News from Nowhere was Re: Vision of a better world ? We don't have one.

Nestor Miguel Gorojovsky gorojovsky at
Sat Jun 3 08:16:33 MDT 2000

En relación a News from Nowhere was Re: Vision of a better worl,
el 3 Jun 00, a las 16:31, Gary MacLennan dijo:

> I must say that I am on the side of the utopianists here and in
> disagreement with Carroll and Jose

Let us see if I can do a brilliant acrobatic manoeuver here, and
propose both sides as one-sided and in that sense right/wrong,

with all due respect of course to


> ... of the finest political minds on the list.

On his answer to Carrol and José, Gary has summed up his ideas like

> ... Leninism and hard  politics die slowly it seems and many a good
> comrade cannot see how the Bolsheviks and other tough folk grew
> out of the swamp of 19th century utopian dreaming.


> I myself think that part of the crisis we face is in the collapse of
> desire.   ... my favorite quote from William Morris....  "We must teach desire to
> desire, to desire more but above all to desire in a different way."

Nothing of this counters, in my opinion, the "hard" (Gary's wording)
statements by José and Carrol, since what follows is not precisely

>...  Utopian thinking
> is nothing less than the presence of the future in the present.  Under
> capitalism we are all but dominated by the presence of the past in the
> present. The tradition of all the dead generations weighs like a
> nightmare on the living.

What escapes us here, however, is the simple present. What is the
present, then, a realm determined by the past, by the weight of dead
generations? Or it is, on the contrary, the realm of the craving for
a future that "exists nowhere", that is an Utopian future?

Methinks both positions are true, and both are wrong. Methinks that
we should keep in mind that past and future conflict dialectically in
the present through praxis, and that while we cannot accept the
objetivist cast of mind, we cannot try to substitute "utopianism"
tout court for it. It is probably this what Marx meant when he stated
that humankind poses itself only those tasks whose solutions are
already existing in the material reality of the present.

Utopia exists, it is among us, it is around us, it penetrates us.
Only that we cannot see it. Only through practical struggle (which of
course, Gary, must be a struggle in the name of a project, but not of
an Utopian project) it becomes true and visible. The past, as well as
the future, are constitutive parts of the present. If we forget this,
then we fall offboard.

Well, my two cents.

> regards
> Gary

Néstor Miguel Gorojovsky
gorojovsky at

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