The Real Movement

Communism is free time and nothing else!

Month: January, 2019

The SCUM Manifesto and the Abolition of Wage Slavery

As I was banned on r/communization last night, I accused of parroting Valerie Solanas, author of the SCUM Manifesto in 1967. I had never heard of this person before last night, so I went to read it. I was actually surprised both by the manifesto and by the accusation that I was parroting many of Solanas’s ideas.

If you are familiar with Solanas and her SCUM Manifesto, my surprise may not be what you think it is. I was very impressed with her argument.

Here are some of her choice quotes:

Life in this society being, at best, an utter bore and no aspect of society being at all relevant to women, there remains to civic-minded, responsible, thrill-seeking females only to overthrow the government, eliminate the money system, institute complete automation and destroy the male sex.

This is certainly more profoundly revolutionary sentiments than anything I have ever read on r/communization since I joined it, or any communization screed with which I am familiar.

Solanas also wrote this in 1969:

There is no human reason for money or for anyone to work more than two or three hours a week at the very most. All non-creative jobs (practically all jobs now being done) could have been automated long ago, and in a moneyless society everyone can have as much of the best of everything as she wants.

And, finally, this gem:

What will liberate women, therefore, from male control is the total elimination of the money-work system, not the attainment of economic equality with men within it.

This manifesto was decades ahead of its time on a number of fronts and addresses issues communists still grapple with today.

The text is highly controversial: did Solanas mean it to be taken literally or was it satire on the level of Jonathan Swift? Solanas (and many who knew her) at times appears to take either side of this controversy. In any case, I am going to spend some time examining it. I hope to write something about it in the next few days.

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Banned again for suggesting we need to get rid of wage labor: A Tale

I had an interesting experience on r/communization subreddit tonight. I told some people that I thought communism meant getting rid of wage slavery. I even explained how I thought this could be done.

I was told that getting rid of wage slavery didn’t address women’s issues, colonialism, etc. When I responded that if wage labor was eliminated that women would not be dependent on men and could tell men to fuck off, I was banned summarily from the subreddit.

I am pretty sure I never violated any rules of the subreddit. I just think many communists really don’t want to think about actually getting rid of wage labor, despite their protests to the contrary. Banning may be the only way they can handle the issue.

I think the real rule I violated was to talk about getting rid of labor. No one — not radical Leftists, social-democrats or hard-core communists — wants to talk about this issue.

John Danaher asks “Should We Abolish Work?”

I have been reading an essay by John Danaher, “Should We Abolish Work?” It is part of a collection of essays on the theme of antiwork in a volume titled, “Abolish Work”.

I don’t make it a habit of critiquing anarchist essays for the simple reason that it is a little like nailing jello to the wall. Anarchist writings are so diverse in their approaches that very little said about one writer applies to the next. However, I think Danaher asks an interesting question that pretty much touches on one of the most important themes of this blog.

And I want to discuss why I think Danaher’s approach is unsatisfactory in this essay because it reflects what I think is a general weakness with the essays in this volume. While I agree that technological unemployment is a good thing (at least in the long run), I don’t believe this volume makes a very good case for abolishing wage labor.

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Ben Reynolds discusses his book, “The Coming Revolution”