Tag Archives: Hillary Clinton

Should Anti-Fascists Vote? A Debate

While the mostly anarchist anti-fascist movement would likely never devolve into a question of voting for liberal candidates, the unique nature of this year’s election has changed many opinions.  With the potential of a Donald Trump victory on the horizon, many are asking the question of whether or not supporting Hillary Clinton as simply a way to dethrone the nationalist movement.  Given the election results creeping up on us late tonight, we have decided to present a quick debate between two competing opinions on whether or not voting is an worthwhile anti-fascist act in this context.

 

No Ballot Box

by Anti-Fascist Front

The question about voting is one that tends to divert from what the real question ends up being: how to build anti-fascist movements and projects that can confront the real core of the movement.  It may be a benefit if Trump is not voted in, especially in that it will cut off the connection between the Alt Right and the mainstream GOP.  At the same time, the struggle against fascism will only continue as the component parts are still built into the neoliberal world.  Clinton herself is voice of the ruling class, one that will likely attack unions, support police murder, continue the march off the cliff of climate change, deregulate financial markets, and celebrate international bombing campaigns.  She herself is not a fascist, and instead is part and parcel of American capitalism, so it is hard for many to actually expect casting a ballot will do much more than act as self congratulation.

No matter what you do today, spend no more than a few minutes on it.  If you cast a ballot, then fine, and if you choose to burn yours in protest, that is great as well.  What matters is what you do tomorrow, whether you begin working in your community to build an anti-fascist movement.  This can be supporting anti-racist education projects or Antifa organizations in your city.  It can be standing in the streets yelling Black Lives Matter or confronting anti-immigrant sentiments in schools and police unions.  It means building a mass movement to undo “Trumpism” as a social concept, and that will be required whether or not Trump loses tonight.

Election results will not unring the bell of the Alt Right, and so it is going to be a necessity for us to find a way to contribute to on-the-ground work, movement building and community organizing.  That is where the battle is had, so do not allow this flurry of button pushing to obscure what is really required in this struggle.

 

Vote

by Karl Starkweather

I contend that one should vote.

 

Living under liberal democracy is better than living under fascism. It is also better in terms of the Left’s ability to move in an egalitarian direction.

More concretely, currents existed prior to the rise of Trump and the neo-Nationalist movements around the globe, but Trump and the neo-Nationalist movements outside the US have helped manifest new forces and embolden older strains. And whether Trump wins or loses on the 8th, these new and old currents will have to be confronted beyond the ballot box. Still, we as Anti-Fascists must stay true to the call we took up: that the heads of State, military, and economy, when confronted with fascism, either cannot stop it or will absolve themselves into it. The only true cure for the disease of fascism is popular resistance. And in the USA, there is not currently a working mass popular resistance outside of the Democratic Party.

How? In power, a moderate-Left party does more good for the 99%. In the United States, I personally benefit from a Democratic NLRB, for instance, and from the various (inadequate and non-universal) social services and aid that nonetheless have a real impact on the day-to-day life of myself and loved ones. In addition, women are more likely to be able to access the full spectrum of health services they need; there will be more support for reforming our racist criminal justice system so I can see more energy in the world not be totally annihilated; there will remain some semblance of hope that millions–including people close to me–won’t be violently removed by Trump’s militarization of ICE; and the list goes on.

Furthermore, to be Sorelian or Nietzschean, getting turned on by “catastrophic myths” that heighten contradictions—or the proposition “that which is falling should also be pushed” by not voting or voting 3rd party—is quintessentially fascist. Only such an irrational-artistic-metaphysics of the fascist could visualize joy in that violent chaos. Are we Anti-Fascists for the people? Or are we enamoured of that fascist myth—seeing destructive chaos as some “hygiene” for the people?

What is wrong with voting then, if it can keep some things that impact real marginalized people in place? Maybe make some things better? There has been progress in some areas, the last 8 years under Democrats. It could be much better and it is our duty to make it that way. We have to continue stepping up. The Left, if more imaginative, and with more agency, could comprehend of a world where the far-Left would help win victories for the moderate Left while at the same time building a movement to turn the moderate movements more to the Left, usurp them, or transcend them (depending on your ideological persuasion).

So, as Anti-Fascists, I contend that we must use the means available. At present, in America specifically, today on November 8th, it’s the ballot box. Vote against Trump today and for the Democrats. That is the job for today, and will enable us to continue to do our job tomorrow.

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Those on the Alt Right: Why We Hate Hillary Clinton, But Loved Her Speech

Yep, she said it.

 

Hillary’s speech from August 25th was rumored for days in advance, with the fact that she was addressing the Alt Right well known. This sent many in the press running to get this phenomenon figured out, while at the same time the Alt Righters were waiting to hit their moment of peak visibility. With their media savvy, their ability to dominate social media, and their focus on well-packaged talking points, it was quite possible that they were going to be able to set the conversation after Hillary spoke in vague platitudes.

Except this time Hillary was prepped well, and named the fascist. Her speech identified the Alt Right as one element of the racist right wing that is giving Donald Trump his surging popularity. She mentioned Twitter accounts like White Genocide, went after the KKK members that support Trump openly, and even lamented the ludicrous conspiracy theorizing of Alex Jones and Infowars. She took on Breitbart, reading aloud some of the more offensive recent article titles where they showed their hate for women, minorities, and LGBT people.

Hillary’s endgame here is simple: to scare you into voting for her. For our side of things, we recognize that both the Democratic Party and the Clinton campaign are representing the interests of capital. They made up a middle-ground of establishment financial politics, ones steeped in Neoconservative foreign policy, international commercial interests, and environmental ruin. Donald Trump shares this position in politics, and laughs about the deregulated markets he attempts to foist on an already drained working class. Together, they make up what we have always expected from American politics: the choice between members of the capitalist class.

As we listened to Hillary’s speech, we knew that she had scored herself a campaign point. She also scored one for us, just not the one she wants.

We will never support the Clinton campaign, or the campaign of any bourgeois politician (this includes Jill Stein). Instead we think that the power of the working class is in movements from the ground up, and in today’s climate that includes organized anti-fascism. What Hillary’s speech did was accurately describe the phenomenon(to a point), named some of the key players, and then tied them directly to their support of Donald Trump.

Over the last couple of weeks, and especially in the last two days, we have seen a number of major news outlets clamor to make sense of the Alt Right. Anti-Fascist News was founded just over a year ago specifically with the idea that we wanted to focus in on the Alt Right from an anti-fascist perspective. Some major media coverage of the Alt Right has been better than others, but many miss the key factors at play with this movement. The recent segments from Fox News painted the Alt Right as synonymous with Donald Trump’s working class white, Middle American base. This confuses the situation and lacks the key lineage that the Alt Right comes from.

Drawing on the racialist organizations of the past, the European neo-fascist organizations, the history of fascist philosophy and spirituality, and various interlocking “traditionalist” and “identitarian” movements, the Alt Right is the latest and most popular confederation of what we would clearly label as fascist. This word is thrown around a lot, often used to mean authoritarian or violent. Instead, the word means a political movement founded in inequality, elitism, “essential” identity such as race or gender, hierarchy, “traditional values,” and a romantic view of the past. While this has some common historical forms, it can creep up with a variety of different political structures and programs. National anarchists, radical traditionalists, the Dark Enlightenment, paleoconservatism, “race realism,” racial paganism, identitarianism, and many other self-important philosophies fit under this broader fascist ideological banner, and all of them make up the various wings of the Alt Right. Together they are founded on the idea that there are racial differences in intelligence and “criminality,” that Jews are secretly in control of the government and the media, that feminism is eroding the true structures of man, and that we need to return to the identity and authority of our ancestors.

While Breitbart, Milo, and Donald Trump may only be the “diet” version of the Alt Right, they are taking their most palatable points and putting them out into bite sizes morsels. The Alt Right has taken the key fascist ideas built over a century of violence and attempts at power and turned them into “fashy memes,” jokes told on 4chan and celebrated at My Posting Career.

 

In short: the Alt Right has made fascism tweetable. And we are here to shut them down.

 

With Hillary Clinton’s most recent campaign ad and the direction spoken of in her speech, she has simply helped to mainstream the anti-fascist messaging in the same way that Donald Trump added a loudspeaker to the Alt Right. That does not make her our ally, she never will be. Instead, her speech helped to make the Alt Right known as a racist caricature of itself; a violent movement of vile racism bent on attacking communities of color, putting women in their place, and locking up trans people. While places like the Radix Journal and the Daily Shoah were celebrating the attention, and Alt Right vloggers like Millenial Woes were using it as an opportunity to create a racially-charged promotional video, we get more out of this mention than they could ever hope to.

Now our task is to take her rhetoric much further, and to put the logic of it into practice. It is not enough to name a fascist on the Internet; we need movements capable of undermining them when they show up.

 

And they have.