In the upcoming book I’m working on with Claire Wolfe, one of the points we keep trying to drive home is that people looking to do resistance work need to be able to separate ideology from tactics. What that means is, don’t throw out a solid point or idea for action just because it was said by someone you don’t like, and don’t jump on a stupid or dangerous idea just because you like the person who’s advocating it.
The above precept requires critical thinking. It requires swallowing your hatred for an idea if the people espousing it have an ingenious method of spreading it that you can use for your own ends.
This morning I came across the following statement on Gab. I’ve edited it a bit for clarity and to remove identifying info, for reasons that will be apparent momentarily.
Look. Here’s the thing about IRL activism.
It isn’t really IRL if you are putting on a performance, which is what
virtually all of the alleged IRL activism right now is – it is
performance activism. And obviously, the performance is not being put on
for the few people who see it in real life – it is being put on because
it will be photographed and video taped and seen by thousands or
millions of others.
And where will it be seen?
It will be seen on the internet.
So this alleged “IRL activism” is really just the producing of internet
propaganda. It can be good propaganda or it can be bad propaganda, but
it needs to be understood that this is what it is.
That is what a march is, that is what a public speaking event is. It is
And a lot of it frankly looks like shit and takes away from things that
we’ve been doing successfully in the propaganda sphere.
If you are a couple hundred or fewer guys getting shouted down or
physically attacked by the opposition, that is bad propaganda. If you
are a fat slob in a military costume looking like shit…that is bad propaganda.
Some of the demonstrations have been good. But we need to understand
that there is no goal there beyond propaganda, and if we look at it
through that lens, it is much easier to understand what is good and what
Because a lot of this shit is fucking demoralizing. Watching a bunch of
…fat guys in costumes get shouted down in the street and
laughed at is not only bad propaganda – it hurts the morale of our own
But the shit that is bad is doing harm. It is harming us. And I’m
getting really, really tired of people acting like if you point that out
you are hurting the cause.
Other IRL Activism
There is other IRL activism that is not propaganda. Organizing
politically on a local level to get /ourguys/ elected is something that
you don’t do because it gets people to look at you, you do it because
you have a tangible goal.
Just so with helping communities to gain the good will of the people
through charity or whatever.
Most important in my opinion is forming IRL communities and building
bonds with each other. I believe that should be the primary goal right
now IRL. That has a clear purpose in that we are taking what we have
built on the internet to the real world and helping each other, creating
relationships and brotherhood.
That sounds like some pretty sound advice. In fact, it sounds what a lot of us have been advocating for quite some time.
Here’s the kicker–guess who said it?
Andrew Anglin, of Daily Stormer fame.
Does my agreement with the above statement mean I somehow agree with the rest of his belief system? Of course not. I find his beliefs morally repugnant and disgusting, even as I value at a core level his right to state them in the public square.
I’m posting his comment because it’s correct. The information is not tied to the person. It’s not any different than stuff JC Dodge, WRSA, or others have said. In fact, in the piece I linked from Dodge, he’s giving a real-world example of the exact point Anglin is making; namely, that the stuff people call “activism” is really a performance meant to be propaganda.
Propaganda is great. We should do it more effectively. But let’s also own our crap, as my brother-in-law likes to say, and call it what it is instead of trying to convince ourselves and others that it’s something else.
Now, obviously Anglin’s original comment included words that get websites flagged nowadays. They also tend to make people uncomfortable enough to ignore the info behind the rhetoric–the info that is necessary to understand the other side(s). It’s the same phenomenon that makes a lot of people gasp if you tell them you own a copy of Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals, or Mein Kampf, or the Koran.
Wait…you don’t own those, as well as a whole list of other books you don’t agree with?
This should drive home another point as well: Other groups that you may find yourself in conflict with are studying these strategies and tactics, which means if you are not, then you are already behind the curve.
I’m not a white supremacist. As I’ve said before, I find that belief system disgusting. I don’t agree with social justice warriors on the other end of the spectrum either, who want to force diversity on everyone. I’m a fan of free association, in which we all choose for ourselves who we live/work/associate with, regardless of how inclusive, exclusive, or offensive others may find those choices.
But even though I vehemently disagree with each end of the spectrum, I can objectively look at HOW they do what they do, and adapt it for my own use.