Lenin as "dictator"

Jim Jaszewski ab975 at main.freenet.hamilton.on.ca
Sun Jun 11 19:22:24 MDT 1995

On Sun, 11 Jun 1995 TimW333521 at aol.com wrote:

> When you compare the American Revolution to the Russian Revolution and
> conclude that the latter was more democratic than the former, I find that
> stretching things IF one looks at both revolutions, say even five years after
> they began, not to mention ten.  Bourgeois as it was, the American revolution
> did evolve reasonably quickly into a limited but real democracy.

	??? Limited is the operative word here! How can you say this??

	Perhaps because the slaves and indians didn't have representative
organizations to make big noises and have manifestations and get
themselves into the history books? Because they and women didn't have a
championing Press of record for same??  Gee, I guess their not going out
on general strike is a dead giveaway...

	You can't really compare an isolated, expanding U.S.A. with an
internationally beset pariah like the early Soviet Union. Hell, even the
*U.S.* (Teddy Roosevelt?) invaded the Russian Far East in 1917(?)...

	By your logic, our present, even 'BETTER' (new & improved?)
New World Order is approaching the limiting case of all possible

  The Russian
> revolution, though proletarian, did evolve relatively quickly into a
> dictatorship.

	People who say these things usually don't seem to understand that
socialist revolution is meant to be lead from the most advanced
(materially) societies. Lenin didn't intend to be The Caudillo...	

> The record is indisputably clear on this matter.  It was at Lenin's
> insistence that all other working class tendencies (Mensheviks and
> Anarchists) were completely suppressed in 1921 AFTER the end of the Civil
> War.

	A sad truth. Perhaps _he_ justified on the grounds of being
surrounded by (militarily) strong enemies? (Not part of the original
internationalist plan).

> It is interesting to pose the question of what the Soviet Union would have
> been like if Lenin had lived say ten more years?  I believe it would have
> been a dictatorship administered by a single party run by Lenin (all the time
> feeling most unhappy with the bureaucratic nature of his creation).  I am
> afraid that does make Lenin a dictator, though no doubt a more benign one
> than Stalin.  We can assume he would have avoided the absurdity of the forced
> collectivizations and force march industrialization as well as the extremes
> of purges.

	Ignoring what I've 'pointed out' above.

> If we are to understand Stalin institutionally (that is as representing an
> entrenched bureaucracy) we must give Lenin credit for establishing the
> framework of that institution with his one party rule and developing the
> theory to justify it.

	True -- but a one-sided Truth...

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