Anarchism, Psychology, and Law (Video 2 of 2)



this is a library tense up near the front and I dropped a few books so up there the other day and I was reading with them on the team when I came in I had two groups in a long time one of them was on the people's history of the United States which referred seventeen thousand six people Bicentennial and there's a good description there of the period of 19 6 of 17 60s before the Revolutionary War looking at economic grievances of the people against Britain not so much for imposing tax because you know the Boston Tea Party which scene is so that we don't like being taxed that the tax is actually what the tax actually lowered the cost of tea in the colonies because it gave a monopoly to the British East India tea company and it gave them a monopoly they collected attacks but the price was lower and the colin is supposed that because they didn't want things monopolized by a corporation the colonists were very anti-corporate the colonies once they became independent separately imposed a lot of anti-corporate laws corporations could not last forever corporations have to serve the public i'm here corporations had to serve a public function corporations for stockholders and corporations were personally liable for the damage is done by the corporation's all of that change in the eighteen hundreds but in the 1760s with the Stamp Act is it's a really a fascinating history and that in that popular uprising against external control of our lives extended from the 1760s through the Revolutionary War and writing the Constitution into the 1790s when we had the whiskey rebellion there's another book in there in the whiskey rebellion I was also looking through the whiskey rebellion which I knew nothing about until like three days ago was a rebellion and a potential secession of western Pennsylvania Maryland from new United States in opposition to Washington which was federalizing law and federal izing taxes and so it's a fascinating history and that battle was kind of lost and buried in our popular histories of the revolutionary period when we we think about the Constitution very quickly the revolutionary the Declaration of Independence that we can be seen as a as a revolutionary document we don't want to be controlled by people other places the Constitution can be seen as a captain revolutionary document it was an effort to make sure the people couldn't change anything there was a way of preventing the states from going their separate ways it was a way of preventing masses of people from demanding change in getting it democracy in which doesn't appear in the Constitution democracy is a word that was seen as a negative it was seen as mob rule and the Constitution in many of his provision is a way to keep things from changing much at all let me let me get let me get to that let me when most people complain about law you hear this in jokes we joke about judges sometimes we joke about lawyers all the time sometimes so the attitude when things don't go right in the legal system is to blame the people aim the individual who are the legislators the police the judges the ones who are carrying out policy making policy sort of a higher level of critique is a critique of the system that creates the law that the problem with our laws according to this view is that the laws are written by people who don't represent them if we get different people into Congress the right different laws if we get different judges they'll be on our side instead of the other side and a lot of the battle over federal judges a lot of battle over the Supreme Court justices has to do with trying to get the right judge in there who's going to see things our way presidents appoint judges federal courts who they think will see things their way usually they're right sometimes they're wrong and so we end up with judges appointed for political philosophy reasons anarchist and Marxist Marxist have that same view according to what I understand of Marx's theory if the working class controlled the law then we have better law will have a different system a different state and and things would be better because the focus of the Lord be on helping the people instead of capitals Annika's conditionally have had a different view of your but it doesn't matter who writes the law it doesn't matter who enforces the law it doesn't matter who's making those decisions there's something wrong with the nature of law as a decision making and conflict mechanism and an anarchist have focused on the way law takes disputes out of the personal interpersonal community level and turns it into a bureaucratic process where we apply general principles to specific cases even if those principle don't make sense in those particular cases so when somebody loses an appeal at the Supreme Court on a death penalty case because their lawyer didn't get the appeal in on time the court can say sorry and it's not because they they want the person to die is not because they even death penalty is because that's the way the law is applause and there every legal system has a way to get around that to try to end it but more you defend that the more you getting away from law way legal theorist and stood it in the way that when people say everyone has to be treated right now there's a debate online about whether we should have asked for a permit to be here someone called boston city councilors about first do they agree with our goals and second they did they like that we don't didn't get a permit and so half of them didn't answer the rest will pretty much found the goal they could agree with and the role on our side no one asked them like how is boston city council Italians corporate power you know if you follow a question but then they split some of them said well we should have gotten the permit they like what we're doing but we should have gotten a permit because everyone has to be treated the same you don't make distinctions and that's a very legalistic technocratic way to do with an anarchists have often criticized in favored instead ways of conflict resolution ways of decision and that don't look to a general principle and then apply it no matter whether it fits those circumstances or not and do you think Louis a moral standard I mean I think law Lord teaches people if we don't have a lawyer we're not going to be good to each other you know the reason that I'm not like stealing your stuff right now is because I'll get arrested you know it's like so that's the kind of the theory that you know if there's no law against it if there's a law against it that means they're not going to do it and most people don't go around stealing things hi most people have never murdered anybody you don't really want to all the people in these buildings do the people the people in these building corporations are a product of law there were no corporations who we had a legal system that established the ability of corporations to exist there are legal a legal fiction a legal thing the only reason that they can control property the only reason that they aren't that they don't have to serve a public function anymore because the law allows that we could instead of landing a constitutional amendments to and corporate personhood or put brakes on corporations we could abolish corporation you know I mean this is the corporations are a creation of the state and it's something that isn't inherent in the way society that should be a political decision hope you want is a Democratic Society the Democratic we don't have a say in how the economy run it's very anti-american notion that the people should have input to have the common stock in terms of how we get from here to there that's a good question I don't know the answer to that question I think clearly people who grew up in society adopted those norms and expectations and if the law on the police's the judges all business here tomorrow they'd be a full range of different kinds of reactions to that and some people would be dangerous and other people and I guess as low as not going to just with an earful of lunch though start pushing towards pointing out the problems with resolving food means looking for alternative raise it isn't food here and there have been disputes here you know the solution isn't to bring in a cop from outside have the resolve the dispute or arrest someone the conclusion is two to get people here who were trained and conclude the installation there is training and conflict resolution conflict the escalation we've seen this at the General Assembly's at times where somebody gets up and is acting in a way that other people see is disruptive and and knowing I don't think anyone's had to call the cops yet but we managed to figure out ways to do that so this is part of the experiment this is part of the annual kiss experiment how you create a community without having somebody empowered to tell people what to do without people being empowered to arrest people and turn them over to authorities you have the power to make decision I don't I don't want hundreds i consider buy something interesting like entirely sympathetic service commission and i see that as the end results of any sort of the gala tarian reminded or ideology sorry are you in any way sympathetic towards the notion that there are at least large elements of Marxism that can be seen as a transition towards this society that no longer needs laws he's a state apparatus at all I don't know that I know enough about it to say I think from what I know of marks are Marxism is the most demark stairs a lot of different variants of that you know and hear people tell me marks wasn't the Marxist then said so itself so i don't i don't quite you know it's not something that I really kept up with I know that Marxist of anarchists always work together yeah well though it's always been controversial and a little i know with the history of the eighteen hundreds is that mark communists and Atticus work together in the Internationale in the labor movement and then split up over this issue of sort of ultimate goals and over questions of how hierarchical how hard on toll the decision-making process is versus kind of a vanguard is ocean but that's not it's not really something I did a lot of attention to there's a very good big spoon of Marxist differences requested spectracide bridge by months and we 75 76 we're quickly mastered number ? since the handsome but their relationship and best was chilly although I have to say the cocooning actually translated into Russian it came to Russia to buckle and he always got the consul's an excellent economist just disagreed with him about this whole vacation but military today there are a lot of anarchists and a lot of marxist and others who keeping sort of with branding instead of using the term annexes of use the term anti-authoritarian is so they're people who have anti-authoritarian groups meetings magazines websites and so you'll begin to see more of that language is waiting maybe get around the branding problem but also people in dalaran annexes but can identify with being anti authorities away that is kind of destruction in society look open up another term that uses my introduction to anarchism as a philosophy really came here in Boston in the 1970s when I answered an ad for a house looking for new people and they said that they were part of the political group that did community botany and study rooms and they call themselves libertarian socialists and so I moved in and turned out well that meant Bannock libertarian was a word that used to be left here in the United States has been co-opted by kind of individualist anarchists and libertarian now is sort of this kind of writing anarchism so it's controversial wikipedia has this constant battle back and forth on the anarchism pages over who controls the definition but but there are different terms historically libertarian socialism riparian what was a reference to an occasion compact what you saying about anarchy and the law there are provisions and all about charters that provide for public access to petition government yo that's one of the things that we're here to both tests against in a way is the influence of lobbies on our government and yet isn't that so nervous or corporal eric is having individuals like Bank of America and caliber and large you know working outside and you know gaming law outside of yo the power structure of organized government is about to deliver form of anarchy in itself I guess my response to seasonality if you look at the actual existing ma'am domination my capital that you sort of falls apart and I guess one day cover two I was particularly interested in the psychology aspect of this talk at one question that i've been pursuing in my own I'm aware of psychology for instance something that I've been thinking about a lot is viewing the small political activist group as like essentially like the group therapy and trying to apply concepts from that because I do i do think our group process it's not where it needs to be it's an excellent point which I've been struggling with last few decades but especially the last couple years and and I said before that Annika's have hoes that recognize the importance of changing ourselves in order to function that are the Hubble year but we've had danica suppose have much trouble is anyone else trying to be non-competitive the contest and so you would think that anarchist would pay more attention to had to do that and there is this petition of radical therapy that has tried to address that my experience has been going back to the 70s there were political groups and against and others who were so focused on our message in our work that we were going to be distracted by dealing with our own stuff and then there were people who were so focused on fixing themselves on the human potential movement the New Age movement and they might acknowledge that yeah we want the world to change too but the way they were going to change the world was but learning more about themselves becoming better people interacting with other people better and there was a big gap between these two groups and there were very few groups that I knew of back then that tried to bridge that gap moving for new society which was a big move in Philadelphia which lasted for a while they had a dozen or two dozen communal households they also did a lot of interpersonal personal work and came up in the 70s to do non-violence training they're not around anymore but it cook to have seen yet been looking at this last year about to move it from your society perspective the last year into I've been looking at groups that assertive on the other side groups that come out of potential movement that claims want a new society or culture and I and I'm sort of trying to explore this to see where we can bridge that gap because I think I think that's an important point we don't if different if I think it's too narcissistic figure out so why am I feeling joy at buying the new computer or why am I feeling jealous about a relationship with why you know if if I don't want to look at those things I'm never going to figure out I can try to shove them aside and people who have gung-ho political activist whup and just jump things aside which to me means two things first getting awful might have done even though he puts us to the side but I think we could do more if we knew how to do the work groups better if we knew how to make decisions better and a lot of it comes up here just sitting around being in front of the General Assembly's seeing people to up I said before that things here at work generally Annika's design but a lot of specifics to me sort of don't work that well finiti group structure or another structure where everybody here is connected to a single group that means it works on issues within the group and has networks with other groups instead it seems to me more than half pound thing than I think the rhetoric describes it comes up with issues like direct action now we have a direct action I think at one point the direct action working groups with the two direct action working at different sensitive like direct action 10 managers have a pathetic is antenna and it is caucus having to reassure the General Assembly that weren't going to trash an action that the General Assembly decided on in preserving the right to act differently elsewhere I think the notion of direct action has been bandied about back when i came across the town in the 70s 80s direct action mens knots petitioning the government not asking for legal not talking about how anybody else do anything different direct action meant directly trying to accomplish what you wanted to accomplish if you want we wanted a block good for your plant construction the goal was to get on the site stand in front of the machines and prevent construction not to get arrested outside appealing for people to do that anarchist in particular have often resisted the notion of petitioning asking for changes in the law asking other people to do things that we should be able to do ourselves and not just Annika's people in the anti-war movement an anti-vietnam war movement block trains of troop transports going to Vietnam they didn't just ask the government to not send the truth they block trains we still have people mostly from the religious direct action na nana is religiously motivated catholic worker in similar communities that are still getting arrested for going into nuclear facilities and banging with hammers on the nose cones of the silos that nuclear missiles are on and they're still in prison is still going to federal prison because they want to prevent this nuclear missile from going off they will cut through the fence they bang on the notes on the silo tribe damage it then they get arrested and they do it they get arrested peacefully but their goal on the site isn't just to make an appeal isn't just a petition it's to show what if thousands of people were doing that we might actually stop those missiles from taking off and if thousands of people were preventing to disability the Middle East we might actually stop though so when longshoremen get involved in action and stop loading warships for example that's a huge thing and so it's a very different model of trying to create change than petitioning and looking at which legal reform might work best can anyone see other things that have come up here that you think are relevant to this discussion in terms of weight decisions are being made or leadership actions can't want to go back to the notions of like how in our kids miss violence has house portrayed that way and like and how people use media portrays how then are kiss are just like destroying the state property and I like to push back on that idea that more about transforming space transforming like a part into something that's a community space and that I think that's more what anarchism is what it's trying to teach and it's also not lawlessness it's like anti-authoritarian Syrian isn't as he talked about because even the General Assembly that's going to be a representation of anarchism or you know community development there's rules of how you vote how we talk I mean that's we're going to decide that so yeah you do have law in a sense you have organized communication so I mean I think those are all in Arcis ideals and I don't think we should think about it as like violent or anti law I think it's just looking at how we can change individuals and how we interact with each other that's the ideal can argue is it is the nature of civil disobedience to grateful or to break some sort of social norm so it really wouldn't be civil disobedience if it wasn't being disobedient yeah I think shows disobedience is more about being like upset with the system as it is for you I'm challenging the bar like you know blocking traffic here at something like that the gate attention or something or what they didn't vote on the Brooklyn Bridge there's absolutely issues that have come up here and in Wall Street in other places dealing with some of these questions when is the question of violence there is there is a tradition within a chasm of violence mostly essential role of SAS nations of heads of state for Ruth leaders it was never the dominant former mannequins organizing but it was there and it was part of the image of anarchism and was what led to the red squiggly red scare 1920 where basically the federal government rounded up Annika's differences in the back to Italy and wherever else they came up will show how the cool cause but energy has always been this different trend is there's Annika's who have favored they called propaganda of the deed which originally meant the bunch of being taken to mean assassinations in political but they're both have always been pacifist panelists they have been religious and Catholic working as a pacifist anarchist Catholic organization that Nvidia a very long time they you know they have centers here in Massachusetts anarchism today that the question isn't so much people advocating violence in question has to do with finding while and this has been controversial within a lot of movements and many anarchists would argue that violence and violence against people Annika's with pretty routinely I think these days are against any violence to people individuals there's a split about where the property destruction is violence and described by on whether blocking traffic which some people say well that's violent because it wasn't people to stop what they're doing post anak is to say that blocking traffic not a fire that but there are people including people here don't want any disruption and there's sort of a philosophical differences that how this movement develops do we develop by Tony things down talking to the cops not marching any place we're not supposed to go not blocking traffic not breaking windows and then we might just stay here forever or do we grow by being normal by coming up with different actions that it disrupts of it and yes I was in here I did the other day in northeastern students marched here and block traffic for 20 minutes or something and then after some negotiation with the cops they came in and had their route and I'm not sure that would have come out of here because here there's been this effort not to be constructive and annika sort of bending over backwards not that this people off but there is this this issue of just how how much disruption is too much we're getting a lot of support from unions and other people who are making clear that they like the way things are going what happens is the tongue changes and mutter the goals of the goals to basically be where the city wants us to do and he what the city wants us to do tour is the goal to not suck not be so close and try to come up with other means but the property destruction thing is important in my guess is it will come up here again at different points it will come up if if roots of people break a window or cut through a fence in order to get on property and others denounce them you know it's an issue should the peacekeepers years so the medium people identify the people who did that and turn them over to the police and this is something that has happened in protests you know for many years in different places because they're clearly difficult very so I urge you to kiss way to keep track of those issues as they come up in general assembly in other places and try to you know make sense of what's going what now smarty Mike critique I guess of a lot of keeping things within confined boundaries is that whatever demands come out of the group that's sticking to the rules would be very hot and I think I think we have to do another corpus of points on positive al-askari




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