This is a booklet against elections, parties, constitutional government and voting. It reprints eight essays on Anarchist politics by Charles W. Johnson, Kevin Carson, and Roderick T. Long – and a special guest appearance by Randolph Bourne – on the failure of electoral politics, the structural limits that quarantine and neutralize any threat of reform from within party politicking, and the possibility and promise of radical activism and d.i.y. social transformation, beyond the quagmire of majoritarian votes, party politicking, political lobbying, legalistic reforms and elected government.
“I am boycotting the election today. I hope that you will too. I will not vote for any candidate for political office, Democrat, Republican, or other, no matter what promises they make, and no matter what party they come from. I do not support them as candidates, and I do not support the oligarchical political machine they represent. If the last few election cycles prove anything, they prove that power-plays beat promises every time.
“It’s not just a few radicals who have noticed something is deeply wrong; it’s not just a handful of malcontents who know that we need a radically different direction, away from the insane and destructive Beltway consensus — away from this government’s wars, this government’s bail-outs, this government’s secret surveillance, catastrophic economic polices, shameless fear-mongering and constant, unremitting power-grabs. But people have HOPE’d and parties have CHANGE’d and if it all accomplished anything at all, it was only to prove that we’re never going to get anything but more of the same as long as we maintain a false hope in electoral politics.
“If what you want is social progress, there is no shortcut around principled agitation, grassroots social movements, community organizing, civil disobedience and direct action. There is no low-calorie political substitute for D.I.Y. social transformation. Elections and party politicking are no way to make a revolution. They’re not even a way to make small change. . . .”
- “Don’t Vote.” Charles W. Johnson. Rad Geek People’s Daily weblog. November 2, 2010.
- “‘Funding?’ More like, ‘Is.’” Charles W. Johnson. Rad Geek People’s Daily, May 24, 2012.
- “The Joke of Democratic Accountability,” Kevin A. Carson. Center for a Stateless Society column, September 27, 2012.
- “Tea and Sympathy,” Roderick T. Long. Austro-Athenian Empire, April 18, 2009.
- “I am shocked!—shocked!—to find that politics is going on in here!” Charles W. Johnson. Rad Geek People’s Daily weblog. February 25, 2008.
- “The Party State.” Selections from The State (1919) by Randolph S. Bourne, and from “Show Me What Elected Government Looks Like. . .” by Charles W. Johnson in the Rad Geek People’s Daily weblog, August 28, 2012.
- “The Statist ‘We Don’t.’” Charles W. Johnson. Rad Geek People’s Daily. September 17, 2008.
- “Counter-Economic Optimism.” Charles W. Johnson. February 7, 2009.
Introduced October 2012.