Popular- Front Antifa (Part 1): Towards a Broad-Based Struggle

From Radical Education Department

The resurgence of Antifa has placed the problem of fascism front and center for radical politics today.  It also raises a key strategic question: if we are to disrupt, dismantle, and transform fascism–to ensure “no platform for fascists”–what is it that makes the Trump regime fascist, and what are its sources and mechanisms?  Discussions on the left surrounding these issues have often been limited.  They tend to focus on governmental or state fascism, endlessly comparing and contrasting past fascist governments and the current, American one.  In doing so they miss a broader socio-political fascism: the Trump regime is one expression of a diffuse fascistic desire for violent domination as well as of the fascistic social structures in which that desire is generated and cultivated.

The task of Antifa must be to challenge not only narrower, governmental fascism but also its broader social roots.  This project entails standing in radical, active solidarity with struggles against white supremacy, misogyny, anti-worker class warfare, transphobia, xenophobia, and beyond, as one node in a broad-based, radical left struggle.  In this post, we sketch the need for such a popular-front Antifa.

Some Limits to How We Are Talking about Fascism

Discussions about the term “fascism” raging on the left since the Trump campaign have often been deeply limiting.  They tend to be obsessed with a fairly narrow understanding of fascism as a phenomenon of state, which they explore by comparing and contrasting 21st century America and 20th century fascist governments.  Such analysis certainly has value, particularly in raising the alarm, but leaves us with a seemingly endless debate. Many argue that we can and should unequivocally call the administration fascist given its white supremacist and nationalist policies, cultivation of white supremacist violence, demonization of immigrants, attacks on the media, and so on.  But as others point out, certain hallmarks of past fascist states are missing, like a wholesale attack on individualism.  Others chart a middle path: “No, but …”  Across the debate we find a dizzying array of new terms: Trump is a “proto-fascist,” “neo-fascist,”  or maybe an “ur-fascist.”

This endless battle misses history.  It presents “fascism” as though it were a fixed set of characteristics, failing to ask: how might fascism, like a virus, become “resistant,” taking on new forms and strategies that allow it to survive in changed contexts?  Moreover, when we assume that fascism is solely a function of who is in charge of a country’s political machinery, we come to see Antifa, in turn, as a highly specialized struggle, implicitly rejecting any deep connection between Antifa and the vast array of other social struggles with which it might create a mass radical project.  We thereby also ignore the much wider, fascistic base on which Trump builds. To combat the limits of this discussion, we must shift our gaze.

Fascistic Desire and a Popular-Front Antifa

Beyond the left’s endless debates, we should recognize that the Trump regime’s ambiguous state fascism embodies a much broader desire to violently dominate humans and nature that is diffused throughout American society.  State fascists cannot rise to power without mobilizing and constantly reproducing this desire, but the latter can and does assume both explicit and implicit forms, within and outside the machinery of state. The desire for domination is generated in structures that have always organized life in American society: imperialism; militarization; local and state police; misogyny; the construction of masculinity as authoritarian violence; white supremacy; American nationalism’s constant refrains of exceptionalism; and many more.  The capitalist order, inherently authoritarian, provides the framework in which all these develop: it seeks to capture every part of society and every moment of life for a brutal competition in which a few heroes will rise to rule over the unwashed masses.

o-REVOLUTION-FIST-facebook

Such structures organize the violent domination and eradication of human and non-human life, constituting socio-political fascism.  When we call them, and the desire for domination that they nurture, “fascistic,” we point out that they make state fascism possible. At the same time, the term highlights the fact that state fascism is a symptom of a much broader problem that must not be reduced to an issue of who runs the government.  A fascist state is the reflex of an obscene social order trying to defend itself against the threat posed by a dominated populace.

From this shifted perspective, we do not need to endlessly debate just how fully Trump fits into a fixed definition of fascism derived from the past.  Instead, if we recognize the Trump regime as emerging out of the convergence of particular fascistic tendencies at a given time and in a given place, we can see that its ambiguously fascist form is tailored to the American context and sensibilities, accommodating itself, for instance, to American individualism by forgoing appeals to mass unity.  Whether Trump is a “proper” fascist–whether he fits into a rigid definition taken from the past–matters much less than that he is opposed as the governmental voice of a pervasive fascistic violence.

Nor do we have to see Antifa as a specialized, narrow struggle against a particular regime.  Antifa can see its work as inseparable from all those that struggle against fascistic desire in the diverse, irreducible forms that make an obscenity like Trump possible: against white supremacy, misogyny, transphobia, anti-worker class warfare, and beyond.

Pursuing its task–”no platform for fascists”–Antifa would then attack socio-political fascism in all its many forms.  It would stand in radical solidarity with, and constantly learn from, a vast array of left social struggles–and so aim to be one part of an intersectional, popular-front Antifa.

Anathema Volume 3 Issue 7

from Anathema

Volume 3 Issue 7 (PDF for printing 11 x 17)

Volume 3 Issue 7 (PDF for reading 8.5 x 11)

In this issue:

  • From Anarchy to Antifa
  • Mural Arts Reinforces Racism
  • Thoughts on Organization
  • What Went Down
  • New Groups in Philly
  • Prisons Escapes
  • Police Blotter
  • Nearby Resistance to Police
  • Power by Audre Lourde
  • Confront the IACP

Antifa: the Anti-Fascist Handbook

from Facebook

Discussion with author Mark Bray

As long as there has been fascism, there has been anti-fascism — also known as “antifa.” Born out of resistance to Mussolini and Hitler in Europe during the 1920s and ’30s, the antifa movement has suddenly burst into the headlines amidst opposition to the Trump administration and the alt-right. They could be seen in news reports, clad all in black with balaclavas covering their faces, fighting police at the presidential inauguration, and on California college campuses protesting right-wing speakers …

Simply, antifa aims to deny fascists the opportunity to promote their oppressive politics — by any means necessary. Critics say shutting down political adversaries is anti-democratic; antifa adherents argue that the horrors of fascism must never be allowed the slightest chance to triumph again.

In a smart and gripping investigation, historian and former Occupy Wall Street organizer Mark Bray provides a one-of-a-kind look inside the movement, including a detailed survey of its history from its origins to the present day — the first transnational history of postwar anti-fascism in English. Based on interviews with anti-fascists from around the world, Antifa details the tactics of the movement and the philosophy behind it, offering insight into the growing but little understood resistance fighting back against the alt-right.
[September 16th from 7PM to 9PM at Wooden Shoe Books 704 South St]

Confront the IACP in Philadelphia this October

From Disrupt IACP Philly

This October, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) will hold their annual conference in Philadelphia. This is a call for an ambitious mobilization to directly disrupt the conference, to publicly spread an explicitly anti-police position, and to attempt to open up space that is hostile to state control. We hope to do so using both coordinated and decentralized, autonomous actions in the area immediately surrounding the conference in Center City and throughout Philly.

The IACP brings together law enforcement agencies from throughout the world to “advance the science and art of police services” through international coordination, training, and policy work. Their 2017 conference will take place at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, with four days of workshops, an exhibition hall with corporate vendors, and a number of secondary events at other locations. Also, a “general assembly.”

This call for opposition comes from the perspective that policing is inherently a colonial, white supremacist project. From their inception, the police have had as their primary function the maintenance of a social order based on violent domination along lines of race, gender, class & ability; from slave patrols to strike-breakers and from vice squads to gang units. Opposition to the IACP presents a unique opportunity to advance a position that is absolutely against all policing, as a large part of the organization’s agenda mirrors that of those who would reform the institution. Body cameras, diversity in hiring, “trust and accountability,” and above all, “community policing” are all central themes of the conference and to recommendations for “21st Century Policing.”

As the Trump administration (universally endorsed by law enforcement unions during the election) bombastically seeks to reinvigorate the militarization of police, it is a crucial time to aggressively put forward an analysis that recognizes militarization and community policing not as divergent, but as complementary parts of a coherent strategy of domination.

Meanwhile, the hundreds of participating agencies and workshops starkly demonstrate the severe intersectionality of the violence the police have always carried out. Interlocking movements for black liberation, indigenous struggle against colonization, sex workers’ self-determination, resistance to ableist police violence, radical political movements resisting repression, queer rebellion, global anti-imperialism, migrant and refugee justice and no borders movements, housing justice, environmental struggles, and more, all have a stake in opposing the strategies and tactics that will be promoted at this conference.

The IACP conference puts on display what we know from our daily participation in diverse forms of resistance: that every struggle is a struggle against the police.

While all the departments involved have histories of (and foundations in) violence, many have also seen fierce resistance to that violence in the recent past. Participating departments from Albuquerque, Chicago, Milwaukee, Seattle, the Bay Area, and more have seen rebellions against them in the last several years. We hope to use this opportunity to build connections with those who carry these memories of antagonism towards the police and contribute to lived experiences of uncontrollable revolt.

A complete list of presenters, vendors, and workshops is available on the conference website, www.theiacpconference.org, but here is a small sampling of some notable participants:

• Peter Newsham, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department (who gave orders to kettle protestors on J20)

• Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office (speaking on their experience sending officers to repress resistance at Standing Rock)

• Robert Metzger, Chief of Pasco (WA) Police Dept. (presenting “Public Trust After a Police Use of Deadly Force Incident,” based on lessons on maintaining stability after the police murder of Antonio Zambrano-Montes)

• Local departments from Philadelphia, New York, Albuquerque, Seattle, New Orleans, Edmonton, Chicago, Las Vegas, El Salvador, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Tempe, AZ, Tucson, AZ, Dubai, Portland, OR, San Diego, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, San Francisco, Vancouver, Australia, Raleigh, NC, Dallas, and many more.

• Federal agencies, including FBI, Border Patrol, ATF and USCIS.

Expect more information and specific calls soon. In the meantime, save the date, make plans, study some maps, learn the terrain and spread the word throughout the region and beyond. Here are some more detailed resources to get started:

Outreach Zine for Reading // Outreach Zine for Printing

Workshop Descriptions and Schedule // Conference Hotel Map // Special Event Schedule

Against White Supremacy // Against the Police

For a world without cops, prisons, or borders.

FTP//1312

Assembly: A discussion with Micheal Hardt

from Facebook

Drawing on ideas developed through their well-known Empire trilogy, Hardt and Negri have produced, in ASSEMBLY, a timely proposal for how current large-scale horizontal movements can develop the capacities for political strategy and decision-making to effect lasting and democratic change.

In recent years “leaderless” social movements have proliferated around the globe, from North Africa and the Middle East to Europe, the Americas, and East Asia. Some of these movements have led to impressive gains: the toppling of authoritarian leaders, the furthering of progressive policy, and checks on repressive state forces. They have also been, at times, disorganized and ineffectual, or suppressed by disoriented and perplexed police forces and governments who fail to effectively engage them.

Why have the movements, which address the needs and desires of so many, not been able to achieve lasting change and create a new, more democratic and just society? If these new social movements are to achieve meaningful revolution, they must invent effective modes of assembly and decision-making structures that rely on the broadest democratic base. We have not yet seen what is possible when the multitude assembles.
[September 7 from 7PM to 9PM at Wooden Shoe Books 704 South St]

Bosses, Workers, and Race in Philadelphia, Part 1

from Tubman-Brown Organization

Philadelphia and the surrounding areas are well known for their poverty, drug addiction, and violence. It is hard to get a straight answer about why this is, and when the answer is given it’s often blatantly racist or racist just under the surface. One of the more common answers, especially among White Philadelphians, is that Black and Latin people are inclined towards crime and violence — whether or not they actually claim people of color are naturally or culturally inferior only depends on if they’re comfortable being an obvious racist or not.

Of course, this explanation is ridiculous. The various Black and Latino/indigenous cultures of Philadelphia are unique in their traditions, their music, their literature, and their history — they are not unique in their inclination towards crime and violence. White Irish and Italian neighborhoods in Philadelphia have always had their share of gang violence, and currently there are majority White neighborhoods, most notably Kensington, that are notorious for drug addiction and drug trade. The Near Northeast and South Philadelphia also provide examples of White poverty easily comparable to the poverty of Black and Brown people throughout the city. Often it seems that the distinction made by White Philadelphians between the White poor and the Brown poor is based on their level of personal comfort instead of any social reality.

It is, however, true that Black and Brown people in Philadelphia are poor at a greater rate than White people in the city. Why is this? The basic answer is that racism has always been used as a tool by politicians and by bosses to divide the poor and working class people. The history of Philadelphia is a history of competition between bosses and workers, hidden by a staged conflict between races and ethnic groups for jobs and living space — both of which would be available to all peoples if not for the artificial scarcity created by bosses and politicians. Working class unity, across racial and ethnic lines, means that workers have leverage over their bosses, something a boss clearly does not want. To maintain control over their workers, an easy and successful strategy is for bosses to, first of all, hire mostly White people if possible. When required to hire Brown workers, they will treat White workers better (and as anyone who has worked for a living knows, a slight difference in the quality of employment goes a long way) so that White workers are loyal to their bosses and will side with the boss against their fellow Black and Brown workers. This produces a self-fulfilling prophecy in which Black and Brown workers will usually be poorer, and as a result are unwilling to put in as much work when they’re treated worse and are considered disposable.

In a country filled with mostly White workers, mostly White politicians, and mostly White bosses, and with a set of laws created to favor White businessmen, it is no mystery why bosses and politicians strategically choose to give White people preference over Black and Brown people. Another successful strategy to bait White people into betraying their class interests is the White police force, and this White police also goes a long way in explaining the larger amount of poverty present in Black and Brown communities.

When Whites were forced to compete both among themselves and against Black workers, they were offered a job not initially offered to people of color — that of the policeman, a new job that came around with the growth of cities in the mid 1800s. When many White immigrants, especially the Irish, took this job of the policeman, it gave their own ethnic community power to enforce their interests, a power that other communities did not have. It is often mentioned that the Irish were once discriminated against — this is true. It is also often claimed by racists that the Irish pulled themselves out of discrimination and that Black and Brown people could do the same if they really wanted to. This is simply wrong. The Irish were not discriminated against as White people — rather, they were discriminated against until they became White, and they became White by serving White interests. Also this was clearly made easier through having a physical appearance compatible with Whiteness. But consider the Russians and Ukrainians who now have their distinct communities in Philadelphia. They may be light skinned and white by a wide definition, but there is certainly a distinction made between a White person and a person from Russia. And further, a Puerto Rican person with light skin is not considered White the moment their accent reveals them as Puerto Rican. These categories we have been placed into are not inevitable.

When many police were Irish, the Irish community was able to “lift themselves up” by choosing not to arrest other Irish, and choosing to arrest those Black and Brown people they believed were competition for their own people. When many able bodied Black workers, the economic pillar of the Black community, were arrested for the same things able bodied White workers were allowed to go free for, this created a situation in which the Irish were able to improve their economic situation through undermining Blacks.

Anathema Volume 3 Issue 6

from Anathema

Volume 3 Issue 6 (PDF for printing 11 x 17)

Volume 3 Issue 6 (PDF for reading 8.5 x 11)

In this issue:

  • Coyotes Return
  • Police Conduct Business
  • Gentrification in Mantua
  • What Went Down
  • Thoughts on Charlottesville
  • Call for International Week of Solidarity with Anarchist Prisoners
  • Direct Action Topples Symbolic
  • Science of Statues
  • Scumbag Co-op to Arm ATMs with “Smart Water”
  • Midwest Pipeline Sabotage

Holding Together In the Face Of State Repression

from Facebook

A Conversation With Tilted Scales Collective, Human Rights Coalition and Philly J20 Defendants On How To Beat The Authorities When They Drag Us Into Court

In April of 2010 six prisoners at SCI-Dallas were charged with riot after a coordinated protest against abusive conditions in solitary cofinement durng which they covered their cell doors with sheets and bedding material. On January 20 2017 over two hundred protestors who attended a spirited ‘anti-fascist, anti-capitalist’ march were chased by police, assaulted with chemical weapons and mass arrested. They were initially charged with riot and conspiracy. Several months later those charges were expanded to include numerous other felonies and the 211 remaining defendants face up to 75 years in prison. The case against most defendants is not that they specifically commited a crime, but that they entered into a criminal conspiracy by covering their faces and wearing black. How do we defend our movements when the authoriteis attack? How do we work together to win in court and protect each other?

Join Human Rights Coalition (a group of prisoners families and supporters), Philly J20 defendants and The Titled Scales Collective (a Los Angeles based legal support collective) for a conversation about how we act together to keep each other safe. Tilted Scales will be in town discussing their ‘Tilted Guide To Being A Defendant’, a comprehensive guide to facing charges in the criminal legal system to help defendants not only figure out how to handle their legal cases, but also how to think about their cases personally, politically and legaly. People who have faced cases or who are currently caught up are encouraged to attend and participate in the discussion. Of course we will not talk about specifics about any case (what someone did or did not do that led to charges) in a way that could jeaporadize anyones legal defense. However, we will talk about ways we can act in solidarity in the courts and through the legal process and how we can build resilient movements that can withstand state repression. Come and be a part of the conversation!

Sponsored By Up Against The Law Legal Collecitve, Philly J20 Solidarity, Tilted Scales Collective, Human Rights Coalition, Irish Against Oppression and Decarcerate PA

[August 8 from 6:30PM to 8:30PM a Arch Street United Methodist Church, 55 N Broad St]

Sunoco Faces Backlash After Repeated Pipeline Drilling Spills

from Unicorn Riot

West Whiteland Township, PA – Construction of the Mariner East 2 natural gas liquids pipeline faces several new obstacles as local authorities and the public respond to a series of drilling accidents.

Sunoco/Energy Transfer Partners recently voluntarily stopped construction in certain areas where horizontal directional drilling for the pipeline had contaminated local water sources. After a meeting with township officials on Friday, July 14, the company announced that it was halting drilling operations in Chester County “indefinitely.” The horizontal directional drill (HDD) has been withdrawn from the site at Whiteland West Apartments where it had been active until last week, and has been sitting unused in the parking lot at St Peter and Paul Catholic Church and School.

It is unclear how long drilling in the area will stop, and if construction activities other than drilling are still taking place. Sunoco Logistics reportedly intends to blame Union Pipeline contractors, who had been operating the drill in Chester County, and replace them with workers from Michels Corporation, a pipeline contractor known for its work on the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines.

Sunoco admitted puncturing an aquifer in Exton while drilling on June 22, and has offered bottled water and hotel vouchers to over a dozen residents whose water supply either disappeared or was tainted. The incident has been described as an “inadvertent return” – an accidental process in which a chemical slurry of underground drilling lubricants ends up flowing back towards the surface, contaminating any local waterways in its path.

Contaminated water from a tainted well in West Whiteland Township

Sunoco has paid to attach several homes to the public water system after their private wells were tainted with drilling slurry containing chemicals. However, problems with the aquifer feeding the public water system have also been reported since drilling began last month. Before residents started reporting contaminated water, the company had ignored requirements to notify downstream residents 72 hours before starting to drill.

Permitting paperwork from February of this year shows both Sunoco and Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection were aware that drilling was likely to damage the local aquifer. Despite this knowledge, Sunoco was given regulators’ blessing to drill anyway.

Earlier this month we heard from affected residents in Chester County about how pipeline drilling accidents are impacting their neighborhoods and their lives:

 [Video]

Water contamination from drilling has also been reported in other counties along the route of Mariner East 2. Blair County reported an ‘inadvertent return’ earlier this month. On Monday, July 17, another drilling spill was reported at a Mariner East 2 HDD site in Middletown, PA, in Delaware County:

On Monday July 17th, Middletown Township reported to residents that the township had been made aware of a bentonite spill at Sunoco’s HDD drilling site behind Tunbridge apartments. Middletown Township reported that they had been notified around 4:30pm, and that PADEP had also been notified and was responding to the event. It is reported that the spill reached Chester Creek. – Middletown Coalition for Community Safety

On Tuesday July 18, a Middletown resident posted a video of the drilling spill site to Facebook and noted how contractors’ efforts to contain the spill seemed inadequate.

Sunoco had previously spilled drilling slurry into Chester Creek in Delaware County earlier this year while drilling in Brookhaven on May 10. The Middletown Coalition for Community Safety is demanding that Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) revoke “prematurely issued water obstruction and encroachment permits” for Mariner East 2 as well as calling for a moratorium on all pipeline construction. State Senator Andy Dinniman, of West Whiteland Township, also alleges that Sunoco used loopholes in DEP regulations to ignore potential impacts private wells when applying for permits.

Additionally, Sunoco is facing legal action from the Chester County township of West Goshen, which seeks an injunction to immediately and indefinitely halt construction on Mariner East 2. West Goshen Township supervisors, who voted unanimously to petition Pennsylvania’s Public Utilities Commission (PUC) for an emergency order, allege that Sunoco began pipeline construction at an unapproved location without notifying them or asking for their permission. Township officials also say Sunoco pipeline crews ignored local construction and safety regulations, and have repeatedly blocked the driveway to the local fire department with their vehicles.

Several hundred miles west in the Susquehanna Valley in central Pennsylvania, tree-sits at Camp White Pine still block Mariner East 2’s route through Huntingdon County. The property is owned by the Gerhart family, who have refused to allow pipeline work crews onto their property despite repeated rulings against them by local courts on behalf on Sunoco. Huntingdon County judge Georce Zanic recently approved an injunction sought by Sunoco to allow police to arrest the Gerharts (and/or their supporters) on their own property at the pipeline company’s request.

One of several tree-sit pods at Camp White Pine, on the route of Mariner East 2 in Huntingdon, PA

With drilling paused in Chester County, the blockades at Camp White Pine still in place, and neighborhoods along the route self-organizing to respond to pipeline safety issues, hundreds of miles of Mariner East 2 are still incomplete. Nonetheless, Sunoco Logistics (‘an Energy Transfer company’) claims the pipeline will be operational sometime this year. The line would carry liquified gases such as ethane, butane, and propane from frack fields in Scio, Ohio across Pennsylvania to export terminals at Marcus Hook, where it would then be shipped across the Atlantic to a plastics company in Scotland.

Stay tuned to Unicorn Riot for more updates as we continue to report on this unfolding story.

Alt-Right Tries and Fails – Again – In Philly

from Philly Antifa

“Lol only half of us are actually Nazis and the others are being ironic. We’re so funny.”

On Saturday July 15th Refuse Fascism (an anti-Trump/Pence coalition with no affiliation to our crew) held several “Drive our the Trump/Pence Regime” demonstrations around the country.

Having been thoroughly embarrassed over and over in the past few months, one might think that the racist right might have taken the hint and left these nice communists alone. And for the most part, you would be right. Gone were the throngs of suburban MAGAts, Bikers for Trump, and crews of White Nationalists we saw back in May during the failed “Make America Great Again” march. Even the pathetic turnout on July 2nd could not be repeated. (See links if you are not a regular reader)

No, what turned out this past Saturday with some vague notion of disrupting or trolling the Refuse Fascism march represented the dregs of the Pennsylvania Alt-Right. Less than a dozen individuals brought together through social media and shared stories of catching beat downs for having bad situational awareness and worse politics, “rallied” on the corner of 15th and JFK.

We say “rallied” because they were basically silent the entire time, preferring to talk among themselves or occasionally argue with the Anti-Racists and Anti-Fascists that walked by on their way to the Refuse rally, which went off without a hitch across the plaza. They handed out two different fliers. The first was as vague as it was pathetic, listing a bunch of “posi” slogans about how “We can be great again” though refraining from using Trump’s name, and a bunch of masked pleading about how the alt-right are poor victims of Leftist violence. The 2nd flyer was largely a cut and paste job of that idiotic article put out by the NJ DHS claiming the Antifa are an “extremist group.” The article, riddled with inaccuracies and bias, was followed by an article detailing the far right’s acts of violence, including ACTUAL murders, but these lovers of informed discourse declined to distribute any information about THAT article. Instead, they preferred to (incorrectly) assert that an article online means that all Antifa are now “classified as terrorists,” when in reality none are.

After the Refuse march departed from their rally, barely even noting the MAGAts, they (along with their police escort and a handful of Anti-Fascists and media) walked over the the Fox and Hound on 15th street. The right wingers ordered food and drank for several hours.

Undercover police and surveillance made for a calm scene, but Antifa did inform the management of the identities of the alt-rightists, including the fact that one of them was non other than Mark Daniel Reardon, aka “Illegal Aryan,” the Neo-Nazi troll who has been putting up Neo-Nazi flyers in West Philly (more on that below). Reardon hopped into an Uber not long after. A few more of them would make similar exits until a core group headed back towards city hall to distribute more of their Anti-Antifa fliers. It did not take long for them to realize their folly and they were soon calling the cops for protection again.

So who were this patchwork crew of Alt-Knights, “Classical (racist) Liberals,” MAGAts and outright Neo-Nazis who struggled to even exist in Philadelphia while under constant police protection? Here’s some of what we know about them:

Jeff Thomas

Jeff Thomas

Jeff Thomas is a member of Greater Philadelphia Alt-Knights. He is “not a Nazi or White Supremacist.” He tries (repeatedly) to make that clear to Anti-Racists that object to his organizing events for Neo-Nazis and White Supremacists to attend. Thomas claims that he is an anarcho-capitalist or right libertarian, both nonsense terms invented to hijack leftist language about individual liberty to serve the rich. When confronted with the fact that everything he organizes (including this past Saturday) is at least 50% comprised of Neo-Nazis, Fascists or other White Supremacists, Thomas only shrugs his shoulders and mutters some absolution of responsibility based on his inability to control others. When you’re full of shit you’re gonna attract flies, Jeff.

Jeff claims on social media to be living in Collegeville but has a partner who lives in Philly and he’s still listed at his parents’ house on S. Mountain Drive in Reading. He loves to debate, which we caution against as a waste of time, but if the mood strikes you he can be reached at 610-207-2223.

Thomas is working on a book on right and left politics. We imagine that when he wants to call it quits, he will claim this was all just research. Anyone remember Jacques Pluss? Anyway, time will tell. It’s irrelevant because when you help organize and protect Neo-Nazis, your own personal politics are moot.

There’s no shortage of con-men or short-sighted demagogues on the right who may not consider themselves racist (again, completely irrelevant and laughable considering the circumstances). This is true for Jeff Thomas, and this is true for Gaving McInness, Donald Trump, or any other not-textbook-fascist who associates with, enables and emboldens Neo-Nazis and other racists and/or Fascists.

Mark Reardon

Mark Daniel Reardon, aka “Illegal Aryan”

Regular readers of this site will remember Mark Daniel Reardon, aka “Illegal Aryan,” a The Daily Stormer poster who we exposed after he anonymously claimed responsibility for putting up Neo-Nazi flyers along Locust Walk a few months ago. According to a man who was at the rally Saturday and lives in West Philly, Reardon has been spotted putting up more flyers, including one at 36th and Chestnut. Reardon is a Neo-Nazi who attended the Traditionalist Worker’s Party rally in Pikevilly, KY in May and returned to find out he was no longer anonymous.

Reardon attending the private conference portion of the Traditionalist Workers Party’s event in Kentucky.

Since then he was kicked out of his apartment but is still staying somewhere in Philadelphia and recently stopped by a Food Not Bombs serving at an anarchist space then took to twitter to gloat about how he had visited our “headquarters” (lol) and escaped detection.

However this past Saturday he was just a shook one who feebly refused to answer an elder’s question as to whether the Holocaust happened (though he stuck out his tongue and smiled when Jeff Thomas and others acknowledged the Holocaust happened).

Reardon pretty much refrained from talking with anyone other than the other Alt-Rightists, and was generally about as craven as we all expected. He did post a boasting report back afterwards about his ability to survive a day out in Philadelphia with police and sympathizer protection, in which Reardon also speaks highly of just how sympathetic the others there were to his politics and activities.

Ellsworth Lewis

Ellsworth George Lewis III

Ellsworth George Lewis III is a far-right wing racist troll who is a member of Greater Philadelphia Alt-Knights. He is 31 and lives on Lincoln Ave in Prospect Park, PA. He works at Taylor Hospital in Ridley Park PA.

Here is a screengrab of Lewis discussing the “Unite the Right” rally being held in Charlottesville in August with the explicit aim of merging the outright racist elements of the right such as National Socialists and White Nationalists and the so-called “non-racist right” like Ancaps and various so-called “sovereign citizens.”

Deborah Nemeth

Deborah Nemeth

Deborah Nemeth lives in center city. She works as a paralegal and business manager for Piscitello Law as well as Project Manager for Diamond Contractors. Her bigotry of choice seems to be Islamophobia. This is only her second appearance with this crowd by our count, and is another one of this crew that claimed to not be a Nazi or White Supremacist. For our feelings on that argument, see Jeff Thomas.

Howard Caplan

Howard Caplan, aka “Pizzagate Howie”

Howard Caplan, also known as “Pizzagate Howie” or by his (now suspended) twitter handle @pghowie1, is a local wingnut and the seemingly the last man on earth (or at least in Philadelphia) willing to publicly claim that the endlessly debunked Pizzagate conspiracy is a real thing. Caplan also burst into Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul during midnight mass on Christmas eve to deliver a tirade alleging a link between Pizzagate and The Catholic Church’s (very real) scandals regarding sexual abuse. Before he was on Pizzagate, Caplan was the “Hillary 4 Prison sign guy” for flying said sign along Roosevelt Boulevard near where he lives in NE Philly.

Kevin Nally

Kevin Nally, JR

Kevin Nally Jr. is fucking gross. He is otherwise known as “pill eater” and he runs a website asianaryanism(dot)com (NSFW. Disgusting misogynist and racist content), the crux of which is advocate for a home for racist alt-right white men who fetishize east Asian women as submissive sex objects. When we say home we are being literal; the site claims to advocate for “a new ideology called ‘Asian Aryanism’ where a new white male-asian female ethnostate is established right next to the white ethnostate that Richard Spencer proposes…” Nally’s website features his writings and music, including an album called “Rape is Love” with a disgusting cover featuring battered women.

Nally lives at 606 Nantucket Court in King of Prussia. He was with a woman, who people were calling “Molly”.

So so far we got an Ancap who is either playing dumb or is just really dumb, a far-right LARPer, an Islamophobic nazi sympathizer, an actual Neo-Nazi, a racist misogynist, and fucking “Pizzagate Howie.” This is a wonderfully diverse collection of unique fashy snowflakes.

Also spotted with the Alt-Right contingent included:

This douche had stars and stripes socks.
This guy was with them. He seemed to be trying to blend into the Refuse Fascism rally but after Antifa started filming him he bounced.

There was also a 15 year old boy who expressed sympathy for the Traditionalist Worker’s Party and claimed “Hitler did nothing wrong,” though they quickly backtracked and said “some things.” His (hopefully ashamed) mother was literally waiting a few yards away behind a row of police. Daniel Reardon beamed about the little Nazi in his report back, claiming he had a “bright future.” Sounds like wishful thinking coming from a guy with a lot of hard times on the horizon .

And that was pretty much all of them, except for one or two who kept more or less silent.

Oh and there were some total P.O.S. Anti-Gay preachers there with their kids. Something about everyone going to hell. It was stupid. Later they went to Clark Park during a Dead Milkmen show and some of the attendees confronted them. Maybe there’s room for them with Jeff and Howie and Deb’s crew of people who are safe nowhere in Philadelphia.

Takeaways from this rather uneventful event are some classics (cops protect Fashies/the alt right is a bunch of rich kids and wingnuts getting duped by White Supremacists) as well as some disturbing new ones (Reardons report back, which we won’t link for obvious reasons, makes it very clear there is no limit to who this crowd associates with) as well as the always worthwhile goal of taking some time to let racists, sexists, homophobes and other assorted fascists know they are (still) not welcome in Philadelphia.

Eternal War on the Hitler Youth,