Ariel Sharon and Stalin

wpc at cs.strath.ac.uk wpc at cs.strath.ac.uk
Wed Mar 22 03:20:06 MST 1995


Paul wrote
----------
 >The liberal criticism replaces party rule by
 >parliamentary rule, but this just replaces one
 >aristrocracy by another - a proletarian
 >aristocracy by a bourgeois one, and is the
 >fastest possible route to counter revolution.
 >Lenin understood this in his suspension of the
 >constituent assembly.
Darrell responded
------------------
An argument (oddly in the style of Laclau & Mouffe) to the effect apperently os
some a priori necessecity between parlimentary rule and counter revolution.
the only connection offered is the hurried invocation of the wisdom of Lenin.
Surely such claims require careful historical and sociological evidence.  The
misunderstanding of Lenin's position is gross.  Lenin argued for the disbanding
of the  costituent assembly, after the Bolsheviks had previously promised to
honor the elections, becuase they didn't get a majority (Marcel Liebman's "Was
Lenin  A Stalinist?" is  good reference for this).  Whether or not that was the
right thing to do at the time hardly impugns parlimentary rule generally.

Paul responds
--------------
We now have had a plethora of such experiments
since the late eighties. All instances of the
establishment of parliamentary government in
socialist countries have led to plutocracies
that have re-established capitalism.
Further, as far as I know, in all of the hundred's of
parliament-years that have now accumulated since
the introduction of universal suffrage we have
never seen it lead to anything but capitalism.
The only possible exceptions might be West Bengal
and Keralla.

Darrell
--------
This has the peculiar anti-tyrranical virtues of combining a disregard for
universal sufferage with a disregard for political representation.  Not every
one gets a vote and those in the chamber don't represent any majority tendency.
This hardly appears to be remedy to me.

A modest (but better) step toward achieving the objective recognized above
would be publicly financed campaignsm   And presumably in a post-revolutionary
society there would already some constitutionally  prescribed limits on
property ownership.

Paul
-----
It all depends upon what you mean by representative. The aristocratic
conception is that someone with special political skill will speak for
and in this sense represent their constituents.
In fact however, on statistical grounds we know that the `elect` with
such skills are disproportionately drawn from the upper classes of
society, and that an elected parliament is not a representative
sample of the population in the statistical sense.
If we were to assume that the US senate was representative, the US
population would have died out centuries ago for lack of women.

I think that it is realistic to assume that a collection of members
of the upper classes will always act to represent their own class
interests not those of the lower classes they supposedly 'represent'.
I do not believe in the miracle of transsubstantiation.


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