Third Party & Independents: Archives

March 13, 2007

Notes to the Left: Part One: If Your An Anarchist and Your A Leftist Your An Idiot

You can NOT be an anarchist and a leftist at the same time: It is impossible!!!

an·ar·chy: [an-er-kee]: –noun 1. a state of society without government or law.
2. political and social disorder due to the absence of governmental control.
3. a theory that regards the absence of all direct or coercive government as a political ideal and that proposes the cooperative and voluntary association of individuals and groups as the principal mode of organized society.
4. confusion; chaos; disorder.

The left as a whole needs to abandon this romantic concept of anarchy, because it is in all purposes against leftist principles. Such concepts that the left embraces as: universal health care, a living wage, environmental regulations, workplace regulations, and making housing affordable require government intervention. Governmental intervention is the exact opposite of anarchy.

In fact anarchy is the exact opposite of what leftist want. With anarchy it would be impossible to have such social safety nets as social security.

If you want any sort of: gun control, workplace regulations, consumer protections, or medical protections than you do not want anarchy.

This romantic connection between the left and anarchy needs to end here and now.

Posted by Richard Rhodes at March 13, 2007 04:21 AM
Comments
Comment #211677

Richard,
You are right. Anarchy and leftism are opposites. Given only those two choices, I would choose anarchy.

Posted by: tomd at March 13, 2007 06:57 AM
Comment #211678

Richard,
You are right. Anarchy and socialism leftism are opposites. Given only those two choices, I would choose anarchy.

Posted by: tomd at March 13, 2007 06:58 AM
Comment #211685

The left has an unhealthy love affair with all sorts of wierdos and revolutionaries. Think of how a terrible murderer like Che Guevara still decorates college walls, sort of like having a Dr. Mengele poster, when you think about it.

The problem for leftists, especially young ones, is that they want to pose as revolutionaries who will sweep away existing forms, while their actual programs are very regimented and supporting the status quo. So they talk like Che, but act like the nanny.

It works for them. If you strip that away, the young will be less likely to favor leftism. It is kind of a marketing strategy, a bait and switch. That is one reason that we see so many leftists at 20, but by 40 many have moved on.

Posted by: Jack at March 13, 2007 09:16 AM
Comment #211691

Richard,

When did the “left” claim to be anarchists?

“This romantic connection between the left and anarchy needs to end here and now.”
Where do you see the “left” making this connection?
I thought we were still “tree-huggers” and “peaceniks.”
I thought we already had our labels, “aiding and emboldeners,”“cut and runners.” When did we get the anarchist label?
The folks who can only see “left” and “right” prove that Rove was right. People can be manipulated like trained chimps by just telling them that the other chimps are different.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at March 13, 2007 09:26 AM
Comment #211692

Well some of what the left wants I agree, some I do not, and some those are gun control, SS as a safety net. Problem is SS was never ment to be used as a 100% support after you retired/quit working.
Affordable health care, and housing I would agree with. Also against welfare as it is now. If a person needs help, help them but also there is a lot of community work that can be done i.e. clean up parks, help remove blighted property, and set a max time limit to be on it.

So I am not a liberal, I am not a conservative, I am looking for a good third party, anyone know of one.

Posted by: KT at March 13, 2007 09:33 AM
Comment #211693

Thanks!

Whenever there is some sort of an international protest, some self-proclaimed anarchists break some windows and we have to hear about how crazy “the left” is and how all of this “violence” undermines the protest. It’s good to know I can count on you to help clear this up. All together now, “THOSE WEREN’T LEFTISTS, THOSE WERE ANARCHISTS!”

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 13, 2007 09:40 AM
Comment #211694

Jack: Your comments on age are much too simplistic, and quite frankly ARE VERY VERY OFFENSIVE.

I am 24, and have worked for the Green Party National Office for over a year, have worked for two different attorneys, two different non profits (Global Impact and NORML), have worked as a independent web researcher for the Green Institute, and am less than six months away from getting my Masters at a very high GPA level at one of the best university’s in the country, GWU.

So next time you might not want to generalize all of the youth in such a simple manner.

Because some of us worked really damn hard too earn scholarships and get into graduate school.

University of Dayton: Class of 2005 and Proud

Posted by: Richard Rhodes at March 13, 2007 09:48 AM
Comment #211695

Andre: You have a good question and I am glad you asked it. I am not saying the left in general is anarchist, just a segment of it. In truth this article came because I attended NCOR(the National Conference on Organized Resistance) this last weekend on American University’s campus in which their were many people who claimed to be both leftists and anarchists and that made me think of this concept.

Posted by: Richard Rhodes at March 13, 2007 09:56 AM
Comment #211702
a theory that regards the absence of all direct or coercive government as a political ideal and that proposes the cooperative and voluntary association of individuals and groups as the principal mode of organized society.

Sounds exactly like Reagan Republicans to me, with associations exempt from government interference being the wealthy and business interests.

But, see there’s a real problems here. Democracy is a form of government in which cooperative and voluntary associations of voters determine policy for themselves, being the majority. A Constitutional Democracy provides limits and bounds on the majority’s ability to intrude upon minorities.

A Democratic Republic assumes the people are ignorant and need to be led by those powerful enough to persuade the ignorant to elect them.

Given the options, a Constitutional Direct Democracy appeals to me most in these times.

A Democratic Republic made sense in the 1700’s when only a minority of citizens were literate, and many minorities were not considered even full citizens. It does NOT make sense today, as our current system makes abundantly clear by its steady march toward demise through lack of continuity and resolve to take the nation’s interests before reelection interests.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 13, 2007 10:51 AM
Comment #211703

Since when does the left connect themselves to anarchy? Honestly, I think this “romantic” relationship is totally in your head, or maybe something from Fox News.

Posted by: Max at March 13, 2007 10:53 AM
Comment #211705

Jack, the research suggests that folks become only slightly more conservative with age. Democrats tend to remain Democrats, and Republicans, Republicans.

Democrats get a bit more fiscally and law and order conservative with age. Republicans get more Libertarian with age. But the ideological gap between them, even with age, remains pretty much as wide.

This nation was founded on documents with embedded Idealism. Are you suggesting our founding was a mistake? Or are you merely suggesting that Ideals are fine for rhetoric at election time, but, only a young fool would insist on fulfilling them?

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 13, 2007 10:58 AM
Comment #211712

Richard

I went to grad school until I was 27 and learned lots of useful and good things. I respect the high GPAs (although my own feeling is that if you get As in everything you are not trying to hard enough to p*ss off your professors), but there are things you just cannot have yet. What you cannot have at that age is experience in seeing several trends come and go; in politics, for example, I have seen the conservatives and liberals change places five or six times and heard twice that the Republican Party was doomed and three times that the Dems could never again win the presidency. You cannot have watch children grow up; you cannot have built a career over twenty years. These things change you perspective.

A lot of left wing ideas are very good and good sounding. But the move from left to right that comes with experience is a long term one. It does not mean you give up your ideals, but it does mean that you look to the practicalities of achieving them.

Back when I was in grad school, I noticed a big difference between professors who had worked on something outside academia and those who had not. The academics were more rigorous. I remember one young professor made us derive a price equation using calculus. I have no idea how to do that now, since I have never had occasion to use that knowledge, nor have I even known anybody who has. I also recall an older professor’s comment on this same problem. He said, you charge what you think you can get and then adjusts it up or down depending on what happens.

David

Please see above. You do not give up your ideals, but you go about them more practically.

Perhaps our definitions of left and right are a little different. I am of the business oriented, pragmatic right. I like things that work and have found that the free market (rule of law, market mechanism and reasonable regulation) works the best. I never bother to do an ideology check and I do not worry about being intellectually consistent, but my practice tends to put me on the right.

There is also a significant difference in the way married people with families vote. It is especially true among women. Childless single women are heavilty Dem. Married women with children more often vote Republican. Different experiences make you see thing differently. That is my unremarkable point.

BTW - our founding documents are very practical. That is why they work. The ideals are great and important, but they need to be tied to practice.

The American revolution was one of the few revolutions in the history of the world that really worked. We did not over reach. Think of the French, Russian and Chinese revolutions that followed, each more bloody than the one before and all of them betraying their ideals within months of their victories. Idealists without a dose of pragmatism just gets lots of people killed.

Posted by: Jack at March 13, 2007 12:39 PM
Comment #211724

David you said,

“A Democratic Republic assumes the people are ignorant and need to be led by those powerful enough to persuade the ignorant to elect them.

Given the options, a Constitutional Direct Democracy appeals to me most in these times.”

I’m trying to understand the difference between these two concepts as you intend them. Could you expound a bit? Are you saying that we should give up the representative structure of our government in exchange for direct democracy or is it something different?

Posted by: Rob at March 13, 2007 01:25 PM
Comment #211725

Richard,
There are anarchists on both the left and right. Sometimes thought, they won’t come right out and tell you they’re anarchists. Instead, sometimes they will say that they consider themeselves to be either left-libertarian or right-libertarian. Since another segment of libertarians (who lean both left and right also) are not truly anarchists, I imagine this must be very frustrating to them.

“The left as a whole needs to abandon this romantic concept of anarchy, because it is in all purposes against leftist principles.”

Richard, in my opinion, there isn’t much point telling an anarchist to abandon their views. I mean, they’re anarchists! :^) They actually believe that chaos is a good idea, that it makes sense, and is good for society, somehow.

Btw, not to be pedantic, but since it’s in the title of your article, I feel the need to inform you that that it should read: “If You’re Not An Anarchist, And You’re a Leftist, You’re An Idiot.” I know it’s one of those easy to forget rules, but the apostrophe followed by the “re” is a shortening of the words: you are. Just as an apostrophe turns “we are” or “they are” into: we’re and they’re.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 13, 2007 01:32 PM
Comment #211729

Those preaching anarchy are the romantics who see themselves standing at the Parisian street barricades, or the San Francisco “types” who see themselves as champions of no moral restrictions and wish only to live for the moment. It is much like the communist who believes, someday, there will be an absence of government, but until that day, they will accept a tyrant calling the shots on how we live. What is wrong with what was started in America, so different than anything experienced before? It proved itself in so many great ways.

Posted by: Clay Barham at March 13, 2007 01:49 PM
Comment #211734

Clay Barham’s generalization:
“the San Francisco “types” who see themselves as champions of no moral restrictions and wish only to live for the moment.”

Is bunk. You will find anarchists, or left-libertarians/right-libertarians in practically every corner of this nation. People who use the name of San Francisco like a dirty word, and claim this area is crawling with nothing but whatever kind of people they’ve decided they hate most and wish to gripe about, are not only being stupid, rude and glaringly ignorant, but demonstrating an outdated, moss covered notion of SF and the Bay Area from the Sixties.
Guess what people? It’s been forty years since the Summer of Love — and we’ve got every kind of person you could imagine here, so making a list of San Francisco “types” actually entails making a very long list, rather than spitting out a stupidly monolithic label.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 13, 2007 02:21 PM
Comment #211746

Adrienne,

Sweeping generalizations and labels are neccessary when trying to pass off all “left” vs. all “right” divisive rhetoric.
We “cut and runner”Democrats who mock god, promote anarchy and give each other abortions should know that by now.
You know Adreienne, us “San Francisco types.”
Wow.

Posted by: Andre M. Hernandez at March 13, 2007 02:47 PM
Comment #211748

Rob, I am saying we should do away with the Electoral College, do away with rich person financing of political campaigns, and do away with Congressional Impeachment procedures, replacing them with a national no confidence vote if a President or national Congressperson fails to represent the people’s will. These 3 steps would make our nation a 21st century more direct democracy with the assumption that the now literate and free people of America generally know best what is good for the country on big national issues.

Leaving the Supreme Court and Constitution otherwise intact, the checks and balance against majority rule trampling minority rights is maintained.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 13, 2007 02:53 PM
Comment #211750

Clay, and failed in so many ways. Surely you have sufficient history education to know this. Slavery, women’s suffrage, Civil War, concentration camps for citizens and the theft of all they owned, selective law enforcement and selective justice depending upon one’s station and wealth, just for starters.

We are better now on all these issues thanks to the likes of writers and thinkers of both Conservative/Libertarian and Socialist bent throughout our history. But still, some of these problems persist, and America still has a way to go to achieve her ideals set out in the Declaration of Independence and Constitution and a number of amendments are long overdue to bring our nation’s laws out of the agricultural age into the technological age.

Posted by: David R. Remer at March 13, 2007 03:00 PM
Comment #211760


A little anarchy now and then is a good thing. Consider what the opposite is. Today, there are millions of Americans willing to give up personal liberties and increase government powers because they are afraid primarily of government induced terropropagandism. One should pay close attention to a government that tells you to be afraid of something while it persues policies guaranteed to increase the numbers of what it is you are to be afraid of.

Posted by: jlw at March 13, 2007 03:31 PM
Comment #211775

In agreement with Mr. Remer concerning the formation of a more democratic process of governance, the technology is available. Implementing a truly democratic form of governing may save this failing country.

Posted by: catastrophyinprogress at March 13, 2007 05:00 PM
Comment #211776

I get over to Valdosta State on occasions. I have a friend there that’s a climatology professor. I just call him an overrated weather man. :)
Now and again I talk to some of the students and find what Richard said is true. They want to be both Anarchist and Leftist at the same time. And when ya try to tell them that you can’t be an Anarchist and a Leftist at the same time because they oppose each other they just look at ya like you have two heads. I contribute this mostly to their youth and lack of experience in the real world.
I also contribute some of it to some of the whacked out professors they have over there. Some of them guys smoked to may left handed cigarettes and took too many sugar cubes when they were in college.
I had one professor over there tell me that conservatives were the ones that believe in Anarchy. LOL! And from what a couple of students that’s had him tell me he’s one of those that claims that Anarchy and Leftist are inseparable. Again LOL! How many sugar cubes did he ingest in college?
Fact is I don’t see how anyone can be an Anarchist and a Liberal or Conservative at the same time.

Posted by: Ron Brown at March 13, 2007 05:05 PM
Comment #211777

Jack
I respect the high GPAs (although my own feeling is that if you get As in everything you are not trying to hard enough to p*ss off your professors)


So that’s why my daughter graduated with only a 3.0 grade average. She managed to p*ss of every professor she had. Specially the radically liberal ones.


Posted by: Ron Brown at March 13, 2007 05:12 PM
Comment #211808

Viva San Francisco!

Posted by: jrb at March 13, 2007 08:49 PM
Comment #211809
The left has an unhealthy love affair with all sorts of wierdos and revolutionaries. Think of how a terrible murderer like Che Guevara still decorates college walls

Come on, Che was a small-time punk. Hitler and Stalin wouldn’t be caught dead with him.

I think a lot of people just like his picture. Once I saw an Asian exchange student wearing a pink Che button (yes, pink), and I politely asked her if she knew who he was. As it turned out, she had no idea and just thought it was a pretty button!

Another story Che-related story — I swear this is true. Young couple I saw at the mall:

HIS shirt: Che

HER shirt: “I have the pussy, so I make the rules.”

I wanted to go up to him and yell, “Free yourself, man! Don’t let that vagina push you around!”

:)

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 13, 2007 08:51 PM
Comment #211817

Woody
That could be right. A lot of kids most likely don’t have the slightest idea who Che really was. All they know, if anything, is the what some radical left wing professor told them.
I saw a T-shirt like that worn by a guy that mentioned the male organ. Ain’t even going to go into what my wife told him about it. But when he got back in his car he took it off.

Posted by: Ron Brown at March 13, 2007 09:26 PM
Comment #211986

Thanks David, that cleared it up for me. I fear I took your remark too litterally. When I hear direct democracy I have visions of New Hampshire churches or school rooms with the town’s people voting on whether to appropriate $10,000 or $20,000 a year to fix pot holes.

Posted by: Rob at March 14, 2007 05:04 PM
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