Thesis, antithesis, synthesis

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Joseph Kay
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May 18 2007 09:47
Rosa Lichenstein wrote:
Quite; what is correct in Hegel is the stuff he filched from Ferguson, Millar, Smith and Hume (and probably from Vico and Herder, too).

Marx was happy to return to that rational form of historical materialism, and to develop it, hence he needed nothing at all from Hegel.

Same with me.

Rosa Lichenstein wrote:
I reject all of traditional philosophy as ruling-class clap trap.

you're certainly managing to reject dialectics, the law of non-contradiction and the thoroughly bourgeois notion of coherency

SatanIsMyCoPilot
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May 18 2007 09:56
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Well, no -- he "coquetted" with these words (and only in a few places -- why not in every chapter?). This is not a ringing endorsement of that 'mighty' thinker. This he said after putting his praise for Hegel in the past tense, and after quoting a long passage from a reviewer in which no Hegelian terms are to be found, which Marx described as the 'dialectic method'.

I've explained to you why this was in the past tense several times: Marx is talking about a period of time that had since passed, in which it had become fashionable to slag off Hegel, and he is talking about a book that he wrote during that period. This is very, very simple. He 'even coquetted' with Hegelian terms, so sure was he of the merits of studying, learning and critqueing him. You ask "why not in every chapter"? Rosa, have you actually read Capital? Have you read volumes two and three? References to Hegel crop up throughout the text of each book, either explicitly ort implicitly. Do I have to list page numbers for you?

The passage from the critic, "in which no Hegelian terms are to be found", is clearly presented as an example of someone describing dialectical procedure without realising it: "Whilst the writer pictures what he takes to be actually my method, in this striking and [as far as concerns my own application of it] generous way, what else is he picturing but the dialectic method?" The point being made is that the critic is describing Marx's method comparatively accurately, and in so doing he is, according to Marx, describing "the dialectical method."

Now, according to you, because a dialectic can (allegedly) only be Hegelian or Hegelian influenced (you've defined neither) if it uses Hegelian catch phrases (which Hegel woudl himself dispute), the fact that this critic describes dialectical method without employing such buzz words means that it cannot be Hegelian or Hegelian influenced. This despite the strikingly obvious fact that this guy is pictured as "picturing...the dialectic method" without realising it. The simple point being made (as should be extremely obvious to anyone who isn't engaged in a deliberate misreading of an inconvenient truth found within what seems to them a religious text[) here is that the critic is describing a dialectic that is strikingly similar to Hegel's own, albeit 'materialist' rather than 'idealist.' As is abundantly clear from that section of text itself, and from the rest of the text.

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So, once more, you can only make your theory work if you ignore his actual words.

Now that's kind of ironic, isn;t it

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My theory has the merit of not doing that.

YEAH!

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Now, please do reply to my first question.
Done it, if this was it:...

Nope, reading skills are clearly not one of your virtues (although we know that already from the above): I'm asking you to define what a Hegelian dialectic is, and what you think Marx's dialectic to be. Someone who can become as animated as yourself about these issues must be able to summarise them clearly. As it now stands, your complaining about the poison of Hegelianism without explaining what's bad about it, and you're talking about Marx's 'dialectical method' whist shouting about how un-dialectical it is. Explain what you mean by these terms. "The only good thing about Hegel is he dropped dead" is a fairly childish response.

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What it says: Historical Materialism without the Hegel.

So what's that then? Don't point me to books; if you've read these books and assimilated them you shoudl be able to explain to us yourself. What is "Historical Materialism without the Hegel"?

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 18 2007 11:08

Revol68:

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see this part just shows what an utter cretin you are. Do you think philosophers just invent ideas, that they aren't adaptions, reworkings of previous ideas, problems etc?

I congratulate you on trailing your pig ignorance once more for all the world to see.

There aren't many who would stick their short necks out like this -- and with such style!

si
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May 18 2007 11:20

rosa I'm not sure this is going well for you. why don't you answer SIMCP's request for your working definitions of Hegel's and Marx's dialectic? (it's clear from the preface that Marx thought he did have such a method, after all...)

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 18 2007 11:34

SIMCP:

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I've explained to you why this was in the past tense several times:

Yes, and I don't buy it, for he directly goes on to add this put-down:

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and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him

Some endorsement of Hegel's 'genius' -- I think not!

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You ask "why not in every chapter"? Rosa, have you actually read Capital? Have you read volumes two and three? References to Hegel crop up throughout the text of each book, either explicitly ort implicitly. Do I have to list page numbers for you?

Yes, list them -- let's see you put your quotations where your mouth is.

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The passage from the critic, "in which no Hegelian terms are to be found", is clearly presented as an example of someone describing dialectical procedure without realising it: "Whilst the writer pictures what he takes to be actually my method, in this striking and [as far as concerns my own application of it] generous way, what else is he picturing but the dialectic method?" The point being made is that the critic is describing Marx's method comparatively accurately, and in so doing he is, according to Marx, describing "the dialectical method."

And without a single Hegelain word/term/idea/concept -- which Marx (not me) called the 'dialectic method'.

In short, we do not need Hegel to grasp Marx's method -- as he himself indicates.

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Now, according to you, because a dialectic can (allegedly) only be Hegelian or Hegelian influenced (you've defined neither) if it uses Hegelian catch phrases (which Hegel woudl himself dispute), the fact that this critic describes dialectical method without employing such buzz words means that it cannot be Hegelian or Hegelian influenced. This despite the strikingly obvious fact that this guy is pictured as "picturing...the dialectic method" without realising it. The simple point being made (as should be extremely obvious to anyone who isn't engaged in a deliberate misreading of an inconvenient truth found within what seems to them a religious text[) here is that the critic is describing a dialectic that is strikingly similar to Hegel's own, albeit 'materialist' rather than 'idealist.' As is abundantly clear from that section of text itself, and from the rest of the text.

This is all very convenient for your 'theory' but it ignores the fact that Marx endorses a summary of the 'dialectic method' in which there is no trace of Hegel.

Now you can thrash about trying to minimise the damage this does to your 'theory' if you like, but it won't wash, since all I will keep doing is re-posting this comment, or a paraphrase of it:

Marx's actual words support my theory not your traditional account.

Get over it.

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Now that's kind of ironic, isn't it

Nearly right:; here is my correct paraphrase:

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Now that's correct, isn't it

And as for this:

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YEAH!

No need to shout your agreement -- lower case will do from now on.

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Nope, reading skills are clearly not one of your virtues (although we know that already from the above).

Well, when it comes to reading you are the one in difficulties, since you keep ignoring these words:

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and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him

And, you ignore the fact that Marx himself described a reviewer's summary of his ideas (in which not a trace of Hegel is to be found) as the 'dialectic method'.

So, projecting your selective blindness onto me is just another sign of how desperate you are becoming.

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I'm asking you to define what a Hegelian dialectic is, and what you think Marx's dialectic to be. Someone who can become as animated as yourself about these issues must be able to summarise them clearly. As it now stands, your complaining about the poison of Hegelianism without explaining what's bad about it, and you're talking about Marx's 'dialectical method' whist shouting about how un-dialectical it is. Explain what you mean by these terms. "The only good thing about Hegel is he dropped dead" is a fairly childish response

But, you are the one who sees Hegel everywhere, so it is you who should do all this 'defining', not me.

And far from my comment being "childish", I rather think I was being overly kind to this Hermetic bumbler -- to find in Hegel's life one thing positive that I could say about him.

I think I'll not bother in future if that is all the thanks I get....

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So what's that then? Don't point me to books; if you've read these books and assimilated them you shoudl be able to explain to us yourself. What is "Historical Materialism without the Hegel"?

Sorry, you have got the wrong girl here: I won't pander to your lack of thought in this area.

You are just going to have to start working things out for yourself.

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 18 2007 11:35

Si:

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rosa I'm not sure this is going well for you. why don't you answer SIMCP's request for your working definitions of Hegel's and Marx's dialectic? (it's clear from the preface that Marx thought he did have such a method, after all...)

Done it.

And we all know how 'unbiased' you are, don't we?

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 18 2007 11:50

SIMCP: sorry, but I missed this 'comment' of yours from earlier:

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This is great. No Rosa, 'we' have not covered this at all. But if you declare that to be the case - much like you keep declaring yourself to have already refuted the criticisms put forward by your other opponents here - then perhaps it will become true. And if you keep saying that Marx was completely uninfluenced by Hegel, and that there is no 'dialectical content' (yet to be defined) within Capital, then maybe that will become true.
...Kind of ironic that you're calling people here idealists.

It's rather like watching someone being presented wioth evidence that the earth is round, and seeing then shout 'no! It's flat! You mystical fools, you're all deluded!'

This was in response to my claim to have covered the comments of another poster from the previous page.

However, as the 'debate' has progressed, we can now see that it is you who is struggling to make his case, since I have stuck rigidly to what is on the page, as opposed to trying to insert things into the text, as you have done.

And your last 'comment' about the earth etc., we can now see as an early indication of your deepening desperation.

You are the one who rejects the evidence.

Here it is again for you:

1) Marx, not Rosa, wrote this classic put-down of the 'mighty' thinker Hegel:

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and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him

2) Marx, not Rosa, described the summary of his method (in which not a single Heglian notion/term/concept/word/mystical idea is to be found) as the 'dialectic method'.

So, in view of the fact that it is you who grovels at the feet of this Hermetic mystic, and wants to infect Marx's work with his incomprehensible ideas, my description of you as 'idealist' was a bit tame.

You are in fact worse than flat earthers -- they might be loopy, but at least they are not mystics.

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Demogorgon303
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May 18 2007 12:27

The problem Rosa is that your entire argument seems to hinge on one line from Marx: "and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him"

No-one with the slightest grasp of the English language (bearing in mind this is probably a translation from the original German of course!) can say that this conclusively overturns all the other stuff Marx had to say about Hegel and the dialectic in the Afterword!

In terms of pushing this "debate" forward I can briefly summarise your position and counterpoints so far thusly:

1) Marx wasn't using the Hegelian dialectic - this is stating the obvious and we all agree with it. Marx himself states his dialectic is rather different.

2) Marx has no Hegelian influence at all - far too extreme, Marx has moved beyond Hegel, just as he moved beyond Smith, Ricardo and the rest, but this doesn't mean they had no influence at all!

3) Marx uses no Hegelian terms - this seems to leave aside the fact that the whole of Capital, not to mention the rest of Marx's corpus is littered with analysis of contradictions (a method he uses precisely in a Hegelian sense rather than in the sense of formal logic, although he and Engels use it in this way also, especially when critiquing the work of others). These contradictions (for example, the contradiction between production and consumption) are part of a unity in that they comprise the totality of social relationships and thus express a "unity of opposites". I think at certain points he also uses the term Ideal in a formal Hegelian sense at some points as well.

3) Marx uses no dialectics at all - complete rubbish because Marx himself says he says does!

4) Dialectics is complete rubbish - frankly this debate is beyond my competence, but what is quite clear from Marx's work is that rejecting dialectics is to reject his work as he himself says his method is dialectical (although not in the Hegelian form).

Also you appear to contradict yourself when you say on the one hand you reject dialectics and yet agree with Marx when he says "That crisis is once again approaching, although ... the intensity of its action it will drum dialectics even into the heads of the mushroom-upstarts of the new, holy Prusso-German empire" and you say "In its non-Hegelian form, I can quite easily see it doing that". As a result, I can't help but feeling confused. One minute the dialectic is complete rubbish. The next, in its "non-Hegelian form" it will be "drum[ed]into the heads of the mushroom-upstarts"!

But on a more concrete level, if we reject dialectics entirely, why will capitalism be transformed into communism? Is it not the internal contradictions of capitalist forces of production that creates the possibility of revolution? If there is no material process internal to capitalism that drives forward revolution, what does?

SatanIsMyCoPilot
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May 18 2007 12:38
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Yes, and I don't buy it

I know. That's funny

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Yes, list them -- let's see you put your quotations where your mouth is

I'll do a few over the weekend when I have time

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This is all very convenient for your 'theory' but it ignores the fact that Marx endorses a summary of the 'dialectic method' in which there is no trace of Hegel.

Jesus Rosa, the point Marx is making is that the guy is summarising a dialectical method without realising it.

(...and your claim that Hegelian thought is specific to Hegelian words is nuts. How to translate it?! How to relate this to Hegel's own claims about language? )

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all I will keep doing is re-posting this comment, or a paraphrase of it:

Yes, I think we've all gathered that now. It's particularly clear from the way in which you quote the 'coquetted' sentence three times in the posts above - completely and totally missing the fact that Marx is voicing his approval of Hegel! Marx's dialectical method arises from a critical confrontation with Hegel, and he is paying tribute to the 'mighty thinker' from whom he's developed these ideas.

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I won't pander to your lack of thought in this area.

You don't know what you're talking about, do you? Not only are you engaged in a wilfull misreading of a text - wierd enough as it is - you're also conducting a crusade against something you don't know how to define. You don't know what Hegelian philosophy is, you don't seem to know what 'Marx's method' is, and yet you want to 'crush Hegel into the dust' on that basis.

Try and redeem yourself. Please., for the third time, define your terms.

...and please note this: I have no problem with your dislike of Hegel (although I think its unfounded). I have no problem with your ambition to remove Hegel from Marx (although I think its misguided). What I object to is a deliberate misreading.
If you were to say "Marx said A. What he really shoudl habve said is B" I'd have consierably more respect for your enterprise - but as it is you seem like some kind of dark ages priest scrabbling around in sacred texts for ways in which to interpret them differently. Admitting the Hegelian influence in Marx is common sense. Critiqueing it is interesting and possibly profuctive. Denying it is completely stupid

wangwei
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May 18 2007 21:17

I haven't had much time to return to this thread, but man has Rosa taken a pounding! The best part is that she doesn't even realize it! It's hilarious how people coming from completely different approaches came up to the same conclusions that I did.

Gato pointed out that her philosophy was atomizing, polarizing, and empirical. She said no it's not. Oh, okay.

SIMCP goes on to point out that she's bascially illustrating the dialectic in Marx, but trying to pigeonhole the whole of the dialectic into Hegel. Followed by this gem:

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Once more: it can only be such if it uses his gobbledygook.

She only recognizes the dialectic if it is in the vocabulary particular to Hegel. Ridiculous.

The best part is SIMCP coming to the same conclusion I did with this:

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Nope, reading skills are clearly not one of your virtues (although we know that already from the above).

All independent paths, one by a person who doesn't even particularly like the dialectic for his own reasons, and all basically bashing in your empirical philosophy based on semantics.

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And, you ignore the fact that Marx himself described a reviewer's summary of his ideas (in which not a trace of Hegel is to be found) as the 'dialectic method'.

Because it illustrated the dialectic method without having to use the vocabulary of Hegel. Who is it that can't read?

I don't want to detract from the line of this whole argument basically plowing Rosa's refuse into a pile of manure, but I'll refute a few of her claims against my argument:

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Mine: Because you are unable to understand that fact that all ideas have come from the ruling class, including Marx's.
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Rosa's: But, you said all ideas were from the ruling class, not 99%, but all ideas.
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Rosa: Which is it to be?
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Rosa: As Marx said: the ruling ideas are always those of the ruling-class

Amazingly enough, she doesn't argue this assertion with Marx, just me. Hmmm... She is incapable of understanding contradiction and dealing with it. That's her problem not mine. The workers build the house, the ruling class owns it. They have possession of it, so it's there's. The ruling class of each time period creates an ideology that justifies its own existence, and wrapped within that ideology is the "rational kernal" (Marx's words) that is based on materialism and exists within and in contradiction to the dominant ideology owned by the ruling class and in opposition to the working class. When workers existed in a primitive communist society, they were the ruling class, but within them existed all of the contradictions that would resolve into class society. Only under a communist society will the ruling class philosophy be purely material based, as only a Communist society can be based on a purely material world view.

Who cut down the trees, the workers
who built the house, the workers
who lives in the house, the bosses.

And Rosa, I know your reading skills are a bit on the low side, but this is an example of a metaphor. It's part of figurative language. You induce meaning from it.

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May I now suggest you read Conner’s book to see how little of science has actually come from the ruling class?]

This is ridiculous. All science is owned by the ruling class and is politically movivated to benefit them, existing within that science is a progressive force in direct opposition to it.

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You are getting sick of my devastating attacks, are you?

read: insane unfounded ramblings. Yes.

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And he chose not to publish Grundrisse, and neither did Engels.

1.) There's no proof that Engels even knew of its existence. 2.)Rosa completely ignored McCellen's analysis on this. Rosa just ignores arguments that don't conform to her narrow views. It's quite sad actually, you know, how mad she is.

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That would, of course, mean that Marx believed the opposite of what Hegel believed (for example, there were no contradictions in reality, including Capitalism).

Her philosophy is so mechanical and absolutist that it's not even funny, it's downright hysterical! Okay, uhm, dear dear sad lil' Rosa, just because you don't know what the dialectic is, doesn't mean that it doesn't exist. Opposite, within the context of the dialectic means just that opposite, yet still retaining the seeds of it's original essence, just in a new form. Sad sad lil' Rosa. (to be played to "Sad Lisa" by Cat Stevens)

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You are the one who thinks we can learn something from mystics and idealists

I actually think that we can learn something from everything and everyone. There's a rational kernal of truth to be found within all contradictions and ideology. I just believe that the dialectic is necessary to dig them out.

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Where do I deny that “infererence [sic] and reason can be applied to language”?

Throughout the whole of our argument, and basically throughout each and every argument that you've tried to dismiss. Yeah, you seem to basically hinge your logic on the fact that inference doesn't exist.

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Me: "whole", as used by Lenin, is a dialectical term. She is interpreting it apart from its use in the context of the dialectic.

She basically ignored this because she can't deal with words meaning different things depending on code and context. When she says this

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Rosa: (just a capacity to understand the word “whole”)

it's so sad how little she knows about language and reading. She deliberately misrepresents language, much as SIMCP pointed out earlier.

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1) If I do not know what it is, how can I be an empiricist?

The same way you can drink water and not know H20. You not knowing something doesn't mean you can't use it. Empiricism is the dominant current of capitalist ideology, of which you're regurgitating.

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Rosa has exposed your boundless capacity to dissemble.

BEST QUOTE EVER!!!! I might make this my tagline! She refers to herself in the third person! This reminds me of studying Byron's Romantic Personae. She actually refers to herself in the third person in a celebratory manner. How mad.

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formal logic is used to run the computer you are using, so it can’t be useless

Yes, but it can't penetrate into the internal and illustrate the underlying connetions and interrelations of things. Only the dialectic is able to do that. If we thought as computers, then that's what we'd be, mechanical minded machines. Marx clearly understood that the mode of production had to be negated for the forces of production to become owned by the working class. You admitting to this illustrates that you're supporting the dominant ideology that the bourgeoisie use to program their thinking machines. If this philosophy posed a danger to them, then why would they push it so much. Again, Rosa likes to point fingers, but in the end, she's got one going out and three pointing back.

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Since no one understands the ‘dialectic’

I, and several others on this site, understand it pretty well. Rosa is the one that ignores it, missunderstands it, and dismisses examples of it outright.

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Me: Hint: negation is the process of unbecoming to become.

Rosa: I defy you to explain that – not without, that is, the use of yet more impenetrable jargon (as you do at the end of your last ‘deposit’).

Simple really, for a tree to grow new leaves, it must lose the old ones, and new buds form. For adult teeth to form, child's teeth must fall out. For Communism to come, capitalism must be torn down through a revolution that has the aim of directly fighting for communism. As capitalism withers away, the communist society is being formed within it and in direct contradiction to the primary social relationship.

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The things you mention are not ‘the dialectic’; unless, of course, ‘the dialectic’ means anything that “native” peoples use in their attempt to grapple with reality.

This in reply to me illustrating the dialectic here:

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Classless societies regularly use a rudimentary dialectic in their analysis of the world. The native American peoples of North America would thing of themselves in complete relation and interrelation to the world around them. They consistently analyzed things in terms of them as subjects and objects within the world. They didn't codify it, as it was natural and in practice. The dialectic is organic.

Illustrates that Rosa has no clue at all what the dialectic is, yet she's arguing against it.

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either there was a ruling-class that pre-dated class society,

Yes. The working class was the ruling class before class society since they determined production based on need. In a classless society, the working class is the ruling class since everybody works to the best of their ability to meet everyone's needs.

What's really interesting is how Rosa avoids any direct questions, and retorts with blistering insults.

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You appear to think that “discourse” is some kind of container.

Bingo! Discourse is the form within which the content of a social conversation occurs. This is pretty basic marxism. Nice to see you got it, we can go on from here.

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I have studied Philosophy extensively (among other things), as the many works I quote (and the many more to come) will attest -- in my final Bibliography, which runs to 90 pages at present, I will reference well over 2500 books and scholarly articles.

Rosa ranted about herself in the most elitist manner I think I have ever seen on the internet. She is the perfect example of self-paradoy, except she actually believes in her own mystique.

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And how is my discourse “saturated with the state”?

Because it's based upon domination and not based upon coming to a common understanding so that a mutual aid in knowledge sharing can occur. Look at the conversation between Gato and I on this very thread, we both disagreed, but we understood things much better for it. She then says, like a good revisionist Leninist:

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If you are right over both these claims, then you should be praising me for being “saturated with the state”

Uhm, no. I'm a communist. I smash states.

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What has a participle of the verb “to be” (i.e., “becoming”) got to do with anything?

everything. As everything must become something, and come from something, and is connected, in some way to everything. Understanding the relation and interrelation of the connections from the subject to the object is the dialectic.

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And what, for goodness sake is “unbecoming”?

the process of ceasing to become what you once were "un" as in the negation of what it's attached to.

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As far as I can tell it means “not very attractive”;

Not in the context I was using it. Again, this just illustrates Rosa's inability to read language in context and understand it apart from her own narrow views of it.

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And what makes something change from “becoming” to “unbecoming”, or is it the other way around?

whatever forces relative to the essence of that thing cause it to unbecome, and of course the converse of it is true. To become you must unbecome, but while unbecoming, you are becoming.

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And how do you know all this?

It's called material reality.

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Why can’t some things just stop?

Because energy is never wasted, it just transforms. I learned that one in Jr. High. It's called material reality.

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How could that possibly be or have been “all that once was”?

Tony Blair exists, he was powerful, the seeds that gave him his leadership allowed him to achieve his power, but they also had within them the seeds of his downfall and destruction based upon the inter-imperialist rivalry of Iraq.

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And what happened to all those bogus ‘contradictions’ Hegel magicked as a result of his failure to understand identity

The seeds exist within the identity of what exists. The content within the form is the internal contradiction within a thing.

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And this is not an explanation, but a set of dogmatic statements of dubious meaning.

It's an explanation given in a Zen Taoist manner, one in which the student should make the connections and teach themselves to attain a higher level of understanding.

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 19 2007 08:07

Demogoron:

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The problem Rosa is that your entire argument seems to hinge on one line from Marx: "and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him"

No, it is based on much more than this; check out the full argument in Essay Nine Part Two, note 16.

But, more directly it is based also on Marx's own descritption of the comments of a reviewer of his work (in which no Hegelian concepts are to be found) as the 'dialectic method'.

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Marx uses no Hegelian terms - this seems to leave aside the fact that the whole of Capital, not to mention the rest of Marx's corpus is littered with analysis of contradictions

As he says, he is "coquetting" with this word; and you can see thatthis is so from the fact that the things Marx uses this word to descibe are not contradictions.

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Marx uses no dialectics at all - complete rubbish because Marx himself says he says does!

Yes, and he also pointed out that that reviewer's summary of his method (in which no Hegelian concepts are to be found) is what he meant by this word.

His words, not mine.

In your haste to defend the indefensible, you ignore this.

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Also you appear to contradict yourself when you say on the one hand you reject dialectics and yet agree with Marx when he says "That crisis is once again approaching, although ... the intensity of its action it will drum dialectics even into the heads of the mushroom-upstarts of the new, holy Prusso-German empire" and you say "In its non-Hegelian form, I can quite easily see it doing that". As a result, I can't help but feeling confused. One minute the dialectic is complete rubbish. The next, in its "non-Hegelian form" it will be "drum[ed]into the heads of the mushroom-upstarts"!

I do not see the contradiction here.

The dialectic as he depicted it (in its 'rational form', with Hegel removed 100% -- as that reviewer's summary showed) will do as he says in this quotation.

[You will note also that Marx's prediction failed to materialise -- so if you are right in what you say, Marx was wrong!]

I have been through this already; if the 'dialectic' is as that reviewer says (with no Hegel in it at all), I have no problem with it.

How many more times do you need telling??

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But on a more concrete level, if we reject dialectics entirely, why will capitalism be transformed into communism? Is it not the internal contradictions of capitalist forces of production that creates the possibility of revolution? If there is no material process internal to capitalism that drives forward revolution, what does?

Capitalism will be terminated by the working class.

Did you not know?

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 19 2007 08:29

SIMCP:

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I know. That's funny

You still seem to think that your capacity to find serious issues amusing constitues an argument.

And, do you know what: in your dire position, I think I'd be reduced to neurotic peels of laughter, too.

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I'll do a few over the weekend when I have time

And, remember to leave out the ones that he said he merely "coquetted" with (i.e., all of them...).

And now, what is this? A prayer to the Lord for help?

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Jesus Rosa, the point Marx is making is that the guy is summarising a dialectical method without realising it.

Something Marx calls the 'dialectic method', in which not a trace of Hegel is to be found.

No wonder Marx merely "coquetted" with Hegelian jargon, then.

Quote:
(...and your claim that Hegelian thought is specific to Hegelian words is nuts. How to translate it?! How to relate this to Hegel's own claims about language? )

Why did he use such wording then?

Just to confuse everyone?

[That worked a treat, didn't it?]

Quote:
Yes, I think we've all gathered that now. It's particularly clear from the way in which you quote the 'coquetted' sentence three times in the posts above - completely and totally missing the fact that Marx is voicing his approval of Hegel! Marx's dialectical method arises from a critical confrontation with Hegel, and he is paying tribute to the 'mighty thinker' from whom he's developed these ideas.

What a way for Marx to declare his praise for that 'mighty' thinker -- he puts it in the past tense, and then immediately says:

Quote:
and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him

That's four times.

We can keep doing this if the point has not sunk in yet.

Quote:
You don't know what you're talking about, do you? Not only are you engaged in a wilfull misreading of a text - wierd enough as it is - you're also conducting a crusade against something you don't know how to define. You don't know what Hegelian philosophy is, you don't seem to know what 'Marx's method' is, and yet you want to 'crush Hegel into the dust' on that basis.

I think your comments above show that it is you who is struggling.

Now, if you can't be a patient little boy, and wait for my reduction of Hegel to dust (to be published in 2008/9, sometime), I careth not.

Humanity has had to wait nearly 200 years for this, but you want instant gratification.

That's your problem.

Deal with it.

Quote:
Try and redeem yourself. Please., for the third time, define your terms.

Perhaps you belong to that male school of thought that thinks that when a girl says 'No!', she means 'Ok, but only if you keep on trying....'?

Quote:
...and please note this: I have no problem with your dislike of Hegel (although I think its unfounded). I have no problem with your ambition to remove Hegel from Marx (although I think its misguided). What I object to is a deliberate misreading.
If you were to say "Marx said A. What he really shoudl habve said is B" I'd have consierably more respect for your enterprise - but as it is you seem like some kind of dark ages priest scrabbling around in sacred texts for ways in which to interpret them differently. Admitting the Hegelian influence in Marx is common sense. Critiqueing it is interesting and possibly profuctive. Denying it is completely stupid

But, we have already established, in detail, that it is you who wants to inject into Kapital Hegelian concepts Marx himself said were not there.

Check out again his comments on that reviewer's summary.

Oh..., and do not forget this:

Quote:
and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him

That's five times.

Rosa Lichtenstein
Offline
Joined: 30-03-07
May 19 2007 08:32

Simpy, I will respond to your rather short, but disappointingly aimless response to me in the next few days.

Full marks, though, for maintaining such low standards!

Demogorgon303's picture
Demogorgon303
Offline
Joined: 5-07-05
May 19 2007 14:55
Rosa wrote:
Yes, and he also pointed out that that reviewer's summary of his method (in which no Hegelian concepts are to be found) is what he meant by this word.

I'm not sure he ever used the term "labour theory of value" either. Does that mean there is no labour theory of value in his work? The argument that he didn't use any Hegelian words doesn't mean he doesn't take the "rational kernel" of Hegels philosophy - again his own words!

Rosa wrote:
As he says, he is "coquetting" with this word; and you can see thatthis is so from the fact that the things Marx uses this word to descibe are not contradictions.

They aren't logical contradictions, they are internal conflicting processes that transform the subject in question. This is exactly what Hegel means by contradiction, not a logical error or a physical impossibility (like a square circle). Marx distinctly follows him in this throughout Capital, when he talks about the varying contradictions.

However, the point is made most clearly in the Preface To A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy
where he says: "consciousness must be explained from the contradictions of material life, from the conflict existing between the social forces of production and the relations of production". It is absolutely clear that Marx identifies the "conflict between the forces of production and relations of production" as a "contradiction". These contradictions are the motor force for the entire development of society, its ideology, its growth, its decline and its revolutionary overthrow.

Rosa wrote:
The dialectic as he depicted it (in its 'rational form', with Hegel removed 100% -- as that reviewer's summary showed) will do as he says in this quotation.

So you're admitting there is a dialectic in Marx's work, albeit not a Hegelian one! But you reject all dialectics. You cannot accept Marx's method (which is self-described as dialectical and demonstrably dialectical in its approach) and reject dialectics. This is a contradiction - a formal one, not a Hegelian one, I feel compelled to add as you clearly don't know the difference.

You then agree with Marx that could see how the crisis will drum the dialectic into the silly Prussians! You accept that reality will assert something you yourself don't agree with. Another (formal!) contradiction. Are you beginning to see why everyone on this thread is telling you that you are talking rubbish? It's because you appear to contradict yourself with every second breath.

On to Marx's relationship with Hegel! "The mystification which dialectic suffers in Hegel’s hands, by no means prevents him from being the first to present its general form of working in a comprehensive and conscious manner". However much you twist and turn you simply cannot get away from the fact that Marx praises Hegel for discovering the dialectic, however "mystified" and distorted it may be.

Marxism is what it says on the tin: the "rational kernel" of the dialectic first set out in "a comprehensive and conscious manner" by Hegel.

Frankly, if the method you use to analyse this passage - a refusal to accept the meaning of the actual words! - is any indication of the one you use to attack dialectics, I simply have no inclination to read through the pages on your website. Your wilfull distortion of phrases which, to any reasonable person, are as plain as day simply leads me to reject your entire method as either completely delusional or deliberately disingenuous. The last time I have encountered anyone with such an extraordinary ability to read a sentence and be in absolute denial about its meaning was a Christian fundamentalist who simply refused to accept that Deut 20:17 was an instruction for genocide.

Rosa wrote:
Capitalism will be terminated by the working class. Did you not know?

Your completely facetious response to the most fundamental question facing revolutionaries, seriously asked, simply speaks volumes. Why is the working class revolutionary? What process drives it overthrow capitalism? The attempt to answer this question is fundamental to the very conception of being a revolutionary. Marxism is not some academic curiosity, it is the most advanced form of the class consciousness of the proletariat. The sole purpose that Marx, Engels and all the revolutionaries that followed them had in their theoretical work wasn't some abstract desire to understand the world, but to arm the militant struggle against capitalism.

Lastly, this wasn't addressed to me but what the hell ...

Rosa wrote:
Now, if you can't be a patient little boy, and wait for my reduction of Hegel to dust (to be published in 2008/9, sometime), I careth not.

If your method demonstrated so far is anything to go by I have an excellent suggestion for a title cover to your book.

We shall grind Hegel to dust!

Rosa Lichtenstein
Offline
Joined: 30-03-07
May 19 2007 16:14

Demogorgon:

Quote:
I'm not sure he ever used the term "labour theory of value" either. Does that mean there is no labour theory of value in his work? The argument that he didn't use any Hegelian words doesn't mean he doesn't take the "rational kernel" of Hegel’s philosophy - again his own words!

Fine, we can drop that title too, so long as we keep the economic ideas (drawn, may I remind you, from Smith and Ricardo, not Hegel).

And again, in his own words, his method, was summarised by that reviewer, and contains not a trace of Hegel, -- and that is what Marx refers to as the 'rational kernel',

Quote:
They aren't logical contradictions, they are internal conflicting processes that transform the subject in question. This is exactly what Hegel means by contradiction, not a logical error or a physical impossibility (like a square circle). Marx distinctly follows him in this throughout Capital, when he talks about the varying contradictions.

Then why call them 'contradictions'?

Hegel derived these from a series of gaffes he made over the alleged 'law of identity'.

And, because these are gaffe's you have no good reason to keep using that word in this way.

And Marx was, as he said, merely "coquetting" with this bogus term in Kapital.

Why do you keep using it then?

Quote:
However, the point is made most clearly in the Preface To A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy
where he says: "consciousness must be explained from the contradictions of material life, from the conflict existing between the social forces of production and the relations of production". It is absolutely clear that Marx identifies the "conflict between the forces of production and relations of production" as a "contradiction". These contradictions are the motor force for the entire development of society, its ideology, its growth, its decline and its revolutionary overthrow.

I am ok with 'conflict' and 'struggle', but not with 'contradiction', since it carries with it a load of mystical baggage dialecticians then impose on nature.

In this earlier work, Marx does connect these, I agree, but that was before he entered his "coquetting" stage.

I prefer the latter part of his career, however.

You, the former.

Quote:
So you're admitting there is a dialectic in Marx's work, albeit not a Hegelian one! But you reject all dialectics. You cannot accept Marx's method (which is self-described as dialectical and demonstrably dialectical in its approach) and reject dialectics. This is a contradiction - a formal one, not a Hegelian one, I feel compelled to add as you clearly don't know the difference.

I do not think I have ever denied it, but only if Hegel is removed 100%.

And your 'contradiction' is no contradiction.

Your incapacity to recognise one of these beasties I think we can put down to your reading too much Hegel, and accepting more of it than any human should have to.

Quote:
You then agree with Marx that could see how the crisis will drum the dialectic into the silly Prussians! You accept that reality will assert something you yourself don't agree with. Another (formal!) contradiction. Are you beginning to see why everyone on this thread is telling you that you are talking rubbish? It's because you appear to contradict yourself with every second breath.

Why are you perseverating on this?

I answered this in my last reply to you.

Unless, of course, you are so desperate to protect this mystical 'theory', you have lost the ability to think clearly, and will say anything, do anything, to defend your precious 'dialectic' (irrational version).

[And Marx's prediction, may I remind you, once more, was incorrect.]

Quote:
On to Marx's relationship with Hegel! "The mystification which dialectic suffers in Hegel’s hands, by no means prevents him from being the first to present its general form of working in a comprehensive and conscious manner". However much you twist and turn you simply cannot get away from the fact that Marx praises Hegel for discovering the dialectic, however "mystified" and distorted it may be.

Sure Hegel wasn't the first to do this; as I noted he himself pinched these ideas from the Scottish school, and from Vico and Herder.

And that is what Marx is returning to, the non-mystical, pre-Hegelian version.

Which is, as that reviewer pointed out, bereft of every atom of Hegel, which Marx himself calls the 'dialectic method'.

I can live with that.

You cannot,

That is your problem.

Quote:
Marxism is what it says on the tin: the "rational kernel" of the dialectic first set out in "a comprehensive and conscious manner" by Hegel.

I think you bought this tin at Kmart.

It is defective; I advise you send it back.

Quote:
Frankly, if the method you use to analyse this passage - a refusal to accept the meaning of the actual words! - is any indication of the one you use to attack dialectics, I simply have no inclination to read through the pages on your website. Your wilful distortion of phrases which, to any reasonable person, are as plain as day simply leads me to reject your entire method as either completely delusional or deliberately disingenuous. The last time I have encountered anyone with such an extraordinary ability to read a sentence and be in absolute denial about its meaning was a Christian fundamentalist who simply refused to accept that Deut 20:17 was an instruction for genocide.

Well, you are the one who ignores the "coquetted" passage, and fails to note that Marx himself described the summary of his work, in which not a trace of Hegel is to be found, as "the dialectic method", so you are the born again mystic here.

And stay away from my site; please!

I'd hate to undermine your naive religious faith in this mystical 'theory' -- the sort of belief Marx calls an 'opiate', one that clearly provides you with consolation for the fact that your version of Marxism is such an abject, and long-term failure.

It certainly helps explain the irrational response I am getting from you dialectical druggies.

Quote:
Your completely facetious response to the most fundamental question facing revolutionaries, seriously asked, simply speaks volumes. Why is the working class revolutionary? What process drives it overthrow capitalism? The attempt to answer this question is fundamental to the very conception of being a revolutionary. Marxism is not some academic curiosity, it is the most advanced form of the class consciousness of the proletariat. The sole purpose that Marx, Engels and all the revolutionaries that followed them had in their theoretical work wasn't some abstract desire to understand the world, but to arm the militant struggle against capitalism.

So, my declaration that the working class, not some mystic process that not a one of you can explain, will terminate capitalism is "facetious", is it?

That must mean that Marx was being "facetious" in the Communist Manifesto, too, when he said the same?

And your reference to 'academic' matters is ironic, since it is I who questions your naive faith in that arch academic, Hegel (or did you think he was a worker?).

And, doubly ironic, too, since it took little old me to remind you that the working class with terminate capitalism, not the mystical process you still have such an irrational faith in.

Nice picture of you too!

And I am glad you now can join me in this promise:

Quote:
We shall grind Hegel to dust!

But, in view of such a quick conversion, how can I trust you won't backsass?

gatorojinegro's picture
gatorojinegro
Offline
Joined: 21-01-07
May 19 2007 16:37

Demo:

Quote:
They aren't logical contradictions, they are internal conflicting processes that transform the subject in question. This is exactly what Hegel means by contradiction, not a logical error or a physical impossibility (like a square circle). Marx distinctly follows him in this throughout Capital, when he talks about the varying contradictions.

and this is how anarchists who use this lingo of "contradictions" understand it also. it became a commonplace of radical left lingo. Marx obviously believes in the reality of forces and tendencies and "laws of motion". There are the "forces of production" which play the central role in M.'s theory of history. there is the "tendency of the rate of profit to fall" which is part of M.'s theory of capitalism's tendency to crisis.

this is all well and good but it doesn't warrant adoption of a notion of dialectic as a "method" or the alleged "laws" of dialectic as articulated by Engels.

Rosa alleges that Marx was influenced by "Scottish materialists" among whom she lists Hume. But Hume -- a dandy with connections to the British elite of the 18th century -- was, altho an atheist, not a materialist. He was the main source of radical empiricism, an atomistic ideology that Marx would not have agreed with. For one thing, Hume denied the reality of "tendencies" and "forces"...and in this Rosa seems to follow Hume, not Marx.

Rosa Lichtenstein
Offline
Joined: 30-03-07
May 19 2007 17:41

Posey:

Quote:
Rosa alleges that Marx was influenced by "Scottish materialists" among whom she lists Hume. But Hume -- a dandy with connections to the British elite of the 18th century -- was, altho an atheist, not a materialist. He was the main source of radical empiricism, an atomistic ideology that Marx would not have agreed with. For one thing, Hume denied the reality of "tendencies" and "forces"...and in this Rosa seems to follow Hume, not Marx.

I refer the honourable ignoramus to my previous response to him.

Rosa Lichtenstein
Offline
Joined: 30-03-07
May 19 2007 17:42

Fido returns to the fray; so it’s not so much the seventh cavalry to the rescue, more the charge of the rather light-weigh brigade:

Quote:
I haven't had much time to return to this thread, but man has Rosa taken a pounding! The best part is that she doesn't even realize it!

Still fantasising, I see.

It goes well with your penchant for mystical boll*cks

Quote:
It's hilarious how people coming from completely different approaches came up to the same conclusions that I did.

Which means, no conclusions at all -- or none that make any sense.

Quote:
Gato pointed out that her philosophy was atomizing, polarizing, and empirical. She said no it's not. Oh, okay.

But he neglected to post a single piece of evidence in support, and you bought it.

Gullible little doggy, are you?

‘Yup’ at that one, Fido….

Quote:
SIMCP goes on to point out that she's basically [sic] illustrating the dialectic in Marx, but trying to pigeonhole the whole of the dialectic into Hegel.

Eh?

Not even SIMCP will be able to understand that Fido-ism.

Quote:
She only recognizes the dialectic if it is in the vocabulary particular to Hegel. Ridiculous.

I agree: what you say is ridiculous.

May I suggest, therefore, that you stop saying such things?

[Some hope – you seem intent on saying little else.]

Quote:
All independent paths, one by a person who doesn't even particularly like the dialectic for his own reasons [sic], and all basically bashing in your empirical philosophy based on semantics.

Brave words for someone who cannot spell “simpleton”.

Quote:
Because it illustrated the dialectic method without having to use the vocabulary of Hegel. Who is it that can't read?

Clearly it is you, since Marx himself, not me, described this summary (in which not a trace of Hegel can be found) as the ‘dialectic method’.

In response to Fido’s claim that Daoist ideas were not from the ruling class, I quoted his words that claimed all ideas were from the ruling class:

Fido:

Quote:
Because you are unable to understand that fact that all ideas have come from the ruling class, including Marx's.

Rosa:

Quote:
But, you said all ideas were from the ruling class, not 99%, but all ideas.

Which is it to be?

Fido now back-tracks from an “all” to this:

Quote:
As Marx said: the ruling ideas are always those of the ruling-class.

Fido perhaps has not noticed that “ruling ideas” is not the same as his hyper-bold “all ideas”.

This, apart from the irrelevant bluster below, is his “refutation” of my argument.

He has not responded to my claim, that Daoist ideas are ruling class ideas (but see below), but when this is coupled with his inadvertent admission that I was right in this comment:

Quote:
Because you are unable to understand that fact that all ideas have come from the ruling class, including Marx's.

we can only conclude that he has conceded the point: Daoist ideas are indeed ruling-class ideas, and “have come from the ruling class” (Fido’s words, not mine).

Now the irrelevant bluster (aimed, once more to detract from the parlous state he is in):

Quote:
Amazingly enough, she doesn't argue this assertion with Marx, just me. Hmmm... She is incapable of understanding contradiction and dealing with it. That's her problem not mine. The workers build the house, the ruling class owns it. They have possession of it, so it's there's. The ruling class of each time period creates an ideology that justifies its own existence, and wrapped within that ideology is the "rational kernal" [kernel??] (Marx's words) that is based on materialism and exists within and in contradiction to the dominant ideology owned by the ruling class and in opposition to the working class. When workers existed in a primitive communist society, they were the ruling class, but within them existed all of the contradictions that would resolve into class society. Only under a communist society will the ruling class philosophy be purely material based, as only a Communist society can be based on a purely material world view.

Can anyone see in here a response to my claim that Daoist ideas not only are, but came from, the ruling class?

Apart from acknowledging that his own ideas are “contradictory”, there seems to be no other defence in there.

[Of course, Fido is allowed to be “contradictory”, but no one else is!]

And what have houses got to do with anything?

Quote:
Who cut down the trees, the workers
who built the house, the workers
who lives in the house, the bosses.

Fido here is even worse than Posey at sticking to the point.

In his case, I blame the loopy Hegelian, Daoist ruling-class ideas that have infected his brain.

In Posey’s case, he is a self-made man.

Quote:
And Rosa, I know your reading skills are a bit on the low side, but this is an example of a metaphor. It's part of figurative language. You induce meaning from it.

So, which bit is the metaphor? Your claim that “all ideas have come from the ruling-class”? Or your claim that Daoist ideas have not come from the ruling class?

Hence, it’s not my reading skills that are in doubt (you are the one who claims he can read into anything, anything he likes), but your enigmatic writing (if such it may be called).

And in response to my request that he actually find out the facts from a Marxist scholar (hence my reference to Conner’s book), which show that science is not a ruling class pursuit, or not exclusively theirs, Fido responds thus:

Quote:
This is ridiculous. All science is owned by the ruling class and is politically movivated [sic] to benefit them, existing within that science is a progressive force in direct opposition to it.

In other words, he prefers to cling onto his erroneous belief that science is a ruling class activity, in defiance of the evidence that Conner has produced, calling my request that he check his facts “ridiculous”.

And such are the deleterious effects of Hegel on the brain of a (I suspect already rather dim-witted) comrade.

Look and learn folks.

You could be next...!

Quote:
insane unfounded ramblings

Well stop posting them, then!

With respect to the Grundrisse, Fido asserts this:

Quote:
1.) There's no proof that Engels even knew of its existence.

2.) Rosa completely ignored McCellen's [sic] analysis on this. Rosa just ignores arguments that don't conform to her narrow views.

According to Fido, however, in the Marx/Engels correspondence, there is such proof.

Here is Fido before he was rumbled -- (on page five above, in response to this from me):

Quote:
Oh, so it [the Grundrisse] was published by Marx then? Or by Engels??

Fido said:

Quote:
and if you read the dialogue between them, then you'd know why.

Is he being ‘metaphorical’ again?

And this on, page six, from our very own canine numpty:

Quote:
Apparently she hadn't read it or she would know that The Grundrisse was the work that Marx wanted to publish, but the publisher and Engels warned him not to publish only one text, as money had to be made.

Bold emphasis added.

So, if Fido is right, there’s my proof.

And by “McCellen”, I presume Fido means David McLellan? In his haste to rubbish me, he can’t even get his facts right!

And he has the cheek to say that it is I who cannot read!

Unfortunately for Bozo here, I have read this work (and probably better than he has) -- at least I seem to know who edited it!

The bottom line is that this work remained unpublished, even by Engels.

Why?

Now, when this fact is viewed in the light of Marx’s own words --, that the “dialectic method”, summarised for us by the reviewer he quoted, which contains not an atom of Hegel --, this decision not to publish becomes a little clearer: by the time it came to publishing Kapital, he had himself ditched all traces of Hegel, except, of course, for some jargon, with which he merely “coquetted”.

But, what is this, more feigned ‘sadness’ from Saddo here?

Quote:
It's quite sad actually, you know, how mad she is.

Yes, it seems I have caught this from you, Fido, with your dog impressions and brain-rotting fondness for ruling-class tripe.

But, try as I might, I cannot quite reach down to your level of knuckle-dragging, saliva-drooling lunacy, Fido.

So, you will need to be patient with me while I try to catch you up….

Quote:
Her philosophy is so mechanical and absolutist that it's not even funny, it's downright hysterical!

This was in response to the following comment of mine:

Quote:
That would, of course, mean that Marx believed the opposite of what Hegel believed (for example, there were no contradictions in reality, including Capitalism).

Which was in turn a reply to Fido’s alleged capacity to see in Marx’s text the exact opposite of that which confronts the eye.

The point being (but Fido will miss this again) that if he (Fido) claims that Marx actually believed the opposite of what he wrote, then he must have believed the opposite to Hegel too, as I pointed out above.

On the other hand, if, as I claim, he rejected Hegel root and branch, he believed the opposite, anyway.

So, either way, Marx believed the opposite of Hegel.

How does Fido handle this devastating but complex set of inferences; well, he can’t respond --, so like SIMCP, he merely laughs hysterically:

Quote:
Her philosophy is so mechanical and absolutist that it's not even funny, it's downright hysterical!

This, despite being told more times than even he has soiled himself in public like this, that I have no philosophy, mechanical or otherwise.

And, dimwit that he is, he failed to note that he himself has criticised me for not having a philosophy!

So, on top of picking a fight with me, he struggles against even his own watery thin ideas!

And, now we are confronted with an example of the ‘superior logic’ that infests his brain:

Quote:
Okay, uhm, dear dear sad lil' Rosa, just because you don't know what the dialectic is, doesn't mean that it doesn't exist. Opposite, within the context of the dialectic means just that opposite, yet still retaining the seeds of it's original essence, just in a new form.

Once more, if I do not know what the ‘dialectic’ is (but I do --, see next comment, and at the end), I am in good company, for Fido too does not seem to know what it is, either.

But, I do know what it is (in its rational form): Marx very kindly spelt it out for us in that quotation from his reviewer, which he called the “dialectic method”, in which not a shred of Hegel is to be found.

So, if we are to take Marx at his word (and reject Fido’s tactic of reading into his words whatever suits him), the opposite of Hegel’s ‘dialectic’ is in fact a ‘dialectic’ with not trace of Hegel in it, as the word “opposite” means.

Quote:
Sad sad lil' Rosa. (to be played to "Sad Lisa" by Cat Stevens).

I rather think that, in light of the above, this song should be “What a prat Fido is”, sung to the tune of “Rosa was right all along”, by Fido Stevens.

Quote:
I actually think that we can learn something from everything and everyone. There's a rational kernal [sic] of truth to be found within all contradictions and ideology. I just believe that the dialectic is necessary to dig them out.

Ah, but you go further; in your endeavour to crawl on your knees before those hacks who defend this rotten system (i.e., the likes of Hegel), albeit reformed, these mystical ideas dominate your ‘thought’ (if such it be).

In this way, “ruling-class ideas” control your brain. And, apparently, until I very helpfully pointed this out to you, you were unaware of this fact.

But, what do you do?

Not only do you not thank we for trying to save the remaining brain cells from dying of loneliness, you wallow in these mystical ideas.

Well, you are on your own now, numpty. I cannot help you if you refuse my assistance.

Say goodbye to your last few working brain cells. You are not going to miss them, since you never seemed to have much use for them.

Now, Posey has mastered the art of attributing to me beliefs I do not hold (indeed, often their opposite), but his understudy, Fido, here, not to be out done, responds thus:

Quote:
Throughout the whole of our argument, and basically throughout each and every argument that you've tried to dismiss. Yeah, you seem to basically hinge your logic on the fact that inference doesn't exist.

to this query of mine:

Quote:
Where do I deny that “infererence [sic] and reason can be applied to language”?

which itself was in reply to this:

Quote:
you deny that infererence [sic] and reason can be applied to language, and now I can't know logic unless I read your shiite? [sic] Fuck outtta here! I think you need to reboot your brain.

What Fido wants to do here is justify his own ‘infererences’ , but he took exception to my pointing out that he inferred the opposite of what was on the page, to derive ideas Marx had tried to keep out of his great work.

Now, those sorts of ‘infererences’ I do care to deny, but, Dumbo here seems to think that this denial relates to all inferences (including the very many that I myself have indulged in here!).

So, from one denied ‘infererence’ he says I deny all of them!

But, in relation to the above, he now says I have asserted this:

Quote:
Throughout the whole of our argument, and basically throughout each and every argument that you've tried to dismiss. Yeah, you seem to basically hinge your logic on the fact that inference doesn't exist.

failing to note the difference between a legitimate inference, and the whacko sort he indulges in (wherein he can infer whatever he likes -- indeed, the opposite of what Marx actually said --, based on the damage done to his powers of reason because of years and years of grovelling to ruling-class hacks).

Once more it suits his purpose to muddy the waters here, as elsewhere.

Then we have this model of ‘clarity’:

Quote:
Me: "whole", as used by Lenin, is a dialectical term. She is interpreting it apart from its use in the context of the dialectic.
She basically ignored this because she can't deal with words meaning different things depending on code and context.

If anyone fluent in Martian can interpret this for us human beings, I’d be grateful.

[I suspect, though, that it is Fido-esque for “the dialectic allows me to make stuff up as and when I want to, and then use the word ‘whole’ as a neat devise to distract from my fondness for fabulation”. He is allowed to make stuff up, but he barks angrily when he thinks I have done what he does. This poodle is not fairness personified!]

Then he quotes my response to his earlier claim to be able to use the word “whole” as a sort of blank hermeneutical cheque to read anything he likes into anything, as follows:

Quote:
Rosa: (just a capacity to understand the word “whole”).

Which seems fair enough.

But does Fido produce a devastating response to it, laying all before him to waste? Er…, no, we get this damp squib in its place:

Quote:
it's so sad how little she knows about language and reading. She deliberately misrepresents language, much as SIMCP pointed out earlier.

More feigned sadness, from Saddo here, but at what is it directed? Clearly, at my refusal to let him get away with making stuff up, as and when it suits him, using the word “whole” as a sort of get out of deep sh*t free card.

And to cap it all, because I have exposed his fondness for invention, he says it is I who “misrepresents” language, when it is he who wants to read into Marx the opposite of what he says.

If that is to “misrepresent” language, long may I continue.

Now, earlier, Fido had said this:

Quote:
It's apparent that she doesn't know what empiricism is.

to which I responded:

Quote:
But:

1) If I do not know what it is, how can I be an empiricist?

2) I note you do not quote a single passage from my work that supports this contention. And it is clear why: as we have seen several times already, you like to make stuff up, and claim that anyone who disagrees with you is either an “elitist” or is “unable to read”.

Which is yet more evidence that you and logic are total strangers, Fido.

Dingbat here responds to this with:

Quote:
The same way you can drink water and not know [it’s] H20. You not knowing something doesn't mean you can't use it. Empiricism is the dominant current of capitalist ideology, of which you're regurgitating.

But I had expressly asked how I can be “an empiricist”, not how I can use such ideas:

Quote:
1) If I do not know what it is, how can I be an empiricist?

He tries to argue his way out of this hole thus:

Quote:
The same way you can drink water and not know [it’s] H20. You not knowing something doesn't mean you can't use it.

But this analogy is lame; if I went about the place saying “water is H2O” and someone said I did not know that water was H2O the absurdity would be apparent.

How then can I (as Fido alleges) go about the place openly spouting empiricist ideas and not know they are such (especially when I have a degree or two in the subject Fido is trying to correct me over!).

His analogy is clearly about specialist knowledge; so just as those who know no chemistry at all can drink water while not knowing what it is made of, those who know no, er…, well, what?

Well, it seems that just as those who do know what empiricism is do not know what it is!

That seems to be his ‘argument’!

As I said, those few remaining brain cells of his are dying fast.

Let’s see if we can speed up the process….

Someone read him some more Hegel!!

And it is worth reminding ourselves that, just like his role model, Posey, Fido ignored this:

Quote:
2) I note you do not quote a single passage from my work that supports this contention. And it is clear why: as we have seen several times already, you like to make stuff up, and claim that anyone who disagrees with you is either an “elitist” or is “unable to read”.

Did anyone see in this, the latest ‘intellectual log’ he dumped at this site any attempt to justify his allegation that I am an empiricist?

No, and there is none, here or at my site.

And then, when I reminded him of how I have exposed his penchant for invention, we get this:

Quote:
BEST QUOTE EVER!!!! I might make this my tagline! She refers to herself in the third person! This reminds me of studying Byron's Romantic Personae. She actually refers to herself in the third person in a celebratory manner. How mad.

No attempt to respond (as if he has never seen anyone else refer to themselves in the third person!), just a juvenile comment.

In my last post, and in reply to this comment of his:

Quote:
If your logic can't represent reality, then it's useless. The [sic] it's pointless.

I said the following:

Quote:
Well, formal logic is used to run the computer you are using, so it can’t be useless, even though it represents nothing. It has countless other applications in technology and the sciences. [Details in Essay Four at my site.]

Diabolical logic has no known technological or scientific application/use. So, if ‘representing’ the world is what ‘your logic’ does, then thank goodness genuine logic does not do this.

Fido whimpers back:

Quote:
Yes, but it can't penetrate into the internal and illustrate the underlying connetions [sic] and interrelations of things.

Notice how he has ignored my demonstration that a formal logic does not need to be able to represent anything to be useful, which had been his original assertion. Does he withdraw it, or try to defend it?

No, he darts off on another tack (because I suspect it went right over his empty head):

Quote:
Yes, but it can't penetrate into the internal and illustrate the underlying connetions [sic] and interrelations of things. Only the dialectic is able to do that. If we thought as computers, then that's what we'd be, mechanical minded machines. Marx clearly understood that the mode of production had to be negated for the forces of production to become owned by the working class. You admitting to this illustrates that you're supporting the dominant ideology that the bourgeoisie use to program their thinking machines. If this philosophy posed a danger to them, then why would they push it so much. Again, Rosa likes to point fingers, but in the end, she's got one going out and three pointing back.

But, as history has shown, this ‘logic’ of his has not done that; it has failed whenever it has been applied (but, I allege, it cannot be applied, that is one reason why Dialectica Marxism is such a long-term failure).

Once more: Dialectical Logic has no known application in the technology or the sciences.

As I put things in Essay Four:

Quote:
At first sight, it would seem obvious that a logical system based on a static view of the world -- as it is alleged of FL -- would have few if any practical consequences. On the other hand, it would appear equally clear that a different logical system based on the opposite view of reality -- as is also claimed of DL -- should have countless practical applications in science and technology.

[FL = Formal Logic; DL = Dialectical Logic; DM = Dialectical Materialism]

Oddly enough, the exact opposite is the case: DL has no discernible practical or scientific applications, and has featured in none of the advances in the natural or physical sciences (and arguably none even in the social sciences) -- ever. Worse, DL has made no contribution to technological innovation. In stark contrast to this, FL has proved to be invaluable throughout the history of science and mathematics, and has featured in countless applications in technology and the applied sciences.

Indeed, one excellent example among the many of the impact FL on technology is the development of computers. Their origin goes back many centuries, but advances in mathematical logic (post 1850) proved to be decisive. The invention of Boolean and Fregean Logic, the mathematical logic of Russell, Whitehead, Hilbert, Peano, von Neumann and Church (etc.) -- along with the logico-mathematical work of Alan Turing -- all helped to make the development of computers possible. FL has not only contributed to the evolution of software and of computer languages, the principles of Propositional Calculus govern the operation of all standard processors (etc.).

In addition, there are numerous other examples of the practical applications of FL, ranging from Cybernetics to Code Theory and from Linguistics to Game Theory and Discrete Mathematics. The question is: Can DM-theorists point to a single successful application of DL in technology, or in the natural and physical sciences? The answer is reasonably plain; they can't. But this glaring failure becomes all the more revealing when it is remembered that dialecticians repeatedly claim that their 'logic' is superior to FL when it is applied to the material world.

In fact, its one ‘success’ was in the notorious work of Lysenko!

This is perhaps one paradoxical mismatch between DM and recalcitrant reality that cannot be solved by the simple expedient of "grasping" it.

More details here: http://homepage.ntlworld.com/rosa.l/page%2009_04.htm

So, the mystical ‘logic’ on which Fido dotes has failed, and has no known scientific application. But does he follow Marx’s advice (along the lines that truth is tested in practice), and draw the obvious conclusion that this ‘logic’ of his is a crock of sh*t? No, he diverts attention again, for this is one “infererence” he does not want to make.

As for this comment:

Quote:
If this philosophy posed a danger to them, then why would they push it so much. Again, Rosa likes to point fingers, but in the end, she's got one going out and three pointing back.

Fido probably does not know, but Formal Logic is not a philosophy (it might require one to set it up, or to interpret it, it might not -- but it is not one per se).

But, even if it were, so what? If we use computers (and computer chips, in mobile phones, etc.) to help bring capitalism down (as I hope we will), then the ruling class will have every reason to fear this ‘philosophy’.

One thing is for sure, they do not fear Hegelian tripe, since it does not work.

Computers do.

In response to my repeated claim that no one understands the ‘dialectic’ (not the Marxist sort outlined by that reviewer, but the mystical sort Fido dotes on), we find this:

Quote:
I, and several others on this site, understand it pretty well. Rosa is the one that ignores it, misunderstands [sic] it, and dismisses examples of it outright.

We have yet to see this, however. 200 years after Hegel put pen to misuse, we are still waiting on someone, anyone (??) who can explain it in non-Martian terms.

In his severely reduced intellectual state, this “Yupping” dog stands no chance.

The best I have so far seen (from a Marxist, that is, has been dispatched in Essay Eight Part Two, Note 67); the best non-Marxist attempt that I yet have seen (by Beiser) also fails. Why that is so I will say in Essay Twelve Part Four, in a year or so.

Until then, Fido has the floor: over to you yup-o-holic: if you are so smart, tell us what it means.

[Alas, I predict more of that ‘un-becoming’ stuff again, so avert your eyes children.]

Ah, I was wrong!

Here at last is the earth-shattering response that will change the direction of modern philosophy for ever,-- the first person to explain the dialectic in 200 years is our very own Yup-meister:

Quote:
Simple really, for a tree to grow new leaves, it must lose the old ones, and new buds form. For adult teeth to form, child's teeth must fall out.

How have generations of scholars, thinkers and philosophers missed this simple lesson from the garden (or the dentist’s surgery)?

One small nagging doubt: where is the Hegelian stuff in here?

In fact, it is a huge doubt, which grew non-dialectically from that infant doubt.

Do the old leaves ‘contradict’ the new ones?

Presumably not.

Does the tree contradict either of these?

No, since trees know no language, and cannot speak.

Do teeth argue among themselves (for that is what the word “contradict” means)?

I think the answer to that is “No”, too.

So where is the ‘dialectics’ here?

As usual, you mystics are radically unclear about change.

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The law of the interpenetration of opposites.... [M]utual penetration of polar opposites and transformation into each other when carried to extremes...." [Engels (1954), pp.17, 62.]
Quote:
And so every phenomenon, by the action of those same forces which condition its existence, sooner or later, but inevitably, is transformed into its own opposite…." [Plekhanov (1956), p.77.]

You can find the same sort of stuff in every book of Dialectical Mysticism, including Gollobin’s.

Here is a summary of my argument against this (taken from the basic introduction to anti-dialectics at my site, more (advanced) details in Essay Seven and Nine Part Two.]

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In fact, as is easy to confirm, dialecticians have been hopelessly unclear as to whether things change because of (1) their internal contradictions (and/or opposites), or (2) whether they change into these opposites, or, indeed, (3) whether they create such opposites when they change.

Of course, if the third option were the case, the alleged opposites could not cause change, since they would be produced by it[i], not the other way round. And they could scarcely be 'internal opposites' if they were produced by change.

If the second alternative were correct, then we would see things like males naturally turning into females, the capitalist class into the working class, electrons into protons, left hands into right hands, and vice versa, and a host of other oddities.

And as far as the first option is concerned, it is worth making the following points:

(A) If objects/processes change because of [i]alreadyexisting internal opposites, and they change into these opposites, then they cannot in fact change, since those opposites must already exist. So, if object/process A is already composed of a dialectical union of A and not-A, and it 'changes' into not-A, where is the change? All that seems to happen is that A disappears. [And do not ask where it disappears to!]

At the very least, this account of change leaves it entirely mysterious how not-A itself came about. It seems to have popped into existence from nowhere.

[It cannot have come from[i] A, since A can only change because of the operation of not-A, [i]which does not yet exist! And pushing the process into the past will merely reduplicate the above problems.]

(B) Exactly how an (internal) opposite is capable of making anything change is somewhat unclear, too. Given the above, not-A does not actually alter A, it merely replaces it!

http://homepage.ntlworld.com/rosa.l/Why%20I%20Oppose%20DM.htm

And, surprise, surprise, this basic confusion re-surfaces in Fido’s attempt to ‘explain’ dialectics.

Quote:
For Communism to come, capitalism must be torn down through a revolution that has the aim of directly fighting for communism. As capitalism withers away, the communist society is being formed within it and in direct contradiction to the primary social relationship.

But, if everything changes because of its ‘internal opposite’ then communism must exist already, in the here and now, (otherwise, the change depicted here could not come about).

On the other hand, if communism does not exist in the here and now, then capitalism cannot change.

As I said, not even you mystics understand ‘dialectics’.

Now, in response to my claim:

Quote:
The things you mention are not ‘the dialectic’; unless, of course, ‘the dialectic’ means anything that “native” peoples use in their attempt to grapple with reality.

which was itself in reply to this:

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This is the most ridiculous shit. Classless societies regularly use a rudimentary dialectic in their analysis of the world. The native American peoples of North America would thing of themselves in complete relation and interrelation to the world around them. They consistently analyzed things in terms of them as subjects and objects within the world. They didn't codify it, as it was natural and in practice. The dialectic is organic.

Which was part of this series of comments of mine:

Quote:
So, your assertion is not proof.

But, don’t take my word for it!

Fortunately, we have our very own resident expert to settle all matters theoretical, with ‘his’ hot-line to ‘God’ -- for the Very Reverend Wangwei (B.Ed(Case)) declareth, in book Ten of the Gospel of Bollocks that all ideas have come from the ruling-class:

Fido: “Because you are unable to understand that fact that all ideas have come from the ruling class, including Marx's.”

Rosa: So, in the Wango-Whacko world you inhabit, either there was a ruling-class that pre-dated class society, or you made a [shock, horror!] mistake.

Fido replies:

Quote:
Classless societies regularly use a rudimentary dialectic in their analysis of the world. The native American peoples of North America would thing of themselves in complete relation and interrelation to the world around them. They consistently analyzed things in terms of them as subjects and objects within the world. They didn't codify it, as it was natural and in practice. The dialectic is organic.

Illustrates that Rosa has no clue at all what the dialectic is, yet she's arguing against it.

First, notice, Fido refers to “classless society” (the significance of that blunder will emerge later).

Second he bases this assertion on what?

Well, on his say-so.

Where is his evidence that things were/are as he says?

Of course, he might point to studies done of native peoples; but do any of these reach back into the ancient past, before there were any written records?

No.

So, how could he possibly respond to the counter-argument that these native peoples derived their ideas from previous ruling-classes (perhaps those that once dominated them before they migrated, or those who ruled the societies from which their tribes descended as their civilisation decayed, as they did in S America, say)?

Well, he can’t.

But once more, don’t take my word for this!

Fortunately, we have our very own expert on hand to help us, for the Prophet of the Puerile declareth the following (as I noted above):

Quote:
Because you are unable to understand that fact that all ideas have come from the ruling class, including Marx's.

So, how does he handle this ‘contradiction’?

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Yes. The working class was the ruling class before class society since they determined production based on need. In a classless society, the working class is the ruling class since everybody works to the best of their ability to meet everyone's needs.

So, in a classless society, there is a ruling class!

Who on earth did they rule over, then?

And, if there was a ruling class, it cannot have been a classless society.

Yes, I know – you were being ‘metaphorical’, again.

But, if so, we need not take you as telling us the literal truth, and that you made this up too.

On the other hand, if this is not ‘metaphorical’, how can a classless society have a class in it?

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What's really interesting is how Rosa avoids any direct questions, and retorts with blistering insults.

Yes, I seem to have learnt this off you, too.

For that is what you have been doing from the start.

More invention now:

Quote:
Bingo! Discourse is the form within which the content of a social conversation occurs. This is pretty basic Marxism. Nice to see you got it, we can go on from here.

Where does Marx say this?

Ah, you do not do ‘evidence’, do you?

Just assertion.

In reply to this:

Quote:
And, I have to admit that for once you have gotten something right. I have studied Philosophy extensively (among other things), as the many works I quote (and the many more to come) will attest -- in my final Bibliography, which runs to 90 pages at present, I will reference well over 2500 books and scholarly articles.

we get this:

Quote:
Rosa ranted about herself in the most elitist manner I think I have ever seen on the internet. She is the perfect example of self-paradoy [sic], except she actually believes in her own mystique.

When my original comment had been in reply to this Fido-ism:

Quote:
You can only particularize things, as opposed to seeing them wholistically. Ah well. your tunnelvision is quite sad. The basis for your site is the fact that you have a PHD and have studied philosophy extensively. You don't use proof, you just weigh in, and that's pretty consistent now.

In other words, in response to his assertion that I do not use proof, I claim that I do, and I use it extensively, as my detailed work (at my site) shows, tiny brain here once more fails to get the point, and drags in yet another irrelevance.

Yet again, his calling me an “elitist” sits rather badly when set against his worship of that über-elitist Hegel, a man who while working down the pits, managed to write tome after tome of ruling-class tosh.

And, it would be interesting to see if this intellectual minnow dares to criticise Marx for researching his ideas thoroughly (relying on the best work of his day), as I have done.

Had Fido lived in the 1860’s. I suspect he’d have called Marx an ‘elitist’, too.

In reply to this question of mine:

Quote:
And how is my discourse “saturated with the state”?

Fido replied:

Quote:
Because it's based upon domination and not based upon coming to a common understanding so that a mutual aid in knowledge sharing can occur. Look at the conversation between Gato and I on this very thread, we both disagreed, but we understood things much better for it.

So, anyone who engages in criticism is a state lackey; is that it?

That must mean that Marx was a state lackey when he criticised Proudhon, and so was Engels when he had a go at Dühring? How much agreement was there, there?

A large proportion of Marx’s work is polemic. So is mine. That makes it now no more nor no less “saturated with the state” than it does Marx’s.

And in response to this from me:

Quote:
And how is my discourse “saturated with the state”? In fact, you are the one who lionises the ruling-class --, from whom, according to you once more, humanity receives all its wisdom.

Fido chooses to ignore the last half and chest beats this response:

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Uhm, no. I'm a communist. I smash states.

Well, Blanqui, how many of these have you “smashed”, and all on your own?

Once more, I will put to you the passage you conveniently ignored:

Quote:
In fact, you are the one who lionises the ruling-class --, from whom, according to you once more, humanity receives all its wisdom.

So, why do you not lionise my alleged attempt to emulate their thinkers?

May I supply the answer that begs to be given: you do not do this because even you can see that my work is not “saturated with the state”.

And in response to my asking him what a participle of the verb “to be” (i.e., “becoming”) had to do with anything, he responded thus:

Quote:
everything. As everything must become something, and come from something, and is connected, in some way to everything. Understanding the relation and interrelation of the connections from the subject to the object is the dialectic.

But, Fido did not use this word that way originally; this is what he asserted:

Quote:
I have, in order to become you must unbecome, and the process of becoming is unbecoming. All that is, was once all that was, and will be the seeds for all that will be. It's that simple and that complex.

It is this mystical use of these words that puzzles me.

Why has anything that ‘becomes’ got to ‘unbecome’?

And “unbecoming” means “unattractive” (but see below), unless you want to stipulate a new sense for this ‘word’?

Indeed, that is exactly what Fido does:

Quote:
the process of ceasing to become what you once were "un" as in the negation of what it's attached to.

But, how do you know that this made-up word is ‘the negation’ of the other?

[‘Non-becoming’ might be, but that word seems to mean that things could not change! No wonder you failed to consider that ‘word’!]

So, it seems you just make stuff up as you go along.

But, anyone can make any theory work by stipulating that certain words mean whatever they like.

So, if I were so minded (which I am not), I could stipulate that human nature is “selfish”, or that capitalism is “fair” -- and direct all objections to the contrary to my stipulation.

[I do not think you’d be inclined to accept these as legitimate objections to our sort of politics! But you expect us to allow you to re-define anything you like.]

Other than your stipulations, what evidence have you got that anything you say here is correct?

Me, earlier:

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Rosa: As far as I can tell it means “not very attractive”

Fido, now:

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Not in the context I was using it. Again, this just illustrates Rosa's inability to read language in context and understand it apart from her own narrow views of it.

Well, the context in which Fido is using this word is divorced from the material language of everyday life, and situated in the rarefied a aprioristic, -- and, dare I say it?, elitist -- world of high theory.

In the material world, “unbecoming” means what I said: “unattractive”.

In Fido’s non-material universe, it means whatever he stipulates, which in turn means that he is setting up a new convention for this ‘word’, and any ‘truths’ that flow from it will be conventional ‘truths’ not material ones.

In other words, truths about the world will, for Fido, flow from the alleged meaning of words, and which can be declared true in advance of looking at the world. In short, Fido is a Linguistic Idealist.

But, once more, why did Fido not use the more likely negation of “becoming” – i.e., “non-becoming”?

It is easy to see why: it would have destroyed his mystical ‘theory’.

And in reply to this question of mine:

Quote:
And what makes something change from “becoming” to “unbecoming”, or is it the other way around?

Fido drops this steaming pile:

Quote:
whatever forces relative to the essence of that thing cause it to unbecome, and of course the converse of it is true. To become you must unbecome, but while unbecoming, you are becoming.

But that is no explanation. It merely repeats what he said earlier.

So, either Fido does not know what changes “becoming” into “unbecoming” (meaning that not even he, the High Priest of Gobbledygook, ‘understands’ the dialectic) -- or he does know, but won’t say.

I suspect the former.

[And when you, Fido, do finally tell me the answer to this corker, you will fall a into neat little trap. So, go on, make my day….]

To this question of mine:

Quote:
And how do you know all this?

We get this Fido-‘fact’:

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It's called material reality.

So, you have examined every particle in the entire universe, have you?

Or, is ‘material reality’ whispering things to you (again)?

[In fact, the only way Fido could know this is to have ‘derived’ these ‘a priori’ ‘truths’ from a few distorted (or re-configured) words, as we saw him do. As I said, he is a Linguistic Idealist – truths about reality flow from a few tortured bits of jargon, with which not even Marx would have “coquetted”!]

And in response to this question of mine:

Quote:
Why can’t some things just stop?

Fido posts this canine canard:

Quote:
Because energy is never wasted, it just transforms. I learned that one in Jr. High. It's called material reality.

But that just tells me they do not in fact stop, not why they cannot stop.

And yet, what piece of tortured sub-Hegelian prose can he point to that tells us that ‘becoming’ might not one day change into non-becoming, its real negation?

None at all, for this devastating point escaped this air head.

[And how does he know that energy is never “wasted”? Scientists are always changing their minds (indeed, they often “become” wrong – but I am not sure what it would mean for a scientist to “unbecome” wrong!). They could be wrong on this, too. And since the vast majority of scientific theories (from the past) are now known to be wrong, there is a high probability that this is wrong, as well.]

Now, Fido’s naivety over modern logic shows itself here; in response to this counterexample:

Quote:
Here is something that is, which wasn’t “all that once was”: Tony Blair’s resignation.

which was in response to this from Fido:

Quote:
All that is, was once all that was, and will be the seeds for all that will be.

he tries this lame reply:

Quote:
Tony Blair exists, he was powerful, the seeds that gave him his leadership allowed him to achieve his power, but they also had within them the seeds of his downfall and destruction based upon the inter-imperialist rivalry of Iraq.

But, how is this a reply to my counter-example. He clearly does not know the logic of the quantifiers he so sloppily threw about the place in the above.

Let me walk him through it, more slowly this time:

Fido-slop:

Quote:
All that is, was once all that was, and will be the seeds for all that will be.

So, according to this mystical gem “All that is, was once all that was…”

Well Tony Blair’s resignation is part of “all that now is” (at least recently), but how could it also be all “that was”?

How is it possible for his resignation to have been the entire universe up to a few seconds before it happened?

It would have to be this, if that LuLu of his were correct: “All that is (and that includes Blair’s resignation), was once all that was (which is the entire universe up to that point).”

Now, there are ways around this ‘difficulty’, in modern logic, but not using the impoverished logic that swills around Fido’s brain (er…, empty cranium).

[And this logical ‘escape route’ would also, unfortunately, let the hot air out of such grandiose a priori theses, cooked up in that doggy brain of his, so I am not sure Fido would welcome its assistance, even if he could follow it.]

Quote:
The seeds exist within the identity of what exists. The content within the form is the internal contradiction within a thing.

But, how are these ‘contradictions’? Does everything contain within itself a proposition and its negation? Or two people arguing?

If so, Fido is indeed a very odd sort of Linguistic Idealist.

But, worse, he is a mystic, too:

Quote:
It's an explanation given in a Zen Taoist manner, one in which the student should make the connections and teach themselves to attain a higher level of understanding.

Good job Marx was not.

He ditched the dialectic.

I suggest you emulate him, Fido.

Demogorgon303's picture
Demogorgon303
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May 19 2007 18:37

Unfortunately, I just lost a whole bloody post and have no more time, so I'm going to have to restrict myself to one point. I'll come back to the rest later, hopefully.

Rosa wrote:
Good job Marx was not. He ditched the dialectic.
Marx wrote:
In its mystified form, dialectic became the fashion in Germany, because it seemed to transfigure and to glorify the existing state of things. In its rational form it is a scandal and abomination to bourgeoisdom and its doctrinaire professors, because it includes in its comprehension and affirmative recognition of the existing state of things, at the same time also, the recognition of the negation of that state, of its inevitable breaking up; because it regards every historically developed social form as in fluid movement, and therefore takes into account its transient nature not less than its momentary existence; because it lets nothing impose upon it, and is in its essence critical and revolutionary.

This was written in 1873 and is a ringing endorsement for the rational (i.e. materialist)dialectic. When talking of this materialist dialectic, Marx speaks in the present tense clearly indicating that he thought it was "critical and revolutionary" at the time of writing.
At what point in the next ten years (Marx died in 1883) did Marx "ditch" the dialectic that at this point he felt was "critical and revolutionary"?

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gatorojinegro
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May 19 2007 21:09

wangwei: "Gato pointed out that her philosophy was atomizing, polarizing, and empirical."
Actually, i said "empiricist". rosa:

Quote:
But he neglected to post a single piece of evidence in support, and you bought it.

Then she will need to explain what she means by the following passage, which appears to deny that it makes any sense to talk of tendencies in things:

me: "if we look at the types of internal conflicts that generate change in things, what we find is we are looking at tendencies, which are potentialities with some actuality that is a necessary condition for the realization of that potentiality. Thus Sam's tendency for his hair to turn white coexists with his current causal tendency to maintain his hair's black color because the first tendency is not the actual whiteness of his hair but its possibility. And the possibility of his hair becoming white is consistent with his hair being actually black. This sort of thing was analyzed by Airstotle over 2,000 years ago. Moreover, Marx was well aware of Aristotle's writings on this subject because Marx's PhD dissertation was on Aristotle's philosophy of science."

rosa:

Quote:
Well, I deny any of this makes much sense, and for the reasons I said.

And what gives such 'tendencise' their power to do whatever it is they do? Yet more 'internal opposites'?

If so, the problems I mentioned in my last post reappear.

If not, then what?

And I am well aware of the metaphysical/mystical origin of these ideas: they were based on the fact that Greek theorists were quite happy to anthropomorphise nature, and to derive profound truths from words alone (since they thought nature was mind, or mind like, or constituted by mind).

to deny that there are powers, forces, abilities, capacities, tendencies, susceptibilities, potentialities in things,in people, in social wholes is on what basis? in the history of philosophy this view is based on the atomistic empiricist ideology, derived from Hume and his followers. and it's not consistent with Marx's view of method or his actual social theory.

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 19 2007 21:20

Demogorgon quotes this:

Quote:
In its mystified form, dialectic became the fashion in Germany, because it seemed to transfigure and to glorify the existing state of things. In its rational form it is a scandal and abomination to bourgeoisdom and its doctrinaire professors, because it includes in its comprehension and affirmative recognition of the existing state of things, at the same time also, the recognition of the negation of that state, of its inevitable breaking up; because it regards every historically developed social form as in fluid movement, and therefore takes into account its transient nature not less than its momentary existence; because it lets nothing impose upon it, and is in its essence critical and revolutionary.

And we know what that 'rational form' is, for Marx tells us: it is the version encapsulated in that reviewer's summary, in which there is no trace of Hegel,

This is the rock against which your fantasies will always founder.

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This was written in 1873 and is a ringing endorsement for the rational (i.e. materialist) dialectic. When talking of this materialist dialectic, Marx speaks in the present tense clearly indicating that he thought it was "critical and revolutionary" at the time of writing.

At what point in the next ten years (Marx died in 1883) did Marx "ditch" the dialectic that at this point he felt was "critical and revolutionary"?

He never ditched the 'rational form' just all traces of Hegel (this non-Hegelian version being captured in that review, which Marx himself describes as the "dialectic method").

As he said, Hegel is only fit for "coquetting" with.

I am sorry of I forgot to point all this out before.

That can be the only explanation for your continuing to bash your head against this brick wall of contrary evidence.

Either that, or you can't read....

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 19 2007 21:23

Posey, quoting me:

Quote:
But he neglected to post a single piece of evidence in support, and you bought it.

I refer the honourable, but increasingly rattled and supporting evidence-free ignoramus to my earlier response to him.

lem
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May 19 2007 22:34

Yeah. The dialectic is inherent to social activity. How could it not be confused

lem
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May 19 2007 22:35

I mean that ^^ could hardly be described as mystical! If you disagree, explain why?

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 19 2007 23:09

lem:

Quote:
I mean that ^^ could hardly be described as mystical! If you disagree, explain why?

You need to read this thread, after which all should be clear to you.

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gatorojinegro
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May 19 2007 23:54

Rosa desperately wishes to avoid discussing her own rejection of tendencies and forces...a viewpoint that would be hard to square with her advocacy of historical materialism and Marxism. here we have what she said in an earlier post:

me: "A tendency IS a causal power, like a capacity. The tendency of humans to get wrinkles as they age includes a causal capacity to do so. Now, you can ask reasonably for an explanation for why something has a tendency or capacity. That will require as a component yet another capacity or tendency. That's because dispositional properties (powers, capacities, tendencies, susceptibilities) are necessary elements in all explanations."

rosa:

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In that case, as I am sure you must know, we should have an infinite regress, with tendencies to develop tendencies.

actually not. some tendencies or powers or abilities depend on further abilities. Jack's ability to speak Russian presupposes his ability to learn Russian which presupposes his ability to stay alive. but there is no reason for this regress to be infinite. it ends in whatever the most basic capacities or "laws" are.

rosa:

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But even if you were right, such tendencies cannot be governed by 'internal contradictions' or even 'unities of opposites', since they are vulnerable to the objections I raised.

So, even if you were right, 'tendencies' are of no use to dialecticians.

[And 'tendencies' no more account for things than does the old example: sleeping pills work because of their dormative qualities.]

this is a parody. the way the appeal to tendencies or causal powers works in real explanations is rather different. to give an example. a bridge collapses. we want to know why. immediately before the collapse a large truck drove onto it. this event provoked the collapse. but it isn't sufficient. we need to bring in things like the loading capacity of the bridge, the weight of truck. without the references to forces, capacities we don't have an explanation of the event.

forces and tendencies may be of no use to dlalecticians but they are of use if one wants to explain things. Marx aparently thought so. that's why he referred to the "forces of production", "the tendency of the rate of profit to fall".

do you think there are such things or not?

and by what sort of inference do we impute tendencies to things? is it perhaps to explain events, things we observe? when researchers came up with the hypothesis that cigarette smoking causes lung cancer, and concluded it was confirmed after testing, what sort of inference was that? and what is it that they are imputing to exist? Is it perchance a tendency of cigarettes to cause lung cancer?

i can't see that "dialectic" is of any value as a "method". i do see the method of making hypotheses and then testing them as a valuable method, as far as trying to understand the world around us.

SatanIsMyCoPilot
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May 20 2007 11:37

I've just woken up with a stinking hangover and can;t bring myself to write a proper reply. I probably will do later, but for now:

Reiterating what I said above: Rosa, you're welcome to launch an attack on Hegel (albeit misguided, unfounded and conducted without having actually read Hegel). I'm also glad that you're (allegedly) engaging in a close reading of Marx, even it its with the aim of reformulating him in order to remove the Hegelian influence.

However, denying the very existence of that influence is stupid (you might as well deny the influence of Ricardo or Smith) - and you seem to be unable to explain a) why you want to do this, b) why it needs to be done, and c) exactly what it is you are fighting!

I'd take you far more seriously if you framed all this by saying 'Marx said A. What he meant to say was B.' As it is, you're saying 'Marx didn't say A at all, despite the vast mass of textual evidence to the contrary - on the basis of a deliberate misreading, I declare Marx to have said B all along!' I find it very, very depressing indeed that you're doing this after having undergone an academic training.

Now, let's just say this again, so as to make sure that it doesn't get lost beneath your pointless little insults. Explain why you want to do this, and why it needs to be done. Explain what it is you oppose and why.

If you can't do that - and I suspect that you can't - your entire enterprise is pretty much ridiculous, as is the time wasted talkintg to you about it.

Might get back to you later if my hangover improves

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darren p
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May 20 2007 12:33

and there's more:

"I did look a bit more at the anti-dialectic argument about nodal points. I noted that the author cites things like tar and butter as examples where there is not a distinct nodal point. To me this does not address Engels' point that all change requires "the addition or subtraction of energy or motion". In these cases the tar or the butter certainly changes as you add or subtract heat.

And I would also argue that each of these does have a melting point, so I would not agree that the nodal point does not exist. The author is possibly referring to the fact that butter goes through a "softening" stage that is different than ice. To me that is just another stage, and one that is very useful in making chocolate chip cookies (ever try to mush a hard stick of butter or mix a melted pool of butter with sugar as the recipe calls for?- the "soft" stage is just right). There is a turning point where the butter is too hard and another one where the turning point is too liquidy.

Regarding the example the author raises about evolution, I also don't see how it challenges the notion of quantitative/qualitative change. My understanding is that if members of a single species are isolated for long enough, the quantitative mutations that routinely occur will eventually add up to a situation where the former members of the single species will not be able to mate, which is the distinction that normally marks the formation of a new species. So the quantitative changes add up to a qualitative one.

If the argument is that mutations themselves are not produced by the quantitative addition of energy, I would also disagree. My understanding is that cosmic rays are one source of mutations. I'll have to study a bit of molecular biology to figure out more about mutations, but I don't pretend to be an expert on that (I'm more of an expert on making chocolate chip cookies!)" -Jack Lucero Fleck "Dialectics for Kids"

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 20 2007 14:36

Darren, it seems to me that this 'correspondent' of yours is either dim-witted, is deliberately trying to misread my Essays, or someone is feeding him duff information. This is the latest example (to add to the others I listed in response to your last post):

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"I did look a bit more at the anti-dialectic argument about nodal points. I noted that the author cites things like tar and butter as examples where there is not a distinct nodal point. To me this does not address Engels' point that all change requires "the addition or subtraction of energy or motion". In these cases the tar or the butter certainly changes as you add or subtract heat.

The examples I quoted, and there were many more than are listed above -- metal being the most important counter-example --, were aimed at showing only one thing: that the claim that dialecticians make that all qualitative change is nodal is incorrect; many things change qualitatively non-nodally.

Your 'correspondent' mentions this but failed to note the fatal consequences of my counter-examples to this piece of hokey dialectics.

For example, he seems to think that my objection revolves around chocolate. He conveniently ignored metal, rocks and glass -- which comprise a sizeable proportion of the material world.

That means, of course, that the change of state from solid to liquid, and vice versa, for much of nature is non-nodal.

Now, it also appears that this 'correspondent' of your does not know what Engels's first 'law' is. As I pointed out to you in my previous response, this law is not just about the addition of matter and energy. If it were, it would distinguish Engels from no other sort of materialist, since all materialists believe that change can come about in no other way than the addition or subtraction of matter or energy.

What distinguishes Engels from the rest is as follows:

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For our purpose, we could express this by saying that in nature, in a manner exactly fixed for each individual case, qualitative changes can only occur by the quantitative addition or subtraction of matter or motion (so-called energy)…. Hence it is impossible to alter the quality of a body without addition or subtraction of matter or motion, i.e. without quantitative alteration of the body concerned." [Engels (1954), p.63.

Engels's unique twist is to add that qualitative change can only occur (indeed, he says that it is impossible for this to take place in any other way) by the quantitative addition or subtraction of matter or energy.

Now I gave examples earlier, but there are many more at my site, that show that Engels is wrong.

You -- or your 'correspondent' -- need to show where I am wrong, or abandon this 'law'.

As far as this is concerned:

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Regarding the example the author raises about evolution, I also don't see how it challenges the notion of quantitative/qualitative change. My understanding is that if members of a single species are isolated for long enough, the quantitative mutations that routinely occur will eventually add up to a situation where the former members of the single species will not be able to mate, which is the distinction that normally marks the formation of a new species. So the quantitative changes add up to a qualitative one.

I discussed this in considerable detail. This 'correspondent' of yours needs to address what I actually said, not rehearse the same tired old formulae (which I show are incorrect too).

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If the argument is that mutations themselves are not produced by the quantitative addition of energy, I would also disagree. My understanding is that cosmic rays are one source of mutations. I'll have to study a bit of molecular biology to figure out more about mutations, but I don't pretend to be an expert on that (I'm more of an expert on making chocolate chip cookies!)"

In saying this, he cannot have read my Essays, but must be responding to the questions of a third party (you, perhaps?), who is feeding him incorrect information.

The point about mutations is that they are (in most cases) caused by external agents, and I used this fact to falsify the dialectical idea that all change in internally-induced.

My objection (about mutations) has nothing to do with the addition of matter and energy, and nowhere do I say this..

So, tell this 'correspondent' of yours to stick to kids stuff; that appears to be his limit.

Or, stop feeding him incorrect information (if it is you who is doing it).

Rosa Lichtenstein
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May 20 2007 15:01

SIMCP:

I'd have a hangover too if I'd have received the drubbing I gave you all week! smile

Quote:
Reiterating what I said above: Rosa, you're welcome to launch an attack on Hegel (albeit misguided, unfounded and conducted without having actually read Hegel). I'm also glad that you're (allegedly) engaging in a close reading of Marx, even it its with the aim of reformulating him in order to remove the Hegelian influence.

Since you 'reiterate' issues that have been settled (not by me, but by Marx), this was a waste of time.

Once more: Marx calls the summary that that reviewer wrote, the "dialectic method".

And, Guess what? There's no trace of Hegel in there!

Guess what, too? That is how I approach Kapital -- as a 100% Hegel-free zone.

Why do I do this?

For several reasons, but the most relevant here is because it is what Marx did.

And, in case you missed it, he rubbed that fact in with this little-known passage (which you might not have seen before):

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and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him

That's six times.

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However, denying the very existence of that influence is stupid (you might as well deny the influence of Ricardo or Smith) - and you seem to be unable to explain a) why you want to do this, b) why it needs to be done, and c) exactly what it is you are fighting!

Describing my position as "stupid" is your best argument yet.

Nice move!!

But, I do not think I'd want to deny the influence of Smith and Ricardo, since they were not mystics.

Yes, you are right, I am biased -- biased against ruling-class mystics.

So, sue me.... sad

It appears to me that you are reduced now to just repeating yourself (I wonder, did you get plastered last night to drown your sorrows??).

Quote:
I'd take you far more seriously if you framed all this by saying 'Marx said A. What he meant to say was B.' As it is, you're saying 'Marx didn't say A at all, despite the vast mass of textual evidence to the contrary - on the basis of a deliberate misreading, I declare Marx to have said B all along!' I find it very, very depressing indeed that you're doing this after having undergone an academic training.

All I can do in response is repeat myself, too:

Quote:
Since you 'reiterate' issues that have been settled (not by me, but by Marx), this was a waste of time.

Once more: Marx calls the summary that that reviewer wrote, the "dialectic method".

And, Guess what? There's no trace of Hegel in there!

Guess what, too? That is how I approach Kapital -- as a 100% Hegel-free zone.

Why do I do this?

For several reasons, but the most relevant here is because it is what Marx did.

And, in case you missed it, he rubbed that fact in with this little-known passage (which you might not have seen before):

Quote:
and even here and there, in the chapter on the theory of value, coquetted with the modes of expression peculiar to him

That's seven times.

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Now, let's just say this again, so as to make sure that it doesn't get lost beneath your pointless little insults. Explain why you want to do this, and why it needs to be done. Explain what it is you oppose and why.

I think you must have missed this earlier comment of mine, too:

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Perhaps you belong to that male school of thought that thinks that when a girl says 'No!', she means 'Ok, but only if you keep on trying....'?

Beat your brains against this brick wall, see if I care -- the answer is still "No", will always be "No" --, and even after that will miraculously change into another --, guess what: "No!".

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If you can't do that - and I suspect that you can't - your entire enterprise is pretty much ridiculous, as is the time wasted talking to you about it.

Think what you like, it won't change that "No" even into a "maybe in a 100 years".

Hope this does not give you another hangover....