Quote# 124701

A quick note on what we mean by "ultra-leftist."

An ultra-leftist is someone who clamors for things for which the material conditions don't exist yet. For example, with regards to the Syrian conflict, most MLs support the Syrian government against the "rebels" *even though* the Syrian government is a bourgeois nationalist government. Why? Because in a fight between the national bourgeoisie of a country and the imperialist bourgeoisie, the national bourgeoisie represents the progressive force. This of course does not hold if the conflict is between say the national bourgeoisie and the working class, in which case the workers would represent the progressive force and we'd switch our allegiance.

This is a basic application of dialectical materialism: the fact that what is reactionary in a particular situation can be a progressive force in another situation. Things aren't static and rigid but are continually changing. Capitalism was a progressive force against feudalism but is reactionary against socialism. The French Revolution was a progressive advance against feudalism even though it was a bourgeois revolution. This is the Marxist position.

The ultra-leftist position is: no, full communism in Syria! This ignores the existing material conditions in Syria, misunderstands the strength and position of the proletariat, and jumps to establish the ideal society by ignoring the messy present. This, of course, results from a gross misunderstanding or lack of knowledge of dialectics which make them hold to the position that nationalism or the bourgeoisie are always and always "bad."

This is what an "ultra-leftist" is. It's not someone who's the farthest left on the political spectrum (please) and it's not something to be proud of (at least if they understand the way Marxists use the term against them).

Socalist Musings, Facebook 10 Comments [2/20/2017 6:02:11 PM]
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Submitted By: Ivurm
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Ivurm

Some notes on the jargon.

Marxist sociology states that human history is defined by class struggle. It starts with Freemen and Slaves (Ancient Greece and Rome), then is overthrown and replaced with feudal lords and serfs (Middle Ages Europe) which is then overthrown and replaced by the Bourgeoisie and Proletariat (Modern society). This system is overthrown and replaced by the Dictatorship of the Proletariat, which ends the class struggle and, therefore, history itself.

Each one of these stages cannot be skipped, so you cannot go from a Feudal System to a Dictatorship of the Proletariat, because each stage sets up the Material condition for the next stage.

So Marxists will support a movement that might not necessarily share their interests, as long as it advances the material conditions and hastens the end of history. In this case, it means supporting Assad, rather than the rebels which this person believes would harm the material conditions.

2/20/2017 6:33:12 PM

NeoMatrix

"Why? Because in a fight between the national bourgeoisie of a country and the imperialist bourgeoisie, the national bourgeoisie represents the progressive force."

No, I support the Syrian government because the alternative is ISIL and Islamist fanatics who are far, far worse than Assad (as bad as he is).

2/20/2017 6:50:40 PM

Ivurm

@NeoMatrix

That's a highly reductive description of the situation.

2/20/2017 7:53:11 PM

Apatheist

No, most ultra-leftists, which is just your word for communists and anarchists, support the YPG/YPJ. I'd rather they take control of the whole of Syria, but I know that's unlikely. I'd rather they just maintain their hold on Rojava and leave it at that.

2/20/2017 11:42:36 PM

Pharaoh Bastethotep

In other words:
Blather blather, support the arsehole who sane people oppose the most, blather blather, that guy is too crazy even for me, blather blather.

@Ivurm:
See also: All those Far-Left idiots who supported Trump because he would be so terrible that he would cause the Glorious Revolution.

2/21/2017 12:17:35 AM

Insult to Rocks

Thanks. I needed my annual reminder as to why I despise Marxist ideology. Claiming to care about a group of people you obviously know nothing about while diminishing their own agency so you can fit them into the imagined revolution you've concocted is one of the more frustrating tools in the Marxist arsenal.

2/21/2017 12:17:44 AM

KingOfRhye

If someone who's the farthest left isn't "ultra left" then what the hell ARE they? Ultra-ultra left? Super-duper left?

2/21/2017 1:16:15 AM

Malingspann

"ultra-leftist"

What would an ultra-rightist be like?

2/21/2017 3:37:50 AM

Apatheist

No, most ultra-leftists, which is just your word for communists and anarchists, support the YPG/YPJ. I'd rather they take control of the whole of Syria, but I know that's unlikely. I'd rather they just maintain their hold on Rojava and leave it at that.

2/21/2017 6:41:31 AM

NoXion

The Syrian government is murdering Syrian workers, just slightly differently to how the beardie fucks are doing it.

2/21/2017 2:01:33 PM

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