Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Wed Mar 14 17:19:26 MST 2001

>Have you seen this? Might be interesting to see what peoples on the list
>have to say about it....

Hi, John. I just took a look at it. If you don't mind, I am going to answer
this thing publicly since Monthly Review is an important institution on the
left and John Mage, the author of the article, is a key decision-making
figure at the MR. Unfortunately, on the basis of this article it doesn't
bode too well for this august institution. John, in what I believe to be
his first public utterance in his rather lengthy association with the MR,
urges the left to consider the kind of breakthrough represented by the
election of the CP to the reins of government in Moldova. Unfortunately, I
do not believe that any of these elections, whether in Romania or in
Belarus, are capable of re-establishing socialism. Socialism will require a
powerful mass movement of working people using extra-parliamentary
measures, coordinated across national boundaries united by an
internationalist perspective like Che Guevara's. The CP's in Eastern Europe
and the former Soviet Union are social democratic parties for all practical
purposes. They wouldn't know how to organize a revolutionary movement if
their life depended on it. The problem, however, is that the lives of
ordinary working people does rely on them. What seems to characterize
Eastern European and former Soviet Union politics for the past 10 years or
so is the determination of pro-capitalist forces to use uncompromising and
militant street actions to achive their aims. Meanwhile, the nominally
socialist forces use sclerotic, tepid, parliamentary methods to either
retain power or make steps toward reconquering power. This is not what Marx
and Lenin meant when they talked about socialism.

Louis Proyect
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