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Episode 74 – Heretics II: Rotn

The Brilliant Podcast
The Brilliant
Episode 74 - Heretics II: Rotn

The second interview is the heretic series is long time anarchist heretic Rotn. Rotn and I met just before the “battle in Seattle” that really boosted his notoriety (he appeared in 60 minutes in the following weeks) and is a great start to a two decade long friendship. During about a decade of that friendship we were publishing rivals. Me with Anarchy: A Journal of Desire Armed and he with Green Anarchy.

This conversation should have happened some time ago as our chemistry and spiritedness is apparent. If you want to ask us questions for a deeper discussion on topics, leave a comment here or email us!

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  1. Steve kirk Steve kirk

    Good episode. Would love to hear Kevin T. on here since, as you well know, Kevin would have plenty to say and there’s never been an adequate publicly available discussion. I do think there’s quite a bit of assertion in here. But, overall, well done is my take. Not sure the point of talking about John anymore, he’s done a lot, made mistakes seems like it’s time to give it a rest. Additionally, disappointing how the conversations about Corrosive Consciousness never really develop into the content but seem to revolve around hinting about the crucial mistakes of AP. the cherry-picking anthro data also has been addressed in some for by Four-Legged-Human, at least in personal communication, though I believe he wrote on it as well. Only to point out that criticisms of ap are also assertions and some level of discussion would be helpful. It’s doubtful that will happen but would be delightful to hear

    • thebrilliant thebrilliant

      KT disassociated from us (LBC and I) about two years ago. I’m not sure what you are saying about assertions and dialogue but IMO most of the expressed hostility has been name calling and foot stomping from the start. I’d happily sit down and have a recorded conversation with either KT or JZ. I’d love for that conversation to start with the content of Corrosive Consciousness since it “chapter and verse” many of the issues I have with the two of them.

      • SK SK

        To clarify… Corrosive Consciousness (which I’ve read) may be chapter and verse but the actual content is asserted throughout the podcast conversations. Based on your conversation with Bellamy we know it has footnotes *cheering*. Based of Rotn’s take, here and on Anarchy Radio, we are to assume that CC illuminates the believer into realizing that AP does….? The conversation typically ends there. Fine, this isn’t an AP podcast but the topic comes up frequently enough it’d be satisfying to hear something beyond how much Egocide and Animal Dreams really really suck. So I say all this to ask, what does the conversation look like if it “start[s]” with Corrosive Consciousness? Additionally, there are positive assertions in CC that need further interrogation and seem awkwardly housed in the critique of AP (though it’s ostensibly just a critique of KT and JZ (though mostly KT and Animal Dreams with some anger over eco-extremism reactions) its use of AP throughout certainly feels to come from a place of not knowing the AP milieu very well and assuming we worship at the altar). Finally, in terms of overarching problems with this as a possible starting point, we’d have to leave aside the Bob Black jr. snark and the [sic] critique throughout. Having been front seat to how the conversation between B and KT broke down, I certainly don’t bemoan B’s use of these tactics but it did make me wonder just who the intended audience was. So I think this starting point is, unfortunately, unproductive as such since — while it may carry the content needed — it carries on the foot stomping and insults as well. I do hope KT and JZ engage with it eventually.

        • thebrilliant thebrilliant

          There isn’t really a question to answer here so I’ll keep it short. I review CC in the newest Black Seed but simply but I appreciate the book because it serves as a nice capstone on AP. It doesn’t not start a conversation IMO but ends one. It takes on AP from the position of accepting many/most of its assumptions and then tells one persons story of what happens next. This isn’t my story so I don’t have much to say about leaf cutting ants and how mean KT/JZ are. Those are minor points that have become major because they are easier to throw in a sack and then off a bridge than the thesis that if AP had anything worthwhile to add to the Green Anarchist milieu it has long since done so. Time to move on.

          • SK SK

            There was a question that was based off your previous assertion : “So I say all this to ask, what does the conversation look like if it “start[s]” with Corrosive Consciousness?” But in the above you refer to it as a capstone and seem uninterested. I’m finding it hard to follow what you want as far as engagement? You say move on but you’ve been bringing it up with regularity and, again, in your original response you said CC could start the conversation. But I’ll read your review before saying anything else.

  2. Matt Dionysus Matt Dionysus

    “I’d happily sit down and have a recorded conversation with either KT or JZ.”

    You know what would be even better than a recorded conversation? If you, Bellamy, JZ, and KT came on over to for an open discussion where everyone could participate. But, given the current climate of echo chamber isolationism that is so much in vogue in the American anarchist milieu, that’s probably just a pipe dream on my part.

    • thebrilliant thebrilliant

      Frame out that conversation for me. What would be the topic we’d be discussing? Because a large part of the reason I don’t call in or respond to every sling or arrow is that I have no idea where to begin. I don’t think the four (or eight, or twenty) of us need to agree on much of anything. I call the project I’m interested in Green Anarchy. Last week John called it Green Anarchy and/or Anarcho-Primitivism. We all know his project is AP, so I guess the only debate is why does John get all the words? But who cares about that kind of quibble?

      • Matt Dionysus Matt Dionysus

        Well, I suppose you could approach the discussion from any number of different angles depending on where your personal priorities lie. Speaking purely for myself, I’m interested in fleshing out non-essentialist understandings of individual subjectivity that affirm the role desire in the decision to either take action *or not.* It just seems to me that anarchists spend so much time trying to figure out *what* to do that they overlook the question of *why* to do it. As a result, the default rationale usually winds up being one of duty, obligation, and self-sacrifice to the ‘Cause’ of creating anarchy.

        However, if this angle doesn’t appeal to you, another one might be a critical discussion of the concept of ‘rationality,’ the various forms it can take, and the extent to which the so-called “Scientific Method” is implicated in the reproduction of civilization. There is an obvious connection to be made here to anarcho-primitivism’s overreliance on anthropology as a means of stating its case. The text entitled “Necrophilic Logics and The Revolt of The Imagination” from Killing King Abacus #1 could make for an interesting springboard for further discussion along this line.

        In any case, these are the sorts of topics that *I* see as being worth raising to JZ and company, but maybe you have *other* ideas. If so, I would suggest jotting them down and considering the possibility of discussing them in an open forum where others are at liberty to chime in as they please.

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