty.

David Swanson discusses how war erodes civil liberties.

Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man discusses the possibility of annexation of the West Bank.

Grant Smith discusses how military aid to Israel leads to incentives for war.

Ray McGovern discusses the Afghan quagmire and Obama’s lack of political courage.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses foreign policy interventionism and blowback.

Laruence M. Vance discusses Taiwan, China, and the U.S.

Norman Solomon discusses the Democratic Party and the latest controvsery over Russia.

Lucy Steigerwald discusses Trump and the war on privacy.


Ramzy Baroud discusses the Israel-Palestine conflict and the Trump admin.

The New York Times editorial board discusses where secret arrests were stand procedure.

A. Barton Hinkle discusses big government.

Laurence M. Vance discusses the Small Business Adminstration. I am not a fan of his angle on minimum wage laws or anti-discrimination laws, but I appreciate the anti-corporate welfare push of this article.

Owen Jones discusses U.S. interference in foreign elections.

Phillip Smith discusses deaths from the War on Drugs.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses charity vs the welfare state.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the only solution to the healthcare crisis in the U.S.

Michael Rieger discusses early Japanese liberalism.

Daily Molotov Weekend Overview: January 13-15, 2017

Welcome to C4SS’s Daily Molotov, formerly News Bits, All The News That’s Fit to Hate the State With. This is a recap of the top news from this weekend as well as a look back at last week’s top stories. Podcast version here to come.

From the New York TimesScott Pruitt, outgoing Oklahoma Attorney General and buddy of the oil and gas industry, is shockingly antipathetic to attempts to regulate on environmental grounds. Related: here are 14 examples of this.

Also from the New York Times: SpaceX launched its first rocket since that launchpad explosion back in September 2016. Also, we’re not doing super great on that whole “police reform” bit. Here’s a really good series on the challenges and rewards facing Canadians as they accept refugees from Syria. This is how Chelsea Manning has been living since her conviction in 2013. Both Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circuses are closing down for good.


From the Washington PostDonald Trump went after Democratic Rep. John Lewis (who called his presidency illegitimate) toward the end of last week. It did wonders for Lewis’s book sales.

Also from the Washington Post: Protestors at UC Davis disrupted a “debate” between horrible person and pharmaceutical exec Martin Shkreli and horrible person and Nazi Milo Yiannopoulos. Dog poo was allegedly involved. Police in Evanston, Illinois violently arrested a man for stealing a car. The car was his. Mike Pence sure didn’t have any contact with Russia. No sir no ma’am.


From the US edition of the UK GuardianDonald Trump and Vladimir Putin will meet in Reykjavik after the inauguration. So that’s fun.

Also from the US edition of the UK Guardian: Jennifer Holliday canceled her appearance at the inauguration. Protestors in Louisiana are fighting Energy Transfer Partners, the company responsible for the Dakota Access Pipeline, over a new pipeline in the bayou. Immigration activists are making final preparations for Trump.


From PoliticoTrump has been slow to vet candidates he’s chosen that are part of the mega-rich class. CIA director John Brennan (who OU Students for a Stateless Society protested in 2014) called Trump’s “Nazi Germany” comment “outrageous,” which, I mean, true. Peter Thiel is considering running for California governor. Democrats from red states gunned for Jeff Sessions.

From Mic.comProtests against Trump’s inauguration have started, with a march dubbed the “We Shall Not Be Moved” march garnering a gathering of hundreds on Saturday. Donald Trump is not going to visit a black museum after he fought John Lewis. A Republican public official in Greenwich, Connecticut was arrested after grabbing a union worker in the genitals.


From AnarchistNewsWe have some updates on prisoners in Chile and Italy.

From Infoshop NewsA new indigenous and popular resistance group has been formed in Guerrero.

From It’s Going DownA call for militant femmes to march in Washington DC this upcoming Friday has gone out. Also, Mike Peinovich has been outed as the head of The Right Stuff dot biz.

From CrimethInc.Here are ten reasons to go hard in the paint on inauguration day. Also CrimethInc. has a new website and it looks so goooooooood you guys.

From Antiwar NewsTrump will be keeping sanctions against Russia “for now” after the inauguration.

From The InterceptThe Intercept has put out a call for submissions to any public official concerned about working under a Trump presidency.


Thanks for reading the Daily Molotov, curated for C4SS by Trevor Hultner. You can submit news tips to trevor@c4ss.org, tweet at us either at @c4ssdotorg or @trevor_c4ss, or leave a comment below. Your continued support of the Center for a Stateless Society means we can continue to roll out new features like this.

Want this directly in your inbox every morning? Subscribe to our mailing list below.



News Bits: January 12, 2017

Welcome back to News Bits, All the News That’s Fit to Hate the State With. This is going to be kind of a quick one! Here’s what’s happening. 

From the New York TimesDonald Trump had his first press conference yesterday. It didn’t go too well.

Also from the New York Times: Volkswagen pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and to violate the Clean Air Act, customs violations and obstruction of justice, and six executives are being specifically named. And Eric Holder is leading a partisan redistricting committee designed to fight Republican gerrymandering.


From the Washington PostDonald Trump said during his press conference that he has nothing to do with Russia. But it isn’t true.

Also from the Washington Post: The Senate is coming closer to being able to repeal Obamacare. Ben Carson’s HUD Secretary hearing is set to happen soon. Experts say that Amelia Earhart didn’t die in a plane crash. Which, I guess is good news, but where did she go?


From the Los Angeles TimesTwo LAPD cops who shot and killed a 16-year-old in Boyle Heights, CA last year didn’t have their body cameras on. But hey, they’re great deterrents!

Also from the Los Angeles Times: California is REALLY getting wrecked by storms. And the produce industry has announced plans to eliminate abusive conditions for Mexican farm labor.


From the Chicago TribuneCory Booker went hard after Jeff Sessions, saying he should not be Attorney General.

Also from the Chicago Tribune: The Justice Department is set to announce that it has found major constitutional abuses from Chicago law enforcement. Major cellular providers are set to remove unlimited plans from existence once and for all.


From National Public RadioOffice of Governmental Ethics director Walter Schaub is asking Donald Trump to completely divest from his businesses.

Also from National Public Radio: Elaine Chao is coasting to her nomination as Secretary of Transportation. The Supreme Court is examining how schools deal with students with disabilities. And several states are considering raising gasoline taxes in an effort to fill up budget holes.


From PoliticoChuck Schumer is going to vote against Jeff Sessions’ nomination. Also, Mike Pompeo will be grilled over whether the CIA will remain independent, and Rex Tillerson didn’t have a super great time at his hearing for Secretary of State nomination.

From SlateAlabama representative Mo Brooks calls criticisms of Jeff Sessions’ position on racial issues the result of a “war on whites.” Also, the ex-wife of one of Trump’s cabinet appointees, Andrew Pudzer, has allegedly appeared on Oprah to accuse him of physical abuse. And the law firm that Trump uses was named “Russia’s law firm of the year” in 2016.

From SalonThe Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, called Trump to let him know he condemned yesterday’s leaked report. Kellyanne Conway says Trump was “very happy” to receive that call. Also, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu called a Paris summit “rigged” against Israel.

From Mic.comBlack activists plan a week of actions from MLK day to the inauguration. Also, here’s how Wikileaks went from a government transparency outfit to a mouthpiece for the Trump administration.


From Antiwar News55 people were killed during heavy fighting in Yemen.

From The Anti-MediaThe United States dropped three bombs per hour in 2016.

From The InterceptHomeland Security nominee John Kelly didn’t disclose his links to a lobbying firm.

From It’s Going DownMapuche activists in Chile are still protesting for their freedom.

From The GuardianChelsea Manning is on Pres. Obama’s “shortlist” for commutation. Edward Snowden called on Obama to release her via Twitter, saying “only you can save her life.”

From JacobinWho put Trump in the White House?” asks Kim Moody.


Thanks for reading News Bits, curated for C4SS by Trevor Hultner. You can submit news tips to trevor@c4ss.org, tweet at us either at @c4ssdotorg or @trevor_c4ss, or leave a comment below. Your continued support of the Center for a Stateless Society means we can continue to roll out new features like this.

Want this directly in your inbox every morning? Subscribe to our mailing list below.



Farewell Obama

Obama using his farewell address to make a sales pitch for political activism and running for office as the solution to people’s problems pretty much sums up modern liberalism. Snake oil politicians trot out this tired bullshit whenever they see the religious zeal surrounding them and their policy initiatives fading away.

Does Obama really see his remarkable political ascendancy as part of any realistic aspiration for marginalized people? Power doesn’t just corrupt; it blinds you to the reality of your words while building you a throne atop which you can sit, privileged enough to avoid being victimized by the excesses of state capitalism.

While change and diversity were the main themes of Obama’s address, he remains arrogantly intolerant of people who have no interest in the reality show of American politics and repeats the same old conservative pleas for faith in his failed institutions. The fact is that most eligible voters chose nobody for president. The number of people who would rather spend time with their family, read a book, have sex, get high, burn a flag, see a movie, work, or just sit there and stare at a wall rather than cast a meaningless vote for one of two aspiring murderers outweigh the backwards, out of touch, “politically engaged” citizens.

Obama should recognize this trend and use his platform to channel it into true civic virtue and mutual aid, not beg the productive members of society for their time, attention, or, worst of all, moral license while he uses their money to blow up children in the Middle East while paying lip service to “democratic values” from his cozy position.

The more people who take the outgoing president’s advice, the less their voice actually matters on the margin — so goes the systematically under-provided public good of intelligent political activity. But I guess this cruel irony of politics is easy to ignore when your voice actually does matter but you want to deflect blame onto those damn lazy, selfish voters for your legacy of mass deportation, unaccountable drone killings, and bulking up the surveillance state and executive power just in time for a megalomaniac to be elected by your precious democracy. The entire speech was practically one big exercise in absolving himself from any guilt whatsoever and doing the political equivalent of victim blaming.

The pervasiveness of this laughable narrative really is a big reason why Trump won. After all, if your leaders just keep telling you to vote harder and faster, but continually abuse you, then a strong man who bucks this trend and offers instant gratification seems like the only sensible way to play the game of politics. Unfortunately the prospect of moving to alternative ways of organizing society that are more peaceful and horizontal, that don’t so easily reward people who crave power over others, is lost on Obama.

The biggest arms dealer in the world insisting that “citizen” is the most powerful office in the United States as he rides off into the sun on wings of moral superiority and blamelessness for his many war crimes in Yemen and Pakistan is so tone deaf and emblematic of Obama’s self-congratulatory and downright contradictory underdog Americanism that it makes the most fitting end to his presidency. It disgusts me to remember that over the next four years we will be looking back on the Obama years with nostalgia. There’s never been a better argument for burning it down.

News Bits: January 11, 2017

Welcome to News Bits: All the News That’s Fit to Hate the State With. Here’s what’s been happening. 

From the New York Times: Okay listen, before I get into this, I just wanna say that I’m going to refrain from making any horrible pee jokes. None. I promise.

Intelligence officials apparently showered Donald Trump with a series of unsubstantiated reports claiming that Russia had blackmail material on the President-elect. CNN was the first to allude to these reports yesterday, but Buzzfeed News was the first to actually post them. Trump has, naturally, denied the reports’ content, calling them “FAKE NEWS!!!1!” Russia has also denied the claim because did y’all really think they’d be like “Oh, yeah, we have that. Yep.”

State mouthpiece-for-hire Wikileaks took a giant leak on Buzzfeed’s reporting yesterday as well, tweeting, “WikiLeaks has a 100% record of accurate authentication. We do not endorse Buzzfeed’s publication of a document which is clearly bogus.” Buzzfeed News editor Ben Smith defended the decision to publish, saying, “[This] reflects how we see the job of reporters in 2017.” Others, like non-profit multi-time Pulitzer-winning investigative outfit ProPublica president Richard Tofel, also defended Buzzfeed’s move.

Also from the New York Times: Dylann Roof was sentenced to death for killing nine black church parishioners in 2015. Transgender women in immigration detention centers fear a higher risk of abuse. An El Cajon police officer wasn’t charged in the murder of an unarmed black man. Outgoing president Barack Obama made his final address to the nation.


From the Washington Post: Trump has tapped “vaccination skeptic” and all-purpose conspiracy theorist Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. to lead a commission on vaccine safety. Just gonna put this out there, vaccines don’t cause autism, the study that claimed they do was discredited in the scientific community, and this is a waste of time. But hey, at least Kennedy is being recognized for something for once. That period in the 2000s where he tried to glom onto Greg Palast’s voter fraud crusade was forgettable and kind of cringey.

Also from the Washington Post: AG Jeff Sessions’ confirmation hearing was filled with shouting. Rex Tillerson, the pick for Secretary of State, is up next and is probably going to be grilled on his ties to dictators. A Nepalese model will take the stage as the first transgender woman to walk in India’s Lakmé Fashion Week.


From the Los Angeles Times: LA County Supervisors have created an Office of Immigration Affairs that would reportedly help provide services such as legal help to undocumented immigrants. The alt-right is mad about it.

Also from the Los Angeles Times: A painting that depicts police as wild boars is in the middle of a dispute between national lawmakers. Specifically, they’re literally physically fighting over whether the painting, produced by a California high school student, should be hanging up in the Capitol.


From National Public Radio: Contractors working on a Washington, D.C. hotel for President-elect Donald Trump say they’re owed millions of dollars for their work.

Also from National Public Radio: “Blessing boxes,” outdoor food pantries constructed in a similar vein to the Little Free Libraries, are beginning to pop up in communities nationwide. They’ll probably get taken down and their builders arrested for daring to feed the homeless for free, but hey. #MakeAmericaGreatAgain. Also, an Alaskan village is seeking disaster relief dollars to relocate while their shoreline is slowly subsumed into the Ninglick River.


From Politico: We’ve already talked about this but my dudes, Donald Trump actually asked the question, “Are we living in Nazi Germany??” in response to the released intelligence reports detailing his blackmail. My dudes. My dudes. Maybe that Shazaam movie really does exist and this is the universe’s way of self-correcting? I don’t know, I have a headache.

Also from Politico: Cops say that high profile killings make their job harder, according to a new Pew Research paper. Pro tip, maybe knock that whole “killing” thing off. Just, f*ckin don’t. Also, I’m gagging. I’m gagging. I’m going to throw up. I want to die. Just no. No no no no no. Also, “repeal and replace Obamacare” sounds easy, but uh. Well, it’s not. Finally, Trump is holding an internal West Wing competition to see which advisers can win his ear. F*cking christ.


From Salon: Jeff Sessions plans to bring the hammer down on Dream Act folks, so this is a great place to really bring it home that any city that currently calls itself a “sanctuary city” and promises to uphold DACA should probably go ahead and delete their logs. Burn it all.

From Alternet: Charles C. Johnson (no relation to our Radgeek), a hilarious remnant of the proto-alt-right, went on fellow-useless-alt-right-nerd Stefan Molyneux’s show last month to proclaim that he’s been “doing a lot of vetting” of Trump’s nominees.

From Slate: Gen. John Kelly, Trump’s pick for head of Homeland Security, doesn’t seem to be towing Trump’s line on a lot. He doesn’t like torture and said he’d oppose a border wall. Like, what even is the point if the guy you chose to head up a monstrous organization dedicated to worldwide oppression doesn’t even want to do the fun stuff you thought you’d be able to do now that you have all the power? Jeez.

From Mic.com: Google’s search algorithm is still f*cked, with articles that deny the Holocaust ever existed taking top billing.


From Antiwar: The Iraqi Prime Minister has called for Turkey to withdraw from its northernmost sector. Turkey said no.

From The Intercept: “Seal Team Six” was likely a pretty ruthless and terrible group, participating in “revenge ops,” mutilations and other atrocities.

From The Anti-Media: Obama’s “hands-off” policy in Syria pretty simply wasn’t.

From It’s Going Down: The leaders of the Alt-Right got doxxed by… themselves.

From Antifascist News: Why did “LGBTQ Nation” choose Milo Yiannopoulos for “Person of the Year?”

From Jacobin: Feminists call for a national women’s strike during the inauguration.


Thanks for reading News Bits, curated for C4SS by Trevor Hultner. You can submit news tips to trevor@c4ss.org, tweet at us either at @c4ssdotorg or @trevor_c4ss, or leave a comment below. Your continued support of the Center for a Stateless Society means we can continue to roll out new features like this.

Want this directly in your inbox every morning? Subscribe to our mailing list below.



News Bits: January 10, 2017

Welcome back to News Bits, C4SS’s look at the day’s news.

From the New York Times: Donald Trump has named his son-in-law Jared Kushner as his Senior Adviser, a move that will likely be challenged under federal anti-nepotism laws. But I mean let’s be honest this will probably stick. Nothing is true, everything is permitted and all that.

Also from the New York Times: At the NY Times Magazine, Patrick Symmes has written about Trump ally and overall horrible person, Filipino president Rodrigo Duterte and his list of drug addicts and dealers. Also, via Reuters, Dylann Roof’s sentencing period is coming to a close. Finally, Yahoo would rename itself “Altaba” if Verizon purchased it.


From the Washington Post: Trump probably won’t shake all of his conflicts of interest. Which, I mean. I don’t know, y’all, is that what matters now? “Oh hey guys, who cares if he’s a fascist – at least he doesn’t have any conflicts of interest!”

Also from the Washington Post: The FBI paid Geek Squad employees at Best Buy to scrape hard drives for child porn. Now privacy advocates are (F*CKIN RIGHTLY) concerned about implications for other situations. Also, Rick Riordan (author of Percy Jackson young adult novels) got an invitation to be honored by the Texas legislature, and he declined it because he opposes recently-introduced anti-transgender bathroom legislation. Nice!


From the Los Angeles Times: Backpage.com has closed its adult section down after pressure from law enforcement and an unfair legal battle against them.

Also from the Los Angeles Times: Someone was arrested in an attempted attack on a police station in Turkey.


From Reuters: The GOP is trying to pressure Trump into softening his pro-Russia rhetoric. It ain’t really working I don’t think.

From the Associated Press: Prospective Attorney General Jeff Sessions will face questioning from senators today.


From National Public Radio: Secretary of Education nominee Betsy DeVos’s confirmation hearing has been delayed for a week. Also, a cop in Texas faces a 10-day suspension for forcibly arresting a woman who had called police because a man was grabbing her son.


From Politico: Monica Crowley, Donald Trump’s pick for senior director of strategic communications for the National Security Council, allegedly plagiarized a good chunk of her Ph.D dissertation from various sources, including “conservative columns, news articles, Wikipedia and in one case a podiatrist’s website.” Amazing. The Trump camp of course calls it a “politically motivated attack that seeks to distract from the real issues facing this country.” But whatever, ya girl copied from a foot doctor’s website for some reason and that’s hilarious.

Also from Politico: Betsy DeVos’s donations to FIRE (the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education) apparently mean she’s not committed to stopping sexual assault on college campuses? That’s… a reach, but hey, y’all do you. And finally, last week Trump tweeted (shocker) that he thinks the Senate and House intelligence committees should investigate NBC News over leaked intelligence reports. Which is exactly the opposite of what they should – and are going to – do.


From Infoshop News: Some folks in Bloomington, IN are starting an anarchist news blog and calling for submissions. It’s called Plain Words, check it out here. Also, here’s a list of some actions going down in January.

From It’s Going Down: The Missoula, MT branch of the Industrial Workers of the World is calling for solidarity and assistance in combating a planned armed march of Nazis in Whitefish. The Black Rose Federation has an analysis of the national Fraternal Order of Police’s “first 100 days” document. Spoilers: it’s horrifying. Tampa Food Not Bombs is going to continue feeding people despite repeated arrests. And finally, a memorial fund for Michael Israel, a slain YPG volunteer, has been established.

From the American Civil Liberties Union: “Trump and Sessions: Great for the Private Prison Industry” by Carl Takei and Katie Egan

From The Nation: “Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte is a Wildly Popular Fascist,” by Walden Bello

From Jacobin: “America’s Durable Monstrosity,” by Daniel Denvir


Thanks for reading today’s News Bits. Check back in tomorrow for more crunchy bits.

Follow C4SS on Twitter: @c4ssdotorg
Follow Trevor Hultner on Twitter: @trevor_c4ss

Subscribe to News Bits from the Center for a Stateless Society

* indicates required


The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 153

Ramzy Baroud discusses the meaning of Zionism to people in Palestine.

Mitchell Plitnick discusses Trump’s appointment to the position of U.S. ambassdaor to Israel.

Ted Galen Carpenter discusses the One China Policy and the Trump admin.

Tom Engelhardt discusses Donald Trump and the dystopian times ahead.

Zaid Jilani discusses Obama’s approach to anti-Israel U.N. resolutions.

Jenna McLaughlin discusses a new House report on Snowden.

Patrick Cockburn discusses the War on Terror and recent events.

Uri Avnery discusses why David Friedman is a bad choice for U.S. ambassador to Israel.

Conor Friedersdorf discusses Obama’s weak defense of his targeted killing program.

James Risen reviews a book by a CIA analyst who debriefed Saddam Hussien.

Sharon Presley discusses charitable giving and political ideology.

Jim Lobe discusses the views of Trump’s pick for national security advisor Michael Flynn

Eli Clifton discusses John Bolton’s right-wing politics on Israel.

Ann Wright discusses the use of denial of Social Security checks as a way of punishing dissenters.

Robert Fisk discusses ISIS and the far right’s assault on multicultural countries.

Douglas Valentine discusses the CIA and his research on it.

Cathy Breen discusses her trip to Iraq.

David Swanson.discusses post-911 abuses and impeachment.

Binoy Kampmark discusses refugee policy in Germany and a recent terror attack.

Robert W. Merry discusses the difference in opinion between the public at large and elites on American foreign policy.

Geoffrey Aronson discusses the recent U.N. resolution attacking Israeli settlement expansion.

John Buell discusses the potential for a new Mcarthyism.

Stephen Zunes discusses Trump’s picks for foreign policy related admin positions.

Mattathias Schwartz discusses the false statistics of a Trump nominee on deaths by nacroterrorism.

Jordan Smith discusses state govts passing abortion restrictions.

Ramzy Baroud discusses why the people of Palestine should look to the rest of the world rather than the U.S. for backing.

Thomas Knapp discusses the dangerous new NDAA.

Bonnie Kristian discusses drone warfare and Obama.

Daniel Larison discusses why the U.S. shouldn’t repudiate the present China policy.

Linda Lewis discusses whistleblowing and the Obama admin.

News Bits: January 9, 2017

Welcome to News Bits, a look at today’s headlines from an anarchist perspective.

From the New York Times: Congress is set to start confirming cabinet nominations this week. Two weeks out from the inauguration, it’s time to start really rubbing it in that the nightmare is, indeed, real and that there’s nothing to wake up from. Eat Arby’s.

Also from the New York Times: The FBI arrested a Volkswagen executive on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States. Prison riots in Brazil leave 100 inmates dead and a lot of angry, mourning families knocking on the doors of politicians across the country.


From the Washington Post: During a Golden Globes ceremony where a movie literally called “La-La-Land” won in the Best Picture category, notorious radical Meryl Streep took Donald Trump to task. He tweeted about it. Nobody wins.

Also from the Washington Post: The global market plans to fight Donald Trump and Jeff Sessions to the death. And Martin Shkreli was booted from Twitter for trying to get a journalist to be his inauguration date and then sending a horde after her when she noped out. Finally, Margaret Sullivan (our bae) calls on everyone to stop with the damn-fool “Fake News” business.


From National Public Radio: In more than a few states, legislators don’t make enough money to work.  Which, I mean, yikes, kind of. We sometimes (quite rightly) like to think of politicians as greedy money-grubbers seeking deals with corporate fat cats, etc. but it’s easy to forget that some folks – regardless of political leanings – run for office with a genuine, if misplaced, sense of duty. Still, they’d probably be more financially stable out of politics. And better people for it, too.

Also from National Public Radio: Orca shows at SeaWorld (specifically in San Diego, not its other sites in Florida and Texas) are about to stop, which is good, but Orca are still being held captive, which is bad. Also, there was a series of suicide bombings in Baghdad this weekend, which is DEFINITELY bad.


From the Los Angeles Times: You’d think that a lot of rain and snow would be good for drought-wracked California, but – listen, I used to live there, if you dry that state out for even a dang minute it becomes susceptible to mudslides the next time the sprinklers go off. So like, this is not a great thing for anyone.

Also from the Los Angeles Times: A US man shot a US diplomat in Mexico. Also they’re using a F*CKING HOWITZER to do avalanche control on Mammoth Mountain. What is this world.


From Politico: Here’s a list of the 30 most-powerful people in Trump’s Washington. I’m just gonna be over here in this corner from now until the nukes get me.

Also from Politico: No but seriously, Trump is creating his own toxic ecosystem right now. He’s planning on giving his advisors a lot of power in the first six months of his presidency. I really don’t have anything to add to that except I hope y’all are ready.


From AnarchistNews: Greek anarchists were arrested and their six-year-old child was taken into state custody last week. Greeks took to the streets in response.

From Infoshop News: Turkish anarchists report that they are being cornered by a combination of the state’s “OHAL” (or post-coup state of emergency) and other regional factors.

From It’s Going Down: Scott Campbell has a great collection of new information from the Mexican #Gasolinazo gas riots. Also, a Neo-Nazi radio show in Georgia was shut down.

From RARE: Lucy Steigerwald has a post up about Donald Trump’s non-relationship to the Fourth Amendment.

From The Nation: John Knefel writes about the rapidly closing window of opportunity to free Guantánamo Bay prisoners.

From Jacobin: Corey Robin writes about the slow death of American institutions and how that factors into Trump’s presidency.


Follow C4SS on Twitter: @c4ssdotorg
Follow Trevor Hultner on Twitter: @trevor_c4ss

Media Coordinator Weekly Update: January 2-8, 2017

Howdy folks! It’s the end of the first week of 2017, and that means it’s time, finally, for an update on what we’ve been doing over the past seven days!

No More Hiatus

The last couple of months have been hectic here at C4SS. After the 10th anniversary and the Oklahoma SFL Regional Conference – and then, astonishingly, after the election – life just sort of went into overdrive. A lot of what we’ve been doing since November has been behind-the-scenes, and we’re super excited to reveal what we’ve come up with. And we’re not resting on our laurels from there, either.

That said, you can expect the return of weekly updates, starting now. Life may not come at us any slower but these updates will stand strong, immovable, against the tide of hi- what was I saying? Oh yeah, these will be going up regularly.

The Week in Commentary

Every week, we release new commentaries out to the media on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The following statistics are taken following each distribution.

Kevin Carson swept week one of 2017, pumping out articles on open manufacturing, the manufactured “white genocide” outrage and Nestlé’s outrageous policy of simply taking drinking water from communities whenever and wherever it pleases.

2017 and ‘Killer Apps’ for the Transition” was republished at Counterpunch, the Augusta Free Press and the Gilmer Mirror. It marks Carson’s first article at Counterpunch since September 2016.

Who are the Real ‘Genociders?’” was republished at the Augusta Free Press. “No Right to Free Water – Except for Nestlé” has not received any pickups yet because it was published on Saturday, which means it is scheduled for Monday (1/9) distribution. We’ll update you on this arcticle’s reprint status next week.

The Week in Features

While we don’t normally run or count features in the pickup list, this week we did see the republication of Edmund Berger’s stellar late December 2016 feature, “The Coming State of Fear,” in Counterpunch alongside Kevin’s “Transition.” It also got into the Shillong Times in India. It’s a fantastic piece on the incoming president’s desire to start a second Cold War with Vladimir Putin.

Logan Yershov penned their first new C4SS contribution in nearly two years with their takedown of Jeff Deist, “Anarchism not Nationalism.” The feature examines Deist’s reasoning behind their piece, “Market Borders not Open Borders,” and dismantles their idea that, as Yershov put it, “libertarians should embrace the quick-fix solution of selling privatization through the lens of border security.”

The Week in Book and Film Reviews

We got two new reviews this weekend!

James C. Wilson has a review of “Steal This Film,” a movie by the League of Noble Peers which delves into the history of, narrowly, the Pirate Bay; and broadly, file sharing itself. His verdict:

Both parts of the film provide a thought-provoking exploration of ideas that have only become more relevant since its release. Copyright critics and opponents should not only watch the film but share it, copy it and distribute it too.

C4SS editor Chad Nelson has a review of “Cloak and Jaguar: Following a Cat From Desert to Courtroom,” by Janay Brun. The book details the life – and death – of the second-known male jaguar living in the United States, as well as the events that followed its demise by human hands. Chad’s verdict:

Brun’s book concludes with, among other things, the mention of a newly-spotted male jaguar (might he be Macho B’s son or grandson, she wonders?) who has been seen regularly in Macho B’s old stomping grounds. There is hope that individual actors like Brun, who now know about the vicious assault on these beautiful animals, will be motivated to sabotage the conservationists’ and state wildlife authorities’ inevitable efforts to capture and kill him.

Destroy the traps, cover the animals’ tracks, and let them live in peace with the freedom and anonymity they deserve!

Housekeeping

Throughout the next month we’ll be rolling some new features out. Until then, I do just want to mention that we are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that relies on your tax-deductible donations to keep rolling along, putting anarchy into the hands of folks all over the world. Come say hi at ISFLC 2017, be like the generous individuals who have already donated this month, or follow us on Twitter at @c4ssdotorg.

Questions? Comments? Concerns? email me at trevor@c4ss.org or tweet at me at @trevor_c4ss.

Help Bring C4SS to ISFLC 2017!

The Center for a Stateless Society is a left wing market anarchist think tank that utilizes academic studies, book reviews, op-eds, and social media to put left market anarchist ideas at the forefront of libertarianism and to eventually bring about a world where individuals are liberated from oppressive states, structural poverty, and social injustice.

Simply, the Center’s mission is to build a new world in the shell of the old. With Donald Trump ascending to the U.S. Presidency, showing college students and young people the radically egalitarian nature of freed markets is absolutely crucial to tilting the culture away from nationalism, statism, and fascism, and towards one of tolerance, direct action, solidarity, social cooperation, and anarchy.

The International Students For Liberty Conference is the year’s premier gathering of libertarian minds from all over the world – and C4SS is a mere $800 away from getting an exhibitor table at this event. This is a wonderful opportunity to promote radical left anarchist ideas among young liberty lovers from around the globe.

Every penny counts and the Center appreciates any and all help you are willing to give. Let’s get C4SS to ISFLC 2017 and start building the new world!

Donate here.

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 152

Stephen Kinzer discusses China as a psychological problem.

John Payne discusses the War on Drugs and police militarization.

Richard W. Behan discusses the criminal warmaking of Dubya.

Jonathan Cook discusses Israeli hegemony in Palestine.

Renee Parsons discusses the alliance between the Democratic Party and the CIA.

Medea Benjmain discusses the Saudi war in Yemen and U.S. backing.

Daniel L. Davis discusses the fight for Mosul in Iraq.

Patrick Cockburn discusses the conflict in Syria.

Matt Peppe discusses the accusations of Russian interference in the recent U.S. presidential election.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the new Cold War mentality.

Christine Guluzian discusses the current Philipines presidet and U.S. relations with his country.

Roderick Long discusses why there is nothing wrong with flag burning.

Kelley Beaucar Vlahos discusses the bill allowing Americans to sue foreign govts for their acts of terrorism directed against them.

Jon Schwartz dicusses John Bolton and Iraq policy.

George H. Smith discusses how to argue successfully.

Nat Perry discusses the powers Donald Trump will inherit from Obama.

Richaed M. Ebeling discusses Adam Smith’s philosophy.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the collectivist mindset and empire. I am not in agreement with his view of Rex Tillerson.

Neve Gordon discusses Trump’s nominee for ambassador to Israel.

Edward Hunt discusses warfare under Obama.

Abigall R. Blanco discusses the U.S. history of interference in other countries.

Conor Friedersdorf discusses the ticking time bomb scenario justification for torture.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the Russian hacking allegations.

Sam Biddle discusses the protest by IBM employees over cooperation with Trump.

William J. Astore discusses

Thomas L. Knapp discusses the state and Christmas.

Laurence M. Vance discusses conservative nanny statism.

Robert Fisk discusses Samatha power and selective atrocity listing.

David Swanson discusses what racist registeries look like.

Daniel Larison discusses the double standards of interventionists in foreign policy.

Michael Rieger discusses the origins of Japanese liberalism.

Immigration and Liberty Symposium

The Molinari Society will be holding its annual Symposium in conjunction with the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel, 202 East Pratt Street, in Baltimore, January 4-7, 2017. Here’s the current schedule info:

Molinari Society symposium: Libertarianism and Refugees
GFC. Thursday, 5 January 2017, 9:00 a.m.-12:00 noon.

presenters:
James P. Sterba (University of Notre Dame), “Libertarianism and the Rights of Refugees
Jan Narveson (University of Waterloo, Ontario), “Accommodating Refugees and Respecting Liberty

commentators:
Charles W. Johnson (Molinari Institute)
Roderick T. Long (Auburn University)

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to participate in person, but my comments will be read out in absentia.

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 151

The New York Times editorial board discusses the Senate torture report and declassification.

Doug Bandow discusses the rule of law and Donald Trump. There is a lot of right-wing banality in this piece, but it is still of possible interest to free market libertarians,

The New York Times editorial board discusses the drug war fueled slaughter in the Philipines.

Nick Sibilla discusses why undercover cops should stop stings against Uber drivers.

Emma M. Ashford discusses why Trump’s admin should drop the clash of civilizations thesis.

Khaled Abou El Fadl discusses being treated as a national security threat at the U.S.-Canadian border.

Patrick Cockburn discusses ongoing events in the Syrian conflict.

Nikolas K. Gvosdev discusses Russian foreign policy.

A. Barton Hinkle discusses threats to freedom of speech.

Scott McConnell discusses the problems with Bolton.

Alex Nowrasteh discusses the right-wing version of political correctness.

Laurence M. Vance discusses the freedom to travel.

Daniel Kovalik discusses violence in Colombia.

Rory Fanning discusses Japan’s growing anti-war movement.

Robert Fisk discusses the Syrian conflict.

Philip Giraldi discusses the bipartisan interventionist consensus.

Bonnie Kristan discusses three bad ideas from Trump.

Daniel Larison discusses John Bolton’s foreign policy views.

Greg Thielmann discusses John Bolton.

Jim Lobe discusses the worldview of Michael Flynn.

Ramzy Baroud discusses media coverage of the Syrian conflict.

Jacob T. Levy discusses identity politics and the defense of liberty.

Peter Certo discusses CIA subversion abroad.

Spencer Woodman discusses how Peter Thiel stands to benefit from mass deportations under Trump.

Alex Emmons and Mohammed Ali Kafood discuss cluster bombs and their use in Yemen.

Jeremy Scahill discusses a secret intelligence head blog.

Sam Biddle discussess the evidence for and against Russian interference in the ;ast U.S. presidential election.

James Bovard discusses the hypocrisy of governments around the world on corruption.

Phyllis Bennis discusses civilian control of the military.

Virginia Postre discusses the racist history of some progressives.

The Weekly Libertarian Leftist Review 150

Mark Selden discusses the American firebombing and atomic bombing of Japan.

Daniel DePetris discusses the War on Terror.

Laurence M. Vance discusses flag burning.

Laurence M. Vance discusses marijuana and a free society. I don’t agree with his view of what is immoral, but his stance in favor of marijuana being legal is valuable.

Ramzy Baroud discusses the crisis of political leadership in Palestine.

Paul Derienzo discusses Trump’s pick for national security advisor.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the consequences of U.S. interventionism.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses FDR and U.S. interventionism.

Christopher Preble discusses Trump’s foreign policy picks.

Glenn Greenwald discusses a person who put out fake news to try to discredit Wikileaks.

Glenn Greenwald discusses the smear campaign against Keith Ellison.

Rebecca Gordon discusses the U.S. backed war in Yemen.

Glenn Greenwald discusses why anonymous statements to the Washington Post don’t constitute evidence.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses economic fascism and Trump. I am not sure if his historical claim about Mussolini being “democratically elected” is accurate though.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses the Russia-Trump controvsery.

Scott Shackford discusses the outgoing Obama’s attitude on War on Terror practices and compares it to the actual behavior of his admin.

Abigail Hall-Blanco discusses why we should end the War on Drugs in Afghanistan.

Thomas Knapp discusses military spending and Trump.

Patrick Cockburn discusses Turkey and the recent bombings there.

Richard M. Ebeling discusses the philosophy of Adam Smith.

The LA Times editorial board discusses the legalization of street vending in LA.

Doug Bandow discusses Kuwait and political change.

David Swanson discusses the dubious track record of the CIA.

Patrick Cockburn discusses British involvement in the Middle East.

Erin McCarley discusses white nationalist ideology throughout American history.

Yoav Litvin discusses the situation of the Israeli left and the parallels to America.

Yves Engler discusses BDA and anti-semitism accusations in Canada.

Charles R. Larson discusses a book on the Boko Haram kidnapping of over a 100 girls.

Jacob G. Hornberger discusses JFK and the military establishment.

Nick Turse discusses U.S. foreign policy in Africa.

Against Greatness

We’ve been hearing a lot lately about making America “great again” – from a man who seems not to care how many people’s liberty he violates in order to pursue his conception of national greatness.

In this context, I’m happy to announce the Molinari Institute’s latest t-shirt, which features a quotation from Jeffersonian political activist Abraham Bishop, one of the most radical of the American founders:

“A nation which makes greatness its polestar can never be free.”

Thanks to Sheldon Richman for introducing me to this line, which comes from an 1800 antiwar speech titled Oration on the Extent and Power of Political Delusion; here’s a bit of context:

A nation which makes greatness its polestar can never be free; beneath national greatness sink individual greatness, honor, wealth and freedom. But though history, experience and reasoning confirm these ideas; yet all-powerful delusion has been able to make the people of every nation lend a helping hand in putting on their own fetters and rivetting their own chains, and in this service delusion always employs men too great to speak the truth, and yet too powerful to be doubted. Their statements are believed – their projects adopted – their ends answered and the deluded subjects of all this artifice are left to passive obedience through life, and to entail a condition of unqualified non-resistance to a ruined posterity.

Bishop’s other works include an attack on church-state unions and a defense of the insurgent slaves in the Haitian revolution (showing himself, in that connection, a better Jeffersonian than Jefferson himself, who sided with the slaveowners). Bishop also championed women’s education and was an early critic of the Constitution. So he wasn’t an anarchist? Well, nobody’s perfect.

The Fake News Scandal Isn’t Quite What You Think It Is

Welcome to Missing Comma, a bi-weekly look at anarchy in the news.

It would be remiss of us to bring Missing Comma back in the current age without talking about the “fake news” scandal – specifically, how fake it is as a scandal.

For those who have somehow missed the last month of legacy media content, the “fake news” scandal began in earnest on Nov. 17, when the Washington Post published an interview at their internet culture blog, the Intersect, with fake news website creator Paul Horner.

In this interview, Horner said, “I thought they’d fact-check it, and it’d make them look worse. I mean that’s how this always works: Someone posts something I write, then they find out it’s false, then they look like idiots. But Trump supporters — they just keep running with it! They never fact-check anything! Now he’s in the White House. Looking back, instead of hurting the campaign, I think I helped it. And that feels [bad].”

Until this point, the narrative on fake news was that it was a problem, and skewed people’s views during a particularly contentious election season. After this interview, the story – at least as the legacy media portrayed it – changed into something completely different, and interest in the idea of “fake news” as presented shot way up.

Google Trends shows a skyrocketing increase in interest in “fake news” around Nov. 13.

After the Horner interview, fake news became the new buzzword in the political press to mean anything from outright fabrications to satire to clickbait to ideologically-based media. There are even entire campaigns – such as PropOrNot – which aim to seek out such media, under the banner of fighting “Russian propaganda.”

Bewilderingly, PropOrNot has included longtime libertarian stalwarts Antiwar.com and our friends-in-anarchism over at the AntiMedia on their list of “over 200” established media organizations, fake news sites and blogs they’re calling “Russian propagandists.” It’s pretty weird, and their report is… a mess. But we’ll tackle that another time.

In truth, fake news has become a zaxlebax, a package-deal anti-concept that encompasses all of these wildly different media forms and describes nearly none of them correctly. The Onion has never claimed to be anything but satire. Upworthy has never said they don’t use clickbait headlines, and they’re not trying to mislead the public. C4SS, Antiwar, Infoshop or the AntiMedia have never claimed to be objective, nor have they ever misled their readers into believing they were fueled by anything other than their respective ideologies. The only media that really fits the bill of “fake news” in the sense most folks mean by it are actual, fake news websites like “abcnews.com.co” and tabloid news.

These organizations and individuals have no issue writing fake news stories, creating things that never happened, weaponizing people’s naivety and bigotry.

And to their credit, the folks over at the Washington Post’s Intersect blog recognize this and did a write-up on it the other day.

Snip:

Fake news has, in a period of weeks, gone from a concern about how we share news online today to a meme — one that allows nearly any source of information to be “fake.” It seems inevitable that the Internet will continue to twist the term “fake news” into new definitions.

John Herrman at the New York Times also recognized the issue with fake news as a concept:

“Fake news” as shorthand will almost surely be returned upon the media tenfold. The fake news narrative, as widely understood and deployed, has already begun to encompass not just falsified, fabricated stories, but a wider swath of traditional media on Facebook and elsewhere. Fox News? Fake news. Mr. Trump’s misleading claims about Ford keeping jobs in America? Fake news. The entirety of hyperpartisan Facebook? Fake news. This wide formulation of “fake news” will be applied back to the traditional news media, which does not yet understand how threatened its ability is to declare things true, even when they are.

Essentially, there is no longer a premium on credibility, and the same tactics that led to the rise of the alt-right as a meaningful force are on full display now. Redirect concern, misdirect from intent, obfuscate the truth.

Jay Rosen, a journalism professor at NYU, puts it best in a column he wrote last week. He said:

So what I mean by a miss bigger than a missed story is this. It is one thing to bypass the journalists and go directly to voters. It’s another to pull up the press by its roots. It’s one thing to lie for political advantage. It’s another to keep lying to prove you have the power. The retreat from empiricism was a disturbance in 2004. Twelve years later it is a political style in utter ascendency. “When we act, we create our own reality” was a boast in the Bush White House, a bit of outrageousness intended to shock the reporter. Now we have Trump’s attempt to substitute his reality for news of the world. Covering Trump was a massive challenge. Recovering from him may be all but impossible for the political press.

As anarchists, we here at C4SS have always engaged in what is, essentially, a propagandistic mission: to evangelize anarchism to folks outside of academic or activist circles and create cultures of conversation about radical politics in small towns through the main vehicle of small-town talk – the local newspaper. But we have never done so by hiding our intentions or shying away from calling ourselves anarchists. As a result, we have, in recent years, seen diminishing returns from newspapers that once ran our work and now don’t. But telling the truth about our politics and then offering ideas surrounding that has always been our aim, and not one we’re going to drop.

There is an idea I’ve had about media since I started writing Missing Comma in 2013. Namely, it’s that you could apply the same ethics and integrity that power legacy media like the New York Times and Washington Post to media run, staffed and read by anarchists. That you could create media with the same standards of quality and ideas about gathering information and presenting it to people that “mainstream” press did, but without any of the pretense toward neutrality, or away from ideological viewpoints. I don’t know that we’ve done that yet. I’d like to see us try. It might make the next however many years easier.

Markets Not Capitalism
Organization Theory
Conscience of an Anarchist