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Primitivism and Left Communism

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cph_shawarma
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Nov 21 2006 21:08

catch: It's hard to say if Lenin was "wrong" or not. This is part of the problem with this kind of rhetoric, the division in "right"/"wrong", "deceipt"/"belief" and so on and so forth. Lenin embodied the revolution as it was produced at that time (and carrying the counter-revolution in its womb). That is one of the great points of TC IMO, that the counter-revolution is intertwined with the revolution in a mutually binding manner, the revolution comes bearing the counter-revolution.

That is also why explanations such as "recuperation" etc. are really not explanations. Recuperation is not the explanation, but recuperation is what must be explained. wink

Maybe it's my memory that's playing tricks on me, but I can't remember stating that I am a Leninist. Maybe I've said that I think communist theory can not escape the theories or practice of Lenin. The post-facto judgement of Lenin is probably the biggest problem of many good commies, since it does not aim to explain Lenin, but rather to judge him.

Anarcho
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Nov 21 2006 22:38

Primitivism is just inverted Marxism. Engels argued that organisation and technology required authority, and went for the latter. Primitivists agree, but get rid of the former...

For all its "revolutionary" talk, it is just incoherent nonsense. It has no revolutionary perspective at all, no idea on how to get from here to there. For a critique, see section A.3.9 of "An Anarchist FAQ":

http://anarchism.ws/faq/secA3.html#seca39

It is a shame that some comrades take it seriously.

Beltov
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Nov 22 2006 00:34
cph_shawarma wrote:
No, I don't think that the working class is a "revolutionary subject", since I do not believe in any revolutionary subject. And it's certainly true that working class identity has become rather impossible, unity of the proletariat is only possible in communisation, ie. in its self-destruction, thus making this entire postulation quite problematic... Class unity has become impossible on everyday demands, because class identity has become a phenomenon on the margins (ie. in the leftist sects).

So if the working class isn't the revolutionary subject - and you don't believe in ANY revolutionary subject, then how the heck is a revolution going to be possible? Who is going to make the revolution? Do you even think a revolution is necessary?

Class unity is NOT impossible on 'everyday' demands - in fact quite the opposite! Take the anti-CPE protests in France in Spring 2006 for example, where the students and workers were uniting behind attacks on the working conditions of the younger generations of proletarians. Do you think they were wrong to oppose these attacks? Were they comlicit in 'reforming' their own slavery?

The search for class solidarity - indeed, for 'class identity' - is one of the key themes of many struggles that have developed over recent years: London Heathrow, NY Transit, anti-CPE, Vigo in Spain, and the Belfast postal workers. The list is added to every few months...

In fact, this lack of confidence in the working class as a revolutionary class seems rooted in the counter-revolutionary epoch of 1927-68 where the proletariat had supposedly been bought out and western capitalism was victorious. It seems increasingly at odds with the period since '68 where capitalism is obviously in dire straits and the working class has remained undefeated. It is THE class that still bears within its struggles the only positive perspective for the future.

Is class identity important?

B.

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Red Marriott
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Nov 23 2006 00:29
Leo wrote:
Marut

Quote:
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I'm not interested in 'teaching' the ICC or anyone

So I have noticed.

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You ultra-leftists

Wait a second please, I am trying to think how many times I heard this term from Stalinists.

Not sure what point you're trying to make here, or if you have one. But OK, note this - let me teach you something about your own chosen heritage - the following from Wikipedia describes pretty much my understanding of some varying uses of the term 'ultra-left'. From an international perspective, it can't, as you seem to imply, be narrowly associated only with Stalinists, even if that may be the case in your region.

Wikipedia wrote:
Ultra-leftism has two, overlapping uses. It is used as a generally pejorative term for certain types of positions on the left that are seen as extreme or intransigent in particular ways. It is also used – whether pejoratively or not – to refer to a particular current of Marxist communism, which is closely related to council communism and left communism.

The term Ultra Left is rarely used in English, where people tend to speak broadly of left communism as a minor variant of traditional Marxism, but the equivalent term in French - ultra-gauche - has a stronger currency, as it is a more positive term in that language and is used to define a movement that is still in existence today: a branch of left communism...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultra_leftism

lem
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Nov 23 2006 06:41

Adorno is a better philosopher than Lenin, imho. Then-again, I have not read much of either.

lem
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Nov 23 2006 07:06
Ret Marut wrote:
The term Ultra Left is rarely used in English, where people tend to speak broadly of left communism as a minor variant of traditional Marxism, but the equivalent term in French - ultra-gauche - has a stronger currency, as it is a more positive term in that language and is used to define a movement that is still in existence today: a branch of left communism...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultra_leftism

When arguinmg with obscure lefist "sects" on the meaning of 'communism', do not refer them to wiki tongue

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Red Marriott
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Nov 23 2006 09:26

lem, I'm not arguing about the meaning of communism or anything else - I'm attempting to illustrate the wider usage of the term 'ultra-left'. Wikipedia happened to be convenient for that - what's the problem?

lem
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Nov 23 2006 09:39

Meh. I just wanted to stick my tongue out at someone.

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Red Marriott
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Nov 23 2006 18:15

That's what I thought - I'm flattered to be worthy of your targetting.

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Lazy Riser
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Nov 23 2006 20:22

Hi

Quote:
The key problem is seeing Marx or other marxists as one 'thinker' among others rather than seeing his work as a product of the proletariat.

Absolutely. Imagine him bringing his divine work down from the mountain like Moses. You shall respect the iron laws of value! Only they can save us from the oncoming deluge.

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Oh, so you think that the revolution will be all fun and no pain? That sounds nice and fine for a utopist, but not for a serious communist.

Maybe. It certainly explains why serious communists are always hopeless losers for whom “nice and fine” will forever remain a distant fantasy.

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Primitivism is just inverted Marxism

Marxism inverted twice more like.

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we can not gradually "take over" society in order to later constitute "the new", but we must understand revolution as the immediate destruction of society qua constitution of communism (which could take a while, from years to generations, who knows?).

And amid this destruction, the brush with barbarism that will reveal humanity’s final choice: salvation within communism or a primal war of all against all. This saddle point twixt Primitivism and “Left Communism” is jointly theoretically flawed, inevitablist and more interesting as a petit-bourgeois cultural curiosity than as a viable political theory fit for further analysis.

Love

LR

aacammy5
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Nov 23 2006 23:53

it's hardly difficult to understand revolution
the revolution is here, the ethic is what is important
current issues prevent this ethic, but one must work within the system to destroy it. the rev is here, otherwise it will never come, why wait for an impending event, we must fight for happiness even while we are still happy. whether the revolution revolves around a primitivist ideal or nay, it is important the rev is a front of the unified left. primitivism need not be the reaction to the reactionary modernization the right influences through capital. perhaps it is the fragmenting of the left which deters the ethic?

alibadani
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Nov 24 2006 16:00
aacammy5 wrote:
it's hardly difficult to understand revolution
the revolution is here, the ethic is what is important
current issues prevent this ethic, but one must work within the system to destroy it. the rev is here, otherwise it will never come, why wait for an impending event, we must fight for happiness even while we are still happy. whether the revolution revolves around a primitivist ideal or nay, it is important the rev is a front of the unified left. primitivism need not be the reaction to the reactionary modernization the right influences through capital. perhaps it is the fragmenting of the left which deters the ethic?

Good one.

alibadani
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Nov 24 2006 16:13

Well revol, I'm pretty sure he was making fun of academic Marxism.

Leo
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Nov 24 2006 17:56
Quote:
Not sure what point you're trying to make here,

I was trying to point out how similar your argument techniques were with Stalinists. You did not have to pull out a definition from wiki. It's something like "you ultra-leftists..." or "you anarchists..." or "you trotskyists..." or "you hippies..." etc. You get the idea, right?

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let me teach you something about your own chosen heritage

lol!

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Adorno is a better philosopher than Lenin

Adorno is a philosopher, Lenin is not exactly a philosopher. What does that have to do with anything?

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Meh. I just wanted to stick my tongue out at someone.

Nice try! Maybe it'll actually work next time.

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Lazy Riser
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Nov 24 2006 18:32

Hi

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I'm pretty sure he was making fun of academic Marxism

Not easy. You're both comic geniuses.

Love

LR

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Red Marriott
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Nov 24 2006 20:34

Leo - we already have a revol - we don't need another one without even the redeeming qualities.

Leo
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Nov 24 2006 20:38

Nice try, but I don't even swear or flame. Please, if you want to discuss, discuss. Otherwise, don't bother. Your petty insults are not interesting, your arguments might be but I haven't seen them yet.

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Red Marriott
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Nov 24 2006 21:06

While not technically flaming, you have responded, unprovoked, to me (and lem) with sarcasm, rudely and dismissive. You commented largely with smartarse oneliners - I responded largely with polite paragraphs - I don't see your attitude as showing a great willingness to discuss. So I don't really want to discuss with someone whose motivation seems to be a competitive ego. Maybe when you're in a better mood or your testosterone levels have levelled out.wink

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Lazy Riser
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Nov 24 2006 21:19

Hi

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testosterone levels have levelled out

I was surprised to find that such excitable competitive behaviour is a consequence of too low a level of testosterone, not too high, as I understand many assume.

Love

LR

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Red Marriott
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Nov 24 2006 21:21

So how're they levelling today, Lazy?

Leo
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Nov 24 2006 21:21
Quote:
While not technically flaming, you have responded, unprovoked, to me (and lem) with sarcasm, rudely and dismissive.

Not more than you guys did.

Lem wrote:
When arguinmg with obscure lefist "sects" on the meaning of 'communism', do not refer them to wiki

You wrote:
Not sure what point you're trying to make here, or if you have one. But OK, note this - let me teach you something about your own chosen heritage

Quote:
You commented largely with smartarse oneliners - I responded largely with polite paragraphs

If I recall correctly, the long paragraph was about that Stalinism thing, where I was criticizing the sectarian and generalizing manner and you went on giving me a definition of ultra-leftism. Seriously, what did you expect me to say? Giving a link to a left communist about "ultra-leftism" in wikpedia is much more smartarse than any oneliner.

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So I don't really want to discuss with someone whose motivation seems to be a competitive ego.

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I tend to ignore the ICC now

It seems civilized discussion doesn't also fit into criteria, as the ICC members on every forum are the politest people. Sectarianism in this quote is not good lad.

Besides, responding to "sarcasm" with personal insults shows that maybe you are the one has a competitive ego.

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Red Marriott
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Nov 24 2006 21:53

This is getting really silly now - if you have anything further constructive to say then you can PM me - but we are getting into tit for tat pettyness now, which is a bit of a waste of space IMO.
But maybe you're not aware that in the past I've said quite alot in response to the ICC, such as on the 'meaningful reforms/decadence thread', 'a man is running down the street stabbing himself' thread etc... People can be arrogant while remaining polite, which is what I think beltov was doing in his simplistic dismissal of anarchism (not that I'm any great defender of alot of it) - which is what started all this. I tend to ignore them as a result of my experiences of them, both on and off here.
Anyway, no hard feelings.

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Red Marriott
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Nov 24 2006 21:53

double post

lem
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Nov 25 2006 04:05
Quote:
obscure leftist sects

Quote:
Nice try!

Whao, Leo, I didn't mean to upset you. Obscure does not mean you are impotent, sect doesn't mean sectarian, you are "left communists" aren't you. I mean, a friendly proletarian observer outside the milieu may describe you in thuis sort of way.

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I would say that none of those "marxist" academicians had anything to do with actual "marxism", that is the method marxism uses to examine history, economics and sociology.

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Marcuse, Adorno et al are as much Marxists as the Kautsky and Lenin, infact in terms of their theory they are better Marxists.

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Adorno is a better philosopher than Lenin

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Adorno is a philosopher, Lenin is not exactly a philosopher. What does that have to do with anything?

So I am saying, that if Lenin was a better "Marxist" than Adorno (as in proponent of Marxism, cf above) that Adorno has the better theory (i.e. was the better philosopher). Maybe I'm too detached sad

Leo
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Nov 25 2006 07:12
Lem wrote:
Whao, Leo, I didn't mean to upset you. Obscure does not mean you are impotent, sect doesn't mean sectarian, you are "left communists" aren't you. I mean, a friendly proletarian observer outside the milieu may describe you in thuis sort of way.

Alright then smile I really don't like the term "obscure sect" but oh well.

Quote:
So I am saying, that if Lenin was a better "Marxist" than Adorno (as in proponent of Marxism, cf above) that Adorno has the better theory (i.e. was the better philosopher). Maybe I'm too detached

No, ah... the thing is, I don't mean philosophy (dialectics) when I am talking about Marx's theories or his method; I am talking about "historical materialism" and "economical determinism". And quote honestly I am not really good at philosophy, so not much remains for me to understand from Adorno's work. What I know about Adorno is that, for example, he denounced May 68. I have a feeling that, despite his faults, Lenin would have never done that.

RedMarut wrote:
Anyway, no hard feelings.

Okay, no hard feelings.

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Lazy Riser
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Nov 25 2006 13:26

Hi

Quote:
So how're they levelling today, Lazy?

Pretty good, thanks for asking comrade.

Has this thread included a discussion of the correlation between Primitivism and, say, Monsieur Dupoint's ideas on how the specific products we consume are only possible due to capitalist oppression, and hence communism necessarily meaning a low-tech level of industrial production?

Love

LR

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Felix Frost
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Nov 25 2006 23:07
lem wrote:
Quote:
obscure leftist sects

Whao, Leo, I didn't mean to upset you. Obscure does not mean you are impotent, sect doesn't mean sectarian, you are "left communists" aren't you. I mean, a friendly proletarian observer outside the milieu may describe you in thuis sort of way.

"obscure sect" is fair enough, but "leftist" is just plain insulting...

Leo
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Nov 26 2006 07:55
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firstly the wgole point of Marx's (anti)philosophy is to pull it out of it's metaphysical arse and root it in the real relations of men (sic) ie historical materialism.

Well, yeah, that's part of I said basically.

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Secondly, Marx's theory can't be reduced to a crude "economical determinisn"

What's crude about "economical determinism"?

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though if you seperate his early "dialectical" work into philosophy it certainly can give that impression.

Well, yeah, as I said I am honestly more interested in the sociological/ economical/ historical aspects of the Marxist method.

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As for May68 and Adorno and Lenin, well Adorno was a burnt out old twat but unlike Lenin he couldn't have them shot down like partridges.

He would if he could have though.