Living, Fighting, Autonomy: A Conversation on ‘Inhabit’

1925

Cover photo from Cherán, Mexico, where inhabitants have expelled the Mexican State, political parties, and police in favor of an autonomous system of assemblies.

We live in truly interesting and horrific times. Our age is marked by both large segments of the population having access to massive amounts of information, as well as a culture that thrives on the suppression of reality itself; with distraction and demonization of our own abilities and agency to accomplish much of anything as individuals and as human communities, but also in terms of the grave dangers our world faces in the present moment.

One section of the elites points backwards to the past, in the name of “the nation” and “tradition,” while another to the future under the guise of “progress.” But in reality, both beckon to the same end point: one defined by war, ecological collapse, and massive stratification, repression, and misery.

Thus, we are told to applaud our “thriving economy” on one hand, and prepare for the coming apocalypse of climate change on the other. To “get tired of winning,” but to also get ready for an economy defined by automation, weaponized data, and the growth of electronic feudalism.

Meanwhile, camps are forming, as figures from Bannon to those in the Alt-Right proclaim, just as they did after the fall of the Berlin Wall, that now the lines of war are drawn between “globalists” and “nationalists.” Meanwhile, some of the few that still have faith in “our” institutions, point to the growth of a rising social democratic current, which seems content only to push for basic reforms such as universal health care and the rising of the minimum wage, while elsewhere around the world, the track record of post-Occupy Left parties in power is one of abject failure. Moreover, nation States around the globe lose legitimacy, continue to fail at the reproduction of a social contract, and sit back as infrastructure fails and anger rises. In the background, new forms of authority attempt to take power and govern territory, from ISIS to drug cartels, as we watch in real time, the collapse of this civilization.

But while old barons proclaim a New World Order, a new power it rising. It is found in the autonomous towns in Mexico that have expelled both the police, the cartels, and the government, the swamp lands of La ZAD in so-called France, where rioters defend commmunized farmland, and in the cantons of Rojava, where a new society proclaims autonomy not nationhood will define an entirely new form of life.

In this episode of the It’s Going Down podcast, we speak with several people “from the world” that has produced a new book, Inhabit, which touches on many of these concepts. It argues that this civilization is indeed crashing, working within the State is pointless, and that moreover, those who desire a new way of life must push to create strong connections to human communities and territories while working to build autonomous infrastructure that can survive the horrors of climate change and aid in ongoing social struggles.

Not a blueprint, and far from a call to drop out or remove ourselves from the world around us, Inhabit, pushes for a re-articulation of the revolutionary anti-capitalist and anti-state project at a time when the world is changing so fast, and so rapidly.

More Info: Inhabit on the web, Twitter, and Instagram


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