[Marxism] Left Forum 2012

DW dwaltersmia at gmail.com
Tue Mar 20 07:33:30 MDT 2012

"As I pointed out, the presence of such ideas is a function of anarchists
having taken the initiative just as was the case in the anti-globalization
protests of the early 90s. What intrigues me is how that movement is
capable of such audacity while the Marxist left is content to "intervene"
after the fact. I couldn't imagine ISO'ers or members of smaller sects like
the SA ever deciding to send people to Zuccotti Park to sleep overnight on
their own. Marxist-Leninists are just not into that sort of thing."

I'm wondering if Louis himself stayed overnight at Zuccotti Park or
participated in the GAs. Ah, but this could be  a west coast/ east coast
thing? Maybe.

Socialist Organizer, ISO, PSL ALL had people encamped at both SF and
Oakland Occupy(s). ISO members were there for *months* and helped develop
the structure needed to keep it going, as well as the political work of the
various action committees. I would have some disagreements with them on
what they may or may not of proposed, but we all had the street cred to
discuss all sorts of interesting issues around politics and process with
the youth radicalized by Occupy and the anarchists (in all their very
interesting shades of black). In fact, the Bay Area, I think there was a
real problem with the ISO adapting TO the anarchists, if I were to
criticize their work inside Occupy.

I would say, Louis, you really haven't a clue about what organized
self-described Leninist were doing or not in Occupy. This may not be your
fault (I didn't do any encampment myself as I'm not in good health) but
it's presumptuous to think that these groups were only "intervening" as if
at an anti-war conference from the 1970s or something similar.

All the groups took various forms of responsibility. Of course now, at
least in NorCal and SoCal it appears the movement has shifted to Occupy
Education, the anarchists are less of a player in any of their forms and
they tend to work more as coalitions with campus unions directly involved.
Here the socialist groups exist as a 'bloc' of sorts, and are far more
influential among radicalizing students. No one 'disses' the anarchists and
non-"Vandalista" anarchists more or less work with the socialists at the
level of parity. Another, yet equally interesting discussion.

David Walters

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