Why it is Not Statist to Participate
It started a few days ago with a tweet from Sal the Agorist, who is one of the most, if not the most, relevant agorist (the most logically consistent political ideology) on Twitter.
He’s since followed it up with a couple other tweets deriding those advocating for an armed defense of their rights. Whether he was doing this for laughs or to troll ‘boog bois’ is unknown. What is known is that Sal is wrong. He’s been successful in generating discourse on the subject, though, and what follows is a logical defense of Americans’ rights to freedom at the cost of blood. As Thomas Jefferson said best, “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
So, what is the “boogaloo?” It’s a term coined perhaps on 4chan, but also, more likely, by Twitter’s @CollapsitARian-15, Skip. It traces its lineage back to a movie called Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo, a sequel to a breakdancing film. It was, apparently (since I’ve never seen it), terrible, considered a $h!t show of sorts. It’s this very energy that collapsitarians (libertarians that believe freedom will only come about due to a collapse of the United States government, not through counter economics or, God(s) forbid, voting). It’s not, as the corporate media has suggested, a bloodthirst for a second civil war or a race war (and certainly not made up of white supremacists, nationalists, or Nazis (neo or otherwise)), but a sequel to the American Revolution, should the Federal government become unbearably tyrannical, which given their conduct during this pandemic, and the George Floyd protests, is not too far off. Some may, rightfully, argue this line has already been passed.
Why would Sal and others say only statists would partake in the boog’?
Against the Boog’
Sal has argued that taking part in the boog’ is inherently statist, under the belief that coordinated violence is something reserved for the State. This statement, and belief, must hold several loose assumptions in order to be true.
A major assumption in this position is the boogaloo would be initiatory violence, or the threat thereof. This, justifiably, would be immoral and statist, as both Sal and Sam Konkin (Samuel Edward Konkin III, SEKIII), the founder of agorism, have said on Twitter and in The New Libertarian Manifesto, respectively. A violent revolution only begets more violence once accomplished. There hasn’t been a single violent revolution throughout history where this hasn’t been the case.
A second assumption made to deem the boog’ statist and unwarranted, is the belief many innocent people would be harmed or killed by the boojahideen. If this, too, were true, it would mean the boogaloo would be illegitimate. The means justify the ends, not the other way around, no matter what Machiavellian consequentialists tell you.
Another point, not necessarily an assumption, is an interpretation of Konkin’s teachings. Sal claims SEKIII meant private security firms would take up the fighting and defense of agoras when the State would retaliate after counter economics was successful. It wouldn’t be individuals, whole societies, or militias who would fight the State when the agora became too big and would compete with the State for resources (taxes vs voluntary trade).
For the Boog’
The number one reason participation in the boog’ is an anarchist position, rather than a statist one, is the simple fact self-defense is not statist. In virtually any anarchist movement, self-defense is an accepted concept. This applies to State actors infringing on individuals’, or communities’, rights. The boogaloo is a self-defense movement against police, the State’s arm in enforcing its being and its decrees. At the risk of sounding like a communist, or collectivist, self-defense can be a community operation. When the State (police) infringe on a community’s rights, they, as a community, have the right to self-defense. If one policeman shoots one community member, and none of the other police shoot, or restrain the offending officer, the community has the right to light the police up. The only argument I can see against this is one person doesn’t have the right to self-defense when another person was the victim, but that’s an extremely weak argument and wouldn’t hold up to any reasonable anarchist who would normally advocate for the defense of self and innocents around them.
Nobody seriously affiliated with the boogaloo movement believes in killing innocent people. They don’t believe “collateral damage” is a valid concept. Killing innocent people “for the greater good” is a communist endeavor and is incongruent with anarchist goals, specifically agorist ones. This specifically refutes assumption two above about why the boog’ is statist. There is no intention to hurt, let alone kill, anybody who is not an active threat to someone’s (or a community’s) property rights. Nobody in the movement advocates for any action that would compromise an innocent person’s life or wellbeing.
Sal’s first assumption is incorrect, too. Nobody wants initiatory violence. This goes back to the point above. A boog’ would only happen under self-defense circumstances. The only time I could see this is if the State actively declared war on its citizens, and boojahideen members conducted targeted attacks on State agents engaged in said war. Even so, this wouldn’t be called initiatory violence, strictly speaking, since a declaration of war means everybody participating in the war is a combatant and can voluntarily exit the war if so desired. The threat of force (coercion) is a zero-aggression principle violation and would subject the violator to appropriate restitution. A declaration of war is a threat of force and would be met with commensurate actions, nothing inconsistent with agorist or anarchist values.
The third point against the boogaloo is wholly invalid. SEKIII is vague about how the State’s attack on the agora would be repelled in The New Libertarian Manifesto and An Agorist Primer. Relying on a security firm for self-protection exclusively is antithetical to anarchist beliefs. Nobody is more responsible for your defense than yourself, and there’s no reason to suggest that an agora wouldn’t have the means to defend itself from outside threats (the State), although private security firms would certainly aid in defeating State incursions.
The boogaloo is a defense of human rights violations by State actors. It’s not racial in any regard. It’s not an offensive action that would rightfully be called a zero-aggression principle violation. It’s the last-ditch, defensive effort of free men against a tyrannical government. The only part that can be ceded to the anti-boog’ camp is that if a single innocent person (collateral or otherwise) is killed by any boojahideen fighter, the entire movement is forfeited as the means justify the ends and both have to be had without aggression.