You see them in the news, you hear about them on the radio and you read about them in the newspapers. They always pop up in rallies and demonstrations and cause destruction and mayhem. Yes we are talking about anarchists. Not your run of the mill neighborhood kid who calls himself that so he can stand out and look different. No, we’re talking about the real thing, real full blown anarchist and we interviewed one to learn the ins and outs of anarchism. In the interview we talk about views of anarchist, different ideologies, anitfa, the UC Berkeley protests and much more. The anarchist we talked with wished for autonomy and chose to go by the name anarchy heathen.
Southern Sky- How did you become an anarchist
Anarcho Heathen- I found anarchism to be the logical conclusion of Libertarianism. I grew up in an extremely conservative household, I found that I continuously saw how the government was in the way of my family’s ultimate well-being, thus I began to identify with the Libertarian party, as I entered the workforce though i found that the government was only a part of what was really happening that the capitalist system was inherently flawed and lead to a stagnation of the working class when the capitalist class worked in conjunction with the state. That lead me to the works of Warren, Gold, Proudhon, and the Center for a Stateless society.
What is anarchism and what are the views of an anarchist
AH- Anarchism is a set of ideologies based on the idea that people would be better suited without capitalism and government. To put it quite simply. There are many kinds of anarchists covered under that umbrella
SS- Are there any prominent forms/types?
AH- Absolutely. Anarchocommunism is one of the more popular types of anarchism, with mutualism, and syndicalism making up larger minorities. Narchocommunism is the idea that the means of production are completely owned by the workers, that they come together and live the ideal of from each according to their ability to each according to their need. It is the purest form of Marx’s ideal Communism. Mutualism breaks into two main schools, Proudhonian and American. Proudhonian mutualism is based off of the ideologies of Pierre Joseph Proudhon and tend to be a more cut down form of Ancom, in my estimation. While American Mutualism is more based on the ideas of Josiah Warren and is a non-capitalist market based on the exchange of time and expertise.
SS- Ok so anarchism is a very left wing ideology but there seems to be a conflict when liberals advocate for bigger government and anarchists want to eliminate it right?
AH- That is a fair assessment
SS- So how would anarchists deal with that in an election or would they vote at all
AH- Some anarchists vote, I tend to vote locally, however many view voting as a method of oppressing the masses by making them think their vote actually matters.
SS- So are there any dominant schools of thought on how anarchists can change the system, is it an attainable goal?
AH- That is an interesting question, because there are ideological divides within anarchism, anarchists are also divided on how to achieve their goals. Some call for insurrection, but most of us tend to agitate, educate, and try to show the superiority of the idea. The “revolution” is multifaceted, but anarchism only works when most everyone is on board, so it calls for a lot of talking to the people and encouraging them to fight for more freedom, more rights, and to stop putting up with the injustices down by the government and the upper class.
SS- What are your thoughts on antifa
AH- I did some time as an Antifa when I was younger. I have no issues with antifa, I take greater issue with unthinking antifa actions.
SS- Ok so you do not support the Milo protest?
AH- The protest? yes. The pepper spraying of the young lady in the MAGA parody hat? no.
SS- But ideally there would have been a protest and Milo would have spoken
AH- In an ideal world, Milo would have gotten a chance to speak at the university. I think that his opinions are reprehensible, I think that he is a hypocrite, however, a no platform policy in Antifa has been greatly successful in the past and the movement has yet to truly adjust to the new methods used by the alt-right.
SS- What is no platform policy?
AH- a no platform policy is the policy of not giving fascists room to speak. It is the idea that the only way to effectively prevent fascism from spreading is to crush it.
SS- Ok but if people like what they hear and decide to move in that direction, isn’t that the right of the people to choose?
AH- Isn’t it the right of people to oppose them? If you are a fascist I can’t control you, but I can do everything within my ability to oppose you.
SS- : I think the idea of free speech was made so both ideas can get out there and then the people can decide what they like though
AH- Sure, free speech was put in place to allow things to come to a head in the marketplace of ideas. However, if there can be no compromise and your ideology, and facism is one that i have seen to be completely antithetical to not only everything I hold dear, but is also very dangerous to those I love, at what point do words cease to be enough? For Antifa, that point is when you start preaching fascism.
SS: So you would say that you feel a majority of people could take up an opinion that you find dangerous and think it is justified to suppress their idea before it spreads?
AH- I would say that when words fail, actions are necessary. I always prefer to talk to someone and get to know what they think and how they feel before I do anything. If I can talk to you and get to know you, then there is a chance of coming to an understanding, a chance of showing why people find that ideology so frightening that they feel justified in opposing an idea with violence, then there is a strong chance that I don’t need violence at all. However when one starts repeating rhetoric right out of the third Reich? I feel no need to repeat that fight and would rather stomp it out before it sits in power.