Filed under: Anarchist Movement, Publication, Southwest
Bay area anarchist publication, War Commentary, returns for a new issue. Download here.
Our latest issue, formatted for easy printing at home. Print out a stack of 20 and leave them at your local corner store, grocery, or gas station. Good luck, stay healthy. Long live anarchy!
Corona Virus Special
No one expected this. The entire capitalist world system has just been knee-capped by a super-flu bug that respects neither borders or laws. Less than a month after a state-imposed quarantine, COVID-19 collapsed the US economy, put millions of out of work, and revealed to the public how weak capitalism truly is.
Oakland’s a ghost-town, especially downtown, and our entire social lives now revolve around the corner store, the supermarket, the gas station, the take-out counter, and whatever other local businesses are allowed to stay open. Surprisingly, the path around Lake Merritt was popping, given it’s one of the only places to people-watch while remaining six feet apart. Not anymore. All the parks are banned, all the hiking trails are closed, and people were finally spending time outdoors at a time when pollution is at a record low.
With all this new free-time at their disposal, most people don’t know what to do. Sitting at home gets boring, so some people wander outside, sometimes with their romantic partner, who they now see 24 hours a day. Now that nothing’s open except what’s essential, everyone can see just how unessential capitalist reality is. All that’s left is talking with strangers on the street, being careful to remain six feet apart, although most people clearly aren’t, especially in the grocery line.
Millions of people with idle time are now asking how they’re going to pay their rent, their mortgage, their debt, and their utilities. The obvious answer is to simply stop paying any of these things and wait for the government to bail out the entire population. Rather than be satisfied with a one-time payment of 1200 dollars, the US population should demand the 2000 dollars a month the Canadian state has been forced to provide. Once they get that, they should ask for more. If enough people straight-up refuse to pay their rent, mortgage, debt, or utilities, not only will the government be forced to socialize massive segments of the economy, the entire capitalist economy will collapse. All the truths of this corrupt system are now being revealed by COVID-19 and there’s no returning from this crisis. Capitalism won’t recover. The flu killed it.
On April 1, 2020, potentially thousands of people will have participated in a rent strike against their landlords. By the time you read this article, there will hopefully be millions of people refusing to pay anything back to capitalism. The call for a rent strike across the US might prove to be the first act of direct resistance taken by the population against a system that has outlived itself. A full general strike of all remaining workplaces, the next logical step of any rent strike, would bring the government to its knees, putting us in total control. We wouldn’t need to do anything other than refuse to participate in what remains of the economy and build power ourselves.
All of this might have seemed crazy a year ago. Even a few months ago, no one would have believed that a flu-pandemic would bring down capitalism. Now that we’re on the verge of an immense and irreversible transition, these simple words you’ve just read are most likely understatements, just as they’re probably out of date by the time you read them. We’ve left this newspaper in the few remaining sites of social activity and hope our words inspire you to build a better world amid the chaos of this quarantine. Link up with your community, build networks of sharing, and make the state irrelevant by providing for yourselves directly. The world is yours. Go build it.