uburoi at panix.com
Sat Sep 16 20:11:28 MDT 1995
Interesting that they should pop up again. Not having seen hide nor hair
of them in several years, I was wondering if they were still around. The
tiny U.S. franchise of the French Lutte Ouvriere, Spark practices a
Machiavellian cultish clandestinity that apparently renders it all but
invisible. Its militants have that religious devotion of
"professional revolutionaries," the uptight, sour-and-dour
Marxist-Calvinist soldiers fighting for the true Bolshevism and behaving
as if the Okhrana is going to break down the door any second.
Sticklers for the utmost ideological precision, the Iskra-ists
regarded the USSR as the one and only "degenerated workers' state" unlike
the Spartacist League from whence they were spawned, who accorded the
same title to China, Cuba, Vietnam, the 'people's democracies' of E.
Europe, and perhaps Angola and Mozambique as well. They were especially
keen on courting the SWP, but were always snubbed for not having the
correct line on Cuba. Another distinguishing feature of their ideology
has been their advocacy of a separate black trotskyist party.
I don't think their project of identifying revolution with an
organization of hierarchy and ideology has any future, and it wouldn't
surprise me if they undergo even further splits into even more thorough
irrelevance. Stalino-trotskyism, a term used by the Situationists to
describe similar groupuscules in France claiming the heritage of
classical Bolshevism, seems a fitting moniker for Spark. Most people they
recruit quickly realize they've been suckered into a gang, rebel against
the extraordinary degree of organizational control over their lives, and
drop out after being denounced as "traitors to the working class." What
remains is a hard core of fanatics and the masochists they manipulate.
Who needs them? In any real revolution, they would be most likely be caught
flat-footed by insurgents with no ideology and contemptuous of the
efforts of revolutionary high school teachers to provide "correct
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