- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Ending the debate

Posted by: Barry Stoller on February 19, 19100 at 19:52:53:

In Reply to: Claims... posted by Red Deathy on February 18, 19100 at 20:19:12:

Stoller: And, as the above figures demonstrate, the Bolsheviks, who were the leading party of the proletariat and the poor peasantry, led the proletariat and the poor peasantry to victory BECAUSE they had the majority support of the proletariat and the poor peasantry:

: 51% of a reduced turn-out does not constitute an overwhelming majority.

Yes it does---of the working class, i.e. a class who works for others.

The task of the Communist Party is to lead the proletarian revolution. In order to summon the proletariat for the direct conquest of power and to achieve it the Communist Party must base itself on the overwhelming majority of the working class. (Trotsky, emphasis added)

: i.e. they lied through their teeth about what they stood for, and agreed with everything the workers said to them, instead of taking a principled stance of stating what they believed in...

I disagree.

The Bolsheviks stated that they would end the war, turn the land over to the peasants, and start building a socialist economy. This they did.

Were there problems? Considering the amount of petty bourgeoisie in Russia and the undervelopment of industry, there were bound to be problems. Should they have thrown in the towel---or refused to take power in the first place?

World history would indeed be very easy to make, if the struggle were taken up only on condition of infallibly favorable chances.(1)

As far as principles are concerned, I believe it is you who fall short.

You promise a socialist revolution without violence---I believe that's either ludicrous or dishonest.

Specifically, however... You claim that the literature of Marx and Engels supports this view---that's untrue. You claim that Marxism promises a return of craft-production---that's also untrue. You claim that the literature of Marx and Engels supports the social division of labor---untrue again. When I point out, with extensive passages from the literature of Marx and Engels, that your claims are unsubstantiated (here and here), you equivocate, going so far as saying (here) that The Communist Manifesto was a clarion call for capitalism. Now you claim the Bolsheviks were based upon 'Jacobin' minority seizure of the state---another untruth (demonstrated with extensive passages here).

You debate with the confidence of an expert, yet you provide nothing to substantiate your allegations.

All you really have going for you is your stubborn audacity.



1. Marx, Letters to Dr. Kuglemann, International 1934, p. 125.

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