three questions: freedom of the speech and press / what is a marxist / the ruin of the classes

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lem_
three questions: freedom of the speech and press / what is a marxist / the ruin of the classes
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i am going to cunningly reverse the question order...

1. are the "far left" marxists? did they understand marx but miss the spirit, or what, exactly?

2. in the transition state, will any press organ organized through the workplace have some kind of material legitimacy, or are we talking about actually dissolving "liberal" ideas on civil freedoms?

 

thanks for any replies,

lem

jk1921
Your first question is

Your first question is tricky. I can only answer with more questions: Can one be a "Marxist" without being a communuist revolutionary? Do left communists now have a monopoly on "real Marxism"? What is the relationship between politically unaffiliated academics with Marxist leanings and revolutionaries? All very tough questions.

On your second question: This is tricky too. The transitional period is characterized by the "dictatorship of the proletariat," meaning that the working class has no a prirori attachment to liberal nicieties such as freedom of the press, speech, etc. when it comes to other classes. However, within the class itself, because no one worker or group of workers or party or organization can claim some kind of monopoly on the truth, can legitmately claim to know the precise mechanisms for how capitalism can be transformed into communism, it is vital that open discussion within the class (the workers' councils) is recognized as a fundamental material necessity (rather than a mere ethical principle) for the success of the transition. This would also need to include protections for those who hold minority positions as history has shown us ample evidence that majorities are not always right and in fact in the early stages of the transition it may even be the case that communists do not comprise the majority in the councils (see Russian and German revolutions).

Moreover, it is also important not to confuse the dictatorship of the proletariat (organized through the councils) with the transitional semi-state, which may be an entirely different organism. While the proletariat may be under no ethical commandment to respect various freedoms for other classes, this doesn't mean that at a practical level it doesn't make sense for it to allow other non-exploiting strata of the population some voice and say in the direction of society in order to win their good will and in order todemonstrate that the political rule of the working-class is of a fundamentally different nature than that of bourgeois class dictatorship, most all because it aims to be temporary and to transcend itself.

This is, of course, a rather controversial discussion (as demonstrated by other threads).

 

lem_
ok, i understand that it

ok, i understand that it would be a difficult one - in which case i have my own ideas already.

BTW: does anyone know of any communists in greece? i now have no money to offer, but i can offer my solidarity to them... it would be shocking if the cradle of civilzation was lost to the far right. call me a romantic, but i don't think it's necessarily about irrversible utopian like state of nature. for me, to keep humanity living through the forthcoming collapse, would be something like a victory over the idea of barbarism, if not every one of its possible instantiations.

 

it frustrates me that i can't use the quote function...

it is vital that open discussion within the class (the workers' councils) is recognized as a fundamental material necessity (rather than a mere ethical principle) for the success of the transition

i see little difference between ethics [broadly thought of as proletarian solidarity] and material necessity. but let's not get hung up on this point, yet...

it is also important not to confuse the dictatorship of the proletariat (organized through the councils) with the transitional semi-state, which may be an entirely different organism

i understand what you are saying here, i think, you mean that there will be organs of control that lie outside the councils. however, i would think that the dictatorship extends through the state itself. perhaps it will be less energetic in places, but the rest of our lives [from law and order to the press and even socialization] will be being reformed anew, and i don't believe that is possible without a progressive ideology of working class power. that's enough for this post.

lem_
hi,i updated the topic.i

hi,

i updated the topic.

i think that the ruin of the classes are:

international bourgeois - nationalist war

proletariat - unemployment, and populist state murder of internationalists.

 

i think so... just makes sense. enjoy your sunday :-)

edit to add: allow me to expand. without being able to express internationalism the proletariat cannot exist for itself. and, while it seems obvious that there will still be a ruling class after the ruin of the TWO classes, they would be prevented from "flourishing" / restricted, in the same way. surely a loss of fluency to capital - and it's just neat to say that's because of nationalism.

IMVHO [for all i know] all that is needed now is enough unemployment and there will be a largescale war in europe. this is just an impression - i cannot see how e.g. greece could do as she pleases, but she only needs allies and then all hell breaks loose - no? linking back to internationalism, wouldn't that require the use of terror laws against, well, anyone that posed a threat to the state at war?

i am not saying that's what marx had in mind, but i suspect that he meant that the two classes would be ruined in one process, but not share in the exact same fate.

lem_
i know that this will sound

i know that this will sound really millenerial... but i kinda believe that the bou. has been ruined. what "progressive" philosophy? what charity? what nation's people are they even killing for anymore?

 

i know a bou. and he treats me with moralistic suspicion, and i believe that's because i claim state welfare. this from a man that doesn't have to work??

 

i am not saying that this means that the international prole. can recover bourgeois deomcracy in its absolute form, because of that [feeling of ruin]. but yeah...

 

 

edit excuse the abbrv.

what god are the bourgeois murdering and exploiting us for??

lem_
when m. says history repeats

when m. says history repeats itself, how literal is that?

 

are we going to [at best] face a repeat of february / october?

so that there is civil disturbance, that leads to a democratic attempts to quell it, and then a reaction against democracy?

 

sorry if i completely mischaracterized russ. there :) ?

mhou
Quote:what god are the

Quote:
what god are the bourgeois murdering and exploiting us for??
That's a really fundamental question that underlines the entire purpose of Marxism and what, historically, separates it from anarchism and leftism in general.
Quote:
It seems clear that if the whole surplus-value were consumed for enjoyment, the process of valorization would only be a process of conserving value and there would be no increase in value. Or, what is the same thing, the increase would be fixed in enjoyment and would be unable to re-enter the production process. It is therefore impossible to find a capitalist who consumes surplus value for 'the good life' (la bella vita). "This presupposition is the same as presupposing the non-existence of capitalist production and therefore the nonexistence of the industrial capitalist himself" (Marx, Capital, V.II) This means: when it has been shown once and for all that the driving force of the capitalist system is not the individual capitalist's desire to enjoy profits, but the impersonal requirements of social capital- a social force which only a revolution will be able to overthrow- to grow by means of surplus-value, one has shown the exact reasons for the necessity of the death of capitalism and thus, as Marx indicates, its scientifically determined non-existence. But only a science that is revolutionary and no longer doctrinaire can achieve this result!
- J. Camatte from Capital & Community. Separating the impersonal, autonomous action of capital in society from a conception of individual (human) manifestations of the capitalist as the cause of social turmoil, decay, inequity, etc. is a core block of what makes Marxism revolutionary and of a different basis than anarchism and leftism.
Fred
mhou wrote:  Separating the

mhou wrote:
 Separating the impersonal, autonomous action of capital in society from a conception of individual (human) manifestations of the capitalist as the cause of social turmoil, decay, inequity, etc. is a core block of what makes Marxism revolutionary and of a different basis than anarchism and leftism.
 

 

Hi mhou. After  several very concentrated reads of this I'm still not sure I've got it.  Synaptic delays and so on. Are you saying that capitalism is like a robot and just runs itself, all out of control of humans? Like the Sorceror's   Apprentice?  And that to blame individual capitalists for all the mess is to misunderstand the mechanics of the system, and is the mistake that some anarchists and leftist make and is what distinguishes them from communist revolutionaries? Is that right? Please reply because I want to know. 

 

mhou
It's like the idea from an

It's like the idea from an earlier thread on alienation- that the capitalists are themselves alienated (using capital, 'value in process', to create new, greater value with each production cycle rather than appropriating all created value for themselves). Their position as the ruling-class masks this due to relative wealth and power. Marxism outlines why just 'liquidating' the bourgeoisie and/or opposing state power are not sufficient to create communism- because the laws of capital, that govern all classes under capitalism and can continue to operate without a physical capitalist class, would otherwise continue to exist. Property relations haven't made a difference (throughout the 20th century) as to whether the law of value still applies.

Fred
Thank you for your reply

Thank you for your reply mhou. Though I cant say I feel much the wiser. My fault no doubt. Do you mean that if the capitalists kept all the profits for themselves they would be less alienated? But don't they spend most of it on war anyway: their favorite activity?

 

And we don't want to "liquidate" the bourgeoisie, but to make a start on dismantling the self-perpetuating "laws of capital". This I understand. But do we know how to do it?  How would we make a start? 

mhou
 Actually Fred, you

 

Actually Fred, you described the gist of Marx's quote in your post in the Arendt thread:

Quote:
Thus our rulers trembled somewhat at the time, and even crumbled  before events, losing whatever moral fibre they ever had  (never much and of poor quality), losing  confidence in their "vision" of a world triumphantly based on commodity production and the amassing of surplus value, and reduced to the category of subservient automatons before a blind system now completely out of their control.
   not only understanding but verifying with scientific analysis that this is what capital means in society (total alienation of humans from human activities- for all classes and strata), combined with historical materialism (that social change is mediated by class struggle; in our epoch, social revolution is in the hands of the working-class), arms the revolutionary class with a scientific foundation for its emancipatory movement. Elsewhere Marx documents how the contribution made by he and Engels (and their peers) differs from Bakunin, Proudhon, etc.:
Quote:
At the end of 1868 the Russian, Bakunin, entered the International with the aim of forming inside it a second International called the “Alliance of Social-Democracy,” with himself as leader. He – a man devoid of theoretical knowledge – put forward the pretension that this separate body was to represent the scientific propaganda of the International, which was to be made the special function of this second International within the International.

His programme was a superficially scraped together hash of Right and Left – EQUALITY Of CLASSES (!), abolition of the right of inheritance as the starting point of the social movement (St. Simonistic nonsense), atheism as a dogma to be dictated to the members, etc., and as the main dogma (Proudhonist), abstention from the political movement.

  understanding why the capitalist does what they do, why society is the way it is, as a basis for the revolutionary workers movement- unlike moral or abstract rejections of components of class society (inequality, hierarchical authority, etc.). So it's not that the capitalist consumes all value created in production for his own enjoyment to do what he pleases with it, but is compelled to re-invest value created by the workers they've hired into new, larger production cycles- as you said, as a cog in a 'blind system' out of their individual control.
lem_
that's super interesting,

that's super interesting, thanks mihou.

 

i posed the question for similar reasons, but from a slightly different perspective perhaps - not why are they doing this, but why don't we.

 

for me this has led to question about transition [moral] and also i feeel the fetish [economic] and ideology [philosophy].