Mass revolutionary organisations during periods of class retreat?

199 posts / 0 new
Last post
Mike Harman
Offline
Joined: 7-02-06
Dec 27 2007 19:51
Mass revolutionary organisations during periods of class retreat?

split from: http://libcom.org/forums/organise/no-strike-clauses-iww-16122007?page=12

severin wrote:
Revol said:
Quote:
I called you a trot because you hold the working class can never produce a revolutionary mass movement (note not a majority one) outside of revolutionary times, which is a simple minded tautology that only works for people like the ICC because of their decadence theory.

This is an expression that troubles me. I see this sort of thought here a lot.

Well revol's at best greatly oversimplifying what me and John have argued.

The main point for me, is that people's ideas often change during periods of open class conflict - this could be anything from workers co-operating across race and gender boundaries when confronted with a common class enemy during a relatively localised strike - when those boundaries are far more impermeable otherwise - to confronting the entire nature of work, politics etc. which has clearly happened during mass strikes and insurrections in the past.

The counterpart to this is you can't make open class conflict out of ideas by themselves - it's not a matter of 'converting people to libertarian communism' (and I really wish that was a straw-man but it's been said enough times on here) so they get all revolutionary and kick off, and if there was just enough people who were revolutionary then we'd get bigger and bigger and bigger until....

I also think it's quite fair to say that many people will return to normal life (and more or less the same general political outlook) when things die down. Of course not everyone does necessarily but those who continue with active communist politics will be a small number. Rather than psychologising it, we can say that organisations which are built up during these periods have invariably been crushed, recuperated, or shrunk down to a much smaller size when the events that led to their growth have died down.

I've posted this basic points a few times now when this has come up, and no-one who disagrees with me has posted anything serious in response as far as I can remember, and certainly no counter-examples. Hence the new thread.

severin wrote:
What exactly are these mythical 'revolutionary times'? Are they the times when working class people happen to be blessed with the same arcane knowledge, the same theoretical understanding as the 'revolutionaries'?

If you look at any of the major insurrections - there was also some very rapid self-education that went along alongside them and because of them. This also happens on a much smaller scale as well.

A very, very small example - some refuse workers on strike in Tottenham a year or two ago found a couple of articles on here about a bin men's strike in Brighton from a few years ago. They printed this off and handed it around at the picket line (we found out, I think, because someone who knows about this site visited the picket line and heard about it - otherwise we wouldn't have). Now I think it's far more likely that people will go on strike, then decide to read about the wider history of class struggle as a result of that, than vice-versa. Obviously some people come to communist ideas as a result of reading theory or history - I did, I'd imagine the bulk of posters on here did (especially those of us under 50). I also think the numbers of those people could be far, far higher than they are now - many many multiples, and that relatively large number of 'pro-revolutionaries' can help to tip the balance in favour of revolutionary positions in particular situations. However, pro-revolutionaries should be organising themselves, not trying to organise the working class - and certainly shouldn't be getting themselves into situations where they're negotiating the price of labour power etc. with bosses.

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 27 2007 20:22
Quote:
The counterpart to this is you can't make open class conflict out of ideas by themselves - it's not a matter of 'converting people to libertarian communism' (and I really wish that was a straw-man but it's been said enough times on here) so they get all revolutionary and kick off, and if there was just enough people who were revolutionary then we'd get bigger and bigger and bigger until....

No, you have to vindicate the potency of those ideas through direct action applied to preexisting and nascent struggles. The education happens by example.

Quote:
I also think it's quite fair to say that many people will return to normal life (and more or less the same general political outlook) when things die down. Of course not everyone does necessarily but those who continue with active communist politics will be a small number. Rather than psychologising it, we can say that organisations which are built up during these periods have invariably been crushed,

By force.

Quote:
recuperated,

By unions and political parties.

Quote:
or shrunk down to a much smaller size when the events that led to their growth have died down.

Because the energy is no longer there, And that has nothing to do with ideology.

Quote:
I've posted this basic points a few times now when this has come up, and no-one who disagrees with me has posted anything serious in response as far as I can remember, and certainly no counter-examples. Hence the new thread.
severin wrote:
What exactly are these mythical 'revolutionary times'? Are they the times when working class people happen to be blessed with the same arcane knowledge, the same theoretical understanding as the 'revolutionaries'?
Quote:
If you look at any of the major insurrections - there was also some very rapid self-education that went along alongside them and because of them. This also happens on a much smaller scale as well

A very, very small example - some refuse workers on strike in Tottenham a year or two ago found a couple of articles on here about a bin men's strike in Brighton from a few years ago. They printed this off and handed it around at the picket line (we found out, I think, because someone who knows about this site visited the picket line and heard about it - otherwise we wouldn't have). Now I think it's far more likely that people will go on strike, then decide to read about the wider history of class struggle as a result of that, than vice-versa. Obviously some people come to communist ideas as a result of reading theory or history - I did, I'd imagine the bulk of posters on here did (especially those of us under 50). I also think the numbers of those people could be far, far higher than they are now - many many multiples, and that relatively large number of 'pro-revolutionaries' can help to tip the balance in favour of revolutionary positions in particular situations.

I would tend to agree....tho the very concept of the revolutionary current being 'separate' from the whole of working class life- which is riddled with forms of subversion that we simply don't know about - is scary to me and squints towards vanguardism. Also, in no way do i see any sort of energetic plain language propagandizing towards the dissemination of a revolutionary critique. In no way.

The idea of this seperation can only survive on stereotypes-- the blinkered, ignorant and passive worker and the 'pure' revolutionary. We all have tendencies, we are mixed creatures. People have the capacity for rebellion at all points, and the desire, if it does not come packaged in terms of 'communism' and such then who gives a fuck.

The idea as that there is a clear path or set of channels thru which all of those private and 'open' forms of class conflict can converge and truly catalyze the utter destruction of the capitalist system....so that there is no normal life to go back to. I think if 'revolutionaries' are to organize and educate themselves, it means developing real empathy with the broader working class and learning from 'them' rather than trying to preach to 'them'.

Quote:
However, pro-revolutionaries should be organising themselves, not trying to organise the working class - and certainly shouldn't be getting themselves into situations where they're negotiating the price of labour power etc. with bosses.

Agreed, then what the hell is so 'science fiction' about the folowing assertion, according to pghwob:

Quote:
The Alliance is not interested in negotiating with bosses, or organizing labor in submission to laws set by any government. We hold that labor is a law unto itself. The Alliance sees as central to its task the complete control of industry by the working class on a directly democratic basis, and nothing less.

You'll pardon my lack of articulation, i am just trying to feel things out here. I am not hard and fast about a lot of things.

Mike Harman
Offline
Joined: 7-02-06
Dec 27 2007 20:50
severin wrote:
No, you have to vindicate the potency of those ideas through direct action applied to preexisting and nascent struggles. The education happens by example.

Well, yes. But you don't deal with how to deal with struggles you're outside of (our answer to this during the recent postal and other public sector strikes was 'Dispatch' - a few threads and one copy of the pamphlet are on here via a quick search - wasn't that successful but that was in large part due to the strikes themselves winding down before they got started), or for that matter what to do when there's no obvious struggles to be involved with.

severin wrote:
By force...
By unions and political parties...
Because the energy is no longer there, And that has nothing to do with ideology...

Do you think force, unions and political parties are going to disappear any time soon? Do you not think that some unions and political parties were in fact (or at least claimed to be) the authentic expression of working class self-organisation during revolutionary periods in some countries? And yet here we are in 2007 with groups trying to build both unions and political parties.

Quote:
I would tend to agree....tho the very concept of the revolutionary current being 'separate' from the whole of working class life- which is riddled with forms of subversion that we simply don't know about - is scary to me and squints towards vanguardism.

I think I argued very clearly that it's entirely tied up with the whole of working class life - however quite clearly these ideas are in large part very 'separate' from the experience of the vast majority of people - most haven't had any exposure to them at all, let alone an opportunity to actively reject them.

severin wrote:
Also, in no way do i see any sort of energetic plain language propagandizing towards the dissemination of a revolutionary critique. In no way.

What in my post? Well it was a five minute response to a discussion which revol and John. brought up, which itself was the product of several previous discussions on here. You can't have everything all the time.

Quote:
The idea of this seperation can only survive on stereotypes-- the blinkered, ignorant and passive worker and the 'pure' revolutionary. We all have tendencies, we are mixed creatures. People have the capacity for rebellion at all points, and the desire, if it does not come packaged in terms of 'communism' and such then who gives a fuck.

Er, this was exactly what I argued. That we all have contradictory tendencies and these tend to come to the fore during periods of struggle (I could perhaps have mentioned all the 'revolutionaries' who monumentally fucked things up when the time came, but hoped that wouldn't be necessary on here). Why all these contradictory tendencies need to be expressed in a self-professed revolutionary organisation - that's what I don't understand. If we accept that class struggle is contradictory, happens all time in ways we rarely get to hear about - why try to package that up in to a revolutionary union?

Also, ust because we're all contradictory doesn't mean I don't think my political ideas are better than some of the people I work with, or that I think it'd be really productive to sit down with them and write communist propaganda during our lunch breaks.

Quote:
I think if 'revolutionaries' are to organize and educate themselves, it means developing real empathy with the broader working class and learning from 'them' rather than trying to preach to 'them'.

Hence why I think 'pro-revolutionaries' should concentrate on organising themselves rather than organising 'the workers'. I've been active at my work the past couple of years, but I didn't do this as 'libcom.org' - and when one of my workmates registered on here after some conversations that wasn't as a result of the stuff we were actually trying to do at work.

Severin wrote:
Mike Harman wrote:
However, pro-revolutionaries should be organising themselves, not trying to organise the working class - and certainly shouldn't be getting themselves into situations where they're negotiating the price of labour power etc. with bosses.

Agreed, then what the hell is so 'science fiction' about the folowing assertion, according to pghwob:

Quote:
The Alliance is not interested in negotiating with bosses, or organizing labor in submission to laws set by any government. We hold that labor is a law unto itself. The Alliance sees as central to its task the complete control of industry by the working class on a directly democratic basis, and nothing less.

You'll have to put that in some context for me. I think we need to go a fuck of a lot further than 'complete control of industry by the working class on a directly democratic basis' though.

mikus
Offline
Joined: 18-07-06
Dec 27 2007 21:14

Please define "mass revolutionary organization" and also "period of class retreat". I strongly suspect, like Revol, that the whole argument is a tautology but that depends on how you define those terms.

Steven.'s picture
Steven.
Offline
Joined: 27-06-06
Dec 27 2007 21:18
Mike Harman wrote:
split from: http://libcom.org/forums/organise/no-strike-clauses-iww-16122007?page=12
severin wrote:
Revol said:
Quote:
I called you a trot because you hold the working class can never produce a revolutionary mass movement (note not a majority one) outside of revolutionary times, which is a simple minded tautology that only works for people like the ICC because of their decadence theory.

This is an expression that troubles me. I see this sort of thought here a lot.

Well revol's at best greatly oversimplifying what me and John have argued.

I have responded on that thread, because I've never said that. Revol is inventing views and attributing them to me.

Nate's picture
Nate
Offline
Joined: 16-12-05
Dec 27 2007 21:36

Catch, I think you sum up an important point here regarding disagreements in these forums -

Mike Harman wrote:
pro-revolutionaries should be organising themselves, not trying to organise the working class

Can you clarify some stuff for me please?

1.By "pro-revolutionaries should be organising themselves" you mean the pro-revolutinaries should be organizing themselves specifically around their shared pro-revolutionaryness. Right?

2. Not organizing themselves around their concerns as workers in their own jobs. Right?

3. Can you say more about what you think these pro-revolutionaries should be organizing themselves to do? (Or can you recommend anything that I read that lays out this perspective on what revolutionists should do?)

4. By "not trying to organize the working class" you mean not organizing with other workers (ones who are not pro-revolutionaries) around common concerns as workers. Right? (I ask this because I would never claim that the IWW is going to organize the working class in its entirety. I think the working class benefits from having multiple organizations and multiple types of organizations).

5. You don't mean that pro-revolutionaries should _avoid_ doing that sort of activity, organizing with other workers. Right?

Thanks.

Mike Harman
Offline
Joined: 7-02-06
Dec 27 2007 22:34
Nate wrote:
1.By "pro-revolutionaries should be organising themselves" you mean the pro-revolutinaries should be organizing themselves specifically around their shared pro-revolutionaryness. Right?

Yes.

Quote:
2. Not organizing themselves around their concerns as workers in their own jobs. Right?

I think workers should organise themselves around their concerns as workers. Some 'pro-revolutionaries' are also workers. Hence in that context, they should organise themselves as workers (but not try to squeeze this into a putative revolutionary organisation).

Quote:
3. Can you say more about what you think these pro-revolutionaries should be organizing themselves to do?

They should discuss and share their direct experiences around 2. - they should also circulate information about struggles they may or may not be involved with. I also think it's important to understand and disseminate past struggles - hence my involvement with this website.

Quote:
4. By "not trying to organize the working class" you mean not organizing with other workers (ones who are not pro-revolutionaries) around common concerns as workers. Right?

This is answered by 1 and 2 I believe. I'm surprised you're even asking this question given my discussions with you on other threads. I don't think we should be organising workers who aren't 'pro-revolutionary' into 'pro-revolutionary' organisations, no.

Quote:
(I ask this because I would never claim that the IWW is going to organize the working class in its entirety. I think the working class benefits from having multiple organizations and multiple types of organizations).

So you disagree with "One Big Union" then?

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 27 2007 23:13

Bah. i dunno.

The more i study, the more observe and the more I reflect on the content of these debates, the more I think it is: completely back to the drawing board and develop a new kind of revolutionary organization, one that has every intention of being a mass organization but does not backslide on principle.

I really think that the nature of the energy surrounding these critiques and campaigns is central, I think that we've got never ending cycles of debate that don't somehow really expose the fundamental problems. Like... all the preconcieved notions of what a revolutionary organization should be and how it will obtain should be thrown out. Square one. Blank slate.

With what you all agree on as the ultimate goal or goals, or rather the processes you want to initiate, And how the hell you are going to convince anyone that these will mean a better life for us all. We have subjective aims, we have to defend, prove. their validity. Not just to each other but to the world.

I am grateful for everything catch has given me to think about---i am not prone to argument for its own sake, which is why i take time to reflect on what i have read rather than dive back in immediately on the defensive/offensive- but I frankly agree with revol on most of the shit here...his tone does not win him many friends but tough shit you know, this isn't a fucking tea-party. If you are serious than you should be able to take some heat.

thugarchist's picture
thugarchist
Offline
Joined: 26-11-06
Dec 28 2007 00:23
Mike Harman wrote:
Nate wrote:
(I ask this because I would never claim that the IWW is going to organize the working class in its entirety. I think the working class benefits from having multiple organizations and multiple types of organizations).

So you disagree with "One Big Union" then?

This has to indicate a disconnect between IWW militants and what the syndicalism of the IWW means.

Nate's picture
Nate
Offline
Joined: 16-12-05
Dec 28 2007 00:35

Catch, thanks for clarifying. I wasn't implying anything by my questions. More later.

Duke, not sure what to say - you already said most of it

Quote:
"Snarky jackass with nothing to offer!"

smile

booeyschewy
Offline
Joined: 18-10-06
Dec 28 2007 02:28

thug & catch-

There's definately a disconnect between the official documents of the union and its militants. I find the idea of one big union for all workers cute but crazy and potentially dangerous. It's marxist modernism at its worst. It's kinda funny actually, i disagree strongly with parts of the preamble, the OBU, and the constitutions, and i've laughed at the idea of being charged for it and tossed from the union.

I think a lot of the best people in the union are in it because of the other good people and work, not because of the official documents or ideology or even all the work in the union. I've been tottering on the edge of leaving many times in the recent past, but have been kept in by the good people i do know (some of whom are on libcom), and the interesting projects (the best is usually unadvertised btw) that are still going on. If either of those equations changed, i'd be out. It's certainly not the gleaming truths of the iww's ideology that keep me in it.

thugarchist's picture
thugarchist
Offline
Joined: 26-11-06
Dec 28 2007 02:42
Nate wrote:
Catch, thanks for clarifying. I wasn't implying anything by my questions. More later.

Duke, not sure what to say - you already said most of it

Quote:
"Snarky jackass with nothing to offer!"

smile

Don't get used to it. I'm being unduly influenced into being pleasant. If it lasts much longer I might start bleeding from the eyeballs.

mikus
Offline
Joined: 18-07-06
Dec 28 2007 02:57
booeyschewy wrote:
I find the idea of one big union for all workers cute but crazy and potentially dangerous. It's marxist modernism at its worst.

What does the bold sentence mean?

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 28 2007 03:14

for now.

Severin wrote:
Mike Harman wrote:
However, pro-revolutionaries should be organising themselves, not trying to organise the working class - and certainly shouldn't be getting themselves into situations where they're negotiating the price of labour power etc. with bosses.

Agreed, then what the hell is so 'science fiction' about the folowing assertion, according to pghwob:

Quote:
The Alliance is not interested in negotiating with bosses, or organizing labor in submission to laws set by any government. We hold that labor is a law unto itself. The Alliance sees as central to its task the complete control of industry by the working class on a directly democratic basis, and nothing less.

Catch said:

Quote:
You'll have to put that in some context for me. I think we need to go a fuck of a lot further than 'complete control of industry by the working class on a directly democratic basis' though.

I said 'central to its task', not the whole show. I don't think that the democratic workplace is the end of revolutionary activity, i think of it more as a corollary or even a by-product or parallel development.

Just a draft.

booeyschewy
Offline
Joined: 18-10-06
Dec 28 2007 15:01
mikus wrote:
booeyschewy wrote:
I find the idea of one big union for all workers cute but crazy and potentially dangerous. It's marxist modernism at its worst.

What does the bold sentence mean?

i'd say a tendency in marxism which tried to economically reduce the whole working class (world wide) into pretty narrow categories. The english speaking sections of IWW theory is filled with this stuff. Nate can say more about it. I think there was a journal or something called economic reductionism even.

yoshomon
Offline
Joined: 19-06-07
Dec 28 2007 15:03

If such a journal existed, it had arguably the best name for a journal ever.

Nate's picture
Nate
Offline
Joined: 16-12-05
Dec 28 2007 18:37

There was a column run in one of the IWW journals called Economic Determinism, around 1908 or so.

Dundee_United
Offline
Joined: 10-04-06
Dec 28 2007 23:33
Quote:
I find the idea of one big union for all workers cute but crazy and potentially dangerous. It's marxist modernism at its worst.

Most active members I'd say agree with that. I certainly do. The internal statutes need updating accordingly, and the One Big Union pamphlet should be considered a historical document, not a required piece of literature in all new members packs.

I think the concept of one labour international which is composed of socialist industry unions that are committed to direct democracy, and are international is certainly necessary.

thugarchist's picture
thugarchist
Offline
Joined: 26-11-06
Dec 28 2007 23:44
Dundee_United wrote:
Quote:
I find the idea of one big union for all workers cute but crazy and potentially dangerous. It's marxist modernism at its worst.

Most active members I'd say agree with that. I certainly do. The internal statutes need updating accordingly, and the One Big Union pamphlet should be considered a historical document, not a required piece of literature in all new members packs.

I think the concept of one labour international which is composed of socialist industry unions that are committed to direct democracy, and are international is certainly necessary.

If the IWW isn't about fomenting revolution and it isn't about the one big union...

then what the fuck is it about?

Dundee_United
Offline
Joined: 10-04-06
Dec 29 2007 01:19
Quote:
If the IWW isn't about fomenting revolution and it isn't about the one big union...

then what the fuck is it about?

Building a union that will advance the class struggle and put us in the position of making steps towards a new international labour convergence.

booeyschewy
Offline
Joined: 18-10-06
Dec 29 2007 01:38

i think it is about fomenting revolution, I just think the history of syndicalism casts doubt on whether it will succeed if left to its own devices. I think it can be both pro-revolutionary and realize its own inadequacy in that. maybe.

What its about to me is a workers' organization built (or in the process of building) on libertarian principles that gives us the space to develop tactics and consciousness around workplace struggle that we wouldn't otherwise be able to do within existing hierarchical organizations or as unorganized spontaneous groups.

but that's just me, i bet a lot of people disagree with parts of that.

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 29 2007 01:54

there will never and need not be 'one big' formalized union. there is no program or constitution that can possibly cover all of the variables, tactics, procedures or sensibilities involved.

the best u can do is provide and example. which is not, at this moment, happening.

cantdocartwheels's picture
cantdocartwheels
Offline
Joined: 15-03-04
Dec 29 2007 03:48
Mike Harman wrote:
split from: http://libcom.org/forums/organise/no-strike-clauses-iww-16122007?page=12
severin wrote:
Revol said:
Quote:
I called you a trot because you hold the working class can never produce a revolutionary mass movement (note not a majority one) outside of revolutionary times, which is a simple minded tautology that only works for people like the ICC because of their decadence theory.

This is an expression that troubles me. I see this sort of thought here a lot.

Well revol's at best greatly oversimplifying what me and John have argued.

The main point for me, is that people's ideas often change during periods of open class conflict - this could be anything from workers co-operating across race and gender boundaries when confronted with a common class enemy during a relatively localised strike - when those boundaries are far more impermeable otherwise - to confronting the entire nature of work, politics etc. which has clearly happened during mass strikes and insurrections in the past.

People confront the entire nature of work every day they have to sit through 8 hours of it. The point people have repeatedly made (i'm pretty sure i made several posts to this effect in the last thread you didn't bother replying to), is that you want mass revolutionary organisations in a revolution like workers councils yadda yadda yadda, but outisde of the revoluton you don't think they are possible or desireable, hence you are quite clearly creating a mythical divide between revolutionry and non-revolutionary times.

Quote:
severin wrote:
What exactly are these mythical 'revolutionary times'? Are they the times when working class people happen to be blessed with the same arcane knowledge, the same theoretical understanding as the 'revolutionaries'?

If you look at any of the major insurrections - there was also some very rapid self-education that went along alongside them and because of them. This also happens on a much smaller scale as well.

This is nonsense, sometimes large elements of spontaneity, some don't, its just plain old reductionist to try and claim that evry organisation should somehow reflect some idealised spontaneous form that leads neatly to communism. For example do you think the current wave of insurrections and workplace and community organisation in south america is the result of sudden spontaneous revolt? If a mass revolutionary organisation engaged in collectively defending its membership, is it wrong for them to do so, should they be waiting for revolutionary times to do so or for the whole working class to follow suit, or sould they completely drop all pretence of being ''political'' and go for apolitical unionism instead?

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 29 2007 05:58

I think what I am detecting is a hierarchy of some kind here...

there are 'revolutionaries' (the chosen ones, with 'good politics')

the 'pro-revolutionaries' (intermediate, apprentice types, not ready for prime-time players)

and

'plain old working class people' (either followers, or an obstruction).

right?

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Dec 29 2007 06:25
cantdocartwheels wrote:
People confront the entire nature of work every day they have to sit through 8 hours of it. The point people have repeatedly made (i'm pretty sure i made several posts to this effect in the last thread you didn't bother replying to), is that you want mass revolutionary organisations in a revolution like workers councils yadda yadda yadda, but outisde of the revoluton you don't think they are possible or desireable, hence you are quite clearly creating a mythical divide between revolutionry and non-revolutionary times.

The point isn't that in non revolutionary periods workers' councils are not desirable. The point is that they don't exist. My guess is that there may be a few people on here who have been on strike committees. I don't think that anybody has been on a workers' council because there haven't been any for years, which is because there hasn't been a period of mass struggle. The struggle creates the workers' councils, and you can't have them outside of periods of mass struggle.

Devrim

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 29 2007 06:27
Devrim wrote:
cantdocartwheels wrote:
People confront the entire nature of work every day they have to sit through 8 hours of it. The point people have repeatedly made (i'm pretty sure i made several posts to this effect in the last thread you didn't bother replying to), is that you want mass revolutionary organisations in a revolution like workers councils yadda yadda yadda, but outisde of the revoluton you don't think they are possible or desireable, hence you are quite clearly creating a mythical divide between revolutionry and non-revolutionary times.

The point isn't that in non revolutionary periods workers' councils are not desirable. The point is that they don't exist. My guess is that there may be a few people on here who have been on strike committees. I don't think that anybody has been on a workers' council because there haven't been any for years, which is because there hasn't been a period of mass struggle. The struggle creates the workers' councils, and you can't have them outside of periods of mass struggle.

Devrim

Yes but you can stump for their necessity/viability, study what the parameters of their activity would be and strategize for their course of action, no?

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Dec 29 2007 06:36
severin wrote:
Yes but you can stump for their necessity/viability, study what the parameters of their activity would be and strategize for their course of action, no?

I don't understand the question.

Devrim

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 29 2007 06:44

Meaning.

You can recommend the development of worker's assemblies and, that they take on a councilist executive form.

You can decide exactly what the various spheres of activity of the councils would be in order to unite them across industrial lines etc.

And you can study the needs of a given area and tactically plot the function of the councils, the necessity for expropriation, defense...its priorities and such.

simple question.

edit.

Or you can find yourself in a revolutionary situation (even one that you have created) with a mass of disconnected bodies who have no way to coordinate their activity, and no guiding principle.

Like May 68.

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Dec 29 2007 06:52
Quote:
You can recommend the development of worker's assemblies and, that they take on a councilist executive form.

Yes, absolutely. But there is a difference between a mass meeting, and a workers' council. Let's not conflate the two.

Quote:
You can decide exactly what the various spheres of activity of the councils would be in order to unite them across industrial lines etc.

Exactly? Aren't they something that evolve organically through the struggle?

Quote:
And you can study the needs of a given area and tactically plot the function of the councils, the necessity for expropriation, defense...its priorities and such.

I think that we can make generally comments, but we can not plan everything in detail.

Devrim

severin
Offline
Joined: 9-10-07
Dec 29 2007 07:01
Devrim wrote:
Quote:
You can recommend the development of worker's assemblies and, that they take on a councilist executive form.

Yes, absolutely. But there is a difference between a mass meeting, and a workers' council. Let's not conflate the two.

-Yes but without a mass meeting a worker's council has no mandate.

Quote:
You can decide exactly what the various spheres of activity of the councils would be in order to unite them across industrial lines etc.

Exactly? Aren't they something that evolve organically through the struggle?

-No, not exactly, but you must establish priorities (defense, food, communications, power, etc.) or you can watch them dissolve and be destroyed 'organically' in the midst of said struggle.

Quote:
And you can study the needs of a given area and tactically plot the function of the councils, the necessity for expropriation, defense...its priorities and such.

I think that we can make generally comments, but we can not plan everything in detail

Um, I think certain things should be planned in scrupulous detail, otherwise everything else will fall apart.

Devrim's picture
Devrim
Offline
Joined: 15-07-06
Dec 29 2007 07:05
severin wrote:
-Yes but without a mass meeting a worker's council has no mandate.

Yes, but back to the point of the thread, there is a reason why we don't have workers' councils, the fact that there are not strike committees, which comes from the fact that there are not mass meetings, which comes from the fact that there is not large scale struggle.

severin wrote:
Um, I think certain things should be planned in scrupulous detail, otherwise everything else will fall apart.

By whom?