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How to build a mass political movement to empower the poor and working class


Step one: Eliminate 199 out of every 200 Americans, and probably 999 out of every 1000 working class and poor people, from the pool of potential participation, with your very first criterion for participating:

Comrade Cooper wants to get rid of gender and the state, along with less ambitious targets for elimination such as prisons, the police, and Big Macs, so they don’t represent the precise center of the left part of the political spectrum in the USA at the moment or anything, but:

(1) There’s a kind of lifestyle leftism that’s essentially aesthetic more than political. Obviously what sort of food people do and don’t eat has very serious political implications, and I respect and admire anybody’s choice to be vegetarian or vegan, although I’m not going to make that choice myself. But the sort of flaunting/taunting in this tweet is very familiar to anyone who has had any dealings with members of the self-identified left in this country, especially the depressingly large sector of it that seems more horrified by NEOLIBERALISM than the actual revenant fascism that we’re actually facing right here right now.

(2) This kind of relentless aestheticizing of political identity on the far left often ends up being fascist-curious and/or fascist-adjacent, or simply fascist, because fascism is itself such a heavily aestheticized phenomenon (Cool uniforms! Marches under the floodlights! In your face sloganeering that horrifies Mom bien pensant liberals!).

(3) Fascism in this country, aka the Republican party — this is not hyperbole: at this moment the Republican party in the United States of America is the institutional center of a mass political movement that is essentially fascist — identifies “the left” as containing both this person and Joe Biden, because to it “the left” means anybody and everybody opposed to the authoritarian ethno-nationalist white supremacist project which has become the defining and organizing feature of that movement.

Nothing is more important right now than for everyone opposed to that movement, from Bill Kristol and Jennifer Rubin to Noam Chomsky and the people who want to abolish gender and the state, to resist that project together, because at the moment that movement is winning.

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