[Marxism] Skewering "Fahrenheit 9/11"

Ian Pace ian at ianpace.com
Fri Jul 2 16:02:56 MDT 2004

Scotlive> > Carrol
> >
> > What about workers who break picket lines, who scab,
> > for example?
> >
Carrol> Simple. They are scabs. Most scabs are working class.

Scabs are afflicted by a particularly painful dose of false consciousness
(or are simply putting self-interest before solidarity with their class).
Carrol> Consciousness is developed in struggle. It isn't a passive attribute
> such as height or weight or the color of the pretty glass marbles in the
> jar.
> You are falling for the mechanical sociological habit of thinking of
> class as merely pigeonholes in which to classify individuals.
> If I say X is a rabbit, you know a lot about X.
> If I say X is a member of the working class you know nothing whatever
> useful about him/her. (If I say X is a capitalist, you almost certainly
> -- but not certainly -- know a lot about him/her. In every revolution
> some members of the ruling class come over to the revolutionary  class.
> E.g. Chou En Lai.)
> We are not sorting laundry into baskets.
> Which sectors and strata & individuals of the working class will develop
> class consciousness through struggle simply can't be known in advance.
It's surely not a totally arbitrary process though. The greater degree of
alienation that a working class person suffers, the less likely they are to
pledge tacit allegiance to the interests of liberal capitalism (though I
realise that can also turn them towards the far right)? And dispossessed
workers in Latin America are more likely to be drawn towards the overthrow
of the system that put them in that position than those middle managers in
the US who have played an active part in creating that situation?


More information about the Marxism mailing list