Only A Coward, A poem

Only a coward attacks with no face.

Only a fool takes the time to make an enemy.

Only a coward and a fool

would ever throw a tantrum

about helping someone else.

Cowards and fools running amok,

literally leaving plaque and death in their wake.

We must do something, something now

to deal with these cowards and fools.

_______________________________________

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Insulting, a poem

Too poor to write?

Too dumb to be important.

That is what you say when you scoff at the literate,

When you make “beautiful” synonymous with “bougie”

Literature and Revolution,

name one that never had the other.

Yes, the old guard is no longer revolutionary,

but you still have much too learn if you replace him.

To sacrifice intellect for action for the sake of action?

selfish.

How will one ever realize their power?

There is more to materialism than the materials itself,

truth.

We insult the ones we want to save

when we think they need to be saved.

No one needs a savior, nor a god nor a master,

none of us need heroes.

Liberals and Oppression

I have a large family filled with well-meaning liberals, all of whom are quick to say Black Lives Matter and say they support medicare for all. Yet all too often I will hear them comment about how in awe they are that a person of color could support Trump, or how a white gay man can be racist.

Tell me if any of these sentences sound familiar to you:

“How could such and such be so racist! They had to fight for marriage equality!”

“How can such and such support Trump when such and such is black!”

“How can you be woman and a Republican?”

And so on, and so on, and so on.

This is one of the many reasons why I am a socialist and not a liberal. Liberals fail to grasp the concept that identity is not an act of solidarity. Because liberals put so much emphasis on shallow identity politics, they think that all oppressed groups must support each other and understand the intersections of their oppression.

This line of thinking both reduces the realities of oppression and it demonstrates two facts about liberal thought: 1. Liberals think that anyone oppressed in our system operates like a monolith or hivemind. and 2. They think all oppression can be reduced to identitarian lines.

1. The Hivemind

Every election we have to hear about the latino vote, the black vote, and the women vote, as well as other demographic breakdowns of voters.

The problem is whenever pundits and politicians talk about these groups of voters they talk about them as if the people who make up the demographic are thinking in unison. Consider how Bernie Sanders is chided for not winning “the black vote” despite there being numerous black people both supporting, running, and endorsing his campaign, but because of the fact he did not have the majority of black voters, in the eyes of the pundits the black people who did support Bernie are erased.

The same goes for the latino voters, most went to Bernie, but those who voted for Biden or other candidates are considered irrelevant. Because one candidate has the majority for one demographic, that demographic is spoken for by pundits as if their votes are the result of a singular thought process. This is an act of erasure that ignores several of the very real intersections an individual voter lives in that guides their choices. Yet, this is how liberal pundits breakdown the elections every time, as a result we see liberals in the real world reflect this toxic thought process in their politics.

So how can a POC vote for Trump or a gay white person be racist? It is because people beloning to one demographic are not a hive mind, each individual lives at a different intersection of identity. To assume all black people will vote one way or that all gay people will stand with black people erases the reality that both are demographics made up of individuals.

2. Identity Politics

I hesitate to use that term because I feel that fellow socialists will use it in a toxic manner to silence very real discussions about race and gender. However there is an important difference between the idenity politics of liberals, which is inherently class reductionist, and the idenity politics of liberation.

Liberal identity politics make a point of seperating the issue of class with all other issues, they intentionally ignore the nuances and intersections of idenitiy to focus only on one aspect of an individual.

They think discussions of racial oppression can only talk about race and never involve class.

They think discussions of sexism can only talk about gender and never involve race.

At no point do the aspects of gender, race, or class intersect in their understanding of politics, and as a result they think that because one group is oppressed they must inherently identify with another oppressed group. To liberals, all oppression is uniform.

This is yet again the result of differeniating and defining oppression souly on singular lines of idenity instead of intersectional ones. If we reduce all of a group to that of a hivemind we ignore very real and defining intersections, for example when you ignore the intersections of homophobia and racism in this country you inevitably perpetuate both.

Oppression is anything but uniform save for the fact that capitalism is the umbrella underwhich all oppression exists. Yet because liberals only see oppression on singular lines of identity and not intersectionally, they cannot understand the reality that idenity is not an act of solidarity. In the liberal mind, if you are a part of an oppressed group you must stand with that oppressed group.

Identity politics without intersectionality leads to erasure, that erasure leads to the idea that all oppressed identities are oppressed at the same level and therefore understand each other.

This shallow way thinking is one of the many reasons why I abandoned liberalism for socialism, I suggest anyone reading this do the same.

The Professional Protester #24 Does Bigger than Bernie Hold Up? | The Professional Protester on Patreon

Official Post from The Professional Protester : Bigger Than Bernie is a book published by Jacobin, the officially unofficial magazine of DSA and it was written by Megan Day and Micah Uetrich, two of my favorite Jacobin writers. It was written and published during the primary and was written when Bernie’s campaign was on the upswing. It lays out
— Read on www.patreon.com/posts/39869036

There is No Going Back, a poem in the time of Covid

There is no going back,

Our heroes are dead.

We are our own heroes now.

There is no going back.

There is no going back,

The tides are swallowing us,

A virus is choking us,

Our “leaders” are killing us.

There is no going back.

There is no going back,

You can’t get something back

that you never had.

So many don’t know this,

and too many don’t care.

There is no going back.

There is no going back,

A murdered mass has found its voice,

and torn down monuments to lies.

The truth is too loud to drown out anymore.

There is no going back.

There is no going back,

Evil cannot be ignored,

Evil is now the judge and jury,

and it’s time to burn down the courthouse!

There is no going back.

There is no going back.

Only a fool would look to the past,

and only a coward would run toward it.

There is no going back.

Grieve and make your peace now,

There is no going back.

Why I am Returning to Poetry

If you read my about me page, you’ll know that I started this blog as a poetry blog, but then as I got more into activism and organizing, I began to write more about socialism and politics.

I’ve decided to make poetry a more frequent part of this blog again.

They say you’re supposed to write what you know, and the things I know are activism and the arts.

I still plan on writing articles to expand the world’s understanding of socialism and activism, but I have always thought of myself as a subversive. My greatest desire is for my writing to have an effect, to make someone think a thought they never thought before and to get them to take action.

But there is an annoying hurdle towards getting people to read theory, people often find it “boring” and prefer to read something creative rather than theoretical. People do want to further their political education, but they also need escape and to be reminded of the beauty of expression, especially in these dark times we find ourselves in.

As much as I disagree with the idea that theory is boring (I find intellectualism invigorating) it is true that one can be just as subversive, if not more so, with a piece of poetry or art.

If I want my words to provoke thought and feeling, I can think of nothing better than poetry.

Poetry is pure expression, it puts feelings into words and is always a product of reflection, and it invokes emotion and thought in its readers and listeners. Poetry, has thus been an underutilized tool in organizing.

There is another reason I am promising more poetry on this blog and it is the epidemic of leftist grifters online, who are begging for your money for doing nothing more than spewing their hot takes and problematic politics.

I want to give the world something more than the bad jokes on Chapo Trap House or the self branding of other podcasters. No, I started the patreon with the hope of funding my artistic license.

Sure, I want to write about politics, I’m well versed in politics, but I do not want to use leftism as a way to con followers out of money. No, I want my patrons to feel like they are actually patronizing something besides more than a hot-take machine or a personal brand, I want my patrons to know that they are funding the arts.

As mentioned before, poetry invokes feelings of beauty, all poetry is dependant on the language being beautiful, even the darkest of poems needs beautiful language to invoke its tone in the reader, and this is a time when we need to be reminded that there is beauty in the world. Poetry is something that I can offer the world and my patrons without feeling like a grifter. Poetry is powerful and I intend to use that power.

So you can expect just as much poetry on this blog as you can expect politics, hence the new tagline “A socialist blog of theory and poetry.”

Join my patreon here.

Maxine Waters Confronted A Cop, What Does This Mean?

On July 20th, 2020, Congressman Maxine Waters, got out of her car to observe a police officer and to protect a black man from harassment and abuse. She saw the interaction, got out of her car, and monitored the officer.

While I take issue with Maxine Water’s voting record, I applaud her for this one. But it needs to be pointed out that this wasn’t just an act of bravery on her part. This was yet another sign that the protests for black lives are working, and that we are winning.

It is quite possible that Maxine Waters has been doing this the entire time she has been in office and this was just first time that the cameras were rolling, but I doubt that for a number of reasons, namely that confronting a cop is a huge risk to her safety.

There is nothing but good to take away from this happening. If Waters has been doing this her whole tenure and we are just now noticing, then we have underestimated Waters’s dedication to justice. If this was her first time doing this, then it means two things

1. That she as a political leader wanted to show that black people are not going to take this crap from the police anymore.

And 2. it means that politicians have taken notice of the protests to the point they are taking action in there own lives.

Whether Water’s did it because she felt emboldened or pressured by the protests is irrelevant when one considers that the state of affairs have finally pushed politicians, like Waters, to use their position in power to the benefit of the oppressed, even when they are not technically “on duty.” Waters was in her home district and witnessed this on her personal time, you are not likely to find many other politicians who will do something like this, unless we continue to mount enmorous levels of public pressure on them.

Whether or not Waters did this because she is not going to suffer any further indignations of her race or because she is reeling from the public pressure to take action does not matter, because what matters is that in either case the protests have pushed our politicians to take action, even in their personal day-to-day lives.

This was one tiny event, but it is not inconsequential. It demonstrates the real power of protest. It demonstrates that this is no time to slow down. Direct action is working, keep it up.

Your House, My Home (A poem about eviction) | The Professional Protester on Patreon

Official Post from The Professional Protester : Your house is my home, Mr. and Mrs. Landlord.You have the deed,but I have the memories.It might be your property, but it is my life.The living room that you want to sell,That is where I saw our children play,Where I did puzzles with grandma,Where my siblings and I played dress upand made home movies
— Read on www.patreon.com/posts/40093544

Why Do We Take The Joker Out of The Deck? (Poem)

Why do we take the joker out of the deck?

The comedian knows more than the journalist,

and the Jester was the king’s adviser.

It is easy to keep your distance

if we laugh at the messenger

instead of killing them.

Why do we take the joker out of the deck?

Does the dealer fear other cards we might play?

Is there another rule to the game

that we are not aware of?

Several actually,

and we’re never supposed to know,

so the dealer never has to answer

when you ask him

“Why do we take the joker out of the deck?”

The Professional Protester #22 Shahid Buttar is Doomed | The Professional Protester on Patreon

Official Post from The Professional Protester : Shahid Buttar, Nancy Pelosi’s challenger for her congressional seat, was accused of sexual harassment by an old acquaintance, and of gender discrimination by former campaign staffers.The survivor made her allegations in a post via medium, and not long after the Intercept broke the story about Buttar
— Read on www.patreon.com/posts/39594864

Announcement: I no longer endorse Shahid Buttar

Today, someone came forward with allegations of sexual harassment against Shahid Buttar, someone I had endorsed on this blog.

Shahid and his campaign had the chance to approach this from a place of restorative justice, but instead they chose to perpetuate the misogyny that socialists have a duty to always stand against. You can see their toxic response on twitter.

As such, I withdraw all support from Shahid and his campaign. While I agree Pelosi must go I must agree even more with the survivor, the left can do better than Shahid Buttar.

3 People Who Deserve to Be Cancelled

Cancel Culture seems to be the hot topic of the week. I’m one of the people who thinks that “cancel culture” isn’t actually a thing. I think it is just elites and over established careerists complaining about being held to scrutiny.

That said, there are some people who do deserve to be cancelled. Angela Nagle, Michael Tracy, and Ben Norton are all holding back the growth of the left single handedly by using conjectures about the left to validate their shitty takes and identities rather than engage in working class struggles. The sooner we stop giving them work, the better.

All three of the previously mentioned names are living examples of the word “hypocrisy” personified.

Consider how Michael Tracy constantly plays the victim while he mocks the practice of respecting people’s pronouns and shames sex workers via twitter. You might also remember him as the man who was “physically attacked” by 70 something year old congresswoman Maxine Waters. Tracy constantly plays the victim yet since getting fired by the Young Turks he has been doing nothing but tweet crappy, out dated jokes about body size, women, and sexwork while collecting approximately $1000 a month from his patrons. His latest piece was that god awful post mortum about the Bernie campaign which was co written with Angela Nagle. It is a piece they wrote together despite the fact they neither one had any involvement in the Bernie campaign and therefore offer no credible expertise.

Speaking of Nagle, consider how Anglea Nagle refers to the DSA as “bourgasie narcissists” when interviewed while she never actually does any work to help the working class. Nagle is a writer and nothing more, she does no actual organizing. She constantly rages against keyboard warriors but only from the safety of her own keyboard. Angela Nagle is the an anti-keyboard warrior keyboard warrior!

And what has Nagle actually accomplished besides a book about 4chan? What has she done for the left except write the very same types of think pieces that she is so quick to scoff at. And ask yourself, what kind of voice of the left gets chummy with Tucker Carlson and helps him dox members of the DSA.

Nagle was one of the first pundits brought onto Fox News when an overtly edited clip from the DSA convention went viral last year, despite not being a rank and file member nor actually being an actual organizer in anyway, she was brought on to Tucker Carlson as an “expert” and spent the interview spitting ableist conjectures and misinformed nonsense, all while sharing a laugh with one of the most notorious racists on television.

The worst of the worst however is Ben Norton, a revisionist Stalinist who joined DSA only to come to the defense of a rapist, RL Stephens, when Stephens was expelled from the organization. Norton argued it was an act of “censoring an anti imperialist member” or whatever his dogshit excuse was. Norton now spends his time tweeting crackpot theories about how DSA leadership has been taken over by Trotskyists, and he uses his medium to perpetuate this shallow false equivalency that has infected leftist thought that being Anti-American is the same as being Anti Imperial.

Norton argues that only western states can be imperialist. This is a shallow definition of anti-imperialism and it is one that completely erases the working class struggles of people nations such as Syria or China, and in his rallying against the US he leaps to the defense of Xi and Assad, turning a blind eye to their acts of slaughter. Yet because the Party of Socialism and Liberation sends Norton to places like Venezuela, we are just supposed to accept that he is an expert in international relations.

It should be noted that Ben Norton works very closely with another crackpot grifter by the name of Max Blumenthal, everything I said about Norton can also be said of Blumenthal, so feel free to cancel him to.

Some will say that these are insignificant voices and that I should just ignore them, I firmly disagree. It is when you ignore your bullies that they grow and gain power. While each of these people are crackpots, it can’t be denied that they have a following, Nagle didn’t end up on Fox News because she is obscure, and Norton makes a healthy living spewing his idiotic takes.

When I was growing up I never ran from my bullies, I stood up to them and I encourage everyone to stand up to their bullies, loudly and even violently if they have to! Bullies should be pushed down, beaten in public, and their victims should stand proud over them as they squirm! Bullies and keyboard warriors like these three need to be dragged and publiclly humiliated.

The three of them also personify the whole problem with punditry. Pundits just sit on their asses conjecturing about things like the socialist movement as if they have a degree of expertise, yet they have none because they do no front line work.

Even the most privileged member of DSA has done more frontline organizing than Nagle, Tracey, or Norton combined. While these three talk about the working class they do nothing to actually organize them. People like these three will intellectualize why the working class shouldnt be organizing in the ways they are. Instead of meeting the working class where they are at and building them up from, they want to dictate to the working class what they should be doing.

This constant reflection on our work as socialists by people who do no work at all is tedious and frustrating, but what is dangerous about it is that it allows for a secterain base to exist, and those secterain bases prevent left unity when the likes of Nagle, Tracy or Norton validate their toxic and misinformed notions about the left or organizations like DSA. And in any case we do not need more pundits, we need public intellectuals.

Don’t ignore the sectarians, drag them, and drag them until they get off their ass and actually do some work.

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