For collective decision-making

October 4, 2010

IT IS unfortunate that David Bliven, in his response ("'Policing our own' is not the answer") to an article by Canadian activists from Socialist Voice about the G20 protests, equates attempts by protest organizers to prevent provocations with the activities of the police.

The police derive their brutal powers of coercive violence from the backing of the parasitic ruling classes they defend. Their actions are inherently undemocratic and reactionary. Even if a movement resorted to force to prevent dangerous adventures from happening, I believe this could in some circumstances be justified.

In any case, it could never occupy the same moral/political plane as police repression, as long as it did not involve collaboration with the police, media or other ruling class institutions. And the Socialist Voice authors made their opposition to such collaboration crystal clear.

David challenges the authors with visions of what he sees as the logical conclusions of their argument. Should we stop people wearing black from joining protests? But the authors aren't suggesting this. Instead, they clearly point to "collective decision-making" as the method that needs to be fought for against the demagogic invocation of "diversity of tactics" to impose a taboo on it.

Few of our movements have acquired the cohesion and radicalism to operate effectively in such a concerted and collective manner. We cannot skip the stages required to achieve this. But it should be the goal, as the unfortunate outcome of the Canadian G20 protests shows. David's moralistic red herrings exemplify the mindset standing in the way.
Avery Wear, San Diego

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