The dilemma here is false if the real issue with the classic revolutionary wing is that it has no real platform beyond regurgitated marxism and leninism. The revolutionaries are so focused on the great moment of seizing power that they have forgotten to state what kind of society should come next and how it will evade stalinism.
A completely revamped framework and strategy might be far more appropriate at a time of terminal crisis. The revolutionary left is stuck in leninist confusion and can’t rethink its position. The ups and downs of ‘competing’ reformist and revolutionary sectors is illusory. At the very least reformists need the revolutionary idea in order to think holistically about a new kind of society.
The entire planet is at risk and the chances of reformist measures dealing with the issues seems a vanishing percentage, perhaps the same is true of the revolutionary angle. But it is false perhaps to polarize these two extremes: we need a revolutionary reformism and a reformist revolution, next to a project that can move along reformist lines toward a revolutionary transformation. Part of the problem is that the revolutionary brand is stale leninism, feckless marxism, in the context of an undefined platform.
If the revolutionary and reformist wings could reinvent the left in the sense of saying what kind of society they envision, the false dualism might moderate and the public could respond.
Right now, democratic socialism is on the rise in American society. Revolutionary socialists who have kept the torch of socialism burning during the lean years will now have to merge with democratic-socialist demands of the current moment.
The left has failed to either upgrade or extend its classic format and the result is that there are no real groups ready to confront the capitalist train wreck.
There is no breach of solidarity in a critical view of marxism nor in an enjoinder to leave much of its theory behind at this point. The reverse is the case.
We can see that in fact this was always true and an upgrade requires getting a subject as if for the first time.
The issue of teleology is orphaned from science but its place in world history is fundamental, yet elusive. Marxists reject teleology and yet Marx’s theories adopt it in disguise, while religionists take a biblical view of it which distorts their thinking.
The eonic effect shows the way it emerges in world history in a complicated and tricky way: the real thing, so to speak, is at first confusing because it is not quite what we expect…
The issue of teleology is confounding to darwinists, but it is likely to prove confounding to its own proponents, for example, the ID group and the Discovery Institute.
The model of the eonic effect is perhaps exotically named which may throw people off but it is helpful whatever you call it because it is a clear warning that simplistic theories won’t work a…
Source: …so neither bolshevik marxism nor (american) democratic/capitalist formats have proven to be the answer. We have essentially nothing to take us into the future, as yet. – 1848+: The End(s) of History
The left is in transition and we have tried multiple new versions of such an entity, as the idea of a ‘left’ transposes backward with our cowcatcher meme of the year 1848 and its huge spawn of southpaw outfits: this is a way to look to pre-marxist origins and to be both critical of marxism which took over the field and yet able to abscond with a number of its tenets/insights. We need, even if we adopt a critical marxism to see the logic of revolutionary thinking before the onset of reformist thinking. Managing that dialectic is not so simple but as we have suggested if we actually adopt that dialectic then the revolutionary tends to become dominant theoretically even as the reformist proliferates in practice. The reformist legacy simply presses the reset button on the revolutionary option despite the lack of any realistic such radicalism. And we are talking about that in terms of the US/american capitalist juggernaut, a prospect that sets the Berniacs into motion as reformists in halloween ‘our revolution’ costumes.
We have created a new idea for a neo-communism, with a divorce from the marxist legacy, banished to the footnotes as reserve dna: we must reinvent the whole subject, which requires seeing the close connection of liberalism and communism across the divide of expropriation. This is not a form of compromise but a way to suggest (what was obvious to many in our cowcatcher assembly of primordials) that socialism might be born from a remorphed liberalism that was based on challenges to capitalism but otherwise was a realization of modern freedoms and rights. That sounds a bit obvious but a close look shows this perspective is absent form the leftist successors to bolshevism, that is the whole nearly braindead left.
Let us grant however that the historical exemplars however we judge them confronted the right at full force and we must ask if the same fate awaits the future as we see in the contracting atmosphere of the defense against couterrevolution, viz. the russian Civil War. The left must find a way to success beyond the construction of covert agencies to defend the revolution, etc, ad nauseam…It is obvious one can fail at the moment of that challenge in practice.
It is worth noting that Thomas Munzer at the dawn of the reformation and of modern revolutionary communism proclaims a communist theme far before the rise of modern democracies. And the English Civil is the cowcatcher for all later broils, including our own.
Somewhere there we see the way the Restoration confused the issues of democracy and the later excess reaction to liberalism that hoped in vain for a total reconstruction after smashing the whole social scene, a project that failed.
We have suggested a way to instead remorph liberalism into a (neo-) communism and that the issue is not so much destroying liberalism, and hence its rights and freedoms, as remorphing its core, but in a context of genuine (revolutionary, but still possibly reformist) postcapitalism in the sense of expropriation and the creation, or recreation, of a Commons.
Historical materialism is a useless pseudo-science. It gives license to anyone who feels like it to dismiss marxism, socialism, with a wave of the hand. As a stage of insight into economics and history is one thing, but its total domination of all leftist fundamentals is totally counterproductive. Its reign in the early second international was ideologically explosive, but now its mere mention sets a brake on the left. Look at the facts: the marxist left cannot attract more than a small field of dwindling sects.
Now that ‘democratic socialism’ is on the move again, whether as the real thing or social democracy, it is important to recast the basic frameworks anew. Marxists tend to get impatient with social democracy and then drown discussion with archaic boilerplate.
The question of revolutionary may be crucial, but not if it simply reiterates old formulations or indulges in leninist hail mary.
We have introduced a seeming distraction: the data of the eonic effect. It can help to look at world history all over again with fresh thinking, whatever the nature of its detailed claims.
We have suggested using the eonic effect/model as a tool to enforce close reading of texts, covering a balanced sample of all zones and regions, bypassing deterministic ‘laws of history’ fallacies, bringing free agents into the discussion and using empirical chronicles.
The issue of economics is actually secondary and economic systems do not drive the evolution of civilization. What does the term evolution mean? In an historical context the term simply means development, but it is essential to see that ‘ organismic and historical evolution’ is not random. The eonic effect shows a non-random pattern in that regard. Unfortunately everyone is rendered so braindead by darwinism they cannot think about history. And biblical history is equally deranged and confuses the issue: the eonic effect resolve that religious history with ease.
Our approach unifies structural analysis AND free agency: history develops a pattern and shows directionality but at the same time free agency carries out the realization. No other model has that combined set. The facts require it.
Modernity is structure while free agency creates its realization. But modernity as such is more than free agency, as we can see if we zoom out.
The full model of the eonic effect might seem controversial, set it aside and use its gist, as a simple empirical format as periodization. In that form it will protect you from many goofs. Consider Marx’s statement that class struggle drives history. Does it? Doesn’t look like it to me. Instant theory, and probably false. A lot of marxist insight can be brought into the eonic model, e.g. studies of class taking empirically. But Marx’s theories fail in all cases.
The eonic effect in its full form might show the way to finding what drives world history because it suggests there is frequency driver. Uh oh, another theory. But descriptively an hypothesis of cyclical frequency is quite OK, empirically, and not quite proven…
And you will discover world history is so complex you are better off staying away from theories. The eonic effect might produce a theory someday but for the moment it is a simple periodization. One that is not dogmatic, but useful and which corresponds to how we take history, sort of, if we actually study the subject.
And a thousand books is the minimum needed to start observing history.
In its simplest form we can simply periodize world history as three epochs or intervals, 3000 BCE to 600 BCE, 600 BCE to 1800 AD, and 1800 AD to plus/plus: it is an unfinished epoch underway, global modernity… For some reason this periodization works and it leaves the future open as it should. There is a lot more to the model but you begin to study empirical eras with that and you will find that this periodization fits the facts well. That it might conceal a subtle dynamic can be deferred to later study if you like. But the point is that empirical data is the bottom line and if you want you can study the economic systems as they arise factually in history. Marx’s system of stages or epochs just doesn’t work. Early socialists had it right the first time: democracy emerges in the early modern but if we add socialism to democracy we get real democracy. No grand theory needed there and we see democracy has a close correlation with the model. The same might be said of socialism and if we study ancient greek history we see that they were the real inventors of socialism, as an idea or a set of ‘utopias’.
Whatever the case ‘capitalism’ is not a stage of history and should have been blended into socialism from the start, as Marx/Engels before 1848/9 understood quite well.
The eonic effect shows something mysterious behind world history and it resolves the famous challenge of Kant to find some structure in world history. As our data increases the point becomes obvious.