Jerry Rubin

Do It !




This is a short extract from the writings of one of the ebullient individuals that appeared on the American scene during the sixties. Jerry Rubin was the crazy face of the yippies, the movement against all conventions, all stale practices, all that was fake and senseless in the American Way of Life. Some things have changed, some of what he says will not resonate any longer with many people, but the core message that emerges from these lines, i.e. the deep-seated desire for freedom and simplicity and truthfulness, will remain.



Ideology is a Brain Disease


The revolution is now.
We create the revolution by living it.

What would happen if the white ideological left group took power: Communist Party, Trotskyites, Progressive Labor, Independent Socialists, Outer Mongolian Proletarian Internationalists and the rest of the alphabet soup?

The hippie streets would be the first cleaned up by "socialist" pigs. We'd be forced to get haircuts and shaves every week. We'd have to bathe every night, and we'd go to jail for saying dirty words.

Sex, except to produce children for the revolution, would be illegal.

Psychedelic drugs would be capital crimes and beer-drinking mandatory.

We'd have to attend compulsory political-education classes at least five nights a week.

Rock dancing would be taboo, and miniskirts, Hollywood movies and comic books illegal.

The left says to the yippies, "You're not serious."

They tell us only the "working class" can make the revolution as they walk into the university libraries carrying The New York Times and The New Republic. Would a university radical be caught dead watching TV, reading the New York Daily News or digging a baseball game? The left is waiting for the workers to come to the university.

The yippies will consider the left serious when it starts printing comic books. We gotta reduce politics to the simplicity of a rock 'n' roll lyric. The left would rather hand a soldier a leaflet than a joint.

The left turns Communism into a church with priests defining "the line." It's a Christian trip all the way. Study and sacrifice to make the revolution. Suffering will free you and the working class.

The ideological left is made up of part-time people whose life-style mocks their rhetoric. There's a thousand miles between their actions and their ideology. How can you be a revolutionary going to school during the day and attending meetings at night? How can you be a part-time person in a full-time revolution?


the yippies scream at them.
Revolution is not what you believe,
what organization you belong to, or who you vote for -
it's what you do all day, how you live.


The left drives people away almost as fast as Nixon drives people toward us. (Thank God Nixon does a better job!) Ideological hassles on theoretical bullshit, boring meetings - is this the life of a revolutionary? Who's going to give his life to a movement with that kind of come-on?

Yippies scream: "You don't know what you're missing if you're not in the revolution! Yippie!" The romance of our revolutionary life-style, freedom and fighting will draw the children of the working class to the revolution.

Many intellectual radicals arrogantly call themselves "Marxists." (Poor Karl.) They're very mechanical, telling us the "Laws of Marxism" say revolution comes only out of economic exploitation. There'll be revolution only if there's another economic depression.

Their theories don't explain us - a revolutionary movement that has come out of affluence, not poverty. We don't fit into any of their preconceived "scientific" categories. They say the only role for whites is to "support" - support the Black Panthers, support the "working class," support the Chinese.

The yippies see white middle-class youth as a revolutionary class. We are exploited and oppressed, and we are fighting for our freedom. We do not feel guilty because we're not black, Chinese or factory workers. Capitalism will die because it cannot satisfy its own children!

But then the liberal intellectuals tell us that a revolution has never taken place in an industrialized affluent country. Nothing in history has ever happened till it happens!

Get out of your universities, leftists!
Watch TV!
Turn on!
Drop out!
Get high!


Act first. Analyze later.
Impulse - not theory - makes the great leaps forward.
Theory comes when people try to figure out what they did - after they do it.


For years I went to left-wing meetings trying to figure out what the hell was going on. Finally I started taking acid, and I realized what was going on: nothing. I vowed never to go to another left-wing meeting again. Fuck left-wing meetings!

None of the movement's great historical events - from the Be-in to the Pentagon to Chicago - came out of a left-wing meeting. In fact, they would all have been voted down!




The yippies are Marxists. We follow in the revolutionary tradition of Groucho, Chico, Harpo and Karl.

What the yippies learn from Karl Marx - history's most infamous, bearded, longhaired, hippie commie freek agitator - is that we must create a spectacular myth of revolution.

Karl wrote and sang his own rock album called "The Communist Manifesto."

"The Communist Manifesto" is a song that has overthrown governments.


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