Monday, July 4, 2005

"We're all autonomous individuals"

Butler Shaffer, writing for Lew Rockwell:

One philosophical abstraction that seems to befuddle most people is "anarchy." To those challenged by complexity – such as radio talk show hosts and cable-TV "newscasters" who are convinced that all political opinions can be confined to the categories of "liberal" and "conservative" – the word anarchy evokes an unfocused fear of uncertain forces. Images of bomb-throwing thugs who smash and burn the property of others are routinely conjured up by politicians and the media to frighten people into an extension of police authority over their lives. "Disorder" and "lawless confusion" are common dictionary definitions of this word.

That there have been some, calling themselves "anarchists," who have engaged in violence on behalf of their political ambitions, is not to be denied. Nor can we overlook the provocateuring occasionally engaged in by undercover policemen – operating under the guise of "anarchists" – to justify harsh reprisals against political protests. But to condemn a philosophic viewpoint because a few wish to corrupt its meaning for their narrow advantage is no more justifiable than condemning Christianity because a man murders his family and defends his acts on the grounds "God told me to do it!"
An example: The Scotsman reporting on the recent 'anarchist riot' in Edinburgh. HT: Nealenews:
About 200 protesters, some dressed as clowns, tried to break through police lines after being corralled in to Canning Street in the West End as they staged their Carnival for Full Enjoyment.

[..] The protests first turned violent in Canning Street after a peaceful march through the city centre. The huge group gathered outside the exchange tower on Canning Street.

The police contained the group with riot squads at either end.

After a lot of music and general noise at 1pm the protestors surged forward and tried to break the police line.

Police responded by pushing back and there were numerous skirmishes between protestors and officers.

A number of punches were thrown, but no-one appeared to suffer any serious injury.

[..] Police managed to push back the protestors and contained them in a small area.

The music then stopped and the protestors started chanting obscenities such as 'F**k the police'.

One anarchist managed to climb onto the roof of an annex building and egged on the crowd.

He threatened to urinate over the police, but instead resorted to dropping his trousers and showing his behind.

One anarchist from Sussex said: "I don't have a problem with violence against property because the people with the money can pay for it to get it fixed.

"We're all autonomous individuals."
Anarchist or socialist - you can't have it both ways loser from Sussex.