[Marxism] Electoral hibernation ends

Octob1917 at aol.com Octob1917 at aol.com
Thu Nov 4 09:29:33 MST 2004

In a message dated 11/4/2004 8:01:12 AM Pacific Standard Time, lnp3 at panix.com 
Joe, there is no way in hell that a revolutionary movement in the USA 
can grow out of tenant associations, credit unions, food drives for the 
ultra-poor, and especially fitness classes. You are living in some kind 
of crypto-Maoist fantasy.

In your previous incarnation as "Scotlive", you held up the Black 
Panthers as an example for what the left should be doing. Unlike you, I 
happened to be in the USA when the Panthers were in their heyday. While 
nobody can doubt the need for free breakfasts, there is absolutely no 
evidence that this kind of 'serve the people' activity made any 
long-lasting impact.

Well...I admit the way I used the term fitness classes, it sounds as if I'm 
advocating a Jane Fonda type regimen towards the revolution. That's not what I 
meant. I meant youth activites. One of the comrades at the IAC office in LA 
has arranged with a community group in S. Central to hold half hour jujitsu 
classes followed by half hour political forums for young people. This is a start, 
and can only be an improvement upon what...? Nothing, really. The feeling that 
we're sitting back waiting for people to awaken and come to up of their own 
accord is now more apparent than ever.

As to your assertion that no revolutionary movement can grow out of tenant 
associations, etc., of course not, but it serves as a way to build trust and 
respect, and out of these ties, marrried to a change in material conditions, 
things can and do happen. The revolutionary upsurge which took place in the six 
counties of Ireland around the late sixties came on the back of beleagured and 
oppressed nationalist communities already being organised in exactly the kind 
of community self-help groupings I'm talking about. This is indisputable. Look 
at any oppressed community where what you refer to rather condascendingly as 
'serve the people' activities have taken place and you will see that it does 
work. In Palestine, the Six Counties as I already mentioned, and in the case of 
the Panthers here in the US.

Also, regardless of whether or not you were in the US around the time of the 
Panthers, I suspect you weren't in the black communities they operated and 
were active in. There's not doubt that they were very effective, and helped to 
politicize a lot of the youth. The manner in which the FBI came down on them 
indicates just how effective they were.


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