The two historians in question are both of interest but more generally Marxists have boxed themselves into a corner from which there is no escape, and no path to the future. The passage below is the standard tactic to cite the devastating critiques of Marxism, as if to cite them shows, well, we know all that but,… This tactic creates great confusion and has essentially stalled the left with Marxist dogmatism. The critiques offered are more or less final and Marxist true believers can’t really evade that. One grows impatient with the cultic rigidity here. A better tactic is to see that the time has come, long since in fact, to start over with a new formulation that can acknowledge the critiques. Marxists are dreary in their obstinate refusal to see that the critiques as below are an enjoinder to move on. The question of history eluded Marx, and the standard critique below shows why. Marxism is a lost cause theoretically. I have shown in The Last Revolution how easy it is to move on. Marx ended up crippling socialism. Time to start over, time is short.
Update: The passage below states the problems with Marxism very well, but to cite them in an apologetic is very destructive and in general the Marxist is hopelessly confused by such argumentation. Citing the British Marxist historians is all very well, and I have read manyof their books, but they never challenged openly the Marxist problematic and the average leftist is never going to read them anyway. Read this again: armed with this set of critiques a Marxist can free up thought to something new and stop the century and half of Marx religious blah blah. We will move below the quote and to continue.
In the discipline of history in particular, the Marxist approach is now frequently criticized as economically deterministic, failing to account for human agency, and reducing complex historical developments to the unchangeable processes of economic systems. In the crudest interpretations of Marx’s writings, all ideology, law, politics, culture, and civil society is reducible to the makeup of the economic base; the study of historical development becomes an unchangeable science, accessible with only a Marxian understanding of economic exploitation.
Marxism was born in an especially confusing moment and Marx seems to have wasted energy on the Hegel milieu and in the process confused himself and others. The issue of idealism and dialectic are hopelessly confused in Marxism. A simpler approach would be helpful leaving that debate to historical review while practical work moves in a new vein.
Marx in fact attempted to make historical materialism and economic analysis fundamental but that made Marxism simplistic and unable to deal with the broader history of culture/ On top of that Marx adopted the Darwinian view as a buttress to his scientism, and the result was still more confusion.
In our time the issue of JFK assassination research and the 9/11 false flag operation are beyond the ken of the left in general and Marxists in particular. After all the sermons on ideology Marxists have been fooled three times and end up a kind of laughing stock.
I have tried to restate the issue of ‘socialism’ and/or what I call neo-communism in The Last Revolution: in one hundred pages one has a critique of Marxism, a new approach to history, a critique of Darwinian ideology, a clear acknowledgment, if not resolution, of the JFK and 9/11 issues, a practical program for a new socialism, and a complete break with Marxist boilerplate religion, using Marx as an historical reference point. The_Last_Revolution_Postcapitalist_Futures_ED2_version_11_9_22