[Marxism] Moderator's note
mikedjyates at msn.com
Sat Jul 18 15:23:08 MDT 2015
I thought that Michael K replied to Jim C with well-argued points and without rancor. Jim C answered in the same way. These are complex issues, and passions run deep. So perhaps Louis should reconsider giving Jim C the boot. Jim's position would surely not be one alien to Greek radicals, and some would surely agree with him. I might argue that his definition of class position is too pat and somewhat formulaic. But on the other hand, as Michael Lebowitz argues in his new book, The Socialist Imperative: From Gotha to Now, and he has consistently argued for years, as we participate in production, we produce not only goods and services but ourselves as well. So, and especially because the class position we are in has a great deal to do with that of our parents, it seems self-evident that whatever their intentions and character, those who come from highly educated professional families with high incomes are likely to follow in their parents' footsteps. They may be sympathetic to working people and radical in their writing and thinking, but this doesn't always translate into knowing what it is like to be a working person without such advantages, to really feel it. They also may well have an entire set of unexamined notions and emotions that buttress modes of being that take for granted what they have materially and make it seem crazy that they should ever have to give these things up. All of this can condition politics, even behind the back, so to speak, of such persons.
Anyway, I often go off the deep end berating people, at least in my head, for not seeing that their life circumstances, including parental income, education, and employment, as well as their own income, education, and employment, shape what they believe and the political actions they are willing to take. But there is I think always some truth in what I say or think about this.
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