Whether Nick is a Marxist-Leninist

CAGJimKane at aol.com CAGJimKane at aol.com
Thu Aug 15 15:54:02 MDT 1996


Kate,
you were wondering why I didn't think Nick was a Marxist-Leninist.

This is a fairly well understood term. It was first used in the Stalin era by
leaders and supporters of the Communist International. The argument behind
the adoption of the new term was that Lenin had developed Marxism: that
Marxism-Leninism was (is) Marxism in the era of imperialism.

The only people who have used the term to describe themselves are supporters
of the Communist International. The Trotskyists, for example, never used the
term to characterise their own position, but instead used a number of terms,
the most common (apart from Trotskyist itself) being Bolshevik-Leninist.

Now, Nick made it clear that he did not think the Soviet Union under Stalin
was socialist, and that he did not define himself as a Leninist. His only
supported "Leninism" in so far as it was defined as the practice of the
Bolsheviks in the concrete conditions of the Russian revolution.
"Marxism-Leninism", as we all know, claims to be of universal relevance to
the working class in its struggle against capitalism and imperialism. I do
not consider him a Marxist-Leninist, and neither does he according to this
post. So what's the big deal?

You make the point that I should want to discuss with working class people
who do not agree with me. I agree. And I repeat, that is exactly what Nick,
comrade Richard Bos and myself have been doing for the past few days. And it
is precisely what I have suggested we continue to do on a slightly different
political terrain now.

Again, Kate, I do not understand what the big deal is for you on this one.
Nick doesn't want to join the CAG nor to leave Labour. I have discussed the
matter with him. I have not convinced him, and he has not convinced me. Given
his political line, it would be absurd for him to leave the Labour Party,
wouldn't it?

We reached the point of repeating ourselves. If he (or you) really do want to
go through the debate again, I have no objections. I just though it time to
move on, and understood (perhaps incorrectly) that he did too.

For Communism

Jim
BM Box 4473
London WC1N 3XX


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