A warning: Rise to the defense of the revolutionary

by Mike Ely

Here is the deal: The smell of sulfur is upon the land. Satan himself is  coming now

Of course we don’t believe in Satan. It is a metaphor.

What I mean is this: The real and difficult struggle within this movement and for this movement is now starting.

The media is turning on the machinery. The unions officials will now come as “supporters” but broker for the liberal establishment. “Advisers” will show up. People (who are pliant and acceptable) will now be declared leaders and spokespeople in the media. Demands will be announced or promoted or demanded that correspond to the program of the Democratic Party…. and much more.

We see it on every side: The Democratic Party (through many instrumentalities) is coming to convert the Occupy XXX movement into a liberal version of the Tea Party (their personal reserve to whipping up their social base for the coming elections). It is, to put it bluntly, what death looks like for this new movement.

They are coming in disguise, with honeyed words, with promises and seductions. As they have come for previous generations.

The  liberal establishment themselves will now try to shape and coopt. And i mean those who currently dominate an empire and wage wars to maintain it.They are the confidants of the bankers, the guardians of the status quo. They will whisper the language of populist rage and reform — while offering a servile place in their election machinery. Those who are coming have money, agents, foot soldiers, spotlights, avenues to fame, perfumes of power and the weight of their system’s deadening political logic.

Look at Wisconsin — where a righteous resistance was funneled into a lame recall campaign… the way cattle are funneled toward the zapper.

The system is broken. We don’t want a way back in. Obama is the president from Goldman Sachs. He serves as commander in chief of an empire and its wars. We don’t want a seat in his campaign table. And we don’t want tactical advice on how to help his campaign appeal to “Middle Americans.”

We will reach the people ourselves (especially the youth of ghettos and  barrios and Middle America) with a subversive message that won’t compute in the calculators of this system.

What will they do: The Republicans sent in a steel backbone of trained operatives (led by Dick Army) to simply take over and shape the Tea Party — replacing the rightwing grassroots with a flogging of mailing lists using Fox News. The Democrats will now try the equivalent with the Occupy movement — if we allow it.

Can we allow ourselves to become a house-broken leftwing chorus within an oppressive and corrupt status quo? No.

How we will defeat this:

First, we need to take an inventory of who we are — the revolutionary, the discontented, the dissident, the energized and visionary — and see the great potential for this radicalism. We are not something that “turns off” — we are not something that has to be tamed, or hidden, or cleaned up. On the contrary, we will have to deepen our critique and its radicalism — because the problems run deeper than even many of us know, and the solutions will require more disruption and change than even many of us imagine.

And so, we need to prepare a sophisticated defense of the radical: within the movement and within the larger society.

This movement has punched a hole into the public sphere. The whole world is watching — use it!

Our enemies are now turning on the big carrot and big stick and big lie. They will now start to red-bait the radicals, revolutionaries and “crazies” in the movement. It is already happening. Learn to ride the tiger.

Look at the major questions of power and politics concentrated in this moment and this movement. Get on a high plane.Represent the future within the present and the whole within the part. Represent the revolutionary within the movement — in a sweeping, not nit-picking, way.

We need strategic messaging when we write and speak. We need to identify forces inside and outside the movement we are speaking to.

Above all, we need to grasp the power of that very radicalism that they will try to extinguish.

Don’t focus on the petty

If reactionary shit goes down within the movement (especially the usual racist and sexist shit of American society), let’s call it out — short, sharp, clear. Bring it to a stop and move on. But our self-cleansing is process, not the central work. Don’t get bogged down.

I hear complaints — about the naive and goofy within the movement (including consensus rules, hand gestures, an attempt to avoid leadership or what ever). Deal with such things when they get in the way — but don’t get lost.

We need to help build a core  of the most determined and radical (together with others) to grow through the offensives that will be thrown at us.

Revolutinaries  need to develop a generous, inclusive,  and sweeping manner of speaking — that sharply indicts all that abuses the people. We need to speak to (and for) the revolutionary within this movement.

This requires some quick transformation, quick learning, mutual training and creative work. Do it. Time is running out.

Proclaiming the revolutionary: Breaking down the tasks

Revolutionaries within this movement face some incredibly challenging responsibilities. Let’s rise to our crucial tasks.

Prominent among them: We need to solve the problem of getting youth from oppressed communities deep into this movement, and help transform it. Help actually solve the problem… Make outreach of that kind into a movement of the advanced.

And my main theme here: We need to help wage that proud and unapologetic defense of the revolutionary (inside and outside the encampments)

For that…. four things:

1) Develop a visible and creative pole of revolutionary discussion — we need arguments based on the overall direction and purpose of this movement (not on petty correctives). What does that consist of? First, putting forward revolutionary, socialist and communist politics clearly and creatively — and (when appropriate) in an all round way. Second, identifying the two or three key political points that the movement needs to have breakthroughs on — and find the ways of articulating them powerfully. (Identifying those make-or-break issues is a fluid and creative process — rooted in context and actual need — not in our own pre-existing  checklist.)

2) Identify and unite the advanced (using a mass line method )– a creative task that has not yet been accomplished.

3) Rely on the advanced (mobilize them, help them articulate a common approach) to influence and win over the intermediate.

4) Work to isolate the backward. In this case, the backward are those determined to turn this movement into a liberal version of the Tea Party, and perp -walk everyone into the 2012 elections as loyal subjects.

This is happening now.

Source: Kasama Project

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Filed under Analysis, United States

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