Alright leftcoms, it's time to explain yourselves.Concerning the majority of...

Caleb Davis
Caleb Davis

Alright leftcoms, it's time to explain yourselves.

Concerning the majority of leftcom principles, you barely find any information on the internet. Stuff like organic centralism or spontaneous revolution is barely - if at all - explained, or maybe I have just read the wrong sources. Whatever the case, from my limited observations those ideas seem a little obscure.

Anyways, to me leftcom posters always seemed, in spite of their occasional arrogance, like rather well-read and intelligent people, so I struggle to believe that the general conception of leftcom (specifically bordigist) theories("the absolute armchair", "literally do nothing" etc.) is accurate.

And no, I will not just "read Bordiga". Convince me of the value of your positions, and I shall do so, but not without you giving me a proper reason. My time is limited, and I have a lot of other stuff yet to read.

TL, DR: leftcoms (specifically bordigists), give me a crash course on your positions, without directing me to some tomes of yours.

All urls found in this thread:
https://symptomaticcommentary.wordpress.com/2014/08/19/the-brain-of-society-notes-on-bordiga-organic-centralism-and-the-limitations-of-the-party-form/
https://www.marxists.org/archive/bordiga/works/1951/class-party.htm
https://www.marxists.org/archive/bordiga/works/1926/lyons-theses.htm
http://www.international-communist-party.org/English/Texts/CPTraLef/CPTraLe2.htm#IV.4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDDaHmA2psw
https://www.marxists.org/archive/brinton/1970/workers-control/02.htm
https://kokkinogati.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/philosophy-of-the-encounter.pdf
Brayden Hall
Brayden Hall

And no, I will not […] read

Gavin Sanchez
Gavin Sanchez

We have this thread every fucking week.

Ryder Hernandez
Ryder Hernandez

BOR-digguh

Lincoln Lee
Lincoln Lee

leftcom dishonesty is taken to this extent
he said don't tell me to read bordiga, not I won't read. Jesus christ
and they are never able to answer properly. They literally can't tell you how "organic centralism" would be structured, or why it would be more "organic" than other organisational forms.

Communisers are just pretentious ancoms and they cannot tell you how they are any different.

Josiah Miller
Josiah Miller

read bordiga
someone had to do it

Evan Flores
Evan Flores

No.

Gabriel Jenkins
Gabriel Jenkins

Pls spoonfeed me, I refuse to read and I'm gonna be a huge, pretentious dick about it
Here's a good, short article you can start with OP:https://symptomaticcommentary.wordpress.com/2014/08/19/the-brain-of-society-notes-on-bordiga-organic-centralism-and-the-limitations-of-the-party-form/

Nathan Taylor
Nathan Taylor

Lmao, I remember you. You're still mad over that thread? Get fucked, brainlet

Colton Gutierrez
Colton Gutierrez

It's literally explained in every one of these threads tho. Stay mad brainlet.

Brody Rivera
Brody Rivera

OP here

Asking for a basic explanation
Say I don't want the "read Bordiga" meme
Say that I will read him if I'm given an incentive
Call leftcoms generally intelligent people
"A huge, pretentious dick"
Ok.
Thank you for the article nevertheless.

Bentley Thompson
Bentley Thompson

Leftcommunists were just the original anti-Stalinist socialists before the Trotskyite cultists earned a monopoly in that field, they were never a coherent movement.

Now the few retards dumb enough to still parade that label exist basically nowhere outside the internet. Their principal characteristics are misanthropy, megalomania, and old-left nostalgia. Their whole movement is best ignored and forgotten, if we stopped giving them attention they'd all leave the board in a few months so please do the world a favor and don't reply to this thread

Gabriel Ramirez
Gabriel Ramirez

Oh sorry, I mistook you for the other anti-leftcom poster at . My bad, you're probably not a pretentious dick.

Brayden Ross
Brayden Ross

Stalinism a shit, and Trotsky was shit too. Leftcoms are just communists who criticize other communists from the left. There's plenty to criticism that needs to be had on the left, some leftcoms just have bad criticism. Stop being so assmad over a little criticism.

Hunter Miller
Hunter Miller

Except that Leninist organizational practices and party discipline is why they actually managed to lead a real proletarian revolution. What successful revolutions have left comes led?

Carson Price
Carson Price

nice doublepost, brainlet (stay mad). It is "explained" in the vaguest terms possible so that it doesn't mean anything and then refuse to elaborate and throw out buzzwords such as Utopian. There are certain "leftcom" positions that have merit, but organic centralism is a joke and communisation theory is The Conquest of Bread for people who like to waffle

Joshua Ross
Joshua Ross

inb4
no revolution has ever been successful because value has never been abolished.
Anarchists have come the closest tho big ups to the Mahkno

Jaxson Flores
Jaxson Flores

Yeah congrats on collectivizing a very small part of an already small region with your weak bandit state that accomplished basically nothing. Hoorah anarchy

James Young
James Young

Except that Leninist organizational practices and party discipline is why they actually managed to lead a real proletarian revolution.
Lolnope. The revolution was as successful as it was despite the organizational practices that Lenin laid out, not because of them. Additionally many of the organizational practices that MLs hold dear were only adopted because they made sense for the material conditions they had at the time. More than anything Lenin was pragmatic, which is a good thing; but this is lost on most modern MLs, who are dogmatic as fuck and don't understand why the USSR failed beyond "muh imperialism".

Gabriel Flores
Gabriel Flores

accomplished the beginnings of true communisation, one of only a handful of people in history to accomplish even this, the communist goal

Jayden Garcia
Jayden Garcia

without directing me to some tomes of yours.

https://www.marxists.org/archive/bordiga/works/1951/class-party.htm

https://www.marxists.org/archive/bordiga/works/1926/lyons-theses.htm

Luke Anderson
Luke Anderson

Wot

Adrian Sanders
Adrian Sanders

Actually, I recommend you read the first one OP, then you'll fully understand the idiotic autism that is bordigism.

Jaxson Fisher
Jaxson Fisher

Organic centralism is basically centralism without democracy. as opposed to democratic centralism. Organic Centralism is specific tot he italian leftcommunist , mainly Bordigists. it's a theory of the organization of the revolutionary communist party.

Bordiga saw party politics as voluntary act. you shouldn't be "forced" into obeying orders if you disagree with the principles and tactis of the party, in contrast to how it was under Democratic Centralism.
he saw the need for enforcement of obedience necessarily creates a party bureaucracy, which is the other side of the coin of Democracy.
so how do we avoid such a situation? by having an a strict and clear revolutionary party principles and tactics. hence, when all the memebers of the party agree on that specific program, minor disagreements can be solved without the use of bureaucracy and democracy. people aren't "voted" into their party position, they organically fill the position they are most fit for.
that way, by having a clear party program and tactics, you avoid intra-party drama and splits and majorities and minorities as it was the case in the Russian Social Democratic party with the mensheviks/bolsheviks.

I can give you something to read on it but from your post you don't seem keen on reading material. I hope I helped. you can ask me more if you want

Hudson Allen
Hudson Allen

Democratic centralism was literally only democratic in name only. Bordiga also believed that if you had a minority position you should be kicked out of the party.

people aren't "voted" into their party position, they organically fill the position they are most fit for.
wow that totally won't get abused at all.

organic centralism is a meme for people who's only problem with democratic centralism was that it had democracy in the name. get the fuck out of here with that gay shit.

Benjamin Foster
Benjamin Foster

read more kid http://www.international-communist-party.org/English/Texts/CPTraLef/CPTraLe2.htm#IV.4

Bordiga also believed that if you had a minority position you should be kicked out of the party.

that's the fucking point. you are only in the party if you agree with the program and tactics. if you don't you aren't forced to carry out the orders. you don't get disciplined, no list of punishments etc. and most importantly you don't get fractions that fundamentally disagree with each other so you don't get different camps that stick with each other. that way you avoid the bureaucratization of the party. as I said, read more.

Wyatt Sanders
Wyatt Sanders

I've read enough of leftcommunist texts to know I am disgusted by it, and organic centralism in particular.

guess what happens when you try to apply that logic to the dictatorship of the proletariat, whereby you believe the party is supposed to somehow represent the proletariat? You get a small clique of party insiders dominating the state apparatus, a tyranny a theoreticians, probably the most despotic form of government imaginable.

Disagreement is a part of life, a part of participating in society. Try not being autistic for once and go outside.

Here, why don't you read.

Without general elections, without unrestricted freedom of press and assembly, without a free struggle of opinion, life dies out in every public institution, becomes a mere semblance of life, in which only the bureaucracy remains as the active element. Public life gradually falls asleep, a few dozen party leaders of inexhaustible energy and boundless experience direct and rule. Among them, in reality only a dozen outstanding heads do the leading and an elite of the working class is invited from time to time to meetings where they are to applaud the speeches of the leaders, and to approve proposed resolutions unanimously – at bottom, then, a clique affair – a dictatorship, to be sure, not the dictatorship of the proletariat but only the dictatorship of a handful of politicians, that is a dictatorship in the bourgeois sense…

Lucas Martin
Lucas Martin

I did not argue for why organic centralism is correct in theory, I merely explained it to a person who asked. you jumped on me for assumingly misrepresenting it. I replied to you with actual clarification and now you have nothing to say about that.

now you want to argue whether Organic Centralism in party is correct in theory. which is fine and a good discussion. but don't jump on like an idiot and then try to shift the subject to save face.

Julian Watson
Julian Watson

I literally didn't contradict you anywhere on organic centralism, I'm just here to show how it's the dumbest fucking thing in leftism since democratic centralism.

Carson Butler
Carson Butler

you did by implying it's the same as democratic centralism without the label democracy. anyway. I'll bite. what's your problem with organic centralism? I'm assuming bourgeois notion of freedom and liberty or whatever?

Ryder Cruz
Ryder Cruz

It's the same in effect, that's all I care about. You're delusional if you don't think it will lead to bureaucracy when in power.

My problem with it, as I've repeated several times now, is that it is not a dictatorship of class, but the empowerment of a party clique.

But I should note that workers too care about liberty, of their liberty, and the party is the enemy of that liberty just as much of the bourgeoisie. If any revolution is to be successful, any """"vanguard""" party that consolidated state power must be removed from such power as soon as possible. Dismissal of concerns over liberty as bourgeoisie is exactly why everyone hates leftcoms.

Colton Jenkins
Colton Jenkins

you make some false assumption here. Bordiga does say that the Proletarian state should be lead by the revolutionary party, but that doesn't mean he's against structures like the councils where the whole class asserts its dominance. for example he liked the establishment of soviets in revolutionary Russia. here's what he said :
Since the proletarian state apparatus is an instrument and a weapon of struggle in an historical transitional period, it does not derive its organisational strength from constitutional rules or from any representative schema. The highest historical expression of such an organisation until now has been the workers’ soviets born in the course of the Russian Revolution in October, 1917, when the working class organised itself militarily under the exclusive leadership of the Bolshevik Party

your assumption that it will lead to bureaucracy is I assume dependent on some metaphysical belief in "human nature" and how it tends to corruption and greed. mainly you think like a liberal, from that stems your support for democracy understandably.
the rejection of Party and State because they create leaders, chiefs and power-brokers, who, due to the weakness of human nature, will inevitably be transformed into a muh privileged group; into a new dominant class (or caste?) to live off the backs of the proletariat.

These superstitions about "human nature" were ridiculed by Marx a long time ago when he wrote in a short, pithy sentence: Monsieur Proudhon ignores that all history is nothing but a continuous transformation of human nature. Under this massive tombstone can be laid to rest countless throngs of past, present and future anti-Marxist idiots.

But I should note that workers too care about liberty, of their liberty, and the party is the enemy of that liberty just as much of the bourgeoisie. If any revolution is to be successful, any """"vanguard""" party that consolidated state power must be removed from such power as soon as possible. Dismissal of concerns over liberty as bourgeoisie is exactly why everyone hates leftcoms.

you have a fundamental understanding of what the party is and what it constitutes in Bordigas mind. it isn't a number of fixed individuals. as he put it
This practicalism is a distortion of Marxism, whether highlighting the resolution and vigour of leaders and vanguard groups at the expense of doctrinal scruples, or when referring back to some ’class’ decision, or consultation of the majority, with an air of having chosen the path that most of the workers, impelled by their economic interests, preferred

what matters to bordiga is the party program. the party are just the most advanced part of the proletariat, who understand the historical task of the international proletariat and willing to act accordingly.
if the formal party abandons that historical mission, it is no longer the real party. the real party is those people, *whether they are grouped into a formal party or not*, who are most conscious of the historical mission of the proletariat.
this party can't be seperated from the calss, it has a dialectical relationship to it, it is an revolutionary *organ* of the class. and naturally, when the mass movement degenerates, formal parties degenerate too. as it happened in Russia. and the radical groups have to regroup again into a formal party or several.

the problem with the Russian Revolution wasn't that greed or lust for power got into the heads of the revolutionaries. it was that the revolution in Europe failed. the proletarian state could not sustain itself as it governs a capitalist system. that along with tactical errors of the international, the Russian revolution degenerated.

understanding the fun of the Russian revolution in terms of lack of political freedom or free speech is fundamentally liberal. that's why we call people like you liberals. because you can't escape that dominant ideolgy.

Aaron Nguyen
Aaron Nguyen

They literally can't tell you how "organic centralism" would be structured, or why it would be more "organic" than other organisational forms.
Maybe because it's precisely not an organisational form (which you'd know if you had read Bordiga).

Wyatt Richardson
Wyatt Richardson

you have fundamental missunderstanding*

James Perry
James Perry

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDDaHmA2psw

Nolan Miller
Nolan Miller

Damn, thanks for these posts. You were calm, clear, and reasonable the entire time and I learned something new by watching you school that person.

Oliver Butler
Oliver Butler

Leftcom samefagging is so disgustingly shameless, no "schooling" happened here

Henry Williams
Henry Williams

Bordiga does say that the Proletarian state should be lead by the revolutionary party, but that doesn't mean he's against structures like the councils where the whole class asserts its dominance.
This is a massive contradiction, and through that very quote it's blatantly obvious. Lenin and the Bolsheviks destroyed all power in the soviets as soon as it became convenient to do so. A dictatorship of party and a dictatorship of class is completely incompatible.

your assumption that it will lead to bureaucracy is I assume dependent on some metaphysical belief in "human nature" and how it tends to corruption and greed
'no'
I'm telling you it will lead to bureaucracy because it's the only logistically possible way a party dictatorship can survive, both militarily and if it wants to centrally plan an economy.

The Bolsheviks did what they did because it was necessary to hold onto power, and they wanted to hold on to power not because they were power hungry or greedy, but because they genuinely believed in their cause. No one is so cynical to think even Stalin did everything for personal gain.

mainly you think like a liberal, from that stems your support for democracy understandably.
And you think like an idealist, from that stems your support for party despotism.

These superstitions about "human nature" were ridiculed by Marx a long time ago when he wrote in a short, pithy sentence: Monsieur Proudhon ignores that all history is nothing but a continuous transformation of human nature.
Wow you're really getting into this strawman argument.

it isn't a number of fixed individuals. as he put it
Does it matter to the workers if their dictators change every so often, it certainly doesn't now. And yes, he's literally advocating for left-elitism, sometimes he even starts to sound like Burke.

what matters to bordiga is the party program.
Suddenly the question of the dictatorship of the proletariat has nothing to do with the actual power of the working class, but with the magic words written on a pamphlet.

the party are just the most advanced part of the proletariat
this is the biggest meme I've ever heard.

*whether they are grouped into a formal party or not*, who are most conscious of the historical mission of the proletariat.
You're literally just using the abstraction of the most advanced part of the proletariat to justify the rule of the formal party. Fuck off.

this party can't be seperated from the calss, it has a dialectical relationship to it, it is an revolutionary *organ* of the class.
You know, except for all the times that it openly betrayed the working class's interest and destroyed institutions of its power.

if the formal party abandons that historical mission, it is no longer the real party.
<if that real party does something I don't like it wasn't real organic centralism.

when the mass movement degenerates, formal parties degenerate too.
<it wasn't the Bolshevik's fault, it was the masses' fault!!

the proletarian state could not sustain itself as it governs a capitalist system
There was never a proletariat state, they destroyed all proletarian power in the very act of creating a one party state, all in the name of revolution and logistics.

The problem with the Russian revolution is that it was occurring in a backwater pre-capitalist economy which needed to industrialize beyond all else. The necessity to do so contradicted proletarian power and so it was crushed. I'm not asking you to try to judge the russian revolution by some ideal, I'm telling you your ideal blatantly contradicts the reality, that organic centralism in the same situation would have just as easily created the bureaucracy and potential for consolidation that lead to Stalin. I'm telling you, that if you want to see actual proletarian power in action, you WILL see disagreements, and you will see the free thought and you will need all the institutions that make such disagreements possible.

The word democracy, in the context of ancient athens, literally meant the rule of the poor. They did this without any concept of liberalism, and the ideology of this democracy was that of freedom and dignity. That was the ideology of working class power.

Also
Rosa Luxemburg was a liberal
fuck off.

Benjamin Hughes
Benjamin Hughes

Leftcoms seem really fucking smart when they criticize other communist tendencies, but when it's time to talk about their own ideas they end up looking like complete idiots almost every time. It's pretty funny.

Alexander Ramirez
Alexander Ramirez

I've tried to understand a little bit of Bordiga, but to me it just seems like a narrow theoretician's attempt to legislate unity by fiat.

The problem is that, outside of a very general set of class interests, the proletariat is not a monolithic entity. They are divided by nationality, trade, region, etc. and all will end up wanting different things. This is a problem when you attempt to install a "dictatorship of the proletariat" organized on Leninist principles, but make it the governing authority of a sovereign state or collection of states. The very natural disagreements in day-to-day economic, political, budgetary strategy etc. suddenly become intolerable impediments to the DotP which much be stopped. Democratic/organic centralism seems like an institutional arrangement which is guaranteed to devolve into despotism or bureaucracy, unless massively decentralized or sidelined by another institutional arrangement which handles day-to-day governance more flexibly.

Owen Moore
Owen Moore

Suddenly the question of the dictatorship of the proletariat has nothing to do with the actual power of the working class
Congratulations, you're starting to get it.

The question of the dictatorship of the proletariat has everything to do with what is effectively done with "the actual power of the working class [by itself]", and thus has anything to do with said power only insofar it is used to apply the communist program – for if it's not, it is crushed!

James Morris
James Morris

<it wasn't the Bolshevik's fault, it was the masses' fault!!
And you call people idealist…

Alexander Bailey
Alexander Bailey

We have a handful of those threads every week and they are invariably posted by the type of person who typically whines about sectarianism all the fucking time.

Daniel Gonzalez
Daniel Gonzalez

power doesn't mean anything unless it is confined to my autistic party program
you're a fucking moron.
The working class was crushed under the boot of such a program thousands of time over.

people in power don't have agency
bolsheviks weren't responsible for what the bolsheviks did
every time the bolsheviks failed, it was the masses who failed them.
end urself m8.

Samuel Bennett
Samuel Bennett

This is a massive contradiction, and through that very quote it's blatantly obvious. Lenin and the Bolsheviks destroyed all power in the soviets as soon as it became convenient to do so. A dictatorship of party and a dictatorship of class is completely incompatible.

the contradiction is all in your mind. it's obviously because of your fundamental lack of understanding of what the party means to Bordiga as a class organ and it's relationship to the proletarian class. hence you presume to perceive it as an entity separate from the class and above it. therefore it does not make sense in Bordiga's writing to speak of "dictatorship of the party" as opposite or seperate from "dictatorship of the proletariat". in the same way that the Party leads the revolution, but doesn't do the revolution by itself without the proletarian class.

I'm telling you it will lead to bureaucracy because it's the only logistically possible way a party dictatorship can survive, both militarily and if it wants to centrally plan an economy.

again, your fundamental understanding of Bordiga's conception of party, class and the proletarian state. a centralized power is unavoidable, first for the proletarian state to suppress the bourgeoisie counter revolution, and second to centralize the production. the soviets are part of that too, which are a form of organization that includes the whole of the proletariat. led of course by the party, of course in bordiga's conception not yours.
the importance of the an advanced section of the working class organized in a party and leading the proletarian state is because it's the section that is consciouss of the proletariat's historic task and it's international position. the majority of the class would necessarily reacts to their immediate concerns, different sectins of the class in different regions are going to have different immediate concerns, without a centralized form of organization that leads the whole class under a unified and an internationalist goal, there break up of the unity of the working class is guaranteed. concern-trolling about central organization is narcho-tier.

The Bolsheviks did what they did because it was necessary to hold onto power, and they wanted to hold on to power not because they were power hungry or greedy, but because they genuinely believed in their cause. No one is so cynical to think even Stalin did everything for personal gain.

the bolsheviks early on understood very well that they need the aid of the European Proletariat to succeed. else the revolution would degenerate. with the failure of European revolutions, predictably opened the space for counter revolution in which Stalin took over. there wasn't much that the bolsheviks could do anyway, without revolution in Europe they're undeniably fucked, which is exactly what happened. of course they made tactical errors too which Bordiga recognized as well.
And you think like an idealist, from that stems your support for party despotism.

you evidently don't even know what the class party means. educate yourself.
Wow you're really getting into this strawman argument.

that's a quote from bordiga on human nature.
Does it matter to the workers if their dictators change every so often, it certainly doesn't now. And yes, he's literally advocating for left-elitism, sometimes he even starts to sound like Burke.

your understanding of the party is so embarrassing, it mimics liberal concern-trolling to the note.
it's not a matter of "dictators change" or whatever the fuck that means. your ideology is so tainted by bourgeois nonsense.
first of all, the question of centralization of power and prodcution is of great importance. we know that it's impossible or the whole class to have the conscioussness and the vision of the historical task of the proletariat in aiding the internationalist movement and seeking its aims. it is natural that they would respond to their immediate economic consideration and demands that do not necessarily align with the interest of the global proletariat. what do we do then? if each section of the worker react to their economic concerns the unity of the proletarian state will disintegrate. and if it's at an early stage of the itnernational revolution it won't be able to do it's task in aiding the international proletariat or the transformation of the mode of production.
that is why it matters that the most advanced part of the class be organized in a centralized form, be it one party or a group of party, that is ready to acts in the interest of the international communist revolution.
now until you have an answer to these questions without invoking liberal concern-trolling about spooky "dictators" and immediatist fetishism of "the worker", no one needs to take you seriously.

Ethan Torres
Ethan Torres

Suddenly the question of the dictatorship of the proletariat has nothing to do with the actual power of the working class, but with the magic words written on a pamphlet.

you're such a fucking moron.
what matters is the revolutionary doctrine with relation *to the party* not the class. you missed the whole fucking point. the point is, the party in Bordiga's sense isn't about conscious individuals, it's about an organized group that is an *organ* of the class, that is aware of the historic task of the proletariat in the revolutionary transformation of the mode of production. what matters is that "awareness" that is transformed into party revolutionary doctrine. whenever this exists, the class as it "being for itself" exists, of course through the party.
this is the biggest meme I've ever heard.
whether they are grouped into a formal party or not*, who are most conscious of the historical mission of the proletariat.

<The class forms itself as certain conditions and relationships brought about by the consolidation of new systems of production are developed – for instance the establishment of big factories hiring and training a large labour force; in the same way, the interests of such a collectivity gradually begin to materialise into a more precise consciousness, which begins to take shape in small groups of this collectivity. When the mass is thrust into action, only these first groups can foresee a final end, and it is they who support and lead the rest. When referring to the modern proletarian class, we must conceive of this process not in relationship to a trade category but to the class as a whole. It can then be realised how a more precise consciousness of the identity of interests gradually makes its appearance; this consciousness, however, results from such a complexity of experiences and ideas, that it can be found only in limited groups composed of elements selected from every category. Indeed only an advanced minority can have the clear vision of a collective action which is directed towards general ends that concern the whole class and which has at its core the project of changing the whole social regime. Those groups, those minorities, are nothing other than the party

-bordiga

You know, except for all the times that it openly betrayed the working class's interest and destroyed institutions of its power.

it's like you don't read what I say.
as I said, when the formal party betrays the working class interest(by working class interest I'm assuming you mean the communist revolution, not some petty bourgeois notion of self-management), then the formal party is no longer a party. the party is defined by it's aim at a revolutionary transformation of the mode of production. i the formal party does not seek that aim anymore, it is no longer the actual class party.
it wasn't the Bolshevik's fault, it was the masses' fault!!

idealism101 interpreting history as a matter of actions of individuals and politicians.
There was never a proletariat state, they destroyed all proletarian power in the very act of creating a one party state, all in the name of revolution and logistics.

ideologies do not move history. the bolshevik's ideas about party organization are not what destroyed the Russian revolution.

I'm not asking you to try to judge the russian revolution by some idea

then why the fuck say idealist shit in the first place.
that organic centralism in the same situation would have just as easily created the bureaucracy and potential for consolidation that lead to Stalin

where the fuck have I claimed that organic centralism would not have lead to stanism? unlike you I don't believe ideas or tactics matter much in the face of historical forces. the European revolutions have failed, and that is what ultimately killed the russian revolution. with, of course, acknowledging that mistakes were made by the bolsheviks, but they did not matter much.

Oliver Clark
Oliver Clark

I'm telling you, that if you want to see actual proletarian power in action, you WILL see disagreements, and you will see the free thought and you will need all the institutions that make such disagreements possible.

this is liberal democracy fetishism. I thought the point of communism was destroying the state with it's superstructure of democratic and representative politics…
organic centralism is way of organizing the party, not the state. that's first. second, no shit the people will disagree, as I said, most of the workers would react to their immedite economic concerns and demands, and that neccessarily do not fall in the interest of the international proletarian revolutions.
what does your democracy fetishism provides for an answer here? if it's up to majority vote, with capitalism still in place, and as we know, the dominant ideology in society is the ideology of the ruling class, the class would vote shit that is not in the interest of the international proletariat, and most likely open up the space for counterrevolution through opportunistic "populism"

3/3

Brody Powell
Brody Powell

whines about sectarianism all the fucking time.
True, it can get annoying but is a very annoying issue itself

Grayson Bennett
Grayson Bennett

are you really so insecure you assumed that person was me?

Brandon Lopez
Brandon Lopez

Bordiga; The problem with Stalin is that he didn't let people "organically" fill positions and his name wasn't Bordiga.

Carter Miller
Carter Miller

hang on, so this means Holla Forums is technically the class party rn?

William Bennett
William Bennett

people in power don't have agency
Like I said: textbook idealism.

Jacob Fisher
Jacob Fisher

Lenin and the Bolsheviks destroyed all power in the soviets as soon as it became convenient to do so.
How?

Samuel Price
Samuel Price

do you get your opinion on things from internet memes?

Jonathan Hall
Jonathan Hall

If I keep autistically believing that the party exists as a tool of the working class, AND ONLY A TOOL, then it will be true
I know what Bordiga thinks, he's a fucking idiot. The party is the party, to think it's anything more than a particular organization is nothing but metaphysics.

a centralized power is unavoidable
Centralization and decentralization has nothing to do with it beyond Bordiga's autistic belief that the party should be the locus of all revolutionary activity. during the rise of fascism he even openly rejected all organic working class resistance to the fascists, and refused to work with anyone not directly affiliated with the communist party.

Tell me of a single time that a party has "led" the working class and not betrayed the revolution after taking power. It certainly didn't happen in Russia, or in any of the other leninist inspired revolts.

leading the proletarian state is because it's the section that is consciouss of the proletariat's historic task and it's international position
History gets on with itself whether we are conscious of it or not.

That the working class would have different concerns in different areas, that they have immediate interests, is exactly why they must be in power. If your program is against the interests of the working class, who exactly is it for? History?! Don't make me laugh. Or if you prefer, you can let their concerns go unaddressed and wait till they explode into revolt that needs to be violently put down later. The fact that you celebrate that a party would have different interests than the working class is very telling. And no, those differences wouldn't end at some internationalist sentiment (which has always been used opportunistically once they gain state power).

concern-trolling about central organization is narcho-tier.
I have no quarrel with centralization as such, only centralization that is not under the thumb of the proletariat.

the bolsheviks early on understood very well that they need the aid of the European Proletariat to succeed
The civil war, the interventions, would have occurred either way.

with the failure of European revolutions, predictably opened the space for counter revolution in which Stalin took over.
Yeah, it's the damn kraut's faults that we had stalin. lmao.

of course they made tactical errors too which Bordiga recognized as well.
yeah it's not like Bordiga didn't make any tactical errors himself, lol.

you evidently don't even know what the class party means.
I know what it means. I'm telling you its fucking stupid. If you're only argument is "no you don't understand THE TRUE ESSENCE" people are going to see through your bullshit.

that's a quote from bordiga on human nature.
And yet I haven't brought up a single thing about human nature. you're getting spooked by shadows.

lol how do we deal with divisions in the interests of the working class
YOU FUCKING LET THEM TALK ABOUT IT AND COME TO THEIR OWN DECISIONS ABOUT IT. If there's one thing democracy is good at it's reconciling interests.

In the mean time, you could do well with trying to address the historically understandable concern of the phenomena of communist dictators and communist party dictatorships, which no, have historically not been dictatorships of class. The fact that you have no answer for that beyond constant scapegoating tells everyone you don't want to be taken seriously.

Owen Cox
Owen Cox

It's really not very complicated. Like Bolsheviks, we're communists in that we accept Marx's critique of capitalism, and proper Marxists in that we accept and his revolutionary theory of a socialist transition state, which distinguishes us from anarcho-communists. But we're not like Leninists because we want more personal freedom and less centralization of power, and most of us are down with multiple political parties. Trots are hard to classify on this spectrum, because he's almost certainly left of Lenin, which might make him a sort of leftcom too, but his ideas about participating in bourgeoisie politics would probably put him in oposition to most leftcoms.

Aaron Wright
Aaron Wright

The party is special because of it's awareness of history
this is idealism of the highest order. Go worship history on reddit, and take the rest of these fags with you. The party does not transform the mode of production, the natural laws of the logic of the current mode of production changes itself. The interests of proletariat is the expropriation of the bourgeoisie, that is universally true, and they don't need a fucking party to tell them that.

One capitalist always kills many. Hand in hand with this centralisation, or this expropriation of many capitalists by few, develop, on an ever-extending scale, the cooperative form of the labour process, the conscious technical application of science, the methodical cultivation of the soil, the transformation of the instruments of labour into instruments of labour only usable in common, the economising of all means of production by their use as means of production of combined, socialised labour, the entanglement of all peoples in the net of the world market, and with this, the international character of the capitalistic regime. Along with the constantly diminishing number of the magnates of capital, who usurp and monopolise all advantages of this process of transformation, grows the mass of misery, oppression, slavery, degradation, exploitation; but with this too grows the revolt of the working class, a class always increasing in numbers, and disciplined, united, organised by the very mechanism of the process of capitalist production itself. The monopoly of capital becomes a fetter upon the mode of production, which has sprung up and flourished along with, and under it. Centralisation of the means of production and socialisation of labour at last reach a point where they become incompatible with their capitalist integument. This integument is burst asunder. The knell of capitalist private property sounds. The expropriators are expropriated.

The capitalist mode of appropriation, the result of the capitalist mode of production, produces capitalist private property. This is the first negation of individual private property, as founded on the labour of the proprietor. But capitalist production begets, with the inexorability of a law of Nature, its own negation. It is the negation of negation. This does not re-establish private property for the producer, but gives him individual property based on the acquisition of the capitalist era: i.e., on cooperation and the possession in common of the land and of the means of production.
t. Marx

Excuse me if I take Bordiga's fairy tail explanation of parties with a grain of salt. Reminds me of the beginning of econ textbooks describing how markets came from barter.

it's like you don't read what I say.
It's like you don't realize you have to back up what you say with evidence.

the party is defined by it's aim at a revolutionary transformation of the mode of production
If I define the party as always being right, I win!
lmao

idealism101 interpreting history as a matter of actions of individuals and politicians.
looking at actual actions people take as effecting the world around them is idealism.
learn something new everyday.

Julian Campbell
Julian Campbell

ideologies do not move history.
Your entire theory is that the party's ideology moves history. Wake the fuck up.

then why the fuck say idealist shit in the first place.
because I'm asking you NOT to be one

there were no structural reasons for the rise of stalin
uh huh.

The Bolsheviks did what was necessary to stay in power, I'll say that much. Whether that was a good thing or not in the grand scheme of thing, is impossible to say.

Pointing out that people have disagreements in the real world is democracy fetishism
ok

I thought the point of communism was destroying the state with it's superstructure of democratic and representative politics…
There is no "democratic" bourgeoisie state and there never has been. The point of the dictatorship of the proletariat is to reach communism, and the only way to have a dictatorship of the proletariat is through democracy, which is both the rule of the working poor and the rule of the majority.

if it's up to majority vote, with capitalism still in place, and as we know, the dominant ideology in society is the ideology of the ruling class, the class would vote shit that is not in the interest of the international proletariat, and most likely open up the space for counterrevolution through opportunistic "populism"
<MFW leftcoms actually admit they despise working class power
If the proletariat have authentic power in a capitalist system, and that includes all the benefits the former bourgeoisie had, then we've actually solved many of the problems of the development of productive forces. At once, popular resistance to consolidation is removed as is resistance to international trade. States have been actively undoing the consequences of the law of value for over a century now in an attempt to stave off revolution, we wouldn't have to worry about that anymore.

Ryan Brooks
Ryan Brooks

That's not me dumbass and nice reddit spacing.

physical actions people and organizations make are ideas
how about no.

Lenin destroyed the autonomy of all the working class organizations including the soviets in order to stabilize production for the war. The soviets were nationalizing things too much and too chaotically for their liking. Guess that expropriation of the bourgeoisie is only ok when the party does it.

Caleb Parker
Caleb Parker

Nigga you are in some bad company.

Xavier Davis
Xavier Davis

Lenin destroyed the autonomy of all the working class organizations including the soviets
How?

Joshua Williams
Joshua Williams

Nigga you are in some bad company.

How do you figure, comrade?

Carter Jenkins
Carter Jenkins

If the proletariat have authentic power in a capitalist system
It doesn't. That's the whole point. Every bit of power it may seize, the proletariat can only do two things with it: use it to destroy capitalism; or lose it. Only when capitalism is no more can the proletariat have actual, authentic power. But then the proletariat is no more either.

Wyatt Lee
Wyatt Lee

https://www.marxists.org/archive/brinton/1970/workers-control/02.htm

Start at around December.

Ian Sullivan
Ian Sullivan

They would have class domination, that IS power, and I mean it as authentic as the bourgeoisie have in power in the current capitalist states. If you don't accept this class domination as authentic power, you're certainly not a marxist and you certainly don't believe in a dictatorship of the proletariat.

Zachary Lewis
Zachary Lewis

Replacing "power" with "domination" doesn't change a thing. There are only two things the proletariat can do with it: destroy capitalism, or lose it.

Aaron Robinson
Aaron Robinson

But we're not like Leninists because we want more personal freedom and less centralization of power, and most of us are down with multiple political parties.
<entire thread is leftcoms saying centralisation of power is good and democracy is unnecessary and not that important

Nolan Williams
Nolan Williams

which is the whole point of a dictatorship of the proletariat, it is for the purpose of the expropriation of the bourgeoisie. But that's still exactly having power in a capitalist system. Stop playing semantics

Cooper Rivera
Cooper Rivera

meant for

Blake Wright
Blake Wright

This necessarily implied the perpetuation of hierarchical relations within production itself, and therefore the perpetuation of class society.
The building of socialism […] can only be the self-conscious and collective act of the immense majority.
Wtf is this shit?

Hudson Diaz
Hudson Diaz

which is the whole point of a dictatorship of the proletariat, it is for the purpose of the expropriation of the bourgeoisie.
And it is an actual dictatorship of the proletariat only insofar as it effectively abolishes property, ie: accomplishes the communist program.

See? You're getting it.

Benjamin Nguyen
Benjamin Nguyen

I know what Bordiga thinks, he's a fucking idiot. The party is the party, to think it's anything more than a particular organization is nothing but metaphysics.

<I give you a whole paragraph quoted from Bordiga about the party
<ignores it and yells "the party is the party"
Tell me of a single time that a party has "led" the working class and not betrayed the revolution after taking power. It certainly didn't happen in Russia, or in any of the other leninist inspired revolts.

the bolsheviks led the working class to a successful proletarian revolution. the degeneration later isn't because of some inherent wrong with the party as a revolutionary class organ.
History gets on with itself whether we are conscious of it or not.

what the fuck does that even mean
That the working class would have different concerns in different areas, that they have immediate interests, is exactly why they must be in power. If your program is against the interests of the working class, who exactly is it for? History?!

the party is an organ of the class as whole, meaning, the whole of the international proletariat, not some segments in a specific region. and on that principle the party acts.
Or if you prefer, you can let their concerns go unaddressed and wait till they explode into revolt that needs to be violently put down later.

that's certainly possible. that's why the proletarian state can't exist in a capitalist mode of production for too long. the revolution need to happen in a lot of places rapidly for communism to ever have a chance.
r. The fact that you celebrate that a party would have different interests than the working class is very telling. And no, those differences wouldn't end at some internationalist sentiment (which has always been used opportunistically once they gain state power).

see this demonstrates your lack of understanding about what the party is.for the fourth time it is not a seperate entity from the class. during revolutionary times the whole class gains revolutionary consciousness and places it's trust in the advanced groups. but that can not last for long as the immediate concerns for the different people over-weighs the revolutionary sentiment of that period over time. that's one more reason why the proletarian state can't exist alone iin isolation. as the revolutionary sentiment of the whole class begins to wither away, so does the party. it can reside over the whole class if the class has no trust in it.
I have no quarrel with centralization as such, only centralization that is not under the thumb of the proletariat.

literally nobody argued the opposite.
The civil war, the interventions, would have occurred either way.

Jackson Lee
Jackson Lee

and?
Yeah, it's the damn kraut's faults that we had stalin. lmao.

you're such a dumbass I'm not sure why I'm wasting my time educating you. pointing fingers is what liberals like yourself obsess with. trying to understand historical forces that were under play isn't a game of pointing fingers
yeah it's not like Bordiga didn't make any tactical errors himself, lol.

he probably did. that's irrelevant. again liberals like yourself are obsessed with putting blame on individuals. what matters is his theory not his individual.
I know what it means. I'm telling you its fucking stupid.

I think I have demonstrated several time by now that you don't understand what Bordiga meant by class party.it's not my fault you don't want to let go your preconceived notion about it that you probably got from a meme somewhere.
And yet I haven't brought up a single thing about human nature. you're getting spooked by shadows.

your rhetoric heavily implied that, as I have already explained
YOU FUCKING LET THEM TALK ABOUT IT AND COME TO THEIR OWN DECISIONS ABOUT IT. If there's one thing democracy is good at it's reconciling interests.

it's not unusal for democracy fetishist liberals like yourself to miss the point by obsessing over muh freedomzz. the divisions of interest of the class isn't solved by democracy, that's the whole fucking point of why bourgeois democracy is the superstructure of capitalism. it's a symptom for the disintegration of the unity of the working class and the drawback of it's revolutionary consciousness, hence the need for a mechanism to mediate that disintegration. exactly like it's needing for the mediating of individuality in liberal capitalist societies
phenomena of communist dictators and communist party dictatorships

lol, if you know anything about bordiga you would know he would be the first one to call those "communist" party dictatorship counterrevolutionaries.

Oliver Scott
Oliver Scott

have historically not been dictatorships of class.

example of Russia only. the degeneration into a capitalist party dictatorship isn't to be understood as something inherent to the existence of revolutionary party. again your obsession with leaders and politicans will rather than studying the historical forces in play.
this is idealism of the highest order

you don't know what idealism is, stop embarrassing yourself
The party does not transform the mode of production

no one fucking said that, the proletariat transforms the mode of production lead by the party.
the natural laws of the logic of the current mode of production changes itself

that seems like a mechanistic economic determinism shit
The interests of proletariat is the expropriation of the bourgeoisie, that is universally true, and they don't need a fucking party to tell them that.

lol, then why haven't they done it so far? it isn't a mechanical gradual process. there are periods of revolutions and counter revolution. nothing inevitably happens. there are vast periods of working class passivity. the task of the party isn't to teach the proletariat what it had to do, but to lead it through the process.
excuse me if I take Bordiga's fairy tail explanation of parties

you have to understand him first.
If I define the party as always being right, I win!

I can't take this much stupidity. you fucking moron for the 10th time, there is something called the materiall party, it's the section of the working class that becames aware of it's historical position with the class and task of revolutionary transformation of the mode of production. that is seperate from individuals in a formal party regardless of their revolutionary doctrine. that is the whole fucking basis on which Bordiga's theory on the party, class and class dictatorship is based. if you don't understand that and laugh at it just goes to show how ignorant you are and proud about it.
looking at actual actions people take as effecting the world around them is idealism.

individual politicians*
Your entire theory is that the party's ideology moves history. Wake the fuck up.

I can't keep explaining the same shit over and over again. if you're interested in understanding go read his work, don't come up with this shit it's tiresome
The Bolsheviks did what was necessary to stay in power, I'll say that much. Whether that was a good thing or not in the grand scheme of thing, is impossible to say.

lol you have no actual marxist understanding of revolutions and counterrevolutions. no wonder you're such a liberal
There is no "democratic" bourgeoisie state and there never has been

lol
The point of the dictatorship of the proletariat is to reach communism, and the only way to have a dictatorship of the proletariat is through democracy,

lol
<MFW leftcoms actually admit they despise working class power
muh masses

literal social democracy opportunism

Justin Clark
Justin Clark

it can't, not can*

Wyatt Bailey
Wyatt Bailey

History itself is an ideological construction, especially with regard to historical positions, roles, stages, subjects, their consciousnesses, and its movement. "ideas don't Move History" from people arguing correct ideas itt, amazing.

Jonathan Garcia
Jonathan Garcia

The dictatorship of the proletariat is the class domination of workers over the bourgeoisie. If it doesn't abolish property that's a problem with Marx's theory, not the proletariat.

I give you a whole paragraph quoted from Bordiga about the party
I don't know if you realize this, but the words of bordiga don't actually do anything but establish the positions of bordiga, they don't reveal any deeper truth about the real world. I've told you a thousand times over that I understand Bordiga's conception of the class party, and I agree with your description of it, but that conception is wholly detached from reality and is in blatant contradiction with it.

the bolsheviks led the working class to a successful proletarian revolution
Yeah, you know, minus the proletarian part. The revolution degenerated because it was incompatible with the material conditions of the civil war and immediate development of the productive forces. I'm not assigning anyone blame in that fact. But, *the way* in which it degenerated was clearly orchestrated by the Bolshevik party, no one who knows the history of the early USSR can deny the impact of the party and it's organization.

what the fuck does that even mean
It means history doesn't give a fuck about your opinions. History hasn't stopped since 1917, it didn't stop in 1991 either, even when the communist movement lay in tatters. The end of capitalism will come whether we like it or not, all we can do is try to make sure the proletariat are in control when it happens, and that it happens before complete ecological catastrophe.

the party is an organ of the class as whole, meaning, the whole of the international proletariat, not some segments in a specific region.
You keep saying that, it doesn't make it true. No party once taking state power has had an international character, do you know why, because now the interests the must respond to are the interests of a state and not that of the international proletariat. And no amount of wishing is going to make that so.

the revolution need to happen in a lot of places rapidly for communism to ever have a chance.
Then you're advocating for a completely ahistorical version of revolution, considering how long it took previously modes of production to spread.

during revolutionary times the whole class gains revolutionary consciousness and places it's trust in the advanced groups.
No they don't, they put their trust in the groups who act in their own interest, irregardless of how "advance" they are. There were several groups that had more support than the Bolsheviks and they were beaten military and strategically not by some sacred process of trust and consciousness. Revolutions aren't just sentiment, they're guns and battles.

what matters is his theory not his individual
What matters above all else is actions.

Easton Reyes
Easton Reyes

blame games
I was only following the logic of your own statements. However, we're here to dissect the past and you're petty protesting about assigning blame is only working to obscure exactly why things happened the way they did. It was not because of the failure of the german revolution that Lenin so tightly and centrally organized the party, it was because he feared a repeat of the end of the French revolution, where the bourgeoisie were brought low by their peasant class enemies. And it's also likely true that without this specific centralization of the party, it would not have been so easy for stalin to secure power.

then why haven't they done it so far?
Because they don't have power dumbass, and every revolution has seen a communist party attempt to destroy such power in the name of lenin and marx.

there is something called the materiall party, it's the section of the working class that becames aware of it's historical position with the class and task of revolutionary transformation of the mode of production. that is seperate from individuals in a formal party regardless of their revolutionary doctrine. that is the whole fucking basis on which Bordiga's theory on the party, class and class dictatorship is based.
Yeah and guess what, his theory has absolutely no fucking basis in reality. It's not going to be this "materiall"
party that gains state power, it will be the formal party.

individual politicians*
look up overdeterminism, you might just learn something.

Bitch I've had to suffer through the fucking democratic principle, the Lyon's thesis and Proletarian Dictatorship and Class Party. Bordiga is a gratingly stupid idealist philosopher who took all of the necessary measures of the russian revolution as theoretical goals and then *still* completely unmoored them from reality. Every single complaint he makes about democracy can be doubled at his theory of class party which remains nothing more than a vain abstraction. At one point he even quotes a section of Marx's comments on the Paris commune to justify his anti-democratic screeching, when the very sentence before it praises the commune for its universal suffrage! If you're only defense is that I "just don't get bordiga" then you really don't have anything else to bring to this conversation.

literal social democracy opportunism
nodanarquement.png

Josiah Parker
Josiah Parker

If it doesn't abolish property
… it restores the class domination of the bourgeoisie.

Xavier Lewis
Xavier Lewis

The end of capitalism will come whether we like it or not, all we can do is try to make sure the proletariat are in control when it happens
So according to you "the end of capitalism will come" no matter the proletariat is "in control" or not?

Asher Murphy
Asher Murphy

You have a very limited imagination. State's have shown themselves to be quite capable of undoing the consequences of the law of value. Capital accumulation and consolidation are very easy to undo with taxes and anti-trust laws, only the law of profit is more difficult. I do think they will abolish property, but you shouldn't see these kind of situations in such binary terms, many things are possible.

Yes. But if the proletariat are not in control, it will probably be replaced by something far worse.

John Harris
John Harris

You have a very limited imagination. State's have shown themselves to be quite capable of undoing the consequences of the law of value. Capital accumulation and consolidation are very easy to undo with taxes and anti-trust laws, only the law of profit is more difficult.
I'm totally not a socdem guys, I swear!

I do think they will abolish property, but you shouldn't see these kind of situations in such binary terms, many things are possible.
No. What is possible is the communist revolution, that is the complete abolition of property on a global scale. What is not possible as long as there's still private property is "workers' power", "democracy" and all these fetishes you keep blabbering about.

Landon Hughes
Landon Hughes

I'm totally not a socdem guys, I swear!
If it was up to me I would repeal all the anti-trust laws. You can't deny that's been going on, however, if capitalism was allowed to continue according to its logic unabated, communism would have already happened by now. In the end, however, these measures only delay the inevitable obsolescence of capitalism.

What is possible is the communist revolution, that is the complete abolition of property on a global scale.
I'd like to think so, yes. It remains, however, hypothetical.

What is not possible as long as there's still private property is "workers' power", "democracy" and all these fetishes you keep blabbering about.
You know, besides all those times it actually happened. The Paris Commune still had private property, the soviets and councils of the 20th century still existed in a situation of capitalism. Athenian democracy, which, according to all the anthropological evidence we have was indeed class domination of the poor working class, existed for two hundred years. This is straight out of aristotle's mouth who Marx repeatedly praised as a "giant thinker."

Power is hardly a fetish. The worst one of all, however, is history. Let it be the things that happen, and not this grand scheme you've dreamt up for the future.

Kayden Thomas
Kayden Thomas

this screeching is really draining. I'll try to be respectful. maybe you try too we could learn something from each other instead of useless attacks, it all feels like LARPing honestly.
I don't know if you realize this, but the words of bordiga don't actually do anything but establish the positions of bordiga,

it's marxist theoretical work based on the experience of the working class of his time and in the past, and on the work of Marx. Marx actually expressed a similar take on the party :
<“The League, like the Society of Friends in Paris and a hundred other associations, was only an episode in the history of the party which grows everywhere spontaneously from the soil of modern society… Under the term ‘party’, I understand party in the great historical sense"
Yeah, you know, minus the proletarian part

I think hardly anyone can argue that the October revolution had no proletarian character. and as a state it was an example of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat. though it's I'd say it lost it's proletarian character way earlier than Bordiga says in my opinion
It means history doesn't give a fuck about your opinions. History hasn't stopped since 1917, it didn't stop in 1991 either, even when the communist movement lay in tatters.

I don't disagree
No party once taking state power has had an international character

the bolsheviks for a brief while had a pretty good international character
because now the interests the must respond to are the interests of a state and not that of the international proletariat. And no amount of wishing is going to make that so.

neither I nor Bordiga can see the future. the point is that if a communist revolution has any chance of actually succeeding it has to be international.
but you yourself don't offer a solution to the problem. if the party isn't going to guarantee the integration of class unity(of the whole world not just within that specific country)then democracy for the reasons I explained wouldn't do it. what forms of organization do you suggest? keep in mind the problem is that socialism can not be in one country, and if the proletarian revolution in a certain country is concerned with itself only and the different sections of different region are looking for their own immediate interest it will never have an international character, and the state will lose any proletarian character quickly since it's isolated.
Then you're advocating for a completely ahistorical version of revolution, considering how long it took previously modes of production to spread.

bourgeoisie revolutions are different from proletarian ones. I explain why just above. you didn't base your rejection of my quote based on an analysis of the communist movement, rather than the example of the bourgeois one. can you ground your rejection based on the communist movement and give solution to the problems I listed above?
No they don't, they put their trust in the groups who act in their own interest

no one denies that. the party in revolutionary times is the one that represents the interest of proletariat, so the flock behind it. without the proletariat the party can't win. now of course some other groups with different kind of support might win, and if that group. no one says it's impossible.

Brody Jones
Brody Jones

It was not because of the failure of the german revolution that Lenin so tightly and centrally organized the party,

I never said that. I said because of the failure of the revolutions in Europe the proletariat in Russia remained isolated, and hence they had an inevitable defeat. at certain point the state no matter how revolutionary or proletarian it is, whether it's run by democracy or party dictatorship, it has to abide by the laws of capital. it can never survive on it's own. hence why revolutions in other countries is neccessary. not because I like it, but because if communism were to have any chance of success, that's how it has to be like.
And it's also likely true that without this specific centralization of the party, it would not have been so easy for stalin to secure power.

I don't know of any evidence for that. but it doesn't matter, stalin is just one person, but he represented the counterrevolution. now if you may try to explain how a democratic structure of the proletarian state could have made things better? on the side of keeping the counter revolution at bay, and secondly keeping the state with a proletarian character while presiding over a capitalist society?

if you can't answer those questions no amount of ranting about the party is gonna be of use.
Because they don't have power dumbass, and every revolution has seen a communist party attempt to destroy such power in the name of lenin and marx.

explain how communist government could have prevented the degeneration of the proletarian state through the two questions I pose above.
Yeah and guess what, his theory has absolutely no fucking basis in reality. It's not going to be this "materiall"

it's similar to Marx's theory as I have alluded to above and incidentally to Pannekok's :
<“The proletariat’s organisation – its most important source of strength – must not be confused with the present-day forms of organisations … The nature of this organisation is something spiritual – no less than the whole transformation of the proletarian mentalit

now of course they disagree on the formal party, but of the material party they express similar views. so Marx, Bordiga and Pannekoek theories have "no basis in reality"?

Jayden Long
Jayden Long

democratic government not communist government*

William King
William King

at certain point the state no matter how revolutionary or proletarian it is, whether it's run by democracy or party dictatorship, it has to abide by the laws of capital.
Yeah but the other user disagree with that (and materialism altogether).

Daniel Price
Daniel Price

I think I should have really stayed on that point to get what their point was. instead the fucking arguing culture of this place got me defensive and we started talking about irrelevant shit with insults.

Jace Roberts
Jace Roberts

it's marxist theoretical work based on the experience of the working class of his time and in the past
If there's anything to be learned from the experience of the italian communist party its "don't do that"

As for Marx's take, yes, I'm well prepared to say that many communist parties are organically a part of the working class movement, but the whole context here has been a dictatorship of the proletariat, of getting state power. This is another matter entirely.

The October revolution had a proletarian character to the extent the working class actually had power, which was really only the first year of the revolution. I had assumed you meant it as a whole. Sure, the Bolsheviks had an ""international"" character at first because they needed diplomatic and military support. Comintern, however, remained a russian dominated institution from almost the very start.

In regards to global socialism, I still say democracy is the method of organization, there is a need to set up international democratic institutions to fill these roles and for workers to form international associations that have real policy setting and economic power. These will take time to build, logistically speaking, but modern communication technology should make it quite viable once it's set up. Keep in mind, interests are not just regional and there are bound to be many cross cutting issues.

If you're asking for an analysis of the communist movement in it's current state, I would say it's in an even worse position to have a global revolution than in the early 20th century. Most mass parties are either social democratic or openly reactionary. The best hope there is, strategically speaking, is for it to happen in the US first, or else hope the US experiences some sort of collapse that makes the situation more viable around the world.

I said because of the failure of the revolutions in Europe the proletariat in Russia remained isolated, and hence they had an inevitable defeat.
I've never disagreed that defeat for the communism in russia was inevitable. I started off my pointing out their economy was mostly pre-capitalist in nature.

Hunter Howard
Hunter Howard

at certain point the state no matter how revolutionary or proletarian it is, whether it's run by democracy or party dictatorship, it has to abide by the laws of capital.
There is a bit of a misconstruing here. The laws of capital apply to capital, the state, while not being capital, has to react to it and its changes. Superstructure, like politics and states, is built off of the economic base, in this case of capital and wage labor, but it doesn't correspond to it 1 to 1. The bourgeoisie state, however, pre-supposes private property, it's existence is predicated on the existence of class. It must therefore do everything it can to forestall the destruction of capitalism to ensure its own survival. This includes fighting back against the motions of capitalism which lead to its own negation. The state of the dictatorship of the proletariat is still a bourgiosie state, and indeed if it was alone in a world of capitalism, it would almost certainly need to trade commodities with its neighbors to survive. Thus, if you actually want the state of the DOTP to whither away, you must make it subservient to the masses who have it in their power to destroy it, and you must build up new economic structures which are not in the hands of the party and state, but the hands of the working class as such.

Stalin is just one person, but he represented the counterrevolution.
He was also a powerful despot who's clumsy and misplaced policies needlessly lead to the death's of millions. Hell, even if Bukharin had Stalin's office many peasant's lives may have been saved and Russian capitalism would have been developed without so many illusions of socialism (he advocated for a slogan of "get rich" in order to encourage the production and selling of grain) which has so negatively construed the name. If there had been a democratic structure to the state, we'd also see almost certainly more sensitive price policies which were the source of so many problems in those days. And if that structure had been preserved into the second half of the 20th century, we may have seen genuinely socialist measures being undertaken when the material conditions made them more possible. But instead, the pretense of socialism was given up to save the real ruling class, the nomenklatura.

The nature of this organisation is something spiritual – no less than the whole transformation of the proletarian mentalit
Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's just idealism buddy.

Marx himself certainly wouldn't have used the word "spiritual" in such a context. In terms of the DOTP, Marx only spoke of the proletariat seizing state power, not a party. Luxemburg, however, saw that this could only be accomplished via unlimited democracy, and she was right. Marx himself, was certainly open to either possibility. Subsequent events have shown the party dictatorship to not be up to the task.

Adrian Sullivan
Adrian Sullivan

okay this is constructive and actually agree with a lot of stuff. I wish we had this attitude from the start instead of wasting time trying to insult each other.

As for Marx's take, yes, I'm well prepared to say that many communist parties are organically a part of the working class movement, but the whole context here has been a dictatorship of the proletariat, of getting state power. This is another matter entirely.

I was not referring only to the state form. I was talking about the material party and how its formed. and as I've shown Marx had similar understanding of the material party to that of the Bordiga.
I agree though Marx did not specify a form of organization of the proletariat as the working class. though at his time he thought the french commune was that example. but it doesn't matter

we mostly agree on the October revolution having a proletarian character and losing it quickly so I won't get into that.
I still say democracy is the method of organization, there is a need to set up international democratic institutions to fill these roles and for workers to form international associations that have real policy setting and economic power.

alright fair enough, but this far you haven't justified the reasoning behind your insistence on a democratic form so far or have responded to the criticism of it. and if you don't do it later in the post I'll pose the criticism again in a clearer way perhaps.

now this paragraph is what I want to get into :
This includes fighting back against the motions of capitalism which lead to its own negation.

not sure what you're trying to say here. but that "motion" I assume is the proletariat itself. so if you're saying the bourgeois state has to fight the proletariat to preserve capital then sure no disagreement
Thus, if you actually want the state of the DOTP to whither away, you must make it subservient to the masses who have it in their power to destroy it, and you must build up new economic structures which are not in the hands of the party and state, but the hands of the working class as such.

okay so this may seem like a justification for your support for democracy, but It's not satisfactory I'm afraid. so I'll reiterate the criticism within my reply to this part.
as you have said, the proletarian state if it's isolated will naturally by governing over a capitalist mode of production. it's job is to begin the transition to a socialist mode of production. here the state is the whole of the working class. you don't disagree since you say "but the hands of the working class as such". that's absolutely true and so far I don't disagree.
but there are problems here.
first, say a proletarian revolution is successful in a certain country. the proletarian state in that country, democratic or one party system or system of soviets alone, can never transform the social relations into socialist ones. because as you said, a country in isolation has to trade commodities with it's neighbors.
so that makes the issue of success of the revolution internationally of paramount importance for the success of the communist revolution. and the proletarian state in that country, naturally,, in order to begin the transition has to first do all it can to agitate and aid an international revolution of the proletariat.
so. with that in mind. the criticism of democracy here is that, if the proletarian state in this case is organized in a democratic form, the state has to act to the will of the majority. but the problem is that the majority will probably not be able to act in sacrifice of itself to the success of the international proletariat. the immediate economic concerns that faces the workers, in a democratic system, will have to come at the forefront of concern. even if the proletariate tried to maiintain an internationalist consciousness after their revolution, it can never last long. immediate concerns strike hard.

Dylan Hill
Dylan Hill

so in that scenario, the proletarian state would stop acting as the aid and help of the international proletariat, rather, it will act like a bourgeois state, for the economic narrow interest of it's citizens. and that will of course include capitalist policies since socialism can't exist in one country.
that is one criticism of democratic organization that I'd like to see you respond to.
another criticism would be that these immediate and diverse economic need, manifested by the will of the majority in the hands of the state, would reflect the narrow economic interest of the majoity. meaning it will reflect the will of independent producers and private property. the centralization of production can't be carried out to the will of the majority since i might very well hurt the economic interest of large groups of people.

so in conclusion, the criticism of democratic form is first, it is very likely that it diverts the attention of the proletariat away from the international revolution toward its own narrow economic interest. secondly, since the different economic concerns of different groups acted upon by the state will reflect the disintegration of the class and highlights the existence of independent producers and private property.

Marx himself certainly wouldn't have used the word "spiritual" in such a context

eh… pannekoek isn't idealist. I don't think using the word spiritual indicates that but it doesn't matter. I'm saying while he was different from bordiga he had similar view on the material party. just like marx's.

Alexander Gray
Alexander Gray

organization of the proletariat as the ruling class , not the working class*

Andrew Butler
Andrew Butler

Yeah, I'm kinda used to leftcoms just using insults instead of arguments. I'm glad we can be more mature.

the material party
from what you've described, such a group of people would exist regardless. I would also argue, if this is a matter of having experts in the right place, that a democratic system would be perfect for putting those people in place to carry out the directives of the working class. Albeit within a framework where the working class is the ultimate decider of all things. As Marx put it:
<While the merely repressive organs of the old governmental power were to be amputated, its legitimate functions were to be wrested from an authority usurping pre-eminence over society itself, and restored to the responsible agents of society. Instead of deciding once in three or six years which member of the ruling class was to misrepresent the people in Parliament, universal suffrage was to serve the people, constituted in Communes, as individual suffrage serves every other employer in the search for the workmen and managers in his business. And it is well-known that companies, like individuals, in matters of real business generally know how to put the right man in the right place, and, if they for once make a mistake, to redress it promptly. On the other hand, nothing could be more foreign to the spirit of the Commune than to supercede universal suffrage by hierarchical investiture.

but this far you haven't justified the reasoning behind your insistence on a democratic form
First of all, democracy isn't a form, it's a power relation. Elections or voting are not inherently democratic, and in fact the Athenians considered elections to be extremely anti-democratic as they favored those who had the most time to practice rhetoric, the elites. Democracy is a system whereby all measures are taken to prevent the accumulation of power into a single individual.

but that "motion" I assume is the proletariat itself.
In the final instance, yes, but this is a more complicated game than just beating the proles with a stick. There's also a carrot. This is what brought about social democratic reforms, labor reforms, competition laws ect. Those in charge of states are well aware that they are playing a game whereby they must stave off revolt while ensuring their own survival.

the proletarian state in this case is organized in a democratic form, the state has to act to the will of the majority. but the problem is that the majority will probably not be able to act in sacrifice of itself to the success of the international proletariat. the immediate economic concerns that faces the workers, in a democratic system, will have to come at the forefront of concern. even if the proletariate tried to maiintain an internationalist consciousness after their revolution, it can never last long. immediate concerns strike hard.
Yeah, the immediate economic concerns of the native workers will come first, and they'll come first no matter who's in charge because that *is* the stuff revolts are made of. What will happen, however, if the workers are genuinely in control, is that they will leverage class struggle everywhere to their advantage, as at the very least they know that the elites of all countries are their enemies. In ancient Athens, this is what happened:
<In regard to the allies: the Athenians sail out and lay information, as they are said to do; they hate the aristocrats inasmuch as they realize that the ruler is necessarily hated by the ruled and that if the rich and aristocratic men in the cities are strong, the rule of the people at Athens will last for a very short time. This is why they disfranchise the aristocrats, take away their money, expel and kill them, whereas they promote the interests of the lower class.
Of course, athens was also an empire, and so was the soviet union, as will likely be any state in that situation by necessity of survival.

and that will of course include capitalist policies since socialism can't exist in one country.
In that situation, making capitalist policies would be the right thing to do. They're not socialist after all. Many hair-brained state sponsored schemes in the soviet union were brought about because they were genuinely operating on the assumption they were a socialist economy.

The bottom line, however, is that an isolated country with a proletarian revolution is always going to act in the interest of the proletariat that live there, there's no getting around it. The best you can hope for is that the proletariat are genuinely in power so they will attack all class enemies around the world, for their own sake, even if the workers of other countries become subordinate to them.

>eh… pannekoek isn't idealist
It feels like the same tact I saw in Dauve. The problems of the 21st century were, according to him, problems of mindset, not strategy or military failure. That, to me, is idealism.

Easton Ward
Easton Ward

The bottom line, however, is that an isolated country with a proletarian revolution is always going to act in the interest of the proletariat that live there, there's no getting around it.
Yes there is: expand the revolution.

Jaxson Rivera
Jaxson Rivera

And that "expansion" can't fall on another state, even a DOTP. Only the proletariat of that specific country can truly liberate themselves, or, as we already established, they will be dominated by the interests of another region and polity.

Tyler Jackson
Tyler Jackson

I have other disagreements but I want to focus on this because it's the main point IMO :
The bottom line, however, is that an isolated country with a proletarian revolution is always going to act in the interest of the proletariat that live there, there's no getting around it. The best you can hope for is that the proletariat are genuinely in power so they will attack all class enemies around the world, for their own sake, even if the workers of other countries become subordinate to them.

on the face of it, you would be surprised that I would agree too. but what there's an underlying disagreement that I think is because of our different notions of DoTP and the class party.
The bottom line, however, is that an isolated country with a proletarian revolution is always going to act in the interest of the proletariat that live there,

this is very true. the proletariat are going to want to act on their immediate concerns. as the country moves to centralization of production and aiding the interntional proletariat the same time, it almost certainly would hurt a lot of workers. certain industries would suffern more than other, and certain regions will suffer more than other, given the natural distribution of production across the land and the division of labour. that will necessarily set different segments and groups of the proletariat against each other, they would have different immediate interests.
therefore a central organ that expresses the unity of the proletarian class and links it to the the international proletariat.
I think you do recognized that the power should be centralized, not that the proletariat establish isolated communes in different regions. but however, you prefer that centralization be arrived at through democratic mechanism. (I don't want to misrepresent you, so let me know if I got something wrong here).

the difference between us is that I think democracy does not necessarily put the right people in the right place in that centralized organ or form. in fact, the it does the opposite.
my reasons for that are clear : namely that the party(material here) is always going to be a minority of people. I do however the consciousness expands to the whole class in revolutionary success, but I also recognize it begins to wither away pretty quickly due to, as I said, the immediate economic concerns that arise out of the natural difficulties that would face them, and only a minority of the most resolute and conscious part of the proletariat are going to be the group who does not abandon the international proletariat historic mission. and those people are the ones who should occupy that centralized organ of power and who should lead the proletarian state. not because they were elected(after all they are a minority) but because they are the ones who are fit to carry out the task.

but I concede that without the aid of the international proletariat, the local proletariat that have made a successful revolution, naturally acting in their own self interest would pit them against the interest of the international proletariat and the communist transformation. but that democracy being the rule of the majority is no mechanism to do any of this, for the reasons I outlied.
The best you can hope for is that the proletariat are genuinely in power so they will attack all class enemies around the world

absolutely. the only way you would disagree is that you see the party as separate from the class. this is also shows I think your misunderstanding of what Bordiga means by Class. (which is a point we have not touched on). the class for bordiga isn't the number of individual people who have certain economic interests, or who get revenue from similar places. rather, the place is defined when it becomes "a class for itself", and that happens through the party (as minority of groupings who are most self aware etc)/ that's why to him the party (in the material sense) can not be separated from the class. you could have a majority number of the proletariat in a certain country and they still would not express the class identity. that's why to him, majority rule is never necessarily a class rule.

John Johnson
John Johnson

sorry for the misspellings and missing words. I just woke up

Sebastian Miller
Sebastian Miller

therefore a central organ that expresses the unity of the proletarian class and links it to the the international proletariat.
If the situation is as you describe, it would only be a false unity. If you suppress the very real contradictions of interests between workers now, they will only appear in more ugly forms later. For example, just look at the break up of yugoslavia. You have to allow them to come to some sort of compromise between themselves if you want to preserve the stability, and create a real basis for unity.

I think you do recognized that the power should be centralized, not that the proletariat establish isolated communes in different regions. but however, you prefer that centralization be arrived at through democratic mechanism. (I don't want to misrepresent you, so let me know if I got something wrong here).
This isn't quite what i mean, no. Centralization is only good to the extent it is efficient. This centralization should not be carried out through a democratic mechanism, but through the law of value, see that part of marx I quoted earlier: Forcing centralization via the coercive power of the state can be a recipe for disaster, as Stalin's experiments in agricultural collectivization have shown. On the other hand, Nixon accomplished a massive centralization of agriculture in the US by only encouraging the market to do what it does best. And he accomplished it without the large amount of death's that we saw in Russia.

I think democracy does not necessarily put the right people in the right place in that centralized organ or form. in fact, the it does the opposite.
As I showed earlier, Marx certainly seems to disagree with you. And even if that was the case, I'd say it'd be well worth it to ensure the power of the masses is secured. The power of experts is first and foremost the slogan of neoliberalism.

the class for bordiga isn't the number of individual people who have certain economic interests, or who get revenue from similar places. rather, the place is defined when it becomes "a class for itself"
If that is Bordiga's, and your understanding of class, it's not just me you're disagreeing with, it's marx and engels.
<In proportion as the bourgeoisie, i.e., capital, is developed, in the same proportion is the proletariat, the modern working class, developed — a class of labourers, who live only so long as they find work, and who find work only so long as their labour increases capital. These labourers, who must sell themselves piecemeal, are a commodity, like every other article of commerce, and are consequently exposed to all the vicissitudes of competition, to all the fluctuations of the market.
<Owing to the extensive use of machinery, and to the division of labour, the work of the proletarians has lost all individual character, and, consequently, all charm for the workman. He becomes an appendage of the machine, and it is only the most simple, most monotonous, and most easily acquired knack, that is required of him.
<By proletariat, the class of modern wage labourers who, having no means of production of their own, are reduced to selling their labour power in order to live.
t. the communist manifesto

Class is at is material at it's most basic level, a relation to the means of production. Marx describes the political character, and the political party of the laborers, being descended from this relation. Not the other way around.

Hunter Ramirez
Hunter Ramirez

this quickly and I'll comment on the other points when I have the time
If that is Bordiga's, and your understanding of class, it's not just me you're disagreeing with, it's marx and engels.

the economic condition is the foundation of the class, but it's not what defines the class struggle. the economic condition for the workers as part of the production is what unifies them in the first place, and out of that arises the "class for itself". here's what Marx wrote on class at the end of Capital Vol. 3
<The first question to he answered is this: What constitutes a class? — and the reply to this follows naturally from the reply to another question, namely: What makes wage-labourers, capitalists and landlords constitute the three great social classes? At first glance — the identity of revenues and sources of revenue. There are three great social groups whose members, the individuals forming them, live on wages, profit and ground-rent respectively, on the realisation of their labour-power, their capital, and their landed property. However, from this standpoint, physicians and officials, e.g., would also constitute two classes, for they belong to two distinct social groups, the members of each of these groups receiving their revenue from one and the same source. The same would also be true of the infinite fragmentation of interest and rank into which the division of social labour splits labourers as well as capitalists and landlords-the latter, e.g., into owners of vineyards, farm owners, owners of forests, mine owners and owners of fisheries.

Elijah Baker
Elijah Baker

Yes, that's what modern political economists refer to as sector interests vs factor interests, that's nothing new. However, "distinct social groups" are not classes, and i suspect Marx would have clarified as such had we not been left with [And the Manuscript Breaks off Here]. Much hay has been made of this section by bourgeoisie economists, citing it as evidence that Marx was refuting the very basis of his own theory, one which he summed up as

<(1) that the existence of classes is only bound up with particular historical phases in the development of production (historische Entwicklungsphasen der Production), (2) that the class struggle necessarily leads to the dictatorship of the proletariat,[1] (3) that this dictatorship itself only constitutes the transition to the abolition of all classes and to a classless society .

Considering the incompleteness of the work, I wouldn't read too much into it.

Samuel White
Samuel White

you misunderstand the point of me bringing up the quote. the point of it is to illustrate the 'impersonal' nature of the class. as in class struggle is not defined by the individuals with similar economic condition as I have pointed out. after all, Marx spoke also on the impersonal character of Capital. how Capitalist are the personification of Capital, and Capital would exist without those individuals as well. here's Bordiga after he quotes that from Marx
< Whereas it was entirely clear from then on, whether it was the individual capitalist or the capitalist class which might here and there cease to be the “personification” of capital, that capital itself would continue facing us, confronting us, as a “social mechanism”, as an “overwhelming natural law” of the production process.
<Without demanding royalties for just the one line, we can complete the chapter which was interrupted by the death of Karl Marx
<It isn’t identifying sources of revenue, as it appears “at first glance”, which defines class.
<It is worthless, statistically, to define classes in a “qualitative” way according to monetary source of income. It is even stupider to select them in a quantitative way according to the “pyramid of earnings”. For centuries this has been raised: and in fact the State census in Rome is all about income scales. For centuries simple arithmetic operations have shown to the philosophers of poverty that reducing the pyramid to a more level prism, but on the same foundations, will just create a society of paupers. Is there, qualitatively and quantitatively, a way out from these myriad difficulties? A senior civil servant is paid a salary, and therefore according to time, just like a wage earning labourer who works, let’s say, in a State saltworks; however the former’s income is higher than many merchants and industrial capitalists who live off profit; the labourer’s salary is higher not only than many small peasants’ income, but also more than that of many minor landlords living off rent…
A class isn’t defined by income statements, but by historical position within the gigantic struggle by which a new general form of production overtakes, overthrows and then replaces the old one.
It is stupid to consider society as simply made up of the sum of its individuals understood in an abstract sense, but it is no less stupid to see class as simply made up of individuals understood as economic units. ’Individual’, ’class’ and ’society’ are not pure, idealist categories. Since they are constantly altering within time and space, they are the products of a general process, whose sovereign laws have been worked out by applying the powerful methods of the Marxist approach.
The concrete social mechanism propels and moulds individuals, classes and societies without “consulting them” on any level.
A class is defined by its historic task and the road it takes, and our class, via an arduous dialectical point of arrival to be reached only after immense effort, is defined by the revendication that the class itself should actually cease to exist in a statistical quantitative and qualitative sense; a demand made particularly with regard to itself (since it has little or no interest in advocating the disappearance of its enemy classes, a process well underway already).

William Murphy
William Murphy

the last two paragraphs are quotes too. I missed up the format

Easton Adams
Easton Adams

Capital is impersonal in the sense that it is unfeeling, it does still need people to do things you know. It only has the power people give to it. If capitalists were gone, capital would need another group of people to be it's "personification," in the case of the USSR, this was the nomenklatura, in the case of a proudhonist utopia, it would be the workers themselves. To say that class is not defined by a certain economic condition is only to say that class does not exist at all, and is an identity as happily fluid as the post-modern gender.

The incredible thing about Bordiga's remarks is that he even completely misses the mark of the first part of Marx's section. Marx was not saying that class, "at first glance" was a matter of relative income, but a matter of where the revenue of that income comes from.

I've seen this particular trend elsewhere in his work, but it's nice to see it so blatant here. It's absolutely incredulous that he describes the idea of a class as made up of individuals in a an economic relationship as abstract. That's literally the concrete here, the people who actually exist and are stuck in these material relations! Marx and Engels make it very clear in the Manifesto that the historical struggle of class warfare is born from these individual material relations and not the other way around. I do find it fascinating that he literally put his own word's into Marx's mouth, rather insanitary, and very shameless.

I'm going to let you in on a little secret, however. The "science" of these """"concrete"""" social mechanisms isn't a science at all, there have always been too many factors involved to determine very many iron laws of history and society, only general tendencies. There is not a choice here between on the one hand the ideological mysticism of bourgeoisie economists and utopian socialists and the science of marxist socialism. They are all ideology, and we have to be careful not to buy into our own bullshit, even if we are closer to the mark than most. Of course, there was a very different understanding of science in Marx's day, and the intellectual norms of that time didn't leave him unscathed. He wrote Das Kapital by beginning with the most abstract parts of his theory and moving towards the most concrete, as this was his understanding of how science worked (you begin with an abstract idea of how things work and then look into the particulars). People like Bordiga took these most abstract parts as the most concrete, and thus flipped Marx's entire theory on its head to a very confusing and negative effect.

I'd suggest reading Althusser.

Henry Stewart
Henry Stewart

I'm afraid you're entirely missing the point here. you're misrepresenting Bordiga when you say something like :
the historical struggle of class warfare is born from these individual material relations and not the other way around

here are his words
<Therefore the concept of class must not suggest to us a static image, but instead a dynamic one. When we detect a social tendency, or a movement oriented towards a given end, then we can recognise the existence of a class in the true sense of the word. But then the class party exists in a material if not yet in a formal way. A party lives when there is the existence of a doctrine and a method of action. A party is a school of political thought and consequently an organisation of struggle. The first characteristic is a fact of consciousness, the second is a fact of will, or more precisely of a striving towards a final end. Without those two characteristics, we do not yet have the definition of a class.

< The class forms itself as certain conditions and relationships brought about by the consolidation of new systems of production are developed – for instance the establishment of big factories hiring and training a large labour force; in the same way, the interests of such a collectivity gradually begin to materialise into a more precise consciousness, which begins to take shape in small groups of this collectivity.

<When referring to the modern proletarian class, we must conceive of this process not in relationship to a trade category but to the class as a whole. It can then be realised how a more precise consciousness of the identity of interests gradually makes its appearance; this consciousness, however, results from such a complexity of experiences and ideas, that it can be found only in limited groups composed of elements selected from every category. Indeed only an advanced minority can have the clear vision of a collective action which is directed towards general ends that concern the whole class and which has at its core the project of changing the whole social regime. Those groups, those minorities, are nothing other than the party. When its formation (which of course never proceeds without arrests, crises and internal conflicts) has reached a certain stage, then we may say that we have a class in action.

Bordiga does not reject the basis of class as the economic condition of group of people. as he says "The class forms itself as certain conditions and relationships brought about by the consolidation of new systems of production are developed – for instance the establishment of big factories hiring and training a large labour force". that is the absolute basis for the existence of class. and as these people are grouped together in this particular socio economic relation, a consciousness of themselves as being a class begins to materlialse in a limited number of people(those limited number of people are nothing but the material party). it is when that consciousness materializes, when the class becomes a class "for itself", it's then we can speak of class struggle striving towards an end goal. that is what bordiga means that until the [material] party exists, that is, until consciousness in a number of people or groupings of people materializes "then we may say that we have a class in action."

Bordiga describes a class and class struggle as something in motion, a movement. his point is that it's wrong to take a snapshot of a point of time and deduce from that whether there is a class or not and start counting individuals who's on that side and who's not. because this leads, as in Marx's quote, to ambiguity and endless divisions.
what gives significance to the class? why not look for example at nationality? ethnicity? gender? all these things are groupings to which the workers can identify with and adhere to and struggle within. for bordiga what defines the class is class struggle, the class struggling as a class for itself towards an end.

Juan Morgan
Juan Morgan

Marx was not saying that class, "at first glance" was a matter of relative income, but a matter of where the revenue of that income comes from

that is literally what he said in the quote
<It isn’t identifying sources of revenue, as it appears “at first glance”, which defines class.

Christian Allen
Christian Allen

Bordiga clearly thinks that this is all an issue of "class consciousness," which is ironic, because this is a concept which many modern leftcoms constantly criticize.

The class forms itself as certain conditions and relationships brought about by the consolidation of new systems of production are developed
The class does not form itself, this is exactly the point, classes are formed violently by the necessity of material conditions and production. To say the class forms itself is to surrender to a fundamentally idealist understanding of history. The entire point is that class exists whether the people in that class are conscious of it or not. What Marx pointed out was that the movements of capitalism in his time tended to make people more aware of their class position.

it is when that consciousness materializes
oxymoron.

because this leads, as in Marx's quote, to ambiguity and endless divisions.
No, it is not *the process of counting individuals and their allegiances* that creates this ambiguity and endless division. That division already exists in the real world! It does not, however, suddenly destroy the importance of class. This is leading down the same road over the debates of sexual division. Why do you think they added that + at the end of LGBTQA, to signify that endless ambiguity that exists in real life. You couldn't just replace all the letters with + however.

for bordiga what defines the class is class struggle, the class struggling as a class for itself towards an end.
And that is a distinctly non-marxist understanding of class. And if you were to ask the nationalist, the racist, the feminist, the MRA, they'd almost certainly tell you they believe in struggle too! A struggle of races, nations, and sexes. Struggle is hardly unique to class. To define it by its struggle is to capitulate it the same superficiality as the other categories. What class is, and always has been, is an economic relation. What makes class struggle important is that it heralds the creation of new political systems and modes of production. Once again, I would ask you not to put words into Marx's mouth and rely on the very last paragraph of an incomplete text, a totally incomplete idea, as the grounding for your theory.

Yes, that's exactly what I'm talking about. Bordiga was saying that Marx was saying that relative income was the source of class "at first glance," which was untrue. In this preliminary glance, sources of revenue were the sources of class, making Bordiga's explanation a mischaracterization.

Oliver James
Oliver James

Bordiga clearly thinks that this is all an issue of "class consciousness," which is ironic, because this is a concept which many modern leftcoms constantly criticize.

<The Marxist thesis states: it isn’t possible, first of all, for consciousness of the historical road to appear, in advance, within a single human brain. This is for two reasons: firstly, consciousness follows, rather than precedes, being, that is, the material conditions which surround the subject of consciousness itself; secondly, all forms of social consciousness – with a given delay allowing them time to get generally established – emerge out of circumstances which are analogous and parallel to the economic relations in which masses of individuals find themselves, thereby forming a social class.

The entire point is that class exists whether the people in that class are conscious of it or not
< The concrete social mechanism propels and moulds individuals, classes and societies without “consulting them” on any level.

oxymoron.

maybe. but you got the point.
That division already exists in the real world! It does not, however, suddenly destroy the importance of class

that is literally the point Bordiga is making
. And if you were to ask the nationalist, the racist, the feminist, the MRA, they'd almost certainly tell you they believe in struggle too! A struggle of races, nations, and sexes. Struggle is hardly unique to class.
.What makes class struggle important is that it heralds the creation of new political systems and modes of production

you are repeating his point. people exist within different groupings and identify by different struggles. the economic condition is the basis for class struggle, no one disagrees with that and I have repeated it several times. on the face of it, the worker's position within society is complex. he is grouped with people because of his economic condition, grouped with people because of his national identity, grouped with people because of his gender etc.
you say "What makes class struggle important is that it heralds the creation of new political systems and modes of production". that is literally what bordiga is saying. what makes the class struggle is that it's a movement toward an end, which is the class dictatorship(DotP) and the bringing about a new mode of production. the grouping into an economic condition is what brings about that struggle. but without that struggle, without the class moving towards a 'creation of new political systems and modes of production', the shared economic principle does not say much. it is the basis sure, but the struggle towards that end is for bordiga what characterizes the class being "for itself"

Bordiga was saying that Marx was saying that relative income was the source of class "at first glance," which was untrue.. In this preliminary glance, sources of revenue were the sources of class

I'm afraid you have misread the quote my friend
<It isn’t identifying sources of revenue, as it appears “at first glance”, which defines class.

Bordiga is saying that the source of revenue, being as marx put it what appears "at first glance" isn't what defines the class. he is not sayiing that marx said relative encome was the source of class. he is saying that the source of revenue is what appears "at first glance" to identify the class according to marx.

I feel like we're in an endless cycle where I quote bits and pieces of Bordiga and then you mischaracterize him, and then me quoting another bits to clarify.

I'm not blaming you, maybe I'm not doing a good job clarifying his position. I suggest you read him in full context.
cheers .

Gavin Lopez
Gavin Lopez

bordiga quote
The Marxist thesis has nothing to do with consciousness! This has been what I've been saying the whole time. It doesn't matter at what point such a "consciousness" exists or whether it exists at all. The bourgeoisie used humanism and divinely inspired reason as their slogans, they had no need of any purely class consciousness.

The concrete social mechanism propels and moulds individuals, classes and societies without “consulting them” on any level.
Marx also never refereed to capitalism as a "mechanism" or a machine, that language was reserved for the state, and for good reason. Once again, it is not a "concrete social mechanism" which applies such force to individuals, but the material necessity of production and the limited avenues of logic of a certain kind of production which force them to act as such. Bordiga is once again mistaking the abstract for the concrete, "the social mechanism" to the extent it exists is the abstraction of this material and logical reality, which is the concrete.

the economic condition is the basis for class struggle
This isn't what we're debating, I only brought up struggle to show how absurd it was to define class only in terms of struggle. Class is defined by the economic condition, not struggle. This is what the debate has been about.

what makes the class struggle is that it's a movement toward an end
That is only knowable in post. For now, communism remains Marx's hypothesis. To test it, we must have a situation where the proletariat captures state power, and authentically so, without intermediaries of party whether formal or "material."

but without that struggle, without the class moving towards a 'creation of new political systems and modes of production', the shared economic principle does not say much.
This is exactly what you're missing: the shared economic situation is exactly what compels class struggle towards the creation of new modes of production and modes of production. To impose some artificial "end point" arrived at via abstract thinking is to trip before the race has even started. One of the few errors of Marx was exactly this, believing that a "historical task" was anything but an ideal. No doubt the working class will have ideals, including possibly ideals of historical tasks. It will make no difference. We are compelled by necessity to adapt or die. If you have a situation where there is a class dictatorship and there is no purposeful push towards communism as Marx envisioned it, as I said before, that is a problem with his theory, not the working class.

I'm afraid you have misread the quote my friend
And I'm afraid you're missing the point here. I'm not even talking about there what Marx said of the second glance, I'm saying Bordiga mischaracterized the first glance. Bordiga says nothing of revenue sources in the quote you made, only relative revenue, the vulgar understanding of class in most places today.

I feel like we're in an endless cycle where I quote bits and pieces of Bordiga and then you mischaracterize him, and then me quoting another bits to clarify.
And you seem to completely miss the point of my critiques over and over again. Is it really that hard to understand that you can't, by defining class struggle as the movement towards communism, thusly define class as whoever wants communism the most? With a single stroke you've evaporated all that was scientific of your precious scientific socialism, you've decided on the conclusion before consulting the evidence and refuse to change it even after being exposed to it. You're not actually addressing any of my points here.

The central issue is this: Bordiga has made the unity of the party and its centralized power as his principle. He has done this by taking Marx's conclusion, that the proletariat will seize power and use that power to create communism and negate classes as such, and then removing the rest of Marx's argument for why they would do so. To Bordiga class only exists to the extent it struggles towards communism, and this is why he can advance an idea so ridiculous as that of the class party dictatorship, that this "material" party of those enlightened few communists, the experts, who will actually bring it into being in lieu of the working class themselves. Since to Bordiga, creating Communism is only a matter of implementing a program (and has nothing to do with the actual power of the proletariat) we see his true working class of highminded experts must be completely unified around this program. And here we have arrived at Organic Centralism. The ludicrous notion that we should trust a group of theoreticians with absolute power and they should not even be allowed to disagree with one another, philosopher_kings_2.0. They are the REAL working class after all.

As for me, I will put my trust in the masses.

Nolan Peterson
Nolan Peterson

there are some unfair mischaracterizastions and some valid points of criticism. I don't want to point them out to not get into this spiral once again since I'll be just repeating myself once again.

in any way. enjoyed the conversation. take care.
also what's your opinion of althusser. is he worth reading? I've been wanting to read him, where should I start?

Gavin Wilson
Gavin Wilson

Fair enough. I also got a lot more out of it than usual. Thank you.

also what's your opinion of althusser. is he worth reading? I've been wanting to read him, where should I start?
He's great. I'd suggesting starting here:
https://kokkinogati.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/philosophy-of-the-encounter.pdf

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