Winning the Argument or Winning the Fight?

This article was written by a Thames Valley Solidarity Federation member for Issue 3 of The Oxfly, a local anarchist newsletter produced and distributed in Oxford. It argues that winning the argument is all very well but society "is not a debating chamber but a power struggle between different groups with competing interests" - and we should fightback accordingly.

There has been a lot of talk in the anti-cuts movement about the importance of ‘winning the argument’. This strategy holds that the best way to go about fighting attacks on wages, living conditions and services is to point out the flaws in the pro-cuts arguments and suggest alternative policies which would avoid the need for cuts.

If Voting could Change the System . . . the libertarian case for direct democracy

Politics is the art of
governing mankind by deceiving them.

Benjamin Disraeli

One of the defining tenets setting libertarian socialism apart from authoritarian political traditions of both left and right, is an unshirking commitment to the principles of direct democracy. This is the means advocated by anarchists for exercising and enabling genuinely participative decision making in all domains of human life. Rejecting hierarchical organisation, we argue that both parliamentary “democracy” and totalitarianism have the same intensions – to maintain the distinction between leaders and led, rulers and ruled. Both, in the final analysis, are designed to ensure our passive acceptance of a system that oppresses us.