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  Last updated: November 23, 2009
Ben Seattle
information theorist • infrastructure architect

• building and using weapons of information warfare
• political transparency will serve the consciousness and organization of the proletariat

 

What's New?  •   Overview  •   Email Lists  •   Theory  •   Antiwar Work

Laying the Foundation of an Independent News Service Based on the Masses
(this section includes Indymedia criticisms and proposals)

Digital Infrastructure  •   Culture  •   Victory  •   Charts of the Future  •   Tour
Annual Reports  •   Animated Buttons  •   Want to Help?  •   Feedback  •   Contact

Contents
What's on this page?
An overview of the work
    of Ben Seattle

1. creating weapons of information war
2. helping to lay the foundation for
    organizations of information war

Ben's email lists
• POF-100 • POF-200 • Theorist
• Proletarian Democracy • Red Team

Theoretical work
Confronting the crisis of theory that has paralyzed the revolutionary movement
• Proletarism
• Anarcho-leninist Debate on the State
• Proletarian Democracy
• 17 Theses

Antiwar work
• Independent anti-war leaflets
• Work with the Seattle
  Anti-Imperialist Committee
• Open struggel over decisive tasks

A News Service
   Based on the Masses

• The News Refinery
• Indymedia criticism and proposals

Digital Infrastructure
• The Attention Refinery
• The Red Team:
   Now building the digital nervous
   system of the working class

Cultural work / criticism
• Cartoon Guide to the Left in Seattle
• Desert Goddesses Saturate Emergent
   Community with Eye-Candy
   (The significance of "Burning Man")
• The History of the Universe

Annual reports
• A concrete example
  of political transparency

Architecture for Victory
• How the proletariat will use information war to mobilize millions
for the overthrow of bourgeois rule

Charts of the future
• Penetration of digital
  communications:
  world population vs. time
• Economic sectors in
  the transition period following
  the overthrow of bourgeois rule
• Local left ecosystem • Seattle 2002

Animated buttons
• by popular demand
Tour
• A popular survey of Ben's work
  using political ads from the forum
  at: Communism.org

Want to help?
• The three most important things
   you can do to help

feedback
• What do you think?
contact
• How to contact Ben Seattle
What's new?
What has Ben been working on recently?
My main focus at this time is the development
of the Media Weapon community of activists.

The discussion list for this community is the pof-200 list.
My more recent posts can be seen in the public archives of the theorist list. The wiki for the Media Weapon community is here.

(The most practical way for you to keep up with the life of the Media Weapon community without having to read all the pof-200 message traffic is to subscribe to the theorist list.)

  November 2009 update UP   


I wrote a major essay Conscious Forces Will Bring Us Certain Victory as part of my (delayed) annual report. Here is the subtitle:

How in the coming period of intensified class struggle,
activists will use open communities and information war
to win ever-increasing attention and support and
create the conscious forces that will bring us certain victory


I wrote a short and highly concentrated essay in July 2008, SAIC and the struggle for sobriety, which attempts to confront the most fundamental problems related to building revolutionary organization. I recommend this short and easy-to-read essay to all of my readers. It includes the following key passage:
The only realistic and reliable way to overcome self-deception
and maintain a clean and sober perspective is to strive to develop
a depth of humility equal in magnitude to our confidence in our principles
and the boldness of our vision. This means, above all, that we must
ask for help from one another for the purpose of keeping ourselves honest.
We need mass criticism. Mass criticism is a matter of life and death.
Mass criticism equals victory. The lack of mass criticism equals defeat.


I wrote a short essay with the aim of correcting some of the formulations Lenin used in "State and Revolution" that have not stood the test of time: A criticism of some problems in Lenin's "State and Revolution" .


As part of preparation for my reply to Eroc of the CVO I created chart showing the Timeline of Transition to Classless Society.

  June 2008 update UP   


I created a new wiki for our Media Weapon community.


Cargo-Cult Leninism vs. Information War
Workers' Rule: Is it Dead or Alive?
Ben replies to Eric Gordon
• May 16, 2008
• 7,000 words (main article)
+ 4 appendices
+ 5 diagrams

The question we
cannot escape concerns
the degeneration of
the Soviet and Chinese revolutions of 1917 and 1949. If these revolutions appeared to be successful and then degenerated -- does this mean that future attempts at establishing workers' rule will inevitably suffer the same fate?


How to Build the Party
of the Working Class

Ben Seattle • Feb 22, 2008
• 6500 words in one main article
10 sidebars + 2 diagrams + illustrations

The most important task for revolutionaries
in the present period is the creation of
a genuinely revolutionary organization (or system
of organizations) capable of uniting everything
healthy in the progressive and workers' movements
and laying the foundations of
a mass workers' party that can overcome
both the reformist and sectarian diseases and unite
the majority of the working class around a program
centered on the overthrow of bourgeois rule

• Main article: • Why do we need organization? • What form
will our organization take? • Party will emerge from network
• Network will self-organize around revolutionary news service
• Poles of attraction will emerge • The revolutionary pole
• The reformist pole • Competing agendas • Emergence of mass organization without reformists
• The experience of Russia (1903 to 1912) • The experience of the Communist International (1919 to 1935)
• Cargo-cult attempts to clone Lenin's party • We cannot "grow" a small group into a mass party
• Which is better ? Building a brick wall -- or casting a wide net ? • Can we build "a party of a new type" ?
• Cargo-cult method cannot create the revolutionary pole • Revolutionary core will emerge from primal struggle
• Charts: • Development of split in the Russian Party (1903 - 1911) • Party may emerge from a mass organization


          Reply to a cargo-cult Leninist:
Powerful Agitation Requires Confronting the Crisis of Theory
Ben Seattle • January 26, 2008 • 13,000 words
1. Intro: powerful agitation requires
    a marriage between our current
    struggles and our future goal
2. The politics of workers' rule --
    Many independent organizations
    will exist
3. The proposal to rename
    the communist movement
4. The struggle to build a party:
    community, political transparency
    and confronting the crisis of theory
5. Economics in the transition period:
    and the struggle of the working class
    to exercise control
6. The struggle for integrity:
    The issue is line, not author

   

  July 2007 update UP   


The open struggle over decisive tasks in the antiwar movement:

"Cargo-Cult Leninism" vs. Political Transparency
What principles of organization will serve
the antiwar and revolutionary movements?

The revolutionary mass organization that we need will rely
on the energy and experience of activists in open struggle
to resolve opposing views on the way forward
Ben Seattle • June 30, 2007 • 8800 words in 22 sidebars + illustrations

• "Information War" Program for SAIC • Where is my organization?
• What is political transparency? • The opposite of transparency (stonewalling)
• The relationship of the revolutionary mass organization to the mass of activists
Ben's "Information War" Program for SAIC

1) Reach out to a
national audience

2) Work to build
a community


3) Dare to talk
about our goal
• The problem with pragmatism • Is Ben a "black hat" ? • The "rate of information metabolism"
• Cargo cults and cargo-cult Leninism • Join our group – We can do your thinking for you
(Why do supporters of left-wing groups drink the kool-aid ?) • What is revolutionary theory?
(GLUE to hold us together? – a STICK to beat heretics? – or a LIGHT to help us see?)
• The Spectre of Endless Discussion • What is Ben’s idea of a "trend of trends"?
• Is Ben an anarchist ? (Watch out for his Trojan Horse!) • Showdown at final congress of MLP
• Confronting a refugee from theoretical needs of class struggle (Ben Seattle vs. Joseph Green)
• Foundations of revisionism ("Marxism-Leninism" is anti-Marxist, anti-Leninist & revisionist)

  May 2006 update UP   


The open struggle over decisive tasks in the antiwar movement:

• Letter to Comrade Edward:
   The Road to Information War
   A longer-term view of the tasks of building anti-imperialist and
   revolutionary organization in the U.S. in the early 21st century
  (May 2006)

• Why do we need to build an open community?
• The case for putting more of an effort into national distribution
• The case for developing theoretical tools that
   allow us to confront the more serious questions
We cannot ask the working class to sacrifice for this struggle if we cannot hold up the light of theory and illuminate the path to victory.

• Ben replies to Michael in Portland:
   Make Hay while the Sun Shines
   Building the movement on a solid foundation
   requires accountability and political transparency
  (May 2006)

We need a security culture to protect activists, and the movement, from harassment and intimidation from the state and from employers.

But we can't let this stop us from taking advantage of the current window of opportunity, in which we have the democratic rights of speech and organization, to openly share our experience and build focus on the principles that will make our movement powerful:

1. We must break from the stranglehold of reformist thinking and tactics
2. Powerful actions are based on mass action and the mass movement
3. Political disagreements must be openly discussed and debated

• Archive of public debate on the tasks and
  organizational needs of the antiwar movement:
   We need mass democracy
   Real organization cannot be built on a foundation of sand   (2001 - 2006)

If we can create a mass anti-imperialist organization where decisions and struggle are based on mass democracy -- then we will capture the imagination of serious activists everywhere -- and be in a position to change the dynamics of the entire antiwar movement. In other words: we will win.

On the other hand, if we fail to understand what mass democracy is -- then we will end up with a typical organization that will accomplish relatively little and which will eventually evaporate. In other words we will lose.


This page links to public discussion and debate concerning the future of the Seattle Anti-Imperialist Committee and links to comments by Ben, Frank and Joseph Green. Articles include:

    • Information war is central to building the movement
    • Frank retreats from his attempt to ban Ben
    • Frank on the Media Weapon community and the Crisis of Theory
    • Activists have the right to know what the fuck is going on
    • Are anti-imperialists afraid of open politics?
    • Real organization requires a commitment to transparency


The struggle for a news service based on the masses:


Can't happen here? It already has.
Ben complained about the excess of neo-nazi posts and comments on the Seattle Indymedia newswire and criticized the Indymedia editor
for not doing more to keep the site usable.
The editor responded by tampering with
and deleting Ben's comments.

What do we need
at Seattle Indymedia?

Indymedia must be run in
an open and democratic way

(May 2006)

Ben Seattle describes his experiences
(to date) with Seattle Indymedia and the Indymedia community and makes some constructive suggestions:

• No racist trash -- fewer crude, thoughtless
  and malicious comments on the newswire
  -- a higher signal-to-noise ratio
  (ie: be more like Portland Indymedia)

• Democratic rights for activists to discuss
  events and politics on the newswire
  (including the politics of Indymedia itself)

• An editorial collective which is
  responsive and accountable to
  the progressive community


Digital Infrastructure to serve the movement:

• The Attention Refinery   •  The next step in the evolution of wiki warfare
   • Overview • Outlining key features such as sister pages and attention posts  (May 2006)
   • Introduction • Why we need a new kind of wiki with: (a) individual zones of control
       (b) a column on all pages where readers can post comments and criticism
       (c) blog-like features (d) the ability to rate and filter pages and comments
   • Mockup • showing a sample page with main column and sidebar columns  (Feb 2006)

The Attention Refinery will be an ecosystem of parallel and connected blogs and wikis that serve as an arena for progressive activists in the Media Weapon community to talk to one another -- compete and cooperate -- organize our thinking -- discover and develop powerful and practical principles and projects -- resolve our contradictions in full view of friend and foe alike -- gradually assemble a common agenda -- and learn how to wage information war as an essential and decisive component of the class struggle -- so we can help mobilize the working class for the overthrow of bourgeois rule.

  November 2005 update UP   


The open struggle over decisive tasks in the antiwar movement:

• Proposal for the kind of anti-imperialist organization that our movement needs:
   The Open and Democratic Anti-Imperialist Network
   for Mass Action and Information War
  (November 2005)

•  mission statement
1. democratic rights
2. democratic (and accountable) decision-making
3. program of work to build a revolutionary channel


Antiwar leaflet:

• Hit them where it Hurts!   (Sept 2005)

Leaflet for the September 24, 2005 antiwar march in Seattle:

The anti-war movement will become an increasingly powerful social force as it breaks from bourgeois influence (ie: the orbit of the Democratic Party) and tells the masses the truth about the need to end the system of bourgeois rule:

• Introduction • Tired of begging for peace from the gods of war?
   • It is time to get off our knees and ...
   • Build a movement focused on a world without imperialism!

• How the Democratic Party and its flunkies plan to
  liquidate the antiwar movement with hot air about an "Exit Plan"

• Joint Statement against the influence of the
   imperialist Democratic Party and its numerous flunkies

• Cartoon Guide to the Left in Seattle   (Sept 2005)

• What kind of Organization
  does the antiwar movement need?

  An organization capable of overthrowing the system of imperialist rule
  cannot be built on a foundation of sand. Only principled, transparent
  and long-term collaboration between serious activists can:
  1. organize a decisive break from the confinement
      of liberal-imperialist politics,
  2. mobilize the masses in their millions and
  3. chart the course forward to a world without
      imperialist war or capitalist exploitation


Estimates of distribution:
Intro: 800 copies,     Organization article: 200 copies
Cartoon + Joint Statement: 2000 copies


The struggle for a news service based on the masses:

• The News Refinery / Proposal for news rating & filtering service  (July 2005)

   News and views to serve the working class, the antiwar movement and the struggle
   to end bourgeois rule -- posted, summarized, rated and filtered by activists like you

 

• Detailed proposal and mockup for democratic filters for Indymedia

  January 2005 update UP   


Antiwar leaflet:

• How to build a powerful antiwar movement   (January 2005)

Thousands of activists are giving thought to all questions related to the development of a more powerful antiwar movement. This leaflet represents an effort to directly confront the most serious questions related to the development of an antiwar movement that can deliver powerful blows against US imperialism’s war on Iraq.
• Organize ourselves!
Mass meetings and regular marches
• Politicize our movement and take it to the masses!
Use mass democracy to fight the influence of the Democratic Party
• Focus on our goal!
A world without bourgeois rule vs. begging for peace from the gods of war

-- Sidebar articles --
• The carrot and the stick:
   The great "secret" of how the bourgeoisie works to tame the antiwar movement
• The experience of the movement against the war in Vietnam
   illustrates what the bourgeoisie fear most


The open struggle over decisive tasks in the antiwar movement:

• My criticism of the work of NION which led to
    NION banning me from their public meetings   (January 2005)

• Parts 1 and 2 on the RCP's recent "Battle for the Future" campaign:   (January 2005)

   Part 1: Crying "Wolf" over fascism
      Hysteria about "fascism" serves to hide
      the essential role of the Democratic Party in
      the political and economic system of imperialism and
   Part 2: Nothing but Hot Air
      Talk of "proletarian democracy" without recognition of
      the central and decisive role of democratic rights
      is nothing but breezy nonsense.

  Theoretical work in 2004 UP   

• The Laws of Commodity Production
   for Dummies

   was written as part of The World for which We Fight,
   which was my concluding installment in the
   Anarcho-Leninist Debate on the State   (March 2004)

• Proletarism is anti-revisionist Marxism
   for the 21st century

From the Russian workers' movement (with experience in underground organizing against the rule of Brezhnev's "communists" and militant strikes under the rule of Yeltsin's "democrats") has come a proposal to recognize, with a new name, a decisive break with the treachery of the "communist" leadership -- which enslaved the working class and betrayed the revolutionary movement in a way comparable to the great betrayal of 1914. (Includes timeline history chart and forum for questions or comments) • (August 2004)

• An essay on culture examines the significance
  of the phenomenon known as "Burning Man":
   Desert Goddesses Saturate
   Emergent Community with Eye-Candy

   A community of artists opens a window into a human future based on a gift economy and the emergence of a deeper form of beauty   (September 2004)

It's easy to keep informed!

Get email updates twice a year

  No spam--just an email sent to you twice a year  

What's New?  •   Overview  •   Email Lists  •   Theory  •   Antiwar Work

Laying the Foundation of an Independent News Service Based on the Masses
(this section includes Indymedia criticisms and proposals)

Digital Infrastructure  •   Culture  •   Victory  •   Charts of the Future  •   Tour
Annual Reports  •   Animated Buttons  •   Want to Help?  •   Feedback  •   Contact
top
Overview
An overview of the work of Ben Seattle
1. creating weapons of information war

Today the phrase information war is often used to mean the deliberate sabotage of computer systems. But a new definition of this phrase is bound to emerge:


Information war will mean the open and systematic struggle for ideas on a mass scale in a world where digital communications systems are universal and work just fine--and the masses, (who have been shut up for most of history) discover that no force can stop them from making their voices heard.
My work is dedicated to unleashing the voices the masses. I work to build information and communication systems (portals, bulletin boards, web-based databases) that will allow news and ideas to be collected and refined thru a process of struggle. As the revolution in digital communications matures, the masses will forge weapons of transparency that will allow them to build channels to one another, organize themselves and engage in the struggles that will lead to the overthrow of bourgeois rule and the creation of a peaceful and abundant world.

Most of my activity breaks down into either theoretical work (in particular what modern society will be like when it is run by workers) and infrastructure work focused on the use of the web and/or databases to collect and filter high signal-to-noise information in an organized way.  I believe that eventually my theoretical work and infrastructural work will be integrated since they are both central to the emerging tactics of information war.

My proletarian democracy website is probably the best popular summary of the conclusions to which my theoretical work has led me.  My theoretical work is focused on ending the crisis of theory that has paralysed the movement for the overthrow of bourgeois rule.  At the present time this movement is something of a joke and is not really deserving of the respect of workers. Obviously this must change.  And this change cannot happen without theoretical clarity.

2. helping to lay the foundation for
organizations of information war

I am also studying and popularizing the methods by which the unfettered flow of information will be essential for the creation of authentic communist organization (characterized by transparency, accountability and internal democracy) -- and for making it possible (and easy) for serious activists (and the masses themselves) to intervene in the struggle to preserve and defend the revolutionary character of such organization.


The great problem of the present time is that there exists no genuinely revolutionary organization that commands respect; that is deserving of the trust of activists; that has its feet on the ground and, to continue this analogy, does not have its head shoved into a place that can't be reached by sunlight.
Such an organization (or network of organizations) will eventually emerge. Such an organization will take up the revolutionary tasks which are decisive. These tasks will include leveraging the work of (and giving activists an analysis of) the work of all progressive groups. These tasks will include bringing a decisive resolution to the crisis of theory and making use of information war to bring news of this resolution to activists everywhere--and to the masses.

If my work seems like it might be of interest to you--you should know that I would like to keep you up to date on my work. Once or twice a year I send out a progress report on my activity. You can get these reports by subscribing to my pof-100 elist.

You may also want to join some of the elists described on this page.  The list which comes closest to a conventional marxism or anarchism related email list is pof-200.  My other lists are either read-only or strongly focused on particular topics.  All of my lists are very low traffic (ie: a few posts per month at most).  The focus is on quality--not quantity.

It's easy to keep informed!

Get email updates twice a year

  No spam--just an email sent to you twice a year  

What's New?  •   Overview  •   Email Lists  •   Theory  •   Antiwar Work

Laying the Foundation of an Independent News Service Based on the Masses
(this section includes Indymedia criticisms and proposals)

Digital Infrastructure  •   Culture  •   Victory  •   Charts of the Future  •   Tour
Annual Reports  •   Animated Buttons  •   Want to Help?  •   Feedback  •   Contact
top
Email lists
POF-100  •  POF-200  •  Theorist  •  Proletarian Democracy  •  Red Team
Chart of active email lists:
Email list
name
posts
per year
Description
send blank email to subscribe
pof-100
2
Two emails per year, from Ben Seattle, to keep you informed about his work, the Media Weapon community
and the Attention Refinery.
• subscribe
• archive
pof-200
250
Discussion list for activist and revolutionary politics. Subscribers are limited to one post per week (or two posts per week for those who march in antiwar demonstrations). (There are about 140 subscribers -- but only a few will post in a typical month.)
• subscribe

• archive

pof-300
350
Sister list to the POF-200 discussion list. Subscribers to POF-300 can post unlimited times per week.
(There are about a dozen subscribers.)
• subscribe
• archive
theorist
30
Consists of Ben's posts to other lists (mostly to pof-200)
• subscribe
• archive
red team
60
Focused on digital infrastructure that can serve the movement and related tech topics. (Only a few subscribers.)
• subscribe
• archive

More about each list:

POF-100 • Two emails per year
If you want to keep informed of my work but want
the minimal amount of email, this is the list for you.

I use this list to send out annual or semi-annual reports on my political, theoretical and infrastructure work. ("POF" stands for "Party of the Future")

• average volume is 2 posts per year
• public archive • to subscribe • to unsubscribe

POF-200 • An unstructured discussion list
The POF-200 list serves as a place for serious revolutionaries to have discussion in the public domain. I want to encourage, to the maximum extent practical, that revolutionaries who correspond with me consider joining POF-200 and making the correspondence public.

In order to keep an acceptable signal-to-noise ratio on a list in which most subscribers have very little experience in the revolutionary movement, subscribers are limited to one post per week (two posts per week for subscribers who march in antiwar demonstrations). This limits the speed, and convenience, of discussion but improves the quality.

Question: What happens if there is too much "noise" (ie: unwanted email) on POF-200?
Answer: Let me know and I will change your option to "web only". You will then be able to send email to the list and will be able to read replies on the web.

• average volume is (currently) 20 posts per month
• public archive • to subscribe • to unsubscribe

Theorist • Consists of Ben's posts to other lists
The theorist list consists of Ben Seattle's postings to various lists in cyberspace. Watch Ben apply the tactics of "information war" (characterized by intelligent listening and calm, scientific argument) to help transform the marxism space into a powerful weapon against bourgeois rule.

• average volume is 30 posts per year
• public archive • to subscribe • to unsubscribe

Proletarian Democracy • focused on the crisis of theory
The right to post on this list requires that you fill out a form
agreeing to respect the exclusive focus of the list:

        How will economics, politics and culture work
        when the working class runs modern society?

Subscribers are strongly encouraged to first read my introductory essay
on Proletarian Democracy

• average volume is 0 posts per month • (ie: nobody has posted in a long time)
• public archive • to subscribe • to unsubscribe

Red Team • A list focused on digital infrastructure
The Red Team list is focused on discussion and discovery of the principles that must guide efforts to create the digital nervous system of the working class. A technical or programming background is not required to participate in this list. What is required is determination to forge weapons of information war (defined, not as the sabotage computer systems, but as the systematic and methodical use of the emerging revolution in communications to wage an open struggle for ideas and principles that will awaken the working class and facilitate its self-organization).

Subscribers are encouraged to read my short introduction at the Red Team site.

• average volume is 5 posts per month
• public archive • to subscribe • to unsubscribe

It's easy to keep informed!

Get email updates twice a year

  No spam--just an email sent to you twice a year  

What's New?  •   Overview  •   Email Lists  •   Theory  •   Antiwar Work

Laying the Foundation of an Independent News Service Based on the Masses
(this section includes Indymedia criticisms and proposals)

Digital Infrastructure  •   Culture  •   Victory  •   Charts of the Future  •   Tour
Annual Reports  •   Animated Buttons  •   Want to Help?  •   Feedback  •   Contact
top
Theoretical work
Confronting the crisis of theory that
has paralyzed the revolutionary movement
  • Proletarism is anti-revisionist Marxism for the 21st century • (August 2004)
    From the Russian workers' movement (with experience in underground organizing against the rule of Brezhnev's "communists" and militant strikes under the rule of Yeltsin's "democrats") has come a proposal to recognize, with a new name, a decisive break with the treachery of the "communist" leadership -- which enslaved the working class and betrayed the revolutionary movement in a way comparable to the great betrayal of 1914. (Includes timeline history chart and forum for questions or comments)

  Anarcho-Leninist Debate on the State UP   

  • The Anarcho-Leninist Debate on the State website • (October 2002 - March 2004)
    An Australian activist, currently attracted to anarchism, suggested that we have a debate. The issue at stake is central to the kinds of questions that are of interest to a great many serious activists: In the period immediately following a successful mass uprising against the bourgeoisie, should the form (or forms) of organization adopted by the proletariat to secure its ultimate liberation be understood to be a state?
    --- highlights from the debate ---
    • The World for which We Fight
      What has not taken place so far in the progressive movement--what is currently being _blocked_ by the crisis of theory--are practical forms of cooperation by which militant activists of diverse views work together to effectively oppose the domination of the movement by the reformist ideology.

      Control of the state by the working class as a whole requires that the working class have the fundamental political rights of speech and assembly--and the right to create its own independent organizations--and to determine (via elections or other methods of open struggle) which political trends deserve support and will best defend the material and class interests of the workers.

    • Finding the Confidence to Build the Future
          How will the working class keep supply chains running    
          and bourgeois apologists from flooding the airwaves
          on the morning after bourgeois rule is broken?

    • The Future Transparent Workers' State
          Will a workers' state be a brutal police state
          or a machine controlled by workers?

      Introduces Ben's first and second laws:

      Ben's first law:
      The movement for the overthrow of bourgeois rule
      can only become a mass movement when it demonstrates
      that it understands the conditions of modern society
      well enough to describe, in a realistic way,
      how, within the context of modern conditions,
      the working class can run society better than the bourgeoisie.

      Ben's second law:
      The long-term suppression of political trends
      is no longer possible in the conditions of a
      modern economy and communications infrastructure.

      Includes 5 concise points that outline the solution to the crisis of theory:
              1. Workers' state will guide transition to no state
              2. Economic stability (and experimentation)
              3. Gift economy will absorb other sectors
              4. State will suppress bourgeoisie, not workers
              5. Masses will overthrow corrupt leaders

    • Politics, Economics and the Mass Media
      when the working class runs the show

          Will there be elections?
          The three economic sectors
                  • private capitalist
                  • state capitalist
                  • gift economy
          The evolution of
             the mass media
                  • commercial media
                  • state media
                  • free media

    • A scenario for the overthrow of bourgeois rule
      in the U.S. in the middle of the 21st century

          Here is one way events may unfold ...
       
  Before the ALDS UP   

  • The Proletarian Democracy website • April-September 2001
    How will economics, politics and culture work
    when the working class runs modern society?
    This is what the future will look like. This theoretical essay confronts this most decisive of all theoretical questions. No more of the bullshit evasion (concerning whether workers will have democratic rights) that we have come to expect from the clueless "cargo cult Leninists". • Includes poll, bulletin board and email list (see above for the email list)

  • Seventeen Theses website • July 2001
    • Eight Theses on the Destiny of the Concept of Workers' Rule
    • Nine Theses on the Emerging Revolution in Communications and its
      Significance for the Awakening of Proletarian Political life and Consciousness
      (a fairly concentrated summary of my views on our tasks)
    • Includes poll and bulletin board

  • The History of the Universe website • May-August 2002
    This site was created to help answer questions from many of the teenagers who visit http://communism.com or http://communism.org (the com and org site, by the way, are currently identical). A scientific understanding of the tendency of matter to self-organize is very helpful in understanding an authentic communist worldview. I also work on this site to relax since it involves reading a lot of material for fun.

  • Posts on the Theorist elist • March 2000 - Current
  20th Century work UP   

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Antiwar work
Anti-war leaflets  •  Open struggle over the decisive tasks
Contents:
• Antiwar Leaflets • 2005
• Open struggle over decisive tasks • Sept 2005 - May 2006
• Open struggle • January 2005
• Antiwar Leaflets • 2004
• Antiwar Leaflets • 2003
• Open struggle • 2003
• Antiwar Leaflets • 2002
• Open struggle • 2001 - 2002
• Antiwar technical work • 2002

Since the recent round of imperialist wars began in September 2001 I have independently written and distributed 7 antiwar leaflets at mass actions in or around the Seattle area.

I have also worked with the Seattle Anti-Imperialist Committee (SAIC) from the time of its formation (August 2005) and its predecessor organization, the Seattle Anti-Imperialist Alliance (SAIA) during the time in which it existed (October 2001 - July 2002).

During this period I have also engaged in an open struggle over the principles, such as political transparency and information war, which I believe must guide the antiwar movement. Much of this struggle has been with the people I have worked with in SAIC and SAIA. I believe we are entering a period in which activists will take an increased interest in learning about all the important questions of the movement.

  Antiwar Leaflets  •  2005 UP   

• Hit them where it Hurts!   (Sept 2005)

Leaflet for the September 24, 2005 antiwar march in Seattle:

The anti-war movement will become an increasingly powerful social force as it breaks from bourgeois influence (ie: the orbit of the Democratic Party) and tells the masses the truth about the need to end the system of bourgeois rule:

• Introduction • Tired of begging for peace from the gods of war?
   • It is time to get off our knees and ...
   • Build a movement focused on a world without imperialism!

• How the Democratic Party and its flunkies plan to
  liquidate the antiwar movement with hot air about an "Exit Plan"

• Joint Statement against the influence of the
   imperialist Democratic Party and its numerous flunkies

• Cartoon Guide to the Left in Seattle   (Sept 2005)

• What kind of Organization
  does the antiwar movement need?

  An organization capable of overthrowing the system of imperialist rule
  cannot be built on a foundation of sand. Only principled, transparent
  and long-term collaboration between serious activists can:
  1. organize a decisive break from the confinement
      of liberal-imperialist politics,
  2. mobilize the masses in their millions and
  3. chart the course forward to a world without
      imperialist war or capitalist exploitation


Estimates of distribution:
Intro: 800 copies,     Organization article: 200 copies
Cartoon + Joint Statement: 2000 copies

• How to build a powerful antiwar movement   (January 2005)

Thousands of activists are giving thought to all questions related to the development of a more powerful antiwar movement. This leaflet represents an effort to directly confront the most serious questions related to the development of an antiwar movement that can deliver powerful blows against US imperialism’s war on Iraq.
• Organize ourselves!
Mass meetings and regular marches
• Politicize our movement and take it to the masses!
Use mass democracy to fight the influence of the Democratic Party
• Focus on our goal!
A world without bourgeois rule vs. begging for peace from the gods of war

-- Sidebar articles --
• The carrot and the stick:
   The great "secret" of how the bourgeoisie works to tame the antiwar movement
• The experience of the movement against the war in Vietnam
   illustrates what the bourgeoisie fear most
(approx 700 copies distributed)

  The open struggle over decisive tasks  •  Sept 2005 - May 2006 UP   

• Archive of public debate on the tasks and
  organizational needs of the antiwar movement:
   We need mass democracy
   Real organization cannot be built on a foundation of sand   (2001 - 2006)

If we can create a mass anti-imperialist organization where decisions and struggle are based on mass democracy -- then we will capture the imagination of serious activists everywhere -- and be in a position to change the dynamics of the entire antiwar movement. In other words: we will win.

On the other hand, if we fail to understand what mass democracy is -- then we will end up with a typical organization that will accomplish relatively little and which will eventually evaporate. In other words we will lose.


This page links to public discussion and debate concerning the future of the Seattle Anti-Imperialist Committee and links to comments by Ben, Frank and Joseph Green. Articles include:

    • Information war is central to building the movement
    • Frank retreats from his attempt to ban Ben
    • Frank on the Media Weapon community and the Crisis of Theory
    • Activists have the right to know what the fuck is going on
    • Are anti-imperialists afraid of open politics?
    • Real organization requires a commitment to transparency

• Letter to Comrade Edward:
   The Road to Information War
   A longer-term view of the tasks of building anti-imperialist and
   revolutionary organization in the U.S. in the early 21st century
  (May 2006)

• Why do we need to build an open community?
• The case for putting more of an effort into national distribution
• The case for developing theoretical tools that
   allow us to confront the more serious questions
We cannot ask the working class to sacrifice for this struggle if we cannot hold up the light of theory and illuminate the path to victory.

• Ben replies to Michael in Portland:
   Make Hay while the Sun Shines
   Building the movement on a solid foundation
   requires accountability and political transparency
  (May 2006)

We need a security culture to protect activists, and the movement, from harassment and intimidation from the state and from employers.

But we can't let this stop us from taking advantage of the current window of opportunity, in which we have the democratic rights of speech and organization, to openly share our experience and build focus on the principles that will make our movement powerful:

1. We must break from the stranglehold of reformist thinking and tactics
2. Powerful actions are based on mass action and the mass movement
3. Political disagreements must be openly discussed and debated

• Proposal for the kind of anti-imperialist organization that our movement needs:
   The Open and Democratic Anti-Imperialist Network
   for Mass Action and Information War
  (November 2005)

•  mission statement
1. democratic rights
2. democratic (and accountable) decision-making
3. program of work to build a revolutionary channel

  Open struggle  •  January 2005 UP   

• My criticism of the work of NION which led to
    NION banning me from their public meetings   (January 2005)

• Parts 1 and 2 on the RCP's recent "Battle for the Future" campaign:   (January 2005)

   Part 1: Crying "Wolf" over fascism
      Hysteria about "fascism" serves to hide
      the essential role of the Democratic Party in
      the political and economic system of imperialism and
   Part 2: Nothing but Hot Air
      Talk of "proletarian democracy" without recognition of
      the central and decisive role of democratic rights
      is nothing but breezy nonsense.

  Antiwar Leaflets  •  2004 UP   

I created no antiwar leaflets for antiwar actions in 2004 -- because there were
no mass actions in Seattle where I would be able to distribute them.

The cowardly social-democrats who had the ability, resources and alliances to mobilize for mass actions -- liquidated all mass action -- in order to better hijack the energy of antiwar activists in the direction of becoming election fodder for John "send more troops" Kerry.

  Antiwar Leaflets  •  2003 UP   

  Open struggle  •  2003 UP   

  • November 11, 2003 • What is to be done? (reply to Wilhelmina) • Of all the tasks which are decisive for the antiwar movement one stands out at this time: An interactive news site fueled by the energy of activists and readers is too important to be left in the hands of social-democracy • (A concentrated criticism of the reformism of the Seattle Indymedia center and the sectarianism of "Leninist" organizations which recoil from the task of creating an interactive news site under the command of revolutionary politics.) Posted to the Seattle Indymedia newswire

  • October 25-27, 2003 • three posts • to the editorial list of Seattle Indymedia collective
    • Working relationships that avoid unnecessary friction • Who owns the newswire?
    • Localism represents a retreat from the goal of providing an alternative news service
    • Solutions to newswire spam • Political overview • Going beyond slashdot

  • October 5, 2003 • open letter to a supporter of the Socialist Alternative organization
       The independent movement of the working class cannot be built
       on a foundation of illusions in "saviors from above" like Ralph Nader
  Antiwar Leaflets  •  2002 UP   

  • February 13, 2002 • Leaflet distributed at University of Washington campus: Protest
    the "war on terror"
    • Protest the UW visit of undersecretary of state Marc Grossman

    • Describes the "war on terror" in Colombia, Afghanistan, the Philippines, and at home
    • (I wrote this leaflet and helped distribute it to assist the "Antiwar Project",
    a small local group that folded in 2002) (approx 1000 copies distributed by 4 people)

  • January 12, 2002 • What is Our Alternative to Imperialist War? • What is bourgeois rule? • Is working class rule possible? • Theoretical issues must be resolved • Democratic rights under workers' rule • The central theoretical question of our time (approx 400 copies distributed)
  Open struggle  •  2001 - 2002 UP   

  • Oct 2001-Jun 2002 • I worked with the Seattle Anti-Imperialist Alliance. SAIA wrote ten leaflets with total distribution of approximately 14,000 copies. Unfortunately, SAIA liquidated itself in an effort to shield itself from the threat of transparency (ie: public criticism or debate of its errors and its failure to confront the deeper tasks required of an anti-imperialist orientation). Five of the SAIA activists (ie: everyone except me) are now supporters of the Communist Voice Organization.
    "My view is that your dedication and hard work is being negated by your failure to engage serious activists at a deeper level. Rather than give the movement the clarification it desperately needs on the deeper issues (ie: what kind of society we need to create, what kind of revolutionary organization is needed today) everything is judged quite narrowly in terms of its potential for recruitment to a dysfunctional organization. This will eventually prove to be a dead end and, at that time, will put pressure on you to conclude that struggle is not worth the effort--and will put pressure on you to become passive.

    The root of this failure, in my view, is that you are all intoxicated with the idea that you are building a solid revolutionary organization with the ability to take up the decisive tasks. But if the organization you are working so hard to build is afraid of transparency and lacks the ability to deal with serious criticism--then everything will turn out to be a mirage--and you will eventually discover (if you have not first succumbed to cynicism or passivity) that you were attempting to build a serious revolutionary organization on a foundation of sand."
    • From Letter to local supporters of the Communist Voice Organization • Jan 2003

  Antiwar technical work  •  2002 UP   

  • Jan-Feb 2002 • I created a pilot anti-war portal • The concept was more ambitious
    than I had time to develop on my own.
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A News Service Based on the Masses
Laying the Foundation for an Independent News Service
Contents:
• The Mission
• The News Refinery
• Democratic Filters for Indymedia
• Indymedia Criticism
• Earlier work

  The Mission UP   

Work to lay the foundation for
an independent news service
based on the masses that will:
(1) draw energy from and serve the masses
(2) unite everything healthy in
      the progressive movements
(3) challenge the system of bourgeois rule

  The News Refinery UP   

• The News Refinery
   Proposal for progressive activists' news rating & filtering service  (July 2005)

   News and views to serve the working class, the antiwar movement and the struggle
   to end bourgeois rule -- posted, summarized, rated and filtered by activists like you
 

  Democratic Filters for Indymedia UP   

• Detailed proposal and mockup for democratic filters for Indymedia  (July 2005)

  Indymedia Criticism UP   


Can't happen here? It already has.
Ben complained about the excess of neo-nazi posts and comments on the Seattle Indymedia newswire and criticized the Indymedia editor
for not doing more to keep the site usable.
The editor responded by tampering with
and deleting Ben's comments.
Ben Seattle describes his experiences
(to date) with Seattle Indymedia and the Indymedia community and makes some constructive suggestions:

What do we need
at Seattle Indymedia?

Indymedia must be run in
an open and democratic way

(May 2006)

• No racist trash -- fewer crude, thoughtless
  and malicious comments on the newswire
  -- a higher signal-to-noise ratio
  (ie: be more like Portland Indymedia)

• Democratic rights for activists to discuss
  events and politics on the newswire
  (including the politics of Indymedia itself)

• An editorial collective which is
  responsive and accountable to
  the progressive community

  Earlier work UP   

• Mockup of better designed page for Seattle Indymedia •   (December 2003)
   If the people who run Seattle Indymedia really wanted to do everything they could to make
   the newswire more useful and democratically run -- it might look something like this:
   with a wider column for the newswire and the segration of newswire posts into six categories:
       (1) Local • (2) National • (3) International
       (4) Actions
       (5) Rants
       (6) Indymedia policies and evolution
   (This was an early, primitive version of my 2005 proposal.)

• Three posts by Ben to the editorial list of Seattle Indymedia •  (October 2003)
   • Working relationships that avoid unnecessary friction • Who owns the newswire?
   • Localism represents a retreat from the goal of providing an alternative news service
   • Solutions to newswire spam • Political overview • Going beyond slashdot

• What is to be done? • Ben Seattle replies to Wilhelmina •  (November 2003)
Of all the tasks which are decisive for the antiwar movement one stands out at this time: An interactive news site fueled by the energy of activists and readers is too important to be left in the hands of social-democracy.
(Includes: A sword in the hands of Spartacus • Dare we talk about the decisive tasks? • The digital fire--and healthy revolutionary cooperation )

• 17 Theses on the destiny of the concept of workers' rule -- and the emerging revolution in communications and its significance for the awakening of proletarian political life and consciousness  (July 2001)

• Project MAD (ie: Media Abstract Discussion) a web site I created in 1998 where activists can post summaries of news articles and related comments into an online database.

• References to the proposed web-based news service
   from Ben's unfinished work: "How to Build the Party of the Future"  (May 1997)

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Digital Infrastructure
Information refineries for the proletarian century
• The Attention Refinery   •  The next step in the evolution of wiki warfare
   • Overview • Outlining key features such as sister pages and attention posts  (May 2006)
   • Introduction • Why we need a new kind of wiki with: (a) individual zones of control
       (b) a column on all pages where readers can post comments and criticism
       (c) blog-like features (d) the ability to rate and filter pages and comments
   • Mockup • showing a sample page with main column and sidebar columns  (Feb 2006)
The Attention Refinery will be an ecosystem of parallel and connected blogs and wikis that serve as an arena for progressive activists in the Media Weapon community to talk to one another -- compete and cooperate -- organize our thinking -- discover and develop powerful and practical principles and projects -- resolve our contradictions in full view of friend and foe alike -- gradually assemble a common agenda -- and learn how to wage information war as an essential and decisive component of the class struggle -- so we can help mobilize the working class for the overthrow of bourgeois rule.

  • The Red Team website • (July 2001)
    • We engineer to raise hell ... and storm heaven ...
    • Now building the digital nervous system of the working class


    Information becomes more powerful as it is refined.
    The working class will make itself conscious by creating
    information refineries on a large scale.

     
    • The ultimate "killer app" to emerge from the internet will be the collective mind of the proletariat, which will organize itself for the overthrow of bourgeois rule and the liberation of the infinite potential of humanity

  • The The Anarcho-Leninist Debate on the State website • (Oct 2002 - March 2004)
    This project is already listed (above) as part of my theoretical work. I am also listing here because it is currently my leading edge infrastructure project, with more than a dozen MicroForums and a bullshit meter that may help to encourage activists to rate the value of various posts.

  • Digital Infrastructure for Communist Transparency
    How web-accessible databases will assist the self-organization
    of the anti-revisionist communist movement • November 1998

  • Bulletin board and polling system at http://communism.org • March-May 2002
    Currently approximately 100 visitors a week answer questions on a poll.
    Approximately half of these visitors also make comments.

  • Previous projects (on hold):
    • pu-pc (microportal guide to the workers' movement and left in Russia) • (2001)
    • A system of two lists • Illustrated proprosal I made to the PDP/Samara Stachkom to convert their Proletarism elist into a system with read only and active components • February 2001
    • List of marxism-related lists • January-April 2000
    • Media Abstract Discussion • June-September 1998
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Culture
Cultural work and cultural criticism
  • Cartoon Guide to the Left in Seattle (Sept 2005)
    Ben's guide to "Politics As Usual": • The Democratic and Republican Parties • The Imperialist Democratic Party
    • The Big Antiwar Coalitions • The Green Party • The Reformist Disease • The Sectarian Disease • The Crisis of Theory
    • The SA and ISO (ie: Socialist Alternative and International Socialist Organization) • The FSP (ie: Freedom Socialist Party and Radical Women) • ANSWER and NION (ie: Not in Our Name) • The RCP (ie: Revolutionary Communist Party) • The CVO (ie: Communist Voice Organization) • The Anarchists • You, dear reader


  • An essay on culture examines the significance of the phenomenon known as
    "Burning Man":
    Desert Goddesses Saturate Emergent Community
    with Eye-Candy

    A community of artists opens a window into a human future based on a gift economy and the emergence of a deeper form of beauty and sexuality (September 2004)

  • The History of the Universe, Humankind and Communism

    Never mind the crap they teach you in school, here are a few of the real events that mark the struggle and progress of humankind. The history of the universe is the history of the self-organization of matter. The struggle to overthrow the system of bourgeois rule and replace the capitalist mode of production with a self-organizing moneyless economy is the culminating and decisive chapter in a story billions of years old. (May - August 2002)
 
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Annual Reports
A concrete example of political transparency

I believe it is useful for revolutionary activists to post, by May 1st every year, a summary of their activity over the past year and plans for the coming year.

Capitalist corporations give a public annual report to stockholders every year.  Our "stockholders" are the workers and oppressed of the world who, by their own struggles, inspire us and give us strength.  An annual report can assist communist militants to better understand the work, activity and priorities of other communist militants.  This can be a small step in the direction of transparency and eventual greater coordination of effort.

To set an example, and declare my work and priorities before friend and foe alike, I submit the following:

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Architecture for Victory
How we will win
The relationship between work on the fronts of theory and infrastructure
can be summarized in a single picture:

How the proletariat will use information war
to mobilize millions for the overthrow of bourgeois rule
Communist theory and practice will combine to deliver to millions of workers in the advanced industrialized countries the news that the fundamental solution to all the problems of the modern world--is the overthrow of the system of bourgeois rule--and its replacement with something that has never existed--workers' rule under modern conditions.
Theory of Workers' Rule
under modern conditions
  • The rule of the rich will be broken • The economic, cultural and political life of society will no longer be ruled by the wealthy or subordinate to the needs of corporate profits. Sources of bourgeois wealth will be confiscated. All attempts by those with any remaining form of wealth or privilege--to leverage their resources and seize control of society--will be smashed.
  • Workers will run society without restriction • Workers will have the democratic right to hear and voice uncensored views and form independent organizations under conditions of political transparency.
Workers' News Network
  • Reviews of all important articles in the mainstream press
  • Inclusion of full text of all articles from participating progressive organizations
  • Platform for "coopetition" (ie: competition and cooperation) between various progressive trends
  • Web-accessible database • open to contributions from all • No copyright--everything is public domain
  • Comprehensive and in-depth coverage of:
        • Politics
        • Economics
        • Culture
        • Technology
    from the standpoint of working class interests
  • Readers decide what to read (and what to ignore) on the basis of collaborative filtering

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Charts of the Future
Technology, economics and politics • Present and Future
  • The two charts below represent the most accurate estimates in the world of the phenomena they purport to describe. These same charts are also the least accurate estimates in the world. How can this be possible? Because these charts represent the only attempt at a scientific estimate of these phenomena.

    I will probably eventually be criticized for daring to make charts like the two below. "How dare he assert that such things are forseeable!" How accurate are these charts likely to turn out? We'll just have to see.

Also, here is a chart of the present:

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Animated Buttons
by popular demand
               

       

       

       

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Tour
A survey of Ben Seattle's theoretical work
Here is a selection from the 29 political ads that I insert
between posts on the forum at http://communism.org

=================================== 2 ===================================
Communism and human nature

The self-organizing moneyless economy of the future will unleash
the full potential of human initiative and the striving for happiness

    Many who post here argue that communism will never be possible because of "human nature". The essence of this false argument is the belief that a communist society would consist of an all-powerful central government that would tell everybody what to do--and would therefore undermine the creative initiative of individuals and the search for happiness.
    • This argument is based on two false assumptions: (1) It assumes that a communist society will look like the former Soviet Union, or the current China, North Korea, etc (ie: corrupt police states with a feudal-style ruling class) (2) It assumes that people will only work in order to own bigger and bigger piles of commodities.
    • The truth is that: (1) There will be no government in communist society--people will do what they want without being pushed around by anyone. The development of a corrupt police state or a new ruling class will be prevented by the struggles of the masses who will be armed with the weapon of transparency. (2) In a world of abundance for all no one will have to struggle (or even work) for the necessities of life (which will be a birthright--just like the air we all breathe). People will work on projects of their own choosing because (a) they find the work fun and interesting; (b) they enjoy the work relationships with talented and dedicated co-workers; (c) they want to make the world a better place; or (d) they want social status and recognition. A world of abundance for all where work is fun (and voluntary) will be made possible by a much higher productivity of human labor.
    • An example of communist work relationships is provided by the Linux computer operating system--the core of which was created by many thousands of people--all working for free. A 2nd example is the "work" involved when people post to this board. No one gets paid to post here--but people do so--because it is an expression of their principles and convictions.
    • Who is in control? Under capitalism (and previous economic systems such as feudalism and slavery) only a small fraction of the population has control over their conditions of work--and the life of society as a whole. Only under genuine communism will the masses control their conditions of work--and the culture, economy and politics of society. • (Ben Seattle • Dec 2003)

The Self-Organizing Moneyless Economy
    The first scientific speculation on how a communist economy and political system will function in the 21st century. Featuring brief sketches of the organization of political, cultural and economic life in a future where all authority flows from principles that have been distributed universally and are part of everyone's internal compass rather than institutions which are external to the individual and which use one or another form of carrot or stick.
    The future communist economy, based on the principle of from each according to his ability, to each according to his need, will not be based on the market, money, capital, commodities or wages (ie: the economy will not be based on exchange or trade of any kind) nor will there exist any kind of supreme central authority telling everyone what to do.
    All work and all economic actions will be voluntary (ie: gifts freely given without strings attached--nor expectations of reciprocity). The communist economy will consist of myriad self-organizing assemblies of economic units in competition with one another to most efficiently transform skilled labor and other resources into forms of social wealth serving the the material and cultural needs of the masses. (1995)
=================================== 4 ===================================
Politics, Economics and the Mass Media
when the working class runs the show

After the overthrow of bourgeois rule, during the
period of transition to a communist economy ...
    Will there be elections?
    The three economic sectors
      (private capitalist, state capitalist, gift economy)
    The evolution of the mass media
      (commercial media, state media, free media)
=================================== 5 ===================================
A scenario for the overthrow of bourgeois rule
in the U.S. in the middle of the 21st century

Here is one way events may unfold ...
1. The digital fire • 2. Electoral victory • 3. Economic retaliation
4. Workers stand firm • 5. Attempted decapitation • 6. Workers' movement resilient
7. Bourgeoisie paralyzed • 8. Workers' victorious • 9. Stable workers' state
=================================== 6 ===================================
The Future Transparent Workers' State
Will a workers' state be a brutal police state
or a machine controlled by workers?

Are we paralyzed by fear of violent and brutal repression?
Or defiant, courageous and determined to win victory with mass-based information war?

• Who's afraid of "red fascism"? • The solution to the crisis of theory • Thermador vs. Transparency
• Mass-based information war • Why "censorship by filter" is doomed to fail
• Productivity of labor inseparable from revolution in communications
• How the bourgeois political machine undermines the independence of the mass oppositional movements
=================================== 7 ===================================
Want to see the overthrow of bourgeois rule?

  Do you have what it takes to be part of the pof-200 discussion list

Determination  •  Humility  •  Militancy  •  Maturity
=================================== 8 ===================================
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=================================== 9 ===================================
The cyberLeninist Manifesto
The principle that "information wants to be free" fits Leninism like a bullet does a rifle
in what turns out to be the ultimate nightmare for the bourgeoisie.

Leninism, as a continuation of the practical and theoretical work of Karl Marx, had two stages in the period that Lenin was alive. The period from Lenin's death to approximately the present time has represented the third stage of Leninism. Now, as the coming revolution in digital communications promises to link-up class-conscious workers in every country, we are entering the fourth stage.
  • Leninism I • (1896-1917) • Building a party that withstood repression and fought emergent social-democracy
  • Leninism II • (1917-1923) • State power under harsh conditions
  • Leninism III • (1924 -- approximately today) • Leninism in the hands of its enemies
  • Leninism IV • (after the fall of the Soviet Union and the emergence of the internet) • Classical Leninism plus "information wants to be free"     (Oct 1996)
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How to Build the Party of the Future
By continuing our political development and harnessing the power of
the coming revolution in communications--we can help to
lay the foundation for a communist "trend of trends"
with the ability to eradicate sectarianism from our ranks,
puncture the influence of reformism over a vast audience,
capture the imagination of workers in their millions
and mobilize our class to ignite a fire that cannot be extinguished
    The coming revolution in communications, now in its earliest stages, is already beginning to demonstrate its potential to influence the development and interaction of Marxist (and would-be Marxist) organizations. In the next decade or so, the communications revolution holds promise to completely transform the "left ecosystem" at present consisting predominantly of squabbling sectarian grouplets, craven reformists and the just-plain confused. In place of this will likely emerge a dynamic and powerful system of communist organizations which will both compete and cooperate with one another ...
(May 1997, unfinished, deals with principles and history of international communist movement)
=================================== 11 ===================================
1917 was the beta version
What are the decisive tasks today to rebuild
a communist movement worthy of the name ?
1. working to create a web-based news service
without copyright that would be open to all trends
2. focusing discussion on the system of workers' rule
as it will exist in modern conditions     (Nov 1997)
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Determination  •  Humility  •  Militancy  •  Maturity
=================================== 13 ===================================
How will economics, politics and culture work
when the working class runs modern society?
Working class rule has never existed in a modern, stable society.
However it will emerge triumphant in the 21st century.
How will a workers' state suppress the former ruling bourgeoisie
without also suppressing the independent political life of workers?
(Apr 2001)
=================================== 14 ===================================
Seventeen Theses
• Includes 9 theses on the Emerging Revolution in Communications and its
Significance for the Awakening of Proletarian Political life and Consciousness

(a fairly concentrated summary of Ben's views on our tasks in the coming period
of transparency and information war) • Includes poll and bulletin board   (July 2001)
=================================== 16 ===================================
Finding the Confidence to Build the Future
How will the working class keep supply chains running
and bourgeois apologists from flooding the airwaves
on the morning after bourgeois rule is broken?
The crisis of theory is that
we don't have a goal
that makes any sense.
The alternative to resolving
the crisis of theory
is to restrict our vision to
rolling a heavy stone up a hill
until the end of time.
{Excerpt}   ...   But if we seek a fundamental change to the status quo--we soon run into a formidable obstacle: fundamental change to the status quo is unthinkable.
    The progressive movement (even the most serious, militant sections of it) is totally incapable of coming up with any serious alternative to the present system of bourgeois rule. The alternatives we are offered are only fit for people with the mentality of children. The militant "marxists" offer us an alternative that consists, essentially, of a police state. The militant anarchists offer us only childish daydreams. This failure of the progressive movement to offer a serious alternative to the rule of the rich is called the "crisis of theory".
    It is because of this crisis of theory that fundamental change to the status quo is unthinkable. No one can imagine it, picture it, visualize it, or explain it in terms that are remotely realistic--in terms that take into account the specific features of modern, economically developed societies. This is why such an alternative is unthinkable. It is impossible to think about.    
(January 2003)
=================================== 17 ===================================
Which way forward for the development of a powerful anti-war movement?
The decisive step forward for the anti-war movement is to develop in depth
so that it can give tens and hundreds of thousands a clear understanding
of the class nature of our society and the need to end the rule of the bourgeoisie.
• Hit them where it hurts • How to move the Democrats to the left
• The need for revolutionary organizations that are
deserving of the respect of the masses.   (March 2003)
=================================== 18 ===================================
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Determination  •  Humility  •  Militancy  •  Maturity
=================================== 20 ===================================
Frequently Asked Questions
What is communism? • What is socialism? • Where has communism or socialism existed?
Communism and human nature • What happened to Lenin's 1917 revolution?
• What democratic rights will workers have after the overthrow of bourgeois rule?
• How will workers prevent the former bourgeoisie (or a new ruling class) from coming back
to power? • What will a genuine classless, communist society look like?
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Contact
How to contact Ben Seattle
  • Ben can be contacted at:

    (this address may change often so check back at this page from time to time)

    Do you like Ben's work?
    Want to help?

    The best and easiest way to learn about Ben's work and interact with Ben and other activists -- is to become part of the Media Weapon community of activists.

    The discussion list for this community is the pof-200 list. Ben's weekly (sometimes monthly) posts to the pof-200 list are archived here. The wiki for the Media Weapon community is here.

    (The most practical way for you to keep up with the life of the Media Weapon community without having to read all the pof-200 message traffic is to subscribe to the theorist list.)

     

  • Ben is also known as cyberRed
    Note by Ben • December 2002: In response to recent feedback from a reader I did a google search and discovered that the name "cyberRed" is used by others on the net, including a manga (ie: Japanese style anime) character and a so-called "hacker" (ie: a young person who defaces web sites as kind of a prank). I will therefor make clear that I am in no way associated with either the manga character or the "hacker". I am exponent of "information war" but (as described above) this is defined as a systematic mass war for ideas rather than pranks or sabotage of computer systems. I work to help create a world where young people will have abundant opportunities to use their talent and creative drive in fun and exciting ways to serve the needs of the masses.