Trotsky and the collapse of Stalinism

TimW333521 at TimW333521 at
Fri May 17 06:59:54 MDT 1996

Sorry to say Hugh, the man has a point.  Trotsky believed that the overthrow
of socialist property relations in the USSR would require a "social
revolution" while the overthrow of the bureaucracy would require only a
"political revolution."  He expected the working class to rise up and defend
the property relations when they were threatened.

What has happened is more complex than Trotsky predicted.  We have seen a
relatively slow cold reasonably non-violent restoration of capitalism in the
USSR with little worker resistence.  This is fact.  Yet the current
presidential elections also reflects the contradictions.  There is now
growing working class resentment over the effects of this restorationist
process, largely reflected, strange as it may seem, in support for the old
CP.   At the same time the "restoration" is still far from complete as much
of the productive apparatus remains in state hands.

What to make of it all?  I believe Trotsky was the kind of thinker who would
find this new situation -- which he did NOT strictly predict -- a challenge
for new theoretical work.  After all neither he -- nor anyone else in the
Bolshevik leadership -- predicted ahead of time the Stalinist degeneration.
 I would also think a Trotsky today would probe this new reality to find a
footing for advancing the interests of the masses.

     --- from list marxism at ---

More information about the Marxism mailing list