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(en) anarkismo.net: Syndicalism or platformism? Syndicalism AND Platformism! - a reply by the (die)plattform (de)
Sun, 4 Aug 2019 09:42:35 +0300
Criticism is a gift. Usually, however, just this special present is packaged a little
loveless, which is why it is then accepted so reluctant. ---- Also a recent, quite
polemical discussion with our text "
https://www.dieplattform.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/layout17shre-7.pdf " falls into
this category: the brochure " https: // www .syndikat-a.de / index.php? article_id = 2 &
cat = 3923 & prod = 5422 ", published by Syndikat-A as a copy of the journal
https://tsveyfl.blogspot.com/p/start.html . ---- The author Frederik Fuss has a strong
bitterness in the face of the state of the anarchist movement. Even the term "movement" is
too much of a good thing for him. This frustration has very relevant reasons - with regard
to the criticism in our text seems to be consensus. We only doubt that in this way he will
be successful in doing something about them.
As for us, we are still grateful for the input. We do not need harmony and no
(cross-organizational) consensus on all issues. What do we care about the packaging ... is
If we ignore this, there are certainly some noteworthy points that can help to better
describe our positions. As the author himself notes, it was never our claim to provide a
comprehensive explanation of the world with this first text - but a basis for discussion.
We are therefore right in pointing to a few empty spaces in our text: for example, the
hitherto unformulated position on anti-Semitism - which should not only be mentioned in
relation to the shift to the right. Such blanks exist in the text even a few more, which
are not mentioned in Fuß criticism. We are aware of that. We will also take a clear stance
on other situations of oppression and domination that are too brief or unmentioned.
As the successful paragraph on the strengths of platformism emphasizes, "the collective
process of negotiating the concepts first enables individuals to place their own thoughts
and conceptions of and about the world in a fruitful relationship with those of others.
Dissent can and does not have to be carried out ... have been suppressed. "We have already
successfully started this process, as both the large number of positive and negative
reactions to our text show.
Insinuations such as, we would understand capitalism or patriarchy as purely interpersonal
relations of domination, at least show us that we need to formulate and expand these
points and relationships again more carefully and clearly. With a little benevolence, a
different point of view would have been deducible from our text: The sentences "At the
center of capitalist functioning are not human needs, but the achievement of (maximum)
profit and capital utilization" and "Patriarchy the world-wide system of oppression and
exploitation of women "should become clear that we are not concerned with shortened and
personalized rule of domination.
The statement that gender is not social (that is, social) constructed, but that it is
"rather ... a social process that generates and enforces gender," we are then a bit
puzzling. But of course there are also material foundations and emotional, institutional
and physical influences regarding "ideological dressing", no question. We have the
impression to address these in our text at least partially. But even here, everything is
certainly even clearer.
There are also affirmative passages - such as criticizing some of the current (albeit
over-subscribed) developments in FAU to which our text indeed provides answers: for
example, the reference to a clear, anarchist viewpoint in everyday union work or the
proposal a supraregional awareness structure.
It must also be said: Not a few of us are organized in the FAU and participate in internal
discourses there. We see our approach and that of anarcho-syndicalism not as opposites,
but as complementary and natural siblings.
This assessment also leads us to reject the variant of platformism that Frederik Fuss
represents. The resulting accusation against us is that we are not platformistically
enough, or that we are anethistic anarchist in a platform costume. It contains, based on
passages of the historical platform of 1926, an exclusive representation claim and the
attempt to gain a power of definition over the anarchist movement. For good reasons, which
can be found in our text, we think that this is neither feasible nor desirable. Many
present-day, platformist organizations, who likewise do not want to enforce "anarchist
monoculture", think this similarly. However, this does not mean that we have a synthetic
organizational approach, as assumed b Fuß. Our organization is based on the unity of
theory and practice, goals and strategies. This applies to all constituents and members of
the platform. This organizational approach as well as a diverse, well thought out and
socially effective anarchist movement are not mutually exclusive.
Therefore, we also resolutely oppose his proposal to join the FAU in an attempt to
transform it into an organization based on platform principles. Just as we disagree with
the assessment, "with the FAU there is already an organization in Germany that fulfills
some requirements of the idea of platformism". The FAU, with its "principles and
fundamentals" of 2015, has a very general and brief theoretical basis. However, the
individual FAU syndicates do not have a common understanding of practical activity, nor a
common understanding of strategies to achieve their goals (ignoring the general strike).
The FAU as an anarcho-syndicalist union has a clear and correct current focus in the
syndicalist labor struggle on anarchist basis - the FAU's strict anarcho-syndicalism
demanded by Fuß (taking into account its current capabilities) is, in our opinion,
fulfilled. As a platformist organization of ideas, we do not have to focus primarily on
labor disputes, but can also contribute to other social struggles of the wage-dependent
class - continuously and as the main focus of our organization. We therefore have a
broader policy space in the current situation.
To come back on Fuß reasoning: The platformism has nunmal since its founding paper
developed almost 100 years ago. In the wake of its Latin American character, the
especifismo, we must further disappoint ourselves: we do not want to work only with
syndicalists and synthetic anarchists on a practical level. We want to get into the
balance of power and social struggles - in other words, wherever we are strategically
given, we will happily work with people who do not even see themselves as anarchists.
Anyone who, on the basis of a claim of platform superiority, sees the synthesis on the
next level alone in practical cooperation, will probably have to rely on it.
Of course we would be happy if FAU or FdA would adopt some of our approaches in the
future. But once that happens, then on the basis of voluntariness, insight into their
correctness and not through intra-anarchist confrontation and repression. This strategy,
even if it were promising - which it absolutely is not - would only weaken and split the
movement as a whole.
But we have started to strengthen the anarchist movement. In order for us to be able to
set ourselves up effectively according to our platform-based and especifismo-derived
approach, we need our own organization. This also applies to the - never completely
finished - development of a consistent, theoretical basis, a binding structure, which is
just not arbitrary, and an effective practice. "Fight where you stand" is certainly an
important principle - not only in terms of labor, but also on Mietenkämpfe, social
revolutionary twists of identity politics or ecology - but not the only one. An altered
perception of anarchism does not have to be enforced, especially in a "scene", but in the
social public sphere. Whether that can succeed,
We also have to reject other arguments.
For example, the assumption made in the air that our view of National Socialism is based
on the condensed fascism theory of the Stalinist Dimitroff, according to which fascism is
virtually only a puppet or particularly "consistent" expression of the financial capital.
Again, we may have to clarify something once again. If we say that "fascism can serve as a
way out of capital in times of crisis", that does not mean "capital is behind fascism".
Instead, this refers to the simple fact that fascism and capital in the past have always
made good ally and the nationalist as well as capitalist-dominated competitive society,
unfortunately, provides good conditions for slipping into fascist barbarism. This also
applies to the current shift to the right, for example, for the promotion of AfD by
political groups from the economy.
In order to recognize this, it is not necessary to put different phenomena in one. Even
though we were concerned with fascism in general, the practical efforts of National
Socialists to "negate the capital ratio" were largely ideological in comparison to the
extent of their practical collaboration with capital groups. The great emphasis on
racist-racist and anti-Semitic content is indeed an important distinguishing feature of
National Socialism compared to many capitalist actors, as well as other fascist movements.
But even if capitalist interests were frustrated partly and especially towards the end in
favor of more direct power and violence during National Socialism, The Volkish element
historically had the function of pacifying, mitigating and overriding class antagonisms
and not their cause. National Socialism unleashed the class struggle from above, partly
replacing wage labor with open slavery, not to mention the barbaric, absolutely
dehumanizing forced labor in the labor and concentration camps, which to this day brings
German companies the necessary advantage in world market competition.
Nor do we by any means reduce all migrants to Muslims - but it remains important to note
that the latter have become a primary enemy image for some of today's right, which in turn
makes this reduction. Not only because of "envy and admiration," as Fuß claims, but above
all on the basis of anti-Muslim racism, "barbarian discourses" and a self-image as
gatekeeper of a Christian-Western hegemony.
That racist attitudes in society tend to decrease statistically with stronger contact with
the people they refer to, as well as structural differences in urban and rural areas. Of
the assumed automatism was with us also no speech. However, we gladly accept the incentive
to deal with "identity diffusion" as the basis of right attitudes.
It is also a pity that Fuss accuses us of not being concrete enough, for example, to
discard only platitudes in terms of the anarchist concept, but often even fiddling around
in a cloud of just such - only more influenced by academic jargon. But that does not make
up for the lack of concretization of criticism. It would have been exciting for us to find
out exactly what he still misses or suggests. Unfortunately, instead of formulating
answers himself, it often remains in pure negativity - which is legitimate, but also
significantly more unsettling.
Unlike the author, we do not consider the anarchist movement irrelevant. Otherwise we
would hardly want to get involved in it to the degree. On the contrary: at the latest
after the decline of real socialism, some anarchist contents in left-wing movements have
become hegemonic. In the same way, the social movements increasingly recognize that
suppression is mutually supportive and intersectionally interwoven - anarchism, with its
declared opposition not to one, but to all forms of domination, offers here a theoretical
basis in which various social movements converge could. Unfortunately, organized anarchism
has failed to capitalize on this great potential due to the weaknesses we have identified.
Despite all this again - thanks for the 32-page brochure - which also refers to our text.
We have read them partly with great profit and are also very pleased that we could
continue to fuel the discussion about anarchist organization.
Related Link: https://www.dieplattform.org
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