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Why do Communists confuse themselves with anarchists?

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    (Original post by chefdave)
    It's a phenomenom that I've only come across on TSR. If they genuinely want a "classless, moneyless, stateless" society then why not just advocate anarchism and be done with it?

    I get the feeling they're employing what can only be described as ideological bipolarism to run rings around their critics. When we point out that they're in favour of an all powerful state and a dictatorship of the proletariat they smugly counter with their supposed commitment to state abolition. As if in order to lose weight and get skinny you need to turn into a morbidly obese fatso first.

    Cue all the smart alec's who can't wait to instruct me that...."I don't understand Communism" etc etc.
    You don't understand communism (but it is not your fault). It is North Korea and the USSR that are/were confusing themselves with communism, which is why you consider it an authoritarian worldview, when it isn't (necessarily). It is not necessarily libertarian either - it is an economic system, with few social implications.
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    Please find me where Marx described socialism as a 'completely state run, nationised industry'. Marx didn't describe socialism at all, really. As for 'state socialism', he rejected the concept (see Critique of the Gotha Program for just one example). The idea that Marx supported 'state socialism' or a 'workers' state' originated with Bakunin who, while being brilliant most of the time, never offered a single quote by Marx to back up his criticism.
    10 Pillars

    Dictatorship of the prolatariat
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    (Original post by prog2djent)
    10 Pillars

    Dictatorship of the prolatariat
    The '10 pillars' (quite an interesting term because Marx doesn't call them that anywhere) are in actuality, policies that he suggests Communist Parties should hold. Having them does not make them communist policies - for a current example, the Greek Communist Party wants elections to be held ASAP and has done since last year. Does that make it a communist policy?

    As for DotP, as I've said, both Marx and Engels said they meant something like the Paris Commune.
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    In the Spanish Civil War there were communes in Catalonia, and there were indeed cases of communes generally encompassing a town, but individual areas and even individual houses of the town were not part of the commune.
    A commune = a bunch of flower obsessed hippies living out a fantasy based upon the sharing of common resources. Ok I'm extracting the urine a bit but the words 'commune' and 'community' are embedded with the implicit idea of a shared geography.

    The Diggers' commune on St George's Hill was probably our most famous example of the communal lifestyle, and their model was built upon the appropriation and common usage of agricultural land. Without the cornerstone of land ownership their ideas meant very little.



    Please elaborate on the land issue and anarchists' supposed problems with it then.

    I don't know I'm not an anarchist, I guess you're the expert in this area? The 'solutions' usually revolve around ignoring the issue, trying to share the physical land out equally in a Mugabe-esque fashion or reducing overall productivity so there wasn't such a large discrepency between the most fertile/useful land the least fertile/useful. Different anarchists will of course have differing opinions, if I tried to advance a one-size-fits-all anarchist understanding and attacked that I'd clearly be setting myself up for the old..."you clearly don't understand anarchism" retort. So I won't even try.
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    (Original post by When you see it...)
    You don't understand communism (but it is not your fault). It is North Korea and the USSR that are/were confusing themselves with communism, which is why you consider it an authoritarian worldview, when it isn't (necessarily). It is not necessarily libertarian either - it is an economic system, with few social implications.
    Go on then, you can have 10 points too.

    We've already agreed that dictatorships are part of the communist process so whether they're the embodiment of textbook endgame communism or not is a moot point. As I've said above it's a sly get out of jail free card that lefties weakly deploy to disassociate themselves from the real world outcomes of their creed. The fact that autocratic regimes almost feel obliged to liberally use Marxist rhetoric and ideas should really tell you something about the true nature of the ideology.
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    The '10 pillars' (quite an interesting term because Marx doesn't call them that anywhere) are in actuality, policies that he suggests Communist Parties should hold. Having them does not make them communist policies - for a current example, the Greek Communist Party wants elections to be held ASAP and has done since last year. Does that make it a communist policy?

    As for DotP, as I've said, both Marx and Engels said they meant something like the Paris Commune.
    And was the paris commune a success?

    Why do you defend marx and communism so much?

    What type of anarchist are you? You don't sound like one of the 'anarchism without adjective' or 'black flag' type aresholes who have only ever achieved smashing stuff up at some pathetic student march where the goal is essentiall

    WHAT DO WE WANT .... FREE STUFF

    WHEN DO WE WANT IT .... FREE STUFF
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    (Original post by chefdave)
    A commune = a bunch of flower obsessed hippies living out a fantasy based upon the sharing of common resources. Ok I'm extracting the urine a bit but the words 'commune' and 'community' are embedded with the implicit idea of a shared geography.

    The Diggers' commune on St George's Hill was probably our most famous example of the communal lifestyle, and their model was built upon the appropriation and common usage of agricultural land. Without the cornerstone of land ownership their ideas meant very little.
    During the Spanish Civil War there were lots of agricultural collectives, and agricultural output went up by 20%.

    And there's nothing forcing you to be in a commune, as I said. You can have your own plot of land which you can produce what you want on if you so wish in anarchism. That was one of the slogans of the anarchists during the Russian Revolution - 'The land to those who till it!'.
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    (Original post by prog2djent)
    And was the paris commune a success?
    No, because they were massacred by the French Army - that wasn't the Parisians' fault. And obviously they weren't advocating that, they were advocating a structure somewhat like the Commune.

    Why do you defend marx and communism so much?
    Because I think they are often distorted.

    What type of anarchist are you?
    I'd say anarchist without adjectives, as I think anarchist society would be a mix of communism, syndicalism, mutualism, etc, but I'm personally probably closest to syndicalism.
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    During the Spanish Civil War there were lots of agricultural collectives, and agricultural output went up by 20%.

    And there's nothing forcing you to be in a commune, as I said. You can have your own plot of land which you can produce what you want on if you so wish in anarchism. That was one of the slogans of the anarchists during the Russian Revolution - 'The land to those who till it!'.
    From the Georgist perspective this is an eminently statist attitude and validates my early criticism that ideologues of all hues end up advocating something very different to what they were intending. Arbitrarily assigning land tenure rights over to individuals is a basic function of the capitalist state (we just call it homeownership), ok the wealth may be spread a bit more evenly to begin with but the model is virtually the same if a little less grand in scope.
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    (Original post by chefdave)
    Go on then, you can have 10 points too.

    We've already agreed that dictatorships are part of the communist process so whether they're the embodiment of textbook endgame communism or not is a moot point. As I've said above it's a sly get out of jail free card that lefties weakly deploy to disassociate themselves from the real world outcomes of their creed. The fact that autocratic regimes almost feel obliged to liberally use Marxist rhetoric and ideas should really tell you something about the true nature of the ideology.
    The people who think that dictatorship are necessary steps in implementing communism are, in my opinion, fundamentalists. Please give me your opinions on this thread that I just started:
    http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show....php?t=1926283
    BTW Marxism is just one type of communism so you can't say that 'dictatorship of the proletariat' is 'proof' that all forms of communism are necessarily authoritarian. That would be like me saying 'modern China has a capitalist economic system. Modern China is authoritarian. Therefore all forms of capitalism afre authoritarian.'
    They are economic systems and you are getting bogged down with social issues.
    I would say that Anarchism (in the sense you seem to be talking about) is one example of communism whereas Marxism is another. Both claim to have a libertarian social side, but as you said Marxism has some sort of authoritarian process involved although, correct me if I'm wrong, the 'dictatorship of the proletariat' is actually an example of democracy in that it is the workers who make the decisions although I realise that at some point in the Marxist progression there are 'philosopher kings' involved although I would argue that they are present in the modern West as well (i.e. politicians).
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    No, because they were massacred by the French Army - that wasn't the Parisians' fault. And obviously they weren't advocating that, they were advocating a structure somewhat like the Commune.



    Because I think they are often distorted.



    I'd say anarchist without adjectives, as I think anarchist society would be a mix of communism, syndicalism, mutualism, etc, but I'm personally probably closest to syndicalism.
    So would you say the majority of the anarchist population are peaceful. Or are the people that were the anti-cuts marches not really anarchists, the ones with the black flags smashing up private property, all hooded (what badasses) and spraying graffiti on anything. Or what about the tw@s on revleft who basically say if someone opposes them they will be the first to die in a revolution.

    Anarchists have a serious image problem, I know what they/you/we want and I don't want to force anybody to do anything, or anything to turn violent.
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    (Original post by chefdave)
    From the Georgist perspective this is an eminently statist attitude and validates my early criticism that ideologues of all hues end up advocating something very different to what they were intending. Arbitrarily assigning land tenure rights over to individuals is a basic function of the capitalist state (we just call it homeownership), ok the wealth may be spread a bit more evenly to begin with but the model is virtually the same if a little less grand in scope.
    Fundamentally, I fail to see too much distinction between land being owned by no-one, it being owned by everyone, and it being owned by whoever uses it. In practice, it will end up with similar results.

    I'd say the person who uses the land being the owner is far from arbitrary.

    The fundamental problem of capitalism is that state-enforced owners of land and capital can take the product of those who work them.

    (Original post by prog2djent)
    So would you say the majority of the anarchist population are peaceful.
    Compared to the state, I'd say the overwhelming majority of people are peaceful. And yes, I'd say the majority of anarchists are peaceful. And it really depends on who and where you ask.

    The anti-cuts marches and the like are a mix. Some of the 'violent' ones are anarchist, some are Marxists, and some vaguely support the cause but mostly just like rioting. But I've been on plenty of demonstrations where anarchist contingents have red and black flags with them and they wave them, but with no violence or any attempt to cover faces or anything like that.

    Don't ask me to predict what a revolution would look like, there's quite a big range of possibilities.
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    Fundamentally, I fail to see too much distinction between land being owned by no-one, it being owned by everyone, and it being owned by whoever uses it. In practice, it will end up with similar results.

    I'd say the person who uses the land being the owner is far from arbitrary.

    The fundamental problem of capitalism is that state-enforced owners of land and capital can take the product of those who work them.



    Compared to the state, I'd say the overwhelming majority of people are peaceful. And yes, I'd say the majority of anarchists are peaceful. And it really depends on who and where you ask.

    The anti-cuts marches and the like are a mix. Some of the 'violent' ones are anarchist, some are Marxists, and some vaguely support the cause but mostly just like rioting. But I've been on plenty of demonstrations where anarchist contingents have red and black flags with them and they wave them, but with no violence or any attempt to cover faces or anything like that.

    Don't ask me to predict what a revolution would look like, there's quite a big range of possibilities.
    A revolution will never start in european, N.American, Japanese, and Australasian advanced capitaliste economies, unless WW3 comes to ahead with Iran-syria malarkey being backed by Russia and China opposed to Nato and .... the west. But I think its a big wind up and puppet show, from both superpower sides.

    If anywhere, the places with remotely capitalistic economies that could go for a revolution are Thailand, India, Iran, Russia if Vladimir putin gets in again and increases the size of his administration by 50%.

    Not enough people support any form of leftism being implemented, either they've been brainwashed by the state and its institutions or have educated themselves on it and genuinly don't want one.

    Its all about force, if we polticise it. Who forces who to do what and where I stand.

    Unluckily for you though, I would support a peaceful anarcho-capitalism revolution (though I am not one), sorry market anarchist.
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    (Original post by anarchism101)
    Fundamentally, I fail to see too much distinction between land being owned by no-one, it being owned by everyone, and it being owned by whoever uses it. In practice, it will end up with similar results.

    I'd say the person who uses the land being the owner is far from arbitrary.

    The fundamental problem of capitalism is that state-enforced owners of land and capital can take the product of those who work them.
    Well if you're trying to use a bit of land and you're unsure whether it's legally; yours, nobody's or everybody's, pretty soon your system is going to fall apart at the seams.

    Could you imagine trying to grow crops when every Tom Dick and Harry has a right to use your field whenever they like? Productivity would grind to a halt with disasterous consequences.

    So far from being unimportant it actually forms the bedrock of any society, without clear rules on who owns what that society is doomed to failure.
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    (Original post by prog2djent)
    A revolution will never start in european, N.American, Japanese, and Australasian advanced capitaliste economies
    How do you know that? Revolutions are usually unpredictable, and that's why they happen. If you'd told a Frenchman in 1787 that within 6 years, the monarchy would be abolished, the king executed, the Bastille stormed, etc, do you think they'd believe you?

    Anyway, Would you be prepared to bet against revolution in Greece now? Greece is European. May '68 came relatively close to revolution.

    Not enough people support any form of leftism being implemented, either they've been brainwashed by the state and its institutions or have educated themselves on it and genuinly don't want one.
    Anarchism is not 'implemented'. The principles of anarchism arise as soon as a revolution begins. Anarchism is simply what there is when there is no state.

    (Original post by chefdave)
    Well if you're trying to use a bit of land and you're unsure whether it's legally; yours, nobody's or everybody's, pretty soon your system is going to fall apart at the seams.
    I wasn't talking about legal title to land.

    Could you imagine trying to grow crops when every Tom Dick and Harry has a right to use your field whenever they like? Productivity would grind to a halt with disasterous consequences.
    If you advocate ownership based around use, which I do, it fundamentally results in the same thing. Suppose you have three guys with a patch of land. In one scenario they start with the land divided between them and in one they start off owning it collectively.

    If they prefer to work alone, in the former they have no problem, and in the latter they will work out some sort of mutual division of the land.
    If they prefer to work together, in the latter there is no problem, and in the former they will pool their land.
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    (Original post by chefdave)
    What are you blathering on about?
    Marxism is also a historical perspective. I suggest you read up on Historical Materialism to help gain an insight into Marxists' thinking
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    (Original post by chefdave)
    Straight off the bat, 10 points.

    I understand communism, it's just that comrades are unwilling to come to terms with the real world implications of their ideology. So they claim that the dictatorship of the proletariat is necessary to implement communist ideals but when the vanguard go power mad and start lashing out (for the greater good, of course) we're told that this has absolutely nothing to do with Marx's vision!

    Let's put it this way, that claim wouldn't stand up in a court of law. The dictatorship 'transition' is part and parcel of communist ideology, I find it unbelievable that hard left-wingers cannot accept this.
    I think you are being simplistic. Communism existed before Karl Marx, and 'When you see it...' is right to correct you here. The reason why 'hard left-wingers' are uncomfortable with the dictatorship of the proletariat is for historical reasons (i.e. the failure of the French Revolution), and in reality it has little to do with the proletariat but rather the betrayal of the bourgeoisie.

    What this has to do with Marx or anarchism is beyond me. I would take Muscovite's advice and read up on historical materialism before you comment further because, contrary to what you have suggested twice, it does not look like you have actually understood communism at all.
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    (Original post by evantej)
    I think you are being simplistic. Communism existed before Karl Marx, and 'When you see it...' is right to correct you here. The reason why 'hard left-wingers' are uncomfortable with the dictatorship of the proletariat is for historical reasons (i.e. the failure of the French Revolution).

    What this has to do with Marx or anarchism is beyond me. I would take Muscovite's advice and read up on historical materialism before you comment further because, contrary to what you have suggested twice, it does not look like you have actually understood communism at all.
    To adapt the anolgy that I used above, if a team of builders kept trying to erect a structure that persistently fell down killing an extraordinary amount of innocent bystanders in the process you wouldn't necessarily need a degree in architecture to explain why their blueprints failed. They just did.

    I take it as such an expert in the field you've read all three volumes of Das Kapital?
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    Communism: a form of socialism that abolishes private ownership

    Anarchism:
    a political theory favoring the abolition of governments

    The difference seems fairly obvious.
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    (Original post by chefdave)
    Well if you're trying to use a bit of land and you're unsure whether it's legally; yours, nobody's or everybody's, pretty soon your system is going to fall apart at the seams.

    Could you imagine trying to grow crops when every Tom Dick and Harry has a right to use your field whenever they like? Productivity would grind to a halt with disasterous consequences.

    So far from being unimportant it actually forms the bedrock of any society, without clear rules on who owns what that society is doomed to failure.
    What complete garbage. Until the last two hundred years or so, communal use of land was the bedrock of society. You are so historically and ideologically deluded it is not even funny.

    Capitalism's influence on agriculture was about freeing up unproductive land, for example land owned by the Church, and to create economic conditions so you have surplus labour. This labour could then be redistributed to other areas of the economy, but it also helped drive down the standard of living too. Feudalism has its bad points, but the peasant or serf had guaranteed privileges and rights so far as agriculture was concerned which protected them from economic and natural downturns.

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