- Capitalism and Alternatives -

history is always made by struggle.

Posted by: andy ( resistance - socialist youth organisation, australia ) on October 10, 1999 at 17:49:31:

In Reply to: Socialism and Capitalism posted by Lark on October 07, 1999 at 11:36:04:

> I think socialists should be less worried about capitalism
> and more worried about anything that simply isnt socialism,
> I mean if you get locked into this whole puesdo-marxist critic
> of capitalism alone how do you fight against pre-capitalist or
> post capitalist oppression?

We think some people should be less pontificating and more organised in struggle. Yes I'm pretty happy to be "locked into this whole puesdo-marxist critic of capitalism" and so are my comrades.

Using the marxist method and studying the history of such things as oppression, we find that history is always made by struggle.

So we find it hard to take seriously anyone who isn't testing their ideas out on the street, at every upsurge against the evils of this society.

> "how do you fight against pre-capitalist or post capitalist oppression?"

If you'd been out on the streets, you'd already have some answers by now - we've worked some stuff out over the last 30 years we could always let you in on ...

(from a recent post by Lark)

> What is required is a Citizens wage paid by the authorities
> to every citizen, as close as possible to, if not equal to the
> average workers income and totally tax free, additional income
> would be taxed at a flat rate of about 50% until introduction
> costs can be diminished etc. Labour is now decommodified and if
> you can't get a job you'll be alright and if you dont want to
> work, which SHOULD BE YOUR RIGHT, you don't have to.

Where do I start ? Well, firstly I would sincerely hope that no-one believes in utopias. You can't just go around saying "I reckon we should do things this way" if it doesn't bear some semblance to the possibility of it occurring in reality and not just some idea someone thought of. Unless you plan on becoming a dictator that is.

Notwithstanding the uptopianism of it all, Lark's struggle for change only extends to a fight for a welfare right - "the average workers income". Does this mean that you like this society if only there was no poor?

> Why Marxism? I hope Marxism is dead for good.

Gee lets just throw analysis out the window then! What alternative view of describing the plight of humanity do you propose in stead of a class analysis?

Marxists want to get rid of bourgeois society, that is to say, class society. Does Lark want to get rid of bourgeois society? Of course. Is Lark a bit confused then? Probably.

The point that Dehno completely misses is that capitalist society sufferes crises of OVER-production. It's already the case that technology is advanced enough for it to be possible for basic economic problems to pale into insignificance.

What have the capitalists been forced to do to counter this crisis of over-production? Hello planned obsolescence! And don't forget the production of totally useless crap just to keep the economy growing. Also don't forget the crap comes complete with the packaged, 30-second lie that is the TV advertisement urging you to consume.

It is already possible to satisfy very rapidly the world's needs and wants. They (the bourgeoisie) aren't going to admit anything until they've really fucked it up. After some nuclear war, or some fatal side effect from all this mucking around with genetically engineered food, or the collapse of parts of the bioshpere - they'll all blame each other but even then they won't blame the system.

We should want to completely get rid of bourgeois society - at its heart is utter inhumanity: competition.

Socialism, in a word - cooperation, will mean a return to the very activity that began the construction of human beings in the first place. The use of tools, the development of intelligence benefits of increased hand-eye coordination, the working together in clans to increase chance of survival, the whole darn time-consuming evolving thing that finally ended up as the human being.

The commodification of humanity has hastened the effects of alienated labour in terms of lonliness and separation (at least the serfs didn't have to deal with suburbia) - no wonder the violent & depressed soceity.

We became human by struggling together and that coincidently enough is what we'll have to do to change anything. To the streets comrades! (even if its just a stall with some radical propaganda - from little things big things grow)

finally, from the last chapter of a book I like very much:

In the higher phase of socialism, humanity will pass beyond formal equality in the distribution of consumer goods and services to actual equality, that is, to the operation of the rule from each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs.

As a result of the planned development of the productive forces and the full automation of production, socialism in its higher phase will be able to assure society such an abundance of goods that labour will cease to be a requirement for the satisfaction of people's material wants.

Each individual's material wants will be freely satisfied according to need. Labour itself will disappear and be replaced by free creative practice.

The state, as a special apparatus of coercion, will wither away and be replaced by a purely technical administration of the general business of society based on the people's voluntary fulfilment of social duties.

Socialist society in its mature phase will be based on the most complete human solidarity. The leisure and educational opportunities which will be afforded to everyone through the provision of material abundance will offer every individual possibilities for the fullest development of their creative abilities.

For the first time a truly human society will exist in which the free development of each individual will be the condition for the free development of humanity as a whole.

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