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lenin86

New Communist Party of Ireland Marxist-Leninist?

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Guest Connolly

No, never heard of them, or him/her.

 

Ill give it two months at most. Pure self serving identity politics without any analysis of the problems faced. A Maoist, or should I say Leninist-Hoxaist-Maoist equivalent of the Spartacist League or Democratic Right Movement, except probably worse in organisational capacity and commitment.

 

The language used is crazily Cultish, which is typical of these formations throughout history.

 

Interesting nonetheless.

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Guest Connolly

Same could be said of other small communist parties in Ireland ;)  Certainly worth finding out who this is, there's too few communists about for us to be shunning and ridiculing each other.

 

It depends what you mean by 'communists'.

 

Many of these people do not share the objectives of Marxists or Anarchists, and instead want to create some type of state-capitalist tyranny like we saw in Albania, Yugoslavia or the USSR, or presently in the DPRK, Cuba or China.

 

These are systems of ruling class despotism enforced with an ultra militarised state. A variant of fascist economic corporatism.

 

There is nothing Marxist in anything on that parties website.

 

If we are going to so whimsically throw the term socialism or communism about then really, it means nothing.

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It depends what you mean by 'communists'.

 

Many of these people do not share the objectives of Marxists or Anarchists, and instead want to create some type of state-capitalist tyranny like we saw in Albania, Yugoslavia or the USSR, or presently in the DPRK, Cuba or China.

 

These are systems of ruling class despotism enforced with an ultra militarised state. A variant of fascist economic corporatism.

 

There is nothing Marxist in anything on that parties website.

 

If we are going to so whimsically throw the term socialism or communism about then really, it means nothing.

 

 

Fascist corporatism is quite different in that it protects the privileges of private property and denies class struggle.  Now all State Capitalist countries do have some level of private property, but it is regarded as a necessary evil while building up enough state power to crush the bourgeoisie - both internally and externally. I don't think Marx would have behaved any differently if he had been presented with the real world challenges that Lenin was faced with. And he didn't coin the term "Dictatorship of the Proletariat" with some kind of Anarchist free for all in mind.

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Guest Connolly

Fascist corporatism is quite different in that it protects the privileges of private property and denies class struggle.  Now all State Capitalist countries do have some level of private property, but it is regarded as a necessary evil while building up enough state power to crush the bourgeoisie - both internally and externally. I don't think Marx would have behaved any differently if he had been presented with the real world challenges that Lenin was faced with. And he didn't coin the term "Dictatorship of the Proletariat" with some kind of Anarchist free for all in mind.

 

Class is not defined by whether one has "private ownership". It is defined by ones relationship to the means of production. Private ownership is just one of many possible superstructural reflections of material class relationships in society.

 

It dosnt matter whether the state owns assets or whether they are owned by private individuals. The real question is what class - as defined by its relationship to the means of production -  has effective control over the MoP and extracts surplus value. Whether that class uses private property or state property it really dosnt matter for the purposes of determining whether something is socialist or not.

 

Fascist corporatism is not much different. Not at all is it much different. Both fascist corporatism and state capitalist """Communism""" served the interest of maintaining ruling class privilege - state bourgeoisie or market bourgeoisie.

 

This whole debate really stems from a misunderstanding by many of what class is, or indeed, what Marxist class analysis is. It leads to mad things really - from supporting Korean Despots to calling China communist or socialist.

 

The main misconception is the idea that class is defined by private ownership. It isnt. Private ownership is but one form of a legally codified reflection of class power and class relationships. A political system or state which, through a myriad of complex methods, maintains one classes effective control and surplus extraction is but another superstructural 'reflection', despite an absence of private ownership.

 

And thats all private property is, a reflection. It is not the real material relationship itself.

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I've come around to your view that class is defined by the relationship to the means of production, rather than simply the relationship of ownership.  However, I still believe that you are too idealistic.  You want Communist relations to be put in place from the get go.  I simply don't think that's possible in a large country - particularly if there is already a very strong aristocracy (as in Russia in 1917) or a very strong national bourgeoisie (as in Cuba in 1959.)  In such cases, the aristocracy or the national bourgeoisie will use their wealth and power to divide and conquer - as they have been quite successful in doing in Venezuela today. Imagine if Chavez had simply turned power over to the people.  There would have been absolute chaos, and the bourgeoisie would have then stepped in to "restore order."  With the overwhelming support of the Working Class, I might add. It remains the aim of the Venezuelan bourgeoisie to create so much chaos, crime and disorder, that the Working Class will beg them to restore order - perhaps with US military intervention.

 

Libya today is another example.  The state power of the Jamahiriya was smashed, and nothing put in its place.  What has been the result?  Workers Councils taking control of the means of production?  Not at all.  Militias carving out their own little dictatorships and smashing any kind of Working Class resistance, the old Comprador Class coming back from exile to reclaim their lost property, and a client "government" put in place in Tripoli to serve imperialist interests (albeit with no de facto power at this stage.)

 

Today in Venezuela, there is a system of direct democracy in its infancy.  The real hope is that Madura can keep state control for long enough for this system to start making real world decisions that effect large numbers of people.  In the Jamahiriya there was also a system of direct democracy in development.  I do say in development, as in any society there will be powerful vested interests against direct democracy.  It seems clear to me that direct democracy can only develop in a dictatorship which is powerful enough to face down the forces that want to maintain the dictatorship of the market or of tribal and\or religious leaderships.  Switzerland might seem like an exception, but direct democracy has existed in Switzerland for a long time and has never been allowed to progress beyond a certain point.  Particularly, it has never been allowed power over the means of production, i.e. to question bourgeois relations of power.

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Guest Connolly

I've come around to your view that class is defined by the relationship to the means of production, rather than simply the relationship of ownership.  However, I still believe that you are too idealistic.  You want Communist relations to be put in place from the get go.  I simply don't think that's possible in a large country - particularly if there is already a very strong aristocracy (as in Russia in 1917) or a very strong national bourgeoisie (as in Cuba in 1959.)  In such cases, the aristocracy or the national bourgeoisie will use their wealth and power to divide and conquer - as they have been quite successful in doing in Venezuela today. Imagine if Chavez had simply turned power over to the people.  There would have been absolute chaos, and the bourgeoisie would have then stepped in to "restore order."  With the overwhelming support of the Working Class, I might add. It remains the aim of the Venezuelan bourgeoisie to create so much chaos, crime and disorder, that the Working Class will beg them to restore order - perhaps with US military intervention.

 

Libya today is another example.  The state power of the Jamahiriya was smashed, and nothing put in its place.  What has been the result?  Workers Councils taking control of the means of production?  Not at all.  Militias carving out their own little dictatorships and smashing any kind of Working Class resistance, the old Comprador Class coming back from exile to reclaim their lost property, and a client "government" put in place in Tripoli to serve imperialist interests (albeit with no de facto power at this stage.)

 

Today in Venezuela, there is a system of direct democracy in its infancy.  The real hope is that Madura can keep state control for long enough for this system to start making real world decisions that effect large numbers of people.  In the Jamahiriya there was also a system of direct democracy in development.  I do say in development, as in any society there will be powerful vested interests against direct democracy.  It seems clear to me that direct democracy can only develop in a dictatorship which is powerful enough to face down the forces that want to maintain the dictatorship of the market or of tribal and\or religious leaderships.  Switzerland might seem like an exception, but direct democracy has existed in Switzerland for a long time and has never been allowed to progress beyond a certain point.  Particularly, it has never been allowed power over the means of production, i.e. to question bourgeois relations of power.

 

I suggest you develop an understanding of historical materialism and Marxism in general. Because unless you lived in 1917, or there abouts, you couldnt possibly conclude the Russian Revolution had anything to do with socialism. Or Cuba, or Venezuala for that matter - without seriously misunderstanding the Marxist paradigm

 

Where is the historical materialist analysis to determine whether Cuba or Venezuala are socialist? - of the forces of production? - of the technologies involved? - of organisational forms and knowledge? - of the consequent impact this has on proletarian consciosuness? - of the form of the political economy? - of the consequent impact the forces of production have on surplus value extraction/rate of exploitation? -of the political forms to siphon and administer this surplus? - of the political and ideological forms which develop to protect the siphioning of this surplus by those who control and administer it? - of the class antagonisms beteween those who control and extract the surplus and those who produce it?

 

You know, the sort of analysis Marx had done for the capitalist configuartion of his time - private ownership and economic liberalism.

 

Because I dont see it.

 

These are the conditions, as Marxists, and as scientific socialists, we should be looking at.

 

Not what Castro thinks, what Gaddafi says, what Mao labels himself as or Chavez believes he is doing. No more should we look at what an Islamist nut in Syria thinks he is fighting for, or what a Catholic Bishop thinks his purpose on earth is.

 

What people think and do should be explained in a historical materialist way, through an analysis of the objective material conditions. As Marx states -

 

"Just as our opinion of an individual is not based on what he thinks of himself, so can we not judge of such a period of transformation by its own consciousness; on the contrary, this consciousness must be explained rather from the contradictions of material life, from the existing conflict between the social productive forces and the relations of production."

 

Similarly, what a regime is, what a society is, should be explained through historical materialism. Not what it claims to be, not what the propaganda or what the ideology says it is

 

Evan at a most cursory glance it is as clear as daylight what Venezuala is. What Cuba is. What the USSR was.

 

We can see who controlled the economic surplus (and it was not the proletariat). We can see how that economic surplus was extracted (wage labour). We can see the means by which that surplus extraction/exploitation maintained itself (militarised police state). We can see how that surplus extraction justified itself (state property being equated with common ownership)(forms of participatory democracy without meaningful economic power).

 

Further, we can see the level of the productive forces and organisational knowledge which, by any measure, produce corresponding relations to production. Internet in the USSR? no. Mobile phones in the USSR? no. Mass transit in 1917? no. flight? no. Robotics in Venezuala and Cuba? no. Self driving automatic cars - anticipated here in the forseeable future? No. 3d printers? (an extremely important developing technology - http://gadgets.ndtv.com/laptops/news/new-giant-3d-printer-can-build-a-house-in-24-hours-470564) No. Globalisation in Cuba or the USSR? no. TVs in every household? no. carbon fibre? no. CNC machines? no. broadband? no. comp[uter chips in 1917? no.

 

And who but an oracle could list the rest. But all of these are seismic changes to the forces of production, and which consequently change social class relations and preciesly how humans organise themselves. Most people couldnt fathom not having a mobile phone or internet these days, for example, thus changing/advancing organisational forms.

 

It is the Marxist contention that these advances create the conditions in which the proletraian class consciosuness emerges - a consciosuness in which the proletariat can see and can conceive of a new mode of production. Without wage labour. Without surplus value. Without classes. Socialism does not emerge from what a caste of middle class "communist" priests or military men can conceive - which in recent history has been capitaism.

 

Given this, what of 1917? - well, what other than a capitalist revolution? - primitive technologies and forces of production, check. Middle class leaders/technocrats/political alienation, check. Wage labour, check. Capitalist means of exchange, check. Class system and surplus extraction, check. Primitive organisional forms - workplace hierarchy, lack of meaningful workplace control, check. And so on.

 

Unfortuanetely today we mainly have pseudo-Marxist waffle, red flag waving and ideological smoke and mirrors about "direct democracy" and nationalisation. Which are all a puddle of piss - banal, empty, unscientific and shallow.

 

Marx would be turning in his grave to be associated with the buffoons calling themselves Marxists in Venezuala and Cuba.

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So are you saying we should just leave bourgeois Capitalism to work away until the conditions are perfect for Communism?  Where does Peak Oil come into your analysis?  Bourgeois Capitalism has come to the end of its ability to create vast wealth and technological development, and this end has come before the perfect conditions for Communism have been created.  And what gadgets have been given to the people, such as the internet, do more to immobilize them than anything else.  Can you seriously say there is more political consciousness and activity among the people now than in the 1950s, 60s and 70s?

 

And yes, October 1917 was a State Capitalist revolution.  Lenin said so.  Marx, brilliant though he was, did not say the last word on human development.  It is a mistake to limit your view to one philosopher - this is a mistake Marx himself would never have made.

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Guest Connolly

 

 

So are you saying we should just leave bourgeois Capitalism to work away until the conditions are perfect for Communism?

 

No. But until the conditions are right for socialism, socialism will not happen. I had this discussion before with you. Socialism is not something "willed" or "thought" into existence.

 

Show me an historical materialist analysis of the material conditions which suggest Cuba or Venezuala are in the process of a socialist transformation. The burdon of proof is on you im afraid.

 

 

 

Where does Peak Oil come into your analysis?

 

I havnt done an analysis. Im just sketching out what Marxism is.

 

 

 

Bourgeois Capitalism has come to the end of its ability to create vast wealth and technological development,

 

Simply untrue. People were saying that in 1917.

 

 

 

And what gadgets have been given to the people, such as the internet, do more to immobilize them than anything else.
 

 

Highly questionable. And even if it did, you only have a very narrow frame of historical reference to make that judgement.

 

 

 

Can you seriously say there is more political consciousness and activity among the people now than in the 1950s, 60s and 70s?

 

The point is to explain consciousness in a historical materialist way. It not a question of "how much" consciousness there is, but for what socio-economic organisational form it objectivley serves.

 

 

 

It is a mistake to limit your view to one philosopher - this is a mistake Marx himself would never have made.

 

That is a type of cop-out. Im an anarchist after all. But Marx's theories are far more consitent than Lenin's. Infact I think Lenin's theories do not make any logical sense at all. He was a theoretical lightweight.. They dont stand up to any historical materialist scrutiny.

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That is a type of cop-out. Im an anarchist after all. But Marx's theories are far more consitent than Lenin's. Infact I think Lenin's theories do not make any logical sense at all. He was a theoretical lightweight.. They dont stand up to any historical materialist scrutiny.

 

 

Have you changed your mind about dialectics?

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Ah sure ill respond anyway.
 

 

 

There would be no real reason to say it in 1917. 

 

Your right. But people did. Or a varient of it. Indeed Marx himself believed capitalism to be near expended, and how wrong he was.

 

 

A reduction in oil production, or a global economic crisis because of its depletion, would not create the conditions for socialism, or the demise of capitalism.

 

Because socialism requires a change in the intrinsic social relations produced by technological levels and the forces of production. Note - not the production capacity - which is what you are talking about.

 

In short, certain technological developments enable, or produce, an accompanying human-machine relationship. A most obvious example is a steam engine. A steam engine requires the obsolescence of human labour. You cant have people making garments by hand and have a steam engine at the same time, because if you had people making handmade garments a steam engine would no longer be required - or vice versa. There ie no point in having horses pulling a barge when you can propel the barge by steam engine. Or there si no point in having humans pull a barge when you have horses - and so on.

 

To repeat: different technological developments produce new intrinsic social relations.

 

And it is these changes in the forces of production - in technological advances - which produce the conditions for new social relations. And when the social superstructure - the legal forms, the ideological forms, the political forms, the state forms - become a hinderance to allowing these new social relations - that a revolution in the mode of production occurs.

 

Now this is a very simplistic overview. There are other factors. For example the production capacity, which can produce ever increasing cyclical crises through overproduction. This was the main factor Marx believed would bring down capitalism. But we now know this to have been a wrong "prediction", if it could be called that.

 

 

 

 

 

You seem to put a lot of faith in the expansion of information and information technology.

 

No. Just the things that come immediately to mind, given im on a computer. Again, I havnt really outlined any extensive analysis. Im explaining basic Marxism.

 

 

 

I also thought that more information would lead to a more informed public, and thus a public more capable of action.

 

No. Socialist revolution requires a consciousness produced from the changed intrinsic social relations. We havnt seen anything close to that yet.

 

You can inform the public whatever way you want. But it will be limited to capitalist social relations, and thus, irrespective of what you think you are doing, it will result in a superstructural change, rather than one of the economic base. Which is exactly what we see in state capitalist societies.

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No. But until the conditions are right for socialism, socialism will not happen. I had this discussion before with you. Socialism is not something "willed" or "thought" into existence.

 

 

Have you ever watched The Triumph of the Will?

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I think the main thing I would say about your view of Marxism is that you leave out Marx's theory of Free Conscious Activity.  In short, you seem to think that human will has nothing to do with history.  Yes, Marx is saying that the will is not enough, you need the material conditions for any kind of social change, but, at the same time, that change would not come about without full human participation, i.e. without the input of human will.  In a sense you are right that the USSR, China, Cuba, etc. were\are anachronistic, in that they are\were attempts to put Socialism in place before its time.  But, aren't all historical events anachronistic, i.e. before their time.  The French Revolution is a case in point, as is the 1916 Rising.  Lenin regretted that the Rising in Dublin couldn't have waited till after October 1917.

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Guest Connolly

I think the main thing I would say about your view of Marxism is that you leave out Marx's theory of Free Conscious Activity.  In short, you seem to think that human will has nothing to do with history.  Yes, Marx is saying that the will is not enough, you need the material conditions for any kind of social change, but, at the same time, that change would not come about without full human participation, i.e. without the input of human will.  In a sense you are right that the USSR, China, Cuba, etc. were\are anachronistic, in that they are\were attempts to put Socialism in place before its time.  But, aren't all historical events anachronistic, i.e. before their time.  The French Revolution is a case in point, as is the 1916 Rising.  Lenin regretted that the Rising in Dublin couldn't have waited till after October 1917.

 

Im only addressing this post as everything else is off topic. Start a new topic to discuss them if you wish.

 

You are wrong that I rule out human agency, and I have outlined my views on agency elsewhere on this forum - namely - here: http://soviet.ie/index.php?/topic/2227-socialism-as-a-class-society/?p=9440

 

 

So back to the point.

 

Show me a historical materialist analysis that Cuba, Venezuala, Hoxha's Albania, Kim's Korea or China are/were in the process of a socialist transformation.

 

Because in all the years of being a Marxist I have yet to see one. Its like trying to find water in a desert.

 

And from my own understanding of Marxism, these societies were nothing of the sort. If anything, they were/are reactionary.

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Guest Connolly

Ah sure ill respond anyway.

 

There would be no real reason to say it in 1917. 

 

But people did. Or a varient of it. Indeed Marx himself believed capitalism to be near expended in his day, and how wrong he was.

 

 

 

But today, when growth in oil production is impossible, there is very good reason to say it.  Any belief that science will soon find a replacement for conventional oil is just wishful thinking - or even superstitious reverence for science.

 

A reduction in oil production, or a global economic crisis because of its depletion, would not create the conditions for socialism, or the demise of capitalism.

 

Because socialism requires a change in the intrinsic technical and social relations produced by the technological levels of the forces of production. Not just of the production capacity, if at all - which is what you are talking about.

 

In short, certain technological developments enable, or produce, an accompanying human-machine relationship - or technical relationships. These technical relationships require new social organisational methods to operate in an economy. These are called social relationships. A most obvious example is a steam engine. A steam engine requires the obsolescence of human labour. You cant have people making garments by hand and have a steam engine at the same time, -as  the latter is more efficient, productive and economically viable once 'discovered', particularly within the dynamism of captalism. There is no point in having horses pulling a barge when you can propel the barge by steam. Or there is no point in having humans pull a barge when you have horses - and so on. To have it any other way is to hold back progress, or the real potential of human productivity. Each previous form is made obsolete through technological advances. And to implement the new technology requires new intrinsic social relationships -> people are made redundant, peope co-operate in different ways to operate the new machinary/technology, people change their organisational methods and behaviours to integrate the new technologies into the socio-economic structure. Both the technical relationships and the social relationships are intrinsic in that they have particular inherent and fixed forms. To explain very simply, althought this is an interesting and complex area, a steam engine, by its very nature, may only require three operators -> a fireman, a steam regulator and I dunno, an operator. Not an electrician, not a carpenter, not a polisher, not an administrator. Thus, the social organisational forms will also take on an intrinsic fixed nature -> how those three operators are organised. And this micro organisation will extend and integrate within broader organisational forms -> the administrative unit which organises 20 steam engines and 60 operators, and so forth.

 

To repeat: different technological developments produce new intrinsic technical relationships, and which thus require new intrinsic social relationships to operate.

 

When the social superstructure - the legal forms, the ideological forms, the political forms, the state forms - become a hinderance to allowing the development of these new technical and social relations - a change in that social superstructural form is often required - this called a "political revolution". Superstructural change can also be characterised as having lots of gradual quantitative changes -> policy changes, legal changes, ideological/belief changes, leadership changes, political/structural changes.

 

Further, when the class relationships become incompatible with an ever growing web of new social-technical relationships and of new socio-organisational methods/requirements - a change in the mode of production is required. That is, a social revolution - or a qualitative change. The mode of production is composed of the sum total of these inherent and intrinsic social and technical relations -> the economic base.

 

Proletarian class consciosuness emerges from the interactions with these new social and technical relations - relations we potentially have not even begun to see yet as they are dependent on certain technological requirements and objective conditions. But that is what an historical material analysis is for -> to explain forms of consciousness through looking at material conditions.

 

Having a lack of oil does not produce new intrinsic technical relations, and therefore does not produce a revolutionary proletarian "class consciousness". If anything it creates the possibility of reverting to older ones -> but not new ones. It is new and more advanced technical and social relations that socialism requires. Automation springs to mind.

 

Now this is a very simplistic overview. There are other factors. For example the production capacity, which can produce ever increasing cyclical crises through overproduction. This was the main factor Marx believed would bring down capitalism. But we now know this to have been a wrong "prediction", if it could be called that.

 

You seem to put a lot of faith in the expansion of information and information technology.

 

No. Just the things that come immediately to mind, given im on a computer. Again, I havnt really outlined any extensive analysis. Im explaining basic Marxism.

 

I also thought that more information would lead to a more informed public, and thus a public more capable of action.

 

No. Socialist revolution requires a consciousness produced from the changed intrinsic technical relations, and consequently, of the new social relations. We havnt really seen anything close to that yet.

 

You can inform the public whatever way you want. But it will be limited to capitalist technical/social relations, and thus, irrespective of what you might think you are doing, it will result in superstructural change, rather than one of the economic base and class system. Which is exactly what we see in state capitalist societies.

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The first thing that strikes me here is that your definition of Socialism is conflated with the definition of Communism.  Socialism doesn't necessarily mean individual workers having an equal say over the control of the means of production, it just means rational planning of the society as opposed to a so called "free market" economy, or a Feudal theocracy. Rational planning will always mean full employment, free health care, free education and price controls over essential items like food, clothing, transport, housing and credit. So, when the German National Socialists called themselves Socialists, they were not wrong.

 

Needless to say, according to this definition, the USSR, China, Cuba, the DPRK, etc. are\were indeed Socialist societies. Now, the move to Communism is a much greater task, and, in effect, you are asking me how Cuba etc. are moving towards a Communist form of society, and you do have a point.  I think Cuba has made good progress towards this goal by introducing many genuinely democratic institutions on the local level - as the Libyan Jamahiriya did.  People do have a real say over local development, and do take part in such discussions.  This is a major advance over capitalist states, where the people have no input into either local or national decision making.  National decisions are also widely discussed in these fora.  Cuba, by inspiring the rest of South America to adopt more Socialist economies, has made it more possible to move towards Communism itself.  One country cannot move towards Communism on its own.  This is a simple fact.  As long as you must trade in currency with other countries, you must maintain a system of commodified labour.

 

In general, I think your interpretation of Marx is far too rigid and idealistic, which is probably why you prefer to call yourself an Anarchist. No doubt you are aware that Marx considered Anarchism to be a bourgeois deviation.  In my personal experience, I have never met such rigid and authoritarian people as Anarchists.  And I'm not talking about you particularly, but those of a certain place we all know in Dublin.  Marx, in contrast, was very fluid in his thought, and constantly changed his analysis with new information.  Those who use his work as some kind of dogma are really anti-Marxist. Marxism is a method of analysis, not a dogma.  I would go so far as to say that a true Marxist turns Marx on his head, as Marx, the Hegelian, turned Hegel on his head.

 

By the way, I don't think Marx was wrong at all about Capitalism coming quickly to an end.  The type of Capitalism that Marx was analysing really did come to an end in 1929.  After that, the bourgeoisie was forced to introduce a whole different type of régime to the type that existed in the 19th century, i.e. the social democratic state.  It was only by offering the working class a stake in their own subjugation, and promising them a constant and demonstrable rise in living standards, that capitalism was able to continue in any form at all. And, as has often been noted, after 1929, Capitalism changed from the pure economy of commodity exchange to an economy of the spectacle \ sign.  Cheap and plentiful oil made such compromises and innovations possible.  But, the cheap oil has run out, and the compromise is off the table.  The bourgeoisie is returning to the capitalism of the 19th century - which is why intellectuals and even journalists who had thought Marx long gone are now quoting him all the time - often unknown to themselves.

 

We are at a very interesting point in history.  You have to go back to the ending of slavery at the end of the Roman empire to find a time of equivalent change.  That society ran out of energy and transformed itself because slavery was no longer possible.  Capitalist society could have come into being then.  The conditions actually existed - interest baring loans being the causa sine qua non of Capitalism.  Feudalism was really a desperate attempt by the aristocracy and the Church to stop such a monstrous thing happening.  As Marx and Engels wrote, Capitalism is the smashing of all human relations and their replacing by relations of money. This is truly monstrous, and, in Church terms, deeply sinful.  But, as you say, the introduction of new machinery made it impossible to hold the monster in its box.

 

Now we have come to a time when our slave, i.e. oil, is no longer able to power this society.  We are actually returning to human slavery, with jobsbridge etc.  This is a major change in the human-machine relation, and will cause fundamental social change.  What that change will eventually be, I don't think anyone can say. In the short term, I think it will involve the West adopting the type of society that China has today.  The Muslim world is tending towards a return to theocratic Feudalism.

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Guest Connolly
The first thing that strikes me here is that your definition of Socialism is conflated with the definition of Communism.  Socialism doesn't necessarily mean individual workers having an equal say over the control of the means of production, it just means rational planning of the society as opposed to a so called "free market" economy, or a Feudal theocracy. Rational planning will always mean full employment, free health care, free education and price controls over essential items like food, clothing, transport, housing and credit. So, when the German National Socialists called themselves Socialists, they were not wrong.

 

No you are wrong. Marxist socialism, revolutionary socialism, or scientific socialism, does not just mean rational planning.

 

Im afraid you are using a non-Marxist definition of socialism. Some may say Obama is socialist. And they are right, depending on their definition. The Labour Party of Ireland describe themselves as socialist. And they are right, because they use a particular definition, from a particular non-Marxist political tradition.

 

But when we are talking about Marxist socialism, or rather, revolutionary socialism (and you know, anarchists are socialists too), we are talking about a new mode of production as looked at from a historical materialist perspective and analysis. And from a Marxist point of view, the Nazi's were not socialists, nor Obama, nor the Labour party nor any other "socialists" who advocate capitalist social configurations, planned or otherwise.

 

You really need to brush up on your Marxism because this is like debating with someone from a non-Marxist background where I spend most of my time trying to counter misunderstandings and misconceptions about the meaning of terms ad definitions, rather than debating anything of real substance.

 

 

 

Needless to say, according to this definition, the USSR, China, Cuba, the DPRK, etc. are\were indeed Socialist societies.

 

Yeah and its a fucked up definition based upon pseudo-marxist regimes trying to piggyback and justify their ruthless existence on the ideas of Karl Marx. Its sickening, and completely damaging to genuine Marxism and revolutionary socialism.

 

 

 

Now, the move to Communism is a much greater task, and, in effect, you are asking me how Cuba etc. are moving towards a Communist form of society, and you do have a point. 

 

How can they move to communism when they have nothing to do with Marxist socialism?. You are fucking about with mixing terms from different political traditions. Stop it, please.

 

 

 

This is a major advance over capitalist states,

 

But they are capitalist states. And im still waiting for the historical materialist analysis iv asked you two times for already which says otherwise.

 

 

 

One country cannot move towards Communism on its own.  This is a simple fact.

 

Well certainly capitalist countries like Cuba, Venezuala and North Korea wont, thats for sure.

 

 

 

In general, I think your interpretation of Marx is far too rigid and idealistic,

 

In general, I think you are a Marxist illiterate. You seem to know little about Marxism. And the further down I go responding to this post it seems to confirm this view.

 

Where is that historical materialist analysis of how Cuba, Venezuala, the DPRK and China are socialist iv been asking for?

 

Im still waiting, And, if experience is anything to go by, ill be waiting forever.

 

And you know why? because it dosnt exist. And it dosnt exist because it wouldnt make any sense in a historical materialist perspective.

 

Im finished debating this. Provide evidence or stop talking shite and calling yourself a Marxist. From your politics you sound like a Blanquist, not a Marxist. And passing Blanquism off as Marxism and advocating military dictatorships and capitalist despotism is damaging to my and every other revolutionary socialists cause.

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A chara, you seem to be one of these people who dismisses everything that has ever really existed, and respects only the dreams you have in your head.  The Trots have the same delusional attitude. And what's really bizarre is that you claim to know what Marxism is - which is why you reject it and adopt Anarchism. The end result of this kind of thinking is counter-revolutionary, since you set the bar so high that no real society could ever hope to satisfy your criteria.  You also dismiss everything already achieved, so that we have no tradition we can be proud of.  I'm afraid to say that people with your pure idealism usually end up being totally disillusioned and either drop politics altogether or adopt social democracy. Its a slippery slope - you are already giving some justification to the imperialist attack on Libya, as the Trots did - and for the same reasons, i.e. a total lack of realism.

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Guest Connolly

A chara, you seem to be one of these people who dismisses everything that has ever really existed, and respects only the dreams you have in your head.  The Trots have the same delusional attitude. And what's really bizarre is that you claim to know what Marxism is - which is why you reject it and adopt Anarchism. The end result of this kind of thinking is counter-revolutionary, since you set the bar so high that no real society could ever hope to satisfy your criteria.  You also dismiss everything already achieved, so that we have no tradition we can be proud of.  I'm afraid to say that people with your pure idealism usually end up being totally disillusioned and either drop politics altogether or adopt social democracy. Its a slippery slope - you are already giving some justification to the imperialist attack on Libya, as the Trots did - and for the same reasons, i.e. a total lack of realism.

 

Did you get that historical materialist (Marxist) analysis yet?

 

Or should the critically minded among us just accept that Cuba and Venezuala are socialist because you/they say it is.

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Did you get that historical materialist (Marxist) analysis yet?

 

Or should the critically minded among us just accept that Cuba and Venezuala are socialist because you/they say it is.

 

 

But don't you think that dialectics is useless? How am I going to give a historical materialist analysis without dialectics?

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