Lenin, Stalin and Adolfo on Socialism in One Country

Hugh Rodwell m-14970 at mailbox.swipnet.se
Sat Sep 28 08:58:16 MDT 1996


No, Adolfo, Lenin never said socialism could ever be achieved in a single
country. He doesn't say this in your quote from Stalin's opening fanfare
for the theory of Socialism in One Country either.

Note the way Adolfo changes his tune to agree with my criticism in his
opening statement:


>Lenin speaks of the POSSIBILITY of beginning to build COMPLETE -
>that is FINISHED socialism.

Indeed: BEGINNING TO BUILD, not in fact achieving or completing, but
BEGINNING TO BUILD.


>What your are mixing here is COMMUNISM, or the
>highest stage of socialism, which no one, Stalin or otherwise has ever
>claimed that could actually be achieved BUT ON AN INTERNATIONAL, i.e. world
>wide scale.

I am confusing nothing. You are denying the classical definition of
Socialism given by Marx in his Critique of the Gotha Programme and accepted
without a murmur by Lenin and Trotsky. It's an international definition.


>Trotskysm denies the possibility of building COMPLETE SOCIALISM in ONE
>country

True.

>Lenin assert the opposite and applies this to his own country, the
>Soviet Republic:

False. The whole farcical theory of Socialism in One Country is a Stalinist
fabrication from start to finish, and its first appearance was when Lenin
was safely out of the way.

Let's have the quotation again:

>"As a matter of fact, state power over all large scale means of production,
>>state power in the hands of the proletariat, the alliance of this
>>proletariat with the many millions of small and very small peasants, the
>>assured leadership of the peasantry by the proletariat, etc. - IS THIS NOT
>>ALL THAT IS NECESSARY FOR BUILDING A COMPLETE SOCIALIST SOCIETY from the
>>cooperatives, from the cooperatives alone which we FORMERLY looked down upon
>>as huckstering and which from a certain aspect we have a right to look down
>>upon as such now, under the NEP?  This is NOT YET the building of socialist
>>society, but IT IS ALL THAT IS NECESSARY AND SUFFICIENT FOR THIS BUILDING"
>>(See V. I. Lenin Complete Works Vol XXVII, Russian Edition, page 392)
>
>Moreover the same quotation appear in English - and giving the same source
>(do not worry so much about sources that things like this cannot but prompt
>others to look it up themselves and that will work to your disadvantage) in
>Stalin's pamphlet "October Revolution and Tactics of Russian Communists",
>published in 1924

Well, now we know where your Lenin quotes come from and why you don't give
us any better indication of the occasion of Lenin's remarks.

Also it's very important to know what part of 1924 we're looking at. Stalin
wrote the following in February 1924:

        The overthrow of the power of the bourgeoisie and the establishment
of a proletarian government  in one country does not yet guarantee the
complete victory of  socialism. The main task of socialism -- the
organization of socialist production -- remains ahead. Can this task be
accomplished, can the final victory of socialism in one country be
attained, without the joint efforts of the proletariat of several advanced
countries? No, this is impossible. To overthrow the bourgeoisie, the
efforts of one country are sufficient -- the history of our revolution
bears this out. For the final victory of Socialism, for the organization of
socialist production, the efforts of one country, particularly of such a
peasant country as Russia, are insufficient. For this the efforts of the
proletarians of several advanced countries are necessary.

        Such on the whole, are the characteristic features of the Leninist
theory of the proletarian revolution.

(Foundations of Leninism)

Of course, by the end of 1924, Stalin had repudiated his own Leninism and
Trotskyism on this point, and replaced the above with its opposite.


>when Trotsky - should that had been a "falsification" on
>Stalin's part was in full capacity to contest it and make his rights as a
>member of the Party.  He did not contest it, I can't see why YOU - his
>SERIOUS disciple - are contesting this now in a "libelous" fashion?  Run out
>of ideas about how to wriggle out of that hook, Hugh? Or what?

Trotsky repudiated Stalin's misunderstanding of such declarations of Lenin
as the one you quote. He didn't necessarily reject Lenin's quotes as false
because they were manipulated against him. Stalin frequently played that
trick, however, suppressing inconvenient quotes and even falsifying his own
past statements.

Then Adolfo shows us he can't read:

>Moreover, Lenin - contrary to your vague assertions about some other
>"in-pectore" conditions that according to you he did not mention - ACTUALLY
>SAYS VERY CLEARLY (except of course, for Jehova's Witnesses and SERIOUS
>Trots): "ALL THAT IS NECESSARY FOR THE BUILDING A COMPLETE SOCIALIST
>SOCIETY" - "All that is NECESSARY" Hugh! - i.e ALL THE CONDITIONS without
>exception!.  OR don't you understand English?

That little "i.e." is too fragile a bridge for all the weight Adolfo puts
on it: "ALL THE CONDITIONS without exception". If this were the case, why
does Lenin start his sentence with:

        This is NOT YET the building of socialist society


Adolfo half admits the force of Marxist objections to the stupidities of
the theory of Socialism in One Country when he backtracks to talk about
*beginning*, so why doesn't he go the whole hog and explain why Lenin talks
about "NOT YET the building of socialist society"?

        NOT YET THE BUILDING OF SOCIALIST SOCIETY

        NOT YET THE BUILDING OF SOCIALIST SOCIETY

        NOT YET THE BUILDING OF SOCIALIST SOCIETY

The obvious meaning of this, is that given the international preconditions
I mentioned in my last post, with the proletarian dictatorship having
hegemony
or near-hegemony in the world market, or as the Stalin quote has it:

        Can this task be accomplished, can the final victory of socialism
in one country be attained, without the joint efforts of the proletariat of
several advanced countries? No, this is impossible.

-- the meaning is that the measures taken by October in Russia are
sufficient preconditions for beginning to build towards socialism right
away within the Soviet Union, regardless of the existence of self-owning
peasant masses even, but *not yet* sufficient preconditions for *achieving*
socialism.

To round off, if this quote by Lenin is so incredibly important -- and all
the armwaving makes me think that Adolfo must ascribe magical powers and
Papal infallibility to it -- how come Stalin just a few years later went
and wiped out the  "many millions of small and very small peasants" as a
class by his policies of forced collectivization.

I thought that the Lenin quote hallowed by Stalin's blessing had just
taught us that:

>Moreover, Lenin - contrary to your vague assertions about some other
>"in-pectore" conditions that according to you he did not mention - ACTUALLY
>SAYS VERY CLEARLY (except of course, for Jehova's Witnesses and SERIOUS
>Trots): "ALL THAT IS NECESSARY FOR THE BUILDING A COMPLETE SOCIALIST
>SOCIETY" - "All that is NECESSARY" Hugh! - i.e ALL THE CONDITIONS without
>exception!.  OR don't you understand English?

Perhaps Stalin's the one who didn't understand plain English -- if ALL THE
CONDITIONS WITHOUT EXCEPTION are present, on Lenin's and even more
importantly Stalin's say-so, why the need to remove the "many millions of
small and very small peasants" just a few years later? Or perhaps Lenin
didn't express himself quite clearly enough. Perhaps he meant to say:
except the bit about the "many millions of small and very small peasants".
Perhaps he meant to say: except the NOT YET bit. Perhaps he meant to say:
except every bit that Stalin might find embarrassing when he finds himself
driven by unforeseen circumstances to make some new 180 degree turn and tie
himself in theoretical knots again.

What does your Little Stalinist Compendium say about that?

Cheers,

Hugh





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