[Marxism] Re: Another Chavez or another Lula

rrubinelli rrubinelli at earthlink.net
Thu Jan 5 20:31:12 MST 2006

The flippant, unrestrained answer is because some insist on continuting
to post uncritical, unmaterialist, unMarxist analyses of social
movements in Latin America (and elsewhere)--

A more sophisticated, "presentable," answer is:  because the struggle in
Latin America regarding the emancipation of indigenous people has gone
on for 470 years; because the struggle in Latin America to overcome the
legacy of Spanish colonialism has gone one for 190 years; because the
struggle against the expansion of poverty dictated by the convergence of
advanced capitalism and capitalist underdevelopment  is part and parcel
of the struggle for the emancipation of all of labor; because this
issue, and let's be clear, this issue is the same issue that is at the
core of all struggles against capital, in advanced as well as less
developed countries- the issue of reform vs. revolution,  of labor vs
capital, of class vs. class is the issue that all other issues boil down

That's why we engage that issue:   because if we don't, then we are not
contributing anything.  Praise is, by its very nature, empty.

Joaquin suggests, and incorrectly in my view, that DW and others,
"isolate" the struggles in Bolivia; confining them to worker vs local
national capitalist, instead of  recognizing the international component
of the struggle.  That's just not so.  If anything, the "lefts" in this
discussion are the ones who consistently point to the links between the
national bourgeoisie and the international bourgeoisie, the dependence
of "national" structures, the national condition of the national
economy, on international capital and that only by recognizing the
identity of local and international bourgeoisie, of advanced and
underdeveloped capitalists, only by acknowledging the linkage in class
representatives of a system of capitalism that we all acknowledge makes
underdevelopment part and parcel of its advancement, can the struggle be
waged for real, and realistic change.

If we-- JB, FF, LP, DW, NG,  Brian Shannon and any/all others-- agree
that capital in its existence is at once advanced and underdeveloped,
manifests each in the organization of the other; if we all see capital
at its origin springing from a legacy, a linked legacy of modern and
archaic conditions of property and labor-- how can we not see that same
legacy, that same interpenetration in the representatives of capital in
the particular areas, markets, countries organized around that property?
How can we not see the unity based on class, on issues of class and
ownership of production?

JB states he agrees with FF that  Bolivia is not ripe for socialist
revolution.  So what?  Was Russia ripe for socialist revolution in 1914
when factory workers chase Bolsheviks out of the factories for opposing
WW1?  In 1915?  In 1916?  In 1917?  Ripeness is a product of workers
self-activity, of self-development once the economic substrate, the
material conditions, the much hated by C. Cox  conflict between the
means  and the relations of production throws the classes against each
other in the manifest, explicit struggle, not just for surplus value,
but for power.  That has happened.  That conflict in Bolivia has been
made manifest, and the conflict is quite clearly part of the conflict
made manifest in worldwide overproduction, drops in rates of profits,
and attacks on unit labor costs, and unit non-labor costs made by the

Which I guess is why the thread continues, or repeats itself-- because
the material conflict continues, repeats, resurfaces, returns.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Joaquín Bustelo" <jbustelo at bellsouth.net>
To: "'Activists and scholars in Marxist tradition'"
<marxism at lists.econ.utah.edu>
Sent: Thursday, January 05, 2006 5:32 PM
Subject: RE: [Marxism] Re: Another Chavez or another Lula

Fred writes, "Why is this thread continuing?  This kind of speculation
when Morales has hardly spent a week in office becomes truly bizarre as
it drags on."

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