In The Game Of Thrones Of Political Reality Leftism Only Exists In Dignity/Integrity & Self Respect

The lunacy of believing that a child of three or four who has been breathing fresh air for less than 1,825 days would know enough about self and gender and sexuality to have any sort of meaningful, certainty about their metaphysical identity contrary to anatomical parts is as deviously neoliberal as companies contributing to environmental degradation creating marketing with the purpose of convincing people to be more ecofriendly.

Let it be clear, that what this essay argues is that there is no such thing as leftist theory that lacks dignity and encourages the effacement of dignity for ANY gender or sexual identity.

The modern (within the last ten years) trend of gender creative parenting is as Quixotic as the individual becoming the savior of the planet. This is not to say that a child can’t internally discern that they are transgender or have another nonnormative identity but parents should not be establishing a revolution with their child as the vanguard. You might ask, “Why is that the case?” Well, while nonnormative gender and sexual identity is valid – it is noncognitive to observers. And this matters because a person can look like A but be Z but when K looks and sees that person as A, that person will not be able to logic their way into changing K’s mind. The epistemological and metaethical idea of the is-ought problem is not just a matter of philosophy, it is also a matter of identity and relation with others. And so, in this case, a parent’s efforts at rearing will be confronted with the identity of their child in relation to others and the desire of others.

Many theories operating within identity politics create scripts of naivety akin to religious piousness. And what this does to the impressionable is problematic! The vanguard if you will, is not going to have the confidence to become who they want to be if they are afraid or don’t come to terms with the fact that they are existing in a script that might be contraire to who they will want to be. This point is made because parents need to remember that the goal is to offer dignity to their children so that the children become adults who practice dignity and self-respect.

Let it be clear, that what this essay argues is that there is no such thing as leftist theory that lacks dignity and encourages the effacement of dignity for ANY gender or sexual identity.

Now, let’s start from the beginning. Put aside your Kropotkin. Put aside your Marx. Put aside your Žižek. Put Aside your Davis. Put aside your Butler. And actually, think about how to get rid of oppression. No, not think about what other people thought but what you think. Yes, indeed the poststructuralist reader might say “There is no outside-text” and to that The Groundup will say reread Derrida because he was not discounting creativity but was critiquing the idea of true forms or essences. Indeed, I do not disagree with Derrida. I am not creating as a wizard might but rather, just as Marx and Davis did, I am borrowing. I am bringing the scholarship of philosophers like Hume and A.J. Ayer and G.E. Moore and C.L. Stevenson and bringing their work into the identity politics conversation. I am establishing an actual metaethical and epistemological turn in leftist theory. I am establishing a realpolitik of leftism.

After you have thought for a moment about how to get rid of oppression, explore what you think of as oppressive and what you think of as non-oppressive. I would suggest material exploration of things you have never materially analyzed for oppressive and non-oppressive qualities. I suggest this because many people and organizations don’t do any sort of investigation and just believe whatever they want to and will live out their lives or organizational existence believing things that may or may not be true. Here is an example of a belief that one organization, the national u.s. anarchist organization Black Rose/Rosa Negra Anarchist Federation, holds that is not true. This critique was presented previously in The GroundUp article “Business Elite And Their Occam's Razor View Of Labor.” The critique is as follows:

[Black Rose/Rosa Negra Anarchist Federation] have a text called “Why Sectoral Analysis?” and it reads:
“The traditional actors of struggle that Latin American leftists have identified are workers, students, neighbors and peasants. These are considered to be distinct actors of struggle because they have: 1) Problems that affect them immediately and their immediate interests, 2) Traditions of struggle and organization sprouting out from these set of problems and interests, and 3) A common place or activity in society (Jose Antonio Gutierrez D., The Problems Posed by the Concrete Class Struggle and Popular Organization).
“With an analysis of who these main actors of struggle are in the u.s. and of their unique relationships, demands and history, Black Rose can frame our organizing around these actors, creating broad sectors of struggle. The u.s. does not have a really existing peasant class, so that’s something that we do not need to include as a major sector.”
This is a major flaw in theorization and it is theorization that demonstrates a lack of material engagement with reality. A clear example of how material peasantry in the u.s. exists is through the migrant farmworker. New Deal politics (unless individual states have passed bills that force labor demands) prevent farmworkers from accessing the federal minimum wage. They are unable to unionize. And immigration and migrant laws tether workers to a dependency on the farm and farmer and establish a paternalism to the farmer that is different yet similar to the alienation that peasants of the Middle Ages felt towards their rulers (many truly believed that it was a king’s divine right to rule over them). These laborers can be understood and should be understood as neo-serfs. Hotel workers are neo-serfs as well. Restaurant workers and retail workers are cleanly peasants as well but they are in a considerably better position given that they can collectively bargain because they are not barred from creating unions – they are neo-peasants but not neo-serfs.

What this means is that if you find after a material analysis that certain things do oppress or certain things don’t oppress then the theory that says otherwise should be discarded. Now, this can’t be done when someone is in the formative stages of life. There is no way to verify precisely how a particular parenting strategy will impact a child’s life during the formative stages. Just as how chess opening theory is not theory in the sense of being equivalent to a scientific hypothesis but rather, it is merely judgment about what is good and bad. Moral judgments and leftism are therefore not compatible. Our “Boo!” and “Hurrah!” do not matter in the middle and end game.

Now, there is actual research and theory of the middle and endgame in chess. Some examples include blockades, prophylaxis, weak squares and over-protection. Additionally, after learning the function of each piece, the best way to learn chess is to learn the end game first. The goal of chess is to checkmate a king. Learning how to actually checkmate a king is essential. If you don’t learn how to properly checkmate prepare for stalemates or worse, prepare to lose.

So, how do we actually eliminate oppression?

How do we topple a system?

You can’t make accurate, impactful decisions in complex situations if you’re not confident in your ability to deliver a full point when it matters most. Learn what actually exists rather than assume. Just as the parent should know that the little path they make for their child is not the revolution, the chess player should know that no first move establishes the victory for either white or black. Yes, there are awful openings that can result in Fool’s Mate just as how parents can do awful damage with abuse but egregiousness aside, the beginning is just that – a beginning.

A beginning is important but its not the middle. And it is not the end. And in chess, playing backwards to forwards in your mind allows you to stop, and think about the long-term weaknesses and strengths of your positions before you start making moves.

Parents and many so-called leftist theorists will create a script for their child or reader like how a Sokolsky Opening or Queen’s Gambit or French Defense is a script and then demand that this script be followed irrespective of the response of others. But the state and the right wing and relationships of all kinds will challenge scripts. And so, rather than working towards a massive blunder or the tragic comedy of a misplayed ending (the Russian Revolution is a popular example) it must be the case that dignity gets refocused as what makes leftism actually leftism. It is essential to live with dignity. It is essential to instill dignity and self respect rather than instill a script so that children can make dignified choices in their middle and end game. It is essential to have dignity in response to oppression – initially to actually know who or what the enemy is in actuality rather than assuming who or what the enemy is – so that the endgame can be won.

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