Russell Brand has spoken. If there is one nice side effect here it is that everyone is talking about it. That includes me.
One thing I have seen come up recently in Brand’s material is the imperative need for a (political) revolution. In the modern left the current emphasis is on pending ecological catastrophes (with wild finger pointing at recent Act of God-esque weather phenomenon in the USA). There are also many Marx-attuned folks who are convinced that the 2008 financial downturn and the failure to turn it around for everyday people marks the beginning of the “Final Crisis” of capitalism. Brand takes lightly from both tendencies and says a revolution is necessary to avert total environmental and economic collapse. More broadly, this means catastrophe is inevitable and to dodge it we require a revolution.
Readers of “Tired of Progressivism” may think “Well, now you agree with this as you spent over a thousand words convincing me that things are getting shit.” Here I may disappoint. In particular there is nothing certain about a thorough-going revolution. Despite their deep divisions one thing anarchists and communists agreed on was how terrible conditions were and how certain revolution was. In the mid-1800s socialists were convinced one was right around the corner: “Twenty years” they said. Twenty years later it became forty years. By the Great Depression an exiled but esteemed Alexander Berkman committed suicide, convinced he was a burden to the unattainable dream. Weeks later the Spanish anarchists of the CNT …Read More