group therappy

George Snedeker snedeker at
Sun May 6 10:09:48 MDT 2001

This discussion reminds me of a group therapy group I was once in. some of
the members would tell the same story week after week. they were trying to
get past some childhood trauma I guess. it gets very boring after a while.
it's the same story. it's not that Louis or Julio are going to change each
other's minds. let's move on.the universe waits our understanding.  stop
trying to beat a dead horse. we all have our obsessions. I have some of my
----- Original Message -----
From: Julio Huato <juliohuato at>
To: <marxism at>
Sent: Sunday, May 06, 2001 12:04 PM
Subject: Re: Response to Louis' posting

> Louis Proyect writes:
> >I had a feeling these proposals would turn you off. It was the same
> >reaction I got from my cocker spaniel Trixie when I tried to give her a
> >bath.
> Take care of Trixie.
> >Yes, I think I have heard something like this before. I can't seem to put
> >my finger on it. Wait--I think it is something like this:
> >
> >"According to the laws of social development established by Marx, a
> >backward agricultural country cannot show the way to Socialism to other
> >countries. Its failure in this respect is foreordained. It is merely a
> >question of when and how this failure will finally manifest itself. Until
> >now the Bolsheviki have been skillful in disguising their failure under
> >mask of promises of a glorious future. The last such promise was the
> >Five-Year plan. But the Bolshevist state economy has been in existence
> >more than fifteen years. For more than ten years the USSR has been
> >complete peace. And yet, contrary to all promises, things under the
> >Bolshevist state economy have been getting worse every year, (excepting
> >short period of the Nep), and the day is not far distant when even the
> >credulous will become convinced that the Bolshevist way leads not upward,
> >toward Socialism, but downward, to open ruin or slow disintegration."
> >
> >Karl Kautsky, "Marxism and Bolshevism—Democracy and Dictatorship",
> >1934
> Anatema!  Reader: Close your eyes.  Don't read Karl Kautsky.
> >Actually, during the first 5 years of its existence, the Sandinistas
> >presided over the most rapid GDP growth of any Central American country.
> >Much more rapid than Mexico's under NAFTA. That, of course, is why it had
> >to be destroyed. It was what Chomsky called the threat of a positive
> >example.
> I didn't mean to provide a complete analysis of the Sandinista failure.
> not qualified for that.  But, regarding your comments, growth rates depend
> on the starting point.  If the starting point is low, small absolute
> translate into large growth rates.  When the Sandinistas arrived in power
> Nicaragua's GDP was very low.  This happens a lot after a long conflict.
> backward economy managed by a dictatorship, which was not an exemplary
> of efficient public administration.  Then the earthquake and Somoza
> the foreign aid.  Then the insurrection and the civil war.
> Mexico's growth under NAFTA didn't start at a low point.  On the contrary,
> it started counting at an artificially high point.  Salinas was boosting
> peso artificially to get NAFTA passed in the US and then to have his PRI
> candidate, Colosio elected.  Then, after the Zapatista uprising and the
> killing of Colosio, the need to hold the economy up only increased.
> these events, as the speculators saw the opening, they savaged the
> gradually at first and then massively.   Zedillo, after a shaky start, had
> to let the peso fall.  The peso collapse (1994-1995) drove the economy
> after NAFTA.  That means that the average growth rate for the NAFTA years
> was punished as a result.  That is no assessment of NAFTA, but it seems I
> don't need to give my opinion about NAFTA since you already decided for me
> what that is.
> Now, I have no intention to cover for the US atrocious intervention in
> Nicaragua.  They are not off the hook.  But, as I said, in this e-list,
> that's preaching at the bishops.  Ultimately, those who are better
> positioned to stop the US government from supporting counter-revolutions
> anywhere are the people of the US, hopefully with a Communist leadership
> at least with a strong Communist movement inside to make the government
> behave.  But that requires not to focus on anti-imperialism, but on
> something else that you haven't yet figured out.
> On the other hand, new revolutions can use of resources that were
> underutilized or idle due to the inefficiencies of the previous regime or
> due to a civil war.  Under reasonable circumstances, public education,
> public services, and massive infrastructure works are areas of
> underdeveloped economies where public funds and planning tend to work
> They are activities that demand the mobilizition of large amounts of
> resources.  Obviously, the military effort drained a lot of the energy of
> the Sandinista government, even if at first -- if I remember correctly --
> the US (under Carter) was not backing up the contras as it did later
> Reagan).  The fact is that when the task is to obtain more from a unit of
> resource (labor time), then the brute force public-planning approach runs
> into trouble.  But with a voluntarist frame of mind, this is immaterial.
> _________________________________________________________________________
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