[Marxism] Awesome Proletarian Positions

Angelus Novus fuerdenkommunismus at yahoo.com
Sat Apr 6 05:16:42 MDT 2013

Andy wrote:

> extrapolated from that to deny the importance or possibility of such
> consciousness, because they wanted to defend Richard Estes' piece in North
> Star.

Hey wait a minute, I said nothing about any of this, nor do I feel strongly enough by Estes' piece to think long enough about it to formulate a position pro or contra.

I was simply needling you about your tendency to ascribe "proletarian" or "petit-bourgeois" status to abstract positions.

My point is this: obviously we all accept (more or less) Marx's critique of capitalism, and the reasons it should be abolished.  We can hopefully also explain this to others.  But I think it's just an absurd legacy of "worldview Marxism" to assume you can ascribe a class character to a set of positions.

Marx's critique isn't correct because it's "proletarian"; it's correct because it's correct.  Now, Marx also happens to explain that capitalism exists at tremendous, horrible cost to workers and the environment, and hopefully we will be able to convince a lot of workers and environmentalists of this, but that's different than saying that Marx's insights express a certain class position (though if you want to say they take the side of the working class, I'd agree with that).

> The core issue remains: does working in a working class job -- whether
> factory, school, hospital, domestic work, whatever -- provide the 
> potential for a different kind of consciousness?

A resounding "maybe".  Obviously those of us on that list have a different kind of consciousness.  But we're in the vast minority on this.  

Again, I'll reiterate my point that since the working class comprises the vast numerical majority of people in industrial societies, it's kind of pointless to ask whether they possess some quasi-mystical ability to see capitalism critically as a result of their class position.

The more important point is: we sure as hell better have the correct arguments to convince people to see why capitalism is destruction of workers and the environment, because otherwise we'll never end it.

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