Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Soccer Scandal

Got this interesting email in response to my article on the Juventus scandal in Italy. This is the site of one member of European proto-situationist culture jammers and net artists collectively known as Luther Bissett.

Hi there,
I bumped into your post. If you're interested in following the development of this football scandal, with particular focus on its links to Italian politics, I built a lenspage on squidoo called "Calcio. Italian soccer and its nightmares", with daily updates etc.
And re Berlusconi's conflicts of interest:


R. / WM1

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Uh Oh

Dodge also noted that interest rates are still historically low,
which one analyst said seemed to be a suggestion
that there might be room for more increases.

Told ya. Never trust the Bank of Canada. Their interventionism is old school, predictable and disastourous. Disastorous as in job losses, just like in the Mulroney era when this policy originated.

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Capitalist Demands Regulation

Regulate the market for me please.

"While I understand the Bank of Canada's role is to control inflation by varying interest rates, I have a hard time understanding why it only steps in when there is a loss of confidence in the Canadian dollar, and not in the opposite case when there is excess confidence." Laurent Beaudoin, chairman and chief executive of Bombardier Inc., questioned Bank of Canada policy at the company's annual general meeting yesterday.

See: Before the Crying Starts

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Cry Me A River

Unless the Canadian dollar cools off, he warned that manufacturers, such as Bombardier, would have little choice but to move jobs to the United States or elsewhere to remain competitive. Bombardier says its costs in Canada have increased by hundreds of millions of dollars relative to its largely U.S. dollar revenue base.

Bombardiers chicken little threats to cut jobs are hogwash. The reality is their drop in earning is BECAUSE they already cut jobs.
Bombardier's first-quarter earnings fell after a charge for job cuts at its train-making unit, but business jet deliveries and prices rose, the company said on Tuesday.
And then they will come cap in hand and ask for more corporate welfare from Ottawa to bail them out. And the reality is that Bombardier's problems are perenniel. Less to do with the dollar than the collapse of the American airline industry, and competition in Europe.

MONTREAL -- Bombardier Inc. posted a 56% decline in net income for the fiscal first quarter amid a 6% drop in revenue, as slower rail-equipment sales in Europe, the strengthening Canadian dollar and the financial struggles of U.S. airlines weighed on results.

Bombardier stock derailed over results

Cameron Doerksen of Versant Partners in Montreal said Bombardier's aerospace margin of 2.8 per cent in the first quarter was only slightly higher than the 2.7-per-cent reported a year ago.

The margin "is essentially unchanged from a year ago despite higher deliveries of business jets that were presumably sold at better prices," he wrote in a research update.

In the transportation -- or rail -- unit, the first-quarter margin was 3 per cent, up from 2.4 per cent a year earlier.

Mr. Doerksen questioned the company's ability to sustain higher margins in the longer term.

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Ho Hum Folk Festival

The problem with Terry Wickham is that he takes his audience for granted. The Edmonton Folk Festival is no longer exciting, nor experimental, in fact it is downright pedestrian. That's cause Terry leaves all the good acts for his Calgary Folk Festival. Which has been apparent over the last couple of years.

You see the Edmonton Festival is suffering from its own success. The consumers will come and consume, regardless of the performers presented. Wickham takes that as a given. Hence this years really, really, boring line up. No matter how they dress it up, with their syncophantic media relations.

Folk Fest reveals richest roster ever Not rich in performers but in fees probably and gate reciepts. About the only exciting act in this group of retro performers, really gimme a break Linda Rondstadt and David Bromberg, is Chumbawamba. And they are only mentioned in passing.

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Wrong Move

The Edmonton Police Service has dumped the cop in charge of community relations, who organized the largely peaceful crowd control situation on Whyte Avenue on Sunday night, in favour of this Orwellian named crew; the public safety unit, also known as the riot squad.

"I, quite unabashedly, state that yes, I was fired from that job," said South Division Insp. Bryan Boulanger, still reeling yesterday over the abrupt sacking. Boulanger said his approach to policing Whyte - "professionalism, discretion and tolerance" - clashed on more than one occasion with that of the commanders of the public safety unit, also known as the riot squad.
"They wanted to put on their hats and bats and go out swinging," he said.

Yep and that would be a PR disaster. All you need to make hooliganism turn into a full scale riot is riot cops.

As I have said here before you need to charge the bars a tax since it is their drunks partying on the streets, plus make sure they are closing early. The other point is that while many revelers are drunk, they are coming from elsewhere, they have not been partying on Whyte all night.

They are encouraged by websites like and
Gee do ya think maybe the City should encourage these web sites to be more socially responsible and say post a message about responsible partying versus hooliganism.

Also when you herd all the revelers into the area of 105 st. around the old post office building, you have no control. Period. The crowd becomes too large. It naturally gets out of control. Spread 'em out don't let people bunch up, keep them moving.

The police line last Sunday was well behaved and friendly, it should have continued down to 109 St. The cop in sharge should not have been fired for what has been mainly a media snow job. The hooliganism occured later in the evening.

And interestingly there were three knifings in Edmonton that night, but NOT on Whyte. This of course was deemed less important to report than the predictable hooliganism on Whyte.
Three stabbings overnight

Inviting the Riot Cops to patrol Whyte is asking for trouble. Since they won't listen to the cop in charge and undermined his authority on Sunday night they are just as responsible for the holliganism. Reinstate Boulanger.

Whyte reports overblown say business owners

Saturday’s hooliganism at the intersection of 105 Street and Whyte Avenue isn’t as bad as the media makes it out to be, say bar owners and shopkeepers in the area.

But they agree it’s time cops start pushing back at the idiot vandals who’ve been ruining everyone else’s fun.

“Everyone in the world is starting to think Whyte Avenue on game day is like a Saturday night in downtown Beirut,” says Blues On Whyte manager Jim Szakszon.

“Outside of that intersection the late night crowd gets very thin. The wisest thing the police can do is start ticketing every jerk that gives bar owners and fans a bad name.”

See Whyte Avenue

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Ignatieff Calls For Animal Sacrifice

Liberal Leadership Candidate Michael Ignatieff yesterday called for the "murder of the sacred cows" of the Liberal Party says Quebec newspaper Le Presse.

After getting in bed with the Conservatives over Afghanistan, now Ignatief is presenting himself as a Blue Liberal. So why doesn't he just join the Tories? Maybe he will after he loses the Liberal leadership race.

Here are the Sacred Cows that the Liberal version of Kurtz plans to sacrifice.

In the party until very recently directed by Paul Martin, "there are totems, there are sacred cows "and" they should be killed ", said M. Ignatieff, Monday, in front of a handful of militants - a dozen - come to have breakfast with him. He indicated some "sacred cows" which he would like to be sacrificed: financing of the system of health, tax imbalance, protocol of Kyoto and anti-Americanism, were his priorities.

Also See: Ignatieff

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Criminal Capitalism-WestJet

Well WestJet has been caught out. In a classic case of deny, deny,deny, confess out of court, they finally admited to the truth. They are crooks. That in order to take advantage of the consolidation of Air Canada they hacked into AC's customer base and looted information. And did they go to jail? Well unlike joe hacker, no. Of course not. They paid a fine, apologised and looked sheepish at a joint press conference with AC boss Robert Milton. See white collar crime does pay!

WestJet apology means industry can work together on regulatory change: Milton

Milton seeks WestJet's help on landing fees

Competitors? Competition? Nope, Oligopoly.

WestJet straying from its low-fare script

Clive Beddoe did the right thing in settling the espionage case against WestJet Airlines. Fifteen million dollars, plus a few toothpicks to remove the humble pie, doesn't seem like a big price to pay to get rid of a costly distraction.So the airline industry's conspiracy-of-the decade has ended with a whimper, and Mr. Beddoe's company emerged with no lasting damage. Is there a single person who refused to fly WestJet because they were concerned about management ethics? Doubtful. Most people want four things when choosing an airline: (1) low fares, (2) low fares, (3) to not feel as though they've been crammed into a tin of Starkist tuna, and -- What was the other thing? Oh, yes -- (4) low fares.

Here is a take on this from the left;

I think it goes a bit deeper, actually. Westjet has been held up, particularly by the right in Canada, as the paragon of free market virtue compared to Air Canada's incompetence and waste, in large part because Westjet was very profitable. It's been used as a way to bash on Air Canada and its unionized workforce. Layoffs have been a way of life for Air Canada staff for about 15 years. I know someone who is 4 years from retirement, and is at the bottom of the seniority list at his airport.

While Neil Waugh, the Edmonton Sun Columnist who has gone pinko, defends the unions and spanks AC boss Robert Milton (will wonders never cease) in a case of fair and balanced reporting.

Instead, for the grovelling confession and apology Milton is willing to settle for $5.5 million in investigation and legal fees, plus a further $10-million donation to unnamed Canadian kids' charities.

As a sign that Milton wants to bury the hatchet and "turn a new page on this unfortunate chapter," the cheques will bear both Air Canada's and WestJet's names.

But it's not open skies any time soon for Milton - even after recently reporting a "solid first quarter" for Air Canada's parent AEC Aviation Holdings.

The $118-million net profit has attracted the attention of the Air Canada Pilots Association, which took a 30% pay cut and faced massive layoffs when the company sought bankruptcy protection.

"The company can now afford to share this success with the people who helped achieve it," the Air Canada pilots said about upcoming contract negotiations. Especially when it pointed out that Milton took an alleged 13.5% salary cut from 2002-05 when the creditors were circling.

"During the same period, Milton's annual compensation grew by 72%," the pilots scolded. "And nearly doubled from 2004 to 2005."

Say it ain't so, Robert?

Also See:

Criminal Capitalism

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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Jimmy Boy Where Are Ya?

Why am I not surprized? !

FBI Finds No Trace of Hoffa and Calls Off Search

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Comrade Ambrose

Gee this sounds like the whining that comes out of Conservative MP and Minister of the Environment; Rona Ambrose's mouth.

Beijing unlikely to meet air quality targets

Guess they didn't meet their Kyoto targets either. Wait they aren't signatories to the Kyoto Accord.
Must be the Made in China solution. They are members of Rona's alternative to Kyoto the Asia-Pacific climate change partnership. Guess that isn't working either.

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Socialized Medicine Is Good For You

Nyah Nyah. Michael Moore got it right.

It's gotta be true it's an American study!

Canadians healthier than Americans, study says

Updated Tue. May. 30 2006 5:07 PM ET News Staff

Canadians are healthier and have better access to health care than U.S. residents. And, according to a new study, Canadians obtain better care for half of what Americans spend on their medical system.

The study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, was conducted by Harvard Medical School researchers. They also found that:

  • Canadians were seven per cent more likely to have a regular doctor
  • Canadians were 19 per cent less likely than Americans to have their health needs go unmet.
  • Americans were more than twice as likely to forgo needed medicines because of cost.

Discrepancies in health care become even wider when taking into account income, age, sex, race and immigrant status. In those kind of detailed comparisons, Canadians were 33 per cent more likely to have a regular doctor and 27 per cent less likely to have an unmet health need.

Meanwhile, Americans had higher rates of nearly every serious chronic disease, including obesity, diabetes and chronic lung disease, even though U.S. residents were less likely to be smokers.

"We pay almost twice what Canada does for care, more than $6,000 for every American, yet Canadians are healthier, and live two to three years longer," said Dr. David Himmelstein, an associate professor at Harvard and study co-author.

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Nikes or Volpe

This is hilarious teenagers with a spare $5400 drop it on Liberal Leadership candidate Joe Volpe instead of Ipods or Nikes. Yeah right. Sounds like corporate donations made via the backdoor. Here kid here's some money donate it to Uncle Joe.

Executives' donations to Volpe draw fire

New Democrat MP Pat Martin yesterday filed a complaint asking Elections Commissioner Raymond Landry to investigate whether "individuals may be trying to circumvent campaign fundraising limits. "I suppose it is possible that all six children of two drug company executives would choose to donate their life savings to the Liberal leadership campaign of the member for Eglinton-Lawrence. It is possible, but it is not likely," Mr. Martin said in the Commons.

Volpe receives big donation from drug execs' kids

NDP wants Volpe leadership donations probed

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Martin Says Some Crimes Are Not Crimes

Keith Martin. Dr. Keith Martin. Liberal MP. He defends liberalized marijuana laws. Something the Harpocrites refuse to accept in their new Republican style law and order bill.

He says, correctly, that addiction is not a crime but a medical condition. He was debating the Tories new crime bill C-9 which is now in Second Reading.

And his comments are particularly important in light of the recent announcements by Crime Lord errr In-Justice Minister Vic Toews and the Harpocrite, that they are less than enamoured of Vancouvers safe injection program for drug addicts.Instead they declare war on drugs, like the Republicans. Martin was the voice of reason over this issue.

Mind you he sort of went a bit wonky over unions, somehow believing that unions would oppose back to work programs for addicts. Nothing could be further from the truth.

But the rest of his speech hits the nail on the head. His point that the majority of those currently incarcerated suffer Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, and are aboriginal, shows that this is a medical problem rather than a problem of crime. Addiction and FAS are not matters of criminal law, rather the crimes committed are the result of medical conditions. This is classical Benthamite Utilitarianism. Classic liberalism, in the best sense of the term.

Hon. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Lib.):

Mr. Speaker, I want to go back to a question I asked the parliamentary secretary earlier. It dealt with the issue of the simple possession of soft drugs. Will his party support decriminalization of the simple possession of marijuana given the fact that the application of this law across the country is extremely varied? It is inhumane when individuals who are 18 or 19 years old are picked up, prosecuted and receive a criminal record that will affect them for their entire lives. This has even been stated by such varied groups as various police groups and the Canadian Medical Association.

There are other things that we have to do. I want to delve into a subject that is a big problem, and that is the issue of substance abuse in our communities. The Prime Minister has made it very clear that he looks at substance abuse as an issue of personal morality. He has lamented that society does not sanction people with substance abuse issues in a negative way.

People who have substance abuse problems have a medical problem, not a judicial problem and they have to be dealt with in that way. If we throw the book at people who have a substance abuse problem, or try to deal with them as a judicial problem, we are going to be making matters worse. We are going to increase their level of criminality. It is certainly not going to address the heart of the problem. While many of these individuals have a substance abuse problem, they also have what is called dual diagnosis. A lot of them have a psychiatric problem as well. It is a toxic marriage between a psychiatric problem and a substance abuse problem. Both feed off each other. It is a profound tragedy for those afflicted.

Mr. Speaker, you have seen it in your community, as have all of us in our communities. Among the individuals living on the streets, we see a subpopulation of homeless individuals who have a substance abuse problem, a psychiatric problem, or both. We are not dealing with this in a very intelligent way. I was dismayed and disheartened last week when the Prime Minister was in Victoria and said that he was not going to continue with the harm reduction strategy that we have been using in east Vancouver to great effect. It has saved a lot of people's lives. He is going to need “more studies”.

The studies have been done and the evidence is very persuasive. Lives have been saved. There has been a decrease in the rates of HIV, hepatitis C and hepatitis B. If the Prime Minister wants to save lives of individuals who are living in the conditions that none of us would ever want to experience, then he had better look at the facts, remove his sense of morality and look at this as a way of saving people's lives and reducing harm. If he wants to do that he should extend the east Vancouver experience to other communities in Canada. Communities across the country that are trying to grapple with the issue of substance abuse need to adopt these programs. The Prime Minister and his justice minister need to give these programs the green light.

In Victoria, B.C. the chief medical officer, Dr. Richard Stanwick, has put together a very comprehensive and exciting harm reduction strategy based on work that has been done in Frankfurt and other parts of Europe. Those experiences show very clearly that to reduce substance abuse a comprehensive view is what works. If necessary, the person should have access to a safe injection site and the drug. This may rub people the wrong way, but if we do not give the drug, the person will become involved with organized criminal activity and we would not have dealt with a very important part of the picture. It will take some people a while to get their heads around this idea, but if they thought about it properly and logically instead of through the prism of morality, they would see that this would work.

If necessary, the person should have access to a safe injection site and the drug that the person needs. Along with that, if necessary, there should be counselling and psychiatric help because of the dual diagnosis I mentioned earlier. The person also needs skills training and work.

The unions would be wise not to stick their noses into this and try to impose union desires on an issue that is a matter of life and death for these individuals. Work was an integral part of the treatment program for the individuals on the ground. Work gave people in the programs a sense of structure and discipline that they never had before. It gave them a sense of self-worth and meaning and enabled them to connect with other parts of their treatment program that had to happen over a prolonged period of time.

It is an integrated program and it works. In order for that to happen the justice minister has to give the okay. I would put forward a plea to the justice minister and the Prime Minister that they give the green light to Victoria and other parts of Canada to proceed. I ask them not to cut off the ability of these programs to function. They were going to cut off the ability of harm reduction programs to occur in this country. If they did that, they would essentially be signing a death warrant for people who live on the street. It would increase the rates of hepatitis C, hepatitis B and HIV. I am sure that is not what they would want but that is exactly what the consequence of their actions would be if they did not give the green light to these programs forthwith.

There are many people on the street who will be dead a year from now if these programs are not continued or started. I challenge the government to allow them to proceed. It is a matter of basic humanity and justice.

When I was putting myself through school, I worked as a guard in a maximum security prison. The high incidence of fetal alcohol syndrome was evident among the prison population. It is estimated that between 40% and 50% of individuals in jail suffer from fetal alcohol syndrome and fetal alcohol affects. Fetal alcohol syndrome is the leading cause of preventable congenital brain damage in Canada. An individual suffering from fetal alcohol syndrome often has a median IQ of about 70 as well as a host of problems trying to integrate into society. Fetal alcohol syndrome is irreversible, but it is preventable.

Fetal alcohol syndrome can be prevented if individuals are spoken to before they have children. Imagine the cost savings to the health system. Imagine the decline in the prison population. Fetal alcohol syndrome and fetal alcohol affects are preventable. The Minister of Justice and the Minister of Health should be gripped with this issue because simple, sensible and cost-effective things can be done to prevent this from happening.

Individuals suffering from fetal alcohol syndrome are often marginalized in school because of their low IQs and the psychological challenges they face. Imagine if that did not happen. Those children would have an incredible opportunity to become integrated members of society.

If the Minister of Justice and the Minister of Health were to look at the headstart program, if they were to build on the early learning program that my party put together, they would be doing something quite remarkable for Canadian society. Youth crime and teen pregnancy rates would be reduced. Kids would stay in school longer, thus reducing their dependence on our social programs.

I have laid out some constructive solutions that I hope the minister will consider. The former parliamentary secretary provided her cogent solutions on minimum mandatory sentencing and the work we did through former Bill C-70. We certainly hope that we can craft a bill that will serve the public well and help our police officers while also reducing criminality within our society.

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Direct Action

This is Part Two from the pamphlet The Anarchist Revolution. by George Barrett, London: Freedom Press, 1920.

It's on the Anarchist idea of Direct Action. Like the wildcat strike yesterday in Toronto against the TTC.

I thought this text was particularly appropriate in light of that wildcat strike and the reactionary response from the Blogging Tories and the so called progressive liberals at Progressive Bloggers.

Both showed their reactionary nature, not unexpected from either really, it's always easier to attack the workers rather than the bosses. And of course it all had to do with the selfish idea that they were some how inconvenienced by the strike, and how dare the workers strike against public transit, their transit. We the public own it.

So how come we abdicate the management of it to the State and its appointed bosses? Better that transit be under worker and community control and then workers would not revolt against a heavy handed manangement.

They should have cheered the TTC workers rather than jeered them,
seeing this as an opportunity to resist work, and to ignite a general strike, or at least sit in their backyards, relax with a beer and avoid being exploited for a day.


To make it quite clear what is meant by the expression Direct Action, let us take an illustration. Not very many years ago, if there was a great national calanmity, such as an outbreak of plague, the religious people used to declare that the only remedy was for us as a nation to pray that God might remove his curse. These good people were very much shocked when scientists came along and began taking merely sanitary precautions to stamp out the disease. The first was the indir'ct method: prayers were sent up to heaven so that God might send down his good influence on the plague. This was a very indirect route to reach a disease which was, so to speak, next door. The scientist attended to the disease itself, studied its nature, and tried to find a means of stamping it out. This was direct action.

To-day in very much the same way the people are divided with two methods. In their factories and homes they find themselves discontented, and some of them propose to influence the chief of society-the Parliament-so that it will exefcise its power to put things right. These in their turn are shocked when advanced thinkers come along and declare that the way to get a remedy is to study the nature of the trouble and apply the cure directly to it. The former believe in the indirect or legislative method, for it is a long way from home to Westminster and back home again. The latter are the direct actionists, aind they recognise that if any one is going to put the factories in order, it will be the workers who spend their lives in them, and iot the politicians. Imagine the utter absurdity of a group of politicians sitting in the House of Commons earnestly discussing the welfare of the people. While they are doing so, are there not countless bakers, builders, and tailors walking about the streets, unemployed, and cut off, by the laws which these same politicians have passed, from the means of production, machinery, and tools with which they might produce what they need. To break down the laws and allow these people to produce what is necessary for their welfare, on equal terms with the other workers, is the way to ablish poverty.

It is clear that, if we are to rid ourselves of the troubles that bestet us at present, we must organise an entirely new system of wealth distribution. I do not mean by this that we must divide up, but I mean that the wealth which is produced must be stopped from flowing to the rich man who produces nothing; the stream must be diverted so that it will come to the producer. But who is it that distributes the wealth? Is it the - politician Certainly not; as a matter of fact, it is the transport workers. If, then, the workers who produce want an alteration in the present distribution, to whom must they apply? To their comrades, the transport workers, and not to the politicians, who have nothing to do with the matter. Similarly when better conditions are needed in the factories-larger sheds, better floors, and more efficient lighting and ventilation-who are the only people capable of doing this? It is the workers who need these reforms, and the workers who can "carry them out.

The task before the worker to-day is as it has been in the past: the slave class must rid itself of the dictating class-i.e., of those in authority. Such is the simple logic of the Direct Actionist, and it is already clear how it necessarily leads to the Anarchist Revolution. We must, however, be careful how we follow this principle-not that we fear being taken too far, but lest it does not take us far enough. The expression has been used so much in contradistinction to legislation, that any one who throws a brick through a window is generally supposed to be a Direct Actionist. He may be and he may not.

To be logical and true to the real meaning of the term, every act should, of course, be on the direct road towards the desired end-in our case, the Social Revolution. Sometimes it is difficult to be entirely consistent, but it is nevertlhless of the utmost importance that there should be at least a minority of the workers who understand what is the direct road, so that every skirmish may be made by them a step towards the final overthrow of Capitalism. At the risk of repeating myself, then, let me try to state the position very clearly. We have two classes-the governing, ruling, and possessing people on the one hand, and those governed and without property on the other; in a word, a master class and a slave class. "When this slave class becomes discontented and restive, it has several courses to consider before deciding which will give better conditions.

It may be argued:(1) That since the present masters do not give enough of the good things of life, these must be turned out and a new set selected from among the slave class; or (2) That since the slave class is composed of the producers, and the master class is, therefore, dependent on it, the former is clearly in a position to force the masters to give them more food and everything that may be desired; or (3) That since the slave class is the producer of all that is necessary for life, there is no need to either ask or demand anything from the master class. The slave class need simply to cut off supplies to the masters and start feeding themselves. The first of these arguments, it will be seen, is that of the politicians; and it may be dismissed without further comment, since, as will be understood after what has been already said, it obviously misses the point. It is not a question of who shall be master, but it is a matter of the essential relationship between master and slave, quite irrespective of who either of them may be. The second argument is that of the non-Parliamentary but non-Revolutionary Trade Unionist. It is right in that it recognises. where lies the true power of the workers in their fight against the capitalists, but it is wrong in that it proposes no change in the relationship between these two.

If the slave class is to be better housed, fed, and clothed from the masters' store, it means that the slaves will become more and mIIre completely owned by the masters. It is riot revolutionary, because it proposes to retain master and slave, and merely attempts to better the conditions of the latter. The third argument is, of course, that of the revolutionist. It agrees with the second as to the weapon to be used, bur. it says that the task before the workers is to feed, house, clothe, and educate themselves, and not to spend their energies in making better masters of the capitalists. rTo cut off supplies to the capitalist and to retain what is pr'odulced for the workers are the main points of the revolutionary fight. In every industrial dispute there are really two, and only two, essentials. On the one hand are the factories, warehouses, railways, mines, etc., which may be termed industrial proparty; on the other, the workers. To unite these two is to accomplish the revolution; for with them will be built the new society. The capitalist and master class in general can hold their position only so long as they can keep the workers outside the warehouses and factories, for within are the means of life, and the common people must be allowed to use these only on the strict understanding that they make profit and submit to the conditions dictated. To come out on strike, then, is merely rebellion, and is essentially not the revolution, however thoroughly it is done; to stay in and work in the condition of equality, free from the dictates of a useless master class, is the real object of the revolutionist. Direct action, therefore, in this strictly revolutionary sense would mean the taking possession of the means of production and the necessities of life by the workers who have produced them, an.I the reorganisation of industry a cording to the principles of freedom. The doctrine of Direct Action does not boast of bringing the workers easy salvation. It is, indeed, a recognition of the terribly simple fact that nothing can save us except our own intelligence and power. We, the workers, are the creative force, for is it not we who have produced all the food, clothing, and houses Assuredly it is we who need them. What, then, has the politician to do with this? Nothing, absolutely nothing! What use is it to hand over to the master class all that we produce, and then keep up a continuous quarrel as to how much we shall be allowed back?

Instead of this we have to stop supplies, reorganise our industries, not from above but from their source below, and see that in future all that is produced goes to the producer and not to the dominant class. This is the meaning of direct action, and it is Anarchism. But, alas! it is easier to accomplish a revolution on paper with cold logic than it is to bring it about in industrial life. We have to fight the lack of understafding on the part of the worker and the craft of the politician ever at work to increase this; and in addition we have the certainty that the class in power will attempt to resist the change, with the only argument that remains on their side-brute force. While, therefore, it is important to understand that direct action properly applied means the actual "conquest of bread " and the taking possession of the factories, we must be content probably for some little while longer to use our weapon of direct action simply according to the second of the three arguments given above-that is, to demand better conditions from the capitalist class. It is not, however, too much to hope that in the very near future the Anarchists will form a militant section of the workers, which will give to every great industrial rebellion the revolutionary character which is its true meaning. Worker as well as capitalist is beginning to recognise that a well-planned scheme for feeding the strikers is more than possible. Such a scheme would entail the captuiing of the bakeries, and this is surely the first step of the revolution. Beside this real problem, simple but great, how hollow and grotesque are the promises of the politicians. How absurd the idea of gaining liberty through the ballot-box. These hopeless government men, who talk with such sublime imbecility of feeding, housing, and clothing, only add insult to injury. The House they stand in to make their senseless speeches was built and furnished by the workers, and it is the workers who house and feed them. And beyond our own doubt and liesitation, what, after all, stands in our way? Let us gain inspiration from the hopeless position of our foes. How helpless they are! Is not the policeman's baton shaped by the worker, and his absurd uniform stitched by inderpaid women? The soldier's rifle is certainly not made by the master class-in every particular they are hopelessly our dependents. Every instrument of oppression is supplied to them by us, and we keep them alive by feeding them day by day. Surely, then, it is apparent that this change must come. Those above are powerless for goo, or for evil; the revolution can be brought only by an upheaval from below-from the one vital section of society, the workers

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Anarchist Critique of Government

A tip o the blog to my fellow left libertarian Freeman who noted that many of the revolutionary anarchist pamphlets in the Labadie collection are now available online as facsimile reproductions, that is as jpgs of the actual pamphlets with text accompanying them.

For more on Joe Labadie who started the collection see;

There are at least 200 pamphlets available from the collection online. This is an exerpt of one of them in two parts. This is part one.

The whole pamphlet is well worth the read and download.

As I have often said in this blog the State or government is the executive class of capitalism. The State is the creature of modern capitalism and not separate from it. And I liked the Anarchist attack on taxation from a working class viewpoint.

Part two is on Direct Action and as it is fairly long I will be posting it separately.

The Anarchist Revolution.
George Barrett, London: Freedom Press, 1920.

Thus, while the politicians muddle their heads with the most complex theories of reform, the revolutionist may keep his mind perfectly clear if he will but confine himself to what is really essential, and always start to consider social matters from the simplest point.
The fact is, the Government is simply the executive cominittee of the ruling class. Taxation is its principle source of finance. The landlords and capitalists are those for whom it keeps the land and means of production, and prevents the producers from taking possession.
If instead of the present capitalist class there were a set of officials appointed by the Government and set in a position to control our factories, it would bring about no revolutionary change. The officials would have to be paid, and we may depend that, in their privileged positions, they would expect good remuneration. The politicians would have to be paid, and we already know their tastes. You would, in fact, have a nonproductive class dictating to the producers the conditions upon which they were allowed to make use of the means of production.

As this is exactly what is wrong with the present system of society, we can see that State control would be no remedy, while it- would bring with it a host of new troubles. It cannot be too clearly understood that any system of Government control-that is, any system except Anarchism can at the best do nothing better than enforce the politician's ideal of society upon the people.

For example, let us suppose an absolutely ideal Socialist State, where all the Members of Parliament are in agreement, and where their only object is the welfare of society. As a Government, or an executive committee, or an administrative body, or whatever they called themselves, it will be agreed, I think, that they undertake two chief duties. The one is to see that the necessities of life are supplied, and the other is to ensure that the workers shall have proper conditions under which to produce. Now let us suppose that a section of the workers disagree with the Government as to what are proper conditions (for the worker sees the factory from a slightly different point of view from the politician).

What takes place? The politicians, we will say, refuse to grant these conditions, which seem to them unfair. This section of the workers consequently come out on strike. They are successful up to the point of causing a serious shortage of the commodity which they produce. The politicians are responsible for the supply of this commodity, and they cannot allow the whole community to suffer because of the (to them) unreasonable action of an extremist minority. The inevitable conclusion is that the strikers must be forced back into their factories.
Surely from this it is evident that under a governmental system of society, whether it is the capitalism of to-day or a more perfected Government control of the Socialist State, the essential relationship between the governed and the governing, the worker and the controller, will be the same; and this relationship so long as it lasts can be maintained only by the bloody brutality of the policeman's bludgeon and the soldier's rifle.
You cannot put new wine into old bottles. The institutions of the present society, based upon the subjection of the workers, must be thrown aside, for they will not hold the spirit of liberty which will compose the new society. If we wanted further proof than that furnished by the logic of the position, it would be found in that question so often levelled at the Anarchist: What would you do with the man who would not work?

The implication is, of course, that the questioner, a Governmentalist, and generally a Socialist, has a method of dealing with him. What can such a method be, which the Anarchist has not also, except force? Is not the striker one of the most important of the men who will not work? And is not the question, therefore, an admission that force will be brought to bear on the discontented, to compel them to occupy their proper position in society? Certain it is that to-day the capitalist is compelled to bring out the soldiers and force his slaves back to work; but it is no more certain than the fact that in all societies where there is a central controlling force the same means must be used to crush the rebellious.

That is why we are Anarchists. We have seen already how inevitably we come to this conclusion, and one labour dispute after another in recent years has shown us the theory in practice; and all this logic and fact brings us to one great truth, the truth upon which is based all the hopes of revolutionary activity. It is obvious to us every day, and yet it is recognised by a comparative few.
Many there are who believe that the worker is dependent on the rich capitalist-the governing class; but a few-they are revolutionists-realise that the governing class is entirely impotent itself, and depends most abjectly and helplessly upon the worker.
If the workers refuse to work, it can do nothing unless it can induce some of them to leave their jobs and come and shoot down their rebellious mates. The workers are the only creative, live power in society, and it is for this reason that it must be they who will regenerate society and bring about the revolution.

Their task is on, of construction and re-creation, while the utmost that the helpless Governmentalist can do is to stay the onward progress by persuading some of them to forsake their legitimate task and take part in destruction, in which cause to-day they have vast numbers of workers employed. This truth of the utter dependence of the capitalist and governing class is really the starting-point of the revolultion.

Also See:

State-less Socialism

Not Your Usual Left Wing Rant

The Need for Arab Anarchism