Basis of a social revolution

9 posts / 0 new
Last post
meerov21
Offline
Joined: 14-08-13
Sep 6 2013 22:43
Basis of a social revolution

What social strata can become the basis for a social revolution? It is not necessary to invent anything, it’ll be enough just to look at the facts. During the Russian revolution, workers were usually afraid to take the plants in their own hands. They could, but were scared and that’s why they first of all demanded control rather than full management. One of the enterprises with very different sentiments was VIKZHEL, the overall organization of the railway industry. It demanded that the Bolsheviks pass the whole rail network into the hands of labor groups, as well as the right to form their own armed militia to protect them. Why so? Because VIKZHEL, as evidenced by the researcher of the Russian Revolution E. Carr, was in fact a huge factory committee that united both workers and professionals.

The same phenomenon can be found in Hungary in 1956 and in Poland in 1980: in both cases there were powerful uprising aimed at reaching complete self-governing. According to the researchers, the social base of the Polish "Solidarity" in 1980-1981 looked like this: "According to the degree of disagreement with the official policy young workers sided with students. Following behind them in this row were workers of the older generation from large industrial enterprises, the first five-year plan’s buildings. By contrast, older workers from small enterprises showed the highest level of support for the government." According to sociologist N. Korovitsina, “the alliance of skilled workers and intellectuals was the driving force of the «Solidarity» revolution."

Other researchers discover the same alliance during the Hungarian Revolution of 1956. Thus, all the delegates of the Central Labor Council of Greater Budapest "were toolmakers, turners, metallurgists, engineers" (Hungarian Revolution in 1956. Cardiff, Scorcher Publications, 1984).

So, wherever a union of skilled workers and professionals arose, preconditions were created there for the transfer of enterprises to self-government, i.e. for non- governmental self-governing solutions, for socialism, when the workers themselves were the masters of the country, factories and land, not public officials acting "on behalf of the workers." Obviously, the movement of unskilled workers by itself is not capable to achieve socialist transformation, as its members do not have the expertise to manage the production, to say nothing of the country.

And of course, if by socialism we mean Bolshevism or social democracy, then the picture changes, for they have different goals and different instruments to achieve them.

meerov21
Offline
Joined: 14-08-13
Sep 13 2013 10:38

It is a continuation of other texts :

"the need to rise against trade unions"
http://www.libcom.org/forums/theory/need-rise-against-trade-unions-19082...

English is not my native language so i and my friends can't translate big texts and i just publish fragments.But i hope it represents some ideas.

plasmatelly's picture
plasmatelly
Offline
Joined: 16-05-11
Sep 8 2013 12:37

Hmmm... What country did you say you were from meerov21?

meerov21
Offline
Joined: 14-08-13
Sep 8 2013 15:52

Russia

plasmatelly's picture
plasmatelly
Offline
Joined: 16-05-11
Sep 8 2013 18:44

Any contact with KRAS?

meerov21
Offline
Joined: 14-08-13
Sep 9 2013 09:54

No thanks))

68er
Offline
Joined: 29-04-13
Sep 10 2013 21:16

Greetings: this is my first post on libcom. but not my first post in 'the milieu' :68er by name (and nearly by age::@-): one has to plunge in somewhere. I am not a member of any organisation: Marx's materialist conception of history and his life's work continue ring profoundly clearly... so: 'Marxist'...well we use these 'ists' but I always keep in mind something Engels' wrote in a letter to Bernstein :

'What is known as 'Marxism' in France is an altogether peculiar thing, so much so that Marx himself once said to Lafargue : 'Ce qu'il y a de certain, c'est que moi je ne suis pas Marxiste' : One thing is certain and that is that I am not a Marxist'

Your comments on Poland 80/81 (and other examples) struck me: I agree : the almost innate, effortless ability of those Polish workers to self organise - reaching 9 million at one point - and attack/resist the ruling class was clear. there were no 'Unions' and even the 'Nationalist trap' was a double edged sword as Poland was a 'sub-nation' under the USSR. They certainly took the oppressors by surprise: the ruling classes had to use every brutal or ideological weapon in their armoury to break the revolutionary basis. I remember rolling a revolutionary broadsheet off the presses with a small but tragically apt picture on the front . The workers were rushing out of a long dark tunnel with 'Stalinism' inscribed on its arch, only to run into and slice their hands on a barbed wire fence from which hung the sign 'democracy'.

I understand what you mean at the end re: 'Bolshevism' and of course we have to use 'umbrella' terms otherwise every post would be three volumes long. Not making a big point but what characterised 'The Bolsheviks' in -say- February 1917 in Petrograd was very different from what characterised 'The Bolsheviks' in -say- November 1917 and as one can see what 'Bolshevism' ended up being in 1921 ominously different again .

I'll leave it there : thanks for a great site.

meerov21
Offline
Joined: 14-08-13
Sep 11 2013 11:01

68er, thank you for intresting comments.

As For Polland in 1980-1981.

There were few typical ideas during huge workers uprisings in occupied (by USSR) Easten Europe. Everywhere (DDR 1953, Hungaria 1956, Poland 1980-1981) workers supported three things:

1) Self-managment or workers counseles who will govern the economy or at list partisipate in this governing (like so called "Network" in Poland in 1981).
2) National independents and national liberation fron USSR.
3) Sort of parlamentary democracy of vesterrn stile wich shood be conducted by the left wing partys like social-democrats.

We can see all ideas in the different combinations. For example hungarian revolutionary workers have being strong ant-USSR nationalists in 1956 (and some of them blamed jews for support to bolshevism and Soviet Union). Majority supported the idea of indepentent state with parlamentary sistem, but in the same time minority of workers leaded by Shandor Raz said the counsiles must be a governament themselves.

There were not "pure counsil communist revolutions" of course. As all revolutions eastern europian revolutions were a mixture of contradictive tendencys. They have been pregnant by sort of counsilism. We can see enormous movements of workers counsils in Poland or Hungary with millions of people and incredibly short time self-organisation (few weeks). But they also included numbers of possibilitys like yugoslavian variant or even jewish pogroms (Hungary).

Next point is also importent. All that movements were smashed up by military force. Than market reforms started by stalinist governments (they were softened by a social state). Workers class was strongly repressed, atomized and divided into layers by all of that. This is why hungarian, east german and polish workers cood not give up next brutal turn of market reforms in the and of 1980s. They cood not stope privatisatioans after the previous defeat.

From another side Eastern Europe get an independents from USSR and it satisfied the national feelings of some workers. They olso get parlamentary democracy as they wanted and free unionism. All of that are importent parts of "burgua cultural hegemony".

meerov21
Offline
Joined: 14-08-13
Sep 11 2013 10:55
68er wrote:

I understand what you mean at the end re: 'Bolshevism' and of course we have to use 'umbrella' terms otherwise every post would be three volumes long. Not making a big point but what characterised 'The Bolsheviks' in -say- February 1917 in Petrograd was very different from what characterised 'The Bolsheviks' in -say- November 1917 and as one can see what 'Bolshevism' ended up being in 1921 ominously different again .

I agree.
I can only add that 'Bolshevism' being "ominously different" already in 1918 when Lenin's governament ("Sovnarkom") organized mass falsifications of the elections to the workers counsiles or disperse disobedient counselse all over the Russia. Also elected factory counsilse ("fabzavcom") have being changed to the new "counsiles" stated by the government. In the same time workers militia (red guards) have being violentle dispersed by cenralised Red Army (wich was operated by new bolshevik bureaucrat and former zarist officers) .
All that researchers are published todey.