Richard Barbrook on Thu, 5 Jun 1997 02:43:21 +0200 (MET DST)

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Re: <nettime> more provocations

>> Here's some basic banalities:
>> Anarchism is neo-liberalism for hippies.
>that's a crock of shit,
>please explain

I thought that this position is clear from my remarks about the ultra-left
posturing of the 'zero-work' demand. In Europe, we have real social problems
of deprivation and poverty which, in part, can only be solved by state
action. This does not make me a statist, but rather an anti-anti-statist. By
opposing such intervention because they are carried out by the state,
anarchists are tacitly lining up with the neo-liberals. Even worse, refusing
even to vote for the left, they acquiese to rule by neo-liberal parties. 

I deeply admire direct action movements. I was a radio pirate and we provide
server space for anti-roads and environmental movements. However, this
doesn't mean that I support political abstentionism or, even worse, the
mystical nonsense produced by Hakim Bey. It is great for artists and others
to adopt a marginality as a life style choice, but most of the people who
are economically and socially marginalised were never given any choice. They
are excluded from society as a result of deliberate policies of
deregulation, privatisation and welfare cutbacks carried out by neo-liberal
governments. During the '70s, I was a pro-situ punk rocker until Thatcher
got elected. Then we learnt the hard way that voting did change things and
lots of people suffered if state power was withdrawn from certain areas of
our life, such as welfare and employment. Anarchism can be a fun artistic
pose. However, human suffering is not.


Dr. Richard Barbrook
Hypermedia Research Centre
School of Design & Media
University of Westminster
Watford Road
Northwick Park

+44 (0)171-911-5000 x 4590

"...the History of the World is nothing but the development
of the Idea of Freedom." - Georg Hegel

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