juliohuato at hotmail.com
Thu Jun 14 09:44:39 MDT 2001
Xxxx Xxxxxx <xxxxxxxxxx at xxxxxxxxx.xxx>:
>The general problem with Julio is that he refuses to come terms with the
>discourse of this list..
If this is to be a Marxist list, its discourse must then be in a constant
state of flux. I reject the notion that the 'discourse of this list' is
best represented by Néstor's or Xxxx's ideas. Not even by Louis' ideas. As
far as I'm concerned, there's no party line here. When you subscribe to the
list, you commit to a 'non-sectarian' and 'non-dogmatic' approach to
Marxism. That doesn't put Lenin's theory of imperialism or even Xxxx's
interpretation of Lenin off limits. I'd think that what defines Marxism is
the struggle for human emancipation, a revolutionary attitude towards the
status quo, and a method of thought -- but I'm willing to deal with people
who may have a different take on this. In any case, Marxism is not a
crystalized discourse that someone -- by divine inspiration or something --
have already produced for the rest of us to absorb.
In the current conditions, in which the role of revolutionary Marxism in the
world, particularly in the rich world, is confined and marginal, the need to
rethink the old ideas and look at the reality from fresh perspectives is
even greater. We need to set our illusions aside. The only way Marxism can
survive is by exposure, application, and continuous reinvention. Nobody can
keep a set of Marxist beliefs in a little cyber-bottle to ensure its eternal
purity and truth. That's how Marxism dies.
>His insistence that imperialism is becoming more
>and more irrelevant in today's world is unexpected from a person writing
With all due respect, I don't care what one individual's expectations are.
I have frankly said why I think anti-imperialism is a necessary democratic
struggle, but it should NOT be the main element in a communist strategy in
our times. And I'll be glad to elaborate on my views as necessary. Instead
of trying to shoot the messanger, you should try and deal with the message.
If expectations need to be adjusted to cope with reality, so be it.
>Only a person living in some form of wealth or elite of their
>countries can make such comments.
That is your assumption. Most wealthy and elite Mexicans are likely to be
busy doing other things and could not care less about Marxist lists.
>Julio also refused to engage in my El
>Salvador article that I posted as an evidence of how labor conditions in
>garment industry are socially sucking in the third world. Julio's
>implication was that those working for low wages-- 55 cents per hour that
>is-- deserve what they get because of the "unskilled" or "unproductive"
>labor they put in.
This just goes to show how little the Marxist theory of wages is understood.
There's no moral judgment attached to the idea that the real wage rate is
determined by the costs of reproduction of labor power of a certain quality,
and that these costs have a historical and social element. Marx's theory of
wages is not an apology of the living conditions of workers under
capitalism. I have said clearly and loudly that the focus of workers'
struggle in poor countries should be on improving living and working
conditions. To people who want to read what I truly write, that should be
But we cannot undertake that struggle if we substitute objective social
analysis for pious and wishful thinking. Why are workers in El Salvador
laboring in the garment industry for such low wages? Have you considered
the possibility that the alternatives to these jobs may be even worse? Why
is looking at this reality a defense of capitalism? How can anyone fight
capitalism sensibly if she is not able to look at these facts in the face?
>And he tried to "rationalize" this in terms of the
>historical context of labor unique to Latin America. This sort of blaming
>the "victim", rather than capitalism forcing people into conditions of
>selling their labor power, is one endorsed by Julio. Very unfortunate.
I do not blame the victim. That's a distorsion of my views. Capitalism
exists and it does not need my endorsement. It doesn't suffer much as a
result of my condemnation either. However we feel about this, the
responsibility for changing these conditions does not fall on capitalism.
The responsibility falls squarely on the shoulders of the workers. What we
need is look at these conditions in the face, look at the big picture, and
Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at http://www.hotmail.com.
More information about the Marxism