: You ingeminate the conventional wisdom about 'negative advertising.' Was JFK's 1960 campaign characterized by 'negative advertising'? After all, it was that campaign (only 60% voter turnout) that began the long era of voter disillusionment that exists today.
SDF: How so? At any rate, you've still failed to buttress your speculation about what the public failure to vote "really means".
: : I don't give a shit WHAT you do, Stoller. Go visit Guyana and drink their Kool-Aid for all I care.
: Pretty hostile debate imagery you got going there, Sam... If Frenchy said such a thing, would you spend less than ten posts trying to psychoanalyze him with ridicule?
SDF: You're the macho man. When will that violent revolution be possible?
: : The fact that you predicate the idea of revolution on some doctrinaire version of what happened in Russia in 1917-1937 (as if it has ANY relevance to today's politics...
: The idea that revolutions occur when ruling classes are no longer capable of ruling is not exactly a newsflash, Sam. (Besides, isn't it YOUR view that an ecological crisis will precipitate mass social change?)
SDF: Actually I'm convinced that the odds are highly in favor of these crises producing REGRESSIVE social change, while allowing the US government to stay in business.
Meanwhile the left bickers with itself. What shall we bicker about next? Unreachable utopias? Russian history? Ever wonder why I've contributed so little to McS of late? Can you say "waste of time"?
: : And how do the people know this, too, isn't just another pack of lies?
: Workers judge a party by its behavior during class crisis when workers gather their own invaluable political experience. How do you know Joel Kovel isn't lying?
SDF: That's a risk I'm willing to take, since Kovel isn't asking me to make him a leader in any violent revolution, or in any other way except as an intellectual publicist for ecosocialism. BTW, are we in a "class crisis"? Speaking of judging the behavior of our comrades, are we up for some more more triumphalism?
: : Oh yeah, the "worker's state." One wonders what sort of superhero Stalin really was, to face down the ENTIRE WORKING CLASS (whom Stoller supposes were really in power in Revolutionary Russia) to gain power! Did he wear a cape and tights after emerging from phonebooths?
: Did the bureaucratic reaction occur in 1924? Or did it take at least 5 years for it to assume shape? You should read Stalin's Problems of Leninism to see just how far he had to go...
SDF: Staring down the entire working class in ONLY five years? Wow! If only Trotsky had had possession of some high-quality green Kryptonite, why the revolution would be saved...
: Stoller: If Lark's me-first politics were any further to the right, Sam, he'd fall off the map.
: : Doubtless a knee-jerk response to YOUR prodding.
: Blame me for Lark’s perverse denial of class relations? If Lark (or anybody else) will only accept socialism if they're flattered and cajoled, how resolute do you think their 'new-found convictions' will be when the capitalists let loose the fascist under-forces?
: Stoller: While we're at it: Can I say I'm a member of the Green Party while talking about turning the rain forest into Disneyworld---or would the Green Party act like a 'vanguard' and throw me out?
: : Ah, but the Green Party contains differences of opinion as to what's Green.
: You didn't answer the question: Would they like a member who says the rain forest should be turned into a parking lot? That, after all, is like a communist party wanting members who deny class differences...
SDF: No, but the Greens wouldn't go rushing to a VANGUARD to decide against such a member...
: Stoller: You say that capitalist democracy is better than nothing. I say you should be ashamed of yourself.
: : Bullshit. Voting in itself has nothing to do with the charade of "bourgeois democracy"...
: Yes it does. It legitimizes bourgeois democracy (does it really require ironic quotes?).
SDF: More subjectivism from the self-proclaimed prophet of "scientific socialism". What really legitimizes bourgeois democracy are the cops. Elections, as Marx once said, are occasions when bourgeois democracy risks itself. The quote is paraphrased in the Dictionary of Communism.