against 'entrenched identities'

Max Sawicky sawicky at
Fri Jun 26 14:52:11 PDT 1998

> >If something is incoherent, it is so without
> >respect to whatever else is or is not going on.
> I'm not sure why you say this. In general we want to analyze things in
> their interconnectedness, holistically. Self-determination or coherence
> of a historically specially oppressed and exploited group is effected by
> what else is going on, n'est-ce pas ?

O.K. But making all this less abstract gets to the point better. So --

> >The question is the feasibility of assorted ways
> >of going it alone.
> >
> By the way, the BRC did not have a "go it alone" theme or thrust in the

Never said it did. And let me remind anyone who needs it that I have not 'attacked' the BRC, or even criticized it, since as I said there is no 'it' but a pluralist they.

> . . . A
> self-coherence develops in that historical cauldron. At the same time,

We would hope so. But where is it now? The cauldron has been bubbling for a long time. Even the BRC, a subset of the black movements, is very diverse.

> . . .
> The goals of ending racism/achieving equality and the whole long, long
> program of a radical Bill of Economic Rights for everybody can be

Without rendering judgement on the BER, I can't disagree, and have already said as much in my own post.

> struggled for simultaneously. No ayo contradiction. There is no need to
> pussyfoot with white workers about abolishing racism and predjudice for
> fear of turning them off for this Bill of Rights struggle. All of the

Depends on what you mean here. White workers will never follow a Sharpton or Farrakhan type unless their rhetoric changed radically, in both senses of the word.

> . . .
> not seriatim or sequentially. The elements are coreinforcing (if you end
> racism the class will be stonger in fighting for the pure and simple
> ecoonomic gains, vice versa), plus the totalness the comprehensiveness
> of the demanding is more radical in effect on the different parts. To
> make a revolution you have to break a few eggs like making an omelette.
> The barrier of "bad" Black nationalism is being exaggerated here. When
> has the existence of Black nationalist stopped radical white workers
> from doing something to the capitalists. . . .

I mentioned the Newark teachers strike. Some time ago, blacks were used overtly in racial fashion as strike- breakers. I admit that nowadays these sorts of incidents are rare. More to the point is the use of separatist rhetoric not as a prelude to any larger struggle but as an obstacle to it. Such rhetoric is not usually an instrument to some alternative, nationalist politics, but to no politics at all. Exhibit A is the Million Man March, which led to a follow-up meet in St. Louis which produced nothing, as far as I can see.

I could post a list of political events that various class- and labor-oriented groups are up to. I look forward to being able to post a similar list for the BRC or whatever follows it. But right now I don't see anything from the nationalist movement(s), even stuff I don't like. If there is more going on, go ahead and school me. But the dearth of activism reinforces my skepticism about nationalism.


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