Thread: the sclerosis of organized pro-revolutionaries and what is to be done

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    Default the sclerosis of organized pro-revolutionaries and what is to be done

    i recently had these discussions with some of my friends and people i know because i've been increasingly questioning the role of formal, centralized orgs in non-revolutionary periods. its a tought i had in the back of my mind for some time but didn't make up my mind about it until a few days ago.

    i think the reason why many "pro-revolutionaries" sound like weirdo cultusts or historical dnd and become monolithic and unable to give any sort of relevant input is that they misunderstand lenin and what democratic centralism, "unity", or centralism entails. i think people try to apply the old thesis of workers' organizations or vanguards to ahistorical and small groups, when those theses were meant for historically significant organizations. so you have Ben and his three man trot group starting a "democratic centralist" group and then there is this really elaborate platform and all of them have to defend it. the platform ends up basically being a snapshot of how the world was in the early 20th century and there is no attempt to evolve because the line is already congealed in a centralist, formal group, and because the group is ahistorical, it won't matter the turns and tribulations the class will go today, because these groups already are artificial and have artificially separated platforms from the class and where it stands today. The same can be said about the communist left and some "anarcho syndicalist" groups too.

    communization theorists have this idea of "form" vs "content". The main idea is that the law of value and its contradictions are more or less invariant, but depending on historical specificities, the content of the law of value and its contradictions will manifest itself in different forms. for example, the us and the ussr were both capitalist, so their content was the same but their form was different. "form" and "content" also relates to the class and how it struggles. for example, "labor unions" once were a form that carried the content of class struggle, but today they are becoming increasingly irrelevant. or today, the casualized young workforce carries the content of the category of the "proletariat" but is of a different form than the old, industrial working class. the problem with centralist, ahistorical orgs is that they are formal in the way they think, they are obsessed with forms that might be irrelevant and emerged due to specific historical cycles. so they end up sounding irrelevant, and to say boring, and sometimes weird and atavistic.

    honestly do you guys think that the future class party will call itself trotskyist or left communist? or do you think there is going to be a large anarcho syndicalist contingent? this assumes that all the questions have already answered, and these ideologies, by looking at past historical cycles, they already have all the answers. anyone who thinks honestly will realize that the future class party, whatever form will take, will probably not call itself trotskyist, or leninist, or whatever. even the term "communist" might be ditched.

    i wanted to write an article about this for a sec but i am lazy and my brains are scrambled. the point of this post is not so much to reform organizations, i don't give a fuck about a lot of them, but to give an insight to new people coming to a pro-revolutionary perspective and push them away of turning towards organized rackets.
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    why would the term Communist, in quotes as you put it, be ditched? As an idea, Communism will never die. As the old saying goes: You can never kill an idea. especially one as utopian and egalitarian as Communism

    The defeats of the 20th century should teach us what not to do in the next round of Communist revolutions. History has not "ended" as right-wing intellectuals say. As long as the worker has an incentive to fight with his boss, class warfare will always remain, never static, never ending.

    Why should one move away from rigid, centralized organization? Has not heavy decentralization, as is common in Anarchist "groups", ended in only chaos and cop killing? When one is unorganized, weakness also comes to play, and no one can give a voice to the worker, just wonton destruction and chaos.

    Truth is, IMHO, the Communist party is the only way to organize the working class for a 21st revolution. The working class MUST be organized. The working class must me militarized, marching in line with the Communist movement. The Communist party must be the guiding hand of the revolution, before, during, and after.

    There are those who suggest, well why can't the party just dissolve post-revolution to usher in 'democracy'? well then, what you'd have then is anarchy, and anarchy breeds stupidity. The party must exist in order to direct the revolution forward as it faces off against organized, usually first-world superpowers and major powers who seek to end the existence of the Socialist state. If the 19th and 20th centuries have taught us anything, its that lack of organization, as in the 1871 Paris Commune, leads to destruction by a much stronger, more powerful and organized foe.

    That is not to say that the Communist party must be totalitarian. The utmost effort must be put in place to allow for maximum democracy within a centralized state. The Communist party must be wholly inclusive, as to limit bureaucracy. And most importantly, the revolution must be world wide.

    my two cents.
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    Days after WWII branches within the CPN in the Netherlands wanted to exploit the created gap in governance and 5 years absentyism of burgeoisie democratics by creating a broad revolutionary coalition dissolving the CPN and encompassing the entire revolutionary left including anarchists, spartakists, trotskyists etc. united against capitalism. This was overturned by the CPN's party leadership basically backed up by the comintern.

    In my opinion that was a mistake. One that cost the revolutionary left dearly on the long run and contibuted to its further fractionalisation and sectarianism.

    Any revolutionary leftwing party or group that will have any chance in creating the same amount of mass support like in the "old" days should encompass the vast majority of the revolutionary left with internal debates and decision making based on thesis, anti-thesis and synthesis.

    So far I am not disagreeing with you much. The only point I do not fully agree with is the idea that all questions have been answered by democratic centralised parties or that these parties could not be flexible in nature. Though I admit that this is true in most cases.
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    The point of democratic-centralism is not to have top-down rigid organisation in which all have to defend to elaborated platform of the organisation, this is the world upside down!

    Democratic centralism is all about unity in disagreement, that is: Unity in organisation, but where minorities have the full right to openly express their disagreement with the majority position. Unity is therefore a dialectical development, whereas the unity of opposites create new understanding. Factions therefore come and go, as the disagreements spring up and are resolved during the march of events.

    So, a party platform should not be a fixed thing, frozen in time. That's just a parody of politics. It should always be criticised and tested, out of which the platform can then be amended as is deemed necessary.

    I do make a difference in several "sections" of the "platform" (which I don't think is a monolithic thing): The programme for example should reflect objective tasks that are necessary to build the working class movement and form it as a potential ruling class. It should therefore not change every other month, but should be a fairly steady bit of text, perhaps undergoing reflection once a decade or so. From this flow strategy and tactics, which are very much more subjective and fluctuant. Also, the theory underpinning all this should also be questioned at all times.

    Only through questioning everything, do people start to think for themselves and that is the whole point of the excercise.
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    i think the reason why many "pro-revolutionaries" sound like weirdo cultusts or historical dnd and become monolithic and unable to give any sort of relevant input is that they misunderstand lenin and what democratic centralism, "unity", or centralism entails. i think people try to apply the old thesis of workers' organizations or vanguards to ahistorical and small groups, when those theses were meant for historically significant organizations. so you have Ben and his three man trot group starting a "democratic centralist" group and then there is this really elaborate platform and all of them have to defend it. the platform ends up basically being a snapshot of how the world was in the early 20th century and there is no attempt to evolve because the line is already congealed in a centralist, formal group, and because the group is ahistorical, it won't matter the turns and tribulations the class will go today, because these groups already are artificial and have artificially separated platforms from the class and where it stands today. The same can be said about the communist left and some "anarcho syndicalist" groups too.
    Some of this really is phenomena that happens (the petty toy-vanguard parties that have been around historically are a good example), but I also think there are a lot of straw-men in this section too.

    For example, there is nothing about not being in a group that will make people non-dogmatic. In fact some of the most dogmatic activists I know are independent and convinced that their ideas are 100% correct, and if anyone calls them on it or questions their ideas, then they are obviously some kind of cultist or reformist or whatever. Everytime a movement doesn't do what they'd want it to do, it's just more confirmation to them that they are correct. For individuals or groups I think isolation (from actual movements as well as just generally political workers) and making principles out of theories is a recipie for this. But yes, if there is a group that's all centralism and no discussion or democracy then the people who run things could also be isolated and wouldn't have anyone who could challenge their ideas or expand their good ideas or whatnot.

    I think the low-level of political activity is part of this because many individual radicals or groups of radicals who otherwise could be challenged by other radicals, other workers, or historical events and changes, are left in kind of a holding patter where if you can't test your ideas out in practice, then all you have to try and promote your views are more and more elaborate explanations of things (or idealist programs or plans for the future as you say above).

    communization theorists have this idea of "form" vs "content". The main idea is that the law of value and its contradictions are more or less invariant, but depending on historical specificities, the content of the law of value and its contradictions will manifest itself in different forms. for example, the us and the ussr were both capitalist, so their content was the same but their form was different. "form" and "content" also relates to the class and how it struggles. for example, "labor unions" once were a form that carried the content of class struggle, but today they are becoming increasingly irrelevant. or today, the casualized young workforce carries the content of the category of the "proletariat" but is of a different form than the old, industrial working class. the problem with centralist, ahistorical orgs is that they are formal in the way they think, they are obsessed with forms that might be irrelevant and emerged due to specific historical cycles. so they end up sounding irrelevant, and to say boring, and sometimes weird and atavistic.
    Well until a couple of years ago many people thought that some very basic Marxist economic concepts were hopelessly out of date and irrelevant. Now, it's much easier to talk to people about how capitalism has a tendency to go into crisis and people don't say, "Oh that won't happen, you socialists are like dooms-day prophets for the economy". Yes, people should refrain from jargon and explain things in a clear way... again, this goes for individuals as well as groups. People should be politically extroverted and trying to find ways to explain our ideas to more people in a clear way that could be useful to them rather than argue over anachronistic minutia.

    On the whole, though, I don't know how much this is really true. Sure RevLeft has a lot of minutia-arguing, but it's a website and not really geared towards recruiting more people to our movements. But outside of RevLeft I hardly ever hear people argue about Kautsky or the 2nd international or many other major debates of the past. Mostly it's Russia and the so-called socialist states of the 20th centry that people argue about and I think that's because it's still a living question for many people - "yeah, I like what this sounds like, but how can we be sure we don't just end up with Stalin 2.0?"

    There are many groups which have stuck to tactics that are not as useful or relevant as they once were, this is true. But people not in groups do the same thing - Is the black block in 2011 as effective as in 1999? Does being Bernie Sanders in 2011 and running for office have the same impact as Eugene Debs did?

    honestly do you guys think that the future class party will call itself trotskyist or left communist? or do you think there is going to be a large anarcho syndicalist contingent? this assumes that all the questions have already answered, and these ideologies, by looking at past historical cycles, they already have all the answers. anyone who thinks honestly will realize that the future class party, whatever form will take, will probably not call itself trotskyist, or leninist, or whatever. even the term "communist" might be ditched.
    No, at that point of revolution I don't think people will care so much about how you got there as how you are going to help or harm the worker's attempt to win power in society.

    But I think in non-revolutionary times, organizing radicals is MORE important than in an actual worker's revolution. For one thing, if you are organizing such a thing during a revolution, then you are probably not going to be that effective, that organized, or that tested as a group and so you will be at a disadvantage and it would be more likely IMO that a small group within the larger group would be running the show since communication and democratic practice and decisions among radicals would be more difficult than if done over the course years of building and participating in struggles.

    I think US history also shows some of the problems with lack of organization in down-times leading to missed opportunities in more active times or revolutionary times. Think about how worker's in the 1930s may have had more vehicles to struggle if the IWW was as powerful as it had been decades prior. Workers and radical workers wouldn't have had to build the CIO because there'd be people organizing industrial workers from the crash-on. Think if German radicals had organized as communists outside the social-democrats before the Russian Revolution. Think about how the Egyptian uprising may have been different if there had been some kind of underground socialist labor party - the Muslim Brotherhood had organized and were very powerful in the protests by default even though they basically had to be dragged into opposing the regime in an active way.

    Organizations like radical books are a way of keeping the lessons of history alive - except organizations potentially keep lessons of practice, not just ideas and general conclusions alive. They are living things (well made up of living thinking acting things, people) and so they can grow, learn, be effective, be dysfunctional, stagnate, or combinations of all these things at different times. So I think it's too general to say that any of the things you describe as problems above can be linked solely or even mainly to organizing as a group rather than individually.
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  11. #6
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    One of 'Boffy's' latest blogs is an interesting read on the question of democracy, workers' organisations and the tasks of future workers' parties.

    If many "vanguard parties" fail it's because they cannot organise the vanguard of the class which they would like to represent. The lack of consciousness, discpline and experience among the people they recrute, forces many to concider bureaucratic or semi-bureaucratic measures. Its purpose is to keep the organisation running. Without it the ideas of the pioneers and "founding fathers" wouldn't stand a chance against alien influences. I don't say the ideas of marxism, I say the ideas that are concidered true and fundamental by small bodies of revolutionaries.

    But concider this. The First International was disbanded, just like many other organisations in which Marx and Engels participated, when it had fulfilled its purpous. It's an act many marxist revolutionaries today can't think of. It has much to do with context, as much as Lenin's proposals had to do with context. Some organisations really do "misunderstand" (in a broad sense) Lenin because they act in a totally different context. If workers' start to organise themselves - and communists have a role to play in that proces -, only then can revolutionaries organise themselves on a decent social and organisational basis.

    This is not a left-communist nor a Trotskyist argument. A future workers' organisation won't call itself in such a way because it is a party of the whole class - not of Trotskyist or any other small section of the class.
    Last edited by Tower of Bebel; 29th August 2011 at 13:17.
    “Where the worker is regulated bureaucratically from childhood onwards, where he believes in authority, in those set over him, the main thing is to teach him to walk by himself.” - Marx

    "It is illogical and incorrect to reduce everything to the economic [socialist] revolution, for the question is: how to eliminate [political] oppression? It cannot be eliminated without an economic revolution... But to limit ourselves to this is to lapse into absurd and wretched ... Economism." - Lenin

    "[During a revolution, bourgeois democratic] demands [of the working class] ... push so hard on the outer limits of capital's rule that they appear likewise as forms of transition to a proletarian dictatorship." - Luxemburg

    “Well, then go forward, Tower of Bebel! [August] Bebel is one of the most brilliant representatives of scientific international socialism. His writings, speeches and works make up a great tower, a strong arsenal, from which the working class should take their weapons. We cannot recommend it enough… And if the [International] deserves to be named Tower of Bebel... well, then we are lucky to have such a Tower of Bebel with us.” - Vooruit
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    Days after WWII branches within the CPN in the Netherlands wanted to exploit the created gap in governance and 5 years absentyism of burgeoisie democratics by creating a broad revolutionary coalition dissolving the CPN and encompassing the entire revolutionary left including anarchists, spartakists, trotskyists etc. united against capitalism. This was overturned by the CPN's party leadership basically backed up by the comintern.

    In my opinion that was a mistake. One that cost the revolutionary left dearly on the long run and contibuted to its further fractionalisation and sectarianism.
    Was not the actual intention to form a kind of loose rally around the paper 'De Waarheid'? The Comintern didn't exist at that time any more, but didn't some prominent party leaders support that idea first, but they ended up deciding to restore the party instead, at the behest of Moscow?

    The thing is that the party at that time actually did have quite a lot to gain from refounding itself, and plenty to lose by dissolving itself. I still think that a flawed party is better than no party at all, and that a coalition of loose sand will remain just that. But it's hard to find a good practical example of this.

    Perhaps one of them is that the CP of Venezuela decided not to liquidate itself to fully merge into Chavez's movement, for which they got a lot of flak from Chavez himself. Now I don't think I'm in a room full of Chavez supporters here, so maybe it's not that relevant, but a complete lack of people calling themselves communists and openly and consciously organising themselves for communism does not seem like a good idea to me in any circumstance.

    I do think there is too much preoccupation with small "democratic centralist communist organisations" on this forum and on the western left in general, but I don't think that the concept itself is wrong and shouldn't be attempted. Same with the anti-unionism that's popular on this forum. I also don't agree with trying to shepherd everyone into the framework of the reformist and compromised trade unions, "and then someday we'll pull it to the left - maybe", but staying away from them also seems like a massive mistake. I wonder what kind of alternatives people here have.
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    Why should one move away from rigid, centralized organization? Has not heavy decentralization, as is common in Anarchist "groups", ended in only chaos and cop killing?
    No, although that second scenario is a good thing.

    When one is unorganized, weakness also comes to play, and no one can give a voice to the worker, just wonton destruction and chaos.
    The worker cannot speak for himself? Communists like yourself seem to have such disdain for workers, thinking they cannot organize themselves and must be led like sheep.

    Truth is, IMHO, the Communist party is the only way to organize the working class for a 21st revolution. The working class MUST be organized. The working class must me militarized, marching in line with the Communist movement. The Communist party must be the guiding hand of the revolution, before, during, and after.
    You act as if people can't organize themselves, as if they are small children who need to be taken by the hand and told what to do.

    There are those who suggest, well why can't the party just dissolve post-revolution to usher in 'democracy'? well then, what you'd
    have then is anarchy, and anarchy breeds stupidity.
    Whoever gave birth to you breeds stupidity. You obviously have no idea what anarchism is.

    The party must exist in order to direct the revolution forward as it faces off against organized, usually first-world superpowers and major powers who seek to end the existence of the Socialist state.
    And if the party strays from the revolutionary path? Who then can put a stop to its madness?

    If the 19th and 20th centuries have taught us anything, its that lack of organization, as in the 1871 Paris Commune, leads to destruction by a much stronger, more powerful and organized foe.
    And the occurence of a vanguard party leads to a powerful Party above the working class who won't reliquish power.
    "If those in charge of our society — politicians, corporate executives, and owners of press and television — can dominate our ideas, they will be secure in their power. They will not need soldiers patrolling the streets. We will control ourselves."
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    why would the term Communist, in quotes as you put it, be ditched? As an idea, Communism will never die. As the old saying goes: You can never kill an idea. especially one as utopian and egalitarian as Communism

    The defeats of the 20th century should teach us what not to do in the next round of Communist revolutions. History has not "ended" as right-wing intellectuals say. As long as the worker has an incentive to fight with his boss, class warfare will always remain, never static, never ending.

    Why should one move away from rigid, centralized organization? Has not heavy decentralization, as is common in Anarchist "groups", ended in only chaos and cop killing? When one is unorganized, weakness also comes to play, and no one can give a voice to the worker, just wonton destruction and chaos.

    Truth is, IMHO, the Communist party is the only way to organize the working class for a 21st revolution. The working class MUST be organized. The working class must me militarized, marching in line with the Communist movement. The Communist party must be the guiding hand of the revolution, before, during, and after.

    There are those who suggest, well why can't the party just dissolve post-revolution to usher in 'democracy'? well then, what you'd have then is anarchy, and anarchy breeds stupidity. The party must exist in order to direct the revolution forward as it faces off against organized, usually first-world superpowers and major powers who seek to end the existence of the Socialist state. If the 19th and 20th centuries have taught us anything, its that lack of organization, as in the 1871 Paris Commune, leads to destruction by a much stronger, more powerful and organized foe.

    That is not to say that the Communist party must be totalitarian. The utmost effort must be put in place to allow for maximum democracy within a centralized state. The Communist party must be wholly inclusive, as to limit bureaucracy. And most importantly, the revolution must be world wide.

    my two cents.
    Would you care to back up these incredibly ignorant comments? I do not know, perhaps with facts? Or do you simply spew the same bullshit right wing rhetoric that reactionaries do?
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    Why should one move away from rigid, centralized organization? Has not heavy decentralization, as is common in Anarchist "groups", ended in only chaos and cop killing? When one is unorganized, weakness also comes to play, and no one can give a voice to the worker, just wonton destruction and chaos.


    There are those who suggest, well why can't the party just dissolve post-revolution to usher in 'democracy'? well then, what you'd have then is anarchy, and anarchy breeds stupidity.




    I assumed everyone on this forum understood (for the most part) each others tendencies or at least had an elementary grasp of other leftist tendencies, but i guess im wrong. RedMarxist before you spew any more ignorant BS, go research what anarchism is. Dont ask your high school teachers.
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    I know what Anarchism is, and how is what I'm "spewing" right-wing reactionary talk?

    Look, IMHO Anarchism usually seems to end in violent protests. But your right-that's not real Anarchism. Real Anarchism is of course involving little state power, or at the very least decentralized state power spread over a wider area. Anarchism, contrary to popular belief, does not uphold dissolving of the state immediately after a revolution.

    I don't think the working class are sheep. If you looked at my post better you'd know not to throw reactionary bullshit at it and hope it sticks to the wall like shit. The working class can lead themselves, it just helps if a party is there to help, key word being help, guide them forward towards revolution.

    history has shown us that the reason many 20th century Communist movements were so successful, esp. the Maoist People's War, is because the Communist Party provides for exceptional organization in times of crisis, war, etc.

    What's stopping them from going on a worldwide reactionary counter revolutionary binge? its called inclusiveness for a reason. The party, like the "old" Bolshevik party of 1917, must be open wide as much as possible to as many people as possible. Maximum debate must go on inside the party, with freedom of opinion the utmost certainty. The Party chairman/woman must be held accountable for his or her actions. The party must be the people's party.


    [off topic]


    Furthermore, all other alternative parties must be suppressed under Socialism, as to better limit the influence of the Bourgeoisie, who can be quite dangerous if given control of their own party.

    All property must be seized from the lazy rich classes and given to the poor/farmer/peasant. Furthermore, IMHO, the rich classes must be held accountable for their wrongdoings, put before a "People's Revolutionary Court"

    The industry and military must be made wholly democratic. True power to the people.

    And the revolution must be spread through the armed wing of the party. if it does not spread, then the revolution will wither and began to die on the vine.

    my two cents.
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    Reconsidering the role of militants

    In recent years, an increasing number of people have begun questioning the accepted knowledge, of whatever form, on organization and the role of communists in the class struggle. Both new and veteran militants alike are seeking out the best way to move forward out of the capitalist quagmire we face. This welcome development reflects the beginnings of a renewed proletarian awakening.

    In the interest of continuing and broadening the discussion, I have tried to write up some of my thoughts on these questions, which I have been going over for the last two years. I must apologize for whatever is lacking here, as my conclusions are not yet totally complete. This is but an attempt at a contribution toward reconsideration of these issues, which are of vital importance.

    Organization

    Are mass parties a thing of the past? They certainly exist. But they are not organizations of the working class, nor can they be. Sure, many were born out of the organic struggles of the working class, and militants even took the lead in constructing them. But they were never going to be tools through which revolution would be made, and at a certain point they ossified and became alien to the class they grew out of.
    “Full-time status for the union committeeman, which began as a means of freeing the union representative from the pressures of management, became a means of freeing the representative from the pressure of the workers. …Workers’ self-activity does create organizations create unions and other institutions, which may become bureaucratized and turn against the worker. Unions are not a secret plot designed to fool the workers. Workers organize them and then they get out of control.” – Martin Glaberman
    When unions became permanent, legal organizations they needed professional bureaucrats to organize the day to day operations. This opened the door for administrators to step in and take control, and they in turn brought individual workers into the bureaucracy when necessary.
    The same process occurred with the “workers parties.” Militants were either forced out or co-opted, to become useful in bringing workers back in the fold of “acceptable politics” if and when they got uppity.
    ”How long it will be until the Socialists realize the folly and inconsistency of preaching to the workers that the emancipation of the working class must be the act of the workers themselves, and yet presenting to those workers the sight of every important position in the party occupied by men not of the working class.” – James Connolly
    Bureaucrats and wannabee bureaucrats found a welcome home.
    “The general coordination of workers’ organizations to capitalism saw the adoption of the same specialization in union and party activities that challenged the hierarchy of industries. Managers, superintendent and foremen saw their counterparts in presidents, organizers and secretaries of labour organizations. Boards of directors, executive committees, etc. The mass of organized workers like the mass of wage slaves in industry left the work of direction and control to their betters.” – Paul Mattick
    This is nothing new. It’s been the case since the beginning.
    “The labour party becomes the party of the ‘people.’ Its appeals are no longer addressed simply to the manual workers but to ‘all producers,’ to the ‘entire working population,’ these phrases being applied to all the classes and all the strata of society except the idlers who live upon the income from investments. Both the friends and the enemies of the socialist party have frequently pointed out that the petty bourgeois members tend more and more to predominate over the manual workers.” – Michels, Robert. Political parties: a sociological study of the oligarchical tendencies of modern democracy. [Emphasis added].
    The modern political party is an invention of the bourgeoisie. It arose with their system. Early on attempts were made to use similar bodies for the furtherance of working class interests. But that has proven to be impossible. The working class can’t liberate itself through participation in bourgeois parliaments. It can’t take control of the bourgeois state and use it for its own ends. And it can’t make use of an organizational form created by the bourgeoisie to liberate itself either.

    Parties are now staffed with administrators, seeking self-perpetuation and empowerment. They pursue their own interests by wrangling around to maintain their positions in organizations that rest on elements of their own class, the working class or the bourgeoisie. But they have no interest in abolishing their own positions.
    ”Therefore, those who contemplate a ‘revolutionary party’ are learning only a part of the lessons of the past. Not unaware that the workers’ parties — the Socialist Party and Communist Party — have become organs of domination serving to perpetuate exploitation, they merely conclude from this that it is only necessary to improve the situation. This is to ignore the fact that the failure of the different parties is traceable to a much more general cause — namely, the basic contradiction between the emancipation of the class, as a body and by their own efforts, and the reduction of the activity of the masses to powerlessness by a new pro-workers’ power. Faced with the passivity and indifference of the masses, they come to regard themselves as a revolutionary vanguard. But, if the masses remain inactive, it is because, while instinctively sensing both the colossal power of the enemy and the sheer magnitude of the task to be undertaken, they have not yet discerned the mode of combat, the way of class unity. However, when circumstances have pushed them into action, they must undertake this task by organizing themselves autonomously, by taking into their own hands the means of production, and by initiating the attack against the economic power of capital. And once again, every self-styled vanguard seeking to direct and to dominate the masses by means of a ‘revolutionary party’ will stand revealed as a reactionary factor by reason of this very conception.” – Anton Pannekoek
    Historically, the working class has created its own organs in struggle, without the guidance of any “saviors” from other classes.

    Thus, Marx wrote that the “true secret” of the Paris Commune was that “It was essentially a working class government, the product of the struggle of the producing class against the appropriating class, the political form at last discovered under which to work out the economic emancipation of labor.” [Emphasis added.]

    Similarly, neither the Bolsheviks or any other permanent organization created the Soviets. It was the working class itself.
    “The soviet system of the Russian Revolution of 1905 disappeared with the crushing of the revolution, only to return in greater force in the February Revolution of 1917. It was these soviets which inspired the formation similar spontaneous organizations in the German Revolution of 1918 and, to a somewhat lesser extent, the social upheavals in Italy, England, France and Hungary. With the soviet system arose a form of organization which could lead and coordinate the self-activities of the very broad masses for either limited ends or for revolutionary goals, and which could do so independently of, in opposition to, or in collaboration with existing labor organizations. Most importantly, the rise of the council system proved that spontaneous activities need not dissipate in formless mass-exertions but could issue into organizational structures of more than temporary nature.” – Paul Mattick
    They were created out of necessity, in the midst of struggle.
    “The soviets were the realisation of an objective need for an organisation which has authority without having tradition, and which can at once embrace hundreds of thousands of workers. An organisation, moreover, which can unify all the revolutionary tendencies within the proletariat, which possesses both initiative and self-control, and, which is the main thing, can be called into existence within 24 hours.” – Leon Trotsky
    Of course the political specialists and professional revolutionaries decry this all, because it leaves them no special position. And they can point to examples of “spontaneous” uprisings falling apart. But that proves nothing other than that they were not ready.
    “If the proletariat does not know how to create the necessary prerequisites for socialist organisation of labour, no-one can do this for it and no-one can compel it to do this. The stick, if raised against the workers, will find itself in the hands of a social force which is either under the influence of another social class or is in the hands of the soviet power; then the soviet power will be forced to seek support against the proletariat from another class… it will destroy itself as the dictatorship of the proletariat. Socialism and socialist organisation must be set up by the proletariat itself, or they will not be set up at all; something else will be set up…” – ‘On the Building of Socialism’, Kommunist #2, 1918.
    This is why Marx refused to become any sort of official leader of the nascent workers organizations coming into existence in his time.
    ”Citizen Marx has just been mentioned; he has perfectly understood the importance of this first congress, where there should be only working-class delegates; therefor he refused the delegateship he was offered in the General Council.” – James Carter, Geneva Congress of the First International.
    “‘…Victor Le Lubez … asked if Karl Marx would suggest the name of someone to speak on behalf of the German Workers.’ Marx himself was far too bourgeois to be eligible so he recommended the emigre tailor Johann Georg Eccarius…” – Wheen, Francis, Karl Marx: A Life.
    “Lawrence moved that Marx be President for the ensuing twelve months; Carter seconded that nomination. Marx proposed Odger: he, Marx, thought himself incapacitated because he was a head worker and not a hand worker.” – The General Council of the First International: Minutes, pp. 36 . Institut marksizma-leninizma.
    And why Marx and Engels warned against what they already saw taking shape:
    “…when such people from other classes join the proletarian movement, the first demand upon them must be that they do not bring with them any remnants of bourgeois, petty-bourgeois, etc., prejudices, but that they irreversibly assimilate the proletarian viewpoint. But those gentlemen, as has been shown, adhere overwhelmingly to petty-bourgeois conceptions. …in a labor party, they are a falsifying element. If there are grounds which necessitate tolerating them, it is a duty only to tolerate them, to allow them no influence in party leadership, and to keep in mind that a break with them is only a matter of time. …In any case, the time seems to have come.” – Private Circulation Letter from Marx and Engels, (First drafted by Engels) to Germany’s Social-Democratic leadership, 1879.
    And why Engels suggested a party was no longer necessary:
    ”A whole generation lies between [1836, when the League of the Just, predecessor of the Communist League, was formed] and now. At that time Germany was a country of handicraft and of domestic industry based on hand labor; now it is a big industrial country still undergoing continual industrial transformation. At that time one had to seek out one by one the workers who had an understanding of their position as workers and of their historico-economic antagonism to capital, because this antagonism itself was only just beginning to develop. Today the entire German proletariat has to be placed under exceptional laws, merely in order to slow down a little the process of its development to full consciousness of its position as an oppressed class. At that time the few persons whose minds had penetrated to the realization of the historical role of the proletariat had to forgather in secret, to assemble clandestinely in small communities of 3 to 20 persons. Today the German proletariat no longer needs any official organization, either public or secret. The simple self-evident interconnection of like-minded class comrades suffices, without any rules, boards, resolutions or other tangible forms, to shake the whole German Empire to its foundations. Bismarck is the arbiter of Europe beyond the frontiers of Germany, but within them there grows daily more threatening the athletic figure of the German proletariat that Marx foresaw already in 1844, the giant for whom the cramped imperial edifice designed to fit the philistine is even now becoming inadequate and whose mighty stature and broad shoulder are growing until the moment comes when by merely rising from his seat he will shatter the whole structure of the imperial constitution into fragments. And still more. The international movement of the European and American proletariat has become so much strengthened that not merely its first narrow form — the secret League — but even its second, infinitely wider form — the open International Working Men’s Association — has become a fetter for it, and that the simple feeling of solidarity based on the understanding of the identity of class position suffices to create and to hold together one and the same great party of the proletariat among the workers of all countries and tongues. The doctrine which the League represented from 1847 to 1852, and which at that time could be treated by the wise philistines with a shrug of the shoulders as the hallucinations of utter madcaps, as the secret doctrine of a few scattered sectarians, has now innumerable adherents in all civilized countries of the world, among those condemned to the Siberian mines as much as among the gold diggers of California; and the founder of this doctrine, the most hated, most slandered man of his time, Karl Marx, was, when he died, the ever-sought-for and ever-willing counsellor of the proletariat of both the old and the new world.”
    How can a “revolutionary party” be built in a non-revolutionary period anyway? If the majority of workers are not revolutionary, who would be the recruits that would join the “revolutionary organization,” giving it a mass basis? Is it any coincidence that the largest organizations are always the most openly reformist?

    Even if such an organization could be created, member by member, from scratch, why on earth would the bourgeoisie let that happen? Even small groups which challenge the current order without challenging the fundamental premise of capitalism are smashed out of existence. Why wouldn’t an authentic “workers party” be destroyed before it could be of any consequence? Why were so many well known (and many unknown) proponents of revolution assassinated, tortured and imprisoned?

    Isn’t it much more important then for understanding and a grasp method to exist among the revolutionary class? Individuals can be killed. Organizations can be destroyed. But the working class is a requirement of capitalism and ideas cannot be murdered.

    What is to be done?
    So what do we do? Well it depends who “we” are.

    Elements from other classes who are sympathetic to the cause of the proletariat should at best support it where possible and at most offer suggestions based on study and analysis. But they should do no more.

    The working class is the revolutionary class because of its relation to the means of production. Working people are exploited and oppressed. By pursuing their own interests, as a class, and eliminating the source of that exploitation and oppression they liberate all of humanity.

    It’s not moralistic qualms with the way things run that motivates this class to act, but the need to free itself from wage slavery.
    “Marx had learned from Hegel one lesson which he never forgot: putting in front of society a ‘slogan’, a formula, a set of ‘sectarian principles’ with which to make the world correspond is not the point. The social formation Marx strove for all his life was a human society, which he fought to release. While he respected the work of Fourier and Owen, he saw it as foreshadowing the Communism that arose from the sufferings of the proletariat itself.” – Cyril Smith
    If you are outside of the class but are outraged over poverty, starvation, the treatment of workers, sweatshops, sexism, homophobia, etc., but understand the root cause to be private property and capitalism, then do what you can to support the actual movement of the working class towards it own liberation. But don’t try to lead or direct the working class. Don’t think your single issue activism is the way forward and condemn “backwards workers.” Homophobia, anti-semitism and the like were rife among the workers that made the October Revolution. Reactionary ideas certainly weren’t erased from the minds of the workers that made the Hungarian Revolution, the Paris Commune or the St. Louis Commune.
    “Marx believed that the conditions of life and work of the proletariat would force the working class to behave in ways that would ultimately transform society. In other words, what Marx said was: We’re not talking about going door-to-door and making workers into ideal socialists. You’ve got to take workers as they are, with all their contradictions, with all their nonsense. But the fact that society forces them to struggle begins to transform the working class. If white workers realize they can’t organize steel unless they organize black workers, that doesn’t mean they’re not racist. It means that they have to deal with their own reality, and that transforms them. Who were the workers who made the Russian Revolution? Sexists, nationalists, half of them illiterate. Who were the workers in Polish Solidarity? Anti-Semitic, whatever. That kind of struggle begins to transform people.” – Martin Glaberman
    Which is certainly true:
    “Both for the production on a mass scale of this communist consciousness, and for the success of the cause itself, the alteration of men on a mass scale is necessary, an alteration that can only take place in a practical movement, a revolution; the revolution is necessary, therefore, not only the ruling class cannot be overthrown in any other way, but also because the class overthrowing it can only in a revolution succeed in ridding itself of all the muck of ages and become fitted to found society anew.” – Karl Marx (The German Ideology)
    If you absolutely need to “do something” or to make yourself feel better, volunteer at a food bank, donate money to a charity, speak out, etc. At least that may have some positive effect on the lives of some individuals. It won’t change anything in the overall swing of things, but it’s better, and probably more effective, than naming yourself a part of the revolutionary vanguard and railing against injustice through a bullhorn so you can sleep at night, since at best that will land you in irrelevance and at worst will land in a position opposed to the self-activity of the working class.

    Or, if you’re really serious, join the working class. And don’t do it in the sort of “slumming for support” way that leftists did it in the 60′s and 70′s. Otherwise, you’ll get the same response they did (ie. you’ll be asked: “What the hell are you doing here?”).

    For those who already belong to the working class, the choice is clear: fight for your own liberation. Because the alternative is continued enslavement.

    Workers have no way out other than the abolition of wage slavery. It’s not a political position they can take up during their youths and then discard later on when they move on to other things and “learn to accept the ways of the world.”

    This is what really matters. Communists are not to have some perfect system invented in advance to sell to the masses.

    Marx wrote that “Communism is for us not a state of affairs which is to be established, an ideal to which reality will have to adjust itself. We call communism the real movement which abolishes the present state of things. The conditions of this movement result from the premises now in existence.”

    In the words of The Communist Manifesto, communists:
    “…point out and bring to the front the common interests of the entire proletariat, independently of all nationality. …[and] always and everywhere represent the interests of the movement as a whole. … The Communists, therefore, are on the one hand, practically, the most advanced and resolute section of the working-class parties of every country, that section which pushes forward all others; on the other hand, theoretically, they have over the great mass of the proletariat the advantage of clearly understanding the line of march, the conditions, and the ultimate general results of the proletarian movement.”
    What does this mean in practice? It means they point out the next step, always keeping the final goal in view. This could mean arguing for a strike when your coworkers start expressing anger over the way they are being treated. It could mean arguing on a picket line to elect delegates to go to other workplaces and call for them to join the strike. It could mean calling for mass assemblies in certain situation or even workers councils. It could mean arguing for defensive bodies, or any number of things. Workers who are aware of the overall situation in advance have the advantage of being able to analyze things and try to gain an understanding of what’s going on. The better the understanding, the better able they are to help their class find its way.

    And such workers are 1000 times better able to do this sort of thing than leftist groups that circle around workers’ actions when they spring up like vultures over a dying beast. Coworkers engaged in the same struggles, with the same stakes, can be trusted much more than a handful of students waving around a red flag and hawking their socialist rag.

    Of course such workers can’t will revolution into being. They can only act on what exists.
    “…the Communists know only too well … that revolutions are not made deliberately and arbitrarily, but that everywhere and at all times they have been the necessary outcome of circumstances entirely independent of the will and the leadership of particular parties and entire classes.” – Engels
    We can only act in the conditions we face, but yet, broadly speaking, it is our actions that create future conditions. There is a delicate balance, and that can be the depressing or even dangerous part. It can lead to all sorts of things, from antipathy to adventurism to joining a “revolutionary organization” that promises to deliver. Take my word for it. And that can’t really be blamed or totally prevented. But attempts can be made.

    It seems it may be necessary for proletarian militants to separate themselves from “Communism” if they are going to take that sort of approach at all. Marx clearly set himself apart from the socialists of his day. After World War I, the Communists clearly separated themselves from the Social-Democrats because of what they came to represent. Today, whether we like it or not, “communism” is associated in the minds of most with what existed at the worst of times in the USSR, China, etc., and what exists currently in North Korea.

    And the terms socialism and communism are really meaningless anyway without reference to class. Difference classes have their own “socialisms.” That’s why the Manifesto dedicated a whole section to addressing them, and why Engels later wrote:
    ”…’the appropriation of the means of production, their subjection to the associated working class and, therefore, the abolition of wage labour, of capital and of their mutual relations.’ Thus, here, for the first time, the proposition is formulated by which modern workers’ socialism is sharply differentiated both from all the different shades of feudal, bourgeois, petty-bourgeois, etc., socialism and from the confused community of goods of utopian and of primitive communism.”
    Militants must break free of the left wing ghetto. The same strategies and tactics that have lead everywhere but the liberation of the working class over the last century will not become any more effective in the future. One definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

    The basic principles and line of march that have issued out of the class itself remain relevant and important. The distortions added by years of “official Communism” and even many of its detractors needs to be pealed away, or avoided all together. What’s important is for workers to find the path to their liberation, on their own, as a class.

    The working class has shown that it is capable of creating its own bodies and moving forward. For what use then is a party? Especially when the “revolutionary” parties have time and time again done nothing but damage to genuine class movements!

    Militants in the working class can argue for the next step, even coordinating their work, without the need for formal or permanent “official” organization. And those with an understanding of the traditional role of “revolutionary parties” in such situations will need to remain aware and point such things out to the class as a whole.

    Any models which resemble the methods of religious recruiters should clearly be avoided. Contrary to the belief of some, workers aren’t just waiting around for some enlightened figure to come around and tell them how bad their situation is. Most don’t want to be approached by someone pushing a newspaper with Lenin’s face on it any more than they want to be approached by one with the face of Jesus or Joseph Smith.

    The specifics of practical activity depend on the situation, the forces involved, etc. And there needs to be more discussion around this too.
    Of course a “non-revolutionary period” can change into its opposite very quickly.
    “The working class is divided by race, by gender, by age, by skill, by ethnic group, etc., etc. All true. However, if some social scientist had examined the workers in the industrial suburbs of Budapest in September of 1956, or the industrial suburbs of Paris in April of 1968, the same would have been found. There would have been no evidence of the coming social upheaval. How could there be? The workers themselves did not know.” – Martin Glaberman
    That is obviously both our goal and what we must prepare for.
    In the meantime, all of these questions deserve our careful attention.
    "Getting a job, finding a mate, having a place to live, finding a creative outlet. Life is a war of attrition. You have to stay active on all fronts. It's one thing after another. I've tried to control a chaotic universe. And it's a losing battle. But I can't let go. I've tried, but I can't." - Harvey Pekar


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  24. #13
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    Originally Posted by black magick hustla
    communization theorists have this idea of "form" vs "content". The main idea is that the law of value and its contradictions are more or less invariant, but depending on historical specificities, the content of the law of value and its contradictions will manifest itself in different forms. for example, the us and the ussr were both capitalist, so their content was the same but their form was different. "form" and "content" also relates to the class and how it struggles. for example, "labor unions" once were a form that carried the content of class struggle, but today they are becoming increasingly irrelevant. or today, the casualized young workforce carries the content of the category of the "proletariat" but is of a different form than the old, industrial working class. the problem with centralist, ahistorical orgs is that they are formal in the way they think, they are obsessed with forms that might be irrelevant and emerged due to specific historical cycles. so they end up sounding irrelevant, and to say boring, and sometimes weird and atavistic.
    This is important because overemphasizing form is one of the ways bourgeois ideology in the 21st century dupes working people into accepting capitalism. A good example is the bourgeois conception of "democracy." Modern capitalism is democratic in form -- everyone can vote, speech is free, everyone is theoretically equal before the law, and everyone has an abstract right to own the same commodities; but we all know the content of bourgeois democracy is a different story. Communists are only effective when they can expose the underlying content of bourgeois structures -- Marxism is so compelling because at its core, it's about cutting through forms to unveil the underlying dynamics of systems. So by waging war using formal categories, communists are trying to beat capitalism at its own game and consigning themselves to failure.

    Actually, a lot of communists probably operate this way because this is how bourgeois thought works. For example, in our society, there's a lot of pressure to identify one's self in terms of categories and forms, partly but not entirely thanks to the fact that modern capitalism is increasingly visual and media-oriented. Communists play right into this and want to define themselves as "Leninists" or whatever label they end up choosing, and they try to reaffirm this identity by taking historical writings and treating them as scripture.

    And the result is that we don't really try to understand the actual forces at play in 21st-century capitalism; instead, we try to interpret them in terms of forms inherited from the early 20th century.
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  26. #14
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    I know what Anarchism is, and how is what I'm "spewing" right-wing reactionary talk?

    Look, IMHO Anarchism usually seems to end in violent protests. But your right-that's not real Anarchism. Real Anarchism is of course involving little state power, or at the very least decentralized state power spread over a wider area. Anarchism, contrary to popular belief, does not uphold dissolving of the state immediately after a revolution.

    I don't think the working class are sheep. If you looked at my post better you'd know not to throw reactionary bullshit at it and hope it sticks to the wall like shit. The working class can lead themselves, it just helps if a party is there to help, key word being help, guide them forward towards revolution.

    history has shown us that the reason many 20th century Communist movements were so successful, esp. the Maoist People's War, is because the Communist Party provides for exceptional organization in times of crisis, war, etc.

    What's stopping them from going on a worldwide reactionary counter revolutionary binge? its called inclusiveness for a reason. The party, like the "old" Bolshevik party of 1917, must be open wide as much as possible to as many people as possible. Maximum debate must go on inside the party, with freedom of opinion the utmost certainty. The Party chairman/woman must be held accountable for his or her actions. The party must be the people's party.


    [off topic]


    Furthermore, all other alternative parties must be suppressed under Socialism, as to better limit the influence of the Bourgeoisie, who can be quite dangerous if given control of their own party.

    All property must be seized from the lazy rich classes and given to the poor/farmer/peasant. Furthermore, IMHO, the rich classes must be held accountable for their wrongdoings, put before a "People's Revolutionary Court"

    The industry and military must be made wholly democratic. True power to the people.

    And the revolution must be spread through the armed wing of the party. if it does not spread, then the revolution will wither and began to die on the vine.

    my two cents.

    "Anarchism breeds stupidity." - Red Marxist

    How you can even argue this is not reactionary bullshit is incomprehensible. Clearly you do not even have a rudimentary understanding of anarchism, and when challenged about your ignorant views you simply change the subject as usual.
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    I history has shown us that the reason many 20th century Communist movements were so successful, esp. the Maoist People's War, is because the Communist Party provides for exceptional organization in times of crisis, war, etc.
    And then refuses to let go of power and eventually becomes corrupt.

    Furthermore, all other alternative parties must be suppressed under Socialism, as to better limit the influence of the Bourgeoisie, who can be quite dangerous if given control of their own party.
    And if the Party strays from the revolutionary path? What is the people's recourse then if no other parties can be formed?

    You're ideas leave a dangerous possibility for the consolidation of power in the hands of a few. What if the ideas of the people and the ideas of the Party conflict? Which path will be taken? Are you ready to repress any alternative ideas that the Party does not endorse?
    "If those in charge of our society — politicians, corporate executives, and owners of press and television — can dominate our ideas, they will be secure in their power. They will not need soldiers patrolling the streets. We will control ourselves."
    -Howard Zinn
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    I just assume a huge number of the posters on this site are trolling. Mainly because, if they're not, I'll be incredibly disheartened.
    "Getting a job, finding a mate, having a place to live, finding a creative outlet. Life is a war of attrition. You have to stay active on all fronts. It's one thing after another. I've tried to control a chaotic universe. And it's a losing battle. But I can't let go. I've tried, but I can't." - Harvey Pekar


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  30. #17
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    On the whole, though, I don't know how much this is really true. Sure RevLeft has a lot of minutia-arguing, but it's a website and not really geared towards recruiting more people to our movements. But outside of RevLeft I hardly ever hear people argue about Kautsky or the 2nd international or many other major debates of the past. Mostly it's Russia and the so-called socialist states of the 20th centry that people argue about and I think that's because it's still a living question for many people - "yeah, I like what this sounds like, but how can we be sure we don't just end up with Stalin 2.0?"
    i don't think the issue is isolated to people arguing about kautsky. it is also a question of praxis. trotskyists in the US tend to infiltrate the labor unions (the international socialists called it the industrial turn), when most people could give two fucks about the unions because they have nothing to do with their reality.

    on the other side of the coin of historical sclerosis, there is activist sclerosis. the "mainstream" left in the us throws itself to activisty communities and single issue campaigns that at the end of the day the average guy could give two flying fucks about. so on one side there is pedantic dogmatism, and on the other there is opprtunism and lack of theoretical backbone, to the point that "pro-revolutionaries" get absorbed into a slum of activists, wingnuts, and assorted sociology majors.
    Formerly dada

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    i don't think the issue is isolated to people arguing about kautsky. it is also a question of praxis. trotskyists in the US tend to infiltrate the labor unions (the international socialists called it the industrial turn), when most people could give two fucks about the unions because they have nothing to do with their reality.

    on the other side of the coin of historical sclerosis, there is activist sclerosis. the "mainstream" left in the us throws itself to activisty communities and single issue campaigns that at the end of the day the average guy could give two flying fucks about. so on one side there is pedantic dogmatism, and on the other there is opprtunism and lack of theoretical backbone, to the point that "pro-revolutionaries" get absorbed into a slum of activists, wingnuts, and assorted sociology majors.
    What are you arguing? What is the alternative you are proposing, how is any of this inherent to radicals organizing themselves?
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    What are you arguing? What is the alternative you are proposing, how is any of this inherent to radicals organizing themselves?
    two points here.

    1) i think it is inherent to radicals organizing themselves as "activists". i.e. participate in particular single issue campaigns that are more or less spectacles where "community organizers" "radical students" and "ideologues "participate.

    2) i am not proposing an alternative. the only real alternative i can think of is to stop "trying" to create artificial struggles, and instead intervene in the self-movement of the class.
    Formerly dada

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    two points here.

    1) i think it is inherent to radicals organizing themselves as "activists". i.e. participate in particular single issue campaigns that are more or less spectacles where "community organizers" "radical students" and "ideologues "participate.

    2) i am not proposing an alternative. the only real alternative i can think of is to stop "trying" to create artificial struggles, and instead intervene in the self-movement of the class.
    Ok, but these seem to be at odds. Wouldn't "intervening" in existing struggles (#2) be participating in struggle (#1)? Are you arguing for "pure" agitational efforts that only promote self-emancipation of workers but don't try to enable that in practice by building grassroots struggle or campaigns of existing workers?

    I have never been a part of organizing anything out of the blue that there wasn't already some kind of initiative around already. I don't think the IWW has ever gone into a shop to convince people to unionize when they had no interest in it already. On a practical level, it would be a wasted effort when there are many workers out there already who are engaging in things or looking to protest the war or prisons or austerity or their own workplace bosses or their capitulating union officials.

    It sounds like you are against certain kinds of organizing, not organizing and that why I'm questioning what you wrote. Sure, don't join a group that's seeks to take over unions from the top or whatnot if you disagree with that strategy, that should be common sense to anyone. But there's nothing that inherently makes groups do this. In one of the local unions here the main bureaucrat is an independent radical and because they have no other way of having an impact (because they don't work with a group of like-minded people) is by attaining a position of authority in their workplace and enacting "good policies". So again, this is not a problem of organizing - in fact, I think it's more the lack of struggle over the past few decades that has caused groups (and individuals) to do some of these things that you rightfully criticize.

    i am not proposing an alternative. the only real alternative i can think of is to stop "trying" to create artificial struggles, and instead intervene in the self-movement of the class.
    Of course the irony is, how would you be able to achive this change current situation without organizing with like-minded people to promote this strategy and show in practice why it's correct... then people would begin to call that the Black Magikist tendancy and some people might take it in a strange direction and become dogmatic about it

    But seriously, I think it's more a problem of how people have been organizing, not organization in of itself.
    Last edited by Jimmie Higgins; 29th August 2011 at 10:25.

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