Beyond the flawed Marxism to a new socialism: we were running out of time, now out of time?

postcapitalist_ futures_NWBK_ver2a_LFT_2021: The Last Revolution

I have been following Marxmail for decades without being able to contribute, then suddenly was able to post after Proyect’s passing. (He had actually and graciously allowed me to join the list in 2000 after being unsubbed by the old Pen-l, but that didn’t last long). But within days I was (apparently) unsubbed (I can’t figure out my status).

It is ‘my fault’ for rapidly (since I suspected this would happen) tossing taboo subjects into the mix: balling Marxists out over 9/11, (Darwinism, ran out time, but many posts here on left and that theory), Marx’s flawed theories of history. But I got a lot of links onto the list, and people are reading The Last Revolution, link above. So maybe, success?

I rushed that book to a usable but unfinished PDF form instead of a paperback to post on it on Marmail. I apologize for its rough spots but it makes its point more or less, and actually is better very short and as a PDF. The modern world has a huge tribe of leftist Marxists who are ideologically paraplegic given the confusions of Marxism. And the charge that it is really that ‘ism’ that led to Stalinism is unfair, but only up to a point.
My diagnosis/opinion is Marxism post Bolshevism has to reinvent itself (and drop the cult of personality in its Marx-ism name), consider the implications of ‘smashing the bourgeois state’. Instead, it would work better along the lines of my idea of (eco-socialist) ‘democratic market neo-communism’. ( I use the terms socialism, (neo-)communism interchangeably. This is not reformist compromise but a shift in reference to a four-term system, which is four times more complex than the one-term, but in a way simpler for that same reason. It can’t veer off into Stalinism, one would hope, because a democracy is not a democracy if it is not socialist (i.e. strong equality and shared resources and economic rights, etc…), and a socialism is not socialism if it is not democratic. With similar thinking about BOTH markets and planning (this time ‘socialist’ markets based on a Commons where capitalists now managers license resources from the Commons). This kind of system will work if a liberals system works. Marx made the whole question too complicated and his work has confused every generation of Marxists since.

It comes with a catch: you must expropriate (large-scale resources and Capital into a Commons, which is not State Capitalism)
Using this approach, Bolshevism was not a communism at all because it had no democracy. Period, in this four-term system. This kind of fail-safe would make it very easy to create a postcapitalist system that is really viable, subject to the ‘catch’. Note that both the US and China (and all other cases) are actually malformed versions of the above model which applies to all cases in theory. The US if you look close has some shared resources, but no socialist markets, etc…China has actually added (not socialist) markets to its still pseudo-communism, but has no democracy, etc,….

So, guess what, the US is not a democracy because it is not socialist. Thousands of critics have made the point in their own way for over a century, so the idea is not so strange. Capitalism has coopted democracy.

It may be too late to recast the system, by reform or revolution, but then we are doomed to go over Niagara Falls in a fireball of global warming.
Consider the issue of private property, that is Capital. To allow Exxon-Mobil et al. to own natural resources as private property was seen as unjust at the start but it has now become malevolent. The case of Exxon is that they knew in the seventies of the last century that they were doing something dangerous, but they suppressed their own research and still to this day are indifferent to their own reckless crime against humanity. Right now in the news of the Biden era bill Exxon is in the background trying to move one of its paid-for dummies in Congress to sabotage a last chance for some action on climate change. If you still believe in private property for resources like oil you may be a hopeless dummy, very much the American type.

Americans need to face reality: idiots! Idiots with the power to destroy a planet. Their manipulated stupidity is simply the way capitalism has always destroyed democracy. The danger was seen early on by the first socialists, taken up by Marx/Engels who took over and then monopolized the whole subject, but their mistakes have proven a curse and the failure of Bolshevism was always ominous: capitalism is now so entrenched and its victims so willingly brainwashed that it could be too late. The Last Revolution refers to the era of 1848 and its failed revolutions, with Marx/Engels very much in the mix. The socialists spoke then of the Last Revolution and their ‘prophecy’ should prove to be just that if we wish to survive. But this ‘revolution’ can in principle be reformist, because a reformist project can in theory makes constitutional changes.

Let us note that FDR-ism was trying to invent our DMNC model, but his New Deal still falls short. If only the (pseudo-) communists of that era, very much in play ca. the FDR constellation, could have had a better platform. But the Bolsheviks lurking in the background blocked anything beyond FDR-ism from happening.
Note again our point: Bolshevism was NOT communism because it had no democracy. And no ‘socialist markets’.
We should note also that our model of DMNC or ‘Democratic_Market_Neo_Communism_ver_5(2) is not about state capitalism, but a Commons, with its own legal checks and balances. Fake Bolsheviss with their private dachas controlling ‘state capitalism’ could never arise in a DMNC (with an eco-socialism in the mix). And so on.
It would have been relatively easy to set up such a system far earlier but the legacy of Marxism confused thinking, in fact, it was the lack of any thinking, since Marx refused to predict the future with anything specific.
Marx’s theories of history are the problem. Much of his other thinking is still very cogent. But the failure to model communism/socialism in specifies proved fatal.
The same could happen with our superior model: maybe still not complex enough.

We should cite Decoding World History because it offers a very simple outline of world history instead of the false economic fundamentalism of Marx.

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Decoding World History_ED1

Another post to marxmail

Macrohistory, Marxism, modernity and the coming crisis
From: Nemonemini
To: marxmail@groups.io
Date: Sun, Sep 12, 2021 8:29 am
I apologize for any confusion. I had no idea that ‘ageism’ was such a touchy issue. But let me get to the point which is the need for the left to find an exit path into a new and extended paradigm that can deal with the real complexity of world history and in that context a path beyond capitalism. World history hides a deep structure that can help to make that possible, but it is a vast subject and invokes an immensity of study. But the pattern itself provides a partial simplification. But its study could help to expand Marxism into a more general secular humanism that can lead the way beyond capitalism. The classic Marxist formulation is problematical because economic issues are secondary to a deeper dynamic, one that is light years beyond the kind of study we find in physics of the Newtonian era. Quantum realms, who knows: the subject is so fluid and hard to fathom that we hardly know where we stand any more. The old fashioned materialism is out the window and the battle of materialism and idealism is old-fashioned. The mathematics of physics deals with material objects now in the ‘idealist’ context of mathematics. But reinventing materialism is easy and is always a useful but no longer absolute given. Continue reading “Another post to marxmail”

neither democracy nor communism…//China: capitalist, imperialist? AI and 5G

Our original post got chopped off: here it is:

AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley, and the New World Order /Amazon/Kindle //AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley, and the New World Order /Amazon/Kiindle There are any number of books as above warning that China will soon be world dominant in AI, 5G. etc. (alarming books on China are a thriving genre, so who knows): China invests massively in research where the US tends to be somewhat disorganized relying on the market which can misfocus. The capitalist/communist duality is useless for both US and China: our idea of DMNC: ‘democratic market neo-communism”; both China and US are difficient by this model taken as a test: China is hopeless on democracy, the US is imprisoned in capitalism, etc…

update: actually, the US democracy is not that, and the Chinese case is not communism (by our definition)

In reality the US is not democracy and China is not communism. Our DMNC model (democratic market neo-communism) enforces the rule that  ‘communism’ that has no democratic elements is not communist and democracies dominated by the open market are not democracies.

Our model enforces a four term system: democracy (in dialectic with ‘authority’), markets as ‘socialist’ markets based on a commons, and neo-communism to pull away from the misuse of the term ‘communism’ to demand that stalinist systems, for example, are not ‘communist’.

(An example of ‘authority’ would in one variant of our model be a four party system of three parties in a parliament, and a presidential party consisting of a one-party assembly of the revolutionaries who founded the system and are consigned to guard the Commons, but without any larger powers as such. That system can solve the dialectic of democracy/authority but is dangerously liable to derail. But the point is that democracy alone tends to chaotify while authority tends to tyranny. All democracies in fact have, and hide, this factor which should be explict under checks and balances. Our model can produce a dozen variants of this).

Socialism markets have a huge literature on the left, some of it critical, but the issue is not so complex: markets under the DMNC model are based on a Commons after the process of expropriation and are run by managers who license resources from the Commons. Thus ‘oil’ would be in the Commons and Exxon-Mobil after expropriation could process fossil fuels under license and subject to ecological courts that can mediate environmental issues.

The question of democracy is tricky in our DMNC model democracy is matched with a Commons, and with a system of legal and economic rights and can have any number of labor orgs and unions. The idea of a Commons must however confront a global context with a new kind of International: this system can be national but must also consider its transnational context. etc… Nothing even remotely like this has ever been attempted and yet it resolves most of the issues. The ‘socialist market’ has been shot down multiple times but in vain: it is a perfectly good idea done right. A socialist market will suffer some inefficiency due to its place in a larger system, but so does the classic market in say the US before neoliberalism.

Basically if you can inject flea markets into the model, you inject markets. These can be worker owned but in general the equalization factor makes even the distinction of workers and bourgeoisies obsoleter AND/OR on the way to obsolete in a system that starts with former members of given class thrown together in a new evolving system…

We live at a strange moment: as capitalism passes from good to evil, socialism passes from evil to good, as it were…the world system is in critical danger from capitalism

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This book is incomplete and needs some work, but in fact it is clear enough, as is. We are running out of time:
books have to appear in weeks, not years.

Else this: Two Manifestos

We live at a strange moment: as capitalism passes from good to evil, socialism passes from evil to good, as it were,
The purpose of our discussion is to caution against straight marxism in this context. Marx’s theories are flawed, but
a different perspective can repair that, or better yet, replace that with something without its bad reputation and lack
of popularity.
The idea of socialism should spark enthusiasm and trust, but cannot in its current form. Break away from marxism, taking what is usable
and recasting the rest.

The world’s politicians have suddenly exposed their corruption and incompetence. No kidding: politicians are so ideologically neutralized
they can’t take any steps toward the crisis coming. The spectacle of political paralysis justifies radical intervention
as long as the left can not screw up all over again….

The future of humanity is at stake but these politicians will do nothing, perhaps don’t care: they will be dead before the danger arrives (it has already arrived)

The Earth Burns and the Free Market Won’t Save Us – 

Yes, the time for talk is well past and one more report isn’t likely to change minds or induce new action. Nonetheless, it is always useful to have the latest information when dealing with an ongoing emergency. The world’s government shouldn’t need the latest United Nations report on the state of Earth’s climate to act but if some do care to pay proper attention, the situation is ever more dire. Officially, the paper under discussion is the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, summarizing the knowledge of the world’s climate scientists. The technical summary of the report spans 150 pages, and that is what we’ll be quoting from. The report is intended “to provide policymakers with regular scientific assessments on climate change, its implications and potential future risks, as well as to put forward adaptation and mitigation options.”

Source: The Earth Burns and the Free Market Won’t Save Us – CounterPunch.org

Afghanistan: DMNC: ‘democratic market neo-communism’

Two Manifestos

Our idea of democratic market neo-communism is perfectly adapted to the kind of situation we see in Afghanistan. The ideas of democracy or socialism taken alone are not. The idea of democracy has suffered semantic chaotification and metal fatigue has set in. The Americans seem to think they have a democracy, which is laughable.
Our DMNC is a way to model social constructs and no doubt has its own limits. But the core concepts could allow a social construct that is functional at any stage of any social system/economy. Marxism enjoined the need to have a capitalist stage before a socialist or communist one. Surely that’s wrong, and the Bolshevik example correctly disregarded that but they couldn’t really manifest any part of their Marxist projections

Our DMNC can work at any point in any social system, and could even discuss a band of hunter-gatherers. That’s outlandish but in any case the point is that the construct can model systems with or without capitalism. It was a fiasco of wrong analysis to think that a stage of capitalism must precede socialism/communism (we don’t distinguish the terms). In the DMNC approach socialism and markets emerge together in parallel with a planning aspect in equal parallel. And that in the construct of a Commons, which requires a legal construct that makes equal participation in resources a matter of law with their own courts. It is not a form of state capitalism. The Commons is balanced with a set of economic rights. The corporate construct is easy to adapt here: social market managers (formerly capitalists) can license resources from the Commons and might even be able to bid for resources as shares, while in parallel other corporate types can operate with a high degree of planning. This is a multivalent system, therefore. The construct is democratic with a parliament, scrap the oligarchic Senate (or else…?).
This kind of system could be applied to Afghanistan tomorrow, and would work save only that the US has no intention of allowing anything beyond their muddle of fascist/imperialist domination.
This construct is matched with a variant system that expresses the idea of ecological socialism with its own legal add-ins.
The point here is that we can start with this kind of balanced tinkertoy model that can serve to visualize potentials and warn us of traps and create something more robust than hollow concepts of democracy or socialism.
There is a lot more here, but the basic format can apply any and all possible starting points, medievalist, feudalism, capitalism, archaic socialism (!) and reconstruct a new system in those contexts. The old versions of working-class revolutions require recasting, not hard to do, but the idea that the working class should take total control was unexpectedly flawed. But we can work this into a working-class model at the drop of a hat. The working class is a version a version of James Joyce’s HCE, ‘here comes everybody’ and if everyone who is a passive entity under capitalism is working-class then indeed HCE.
Note that this system re-contains, or re-applies multiple potentials in parallel, and in one version has an indifference level below which control top-down is marginal.

This is the kind of so-called utopian system rejected by Marx who preached scientific socialism, but a science here would have to construct a model, more ‘utopian’ thinking on the way to science. The distinction was pernicious and confused all discussions. Our model is neither scientific or not: it is not utopian in the speculative sense but a realistic remorphing of a liberal system under a commons, i.e. the expropriation of social resources into a general pool.

The US will never get Afghanistan right. An agency like the UN might well be able to oversee but not control a revolutionary restart as our DMNC.
Our thinking no doubt is still limited and one missing element is an international. We need something more than one country/one socialism but that said our DMNC can go either way: socialism in one country and/or an international.

 

There are many, of course, who understand what’s at stake. The people willing to go head to head with this industry — to put their bodies in the way of pipeline construction, chain themselves to bulldozers, stare down rubber bullets and national guard and police deployments, and watch as their comrades are sent to prison. The hundreds of people arrested in 2014 protesting the Keystone XL pipeline. The water protectors at Standing Rock who faced coordination between the National Guard, police and the extractive industry, and saw Indigenous protesters sent to prison in alarming numbers. Indigenous opponents of the Line 3 tar sands pipeline. Young protesters holding sit-ins in congressional offices. Organizers across the country who are mobilizing to wrest utilities away from private companies and put them in the hands of the public so that they can be transitioned to renewable energy. Climate activists who declare that any solution to the climate crisis must beat back capitalism. Groups pressuring the White House and Congress to adopt more expansive climate measures, like a Green New Deal. Across the country, countless people have clearly identified the enemy, and are taking concrete action to stop the fossil fuel industry.

Source: Democratic Leaders Are Finger-Wagging Over the IPCC Report. They Should Look To Themselves. – In These Times

A 10-Point Platform (and Anti-Platform) on Climate Change – 

From its inception in the early 19th Century, fossil-fuel based capitalism destroyed vast swaths of formerly verdant forests, meadows and hills, and polluted rivers, lakes, marshes, and seas. Today it’s murderous; smog and smoke from oil and coal kill at least 200,000 people per year in the U.S. due to heart disease, cancer, emphysema, and asthma. Million more die abroad from the same causes, as well as from civil and colonial wars waged for control of the fuels. More

Source: A 10-Point Platform (and Anti-Platform) on Climate Change – CounterPunch.org

What Do You Call a World That Can’t Learn From Itself?

This is a very good question and one that for myself was key very early on, from the seventies, because of my own experience of never really having been a part of American society, save its dark side aspects.
As an unemployed student of Greek who spent forty years looking for a job/place in the American system, the question in the title was direct and confronted me over and over again: the US is the most overrated mess run by hopeless idiots in a farce that started well with a set of high hopes. I felt the slide from a relative prosperity to a darker system at each point from the mid-seventies into the sudden acceleration under Reagan, and the subsequent list of bad presidents, and etc, etc… I was always puzzled that despite having many talents, the mechanical system of jobs could never place me. Whatever the case the result was a set of variants of the question in the title. In my experience no one could possibly see a bright side to the wreckage of their own legacy such as Americans so-called have created for themselves.
Although the problem is broader than capitalism as such, the latter is the key to the misfortune suffered by Americans. Here the legacy of the left in Europe versus America is the obvious token. What can I say, the early socialists, taken up by the Marx monopoly, sounded the warnings early on, and the record in Europe was better here, up to a point.
The downfall has many aspects, but the era of the CIA tokens the start of the cancer that is now providing fatal. Why is that, and poor old Truman seems to be the fall guy, a true apotheosis of mediocrity and bad judgments, including the suitcase of cash that started the Israel horror,.
Now we have learned some horrifying facts: the coming of Truman, the CIA, and the rest of it was the watershed into American oblivion. There is more there, no doubt, but the rampant activities of the covert agencies brought the system to great evils.
The record of imperialism, the neoliberal etc, the festering race issues, the false illusion of prosperity…the whole game in the last generation has sealed the judgment.
This is not the decline and fall of Rome, but the tragedy of democratic peoples who lose the gifts of time and end up as hopeless fuckups barely even tragic heroes…The Athenian case is instructive.

If only the left, itself a total screwup, could really move to regenerate the American system. It seems too much to hope for and the dark reality is that the current system has so many obstacles to revolution/reform that the frozen nightmare may be beyond repair and end without a socialist phase in premature Putinism. The conspiracy to destroy America is all too real in addition to its inner failings. The current system if rife with drug mafia hidden control and the war in Afghanistan added to the riches of many hidden criminals in the democratic masquerade.

It is a puzzle: the US should have lasted longer than this. But as with Athens the democratic era was brief. Prove me wrong. But we are not condemned to repetition or cyclical history. A new blend of socialism and democracy is possible. A republic if you can keep it: the founding fathers seemed to have sensed that their revolution would ask for another.

Why Don’t Americans Understand How Poor Their Lives Are?

Source: What Do You Call a World That Can’t Learn From Itself? | by umair haque | Aug, 2021 | Eudaimonia and Co