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Why is communism not as socially stigmatised as fascism? watch

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    (Original post by Mr_K_Dilkington)
    Who wrote this? Three guesses!
    Engles?

    Oh wait, this smashes your idea that Marx would have supported the October Revolution (a vanguardist, 'Blanquist' seizure of power by a 'small revolutionary minority.')
    And how exactly does it do that, given that it was written by Engels?
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    (Original post by The Cap'n)
    No. While Marx believed that the economic structure of a state determined its political structure, he was far more interested in the relations of power between those sold labour and those who bought it than he was in economic calculations.

    Not only does your simplistic analysis of Marxism miss out most of its goals, the one goal that you put forward, the equal spread of money, is actually wrong. Communism doesn't seek to redistribute money, it seeks to abolish it, along with all private property. It's a political philosophy: in the commune system, Marx proposes how a communist society should govern itself. It's a theory of history: Marx holds that communism is the end stage of history at which oppressive power relations are abolished forever. Marxism isn't so much a theory of economics as it is a theory of freedom, and the fact that you've reduced it to "the equal spread of all money" shows that you know very little about it.
    You're completely right in saying that it's more complicated than how I stated in, but then, to save time, I decided to save the ********. Anyway, yes you're right. Marxism was about abolishing class, but he did this through reforming the nature of who owns most of the wealth. I think the fact that you're underpinning it as this great 'philosophy of freedom' is greatly exagerating it, but yes, effectively I did understate when I said about 'spreading the wealth', though that was the tenants of socialism, and socialism being the blanket of communism is what I was trying to get at.
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    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    The bold text: No, that's marxism. And that's where you've gone wrong.

    As for your definition of Fascism, you're right to a degree. But then, communism specifically refers to the economic side politics.
    Alright, name me one Communist theoretician that doesn't advocate removal of class hierarchies. Go on, if you find one I'll order dominos to your door.
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    (Original post by Bagration)
    Well, what's the problem with the general definition? I will concede then that the USSR wasn't a Communist State but it was a Socialist State ostensibly aiming for Communism.
    The general definition strikes me too much as Cold War propaganda rather than a comparison of the reality of the Soviet Union with communist theory. I'm probably being picky about this: comes from reading too much political philosophy, I guess.

    I would like to agree with you on this issue and let it to rest, but I really can't. I still think the USSR was a revolutionary state who's primary aim was world revolution. Socialism in one country was more of a Stalinist thing. Dialectics led Soviet authorities to believe that if progress was being made then they didn't need to do anything; history would let the rest work for them. The Soviets were very concerned with this word progress; % increases in output, education, etc etc. Lying was systemic in every bureau of the USSR but this wasn't because they didn't want Communism, it was because each element was scared of the repercussions if it was seen to be that they weren't working hard enough to achieve it.
    The Soviets were of course very concerned with increase in output, but is an increase in efficiency of an existing system really revolutionary? Marxist theory, of course, holds that communism is inevitable. It's one of the big holes in Marx's theory. But the Soviet Union was influenced as much by Lenin as it was by Marx. Marx's view that revolution would occur when the time was right was pushed aside by Lenin's idea of the vanguard party, ie that the Communist Party would have to lead the revolution. The fact that all of the leaders of the Soviet Union used a strong, centralised state rather than allowing history to take its course through the democratic voting of local Soviets indicates that they, too, saw revolution as something to be lead by the state.

    Indeed, the earlier leaders did take an active revolutionary role. Lenin's is obvious, and Stalin's industrial and agricultural programme was another revolutionary step. Krushchev and Brezhnev, though, did not take the revolutionary steps of their predecessors, generally preferring to tinker with the existing state framework. Slightly reformist, perhaps, but not revolutionary.
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    (Original post by Bagration)
    Alright, name me one Communist theoretician that doesn't advocate removal of class hierarchies. Go on, if you find one I'll order dominos to your door.
    I never said communism didn't seek to remove class hierarchies, and it did this THROUGH economic determinism.

    As for your other post, you're the one ignoring my arguments dude, chill the **** out :/
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    (Original post by The_Octopus)
    You said "OK, I mis-spoke in calling the late Soviet Union a reactionary state. But neither was it revolutionary, at least within it's own borders: instead, it sought to maintain the status quo."

    It is hardly clear you are talking specifically about the late Soviet Union.
    Then I apologise. Next time, I'll try to be clearer.

    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    You're completely right in saying that it's more complicated than how I stated in, but then, to save time, I decided to save the ********. Anyway, yes you're right. Marxism was about abolishing class, but he did this through reforming the nature of who owns most of the wealth. I think the fact that you're underpinning it as this great 'philosophy of freedom' is greatly exagerating it, but yes, effectively I did understate when I said about 'spreading the wealth', though that was the tenants of socialism, and socialism being the blanket of communism is what I was trying to get at.
    In that case, you're closer to right than I gave you credit for. I stick by my "philosophy of freedom" claim, though. Why else would Marx want to abolish class hierarchy?
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    (Original post by Bagration)
    I don't think so. He doesn't make any reference to the class of the "small minority that has made the revolution..." should they be proletariats, why not? Why not have Vanguardism if it is being led by the proletariat? I don't think that quote at all shows that Marx only wanted the sort of revolution that involved the great mass of the people (which, remember, the Russian revolution was; as far as I remember, the Bolsheviks didn't take over until they forcibly took power from the Parliament as they declared it bourgeoise and anti-marxist...) because it doesn't specify the class or status of the small minority leading the revolution.
    The class doesn't matter. He opposed the seizure of power by small minority whether they were proletarians or not. He opposed this kind of vanguardism precisely because it was inherently elitist, authoritarian and dictatorial. He wanted to create a mass movement, a mass revolution, not a putsch of the Bolshevik variety.

    The Bolsheviks spoke for the great mass of people? If so, why did they get crushed by the socialist revolutionaries in the only free election Russia ever had? Why did they have to go round shutting down every Soviet that voted in SRs and Mensheviks? Why did they have to crush the sailors at Kronstadt and virtually declare war on the entire country to hold onto power. They came to power basically because the Provisional Government had NO support and power was for the taking to whoever decided to seize it. They had support among the Petrograd and Moscow proletariat, but outside of that not a huge amount.

    (Original post by Bagration)
    I'm not saying that at all. My previous point about design illustrated this. If Marx or Engels, or any other Communist were to have seen the design of the USSR, I don't think that there is much evidence that they would have seen it as a fascist entity! It is the results that the USSR produced that make people think that, not it's design. My point wasn't that Marx was a Stalinist or that if he had a choice he would lead a revolution to create a Stalinist state, just that the Soviet Union was in fact a Socialist entity because it followed sufficient tenets of pre-existing Socialist ideology as well as its own formative ideology to make it so.
    Apart from the vanguardism which I have tried to show you why he would have opposed.

    The idea that the working class should emancipate themselves (i.e. the great mass of proletariat), rather than being emancipated by socialist intelligentsia. I can dig out quotes if you really want me to.

    He also was entirely undecided on the prospects of revolution in Russia, regarding Russia as being very likely too backward to hold a successful socialist revolution. At his most optimistic Marx said that there could be a Russian revolution if it occurred concurrently with a German socialist revolution. He also had a long standing fear of the Russian "oriental tendency for despotism."
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    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    I never said communism didn't seek to remove class hierarchies, and it did this THROUGH economic determinism.

    As for your other post, you're the one ignoring my arguments dude, chill the **** out :/
    "Economic determinism" isn't spreading wealth around and even if Communism is focused on economic determinism that doesn't make it an "economic ideology." Communism is equally concerned with relations between all people; for instance, men and women, or blacks and whites; these aren't economic issues, but social ones, and ones that Communists feel very strongly about (i.e. equality and the destruction of hierarchies.)

    Well, I put it to you three times that Communism was about removing class hierarchies and not about "spreading wealth around" but you totally ignored it, so, I don't think I had any arguments to reply to, really.
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    (Original post by DrunkHamster)
    Engles?



    And how exactly does it do that, given that it was written by Engels?
    Because Marx helped him write it.
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    (Original post by The Cap'n)
    Then I apologise. Next time, I'll try to be clearer.



    In that case, you're closer to right than I gave you credit for. I stick by my "philosophy of freedom" claim, though. Why else would Marx want to abolish class hierarchy?
    For the lulz :p: (I couldn't help myself).

    But yes, it may have been based on freedom initially, but seeing as when it was put into practice, it didn't turn out so great, I wouldn't give communism itself the credit for that. Marxism gets it however :o:
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    (Original post by Bagration)
    "Economic determinism" isn't spreading wealth around and even if Communism is focused on economic determinism that doesn't make it an "economic ideology." Communism is equally concerned with relations between all people; for instance, men and women, or blacks and whites; these aren't economic issues, but social ones, and ones that Communists feel very strongly about (i.e. equality and the destruction of hierarchies.)
    I know it isn't. Economic Determinism is the focus on changing the nature of a society through economic policies rather than social policies. I was talking about socialism. But the issues you have about social relations are marxist ones.


    (Original post by Bagration)
    Well, I put it to you three times that Communism was about removing class hierarchies and not about "spreading wealth around" but you totally ignored it, so, I don't think I had any arguments to reply to, really.

    Once again, marxism.
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    Baggers, may I suggest this video to you.

    Chomsky on Lenin, Trotsky, Socialism & the Soviet Union

    While it won't make you believe Marx was not an advocate of totalitarianism, it will help you understand why Marxism and Leninism are very different beasts, and what was understood by Marxists at the time.

    The seeds of violence in Marxism are definitely there, but they are far more subtle than the picture you paint of Marx being an enthusiast of the historical process that led to the USSR and the GDR.
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    (Original post by Mr_K_Dilkington)
    The class doesn't matter. He opposed the seizure of power by small minority whether they were proletarians or not. He opposed this kind of vanguardism precisely because it was inherently elitist, authoritarian and dictatorial. He wanted to create a mass movement, a mass revolution, not a putsch of the Bolshevik variety.
    How does that quote illustrate that? If it doesn't, what other evidence do you have?

    (Original post by Mr_K_Dilkington)
    The Bolsheviks spoke for the great mass of people? If so, why did they get crushed by the socialist revolutionaries in the only free election Russia ever had? Why did they have to go round shutting down every Soviet that voted in SRs and Mensheviks? Why did they have to crush the sailors at Kronstadt and virtually declare war on the entire country to hold onto power. They came to power basically because the Provisional Government had NO support and power was for the taking to whoever decided to seize it. They had support among the Petrograd and Moscow proletariat, but outside of that not a huge amount.
    I did learn all these things in AS History (which was a particularly good module) but the Russian revolution itself was backed by the majority of the people, it was a people's revolution; political power was afterwards seized in the Vanguard manner but do you think Marx would have disagreed with the pre-Provisional Government revolution itself?

    (Original post by Mr_K_Dilkington)
    Apart from the vanguardism which I have tried to show you why he would have opposed.
    Apart from the vanguardism? Do you think that if Communism in the Marxist sense was 100% achieved by a Vanguardist Party Marx would turn around and disown them and despise their creation? Or would he change his mind and believe that yes, Communism can be acheived by Vanguardism?

    (Original post by Mr_K_Dilkington)
    The idea that the working class should emancipate themselves (i.e. the great mass of proletariat), rather than being emancipated by socialist intelligentsia. I can dig out quotes if you really want me to.
    I would like to read them.

    (Original post by Mr_K_Dilkington)
    He also was entirely undecided on the prospects of revolution in Russia, regarding Russia as being very likely too backward to hold a successful socialist revolution. At his most optimistic Marx said that there could be a Russian revolution if it occurred concurrently with a German socialist revolution. He also had a long standing fear of the Russian "oriental tendency for despotism."
    That Marx was sceptical about the prospects of a revolution in Russia doesn't at all prove that he would in some way disregard a future Russian revolution without seeing it first in action. I have heard this though, and it's quite amusing, another one of Marx's seemingly "racist" notions.

    Apologies for the lacklustre post, dying for a fag. I might watch your video when I have dinner later if its interesting enough.
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    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    I know it isn't. Economic Determinism is the focus on changing the nature of a society through economic policies rather than social policies. I was talking about socialism. But the issues you have about social relations are marxist ones.
    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    Once again, marxism.
    Ok, so non-Marxist Communists don't care about race or gender relations O_o I would really like to here what the Libertarian Communists on this website say to that.

    But it isn't about that. It's not about "reforming the economy" in any form of revolutionary Communism. It's about totally overthrowing the existing state & society and recreating a whole new one around Communist principles.
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    Does anyone else find this slightly suprising?:


    I don't think a picture of Hitler behind him would go down too well....., so why Stalin?
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    (Original post by Bagration)
    How does that quote illustrate that? If it doesn't, what other evidence do you have?
    Look up who Louis Blanqui was, look up Blanquism and tell me Engels isn't writing about basically exactly what the Bolsheviks stood for, what fundamentally separated them from most other Marxists - vanguardism.

    (Original post by Bagration)
    I did learn all these things in AS History (which was a particularly good module) but the Russian revolution itself was backed by the majority of the people
    The "majority of the people" backed killing nobles and taking their land, they backed expropriating the bourgois, they didn't back the Bolsheviks. The Bolsheviks were nowhere near the biggest party at the time, many peasants didn't even know who they were! You're conflating a spontaneous revolutionary movement with support for the Bolshevik takeover of power. The two are extremely different.

    (Original post by Bagration)
    it was a people's revolution; political power was afterwards seized in the Vanguard manner but do you think Marx would have disagreed with the pre-Provisional Government revolution itself?
    You mean the February Revolution? No, probably not. He probably would have welcomed it as Russia modernizing towards a liberal, capitalist economy (and thus closer towards socialism).

    (Original post by Bagration)
    Apart from the vanguardism? Do you think that if Communism in the Marxist sense was 100% achieved by a Vanguardist Party Marx would turn around and disown them and despise their creation? Or would he change his mind and believe that yes, Communism can be acheived by Vanguardism?
    Communism in the Marxist sense was not created though, and never would have been that way. I believe Marx would have seen it for what it was. A dictatorial elite beating the people in the name of socialism.

    (Original post by Bagration)
    I would like to read them.
    I'll dig them out later. They're on my other hard drive from an essay I wrote last year.

    (Original post by Bagration)
    That Marx was sceptical about the prospects of a revolution in Russia doesn't at all prove that he would in some way disregard a future Russian revolution without seeing it first in action. I have heard this though, and it's quite amusing, another one of Marx's seemingly "racist" notions.
    LOL racist? What nonsense. Marx was a bit of a chauvanist towards various 'non-historic' peoples, but this has very little to do with the point being made. Russia had been ruled by absolutism for hundreds of years. It's peasants were backwards, violent and rather barbaric. It's hardly racist to believe that such a violent people ruled by absolutism for so long would take a lot of time to develop a free society.
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    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    'An authoritarian state is not necessarily a fascist state'. I'm aware of that, but lets be specific here. What wasn't facist about the USSR?
    1. GOSPLAN - one of the main reasons Nazi Germany's economy fell behind in WW2 was that, unlike the USSR (and Britain, really) the state didn't exercise direct control over production. In a total war, this is a problem.
    2. Lack of parallel power structures - the Nazis and Italian Fascists kept the original structure of their respective states as well as institutionalising their own party structures into the governance of their countries, and often played the party and state bureaucracies off against one another. Something completely different happened in the USSR.
    3. The USSR was an explicitly multi-ethnic state (OK, yeah, there was some attempt at settling Russians in Siberia and the Baltic States but it was nothing compared to what Nazi Germany had planned).
    4. An important part of Fascism is anti-Communism.

    You have a silly definition of Fascism and Communism.

    Alternatively, we can steal Robert O. Paxton's definition from An Anatomy of Fascism:

    "Fascism may be defined as a form of political behavior marked by obsessive preoccupation with community decline, humiliation, or victimhoodand by compensatory cults of unity, energy, and purity, in which a mass-based party of committed nationalist militants, working in uneasy but effective collaboration with traditional elites, abandons democratic liberties and pursues with redemptive violence and without ethical or legal restraints goals of internal cleansing and external expansion."

    In which case the USSR definitely wasn't Fascist.
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    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    It's easy to ride on other people's comments without providing your own argument by saying 'as others have pointed out', but never the less, I'll engage with what you're saying.
    I did that because you were ignoring the points of the other posters, not because I was trying to "ride" on other people's comments.

    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    The core of communism is economic determinism, which you know just as well as I do, the basic idea of an entirely socialist state.
    Yes, but that is not all that is too it by a long shot.

    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    I'm not saying 'Fascism = Oppression'. If that's what I said, point to where I said that? I said fascism is a form of extreme authoritarianism, which leads to oppression.
    Yes, fascism tends to be authoritarian but that is not all that is to it. There are authoritarians who are not fascist.

    (Original post by jumpingjesusholycow)
    I'm not using 'fascist' in the wrong term and I'm not really sure what point you're trying to make about social democracy. Another far-rightwinger I see.
    My point about social democracy was that the left used the word "fascist" to refer to who ever disagreed with them, including social democrats who communists used to call "fascist".
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    (Original post by Don_Scott)
    My point about social democracy was that the left used the word "fascist" to refer to who ever disagreed with them, including social democrats who communists used to call "fascist".
    Heh, yeah check out the student protests of the 1960s and 1970s in Germany and how they used the word "fascist" to describe the SPD coalition government of the period. The abuse of the word "fascism" (not that I agree with everything you have been saying) really stems from this period from what I've read.
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    (Original post by Mr_K_Dilkington)
    Heh, yeah check out the student protests of the 1960s and 1970s in Germany and how they used the word "fascist" to describe the SPD coalition government of the period. The abuse of the word "fascism" (not that I agree with everything you have been saying) really stems from this period from what I've read.
    It also happened after the Spartacus uprising and throughout the Weimar period. The Communists and the Nazis were both instrumental in bring down the Weimar republic. At the end, only really the Catholic Centre party and the Social Democrats still supported the republic.
 
 
 
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