- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Depends on how drunk you got me.

Posted by: MDG on March 01, 19100 at 16:26:11:

In Reply to: If I bought the next round of drinks and laughed at your jokes, would you ditch your class orienation and become a Marxist? posted by Stoller on March 01, 19100 at 13:17:00:

: : The fact that violent revolutions have taken place does not contradict what I said, namely, that people with children are loathe to support a violent upheaval of society. Unless that society is already more violent than a potential revolution, that is -- which is not the case with life in the USA circa 2000.

: I don't agree. Revolutions occur because the current ruling class cannot move society foward in regard to productive forces and, thus, their rule becomes a fetter upon the potential productive capacity of society. This is resolved when another class emerges that can move the productive forces of society forward. Often there is no violence UNTIL the ruling class is actually challenged.

While that may be true, I still say that the decision to engage in continued violent struggle is problematic for people of any class if those people have children. Will some choose to put principle above the safety of their family? Undoubtedly. Will many step forward and call for peace, either out of fear for their own or from pacifistic principle? Undoubtedly. As with any hypothetical crisis, it's hard to say how one would really react, but for now, I am telling you that things would have to be awful in the extreme before I'd subject my family to a scenario that could easily equal the Russian destruction of Chechnya.

: Further, we must admit the possibility that the 'peace' enjoyed throughout today's society is no indication of pan-class satisfaction---but, rather, that this 'peace' is simply the bounty of one class's victory over another. Remember, truces are called when one side surrenders.

As I've indicated before, the lower/working and middle/professional classes in the USA are anything but satisfied. Now, shall we engage in a game of semantics wherein a desire for nonviolence change is equated with a truce which is equated with a surrender? I'll say simply that, speaking only for myself, I'm a middle class professional who wants social change through peaceful means.

: Stoller: [D]emocracy came into the world by ANYTHING but democratic means.

: : Are you happy with the results?

: Compared to feudalism---yes indeed. Does humanity STILL have a long way to go? Without a doubt!

It's my understanding that feudalism petered out in the 15th century.
I was talking about the American Revolution and what followed in this country. Would the United States circa 2000 be a better place if 225 years ago we had not militarily engaged the British Empire? Hard to say, of course, but maybe gradual peaceful change to "democracy" would have delivered a truer, more egalitarian democracy today than what we have now. It may be that effective and lastingly good change requires centuries, not decades or even years, to come about.

: : Please don't put words in my mouth, Barry. You know from my previous postings to you that I believe a classless society should be our ultimate destination. Where there is disagreement here is, how shall that destination be arrived at?

: This is where we disagree. I believe that the reforms and legal evolution you champion (at this point in time) is nothing but a cheap nostrum to dupe those who are PRESENTLY really hurting under current social relations. Reforms can only go so far---and, judging by the repeal of most of the reforms of the 20th century, the progressive limits of (bourgeois) democracy have come and gone.

Allow for a moment that I'm not out to dupe anybody, okay?

As for whether your prescription for change, i.e. Marxism, is the correct one, I have a question and a comment: 1) Does Marxism necessarily involve violence, or can be achieved peacefully? 2) I prefer non-violent change.

: Stoller:...ever heard of the 'right to the first night'?

: : Rich dudes fucking women at their whim? Times sure have changed.

: Quantitatively---not qualitatively. Full freedom of marriage can only occur when ALL private property in the means of production are transformed into socialistic ownership; public child care centers, laundries, and dining halls are made accessible to all; and job rotation becomes a cultural norm. Care to say that your precious 'eventual, incremental reforms' will ever get us there?

Shall I answer a question that ends with a snide comment? No.

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