[Marxism] A query from Ahmet Tonak

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Wed Apr 1 12:21:49 MDT 2015

On 3/13/15 10:43 AM, Louis Proyect via Marxism wrote:
> On 3/13/15 10:35 AM, Ahmet Tonak wrote:
>> I am in the process of writing a piece on transition to socialism,
>> focusing on especially economic programs/steps/stages etc.  So, I am
>> open to any suggestion.
>> I also need the bibliographic information about a quote from Lenin that
>> I cannot pinpoint.  I was something like this:  "There is no difference
>> between tha last day of capitalism and the first day of socialism."  Do
>> you remember anything like this?  The context and the source?
> Hi, Ahmet
> I will take a look later but in the meantime I am forwarding your query
> to Marxmail. Someone is bound to have a handle on that there.
> Lou

I heard back on this from Lars Lih today:

> On 4/1/15 10:50 AM, Lars Lih wrote:
>     Hi all -- Sorry I haven't responded, the note was sent to my McGill
>     address, which I rarely consult (I only teach a course there every other
>     year or so).
>     You inquire about the following alleged Lenin quote: "There is no
>     difference between the last day of capitalism and the first day of
>     socialism."
>     I don't know this quote -- and in fact, I'm rather skeptical about its
>     existence. Lenin didn't really concern himself with such questions, and
>     I can't think of a context where it may have come up. But if I'm proved
>     wrong -- well, I will have learned something.
>     Something resembling this sentiment is a main idea of Kautsky's book
>     /The Day after the Social Revolution/, from 1902 -- Lenin helped get it
>     published in Russian. But note: note the hazy and metaphysical concepts
>     of "capitalism" and "socialism", but, more concretely, after the
>     proletariat comes to power.
>     And talking about that: I've been writing up Bukharin's book from 1920,
>     /Economy of the Transition Period/, and his angle, I think, would be
>     this. On the one hand, the social revolution entails a collapse not only
>     in the state (smash the state) but in the economy (smash the economy).
>     This is a "production cost of revolution" and has to be paid. On the
>     other hand, when a certain new normalcy is achieved, the structures will
>     /look like/ advanced capitalism (in those days, people thought advanced
>     capitalism was moving toward a semi-planned economy).  On the third
>     hand, although the structures look the same, it will be fundamentally
>     different, because a different class will be ruling (as per Dave the
>     truck-driver).  Or, as I summarize his (Bukharin's) view: things will be
>     fundamentally different -- but /only /fundamentally.
>     Hope this helps -- LTL

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