[Marxism] SWP faction declared

Shane Mage shmage at pipeline.com
Fri Feb 8 11:35:48 MST 2013

On Feb 8, 2013, at 12:55 PM, John Wesley wrote:
> Ever heard of "microfactionalism" ?  Ever heard of anibal Escalante?  
> He was expelled from the Cuban CP on that accusation.  His "crime"?   
> He was too pro-Soviet.  lol

Indeed. The Escalante affair was a major point I raised in the SWP at  
that time.  At issue, of course, was the fact that he had been  
expelled on undefined charges of "bureaucratism" without ever being  
allowed to present his case to anyone outside the Castroite  
leadership.  The hacks running the SWP plus their acolytes Barnes,  
Camejo, and Sheppard of course were applauding.  I objected on the  
ground that if Cuba claimed to be democratic Escalante's political  
views, right or wrong, needed to be debated in front of the Cuban  
workers rather than being administratively suppressed.  Which of  
course made me and my views a target for administrative suppression.

> On Feb 8, 2013, at 11:52 AM, Louis Proyect wrote:
>> The Cuban CP does not have factions but that does not mean that  
>> there are not fierce debates.
> And there were, no doubt, even fiercer debates [post-Stalin] on the  
> CPSU's politbureau (as Beria, Malenkov, Khrushchev et. al.) could  
> attest. But (until Gorbachev) not a word of those debates was ever  
> heard in public.  As in Cuba (cf. Carlos Lage). The debates take  
> place behind closed doors and are decided by a self-coopting bunch  
> quite willing to "demote" dissenters.  In a democratic organization  
> or in a democratic country the only meaningful debate is that which  
> takes place in public, and the only legitimate decisions on policy  
> are made after that debate by majority vote of the members or  
> citizens.  The Communist Manifesto proclaimed that the *first* act  
> of the working class upon seizing power is to "establish  
> democracy."  The power of the soviets was a democratic power, and  
> that was why Lenin and Trotsky were right to proclaim the Russian  
> revolution as "proletarian"--and why the Cuban revolution and its  
> state Party are not.
> Shane Mage
> "Thunderbolt steers all things." Herakleitos of Ephesos, fr. 64

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