Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Egypt

Many things come to mind when I think of the Egyptian Revolution. There are a few that stick out and I haven't heard much discussion regarding them, so I thought I'd bring them up.

Many reports have mentioned the neighborhood patrols people have initiated. This doesn't sit well with conventional wisdom. It should. To be quite simple, we don't need a police force. The police are there to protect the privileges of the ruling class. Case closed. Of course there are individual members of the police force who are sympathetic and will join the people, as has happened in Egypt, but as an institution they are not necessary in a truly democratic state. Arm the people. If my neighbor isn't safe, neither am I.

That brings me to my next point. Many believe most of us on the left are anti-gun and soft on crime. Untrue. I would imagine these patrols and checkpoints would be quite worthless without guns. They are needed for defense, both of individuals and of gains made by the masses as a whole. And we should also be clear regarding crime. There is a huge difference between understanding crime, its institutionalization and its relationship to poverty, and justifying it. The difference has been blurred, mostly by right-wing propagandists, but activist academic types on the left ferociously obsessed with identity politics have played their part as well. We protect our personal property. We are concerned with the means of production, the "property" that gives the few their undue privilege and influence over the many. The lumpen scum that serve as the foot soldiers of reaction deserve every inch of fiery wrath someone protecting their home or small shop can give them.

The coverage on IDOM has been excellent.