fragmentos (politics)

Originally Posted by Juan Moreno View Post
I'm not sure if that's what Luis Henrique is saying that Daesh did this. This seems more like the common(unfortunately) type of sexual assaults at events with a lot of men and alcohol, like New Years celebrations. It's being highjacked by xenophobes to smear immigrants, which is what groups like Al-Qaeda and Daesh want.

I am also not sure of what is happening; the narrative seems to me self-contradictory.

Islamic extremists do not get drunk to harass women, at least if we believe the usual narrative about them: they are Islamic fundamentalists, they follow the Quran to the letter, the Quran forbids drinking alcohol, so they are by definition teetotalers.

On the other hand what is being reported is something obviously organised, even internationally organised. You don't have simultaneous attacks in several different cities in several different countries without coordination.

So there is, in my impression, something fishy about the way those things are being reported. For what I have read, it seems that what is false is the novelty of these attacks: the police and press might have been failing to report previous similar incidents for a few years. If so, the attacks might have been unorganised and "spontaneous", and performed by your regular drunkards and male chauvinistic arseholes. What is problematic, then, is how long these things have been happening, and how could they get past the radar of the sensationalist press.

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The story should be about the fact that it's nearly always men. You'll never have the opposite with hundreds of men sexually assaulted by women. For some reason patriarchal violence is unquestioned and not the outrage, but that for some it may have been done by immigrants is. And while men as a gender are not under scrutiny, the peoples of the Middle East and Africa(strangely including the women and children) are.

Well, several different things here. Of course patriarchal violence is naturalised, we live in patriarchal societies. Of course also the patriarchal violence that is naturalised is culturally linked to local traditions. German male supremacists do not need burkhas to opress women in Germany.

The existence of a minority that is equally patriarchal but whose patriarchal customs are different allows for the otherisation of patriarchy, or of the most nasty aspects of patriarchy. "We" may be sexist but at least we do not assault women during the reveillon; only towel heads would have such an idea. This is the reason why men are not under scrutiny as a gender; "Western" men rape their women within the sanctity of their patriarchal homes, not on the streets; what kind of savages do you think we are?

That's also how these events are a fest for the autochthonous xenophobic far-right.

Here is how it is represented, far away from Germany, in the comment box of a Brazilian blog:

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Originally Posted by random anonymous comment in a blog
Recklessness is so huge that Muslims treat Western women as pieces of meat, they indeed harass and rape, because for them Western women deserve no respect, even though they don't respect even their own women. Indeed these Syrians raping women, we need to talk about this, and make them feel ashamed for exposing us.

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Originally Posted by Juan Moreno
Rightists like Daesh and other Salafi-Jihadists are trying to polarize the political situation on various levels(local, regional and even global). Their European and North American doppelgangers on the right reciprocate it, with libeling all immigrants as inherently criminal(I don't know why native rapists are somehow better in the eyes of these fascists) and launch violent, racist attacks on perceived immigrants. They both play each others' villain. A symbiotic relation on the far-right.

This is certainly how things are happening: the Islamic right and the European nativist right reinforce each other by choosing each other as their preferred enemy, and may be able to capture the centrality of public discourse, marginalising everybody else, from anarchists to tories, in the process. Whether they do it purposefully, by murdering humourists, or whether they simply surf on events that they do not actually control, as it may be the case with the New Year harassment scare, may even be irrelevant. I would certainly not put past the Islamic right consciously organising this kind of things (they certainly are not "primitive" idiots that act irrationally; their leadership is capable of quite sophisticated strategic thinking, that sometimes puts Western mainstream politicians into shame); I doubt more their material ability (their sheer numbers, and their capability of coordinating) than their malice, cunning, and patience.

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I would add these attacks like Charlie Hebdo and the Paris attack are not just to isolate Muslim immigrants and minorities. Having a bunch of racist, Islamophobic governments(okay more than normal) as allies puts governments in Muslim countries in a predicament. Either stand by allies that rabidly hate their people(in both words and deeds) and lose credibility, or break away and lose the support of imperialist countries. This reaction in the predominately Muslim countries then feeds into reaction in Europe and North America, and vis versa. It's drags everyone to the right.

Yup. It is an infernal dynamics, and it would be our task to break it. I am not very optimistic that we can, not even that we are able to see it for what it is, but, as a Danish prince reportedly put it, that's the question.

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Originally Posted by QueerVanguard View Post
and you must be happy as a pig in shit about how this is going to negatively affect refugees who want nothing more than to have a safe place to stay since their countries have been bombed to shit by the Americans, French, Scandinavians, Germans and other white imperialist fuckwads. P.S. I wouldn't put it past fascist women members of the NPD and other nationalist outfits to file false charges in order to stir up hate.

Well, thankfully we have not reversed the burden of proof in cases of sexual abuse, or we would have to convict immigrants on the word of fascist women.

But it seems that both the Islamic right and the German nativist right have good reasons to celebrate: even leftists are starting to frame this as war between women and immigrants. This way, whomever wins, it is certain that secularism, the left, and the unity of the working class are among the losers.

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Originally Posted by #FF0000 View Post
Oh it only gets better.

Vigilante Gangs attack asylum seekers, vowing to "clean up" Cologne.

//http://www.independent.co.uk/news/wo...-a6807021.html//

I have little doubt that the Islamic right deliberately seeks such kind of result. They want to:

1. isolate the left and the secular centre and right;
2. embolden the autochthonous far-right;
3. increase the marginalistion of the Muslim (and, more generally, immigrant) people in the "West";
4. create a situation of permanent confrontation between European nationals and immigrants;
5. posit themselves, or their political/welfare branches, as the defendants of immigrants, especially Muslim immigrants.

This is clear for me at least since the murder of Charlie Hebdo humourists.

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Originally Posted by Thirsty Crow View Post
One of your earlier links about the reports in Finland does something to illuminate an aspect of the general situation:

And this happens for the first time ever in several different cities in several different countries?

I doubt it very much; either it was a planned action, or it has been happening for some years now but for some reason it was not being reported.

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//Originally Posted by soup View Post
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-35280386//

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The German official responsible for investigating the attacks on women in Cologne on New Year's Eve says the suspects were "almost exclusively" those with a migration background, mainly North African and Arab.

Nineteen individuals are currently under investigation by the state police in connection with the attacks, NRW's interior ministry says in a report (in German), none of them German nationals.

Those 19 suspects include 14 men from Morocco and Algeria. Ten of the suspects are asylum seekers, nine of whom arrived in Germany after September 2015. The other nine are possibly in Germany illegally, the interior ministry says.

So the German police inform us on the issue of the national origin of the perpetrators. But what do they have to say on the motivations, circumstances, and modus operandi of these men? Are these 19 guys members of an organisation, what organisation would this be, and was this organisation infiltrated by police? Where they robbing and stealing, and using sexual harrassment threats of rape as an instrument of their robbing, or, the other way round, they were harrassing and attempting to rape, and taking the opportunity to steal some goodies as well? Or where they making a political statement, or attempting to attain political goals through violence against native German women (and were they actually native German women, or otherwise "Western" women, or did their victims include non-Western immigrants as well)? Are these men Muslim, and, if so, practicing Muslims? Do they sport beards, where they drunk, were they shouting Inch Allah or Allahu Akbar while attacking their victims? Where did these men met to plan their actions? Or did they use their cell phones to organise, and in that case, what does their messaging say?

In short, either the police aren't doing a good job of investigating these crimes, or the press isn't doing a good job of reporting the facts, or the citizenry isn't doing a very good job of demanding that police and press perform their designated activities very well.

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Originally Posted by CyM View Post
The link I posted, which is not functioning, comes from official german government stats proving that there is absolutely no difference in crime and rape rates between immigrants or refugees and the local population.

Again, there is no immigrant rape crisis, there is a rape crisis and race is completely irrelevant to it.

I would very much prefer that the discussion could be framed as a discussion on crime and rape, which I am certain you and the German police are right about not being related to race, religion, or ethnic/national origin.

But I doubt this is possible at least until more information dispels the ideas that the New Year attacks were organised and coordinated, and/or that most of their perpetrators were "Middle Easterns". As much as German-born nationals rape and harass women, they do not do it in an organised way.

There are a few fishy points in the press narrative that I think would be worth questioning. Two of the most glaring are the idea that the perpetrators were drunken Islamic "radicals", which seem incompatible attributes, and the logistics of the coordination of the attacks, which seem to require either a quite solid previous organisation (and streetwisdom), or a high ability to use modern communication technology, which I somehow doubt German political Islam would have. Come on, an operation of such wide scope, and no whistleblowers, no moles?

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I am not sure of what is actually happening, but I see reports of similar incidents in Austria, Sweden, and Finland, so I fear that we either have had a quite worrisome internationally coordinated series of misogynistic mass attacks, or that there is an even more worrisome provocateur operation going on and involving the police forces of at least four different European countries.

Anyway, it is evident that somebody is hoping to plot women against immigrants and/or immigrants against women. The worst possible situation is the autochthonous far right and the Islamic right being able to elect each other as the relevant perceived enemy, sidelining the left and the secular forces in the process.

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Originally Posted by Comrade Jacob View Post
Many of those who voted for the opposition actually support the Bolivarian revolution but are dissatisfied with it's leadership and wish to send a message to Maduro.

What kind of message is this?

Seriously, one guy I know once told me he was voting for a right-wing candidate to send a message to the PT that it was betraying its (att. Tim Cornelis) principles. I told him, "well, then vote for the PSTU, perhaps, because voting for the DEM, supposing that the PT could hear your "message" from the ballot box, can only mean you are not betraying your principles enough".

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Originally Posted by Comrade Jacob View Post
The one party is necessary. It becomes an easier job to suppress the bourgeoisie by not allowing them a party. Why should we give our oppressors a party?

Because if we don't, they will take ours.

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Originally Posted by Comrade Jacob View Post
Why don't I care? I just wanna see how many votes CPC-ML and CPC got.

CPC-ML finished ninth place, with 9,105 votes. CPC finished fourteenth, with 4,382.

Now that you know, you probably wish you didn't.

Besides the five parliamentary parties, they both finished behind independents, Libertarians, and Christian Heritage. CPC also managed to win less votes than non-afilliated (what's the difference between this and independent, btw?), Strenght in Democracy, Rhinoceros Party (wth?) and Progressive Canadian.

But both finished ahead of the Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party, so both versions of Stalinism remain more relevant than delusions that animals are citizens too.

Complete results, including the thrilling dispute for the 22th place between the Alliance of the North and the Bridge Party of Canada (wth, 2nd edition):

http://www.cbc.ca/includes/federalelection/dashboard/

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Originally Posted by Os Cangaceiros View Post
And how many examples of monogamy are there in the animal kingdom?

It is quite common among birds.

But this is besides the point. Parrots are monogamic because they are hardwired to be monogamic. Dogs are utterly promiscuous, because they are hardwired to be promiscuous. Sea lions are polygamic, because they are hardwired to be polygamic. Humans are not hardwired in any of those ways. And so we have, or have had, promiscuous, monogamic, and polygamic societies. Or we could have a society in which those things are regarded as individual choices, not as rules to be followed by all.

It is obvious that capitalism has adapted to "sexual liberation" - or that it has adapted "sexual liberation" to its own ends (il sesso anale sconfita il capitale, read an Italian grafitti of the late sixties: it has been utterly refuted; il sesso anale rather offers great opportunities to extract and realise surplus value in producing and selling K-Y jelly). It is painfully obvious that the radical left mostly believed otherwise, and was proven wrong. And, of course, Stalinists and other adepts of "monastic socialism" will use these facts to imply, or even openly propose, that we should oppose post-68 mores, on the basis that they don't, by themselves, damage the capitalist system.

But, also of course, neither the romantisation of post-romantic sexual relationships as revolutionary, nor their exploitation by capitalist markets, nor any kind of restaurationism are on our best interests.

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
I'm not particularly sure these questions are genuine ones. I'm not at all convinced that you are actually interested in a real, honest, open discussion about ideas and praxis. The reason I think that is because of the way you patronisingly and dismissively refer to this term as "buzzwords."

If you are really interested in understanding what I am talking about, my suggestion would be for you to read the following articles. If after that, you wish to actually debate the ideas within them, I will be happy to participate.

Communist measures - Léon de Mattis

What are we to do? - Endnotes

Communisation in the present tense - Théorie Communiste

Between the pause and the leap - Ultra

Thank you; I will have a look into them. I do like the opening statement of the Endnotes article,

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Originally Posted by Endnotes
The term ‘communization’ has recently become something of a buzzword.

though. From a cursory glance at Mattis' text, I can see where they are coming from.

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Originally Posted by ChangeAndChance View Post
So with the snap election only a week away and polls indicating Syriza and New Democracy are roughly neck and neck in popular support, who do you think'll win this time round?
Regardless of who gets more votes, in all likeliness these elections will result in a hung parliament, with no one being able to build a majority coalition, and, consequently, we are going to see new elections probably in early November.

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Is there any hope for the Syriza splitter Popular Unity in the next parliament?

They will quite likely get into the parliament, where they will be a minor party among others like PASOK, the KKE, Golden Dawn and To Potami. If indeed there are new elections this year, I think they will probably grow a bit. They won't win the elections anyway, and I hope they won't fall into the trap of Syriza-led coalition.

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Originally Posted by Hatshepsut View Post
Romney had actual credentials Trump lacks, however. He had been Governor of Massachussets, where he put through an Obama-like health care plan, and he salvaged the 2002 Salt Lake Olympic bid from Tom Welch's kickback corruption and wife-beating. This gave him possibilities to garner Dem switch voters. His constant waffling that culminated with the famous "47% comment" probably did him in at last.

Well, of course Romney had actual credentials, that was the point. Just like Jeb Bush, Kasich, Christie, even Walker, have. But unlike Romney they don't look like viable candidates.

What the Republican rank-and-file seems to want, as of now, is exactly a candidate with no credentials.

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As recently as a month ago, statistics wizard Nate Silver was telling us that Trump is unelectable because of his favourability ratings. And Trump was doing much worse when matched against Hillary in the polls, when compared to Bush or Paul. According to conventional wisdom, Trump was a "surge" candidate like Perry, Bachmann, Cain, Ginrich or Santorum were in 2011/12.

I always smelled fish with such line of reasoning. Romney, with all his enormous un-charisma, was always a viable candidate in the last election cycle. He was always either leading, or at a rather stable second place. Republicans realised that he was their only chance of winning the election, and while they were not fascinated by the perspective, they went with it, because they reasoned that winning with Romney was a lesser evil than losing with anyone else.

But Romney lost anyway, so they probably now think they should have sticked with one of the crazies, and lost with some dignity.

And so something is likely to have cracked in the period. The Republican rebellion in 2011 was expressed by demagogues - but demagogues who happened to be also professional politicians. The least qualified of them (and the one who made the least impressive run) was Michelle Bachmann, a longstanding House representative.

Today, all the professional politicians are far behind Trump and Carson. This is not a coincidence, I think. There is not just a rejection of moderation and reasonability, but a rejection of politics as a whole.

I am certainly not saying that Trump or Carson will be the nominee; but the task of getting someone else nominated seems much more herculean now than in 2012. I can't see Bush, Kasich, Rubio, or even Cruz, being able to stand to such task (I could have seen Walker or Paul, but the former seems to have been seriously damaged by something I failed to notice, and is becoming an ex-candidate at an impressive speed; and the latter, rather stupidly, seems to have chosen a tactic of pretending to be a mainstream Republican, exactly when the rank-and-file seems to be fed up with anything that remotely resembles mainstream).

In 2011, Bachmann, Perry, Cain, Ginrich, Santorum, all rose and fell; they rose as a result of the deep discontent in the Republican base, and they fell as a result of realisation that they were not, after all, the adequate vehicle for such discontent.

My impression is that today the discontent prefers to be expressed by an inadequate vehicle than to not be expressed at all. Such impression is reinforced by two phenomena that Nate Silver couldn't predict: first, Trump favourability rates have improved with his increased exposition - and his gaffes, if gaffes they are, seem to reflect positively on him. Cain or Perry wouldn't be able to publicly discuss the menstrual cycle of a TV journalist; Trump seems to be, and to capitalise on it. Second, and most worrysome, Trump now compares favourably with Bush or Kasich or any other "moderate" (man, does it sound awful to call a guy surnamed "Bush" a "moderate"…) when matched against Hillary or Biden or Sanders. So even the "electability" argument seems now gone.

Hopefully, Trump gets the nomination and the GOP splits, with its "establishment" wing going with Bush or Christe or a resurrected Romney, spoiling the right's campaign, and perhaps putting the Republicans in their deserved path to extinction.

Not so hopefully, we get a Trump or Carson presidency, with renewed State jingoism and completely crazed foreign policies. It may become unhealthier than it already is to be at the wrong end of American missiles and drones.

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Just to make sure,

Corbyn isn't a socialist, and odds are that he is just like any other politician.

His victory, however, represents the wide and deep discontent of Labour's base with its traditional leadership. If he chooses to no longer represent that discontent once he is party leader, it won't make such discontent go away, nor it will pacify it.

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Originally Posted by PhoenixAsh View Post
PASOK will not offer enough seats. As it stands now it will be very hard pressed to maintain its current seats. I believe that I have seen unofficial polls which show anywhere from 6 to 10 seats to be likely (currently 13…which was down from 33 in the previous elections).

There is a threshold of 3% to get into the parliament; as there are 250 seats in play (the other 50 are "bonus" seats to the most voted party), you cannot get less than 8 seats; so, PASOK will get either 8 or more, or just zero-zilch-nada-porra nenhuma. Which looks increasingly likely.

Unfortunately, another of those wishy-washy parties, a certain Enosis Kentroon (Union of Centrists) is likely to surpass the threshold and get in.

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IF the left coalition splits from SYRIZA it remains to be seen what effect that will have on the seats…and whether or not its voter base will swing the mount of opposition seats for them. Currently (last Friday) the parliamentary representation against the government is at 43 seats pressing for radicalization.

Even if they only manage to get 20 seats in the parliament, and assuming that SYRIZA doesn't lose votes to the KKE, the ANEL, or the right opposition, this will mean a complicated parliament, with main-SYRIZA quite possibly needing contradictory alliances to both right and left in order to build a majority.

Which further means… further new elections this year or very early in 2016.

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This is up from a month ago…but the real problem for the government is at the grass root and union local levels where the memorandum isn't accepted by the vast majority of representatives.

Yup. This means even if they can get a majority in September, they will lead a very unstable government, that could be brought down at any moment.

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Originally Posted by PhoenixAsh View Post
There is a grace period of several days in which the opposition can reach a coalition. ND has stated they will make the attempt.

If they do not succeed (and that is the most likely outcome) then there will be a care taker government until the elections….which will probably be unable to put the memorandum into effect. This delays the implementation of the memorandum.

Problem is, SYRIZA has 149 seats in the parliament. Which means, to reach a majority (151 seats) without SYRIZA requires a coalition of all other parties. That is, a coalition featuring ND, To Potami, PASOK (that's the easy part), ANEL (and things begin to get difficult), Golden Dawn (and things begin to get impossible) and KKE (and there the "miracle" part starts).

Unless they could get support from some dissidence from SYRIZA. But it seems that the only actually existant dissidence is to the left of the main party. And so, I would guess that this "attempt" is a mere play by Samaris, to 1. be on the media more often, and 2. try to paint the other parties, especially ANEL, as irresponsible sectarians who don't want to work together for the common good of Greeks.

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
It's not a non-binary position. Either you wish the majority of humankind remain burdened with reaction, incertitude and destitution, or you wish for the majority of humankind to advance into a new epoch that sees their total liberation from present conditions.

Or, as probably 99.99% of mankind, you don't understand what causes incertitude and destitution, or what is needed to liberate ourselves from these conditions. Ie, it certainly is a non-binary.

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I choose the latter.

And so do I. Why are we disgreeing, then? Because it is a non-binary. Both of us want to advance into a new epoch that will see our total liberation from present conditions. But we have a different understanding of what those present conditions are, or of what it takes to liberate ourselves from them, or even, and more probably, of who are "ourselves".

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The subject of the worker, just like the objective nature of our antagonism with the bourgeoisie, isn’t inexistent, nor is it an abstraction. We exist as a subject: the worker. It is defined through the objective nature of class antagonism and therefore defines what our task is.

This makes us an object. The object of exploitation and oppression at the hands of capital; the raw material upon which capital (re)builds the world to conform with its needs and whims. What makes (may make) us a subject is our fight against such condition. But to abolish that condition, we need to negate our "objective" existence as playthings of capital. Sure, "the objecive nature of class antagonism" sets the conditions for such a move; but it also sets the conditions under which we will try to assert our existence as "dignified" playthings of capital. And chosing between these paths requires a conscious collective decision.

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The problem with the left tearing itself apart isn't the agony to identify which precise action leads to revolution, it is the very assumption that there requires the necessity to identify which action leads to revolution in the first place. The entire premise of your argument is that finding an action that leads to revolution is necessary. The actions of the left are not what lead to revolution. No ‘action’ of the left has ever lead to revolution nor will ever lead to revolution.

No; but only actions of the working class will lead to the revolution. And these actions are still actions; they still need to be understood, defined, decided, and executed. No sort of automatic action magically exsudates from our subjection to capital.

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The antagonism that we workers experience on a daily basis is what leads the class to revolt.

It is what leads the class to reformism. Even if it sometimes is rebellious, violent reformism.

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It is in moments in which that antagonism intensifies that we see the class move and it does so irrespective of the existence of any machinery of the left. We cannot predict it, we cannot instigate it; it happens spontaneously and without warning. The purpose of the communists is to then give expression to that instinct to revolt.

What does "give expression to that instinct to revolt" mean? And why would an "instinct to revolt" need to be "expressed", beyond what the working class can express by itself, without the need for leftists, anarchists, communists, Leninists, et caterva?

Either we are consistently spontaneist, and deny the utility of a "left", or we understand that the class builds itself, and that "the left" is part and parcel of such self-building. But holding to spontaneism up to the brink of a revolution, and then suddenly introducing a strange need to "express revolutionary instincts", which for some stranger reason becomes the task of a "left ex machina" doesn't seem to make any sence to me.

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As I said before, it is to prepare, to propagandise, to always keep a militant, radical communist line, critique and defend the class against our enemies, and to assist the class both practically and ideologically in struggle; to escalate, to foster insurrection, provide revolutionary solutions and to win the argument for communism — it is to act as a conduit for communist measures.

And this is openly contradictory to what you have previously stated. None of these, besides, can be done by "the left", much less by leftists sects and cults; either the class undertakes all of these tasks, or, in the event of a State crisis, we will explode into violence, but into meaningless violence ("sound and fury", if you want a Shakespearean inflection). To be done, those things presuppose an internal struggle within the class, in order to constitute it into a revolutionary subject.

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Reformism, be it any of the things you list below, therefore has no place; it inhibits the ability of the class to move when it wishes to intensify the already existent antagonisms by imposing mediating structures of power over it. It prevents the class from moving towards insurrection, which is a necessary part of revolt. For example, if the class is moving towards insurrection, then what need does it have for better wages? If it is not moving towards insurrection, how does attaining better wages achieve that?

Evidently, if the class is in the process of starting an insurrection, better wages will be irrelevant. If it is not in the process of starting an insurrection, then attaining better wages help in a twofold way: first, it helps to maintain the class' ability to think and decide consciously (starving people are seldom to be expected to do intelligent things: even if they explode into revolt, it is going to be a revolt against starvation, not against the rule of capital; but they are more likely to demoralise themselves into finding individual and degrading "solutions" than to revolt). Second, the experience of fighting, winning, and losing, is essential to constitute the class as a subject. Without the discipline, the experience, the wheathering, the tactical and strategical abilities, the understanding of the workings of the extant order, that can only be developed by actual struggle, we won't be able to revolt against the rule of capital. Of course, this supposes better wages forcibly extracted from the bourgeois, not willing concessions on the part of the bosses. I hope you can see the difference.

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The fact they are prophets is what demonstrates them as false.

And how exactly do we know they are prophets, and not communists?

From a strictly "workerist" position, they look very much the same.

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The class can have false interests — that is the power of bourgeois ideological hegemony. It is in the interest of our class enemies to obfuscate the true interests of those it seeks to maintain dominance over. Reformism is part of that process. Showing (or as you say telling) what our true class interests are requires communists to be communists and to argue for communists measures, whether that is within struggles that emerge or whether it is outside of struggles (for examples struggles for false interests).

Your position supposes that reformism is something totally external to our class. In other words, we would all be revolutionaries, if not for the ideological machinery of the ruling class - schools, churches, press, cinema, etc. If they just shut up for a minute, we would realise what our "real", really real, interests are.

It seems to me an absurd position. Of course the ruling class won't stop producing "ideology" - moreso because it can embody it into commodies and sell it for a profit - but if those things didn't minimally resonate into us, it would be a waste of time. At some point, we will have to admit, there is a little bourgeois inside us, who dearly wants to be deluded by bourgeois ideological propaganda.

And this should be no surprise: we are, as a class, after all, sellers of a commodity: the weird and awesome commodity that is labour power. Like all sellers of commodities, we want a higher price for our commodity. That is the root of reformism: it comes from the inside of our common condition as a class; the bourgeois don't need to impose or trick it unto us; it springs out "naturally" from our very conditions of existence. We don't have any "revolutionary instinct", or, if we do, it has to compete, everyday and everywhere, with an equally, if not more, powerful "reformist instinct". In other words, we are, as a class-object, contradictory. That's why mere propaganda can't sway the class in one direction or other; the limits of the capitalist system must be directly seen, felt, stumbled upon, by workers. As a class. As an organised class. As a class-process.

Out of this, even the most radical proclamations remain part and parcel of an ideological machinery that "objectively" helps the capitalist system remain in place.

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
It is not a question of deciding anything. What is in the interest of the class is to overcome our historical antagonism with the ruling class through the production of communism and the self-abolition of the proletariat. That is what is in its interest. This is a historical mission.

Two things here:

first, "interests" and "historical missions" are things of a very different nature. An interest is usually something that we understand as coming from "within" the person or group of persons that hold that interest. If it is in the interest of the working class to abolish class society, it is because, in the views of the working class, it would be better off in a classless society than it is now. "Historical missions" on the other hand suppose some kind of blind "historical necessity" that must be fulfilled for some reason (and at the practical request of some hypostasised entity, like the Geist, God, Progress, Reason, Capitalised History, etc.) It is not a necessity of people or any other entity that we usually understand to have "necessities", but a necessity for an abstraction.

Second, even if we ignore that aspect of your vision that makes us servants of an abstract inexistent "Subject", it is easy to say that our interest is the abolition of classes. It is. But the problem that tears the left apart in agony is to identify which precise actions lead to the abolition of classes, and which lead to the reinforcement of the class society. We can put up a political party, put into its program "We shall abolish the social classes once we win the elections", and well, this may or may not be conducive to the abolition of social classes - ie, it may or may not be in our interests. Who reasons about this? Some material subject, such as a Central Committee? The very conditions of our existence - the fact that we overwork ourselves daily to enrich a small group of parasites - make it obvious for us, as if our "proletariness" suddenly acquires a mind of itself and starts thinking on our behalf?

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Various pretenders of the left claim they know what is in the interest of the class.

Certainly, but how do we tell the false prophets apart?

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The class itself argues for what is in its interest even when it specifically damages their ability to be independent,

So, if the interest of the class is to abolish class society, how can the class have an interest in something that damages our ability to be independent (and consequently, our ability to abolish classes)?

We are back to the conundrum: the class has interests that it doesn't know it has (which seems to me a contradiction in its own terms, but so be it); ergo, someone has to tell the class, from the outside, what our interests really, actually, in earnest, are.

Who?

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but communists understand history (at least they should do) and how history has shaped the reality we inhabit. If we look with even a cursory glance it is evident that reformism does not serve any interest for the class if we accept that the production of communism is in the interest of the class.

Yes, to me, it is evident that "reformism" does not serve the long term interests of my class - even if I am actually not sure of what "reformism" means in this context (voting? setting up political parties? demanding better wages? setting up cooperative enterprises in which we would be our own bosses? demonstrating? going on strike? "Reformism", after all, is, I believe, a general attitude towards society and class struggle, not a precise strategy, tactic, or set of tactics).

But I, alone, am not the working class, and so what I personally think is largely irrelevant. It is only as long as I am an active part of the working class that my opinion carries any weight. And then, of course, by "being an active part of the working class" I don't mean "actively" driving trucks, carrying freights, or doing paperwork for the State: I mean actively taking part in our struggles. In other words, not being part of the class-object, but of the class-process.

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You do want communism, right?

As soon as possible, and with cream, please.

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Originally Posted by Manoir de mes reves View Post
On the contrary, it is in the interest of the immediate well-being of individual members of a given class, but not of the class as a whole (as TFU notes above quite clearly).

So, the class is an entity apart from its members? How is it that? Can it have an interest of itself that is directly contrary to the interests of all its members?

… and how am I the mystic metaphysician?

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
But it only needs to be independent in the sense that it is acting in its interest.

But if it is acting in its own interests, then it is not the class-object, it is something else.

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Reformism is not in the interest of the class.

And who decides what is in the interest of the class? The Central Committee? Lenin when invoked in a spiritist session? We just look at Reality, and Goddess Reality answers back?

In order for the class to be independent, it has to be able to decide what its interests are. And if it does so, it can always happen - after all, it is just a human entity, not a supernatural one - that it gets it wrong.

(***)

Originally Posted by Izvestia View Post
I don't think the class-object is irrelevant at all. If you dont have it you arent going to have a socialist revolution. Make sense?

It isn't irrelevant in the sence that you cannot have a class-process unless you have a class-object. But you cannot appeal to the class-object against the reformism of the class-process; it hasn't answers for such kind of problem.

Originally Posted by Izvestia View Post
How is the working class losing its existence? Where is the empirical proof of this? And doesn't this also mean that capital is losing its existence?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luís Henrique
If you mean the class-object, then it definitely exists and cannot disappear as long as society is capitalist.

But then the class-object is completely irrelevant for the issue of a revolution; it is only the necessary complement of capital, a gear in the machine, and only produces surplus-value, not political unrest.

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
No.

It depends, of course, of what the class is.

If you mean the class-object, then it definitely exists and cannot disappear as long as society is capitalist.

But then the class-object is not, and cannot be, … independent, in any real sence.

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
The working class definitely exists.

But is unexisting at a fast pace.

(***)

Originally Posted by #FF0000 View Post
I agree but the mistake is allying with reformist political parties in order to achieve this. Everything we do should be with the aim of working class independence.

Yes. But something that doesn't exist cannot be independent, so we should struggle for the class' existence first place.

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Originally Posted by cyu View Post
Everyone has a purpose when they go on the internet. They might not agree. They might have a different purpose from yours, but they still have a purpose. Just because the dictator at the top of the pyramid has a purpose, doesn't mean it's the right purpose, and it doesn't mean everyone has to agree. So if everyone in a hierarchical organization doesn't agree with the dictator's purpose, how should those differences in opinion be resolved? Does it apply to the internet?

Everyone has a purpose when they go to the internet, but the internet has no purpose of itself.

A revolutionary organisation has - or should have - a purpose - to make a revolution. So it is not the same kind of organisation as the internet.

The corollary is that the internet doesn't have to solve problems relating to different opinions. Here is revleft, there is Freerepublic, further there Stormfront… and Salon, snopes, Richard Dawkins.org, History Forum, IMDB, RT, Yoshi Forum, BBC online, Subnormality, Pivit, and hundreds of thousands of other things with mutually exclusive or completely unrelated goals.

A revolutionary organisation does have to solve problems relating to different opinions among its members. There are several methods to achieve this, varying from "the guy in the top decides what is right" to "we pretend that there are no different opinions, so that we keep our unity without actually solving the problem". Most of these methods are bad, some are awful, the only marginally reasonable ones are "we discuss it to the point of exhaustion, until everybody gives up except those who defend the winning position", and "we discuss it to the point of exhaustion, and then take a vote, and stick with the position of the majority". Which are also very, very bad methods, just not so bad as the remaining 6,643 ones.

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Originally Posted by cyu View Post
The internet itself is large - perhaps the largest organization known to history. Is it hierarchical?

Perhaps not, but it is certainly purposeless.

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Originally Posted by cyu View Post
I don't know what country you live in, but this is not true in all countries.

Of course it is true in all countries. You may have pistols or revolvers, but you cannot have RPGs or bomber-fighters, so you are still basically unarmed when facing the State.

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In countries where citizens are indeed prevented from having weapons, then I would indeed support the siege of police stations (along with mass media outlets).

Storming police stations is going to be necessary in any revolution, but while we certainly shouldn't shy from taking the weapons there, it is possible that the most important things in storming police stations is disrupting their communication services and destroying their files.

For weapons, of course, we should go preferably to Army and Air Force arsenals.

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This happens regardless of whether you have a pyramid or a network - as I mentioned already, I would recommend discussion be done with the assumption that spies are present, since the closer you are to overthrowing the system, the more spies you can expect.

It does.

In a pyramidal clandestine structure, each member knows a few people, usually above or below them in the pyramid. So an infiltrated mole will know only a few people, most of them below him in the structure. Of course, if the mole is at the top, the whole structure is going to be destroyed, as the Brazilian VPR, that fell to the police due its higher echelon being infiltrated by Cabo Anselmo. But if the infiltration is at rank-and-file, the structure will quite probably resist quite well, for the information provided by the mole will only compromise the lower ranks (and so is quite probably not going to be immediately used by the police).

A more flexible organisation would be more prone to be destabilised from below, and more resilient to blows to its top. It doesn't even need to be a model decentralised organisation; the Brazilian PCdoB, with all its uber-centralised stalinism, was able to survive an infiltration to its Central Committee (that resulted in the police murdering three and capturing five of its ten members), because, albeit being a centralised clandestine structure, it had enough communication between its rank-and-file members and intermediate leadership that the organisation could be rebuilt.

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That is an argument against hierarchy, not for it. And whether something is small or large is orthogonal to whether something is hierarchical or not. Something can be small and hierarchical, or vice versa.

Something can be small and hierarchical, certainly, and it seems to me that small hierarchies tend to be even more oppressive than huge ones - but it is very difficult to be big and non-hierarchical; indeed growth and hierarchisation are commonly intertwinned phenomena for organisations. The "network" solution usually doesn't manage to solve the problem of growing without going hierarchical, because if its growth is the growth in the size of its nodes, then each node will face the problem of becoming hierarchic - and the main organisation risks becoming a federation of little tirannies. On the other hand, if the growth is the growth in the number of different nodes, then the most probable outcome is fragmentation.

And even without growth, fragmentation is always a concern, with each node tending to assert its own autonomy against the main organisation.

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As also mentioned before, hierarchical organization has less filters against bad ideas, especially those coming from the leaders. If the leader thinks genocide (or surrendering to the Troika) is a good idea, then the hierarchy is expected to obey, not decide for themselves whether it's a good idea or not.

This is certainly true. Bad ideas from the top of a hierarchy will easily destroy an organisation, or at least its credibility. Bad ideas in a non-hierarchical organisation will only compromise it if it is very small. But then non-hierarchical organisations are usually very small. And if an organisation is actually a network of small non-hierarchies, then eventual bad ideas will accelerate the tendency to fragmentation: when circle #227 decides that genocide is a good idea, while the other 226 circles will certainly dissociate from that, they cannot also stop circle #227 from going genocidal, at which point we have a split.

(Surrendering to the Troika, evidently, is something that only a huge organisation would be in the position to do. Sure, something like the OAKKE can - and does - bootlick Western imperialism, making silly proclamations of revolutionary capitulation, but that doesn't make any difference in the real world, to which the OAKKE is irredeemably irrelevant.)

So, we are still without a workable formula for a several million people organisation that isn't either hierarchical or brittle, or both. My gut feeling is that such formula, like the philosopher's stone, simply doesn't exist: all organisations are prone to degeneration, and, absent the conditions that may reinstill life and energy into them, will effectively degenerate. Statute can accelerate such a tendency, but it cannot really stop it - be it a Leninist centralist statute, be it a federalist network-like one.

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Originally Posted by Invader Zim View Post
The only way back for Labour is to reinvigorate the Labour brand and win back votes from the Greens, UKIP, the SNP, and those who simply don't bother voting. Whether Crobyn will be able to do that is too early to say — but the message from the electorate, and Labour's grass-roots is clear, it is time to be a party of labour again.

Also, the task of a political party is not to morph itself into something the electorate can vote for, but to morph the electorate into people who will vote for it.

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
Lol, you're so dramatic. Calm down.

You're right. I mis-read the Guardian article.

[…]

A victory for social democracy! Jeremy Corbyn: Britain's Tsipras.

It is not going to happen!

… OK, it is going to happen, but it will be awful!

Boils down, I think, to revolutionary conservatism: we don't want it to happen, because it will disturb our carefully designed loooooooooooooong term strategy.

More or less the KKE's take on everything and everybody.

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Originally Posted by cyu View Post
The point is that currently the ruling class controls the weapons. I don't expect any revolution to succeed as long as that is true. You might say we'll just have weapons temporarily, or we'll convert a few military divisions to our side until the ruling class is overthrown, that's fine. So after capitalism is gone from the entire world, then you'll get rid of the weapons? If it takes that long, I'm ok with postponing the decision, since before the revolution is over, I'm sure the next generation will have forgotten your words

So the revolution comes in two stages: first stage we get the weapons (how, if the ruling class doesn't want us to?), then we make revolution properly. This quickly becomes circular: we can't have a revolution, because we have no guns; we can't have guns, because we would need a revolution to secure them.

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Exactly, but the strength of the network is that it becomes much more difficult.

I think there is a conflation here. A network does not need to be non-hierarchical, and a pyramidal network is something quite possible (even theorised by Carlos Marighella).

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That's why the internet was invented in the first place. The American military was afraid that a Soviet attack will take out major important centers, leaving its ability to respond in tatters. So they instead distributed everything out into as many nodes of a network as they could, thus vastly reducing the single points of weakness - even if one center is taken out, the more distributed you are, the less that one center matters.

Hm, that is problesome.

First, it depends on against what we are trying to protect ourselves. It can be quite different whether against violent repression, or whether against bribery. A modular structure could make it easier to "cut off" from openly compromised nodes (as in, imprisoned people who might spill the beans) but could also make contagion of covert compromise (as in, a mole that keeps repression informed of our moves without our knowledge).

Second, a "network" can perfectly exist only in the imagination of its members; when collective action is effectively necessary, they may discover that what they have, instead of an array of small organistions, is just a pletora of small organisations in disarray.

Third, small isn't beautiful, at least not when it comes to political organisations: the smaller they are, the greater the chance that they are in fact political fiefs of their petty rulers, with little space for free discussion and questioning. Big organisations have other problems (and some of those problems may indeed be even worse), but they do not tend to degenerate into cults as easily as groups of 20.

(***)

Merkins, "voting" does not translate into "voting for the Democrats".

If voting is so unconsequential, why do the ruling classes put such an effort to disenfranchise working class voters?

(***)

Originally Posted by cyu View Post
Do you believe a different party from Syriza, but still organized in a pyramid structure, could have succeeded where Syriza failed? Do you believe the leaders will be immune to bribery, seduction, blackmail, and threats against their family? If you were the leader, would you mind if the NSA leaks your entire internet history to the internet?

No, no, and of course no.

And the answers would be exactly the same for a non-hierarchical organisation (rank-and-file members are also not immune to bribery, seduction, blackmail, and threats).

As I said elsewhere, an organisation is a tool for the people, not the other way round. If we make of the organisation a fetish, we might delude ourselves in the search for the Holy Grail of the perfect, undegenerateable organisation. If instead we understand that the struggle goes on, even when we have to discard an organisation into the dustbin of history, we are better equipped to fight on.

(***)

Originally Posted by cyu View Post
If you don't trust the police and military with weapons, what will you do about the existing police and military in your country and in other countries?

To put an end to that, we need a revolution. What has a revolution to do with the private, individual ownership of weapons that are, by definition, incapable of facing the weapons of police, not even to talk about the military? What has a revolution to do with the private, individual ownership of weapons that are only really useful to further enforce individual ownership of petty property?

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hierarchical_organization lists a few alternatives to pyramid structures. Those aren't the only alternatives of course. Even different corporations are experimenting with "non-traditional" forms of organization. Valve, for example. Are you and your friends organized like a hierarchy? Do you and your friends vote for a President Friend, who orders all your other friends around, and banishes friends who disobey?

I think this is a quite naïve view of what a pyramidal structure is. No, me and my comrades do not vote for a President/Chairman/Secretary General/whatever. We have a collective leadership, and even that collective leadership cannot ban comrades who "disobey" (otherwise I would have been banned a couple times by now…)

But I don't delude myself that my organisation is non-hierarchical; the hierarchy, or hierarchies, might be informal, but they are there, and cannot be dispelled by decree or some other voluntaristic method.

And it is an organization of a few scores of people; imagine an organization of several millions, which is, of course, what we need.

(***)

Originally Posted by cyu View Post
If you don't trust the working class with weapons, who do you trust with weapons?

I don't trust myself with weapons, and I seldom trust anyone else more than myself on any subject.

Quote:
A political party structured like a hierarchical pyramid is a good weapon only for the ruling class, and a trap for the working class. Of course, if it weren't structured like a pyramid, then you might have some hope.

I have never seen anything that isn't structured "like a pyramid", and I don't think such a wonder is possible within a class society. Usually, organisations that delude themselves about their "pyramidness" are the worst, as their internal authoritarianism tends to be secret and informal.

(***)

Originally Posted by cyu View Post
Don't grab a political party. Grab a weapon.

Er… a poliical party is a weapon.

Like any weapon, it is not enough to grab it. It is necessary to grab it correctly. Don't grab a knife by the blade, don't grab a gun by the barrel, don't grab a political party by its newspaper; they won't work that way, and may hurt you if you try.

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If you don't trust the working class with weapons, you don't really trust the working class.

Guns are property, and property regularly makes people less trustworthy.

(***)

Originally Posted by PhoenixAsh View Post
"Told you so; welcome in the real world".

Well, Syriza apparently decided to come back to the "real world"; so it isn't surprising that the actual owners of the real world welcome it back.

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The ND reassured SYRIZA, repeatedly and with glee, that while they previously rejected the measures SYRIZA now brought home they would of course support the government unconditionally regardless of the fact that the memorandum was totally their fault for the childlike fantasy of being able to stand up to the EU and their incompetent swinging back and forth on positions and their words which made Tsipras and SYRIZA untrustworthy.

They (ND and PASOK) moved quite intelligently. They have supported the horrors of austerity, saying they were inevitable, and were justly punished by the Greek voters for it. So they are now saying out aloud, "see, human sacrifices are inevitable; to the sacrificial altar now, and you, who were opposed to it, lead the way, so that no doubt remains about the inevitability… lead the way, or clear it for those who have always had the courage to call it as we see it". Or in other words, either prepare for repression against the Greek people, or renounce government.

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The left opposition was left in a very uncomfortable position in which they could not openly denounce the government of SYRIZA but voiced very strong opposition to the memorandum. This opposition was actually more vocal an much larger than I expected. I had expected them to cave. But with 39 SYRIZA MP's openly voting OXI and 6 direct abstentions…their opposition was quite principled. They did however state they would continue to support the government and would step down if asked. Which makes them hypocrites.

I am not sure that this makes them hypocrites, but it makes them terminally obtuse. The governmnent is over, it can only cling to power by negating itself to the fullest extent, including the unleashing of violent repression against their own political base. It can only save what little remains of its face by falling immediately, before it sullies its hands in blood.

It is said that there is a kind of blindness that is transmitted by sitting into parliamentary and ministerial seats; it seems to have affected the "left opposition". It is time to recongnise defeat and start anew; clinging to an electoral victory won in January won't do any good anymore.

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So far it really appears Golden Dawn will seriously benefit from the vote last night and there were many people in the streets expressing support for the showy tirades of the GD MP's who furiously tore up the memorandum and threw it across the floor in parliament.

While ND and PASOK are gloating about their pyrrhic victory, it is obvious that they remain political lepers, and won't be able to build any kind of "governability" of themselves. So it is time for some other political force to come into the scene, and be tried by the circumstances. The KKE remarkably doesn't want to, so this leaves us with Golden Dawn. Or perhaps Antarsyia, but it may be too late now for another left-wing alternative.

So let's prepare to what is probably coming unto us: Greece with a far-right, antisemitic, anti-immigration, openly bigoted, and probably pro-Russian government, the EU taking the opportunity to exclude and marginalise Greece under "democratic" pretexts, American imperialism appearing as the reasonable force that tries to push Germany into some common-sence calculation about the political risks of the situation, and Russia scheming Odin-knows-what scheme to profit on the troubles while shpealing "anti-imperialism".

Ample opportunities for leftists going astray and losing sight of what is at stake… as it seems we like to do.

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Nothing really major and it was noticeable that the KKE was largely absent from the protests. PAME however showed up dressed for the occasion…and for once weren't on the side of the cops.

Well, at least something remains predictable in this whole mess.

(***)

Well, we have just witnessed a political suicide. Syriza is over; it is to be seen if its left can do something better than just opposing verbal resistance in parliament.

With half of the CC and a quarter of the parliamentary slate, they apparently do have the strength to dislodge Syriza as the main party in the left.

Tsipras is going to fall; let's see if he does so before or after taking capitulation into the logical consequence of a "national unity" government.

(***)

Fofi Genimmata makes the case that the failed attempts at resistance by Syriza's government have worsened the situation.

(and this will probably the line the Greek right is going to toe now: rebellion doesn't pay.)

(***)

Originally Posted by human strike View Post
Well, the IMF are saying that Greece has to have debt relief and a 30 year grace period, hinting that it won't involve itself in this deal otherwise. Germany of course has insisted the IMF be involved but won't support these IMF conclusions. It will be interesting to see what happens with that.

Perhaps the geopolitical dimension of the issue is starting to show. American imperialism certainly doesn't want Russia to have allies with Northern Mediterranean shores, and it may be concluding that German stubborness is going to increase the chance of exactly that. If the IMF is an instrument of American imperialism, then it makes sence that they are starting to put some pressure over Germany.

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Originally Posted by The Feral Underclass View Post
Didn't the KKE form a coalition with New Democracy once?

Oh, yes, but that was a revolutionary kind of capitulation.

(***)

Originally Posted by FSL View Post
You praise the one and only true Messiah of the left and the workers,

So where have I, or anyone else, praised anyone as a Messiah, not to talk about an "only true" one?

Quote:
with the unique concept of making capitalism great for everyone, and when things go just a bit differently than what you expected the story changes to "well, it would be like that with everyone, wouldn't it?"

Nice try, but no. There isn't such thing as "capitalism great for everyone", except perhaps in the calculations of the KKE and its strategy of increasing their vote by 1% each election until getting a majority.

Face it, the KKE would have capitulated much earlier and more easily than Syriza. Wait, it has capitulated earlier and more easily than Syriza - it was just a much more low profile kind of capitulation.

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No, it wouldn't, because not everyone is an enemy of the workers like the hopeless social democrats that swarm this place. Not everyone is as dumb and thickheaded, not everyone is allergic to self-criticism, not everyone is oblivious to the lessons of history.

That's precious. An adept of the world's most dumb and thickheaded party, of the world's less open to self-criticism party, of the world's most oblivious to lessons of history party… lecturing us on dumb-and-thickheadedness, self-criticism, and lessons of history.

And it is me and others who are a joke?

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Originally Posted by lutraphile View Post
the world's most juvenile protest party

That's not the KKE, sorry. The KKE would be this wonder of nature, the most senile protest party in the world.

(***)

Originally Posted by willowtooth View Post
would greece going back to the drachma be a good thing? I don't think so

There are no good things possible at this moment re. Greece.

Awful as it is, it is that time when you have to choose a lesser evil.

(***)

//Originally Posted by ChangeAndChance View Post
The Jacobin definitely reversed the hope they had that Syriza would actually do anything of any substance for the working class: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2015/07/t...-deal-germany/ //

Austerity is dead, long live austerity.

Well, that was published by Jacobin, but written by a Panagiotis Sotiris, described as a member of Antarsyia.

It is a good article, and proposes a good line forward.

(***)

Originally Posted by cyu View Post
I suspect if KKE were in power, the roles would just be reversed. Syriza would be outside throwing rocks at the windows, and KKE would be inside with the IMF pointing a gun to their leaders' heads.

Well, of course. This being the main reason that the KKE is refusing to take any responsibilities in the situation. As long as it remains an oppositional force, it can throw rocks at windows (and pretend that this is a revolutionary activity).

The only problem, for them, is how to dose the things so that they remain in opposition, but keep a dozen seats in parliament.

The main problem with the left is that it views political parties as masters of the working class, not as instruments of the class.

Syriza has been the most useful instrument for the growth of political consciousness of Greek workers up to now. In capitulating, it ceases to be that. It is a normal process, that cannot be replaced by issuing some magical decree that the KKE is the best instrument now - and much less that it has been that instrument in the last five years.

In the end, what most leftists think (fear? hope for?) is that the new deal between Greece and the EU will somehow normalise things, converting Syriza into a traditional social-democratic party - to which the similarly traditional "communist" party can play the same role as CPs used to play in the 50's and 60's in Europe.

That is completely misleading, though.

The new deal between Greece and the EU is either significantly different from those that have been negotiated by ND and PASOK, or, much more likely, it is basically the same.

If it is significantly different, then we can expect the EU to consistently try to reverse it, because it would be a bad deal for the central countries in Europe. And because it would put in immeditate risk the accommodating ruling parties in the rest of the European periphery, for it would give a clear sign to the people in those countries that rebellion pays, or pays more than submission in any case.

If it is basically the same, it will produce basically the same results as the previous deals negotiated by PASOK and ND: more unemployment, deeper recession, further disintegration of the Greek economy.

And if Greece continues its path of economic decline as it seems poised to, then Syriza will have destroyed itself; it will be torn apart into its constituents, their government will fall, Synaspismos will run in new elections as the party that has betrayed the movement, and will be defeated, either by the left of Syriza, or by Golden Dawn, or by the pro-austerity forces combined. In the first case, it will be a "rinse, repeat" situation, until some other outcome is reached. In the second case, Greece will be purposefully punished for voting for nazis, and the EU will have a convenient face-saving pretext to throw Greece and the Greeks through the window. In the third case, we will again have a "rinse, repeat" situation, just going through a wider loop.

Or it could be that the KKE wins the next elections, and implements the dictatorship of the proletariat in Greece through electoral victory. In which case, free plush bunnies for everybody ensue.

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Originally Posted by cyu View Post
I wouldn't really say "the Germans" but rather the international ruling class - including officials at the IMF and ECB and my co-workers at the NSA - they tell German politicians and media figures what to say, who then pass on the message to indoctrinate the rest of the German population.

Obviously you people in the NSA forgot to tell the Treasury Secretary what he should say…

(***)

Originally Posted by The Guardian
US Treasury secretary Jack Lew appears to have thrown his weight behind calls for a Greek debt restructuring.

Speaking at the Brookings Institution in Washington DC, Lew warned that Greece’s debts are not sustainable, echoing the IMF’s concerns. He pointed to a “deep” reluctance among some European countries to face up to the issue, though.

Lew also (again) urged both sides to reach a deal, warning that Greece would face a painful adjustment if it left the euro.

We simply don’t need the “geopolitical mistake” of a Greek meltdown, he added (perhaps looking nervously towards Moscow?)

Yeah, it seems that the Germans are failing to realise the political consequences of their stuborness.

(***)

From what I have read, Tsakalotos would be less flamboyant than Varoufakis… and also quite less Europhilic.

So probably, less accusations that the ECB is "terrorist", and probably less talks of how Greece will remain in Europe no matter what.

In the substance, if nothing else changes, he will be the guy who will issue IOUs when it becomes necessary to reopen Greek banks.

(***)

OPA!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=131&v=yvEIMrqZCjc

… so let's dance and party for now, for the economic night is dark, and full of terrors.

(***)

25% counted, and the "no" margin is widening.

Maybe EU officials last minute efforts backfired and were felt as undue foreign interference.

Thankfully Schauble is not a Japanese, so no harakiri tonight.

(***)

Originally Posted by Tim Cornelis View Post
Safari parks?

So asian elephants and african rhinoceros in Costa Rican safari parks? Am I the only one that thinks that could be an ecological disaster?

(***)

Here is a new poll by Public Issue.

It shows a quite close race - but as these pollsters seem to be a little bit skewed "to the left", I would fear that the "yes" vote has a small but real advantage as of now.

We will soon know.

But some results are quite disorienting:

49% (against 47%) think that voting "yes" is the best thing they can do.
52% (against 44%) think that if the "no" wins, Greece will be in a better position to negotiate.
59% (against 34%) think that if the "yes" wins, Greece won't come out of the crisis.
60% (against 35%) think that if the "no" wins there will be very negative consequences for Greece.

So, apparently voting "yes" is the best thing one can do atm, even though it won't take Greece out of the crisis, and voting "no" will have negative consequences, even though it would place Greece in a better negotiating position.

Seems irrationality has taken over.

Plus, 76% of KKE voters think that the idea that the "no" votes means the return of the drachma and the "yes" vote means remaining in the Euro is false. It is the highest proportion of this reasoning among supporters of all parties, higher than Syriza's (73%), ANEL's (70%) and Golden Dawn's (55%) indeed. So the precise point on which the KKE's leadership seems to hold a more consequential position than its rivals is exactly the point where the KKE electoral base is the most deluded.

Go figure.

(***)

Some info in CNN:

Quote:
Originally Posted by CNN
The aides added that the 400,000 donations came from about 250,000 individual donors. The average donation was $33.51 and 99% of donations were under $250.

We don't know how much the 1% of donations above $ 250 represent, though.

ETA: The Huffington Post says Hillary has raised 45 million dollars in roughly the same period, and that that is an all-time record, so yes, it seems that Sanders' 15 millions are not completely insignificant at all.

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Originally Posted by DekuScrub View Post
Does anyone who's maybe more cosmopolitan than me know why Costa Rica seems to take such progressive stances on animal welfare/animal rights issues?

I am not sure those are progressive stances at all. Conservatives sometimes forbid those activities, either because forbidding things gives them a boner, or because people hunting or betting on dogfights are having fun, and having fun is a no-no on conservative books.

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Originally Posted by RedSeppoku View Post
So according to the Huffington Post, Bernie Sanders has raised quite a bit of money, a fund to the tune of $15 million. What are your thoughts on this? What do you think this is implicit of? Wish I could post the link, but I haven't posted enough yet (which I plan on changing soon ). If someone down below would be kind enough to post the link, I would be eternally grateful.

Well, it depends of how are those contributions distributed. If a single person or company has contributed 15 million dollars, it has a very different meaning than if 150,000 people have contributed ten dollars each.

I am also far from sure that 15 million dollars is a lot of money in the context of American Democratic primaries. Is it? How much would have Hillary Clinton raised during the same period?

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Originally Posted by human strike View Post
Unless he knew that offer would be rejected, which if I'm reading the situation correctly, it looks as if it has been.

EDIT: I mean if he's trying to make them look bad and intransigent it's working; German finance minister calls Greek government "untrustworthy" and says he hasn't even read their proposal.

It seems to be the intention, but considering the way it has been reported in the news, it looks like it was a quite unwise movement, and that it backfired.

But of course we don't know how that exactly impacted the political moods in Greece. I can only hope it doesn't put the OKI camp in disarray.

If it is not just a political manoever, however, and if they indeed cancel the referendum, they are finished. If they don't, and actually mean to capitulate, they will be probably overtaken by the voters.

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Polls taken after the stall of the negotiations show "No" ahead, by large margins. Reuters on the subject, here.

According to the source, 57% to 30% immediately after the government calling the referendum, 54% to 33% after the banks closed.

(So now it appears that scientifically scientific science agrees with my Hegelian-mystic-metaphysic-dialectical approach… but let's see, it is still a long time until Sunday. Perhaps decades, from a strictly Leninist view.)

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29th June 2015, 19:45
Greece to hold referendum on bailout, Tsipras says

Originally Posted by Luís Henrique View Post
Up to then, the Greek government was negotiating with the creditors. And it had the support of most of the electorate, as can be seen in a poll by Public Issue, link here: 41% of "definitely approve", 16% of "rather approve".

Also to notice on that survey, 50% of the people think the government should "definitely not retreat" and 12% that it should "rather not retreat".

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29th June 2015, 19:33 #48 Luís Henrique

Stock markets going down globally.

Tomorrow to Wednesday, the inevitable default (unless the Greek government has 2 billion dollars stacked under its mattress, perhaps). So the stock markets are probably going even crazier.

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29th June 2015, 17:00

Originally Posted by PhoenixAsh View Post
Yes. Because you know that that is not going to happen and isn't realistic. So….they must have another plan.

Of course they have. They plan to have as few votes as they can manage to without losing representation in the Parliament, so that they can keep the tribune without having to take any responsibility for what is coming in.

Oh, you meant a plan for Greece, or for Europe, or for the working class. No, sorry. The haven't any for these.

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29th June 2015, 16:52

//Originally Posted by lutraphile View Post
polling looks pretty grim
link //

Again, these polls have been conducted before the negotiations stalled.

Up to then, the Greek government was negotiating with the creditors. And it had the support of most of the electorate, as can be seen in a poll by Public Issue, link here: 41% of "definitely approve", 16% of "rather approve".

And so, up to then, "supporting the negotiations" and "supporting the government" meant the same thing.

Now, however, the government has left the table, and is calling for a "no" vote against the creditors proposals/impositions. So, now, "supporting negotiations" and "supporting the government" no longer mean the same thing; rather, they mean the opposite of each other. Consequently, the Greeks who until last weak supported both will have to chose; either they vote "yes" Sunday, and support the negotiations against their government, or they vote "no", and support their government decision to break with the negotiations.

Now, it may well be that they do the former, and bring down their government by voting "yay", but we can't bet on that on surveys conducted before the new situation was created.

Further, a "yay" vote on Sunday means the resignation of the cabinet, and new elections. If the Greek voters are coherent, they will then vote ND back into government, and capitulation will ensue*. If they vote for SYRIZA again, they will be incoherent, and demanding that a given political team does the opposite of what such political team seems willing to do.

  • Or perhaps they will find some way to make sence of KKE's zigzags, and vote for a party that seems to be doing its best to get as least votes as possibles, and "revolution" will ensue. Which will be a big problem for the KKE, of course, as it has absolutely no intention or plans for a revolution, and will not know what to do if entrusted with the vote of the majority of Greeks.

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28th June 2015, 15:15

Originally Posted by Tim Cornelis View Post
But you don't even know the source of my claim, where it is from, who conducted the poll, how it was conducted, so your presumption of bias is seems based on "it's numbers I don't like, therefore they must be false".

First thing, they are numbers from a resource made before the government's decision to take the issue to a referendum - and to ask for a "no" vote. To divulge the numbers without this caveat is already to show a definite bias in favour of the Troika.

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28th June 2015, 13:59
Teen shows a bit of upper lag: CONSERVATIVES FREAK

Originally Posted by Mr. Piccolo View Post
It is kind of odd that conservatives would think of some weird bondage sex angle for what this student wore.

Come on, Tories are infamous for their secret sexual vices. They cannot see a young lady dressed like this without feeling an urge to kneel down and perform submissive bdsm sexual acts.

And then go to the parliament and vote for stringent punishment for those who perform submissive sexual acts.

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28th June 2015, 13:48
Greece to hold referendum on bailout, Tsipras says

The Greek parliament just approved the referendum.

Voted yay, SYRIZA, ANEL, Golden Dawn. (178 votes)

Voted nay, ND, PASOK, To Potami, KKE. (122 votes)

Now let's see how each political actor behaves in the (very short) campaign for the Greek's vote.

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28th June 2015, 13:42

Originally Posted by Tim Cornelis View Post
I don't really understand that attitude. By that logic we have to ignore all statistics and information.

Nope. We should acknowledge statistics and information - and the bias of those providing statistics and information.

Which, in the present case, is the bias of people who really want to see Greece paying its debts, even if it means unemployment and poverty for the Greek people.

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28th June 2015, 02:33
Teen shows a bit of upper lag: CONSERVATIVES FREAK

Conservatives afraid that their inner thigh-licker will surface.

28th June 2015, 02:00
Greece to hold referendum on bailout, Tsipras says

Originally Posted by Tim Cornelis View Post
saw it on the news, they did a poll I'm guessing.

And of course the news and the poll are absolutely neutral; they certainly don't have a vested interest in making Greece kneel down, no. Not possible.

Yes, the cute little green men in my basement told me that, so it must be true.

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15th June 2015, 12:10
Things black aren't allowed to do in the US

//Originally Posted by Tim Cornelis View Post
I also forgot, you can't reach for your driver's license while black.

link//

That should read, "you can't obey police orders while Black".

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21st May 2015, 02:08
Poll: I'm 18, will I live to see the end of capitalism?

Originally Posted by JohnnyD View Post
louis henrique, I don't think skins was makingany type of serious coment. I think he was making satire of "armchair revolutionaries", pontificating about "the struggle", on "popular ""message boards"". Haha

Probably not… but since I have seen this argument made in serious here more than once, I'm not so sure.

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18th May 2015, 17:04
Gun Control

Originally Posted by Poor Taste View Post
Indeed, Yugoslavia seems like it might be a more successful example. I am unfortunately pretty ignorant on that subject.

1270873210057

This may explain why it was a more successful example.

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15th May 2015, 17:41 #81

Quote Originally Posted by Mari3L View Post
as a point against the utility of guns why even bother bringing up that it will use artillary against insurgence when cops currently gun down unarmed civilians with assault rifles/multiple handguns/etc.. on a regular basis

Because, as Xhar-Xhar Binks says,

Quote Originally Posted by Xhar-Xhar Binks
Invader Zim's post should have settled that debate - the revolution proceeds, not by defeating the imperialist army, but by splitting it along class lines.

What you keep doing is trying to find a way to defeat the State militarily, which is impossible. It has to be defeated politically, dividing or neutralising its armed forces, so that its technically superior power isn't used against us, but against the State itself, or at least remains idle.

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15th May 2015, 17:32

Originally Posted by Comunero View Post
If anything the Yugoslav partisans are a better example than the French resistance.

Much better - but then they certainly weren't an army armed with handguns, much less handguns bought at legal shops as means for "fun" or defence against petty criminals.

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15th May 2015, 01:24

Originally Posted by Rafiq View Post
The french resistance isn't a model for a revolutionary insurrection or civil war.

If for no other reason, because the French (or Dutch, or Italian, or etc.) resistance only made sence as auxiliary forces for the British/American invasion or for the Red Army, which didn't rely on pistols or revolvers. Maybe I'm blind, but I'm not seeing that mighty army that will intervene on our side, and that we would be helping by keeping guns under our pillows and occasionally shooting them at Black neighbours who remotely look like the will steal our bycicles*.

  • ie, "individual troop carriers"; let's not forget our sacred God-and-Founding-Fathers given right to keep and be carried by bycicles - they will be absolutely essential to our mobility in the case of a proletarian uprising.

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15th May 2015, 01:16

Originally Posted by Mari3L View Post
I think the state uses the guns against its citizens anyways regardless how they are armed- actual weapons or other tactics prompting the state response.

Yes, that is what the State does, isn't it?

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14th May 2015, 00:36
Poll: I'm 18, will I live to see the end of capitalism?

Originally Posted by Skinz View Post
Doing anything I would say is a problematic way of thinking. Why should we be wasting people's time and effort on impotent actions when we could be sitting around and thinking about how we can effectively attack capitalism?

How about we try and do things, and then sit around and discuss what went wrong or right?

I mean, I am all for discussion, but discussion isn't a thing of itself, it needs a subject, and it looks very much like we aren't providing enough of a subject to a discussion on how we can effectively attack capitalism.

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14th May 2015, 00:19

We have discussed this some 3,783,023 times in the past.

The script is always the same: allegations of possible revolutionary use are made; the obvious counter-argument that handguns are useless against tanks and dive-bombers are also made, and dismissed because "guns are fun"; those who do not think that guns are fun at all are ignored at best, and regarded as some kind of weirdos from outer space, who for some reason don't care about being mugged. People are told that defending oneself's petty property against petty crime isn't revolutionary, and, on the contrary, fulfills a role in protecting the status quo. This is then dismissed because in the completely unlikely event of a popular uprising, the guns that we have bought for fun and for personal defence against petty crime will then be used to defeat the State's tanks, military aircraft, bazookas and dreadnoughts. At times someone will posit that no, the State wouldn't use artillery against its own citizens. Then Waco and the Paris Commune, etc.

Rinse, repeat, and there we go again.

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30th March 2015, 02:21
Europe turns Left as Greece breaks all records

Originally Posted by Luís Henrique View Post
On another note, it doesn't seem that Europe is turning left. That may be the case of Southern Europe, but to the North it seems rather to be turning to the far right. UKIP, FN, Swedish Democrats… those are the parties making actual inroads in their countries (and in the case of France and UK, huge and frightening inroads, I would say). And then there is M5S in Italy, which while certainly not being the same as the Swedish Democrats or Golden Dawn, or even the UKIP, doesn't smell as leftist either to me.

The results of the recent local elections in France seem to reinforce this. The conventional right in the rise, the far right perhaps even more so, and the socialdemocrats in retreat. No sign of new alternatives to the left of these.

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12th February 2015, 15:51

On another note, it doesn't seem that Europe is turning left. That may be the case of Southern Europe, but to the North it seems rather to be turning to the far right. UKIP, FN, Swedish Democrats… those are the parties making actual inroads in their countries (and in the case of France and UK, huge and frightening inroads, I would say). And then there is M5S in Italy, which while certainly not being the same as the Swedish Democrats or Golden Dawn, or even the UKIP, doesn't smell as leftist either to me.

9th February 2015, 08:06

Originally Posted by Placenta cream View Post
No, telling us to shut up and play the politics is what make one a reformist.

It is really not like you are being told to shut up, is it?

*

Your position, in my reckoning, is summarised as:

Quote Originally Posted by Luís Henrique
The third classic response is to refuse class struggle as it plays out in the real world, since the reformist tendency usually plays a dominant role within it;
While you are certainly welcome to sustain and expound such views, it would be interesting that you acknowledge that they don't solve the actual problem - the fact that reformism is inherent to the position of the proletariat within the capitalist society. Nor they seem to be a good base for actual discussion on how to fight against reformism in practice. On the contrary, they seem to be a theoretical base for capitulation: since real struggle is plagued with reformism, it follows that we shouldn't… struggle at all.

Quote Originally Posted by Placenta cream View Post
I reject the logic that says we even follow the road. I would hope that we don't even have to have this debate. Blow up the rode instead of traveling along it.

Well, the debate is unavoidable. We won't reign on reformism unless we understand what it is and where it comes from.

But fine, let's blow the road up.

Did you bring the dynamite? Show it to us…

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8th February 2015, 13:18

Originally Posted by Placenta cream View Post
What I'm getting from skimming this thread, Chris, is that criticizing reformism makes you "ultraleft".

Curiously, what I am getting from it is that criticising "radical apathy" makes one a reformist…

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