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Пишет Misha Verbitsky ([info]tiphareth)
by Bob Black

Unless you have lived, as I have, in Berkeley, California, “hypocrisy” is only a word to you. Until you have experienced the pustulate politics of the Bay Area left, you don’t know the depths to which the left is capable of plunging when there are too many leftists around. The self-styled anarchists there are no better than the other leftists, merely weaker. This was painfully obvious when I wrote The Baby and the Bathwater in 1985(1) and in 30 years there has been no improvement. None.

As I’ve explained,(2) on August 7, 2015, I was to speak at a “book launching party” for my latest book Instead of Work, at the Long Haul infoshop in Berkeley. Aragorn knew of specific violent threats against me made by his Facebook Friend, Elliot Hughes, a local leftist paranoid schizophrenic (a not too atypical figure in the Bay Area). He has not denied it: he is too important. Only 3 days before my “party,” Hughes crashed the Anarchist Study Group – which meets at the Long Haul (another Aragorn enterprise) — whose topic was my “The Abolition of Work,” to demand an opportunity to denounce me as a “snitch.” The group declined. But Aragorn never told me this, when we had lunch two days later. Was it any surprise that, knowing that I would be there, Hughes showed up in the same place the next day? Only to me.

This Hughes, reputedly homeless, with no visible means of support, attends almost every local anarchist event, as well as flying around the country to get himself arrested (briefly). One might reasonably suspect him of police ties. But he assaulted me for being a “snitch,” mischaracterizing an incident of 19 years before involving another violent lunatic, Jim Hogshire.(3) Leftists have tirelessly exaggerated and promoted this private matter to justify banning my books and refusing to engage my ideas. Anyway, Aragorn & Co. knowingly allowed Hughes into the building where he brutally beat me up, and then they hustled him out to safety before I could regain consciousness and deal with him.

The Undertheorized Anarchist Police Phobia

It’s past time to be rid of this senseless and hypocritical pretext for censorship and violence. Nearly all normal people sooner or later, for good or bad reasons, have occasion to call the police. Anarchists do it too, although they rarely admit it. If normal people knew that anarchists, who provide no alternative, object to their calling the police for protection, normal people will dismiss anarchists as lunatics, which in some cases is the right diagnosis. As I’ve said, “every time I phone the anarchist militia, the line is busy.” I did in fact call Seattle anarchists for help after Hogshire nearly killed me. They did nothing. They did worse than nothing. One, Jim Koehnline, refused me shelter after Hogshire drove me out into the night at gunpoint. The other, my publisher Mike Hoy of Loompanics, whom I considered a personal friend, sided with Hogshire. I’ve since suspected Hoy of complicity, as I now suspect Moser of complicity. Indeed there are uncanny parallels in the situations. In both, my publishers set me up in those situations. In both, they knowingly failed to inform me of possible danger. In both, my assailants were aware that I was only in town for a brief visit and could never react directly.

Now, I am better read in anarchism than most of my friends, and probably all of my enemies. I have found nothing in the scriptures forbidding the calling of the police. Not that I respect any scriptures. I cannot be accused of hypocrisy because you will not find a prohibition on this practice in my scriptures. It’s easy to foreswear calling the police if you are too insignificant to have enemies. I reject moralistic and doctrinal abstractions, which unpleasantly remind me of my legal education. Nothing is more to me than myself.

In the early 1990’s sometime, I was once mailed a bomb by a close friend of Ivan Stang of the Church of the SubGenius, which I had criticized in a review of High Weirdness by Mail. John Hagen-Brenner, who did a lot of the art for the book, was an old friend of Stang (real name: Douglass St. Clair Smith) from prep school. I called the police because the bomb, which was apparently only partially exploded, was sitting on the floor of my living room. They asked who might have sent it. I was initially baffled. But then I thought of a possible SubGenius tie-in.(4) I mentioned the book review. Police aren’t noted for their sense of humor, but this cop remarked that, this sure was “high weirdness by mail.” I didn’t mention Hagen-Brenner, but I mentioned a name which led back to him. The postal service is quite humorless when it comes to bombs in the mails. H-B pled guilty to a misdemeanor and got off with community service – teaching art classes at a community college! Nobody has ever publicly criticized me for calling the police that time. What else was I supposed to do? Forever tiptoe around the bomb? I received one private criticism from an anarchist. I told him that there was no anarchist bomb squad in my vicinity.(5)

What – and Who? – Is a Snitch?

The only intelligible word that I or anyone understood out of Hughes before he slugged me up to three times in the head was “snitch.” When later I complained to Aragorn Moser about the trap he set, he called me a snitch – and then had the effrontery to call himself my friend. I kid you not: I would rather destroy Aragorn Moser than Elliot Hughes. If even my friends repeat this ancient lie, no wonder I am fair game for crazies. I am not a snitch. A snitch is a paid police informer. Someone who just calls the police is not a snitch, he is just someone who calls the police. I remember people who say things like that about me.

Hughes may be a snitch. Hogshire, according to one of his many inconsistent versions of our encounter, is a snitch, in the Hughes/Moser sense of the word – he claimed he called the police on me. Caitlin Manning of Processed World may be, in that sense, a snitch. Chris Carlsson of Processed World is, in that sense, a snitch. He got me arrested in 1985, and he publicly announced that he would press charges. That was why I left town, never to return. Yet he has been a keynote speaker at the San Francisco Anarchist Bookfair. (He’s not an anarchist, but, their keynote speakers never are.) Why, after 30 years, has he not ever been called out, much less beaten up? Because he is a leftist.(6) Why have I been castigated, censored, libeled, and beaten up many times? Because I am an anarchist.

Lierre Keith: A Case Study in Anarcho-Leftist Hypocrisy

Like Chris Carlsson (and Ward Churchill, and other statists), Lierre Keith has been a keynote speaker at the San Francisco Anarchist Bookfair – a place so dangerous to me that, when I visited it a few years ago, Aragorn & Co. provided a bodyguard. And Carlsson had previously been warned that, if anything happened to me, something would happen to him. Why weren’t similar precautions taken at the Long Haul? Keith is published and promoted by Ramsay Kanaan’s PM Press. She is (with Derrick Jensen) co-dictator of a cult called Deep Green Resistance, which has proven itself to be very good at fund-raising, but no good for anything else. She is a lesbian “radical feminist” authoritarian of the type I’ve long since criticized.(7) She is publicly and viciously transphobic.

After having long been a fanatic vegan, she became a fanatic anti-vegetarian and wrote a book about it. As I have never been a vegetarian, her change of opinion is of no interest to me. I’m not a food fanatic. I eat what I like. My vegan friends have never been self-righteous about it. But people with authoritarian personalities are always self-righteous even if they have switched ideologies. It’s less important to them what they believe in, than that they have something to project their will-to-power with. To me, militant proselytizing for meat eating is much more preposterous than advocacy of plant eating. I do a lot of that too.

At the Bookfair, where Keith was speaking to promote her PM Press anti-vegetarian book, somebody pied her. No one has ever claimed responsibility. I object to that. If you do something like that, you should take responsibility for it, and explain your reasons. I would not have pied her. But it was what she did next that matters.

After the pie hit, her first words were, “Call the police.” Call the police! And, at the (Politically Correct) Anarchist Bookfair, somebody did! And the police arrived. Several online accounts describe her as talking to the police, and as signing some paper for them. (Just like Chris Carlsson.) She claimed that the pie included “cayenne pepper.” This is what they always say. There is no evidence of that. There’s a photo of her a few minutes later, with wet hair, but not otherwise exhibiting any harm to her eyes or anywhere else. Compare this to my being knocked unconscious.

Peter Werbe, the oldest old fart at the decrepit Fifth Estate, wrote a letter to Anarchy magazine which credulously repeated this phony story. Unfortunately for Werbe, one of the editors of the magazine, Lawrence Jarach, is an EMS first responder who is familiar with what happens to eyes when they are exposed to hot pepper irritants (such as pepper spray, which the police freely use). In the photo taken a few minutes later, Keith looks bedraggled, but her eyes are neither swollen nor red.(8)

And this occasioned a flashback for me. In 1985, I threw some rancid yogurt in the face of Chris Carlsson in downtown San Francisco.(9) This was when he beat me up, spit in my face, stole my ID and $120 out of my wallet, and got me arrested. He claimed that there were “steel pellets” in the yogurt, which were never found. As Lawrence said at the time, “maybe they dissolve on contact?”

Calling the Cops: The Double Standard

Now then, Lierre Keith’s cop-calling, in 2010, is an undisputed fact. It follows that, as Aragorn and Hughes and “Lefty Hooligan”/George Matiasz (in Maximum Rocknroll) understand the word, she is a snitch. As such, she should not be suffered to speak in the Bay Area or anywhere that Bay Area leftist avengers may get to. However, she has since spoken many times in the Bay Area, many times in California, and a few times also elsewhere on the West Coast – all after she called the cops. She was pied on March 14, 2010. This is a very incomplete report on her subsequent California speaking schedule (taken from her website):

Sept. 11: Petaluma, CA, spoke at Terra Firma Farms.
Sept. 12. Carson City, CA, spoke at the Nevada City (CA) United Methodist Church! I’ve never stooped that low.
Sept. 17-18. Spoke at Redwood Writers’ Conference, Crescent City, CA.
Feb. 15. Arcata, CA, speaking at Humboldt State University.
Feb. 18 & 19. Spoke in San Francisco and Oakland at film screenings.
May 13-15, San Francisco Co-led a Deep Green Resistance workshop.
Nov. 12. Spoke at Occupy Oakland.
Nov. 13. San Francisco. Spoke at a Deep Green Resistance workshop.
June 16, San Diego. Spoke at the “Stop Porn Culture” 4th annual conference.
Oct. 23, Crescent City. Spoke at Wild River Coast Food Day.
Nov. 5, Crescent City, CA. Spoke at a film showing.
Dec. 13, Crescent City. Book signing.
Carmel Valley, CA. Guest on KRXA radio.
(Many other radio interviews; I don’t know where the stations are.)
2014: Many interviews. (Nothing listed for 2015.)

I now learn that the snitch lives in northern California – probably Crescent City, where she has a post office box and makes frequent public appearances. A well-travelled young man like Hughes could easily find here there. She lives there, but it’s not even safe for me to visit.


(1) Which my publisher, LBC Books, declines to post online, citing technical difficulties. This book is a wooden shoe which fits LBC impresario Aaron “Aragorn” Moser like an iron fist in a velvet glove.

(2) “The Epistle to Aragorn,” available from me at abobob51@verizon.net. When may we expect to see it posted, with 40 other of my texts, at The Anarchy Library? Not anytime soon. Aragorn controls that too. This is under revision.

(3) “My Date with Jim Hogshire,”widely available online.

(4) When I publicized the bombing, an inner-circle SubGenius, Pastor Buck Naked, guffawed that Bob Black has really lost it this time! My insanity is an ancient trope, from Processed World to some clownish Boston-area small press publishers (not worth discussing) to SubGenius to countless anarcho-leftists to – Aragorn. Nobody ever notices I am insane until after I criticize him. This is what Thomas Szasz called “defamation disguised as diagnosis.”

(5) Some people have claimed it wasn’t a” real” bomb, it was just a joke – intended to, as Hagen-Brenner told the judge, “startle the recipient.” In other words, terrorism. However, in Federal District Court in Los Angeles (where he lives), he pled guilty to mailing me an “improvised explosive device.” I have his plea bargain hearing on cassette.

(6) In 1993, Carlsson was given a Local Hero Award by the San Francisco Bay Guardian, one of those obnoxious weekly events-listing and reviews throwaways with some “progressive” political filler. I believe it is defunct, as is the East Bay Express, which I once tricked into paying me (I used a pseudonym), $100 to publish my review of – the Loompanics Catalog! It’s the one which appeared, as “The Best Book Catalog in the World,” in my book The Abolition of Work and Other Essays (Port Townsend, WA: Loompanics Unlimited, n.d. [1986]), 153-158.

(7) Black, “Feminism as Fascism,” The Abolition of Work and Other Essays, 133-138.

(8) This whole thing seems so phony that I suspect that Keith arranged this as a publicity stunt. She was there to promote her latest book.

(9) Why yogurt? Because one of his Processed World flunkeys, Boni Thoreson, previously tried to pour a carton of yogurt over my head in a Haight-Ashbury supermarket. She had a big crush on Carlsson. My then girl friend Donna Kossy thwarted the attack. I later made a poster, “The Yogurt and the Commissar.” Donna made one too. In San Francisco, it was usually my Last International posters which got me laid.

(10) Conceptually, the distinction is important. Behaviorally, it is irrelevant.

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