[Marxism] RE: A sectarian approach

dwalters at marxists.org dwalters at marxists.org
Wed Nov 9 17:58:35 MST 2005

I think Louis' broad swipe at Marxist groups is akin on this list to sticking a
stick in a beehive.

Louis's approach is actually sectarian in itself and, totally mechanical. He
argues that we have to have the approach of the FSLN and FMLN. What? For
Venezuela? A country that is as different from Nicaragua and El Salvador as
Russia is from Morroco. The FSLN and FMLN just "didn't happen" all nicely
packaged for Louis' non-Leninist wet dream. The FSLN development is almost
totally irrelevant for this scenerio, but the FMLN, being a coalition of sorts,
is probably closer, relatively, to the very amorphus Bolivarin movement in his
fantasy. Even the FMLN was composed of various coalition of 'mass
organizations' (LP-28, BPR, etc) themselves often composed of small Marxist
groups of various ideologies. The point is that they evolved in struggle to
form a *somewhat* homogenous revoluionary current under arms. The FMLN didn't
just appear as a some unified group, it took struggle, expulsions, fights,
debates, (and even a few deaths) etc. This probably upsets the North American
solidarity 'type' that thinks everything just appears as a ready to go model of
the Cuban July 26th Movement, but that's the way it works on the ground,fitting
those conditions, and Louis should know better.

Venezuela's class struggle has sprung up hundreds of organzations, many of which
consider themselves Marxist. If I were to criticize this new youth group, and
yes, it's affiliated to the CMR, the "Committee for a Marxist International"
current of Alan Woods, it is that they have this tendency to consider
themselves the only "Marxist" current and everyone else is some how less than
that. But in action, as they relate to the masses, they are doing what dozens
of other Bolivarian currents are doing. That they think Marxists as such should
be organized in a specific current is a *good thing*, they are not for
relegating Marxism to some interesting academic conference for nostalogic
revolutionaries but are for propagandizing for Marxism, showing how their
analysis provides a clear course for the revolution and the problems it
confronts and...is endorsed by Chavez, no less, as an important *current* of
the Bolivarian revoluion.

It's probably healthy that the Bolivarian model, if we can call it that,
actually rejects Louis' mechanical approach in practice, and is allowed to
develop as a cauldron of revolutionary ideas, *especially* inclusive, but not
exlusive, of Marxism and one of it's components, Trotskyism.

David Walters

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