[Marxism] Buying off the German people

rrubinelli rrubinelli at earthlink.net
Sat Mar 26 08:33:34 MST 2005

Kind of an unfortunate, unproductive, discussion don't you think?  First
and foremost, whether wages rose, rose just a little, didn't rise at
all, didn't rise when adjusted for inflation, is not the issue.

The key to the issue is the social, class,  basis for the rise and
triumph of  fascism in Germany.  Have we forgotten Trotsky's painfully
accurate analysis of that basis-- the terrified petty bourgeoisie, armed
and financed by the not so petty bourgeoisie, serving the needs of
finance capital?

No one, to my knowledge, argues that the origin and social base for the
Nazis was the German working class and its organizations-- the
destruction of the social democrats, the communists, and the Kommunists,
kind of makes that point emphatically, no?

So then what?  A lack of organized working class resistance to Hitler?
Not a realistic expectation given the above, is it?

So then what?  The German working class "benefited" from fascism?  That
seems to be the contention.  Really?  Because wages came within 80% of
the pre-depression level?  Because gold, precious stones, works of art,
and property were looted from Jews?  And how was that largesse
distributed to the German workers?  In the form of munitions and free
holidays to Kursk, Leningrad, Stalingrad, Bastogne?

This argument, that the workers were stakeholders in fascism, merely
reproduces, and not really from the left, the basic fascist mythology
about the commonality of interests of the "Volk."

We could, and some have, make the same argument that US workers
benefited from the war in Vietnam based on rising wages in the 1960s,
relatively high employment rates, and low levels of inflation.  Some
might even argue, regurgitating the puke of Cecil Rhodes, that such wars
are essential to avoid class struggle at home.  But Rhodes was no
Marxist, and the support, or silence, of workers at any moment of  any
form of capitalist rule is a product of the previous advance or defeat
of the class in class struggle.  It is most definitely not the product
of a commonality of interests.

Lastly, just a note:  Mass incinerations organized by one sector of
capital against the occupants of another sector are not steps forward in
the class struggle no matter what temporary alliances the sectors of
capitalism may form.  Such acts are always the product of the defeat of
revolution.  Endorsements of  the fire bombing of Dresden, Tokyo, etc.
based on the fact that the US/UK was temporarily allied with the USSR
are contra-Marxism.


More information about the Marxism mailing list