RedMarx

A Forum
It is currently Sat Jun 24, 2017 12:24 pm

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]



Welcome


Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 105 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 7, 8, 9, 10, 11  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 6:38 am 
Offline
Comrade

Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:34 pm
Posts: 25
Has thanked: 3 time
Have thanks: 3 time
S. Artesian, you refuse to answer a simple question about what is and is not, in principle, off the table when dealing with opposing sections of the working class during a time of revolution. An example drawn from your latest response: you wouldn't, in principle, refuse to employ peasant manpower in the military. You would prefer not to have to do so, but the decision depends on the context. In the case of violence against workers, are there NO contexts in which this would be acceptable purely on the basis of principle? Obviously nobody here, as a first principle, revels in suppressing and using coercion against workers, which is why your accusation that anybody would happy to "have a crack at militarizing labor" is just an infantile cheap shot. The idea that anybody does, including Trotskyists or even Trotsky himself, is just a ridiculous caricature. What Trotskyists argue is that, as a first principle, coercion against segments of the working class cannot be taken off the table and must be deployed only if necessary in light of the politico-strategic context. Note that this is different than what you are trying to impute to us, that the first principle IS using coercion in the abstract, as something to be desired, which is an entirely different position. Advocating a policy as necessary at a particular juncture, and "being happy about it" are two different things. One is based on a materialist analysis, however provisional or flawed, of the set of alternatives confronting a movement trying to implement a revolutionary program. The other is a moralistic judgment that ignores program and assigns virtue on the basis of class position alone (coercion of workers is always wrong because workers are always right, by virtue of being workers). Some decisions the Bolsheviks made regarding suppression after October were wrong and retarded the revolutionary movement. Lenin and Trotsky themselves acknowledged this (e.g. Trotsky himself acknowledged it was a mistake to advocate for the militarization of labor). The point that you can't fathom is that these actions are not *wrong in principle.* And the only way you can facilely dismiss them as being so is transform the working class into a moral category, not a political one, by claiming that in principle any decision to suppress them is wrong, independent of concrete context.

You haven't even answered this question, so I would hate to try to discuss with you the definition of a state, a bourgeois state, a workers' state, etc.. A question, by the way, which cannot be answered by simply determining whether property has been nationalized (to squelch that before it is even suggested).

As to the individual who accused Trotskyists of "clinging to corpses," I think it's an ironic accusation to make from a person participating on a web forum named after a corpse that has been decaying for a half a century longer. I suppose only some corpses are worth clinging to. :roll:


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:46 am 
Offline
Comrade
User avatar

Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 2:55 pm
Posts: 1315
Has thanked: 398 time
Have thanks: 938 time
I have answered your question, numerous times in the concrete circumstances, in the actual historical circumstances in which it arose-- the Russian Revolution. I will not answer a question of this nature in the abstract.

You OTOH haven't responded to the fact that your claim that the "backbone of the red army" suppressing Kronstadt were the same workers who "expropriated the bourgeoisie" is false. Typical for a Trotskyist.

Here is the concrete question: Do you support the Bolshevik suppression of the soviets, outlawing of strikes, and the repression of Kronstadt?

Yes, I well know that Trotskyists believe that coercion of the working class, by the party, cannot be "taken off the table." But of course. This is exactly what the Stalinists believe, and only an ignoramus or an ideologue good pose such a question without realizing that it places the whole nature of the so-called revolution in doubt. But that's for those who think class is more important than party.

I have no interest in discussing the "theoretical basis" of a workers state with someone, or some group, that fetishizes a "property relation" formed and determined by and in the relative backwardness of an economy; a property relation that is supposedly "healthy" enough to support a "workers state" but not healthy enough to tolerate the workers controlling that state through the "dialectical" organs of their own power.

You are an ideologue whose abstractions are nothing but a justification for things as they were-- and your nostalgia for the errors, and butchery, of the past.

Answer the question: Do you, however "regretfully" support the Bolshevik suppression of Kronstadt, the soviets, workers strikes for better working and living conditions?

Oh... and the difference between Marx and Trotsky, both corpses, as symbols of political "affection" or leadership? Marx's critique, methodology demand continuous materialist analysis of how capital has reproduced itself, which includes the role of the fSU, and the part the Bolsheviks, however unwittingly, wittingly, regretfully, gleefully, played in that reproduction of capital. Trotskyism requires we suspend that work and accept the reconciling of a "workers' state" that is the enemy of the workers with "healthy" conditions, social organization of labor.

I don't mean to be crude, but the more you talk, the more you happily point to the necessity of keeping the option of suppressing the workers "on the table," the more you define yourself as a motherfucking sack of **** scab.

Wait a minute, one more thing: Yeah the "militarization of labor" is wrong and IN PRINCIPLE, the principle being that the social emancipation of labor is essential for improving the productivity of labor and overcoming the conditions of immiseration. Anybody who knows anything about the "militarization" recognizes that it represents a decline in labor productivity; embeds lowered productivity in the tasks of organizing labor, and can only accomplish tasks through lowering living standards of the laborers...which by the way was demonstrated so clearly in that other example of the "militarization of labor"-- called the Five Year Plans.

Your fucking ignorance would fill volumes; and doom millions.

_________________
Quite an experience to live in fear, isn't it?
That's what it is to live the life of a slave.


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 10:50 am 
Offline
Comrade

Joined: Thu Jun 20, 2013 8:51 pm
Posts: 36
Has thanked: 11 time
Have thanks: 3 time
I think Solidarity is on to something, Artesian. The USSR was the "enemy of the workers." What on fucking Earth does that mean? All workers? Communist workers? From 1917? After they suppressed one strike? After they broke with the Left SRs? You constantly ooze with vague categorical statements. You reduce the early history of the USSR to "bad things done to workers" and hide behind abstract formulations by Marx, that while formally correct, are beside the point. Do you think Trotsky disagreed with your formulation on the emancipation of labor? War Communism was a stopgap -- your smart-*** empty post facto analysis of the circumstances faced by the RCP after the Revolution is worth very little. History is really messy -- especially while it is unfolding. Marx didn't live to see the Russian Revolution -- it posed a large number of new and difficult challenges. And things did go very wrong, although we certainly disagree on the degree to which they went wrong.

As for the nastiness? You obviously can't help it. You are one angry fellow. With little capacity to teach and with a really nasty contempt for people with whom you disagree.
Lev Bronsteinovich has been thanked by:


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 11:53 am 
Offline
Comrade
User avatar

Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 2:55 pm
Posts: 1315
Has thanked: 398 time
Have thanks: 938 time
Ohcome on. The issue isn't the Bolsheviks doing "bad things" to workers. That's your claim. The Bolsheviks "made mistakes." "The Bolsheviks were forced by circumstances to do what they really didn't want to do."

The issue is the fate of a revolution in a backward country when the reciprocating revolution does not occur in advanced countries. Is it possible that the "property relations" established in isolation that lead directly to the "dispossession" of the workers; property relations that cannot match even bourgeois relations in augmenting the productivity of labor can be characterized as a "workers' state"?

I would say that the Bolsheviks turned on the class organs of workers power-- for whatever reason or excuse you care to provide. And the reasons and excuses don't matter, because they are the product of material circumstances; not betrayal; not mistakes; not errors; but an internal necessity (which for your further edification is also a characteristic of a "dialectical" relationship)-- the internal necessity being that of the Bolsheviks themselves to maintain their own power.

Now as for the "workers' state" being the enemy of the workers... well there's little doubt about that is there? The complete and utter incompetence of the Bolsheviks in dealing with the international struggle-- from the trumpeting of nationalism, to the subjugation of the Chinese workers to the KMT (a process that starts with embracing Sun Yat Sen and the KMT in what? 1919?); the British General Strike; to the direct slaughtering of workers in Vietnam, (which actually precedes the popular front days), and Spain... I mean how many mistakes, errors, mishandlings do you need before the light goes on and you recognize that the actions of the Bolsheviks were not quite the betrayal of the Bolsheviks raison d'etre as you would like to think.

Marx's critique explicitly identifies the material circumstances, the condition of labor, how it is organized as determining how society reproduces itself. So let's take that critique to the notion of a "healthy property relation" a healthy social organization of labor.

Do you really think that there could be a "healthy property relation," a "revolutionary organization" of social labor that can dispossess the class that is the agent of that property relation? This is where Trotsky's "Thermidor" analogy breaks down. At no point in the Directory's rule, or Napoleon's were the bourgeoisie, as a class, dispossessed of their property. Nowhere in the Napoleon period, that follows Thermidor is capitalism 'discarded'. On the contrary, Napoleon's conquests are marked by the introduction, or attempted introduction, of bourgeois forms....even in Egypt.

So tell us, where does the worker state enhance the prospects for the proletarian revolution? No place. You can say what you want about the "progress" of China or Cuba, or the victory of the North Vietnamese but at what point has that victory-- that expansion of an essentially "healthy property relation" -- led to anything other than the restoration, faster or more slowly, of capitalism?

The problem with your fidelity to Trotskyism, and Trotsky's bureaucratic formulations is that it requires you, or one, to completely abandon the critical elements of Marx's analysis-- which is that it is the social mediation of the labor process, the conflict between the labor process and that social mediation that propels revolution. And for those who are concerned with "dialectical relations" -- the social mediation of the labor process is the form under which labor is organized-- the social mediation is the property relation. Wage labor and capital have such a dialectical relation. Party and class do NOT have such a dialectical relation. To accept that the property relations introduced by the Russian Revolution in its isolation is "healthy" means that the organization of labor in the fSU was not in conflict with that property-- which is, to put it bluntly, ridiculous, as that property relation absolutely limited the productivity of labor and the prospects for that productivity of labor's emancipation.

Trotsky attempted maneuver around this minor problem by introducting the completely specious, not to mention backward, notion of a "political revolution"-- something which Marx recognized was obsolete in the 19th century. History is the history of class struggle. Revolutions are either social or they are not at all.

So go right ahead with your categories that are nothing but husks, but the real content of the Bolshevik "principle" of "suppressing the workers when necessary"-- with the Bolsheviks of course making the decision as to the when and the necessary-- produced nothing but an analog to capitalism, and the destruction of the prospects for international revolution. Stalinism was no more a betrayal of Bolshevism than Trotskyism was its salvation.

_________________
Quite an experience to live in fear, isn't it?
That's what it is to live the life of a slave.
S.Artesian has been thanked by:


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 12:40 pm 
Offline
Comrade

Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:34 pm
Posts: 25
Has thanked: 3 time
Have thanks: 3 time
S. Artesian, the root of the problem is that you have provided no substance to what you mean when you say "workers' power," which is related to your pre-emptive refusal to discuss what a workers' state is. This is where the question of program comes into play. Is workers' power simply "not being suppressed"? Not being suppressed by whom? And for what purpose? What if some workers are objectively or explicitly siding with the bourgeoisie? Your formulations are unhelpful in resolving even basic questions about the tasks confronting revolutionary-socialist workers in a revolutionary situation.

As much as you've tried to hide from substantive questions of program behind procedural questions of "suppression," we can can deduce what your program is from your presumed position (which you've been too cowardly to take an open position on -- how about that for principled clarity?) that you are opposed to using coercion against any workers in a revolutionary situation, which you seem to be unaware is actually a programmatic statement with huge implications for what you actually mean by workers' power. It means you are using revolutionary workers' power to prop up and advance not the interests of class as a whole, but the expressed preferences of the backward workers, at the expense of the most forward-looking and class conscious of them. This is exactly the problem with the "party of the entire class" model. Big tents are created at the expense of watering down politics to the least-common denominator, and of instituting a de facto program of BOURGEOIS reformism, of giving workers with the most backward forms of consciousness veto power lest they be "suppressed."

In normal times under bourgeois society, this results in your standard milquetoast social democracy, whose forged revolutionary credentials are once being exposed as it conspires with neoliberal austerity all across the globe. Transferring this vision to a period of intense class conflict and revolutionary ferment, as you do, and it results in the suicide of a revolutionary force, cloaked in the flowery garb of "democracy" (used in identically abstract and anti-materialist ways to how Kautsky did in his criticisms of Lenin.)


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 1:04 pm 
Offline
Comrade
User avatar

Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 2:55 pm
Posts: 1315
Has thanked: 398 time
Have thanks: 938 time
I haven't hidden from a fucking thing. The workers created organizations, mediations, of their power as a class, thereby setting the stage for the superseding of all classes. We call them soviets. Or councils. Or cordones. Those are the necessary forms of the dialectical relations of the class to itself, to its own transformation-- for those who want to talk dialectics.

The party, in this case the Bolsheviks, is no such organ of the class. The Bolsheviks were not a mediation for the class to, in "dialectical terms," become the class for itself, and thus begin the process of the abolition of class.

You have yet to tell us, or anyone, how an isolated revolution in backward economic conditions can develop an essentially "healthy" property relation. Sounds a bit like "almost socialism in one country." In fact, there is no such thing as a proletarian property relation.

You have yet to tell us, if the working class is the class to end all classes, and to do that it must abolish wage labor, how there can be a workers' state that reproduces wage labor? And for 70 years.

Your theorizing, such as it is, is all based on some notion of a vanguard of superior consciousness which is able to maintain that superior consciousness despite a material reality that 1) weakens the class itself 2) is a product of such a vanguard consciously disempowering the class.

And then to put the cherry on this rotten cake...you talk about "giving workers with the most backward forms of consciousness veto power."

Hey, news flash, look around-- those with the most backward consciousness were in the middle, upper, and highest echelons of the Bolshevik Party.

Now I asked you some direct questions re suppression of the soviets, Kronstadt etc. You're the one doing the hiding. Answer the concrete questions.

_________________
Quite an experience to live in fear, isn't it?
That's what it is to live the life of a slave.


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 1:19 pm 
Offline
Comrade

Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:34 pm
Posts: 25
Has thanked: 3 time
Have thanks: 3 time
You claim you aren't hiding, yet when asked a straigthforward question, you refuse to answer it, without explaining why. So I'll ask again: is suppression of a segment of the working class, in principle, off the table in a revolutionary situation? Yes or no? I'm not asking you to adumbrate various hypothetical scenarios in which you would approve of suppression, if at all. It's a pretty simple question to understand and to answer. Unless you can't answer because you're just not sure (in which case, that's all you have to say), the only reasonable conclusion I can reach is that you're just ducking the question and hiding from it. If that's how you handle a question about revolutionary politics of the Internet, I shudder to think about how you'd handle a revolution in real life.

Your "theorizing" about soviets, not surprisingly, manifests more of the same problems of abstract empiricism that you and your "comrades" have exhibited time and again on this thread. Why were soviets vessels of working-class power? Because they controlled production? How did they control production? To what programmatic end? What if a soviet, under the intense pressure of material scarcity and imperialist intervention, votes to withhold supplies under its purview until it gets extremely advantageous terms of exchange with other councils? Is that a continuation of "working-class power"? Would "suppression" of that council's decision be the destruction of "workers' power"? Your laughably undertheorized notion of "workers' power" lacks any programmatic class basis, and amounts to little more than a moralistic lionizing of all workers by virtue of being workers.

Your question about wage labor indicates more moralism. Wage labor is bad. Therefore it cannot exist under a workers' state, which is good because, well, it's a state enshrining workers' power and workers are good. So as soon as workers take state power, there is no more wage labor, no more value. You, like so many bad Marxists before you, conflate a state form with the mode(s) of production that conretely exist within a social formation, thereby ignoring the tensions and contradictions that can inhere between them (e.g., the rising power of the bourgeoisie under a feudal state, or the withering of value and commodity production as a workers' state leads a transition to communism). Somebody here needs to go back and read Marx's 1859 preface.

In any event, if a workers' state entails the elimination of value, commodity production, etc., one wonders how you can disagree with the idea of "socialism in one country" after the domestic bourgeoisie is wiped out. How do you think the compulsion of a workers' state to accumulate and reinvest capital to keep up technologically and military with bourgeois states takes place, if not by some (the minimum amount necessary) reliance on value (which is DIFFERENT than class)? I suppose it's either full communism the day after the workers' take power and defeat their domestic bourgeoisie, or bust. We can add workers democratically and communistically planning accumulation, value free, in response to external impetus of bourgeois competition to your list of incoherent ideas. It actually is pretty damn close to the notion of socialism in one country, as one can see no way in which the international context affects the form of the domestic production relations. Perhaps I am not being imaginative enough, and you can point some of these differences out to me.

And, to repeat once more, I do not subscribe to the "orthodox" Trotskyist position that the Soviet Union was a workers' state until the Gorby. I think that position manifests similar kinds of serious problems to the ones that afflict your own thinking.


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 1:55 pm 
Offline
Comrade
User avatar

Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 2:55 pm
Posts: 1315
Has thanked: 398 time
Have thanks: 938 time
double post

_________________
Quite an experience to live in fear, isn't it?
That's what it is to live the life of a slave.


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 1:56 pm 
Offline
Comrade
User avatar

Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 2:55 pm
Posts: 1315
Has thanked: 398 time
Have thanks: 938 time
I've answered your question in the concrete. Theoretically there are fascist workers. Practically, I dealt, and confronted, autoworkers who were members of the KKK. I can answer in the concrete how I dealt with them. But that isn't your issue, unless of course you think the sailors and workers at Kronstadt were actually part of the KKK.

So... your claim that the red army that suppressed Kronstadt was made up of the same workers who expropriated the bourgeoisie has been shown to be inaccurate. Your hypothetical "on the table, off the table" has nothing to do with the reality of class struggle. And I answered the question about if in principle the militarization of labor is "wrong." We're not talking morals here-- we're talking what enhances the productivity of labor, and strengthens the self-organization of the workers as a ruling class during a transition period. Militarization of labor is objectively antithetical to both fundamental requirements of a revolutionary society.

As for this "wage labor is bad...." Are you really that stupid? Wage labor isn't "bad"-- it's capital you moron.

Your turn to answer the questions: do you suppor the suppression of the soviets, the outlawing of strikes, and the repression of Kronstadt as executed by the Bolsheviks in the period 1918-1921?

_________________
Quite an experience to live in fear, isn't it?
That's what it is to live the life of a slave.
S.Artesian has been thanked by:


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Voila Lev
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:11 pm 
Offline
Comrade

Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:34 pm
Posts: 25
Has thanked: 3 time
Have thanks: 3 time
No, actually, you didn't disprove "that the red army that suppressed Kronstadt was made up of the same workers who expropriated the bourgeoisie." AFTER I had already cited stats showing that workers constituted roughly 20% of front-line units of the Red Army in 1920-1921, you provided a couple of quotes from Trotsky basically saying the same thing in more general terms: mentioning how the Red Army had to rely on a lot of peasant manpower. This doesn't rebut my claim about the backbone/character of the Red Army. Nor does is show that the units who participated in suppressing Kronstadt's rogue sailors were devoid of workers who had participated in October. That's just a claim you're pulling out of your ***.

And you still haven't answered my question about suppression of the workers "in the concrete" or hypothetically, because I didn't ask you whether you've confronted fascist members of the working class. Nor did I ask you whether there are "theoretically" (currently?) fascist workers. I asked you whether, in principle, violence against a segment of the working class is unacceptable and off the table during a revolutionary situation. In other words: is forcible suppression an option, or isn't it an option, when dealing with those "theoretically existing" fascist workers, or any other set of workers for that matter? The fact you can't just give a straight-forward answer to this question shows you have an incentive in muddying the waters and not being clear what your views are. I wonder why.

When you've answered the question that I've been repeating for the past five pages of this thread, I'll be happy to have a discussion about Kronstadt, etc. But it's not a discussion that can go anywhere unless we're clear where we're coming from. The question you keep ducking is very much related to, and lays the ground work for, the discussion your questions seem to suggest you want to have. Do you oppose episodes like Kronstadt because you are opposed to all violence against workers, in principle, under a revolutionary situation? Or do you oppose JUST those episodes, while regarding other episodes forcible suppression may be necessary?

As for your comment on wage labor, all I can say is, gee, I didn't say wage labor is "bad." I said that such a moralistic characterization is consistent with the stark black-and-white portraits that suffuse your discussion of the concrete history of the working class and the new state formed following October. FYI, wage labor is certainly by definition a value relationship, and one that leads to the creation of surplus value, but this does NOT necessarily entail the existence of an exploiting capitalist class. During a transition period from capitalism to socialism, wage labor would ensue as the unavoidable byproduct of the inability to rationally plan a massive complexly economy in a context where there is also a need to accumulate for purposes of meeting both military and economic competition from international threats. It's true that the longer this remnant survives, the more central its place in the transitional economy, the more likely it is to result in the restoration of a capitalist ruling class at the helm of the state (either directly or indirectly, through state capitalists or through a more traditional bourgeoisie). But it's just wrong to say that the existence of value or wage labor necessarily entails the the existence of a concrete capitalist class in which the function of capital has been fully embodied.

Oh, and I still eagerly await to hear how your model of a planned economy, without any value or commodity production of wage labor, under a workers' state immediately following the defeat of the domestic bourgeoisie differs in any meaningful way from the idea of socialism in one country.


Report this post
Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 105 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 7, 8, 9, 10, 11  Next

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Donate Now
Donate Now



Hosted by © 2017 FreeForums.org | Create a free forum | Powered by phpBB
About FreeForums | Legal | Advertise Here | Investors | Contact FreeForums.org
Report Violation

Design By Poker Bandits  

suspicion-preferred