Monday, October 8, 2018

Voluntary Tribalism: Why Not?

I've always found it absurd that white nationalists bitch the loudest about identity politics when they're the winy snowflakes who fucking invented the goddamn concept. White isn't even a race for Christ sake. There is no Whitestan. There is no traditional white tribe. It's a class concept designed to justify an oligarchy without a royal bloodline. I'm pretty sure that the first "white" guys were just a bunch of slave owners who settled on the superiority of their lack of melanin after they finished taking inventory on eye color and penis size and came to the conclusion that skin was the one thing they had in common that the field hands couldn't lay claim to. In today's divided states of America identity politics are mostly used to keep different genres of poor people at each others throats while the one percent rapes their wives (often literally) and pollutes their land.

This doesn't mean that race and other identities can't have a positive place in society. I take great pride in being a gender-bending Irish (lapsed)Catholic dyke. But if has proven anything it's that their is no such thing as purity. Through centuries of war, rape, and pillaging, we've all become a little bit of everything. There is no biological basis to racial identity. It's all a cultural crap shoot. So go ahead and take pride in being German, just know that you're making a choice to identify with 20% of your DNA and try not to be such a dick about it.

I know a lot of people hate to hear this, but gender identity is the same damn thing. Contrary to popular belief, human beings are not defined by their genitalia anymore than they are by their skin color. We all start out female in utero and are largely shaped by the amount of testosterone we're exposed to during pregnancy. They're are many cultures from Santa Fe to Sulawesi who have acknowledged the existence of three, four, five gender identities for longer than our loafer dragging puritanical medical establishment has recognized the existence of two. (Before the Victorian era, the Johns-Hopkins-class naively believed that male was the only gender and women were simply defective males.)

"So what does this mean!?" I can hear the hysterical cry-babies of the troll army weep through a veil of tears, soiling their pressed Fred Perry polo shirts, "If gender and race aren't determined by biology than people can be anything! Oh the madness!!" Many of my fellow left-wing queermos would now take the time to launch into some kind of complex post-modern argument about the nature of western civilization and dialectical materialism and blah, blah, blah. At the ripe old age of thirty, I've simply grown to old for this shit. I'll leave the intellectual hair-splitting to younger minds and longer attention spans. My only response to what can only be accurately described as the rise of voluntary tribalism is, so the fuck what? If race, gender, and sexuality are fluid concepts then why shouldn't they be at least semi-optional?

Many indigenous American tribal nations took a similar approach, accepting escaped slaves and impoverished paupers into the fold as long as they committed themselves to the tribal order. Even that pillar of Prussian nationalism, Oswald Spengler preached that race was not defined by blood but rather by shared ideals. So what if Rachel Dolezal is whiter than a bleached gym sock? Or Ward Churchill has less Indian blood than George Custer? Or that I identify as a lesbian with a stubby cock and a six o'clock shadow? We've all chosen our tribes and devoted ourselves completely to serving the only communities that feel like home to us. I may not have chosen to be non-binary but I did choose to leave the closet and embrace my spirit above my biology and it saved my life. Why shouldn't everybody be afforded that same opportunity? Isn't this the logical outcome of embracing voluntaryism and individuality?

This may also be the best way to hobble racism and rise above the incessant bitching of identity politics. If we're all whatever the fuck we want then what really matters? As I noted above, class is the real game changer here. When it all comes down to it, the real deciding factor in a capitalist society is cold hard cash and the power it affords. Things like race, gender, religion, and sexuality serve the state as distractions from the common thread that ties us all together. Black kids in Ferguson have far more common ground with rednecks in the Ozarks than the millionaire uncle toms in the Congressional Black Caucus. Honky Rust-Belt casualties in Youngstown have far more reasons to vote for a black radical like Ajamu Baraka than a Wall Street corporate welfare queen like Trump. As I said here before in the wake of the Charlottesville brouhaha, we're all niggers and faggots in the eyes of the one percent.

So pick a tribe, any tribe, dearest motherfuckers. Loose yourself from the shackles of identity tyranny and come together to smash the state that divides us against ourselves and our radical individuality.

Peace, Love, & Empathy- CH

Soundtrack; songs that influenced this post.

* Cult of Personality by Living Colour
* Beast of Burden by the Rolling Stones
* She Walks On Me by Hole
* Absolutely Sweet Marie by Bob Dylan
* See America Right by the Mountain Goats
* All Along the Watchtower by the Jimi Hendrix Experience
* Say It Loud- I'm Black and I'm Proud by James Brown
* Brown Sugar by the Rolling Stones
* Personality Crisis by New York Dolls


  1. I don't know about the proposed ideas here, but the author makes good points about the problems of nation-states, it being a European invention and how it seems to be a very (understatement) poor fit outside of Europe.

    there's 54 African countries but hundreds or thousands of nations. How is the nation-state model which is inherently based on "purity" supposed to work for it unless you get hundreds or thousands of countries, which if it happened would have to also involve (forced?) relocation of many to create that kind of "segregated purity." Concepts like purity and race as we know it are also fairly recent colonial inventions though and "race" as we know it or phenotype being so salient to identity is fairly recent.

    A lot of right-wingers talk about defending the nation-state with a frankly, alt-right undertone but (and poli-sci people make this mistake at least that guy) don't realize that nation-states are a recent invention and many nations were also recent, forced identities, including in Europe. The formation of nation-states in the 19th and 20th centuries involved suppressing and abolishing many identities (southern France used to be more Occitan in language and identity, etc)


  3. This part from the guardian article sticks out to me:


    In the world’s poorest countries, the picture is very different. Almost all those nations emerged in the 20th century from the Eurasian empires. It has become de rigueur to despise empires, but they have been the “normal” mode of governance for much of history. The Ottoman empire, which lasted from 1300 until 1922, delivered levels of tranquillity and cultural achievement that seem incredible from the perspective of today’s fractured Middle East. The modern nation of Syria looks unlikely to last more than a century without breaking apart, and it hardly provides security or stability for its citizens.

    Empires were not democratic, but were built to be inclusive of all those who came under their rule. It is not the same with nations, which are founded on the fundamental distinction between who is in and who is out – and therefore harbour a tendency toward ethnic purification. This makes them much more unstable than empires, for that tendency can always be stoked by nativist demagogues.

    Nevertheless, in the previous century it was decided with amazing alacrity that empires belonged to the past, and the future to nation states. And yet this revolutionary transformation has done almost nothing to close the economic gap between the colonised and the colonising. In the meantime, it has subjected many postcolonial populations to a bitter cocktail of authoritarianism, ethnic cleansing, war, corruption and ecological devastation.

    If there are so few formerly colonised countries that are now peaceful, affluent and democratic, it is not, as the west often pretends, because “bad leaders” somehow ruined otherwise perfectly functional nations. In the breakneck pace of decolonisation, nations were thrown together in months; often their alarmed populations fell immediately into violent conflict to control the new state apparatus, and the power and wealth that came with it. Many infant states were held together only by strongmen who entrusted the system to their own tribes or clans, maintained power by stoking sectarian rivalries and turned ethnic or religious differences into super-charged axes of political terror."

    1. "
      There was nothing stable about this cold war “stability”, but its devastation was contained within the borders of its proxy states. The breakup of the superpower system, however, has led to the implosion of state authority across large groups of economically and politically impoverished countries – and the resulting eruptions are not contained at all. Destroyed political cultures have given rise to startling “post-national” forces such as Islamic State, which are cutting through national borders and transmitting chaos, potentially, into every corner of the world.

      Over the past 20 years, the slow, post-cold-war rot in Africa and the Middle East has been exuberantly exploited by these kinds of forces – whose position, since there are more countries set to go the way of Yemen, South Sudan, Syria and Somalia, is flush with opportunity. Their adherents have lost the enchantment for the old slogans of nation-building. Their political technology is charismatic religion, and the future they seek is inspired by the ancient golden empires that existed before the invention of nations. Militant religious groups in Africa and the Middle East are less engaged in the old project of seizing the state apparatus; instead, they cut holes and tunnels in state authority, and so assemble transnational networks of tax collection, trade routes and military supply lines.

      Such a network currently extends from Mauritania in the west to Yemen in the east, and from Kenya and Somalia in the south to Algeria and Syria in the north. This eats away the old political architecture from the inside, making several nation states (such as Mali and the Central African Republic) essentially non-functional, which in turn creates further opportunities for consolidation and expansion. Several ethnic groups, meanwhile – such as the Kurds and the Tuareg – which were left without a homeland after decolonisation, and stranded as persecuted minorities ever since, have also exploited the rifts in state authority to assemble the beginnings of transnational territories. It is in the world’s most dangerous regions that today’s new political possibilities are being imagined.


      The west’s commitment to nation states has been self-servingly partial. For many decades, it was content to see large areas of the world suffer under terrifying parodies of well-established Western states; it cannot complain that those areas now display little loyalty to the nation-state idea. Especially since they have also borne the most traumatic consequences of climate change, a phenomenon for which they were least responsible and least equipped to withstand. The strategic calculation of new militant groups in that region is in many ways quite accurate: the transition from empire to independent nation states has been a massive and unremitting failure, and, after three generations, there needs to be a way out.

      But there is no possibility that al-Shabaab, the Janjaweed, Seleka, Boko Haram, Ansar Dine, Isis or al-Qaida will provide that way out. The situation requires new ideas of political organisation and global economic redistribution. There is no superpower great enough, any more, to contain the effects of exploding “quasi-states”. Barbed wire and harder borders will certainly not suffice to keep such human disasters at bay."


  5. Interesting post and article:[0]=68.ARDDNnWxxPceatX89zysdspexO9sGnO4mbARUk0-_f1Dh7w6mENzZt-puP1dR4QytIbQbYh8LqMkUzE2-lWIJwoIg6pHrgFkkmE4i5EhRqgQLSgV97vmg3_uObSG3KXp3PiLNOwWyZu5YE5Dx_RU1fq0YHV4fTPowPXw-CVwBLxazEqBiaB9dQ&__tn__=K-R

  6. BTW Nicky, I know you talked about how it angers you that shrink could potentially be hurting kids with her approach and how you were advised by people not to do much since it's not technically illegal and that even conversion therapy is legal in many places, but conversion therapy is actually illegal where you said you saw her:,1475435/

    So I suppose it might be a comfort to you to know that if she tries it on others she's actually breaking the law

    I used to live in the area but am not these days, and honestly, and I know it is your home, but PA can be a very, very reactive rather than proactive state and culture, and when I think about your struggles there, I feel sad because I think if you were somewhere (to put it bluntly) more progressive such as Seattle or the Twin Cities or even NYC, Toronto, etc or a state with more comprehensive ethics codes than PA's such as California, NY, Minnesota, etc etc, your journey would look different. It makes me happy to hear that you have many people supporting you, but sad to hear that you seem to be getting discouraged from doing much about it, and I don't point at any individual here, but it seems to be another symptom of what I see as PA's reactive-not-proactive, weird rules, "shit has to really hit the fan before anything gets done" culture.

    Where I live atm, I can assure you that there are many people here who would take what happened to you very, VERY seriously, and I guarantee you that you would be able to find therapists here who would validate your pain and not feel that you should forgive her. I can assure you that she would be a pariah at any clinic here and whether the state would have grounds (and my state has much much more comprehensive ethics codes than PA does), if that session occurred at a clinic here, and you reported it to the clinic, it would be taken VERY seriously. You would have many allies and supporters here who would not only sympathize/empathize, but be ready to actively help

  7. Also something that might help. But her mentors from whom she learned the BS from, they've lost their jobs and their clinic was shut down (this includes the guy who came up with that "autogynephilia" BS):

    Conversion therapy is also banned in Illinois where Northwestern is: