Thursday, July 10, 2008

Anarcho-Syndicalism

Well the British may not be taxing our tea anymore but I am suspicious that somebody is. Its been a sad week in the great nation, the surveillance state ever creeping forward with the new version of the FISA law that passed the Senate this week giving telecommunications immunity from civil liability like they were the freakin' sovereign or something. I guess these days being a big corporation is good enough. Maybe I shouldn't be so harsh. I mean being in a consumer society these corporate behemoths are necessary for the material improvement of existence, I guess, theoretically at least. Like a comment said on a blog I was reading earlier this week, "its like I just woke up one morning and I was living in the Soviet Union in the 1950's." For those of you who are not so up on your history, this is not such a good thing.

Still I was left with one delight over the holiday and that was finding this video clip of a discussion between Michel Foulcault and Noam Chomsky (Part I and Part II). Foulcault becomes so pleased with himself at one point that he nearly levitates and Chomsky declares himself to be, on no uncertain terms, an "anarcho-syndicalist". I am not sure exactly what this is but I am going to think about it. I am pretty sure it is different from what a couple of people I have met claimed to be when they professed to me that the were "benevolent" anarchists. These folks probably suggested that they were "benevolent" to distinguish them selves from the anarcho-assassins who shot Archduke Ferdinand. I am not sure whom Chomsky is distinguishing himself from in proclaiming the virtues of syndicalism.

I checked with Wikipedia and this is their definition of syndicalism:

Syndicalism is a set of ideas, movements, and tendencies which share the avowed aim [to] transform capitalist society through action by the working class on the industrial front. For syndicalists, labor unions are the potential means both of overcoming capitalism and of running society in the interests of the majority. Industry and government in a syndicalist society would be run by labour union federations.

But Wikipedia doesn't define "anarcho-syndicalism." And besides that hasn't the time passed to transform society on the "industrial" front. What I want to know is who is going to transform society on the psycho-technological front? I am just sayin'. And if one's political theory is all caught up in labor who is going to get to make a pompous ass out of one's self consuming all the damn goods? Honestly, sometimes I think these philosophers should think these things through.

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