We Are Family

    “The greatness of Lenin is that he WASN’T AFRAID TO SUCCEED.” ~ Slavoj Žižek

    “The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom; for we never know what is enough until we know what is more than enough.” ~ William Blake

Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO) is a Marxist party in the United States. Actually, two Marxist parties in the United States; the party split in 1999, with both factions seeking to retain the title. Ten years later, they’re still at it.

One distinct advantage that the FRSO has over the FRSO is the provision of a terrific Family Tree outlining the development of various Marxist groups from the 1960s through to the year 2000.

One of the groups which dissolved into the FRSO (post-2000) was the ‘Fire by Night Organizing Committee’. FbN was in turn a product of the dissolution in May 1998 of the Love and Rage Revolutionary Anarchist Federation (See : After Winter Must Come Spring: A Self-Critical Analysis of the Love & Rage Revolutionary Anarchist Federation).

    ‘Love and Rage’ was also the name adopted by a leftist student grouping in Australia. L&R was originally titled the ‘Libertarian Communist Collective’, and emerged in 1998 as a tendency within the ‘Left Alliance’ student group. Based largely in NSW, L&R eventually dissolved c.2003, but before doing so was responsible for introducing autonomist Marxism to a number of students, having a small number of its members elected to various student union bodies, and taking part in the usual gamut of leftist student activism.

Another organisational by-product of the dissolution of L&R was the ‘Bring the Ruckus’ (BTR) collective. Like FbN, it formally abandoned anarchism, and placed a central emphasis upon fighting white supremacy.

BTR emerged in the wake of the death of ‘Love and Rage’ and the “Seattle” protests. When L&R was splitting, BTR was a logical outcome of one of the positions on race within Love and Rage. A few former L&R members are currently members in BTR. The Sojourner Truth Organization (STO) was also important to both BTR and Race Traitor. Former STO members are in both BTR and Race Traitor. STO, which was one of the tendencies in [the] “New Communist Movement” of the 1970s, also focused on importance of fighting the color line. These different organizations and journal also belong to a certain common tendency among revolutionaries.

On STO (1969–1985), see: STO Digital Archive.

One of the groups from which L&R drew members was the Marxist ‘Revolutionary Socialist League’ (1973–1989). Upon L&R’s disbandment, a number of these former Marxists proceeded into groups which formed the ‘Northeastern Federation of Anarcho-Communists’ (NEFAC) in 2002. One who did not is Ron Tabor. Instead, Tabor became involved in the publication of another zine, ‘The Utopian’. Prior to this, in 1987, Tabor authored a series of articles for the RSL’s zine ‘Torch’/La Antorcha. These were later published as a pamphlet titled ‘A Look At Leninism’ (and then as a series of articles in the L&R newspaper). In a recent, 2008 issue of The Utopian, Gustavo Rodríguez returns to a similar theme in ‘Leninism without Lenin’/‘Aproximaciones al Leninismo sin Lenin’ (PDF); the essay critiques the re-emergence of a neo-‘Platfomist’ tendency within anarchism.

On the bus to oblivion, ideological fashions, like political organisations, come and go.

Take it away Jayne!

About @ndy

I live in Melbourne, Australia. I like anarchy. I don't like nazis. I enjoy eating pizza and drinking beer. I barrack for the greatest football team on Earth: Collingwood Magpies. The 2020 premiership's a cakewalk for the good old Collingwood.
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9 Responses to We Are Family

  1. Jamie R says:

    Speaking of we are family you goddamn commie sympathisers (I mean that with the *total* love of Christ), I have my drinks ready, and since I know you are a Collingwood man now (oh dear god your Stalin is Eddie it makes me SICK), I will be supporting the Mighty Cats tonight! Not a surprise for me really, because to be honest, there are two teams in this league I can’t stand, Port Adelaide and Collingwood, and I support the Power when they play the Maggies so…

  2. Jamie R says:

    I would live blog this game but… Adelaide is getting the match ‘live’ at 8:30 PM, no Foxtel to intervene. So I’m not going back online until I know the Maggies are done and dusted.

    Stokes Ablett Bartel. These are things that will plague your nightmares tonight. Bitch. I’ve started drinking now, that’s pre-game warm-ups in the City of Churches, it’s 9 AM for Porties. It is listed as a 11:30 PM finish in Adelaide, that is WAY past this city’s bedtime.

  3. Jamie R says:

    Main Event got it. I ain’t payin’. Not for this. I watch later. I come back later. I won’t crack the spirits till our delayed faggycast.

  4. Lumpen says:

    I’d have to say the description of Love and Rage (Australia) isn’t altogether accurate. I was involved on the extreme periphery and there were more than a couple of anarchists involved who remain solid anarchists to this day. It is also true that some went on to be the worst kind of bureaucrat and cash in on their heady days of childish activism. There was a L&R reunion this year, although I didn’t go.

    From what I could see, L&R was more of a forum for libertarian leftists, anarchists and autonomists – they had weekly campus talks and stuff. I think eventually the contradictions became too much, the political evolution and disagreements of leading individuals overtook the desire to have the arguments and it dissipated. They did operate as a faction within the NBL (National Broad Left, post-Left Alliance), but more for the purposes of critical intervention than to crunch numbers and get positions. AFAIK, no-one ran in elections as ‘L&R’, although I’d be interested to hear if that is not true.

    I read ‘Leninism without Lenin’ today. Was worth the read, although I couldn’t find the response from the following issue anywhere online.

  5. professor rat says:

    Plats, Autonomous Marxists, Libertarian communists are all busily preparing the terrain for a new Lenin. Anarchists who suffer under the delusion that these are comrades who have seen the light could wake in fright one day if a new Lenin crops up.
    Certainly Andrew Flood has enough chutzpah to qualify. He’s the one who said that the Platform was not perfect…but then, in spite of it being a brief document, declined to say exactly what was wrong with it or proffer suggestions for improvement. This is the sort of weasel word games Lenin was famous for.
    Another Leninist feature of all these weird (57?) varieties of Marxism and neo-Marxism is their dirty habit of declaring their tiny minority as the majority! They actually carry on as though anarchism is Platformism and they are the only anarchists with the only anarchist way of organizing. ( federating insecurely above ground )
    Leninism without Lenin thus perfectly describes these vermin. Oh, and did I tell you their historical timelines are fanatical dogma with no relationship to reality?
    All the main features for an authoritarian death cult are there at Anarkismo, Libcom and other similar squalid little shitholes. I wouldn’t piss on them if they were on fire.
    @ndy you are doing well to concentrate on the world’s worst fascists. The US state, the Marxists and then the trad Nazi types. There are orders of magnitude differences but the Marxist menace is surprisingly still fairly high. Probably because the US state vacillates between a kind of Nazism and then a kind of Marxism…following the money has never been more important…and difficult. It’s all going down a rabbit hole.

  6. Jamie R says:

    Can I quote Michael Jackson @ndy?

    Another game has gone.
    Geelong is still alone.
    How could this be?
    Oh how me o’ how us Eddie!
    They never said goodbye
    Oh will Collingwood tell me why
    Why go so damn low
    Why leave my world so cold
    In 2009 you’ll ask yourself how did it slip away?
    An Adelaide Crow fan comes by and he says on this day

    You are not alone.

    I would go on but it’s already too gay. I would be evil and hate you so bad, but there’s no reason to do this, you are PATHETIC ENOUGH. I’m trying to behave myself. I’LL BE THERE. YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

  7. Jamie R says:

    Oi @ndy real estate is cheap around Collingwood hey.

  8. @ndy says:

    “I’d have to say the description of Love and Rage (Australia) isn’t altogether accurate. I was involved on the extreme periphery and there were more than a couple of anarchists involved who remain solid anarchists to this day. It is also true that some went on to be the worst kind of bureaucrat and cash in on their heady days of childish activism. There was a L&R reunion this year, although I didn’t go.”

    I think describing L&R as “a leftist student grouping” is reasonably accurate, even allowing for the involvement of a small number of anarchists in its activities, and the continued adherence to some notion of anarchism on the part of these individuals following the dissolution of the group. By the same token, I didn’t intend to provide anything more than a cursory summary of the group and its activities, which is something that would be best pursued by those directly involved in it.

    I’m not sure exactly what is meant by “the worst kind of bureaucrat”; I assume what is meant by this is an especially obstructionist member of the student union bureaucracy.

    “From what I could see, L&R was more of a forum for libertarian leftists, anarchists and autonomists – they had weekly campus talks and stuff. I think eventually the contradictions became too much, the political evolution and disagreements of leading individuals overtook the desire to have the arguments and it dissipated. They did operate as a faction within the NBL (National Broad Left, post-Left Alliance), but more for the purposes of critical intervention than to crunch numbers and get positions. AFAIK, no-one ran in elections as ‘L&R’, although I’d be interested to hear if that is not true.”

    A handful of student reps were involved in L&R; to what extent anyone within the group/network was mobilised in order to secure these positions I don’t know. As a tendency that emerged from LA and then formed part of the NBL, there was presumably some effort required in order for these positions to be gained.

    To the extent that L&R could be said to have adopted a particular position on existing student unions, in addition to their practice, and on the basis of the few texts I have read that were produced by members of the group (and which seem to have reflected a general consensus), it was a reasonably standard leftist critique, proceeding from an understanding that student unions needed to reformed into fighting unions, ones with a progressive, democratic agenda, and so on and so forth.

    Beyond this, on my reading, L&R developed out of the Marxist left, especially as it was expressed within LA, and was situated outside of both Labourite and Trotskyist factions. To the extent that it could be said to have evolved a collective ideology of some kind, it was Marxist, with token nods in the direction of ‘anarchism’, and an ambiguous relationship to Lenin(ism). In many respects, it echoed developments in Marxist thought elsewhere, especially since the emergence of the new social movements of the 1960s, and the theoretical debates taking place within the left triggered by these developments (and of course helping to provoke them).

    L&R was also overwhelmingly centred in NSW (although its e-list was read and participated in by many others).

    Insofar as subsequent political evolution is concerned, I think those involved have followed fairly standard paths; ones reflective of middle-class student radicalism generally.

    “I read ‘Leninism without Lenin’ today. Was worth the read, although I couldn’t find the response from the following issue anywhere online.”

    Lenin will always occupy a place in our hearts.

    http://www.geocities.com/loveandrage_2000/

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