: : : Lenin proclaimed the program of revolutionary defeatism the MINUTE the war started.
: : This did not stop him from engaging his forces in quick border fights on occasion (to strengthen his negotiating position)...
: The Bolsheviks had NO strength to 'neogotiate' ANYTHING with the Germans.
DC: Not in 1918, with Yudenich on the march towards St. Petersburg. But this didnít stop Lenin, who went so far as to offer to declare his country on the side of Germany, et. al. (Read Martin Gilbertís book on the First World War. A very good, not particularly "Randian" book). This alliance was, of course, forgotten as soon as the Ludendorf offensive stalled, and the Americans began to make their weight felt. By 1920, with Wrangel leaving the Crimea, the time seemed right for "Internationalism" - thus, the invasion of Poland (for, although Lenin and Co. might have been Marxists, they were also Russian Imperialists, and particularly rabid ones at that. Thus, the surpression of the various ethnic groups once tied to the old Empire. In the case of Poland, however, the WORKERS ROSE UP, and beat their sorry asses back into the Motherland. Thus, the Pilduski regime.
: : ...or from invading Poland in a program to link up with the Sparticus uprising in Germany.
: Why wouldn't the Bolsheviks support a Polish revolution? They made no secret their urgent need for a European revolution to assist them.
DC: They were not so much supporting a Polish revolution as surpressing it. The Solidarity movement was not the first time that the Poles rose up against Moscow, nor were the Bolsheviks the first Russians to feel the need to crush their subject peoples, but they certainly werenít nearly as against the idea as their rhetoric would lead one to believe. In any case, the Polish city-dwellers, in particular those involved in the technical industries, volunteered en masse for service in the Polish army; this surprise influx of personnel at a critical time led to the resounding defeat of Trotskyís invaders at the Vistula, before Warsaw.
: : This 'rhetoric' was invoked to explain away the terrible deal that Lenin negotiated with his German sponsors.
: Not that old song and dance again!
DC: You sound like a Nazi apologist, groaning at yet another recounting of the HolocaustÖ
: Let's see you SUBSTANTIATE that claim (with anything other than unpublished Ayn Rand manuscripts...)
DC: Again, Iíd have you read Gilbertís book. Not that Iíd consider him a very loyal agent for the Germans - he certainly had his own agenda, and when his quest for personal power was at odds with his relationship to the Germans, you can guess which impulse won out.
: : The idea was that they'd get the lost territory back, once the Revolution was successful and the German government was in a post-war collapse. Very sensible, in a Machiavellian sort of way.
: Well---it worked. Lenin's tactic of revolutionary defeatism was validated.
: But doesn't THAT REALITY rather collapse your idiotic claim that the Bolsheviks were 'sponsered' by the German ruling class?
DC: Sorry if Iíve been misconstrued. I didnít mean to imply that Lenin was a paid lackey of the Germans. He was too deceitful for such a role. I meant to say that Lenin was a duplicitous scoundrel, a murderer and a cheat. What he said and what he did frequently had little to do with the other. Making a deal with this fellow was pretty much worthless; he only understood power, and was only interested in increasing his own. Stalin followed in the masterís footsteps, he did not deviate from it. Those that deny the "Iron Man" at this late date do likewise, is tossing aside a tool that has outlived his usefulness.
Personally, the idea that a high-level Marxist functionary would hold the interests of ANYONE over his own is blatantly ludicrous, plainly borne out by the facts.
: : The NEP, in the sense of experimenting with loosening restrictions on ownership and trade, ended in 1921. Certainly, the resulting private ownership allowed in NEP continued well into the 1920's, right up to the Stalinist purge of the kulaks (his way of 'ending' NEP).
: Your second sentence contradicts your first.
DC: The NEP survived in form, but not in substance, after 1921. The kulaks were slaughtered after the death of Lenin, but their rights to sell the produce from their lands were severely curtailed long before that.
: : In this forced taking and judicious killing, Stalin was actually being true to Marxism and Bolshevism...
: Read Engels' The Peasant Question (brief summary here).
DC: Oh? And what is to be done with capitalists? If the kulaks are "hoarding" their produce (from a governmental body that has seen fit to confiscate it, in the name of the people), if the kulaks are commiting crimes against the revolution, by deliberately destroying the property of the state (by slaughtering their cattle, rather than turning it over; by making vodka from their wheat, so that it might be stored and hidden from communist expropriators), what would Lenin then have to say? Hmm?
When the kulaks were murdered, they had already been reclassified as "petty bourgeois". Marxism is a self-sealing justification for virtually any crime, but donít assume that the slaughters perpetrated in its name are done without an adherence to form. Stalin followed all the appropriate rules.
: Then read Lenin's 'Speech Delivered at the First Congress of Agricultural Communes and Agricultural Artels, December 4, 1919' (Selected Works, International 1975, p. 252) to see that he OUTLAWED 'stupid attempts...to drive the peasants into the communes by force.'
: Hence the N.E.P.
DC: The NEP was allowed to forestall a massive disaster, and to relieve a famine already caused by stupid attempts to drive the peasants into the communes. It became readily apparent to all concerned that, in 1920, the Party could not simultaneously crush the subject states of the old Russian Empire AND force the peasants back into a secular version of serfdom. By 1924, this had changed. "One step back, two steps forwardÖ"
: : P.S. Don't forget Lenin's use of "terror". Terribly useful to the Revolution, according to this clever little fellow. Care to comment?
: Since the bourgeoisie (and their ideological boot-lickers) won't give up their monopolistic privileges by being confronted with REASON or ETHICS or LEGISLATIVE REFORMS, the working class will have to confront them with FORCE.
DC: That force, of course, is more economical if terror is employed along with it, of course. Recently, Nick told me that such reasoning was justification enough for leaving the cold body of said pundit in a stolen car. Care to comment?
: Just like the bourgeoisie did to the monarchy in 1776.
Donít get me started on that bit of business! Damn rebelsÖ