Subject: That Lovable Zizek Guy
>BS: You describe the internal structure of anarchist groups as being
>authoritarian. Yet, the model popular with younger activists today is
>explicitly anti-hierarchical and consensus-oriented. Do you think
>there's something furtively authoritarian about such apparently
>Zizek: Absolutely. And I'm not bluffing here; I'm talking from
>personal experience. Maybe my experience is too narrow, but it's not
>limited to some mysterious Balkan region. I have contacts in England,
>France, Germany, and more - and all the time, beneath the mask of
>this consensus, there was one person accepted by some unwritten rules
>as the secret master. The totalitarianism was absolute in the sense
>that people pretended that they were equal, but they all obeyed him.
>The catch was that it was prohibited to state clearly that he was the
>boss. You had to fake some kind of equality. The real state of
>affairs couldn't be articulated. Which is why I'm deeply distrustful
>of this "let's just coordinate this in an egalitarian fashion." I'm
>more of a pessimist. In order to safeguard this equality, you have a
>more sinister figure of the master, who puts pressure on the others
>to safeguard the purity of the non-hierarchic principle. This is not
>just theory. I would be happy to hear of groups that are not caught
>in this strange dialectic.
What if you have one of these secret leaders, but everyone says, "yeah, he's like a boss, but I guess we really don't care right now" and then, later, when the people feel power and decide to take power, the boss leaves?
Is that better because the fact of this "leader" existing is out in the open? Is it worse, because the there's some kind of pathological behavior by the "leader"? Is it worse because the "followers" aren't immediately suspicious of all leaders? Is it good if the people following are doing so (in their mind) willingly?
Who to depose in the IMC? honj, eccay, naan, cink, lana, cram, tar? Who will lead the overturn/overchurn?
Is egalitarianism equal at all times, or is it a churning, changing hierarchy?
Do anti-hierarchical people just have a problem with authority? Are they control freaks, who can't stand it when someone else exerts control over them? Are they submissives afraid of their own desires for powerlessness?
Why is the target the forces of globalization? They are fond of using forms of consensus for the same reasons the globalfobics are: it works to build teams for direct action. Their idea of consensus is to find, not a fair consensus, but a consensus for action. Ostensibly, that's what anarchistic consensus is, as well, but more often, it seems the goal is to build consensus of thought.