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'the real movement' / 'the historic party'

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yoshomon
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Nov 19 2007 17:59
'the real movement' / 'the historic party'

What does 'the real movement'/'historic party' mean? Do these concepts correspond to real events or are they abstractions?

RedHughs
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Nov 19 2007 22:37

I take the "historic party" as whatever thread of self-conscious activity has existed in the proletariat across history.

I take the "real movement" as whatever movement towards communism has existed over time.

I am don't how exactly how well this interpretation corresponds to the ideas of those who coined the terms but it seems like a useful concept.

Red

yoshomon
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Nov 19 2007 22:50

You defined "real movement" as "whatever movement towards communism". In other words - what is movement? It is movement. This does not define or clarify what it is.

How are you sure that there is a historic movement towards communism?

RedHughs
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Nov 19 2007 23:25
yoshomon wrote:
You defined "real movement" as "whatever movement towards communism". In other words - what is movement? It is movement. This does not define or clarify what it is. How are you sure that there is a historic movement towards communism?

Yes, it is a little self-referential but I still think that it is useful. The thing that it clarifies is "the movement" isn't a particular organization or even group of organizations.

Just as much, it doesn't make you sure that there is a historic movement towards communism at any one time. In a time of complete defeat, the real movement may be virtually non-existent.

It does present the danger that you can throw around the word as if it did prove there was such a movement when really the word is just a place-holder for "whatever is moving towards communism" (which one determines by looking around - what groups are refusing wage labor and commodity relations).

Red

yoshomon
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Nov 19 2007 23:35

What if I say: there is no eternal 'movement towards communism', that is a metaphysical fantasy. Revolution is a rupture, not the accumulation of past actions and actors.

Mike Harman
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Nov 19 2007 23:50

You don't think past actions and actors have constituted a rupture at various times?

yoshomon
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Nov 19 2007 23:53

Yes, I do think they have.

Mike Harman
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Nov 20 2007 00:02

Do you think we can trace some common characteristics of those past actions and actors which identify a trend towards communism/communisation etc.?

yoshomon
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Nov 20 2007 00:09

Common characteristics? Sure.

But finding common characteristics does not mean these ruptures are part of an overarching 'trend' towards communism. If I want to find trends, the trend seems to be the accumulation of capital, the destruction of humanity, and so on... with crisis and revolts being ruptures from this... the trend does not seem to be a march towards communism in which revolts are steps bringing us closer to world human community.

Mike Harman
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Nov 20 2007 00:49

You don't think that there can be contradictory trends, running along at the same time, in a let's say, dialectical, fashion?

A trend of periodic ruptures is still a trend, it doesn't imply a continual onward march. Nor does it imply an accumulation of little steps towards communism.

yoshomon
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Nov 20 2007 00:59

So your conception of movement isn't continuous? Or maybe it is... You say that communism is a 'contradictory trend' that 'runs along' the trend of domination by capital... yet at the same time it is periodic ruptures (that do not 'run along')? The metaphor I often see if that of a wave... cycles of the movement getting bigger and smaller... but I still don't know what 'movement' means!

Is the 'real movement' conscious of itself? Who defines what is and isn't part of the 'real movement'?

In practical terms, was the recent postal workers strike in the UK part of the 'real movement'? What about the French riots in 2005? It would seem theological to connect these two incidents and say that they are part of a 'movement' towards communism.

tastybrain
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Nov 20 2007 05:29

I think the point of the whole concept is to realize that the actual history of people resisting capitalist property relations is a whole lot bigger then the minority of proletarians who consciously identified themselves as communists, formed parties, read leaflets, etc. When people organize to resist exploitation they start to constitute a movement, even if they don't explicitly call themselves communists or even adopt an official ideological position. For example, the landless worker's movement in Brazil, rural squatters in the third world, and the movement against water privatization in Cochabamba are challenging capitalism simply by their actions, even if they don't condemn it explicitly.

But I think that the "real movement" tends to give birth to the "historic party" as the members of the movement begin to look at the wider implications of the problems they are facing and connect them to capitalism.

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MJ
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Nov 20 2007 05:32

My favorite is the fucking MODERN PRINCE

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Alf
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Nov 20 2007 10:39

The concept of the 'real movement goes back to Marx, when he defined communism not as "an ideal to be realised but as the real movement that abolishes the present state of affairs". It was crucial in separating his current from the utopians who saw communism as an abstraction entrely divorced from actual class struggles. I think he meant that the real movement towards communism is the entire movement of the proletariat, both historical and immediate, economic and political. It's a movement that tends to become conscious of itself, that advances both through an accumulation of experiences and through sudden leaps or ruptures. If that's Hegelian wank, so be it.

The "historic party" was a term favoured by the Bordigists who use it to distinguish the historic movement of the class towards autonomy from capital, above all at the level of forming its own political organisations, from the "formal party". meaning the political organisations of the proletariat as they exist at any given moment.

Mike Harman
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Nov 20 2007 11:04
yoshomon wrote:
So your conception of movement isn't continuous? Or maybe it is... You say that communism is a 'contradictory trend' that 'runs along' the trend of domination by capital... yet at the same time it is periodic ruptures (that do not 'run along')?

Well there's day to day class struggle and then there's moments that pose the abolition of classes, and some stuff in between. That's all quiet straightforward I think.

Quote:
The metaphor I often see if that of a wave... cycles of the movement getting bigger and smaller... but I still don't know what 'movement' means!

Well high tide, low tide - meh, I don't think of it like that but I tend to think of cycles of struggle rather than any kind of linear progression.

Quote:
Is the 'real movement' conscious of itself? Who defines what is and isn't part of the 'real movement'?

Don't ask me! wink

Quote:
In practical terms, was the recent postal workers strike in the UK part of the 'real movement'? What about the French riots in 2005? It would seem theological to connect these two incidents and say that they are part of a 'movement' towards communism.

Yeah I think it would, I don't think either got close to calling capitalist social relationships into question. The anti-CPE movement last year I could be a bit more enthusiastic about.

And I think of this only as straightforwardly as tastybrain puts it - that it's important to recognise that the history of class struggle (and revolutionary ruptures) goes very much far beyond the existence of political groups and tendencies.

yoshomon
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Nov 20 2007 17:12
tastybrain wrote:
I think the point of the whole concept is to realize that the actual history of people resisting capitalist property relations is a whole lot bigger then the minority of proletarians who consciously identified themselves as communists, formed parties, read leaflets, etc. When people organize to resist exploitation they start to constitute a movement, even if they don't explicitly call themselves communists or even adopt an official ideological position. For example, the landless worker's movement in Brazil, rural squatters in the third world, and the movement against water privatization in Cochabamba are challenging capitalism simply by their actions, even if they don't condemn it explicitly.

But I think that the "real movement" tends to give birth to the "historic party" as the members of the movement begin to look at the wider implications of the problems they are facing and connect them to capitalism.

So movement means "people organizing to resist exploitation"? Everytime that happens it's part of a "real movement to abolish capitalism" or whatever?

What relation do pro-revolutionaries have to the 'real movement'? How is the concept applied practically?

tastybrain
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Nov 21 2007 07:54
yoshomon wrote:
So movement means "people organizing to resist exploitation"? Everytime that happens it's part of a "real movement to abolish capitalism" or whatever?

That's how I interpret it. A pessimistic viewpoint could be that once the working class in one particular area or of one ethnic group/religion/culture manage to get some small concession from the ruling class they will stop struggling, go back to their daily lives, and be content with their position in the class structure, never calling into question the economic and class systems that caused the problems in the first place. This certainly happens sometimes, but I think just as often class consciousness is developed, social roles are called into questions, and connections are forged between different factions of the proletariat.

yoshomon wrote:
What relation do pro-revolutionaries have to the 'real movement'? How is the concept applied practically?

Ideally, pro-revolutionaries should be taking an active role in the "real movement", steering it towards revolutionary tendencies and class consciousness, pointing out the systemic causes of the problems it is trying to combat, preventing it from stagnating into a single-issue campaign. An example of this is the movement for unemployment benefits during the Great Depression. Unemployed workers occupied welfare offices, rioted, and unemployed veterans of WWI marched on Washington. This movement was to a large extent organized and assisted by communists and anarchists.

The problem with revolutionaries these days in my opinion is that they aren't connected to the "real movement" and are content with summit-hopping and activism which rarely engages with pre-existing struggles. Of course, it's not an either/or situation. A lot of working class people are radicalized through the "real movement" and become revolutionaries, so it's more of a spectrum, from a completely practical, single-issue campaign to a completely ideological, self conscious political party.

yoshomon
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Nov 21 2007 14:02

Tastybrain, it is almost always true that when workers win their immediate demands they "will stop struggling, go back to their daily lives", but I don't think that means people are necessarily content. The same happens when struggles are defeated. These struggles over immediate demands can only push to 'rupture' during crisis.

Quote:
Ideally, pro-revolutionaries should be taking an active role in the "real movement", steering it towards revolutionary tendencies and class consciousness, pointing out the systemic causes of the problems it is trying to combat, preventing it from stagnating into a single-issue campaign.

This is basically a voluntarist position.

It also confuses me why you use the term "single issue campaign" to describe struggles around wages, work conditions, and so on.

fort-da game
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Nov 21 2007 20:27

The only writer I can think of who addresses this question is Walter Benjamin – a marxist who retains the concept of rupture.

http://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/benjamin/1940/history.htm

mikus
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Nov 21 2007 20:28
yoshomon wrote:
These struggles over immediate demands can only push to 'rupture' during crisis.

Evidence?

tastybrain
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Nov 21 2007 21:23
yoshomon wrote:
Quote:
Ideally, pro-revolutionaries should be taking an active role in the "real movement", steering it towards revolutionary tendencies and class consciousness, pointing out the systemic causes of the problems it is trying to combat, preventing it from stagnating into a single-issue campaign.

This is basically a voluntarist position.

It also confuses me why you use the term "single issue campaign" to describe struggles around wages, work conditions, and so on.

Sorry, I don't know what you mean by "voluntarist". Is it a bad thing? wink

Yeah, sorry, the "single issue" wording is confusing, I meant that these struggles are focused on immediate conditions and demands and maybe don't pay any attention to the bigger picture.

RedHughs
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Nov 22 2007 02:32
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Common characteristics? Sure. But finding common characteristics does not mean these ruptures are part of an overarching 'trend' towards communism.

Hmm, I'll join late and mention that while movements against capitalism have both discontinuous and continuous aspects, the link with history has been shown many times. Common characteristics to different revolt are important but we can also see a common recognition - rebels in one town or city or country recognize those in others and further recognize previous rebellions.

I wouldn't imagine a pure rupture having these qualities.
-------- One might say the recent upsurge in the suburbs of Paris was, perhaps more like a rupture. If so (and I'm not an expert on it so I might be wrong), if so then It is easy to have the reaction "one more time if you want to be revolutionary - burning buses with passengers in them is dumb". I think this shows how much other upsurges have been in something like a "real movement".

Red

dave c
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Nov 22 2007 16:54
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On the contrary, our ambitions are clearly megalomaniac, but perhaps not measurable by the prevailing criteria of success.

-Guy Debord wink

fort-da game
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Nov 23 2007 18:14

yoshomon wrote:

Quote:
These struggles over immediate demands can only push to 'rupture' during crisis.

Mikus wrote:

Quote:
Evidence?

Well this depends on the definition of ‘evidence’ as it seems that the demand for material proofs of a relation that: A. has not occurred and must be located in the future; and B. is dependent on a disjunction between two different orders rather than a progress within a series, is slightly ridiculous. We are all in the business of engaging with that for which there is no precedent.

Nevertheless, a certain amount of analysis can be made from the proletarian perspective (this necessarily retains a dimension of absurdity along the lines of that exhibited in the British Government’s extrapolation of likely Bomb damage to London in the ‘30’s from the Zeppelin raids of the the First War).

If we take just three inputs we will immediately see the potential for crisis: A. the pursuit by workers of higher wages and consumer goods as the highest form (the only form) of class struggle; B. A world-wide increased rate of proletarianisation and therefore an increased demand for the products that materially express class demands (homes, washing machines, cars being the foremost); C. The objective finitudes (or various constraining factors) on the feasibility of supplying this ever-increasing demand (this might range from water supply to transport costs).

I do not understand and so cannot make the arguments/equation for the economic viability of production for profit on that scale but even so it is probable that over the next 30 or 40 years the restructuring of society which will be necessary to accommodate the needs of a global population of more than nine billion by 2050 will cause extreme pressures and these will be expressed as class conflict. From the perspective of political economy the problem is strategic and logistical but from the perspective of the proletariat the problem is set purely in terms of needs: ‘I need a car, I must have the income to buy a car.’

If we take three projected statistics for the UK – you probably know that the UK has the population of france in half the space with lower than adequate current investment in the already poor social infrastructure: A. the predicted population for 2050 is around 63 million; B. the number of cars on the UK roads is predicted to double by 2050 to more than 50 million; C. the number of new build houses by 2020 is 3 million. These figures alone imply that massive changes to infrastructure will have to be implemented (and this may involve political changes as well) to handle almost Singaporean/Hong Kong levels of population density.

The changes in UK society will be directed towards the transport system, the health system, town planning, population management and so on. But no matter the reforms of political economy, at every threshold of change the proletariat still seeks to maintain its interest by achieving the products that express its needs – this demand exists as a constant antagonism in relation to the system of production because the system is interested primarily in profit and only to a secondary degree in supplying to human need which is either: a. a constant in its calculations or b. only reducible by force (and therefore further producive of conflict and social crisis).

Be merry

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Nate
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Nov 23 2007 18:35

Yosh, are you suggesting that "the real movement" talk implies a view that history as a built-in/inevitable trend in the direction of communism? If so, I disagree. I think the phrase is pretty simple. If communism is going to exist as a society then it has to have a history since everything comes from somewhere. After communist society exists, we can look back and identify the factors which produced it. The 'real movement' refers to the subjective ones among those factors. At this point, prior to the revolution all we're really doing is speculating, right now the term 'real movement' could be used to refer to something that one takes to be really innovative or important, something which might be considered really important to the revolution (which we won't be totally sure of until after we're won).

I think 'the real movement' is a useful term in part for its negative force in two senses - it says the communist project isn't this or that group, it's whatever produces communism, and it defines communism negatively as the destruction of the current capitalist order.

mikus
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Nov 23 2007 19:56
fort-da game wrote:
yoshomon wrote:
Quote:
These struggles over immediate demands can only push to 'rupture' during crisis.

Mikus wrote:

Quote:
Evidence?

Well this depends on the definition of ‘evidence’ as it seems that the demand for material proofs of a relation that: A. has not occurred and must be located in the future; and B. is dependent on a disjunction between two different orders rather than a progress within a series, is slightly ridiculous. We are all in the business of engaging with that for which there is no precedent.

Exactly. Which is why, unlike Yoshomon, I try not to make grandiose claims about the possibilities of revolution. How does he know that struggles over immediate demands can only push to "rupture" during crisis? You tacitly admit that he doesn't know, but you nevertheless defend his claim. Yet defending a claim generally means defending it with evidence, of which you admit there is none. So your defense can barely even be called a defense. If you have a simple belief for which there is no evidence, then why argue about it? Your guys' position is little more than poor a priori philosophizing about the nature of revolution.

And the rest of your post doesn't help you. You try to show that crisis will lead to class conflict. I do not wish to deny that. But Yoshomon made a claim that presupposes that class conflict exists also during times when there is no economic crisis. (The claim being that only during times of crisis can immediate demands push to "rupture" with capitalism.) But all you have done is shown that class conflict will exist also when crisis occurs. This does not in the slightest show that the class conflict will turn revolutionary. You have just told us what everyone here already knows, namely that there is a conflict between the interests of the capitalist mode of production and the working class. You have not shown that the class conflict must result in communism if it occurs during crisis (which isn't a position that was explicitly stated but I suspect you two believe that -- correct me if I'm wrong), nor have you shown that class conflict cannot result in communism while there is no crisis.

Mike

RedHughs
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Nov 23 2007 21:47
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The “orthodox Marxism” of the Second International is the scientific ideology of socialist revolution, an ideology which identifies its whole truth with objective economic processes and with the progressive recognition of the inevitability of those processes by a working class educated by the organization. This ideology revives the faith in pedagogical demonstration that was found among the utopian socialists, combining that faith with a contemplative invocation of the course of history; but it has lost both the Hegelian dimension of total history and the static image of totality presented by the utopians (most richly by Fourier). This type of scientific attitude, which can do nothing more than resurrect the traditional dilemmas between symmetrical ethical choices, is at the root of Hilferding’s absurd conclusion that recognizing the inevitability of socialism “gives no indication as to what practical attitude should be adopted. For it is one thing to recognize that something is inevitable, and quite another to put oneself in the service of that inevitability” (Finanzkapital). Those who failed to realize that for Marx and for the revolutionary proletariat unitary historical thought was in no way distinct from a practical attitude to be adopted generally ended up becoming victims of the practice they did adopt.

Debord, SoS thesis 95

RedHughs
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Nov 23 2007 23:33

Also

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The inseparability of Marx’s theory from the Hegelian method is itself inseparable from that theory’s revolutionary character, that is, from its truth. It is in this regard that the relationship between Marx and Hegel has generally been ignored or misunderstood, or even denounced as the weak point of what became fallaciously transformed into a doctrine: “Marxism.” Bernstein implicitly revealed this connection between the dialectical method and historical partisanship when in his book Evolutionary Socialism he deplored the 1847 Manifesto’s unscientific predictions of imminent proletarian revolution in Germany: “This historical self-deception, so erroneous that the most na�ve political visionary could hardly have done any worse, would be incomprehensible in a Marx who at that time had already seriously studied economics if we did not recognize that it reflected the lingering influence of the antithetical Hegelian dialectic, from which Marx, like Engels, could never completely free himself. In those times of general effervescence this influence was all the more fatal to him.”

Guy Debord, Society Of The Spectacle, Thesis 79

yoshomon
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Nov 24 2007 16:28

Mike, I think that struggle over immediate demands can only push to rupture during crisis, not that they necessarily will. I do not believe in the inevitability of revolution (generally I'm a pessimist), but I think it's reasonable to think of possibilities and potentials, even if the only answer is "we'll wait and see".

Crisis seems to me to be the only 'window of opportunity', but I could be wrong. I suppose I could say "we do not know anything, the future is unwritten, let's not make any forceful statements" but what would be the fun of that?

fort-da game
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Nov 24 2007 17:09
mikus wrote:
fort-da game wrote:
yoshomon wrote:
Quote:
These struggles over immediate demands can only push to 'rupture' during crisis.

Mikus wrote:

Quote:
Evidence?

Well this depends on the definition of ‘evidence’ as it seems that the demand for material proofs of a relation that: A. has not occurred and must be located in the future; and B. is dependent on a disjunction between two different orders rather than a progress within a series, is slightly ridiculous. We are all in the business of engaging with that for which there is no precedent.

Exactly. Which is why, unlike Yoshomon, I try not to make grandiose claims about the possibilities of revolution.

To make a claim about a possibility is by definition not grandiose, the defining characteristic of which is overbearing certainty. And to make claims about revolution is not so strange on a communist discussion forum. However, perhaps we are agreed that certainty should be abandoned immediately when discussing these matters?

Quote:
How does he know that struggles over immediate demands can only push to "rupture" during crisis?

He doesn’t make the claim that he knows any such thing. The statement concerns occasional moments of opportunity for a possible external outcome which we might look to based upon our experience of the internal development of an existing social relationship.

Quote:
You tacitly admit that he doesn't know, but you nevertheless defend his claim.

I don’t tacitly admit anything. The claim is solid if we accept that the perceived need for communism is not objectively mirrored in any actual existing behaviours or structures in the present organisation of society.

The alternative is to make a claim for the parallel development of a ‘movement’ that exists concretely in all of human history for which there also is no evidence (in fact there is plenty of evidence to the contrary, i.e. all revolutionary events and mass communist organisations have decayed into capitalist forms), and which requires only a change of management (is that what you think?)

Quote:
Yet defending a claim generally means defending it with evidence, of which you admit there is none.

Stop saying admit – who are you Judge Judy? There can be no evidence for a paradigm shift in human society of such a magnitude that it is almost incomprehensible. Therefore, to repeatedly ask for such evidence is plainly applying an incorrect set of criteria.

Quote:
So your defense can barely even be called a defense.

It is not a defence, it is a hypothesis concerning a faint chance for human society, in fact it is a mere sketching in of a relation to forces and factors on a scale that none of us can get to grips with. Personally speaking, I have no investment in the likelihood of communist society, I am more interested in the effects on my life in the present that the consideration of that possibility produces. The question of communism or no communism is out of my hands. I know from my life so far that I cannot aid the formation of a communist society until the possibility for that society becomes concrete objectively. And the major social restraint on communism is capitalism, a restraint which I have no means of releasing.

Quote:
If you have a simple belief for which there is no evidence, then why argue about it?

Why call atheism belief? The taskI have set myself is a progressive shedding of the illusory involvements and statements that have been foisted onto us by our 'tradition' and adopted by our contemporaries. I also seek to combine this with a typological rethink concerning different orderings of existence which it seems always precedes relentlessly, crushingly, from the natural-physical to the social to the individual (we are an affect not an agency) and therefore militates constantly against the concept of communist agency.

Quote:
Your guys' position is little more than poor a priori philosophizing about the nature of revolution.

All arguments, if reduced by hostile others, are inescapably tautological. However, I would characterise us 'guys’ as using a form of inductive logic shaken up with a dash of a worcestershire sauce substitute aka out and out nihilism.

Quote:
And the rest of your post doesn't help you. You try to show that crisis will lead to class conflict. I do not wish to deny that.

Na na na na. What is your evidence?

Your method of argument is absurdly inconsistent. Just as you imply you do not disagree with the content of my recent post concerning organisation, and yet you waste effort also attacking it, so you first attack my ‘belief’ (of which I have none) but then accede to it via a perverse form of what can only be described as non-denial.

Quote:
But Yoshomon made a claim that presupposes that class conflict exists also during times when there is no economic crisis. (The claim being that only during times of crisis can immediate demands push to "rupture" with capitalism.)

This is two claims. The first, I think, depends on your definition of class conflict. I certainly think class conflict is constant (i.e. I don’t think it is dependent upon recognition in consciousness) and takes many forms, this is because capitalism itself is a system in conflict as it realises human society. In other words the conflict is a structural matter rather than of us deciding to 'do' conflict.

Secondly, I think immediate demands are more or less met under ordinary circumstances (otherwise why else would the objects of those demands exist – that is the contractual nature of the wage relation) but where the demands cannot be met (a crisis) then these will exacerbate the situation because a demand without an object necessarily sublimates and escalates typologically in its search for another object (or it dies).

Quote:
But all you have done is shown that class conflict will exist also when crisis occurs. This does not in the slightest show that the class conflict will turn revolutionary.

That is right, there was no attempt (in the slightest) to show that this would be an outcome – the claim only concerned an opportunity for freed up human agency to place humanity as its goal.

Quote:
You have just told us what everyone here already knows, namely that there is a conflict between the interests of the capitalist mode of production and the working class.

A. Above, you implied that there is no class conflict if there is no crisis, so apparently you don’t know it. B. Where is their evidence and on what do they ground this knowledge?

I have set out a brief description grounded in proletarian demands of why there is no need to explain class conflict in terms of idealistic ‘real movements’ and that there is no grounding relation between capitalism and communism – in fact no relation at all. The proletariat is not the class that can supply communism, it is capable only of (but not likely to achieve) the abolition of the fetter of capitalism (and then only by an accident of its programmed selfishness).

Quote:
You have not shown that the class conflict must result in communism if it occurs during crisis (which isn't a position that was explicitly stated but I suspect you two believe that -- correct me if I'm wrong),

There is no necessary relation between class conflict and communism at all. Why should there be? Which of us believes in teleology? Class conflict is the mechanism of capitalist society, the entirety of which must be destroyed whereas communism is a human society that attempts to directly realise needs as the end of its activities – where is the relation?

Quote:
nor have you shown that class conflict cannot result in communism while there is no crisis.

An extremely intriguing cliff-hanger of a statement. How could there be communism without a crisis in capitalism? Are you playing philosophical silly buggers or are you hinting at an allegiance to some sort of dual system? More than likely you are defining crisis in a very narrow sense.

mikus
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Nov 24 2007 18:25
yoshomon wrote:
Mike, I think that struggle over immediate demands can only push to rupture during crisis, not that they necessarily will. I do not believe in the inevitability of revolution (generally I'm a pessimist), but I think it's reasonable to think of possibilities and potentials, even if the only answer is "we'll wait and see".

Crisis seems to me to be the only 'window of opportunity', but I could be wrong. I suppose I could say "we do not know anything, the future is unwritten, let's not make any forceful statements" but what would be the fun of that?

I'm not saying that no one knows anything. I'm saying that you don't know what you claimed. Not only do you not know with certainty, you don't even have any evidence for it. Yet you are effectively telling everyone else here that what they're doing is entirely worthless because they're leftists and we're not living in a time when revolution is possible. That is indeed an overly grandiose claim.

Mike