Alfredo M.

Bonanno
Propulsive Utopia
Tni Ax~icnis1 lini~iv
Tni Ax~icnis1 lini~iv
June s, zc1c
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Author· Alfredo M. Bonanno
Title· Propulsive Utopia
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Contents
Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Propulsive Utopia 4
e Refusal Of Arms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
But what is the imaginary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Are We Modern? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
e Priority Of Practice . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
e Armed Wing Of Science . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
e Moral Split . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
e Tyranny Of Weakness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
z !¯
Preface
Tis is not the first time we find ourselves faced with a similar dilemma·
how transcend the limitation of the means` Read out beyond the con-
striction of the roles` lncounter those who have begun their individ-
ual insurrection but find their path obstructed by a pile of blunt instru-
ments` Tose who have decided to venture into the abyss and have be-
come exigent, want to invent their own methods, draw them forth from
the conditions they are constrained to live in against their will, now, as
the bosses’ calendar indicates the arrival of the third millennium. Tose
who want to dance with life in more than fleeting encounters, in the ad-
venture of discovery’ that illuminates destruction in all its possibilities.
A contradiction emerges· in order to do this we need to activate the
tedniques they taught us with other ends in view read, write, analyse,
discuss, but this time not to pass exams, get a job, acquire social sta-
tus, cultivate the admiration of others. No, here the effort is exquisitely
selfish. Not an accumulation of data, but ideas to stimulate other ideas,
questions to contrast facts Roads to action to be explored. Paths to be
forged or meandered along, as we learn to recognise monsters under
their disguise and experiment the best weapons to confront them with,
those that enhance our indefatigable quest for freedom.
Tis is the perspective we have given ourselves and where we be-
lieve others are venturing. Tat is why we have decided to set to
work…shooting a shower of arms into the unknown, aware that by their
very form they risk turning up in the wrong place and violating the
tranquillity of those who seek in the wriuen word confirmation, truth,
serenity, or simply an antidote to insomnia, however, we have decided
to adventure into the unexplored.
Perhaps one or two will strike, encounter who will take up the
threads of the discourse, unravel them, re-elaborate them and in some
way make them part of their own project of liberation, transforming
them into active intervention.
Te following articles were all published some years ago in the
monthly paper “ProvocAzione” (now out of print). We are now making
them, available to a wider readership, an invitation to question some of
!
dains, then we can no longer put up with tolerance or the tendency to
give up or abandon the struggle. And it should not be thought that what
we are saying here is only valid for comrades who have already put rev-
olutionary engagement behind them and are now quite tranquilly graz-
ing among the greens, the oranges, the buddhists or other sud herds.
We are also referring to those who maintain they are still revolutionaries
but are living the tragedy of progressive physical and mental pollution
day by day.
Tis is not a simple call to action. Te graveyards are full of sud
calls. We are talking about a project that has been studied in the labora-
tories of capitalism and is now being applied to perfection. lt is aimed at
gradually and painlessly turning us away from our capacity to struggle.
Tis project is moving hand in hand with the profound restructuring
of capital. Ours is not a call to voluntarism, or if you like a cry in the
wilderness. We hope it will be, even if limited and approximate, a small
contribution to an understanding of the profound danges that are tak-
ing place in the world around us.
!.
our certainties and examine more closely some of the commonplaces we
take for granted.
Jean Weir
Propulsive Utopia
Some of us have lived through similar moments (1)s¯ — Student and
railway workers rebel in lrance. What follows are a few disconcerting
notes that beyond the specific moment). Te incredible thunderbolt of a
propelling idea suddenly surges up fromthe grey monotony of everyday
life. A desire to be beyond the abyss, well beyond it.
Many have lived through this and systematically put it out of their
minds. A tiny minority of old regulars at meetings and demos con-
tinue to practice the liturgy’ of the incredible within the enclosure of
themselves, now convinced that the utopian proposal must come from
rewriters of theories clever enough to climb mountains from within the
four walls of their own rooms.
Te others are not even worth mentioning. Most of them had no
inkling of what one was dreaming about. Tey casually confused possi-
bilism with socialism in an indigestible mixture known as “democratic
radicalism”.
But propulsive utopia, the life-blood of the real movement, cannot
be found in books or even in the avant-garde theses of the elite philoso-
phers who clocin to the fact of pre-wrapped ideas like clever shinwork-
ers.
lt feeds off a hidden but burning collective desire, increasing its flow
in a thousand ways. Ten suddenly you find it at the street corner. Te
form it takes is not usually staggering. lt is onen shy and unsure of itself
and certainly does not conjure up a vision of lightning on the road to
Damascus. But for anyone able to read between the lines of the real
movement this and only this is the strong point of a phenomenon that
runs into a thousand rivulets threatening to break up its unity in models
worthy of a hasty gazeueen.
.
ourselves in a stunted jargon made up of banalities from television and
sport, a barrac-style journalism that apparently facilitates communica-
tion whereas in reality it debases and castrates it.
But worse still, we are hardly able to make an effort to do anything
any longer. We do not Commit ourselves. lew deadlines, a few things
to be done, not mud reading. A meeting, an action here and there and
we are prostrated, done in. On the other hand we spend hours listen-
ing to (without understanding) music that is devoid of content, songs in
languages we do not understand, noises that imitate the factory: racing
cars or motorbikes. lven when we lose ourselves in the contempla-
tion of nature (what liule remains of it) we do not really go for a walk,
but it is the walk that enters us. We accept the banality, the ecological
and naturalist models that capitalism (in its new alternative version, of
course, even worse than what went before it) is coming out with. But
we have no experience of any real relationship with nature, one that
requires engagement and strength, aggression and struggle, not simple
contemplation.
And don’t talk to me about the aggressive behaviour of the capital-
ists in contrast to whid we should be developing tolerant behaviour. l
know perfectly well what the aggressiveness of capital signifies, or that
of the participants in the Paris-Dakar race. Tat is not what l am talking
about. ln fact l do not mean aggressiveness at all. Words can be deceiv-
ing. What l mean is that it is necessary to act instead of idling one’s
time away while the boat goes up in flames.
lither we are convinced that far-reading danges are taking place
or we are not. Capitalism and power are undergoing a transformation
that will upset the present state of our lives for goodness knows how
many decades. lf we are not profoundly convinced of this then we might
as well carry on dasing the buuerflies of our dreams, the myths of bud-
dhism, homeopathic medicine, Zen philosophy, escapist literature, sport
or whatever else we fancy, including a pleasant distancing ourselves
from grammar and language.
But if we are convinced of the first hypothesis, if we are convinced
there is a project in course bent on reducing us to slaves, principally to a
cultural slavery that is depriving us of even the possibility of seeing our
!!
Here and there in the recent students’ and railway workers’ demon-
strations in lrance the slogan of great revolutions we had become re-
signed to seeing diluted for ever into parliamentary speedes and pub
dat has suddenly reappeared. lquality.
Along a liule path in the forest the real movement is finding itself by
pointing to a great utopian objective· go beyond rights to the full reality
of the deed.
A swallow does not mean spring, you might say. Correct. A banner,
a thousand banners are only words cried to the wind and are onen blown
away by it. But words are not born inside stuffy libraries. When they
correspond to the spirit of thousands of people they suddenly break into
the collective consciousness that is the basis of the real movement. Ten
and only then do words abandon their symbolic purpose and become a
simple covering over reality. Tey become the substance of a project
that is latent but at the same time is powerfully operative.
Today the macabre spectacle of equal rights is suffocating any de-
sire that throws its glance beyond the barrier of the ready-made. But
the refusal of politics by the student movement is only a filter for the
profound, utopian request for immediate, total liberation. Out with all
sdemers, in with freedom. Right. But when this freedom does not have
a bodily content, when it becomes a covering over well (or badly) con-
strued words, then it is no more than a new way of sealing up ideology
Of course the struggle of those enclosed in the gheuoes, prisons,
factories, sdools, racial and sexual discrimination, only aims at break-
ing down the first barrier, the wall, the immediate enemy one comes
up against in painful social discrimination. But although comprehen-
sible that still does not correspond to a revolutionary struggle for the
equality of all, the maximum exaltation of the difference of ead one.
No mauer how well it goes, the particular struggle will be recuperated
and transformed into further conditioning because it is still a struggle
for equal “rights” and does not affect situations of fact that are anything
but equal so long as there remains a field of political, therefore social,
discrimination.
Te statement that appeared in the streets of Paris showed a seri-
ous auempt to go beyond the trap the ideologues built long ago, conve-
¯
anything but a disguised formof weakness —but rather auempt to bring
this situation to light. it is a question of a flauening of values and a
distortion of the instruments we need to acquire in order to live and
to auac our enemies. Te prevailing model today is that of the loser:
renunciation, abandoning the struggle or simply slowing down. Te
power structure has every interest in seeing that this disposition contin-
ues. We hardly think at all and reason inadequately, passively submit-
ting to the messages put out by the various information dannels. We
do not react.
We are building a personality that is halfway between the idiot and
the stamp collector. We understand liule, yet know a lot· a multitude of
useless dispersive things, pocet encyclopaedia knowledge.
We are convinced that we have a right to be stupid and ignorant, to
be losers.
We have sent efficiency bac to the adversary, considered an effi-
cientist model that belongs to the logic of power. And that was right,
indispensable once. When it was a question of damaging the class en-
emy, it was right to be absentecists and against work. But now we have
introjected this auitude and it is our adversary who is winning the re-
turn game. We have given up, even in regard to ourselves and the things
we really want to do.
And so we have turned to the buuerfly catding of oriental philoso-
phy, alternative products and ways of thinking, models that are of liule
use and whid lac incisiveness. lnstead of waiting for our teeth to fall
out, we are pulling them out one by one. We are now happy and tooth-
less.
Te laboratories of power are programming a new model of renun-
ciation for us. Only for us of course. lor the winning minority, the
included”, the model is still aggressiveness and conquest. We are no
longer the sanguinary, violent barbarians who once let loose in insur-
rections and uncontrollable revolts. We have become philosophers of
nothing, sceptical about action, blasé and dandy. We have not even
noticed that they are shrinking our language and our brains. We are
hardly able to write any longer, something important in order to com-
municate with others. We are hardly able to talk any longer We express
!z
niently camouflaging it in the suggestion that students beware of outside
elements, politics, provocateurs, etc. Tis is an old story that the man-
agers of power always circulate at opportune moments because they are
indirectly in control through the dannels of consensus and the condi-
tioning of information. lt is a tednique they use to warn against dangers
relating to one part of themselves so as to detract auention from another
part that they want to bring into effect.
Now, by opposing genuinely revolutionary opposition to sud un-
derhand plots the real movement is rediscovering the explosive potential
of utopia. lt is acting in sud a way that its radical critique of the process
of recuperation cannot be recuperated. lt is not by dance that this posi-
tion has appeared at the same time as economic claims are diminishing
in importance. Tere equality was seen as the result of the repartition
of produced value beyond the endemic division between capitalists and
proletarians. But we are sure that any society that were to pass more or
less violently from capitalism to post-revolutionary socialism through
the narrow door of syndicalism would necessarily be a grey parody of
a free society. Te heavy trade union self-regulating medanism with
its ideal of the good worker and the bad skiver would be transferred to
society as a whole. Te students have faced the problem of the impossi-
bility of any outlet in the labour market. But their analysis strengthens
(or should strengthen) the conviction that only with a radically utopian
way of seeing the social problem will it be possible to break through the
boundaries of a destiny that those in power seem to hold in their hands.
Teirs is certainly not the kind of equality’ that is being talked about
in lrance today. Te same goes for the railway workers, perhaps in an
even more obvious way as they make no reference to arguments of an
economic or at least wage-claiming kind.
Why, one might ask, are we so sure of the revolutionary content of
an idea that, aner all, has moved with varying fortunes in the world rev-
olutionary sphere for at least two hundred years` Te answer is simple.
Te propulsive value of a concept cannot be understood in social terms
if one limits oneself to examining existing conditions. in fact there is
no causal relationship between social conditions and a utopian concept.
Te lauer moves within the real movement and is in deep contrast to
e
“living our own lives” (complex question that deserves going into else-
where). We talk of refusing the ideals transmiued from the bourgeoisie
in their moment of victory, or at least the bogus way in whid sud ide-
als have been imposed on us through current morals. Basically what we
are talking about is the real satisfaction of our needs, whid are not just
the so-called primary ones of physical survival. Well, l believe words are
not enough for sud a beautiful project. When it stayed firmly within
the old concept of class struggle based on the desire to “re-appropriate”
what had unjustly been taken from us (the product of our labour), we
were able to “talk” (even if we didn’t get very far) of needs, equality,
communism and even anardy. Today, now that this phase of simple
reappropriation has been danged by capital itself we cannot have re-
course to the same words and concepts. Te time for words is slowly
coming to an end. And we realise more ead day that we are tragically
behind, closed within a gheuo arguing about things that are no longer
of any real revolutionary’ interest, while people are rapidly moving to-
wards other meanings and perspectives as Power slyly and effectively
urges them on. Te great work of freeing the new man from ethics, this
great weight built in the laboratories of capital and smuggled into the
ranks of the exploited, has practically never begun.
e Tyranny Of Weakness
We come up against weakness everywhere today. We are weak, or act
as though we are for fear of seeming different.
lt is no longer fashionable to be self-assured or to have knowledge
of oneself or others or things. lt seems old fashioned, almost bad taste.
We no longer make any effort to do things well, and by that l mean the
things we have dosen to do, that we believe wt would do at any cost.
Contrary to logic itself, we do them badly, superficially, without paying
any auention to detail. We do not exactly boast about this weakness of
course, but use it as a kind of screen to hide behind.
So we have become slaves to this newrapidly spreading myth. What
we want to do here is not talk about “strength” — whid has never been
!1
the structural limits that condition but do not cause it. ln the fictitious
movement on the contrary the same concept can move around comfort-
ably. Here in the rarefied atmosphere of the castle of spooks the utopian
concept, having lost all its significance, becomes no more than a product
of ideology like so many others. Researd into the causes of utopia or
rather utopian desire could certainly be interesting but would give poor
results if one were to limit oneself to the study of the field of the social
and historical conditions in whid the concept suddenly appears.
lor this reason we cannot outline the limits of a presumed opera-
tivity of a utopian concept starting from these conditions. lt could go
well beyond the lauer, in other words could itself become an element of
social dange.
Now, equality is a contradictory concept that exists in ead one of
us. On the one hand we feel profoundly different to others and tend to
defend and encourage this diversity. We consider uniforming ourselves
and accepting orders and impositions to be unworthy of us, even though
we onen see ourselves forced to put a good face on it for the needs of the
moment. On the other hand everyone sees these radical differences as a
value that exists within the context of a substantial equality. lquality of
conditions, possibilities, freedom, values, social space and so on, all in
the more profound difference of desires, feelings, aims, interests, culture,
physical aspects, etc.
But this concept has only been perceptible throughout history as at-
tempts to transformman into a herded animal. in order to become equal
to another he had to become a sheep and not think about what made him
profoundly different to the shepherd who guides the herd and does the
shearing. Democracy has always been seen (and is still seen today) as
equality of rights, not conditions. To the hypothetical equality of rights
there has always corresponded a substantial inequality of conditions.
And instead of being related to the nature of their individuality, differ-
ences between people have always been those marked by the different
basic conditions they live in as they struggle against the suffocating ar-
tificial divisions imposed on them by power
lncredible things can happen when an idea like equality’ erupts into
the real movement and succeeds in breaking through the conditions
¯
for our deed, without seeking justification in the presumed collective
level of the situation. We cannot put off moral judgement concerning
the need to auac and strike the enemy until we have consulted those
who, all together, determine the “collective situation”. l shall explain
beuer l am not against the work of mass counter-information or the in-
termediate struggles that are also necessary in a situation of exploitation
and misery. What l am against is the symbolic (exclusively symbolic)
course these struggles take. Tey should be aimed at obtaining results,
even limited ones, but results that are immediate and tangible, always
with the premise that the instructional method the refusal to delegate
the struggle, autonomy, permanent conflictuality and self-managed base
structures be used.
What l do not agree with is that one should stop there, or even be-
fore that point as some would have it, at the level of simple counter-
information and denunciation, moreover decided by the deadlines pro-
vided by repression.
lt is possible, no, necessary, to do something else, and that some-
thing needs to be done now in the present phase of violent, accelerated
restructuring. lt seems to me that this can be done by a direct auac
on small objectives whid indicate the class enemy, objectives that are
quite visible in the social territory, or if they are not the work of counter-
information can make them so with very liule effort.
l do not think any anardist comrade can be against this practice,
at least on principle. Tere could be (and are) those who say they are
against sud a practice due to the fact that they see no constructive mass
perspective in the present political and social situation, and l can under-
stand this. But these actions should not be condemned on principle.
Te fact is that those who take a distance from them are far fewer than
those who support them but do not put them into practice. How is that`
l think this can be explained precisely by this “moral split” whida going
beyond the threshold of the “rights” of others causes in comrades like
myself and so many others, educated to say “thank you” and “sorry” on
the slightest occasion
We onen talk about liberating our instincts, and — to tell the truth
without having any very clear ideas on the subject — we also talk about
!c
that had forced it to remain occult till then. Te mortifying reality of the
present does not necessarily imply a negative outcome. ln practice any-
thing could happen, if some revolutionaries exist before the revolution,
most of them are born during it. Te strength of the utopian concept
multiplies to infinity at precisely the moment in whid it is proposed, so
long as it emerges within the real movement and is not an ideological
plaything within the fictitious one.
Te proposal of equality radically transforms the superficial exis-
tence of the equality of rights.
Te exploited make egalitarian utopia their own from the moment
they hoist the flag, so puffing an end to the existence of that equal-
ity of rights that was nothing other than the basis of their exploitation.
Te revolutionary idea ceases to be utopia and transforms itself into
events that upturn the social order far beyond what could have been
predicted from an analysis of the political situation. Te power struc-
ture has made equality something sacred, imposed the stigma of a right
on it. ln this way it has transformed the underground utopian thrust
of centuries deep within the real movement into a further means of ex-
ploitation and recuperation Te struggle for rights thus takes the place
of the struggle for real equality.
Only the concrete use of freedom leads to real equality (in the pro-
found differences between ead one). No freedom can be conceded as
a right. Not even the freedom to demonstrate. And it seems that the
lrend students grasped the utopian essence of equality at the moment
they made utopia the aim of their action, exposing the swindle that pre-
sented their demonstration in the streets as a demonstration for rights.
lt remains to be seen whether the real movement will be able to use
this concept, or whether it will succumb to the process of recuperation
in course aimed at puuing everything bac into the paraphernalia of
rights. lf they were to make revolutionary use of egalitarian utopia, this
would become operative immediately in the same way as whoever takes
freedom is not freed, but is free.
lquality is defiance of today’s society, the utopian decision to act
differently to what the general idea imposes. But this concept has been
introjected by most people and become the very foundation of repres-
s
By auacing, for the sake of argument, a firm that supplies arms to
South Africa or whid finances the racist regime in lsrael, one whid
projects nuclear power stations or makes electronic devices with whid
to “improve” traditional arms, the accent is put not so mud on the
lauer’s specific responsibility, as on their belonging to the class of ex-
ploiters. Specific responsibility only concerns the strategic and political
doice. Te sole element for reading the ethical decision is the class
one. Realising this enables us to read a certain clarity on the mauer
Te moral foundation for any action is the difference between classes,
the belonging to one of the two components of society that are irre-
ducibly opposed and whose only solution is the destruction of one or
the other.
Te political and strategic foundations on the other hand require a
series of considerations that can be quite contradictory. All the objec-
tions listed above concern this last aspect and have nothing to do with
the underlying moral justification.
But, without our realising it, it is in the field of moral decision that
many of us come up against obstacles. Te basically peaceful (or almost
peaceful) mardes, no mauer how demonstrative of our intentions
“against”, were quite different. lven the violent clashes with the police
were quite different. Tere was an intermediate reality between our-
selves and the “enemy”, something that protected our moral alibi. We
felt sure of being in the “right” even when we adopted positions (still
in the area of democratic dissent) that were not shared by the majority
of the demonstrators. lven when we smashed a few windows things
remained in sud a way that this could be accommodated.
Tings are different when we act on our own or with other comrades
who could never give us a psydological “cover” sud as that whid we
so easily get from within the “mass”. lt is now individuals who decide
to auac the institution. We have no mediators. We have no alibi. We
have no excuse. We either auac or retreat. We either accept the class
logic of the clash as an irreducible counter-position or move bacwards
towards negotiation and verbal and moral deception.
lf we read out and auac property — or something else, but always
in the hands of the class enemy — we must accept full responsibility
z)
sion and death by uniformity, boredom, suffocation.
Tis concept of equality, whidhas made faint hearts fear for the sort
of the individual throughout history, represents the most explosive road
for safeguarding the real differences and daracteristics of ead one, be-
yond the social conditions that dain them to the mediocrity of illusory
ones. So equality is the defiance of order that only the real movement
can throw in the face of society.
ln the streets of Paris they are perhaps beginning to see a clearer
road for geuing out of the swamp of possibilism. lt could be a false
alarm, it could be a sign of an underground tumult, it could even be an
operative indication to be put into practice, now, everywhere. lt is up to
the sensitivity of individual comrades to decipher this indication. Men
of power have been doing it — to their exclusive benefit — for a long
time.
e Refusal Of Arms
Te ‘refusal” of arms is an implicit element of anti-militarism. But this
concept is taken for granted and is hardly ever gone into in any depth.
Being precise objects weapons are certainly the fundamental instru-
ments that not only the army as an organisation (whid would not make
sense if it were unarmed), but also the military mentality (whid has de-
rived a series of authoritarian deformations from the use of weapons) is
based on.
Tis is so. Armies have always been armed, and have created a
particular form of hierardical organisation with a fixed and rigid level
of command precisely because the use of weapons is — or at least is
believed to be — rigid and must obey precise rules. Te same goes for
the mentality. Te “armed” individual feels different, more aggressive,
and (apparently) more easily overcomes the frustrations that everyone
has in them, so ends up becoming overbearing and cowardly at the same
time.
But militarism cannot, even in its own opinion, make an “optimal”
use of weapons. lt must insert their possible use within the political
)
the unease of behaving immorally” Puuing the “thrill” aside, whid l am
not interested in and whid l willingly leave to those who like to amuse
themselves with sud things, l want to take a look at the unease
Te fact is, we have all been reduced to the animal state of the herd.
Te morals we share (all of us, even those who in theory do not) are
“altruistic”. Tat is, respectable egalitarian and levelling. Te territories
of this morality have yet to be explored. How many comrades who
superbly declare they have visited themwould recoil at the sight of their
own sister’s breast` Certainly not a few.
And even when we justify our auac on private property’ to our-
selves’ and to the tribunal of history — by maintaining that it is right
that the expropriators be expropriated, we are still prisoners of a kind
of slavery, moral slavery to be exact. We are confirming the eternal
validity of the bosses of the past, leaving the future to judge whether
those into whose hands we have consigned what has been taken from
us personally be considered expropriators or not.
So, from one justification to another: we end up building a durd,
almost without realising it, l say “almost” because basically we are aware
of it but it scares us.
To take property from others has a social significance. lt constitutes
rebellion and, precisely because of this, property owners must be part of
the property-owning class, not simply people who possess something.
We are not aesthetes of nihilist action who see no difference between
taking from the former and pinding money from the beggar’s plate.
Te act of expropriation means something precisely in its present
class context, not because of the “incorrect” way that those we intend
to expropriate have acted in the past. lf that were our only point of
reference then the capitalist who pays union wages and “looks aner”
his workers, sells at reasonable prices, etc, would be excluded from the
legitimacy of expropriation. Why should we concern ourselves with
sud questions`
Te same thing happens when we talk about “destructive” actions.
Many comrades know no peace. Why these actions` What is gained by
them` What is the point of them` Tey are of no benefit to us and are
only damaging to others.
zs
and social context of unstable equilibrium, both nationally and interna-
tionally. At the present time a purely “militaristic” use of arms would
be inconceivable. Tat leads those who bear weapons, as well as their
bosses and the arms producers, to developing an ideology of defence
with whid to cover not only their use but also their production and
perfection in the negative sense.
When anti-militarists limit themselves to simple declarations of
principle weapons remain something symbolic, i.e. they remain the
abstract symbols of destruction and death. On the contrary if anti-
militarism were to go forward concretely and/open up the road to lib-
eration in the material sense, then it would not he able to limit itself to
a symbolic refusal of arms, but would have to go into the problem more
deeply
ln fact weapons, being objects, are considered differently accord-
ing to the point of view they are being looked at from. Tat goes for
anything, and weapons are no exception. Tis is not a relativist consid-
eration, it is a simple materialist principle. Arms as inert objects do not
exist. What exist are arms in action, i.e. that are used (or waiting to be
used) in a given perspective. Tat is so for all things if we think about it.
We tend to imagine things cut off from their historical and material con-
text, as though they were something abstract. But if that were so they
would become meaningless, reduced to the impotence we would like to
reduce them to in the case of arms. in fact things are always “things in
action”. Behind the thing there is always the individual, the individual
who acts, plans, uses means to auain ends.
Tere is no sud thing as an abstract weapon (taken as an isolated
object) therefore, What does exist are weapons that the army uses in
its projects for action where the lauer are given a specific investiture as
instruments for the “defence of the homeland”, “maintaining order”, “the
destruction of the infidels”, “the conquest of territory”, etc. Te soldier
is therefore in possession of a vast outfit of ideologies or value models,
whid he acts out when he uses weapons. When he shoots he feels,
according to the circumstances, defender of the homeland, builder of
the social order, destroyer of the infidels, engineer of social territory, etc.
Te more his role corresponds to that of the crude executioner the more
1c
the second simply stupid.
Tose who make thought an element of privilege in order to ensure
the continuation of power today will unfortunately continue to act in
order to maintain the underlying conditions that make sud forms of
thought possible. ln the meantime some of them could be brought to
face the weight of their responsibility, but that would be a question of
marginal deeds that cannot clean out the sewer completely.
e Moral Split
ln order for an action to be carried out it is not enough for it simply to
be considered “right”. Other elements intervene, sud as the underlying
moral judgement, whid have nothing to do with whether the action is
valid or not. Tis becomes obvious when you see the difficulty many
comrades have in carrying out actions whid in themselves are in no
way exceptional.
A moral obstacle appears, leading to a real ethical “split” with un-
predictable consequences. lor example, we have been pointing out the
uselessness of huge peaceful demonstrations for some time now instead
we propose mass demonstrations that are organised instructionally, sup-
ported by small actions against the capitalist structures responsible for
the present situation of exploitation and genocide all over the world.
We think it could be useful to reflect for a moment on the differ-
ent auitudes that exist concerning sud actions, beyond any question of
method or political doice.
No mailer how mud we go into things theoretically spooks remain
inside all of us. One of these is other people’s property. Others are
people’s lives, God, good manners, sex, tolerating other people’s opin-
ions, etc. Sticing to the subject· we are all against private property,
but as soon as we read out to auac it, an alarm bell rings inside us.
Centuries of moral conditioning set into motion without our realising
it, with two results. On the one hand there is the thrill of the forbidden
— whid leads many comrades to carry out senseless liule thens that
onen go beyond immediate and unavoidable needs — and on the other

he is at the mercy of the fabricators of ideology and capitalist rule and
the more the weapons he bears become blind instruments of oppression
and death. lven if he were to lay them down they would still be objects
within a general framework that qualifies them as instruments of death.
Now, if the project is different, if the aim of the action is different,
the significance of the weapon danges. As a means it can never be ab-
solved of its limitations as an object with whid it is possible to procure
damage and destruction with a certain ease (whid is what distinguishes
the object “weapon” from other objects whid, many of them, can also
become arms when necessary). We are not trying to say that the end —
liberation, the revolution, anardy or whatever other liberatory, egali-
tarian dream — justifies the means, but it can transform weapons into
different “objects in action”. And this different object in action also
comes to be a part of the anti-militarist struggle, even although it re-
mains to all effects a weapon.
ln a project of liberation, behind the arm lies the desire to free our-
selves from our rulers and make them pay for the damage they are re-
sponsible for Tere is class hatred, that of the exploited against the ex-
ploiters, there is the concrete material difference of those who continu-
ally suffer offence to their dignity and want to wipe out those responsi-
ble.
Tat is all radically different to any ideological dauer about order
and the defence of the homeland.
But what is the imaginary
One of the new concepts one tends to come up against with increasing
frequency is that of the “social”, or “collective”, “imaginary”. lt is nearly
always thrown at you as though it were something that everyone is
aware of and is leading to auitudes and deductions that do not seem to
me to be all that well founded.
Hence the need to clarify some of the aspects of this “concept” whid
presents not a few difficulties.
As far as we can see the term “social” or “collective” imaginary is
used to refer to the feelings that a socially significant event or situation
11
that it is precisely the perverse medanismof the productive structure it-
self that we must take as our point of reference, as our subterranean ally.
On one side, the side of the exploited, we have the determination and
will of a few revolutionaries capable of continually working within the
various contradictions caused by the production process as a whole. On
the other the perversity of the tednological process along with the ob-
tusity of the managerial class and their incapacity to control the means
at their disposal. A new model of class division is emerging, a different
way of conceiving the struggle and involvement in the clash.
We are convinced that today’s tednology will never be of any valid
use. Not because we are luddites. Or if we are it is certainly in ways and
with aims that are quite different to those of the last century. Te fact is
that tednology today unequivocably constitutes a whole that is moving
undeced towards a most perverse accumulation. Te struggle against
tednology is therefore a revolutionary struggle in itself even though we
knowperfectly well that in. an acute phase it will not be possible to read
its abolition completely. But objective conditions will have danged, and
the field that this tednology finds itself operating in will be different.
lor the same reason we find those who accuse us of using the tednology
we hasten to condemn ridiculous. lt is certainly not by carrying out
crusades against the peripheral products of tednological capitalismthat
we will be able to face the class struggle and the new (vertiginously
new) conditions of the clash. To simply refuse this tednology would
lead to sclerotisation, a sacralisation of fear, creating myths where we
would end up playing into the hands of all those who have an interest
in increasing fragmentation and endless circumscribed sectors.
Te same goes for science, the ideas of science, not the people who
set themselves up as scientists to beuer qualify their role as the servants
of power We are not against “thought” of course, what we are against
is “specialisation”. No mauer what area it comes from it is always the
harbinger of new power systems, new forms of exploitation. Tought is
free activity and it will certainty not be we anardists to propose its lim-
itation. But we are not so stupid as to request “self-limitation” by those
who draw huge profits from thinking as well as the benefits of status
and a careen Te first prospect would be authoritarian and liberticide,
ze
gives rise to in society as a whole. But there is also an implicit reference
to the means of communication that realise the passage of sud events
from their dimension as circumscribed facts to their spreading in space
and persistence in time as never before. ln other words it would seem
to be an unconscious (therefore irrational) medanism by whid mem-
bers of society interpret particular events in exactly the same way as
the media do, i.e. in the way desired by the dominant political-cultural
structure.
lt is taken for granted that this actually occurs. ln fact there can be
liule doubt that the great mass of people are taken in by the information,
culture, and consequently the ideas elaborated by power. Nor can there
be mud doubt that most people react in a way that is so uniform as to
make reliable political forecasts and projects possible even from quite
modest samples. Mass society: thinks and acts in a massified therefore
foreseeable way, far more so than when social cohesion was guaranteed
by vast analphabetism.
So far so good. Yet mud could be said as to how this uniformity
could be broken up to make it become critical and contradictory, con-
fused and desperate, rather than remain inert and consenting.
ln actual fact quite the opposite happens. And this also goes for the
revolutionary movement, precisely those who should be bringing about,
or at least considering the problem of how to bring about, an operation
of deconsecration and rupture. lnstead the ‘imaginary’.’ has come to be
accepted as a possible point of reference. Something homogeneous that
exists and whid pressure can be put on. Something — precisely what,
is not clear — that can be put to revolutionary purposes.
When this claim is more articulate, something that rarely happens
today in times of great analytical poverty, it is said that the “imaginary”
is the sum of the various levels of class consciousness or, more simply,
that it transforms class differences into sensations and personalised im-
ages sud as production, social mobility, the structures society is divided
into, etc. So through this fiuer the individual is able to grasp his or her
“position” within the social body and identify with one class as opposed
to another
lt seems to me that we need to consider a number of problems ur-
1z
imal and Vegetable selection presently being experimented will lead to.
What scares us most is that we do not know what the results of an ad-
vance in the tednological application of this researdwill make possible
in the near future. Te first fear would still hold even if tednology: were
to put a brake on itself and science were to stop “thinking”. Tat being
impossible, the second is more than well founded.
All this constitutes a real danger, one that tednology as the armed
wing of science is no longer able to put a halt to, making us risk more
and more as ead year goes by.
How are the social and political (therefore also political and moral)
structures responding to this situation` With pitiful calls to scientists to
act with prudence and a sense of responsibility, to politicians for more
control, along with vague denunciations of the dangers of this or that
brand of researd. As though there were sud a thing as good and bad
tednology, and as though the whole of science (including its armed
wing) were not involved in a process of development that will require
something far more complex than the bleating of reformist politicians
or proposals for an ecological orientation to put a stop to.
Behind science stands international capital, behind ead individual
scientist (but how many of them arc there now, certainly no more than
a couple of dozen in the world, for the rest it is a question of highly spe-
cialised workers) there are massive State investments, military projects
for control and economic projects for capitalist accumulation. And
above all there is tednological development.
Tat is why we are against the whole of tednology and do not agree
that it can be divided in two, one part to be rejected (where to`) and the
other accepted. Our road is quite a simple one. lt does not stumble over
a thousand obstacles like that of the possibilists, in fact it is the only
one practicable in the present situation. Te propulsive outlet must be
revolution. A profound upheaval of social, political, cultural and moral
relations. Tese are the only conditions under whid it will be possible
to put an end to the exponential processes of tednology’ with all their
consequences.
We all know, and there is no need to constantly be reminded of it,
that this revolutionary outlet seems far off today. But we must not forget

gently lirst, the fact that the concept of “imaginary” (social and collec-
tive) comes “dangerously” close to the concept of “myth”. Not that Sorel
scares us, what does is an ill-considered, acritical use of mass irrational
processes, especially when considered in a revolutionary perspective.
Second, it is not in fact true that there is a direct relationship between
the “imaginary” ’ and class consciousness in general, if for no other rea-
son than because it is impossible to make a clear separation between
exploiters arid exploited through processes of induced collective feel-
ings sud as those stimulated by the media. let us take the “imaginary”
of nuclear “fear” for example, as it developed in the wake of Chernobyl.
here a great amorphous fear spread throughout all the social classes,
going beyond “differences” by uniting everyone under the common de-
nominator of death by radiation. What emerges in any discussion on
this element of the “imaginary” (social or collective) is a connection not
with levels of consciousness but with a collective, irrational reaction.
ln other words we are far from the project of the “myth .f the general
strike” whid could only be perceived (but not brought about) by the
proletariat according to Sorel’s thesis.
Tird, the consideration that there is suda thing as a reservoir of po-
tential that is simply waiting to be tapped for any revolutionary project
we have in mind, is certainly negative. Tat would lead to the belief that
the media could be used to divert sud a reservoir (the “imaginary”) to
the advantage of the revolutionary movement, whereas in reality it can
only be readed, expanded or modified to the exclusive benefit of the
projects of power lf we were to accept that point of view we would tend
to doose the kind actions of auac we think would be most easily un-
derstood in an “imaginary” key not realising that this is managed by
power through “its” information.
But let us look at things from a different point of view, one whid is
of more interest to us in my opinion. Tat the social or collective “imagi-
nary” be “an organisation of images” is undoubtedly the case. Otherwise
why use this horrible neologism` Whoever uses it must have in mind
not a woolly impenetrable muddle of images but a whole fairly clear
structure, So if we want to use this term we should use it in the sense
of something organised at the level of imagination, something that con-
1!
produced to any good use, most of it is no more than a reproduction
of conditions that cannot be brought to a halt, at least in the present
political and social situation.
Over the next few years ead single tednological innovation could
give rise to an exponential growth of unknown dimensions, both in
terms of their effects and application. Tis will lead to an “explosion”
not in the specific atomic, genetic or electronic sense so mud as an un-
controllable spreading of even more tednological developments.
Many comrades see tednology’ in terms of the friendly computer
the super fridge, the old TV set that allowed us a few pleasant evenings
(disturbed at times by criticism circulated by over biased theorisers), so
a condemnation of tednology as a whole shakes them. On the contrary,
we believe that the danger lies not in specific tednological doices but in
the speed —nowcrazily out of control —at whidthey are being applied.
Tis has led to a widening of the distance that has always existed be-
tween “knowledge” and tednical means”. We nowfind ourselves before
an unbridgeable gap. Not so mud in terms of “controlling” the means,
understanding them and using them within the limits and awareness
of the risks that any “prothesis” implies. We are convinced that this
distance has grown, not just concerning the exploited class who have
been led far from any possibility to take over the available tednology
by force, but also as regards the dominant class, the so-called included
with their highly specialised tednicians and scientists.
Tis disturbing thought can be illustrated by looking at some of the
experiments carried out by the “apprentice sorcerers” in the past. Cer-
tainly with fewer means at their disposition, but presenting just as many
dangers whid were faced with the same superficiality. Te exploita-
tion of the planet’s resources, atomic energy, the division of the world
into areas of influence with projects of genocide concerning the most
economically bacward populations, capitalist accumulation, the cyn-
ical arms market and many other sud nice activities are but a few of
the consequences. And these are all quite rudimental if we consider the
risks that an uncontrolled acceleration in tednological experimentation
could give rise to today.
We do not know what consequences the genetic danges in the an-
z.
cerns symbols, feelings, sensations, images produced by reality (socially
significant facts), then transferred to the collectivity by the classical in-
strument of the media.
Now, if we consider this carefully we see that “an organisation of
images” is what Sorel used to define as “myth”. He even uses the same
words· “the myth is an organisation of images”.
ln recent years (whid could explain the confused immersion of this
concept into the revolutionary movement) there has been not so mud
a revival of Sorel as of the concept of the myth, with analyses by levi
Strauss and Barthes, up to Douglas and Godelier Tis has happened par-
allel to the profound danges in the productive and social structures, new
cultural stimuli and the collapse of the old systemof centralismand State
planning. As capitalism moves towards restructuring on the basis of ev-
erything being “provisional” in a reality darged with tension and lac
of permanence where all the certainties of the past are being replaced
by probabilistic models, the concept of “political myth” is taking up its
trajectory again in the new guise of “social” (or collective) “imaginary”.
Not only are we against the acritical use of sud a term, we con-
sider it indispensable to see what the consequences of considering sud
a concept within a revolutionary project would be. Tis is particularly
necessary in a situation of social disintegration sud as the present. We
need to examine and clan. fly how the powers of persuasion work, how
the irrational (therefore also imaginary’) forces that the profound struc-
tural modifications are causing in society also work, and understand
why the new concepts that are taking the place of the idols of the past
are so fascinating and mystifying.
We are not saying we are for a cold analysis that states things with
clarity, wanting to plant an ideological tree in place of a luxurious spon-
taneous jungle of exotic plants. We arc only saying we cannot accept
complex and contradictory concepts as though they were acclaimed us-
able instruments for our daily struggle against the State and capital.
Our main point of reference remains the whole of the exploited, par-
ticularly the part who are about to be thrown out of the work market
due to the process of capitalist restructuring. Tis whole can undoubt-
edly be readed through the flux of the “organisation of images” that
1.
is not so mud that of tracing a uniform way of acting towards an ob-
jective as of grasping the orientation in its entirety, seeing the totality of
theory and practice as direct action and the transformation of reality as
a whole. it is here that the value of what we do lies, not so-called claims
to purity or coherence at all costs, not enclosing everything in a region
where the air is so pure one cannot allow any contrast or contradiction.
Tere is no sud thing as a didotomy between those who elabo-
rate theory and those who act, but between those (both in the realms
of practice and theory, as their apparent orientation might be, at least
according to them) who want to contribute to transforming things from
their actual “normal” state to one whid is radically different, and those
who do not. Tere are servants of power who feel good in their uni-
forms and people who want to free themselves, and for this reason have
decided to struggle.
e Armed Wing Of Science
Tere is a precise relationship between the means at our disposal and our
capacity to self-manage and defend ourselves against alt forms of power
and exploitation. Te more the means are effective and sophisticated,
the easier it is for them to tall into the hands of a minority who use
them for their own projects to control the rest of us. lt derives from this
that developments in tednology — the “armed wing” of science — are
leading to a perfection in dominion that runs parallel to the fewminimal
improvements in general living conditions.
l do not know if the present level of scientific (and consequently
tednological) development should make us fear catastrophe is immi-
nent. l do not give mud credit to catastrophe theories personally, in
fact l believe they could be designed to scare people. Nevertheless l am
certain that not only is it no longer possible to control tednological de-
velopment because of the incredible speed at whid it is developing new
means and perfecting new instruments, but also that the rulers them-
selves are no longer able to co-ordinate them in a rationally planned
project. Not only would it be impossible to put mud of what is being
z!
power brings about for its own aims, but this process has not been fully
perfected. Contradictions are opening up in it. People might convince
themselves of something but at the same time they cannot avoid har-
bouring suspicion and a potential for revolt. Tis potential is gradually
increasing alongside power’s auempts to obtain consensus and adhe-
sion, as the new systems of exploitation (ferocious restructuring and
destruction of the old work identity) become clearly visible. Power can-
not prevent sud elements from entering the process of “organisation
of images” that it is working to produce. And this is the place for our
intervention.
So we can only take into account what is wrongly defined as the
“imaginary” in part, using precisely that area of it that power cannot
control, not the whole of the flux of images it manipulates to transmit
to and implant in people. And this part can only be readed by stimuli
of rebellion, by — if you like — the irrational consequences of violent
modifications in the productive structures, themselves indirectly caused
by the flux of information and centralised control.
So we suggest a critical examination of the concept of “imaginary”
in sud a way as to make it possible to individuate elements that are “ac-
cidental” or “uncontrollable” as far as power is concerned. We believe
the revolutionary movement should make reference to these and these
alone, not to some hypothetical collective “imaginary” seen as an im-
mense reservoir from whid it is possible to draw subversive potential.
Are We Modern?
lt is not just a question of words. Tere is a common line of thought
that sees those who want to conserve the past as being quite separate
from the supporters of a future that is still to be built. Te first are
seen as old and stupid, linked to institutions and structures that have
been surpassed in time, the second as addicted to transformation and
innovation. ln between, rooted in the past but with an eye turned to
the future, are the so-called reformists and their desires for hazy half
measures.

the action in question can be readed (or at least got a glimpse of)
through its orientation. And this cannot start from a positive or nega-
tive consideration of practice or theory. Worse still, it cannot come from
a judgement that gives complete preference to either theory or practice
concerning the subject under discussion.
All critical analysis should therefore examine the orientation, its ad-
equacy concerning the objective, and this cannot end up with a value
judgement. We shall try to be more clear “lnadequate” interventions
take place for various reasons, not all of whid are the “fault” of who-
ever is directing the orientation. lrompersonal incapacity to inadequate
decisions (but who establishes how and what — qualitative or quanti-
tative should be done`) the arc is extremely wide. Basically, adequacy
should be looked for on the basis of the whole orientation proposed, that
is to say it should be ascertained whether there are contradictions within
the orientation itself rather than contrasts between proposal and objec-
tive. Te roads to accomplishing an aim are not always easily grasped,
at least not right at the beginning, and it is easy to be led astray by
one’s convictions and conditioning. lnstead, and this is the point, some
researd on contradictions is important.
Can a reasonable person say then unsay something` Our culture
says no, absolutely not. We are the offspring of western rationalism and
do not admit contradiction in our orientations. Te fact remains that the
lauer exist, and the results of their unrecognised presence are, unfortu-
nately: always very biuen Analyses should move in this direction, not
cry scandal (when some speak then contradict themselves), but show
how and with what consequences the contradictions revealed produce
greater or lesser possibilities of reading the objective dosen, Because
that is the way things are, the road of action is not always straight.
And the most relevant contradictions, those that make people cry
out right away about the inadequacy of the direction when not — and
here the cry would definitely be gratuitous —about privileging theory as
opposed to practice or vice versa, are precisely those who are unable to
make up their minds about the effects of the theory-practice relationship,
claiming to separate the inseparable.
To conclude this now long precision, Jet us say that the real problem
zz
lt should be said right away that although we are convinced that this
division has seen its day it still persists in our minds, a mental category
we cannot free ourselves frombecause we do not want to face it. Most of
us would never admit that the “future”, i.e modernity, and “revolution”
i.e. violent transformation, could do anything but stand together But is
that really so` A progressive conception of history cannot but say it is.
But what has historicism led to` Without doubt it has built concentra-
tion camps. Also model prisons, but these came later Millions of people
have been slaughtered in the name of the objective spirit whid realises
itself in History, (therefore comes about gradually, in modernity, in the
future), and all with the best of intentions.
And we are nearly all, anardists included, dildren of historicism,
at least until proved otherwise. We deduct from this that more or less
all of us are for progress (whoever would admit to anything else`) and
believe that either we are moving towards a final catastrophe or to a pro-
found, radical dange in values. Tis affair of history as something that
is marding to its destiny is reassuring, even when we see this destiny
as a complete holocaust.
Tis incapacity to question our cultural origins, in the first place
historicism, then determinism, scientism, eclecticism (a decent analysis
of Malatesta’s thought is necessary here), prevents us from seeing our
own condition clearly.
We nearly all believe we are “post” something or other Personally l
think we are in a post-industrial era and have thought so since at least
the end of the ‘Seventies, but this no longer conveys mud. lndustry
sud as lord, Taylor and Marx imagined it has seen its day, and the
trades unions and syndicalist organisations, even those we conceived
ourselves, have seen their day too.
Te management of capitalism at world level depends less and less
on a concept of life based on the accumulation of value. Tat is to say
that if industry in terms of madinery and skilled labour was the basis
of the social transformation that led to the modern world, the end of in-
dustry — now replaced by electronically controlled diffused production
— marks its eclipse.
A new Middle Ages` An absurd question, just as the answers on all
1e
Tere is riot one “place” for theory and another for practice there-
fore, except in an abstract consideration suspended like a ghost outside
the world. Te fact that this ghost turns out to be anything but out-
side this world but acts and produces effects inside it merely confirms
what we have just said. ln other words there are relations of reciprocal
exdange between these two moments of human experience whid arc
themselves part of a general flux, not separate objects in space. We can
make a clearer distinction when we speak of howsomeone who acts tries
to set about their action in respect to others. Again it is only possible to
identify an “orientation’ up to a point, certainly not a constant relation-
ship of cause and effect. Tis orientation gives us an indication of the
actor’s intentions and the condition of who is at the receiving end of the
action, all within the vast flux of relations that cannot be isolated in re-
ality, merely singled out for the love of clarity Whoever acts in any one
of a hundred, a thousand, ways makes their intentions known concern-
ing the aim of their action. At the margins these intentions melt into a
fluid context, but in their nucleus, during the most significant moments
of the event or events that solidify them as intentions, there is consider-
able orientation indicating the doice of means, clarifying the objective,
transforming relations, and all this does not leave reality as a whole un-
danged. Here the leaning can be practical or theoretical, according to
the actor’s intentions. lf on the other hand the prevalence is accidental,
comes about by mistake whereas the intention had been quite different
the relation between orientation and objective is reversed. Te action
takes place with the consequent transformation of individual and col-
lective relations as a whole. But the greater the number of elements of
disturbance capable of acting on and reversing the results, the further it
will be from the original intention.
Criticism, if one really intends to do something and not just give
oneself an ideological cover up, must grasp these discrepancies between
intention and objective, aims and action. Criticismthat degenerates into
simple statements sud as those describing the forms taken by the inten-
tion/objective relationship is pointless.
To say that a given position gives priority to “practice” or that an-
other privileges theory is senseless. lt is necessary to see in depth how
z1
sides have been. lt is pointless to auempt to see historical “remakes”.
Te political pragmatism of daily adjustments is leading to long term
danges in the social whole where new possibilities of dominion and
forms of struggle against oppression are emerging. Te acid test of the
class struggle is always reality in all its forms, and these forms, taken
individually, cannot be considered more modem than those that have
been supplanted because they no longer correspond to certain aims. Tis
philosophical necessity of doice is purely hypothetical. ln reality things
are different. Choices froma wide range of variants are possible because
the basic values affecting the judgements that produce these doices ex-
ist. Considered concretely, i.e. as their effect as elements capable of
transforming reality, these values are neither ancient nor modern. Te
very idea of progress is antithetical to them and produces incredible
confusion.
lor example, is equality an ancient or a modem value` lt is impos-
sible to answer this question. Given that it has never existed in reality,
at least in recent history, one deduces that it must be related to the fu-
ture. But is the future modern` We do not know. Tere are, however,
different ways of believing the realisation (or prevention) of equality to
be possible. Seen in relation to their effectiveness and their response to
social conditions at a given historical moment, these can be considered
to be either ancient or modern. And is the accumulation of value an-
cient or modern for capitalism` Given the conditions at the present time
one could say that it is no longer a modern value and that new aims are
appearing on the horizons of those in power Distinction could be one of
these values, the distance between two world concepts· those who con-
trol the levers of power (the included) and those who must simply obey
and have been programmed and conditioned for this (the excluded).
Reductive values sud as nihilism, neo-formalism, analphabetism, ve-
locism, supra-nationalism, etc, are also modern values whid reconfirm
this final separation between included and excluded. But is it possible to
consider sud values in historicist terms, as being more advanced than
those of the past` l really don’t think so.
We have onen asked ourselves whether it is absolutely necessary to
destroy tednology: or whether we should guarantee its safe revolution-

e Priority Of Practice
When we look at the actions of others we tend to see in them a priority
given either to practice or to theoretical reflection.
Neither of these satisfies us.
When we observe others we onen ask ourselves why they tend one
way or the other on the scales of an ideal equilibrium that clearly only
exists in our dreams.
ls this due to specific interests` ldeological preclusion` Narrow-
mindedness` lntellectual poverty, or simply stupidity` Tere is no lac
of doice. And usually, onen without realising it, we make precisely the
judgement that happens to be the most convenient to us, either to take
a distance from a practice we do not want to have anything to do with,
or so as not to get involved in theoretical positions we do not share.
But human beings act within a whole flux of relations where it is
not always possible, and never easy, to see clearly where practice ends
and theoretical considerations begin. When this impossibility is taken
to the extreme limit, theory and practice become one. Tis is only pos-
sible for the sake of argument. Abstract elements are isolated, i.e. taken
from a wider context, and the more obvious components emerge. Tis
problemdoes not only concern theory, it also concerns practice. ln other
words, by acting in this way we are able to make not only theoretical but
also practical ‘abstractions” We thereby deduce that there is no absolute
correlation between “abstractness” and theory, at least in the way that
those in favour of practice would have us believe.
lrom the moment in whid an individual finds himself in a personal
and social situation, i.e., from birth and even beyond physical death,
they begin working out a theoretical elaboration for all their actions,
even the most seemingly blind and conditioned of them. Tis is con-
stantly present puuing order within certain limits, into that acting no
mauer how spontaneous it might appear to be. So theory is part of the
experience of life itself, in the way others bring themselves to our auen-
tion inaction, joy feelings, disappointments or in the ideas we allow to
penetrate us through reading, studying, looking, talking, listening, but
also from transforming, working, destroying.
zc
ary passage to a possible future “good” use. Ten we realised that the
tednology of computers and universal control could never be useful to
a Society that starts off from the real liberation of all as opposed to that
of a privileged minority. Hence destruction as a necessary fact, a value.
Modern` We do not know. Tere have also been moments of destruc-
tion that seemed reactionary in the past (there are still some who speak
of the Vendee as something negative, but do so due to their personal
historical ignorance), whid since have been re-examined more closely.
Te peasants’ insurrections burned castles. Were they modern` We do
not care a bit. ls a struggle today against neo-madinery modern` lt is
for us because we are trying, not without difficulty, to see things from a
point of viewthat is not totally historicist. Tink of the arguments about
nuclear power. Ourselves against the bosses who turn out to be — some
of them — in favour of it. But on ead side of the clash, hallucinations
of the Apocalypse. Undoubtedly an effect of historicist culture on both
sides. So at a point it is easy for the bosses to reject nuclear energy’ and
transfer their interests and projects elsewhere.
Te same thing goes for atomic war and the atmosphere of millenar-
ian catastrophe we breathe all around us today Te end of a millennium
is fast approading and the circle will present itself again, always the
same and always different. Te rapid destruction of world resources
carried out by the plunderers in power is an inescapable fact. Tis will
either be brought to an end, or it will be transformed when the included
of tomorrow build one world suited to their own needs and another
for the needs of others. ln other words, even the present baule against
the wastage of natural resources could become an industry in the fu-
ture, the foundation of the exploitation of tomorrow. Tat it is why we
propose an immediate systematic auac on all the forms of capitalist
expression, both the bacward ones still linked to rapid and irrational
exploitation and the more advanced ones linked to the electronic control
of the planet. ln a not too distant future they will shake hands, crushing
us in the middle.
ln order to do this we must have the courage to look bacwards as
well as forwards. Bacwards to seek certain values that are no longer
considered “modern”. ln this researdwe could single out a fewelements
1s
that relate to human action· constancy, courage, respect for one’s fel-
lows (human or animal), being harsh with oneself frugality, a correct
consideration of the environment. But others too that are only appar-
ently in contrast· play, love, fantasy, joy, tenderness, dreams.
ln order to make these things our own, critically, not as dogmas
imposed by a globalising concept of the world, we must move towards
a radical contrast with the present social situation as a whole. We do
not accept compromise. We are not points of reference to be taken for
granted. We are not supplying a formula for numerical growth.
Now, this position seems to strongly contradict some of the essen-
tial points of historicism. Not only does it go against the idea of the
Spirit that realises itself in history, it eliminates any privileged point of
reference, even, let’s be clear about this, Anardy. To be against power,
the State, class domination and all forms of exploitation is all very well.
But to oppose all that with an ideological, dogmatic juxtaposition in-
stead of action, no, absolutely not. lf we must reduce anardy to this
in the name of our great ideal, [do not agree. Anyone who enjoys this
weekend pastime may do as they please, we will certainly not be the
ones who prevent them from walking. But they should not complain
if we start running while they are still claiming their rights as free af-
ternoon ramblers. We have never wanted to know anything of these
rights.
And we contradict historicism, or so it seems, with our craving de-
sire for action. We cannot simply wait for things to come to an end
in our absence. We want to be in the game. We want to contribute to
transformation in the direction we believe is right, now, not in the sense
of a dogma that has been fixed forever in time. We cannot wait so are
acting here and now, recognising no point of reference on whid to pin
our hopes and expectations. Nor do we recognise the existence of some
‘objective spirit” or lay god that might be working for our liberation. ln
the deep of the night where all values tend to be zeroised, if anything
tights them up we want it to be the light of our explosions.
1)

. . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Propulsive Utopia e Refusal Of Arms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . e Tyranny Of Weakness . . . . . . . . 4 9 11 15 20 23 27 31 2 35 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Contents Preface . . . . . . . e Moral Split . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Are We Modern? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . But what is the imaginary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . e Priority Of Practice . . . . . . . . e Armed Wing Of Science . . . .

as we learn to recognise monsters under their disguise and experiment the best weapons to confront them with. a small contribution to an understanding of the profound anges that are taking place in the world around us. Perhaps one or two will strike. available to a wider readership. then we can no longer put up with tolerance or the tendency to give up or abandon the struggle. but ideas to stimulate other ideas. A contradiction emerges: in order to do this we need to activate the teniques they taught us with other ends in view read. cultivate the admiration of others. Not an accumulation of data. however. even if limited and approximate.ains. or if you like a cry in the wilderness. We hope it will be. truth. get a job. write. ose who want to dance with life in more than fleeting encounters. serenity. an invitation to question some of 34 3 . unravel them. transforming them into active intervention. We are talking about a project that has been studied in the laboratories of capitalism and is now being applied to perfection. acquire social status. is is the perspective we have given ourselves and where we believe others are venturing. now. And it should not be thought that what we are saying here is only valid for comrades who have already put revolutionary engagement behind them and are now quite tranquilly grazing among the greens. here the effort is exquisitely selfish. e graveyards are full of su calls. No. aware that by their very form they risk turning up in the wrong place and violating the tranquillity of those who seek in the wrien word confirmation. but this time not to pass exams. e following articles were all published some years ago in the monthly paper “ProvocAzione” (now out of print). questions to contrast facts Roads to action to be explored. the buddhists or other su herds. analyse. We are now making them. discuss. as the bosses’ calendar indicates the arrival of the third millennium. in the adventure of discovery’ that illuminates destruction in all its possibilities. Ours is not a call to voluntarism. at is why we have decided to set to work…shooting a shower of arms into the unknown. Preface is is not the first time we find ourselves faced with a similar dilemma: how transcend the limitation of the means? Rea out beyond the constriction of the roles? Encounter those who have begun their individual insurrection but find their path obstructed by a pile of blunt instruments? ose who have decided to venture into the abyss and have become exigent. we have decided to adventure into the unexplored. It is aimed at gradually and painlessly turning us away from our capacity to struggle. encounter who will take up the threads of the discourse. the oranges. Paths to be forged or meandered along. want to invent their own methods. is is not a simple call to action. or simply an antidote to insomnia. re-elaborate them and in some way make them part of their own project of liberation. those that enhance our indefatigable quest for freedom. draw them forth from the conditions they are constrained to live in against their will. is project is moving hand in hand with the profound restructuring of capital. We are also referring to those who maintain they are still revolutionaries but are living the tragedy of progressive physical and mental pollution day by day.

a few things to be done. en suddenly you find it at the street corner. If we are not profoundly convinced of this then we might as well carry on asing the buerflies of our dreams. ourselves in a stunted jargon made up of banalities from television and sport. of course. A meeting. a barra-style journalism that apparently facilitates communication whereas in reality it debases and castrates it. songs in languages we do not understand. Jean Weir Propulsive Utopia Some of us have lived through similar moments (1987 — Student and railway workers rebel in France. What I mean is that it is necessary to act instead of idling one’s time away while the boat goes up in flames. we are hardly able to make an effort to do anything any longer. increasing its flow in a thousand ways. sport or whatever else we fancy. ey casually confused possibilism with socialism in an indigestible mixture known as “democratic radicalism”. not mu reading. What follows are a few disconcerting notes that beyond the specific moment). Capitalism and power are undergoing a transformation that will upset the present state of our lives for goodness knows how many decades. We accept the banality. noises that imitate the factory. In fact I do not mean aggressiveness at all. e others are not even worth mentioning. We do not Commit ourselves. A desire to be beyond the abyss. but it is the walk that enters us. And don’t talk to me about the aggressive behaviour of the capitalists in contrast to whi we should be developing tolerant behaviour. homeopathic medicine. It feeds off a hidden but burning collective desire. cannot be found in books or even in the avant-garde theses of the elite philosophers who clo in to the fact of pre-wrapped ideas like clever shi workers. racing cars or motorbikes. Zen philosophy. But if we are convinced of the first hypothesis. But worse still. On the other hand we spend hours listening to (without understanding) music that is devoid of content. A tiny minority of old regulars at meetings and demos continue to practice the liturgy’ of the incredible within the enclosure of themselves. not simple contemplation. Few deadlines. now convinced that the utopian proposal must come from rewriters of theories clever enough to climb mountains from within the four walls of their own rooms. But propulsive utopia. escapist literature. But for anyone able to read between the lines of the real movement this and only this is the strong point of a phenomenon that runs into a thousand rivulets threatening to break up its unity in models worthy of a hasty gazeeen. Words can be deceiving. the myths of buddhism. e incredible thunderbolt of a propelling idea suddenly surges up from the grey monotony of everyday life. at is not what I am talking about. It is oen shy and unsure of itself and certainly does not conjure up a vision of lightning on the road to Damascus. Most of them had no inkling of what one was dreaming about. an action here and there and we are prostrated. aggression and struggle. Even when we lose ourselves in the contemplation of nature (what lile remains of it) we do not really go for a walk. if we are convinced there is a project in course bent on reducing us to slaves. But we have no experience of any real relationship with nature. done in. Either we are convinced that far-reaing anges are taking place or we are not. even worse than what went before it) is coming out with. the ecological and naturalist models that capitalism (in its new alternative version. well beyond it.our certainties and examine more closely some of the commonplaces we take for granted. e form it takes is not usually staggering. principally to a cultural slavery that is depriving us of even the possibility of seeing our 4 33 . the life-blood of the real movement. or that of the participants in the Paris-Dakar race. I know perfectly well what the aggressiveness of capital signifies. including a pleasant distancing ourselves from grammar and language. Many have lived through this and systematically put it out of their minds. one that requires engagement and strength.

When it was a question of damaging the class enemy. abandoning the struggle or simply slowing down. No maer how well it goes. But the refusal of politics by the student movement is only a filter for the profound. A banner. it was right to be absentecists and against work. racial and sexual discrimination. the immediate enemy one comes up against in painful social discrimination. When they correspond to the spirit of thousands of people they suddenly break into the collective consciousness that is the basis of the real movement. alternative products and ways of thinking. We are convinced that we have a right to be stupid and ignorant. the model is still aggressiveness and conquest. We are now happy and toothless. ey become the substance of a project that is latent but at the same time is powerfully operative. then it is no more than a new way of sealing up ideology Of course the struggle of those enclosed in the gheoes. And that was right. renunciation. conve- 32 5 . Instead of waiting for our teeth to fall out. We have become philosophers of nothing. blasé and dandy. prisons. when it becomes a covering over well (or badly) construed words. We are hardly able to talk any longer We express Here and there in the recent students’ and railway workers’ demonstrations in France the slogan of great revolutions we had become resigned to seeing diluted for ever into parliamentary speees and pub at has suddenly reappeared. discrimination. Along a lile path in the forest the real movement is finding itself by pointing to a great utopian objective: go beyond rights to the full reality of the deed. sceptical about action. the maximum exaltation of the difference of ea one. therefore social. in with freedom. Right. en and only then do words abandon their symbolic purpose and become a simple covering over reality.anything but a disguised form of weakness — but rather aempt to bring this situation to light. e statement that appeared in the streets of Paris showed a serious aempt to go beyond the trap the ideologues built long ago. only aims at breaking down the first barrier. something important in order to communicate with others. We are building a personality that is halfway between the idiot and the stamp collector. We are no longer the sanguinary. But words are not born inside stuffy libraries. sools. Equality. We are hardly able to write any longer. it is a question of a flaening of values and a distortion of the instruments we need to acquire in order to live and to aa our enemies. e power structure has every interest in seeing that this disposition continues. total liberation. We understand lile. even in regard to ourselves and the things we really want to do. We have not even noticed that they are shrinking our language and our brains. we are pulling them out one by one. violent barbarians who once let loose in insurrections and uncontrollable revolts. But when this freedom does not have a bodily content. yet know a lot: a multitude of useless dispersive things. We hardly think at all and reason inadequately. A swallow does not mean spring. passively submitting to the messages put out by the various information annels. considered an efficientist model that belongs to the logic of power. the included”. the wall. But although comprehensible that still does not correspond to a revolutionary struggle for the equality of all. poet encyclopaedia knowledge. utopian request for immediate. Out with all semers. Today the macabre spectacle of equal rights is suffocating any desire that throws its glance beyond the barrier of the ready-made. e prevailing model today is that of the loser. But now we have introjected this aitude and it is our adversary who is winning the return game. e laboratories of power are programming a new model of renunciation for us. models that are of lile use and whi la incisiveness. And so we have turned to the buerfly cating of oriental philosophy. Only for us of course. you might say. We do not react. We have given up. to be losers. Correct. We have sent efficiency ba to the adversary. indispensable once. For the winning minority. factories. the particular struggle will be recuperated and transformed into further conditioning because it is still a struggle for equal “rights” and does not affect situations of fact that are anything but equal so long as there remains a field of political. a thousand banners are only words cried to the wind and are oen blown away by it.

It is no longer fashionable to be self-assured or to have knowledge of oneself or others or things. ere equality was seen as the result of the repartition of produced value beyond the endemic division between capitalists and proletarians. Now. e laer moves within the real movement and is in deep contrast to “living our own lives” (complex question that deserves going into elsewhere). now that this phase of simple reappropriation has been anged by capital itself we cannot have recourse to the same words and concepts. perhaps in an even more obvious way as they make no reference to arguments of an economic or at least wage-claiming kind. etc. e propulsive value of a concept cannot be understood in social terms if one limits oneself to examining existing conditions. e time for words is slowly coming to an end. by opposing genuinely revolutionary opposition to su underhand plots the real movement is rediscovering the explosive potential of utopia. is is an old story that the managers of power always circulate at opportune moments because they are indirectly in control through the annels of consensus and the conditioning of information. whi are not just the so-called primary ones of physical survival. or act as though we are for fear of seeming different. almost bad taste. provocateurs. e students have faced the problem of the impossibility of any outlet in the labour market. has practically never begun. We do not exactly boast about this weakness of course. eirs is certainly not the kind of equality’ that is being talked about in France today. this great weight built in the laboratories of capital and smuggled into the ranks of the exploited. But their analysis strengthens (or should strengthen) the conviction that only with a radically utopian way of seeing the social problem will it be possible to break through the boundaries of a destiny that those in power seem to hold in their hands. But we are sure that any society that were to pass more or less violently from capitalism to post-revolutionary socialism through the narrow door of syndicalism would necessarily be a grey parody of a free society. closed within a gheo arguing about things that are no longer of any real revolutionary’ interest. we were able to “talk” (even if we didn’t get very far) of needs. we do them badly.niently camouflaging it in the suggestion that students beware of outside elements. It is not by ance that this position has appeared at the same time as economic claims are diminishing in importance. without paying any aention to detail. It is acting in su a way that its radical critique of the process of recuperation cannot be recuperated. in fact there is no causal relationship between social conditions and a utopian concept. So we have become slaves to this new rapidly spreading myth. We are weak. and by that I mean the things we have osen to do. Contrary to logic itself. Basically what we are talking about is the real satisfaction of our needs. has moved with varying fortunes in the world revolutionary sphere for at least two hundred years? e answer is simple. We talk of refusing the ideals transmied from the bourgeoisie in their moment of victory. It is a tenique they use to warn against dangers relating to one part of themselves so as to detract aention from another part that they want to bring into effect. communism and even anary. that we believe wt would do at any cost. while people are rapidly moving towards other meanings and perspectives as Power slyly and effectively urges them on. equality. Today. or at least the bogus way in whi su ideals have been imposed on us through current morals. e great work of freeing the new man from ethics. Why. e heavy trade union self-regulating meanism with its ideal of the good worker and the bad skiver would be transferred to society as a whole. e same goes for the railway workers. I believe words are not enough for su a beautiful project. We no longer make any effort to do things well. When it stayed firmly within the old concept of class struggle based on the desire to “re-appropriate” what had unjustly been taken from us (the product of our labour). What we want to do here is not talk about “strength” — whi has never been 6 31 . but use it as a kind of screen to hide behind. aer all. And we realise more ea day that we are tragically behind. are we so sure of the revolutionary content of an idea that. superficially. Well. e Tyranny Of Weakness We come up against weakness everywhere today. politics. It seems old fashioned. one might ask.

To the hypothetical equality of rights there has always corresponded a substantial inequality of conditions. For this reason we cannot outline the limits of a presumed operativity of a utopian concept starting from these conditions. etc. or if they are not the work of counterinformation can make them so with very lile effort. On the one hand we feel profoundly different to others and tend to defend and encourage this diversity. values. no. social space and so on. moreover decided by the deadlines provided by repression. not conditions. It is possible. culture. I do not think any anarist comrade can be against this practice. or even before that point as some would have it. In the fictitious movement on the contrary the same concept can move around comfortably. Equality of conditions. and that something needs to be done now in the present phase of violent. and I can understand this. having lost all its significance.for our deed. physical aspects. It seems to me that this can be done by a direct aa on small objectives whi indicate the class enemy. at least on principle. feelings. and — to tell the truth without having any very clear ideas on the subject — we also talk about the structural limits that condition but do not cause it. becomes no more than a product of ideology like so many others. It could go well beyond the laer. Now. objectives that are quite visible in the social territory. Democracy has always been seen (and is still seen today) as equality of rights. On the other hand everyone sees these radical differences as a value that exists within the context of a substantial equality. all together. accelerated restructuring. but results that are immediate and tangible. in other words could itself become an element of social ange. How is that? I think this can be explained precisely by this “moral split” whi a going beyond the threshold of the “rights” of others causes in comrades like myself and so many others. And instead of being related to the nature of their individuality. interests. to do something else. Here in the rarefied atmosphere of the castle of spooks the utopian concept. What I am against is the symbolic (exclusively symbolic) course these struggles take. all in the more profound difference of desires. possibilities. even limited ones. permanent conflictuality and self-managed base structures be used. necessary. I shall explain beer I am not against the work of mass counter-information or the intermediate struggles that are also necessary in a situation of exploitation and misery. We consider uniforming ourselves and accepting orders and impositions to be unworthy of us. aims. We cannot put off moral judgement concerning the need to aa and strike the enemy until we have consulted those who. equality is a contradictory concept that exists in ea one of us. Resear into the causes of utopia or rather utopian desire could certainly be interesting but would give poor results if one were to limit oneself to the study of the field of the social and historical conditions in whi the concept suddenly appears. autonomy. differences between people have always been those marked by the different basic conditions they live in as they struggle against the suffocating artificial divisions imposed on them by power Incredible things can happen when an idea like equality’ erupts into the real movement and succeeds in breaking through the conditions 30 7 . ere could be (and are) those who say they are against su a practice due to the fact that they see no constructive mass perspective in the present political and social situation. at the level of simple counterinformation and denunciation. always with the premise that the instructional method the refusal to delegate the struggle. without seeking justification in the presumed collective level of the situation. But this concept has only been perceptible throughout history as attempts to transform man into a herded animal. What I do not agree with is that one should stop there. ey should be aimed at obtaining results. But these actions should not be condemned on principle. determine the “collective situation”. freedom. in order to become equal to another he had to become a sheep and not think about what made him profoundly different to the shepherd who guides the herd and does the shearing. educated to say “thank you” and “sorry” on the slightest occasion We oen talk about liberating our instincts. e fact is that those who take a distance from them are far fewer than those who support them but do not put them into practice. even though we oen see ourselves forced to put a good face on it for the needs of the moment.

most of them are born during it. so puffing an end to the existence of that equality of rights that was nothing other than the basis of their exploitation. exposing the swindle that presented their demonstration in the streets as a demonstration for rights. And it seems that the Fren students grasped the utopian essence of equality at the moment they made utopia the aim of their action. e exploited make egalitarian utopia their own from the moment they hoist the flag. Even when we smashed a few windows things remained in su a way that this could be accommodated. but always in the hands of the class enemy — we must accept full responsibility 8 29 . were quite different. or whether it will succumb to the process of recuperation in course aimed at puing everything ba into the paraphernalia of rights.that had forced it to remain occult till then. e strength of the utopian concept multiplies to infinity at precisely the moment in whi it is proposed. no maer how demonstrative of our intentions “against”. We either aa or retreat. Not even the freedom to demonstrate. If they were to make revolutionary use of egalitarian utopia. We either accept the class logic of the clash as an irreducible counter-position or move bawards towards negotiation and verbal and moral deception. e mortifying reality of the present does not necessarily imply a negative outcome. for the sake of argument. In practice anything could happen. e sole element for reaing the ethical decision is the class one. If we rea out and aa property — or something else. this would become operative immediately in the same way as whoever takes freedom is not freed. e basically peaceful (or almost peaceful) mares. imposed the stigma of a right on it. But this concept has been introjected by most people and become the very foundation of repres- By aaing. the accent is put not so mu on the laer’s specific responsibility. In this way it has transformed the underground utopian thrust of centuries deep within the real movement into a further means of exploitation and recuperation e struggle for rights thus takes the place of the struggle for real equality. one whi projects nuclear power stations or makes electronic devices with whi to “improve” traditional arms. e power structure has made equality something sacred. ere was an intermediate reality between ourselves and the “enemy”. No freedom can be conceded as a right. Even the violent clashes with the police were quite different. We have no excuse. Specific responsibility only concerns the strategic and political oice. All the objections listed above concern this last aspect and have nothing to do with the underlying moral justification. e proposal of equality radically transforms the superficial existence of the equality of rights. e revolutionary idea ceases to be utopia and transforms itself into events that upturn the social order far beyond what could have been predicted from an analysis of the political situation. We have no alibi. Equality is defiance of today’s society. without our realising it. e political and strategic foundations on the other hand require a series of considerations that can be quite contradictory. as on their belonging to the class of exploiters. if some revolutionaries exist before the revolution. But. It is now individuals who decide to aa the institution. It remains to be seen whether the real movement will be able to use this concept. Realising this enables us to rea a certain clarity on the maer e moral foundation for any action is the difference between classes. We have no mediators. so long as it emerges within the real movement and is not an ideological plaything within the fictitious one. a firm that supplies arms to South Africa or whi finances the racist regime in Israel. it is in the field of moral decision that many of us come up against obstacles. We felt sure of being in the “right” even when we adopted positions (still in the area of democratic dissent) that were not shared by the majority of the demonstrators. Only the concrete use of freedom leads to real equality (in the profound differences between ea one). something that protected our moral alibi. ings are different when we act on our own or with other comrades who could never give us a psyological “cover” su as that whi we so easily get from within the “mass”. the belonging to one of the two components of society that are irreducibly opposed and whose only solution is the destruction of one or the other. but is free. the utopian decision to act differently to what the general idea imposes.

e territories of this morality have yet to be explored. But this concept is taken for granted and is hardly ever gone into in any depth. boredom. is concept of equality. It is up to the sensitivity of individual comrades to decipher this indication. represents the most explosive road for safeguarding the real differences and aracteristics of ea one. If that were our only point of reference then the capitalist who pays union wages and “looks aer” his workers. It could be a false alarm. so ends up becoming overbearing and cowardly at the same time. Men of power have been doing it — to their exclusive benefit — for a long time. sells at reasonable prices. we end up building a ur. sion and death by uniformity. So. almost without realising it. And even when we justify our aa on private property’ to ourselves’ and to the tribunal of history — by maintaining that it is right that the expropriators be expropriated. even in its own opinion. whi has made faint hearts fear for the sort of the individual throughout history. precisely because of this. we have all been reduced to the animal state of the herd. How many comrades who superbly declare they have visited them would recoil at the sight of their own sister’s breast? Certainly not a few. would be excluded from the legitimacy of expropriation. Armies have always been armed. property owners must be part of the property-owning class. I want to take a look at the unease e fact is. we are still prisoners of a kind of slavery. e same goes for the mentality. Many comrades know no peace. So equality is the defiance of order that only the real movement can throw in the face of society. whi I am not interested in and whi I willingly leave to those who like to amuse themselves with su things. beyond the social conditions that ain them to the mediocrity of illusory ones. and (apparently) more easily overcomes the frustrations that everyone has in them. Why these actions? What is gained by them? What is the point of them? ey are of no benefit to us and are only damaging to others.the unease of behaving immorally” Puing the “thrill” aside. not simply people who possess something. e act of expropriation means something precisely in its present class context. But militarism cannot. Being precise objects weapons are certainly the fundamental instruments that not only the army as an organisation (whi would not make sense if it were unarmed). but also the military mentality (whi has derived a series of authoritarian deformations from the use of weapons) is based on. it could be a sign of an underground tumult. it could even be an operative indication to be put into practice. It constitutes rebellion and. more aggressive. We are confirming the eternal validity of the bosses of the past. from one justification to another. make an “optimal” use of weapons. e Refusal Of Arms e ‘refusal” of arms is an implicit element of anti-militarism. In the streets of Paris they are perhaps beginning to see a clearer road for geing out of the swamp of possibilism. Why should we concern ourselves with su questions? e same thing happens when we talk about “destructive” actions. To take property from others has a social significance. etc. I say “almost” because basically we are aware of it but it scares us. and have created a particular form of hierarical organisation with a fixed and rigid level of command precisely because the use of weapons is — or at least is believed to be — rigid and must obey precise rules. It must insert their possible use within the political 28 9 . leaving the future to judge whether those into whose hands we have consigned what has been taken from us personally be considered expropriators or not. now. at is. even those who in theory do not) are “altruistic”. We are not aesthetes of nihilist action who see no difference between taking from the former and pining money from the beggar’s plate. everywhere. not because of the “incorrect” way that those we intend to expropriate have acted in the past. respectable egalitarian and levelling. suffocation. e morals we share (all of us. e “armed” individual feels different. is is so. moral slavery to be exact.

We tend to imagine things cut off from their historical and material context. engineer of social territory. God. ose who make thought an element of privilege in order to ensure the continuation of power today will unfortunately continue to act in order to maintain the underlying conditions that make su forms of thought possible. Centuries of moral conditioning set into motion without our realising it. When he shoots he feels. with two results. plans. “the conquest of territory”. and weapons are no exception. tolerating other people’s opinions. etc. are considered differently according to the point of view they are being looked at from. as well as their bosses and the arms producers. that are used (or waiting to be used) in a given perspective. What exist are arms in action. What does exist are weapons that the army uses in its projects for action where the laer are given a specific investiture as instruments for the “defence of the homeland”. at leads those who bear weapons. i. At the present time a purely “militaristic” use of arms would be inconceivable. One of these is other people’s property. Behind the thing there is always the individual. according to the circumstances. it is a simple materialist principle. When anti-militarists limit themselves to simple declarations of principle weapons remain something symbolic. but as soon as we rea out to aa it. being objects. good manners. Arms as inert objects do not exist. is is not a relativist consideration. at is so for all things if we think about it. they remain the abstract symbols of destruction and death. In the meantime some of them could be brought to face the weight of their responsibility. but would have to go into the problem more deeply In fact weapons. We think it could be useful to reflect for a moment on the different aitudes that exist concerning su actions. e more his role corresponds to that of the crude executioner the more the second simply stupid. i. at goes for anything. defender of the homeland. in fact things are always “things in action”. But if that were so they would become meaningless. A moral obstacle appears.and social context of unstable equilibrium. leading to a real ethical “split” with unpredictable consequences. beyond any question of method or political oice. both nationally and internationally. then it would not he able to limit itself to a symbolic refusal of arms. e Moral Split In order for an action to be carried out it is not enough for it simply to be considered “right”. Stiing to the subject: we are all against private property. whi he acts out when he uses weapons.e. as though they were something abstract. the individual who acts. “the destruction of the infidels”. Others are people’s lives. e soldier is therefore in possession of a vast outfit of ideologies or value models.e. is becomes obvious when you see the difficulty many comrades have in carrying out actions whi in themselves are in no way exceptional. On the contrary if antimilitarism were to go forward concretely and/open up the road to liberation in the material sense. su as the underlying moral judgement. On the one hand there is the thrill of the forbidden — whi leads many comrades to carry out senseless lile thes that oen go beyond immediate and unavoidable needs — and on the other 10 27 . builder of the social order. etc. whi have nothing to do with whether the action is valid or not. ere is no su thing as an abstract weapon (taken as an isolated object) therefore. No mailer how mu we go into things theoretically spooks remain inside all of us. destroyer of the infidels. Other elements intervene. an alarm bell rings inside us. “maintaining order”. to developing an ideology of defence with whi to cover not only their use but also their production and perfection in the negative sense. etc. For example. reduced to the impotence we would like to reduce them to in the case of arms. supported by small actions against the capitalist structures responsible for the present situation of exploitation and genocide all over the world. but that would be a question of marginal deeds that cannot clean out the sewer completely. we have been pointing out the uselessness of huge peaceful demonstrations for some time now instead we propose mass demonstrations that are organised instructionally. sex. uses means to aain ends.

anary or whatever other liberatory. we have the determination and will of a few revolutionaries capable of continually working within the various contradictions caused by the production process as a whole. We are not trying to say that the end — liberation. an acute phase it will not be possible to rea its abolition completely. In a project of liberation. e fact is that tenology today unequivocably constitutes a whole that is moving uneed towards a most perverse accumulation. On the other the perversity of the tenological process along with the obtusity of the managerial class and their incapacity to control the means at their disposal. ought is free activity and it will certainty not be we anarists to propose its limitation. behind the arm lies the desire to free ourselves from our rulers and make them pay for the damage they are responsible for ere is class hatred. It is nearly always thrown at you as though it were something that everyone is aware of and is leading to aitudes and deductions that do not seem to me to be all that well founded. and the field that this tenology finds itself operating in will be different. if the project is different. the revolution. As far as we can see the term “social” or “collective” imaginary is used to refer to the feelings that a socially significant event or situation 26 11 . e same goes for science. But objective conditions will have anged. On one side. Or if we are it is certainly in ways and with aims that are quite different to those of the last century. And this different object in action also comes to be a part of the anti-militarist struggle. but it can transform weapons into different “objects in action”. Even if he were to lay them down they would still be objects within a general framework that qualifies them as instruments of death.that it is precisely the perverse meanism of the productive structure itself that we must take as our point of reference. the side of the exploited. as our subterranean ally. e struggle against tenology is therefore a revolutionary struggle in itself even though we know perfectly well that in. But we are not so stupid as to request “self-limitation” by those who draw huge profits from thinking as well as the benefits of status and a careen e first prospect would be authoritarian and liberticide. the ideas of science. As a means it can never be absolved of its limitations as an object with whi it is possible to procure damage and destruction with a certain ease (whi is what distinguishes the object “weapon” from other objects whi. that of the exploited against the exploiters. It is certainly not by carrying out crusades against the peripheral products of tenological capitalism that we will be able to face the class struggle and the new (vertiginously new) conditions of the clash. To simply refuse this tenology would lead to sclerotisation. even although it remains to all effects a weapon. or “collective”. new forms of exploitation. No maer what area it comes from it is always the harbinger of new power systems. the significance of the weapon anges. a sacralisation of fear. at is all radically different to any ideological aer about order and the defence of the homeland. A new model of class division is emerging. can also become arms when necessary). a different way of conceiving the struggle and involvement in the clash. what we are against is “specialisation”. there is the concrete material difference of those who continually suffer offence to their dignity and want to wipe out those responsible. But what is the imaginary One of the new concepts one tends to come up against with increasing frequency is that of the “social”. if the aim of the action is different. many of them. For the same reason we find those who accuse us of using the tenology we hasten to condemn ridiculous. egalitarian dream — justifies the means. Now. Not because we are luddites. creating myths where we would end up playing into the hands of all those who have an interest in increasing fragmentation and endless circumscribed sectors. We are convinced that today’s tenology will never be of any valid use. not the people who set themselves up as scientists to beer qualify their role as the servants of power We are not against “thought” of course. he is at the mercy of the fabricators of ideology and capitalist rule and the more the weapons he bears become blind instruments of oppression and death. “imaginary”. Hence the need to clarify some of the aspects of this “concept” whi presents not a few difficulties.

political. It does not stumble over a thousand obstacles like that of the possibilists. one that tenology as the armed wing of science is no longer able to put a halt to. It is taken for granted that this actually occurs. and as though the whole of science (including its armed wing) were not involved in a process of development that will require something far more complex than the bleating of reformist politicians or proposals for an ecological orientation to put a stop to. in the way desired by the dominant political-cultural structure. thinks and acts in a massified therefore foreseeable way. the second is more than well founded. In fact there can be lile doubt that the great mass of people are taken in by the information. Behind science stands international capital. far more so than when social cohesion was guaranteed by vast analphabetism. Something homogeneous that exists and whi pressure can be put on. behind ea individual scientist (but how many of them arc there now. in fact it is the only one practicable in the present situation. Instead the ‘imaginary’. How are the social and political (therefore also political and moral) structures responding to this situation? With pitiful calls to scientists to act with prudence and a sense of responsibility. A profound upheaval of social. or at least considering the problem of how to bring about. Nor can there be mu doubt that most people react in a way that is so uniform as to make reliable political forecasts and projects possible even from quite modest samples. to politicians for more control. So through this fier the individual is able to grasp his or her “position” within the social body and identify with one class as opposed to another It seems to me that we need to consider a number of problems ur- imal and Vegetable selection presently being experimented will lead to. ese are the only conditions under whi it will be possible to put an end to the exponential processes of tenology’ with all their consequences.’ has come to be accepted as a possible point of reference. cultural and moral relations. And above all there is tenological development. that this revolutionary outlet seems far off today. is not clear — that can be put to revolutionary purposes. e first fear would still hold even if tenology. Our road is quite a simple one. Mass society. were to put a brake on itself and science were to stop “thinking”. that it transforms class differences into sensations and personalised images su as production. something that rarely happens today in times of great analytical poverty. and there is no need to constantly be reminded of it. more simply. When this claim is more articulate. along with vague denunciations of the dangers of this or that bran of resear. And this also goes for the revolutionary movement. it is said that the “imaginary” is the sum of the various levels of class consciousness or. In actual fact quite the opposite happens.e. Something — precisely what. In other words it would seem to be an unconscious (therefore irrational) meanism by whi members of society interpret particular events in exactly the same way as the media do. etc. at being impossible. i. and consequently the ideas elaborated by power. But we must not forget 12 25 . confused and desperate. social mobility. making us risk more and more as ea year goes by. military projects for control and economic projects for capitalist accumulation. So far so good. What scares us most is that we do not know what the results of an advance in the tenological application of this resear will make possible in the near future.gives rise to in society as a whole. Yet mu could be said as to how this uniformity could be broken up to make it become critical and contradictory. one part to be rejected (where to?) and the other accepted. the structures society is divided into. for the rest it is a question of highly specialised workers) there are massive State investments. e propulsive outlet must be revolution. culture. rather than remain inert and consenting. As though there were su a thing as good and bad tenology. at is why we are against the whole of tenology and do not agree that it can be divided in two. certainly no more than a couple of dozen in the world. precisely those who should be bringing about. All this constitutes a real danger. an operation of deconsecration and rupture. But there is also an implicit reference to the means of communication that realise the passage of su events from their dimension as circumscribed facts to their spreading in space and persistence in time as never before. We all know.

one whi is of more interest to us in my opinion. capitalist accumulation. going beyond “differences” by uniting everyone under the common denominator of death by radiation. what does is an ill-considered. Many comrades see tenology’ in terms of the friendly computer the super fridge. Let us take the “imaginary” of nuclear “fear” for example. Over the next few years ea single tenological innovation could give rise to an exponential growth of unknown dimensions. most of it is no more than a reproduction of conditions that cannot be brought to a halt. But let us look at things from a different point of view. ird. And these are all quite rudimental if we consider the risks that an uncontrolled acceleration in tenological experimentation could give rise to today. whereas in reality it can only be reaed. we believe that the danger lies not in specific tenological oices but in the speed — now crazily out of control — at whi they are being applied. What emerges in any discussion on this element of the “imaginary” (social or collective) is a connection not with levels of consciousness but with a collective. at would lead to the belief that the media could be used to divert su a reservoir (the “imaginary”) to the advantage of the revolutionary movement. irrational reaction. something that con- 24 13 . is has led to a widening of the distance that has always existed between “knowledge” and tenical means”. Not that Sorel scares us. Second. the old TV set that allowed us a few pleasant evenings (disturbed at times by criticism circulated by over biased theorisers). e exploitation of the planet’s resources. here a great amorphous fear spread throughout all the social classes. if for no other reason than because it is impossible to make a clear separation between exploiters arid exploited through processes of induced collective feelings su as those stimulated by the media. is will lead to an “explosion” not in the specific atomic. but also as regards the dominant class. both in terms of their effects and application. not just concerning the exploited class who have been led far from any possibility to take over the available tenology by force. the cynical arms market and many other su nice activities are but a few of the consequences. the division of the world into areas of influence with projects of genocide concerning the most economically baward populations. In other words we are far from the project of the “myth 4f the general strike” whi could only be perceived (but not brought about) by the proletariat according to Sorel’s thesis. expanded or modified to the exclusive benefit of the projects of power If we were to accept that point of view we would tend to oose the kind actions of aa we think would be most easily understood in an “imaginary” key not realising that this is managed by power through “its” information. acritical use of mass irrational processes. it is not in fact true that there is a direct relationship between the “imaginary” ’ and class consciousness in general. Not so mu in terms of “controlling” the means. the so-called included with their highly specialised tenicians and scientists. understanding them and using them within the limits and awareness of the risks that any “prothesis” implies. We do not know what consequences the genetic anges in the an- gently First.produced to any good use. the fact that the concept of “imaginary” (social and collective) comes “dangerously” close to the concept of “myth”. On the contrary. so a condemnation of tenology as a whole shakes them. at least in the present political and social situation. We now find ourselves before an unbridgeable gap. is certainly negative. Otherwise why use this horrible neologism? Whoever uses it must have in mind not a woolly impenetrable muddle of images but a whole fairly clear structure. but presenting just as many dangers whi were faced with the same superficiality. at the social or collective “imaginary” be “an organisation of images” is undoubtedly the case. is disturbing thought can be illustrated by looking at some of the experiments carried out by the “apprentice sorcerers” in the past. atomic energy. genetic or electronic sense so mu as an uncontrollable spreading of even more tenological developments. the consideration that there is su a thing as a reservoir of potential that is simply waiting to be tapped for any revolutionary project we have in mind. as it developed in the wake of Chernobyl. So if we want to use this term we should use it in the sense of something organised at the level of imagination. We are convinced that this distance has grown. especially when considered in a revolutionary perspective. Certainly with fewer means at their disposition.

ere is no su thing as a diotomy between those who elaborate theory and those who act. sensations. fly how the powers of persuasion work. Not only would it be impossible to put mu of what is being 14 23 . but also that the rulers themselves are no longer able to co-ordinate them in a rationally planned project. but between those (both in the realms of practice and theory. then transferred to the collectivity by the classical instrument of the media. e more the means are effective and sophisticated. e Armed Wing Of Science ere is a precise relationship between the means at our disposal and our capacity to self-manage and defend ourselves against alt forms of power and exploitation. and those who do not. how the irrational (therefore also imaginary’) forces that the profound structural modifications are causing in society also work. Our main point of reference remains the whole of the exploited. feelings. we consider it indispensable to see what the consequences of considering su a concept within a revolutionary project would be. I do not know if the present level of scientific (and consequently tenological) development should make us fear catastrophe is imminent. not enclosing everything in a region where the air is so pure one cannot allow any contrast or contradiction. is whole can undoubtedly be reaed through the flux of the “organisation of images” that is not so mu that of tracing a uniform way of acting towards an objective as of grasping the orientation in its entirety. is is particularly necessary in a situation of social disintegration su as the present. As capitalism moves towards restructuring on the basis of everything being “provisional” in a reality arged with tension and la of permanence where all the certainties of the past are being replaced by probabilistic models. images produced by reality (socially significant facts). the easier it is for them to tall into the hands of a minority who use them for their own projects to control the rest of us.cerns symbols. He even uses the same words: “the myth is an organisation of images”. at least according to them) who want to contribute to transforming things from their actual “normal” state to one whi is radically different. We arc only saying we cannot accept complex and contradictory concepts as though they were acclaimed usable instruments for our daily struggle against the State and capital. wanting to plant an ideological tree in place of a luxurious spontaneous jungle of exotic plants. with analyses by Levi Strauss and Barthes. We are not saying we are for a cold analysis that states things with clarity. it is here that the value of what we do lies. Nevertheless I am certain that not only is it no longer possible to control tenological development because of the incredible speed at whi it is developing new means and perfecting new instruments. ere are servants of power who feel good in their uniforms and people who want to free themselves. I do not give mu credit to catastrophe theories personally. Not only are we against the acritical use of su a term. and for this reason have decided to struggle. It derives from this that developments in tenology — the “armed wing” of science — are leading to a perfection in dominion that runs parallel to the few minimal improvements in general living conditions. In recent years (whi could explain the confused immersion of this concept into the revolutionary movement) there has been not so mu a revival of Sorel as of the concept of the myth. the concept of “political myth” is taking up its trajectory again in the new guise of “social” (or collective) “imaginary”. and understand why the new concepts that are taking the place of the idols of the past are so fascinating and mystifying. Now. seeing the totality of theory and practice as direct action and the transformation of reality as a whole. particularly the part who are about to be thrown out of the work market due to the process of capitalist restructuring. as their apparent orientation might be. not so-called claims to purity or coherence at all costs. up to Douglas and Godelier is has happened parallel to the profound anges in the productive and social structures. new cultural stimuli and the collapse of the old system of centralism and State planning. in fact I believe they could be designed to scare people. if we consider this carefully we see that “an organisation of images” is what Sorel used to define as “myth”. We need to examine and clan.

not all of whi are the “fault” of whoever is directing the orientation. some resear on contradictions is important. but show how and with what consequences the contradictions revealed produce greater or lesser possibilities of reaing the objective osen. So we suggest a critical examination of the concept of “imaginary” in su a way as to make it possible to individuate elements that are “accidental” or “uncontrollable” as far as power is concerned. unfortunately. linked to institutions and structures that have been surpassed in time. People might convince themselves of something but at the same time they cannot avoid harbouring suspicion and a potential for revolt. And this part can only be reaed by stimuli of rebellion. not cry scandal (when some speak then contradict themselves). at least not right at the beginning. and it is easy to be led astray by one’s convictions and conditioning. not to some hypothetical collective “imaginary” seen as an immense reservoir from whi it is possible to draw subversive potential. it cannot come from a judgement that gives complete preference to either theory or practice concerning the subject under discussion. are precisely those who are unable to make up their minds about the effects of the theory-practice relationship. but this process has not been fully perfected. that is to say it should be ascertained whether there are contradictions within the orientation itself rather than contrasts between proposal and objective. always very bien Analyses should move in this direction. is potential is gradually increasing alongside power’s aempts to obtain consensus and adhesion. Power cannot prevent su elements from entering the process of “organisation of images” that it is working to produce. So we can only take into account what is wrongly defined as the “imaginary” in part. Can a reasonable person say then unsay something? Our culture says no. are the so-called reformists and their desires for hazy half measures.the action in question can be reaed (or at least got a glimpse of) through its orientation. by — if you like — the irrational consequences of violent modifications in the productive structures. the second as addicted to transformation and innovation. We believe the revolutionary movement should make reference to these and these alone. themselves indirectly caused by the flux of information and centralised control. e roads to accomplishing an aim are not always easily grasped. Contradictions are opening up in it. and this is the point. its adequacy concerning the objective. In between. We are the offspring of western rationalism and do not admit contradiction in our orientations. e fact remains that the laer exist. as the new systems of exploitation (ferocious restructuring and destruction of the old work identity) become clearly visible. the road of action is not always straight. We shall try to be more clear “Inadequate” interventions take place for various reasons. those that make people cry out right away about the inadequacy of the direction when not — and here the cry would definitely be gratuitous — about privileging theory as opposed to practice or vice versa. and the results of their unrecognised presence are. From personal incapacity to inadequate decisions (but who establishes how and what — qualitative or quantitative should be done?) the arc is extremely wide. adequacy should be looked for on the basis of the whole orientation proposed. Are We Modern? It is not just a question of words. and this cannot end up with a value judgement. And the most relevant contradictions. And this cannot start from a positive or negative consideration of practice or theory. Worse still. 22 15 . absolutely not. Instead. e first are seen as old and stupid. using precisely that area of it that power cannot control. All critical analysis should therefore examine the orientation. Basically. Jet us say that the real problem power brings about for its own aims. ere is a common line of thought that sees those who want to conserve the past as being quite separate from the supporters of a future that is still to be built. not the whole of the flux of images it manipulates to transmit to and implant in people. claiming to separate the inseparable. And this is the place for our intervention. Because that is the way things are. rooted in the past but with an eye turned to the future. To conclude this now long precision.

and the trades unions and syndicalist organisations. e fact that this ghost turns out to be anything but outside this world but acts and produces effects inside it merely confirms what we have just said. is affair of history as something that is maring to its destiny is reassuring. at least until proved otherwise. if one really intends to do something and not just give oneself an ideological cover up. but these came later Millions of people have been slaughtered in the name of the objective spirit whi realises itself in History. ways makes their intentions known concerning the aim of their action. It is necessary to see in depth how 16 21 . We can make a clearer distinction when we speak of how someone who acts tries to set about their action in respect to others. in modernity. Taylor and Marx imagined it has seen its day. To say that a given position gives priority to “practice” or that another privileges theory is senseless. But the greater the number of elements of disturbance capable of acting on and reversing the results. We deduct from this that more or less all of us are for progress (whoever would admit to anything else?) and believe that either we are moving towards a final catastrophe or to a profound. and all with the best of intentions. could do anything but stand together But is that really so? A progressive conception of history cannot but say it is. We nearly all believe we are “post” something or other Personally I think we are in a post-industrial era and have thought so since at least the end of the ‘Seventies.It should be said right away that although we are convinced that this division has seen its day it still persists in our minds. during the most significant moments of the event or events that solidify them as intentions. in the future). all within the vast flux of relations that cannot be isolated in reality. e management of capitalism at world level depends less and less on a concept of life based on the accumulation of value. Again it is only possible to identify an “orientation’ up to a point. certainly not a constant relationship of cause and effect. (therefore comes about gradually. clarifying the objective. and “revolution” i. ildren of historicism. transforming relations. scientism. even those we conceived ourselves. just as the answers on all ere is riot one “place” for theory and another for practice therefore. except in an abstract consideration suspended like a ghost outside the world. the end of industry — now replaced by electronically controlled diffused production — marks its eclipse. Also model prisons. comes about by mistake whereas the intention had been quite different the relation between orientation and objective is reversed. At the margins these intentions melt into a fluid context. but this no longer conveys mu. and all this does not leave reality as a whole unanged. Criticism that degenerates into simple statements su as those describing the forms taken by the intention/objective relationship is pointless. Most of us would never admit that the “future”. aims and action. prevents us from seeing our own condition clearly.e modernity. A new Middle Ages? An absurd question. And we are nearly all. i. a mental category we cannot free ourselves from because we do not want to face it. according to the actor’s intentions. at is to say that if industry in terms of mainery and skilled labour was the basis of the social transformation that led to the modern world. e action takes place with the consequent transformation of individual and collective relations as a whole. Here the leaning can be practical or theoretical. violent transformation. then determinism. have seen their day too. eclecticism (a decent analysis of Malatesta’s thought is necessary here). there is considerable orientation indicating the oice of means. radical ange in values. is orientation gives us an indication of the actor’s intentions and the condition of who is at the receiving end of the action. Industry su as Ford. a thousand. must grasp these discrepancies between intention and objective. even when we see this destiny as a complete holocaust. merely singled out for the love of clarity Whoever acts in any one of a hundred. In other words there are relations of reciprocal exange between these two moments of human experience whi arc themselves part of a general flux. But what has historicism led to? Without doubt it has built concentration camps. is incapacity to question our cultural origins. Criticism. If on the other hand the prevalence is accidental. the further it will be from the original intention. but in their nucleus. not separate objects in space. in the first place historicism.e. anarists included.

one deduces that it must be related to the future. as their effect as elements capable of transforming reality. In reality things are different. we make precisely the judgement that happens to be the most convenient to us. So theory is part of the experience of life itself. But human beings act within a whole flux of relations where it is not always possible. the distance between two world concepts: those who control the levers of power (the included) and those who must simply obey and have been programmed and conditioned for this (the excluded). however. are also modern values whi reconfirm this final separation between included and excluded. Is this due to specific interests? Ideological preclusion? Narrowmindedness? Intellectual poverty. And usually. i. into that acting no maer how spontaneous it might appear to be. When this impossibility is taken to the extreme limit. these can be considered to be either ancient or modern. listening. Abstract elements are isolated.e. etc. When we observe others we oen ask ourselves why they tend one way or the other on the scales of an ideal equilibrium that clearly only exists in our dreams. taken individually. looking. or whether we should guarantee its safe revolution- 20 17 . but also from transforming. either to take a distance from a practice we do not want to have anything to do with. at least in the way that those in favour of practice would have us believe. Considered concretely. In other words. analphabetism. i. and these forms. these values are neither ancient nor modern. studying. ere are. It is pointless to aempt to see historical “remakes”. neo-formalism. is is constantly present puing order within certain limits. velocism. And is the accumulation of value ancient or modern for capitalism? Given the conditions at the present time one could say that it is no longer a modern value and that new aims are appearing on the horizons of those in power Distinction could be one of these values. is problem does not only concern theory. they begin working out a theoretical elaboration for all their actions. e political pragmatism of daily adjustments is leading to long term anges in the social whole where new possibilities of dominion and forms of struggle against oppression are emerging. From the moment in whi an individual finds himself in a personal and social situation. i. oen without realising it. by acting in this way we are able to make not only theoretical but also practical ‘abstractions” We thereby deduce that there is no absolute correlation between “abstractness” and theory. Given that it has never existed in reality. talking. sides have been. is is only possible for the sake of argument. We have oen asked ourselves whether it is absolutely necessary to destroy tenology. working. in the way others bring themselves to our aention inaction.e Priority Of Practice When we look at the actions of others we tend to see in them a priority given either to practice or to theoretical reflection. e very idea of progress is antithetical to them and produces incredible confusion. at least in recent history. is equality an ancient or a modem value? It is impossible to answer this question. disappointments or in the ideas we allow to penetrate us through reading. e acid test of the class struggle is always reality in all its forms. Choices from a wide range of variants are possible because the basic values affecting the judgements that produce these oices exist. is philosophical necessity of oice is purely hypothetical. or so as not to get involved in theoretical positions we do not share. to see clearly where practice ends and theoretical considerations begin. But is the future modern? We do not know. and the more obvious components emerge. even the most seemingly blind and conditioned of them. or simply stupidity? ere is no la of oice. For example.. from birth and even beyond physical death. supra-nationalism. taken from a wider context. But is it possible to consider su values in historicist terms. destroying. joy feelings. and never easy. as being more advanced than those of the past? I really don’t think so. Neither of these satisfies us. cannot be considered more modem than those that have been supplanted because they no longer correspond to certain aims. theory and practice become one. Seen in relation to their effectiveness and their response to social conditions at a given historical moment.e.e. different ways of believing the realisation (or prevention) of equality to be possible. Reductive values su as nihilism. it also concerns practice.

But to oppose all that with an ideological. the State. Anyone who enjoys this weekend pastime may do as they please. to see things from a point of view that is not totally historicist. [do not agree. with our craving desire for action. Modern? We do not know. we must move towards a radical contrast with the present social situation as a whole. now. class domination and all forms of exploitation is all very well. Hence destruction as a necessary fact. We cannot wait so are acting here and now. To be against power. But on ea side of the clash. joy. or it will be transformed when the included of tomorrow build one world suited to their own needs and another for the needs of others. fantasy. love. Now. Undoubtedly an effect of historicist culture on both sides. If we must reduce anary to this in the name of our great ideal. but do so due to their personal historical ignorance). We have never wanted to know anything of these rights. We cannot simply wait for things to come to an end in our absence. respect for one’s fellows (human or animal). not as dogmas imposed by a globalising concept of the world. en we realised that the tenology of computers and universal control could never be useful to a Society that starts off from the real liberation of all as opposed to that of a privileged minority. dogmatic juxtaposition instead of action. a value. tenderness. And we contradict historicism. being harsh with oneself frugality. is will either be brought to an end. a correct consideration of the environment. Were they modern? We do not care a bit. We do not accept compromise. no. e peasants’ insurrections burned castles. We want to contribute to transformation in the direction we believe is right. Anary. ere have also been moments of destruction that seemed reactionary in the past (there are still some who speak of the Vendee as something negative. We want to be in the game. the foundation of the exploitation of tomorrow. Is a struggle today against neo-mainery modern? It is for us because we are trying. whi since have been re-examined more closely. In the deep of the night where all values tend to be zeroised. In other words. not without difficulty. or so it seems. this position seems to strongly contradict some of the essential points of historicism. hallucinations of the Apocalypse. crushing us in the middle.ary passage to a possible future “good” use. But others too that are only apparently in contrast: play. e same thing goes for atomic war and the atmosphere of millenarian catastrophe we breathe all around us today e end of a millennium is fast approaing and the circle will present itself again. it eliminates any privileged point of reference. absolutely not. we will certainly not be the ones who prevent them from walking. So at a point it is easy for the bosses to reject nuclear energy’ and transfer their interests and projects elsewhere. recognising no point of reference on whi to pin our hopes and expectations. courage. In a not too distant future they will shake hands. In order to do this we must have the courage to look bawards as well as forwards. Nor do we recognise the existence of some ‘objective spirit” or lay god that might be working for our liberation. even. if anything tights them up we want it to be the light of our explosions. Bawards to seek certain values that are no longer considered “modern”. e rapid destruction of world resources carried out by the plunderers in power is an inescapable fact. In this resear we could single out a few elements that relate to human action: constancy. dreams. critically. We are not points of reference to be taken for granted. even the present bale against the wastage of natural resources could become an industry in the future. both the baward ones still linked to rapid and irrational exploitation and the more advanced ones linked to the electronic control of the planet. at it is why we propose an immediate systematic aa on all the forms of capitalist expression. But they should not complain if we start running while they are still claiming their rights as free afternoon ramblers. Ourselves against the bosses who turn out to be — some of them — in favour of it. We are not supplying a formula for numerical growth. always the same and always different. not in the sense of a dogma that has been fixed forever in time. 18 19 . let’s be clear about this. In order to make these things our own. Not only does it go against the idea of the Spirit that realises itself in history. ink of the arguments about nuclear power.

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