b9 leftists

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Postby 198d__ » Sun Mar 26, 2017 12:30 pm

I'll likely get flamed for making this thread, but I wanted to make it for the sole purpose of discussing socialist, anarchist, Marxist, anti-imperialist, etc. related literature and activity. It seemed that bringing this stuff up in the other political thread just annoyed people, so now we'll have a specific place to talk without disrupting other people's conversations.

Attn: dogdicksummer3, spsp

I'll start by sharing a piece by Trotsky; The ABC of Materialist Dialectics. I am not a student of Trotsky, nor do I subscribe to the beliefs of the Trotskyist persuasion, but I love reading this article because it explains dialectical materialism in such a simple manner. It has helped me make a lot more sense of other Marxist texts, and if there are any lurkers it's not a bad place to start:

https://www.marxists.org/archive/trotsky/1939/12/abc.htm
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Postby cstocks89 » Sun Mar 26, 2017 1:56 pm

posting for radical shit
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Postby Sarahohio » Sun Mar 26, 2017 1:58 pm

i read this as lefties and got excited. so nerdy
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Postby dogdicksummer3 » Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:21 pm

I haven't really narrowed myself down to a specific term for my ideology but Marx has probably had more influence on my thinking than anyone else.

That article is good but may be a little too ambiguous for people just getting introduced to dialectical materialism. If I had to explain it as easy as possible it would read:

Dialectics is the study of how things change in a process of tensions from opposing forces but nevertheless are unified. Marx was a historical determinist meaning communism is the end goal of history from synthesising forces. Tribalism, feudalism, slavery, capitalism are all the synthesis of previous struggle. They are not fixed but constantly evolving. The physical realities change human life, humans change the physical realities, a new structure is formed which contradicts itself leading to a new change in physical reality. So the contradictions of feudalism gave rise to capitalism as feudal lords and serfs synthesized. The contradictions of capitalism as capital and labor, think growing inequalities, commodification, then synthesize to form socialism. It's a way to critically analyze the world not as separate entities or subjects but intertwined contradictory forces which bring about radical transformations.

There's a lot of jargon in there and this is why Marxists often come off as ivory tower book club thinkers but it's all pretty simple. It definitely changes the way you think about things.
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Postby nerd eater » Sun Mar 26, 2017 5:38 pm

jessefritschzy wrote:i read this as lefties and got excited. so nerdy

Spoiler: show
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Postby TheThrillHouse » Sun Mar 26, 2017 6:16 pm

Hello, hi.
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Postby ChangexofxIdeas » Sun Mar 26, 2017 6:49 pm

I don't think I'm as far left as most of this threads contributors, but this thread is relevant to my interests.
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Postby Check Your Sources » Sun Mar 26, 2017 6:51 pm

pinko scum
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Postby IThinkItsIndecision » Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:08 pm

I was told there would be punch and pie.
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Postby spsp » Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:34 pm

My kind of thread
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Postby spsp » Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:40 pm

Anybody here listen to Richard D. Wolff's Economic Update?

He's America's "Top Marxist Economist(TM)."

I just wanted to give it a plug in this thread because I think everyone would be interested. He's got a real knack for giving easily digestible explanations. Probably has something to do with being a professor.

Post some other lefty-media sources for me too. I'm always interested in more.
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Postby dogdicksummer3 » Sun Mar 26, 2017 7:56 pm

Richard Wolff is cool. He's kind of goofy but endearing and he's a really nice guy. I met him at left forum years back and it was my first introduction to him.

He's probably the best source to send a 10-20 minute video to someone to understand critiques of capitalism and what socialism is.
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Postby t.doomhammer » Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:48 pm

i have the weirdest boner right now
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Postby dogdicksummer3 » Sun Mar 26, 2017 8:54 pm

Liberals be gone~

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Postby xcolepx » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:38 pm

Audio book of The Conquest of Bread by Peter Kropotkin
https://librivox.org/the-conquest-of-bread-by-peter-kropotkin/
Bread book is essential anarcho reading material, I believe there's also a PDF downlaod of it

Murray Bookchin's Communalism theory:
Audio book of The Next Revolution: Popular Assemblies & The Promise of Direct Democracy by Murray Bookchin
https://archive.org/details/thenextrevolution
All encompassing info on communalism theory:


Information should be free
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Postby spsp » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:40 pm

been listening to that Bookchin audiobook. Was that posted on here (I forget) or are you in the socialism subreddit too?
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Postby spsp » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:43 pm

For those that haven't listened yet : https://soundcloud.com/chapo-trap-house ... ddad-21317

Here's an interview with hollywood superstar and anarchist - Jake Gyllenhall. (LENIN_LOVER69/@PissPigGranddad on twitter)
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Postby trentxedge » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:47 pm

Posting

Also, any other Wobblies around here?
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Postby 198d__ » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:49 pm

You're a wobblie?! My buddy Zach is an IWW member and he's always trying to get me to join.
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Postby xcolepx » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:49 pm

spsp wrote:been listening to that Bookchin audiobook. Was that posted on here (I forget) or are you in the socialism subreddit too?

I got it from the communalism subreddit, actually, but I'm on almost every leftist/anarchist subreddit at this point hahahaha
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Postby spsp » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:51 pm

Hell yeah. I was about to post that subreddit actually.. It's really good but I wish it had a little more traffic. They're working on more audiobooks I think, too.
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Postby xcolepx » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:54 pm

I'm interested in what socialist / anarchist groups y'all are in (if not incriminating). I went to an ISO meeting last month, they have them once a month here. I'm friends with a lot of anarchists here but have never gone to a meeting of any sort.
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Postby trentxedge » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:56 pm

198d__ wrote:You're a wobblie?! My buddy Zach is an IWW member and he's always trying to get me to join.


Do it man, I normally communicate with the Detroit branch regarding any union activities though i'm currently affiliated with and pay dues to the headquarters in Chicago since Lansing doesn't have a branch, i've been trying to get more people to join around here.
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Postby spsp » Sun Mar 26, 2017 9:58 pm

What would be an advantage of me joining IWW if I'm in an area where the next closest member is probably a million miles away?
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Postby trentxedge » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:14 pm

spsp wrote:What would be an advantage of me joining IWW if I'm in an area where the next closest member is probably a million miles away?


They'll have your back even if you are in my position, being an hour away from the two nearest branches (Detroit GMB and Grand Rapids GMB) Distance isn't really an issue, hell I hear from the Detroit IWW about once a month just checking in on me and my working conditions, more than I can say about the Teamsters branch i'm apart of who's never even said a word to me in the 2 years I've been at my current job.
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Postby 198d__ » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:14 pm

I want to start a local Marxist-Leninist-Maoist group but I am by no means learned enough to be a leader. The only local socialist group I've met with in Detroit was the SEP (Trotskyist) and they're fucking horrible. They're total brocialists and they were actually fucking banned from r/socialism and r/communism. I need an alternative in big way but there's no MLM groups around me that I know of.
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Postby trentxedge » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:21 pm

198d__ wrote:I want to start a local Marxist-Leninist-Maoist group but I am by no means learned enough to be a leader. The only local socialist group I've met with in Detroit was the SEP (Trotskyist) and they're fucking horrible. They're total brocialists and they were actually fucking banned from r/socialism and r/communism. I need an alternative in big way but there's no MLM groups around me that I know of.


You'd think Detroit would have an abundance of far-left groups being that the City/Surrounding area gave birth to the Weathermen, White Panthers, and SDS. I'm definitely nowhere near a Maoist/Leninist, i'm more Left-Libertarian/Syndicalist and it seems the IWW is one of the only organizations out there with a strong base in that belief set.
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Postby 198d__ » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:35 pm

If you're a syndicalist, the IWW is exactly where you want to be. I dig it, but it doesn't totally align with my beliefs. I still support them fully, though. Every member I've met has been totally decent and genuine.
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Postby Frederik » Mon Mar 27, 2017 12:22 am

198d__ wrote:I want to start a local Marxist-Leninist-Maoist group but I am by no means learned enough to be a leader. The only local socialist group I've met with in Detroit was the SEP (Trotskyist) and they're fucking horrible. They're total brocialists and they were actually fucking banned from r/socialism and r/communism. I need an alternative in big way but there's no MLM groups around me that I know of.


what is a "brocialist"? I've heard this term thrown around a bit, but I've never seen a definition for it.
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Postby Marcabre back from dead » Mon Mar 27, 2017 3:09 am

Quite a few number of years ago there was an anarchist thought/leftist thread on here, it reached quite a few pages and then the mods locked the thread for no damn reason, and then locked a second one made after that too. Here is to this one staying open.
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Postby Marcabre back from dead » Mon Mar 27, 2017 3:16 am

Also I come from the anarchist tradition (Bakunin)/Syndicalism, but have recently kind of given up on any sort of affinity with the anarchist scene/activist group/whatever, so lets just put it as I am open to learning about new philosophies.
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Postby Stubby Clapp » Mon Mar 27, 2017 4:36 am

Genuine question not tryna be a dick or nothing:

Since communism has failed as a form of governance in almost every instance it's been implemented, what makes people think it would be successful in the future?
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Postby killedbydeath » Mon Mar 27, 2017 5:30 am

i have the weirdest boner right now
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Postby cstocks89 » Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:00 am

Stubby Clapp wrote:Genuine question not tryna be a dick or nothing:

Since communism has failed as a form of governance in almost every instance it's been implemented, what makes people think it would be successful in the future?

Communism is not the same as socialism.

Also do you think capitalism hasn't failed? Literally every criticism you could give to socialism has already occurred with capitalism.
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Postby Stubby Clapp » Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:04 am

Nah I agree and am very pro socialism.

I was just curious about what people who back communism super hard think (am assuming there are probably a couple folks in the thread who could weigh in).
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Postby Anti-todo » Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:35 am

Been looking for a good syndicalist podcast, but haven't been blown away by anything so far. Anybody got any recommendations?
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Postby spsp » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:24 am

Marcabre back from dead wrote:Quite a few number of years ago there was an anarchist thought/leftist thread on here, it reached quite a few pages and then the mods locked the thread for no damn reason, and then locked a second one made after that too. Here is to this one staying open.

CIA locked it
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Postby spsp » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:29 am

Stubby Clapp wrote:Genuine question not tryna be a dick or nothing:

Since communism has failed as a form of governance in almost every instance it's been implemented, what makes people think it would be successful in the future?

It's basically become a meme at this point but, many communists would argue we haven't had communism rather state capitalism. And I think they argue that with good reason. The other point is, smaller bottom up movements have to deal with empire looking to destroy them. It's a problem less of the commune and of outside forces.

Plus, building socialism is a pretty big idea that's bound to have issues along the way. Nothing wrong with it learning from mistakes.
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Postby spsp » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:31 am

There's a hundred different ways to build a leftist movement. And as inequality grows, on a long enough timeline maybe the commie nihilists will be proven right.
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Postby 198d__ » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:34 am

Frederik wrote:
198d__ wrote:I want to start a local Marxist-Leninist-Maoist group but I am by no means learned enough to be a leader. The only local socialist group I've met with in Detroit was the SEP (Trotskyist) and they're fucking horrible. They're total brocialists and they were actually fucking banned from r/socialism and r/communism. I need an alternative in big way but there's no MLM groups around me that I know of.


what is a "brocialist"? I've heard this term thrown around a bit, but I've never seen a definition for it.

The MRAs of the left.

They're socialists who are class-reductionists. They believe that all issues like sexism, racism, ableism, etc. will be solved automatically when capitalism is dissolved, therefore the problems of these communities don't need to be discussed uniquely. While liberal "identity politics" should be condemned, writing off all discussions about the aforementioned struggles as such is not only insulting but a grotesque essentialist outlook that could only possibly be held by privileged whites.

Luckily, these people are the minority and are silenced by any socialist who knows their shit, irl and online. It's really only common amongst Trotskyists and Bernie bros (who aren't even socialists, after all).

Here's a link with more information about class-reductionism if you're interested: http://moufawad-paul.blogspot.com/2011/04/problems-with-class-reductionism.html
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Postby creativexcover » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:37 am

jessefritschzy wrote:i read this as lefties and got excited. so nerdy

:smt042 Left handed people unite!
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Postby xcolepx » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:20 am

spsp wrote:
Stubby Clapp wrote:Genuine question not tryna be a dick or nothing:

Since communism has failed as a form of governance in almost every instance it's been implemented, what makes people think it would be successful in the future?

It's basically become a meme at this point but, many communists would argue we haven't had communism rather state capitalism. And I think they argue that with good reason. The other point is, smaller bottom up movements have to deal with empire looking to destroy them. It's a problem less of the commune and of outside forces.

Plus, building socialism is a pretty big idea that's bound to have issues along the way. Nothing wrong with it learning from mistakes.

Communism is what is believed to be achieved from perfect socialism, so communism has definitely never existed

Reddit links from people we more knowledgeable and eloquent than me on failed attempts:
https://www.reddit.com/r/communism101/comments/1f8obt/honestly_not_trolling_why_in_your_opinion_have/?st=J0SBD2Z9&sh=7c319df7
http://www.reddit.com/r/communism101/comments/190vro/communism_does_it_work/
http://www.reddit.com/r/communism101/comments/28sjy4/how_do_i_counter_the_communism_is_a_nice_thought/
http://www.reddit.com/r/communism101/comments/1zrroq/why_did_the_soviet_union_fail/

And a source for a lot of FAQ:
https://www.reddit.com/r/communism101/wiki/index?st=J0SBKJN2&sh=1f2ea372

I'm not a tankie ☭, but I think knowing the information on USSR and Maoism is good.

I'm really interested in American socialist / communist movements so if anyone has anything amazing to read I'm very interested, I have women race and class by Angela Davis and black liberation and socialism by Ahmed Shawki and have read a decent amount of bookchin as well... but something about how technology may change socialism or revolutionary tactics is what I really want
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Postby 198d__ » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:31 am

spsp wrote:
Stubby Clapp wrote:Genuine question not tryna be a dick or nothing:

Since communism has failed as a form of governance in almost every instance it's been implemented, what makes people think it would be successful in the future?

It's basically become a meme at this point but, many communists would argue we haven't had communism rather state capitalism. And I think they argue that with good reason. The other point is, smaller bottom up movements have to deal with empire looking to destroy them. It's a problem less of the commune and of outside forces.

Plus, building socialism is a pretty big idea that's bound to have issues along the way. Nothing wrong with it learning from mistakes.

Communism has never been achieved. Not by the USSR, not by Cuba, not by the DPRK, not by Albania. Socialism, which is the road to communism, has been achieved. This is where a Marxist-Leninist like myself and an anarchist like spsp will disagree. We agree that we've never achieved communism, but his camp doesn't believe that any example of actually existing socialism has truly been socialist. However, this argument has nothing to do with the question originally asked, so I digress.

Socialism has "failed" for a multitude of reasons, the most significant of which being revisionist policy and the shit storm the rest of the world hurls at any nation that stands against imperialism.

You can't simply compare a nation like the DPRK or Cuba to the U.S. or Britain in a vacuum (which is the context the original question has laid out since I'm assuming he's comparing "failed" communist (misnomer) states to "successful" capitalist ones). That completely undermines Marxist theory and to ignore historical context would be irresponsible. The U.S. and Britain are colonizer states whereas a place like Cuba or the DPRK is a formally colonized state. In order to understand the conditions of these places, you have to compare their histories. Capitalist countries are able to afford their "superiority" because of imperialist ventures in the third world. Countries that have implemented Marxism-Leninism didn't do so for fun or because they wanted to provide a "lesser" existence for their citizens, they do so because it's the only way to break their colonizer's chains. Trying to build a fruitful economy without employing slave labor all around the world, bombing countries that won't comply with your demands, and setting up oppressive political systems in nations where you want to extract resources is fucking hard. Countries that have achieved socialism have engaged in the fight against reaction and imperialism, and that is a hard fucking fight. Providing for your countrymen is challenging when you're trying to do shit the right way. It is going to take numerous attempts to get it right, just like all of the social/political/economic systems prior. This is the reason why censorship exists in socialist countries. To prevent bourgeois propaganda from sabotaging their struggle. The relates to my next point:

The people who fled the USSR to come stateside whilst talking shit about their homeland didn't fully grasp the shape of things in a materialist way. From their perspective, they're wondering why the fuck they should have to struggle when there's a whole world out there where they can obtain abundant wealth. This ignores that there's a reason why the U.S. is what is and why the USSR was what it was. There's a reason why socialist countries don't have the luxuries of colonizer countries. Living scarcely is hard, but it's an attempt to be collective and sustainable. The harshness of the socialist struggle while capitalism was still dominating the way it was is the perfect tonic to undermine these efforts. In order to compete, the USSR implemented revision and that's when shit hit the fan (in an overly simplistic explanation). It's worth noting that the USSR didn't begin to crumble until it became more capitalistic.

But this is all secondary to the fact that capitalism itself isn't successful. It's simply superior to the social systems that came before it. Marx applauded capitalism for its innovations. He just condemned it for not solving class contradictions. Capitalism is only successful from the perspective of colonizer states, ask the millions of sweatshop laborers employed by American corporations how fucking sick they think capitalism is. They're the ones actually living in its processes, not us. To them, Cuba and the USSR look a hell of a lot better than what their surrounding conditions are. To them, Marxism-Leninism is the only way to liberate themselves. They don't engage in it to become like the U.S., they embrace it to build a sustainable system that doesn't need to exploit poorer nations to survive. They realize they couldn't be imperialists even if they wanted to be because the whole world can't be like that. It's impossible. This is capitalism's main problem. It needs to grow to survive, and to grow it must exploit, but exploitation can't last forever. Eventually, you'll just run out of people to fuck over, which is why a new system is needed.

I'd rather wait in a bread line than unnecessarily produce bread that gets thrown in the trash while people everywhere starve.
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Postby dogdicksummer3 » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:53 am

Hey Cole, I'm trying to get my hands on Socialist Party of America by Jack Ross. It's a "complete history" around 850 pages in hardcover.

Haven't found a copy at my local library network yet but put in a request.
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Postby TheyWalkedInLine » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:00 am

Looking to start a Juche or Khmer Rouge group in my home town. Please advise.
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Postby Saul Berenson bear » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:02 am

198d__ wrote:
spsp wrote:
Stubby Clapp wrote:Genuine question not tryna be a dick or nothing:

Since communism has failed as a form of governance in almost every instance it's been implemented, what makes people think it would be successful in the future?

It's basically become a meme at this point but, many communists would argue we haven't had communism rather state capitalism. And I think they argue that with good reason. The other point is, smaller bottom up movements have to deal with empire looking to destroy them. It's a problem less of the commune and of outside forces.

Plus, building socialism is a pretty big idea that's bound to have issues along the way. Nothing wrong with it learning from mistakes.

Communism has never been achieved. Not by the USSR, not by Cuba, not by the DPRK, not by Albania. Socialism, which is the road to communism, has been achieved. This is where a Marxist-Leninist like myself and an anarchist like spsp will disagree. We agree that we've never achieved communism, but his camp doesn't believe that any example of actually existing socialism has truly been socialist. However, this argument has nothing to do with the question originally asked, so I digress.

Socialism has "failed" for a multitude of reasons, the most significant of which being revisionist policy and the shit storm the rest of the world hurls at any nation that stands against imperialism.

You can't simply compare a nation like the DPRK or Cuba to the U.S. or Britain in a vacuum (which is the context the original question has laid out since I'm assuming he's comparing "failed" communist (misnomer) states to "successful" capitalist ones). That completely undermines Marxist theory and to ignore historical context would be irresponsible. The U.S. and Britain are colonizer states whereas a place like Cuba or the DPRK is a formally colonized state. In order to understand the conditions of these places, you have to compare their histories. Capitalist countries are able to afford their "superiority" because of imperialist ventures in the third world. Countries that have implemented Marxism-Leninism didn't do so for fun or because they wanted to provide a "lesser" existence for their citizens, they do so because it's the only way to break their colonizer's chains. Trying to build a fruitful economy without employing slave labor all around the world, bombing countries that won't comply with your demands, and setting up oppressive political systems in nations where you want to extract resources is fucking hard. Countries that have achieved socialism have engaged in the fight against reaction and imperialism, and that is a hard fucking fight. Providing for your countrymen is challenging when you're trying to do shit the right way. It is going to take numerous attempts to get it right, just like all of the social/political/economic systems prior. This is the reason why censorship exists in socialist countries. To prevent bourgeois propaganda from sabotaging their struggle. The relates to my next point:

The people who fled the USSR to come stateside whilst talking shit about their homeland didn't fully grasp the shape of things in a materialist way. From their perspective, they're wondering why the fuck they should have to struggle when there's a whole world out there where they can obtain abundant wealth. This ignores that there's a reason why the U.S. is what is and why the USSR was what it was. There's a reason why socialist countries don't have the luxuries of colonizer countries. Living scarcely is hard, but it's an attempt to be collective and sustainable. The harshness of the socialist struggle while capitalism was still dominating the way it was is the perfect tonic to undermine these efforts. In order to compete, the USSR implemented revision and that's when shit hit the fan (in an overly simplistic explanation). It's worth noting that the USSR didn't begin to crumble until it became more capitalistic.

But this is all secondary to the fact that capitalism itself isn't successful. It's simply superior to the social systems that came before it. Marx applauded capitalism for its innovations. He just condemned it for not solving class contradictions. Capitalism is only successful from the perspective of colonizer states, ask the millions of sweatshop laborers employed by American corporations how fucking sick they think capitalism is. They're the ones actually living in its processes, not us. To them, Cuba and the USSR look a hell of a lot better than what their surrounding conditions are. To them, Marxism-Leninism is the only way to liberate themselves. They don't engage in it to become like the U.S., they embrace it to build a sustainable system that doesn't need to exploit poorer nations to survive. They realize they couldn't be imperialists even if they wanted to be because the whole world can't be like that. It's impossible. This is capitalism's main problem. It needs to grow to survive, and to grow it must exploit, but exploitation can't last forever. Eventually, you'll just run out of people to fuck over, which is why a new system is needed.

I'd rather wait in a bread line than unnecessarily produce bread that gets thrown in the trash while people everywhere starve.


The oppressive regimes of Stalin and Castro weren't the products of misguided altruism.
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Postby M.C_ronin » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:03 am

posting
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Postby Sorley Boy » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:06 am

'Free' markets create distortions and inefficiencies, but nothing on the scale of state interventions. The point about Marxism never being implemented in its proper form is fair enough, but it doesn't work in theory either, at least until/unless we have a more sophisticated ability to manage markets.
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Postby 198d__ » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:11 am

I'm not going to engage in petty DB arguments in this thread or anything relatively close to them. If there are genuine questions, they will be answered, but people looking to challenge basic prerequisites like DB is here should be ignored by everyone in the thread.

I don't want to exhaust all my energy as a leftist trying to explain beliefs to people who have no intention of considering them. Not saying everyone has to agree in here, but questions framed like the one above derail the thread and shouldn't have to be answered. This title of the thread isn't "debate leftism."
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Postby dogdicksummer3 » Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:13 am

https://www.jacobinmag.com/2012/12/the- ... the-black/

Sorley, that article might help with some issues.
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