[Marxism] Dorothy Day: Away with all gods

Joaquin Bustelo jbustelo at gmail.com
Tue Dec 9 19:37:17 MST 2008


Walter writes: "Joaquin doesn't know much about Dorothy Day. According to
his description of Dorothy Day: 'Lest we forget, Dorothy Day spent most of
her life pimping for a bizarro cult'" and so on from my original post.

To which Walter adds, "The facts, however, are rather different.

"Dorothy Day was a strong supporter of the Cuban Revolution, even though she
was also a completely committed Roman Catholic. 

"Some people have trouble with contradictory belief systems, but not
everyone has such difficulties. That's why the Cuban CP today allows people
to join it when they formerly forbade that because they'd thought before
that believers would have divided loyalties."

*  *  *

I fail to see what "rather different" facts Walter has adduced. The relevant
ones are that "she was ... a completely committed Roman Catholic" (as Walter
concedes) and that she was also a completely committed PROMOTER of the
Papist cult (which Walter "forgets" but is nevertheless a FACT).

That is all I said. All true.

I then added --translated into the vernacular-- a few points of HER Catholic
Church's doctrine learned in my years in Papist schools.

And I don't give a damn about her supposed "support" for the Cuban
Revolution. The Papist clergy counterrevolutionary network did a billion
times more damage to the Cuban Revolution in the 60's than all of Dorothy
Days's statements of "support" multiplied 100 fold, which, I will note, in
the case of the one forwarded to us by Walter includes "God Bless the
priests and people of Cuba," when the reality was that those priests were
CIA agents working for the imperialist enemy and a less generous or wise
leadership than that provided by Fidel would have rounded up the whole lot
and shot them.

My guess is Walter IMAGINES her "support" for the Cuban Revolution
compensates for her spreading reactionary-obscurantist Papist nonsense. 

But last I checked, this wasn't the "why can't we all get along Kumbaya
friends of Cuba" list, but the MARXISM list. And not Marxism of the Groucho
variety.

The essential message of Dorothy Day was to rely on God. That she herself
perhaps on occasion went further is irrelevant. Her social role was that of
bait to draw suckers into the clutches of the Papists. That is what her
"Catholic Worker movement" was and is about. From Wikipedia:

"When Communism was rather popular in the United States during the Great
Depression, Day and [Peter] Maurin wanted to teach what seemed a well kept
secret; the very progressive teaching of the church, so that the poor,
mostly Catholic, would turn to their own tradition for the solution.

"It first appeared on May Day, 1933 in an edition of 2,500 copies, to make
people aware of the social justice teaching of the Catholic Church as an
alternative to Communism during the depression."

The Marxist movement has a rather well-established analysis of Dorothy Day
and her ilk, who present the "progressive" "social principles of
Christianity" as an alternative to the self-organization and
self-emancipation of working and oppressed peoples.

Marx, responding to the supposed "communism" of a German rag in the 1840's,
quoted the author of one of its articles:  

"'We can also save ourselves all this tedious talk of communism ... 

"'If only those who have the vocation for it develop the social principles
of Christianity, then the Communists will soon fall silent.'

Marx responded: 

"The social principles of Christianity have now had eighteen hundred years
to be developed, and need no further development....

"The social principles of Christianity justified the slavery of antiquity,
glorifies the serfdom of the Middle Ages and are capable, in case of need,
of defending the oppression of the proletariat, with somewhat doleful
grimaces.

"The social principles of Christianity preach the necessity of a ruling and
an oppressed class, and for the latter all they have to offer is the pious
wish that the former may be charitable.

"The social principles of Christianity place the ... compensation for all
infamies in heaven, and thereby justify the continuation of these infamies
on earth.

"The social principles of Christianity declare all the vile acts of the
oppressors against the oppressed to be either a just punishment for original
sin and other sins, or trials which the Lord, in his infinite wisdom,
ordains for the redeemed.

"The social principles of Christianity preach cowardice, self-contempt,
abasement, submissiveness and humbleness, in short, all the qualities of the
rabble, and the proletariat, which will not permit itself to be treated as
rabble, needs its courage, its self-confidence, its pride and its sense of
independence even more than its bread.

"The social principles of Christianity are sneaking and hypocritical, and
the proletariat is revolutionary.

"So much for the social principles of Christianity."

*  *  *

Walter has so committed himself to arguing for "Cuba friendship" on a
bourgeois-liberal basis ("think of the great business opportunities!") that
he seems unable to drop the mask of the professional "progressive," even
among us communists.

That does not, however, mean that the rest of us --or at least some of us--
are willing to tolerate this list being used to reproduce Papist propaganda,
and especially not from a Stalinist dupe like Dorothy Day, with her bullshit
stories about "Trotskyites" murdering good, upstanding, respectful young
people by bombarding a street meeting with bricks from a rooftop.

Capiche, tovarich?

Joaquin









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