Exploitative news clip about London punk squatters in 1983

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/09/26/exploitative-news-clip-about-l.html


i don’t know – pretty standard fare. it didn’t seem THAT exploitative, after all, those punks were charging for pix. for all we know, they charged the reporter and his film crew, too. sad that even though they were all “yahhh! smash the state! anarchy!” they were still homophobic jerks. what would be more punk in 1983 than to be accepting? anyway, i wonder how many of them are still alive, if any.


So, who was REALLY doing the exploiting here!



“Exploitative news clip…”

I see what you did there.



it is pretty rich that those anarchists were such capitalists : )


Most punks weren’t really anarchists… I mean, there are some, but most of them were interested in creating small-scale capitalist ventures, and in themselves controlling the means of production…


The ones on the video are more like edgelords than they are anarchists. No anarchist would go around wearing swastikas unless they wanted their friends to beat the shit out of them.


no, i know – it was more the IDEA of anarchy than actual anarchy they wanted.

I think they adopted the symbols of anarchy, rather than any ideals (except for the punks who actually DID adopt the ideals, such as Crass, who were very much running things like an anarchist collective). Dick Hebdige nailed it when talking about the pastiche/bricolage tendencies of the early British punk scene. They took symbols found in society and repurposed them for shock value.

Not all punks were explicitly political (except when it came to independent music production), but some were (along a spectrum from hard right to hard left). It’s not the politics that makes a punk, it’s producing and/or consuming punk and existing within punk spaces. It’s a praxis rather than a political orientation…


Anomie rather than anarchy?


I forgot how much energy Julian Assange had when he was young.

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Yeah, I think the bent of “anarchy” they were into wasn’t much more than resenting authority and the pre-existing structure of society and the mundane conformity it appeared to demand of them. There seems to be an easy path from “this system is oppressive and I’d like to tear it down” to “I must be an anarchist.”

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I think it’s in the realm of possibility that at least one 80s punk squatter now has a seat in Parliament.


This is more of an anti-squatting thing than an anti-punk one. Some squatters are assholes = all squatters are assholes guilt by association bullshit.

I squatted in London (empty decrepit council flats) from about '86-'91 and only very rarely came across this kind of shite.

n.b. since squatting was criminalised in the UK in 2012 street sleeping has absolutely fucking ballooned.


I am sure I recognise that narrators voice, I am 99% certain he was on Aussie TV in the 80’s and 90’s probably ABC (the public broadcaster) but I can’t put a face or name to the voice

He’s as far from a punk as you can get. I get kind of sick of all sorts of poseurs thinking they are punks.

I have no cultural commentary on the movement other than they are certainly living it up.

Amazing that this is what was happening in London the year I was born. I went to London in 2007 and saw 1 traditional punk, the studded jacket and mohawk and full nine yards but maybe I was in the wrong area if I wanted to see more.

I love The Exploited hard, and Ian Dury and the Blockheads. Got introduced to the latter and punk proper from a CD that was in my ridiculous copy of the Daily

I’ve always been a metalhead, never identified with punk crowd personally, but partied with enough of them to know they know how to party

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I recognised this thoughtful and non-judgemental video within seconds of it playing.
The mercury award nominated artist slowthai used it to top and tail his single “doorman” , the best neo-punk song to come out of the UK this decade (and song of the year in my opinion, but YMMV).

“Doorman” by Slowthai

Recommended to play very loud for full effect.

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It was a joke, based on the appearance of the guy in the gif.

JA would have still been a little kid when that was filmed.

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