Reply to Paul Benedek on ET, DSP and bad analogies

Philip L Ferguson PLF13 at
Tue Nov 23 21:15:03 MST 1999

Paul writes:
>Let's say, Phillip, that I see you being beaten up by several thugs in an
>alley way, one of whom pulls a knife. I'm not strong enough to defend you
>myself, but I do see a cop down the street.
>Do I see the urgency of the situation, and call on the cop (tool of the
>bourgeois state and all) to stop the beating and arrest the perpetrators?
>Or do I recognise that as a 'pure Marxist', I can not call on the cop as a
>part of the bourgoise state, to do anything - and thus I scream and sweat
>in your defence, but am ultimately sidelined, and you are beaten to a pulp
>or perhaps killed.

Does this mean that the DSP is falling for the bourgeoisie's moral panic on
crime and knife-wielding thugs as well as for their humanitarian

Moreover, if you want to get into analogies using the police, try this
scenario on for size:  what if we were in the Deep South of the USA in the
Jim Crow era and the assailants were black and you knew that if the cops
came the black assailants would have their balls cut off and then be
lynched.  Would you still call the cops?

Context is everything, Paul.

Unfortunately, you and the DSP want to rip events in East Timor out of the
context of *imperialist* interests and policy and make the oppressing Third
World regime (Jakarta) the only bad guy.


More information about the Marxism mailing list