Category Archives: Articles

Article in CounterPunch: U.S. Has Never Been a Democracy

My article, “The U.S. is Not a Democracy, It Never Was,” was just published in CounterPunch. It was developed as part of the research and activism activities of the Radical Education Department (RED). Click here to read it.

Excerpt:
Rather than blindly believing in a golden age of democracy in order to remain at all costs within the gilded cage of an ideology produced specifically for us by the well-paid spin-doctors of a plutocratic oligarchy, we should unlock the gates of history and meticulously Screen-Shot-2017-12-04-at-8.55.14-PM-768x507scrutinize the founding and evolution of the American imperial republic. This will not only allow us to take leave of its jingoist and self-congratulatory origin myths, but it will also provide us with the opportunity to resuscitate and reactivate so much of what they have sought to obliterate. In particular, there is a radical America just below the surface of these nationalist narratives, an America in which the population autonomously organizes itself in indigenous and ecological activism, black radical resistance, anti-capitalist mobilization, anti-patriarchal struggles, and so forth. It is this America that the corporate republic has sought to eradicate, while simultaneously investing in an expansive public relations campaign to cover over its crimes with the fig leaf of “democracy” (which has sometimes required integrating a few token individuals, who appear to be from below, into the elite ruling class in order to perpetuate the all-powerful myth of meritocracy). If we are astute and perspicacious enough to recognize that the U.S. is undemocratic today, let us not be so indolent or ill-informed that we let ourselves be lulled to sleep by lullabies praising its halcyon past. Indeed, if the United States is not a democracy today, it is in large part due to the fact that it never was one. Far from being a pessimistic conclusion, however, it is precisely by cracking open the hard shell of ideological encasement that we can tap into the radical forces that have been suppressed by it. These forces—not those that have been deployed to destroy them—should be the ultimate source of our pride in the power of the people […read more].

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Article: “Why RED, Why Now?”

18-19-2Click here to read my most recent post for the Radical Education Department (RED), entitled “Why RED, Why Now?” The post is on:
– the importance of hard leftism in the academy and beyond
– transversal organizing to avoid the pitfalls of horizontalism and verticalism
– autonomous and collective self-education qua community building
– breaking the ideological sound barrier of conservatives vs. liberals
– politics as the collective forging of collectivities rather than pandering & PR campaigns

Article dans Mediapart: “L’Antifa outre-Atlantique”

Cliquez ici pour lire mon article, “L’Antifa outre-Atlantique“, dans Mediapart. Cet article s’inscrit dans les activités du Radical Education Department (RED).

Extrait: Les luttes s’intensifient outre-Atlantique. Des fascistes, des nazis et des militants racistes ont lancé l’assaut depuis l’investiture d’un richissime homme d’affaires jupitérien, raciste et misogyne, dont la candidature fut soutenue par des nationalistes blancs et l’ancien chef national du KKK, David Duke. Ils organisent de grandes manifestations, promeuvent leurs porte-paroles sur des campus universitaires et dans les médias, s’attaquent brutalement à des manifestants antifascistes (dont Heather Heyer, tuée à Charlottesville), et se battent bec et ongles pour légitimer un discours et des pratiques qui rappellent à bien des égards ceux de l’entre-deux-guerres en Europe, et ceux de la grande époque du lynchage aux États-Unis.

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Ci-contre se dresse une masse anonyme qui n’accepte pas l’idée selon laquelle le nazisme, le fascisme et la suprématie blanche seraient autant d’opinions à respecter parmi d’autres. Sans porte-parole, et souvent habillé en noir et masqué pour résister à la surveillance outrancière de l’État, l’Antifa – une abréviation de l’antifascisme – refuse d’être tolérant de ceux et celles qui souhaitent décimer une grande partie de la population, ou qui prétendent que l’on devrait avoir le « droit » de promouvoir de telles idées. Il s’organise de façon autonome pour faire ce que l’État-entreprise et ses médias de masse ne feront pas : prendre une position ferme et nette contre le virage fasciste du capitalisme néolibéral […la suite].

Op-Ed: “It’s Time to Get Violence: Breaking Down the Assault on Antifa”

Click here to read my most recent opinion piece, which I co-authored with Ramona E. Dúran for CounterPunch. It is entitled “It’s Time to Get Violence: Breaking Down the Assault on Antifa,” and it is part of our activities for the Radical Education Department (RED).

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Excerpt: “Violence is the great obfuscator. When its name is invoked by the powerful, rest assured that it is masking much more than it reveals. While it is presented as an objective description of a state of affairs requiring immediate condemnation, it simultaneously serves to discredit movements and ideas, deny the political agency of certain actors, and cloak brutal forms of domination. Its purportedly objective presentation is, in fact, a legerdemain that stirs up moral sentiments in order to muddy political analysis. Under the guise of indubitable moral rectitude, the world is turned upside: those who stand up for justice are often made to appear as senseless savages, and the greatest perpetrators of violence are exonerated, or even presented as victims.

Of late, violence has made headlines in the U.S. corporate media by serving to discredit the work of anti-fascist activists and distract from the actual threats of fascism and white supremacy […read more].”

Op-Ed: “Who’s Afraid of Direct Action on Campus?”

Click here to read my most recent opinion piece, which I co-authored with John-Patrick Schultz for Truthout. It is entitled “Who’s Afraid of Direct Action on Campus? Mobilizing Pedagogy Against the Powerful,” and it is part of our activities for the Radical Education Department (RED).

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Excerpt: “The answer to the question, ‘Who’s afraid of direct action on campus?’ should now be obvious: those inculcated by the indirect action of institutionalized indoctrination, as well as those who seek — usually through clandestine means and dark money — to use these institutions for their own reactionary agenda. They have much to learn from the coming intellectual insurrections and the intensifying waves of mobilization in the name of direct action education, which is an essential force against the increasingly aggressive right-wing cooptation of institutions of higher learning (which we have witnessed yet again at the University of Virginia and Charlottesville). [… read more]”

Op-Ed: “Philosophy in Prison: Educating the Educator”

Click here to read my most recent opinion piece, which was generated out of a collectivist prison project that is described below. The other five pieces, written by inmates at Graterford Prison, will be published in the coming weeks. Click here to read them as they become available.

“Philosophy in Prison” is a series of posts generated for the APA Blog by Professor Gabriel Rockhill’s philosophy course, “Class, Race and Social Transformation,” which took place in the Spring semester of 2017 at Graterford Prison in Pennsylvania. The class was part of Villanova University’s prison program. The participants in the course developed their own topics and worked in groups to define the precise format and content of their contributions, which range from single-author pieces to dialogues and co-authored articles.  The following post, the first of six, introduces the idea behind the series.