- Capitalism and Alternatives -

November, for the orthodox...

Posted by: Red Deathy ( Socialist Party, UK ) on February 23, 19100 at 13:17:42:

In Reply to: Disowning October posted by Barry Stoller on February 23, 19100 at 11:43:19:

: Why is it an abberation? Where has it ever been tried before?

Never---that's my point.

Then it cannot be an aberation, for it to be aberation, you would have to show that such a feat has been attempted, and under usual conditions, your prognosis of the norm to hold true. Or are you merely meaning, its unlikely.

:Irrelevant. Whether or not Lenin and Trotsky themselves participated in
the Kronstadt mutiny, the nascent Soviet state was right to suppress it
under the conditions. Trotsky's regret that innocents died was honest
enough.

Well, I always thought whether the sailors or peasants was irrelevent, but some trots seem to deem it a line of defence that requires refuting - but you are entirely right, the bolsheviks had to suppress it. i do not 'support' the krondstdt mutineers, I think their actions were pure folly and utterly wrong-headed, but I view it as a symbol/symptom of where the soviet regime was, and why we should oppose the leninist model - there is only one duty for a government, one principle - stay inj power. All principles, goals and ideas are worthless next to that - so a cry of Soviets without bolsheviks - since that can be the only part they objected to, since the rest of the krondstadt platform soon appeared as the NEp - was an attack on the very bolshevik regime's heart itself.

:So busy name-calling that you missed much of my postís content.
The Cheka continued PAST the civil war because the civil war, in many
instances, became a cold war of indeterminate length.

Which is exactly the point I have been trying to develop, that the social conditions of civil war, the social relations, will destroy any attempt to build socialist relations. but, I have to say, that we know that as early as kropotkin's death, the Cheka was operating as a secret police force; and we have to ask serious questions about the establishment of an uncontrolable an unaccountable military force in terms of working class politics.

:That, as I see it,
was the tragedy of the October revolution: that the underdevelopment of
industry and the 'overdevelopment' of petty proprietorship prevented the
Bolsheviks from successfully carrying out their aims.

You mean, that the mensheviks were right?

:But, as I had
hoped the Engels quote at the end of my post would illustrate, seeing
failure could under no circumstances 'inspire' Lenin et. al to turn
their back on their proletarian instincts and accept leading a bourgeois nation.

But thats what they did, though. Their best proletarian instincts would have been better served providing solid democratic checks to the bourgeoisie, to prevent the establishment of a white terror.

:And if you want to insult me, you'll have to do better: the name-calling
stakes have gotten pretty high around here since SDF has joined the
Green party's 2000 campaign...

Its not so much a name calling thing, more a sort of, "I'm debating with someone who would have me shot, come the revolution" sort of thing, its more a sort of scream of despair at people who think that uncontrollable secret police have any place in working class politics. Its more like an echoing of despair in the hollowness of leftism.

I haven't been following otehr debates, to be honest, I've been busy keeping up with you.

: We disowned [the October Revolution] in 1917, when it wasn't
fashionable...

What an effort!

I'll be more precise - early on the members were hopeful that the working class could show how much better they could run things, democratically, but we were clear that it was not a socialist revolution, because only the leaders called themselves socialists, and because Russia had some 200 million people, most of whom weren't workers.

I am not here moralising about the revolution, or engaging in abstractionist, 'what ifs', merely looking at it, and trying to attribute failure, and following the logic through - you and I agree entirely as to why it failed, what went wrong, why Lenin did what he did - I am positively certain had I been he, I would have do precisely the same. My point is that we should follow this through, and reject the bolshevist model of revolution.

Oh, and don't vote Nader folks, spoil yer ballots, vote socialism, not capitalism. ;)


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