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(en) Russia, Avtonom: The New Old Czar and Misogyny: "Trends of Order and Chaos" Episode 148 (ca, de, it, pt, tr)[machine translation]

Date Wed, 10 Apr 2024 11:53:31 +0300

1. The so-called elections ---- In mid-March, the so-called presidential elections will be held in Russia. There was a time when Russian anarchists argued whether they should spoil the ballot, vote against everyone, or not go to the polls at all. Now this discussion is no longer relevant: the ability to vote against everyone, as well as the turnout threshold at which the vote is considered valid, were abolished back in 2006. ---- Putin's system is so far structured in such a way that it needs a pseudo-election procedure: it legitimizes the tsar's right to do whatever he wants in Russia for six years. And propagandists can claim that the people trust Putin.

These Putin re-elections are even more dismal than usual. The other three "candidates" allowed for predictable defeat are sitting quietly, below the grass. Putin has no agenda for exiting the war - neither through negotiations, nor even through the seizure of all of Ukraine - in the elections.

As ironically noted on the decentralized social network Mastodon:

Elections are a holiday, but a holiday that has deep mystical foundations. All archaic societies (that is, societies that have not lost touch with the Primordial Tradition) need festive rituals, with the help of which they seem to "play out" negative scenarios for the development of the world. Therefore, it is fair to say that the ancient Roman Saturnalia, the medieval "Feasts of Fools" and Russian elections have a common semantic meaning and aesthetic similarity. Their task is to preserve the sacredness of Power.

"Candidates" for the presidency, symbolizing the seven deadly sins, specifically carry out public desecration of the President, as if encroaching on the sacredness of the Authority. Such desecration is permissible, because in a metaphysical game it has an important symbolic character. The President's opponents, a kind of apocalyptic false prophets, appear before the people as his "dark doubles", demonstrating the duality of the world, which contains not only good, but also evil.

The only thing that can really change after Putin's reappointment is that there are forecasts that the dollar exchange rate will no longer be restrained, which will result in higher prices and a reduction in the product range in Russia.

It is impossible not to admit that when a more or less sane person is elected, he can make decisions that are useful for people for quite a long time, until he is bent by nomenklatura obligations. But within the framework of representative democracy (which in Russia also exists in the most perverted form), voters do not have effective mechanisms for quickly changing presumptuous elected officials: therefore, anarchists themselves do not participate in practically any elections.

The liberal and much less numerous left-wing "non-systemic opposition" are still trying to participate in the elections. Since the 2010s, their maximum electoral successes have been individual deputies in the parliaments of Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Now the "non-systemic opposition" is calling for spoiling ballots and for everyone to come to the polling stations at the same time. Maxim Katz even saw anti-war notes in the program of the candidate from "New People" and suggested voting for him...

The above will most likely do neither harm nor benefit. It is appropriate to quote Alexei Navalny: the late leader of this very "non-systemic opposition" said at the very beginning of the 2010s that power in Russia would not change as a result of elections.

The recent funeral of Alexei Navalny showed that despite many years of state terror against dissidents, in Moscow alone there are tens of thousands of people who were not afraid to come to such an event, although arrests, beatings, whatever, could not be ruled out. But when the cops saw tens of thousands of people gathered, they did not dare disperse people for anti-war slogans.

And when and if an exponentially larger crowd gathers and marches on the Kremlin, it is quite possible that the cops will not dare to hinder the people's anger, and in the corridors of power there will be those who themselves have long wanted to push Putin down.

2. International Women's Day
Last week was March 8, which, of course, is the day of the struggle for women's rights, and not a holiday of spring, love and beauty.

Shortly before the stage of open war among the Russian opposition, and not only the liberal ones, the most popular topic was to scare feminists. They say they are worse than Stalin, and their terrible "fembo committee" wants to create a totalitarian society, and in general they are worse than even the fascists. And then, how suddenly, it turned out that only fascists can be worse than fascists, there is no "fembo committee", and feminists are the most active participants in the anti-war Resistance.

Discrimination on the basis of gender has existed as long as patriarchy has existed. He can take on different guises, even those that may seem progressive; how can one recognize these guises? In fact, it would seem very simple - if you see misogyny, it means this is the evil face of patriarchy, isn't that what feminists are fighting against? But many, unfortunately, prefer not to see such an obvious thing. And they begin to either check privileges, who can be raped and who can no longer be raped, or look for reasons why, as they say, "it's her own fault."

Although feminists would have to answer that it is impossible to kill and rape women. Neither poor nor rich, neither dark skinned nor light skinned. Just? Very. But here's a recent example: how many Western feminist organizations are outraged by the murders, kidnappings and rapes of Israeli women? In any conflict and war, hatred and the desire for revenge are first of all taken out on women, does it really matter what nationality they are and what color their passport is in order to condemn this?

All the problems of society hit women the hardest; the conservative turn in many countries of the world, which occurs regardless of whether they are poor or rich, is aimed primarily at controlling women. Femicide, femicide, is an issue that affects both the poor and the rich. And although anarcho-feminism approaches the fight for women's rights from a social perspective, it is important to remember that patriarchal misogyny is aimed at all women without exception.

We see the same in Putin's Russia: the Kremlin, where it is now considered normal to be friends with the Taliban, increasingly insistently demands that women not engage in self-realization, but be meek machines that give birth to new soldiers. Machines without freedom, education and their own opinion. The North Caucasus is the vanguard here: investigations of "honor killings" in this region are regularly stalled, and from all over Russia, rebellious girls who fled violence are returned to the Caucasus to relatives for new torment.

What can we, as anarchists and feminists, offer women? There is nothing more natural for the ideal in the feminist idea of society than ideas in which dominance, competition, hierarchy and other favorite toys of patriarchy are excluded, and mutual assistance, self-government, an ecological path of development and equality are proposed.

Of course, to achieve such a harmonious society, a lot of work will need to be put in. Especially in a situation where any word of truth can land you in jail. This means that the path of Resistance to the state and patriarchy, of which it is a part, is also the path of resistance to war and Putin's dictatorship. As "the most dangerous woman in America," anarchist Emma Goldman, said: "Resistance to tyranny is the greatest ideal of man. As long as tyranny exists in any form, man must naturally resist it, just as naturally he must breathe."

Well that's all for today! We remind you that in Trends in Order and Chaos, members of Autonomous Action and other authors give anarchist assessments of current events. Listen to us on YouTube, SoundCloud and other platforms, visit our website avtonom.org, subscribe to our e-mail newsletter!

The issue was prepared by Listyev and NinaT

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