archive: what do we mean by revolution? American democracy is broken and can’t lead to change?
July 27th, 2017
What do we mean by revolution? We confront the reality of the US government, in the context of a global set of states: revolution means we indict that government over issues of neoliberalism, criminality as with 9/11, and now most critically failure to act on climate change. We indict that government and proceed to overthrow it by whatever means we can. Electoral means are unrealistic at this point. So, we are in the position of the early rebs confronting the British Empire, except that our situation is more desperate.
A revolution is usually a military operation and involves a cadre of revolutionaries, etc…we are back in the obvious after a good deal of ‘shades of definition’ of the term.
The term via the Sanders ‘revolution’ seems to refer to an economic populist movement dealing with, e.g. wages, etc…
but this isn’t revolution in the real sense.
Since we are dealing with the core issue of capitalism, we are talking about a system of neo-communism to attempt the overthrow of that system. We should have had this in motion a long time ago: we may be too late.
I think a modified ‘communist’ revolution after the model of the American revolution remorphed around a ‘neo-communist’ set of principles is the best option. But the legacy of marxism/bolshevism is probably not going to work, even as the core of marxism will remain the starting point.
In any case, a revolution now means a transition to a postcapitalist system. We should be preparing for that, realistic as a plan or not. We MUST have this plan in readiness. The moment of real revolution will suddenly come and a viable movement will be ready to act. I think that marxist groups are too stalled to perform this, so we can envisage a new movement using streamlined elements of marxism, which is like a Model T Ford, updated without false compromises. Social democratic compromises are possible, but they aren’t revolutionary.
Looking at the American election of the last year we see a spectacle of an entire year wasted and resulting in nothing, with a danger of regression and virtually no discussion of real issues, or climate change. It is incredible, but the democratic system is broken: an entire spectrum of candidates can’t even discuss climate calamity on its way. The problem is capitalism, and the system must stage a revolution beyond capitalism. It isn’t