Franz J.T. Lee, September, 2005
The permanent revolutionary specter haunting Bush, defying World Fascism
Over the previous dark ages of political Puntofijismo ... nurtured by the Yankee "Cold War" witch-hunt of "communists," bedeviled and exorcised by Roman Catholicism and other world religions and infected by a virile, racist, anti-Communist epidemic ... in Venezuela, like elsewhere, ideological terms like Marxism and Socialism were converted into diabolical, terrorist, anti-Christian house word used by just about everybody at whim and caprice without having the foggiest idea what they really connote.
Venezuelan kindergarten, schools and universities in did not escape the ideological venom of this global mind and thought control campaign.
Till today, ignorance about Marxism is bliss and, for the few, true, revolutionary Marxist comrades in Venezuela and Latin America, it still remains folly to be wise, to criticize reformists, revisionists and counter-revolutionaries.
This is the reason why hundreds of adjectives have to be added to the concept "socialism," in an effort not to be classified by the mass media as a "Castro-Communist," a "Marxist," a "terrorist" or even a "Trotskyite."
Once labeled as some "-ist," following some ideological "-ism," one is disarmed, cannot be taken serious anymore and is thus sentenced to fade away into revolutionary oblivion.
The "politically correct" panacea against such social ostracism at all times is simply to be a "democrat," a "true democrat" that firmly believes in the system, the market, labor and consumer goods.
We have had a galaxy of "socialisms" already, among others African Socialism, Cooperative Socialism, Christian Socialism, Democratic Socialism, Socialist Democracy, Arab Socialism, Revolutionary Socialism, Real Socialism, Real, Existent Socialism, and, to crown them all, even Hitler-ite National Socialism.
Nowadays, we have arrived at a "New Socialism" and a post-capitalist "Real, True Democracy" for the 21st Century.
A while ago, in my article, "Venezuela: What is Marxist Socialist Revolution?," I wrote: "Any 'old or obsolete,' 'real or existent,' 'orthodox or dogmatic,' 'social democratic or real democratic,' any new or original Socialism of any century, at first, as point of honor, of departure, must pass before the critical eyes of Marx and Engels, of Lenin and Trotsky, must know the living Marxist conception of Socialism."
Furthermore, I underlined that:
"Talking about Socialism without having studied Marx is like a Christian who never read and studied the New Testament, who never heard about Jesus Christ."
Now, what did Marx mean by Socialism? By a free association of creators worthy of their human nature? In how far is this relevant for Bolivarian Revolutionary Praxis and Theory?
For a century and a half already, scientifically Marxism was either ransacked to give capitalism itself a new lease of life or it was ideologically falsified, disfigured and violated by bourgeois, capitalist and "real, existing socialist" mass media across the globe. In the last analysis, the bulk of the Third World "dependence" theories, and their corresponding socialist or democratic "desarrollismo," were aimed against Marxism, especially against the imperialist theories of Lenin, Rosa Luxemburg, Rudolf Hilferding and Leon Trotsky.
Across bourgeois education, capitalism was nicely separated from imperialism; all over anti-imperialists appeared who were not anti-capitalists, even African nationalism suffered from this mental cancer -- a rupture completely absurd in Marxist political economy. Alexander the Great was imperial, but he was not an imperialist; on the contrary, Cecil John Rhodes was an arch-imperialist. To develop an incisive, scientific praxis and a decisive philosophic theory, Bolivarians have to be precise in the formulation of their strategic concepts, in their revolutionary language tools and arms of emancipatory action and thought.
Probably, during the epoch of primitive accumulation of capital, Jesus Chris ... if ever he had lived ... was against imperial rulers, against Pontius Pilate, had chased usurers out of the Temple, but he surely could never have been a modern anti-imperialist, or even a paradigm for an anti-capitalist socialist. In Europe, after national, liberal, competitive capitalism, monopoly capitalism, that is, imperialism, was launched in 1870, followed by the Berlin Conference of 1884/5, and the resulting ravenous cutting up of the colonial world among the European capitalist-imperialist vultures.
This was imperialism, a late stage of capitalism, of colonialism itself.
Similarly, even the global "theology of liberation" and "Christian Socialism" ... of course, like always, truly respecting their innocence and scientific naivety ... with few exceptions, eventually also ended up in negating the very scientific advances of bourgeois materialism itself, and the theoretical socialist enlightenment developed across Hegel, Feuerbach, Marx and Engels.
Some counter-revolutionary political turncoats, forming a so-called "political class" in itself, even today still doubt that a social revolution currently is taking place in Venezuela. Well, we should ask them: why then the several attempts of Yankee organized military coups, why the oil sabotage, why the permanent threats to assassinate President Chavez and the fear of US military invention in Venezuela?
is the popularity of Chavez rising vertiginously in geometric
progression, why is the economy improving by leaps and bounds?
why did the "Chavistas without Chavez" -- the corrupt
counter-revolutionaries -- come into being in Venezuela if no social
revolution is taking place here?
If the national and international, ruling class interests in Venezuela are not being threatened fundamentally?
Thus, for the sake of creating a real, true, anti-capitalist, socialist vanguard and its corresponding revolutionary cadres, in order to advance Socialism that per definitionem is new, scientific and philosophic, it is imperative to study Marxist praxis and theory, as they evolved over the whole planet over the past 150 years. In other words, we urgently need a Mission Bolivar, Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky; and thereafter, a Mission Lumumba, Ho Chi Minh, Mao tse-Tung, Che Guevara, Fidel Castro, Hugo Rafael Chavez Frias.
A Socialist Revolution does not live by bread alone! It urgently needs living, innovating Marxist Praxis and Theory!
Only as such, the Bolivarian vanguard could discover the Marxist, revolutionary, politico-economic method, that precisely defines social classes, and their corresponding economic and political class interests and struggles, that does not just describe formal logical "political classes."
Also, then we will note that Marx' Capital was not another work of 19th century national economy; that it was not just the perfection of the political economy of Adam Smith or of David Ricardo. Compared to the classical, bourgeois economists, Marx' "labor theory of value" was not developed exclusively to describe prices in terms of quantities of labor-time, it did not just calculate prices, surplus values or equivalents, on the contrary, it revealed that workers' labor was exploited, and thus it unmasked the real master-slave contradictions in the capitalist mode of production. It verified scientifically and philosophically that under capitalism never ever the "real democratic," master-slave relations ... the exploitation, domination, discrimination, militarization and alienation of all working classes ... could be abolished.
Hegel's "Phenomenology of the Mind (Spirit)" explains the whole superstructural development of Capitalist, Bourgeois Society, of the Global Spirit, of Reason alias Capital. Marx's "Capital" explains the basic, material, infrastructural, economic sojourn of Capital, its origin, its tendential developmental laws, its zenith, and its inexorable demise. A serious socio-economic study of these two mammoth works will reveal that by definition, also in Venezuela, Socialism is the Dialectical Negation of Capitalism.
Strange enough, in 1887, it was the "renegade" (Lenin) Karl Kautsky ... who originally in his youth was a "Marxist" ... who published a booklet titled "The Economic Doctrines of Karl Marx." It contained the typical bourgeois economist approach, that profoundly influenced other words, even some Marxist treatises, for example, Maurice Dobb’s Political Economy and Capitalism or Ronald Meck's Studies in the Labor Theory of Value.
As they "matured," many Marxist theoreticians like Karl Kautsky, Edward Bernstein, Joseph Stalin, Georg Lukacs or Max Horkheimer later repented from their "sins of youth," began to corrupt the best, and thus became dangerous counter-revolutionaries, reformists and Mensheviks. Some developed brand new intra-systemic ideologies, with their corresponding counter-revolutionary practices, that favored everything except workers' class struggles and socialist emancipation. The history of the Second, the "Second and a Half" and the Third Internationals can confirm the above.
Ernest Mandel, the world renowned Marxist economist, in his two works ... a massive treatise "Marxist Economic Theory" published in French in 1962 and in his Ph.D. thesis from the Free University of Berlin, published as Late Capitalism in 1972 ... contrary to Kautsky's unilateral approach, explained what Marx meant by being ‘truly human’, by scientific and philosophic socialism as being a "free association" of producers who consciously will transcend to create a society "worthy of their human nature."
Here Marx indicated very clearly that he was not just "criticizing" Capital, on the contrary that he concretely wanted to overthrow the power of capital. Hence, Marx paved the socialist road towards the current historic transition from Workers' Production to Socialist Creation, from Revolutionary Class Struggle to Human Emancipation.
In a paper, Hegel, Economics, and Marx's Capital, Cyril Smith very aptly describes that Marx's "aim was not to ‘explain capitalism’ (a word he never used) but to comprehend how humanity could free itself from the grip of that deadly, exploitative, atomizing social power he called ‘capital’. This aim permeates every sentence of Capital."
By work, by labor, in Capital, Marx meant modern ‘wage-labour’, that he saw as a possibility to dis-alienate labor itself. In fact, he saw dis-alienated labor as "free creative activity."
He wrote: "Labor is man’s coming-to-be for himself within alienation or as alienated man."
For Marx, no socialism could exist without Human Creativity and Creation. He knew that free, human, creative activity, the exercise of human creative powers, is what lies locked up and tortured within the current inhuman, global processes of wage-labor. The past bourgeois political economists and Hegel investigated these forms of alienating wage-labor , but they could not question their existence, could not negate labor and capital, according to Marx, for they were themselves "alienated men."
This was also true for the reformist Mensheviks, for the Kautsky and Bernstein revisionists, for the "Social Democratic" traitors of the Second International and for the Stalinist followers of the late Third International; especially for all those counter-revolutionaries who have played havoc with socialist praxis and theory in the 19th and 20th centuries, and who have reduced it to some "real, existing" Frankenstein creature.
Surely, the above is also valid for their contemporary staunch adherents, who are trying to rob the Bolivarian Revolution of its own, healthy, creative self-determination. In fact, with the help of the Bush junta, permanently they are trying to assassinate or kidnap its political leadership, to nip its emerging socialist consciousness and revolutionary vanguard in the bud.
However, not a step backwards, all this will be in vain!
Inter alia, the transhistoric reasons are the following:
* In Venezuela, the Bolivarian Revolution did not come into existence by historic accident, or as the result of the whim and caprice of President Hugo Chavez, but simply as a result of global, human, emancipatory necessity, that catapulted Chavez into the front line of world revolution.
* It is taking place during a world energetic crisis, that is shaking the very productive foundations of the current world order, of the great powers, and of their future competitors. Venezuela possesses massive reserves of oil, gas, water, oxygen and other natural resources, including strategic minerals, metals and a huge biodiversity, that are quintessential for the future survival of Latin America, even of the USA, of mankind itself.
* The Bolivarian Revolution ... together with its counter-parts elsewhere, for example, in Colombia, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Palestine or Nepal ... is new, authentic and original. It is transitional, emancipatory in character, that is, it is born at the eve of the 21st Century, in the Third Millennium, in a decisive epoch in which the very survival of humanity is at stake. in the era of the decay of capitalism and imperialism.
* It is a historic negating product of so-called "neo-liberalism," or "globalization," euphemistic terms for the currently raging world terrorism and imperialist fascism. In the trans-historic tradition of real Negation of World Fascism, the Bolivarian revolution can only disappear when its Affirmation itself fades into oblivion. As such, like Phoenix, it has the emancipatory capacity to regenerate itself all over the globe, at different times and spaces.
It is the tip of the iceberg of permanent world revolution, that for the first time is creating its own global objective, subjective and "transjective" conditions to surpass the still raging, capitalist French Revolution, including all its particular social revolutions in different times and places.
* From Latin American soil, from his grave in Mexico, the permanent revolutionary "specter" of Leon Trotsky is now haunting Bush, defying World Fascism. Its current spearhead is the Bolivarian Revolution.
* Finally, in anticipation and expectation, for billions in the "Third World" and elsewhere, currently the Bolivarian Revolution reflects the equal, unequal and combined dialectical development of global revolutionary forces, relations and processes towards a real, true exodus, towards a possible, post-productive, post-capitalist, creative, creating Human Emancipation. As President Chávez himself has warned, we do not have much time left, to save planetary Nature and earthly Society, to save mankind from extinction ... perhaps, there are only a few decades left for urgent Human Emancipation.
Capitalism was born with blood and dirt dripping from every pore, its Opposite, its Negation, Socialism, currently shines from Pico Bolivar, inviting Humanity with a creative smile not to capitulate before the vicious onslaught of the northern Orwellian World Empire.