Book Review: DO iT!

Book: DO iT! Scenarios of the Revolution
Author: Jerry Rubin
Year: 1970

This is easily the greatest and most inspiring manifesto ever written. Even before you begin this delicious work of incendiary material, just gazing at the back cover clues you in that your in for one hell of a ride! It reads in giant letters: “DANGER! This book will become a Molotov Cocktail in your very hands.” To the left of this summary is a photo of author Jerry Rubin being escorted out of the halls of Congress by the “pigs,” while dressed up like an American Revolutionary soldier: bare chested (with lots of hair!), covered in war paint, reeking of stench from weeks of not bathing, a head full of acid, and well armed ( a toy gun! albeit very real looking!).
As we open up the subversive memoir we are commanded to “READ THIS BOOK STONED,” a theme that is prevalent throughout the book.
Next, we experience one of the finest introductions by Eldridge Cleaver, the Minister of Information of the Black Panther Party For Self-Defense. Cleaver explains how “if everybody carried out Jerry’s program- there would be immediate peace in the world. Amerika, in particular would cease to bleed.” So, what exactly was Jerry’s programs? Well, his program is very simple: Go out in the streets and be a revolutionary, your own legislator. He shouts, “All you have to do to be a yippie is be a yippie.” Transform your ideas into actions. Fuck Ideologies. Fuck Rules. Fuck Religion. Fuck Everything…in the streets and bring some dope and dynamite with you! Destroy the Schools. Burn the Prisons down. Kill Your Parents. Drop out of society. Burn Money. Actions speak louder than words, so cut out long boring speeches on what your goals or demands are. Instead, use Yippie (Youth International Party) tactics to highlight your agenda. The Yippies nominated an actual pig named Pigasus as their presidential candidate, illustrating the point that all the other candidates were equally filthy pigs. And after all, don’t most politicians like to roll around in their own shit anyway?! If all of this sounds irrational to you, then it should. Our menacing Yippie informs us, “Yippies know we’re sane and everyone else is crazy, so we call ourselves “the crazies.” Jerry Rubin was indeed “crazy,” he was a dedicated revolutionary and a relentless outlaw in the true sense of the word. You know you often hear badass musicians, actors, or comedians like Bill Hicks, referred to as “outlaws.” But, they weren’t constantly in trouble with the law. Jerry, on the other hand was. In fact, at the time of this book’s publication, he and seven other defendants (Abbie Hoffman, Dave Dellinger, Bobby Seale, Tom Hayden, Rennie Davis, Lee Weiner, and John Froines) were on trial for conspiracy to incite a riot while crossing state lines at the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

: A 9.5/10- One of the most subversive books I’ve ever read!


New Left

Throughout this year I have embarked on a journey of self-education through reading inflammatory recipes for revolution and amongst the incendiary material on my bookshelf, works concerning the New Left appear the most prominently. The New Left, unlike the Old Left of the 1930s and 1940s, focused on social activism and American culture. Elvis Presley and the Lone Ranger were just as important as Che Guevara and Fidel Castro. Their main aims were ending the War in Viet FUCKINGnam, ending racism at home, and protesting the conformist, capitalist, greedy, Amerikkkan lifestyle, amongst other initiatives, As I mentioned, I’ve read several books this year on this subject that I highly recommend to anyone and everyone. These include:

From Yale to Jail By: David Dellinger
Steal This Book By: Abbie Hoffman
The Black Panthers Speak By: Various Panthers
Kingdom of Fear By: Hunter S. Thompson
Flashbacks By: Timothy Leary
Soon to Be A Major Motion Picture By: Abbie Hoffman
Fugitive Days By: Bill Ayers
Do iT! Scenarios of the Revolution By: Jerry Rubin

It’s been fantastic learning about these turbulent times through such diverse, charismatic, and first hand accounts. It’s really funny seeing how certain figures are portrayed differently in various works. For example, acid guru, Timothy Leary paints Yippies Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin as pessimistic, Anti-American agitators that advocate violent revolution. Leary says some nice things about the boys, but he tends to omit their personal charm and dedication to social change. On the contrary, through the Yippies’ eyes, the sky is the limit, nope scratch that, after they levitated the Pentagon they could fly with it to the moon! You’ll have to do some reading to understand what the hell I’m talking about right now haha. All of these characters appear in just about all of these books at least once. And the aforementioned protests at the Pentagon, the 1968 (Un)Democratic National Convention and ensuing Chicago Conspiracy Trial are events that are discussed in depth in all of these works. I have also read about Tim Leary’s prison break through his perspective as well as his rescuers’, The Weathermen. Here are some other key New Left figures I haven’t mentioned:

Tom Hayden
Noam Chomsky
Howard Zinn
David Horowitz
John Lennon
Allen Ginsburg
Angela Davis
Mario Savio
Rennie Davis
That is by no means a complete list.

Chris DeCarlo