Selection from The Anthropocene:…
Democratic Market Neo-communism: a short sketch…
We will consider the core idea of the classic Manifesto of Marx and Engels:
…The distinguishing feature of Communism is not the abolition of property generally, but the abolition of bourgeois property. But modern bourgeois private property is the final and most complete expression of the system of producing and appropriating products, that is based on class antagonisms, on the exploitation of the many by the few. In this sense, the theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: Abolition of private property… From the Communist Manifesto
Communism/socialism has many confused representations, ours will attempt to create a very broad blueprint that reconciles many opposites:
The details will be left out as we combine two ideas: the abolition of private property with a system deliberately balancing a set of opposites: planning, markets, top down control, bottom up semi-anarchist autonomy…Many discussions of communism confuse the foundational logic of expropriation with the creation of a particular economic system. But the two issues are not the same: a communist system founded in a constitutional starting point can then proceed to construct an economic system to match. There is no inherent reason why a communist system can’t adopt experimental hybrid in a transition to a new kind of neo-communist economic system. Our refernces imply a discussion of the US system and yet invokes a transnational system.
1. step one is the expropriation of the bourgeoisie, at the high end. We leave a lower threshold to semi-autonomy, subject to regulation. Property, i.e. industrial macro projects, belong to the Commons. All natural resources belong to the Commons. This distinction is important because the control of economic resources by a one-party state is highly undesirable: a separation of powers requires a set of economic bodies, legal and practical, to regulate economic issues.
2. the executive power consists of a strong state that guards the revolution, protects the Commons, but which otherwise has limited powers which are delegated to different branches of government. This sector with be a one party or zero party state, republican with a president and set of guardians, and an elected president. This branch of government requires additional revolutionary challenges to the vices and excesses of authoritarian governments. This requires a global transnationalism in the midst of a communist nationalism, a commitment to a new globalization of states beyond imperialism, robust versions of free trade that are liberated from the capitalist brands of exploitation and out-sourced working classes, and the abolition and reconstitution of all covert agencies and their false-flag conspiracies. The market sector must be divorced completely from military capitalism. The ‘deep state’ must be exposed, neutralized and replaced wih an open system with established laws as to surveillance, ideological mind control, and political deceptions.
3. a congress (and/or Senate) and a set of courts based on multiparty democracy that is completely free of big money of any kind. It will be meritocratic, with short elections, state sponsored advertising on an equal basis, etc…: creating a reformed democracy given the grotesque distortions of the american example. This combination of one-party and multi-party systems is a unique innovation requiring careful consideration
of its draft status in the realization of a open society in the context of a superset with strong but limited authority.
4. a set of economic institutions and courts to match will mediate the issues of development projects, allocations, planning…the central state will not be allowed to muddle through this sector which operates with a separation of powers. This set of legal bodies must include an ecological court mediating the economic impacts of industrial activity. This overall framework will mediate three sectors of the macroeconomy:
5. the resulting macro economy will be a hybrid of state corporations and entrepreneurial startups created by individuals with licenses to operate with ecological resources.
6. there is a lower threshold below which a high degree of autonomy is left to balance the anarchist pole of the equation. This sector can show many combinations of small-economy/communes/farms/NGO’s etc…
7. the system must have strong authority next to a democratic core with rights and liberties and a populist program that deals with labor, education, medicine ( these probably free), housing, employment in populist emphases, and move beyond the sterile anti-liberalism of earlier communists.
This system requires many additional details but our snapshot is an attempt to generate a way to break old habits to think in a new way. As the text of Toward a New Communist Manifesto are aware, we have spoken in terms of the universal class rather than the working class. The universal classis the class of all classes and enforces the idea of the equality of all in a common class. A focus on the working class is entirely appropriate in this context and can be brought to the fore as appropriate.
We need a new perspective on history and a rough outline of the context of revolutionary neo-communism: communism is an innovation arising in the wake of the french
revolution (in fact its primordial birth was in the early modern reformation, if not the ancient greek utopians). Our model of history is a simple ‘narrative’ of epochs in a chronology of civilizations. Economic systems exist inside and influence but do not fully determine these cultural complexes.
Our framework begins with the crisis of climate change. Homo sapiens is a highly destructive species tending to the destruction of all environments in his wake. The modern industrial system has both revolutionized development and handed the curse of environmental scofflaw destruction to this species man. Unrestricted free markets are an emerging calamity.