The Acorn – 60

acorn 2019bNumber 60


In this issue:

  1. Resisting global fascism
  2. “We are not dupes!”
  3. ‘Anarchists’ join the Government in the fight against nature and the stripping of our rights
  4. Intoxicated with technology
  5. Bharatan Kumarappa: an orgrad inspiration
  6. Acorninfo

1.  Resisting global fascism

From Belgrade to Montreal, from Dublin to Warsaw, from Auckland to Hull, thousands upon thousands of people are saying ‘no’ to the capitalo-fascist new world normal.

We are delighted to report that so many protests are breaking out, that we can hardly keep up any more, but here are a few highlights…

Huge crowds protested two weeks ago in Croatia against the Covid-based dictatorship.

Banners included: “Take off the mask, turn off the TV, live life to the fullest”, “Covid is a lie, we’re not all covidiots” and “Better the grave than to be a slave”.

On September 12 a crowd of at least 1,000 gathered outside the United Nations headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, demanding the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions.

Said one media report: “Protesters booed the World Health Organization (WHO), which has its headquarters in Geneva, and criticised the global health body for its efforts to find a Covid-19 vaccine. Some accused the WHO of being controlled by outside interests”.

Parents and schoolchildren in Utah, USA, have been making headlines for protesting against compulsory masks.

“Freedom is essential, rights are essential!” was the message at a massive anti-lockdown Freedom Rally in Vancouver, Canada, on September 13.

On September 14 a crowd of anti-mask protesters walked through a supermarket in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, shouting “take your masks off!” and “we’re not going to take it any more!”.

In the UK, there are signs that the government’s new “rule of six” restrictions could prove to be the final straw that broke the Covid camel’s back.

“We’re winning!” declared Brian Gerrish of stalwartly anti-lockdown UK Column on September 14.

Even previously unquestioning individuals are now noticing that there is an agenda behind all of this, which has absolutely nothing to do with protecting people from a virus.

Some well-known figures are also starting to speak up. Noel Gallagher of rock group Oasis said on September 14 that he refuses to wear a mask, adding: “The whole thing’s bollocks. You’re supposed to wear them in Selfridges, yet you can f*cking go down the pub and be surrounded by every fucking c*nt. Do you know what I mean? There’s too many fucking liberties being taken away… I just think it’s a piss take”.

Ian Brown, erstwhile lead singer with the Stone Roses, pointed out on the same day that “conspiracy theorist” is “a term invented by the lame stream media to discredit those who can smell and see through the government/media lies and propaganda”.

Alongside general flouting of the police-state rules and increasing contempt for the system which is imposing it, demonstrations are also being staged around the country. See the StandUpX site for latest details.

Two more big protests are coming up in London, with mass gatherings being advertised for 12 noon in Trafalgar Square on both Saturday September 19 and Saturday September 26.

We are again calling for Acorn readers to take an active part in these protests, not least in order to influence other rebels in a healthily radical political direction.

Our pdf version of ‘Resist the Fourth Industrial Repression’ is designed to be handed out at events like these, for example (hint, hint).

The freedom-loving anarchists at The South Essex Heckler put it this way: “While we’ve made it pretty clear we have no brief for the organisers of these protests and some of the dubious speakers they invite, we would urge anarchists and radicals to leave their comfort zones and try to engage with those who choose to attend.

“There are two reasons for this. Firstly to offer an alternative pole of attraction to the alt right elements who are sniffing round the fringes and seeking to capitalise on people’s growing anger at the imposition of the ‘new normal’.

“Secondly, if these protests are broken up with some degree of force and followed up with numerous prosecutions, bear in mind that it could well be us next in line for this treatment”.

As another anarchist, Paul Cudenec, recently wrote on his blog: “Our resistance needs to come from our hearts. We need to shake off worries about the consequences of speaking up and fighting back – we need to go with what we feel is right.

“We need to tap into the energies of solidarity, belonging and togetherness that have always played a huge role in human society but which are being deliberately destroyed by those who would control us”.

We also echo the words of Alan Hamilton, in a September 16 piece on the Off-Guardian site: “My personal opinion is that the global program of lockdowns is a mechanism for reorganizing societies around the world along the lines of the World Economic Forum’s ‘Great Reset’ agenda and all that this entails”.

“The only way we will arrest and/or reverse this trend is if we all take direct, non-violent, physical (not digital) action to exercise our civic and democratic rights at every opportunity we can. The time to speak up and stand up is now. It will be too late tomorrow”.

See also: The uprising has begun!

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2.  “We are not dupes!”

France and England are only 21 miles apart at the closest point, but in the political realm the distance can feel a lot more substantial.

At a moment when people across the world are rebelling against the global Covid-coup dictatorship (see above), France has a bit of a head-start.

It already has an well-organised autonomous grassroots street movement opposed to authoritarian global neoliberalism, which knows full well that the mass media pump out pro-system propaganda, that the police are violent thugs sent out to crush dissent and that western “democracy” is a hollow illusion hiding a corrupt and murderous tyranny!

The Gilets Jaunes were back in action on Saturday September 12, with big turn-outs in Paris and all over the country reminding the Macronist regime that they are still a force to be reckoned with.

The regional protest in the southern city of Montpellier attracted an impressive crowd despite inevitably being banned by the authorities.

The march got under way in almost comic circumstances, after riot cops turned up in the Place de la Comédie and tried to encircle the hundreds who were gathering.

But the roles were quickly reversed and the police found themselves surrounded by a ring of protesters.

This obviously made them feel uncomfortable and they retreated to the edge of the square, leaving the way clear for the protest to head off up the road from which the cops had initially emerged, setting off a yellow flare in celebration.

The march was feisty, up-beat and of all ages, animated by the usual songs about Macron and the fight for “a better world” and by chants of “a-, anti-, anti-capitalista” and “révolution!”.

“We are not dupes!” declared one placard. “They are not corrupt, they are the corruption!” said another.

The protest wound through little alleys in the medieval city centre, occasionally breaking into smaller groups and largely succeeding in avoiding the cops, although some protesters were confronted with tear gas.

The Gilets Jaunes’ message remains the same as before the Covid crisis and the movement as a whole is not explicitly anti-mask or Covid-sceptic.

But leaflets were going around on the Montpellier demo with a specifically anti-mask message and voices  challenging the Covid narrative were certainly not shouted down or confronted by fellow protesters. There is clearly, at the very least, an overlap.

The big difference with the UK is that there is no need in France for those rebelling against the New Normal to form a new movement, because the Gilets Jaunes are already there.

When the movement emerged in November 2018, it was regarded with suspicion by many on the left, because it included nationalist and far right elements.

But, because of its fundamental anti-state and anti-capitalist position, the new movement quickly found its identity as a broad anti-system alliance untainted either by the racism of the right or the more absurd ultraliberal dogma of the left.

In other words, it already has the strength and maturity to take on board criticism of newnormalist totalitarianism without running scared of ideological contamination from a fetishized “diametric opposite”.

UK anti-capitalists please take note.

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3. ‘Anarchists’ join the Government in the fight against nature and the stripping of our rights

by Marion (anarchist since 1982)

I wonder when the left started being in favour of the (police?) state. I wonder when people stopped thinking for themselves and started blindly believing the media. I wonder when people who believed in natural remedies started believing the pharmaceutical giants instead. I’m sure they haven’t always done that.

I wonder when anarchism stopped meaning people taking charge of their life and started meaning submitting to whatever the authorities decide is right. In fact I remember a time when the majority (not even just anarchists and the left) started to realise the government and the media were telling porkies. Suddenly, because of a virus, all that seems to have changed with some people.

Yes, we were all saying at first (and still are saying) that wet markets should be abolished. Of course they do; but isn’t that difficult to campaign about from the UK (except for the UK ones)? While wet markets continue, there will be viruses and we need to be able to deal (naturally) with those viruses while they are around. Of course, the virus may have come from a laboratory instead, accidentally or deliberately, but either way viruses should not be manufactured whether for biological warfare or to develop strategies against pathogens; it’s dangerous! But for a lot of anarchists, lefties and animal rights people this hasn’t appeared to move on to questioning how a virus could be dealt with or to advocating living in more natural ways.

Authorities know that they can control people either through fear or by telling people they are saving lives. Because anarchists tend to protect the underdog, the vulnerable, the disabled etc, this has worked superbly with them. They believe that the extreme measures in this crazy new world is protecting those people. Yet lockdown, social distancing and cancelling everything that isn’t to do with Covid makes many vulnerable people’s lives more difficult – a shame that needs to be said as it is really so obvious; elderly people not allowed to see their families or sit with others, elderly and disabled having to queue and use stairs because lifts are not in use, people dying because of cancelled operations, the stress of not being able to get through to services and organisations. And ‘containing’ the virus means keeping it.

In early March people were carrying on with their activities as normal; these were not all reckless and selfish people; they included mindful types; martial arts enthusiasts, drama groups, yoga teachers and herbalists. We agreed that sick or vulnerable people should avoid public places wherever possible – so far fine. We were helping people with compromised immune systems by leaving shopping and remedies outside their houses. Then lockdown.

Some anarchists say they were locking down, masking up etc before actual lockdown began but I’m sure it was not long before; the first case of the virus in the UK was in January yet those anarchists were not distancing for a long time unless they were sick or vulnerable. Then the fear and the idea of ‘responsibility’ seeped in, fuelled by propaganda and media hysteria and, after advice and then orders from the Government, they stopped their activities. This was not just because they were furloughed or paid by the Government; some moved them online (as if we don’t already use computers more than is good for us).

Some, bizarrely, stopped talking about vitamins, herbs, good diet, exercise. Neal’s Yard closed its shop (apparently through lack of customers). After a while some thought any group activities to be dangerous and that ‘not hugging’ is a loving act (rather than hugging actually improving the immune system).

Nearly six months after the first case of Covid-19 in the UK, we are being told to wear masks and still to social distance, yet at the beginning of the crisis, pandemic or whatever you want to call it and even in the worst part of it, there were very few people wearing them. Masks only actually protect other people, not the person wearing it, for whom it’s quite bad for their health and uncomfortable, unless you’re just wearing a scarf around your face.

During every flu epidemic, Swineflu etc, have people even discussed social distancing, locking down, wearing masks, mass vaccination of the population? Certainly we should be careful during those times, look after our health, perhaps not go to places that are too crowded etc and being responsible is a good thing if it is well-thought-out with good reasoning. But we have never before gone to these extremes, shutting everything down, distancing etc, and if you look at the facts and the science, CV-19 is no worse than any other disease we have had.*

As for vaccination, which everything seems to be moving towards and some anarchists and even animal rights people are actually wanting, well, we have natural immune systems; vaccinations tamper with them and actually make us less immune to viruses in general, and sometimes worse (brain damage etc).

Is this compliance by anarchists also because of not wanting to be associated with the Alt Right? That right-wing libertarians (including Trump) believe in freedom (or say they do), therefore the left want absolutely nothing to do with freedom? Even though the Freedom organisation is still called that!

Of course, we know that Trump and Bolsanaro and Johnson and libertarian capitalists don’t really agree with freedom, or only for themselves, not for poor people. There is a hatred of ‘conspiracy theories’ among the left. This is despite most anarchists believing in at least some of them; the facts that GM crops are bad news and that vaccinations sometimes have detrimental effects are actually classed by some as conspiracy theories. Many of those theories have quickly become facts, such as there are no WMDs hidden in Iraq.

Now many anarchists seem to disbelieve and ridicule the fact that natural remedies and herbs can often cure diseases. They identify conspiracy theories with right wing (and I think aligning conspiracy theory with right wing ideology is a conspiracy itself, by those that control us). I’m sure the ‘alternative’ people didn’t use to believe everything the medical profession and Big Pharma told them. What is right wing about a belief in natural cures and preventions?!

It’s also because they have been caught up by the old Divide and Rule tactic. The rulers (governments, Deep State, multinationals, Bilderberg or whoever) do that to people all the time; anarchists should know that, yet many of them are being duped by it. They really should know better. I guess those in power must be clever. They did Divide and Rule very well with Brexit, they’ve always done it in condemning people, via the media, who are taking strike action, and with countless other issues. We need to be cleverer; that involves thinking for ourselves more, a lot more.

Some anarchists and lefties are doing that, the ones who don’t blindly follow the pack but have questioning minds and independent views. We need to stop complying with what the government says but instead do what we think is right; if enough people do that the state(s) will have no power.

So why can’t we reclaim the concept of freedom from the ‘alt right’? Instead, a lot of anarchists are renouncing everything about freedom and self-governance, saying that actually anarchism is about mutual aid. Yes of course mutual aid comes into the anarchist ideology but the actual definition of anarchism is ‘without government’. It does not allow for coercion in any way – either by laws, physical coercion or guilt-tripping (which I have heard a lot of).

Another thing that has been happening is that some anarchists are accusing the anti-lockdowners of being selfish. Yet in reality there is selfishness and selflessness on both sides. Many anti-lockdowners are empathic about people losing their jobs and possibly their homes, about other people living on their own, people who have no garden. And many who believe lockdown was/is the right thing to do are in a situation where they are not affected by it, being paid for not having to work (and so they should be, especially in this situation), taking the opportunity to do creative or educational things, so it seems to me that some of them like lockdown because it is personally good for them.

And of course some anti-lockdowners are that mainly for selfish reasons and some who are pro lockdown are not benefitting from it but believe in some way that it is saving others. There are also a lot of people (all of us?) who contradict ourselves, eg, one minute we say it’s tragic that the elderly are on their own at the end of their life and then say it has to be done.

Whether you are pro or anti lockdown is really not about selfish or unselfish; I believe it is about behaving sanely in an insane world. It is about working with nature rather than fighting against it (and with the government and the pharmaceutical industry). It is about thinking for yourself, rather than going along with what your friends or comrades are saying or what the WHO, NHS, media and government is saying.

Actually this new normal is not that new really; a lot of things have been leading up to this point, such as new regulations against alternative remedies being brought in, extreme health and safety rules, increasingly severe anti-union laws, the criminalisation of squatting and increased surveillance.

Apart from all of this, it is so obvious that what the authorities are doing has nothing to do with a virus, so either there was a conspiracy from the beginning or they are using the situation to control us and bring in new rules and systems. It may be governments doing it but I think more likely it is a group of world technocrats making governments do it (Johnson etc being puppets).

Here are just ten of the reasons for thinking there is a hidden agenda:

1. No lockdown or social distancing was done during all other epidemics or pandemics, except perhaps in China and some other far eastern countries.
2. Quarantines when coming into the UK from other countries were not brought in until June, five months after the first case.
3. Elderly put into care homes after discharge from hospital, including those who possibly had CV-19.
4. If they really wanted to end the virus they would test for antibodies, a far more effective way of controlling a virus and stopping it spreading.
5. Doctors are being made to put CV-19 as cause of death when it was not: https://www.bbc.com/news/health-53443724
6. CV-19 cases are being counted twice (admitted by the mainstream media now such as Sky News).
7. Masks have become mandatory six months after the first CV-19 case, why not before?
8. New lockdowns have been brought in when there are very few new cases and deaths, even if they were really all Covid deaths, eg. 5 new CV deaths per day in the whole of Spain, 7 new deaths in Victoria, Australia.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-australia-53627038
9. The World Health Organisation itself has said that children do not pass covid to adults. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/children-don-e2-80-99t-pass-covid-19-to-adults-report-indicates/ar-BB13psyK
10. Bill Gates has said he wants to vaccinate the entire world! https://architectsforsocialhousing.co.uk/2020/04/23/good-morning-coronazombies-diary-of-a-bio-political-crisis-event/

There are many more. Everyone knows about the multitude of contradictions in the information about the virus and in the rules; some recent ones are ferry companies saying passengers are now not allowed to stay in their vehicles and that medical prescriptions must now be ordered by coming to the health centre while the clinics are at the same time saying they are trying to minimise visits to those clinics.

If anyone thinks this is all just ignorance and incompetence on the part of the governments and big business, no it cannot be, they are not that stupid! The answer to all of this is that the agenda is not to control the virus; that is not why they are doing all these things. But I’m not going to tell you why they’re doing it because I’d be guessing (though it could be because the pharmaceutical industry and others want to make more money, because the authorities want to control us because they’re worried we’re questioning governments too much, because they’re doing all this as a step before doing something else bigger and even more controlling, because they want to ‘re-set’, because they want to bring in a new world order); that’s for everyone to find out.

* https://www.globalresearch.ca/manufactured-pandemic-testing-people-any-strain-coronavirus-not-specifically-covid-19/5707781
https://www.rt.com/op-ed/490006-death-certificates-covid-19-do-not-trust/?fbclid=IwAR35QpanoT3JTVphvW3xaVF5-ahpblv6hrIkhQcNBRmENaUtqWFSlBFsBeo
https://www.collective-evolution.com/2020/04/26/er-doctor-claims-covid-19-is-being-made-to-look-worse-than-it-really-is/

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4. Intoxicated with technology

by Ronan

Intoxicated by our technology
Some so smitten
They wish to merge it with their biology
Eyeing up parts of their anatomy
Being human is just
Not enough for me
I swear I was born to be a God
I feel so restricted by my human form
Once I’m done
I’ll stalk the earth like Magog
it’s all perfectly natural
It’s Darwinian progress see
It’s not that I don’t like being human
Or that I’m envious of machines
and what we can do with them
I just honestly think it’s a good idea
To change my natural frequency
So I can become a superman
and live in a permanent delinquency
After all, what has the Human form done for me
I want to be like those superheroes they have on the big screens
Transhumanism is the future human you see
Some geek guy said that on a curved TV
He must be right as he has a PhD
But wait a minute what about our friends the Military
Oh those guys are just 50 steps ahead
Always have our best interests
At the forefront of their intent
They’re slowly showing us what’s behind their curtain
A twisted form of humanity they envisage
Of this, you can be certain
A cyborg soldier will never disobey
Retreat or show combat dismay
Have we really exhausted all of our potential and capabilities
Tapped every brain cell explored every possibility
Obviously, this thing will never get abused
As they’ve got a computer program
To make sure I don’t get con”fused”
Oh it’s so lucky they’ve thought of everything
The fourth industrial age is aimed at us
Inside and outside
This technological economic bubble
Will never go bust
As a human being can be conditioned to want more
In this, you can trust.
Edward Bernays proved that without any fuss
Once we’re told we can upgrade ourselves
Then I’ll know we’ve turned paradise into hell
I’m suspicious as fuck about all of this
Technological implants ain’t for me
I’ll take my chances with my faults and flaws
As they’re an intrinsic part of who I’m meant to be
Overcoming these things is the path to real personal growth
understanding what you are and are not
Is probably more important than both
Are we really standing at a possible Cyborg future
If we are I might start shooting
I’ll tell them I thought it was a giant malfunctioning toaster
But no doubt the judge will be a robot
Humans can’t be trusted it seems
But I’m more worried about some of our ideas
Once that is they’re allowed to roam free

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5. Bharatan Kumarappa: an orgrad inspiration

The latest in our serious of profiles from the orgrad website.

“Unless something radical is done to Capitalism, it would seem that through it humanity is likely to be wiped out”

Bharatan Kumarappa (1896-1957) was a scholar, writer and activist close to Mohandas Gandhi and, like him, strongly opposed to industrial-capitalist imperialism.

The younger brother of J. C. Kumarappa, he was the Indian editor of Gandhi’s collected works.

He wrote the book Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, published in 1946, while a political prisoner of the British occupying regime.

Gandhi, in his foreword to this work, credits Kumarappa with coining the word “villagism” to describe their shared vision of a decentralised community-based way of living built on traditional crafts and culture.

traditional indian life

Kumarappa aimed the book at Indian village workers, rather than at intellectuals and used it to convey a powerful anti-capitalist message.

He declared: “Unless something radical is done to Capitalism, it would seem that through it humanity is likely to be wiped out”. (1)

Kumarappa said that capitalism’s cult of uncontrolled selfishness was the worst possible basis for any civilization and had created societies “where men in their greed for gain become worse than brutes and compete with each other in fraud, deception, inhuman cruelties and world-wide exploitation and destruction”. (2)

In the religious language of the Bhagavad Gita, he said, capitalism had in fact led “to the establishment of a world of demons”. (3)

In common with Gandhi and other thinkers who inspire organic radicalism, Kumarappa insisted that complete rejection of capitalism must go deeper than the surface of its political presence and address the physical existence of its centralised industrial infrastructures.

india train

He wrote: “The instinct of the anarchist is right when he wants to do away with the tyranny of organisation. But, as we have already pointed out, this can be no more than a dream so long as large-scale production and distribution are adopted”. (4)

An advocate of what would today be termed “degrowth”, Kumarappa challenged the dominant definition of progress, warning that it should not be taken as meaning “a multitude of goods”. (5)

He explained: “If it is realised that progress is not so much a matter of the material environment as a growth in the intelligence, character and artistic sense of the individual, it would seem that it is only under a decentralised economic order that true progress will be possible.

“On the other hand, today, under the centralised economic order, we appear to be descending below the level of the beast, hating, exploiting and destroying each other on a world scale, and reducing the average man to a standardised automaton incapable of thinking and acting for himself”. (6)

Indian moneyIn putting forward the idea of barter as a healthy means of exchange, he questioned why modern societies insisted on “interposing this purely human device of money between food and starvation”.

He asked: “Why should not a man who is eager to give his labour or his produce have direct access to the commodities he wants without first having to change them into money?” (7)

Kumarappa said that however much an economic system might succeed in bringing riches, it would be unstable and prove a failure if in the process it caused human suffering, or in any way hindered people from a full life.

He added: “And, conversely, even if an economic system secures only a subsistence, it will prove stable and adequate if it tends to promote the well-being of all”. (8)

This alternative Gandhian system, villagism, was rooted in ancient pre-capitalist ways of living and was not directly drawn from the Western socialist tradition, he explained.

“The idea of social ownership of production and sharing of things in common was not original to Socialism. Such an arrangement existed in some form or other even in early times, when a whole community or village held land and other property in common and distributed wealth among its members”. (9)

soviet stateIndeed, Kumarappa was highly critical of orthodox socialism for its dependence on a central state to manage its supposedly egalitarian society.

He warned: “As Capitalism took away wealth which rightly belonged to the people and accumulated it in the hands of the capitalist, Socialism takes away the power which rightly belongs to the people and concentrates it in the State.

“And concentration of power is not less dangerous than concentration of wealth; for men get intoxicated with power and can use it with disastrous effect against those who disagree with them”. (10)

A decentralised village-orientated way of life was a bulwark against all concentrations of power, on the national and international level: “We must not think of Villagism therefore as only a matter of economic arrangement but as a social order aiming at ridding the world of imperialism and war”. (11)

RamanujaIn his 1934 book The Hindu Conception of the Deity, Kumarappa set out to counter “critics who think that morality finds no place in the philosophical and religious thought of India”. (12)

To do this, he focused on the teaching of his Tamil predecessor, Ramanuja, the medieval Hindu theologian and philosopher of the Sri Vaishnavism tradition, as opposed to the earlier theology of Adis Shankara or Samkara

Kumarappa said some in the West seemed to imagine that Hinduism regarded the world of experience, the world of life and activity, as unreal.

He objected: “Even if such a criticism be true of Samkara’s philosophy, it certainly cannot claim to be true of all Hindu philosophy.

“Ramanuja, at any rate, repudiates at every turn the doctrine of the illusoriness of the material world and the finite self, and postulates that ultimate Reality is one in which the material world and finite self find a necessary place.

“Nay more, he claims that the ideals by which we live – the perfections of truth, goodness and love – are rooted in the very heart of the Eternal”. (13)

B Kumarappa book2

1. Bharatan Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism (Madras: Shakti Press, 1946), p. 11.
2. Ibid.
3. Ibid.
4. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, p. 104.
5. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, p. 193.
6. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, pp. 193-94.
7. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, p. 153.
8. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, p. 112.
9. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, p. 58.
10. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, p. 105.
11. Kumarappa, Capitalism, Socialism or Villagism, p. 192.
12. Bharatan Kumarappa, The Hindu Conception of the Deity: As Culminating in Ramanuja (Luzak & Co, 1934), p. xiv.
13. Kumarappa, The Hindu Conception of the Deity, p.xiii.

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6. Acorninfo

Hinduism is the world’s largest nature-based religion, recognising the sacred in the living world around us, writes Viva Kermani in this enlightening article. She continues: “It views the earth as our Mother, and hence, advocates that it should not be exploited. A loss of this understanding that earth is our mother, or rather a deliberate ignorance of this, has resulted in the abuse, and the exploitation of the earth and its resources”.

* * *

“Our country is being run by a real-life mafia, comprised of a small group who has assumed a powerful form of global authority. These mafia heads have many minions who populate the pharmaceutical industry and government leadership and regulatory positions. These mafia underlings then have their many minions which include elected officials, university and education system officials, the mainstream media, and public health officials. And as of late, this despotic mafia has succeeded in enlisting citizens to ‘police’ one another, both voluntarily and for pay, via snitch lines, social media shaming, contact tracers, informants who report violations, and non-police enforcers of mask wearing and physical distancing”. Powerful stuff from Laura Hayes in ‘The Catastrophic Costs of Complying‘.

* * *

“We are now taking this Corona investigation into our own hands because we can no longer wait” says Dr. Heiko Schöning of the recently-launched international Corona Extra-Parliamentary Inquiry Committee. With the shocking absence of any scrutiny of the many dubious aspects of the Covid coup, this is a much-needed initiative.

* * *

Scientists have created a new type of robot which they claim is “literally alive”.  Says this report: “Xenobots are a scientific and technological breakthrough — a living organism that is fully programmable, capable of changing form and function essentially on command”. Coincidentally, that also seems to be the preferred destiny for what were once free human beings…

* * *

“Foundations often collaborate closely with the CIA, but it would be incorrect to say that the foundations are controlled by the CIA. It is rather that same people who control the foundations, also control the government – including the CIA”, explains Gregory Sinaisky in ‘Fabricating a Pandemic – Who Could Organize It and Why‘. He adds: “The plutocrats have huge resources and many thousands of trained professionals to perform these tasks. Therefore, they are very likely to have the appropriate tools required to create a false pandemic”.

* * *

As the rhetoric of racial division increasingly eclipses the reality of a shared suffering under the rule of the global capitalist elite, a timely analysis of ‘Fascism and the Deadlock of Race‘ has been produced by Rhyd Wildermuth. He writes: “It benefits the capitalist class – and only truly the capitalist class – to reproduce and maintain race as a identity category”.

* * *

“This New Model robs children of their childhood. It will lead them to a life of debt and servitude”. ‘Lifelong Learning‘ is a superb video exposé created by the Book of Ours team, examining the chilling way in which the  newnormalist elite regard other people’s children as nothing more than “human capital” to be controlled and exploited at their sociopathic leisure.

* * *

COVID-19: Evidence of Fraud, Medical Malpractice, Acts of Domestic Terrorism and Breaches of Human Rights is a very thorough and detailed report from Andrew Johnson, a “citizen of good conscience”. He explains: “This document submission brings together COVID-19 related evidence which most or all authorities seem to either be unaware of, or have decided to ignore. It is presented in an attempt to reverse this situation”.

* * *

Acorn quote: “Capitalism can only function if the mass of the population have no choice but to be part of its pyramid of exploitation. It cannot tolerate anyone opting out of its system and is always prepared to use violence to bring people under its economic control”.

Paul Cudenec

(For many more like this, see the Winter Oak quotes for the day blog)

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The uprising has begun!

acorn 2019bSpecial report

Aug 29 photo 8
Trafalgar Square, London, August 29, 2020

These last six months have been lonely and often desperate ones for those of us who have not swallowed the Covid agenda.

Not only have we seen our basic freedoms come under attack, but we have done so in the full and bitter knowledge that these draconian measures are not in the least bit necessary and not at all about “protecting” ourselves and our fellow citizens.

We have been assuaged with unrelenting fear-mongering propaganda that we know to be just that: even if we steer clear of corporate-state media, this is blasted out at us in the form of endless announcements, posters and notices and also mirrored grotesquely in the muzzled and cowed submission of those around us.

newnorrmalist grey world

We have had to be braced for constant conflict with the state’s officials and eager vigilantes out to impose compliance with the humiliating collective punishments of “lockdown”, “social distancing” and masks.

We have had to think twice about voicing our opinions, for fear of inviting not just disagreement, but outright hostility, abuse, insult, contempt and rejection, even from those to whom we imagined we were personally or politically closest.

And we haven’t been able to look forward to any happier years ahead of us, because all that we once hoped for has been swept aside by a chilling nightmare vision of faceless robotic slavery under the ruthless jackboot of the Fourth Industrial Repression.

But now, at the end of the 2020 summer, something has changed.

The massive demonstrations that took place in several European cities on Saturday August 29, notably London and Berlin, have broken us out of our solitary confinement.

We can see plainly now that there are others out there thinking the same way as us. Thousands upon thousands of others!

Trafalgar Square in London was packed full of protesters, with estimates of as many as 35,000 or 40,000 people, who later moved on to fill Whitehall.

aug291338

They managed to turn up through their own initiative, without party political, trade union or NGO organising, without fleets of hired coaches, promoted hashtags or XR-style media hype.

Of course, where the protest wasn’t simply ignored, it was always going to be smeared.

The “conspiracy theory” tag wasn’t hard to attach, given that David Icke was making a guest appearance, but that wasn’t enough of an insult for some.

So-called “leftists” and “anarchists” scrambled to share the same photo of a couple of men on the outer fringes of the square displaying (momentarily perhaps) a flag which apparently relates to the late and unlamented British Union of Fascists (disbanded 1940).

For these critics this single image was somehow triumphant proof that all the tens of thousands of people present were either “fascists” or being manipulated by fascists.

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These clowns are unwilling or (more charitably) unable to grasp that we are witnessing  a historic reshaping of the essential political divide, as foreshadowed in France by the Gilets Jaunes since 2018.

This is now, quite simply, about ordinary people standing up to the exploitative dictatorship of the global capitalist technocratic elite.

At this moment of enormous existential crisis for the freedom and well-being of humankind, all certainties around previous political classifications have been thrown out of the window.

As one participant put it: “We are left, we are right, we are young, old, black, white, we are the working class. And our eyes are open. Don’t believe the hype. The Unite For Freedom march was very diverse. We cannot afford to be divided any longer”.

aug291368

This new 2020s wave of revolt is all about resisting the power of both big business and the state, with an understanding that these forces have now effectively merged.

Combined with its instinctive defence of freedom and real democracy, this makes it eminently compatible with common-sense anarchism of the old-fashioned variety, to which we subscribe.

If contemporary anarchists want to turn this potential into something more solid, then they are going to have to take off their protective mind-blinkers, brave the risk of political contamination from the Great Ideologically Unwashed, and get involved with the broad front.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr, JFK’s nephew, addressed the same issue in Berlin, where the authorities (both of state and of ideological correctness) have slapped a “far right” label on the whole broad-based protest movement on the basis of minority nationalist involvement.

Robert F Kennedy Jr BerlinHe told a massive freedom rally that the US media would accuse him of having come to Germany to address thousands of “Nazis”, but declared that what he was seeing before him was “the opposite of Nazism”.

“I see people who love democracy, people who want open government, people who want leaders who are not going to lie to them. People who want leaders who will not make up arbitrary rules and regulations to orchestrate obedience of the population.

“We want health officials who don’t want financial entanglements with the pharmaceutical industry, who are working for us and not Big Pharma.

“We want officials who care about our children’s health and not about pharmaceutical profits or government control”.

aug291360

It felt clear to us, when we wrote in advance about this weekend (see Acorn 59), that it was going to be huge and important. And so it has proved.

But what next? Various local demos are planned across England (for the latest info see the StandUpX website) and, north of the border, there will be a ‘Saving Scotland’ March on Holyrood.

The meet-up is near the Scottish parliament in Edinburgh at 1pm on Saturday September 5.

Saturday September 26 is being mentioned as the date of the next big protest in London.

As our comrades at the South Essex Heckler point out, though, large-scale set-piece demonstrations are not the be-all-and-end-all.

They write: “Sure, there’s a place for intelligently organised street protests and actions but more than that, there’s always a place for dispersed, sustained action that aims to sabotage and eventually bring down the existing order.

“We favour long term, dispersed action that will eventually crash the new (ab)normal. We’ve frequently posted about building the new world we want inside the shell of the increasingly dystopian one we’re forced to endure – now is the time to grab the opportunity to do just that”.

aug1361

Delighted though we are at the numbers now expressing their opposition to the totalitarian New World Normal, we don’t want to create any false sense of complacency.

What we are witnessing is just the start of a worldwide uprising.

aug291371The totalitarian capitalist elite have been planning this coup for years, probably even decades, and they are not going to cave in at the drop of a hat, tinfoil or otherwise.

If ignoring and smearing the protest movement does not successfully quell resistance, then we can expect other forms of repression to be deployed.

Outright police-state brutality is a real possibility, as the people of Melbourne, Australia, have been experiencing.

But this will always be a double-edged sword for the authorities, which is why they haven’t immediately leapt into that mode everywhere.

If it becomes blatantly obvious that opposition to their “Great Reset” is being crushed by force, they will start to lose the majority consent which they have been so careful to build up with their propaganda.

The cat will be out of the bag and they will risk stirring up the anger of huge swathes of the population, particularly if the resistance can remain untainted by “right” or “left” labels.

So we can probably expect lots more propaganda, divide-and-rule and other classic British “counter-insurgency” tactics to be deployed, and fail, before the state feels it needs to play its final violent card.

aug29xx

There is a tough struggle ahead of us, that’s for sure, with no guarantee that we will succeed in seeing off and bringing down the dark forces of corporate transhumanist dictatorship.

But at least we have those images of the August 29 protest in our heads, images of people, all kinds of people, united by their capacity to grasp what is going on and their courage to stand up and oppose it.

People with different worldviews, from various backgrounds and all with their personal faults and failings, no doubt.

But also people with faces. People with minds of their own. People with principles.

Real people. Living people. People like us.

Now we all know that we are not alone!

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aug291369

Photos  by Max Hogster

(except top and Robert. F. Kennedy Jr)

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The Acorn – 59

acorn 2019bNumber 59

In this issue:

  1. Stand up to tyranny!
  2. The Great Battle for the Future
  3. Smart means dead
  4. Tracksuits, traumas and class traitors
  5. Henry David Thoreau: an orgrad inspiration
  6. Acorninfo

1.  Stand up to tyranny!

AUG 29 POSTER

Hope is rising that people are finally seeing through the neoliberal corona-lies and are ready to stand up to the 21st century tyranny of newnormalism.

With so many sold-out phoney rebels on the “left” openly backing the new totalitarianism, other people, from a wide range of backgrounds, have had to step forward and urge resistance to the nightmarish global dictatorship.

Many of these are rallying behind the banner of StandUpX (see Resistance Update and Acorn 58) which, as this article explains, has seen numbers on its protests shoot up from dozens to thousands. “The numbers are continuing to increase rapidly – hence why more events are taking place all across the UK”.

StandUPX logo StandUpX say on their website: “We are living in a state of authoritarian control. We do not consent to Government social distancing measures infringing upon public and private life. We do not accept enforced masks. We do not accept a dictatorship of lockdowns, threats of lockdowns, and Covid Ghettos.

“Forced, coerced and mandated vaccinations violate the principles of the Nuremberg Code which states ‘any preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic medical intervention is only to be carried out with the prior, free and informed consent of the person concerned.’

“Humanity will be a mass science experiment profiting billions for pharmaceutical companies and their partners including Bill Gates.

“Tracking & Tracing is a total violation of personal privacy and freedom to associate. It is a digital Gestapo.

“To add to this oppression, the government is proposing a Health Passport, which is designed to track your health records, purchases and public activities including travel. It will not be temporary. It is the preliminary step to 24/7 tracking via an implantable chip.

“5G is necessary for the infrastructure of 24/7 Surveillance Tracking & Implantable Microchips. This is why our roads are currently being dug up to install the fibre cable network necessary for 5G. This is why trees, which block 5G signals (and help us breathe) are being chopped all over our cities. 5G is lethal to privacy as well as to health. We have no reason to believe 5G is safe”.

The imposition of mask wearing, at a time when the virus has all but disappeared, has already opened a lot of folk’s eyes to the fact that they are being conned.

The fact that masks seem to be intended as a permanent “new normal”, plus the threat of compulsory vaccination and further lockdowns, may prove enough to push thousands of others over the edge and into rebellion.

aug 29 poster2

A big bank holiday weekend of protest is coming up in London.

On Saturday August 29, 12 noon at Trafalgar Square, a huge protest and march is planned by a broad coalition of freedom lovers.

The event is due to be addressed by a number of high-profile doctors who have courageously challenged the official propaganda narrative, including Dr Adil, Professor Dolores Cahill, Dr Andrew Kaufman (live video link) and Dr Kevin Corbet.

Natural nurse Kate Shemirani and Jeremey Corbyn’s brother Piers Corbyn are also lined up to speak.

There will be a video link with the latest mass protest in Germany, where earlier this month as many as a million people took to the streets of Berlin to defy newnormalism.

The very next day, Sunday August 30, a protest has been called for Notting Hill during the famous carnival – 12 noon at Portobello Road.

aug 30 protest

Sunday August 30 will also see a Stop New Normal protest in Bristol, in Castle Park from 12 noon. 

Before then, there will be a ‘Protest to Protect our Children’ in Manchester on Saturday August 22, 1pm at Piccadilly Gardens and a Picnic in the Park n Leeds on Sunday August 23, 2pm in Hyde Park.

leeds protest aug 23

A week after the big weekend in the UK capital, on Saturday September 5, there will be a ‘Stand Up for the Children’ protest starting in Hyde Park, London, at 1pm and marching to the BBC studios.

Smaller weekly StandUpX events are currently being held in Bedford (every Saturday, 3pm, Russell Park), Bournemouth (every Saturday, 2-5pm, Bournemouth Town Hall), Norwich (every Saturday, 1pm, Eaton Park, Chapperfield Gardens) and Sheffield (every Saturday, 12pm, Town Hall Peace Gardens).

For latest info see the StandUpX website at https://www.standupx.info/

North of the border, there will be a ‘Saving Scotland’ March on Holyrood: meet-up near the Scottish parliament in Edinburgh at 1pm on Saturday September 5.

Say organisers: “Deliberate media-managed panic, fear and propaganda made the ‘virus’ seem like it could kill us all. It was a lie!

“End the illegal Coronavirus Act 2020 Tyranny. Scotland is being destroyed! Return our civil liberties”.

march on holyrood

Germany remains the epicentre of the revolt against dictatorship (perhaps because historical memories are still relatively fresh), with even a chief inspector of police speaking out against the global big business coup.

But there have also been reports of signficant protests in Madrid (3,000), the Canary Islands (several hundred) Warsaw (25,000) and Montreal (“thousands”).

madrid protest

A ‘Mask Se Azaadi’ campaign now also seems to be underway in India, with one protester declaring: “We are burning the masks. We will not wear any masks and neither will pay any fines. Because wearing masks leads to the spread of diseases. We are being made to wear masks to shut us up”.

We urge Acorn readers, wherever they are, to cast aside their fears and their ideological insecurities, take the plunge and get involved in the resistance to the newnormalist dictatorship.

As C.J. Hopkins says in an excellent piece on the Off_Guardian site: “It is your responsibility to speak up, and to do whatever else you can, to stop the New Normal future from becoming a reality.

“You will not be rewarded for it. You will be ridiculed and castigated for it. Your New Normal friends will hate you for it. Your New Normal family will forsake you for it. The New Normal police might arrest you for it. It is your responsibility to do it anyway”.

Berlin protest
Every day should be freedom day

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2.  The Great Battle for the Future

peasant revolt

In the Middle Ages, with the outright slavery of the Roman Empire left behind, medieval rebels saw ahead of them a better future, one based on social justice, freedom and local autonomy.

They were on the path leading towards the light, towards genuine social progress rather than to the fake “progress” of technological sophistication and profusion.

But this didn’t go down well with the ruling class, who feared that their power and privilege would be lost for ever.

Instead of escaping from slavery into freedom, our ancestors therefore found themselves engaged in a Great Battle for the Future with the dark forces of tyranny.

Capitalism – the new form taken by malevolent ruling class domination – subjugated our ancestors by cutting them off from their sources of subsistence and autonomy.

Common land was confiscated – enclosed – making self-sufficiency impossible. Food could no longer be freely gathered or hunted, rivers could no longer be fished, wood for fuel could no longer be picked up in the privatised forests.

People were forced into the money system, forced to earn “wages” just to live, forced into factories and workhouses, reduced to craven dependency on the capitalist system.

silvia-federici2
Silvia Federici

In her book Caliban and the Witch, Silvia Federici describes the period as one of “relentless class struggle” in which “the medieval village was the theater of daily warfare”.

“Everywhere masses of people resisted the destruction of their former ways of existence, fighting against land privatization, the abolition of customary rights, the imposition of new taxes, wage-dependence, and the continuous presence of armies in their neighbourhoods, which was so hated that people rushed to close the gates of their towns to prevent soldiers from settling among them”.

In order to impose the New Normal of capitalism on the unwilling people, the power elite used what Federici terms “social enclosure”, a precursor of today’s “social distancing”.

Pubs-closedShe writes: “In pursuit of social discipline, an attack was launched against all forms of collective sociality and sexuality including sports, games, dances, ale-wakes, festivals, and other group-rituals that had been a source of bonding and solidarity among workers”.

“Taverns were closed, along with public baths. Nakedness was penalized, as were many other ‘unproductive’ forms of sexuality and sociality. It was forbidden to drink, swear, curse”.

In another striking parallel with the 2020s (and indeed the 1920s/1930s) the elite tried to create “a new type of individual” – a servile, malleable and thus profitable type.

The primary tool used by the ultra-rich minority to oppress the majority was, of course, the state.

Far from representing some kind of benign collective self-interest, as some absurdly persist in maintaining, the modern state emerged in the 14th century “as the only agency capable of confronting a working class that was regionally unified, armed and no longer confined in its demands to the political economy of the manor”.

Inquisition

Whether claiming to be fighting “heresy”, “witchcraft” or disorder, the ruling elite deployed all the violence and propaganda of its inquisitions, wars and laws to bring the population to heel. And, as we all know to our cost, it won that Great Battle for the Future.

But because its socipathic greed knows no end, because its “growth” is based on ever-increasing profit for the ultra-rich, it can never stop treading us further and further into the toxic industrial dust of its total control.

Today we have reached another key moment in history, when the ruling elite – under the feeble pretext of combatting a flu virus – hopes to essentially return us to the slave status we escaped a thousand years ago.

All its liberal pretence at “democracy” is going out of the window as the brutal reality of elite power becomes clear to those who have eyes to see.

There will be resistance, you can be sure of that, even if the advance disabling of certain potential sources of dissent means it may take a while for rebels to regroup and find their common voice.

Those of us who do resist will be embarking on another Great Battle for the Future.

(The full article can be read here)

orgrad logo

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3. Smart means dead

This is our DIY translation of an article which appears in the July/August 2020 edition of the French-language print journal anarchie! under the title ‘Qui a peur de la mort?

5G mast

The radiant and gleaming future presented to us by the promoters of 5G, ‘a world of infinite possibilities’, has finally revealed itself for what it is: while everyone was locked up in their homes and all dissent was set aside in the name of biopolitics, masts went up all over the place to deliver a new infrastructure with which the powers-that-be aim to do nothing less than transform the whole of society.

5G’s forced entry into our lives cruelly illustrates the fact that neither in conception nor design is it meant to contribute to the well-being of the vast majority who consume it, but that it is instead intended to increase the power of the tiny minority who produce it.

Moreover, if we look back over our shoulders; hasn’t it been the same thing with every new technological advance? From the first weaving looms to motor cars and nuclear energy, how many of these would never have happened if their indisputable necessity for our lives hadn’t been forced on us?

4IR

Considering the enormous means at the disposal of the telecommunicatios industry, which in recent years has come to dominate the political narrative in every corner of the world, you get the impression that every day a war is taking place on the stage of our refusal. Precisely because 5G logically comes across as a negative thing in the eyes of the exploited, since the future it is there to build is that of the dominant class, the system tries to resolve the contradiction by using propaganda, so that people welcome the decisions made for them. But they can’t make people feel satisfied with their lot unless they reduce them to the status of insignficant cogs in a phenomenon over which they have no say.

We are already aware (even if only intuitively) of the effects on our lives of the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ invoked by the most enthusiastic experts: they are with us every day in latent form, bursting into reality each time that we catch a glimpse of another, still bigger, slice of nature eaten up by bulldozers. Each time that we realise that we have got used to the sight of a pylon or a nuclear power station. Each time that we notice to what extent the environment in which we live in is artificial and planned.

Awareness is spreading wider and wider of the fact that a technological future cannot halt the ongoing disaster, but is instead aimed at prolonging it.

masked shoppersInstead of opening up the horizon, it closes it down, trapping us in the eternal present. Instead of pointing to the possibility of living something completely different, it offers at the very most the certainty of surviving by managing the catastrophe.

You’d imagine the myth of ‘progress’ would today be riddled with cutting doubts… but no amount of televisual good faith can now stop people seeing the pile of corpses spat out every day on the other side of the world by the capitalist machine. And in the great cities of the ‘advanced’ (sic) world, the end result of two centuries of unquestionable progress has been an existence which is more locked-down, artificial and desperate than we have ever known before.

Only those who have totally surrendered to misery could contemplate without a feeling of dread the technological cages known as ‘smart homes’, the multiplication of ‘sensing systems’ to watch and record every detail of our movements or the alienation of lives directed by the algorithms of ‘virtual assistants’.

At the end of the day it is not just about 5G or the umpteenth new threat from technology. It is about totally refusing a world based on dominating others, that’s to say on war, on environmental destruction, on paid labour and other abominations, of which technology has become one of the cornerstones.

In truth, all of that – the bombarding of cities and spirits, the extinction both of the wild outdoors and of surges of spontaneity in our domestic lives, the state’s administration of its subjects, or the biopolitical lockdown of an entire population – all of that will only be possible if the internet is available everywhere.

5G connect

That is why their emphasis on ‘connectivity’, both between individuals and between individuals and their environment, can only be understood as reinforcement of domination in every domain.

When they tell us to get closer together online, it is really business and the state that are coming closer to human experience: each interraction that takes place on their network is owned by their economy and power. We are obliged to live our everyday lives as if remotely, via more and more technological intermediaries, which put up a sort of screen between us and reality, dictating to us a certain rhythm, a certain behaviour and above all a certain pre-determined relationship with the world.

What is really at stake here, with the way we are being pushed in the direction in which things are going, even more so with the current acceleration of this process by 5G, is our very capacity to think and act autonomously.

Even as technology imposes itself as universal mediation, it paradoxically distances us from the world, in the sense that it derpives us of the moral and material means to understand it, reinvent it and affect it with our own direct, conscious action.

Indeed, the ‘smart’ concept is nothing other than the paradigm of a city, or dwelling-place, where human beings simply follow the directions provided by algorithms, without feeling the need to interrupt this with their own ideas or spontaneous actions born of their own free will… in other words a completely dead intelligence. An intelligence with no conscience.

robot skull

See also: Resist the Fourth Industrial Repression

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4. Tracksuits, traumas and class traitors

Jan Goodey reviews D. Hunter’s new book, Tracksuits, Traumas and Class Traitors, published by the Classwork Project (2020)

tracksuits

On the back of D. Hunter’s first book, Chav Solidarity (Active 2019), which looked at life on the margins of working class Britain, this latest goes further and adds an additional layer of academic analysis into the, at times harrowing, bargain.

The series of ten essays with academic framing, plus a main narrative section, offer insights into queer methodologies; carceral abolition; class analysis; and auto-ethnography which as a terrain is a good fit for this work: “evocative, emotional, dialoguing and engaging writing…[which is]…closer to literature and art than to science”.

At times there is the temptation to rush the analysis which is interspersed and then rush back to the narrative, don’t, the two are integral.

Hunter’s early years could come straight out of an Alan Clarke drama and bear comparison to books like Alexander Masters’ biography, Stuart a Life Backwards; visceral, tortuous, no-holds barred, real life staring you squarely in the face. Muggings, ultra-violence, rape, robbery, incest, are laid bare and borne in occasionally beautiful, positive and counter-intuitive ways.

In this book, one of Hunter’s aims is to do more justice to the lives he dealt with in the first, which honed in on ‘marginalised’ communities. “I focus on the blood and bone of poor and working class people, and the ways in which the social and cultural context reproduces forms of class power… My writing is in a small way a form of activism.”

This honing down is to a ‘poverty class’ as something “distinctly less than the working class; something made of a group of people who should be stripped of their humanity, undeserving of basic dignity. The people who raised me, the people who I grew up around, the imprisoned, the sectioned, the house-less, the traumatised, those who worked in the illegal economies of sex and drugs, the white trash, and the black and brown inner-city youth”.

fans

The often shocking acts of violence that are documented throughout Tracksuits, Traumas and Class Traitors – acts which are carried out by the author, against him and he as witness – are viewed with recognition of the political, economic and social systems in which they occur – a vital sequitur.

That he’s been given “the space, care and time to focus on recovering, that my behaviours have been anything close to the result of conscious decisions. But it’s this experience that leads me to feel compassion towards the person who has caused me the greatest harm, the legacy of which it’s doubtful I’ll ever recover”.

Here he refers to the patriarch of the family, his grandfather. And it is here we look to the restorative powers of transformative justice (TJ) and its liberatory approach to violence; seeking safety and accountability within families and communities and not alienation, punishment, state violence of prison and policing without. The bitter fruits of industrial capitalism.

Bay Area TJ

We are brought to The Bay Area TJ collective in Oakland California where a pod approach is practised within the community while seeking safety and accountability front, left and centre.

These anarchistic, positive, grassroots, small scale initiatives are all about “entering into dialogues that engage with the inequity in our networks. [It] is vital in our attempts to end the reproduction of carceral and capitalist logics. If we do this, we will be able to create spaces which encourage openness and intimacy, from which we can build deep solidarity with one another”.

A deep solidarity he had rarely with his own father and more often with neighbours: the one rare moment of filial connection, playing football…”he was playing with a desperation to connect with me, to find that paternal bond; instead I imagine he was beating people, he was beating other men in a socially approved way, in a manner that those watching could not take away from him easily. I was playing for that bond, the desperation that coursed through my veins then, that wanted the world and its dog to see us together playing, moving in synchronicity with one another. I wanted that synchronicity, that connection, to last forever. It did not make it past the afternoon”.

And then we get to hear of extraordinary acts of kindness towards D and his family from neighbours– “the man who ran the Jamaican takeaway that gave me the fried chicken… For over four years, he supplied us with fried chicken, hot, rice ‘n’ peas, and many, many dumplings. I could go over there at any point during their opening times and he would supply me with a bag of food to take back to the flat”.

The book’s final segment looks at social work: “As Loïc Wacquant has pointed out,
government programmes, which set out to address poverty or more accurately address the poor, working class, have as their primary function the marking of the poor as pathological, enabling the state to criminalise poverty and the bodies of the poor. This process plays a key role in the stigmatisation of poor and working class people”.

This stigmatisation breeds new exploitation with new forms of media-manufactured class differentiation and antagonism.

Through all of this Hunter’s heart stays embedded in his working class roots and he selflessly seeks “to connect some dots and ensure that everyone who had asked for some cash [from the fruits of his first book] received some, and in some cases, set up regular payments for the duration of the social shutdown. I don’t say this to big myself up, I was in a fortunate position to have enough social capital to connect those with plenty to those with not enough”.

(Jan Goodey is a regular contributor to the Ecologist online)

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5. Henry David Thoreau: an orgrad inspiration

The latest in our serious of profiles from the orgrad website.

Thoreau

“We do not ride on the railroad; it rides upon us”

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) was a writer and philosopher who sought and recommended a simple natural life and who spoke out against modern civilization and the violence of the state.

He influenced many political thinkers, including Henry SaltEdward CarpenterLeo Tolstoy and Mohandas Gandhi.

Thoreau’s best-known work is Walden, a description of his attempt to put his thinking into practice by living for more than two years in the woods of his native Massachusetts, USA.

thoreau signHe explained: “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived”. (1)

Part of the appeal for him was undoubtedly to be alone, to escape the crowds and babble of the modern world, for which a certain loss of comfort was a price well worth paying: “I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion”. (2)

Thoreau frequently stressed the importance of living unencumbered by the trappings of the modern world – “Simplify, simplify”, (3) he urged. “Why should we live with such hurry and waste of life?” (4)

It was not just that we did not need these trappings of wealth, but that they were actually bad for us.

He wrote in Walden that most of the luxuries and so-called comforts of life were not at all necessary, but were in fact “positive hinderances to the elevation of mankind” (5) and he added in ‘Civil Disobedience’: “Absolutely speaking, the more money, the less virtue”. (6)

Adi_ShankaraThoreau noted that the wisest of people had historically often lived in the simplest of ways and was convinced that this was all part of their wisdom.

“To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school, but so to love wisdom according to its dictates, a life of simplicity, independence, magnanimity, and trust. It is to solve some of the problems of life, not only theoretically, but practically”. (7)

On the other hand, the rich had “accumulated dross”, did not know how to get rid of it and had thus “forged their own golden or silver fetters”. (8)

Thoreau was interested in Hindu philosophy and also, in Walden, cites the Taoist wisdom of Chuang Tzu.

He pre-empted René Guénon in his view that the modern world represented a reign of quantity where quality, particularly inner quality, was completely neglected. He noted: “While civilization has been improving our houses, it has not equally improved the men who are to inhabit them”. (9)

Contemporary America “lives too fast” (10) he said. Commerce, communication and transport were all regarded as essential issues, but people were less interested in “whether we should live like baboons or like men”. (11)

railroadThoreau was more than sceptical about the point of industrial progress and all the so-called “modern improvements” it brought with it, writing that “there is an illusion about them; there is not always a positive advance”. (12)

He added: “Our inventions are wont to be pretty toys, which distract our attention from serious things. They are but improved means to an unimproved end, an end which it was already but too easy to arrive at; as railroads lead to Boston or New York. We are in great haste to construct a magnetic telegraph from Maine to Texas; but Maine and Texas, it may be, have nothing important to communicate”. (13)

The much-heralded cable under the Atlantic would, he suggested, only succeed in bringing Americans worthless gossip such as news of the latest illnesses affecting the British Royal Family.

“As if the main object were to talk fast and not to talk sensibly… the man whose horse trots a mile in a minute does not carry the most important messages”. (14)

Twenty years later, John Ruskin was to make the same point when he described the new railway allowing the people of Buxton and Bakewell to rush from one town to the other and back in record time and for no apparent purpose.

railroad workers2

Thoreau was also acutely aware of the human cost of industrialism, including the thousands of human lives lost in the building of the railways, the first major infrastructure of American capitalism.

He wrote: “We do not ride on the railroad; it rides upon us. Did you ever think what those sleepers are that underlie the railroad? Each one is a man, an Irishman or a Yankee man. The rails are laid on them, and they are covered with sand, and the cars run smoothly over them”. (15)

An outspoken opponent of the American institution of slavery, which was not formally abolished until after his death, Thoreau also turned his fire on the “factory system” that had been imported across the Atlantic.

He wrote: “The condition of the operatives is becoming every day more like that of the English, and it cannot be wondered at since, as far as I have heard or observed, the principal object is, not that mankind may be well and honestly clad, but, unquestionably, that the corporations may be enriched”. (16)

Against this world of money-greed and exploitation, Thoreau proposed a modest and inward-looking life in the bosom of nature.

The dust that accumulates on any object inside a house symbolised for him the choking effect of modern life on human beings and he declared: “I would rather sit in the open air, for no dust gathers on the grass, unless where man has broken ground”. (17)

Thoreau’s belief in the importance of being close to nature implied that our very thinking should emerge from that nature and effectively amount to a continuation of its unspoken wisdom.

He wrote in ‘A Natural History of Massachusetts’: “To him who contemplates a trait of natural beauty no harm or disappointment can come. The doctrines of despair, of spiritual or political tyranny or servitude, were never taught by such as shared the serenity of nature”. (18)

hoar frost crystalsIn this essay he described the “ghost leaves” produced by hoar frost and was prompted to reflect on the inherent form within the natural world.

He wrote: “It struck me that these ghost leaves, and the green ones whose forms they assume, were the creatures of but one law; that in obedience to the same law the vegetable juices swell gradually into the perfect leaf, on the one hand, and the crystalline particles troop to their standard in the same order, on the other.

“As if the material were indifferent, but the law one and invariable, and every plant in the spring but pushed up into and filled a permanent and eternal mould, which, summer and winter forever, is waiting to be filled”. (19)

He added: “Vegetation has been made the type of all growth; but as in crystals the law is more obvious, their material being more simple, and for the most part more transient and fleeting, would it not be as philosophical as convenient to consider all growth, all filling up within the limits of nature, but a crystallisation more or less rapid?” (20)

Here he raises one of the key elements of organic radical thinking: that there is an implicit order within nature as a whole and all its parts, including humans, which emerges from within and steers our development.

Thoreau wrote: “I perceive that, when an acorn and a chestnut fall side by side, the one does not remain inert to make way for the other, but both obey their own laws, and spring and grow and flourish as best they can till one, perchance, overshadows and destroys the other. If a plant cannot live according to its nature, it dies; and so a man”. (21)

thoreau bookThis realisation, drawn from his observation of plants and frost, formed a nature-sourced philosophical basis for his libertarian political views.

If people were not able to live according to their nature in the contemporary world, it was because of the state and its laws.

Thoreau wrote, in ‘Civil Disobedience’: “I heartily accept the motto, ‘That government is best which governs least’; and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically.

“Carried out, it finally amounts to this, which I also I believe – ‘That government is best which governs not at all’; and when men are prepared for it, that will be the kind of government which they will have”. (22)

He observed: “Law never made men a whit more just; and, by means of their respect for it, even the well-disposed are daily made the agents of injustice”. (23)

Thoreau had direct experience of the power of the state, which jailed him for refusing to pay his poll tax for six years, and was struck by the “foolishness” of the thick walls and doors with which it countered his principled stance.

pilloryHe wrote: “The State never intentionally confronts a man’s sense, intellectual or moral, but only his body, his senses. It is not armed with superior wit or honesty, but with superior physical strength. I was not born to be forced. I will breathe after my own fashion. Let us see who is the strongest”. (24)

When Thoreau insisted that “the only obligation which I have a right to assume is to do at any time what I think is right”, (25) this may sound simply like rugged individualism.

But the use of the term ‘right’ indicated that he was in fact referencing a collective sense of right and wrong, one sourced from his inner human nature.

Like the anarchist psychoanalyst Otto Gross, Thoreau saw how a person who tried to live according to that nature, who remained true to their innate moral compass, was bound to come into conflict with an outside civilization founded on power, money and lies.

Our duty was to allow the sense of rightness that swelled within us to overcome the demands and expectations of a world become corrupt and not to find cowardly excuses to avoid doing so.

He wrote: “All men recognize the right of revolution; that is, the right to refuse allegiance to, and to resist, the government, when its tyranny or its inefficiency are great and unendurable. But almost all say that such is not the case now”. (26)

He urged us to follow the obligation deep within us to be true to ourselves and the natural world of which we are part: “Let your life be a counter-friction to stop the machine”. (27)

Video link: Talking with Thoreau (31 mins)

thoreau art

1. Henry David Thoreau, Walden, with an introduction by Richard Whiteing (London: The Gresham Publishing Company, n/d), p. 109.
2. Thoreau, Walden, p. 42.
3. Thoreau, Walden, p. 110.
4. Thoreau, Walden, p. 111.
5. Thoreau, Walden, p. 15.
6. Henry David Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau: Revised Edition, ed. Carl Bode (London: Penguin, 1975), p. 123.
7. Thoreau, Walden, pp. 15-16.
8. Thoreau, Walden, p. 17.
9. Thoreau, Walden, p. 39.
10. Thoreau, Walden, pp. 110-11.
11. Ibid.
12. Thoreau, Walden, p. 61.
13. Ibid.
14. Thoreau, Walden, pp. 61-62.
15. Thoreau, Walden, p. 111.
16. Thoreau, Walden, p. 30.
17. Thoreau, Walden, p. 42.
18. Henry David Thoreau, ‘A Natural History of Massachusetts’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 33.
19. Henry David Thoreau, ‘A Natural History of Massachusetts’, The Portable Thoreau, pp. 52-53.
20. Thoreau, ‘A Natural History of Massachusetts’, The Portable Thoreau, pp. 53-54.
21. Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 127.
22. Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 109.
23. Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 111.
24. Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 127.
25. Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 111.
26. Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 113.
27. Thoreau, ‘Civil Disobedience’, The Portable Thoreau, p. 120.

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6. Acorninfo

Resistance continues against the disastrous HS2 rail line between London and Birmingham. Says the HS2 Rebellion website: “HS2 is one of the largest and most damaging infrastructure projects our country has ever seen and is representative of everything we are seeking to change within this toxic system”. For info on protest camp locations and how to help go to https://hs2rebellion.earth/camp-locations/

HS2 protest

* * *

Wangan and Jagalingou Tribal Warriors in Australia have served mining giant Adani with an eviction notice for illegally trespassing on their land with its Carmichael Coal Mine. They say: “This eviction notice marks the start of a new phase of our resistance to Adani’s destruction of land, water and culture”.

WJWarriors

* * *

This Spanish TV interview with a doctor went horribly wrong for the corporate propagandists, as the interviewee tore holes into the official smearmongering and its blatant vaccine-profiteering agenda. A real breath of fresh air!

Spanish doctor on TV

* * *

“It will be done in a barbaric fashion using draconian methods and this global holocaust will probably come out from under the flag of the UN… Wake up now!” So says a character in One By One, the last ever film to feature the late Rik Mayall.  Meanwhile the latest Plandemic film has been getting a lot of attention. Note that one of these is labelled fiction and the other not, but we will let readers decide for themselves how that works out!

Rik Mayall in One by One

* * *

“This is the essence of the biosecurity state, in which the citizen no longer has the right to life (familial, social, economic, political), but in which the state has absolute power over the biopolitical body of the subject”. Another hugely impressive article by Simon Elmer
of Architects for Social Housing can be read here.

police state masks

* * *

A warning against the Big Pharma vaccine agenda has been issued in Cyprus. Says the author: “The so-called ‘cases’ of healthy people are exactly what each community needs to cope with the crisis. But the ‘scientific team’ is trying to reduce this natural immunity that the community is now building, because – they have made it very clear – they prefer to pursue mass vaccination”.

DIY.Masks.3.cropped

* * *

The dystopia of the Fourth Industrial Repression is arriving faster than any of us could imagine. In Basildon, Essex, for instance, the council has announced it will be starting a six-month trial of the use of drones to help with planning enforcement. Local activists’ fears of “mission creep” are supported by news from Melbourne, Australia, where the increasingly fascistic cops are already using drones to spy on citizens to make sure they don’t break “lockdown” rules. Will people start developing DIY anti-drone devices in response? Jamming the frequencies? Using catapults even?

drone surveillance

* * *

Canadian constitutional lawyer Rocco Galati is taking out a lawsuit against his government, describing the COVID measures as “the biggest example of misinformation and lies on a global scale that we’ve seen”.

Rocco Galati

* * *

Another glorious triumph for technological Progress has been announced, with scientists apparently having discovered a “ground-breaking” bio-synthetic material that they claim can be used to merge artificial intelligence with the human brain. This “breakthrough” is described as “a major step towards integrating electronics with the body to create part human, part robotic ‘cyborg’ beings”. Marvellous news for life haters everywhere.

cyborg nightmare

* * *

The next phase in  the global techno-fascist coup, particularly if resistance picks some momentum, is likely to be full-out censorship of dissident views. We are still very much present on Twitter, but with some anti-establishment groups already being expelled from social media, we have created a back-up account on Mastodon,  which can be found here.

* * *

Acorn quote: “The great ability of those who are in control in the modern world lies in making the people believe that they are governing themselves”.

René Guénon

vote poster

(For many more like this, see the Winter Oak quotes for the day blog)

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