Resistance Protocols

Don’t publicly advocate extreme solutions (resistance protocol)

Extreme problems generally require extreme solutions. Because problems that could have been solved without extreme solutions, would have been solved before they became extreme problems. If there is a movement to solve a particular extreme problem, and only the extreme solutions are realistic, then indeed one of the things necessary for the success of this movement will be that some of its members are willing to implement extreme solutions. But no matter how good your movement’s strategy is, it still requires a certain amount of people to implement it. Even if you make all of your movement's members willing to implement extreme solutions, that movement will still fail if its members are too few. In order for your movement to reach sufficient size, you should never publicly advocate for extreme solutions. Extreme solutions are seen as immoral by people who do not understand why less extreme solutions will not work. When you publicly advocate for extreme solutions, you are pushing away the potential recruits. When people hear you publicly advocate for extreme solutions, they will not assume that you have high theoretical knowledge and have reached that conclusion by thorough analysis of facts. They will assume that you are just a bad person. I understand that in order to solve an extreme problem, it will be necessary to implement a strategy that includes extreme solutions at some point. But just because it is necessary for your movement’s strategists to advocate extreme solutions, doesn’t mean that it is necessary for your movement’s recruiters to advocate extreme solutions. Public space is not a good place for your movement’s strategy meeting. The job of your movement’s recruiters is not to present a realistic strategy, but to familiarize the potential recruits with the problem that your movement wants to solve, and to get them emotionally invested in solving it. The job of your movement’s recruiters is not to try to prevent this or that type of person from trying to join your movement. Your movement’s leaders will be deciding which of the people who are trying to join will be let in, and which will be kept out. People who are unfit to become members of your movement might still end up advertising your movement to people who are fit to become its members. A movement will never have enough members if its recruiters are arguing about which strategy is realistic or trying to gatekeep, instead of orienting all their efforts towards presenting the problem and getting people emotionally invested in solving it. Even if some extreme actions are necessary for a strategy to be realistic, that doesn’t mean that it will be necessary for every single member to participate in those extreme actions. In fact, a movement should not engage in any extreme actions until it has reached a certain size. Because once a movement does commit extreme actions, its ability to recruit new members will drastically drop. So if it is indeed necessary for a movement to engage in some extreme actions at some point, it should do so only after it has enough members and sufficient organizational infrastructure. Some of the people who agree with the movement’s goal might be useful for recruitment and building organizational infrastructure, but unwilling to implement any extreme actions. A hammer should not be discarded for inability to cut paper, and scissors should not be discarded for inability to put nails in the wood. Similarly, a person who is useful for your movement’s recruiting process should not be discarded for being not useful for another task. People who don’t care about the movement’s goal will not be useful for anything. Your movement’s recruiters will make people invested in achieving the movement’s goal. When a person first gets interested in achieving that goal, chances are he/she will not know what strategy is realistic and what strategy isn’t. But as long as he/she understands what the problem your movement is trying to solve is, he/she will be able to get other people interested in solving that problem. People who share your movement’s goal, but are not members of anything related to your group, are part of your movement’s “abstract circle”. It's not possible to kick out people from the abstract circle or to meaningfully coordinate them. Sufficiently rational people from the abstract circle will understand that for a movement to become successful, a certain degree of coordination is necessary. So as long as your group looks presentable, they will be willing to join it, and assist with some of its projects. These people who are providing your group with some form of assistance, mostly with recruitment, are part of the “outer circle”. To a person who knows nothing, everything is possible. People who are in the outer circle will probably not immediately see that softer solutions won’t work, and that’s fine. They should be allowed to learn at their own pace. The people in the “inner circle”, the ones who are in the know, should never lie to the people who are in the outer circle, by claiming that soft solutions will work. Rather, the people from the inner circle should allow the people from the outer circle to be blissfully ignorant. They should simply abstain from trying to make people from the outer circle quickly adopt their opinion about what solutions are realistic. When people from the inner circle are asked if a soft solution will work, they should present their opinion about it as an opinion and not as a fact. As people in the outer circle are slowly getting more emotionally invested in achieving the movement’s goal, and as they are slowly learning why softer strategies might not work, they will naturally slowly drift towards the extreme strategy. And once he/she reaches a satisfactory amount of knowledge and commitment to the movement’s goal, he/she will be admitted into the inner circle. And thereby get access to the internal channel of communication in which details of strategy are being openly discussed. An extreme solution can only be accepted by people who have a solid understanding of the problem, are invested in solving it, and understand why less extreme solutions would not work. And it would be unreasonable for the movement to expect these traits in potential recruits. They are something that gets cultivated over time. While the people in the inner circle see clearly why soft solutions won’t work, they should allow the movement’s recruiters to advocate for them. And people from the inner circle should try and fail softer solutions along with their less perceptive comrades. What matters is that the movement builds up personnel and organizational infrastructure while working on softer solutions. For example, communist leaders were fully aware that to achieve what they wanted, it would be necessary to destroy the family as an institution. However, they decided to remove the destruction of the family before publishing the communist manifesto. It was a smart decision. Hardly anyone would have joined them otherwise. Is it immoral for the people in the inner circle to let recruiters advocate soft solutions that people in the inner circle know will not work? No, it’s not immoral. It’s not your duty to correct everyone who is wrong. When people from the inner circle say they will not use extreme solutions if others manage to achieve the movement’s goal using soft solutions, that is not a lie. The people who insist on extreme solutions, do so because they believe softer solutions won’t work and they insist on using methods that work. Publicly advocating extreme solutions is not a method that works. So people who are genuine about wanting to use the methods that work, should not publicly advocate extreme solutions.