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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-left
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2012 1:12 am 
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Fred wrote:
Is it at all possible for you to give an example of the "distance within left communist ideas" graymouser, I am intrigued?

Well, I'm mostly referring to the differences in conception of the party and organization between the Dutch-German left and the currents they inspired and the Italian left and the main left communist currents which orient around them. Whether there should be a "party" at all and what it means, whether you see the "21 Conditions" of the Communist International as having been a good thing or not, and general outlook can vary broadly within people who identify with the historic communist left. Just putting everyone into an organization on a very broad basis without going through these questions seems to be asking for internal strife.

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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-
PostPosted: Sat Jan 05, 2013 9:23 pm 
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Explosive Situation said: To put it in very simple terms: what is the role of the revolutionary after the revolution has failed?

What the revolutionary ought to do in this horrible situation is to acknowledge the failure and make sure everyone knows about it. Otherwise you can end up with people thinking that the bourgeois state that emerges from the failure is actually communism. This is a disastrous situation for the world-wide proletariat. It is of course what happened in Russia, and we've been paying for it ever since. The "Death of Communism" so trumpeted by the bourgeoisie, being the most recent instalment of that particular saga. Trotsky has to take a certain amount of blame for this. His refusal to admit the defeat of the revolution in Russia, his failure/refusal to admit that the "new bureaucratic class" was actually the shitty bourgeoisie back again on their perch, did a lot of damage to the proletarian cause in later years. And he can't really be let off on the grounds that he didn't really know what was happening. His suspicions regarding the political activities of comrade Stalin and his mates, started as early as 1919, and he was always warning Lenin about this (see his book "My life") and he had to be in total denial not to
see the defeat in Germany as curtains for the necessary extension of the revolution. (The invention of the idea of "the permanent revolution" is just a cover-up is it not? like keeping a light on in the dark.)

So, what do revolutionaries do when the revolution fails...? They have to face the truth and admit it, as the "left-wing communists" started trying to do in the Cominternin 1924; as Bilan did, by analyzing what had gone wrong, in their theoretical work in the thirties; and as other left communist groups have done after the 2nd. World War and up to the present day. Pretending that essentially everything's okay and just needs a bit of fine tuning, as Trotsky** was reduced to doing, is not a viable alternative.


**This is not to suggest that Trotsky was anything but a brilliant revolutionary and brave militant in both 1905 and 1917. His proletarian qualifications are unchallengeable.


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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-left
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:14 pm 
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graymouser wrote:
Anyway, I don't think a "tent organization" at this point even makes sense; in this period when there is so much ideological work to be done, trying to jam everyone together for a common framework is a major distraction. What I think needs to happen are more tendencies based on fairly close analysis to form, to clarify their ideas and debate with others, and participate when they can in broader class movements. There seems to be a lot of distance within left communist ideas, and that needs to be analyzed and ruthlessly criticized before we can say "Okay, everybody should be in this group."


A tent organization could allow tendencies to share data and scrutinize each other theories from a common reference point, the tent organization itself wouldn't itself wouldn't be a vanguard but a leftist academic journal where you have published theories backed up by data which is peer reviewed.


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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-left
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 5:36 pm 
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Psy wrote:
A tent organization could allow tendencies to share data and scrutinize each other theories from a common reference point, the tent organization itself wouldn't itself wouldn't be a vanguard but a leftist academic journal where you have published theories backed up by data which is peer reviewed.


So we definitely have ideological work to do, but I'm skeptical that any such project (an academic journal, of which academia has plenty) would come to fruition or be valuable in the first place.

As has been noted already, with the absolutely pathetic condition of the "ultra-left" in this day and age, the concept of an overarching organization already dead in the water.

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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:37 pm 
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GuyDebordisDead wrote:
Psy wrote:
A tent organization could allow tendencies to share data and scrutinize each other theories from a common reference point, the tent organization itself wouldn't itself wouldn't be a vanguard but a leftist academic journal where you have published theories backed up by data which is peer reviewed.


As has been noted already, with the absolutely pathetic condition of the "ultra-left" in this day and age, the concept of an overarching organization already dead in the water.


If by "ultra-left" you mean left-communism, then there's nothing pathetic about it, it isn't dead in the water, and it maintains its function as a vanguard organization of the international working class. It certainly isn't to be compared to any "leftist academic journal" of a probably Trotskyite nature, whose "academicism" would confirm its impotence, and "leftist" leanings its pro-capitalist but hidden program.


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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-
PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:00 am 
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Fred wrote:
If by "ultra-left" you mean left-communism, then there's nothing pathetic about it, it isn't dead in the water, and it maintains its function as a vanguard organization of the international working class. It certainly isn't to be compared to any "leftist academic journal" of a probably Trotskyite nature, whose "academicism" would confirm its impotence, and "leftist" leanings its pro-capitalist but hidden program.


I am bemused as to how you can even claim this today. A much more apt description of the communist left would be dead in the water. Now, I don't think that this is a good thing, but I don't think that there is any way to even begin to devolp a discussion on these things if you don't start from where we really are.

If we look at Western Europe and North America, the left communist organisations are absolutely tiny, with no more than a couple of handfuls of members with the exception of France and Italy where they can muster up a few dozen. Added to these tiny numbers, the communist left is facing a demographic crisis of the size that could well see the majority of it literally die off over the next decade or two*.

I really think the communist left is in existential danger. If it continues to carry on as it has, completely failing to attract young people, I think it could well collapse in the reasonably near future. I really don't know how anybody could claim that "it maintains its function as a vanguard organization of the international working class". It is either completely misinformed or delusional.

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*I think that BC in Italy is actually an exception to this.
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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-
PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 1:41 pm 
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Fred wrote:
[If by "ultra-left" you mean left-communism[...]

I think that "ultra-left" is generally taken to include tendencies and individuals not usually identified as "left communist", like the Situationists or the Johnson-Forest Tendency, as well as some currents of operaismo/autonomia and class-struggle anarchism. Most of the Libcom group would probably be considered "ultra-left", for example, but I don't think that any of them would be identified as "left communists".


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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-left
PostPosted: Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:48 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-left
PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:36 am 
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I meant the "Libcom collective", sorry, not just the forum. I know that you and a few other leftcoms post there.
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 Post subject: Re: Why isn't there a tent organisation for ultra-
PostPosted: Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:18 pm 
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Devrim wrote:
Fred wrote:
If by "ultra-left" you mean left-communism, then there's nothing pathetic about it, it isn't dead in the water, and it maintains its function as a vanguard organization of the international working class. It certainly isn't to be compared to any "leftist academic journal" of a probably Trotskyite nature, whose "academicism" would confirm its impotence, and "leftist" leanings its pro-capitalist but hidden program.


I am bemused as to how you can even claim this today. A much more apt description of the communist left would be dead in the water. Now, I don't think that this is a good thing, but I don't think that there is any way to even begin to devolp a discussion on these things if you don't start from where we really are.

If we look at Western Europe and North America, the left communist organisations are absolutely tiny, with no more than a couple of handfuls of members with the exception of France and Italy where they can muster up a few dozen. Added to these tiny numbers, the communist left is facing a demographic crisis of the size that could well see the majority of it literally die off over the next decade or two*.

I really think the communist left is in existential danger. If it continues to carry on as it has, completely failing to attract young people, I think it could well collapse in the reasonably near future. I really don't know how anybody could claim that "it maintains its function as a vanguard organization of the international working class". It is either completely misinformed or delusional.

Devrim

*I think that BC in Italy is actually an exception to this.


It's difficult to live without illusions. Delusional I'm not so sure about. But you're probably right!


Last edited by TFM on Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.
fixed this mess of a post for you -dyvrnaix


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