[Marxism] Seeing Red website up

Peter Boyle peterb at greenleft.org.au
Sun Apr 3 23:16:06 MDT 2005

Here it is after a long wait: <http://www.seeing-red.org/>

Who are we?

Forum of social, political and cultural dissent
Initiated by the Socialist Alliance

1. The Seeing Red editorial, production and distribution team is:
Editorial Board
Alastair Greig, Humphrey McQueen, David Glanz, Dick Nichols, Rosemary 
Webb, Rob White, Jamie Doughney, Tom Barnes
Managing editor
Dick Nichols
Kerry Klinner
Distribution manager
Sam Pillay
Dick Nichols

2. The purpose of Seeing Red is explained in the editorial from our 
first issue

What do we want?

In May 2003 the Socialist Alliance’s second national conference voted to 
launch a new magazine aimed at “stimulating and housing debates in the 
broadly anti-capitalist and anti-neoliberal camp”. You hold in your 
hands the result of that decision, the “forum of social, political and 
cultural dissent” that we have called Seeing Red.

Seeing Red starts life at a time when disgust and rage with contemporary 
capitalism are profoundly felt and deeply rooted. We are living through 
a period of many-sided struggle, conscious and unconscious, against the 
virulent disease that is the production-for-profit system.

This revulsion is producing a wide variety of anti-bodies—in different 
scientific disciplines, in various spheres of human struggle and 
endeavour, and in all societies, cultures and languages.
The goal of Seeing Red is to provide a forum in Australia for this 
spreading process of dissent. We want to open up communications among 
all those who are fighting the status quo in a language all can 
understand, whatever their starting point.

However, although today’s capitalism—more “globalised” and warlike than 
ever—is creating enemies on an unprecedented scale, a spectre still 
haunts these millions of potential grave-diggers of the existing system. 
It’s the spectre of socialism’s failure. The message of the 
“impossibility” of ordinary people actually running their society 
remains one of the most powerful weapons in capitalism’s ideological 
arsenal—whether this comes in the shape of lingering doubts left by the 
final collapse of the Russian Revolution or as a “truth” daily 
jack-hammered into our brains by the Daily Telegraph.

How can the socialist message and a socialist culture revive in such a 

The classical Marxists stressed that capitalism’s basic dynamic was 
captured by the law of combined and uneven development. Those economies, 
peoples, regions and nations that had managed to get their foot on the 
first rung of the ladder of development never climb all the same rungs 
as those who came before them: they always combine steps that their 
predecessors had been forced to take singly.
Yet this very same process of “combination” is always “uneven”: it 
always pushes industries, regions and entire economies back down the 
ladder of development or even away from it altogether. For every 
Malaysia or Chile, a Nepal, Bolivia or Haiti. For every Silicon Valley a 
La Trobe Valley. For South and South East Asia, almost the entire 
continent of Africa.

Development under twenty-first century capitalism has never been more 
combined nor more uneven. Progress takes place at an accelerating, 
devastating and, most of all, avoidable cost—in wars and in exploitation 
of working people and of the environment. The gap between the actual and 
the potential in science, technology and human culture has never yawned 
so large.

The productivity of human labour is now so great that the effort and 
resources needed for definitive solutions to famine, homelessness, 
disease and illiteracy are—historically and relative to the total 
productive potential of our world—smaller than ever.
And yet the ranks of the starving, homeless, diseased and illiterate 
continue to grow.

This appalling contradiction is what will fuel the revival of socialism 
as a conviction of millions of people. It will also be a central theme 
of Seeing Red. We shall publish many articles showing how, on the basis 
of authoritative analysis, humanity’s core problems—problems of the 
foundations of human happiness—can actually be solved.

Our first contribution comes from 2003 Australian of the Year, 
epidemiologist Fiona Stanley. Called “The real brain drain: Why putting 
children first is so important for Australia”, it spells out what a 
serious policy of child health in this country must and can achieve.

How and when such a goal will actually be reached will, of course, 
overwhelmingly be determined by a struggle whose course is impossible to 
predict. However, the Socialist Alliance is convinced that what blocks 
the possibility of generalised progress is capitalism itself. If all the 
peoples of the planetbare to have a chance for development and 
well-being production for profit must be replaced by production for 
social need.

However, we haven’t launched Seeing Red simply to repeat that familiar 
idea. Our goal is to promote sharing of knowledge about alternatives as 
well as debate as to their viability in the real world. It is only 
through this shared journey of trial and error—carried out in the realm 
of ideas and culture but also in relation to the real political 
struggle—that the socialist alternative will revive as a material force.

In short, the aspiration of Seeing Red is to help all of us who are 
fighting for the alternative—the Socialist Alliance included—to think. 
And to think in all spheres, not only in politics and economics, but in 
our culture and daily life.

We will publish articles from a wide variety of backgrounds. Many will 
be explicitly Marxist and socialist, others will be the product of Green 
or left Social Democratic traditions, still others will be true and 
telling descriptions of the “way things are”. They will appear in Seeing 
Red for the simple reason that, in the opinion of the editorial board, 
they advance the common understanding of all of us who are fighting for 
something better.

Ours is a project that will only progress to the degree that all who 
share its goal also make their own active contribution. From our second 
number we will have an extensive letters section—we invite all our 
readers to say their piece. We also invite contributions on the wide 
range of topics—from politics to video art, from economics to music—that 
the magazine will present.

The more the readers of Seeing Red also becomes its writers, the more we 
shall all be helping build the common home that socialist culture and 
politics in Australia have long lacked. Help us make it succeed!
3. How to get involved
How can I write for Seeing Red?

Seeing Red welcomes letters and unsolicited manuscripts, which can be 
sent to the Editorial Board by post or email. Manuscripts will be 
returned only if accompanied by a stamped self-addressed envelope.

How can I get my copy of Seeing Red?

Seeing Red is distributed through subscription (see rates), through 
Socialist Alliance local branches (see 
http://www.socialist-alliance.org) and commercially.

To subscribe, send a cheque or money order (payable to “Seeing Red”) 
with your address to: Seeing Red, PO Box A2323, Sydney South NSW 1235
Rates: 4 issues $16, 8 issues $30 (individual)
4 issues $30, 8 issues $60 (institutional)

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