Keeping Power Homeless

By   /   July 5, 2018  /   36 Comments

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WHERE DO WE GO when both the market and the state have been weighed in the balance and found wanting? How much better-off would the peoples of the world be if, instead of the towering ziggurats of global capitalism, their skylines were dominated by the equally absurd wedding-cake skyscrapers of global socialism? Would the planet be any less ravaged? Would bureaucracy be any less oppressive? Would the individual feel any freer – or less crushed?

WHERE DO WE GO when both the market and the state have been weighed in the balance and found wanting? How much better-off would the peoples of the world be if, instead of the towering ziggurats of global capitalism, their skylines were dominated by the equally absurd wedding-cake skyscrapers of global socialism? Would the planet be any less ravaged? Would bureaucracy be any less oppressive? Would the individual feel any freer – or less crushed?

The traditional Marxist response to these sort of musings is that socialism, once fully established, would lead to a “withering away” of the state. Karl Marx himself equated life under communism with the manifestation of freedom in its broadest possible sense: “[I]n communist society, where nobody has one exclusive sphere of activity but each can become accomplished in any branch he wished, society regulates the general production and thus makes it possible for me to do one thing today and another tomorrow, to hunt in the morning, fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticize after dinner, just as I have a mind, without ever becoming hunter, fisherman, shepherd, or critic.”

Not a vision that would enthuse too many animal rights activists or vegans! Still, it’s easy to imagine a great many huntin’-shootin’-fishin’ Kiwis saying “Where do I sign-up?” Buried in Marx’s bucolic depiction of his communist paradise, however, is the easily overlooked phrase “society regulates the general production”. Society? Who’s that? And how does s/he “regulate the general production”? Who writes these regulations? Who enforces them? And out of which particular part of Planet Earth is all this “general production” to be extracted? You can see already how many serpents this passage sets loose in Marxist communism’s Garden of Eden!

Mikhail Bakunin, a contemporary of Marx – and a fellow revolutionary – was never one to let glib phrases about society regulating production pass him by without a very close inspection. He understood intuitively that the sort of society the socialists were hoping to bring into existence would necessitate a vast and all-embracing bureaucracy. It was a prospect that gave him considerable pause for thought – and not a few misgivings:

Workers, he said, “once they become rulers or representatives of the people, cease to be workers. And from the heights of the State they begin to look down upon the toiling people. From that time on they represent not the people but themselves and their own claims to govern the people. Those who doubt this know precious little about human nature.”

In those few lines, Bakunin describes the fatal flaw which lies at the heart of Marx’s vision. The flaw that, when Lenin’s Bolsheviks set about establishing the world’s first socialist state in post-World War One Russia, led ineluctably to the monstrous bureaucratic tyranny by which every one of the nations in which “actually existing socialism” held sway was to be so appallingly disfigured.

How to escape from this awful conundrum? Is there no way that the material abundance which human ingenuity’s technological creations makes possible can be equitably distributed? Is there no way of overcoming the private and public bureaucracies so determined to preserve, at any cost, their power to create and administer scarcity? For what else is the state if not an elaborate mechanism for sorting-out (in Leonard Cohen’s arresting phrase) “who shall serve and who shall eat”.

Bakunin’s answer was as unequivocal as it was disturbing. If the state is oppressive by its very nature, then attempting to “take it over” is pointless. No matter how well-intentioned the revolutionaries may be when their banners are as yet unstained by the blood of their comrades, in the very act of exercising power over their fellow human-beings, of administering the state, the revolutionaries’ intentions are altered, distorted and, ultimately, perverted.

That being the case, said Bakunin, the only creditable aim of the true revolutionary is to smash the state: to destroy it; so that human-beings are free to take the “general production” directly into their own hands. Rather that create a brand new structure for power to dwell in, he counselled, keep it homeless. More importantly, learn to do without it altogether. In his own words: “Anyone who makes plans for after the revolution is a reactionary.”

Bakunin, the revolutionary contemporary of Marx, was neither a socialist, nor a communist.

He was an anarchist.

 

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36 Comments

  1. David Stone says:

    If you have individual freedom you have capitalism. It’s human nature.
    What is needed is a governmental structure that creates a framework that limits monopolies so that capitalism is made to benefit the vast majority. That ensures a structure in which everyone can participate. Doing this on a scale beyond the nation is not practical .
    One essential tool to allow a government to provide this framework is that the government must have control of the money supply/ creation .
    Constant attention also needs to be given the democratic structure. Only this way can mistakes in governance structure be gradually remedied.
    It isn’t working in America.
    Maybe when an elected government diverges from undertakings they have given during electioneering they should be required to automatically trigger a new election to give the electorate the chance to judge whether the deviation was necessary in the light of changed circumstances.
    Democracy does need to be improved as it is being constantly subverted.
    D J S
    D J S

  2. Glen Carbines says:

    Very insightful article and generally I agree that the fundamental failing of communism is human nature (i.e., greed and the innate desire to rule over others – “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”). However these failings of communism are even greater failings of capitalism which actively enables greed to the extent where virtually all of the worlds wealth and power is held by the tiniest minority. Yet an absence of the state would just place absolute power in the hands of that tiny minority which hold all the resources (i.e. capitalism has stacked the deck) effectively making them the state by default. What’s the solution? I don’t know, perhaps the evolution of the human species to a point where altruism is selected over greed, but with the weapons we have today I fear total extinction will be the most likely outcome for us.

    • Sam Sam says:

      The rebels greatest achievement is to outlast the combative warrior and retain wisdom and the ability to do what’s right for right now. Those who have seen enough death will know that taking another’s life is a last resort. There is a secret to Sun Tzu Art of War, one that has nothing to do with murder and nothing to do with fancy movements, it is the willingness to trade lives with an enemy and to never trade lives for anything you would not die for. Those who fight for glory or gold or power stand on shifting sand, not the bedrock of true courage. When all else fails the rebel retains combative power and again some times less than willing to wield power. Wisdom affords the ability to do simple things well and simple is power. All Though a fight should be a last resort, it should be brief and executed nearly flawlessly.

  3. J S Bark J S Bark says:

    “He was an anarchist.”

    Er, don’t you mean “neo-liberal”? 😀

    All this talk of working together reminds me of the apes in Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey” (itself a more philosophical depiction of the bomb riding scene in the earlier “Dr Strangelove”.

    Auntie Margaret had the answer, of course: “there is no such thing as society”…

    So what’s your next trick? Angels on a pinhead perchance?

    In the meantime capitalism continues to grind away at the existential matter of our planet…

  4. Draco T Bastard says:

    He understood intuitively that the sort of society the socialists were hoping to bring into existence would necessitate a vast and all-embracing bureaucracy.

    Just like the vast, all encompassing bureaucracy that we have under capitalism.

    Dictionary definition of bureaucracy:

    a system for controlling or managing a country, company, or organization that is operated by a large number of officials employed to follow rules carefully:

    Contrary to what people think we actually need bureaucracy. The problem isn’t the bureaucracy but where they get their instructions from. Ours presently get theirs from the capitalists and ignore the people.

    once they become rulers or representatives of the people, cease to be workers. And from the heights of the State they begin to look down upon the toiling people.

    Or we could make it so that they don’t. We should rotate people through being a worker, being a bureaucrat and back to being a worker.

    In those few lines, Bakunin describes the fatal flaw which lies at the heart of Marx’s vision.

    No he doesn’t. He proves that he doesn’t understand Marx’s vision especially the bit …it possible for me to do one thing today and another tomorrow, to hunt in the morning, fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticize after dinner, just as I have a mind, without ever becoming hunter, fisherman, shepherd, or critic.

    Is there no way that the material abundance which human ingenuity’s technological creations makes possible can be equitably distributed?

    Yes there is – it’s called Democracy. It’s what we don’t have.

    In his own words: “Anyone who makes plans for after the revolution is a reactionary.”

    And how are a people to survive without planning?

    Do we just allow anyone who wants to build a road wherever they want?
    To build their house?

    A small group of nomads following the herd and food across uninhabited lands as the seasons change may get away without planning but not the billions that we have on a fully populated world.

  5. orbital panda says:

    As things are today theres not much hunting in the morning and calf rearing in the afternoon.
    I think we need a factory reset on a few things.
    How? I need a few wealthy investors e.g. Gareth and Sam Morgan.
    Housing- subdivide on the edge of e.g. Waimate/Geraldine with existing school ,supermarket etc. Factory built modest warm 3 bedroom home 250K. Garden plots and plants from Mitre10. Small ish 600m2 sections at cost (100K)Latest solar heating etc About 350K. Gareth gets his money back and a street named after him. Not hard. Bit like gloriavale but without Neville Cooper.
    Too much inertia in old NZ. Young NZ are smart, not racist or homophobic,.Give it 30 yrs-things will change. This is then the case study for NZ.Old housing in nz is cold and damp-inefficient. Step two-reset energy supply.solar etc
    step three-electric cars
    Result-fishing in morning cow tending at night.
    Gareth Im the brains you got the money-reply to this and I will give you a call. No cat rule I promise.
    Then reset honours in NZ. The highest award being the good bastard award. Then the honest bastard. Then the hard woking bastard. John and Bill get the useless bastard award.

  6. Danyl Strype says:

    For the record, Chris T never struck me as an anarchist, and I really don’t know what his point is here. But Bakunin would have vehemently disagreed with his conclusion:

    > “Bakunin, the revolutionary contemporary of Marx, was neither a socialist, nor a communist.”

    Bakunin claimed that anarchists are the real socialists, not the Fabians statists and their technocratic “social democracy”, and anarchists are the real communists, not the Bolsheviks statists or their ideological bastard children.

    > “If you have individual freedom you have capitalism. It’s human nature.
    What is needed is a governmental structure that creates a framework that limits monopolies”

    This is priceless! So, as long as there is a government that stops people from having the individual freedom to run monopolies, then you don’t have capitalism? Could it be that capitalism has absolutely nothing to do with individual freedom, despite its constant propaganda claims that it does, because monopolies and the mass tyranny that comes with them are its natural outcome?

    > Er, don’t you mean “neo-liberal”?

    No, for two reasons. First, classical liberals were only just coming into existence in Bakunin’s time, so he could hardly be one of the new (“neo”) versions of them that emerged post-WW2. Secondly, despite their propaganda to the contrary, the corporatists who academics refer to as “neo-liberals” are not against the state at all. On the contrary, their political program is based on seizing control of it, and using its power to dispossess the working population and enrich the 1%. So abolishing the state would stop the neo-liberal strategy from working pretty effectively.

    I concede Glen’s point that just abolishing the state overnight wouldn’t guarantee any improvement. The 1% are unlikely to throw up their hands, say “fair cop”, and let democratize the global economy to serve everyone who works in it. But it should be pointed out that it’s states and their systems of organized violence (police, militaries etc) that enforce the myth that 1% of the global population “own” more than half of the world, and the rest of us should work for them. Maybe we could take them back and make them serve the public good again, but the Reformation and the Enlightenment weren’t satisfied with just reforming the Church to serve the public good, they didn’t stop until they took away its institutional power and put it under democratic control. Worth thinking about.

    • David Stone says:

      “This is priceless! So, as long as there is a government that stops people from having the individual freedom to run monopolies, then you don’t have capitalism? Could it be that capitalism has absolutely nothing to do with individual freedom, despite its constant propaganda claims that it does, because monopolies and the mass tyranny that comes with them are its natural outcome?”
      No, It means that for capitalism to work satisfactorily for society in general some controls must be placed on it to make it work for everyone , and not allow any sector corporation or individual to gain so much control of a sector that it becomes closed to anyone else.
      I don’t see capitalism as necessarily laissez faire or neo liberal capitalism, this is where it has got out of societies’ control. It must be in societies control through a functional democratic government.
      How does Chris earn a living in a non capitalist society? Who decides to print what he writes and offers to various news outlets and what he is paid for that work? He often criticises the powerful harshly. What official in control in a planned social economy would agree that he should be paid a living for doing what he does? He probably is not paid nearly enough for the hours of research he must put in but there would be no opening for his work except in a capitalist society.
      If you’r against capitalism in any form then your alternative clearly explained alternative is needed. How it is going to allow everyone to “make it possible for me to do one thing today and another tomorrow, to hunt in the morning, fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticize after dinner, just as I have a mind, without ever becoming hunter, fisherman, shepherd, or critic.” defies the imagination.
      D J S

      • Draco T Bastard says:

        No, It means that for capitalism to work satisfactorily for society in general some controls must be placed on it to make it work for everyone , and not allow any sector corporation or individual to gain so much control of a sector that it becomes closed to anyone else.

        So, to make capitalism work you need to stop capitalism?

        Capitalism is about accumulating wealth and power. To put in place controls that prevent that prevents capitalism.

        Perhaps it would be simpler to simply not have capitalism.

        • Sam Sam says:

          Question, how would your new system manage wave after wave of war and death that kills tens of millions of people, possible billions over time.

          It’s the Noah’s Ark thought experiment. How would you close your mind to the mess outside.

      • Draco T Bastard says:

        How does Chris earn a living in a non capitalist society?

        You’re working from the false assumption that people have to earn a living.

        • Sam Sam says:

          Also it’s extremely ironic “bias” is important to you, but you think putting in a few quibbles will radically reform the system. by using WordPress to comment. You know word press right? A succeful company with many employees who earn money, right? Genius.

    • Draco T Bastard says:

      This is priceless! So, as long as there is a government that stops people from having the individual freedom to run monopolies, then you don’t have capitalism? Could it be that capitalism has absolutely nothing to do with individual freedom, despite its constant propaganda claims that it does, because monopolies and the mass tyranny that comes with them are its natural outcome?

      Bingo!!!

      Capitalism is about ownership and control of society through that ownership. It’s not about freedom and never has been.

      • David Stone says:

        Capitalism is about individuals making their own decisions as to what they will do to urn a living and make their way in society within the constraints that the laws and regulations that govern society. The potential for monopolies to reduce the opportunities that individuals have access to is a long recognised economic problem that society must address if there is to be a reasonable amount of choice available to the individual. If individuals are to have no choice then someone else is making the choice for them. That doesn’t seem like freedom. Please answer how else you prefer individuals within society to be organised. By whom ?
        D J S

        • Draco T Bastard says:

          Capitalism is about individuals making their own decisions as to what they will do to urn a living and make their way in society within the constraints that the laws and regulations that govern society.

          No it’s not:
          an economic, political, and social system in which property, business, and industry are privately owned, directed towards making the greatest possible profits for successful organizations and people

          The potential for monopolies to reduce the opportunities that individuals have access to is a long recognised economic problem that society must address if there is to be a reasonable amount of choice available to the individual.

          Actually, that’s simply BS. Capitalism creates the same decrease in opportunities for the majority of people. It’s why we’re seeing increasing poverty and the ongoing collapse of society.

          The accumulation of the nations wealth into the control of the rich really screws over society. Always has done going back throughout recorded history.

          If individuals are to have no choice then someone else is making the choice for them.

          In a capitalist society the majority of people have no choice. They either work to make someone else richer or starve.

          Note the increasing number of people starving in NZ.

          Please answer how else you prefer individuals within society to be organised. By whom ?

          In a cooperative way by themselves.

          In our present system this is done by government and the business owners.

          • David Stone says:

            Hi Draco… Are you still there?
            It would be fun to get together one day with a few other interested parties and have a discussion about all this.
            The first chapter of Trotsky’s lectures referenced by Dave reveals that the communist movement back then hoped that all decisions would be made “in a co-operative way by themselves ” too. I think that that assumption left a power vacuum that was bound to be filled by some opportunist or other. I think that a quite sophisticated structure that everyone could see was fair would be needed to assess the majority’s wishes and interests. Some work that needs to be done would not be anyone’s free choice so everyone might should have to have a turn at those.
            Our society is very complex and integrated , and the decisions that would need to be made collectively to keep everything flowing and balanced will not happen by accident.
            I don’t think “in a co-operative way by themselves” is an adequate answer. And an adequate answer is needed if a significant portion of the population were to be persuaded to support a serious move toward such a social structure.
            What you say about the history of capitalism, which is probably more or less synonymous with the history of civilisation and a long time before, leading to a concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a very few has undoubtably been the pattern. If you remember the little book ” The Good Earth” set in China , it alludes to a cycle of this accumulation culminating in such an impoverishment of the masses that they rebel and attack the wealthy making off with their wealth and distributing it and starting the whole cycle off again.
            It is probably the case that we are now in the phase of a comparable cycle where there is such an imbalance that it is no longer sustainable and we are in for a chaotic collapse and reorganisation/ reassessment.
            But what happened after ww2 with the Bretten Woods agreements, though not perfect , did I believe demonstrate that it was possible to pass laws that constrained the tendencies of capitalism to an unworkable imbalance of wealth sufficiently to provide the people with a fair distribution of human needs, and still , even take advantage of the drive of some individuals to innovate and create. The idea that societies’ needs are met by individuals noticing a lack of some thing or service that they can provide , and earn themselves a living by doing so does largely work as a way of deciding what everyone does, and to replicate that self determining allocation of effort with a centrally planned allocation of duties would be a mind boggling task.
            There was a documentary on Cube a few years ago and though there was much to admire in the way that society managed under oppressive sanctions for all those years , it was interesting to hear people there talk of the constant battle between the state trying to prevent anyone from starting any kind of business of their own, and individuals constantly risking imprisonment to secretly do so. It is I think a human instinct that is as old as humanity and needs to be harnessed by society, and controlled . It can’t be eradicated.
            Cheers D J S

  7. dave says:

    There is no inevitability that socialism must end as bureaucracy and dictatorship like capitalism.

    This does not need a correct reading of Marx to prove, though it helps to understand that. It needs a study of the Russian revolution.

    There you will find that the causes of bureaucratization were not human nature, greed, Bolshevik dictatorship, Lenin’s personality or any other old excuse to write off socialism.

    In fact, the revolution was ultimately destroyed by 7 capitalist states invading, isolating, and otherwise quarantining the SU, even if it took 70 years.

    The Bolshevik revolution was so threatening to the capitalists that they had to destroy it for fear that they would be next for expropriation. They stopped it in Germany where social democracy(!) conspired with the fascists to kill off the leadership of the Spartacists. A successful revolution would have united Russian wheat with German tractors and spurred on the world revolution.

    The failure of the German Revolution and the invasion and civil war destroyed much of the Soviet economy forcing it to retreat into a reliance on the market to revive the economy.

    This retreat opened up the forces of capitalist counter-revolution which included the rise of a bureaucratic layer who took over the party and the state destroying workers democracy and the potential for socialism.

    Also evident to those who care to read the history, Lenin and the other revolutionary Bolsheviks who fought this degeneration of the revolution with all their power. They clearly did not make the victory of Stalin easy and most paid with their lives.

    So while NZ was settling into a postwar white settler paradise of small farmers on stolen Maori land, Russia was also undergoing a counter-revolution based on small farmers hostile to the revolution.

    In both cases it was the European imperialist powers that ultimately called the tune, nothing to do with Marxism, or Bolshevism.

    In any event, the bourgeois mythology that capitalism is still the best bet because socialism, you know, proved to be fatal, will be trampled in the rush as workers decide for themselves who rules, and what society, human nature, and humanity itself needs. It won’t be dying capitalism destroying everything in its path. It will be a workers state based on workers’ democracy and a socialist plan that fulfils Marx’s powerful dream.

    • David Stone says:

      Please outline the structure. How are all the decisions of society and the economy made? Who decides ? How do they establish the authority to decide? OK no one says that the soviet union was the only way it could work. I don’t consider that was socialism, it was military dictatorship , as far from socialism as you could imagine. But explain to us how it should be run please.
      D J S

      • dave says:

        David, I suggest you do your own research and stop relying of recycled bourgeois propaganda.
        ‘Military dictatorships’ have existed through history, you need to recognize what was specific about the Stalinist dictatorship.
        You should read Trotsky’s THE NEW COURSE which he wrote in reply to Stalin’s attacks on him and the Left Opposition.
        It was a struggle to revive party democracy against bureaucratism, so as to implement a socialist plan to develop the economy and meet the urgent needs of the people.

        https://www.marxists.org/archive/trotsky/1923/newcourse/index.htm

        • David Stone says:

          Thanks for the ref.
          At first glance I see why you make this referral rather than attempt to succinctly explain it yourself. But I shall persevere.
          But there must be alternative approaches to a social oriented governmental structure than Soviet Russia. Surely this is not the only definitive version.

  8. Nobody says:

    At last. At long last, some light.

    The “Left” as we call it was diverted long ago, from actual “Communism” to “Statism”. Marx’ original work was called the “Communist Manifesto”, not the “Socialist Manifesto”, or the “Statist Manifesto”. We need to fix this.

    The answer is found in Anarcho-Syndicalism. There’s a link below.

    Essentially, the idea is that no one else can be trusted with your property and your rights, you can’t “outsource” that, you have to decide on the disposition of these resources, as a community. That includes all the land and houses and businesses in your district. *You* have to do it. Yes, you.

    Our trouble is, like fools, we hand all of this power over to the very worst people we can find, then complain bitterly when they steal from us, exploit us and betray us. This is only possible because we abdicate our responsibility.

    We must govern ourselves, in our own communities. We must reclaim what belongs to us, the land, homes and businesses in the districts where we live. Stop electing crooks to send to join in faraway criminal conspiracies. Instead, agree with your neighbours to govern all of the productive resources of the community for the greater good of everyone.

    If you do that, you and your children and your neighbours will never starve or want for anything. You will never have to pay a mortgage or rent ever again. You can work 1 day a week, and then literally, as Marx says, you can do whatever the hell else you want with your free time.

    I can hear people saying, “This is a pipe dream, it will never happen.” Well, I mean to tell you, that this is how we all *used* to live, only 350 years ago in England, before the Capitalists enclosed our lands and drove us all into factory towns and chained us to their mills, to be worked to death.

    Now, we work like animals, some of us barely surviving, some of us wondering why we even bother. Our society is bursting at the seams with thousands of homeless and many more thousands hungry and hopeless, precisely because we are kept from re-constructing the Commons we once owned and were driven off of. Were we able to re-learn how to live with common lands and resources, none of us would ever go homeless or hungry again.

    Did you catch that? We need to RE-learn how to take back the Commons and live for the good of all. We need to go BACK to that way of living, with the difference now being, we take our technology with us.

    We do not need large Nation-States. We only need Federated Communities, governing ourselves, and re-distributing the wealth of our communities in common.

    This will come when all of us have finally despaired, as Chris appears to have done, of having to make a Faustian Bargain with the lesser of two groups of thieves.

    We struggle *only* because the greater part of everything we produce is immediately taken from us and given to the rich. There is no need for this! No need at all!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inclosure_Acts
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anarcho-syndicalism

    • John Riley says:

      Keeping it simple , which is very often the way to go , what did Marx mean by society ?

      seems to me what he is saying is do your own thing and get together to help out when the hay needs cutting . Democracy , which is what we got , not always perfect but until some thing better comes along its about as good as it gets .

      reading Marx like the 10 commandments ? look where thats got people cripes . better not in my way of thinking .

      • Draco T Bastard says:

        We didn’t get democracy at all. We got an elected dictatorship that mirrors the capitalist dictatorial hierarchy.

    • John Riley says:

      I would suggest , keeping it simple and asking what did Marx mean by society ? seems to me hes talking about doing your own thing and getting together as a group to bring in the harvest or the planting or whatever , common sense .

      Democracy would fit in with that .Its not perfect but until some thing better comes along , I would prefer it over country Joe and the fish any day .

      reading Marx like the the 10 commandments . look at where thats got people .. holy smoke , better not .

    • David Stone says:

      What you seem to be talking about here is subsistence farming. A healthy and pleasant lifestyle for those who don’t mind getting their hands dirty. The common claim that there ere fewer poor in the world because fewer earn less than $2 US a day is only so because of masses of people w WW having been pushed out of this lifestyle and forced to work for a meagre living measured in dollars where their subsistence farming was not so measured. They are not better off.
      However to imagine that this lifestyle allows one to work 1 day a week and play the rest of the time demonstrates a complete separation from reality . Try it . It’s a 12hours a day 7 days a week commitment. Otherwise there were no vegetables planted, or no weeding happened. No one milked the cow , no one fed the chickens, no one ran the net, or mended it.No one filled the woodshed, etc. etc. etc.
      D J S

  9. Andrea says:

    Revolution is what wheels do. Round and round – no change. The Wheel of Fortune – low, then high, and dripping muck all the way.

    Evolution might work.

    Trying to get systems that were developed to keep the riff raff in their miserable places and ‘educated, civilised, annointed of the gods’ people in high places (preferably near the money bags) to deliver a fairer outcome – are you sober? Change is impossible under those circumstances.

    You can’t improve the water quality while raw sewage is being poured in further up the creek.

    And while that ‘inherent to the system’ inequality is running there is NO WAY for an improvement to emerge. If you can’t beat ’em (the system is stacked against you) – then survival requires that you join ’em.

    W Edwards Deming had it right: first cast out fear.

    And remember – the system was set up to produce certain outcomes. If you want different outcomes – first change the systems. We’ve got more than enough experience and knowledge at this end of the Industrial Revolutions to do exactly that.

    Our present systems produce a certain kind of human response regardless of inherent moral turpitude or sanctimony. Simples. It automatically does exactly what it says on the tin.

    That’s what you change – if you can keep the self-servers and do-gooders off the production floor long enough to make the changes.

  10. Marc says:

    Chris is firmly grounded in the old style solid apparatus of union or social organisational form of ‘revolution’, of the older style ‘workers unite’ call, he is not understanding, I fear, that the way things have evolved, where it is every one to their own, only ONE result is logical, TOTAL COLLAPSE of the existing system, forcing ANARCHISM.

    That means a start from scratch approach, to build on the ruins of the past, of creating NEW movements, grass roots that is, and to organise from there. As we have it, too few are enlightened, ready and able to respond to the disaster that looms in the last days of capitalism. Only a real SHOCK WAVE will shake enough out of their slumber, indifference or rather fear to act, and motivate them to finally see the light and reorganise, to gather, and to take action, and to build a NEW society.

    All else is endless dreaming and drivel, to be damned honest.

  11. Janio says:

    Confusing, confused. A pretentious play on ideological positions. You need to balance the cerebral with material reality. Get real!

  12. Mr Bakunin understood human nature very, very well.

    And as John Philpot Curran also observed, “The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance”. (http://www.thisdayinquotes.com/2011/01/eternal-vigilance-is-price-of-liberty.html)

    From both gentlemen, we get an idea that a fair society has to rely on us all, and not just a few elected (or revolutionary) representatives.

    • Sam Sam says:

      Yeah, guys that think political panel debates are the only competent debate platform. I don’t blame them for being angry and close minded. It’s just annoying that it happens all the time, lol. Got banned from the standard and the pundant (pundit) the second I started informing them how low quality they are for insinuating New Zealand was a laughing stock for not taking a hardline stance against Russia over multiple war crimes allegations. So just more pussy shit.

      Watch the end of any debate, proofs right there. Show what proof? That they don’t call any one out to there face? Just asking to prove negatives all the time. Banning and refusing to debunk any type of point and only talking shit, even after a ban = A Loss.

      Any one with a bit of balls won’t duck, Standardistas and there sister girl pundits were in my sights and got slapped on thier home turf and can not challenge me to my face a single time. Because they know there ideas / ideology is low quality.

      • Draco T Bastard says:

        Yeah, I suspect you got banned for making allegations that you couldn’t back up.

        Just like you are now.

        • Sam Sam says:

          Are you damaged? The wonderful Boris Johnson retreated hard from his claims of Russia did it. Normal people can grasp the fact so to avoid being a bit slow.