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To be a Haligonian Marxist in the 1970s

This Thursday, Herb Gamberg and Tony Thomson Speak on New Communist Movement in 1970s Halifax

by Miles Howe

Herb Gamberg. (Photo: Miles Howe)
Herb Gamberg. (Photo: Miles Howe)

The world has changed drastically since the 1970s, and so have the breadth, scope, and seriousness of the movements that purport to fight against raw capitalism. Whereas the New Left movement in North America was seemingly galvanized by the Vietnam draft, we now find ourselves in a state of constant war. There is no draft, but there is terror, and sleeper cells, and always a new enemy to be found.

The thin veneer behind which neoliberalism hid its dirty secrets has also been cast aside for all to see. The internet, Wikileaks, and the profusion of citizen journalists the world over has assured a far less one-sided portrayal of the state of affairs. And while there may be less in the way of theoretical leanings driving the current movement, there is undoubtedly a far greater percentage of the North American population that realizes there is something seriously wrong with the current system. There is no politbureau from which to take orders, and today's radical is more likely to sift through the ashes of theory, seeking out something that has withstood the fire, than they are to hold any one model upon a pedestal.

The 1970s remain a pivotal time in the Left's progression however, because while it ushered in a time of unbridled passion for the almighty dollar, it also forged resistance. Herb Gamberg was in Halifax at the time. Gamberg has witnessed, and participated in, the New Communist movement, and was, and remains, active in the Occupy movement.

Gamberg, along with Tony Thomson, will be speaking this Thursday in an open interview, titled “A Wind Blows from the East (Coast)”.

Please enjoy the following conversation with Herb Gamberg.


A Wind Blows from the East (Coast) takes place at Dalhousie University, Room 1020, Kenneth Rowe Building (beside the SUB), this Thursday, March 1st, from 7-9pm.


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Statism not capitalism is the real problem

Communist Statism vs. Capitalist Statism is there really a difference?
In both cases communities give their freedom to the state. But what is worse is that in doing so you not only give your freedom away, you give away mine and give authority to "government" to initiate violence against me and anyone else who refuses to follow what has become the arbitrary rules of a governing class.

You give those who "govern" your consent to put free, nonviolent human beings in cages for personal choices that injure no one, but violate a random "law" or legal maxim. The law however is based on a fallacious appeal to moral authority. I live for me, only I have authority over my actions, only I can choose what I feel is moral and therefore no one else can possibly be an authority on what I believe besides me.

If you believe that human beings are inherently evil and require someone or something to force them to be "good" then one must admit that those you elect to "govern" you are also inherently evil. Why then should you choose anyone to tell you what to do?

I consent to no authority.
I consent to no government.
Will you hire someone to initiate violence against me if I disagree with what you believe is moral?

Government cannot do anything that individuals cannot do.
If you cannot demand money from me neither can a group of people calling itself government. You're just hiring someone to do it.

Beautiful writing

This is one of your most wonderfully written introductions, Miles. It was a pleasure to read.

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