- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Paradox resolved

Posted by: Nikhil Jaikumar ( DSA, MA, USA ) on November 21, 1999 at 19:17:54:

In Reply to: Still holding on to your private 10%---or was it 20%---of the means of production, NJ? posted by Stoller on November 19, 1999 at 23:45:04:

: I rather suspect that the part of my essay that bothered you the MOST was this part:


: After all, there ARE members of the proletariat class who readily support 'some' inequality and readily support 'some' private ownership of the means of production.

You can 'suspect' whetver the hell you like, but to me it smacks of teh same democratikc centralist ideology which holds that you know better than the workers what they REALly think and what they REALLY want. You're essentially saying that you know my motivations better than I do. I'm sorry, but EACH PERSOn is the ONLY one who knows what they're really thinking. You cannot get inside my mind.

: : If society as a whole is in favor of socialism, then workers, just like everyone else, should not be allowed to become capitalists and lord it over their fellows. But they should certainly be able to cast a vote and opinion for whatevre system they like...

: Your second sentence obviates your first.

No, properly understood there is absolutely NO CONTRADICTION. The apparent paradox you see is resolved by the concept of FREEDOM. Workers (and the People in general) have the right to CHOOSE whatevre system they like. Democratic communism, socialism, Leninism, anarchism, capitalism, conservatism, liberalism, social democracy, monarchy, representation etcetra. ONCE CHOSEN, however, the legal structure of the society will be designed in accordance with the philosophy they have chosen. For example, if they choose socialism, laws must be drawn up that declare private ownership out of bounds. This is nothing but the construction of what the people sees as just laws, and the subsequent implementation of such laws. If at some later date, the majority of the People decides that they want to live under acapitalist regime, then a certain measure of private property must be allowed (IF the decision has TRULY been made dmeocratically, without coercion or bribery or media bias, which seems unlikely). Certain things, e.g. free speech and the welfare systemn, are basic human rigts and can never be removed. But the decsiion as to what type of economic system to sue must be decided by the majority of the people, and must be always open to revision at regular intervals.

: Returning to your question:

: : Look at the quote [above].It's saying that workers who choose to follow religion, social democracy, etcetera should not be able to lead teh workers? Why no, if the workers support them?

: Because such 'revolutionary leaders' will simply 'lead' the workers BACK TO CAPITALISM.

Yes, but too damn bad if that happens; if the workers want to follow tehse guys, they mjust be able. The freedom to choose one's ideology and political leaders is a basic human right, and as such it trumps the question of what economisc system would be best.

: Only the 'leaders' will become the new capitalists.

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