[Marxism] DSA member Ocasio-Cortez elected (Jason)
jasonh99 at gmail.com
Mon Jul 2 07:31:49 MDT 2018
The revisionist strategy was that they left "electors free to vote for any
liberal candidate they liked" versus the left strategy of 1) having
conditions [such as that the liberals were for universal suffrage] and 2)
it being a party decision and a question of discipline.
As that passage says: "The left, like the left in other parties, did not
refuse, during the course of the elections, to support liberal candidates
who took a stand in favour of universal suffrage against property-based
electoral rights." Rosa Luxemburg supported this explicitly (see The
Letters Of Rosa Luxemburg, pages 185-7).
So the left strategy was that socialists were *under discipline* to vote
for *certain* liberals. The revisionist strategy was that socialists were
"free" to vote for any liberal, some of whom did not support universal
And on your other email about the British Labor Party: again, feel free to
engage with Lenin's argument here:
On Sun, Jul 1, 2018 at 6:57 PM, Louis Proyect <lnp3 at panix.com> wrote:
> On 7/1/18 6:23 PM, Jason wrote:
>> Second, that's hardly my sole argument, given I gave other references to
>> revolutionaries in the Second International supporting voting for liberal
>> bourgeois parties. One can also see this in Shorske’s history and I can
>> provide other references if needed.
> Look, your reference was to a Dutch party that, like Lenin's, was divided
> over supporting bourgeois candidates. You simply found the Dutch equivalent
> of the Mensheviks who backed the Dutch equivalent of the Cadets. Didn't you
> understand that I would track down the reference? You are trying to
> invalidate my claim that voting for liberals is a revision of Marxism by
> referring to an author who describes exactly that strategy as revisionist?
> Although it was completely isolated, the Marxist minority [in other words,
> the Dutch equivalent of the Bolsheviks] didn’t capitulate and resolutely
> carried on fighting. From 1905 to 1907, the Marxist current found itself
> confronted with a vigorous counter-offensive by the revisionists. The
> parliamentary fraction, which was the real leadership of the party, went
> further and further in collaborating with the bourgeoisie. In 1905, during
> the elections for the provincial states, the revisionists raised the
> question of supporting the liberals against the Anti-Revolutionaire Partij
> (‘Anti-Revolutionary Party’ – ARP) government of Abraham Kuyper, which had
> broken the transport strike. The left, like the left in other parties, did
> not refuse, during the course of the elections, to support liberal
> candidates who took a stand in favour of universal suffrage against
> property-based electoral rights. It had adopted a resolution in this sense
> during the 1905 Hague Congress: “[the Party] declares that during the
> elections it will only support candidates who stand for the urgent
> introduction of universal suffrage”.
> But for the Marxists, there could be no question of turning this tactical
> and temporary support into a principle. Contrary to what Troelstra wished,
> it was not at all a matter of calling workers to vote for “liberals of any
> stripe”, even if they were anti-clerical. From a class standpoint, the
> fight was not against a particular capitalist party but against capitalism
> as a totality. In order to avoid being mixed up with the petty bourgeois
> and small peasant elements, the workers had to be clear about their real
> identity. As Pannekoek, Gorter and Van Ravesteyn wrote it, in a booklet –
> ‘The Founding of the SDP’ – distributed to the German social democrat press
> to explain the scission of 1909: “On every occasion the party must show the
> workers that their enemies sit on the left side of parliament just as much
> as on the right...”.
> But instead of respecting the resolutions of the Congress, the party
> leadership, the parliamentary fraction and the socialist daily Het Volk
> left socialist electors free to vote for any liberal candidate they liked.
> Although firm on positions which had been classical ones within the
> workers’ movement, the Marxists found themselves isolated from the working
> masses. Troelstra played on this as much as he could. There were, however,
> reactions within the party.
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