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TadhgÓBarraí

Communist Party of the Irish Republic?

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Since little information is available on this organisation, I would be very grateful if comrades could post up some details such as the origins, and aims of this group. Go raibh maith agaibh.

 

A chara, our Constitution was just agreed on this week. A statement, including the aims and principles, will be put up very shortly.

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Is this group new, a new communist party? I'd be interested in hearing more.

 

Yes, a chara, its a new Communist Party, but we would consider ourselves part of the worldwide Communist Party - in spirit anyway. We would agree with Mao that the Communist Party should be in the front line in the fight for National Liberation, and the fight against imperialism in general.

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Yes, a chara, its a new Communist Party, but we would consider ourselves part of the worldwide Communist Party - in spirit anyway. We would agree with Mao that the Communist Party should be in the front line in the fight for National Liberation, and the fight against imperialism in general.

 

As long as yous dont try to copy mao's economic policy!

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God knows but those famines wouldn't do well in Ireland.

 

Maos a mix of good a bad like.

 

As far as I know, there was one famine, and it would have happened regardless of anything Mao could have done. But, unlike in Ireland, once the famine started, every effort was made to end it. Unlike the British government, Mao wasn't rubbing his hands with glee and hoping that half the population of China would be exterminated. Did you read that article I posted?

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God intentions perhaps, but he showed serious sociopathical tendencies.

 

Like what exactly? I think we need to be very precise when we make those kind of accusations, and not simply rely on popular opinion - which has been carefully created by the capitalist régime.

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Like what exactly? I think we need to be very precise when we make those kind of accusations, and not simply rely on popular opinion - which has been carefully created by the capitalist régime.

The man took 'the end justifying the means' philosophy to a whole new level. I'm not saying he enjoyed being responsible for the deaths of tens of millions, I'm just saying he was detached from it. He wasn't a psychopath, 'merely' a sociopath.

 

Of course, much of the havoc caused during the Great Leap Forward was because of natural causes. Nobody is denying that for a second. However, Mao's management was terrible, ignoring facts and detaching himself from the lives of the poor, making quite derogatory comments about them.

 

He continued to export food for technology from the Soviet Union, even when there was a catastrophic famine in China. Rather than the Great Leap making China a force to be reckoned with economically, instead it was a total disaster. He eventually accepted failure and had to import food from the west.

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The man took 'the end justifying the means' philosophy to a whole new level. I'm not saying he enjoyed being responsible for the deaths of tens of millions, I'm just saying he was detached from it. He wasn't a psychopath, 'merely' a sociopath.

 

Of course, much of the havoc caused during the Great Leap Forward was because of natural causes. Nobody is denying that for a second. However, Mao's management was terrible, ignoring facts and detaching himself from the lives of the poor, making quite derogatory comments about them.

 

He continued to export food for technology from the Soviet Union, even when there was a catastrophic famine in China. Rather than the Great Leap making China a force to be reckoned with economically, instead it was a total disaster. He eventually accepted failure and had to import food from the west.

 

I think you are making some inaccurate statements there. The USSR had practically broken off relations with China by the time the famine happened. They would not sell China technology, or help it in any way, so Mao certainly wasn't buying technology from the USSR during the famine. What he did do was continue to pay interest on loans already received. Now, you could certainly say he could have stopped those payments - but thats a very different thing from saying he was buying new stuff.

 

It's simply wrong to say that Mao was responsible for the deaths of millions of people. That would be like saying Obama is responsible for the deaths of everyone who died in Hurricane Sandy. You have to remember that China was subject to major famines at regular intervals, because of natural disasters. In the mid 19th century, an estimated 60 million people died in one famine. In 1959, half of China's crops were wiped out by natural disaster. In 1959, China was only 14 years after the devastation of the Japanese occupation, and then WW2. The countryside was actually less able to withstand natural disaster than in the 19th century.

 

I don't think it can be said that Mao's management of the famine was a disaster. Unlike in Ireland, where there was no shortage of food and a very small population, relative to the financial power of the British empire, there was a massive shortage of food in China, between 1959 - 1962, and a population that was massive compared to China's financial power. Yet, despite continued crop failures, the famine was ended within three years, in all parts of China. Of course, in such a huge country, I'm sure many mistakes were made, but, I don't know what Mao could have done differently, except, as we said above, freezing loan repayments - but, as we are constantly told today in Ireland, that action is not without consequences.

 

It was an entirely freak occurrence that the famine happened at the same time as the Great Leap Forward. Capitalist propagandists try to link the two and imply that the famine was caused by the GLF. It may be true to say that the transfer of labour and resources to industry, during this period, left China less able to contend with a massive food shortage, caused by natural disaster. But, that is true of any country that undertakes industrialization. To criticize China for the GLF is to actually say to China that it should not have industrialized. That it should have remained weak and dependent on Western industry, and thus, subject to the dictates of Western interests. And, this is precisely what the capitalist propagandists believe. As far as they are concerned, Mao's crime was not the famine, but making China independent of Western interests. We know that today, 25,000 children are dying from drinking dirty water every single day, in countries that have private land ownership. Do authors like Frank Dikötter cry about these children? No, of course they don't. They consider that Holocaust to be "just normal," "just the way things are." No effort is made to stop it. It will continue for as long as capitalism continues. And yet, according to these authors, Mao is the greatest criminal of all time - because he took three years to end all that horror in his country.

 

I think it is also nonsense to suggest that he took a "the end justifies the means" attitude to a new level. The British empire caused famine everywhere it went. It considered famine a normal way to rule native peoples, and keep them in check. Ireland had a famine once every twenty years, on average, under British rule - as did India and many African countries. Mao did not consider famine to be normal. Once this famine was over, famine was never allowed to happen again in China. Mao did not consider the extermination of native peoples to be normal. Yes, he was very cruel in Tibet, and that should never have happened. At the same time, he did not have a policy of totally exterminating them, as the British and the Americans did to the native peoples of North America and Australia.

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I think you are making some inaccurate statements there. The USSR had practically broken off relations with China by the time the famine happened. They would not sell China technology, or help it in any way, so Mao certainly wasn't buying technology from the USSR during the famine. What he did do was continue to pay interest on loans already received. Now, you could certainly say he could have stopped those payments - but thats a very different thing from saying he was buying new stuff.

 

It's simply wrong to say that Mao was responsible for the deaths of millions of people. That would be like saying Obama is responsible for the deaths of everyone who died in Hurricane Sandy. You have to remember that China was subject to major famines at regular intervals, because of natural disasters. In the mid 19th century, an estimated 60 million people died in one famine. In 1959, half of China's crops were wiped out by natural disaster. In 1959, China was only 14 years after the devastation of the Japanese occupation, and then WW2. The countryside was actually less able to withstand natural disaster than in the 19th century.

 

I don't think it can be said that Mao's management of the famine was a disaster. Unlike in Ireland, where there was no shortage of food and a very small population, relative to the financial power of the British empire, there was a massive shortage of food in China, between 1959 - 1962, and a population that was massive compared to China's financial power. Yet, despite continued crop failures, the famine was ended within three years, in all parts of China. Of course, in such a huge country, I'm sure many mistakes were made, but, I don't know what Mao could have done differently, except, as we said above, freezing loan repayments - but, as we are constantly told today in Ireland, that action is not without consequences.

 

It was an entirely freak occurrence that the famine happened at the same time as the Great Leap Forward. Capitalist propagandists try to link the two and imply that the famine was caused by the GLF. It may be true to say that the transfer of labour and resources to industry, during this period, left China less able to contend with a massive food shortage, caused by natural disaster. But, that is true of any country that undertakes industrialization. To criticize China for the GLF is to actually say to China that it should not have industrialized. That it should have remained weak and dependent on Western industry, and thus, subject to the dictates of Western interests. And, this is precisely what the capitalist propagandists believe. As far as they are concerned, Mao's crime was not the famine, but making China independent of Western interests. We know that today, 25,000 children are dying from drinking dirty water every single day, in countries that have private land ownership. Do authors like Frank Dikötter cry about these children? No, of course they don't. They consider that Holocaust to be "just normal," "just the way things are." No effort is made to stop it. It will continue for as long as capitalism continues. And yet, according to these authors, Mao is the greatest criminal of all time - because he took three years to end all that horror in his country.

 

I think it is also nonsense to suggest that he took a "the end justifies the means" attitude to a new level. The British empire caused famine everywhere it went. It considered famine a normal way to rule native peoples, and keep them in check. Ireland had a famine once every twenty years, on average, under British rule - as did India and many African countries. Mao did not consider famine to be normal. Once this famine was over, famine was never allowed to happen again in China. Mao did not consider the extermination of native peoples to be normal. Yes, he was very cruel in Tibet, and that should never have happened. At the same time, he did not have a policy of totally exterminating them, as the British and the Americans did to the native peoples of North America and Australia.

Ah yes, I looked it up there and you are right about the Soviet-Chinese thing. Why I thought that I don't know, maybe because the Great Leap took inspiration from Soviet 5 year plans or something.

 

I never said that he was responsible, I said he did a poor job at preventing it. Mao admitted this himself. Natural disasters can't be prevented, noone is blaming Mao for that.

 

I'm not half as ideological as you when it comes to communism (not a bad thing, it's just a difference between us). Therefore, I don't look for excuses for Mao's actions. Did he have great intentions? Absolutely. Did he make some fuck ups, I would say definitely, yes.

 

None of us here would argue against the fact that the British and American were vicious. But Mao was responsible for policy failures, something he himself admitted. That is a fairly serious crime. That said, I agree with your 2nd last paragraph.

 

I honestly don't want to be sucked into a debate about this because I need to get college assignments done. Sorry a chara, Laoch or someone can take over and I'll come back if it's still going on. I know it's a cop out, but I just don't have the time at the mo.

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I wouldn't claim that Mao was without faults. If someone points out an accurate fault, I will agree with them. But, you have to realise that the West has spent hundreds of millions of dollars promoting complete lies about Mao - and every other Communist leader. After a while, among Western populations, these lies become "obvious facts." What the truth is about Mao is of secondary importance. The primary importance is to stop accepting capitalist propaganda. When a Western source tells us something, we must be fully aware that it is not giving us this information for free. The price we are expected to pay is the abandonment of our powers of discernment. As Irish Republicans, we know the obscene flights of fantasy that the capitalist régime and its media will resort to - and then, without any hint of shame or embarrassment, present to an intentionally dumbed down and gullible public as "plain fact."

 

Just on the final point. I don't think that policy failures are a crime. If the failure of a policy causes harm, then it must have been a good policy, as its success would cause the opposite of harm. On the other hand, there are criminal policies, the success of which cause massive harm and death. I think the policy to industralize China could not be regarded as a criminal policy, as it's success would lead to a great good for the people. On the other hand, the British policy of keeping Ireland without industry was a criminal policy, as its success meant that Ireland could not support its population. Needless to say, the British and Americans also hoped to keep China without industrialization. If they had succeeded, there would still be massive famines in China today.

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Ah yes, I looked it up there and you are right about the Soviet-Chinese thing. Why I thought that I don't know, maybe because the Great Leap took inspiration from Soviet 5 year plans or something.

 

I never said that he was responsible, I said he did a poor job at preventing it. Mao admitted this himself. Natural disasters can't be prevented, noone is blaming Mao for that.

 

I'm not half as ideological as you when it comes to communism (not a bad thing, it's just a difference between us). Therefore, I don't look for excuses for Mao's actions. Did he have great intentions? Absolutely. Did he make some fuck ups, I would say definitely, yes.

 

None of us here would argue against the fact that the British and American were vicious. But Mao was responsible for policy failures, something he himself admitted. That is a fairly serious crime. That said, I agree with your 2nd last paragraph.

 

I honestly don't want to be sucked into a debate about this because I need to get college assignments done. Sorry a chara, Laoch or someone can take over and I'll come back if it's still going on. I know it's a cop out, but I just don't have the time at the mo.

Aw feck I was delighted to see you arguing my point so I could sit back and watch. But you've turned it back on me ffs!

 

Hauld on Floda im gona try and debate onwards but I needa do a bit of reading....

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Right so i don't really have time to be going reading up on stuff.

 

But I think Mao was wrong on putting so much focus on producing steel. It was most likley a good idea in the long term but he did it a bit fast. So I think this reduced production of food as farmers etc where taken away from farming duties.

 

The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was a bit nuts as well like. Don't communists should take part in political or cultural oppression at all. I think our politics are correct and given time people will come round to follow them.

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Right so i don't really have time to be going reading up on stuff.

 

But I think Mao was wrong on putting so much focus on producing steel. It was most likley a good idea in the long term but he did it a bit fast. So I think this reduced production of food as farmers etc where taken away from farming duties.

 

The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was a bit nuts as well like. Don't communists should take part in political or cultural oppression at all. I think our politics are correct and given time people will come round to follow them.

 

Again, you are basically saying that China should still be an agricultural society, without industrialization. The GLF was started before the natural disasters. China could have been lucky, and not have faced these disasters - at least till the GLF was over. It wasn't. But, on the other hand, nobody could know when such disasters were about to happen, so industrialization would have to be put off forever for fear of them. That would not be a good idea. Particularly, since it was industrialization that put a final end to these periodic famines in China.

 

There were certainly a lot of excesses in the Cultural Revolution, but, on the other hand, it did weed out a lot of the Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin types, and probably left the Chinese Communist Party strong enough to resist the counter-revolution that destroyed the USSR and Eastern Europe in 1989. We never hear about the massive loss of life that that counter-revolution caused. In Russia alone, the average life expectancy dropped by ten years after 1989. 120 million by 10 is over a billion years of life exterminated by Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II. And yet, its only Mao we hear about...

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Again, you are basically saying that China should still be an agricultural society, without industrialization. The GLF was started before the natural disasters. China could have been lucky, and not have faced these disasters - at least till the GLF was over. It wasn't. But, on the other hand, nobody could know when such disasters were about to happen, so industrialization would have to be put off forever for fear of them. That would not be a good idea. Particularly, since it was industrialization that put a final end to these periodic famines in China.

 

There were certainly a lot of excesses in the Cultural Revolution, but, on the other hand, it did weed out a lot of the Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin types, and probably left the Chinese Communist Party strong enough to resist the counter-revolution that destroyed the USSR and Eastern Europe in 1989. We never hear about the massive loss of life that that counter-revolution caused. In Russia alone, the average life expectancy dropped by ten years after 1989. 120 million by 10 is over a billion years of life exterminated by Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II. And yet, its only Mao we hear about...

 

I disagree. I think they should have slowed up the rate at which they tried to change. Too much too fast imo. And poor planning too. China is a massive country which a crap landscape that doesn't allow for huge food production rates. So they needed experianced farmers to be involved in working the land instead of having them involved in industry. Of course they needed to industrialise. But it should have been over a much longer period ad with better planning.

 

I think we just have to look at the State Capitalism in china now to see that the CR didn't work. But I still dont think that they should have tried to cruch political opponents. For me that is just fascism.

I would also have a problem with Religious and cultural persicution even though in im no way religious.

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I disagree. I think they should have slowed up the rate at which they tried to change. Too much too fast imo. And poor planning too. China is a massive country which a crap landscape that doesn't allow for huge food production rates. So they needed experianced farmers to be involved in working the land instead of having them involved in industry. Of course they needed to industrialise. But it should have been over a much longer period ad with better planning.

 

I think we just have to look at the State Capitalism in china now to see that the CR didn't work. But I still dont think that they should have tried to cruch political opponents. For me that is just fascism.

I would also have a problem with Religious and cultural persicution even though in im no way religious.

 

If you look at the period 1720 to 1860, which was roughly the period that Europe industrialized, there were 18 major famines in Europe (half of them in Ireland it must be said.) But, the famines in Ireland were still part of the industrialization process, as Ireland was designated to be a non-industrialized bread basket for the industrial regions of England. So, we see that a slower process of industrialization did not prevent famine in Europe, and, ironically, all the famines happened in precisely those regions that had the most experienced farmers and the least industrial workers. The bottom line is that Mao didn't create famine in China. Mao ended famine in China. That said, I do agree that the time scale was too ambitious in the GLF. Mao accepted that himself. But, it was not as overly ambitious as people make out.

 

Yes, there is state capitalism in China now, but, China did escape the catastrophic loss of life that the collapse of the USSR led to. And we have to include the famine in the DPRK in the 1990s in this, as this famine was directly caused by the collapse of the USSR. Again, people talk about the GLF being too much too soon, or the CR being too brutal. But, the imposition of capitalism in Russia and Eastern Europe was almost overnight. It was a massively brutal process. The structures of the Socialist state were simply smashed - with absolutely nothing to take their place. Huge factories were dismantled and sold for scrap. Oil fields were sold off to criminals for a few dollars. It was a process of de-industrialization that had never been seen before - or since - and its rapidity was like a building falling. And the USA was driving all this, through their puppets like Boris Yeltsin, with the intention of leaving Russia as the weak and powerless backwater that it had been when Lenin first came to power. The intention was to make sure that Russia would never challenge the power of the Anglo-Saxon again. Why don't we hear so many people in the West wringing their hands about the transition from Socialism to Capitalism being too fast in Russia and Eastern Europe? Why don't we hear about the massive loss of life? Even today, the life expectancy in Russia still hasn't risen to what it was in 1970.

 

It seems to me that in saving China from total collapse in 1989, the Cultural Revolution actually did more good than harm - though I admit it did a lot of harm.

 

I agree with you that religious and cultural persecution is bad. I think one of the only Communist states that has never opposed religious organizations is Cuba. And that was for a very specific reason. In South America, by the 1960s, Liberation Theology was already the dominant force in the church. Of course, you still had reactionary and fascist priests and bishops, and they were well connected in the Vatican, but, in a place like Cuba they didn't have much influence. It was very different in Russia and China, where the church was part and parcel of the landowner régime, and functioned to uphold the landowner régime. I don't think it would be an exaggeration to say that while the priests kept their power and influence, the landowners kept their power and influence. It's very much like the capitalist media in Venezuela today. It works tirelessly to subvert Chavez and stop his programmes to help the poor. I think there is good reason to believe that if Chavez suppressed the bourgeois media, the poor would progress much faster and a great deal of suffering would be prevented.

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Guest Connolly

If you look at the period 1720 to 1860, which was roughly the period that Europe industrialized, there were 18 major famines in Europe (half of them in Ireland it must be said.) But, the famines in Ireland were still part of the industrialization process, as Ireland was designated to be a non-industrialized bread basket for the industrial regions of England. So, we see that a slower process of industrialization did not prevent famine in Europe, and, ironically, all the famines happened in precisely those regions that had the most experienced farmers and the least industrial workers. The bottom line is that Mao didn't create famine in China. Mao ended famine in China. That said, I do agree that the time scale was too ambitious in the GLF. Mao accepted that himself. But, it was not as overly ambitious as people make out.

 

Yes, there is state capitalism in China now, but, China did escape the catastrophic loss of life that the collapse of the USSR led to. And we have to include the famine in the DPRK in the 1990s in this, as this famine was directly caused by the collapse of the USSR. Again, people talk about the GLF being too much too soon, or the CR being too brutal. But, the imposition of capitalism in Russia and Eastern Europe was almost overnight. It was a massively brutal process. The structures of the Socialist state were simply smashed - with absolutely nothing to take their place. Huge factories were dismantled and sold for scrap. Oil fields were sold off to criminals for a few dollars. It was a process of de-industrialization that had never been seen before - or since - and its rapidity was like a building falling. And the USA was driving all this, through their puppets like Boris Yeltsin, with the intention of leaving Russia as the weak and powerless backwater that it had been when Lenin first came to power. The intention was to make sure that Russia would never challenge the power of the Anglo-Saxon again. Why don't we hear so many people in the West wringing their hands about the transition from Socialism to Capitalism being too fast in Russia and Eastern Europe? Why don't we hear about the massive loss of life? Even today, the life expectancy in Russia still hasn't risen to what it was in 1970.

 

It seems to me that in saving China from total collapse in 1989, the Cultural Revolution actually did more good than harm - though I admit it did a lot of harm.

 

I agree with you that religious and cultural persecution is bad. I think one of the only Communist states that has never opposed religious organizations is Cuba. And that was for a very specific reason. In South America, by the 1960s, Liberation Theology was already the dominant force in the church. Of course, you still had reactionary and fascist priests and bishops, and they were well connected in the Vatican, but, in a place like Cuba they didn't have much influence. It was very different in Russia and China, where the church was part and parcel of the landowner régime, and functioned to uphold the landowner régime. I don't think it would be an exaggeration to say that while the priests kept their power and influence, the landowners kept their power and influence. It's very much like the capitalist media in Venezuela today. It works tirelessly to subvert Chavez and stop his programmes to help the poor. I think there is good reason to believe that if Chavez suppressed the bourgeois media, the poor would progress much faster and a great deal of suffering would be prevented.

 

They were not socialist states, they were state capitalist states.

 

In the Marxist use of the term socialism, the proletariat control the means of production, and maintain the various forms of power derived from this control (political). They did not have this in any meaningful way in China, the USSR or the DPRK. They cannot therefore be considered socialist in the Marxist use of the term.

 

To call them otherwise is to undermine Marxism and serve the capitalist use of the term.

 

These were class societies where a state bourgeoisie, including Mao, Stalin & Lenin, had effective control over the means of production and political power.

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Guest Connolly

"In Marxist theory, socialism, lower-stage communism or the socialist mode of production, refers to a specific historical phase of economic development and its corresponding set of social relations that eventually supersede capitalism in the schema of historical materialism. Socialism is defined as a mode of production where the criterion for economic production is use-value, and is based on direct production for use coordinated through conscious economic planning, where the law of value no longer directs economic activity, and thus monetary relations in the form of exchange-value, profit, interest and wage labor no longer operate." - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialism_(Marxism)

 

Exchange value existed. Surplus value (profit), existed. Wage labour existed. And so on.

 

These regimes were a bastardisation of Marxism.

 

Mao was a fine emperor.

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"In Marxist theory, socialism, lower-stage communism or the socialist mode of production, refers to a specific historical phase of economic development and its corresponding set of social relations that eventually supersede capitalism in the schema of historical materialism. Socialism is defined as a mode of production where the criterion for economic production is use-value, and is based on direct production for use coordinated through conscious economic planning, where the law of value no longer directs economic activity, and thus monetary relations in the form of exchange-value, profit, interest and wage labor no longer operate." - http://en.wikipedia....ialism_(Marxism)

 

Exchange value existed. Surplus value (profit), existed. Wage labour existed. And so on.

 

These regimes were a bastardisation of Marxism.

 

Mao was a fine emperor.

 

A chara, who wrote that quote?

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They were not socialist states, they were state capitalist states.

 

In the Marxist use of the term socialism, the proletariat control the means of production, and maintain the various forms of power derived from this control (political). They did not have this in any meaningful way in China, the USSR or the DPRK. They cannot therefore be considered socialist in the Marxist use of the term.

 

To call them otherwise is to undermine Marxism and serve the capitalist use of the term.

 

These were class societies where a state bourgeoisie, including Mao, Stalin & Lenin, had effective control over the means of production and political power.

 

I don't think you could regard Mao, Stalin or Lenin as part of any sort of bourgeoisie, as they did not support private property in the means of production, nor did they own private property in the means of production. The bourgeoisie don't just control the means of production - they privately own it.

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If you think of the chaos at the end of WW2, how do you think that power could have been handed over to the Proletariat, as individual Proletarians? All most of them knew was a feudal mindset. Whether you like it or not, Mao was actually keeping China on the historical path of the Proletariat, i.e. to become the Universal Class. It was only when Deng came to power that counter-revolutionary forces reasserted themselves.

 

As for use value totally replacing exchange value, this situation can only be approached when ALL countries have become Communist. Its completely impossible when some countries - particularly the most powerful countries - are still trading as capitalists. As we mentioned above, China had heavy foreign debts, particularly from the Korean War. How was China going to repay those debts without foreign currency? The only way you can get foreign currency is from trade, i.e. exchange. Besides that, I dont think Marx ever suggested that exchange value would ever cease to exist - just that it would cease to become the structuring element of society.

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