[Marxism] msnbc on anti-war protests...
Carlos A. Rivera
cerejota at optonline.net
Sun Mar 20 21:02:06 MST 2005
----- Original Message -----
From: "Juan Fajardo" <fajardos at ix.netcom.com>
> If that's not a success, I don't know the meaning of the word.
It is obvious you don't.*
Even taking into consideration the exceptional nature of the February 2003
protests, in which there were demos even in Antartica, the M-19 experience
is an example of the current failure of all the leaderships of all the
groups, from the DP "left" to the cults, to effectively organize something
Maybe Cox and yourself are correct. I am comparing it incorrectly with
February 2003. You both are certainly correct in saying it was an
exceptional event. Yet M-19 was a practical example that others don't share
Cox's and specially your thriumphalism mystify, not clarify, the practical
When you have 1000s of soldiers going awol, when you have 40% of the
population not voting, when you have a historically high unemployment level,
etc etc etc ad infinitum, you can't call a victory something only the usual
suspects show their face in a protests. It speaks of a failure to mobilize
even a small fraction of those who are disaffected.
We have faced not one iota of qualitative or quantitative growth. We are
facing defeat after defeat, and while defeat in the abstract is not bad
(pick your tradition and call it "bend in the road", "one step forward two
step behind", "strategic reflux" or whatever), the concrete nature of this
defeat is that the movement as a whole, including myself, is banging its
head into the same McProtest strategy, time and again. As a matter of fact,
the protests were organized, scheduled, and led in the same fashion as the
Can't have it both ways: To see F-2003 as exceptional while supporting today
the same strategy that worked under those exeptional circumstances is a
glarring error of logic, not to mention common sense.
I am old enough to have seen this same tendency in many local or union
struggles, only to see victory, once in our grasp, melt, like all that is
solid, into thin air. Usually after all the eggs were thrown into the same
basket, and someone let the basket drop.
When reaction is on the march, we must face our weakness even more than our
strength. They won't attack our strength, but will feast in our weakness...
and if we fail to recognize our weakness, if we fail to *learn* from the
weakness, we will not prevail, but the contrary.
I am all for celebrating victories, however small, however partial.
What happened yesterday was not victory but the practical demonstration of
our bankruptcy as leaders and revolutionaries. And until we don't recognize
this, face it, and creatively respond to it, we will continue to collect
only Purple Hearts instead of a couple of Medals of Honor for a change.
The sad part is that many dedicated, good comrades, from many organizations
and groups, spent sleepless nights and coffee-fueled days, not to mention a
large portion of their wages, trying to make this happen.
Some even face jail time.
So the reactionary jackboot can continue to break our spines?
So a couple of months down the line, or next year, or whatever, we can go
and immolate ourselves in the altar of righteousness and moral right?
Suicide might be neccesary at some points, but I don't think in paves the
road to victory: it has yet to change a social relation. Martyrdom while
good for remembrance, its never a good practice, it is never "success".
I am sorry, but I became a revolutionary to win, maybe not the war, but at
least a couple-three battles.
And to stare defeat, when it shows its ugly head, straight in the face and
tell it to go fuck himself all the while learning from it.
Not to deny reality with empty sophisms and to do it wrong over and over
again until I take my last breath.
I became a revolutionary to demystify, not to cloud, conciousness. And to
call M-19 a success is butchering the meaning of the word, and creating a
conciousness so overcast, it looks grayish-purple at sundown.
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