"She is too fond of books, and it has turned her brain." (1873) 
                          -- Louisa May Alcott 

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Date: Mon, 15 May 2000 09:15:47 -0400 (EDT)
From: Jim heartfield <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>

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Subject: Re: M-TH: British intervention in Sierra Leone
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Subject: Re: M-TH: British intervention in Sierra Leone

In message <000201bfbe3d$65ad4540$95fe869f@oemcomputer>, George
Pennefather <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> writes
>    George Pennefather: Facts always merits attention. However they 
>    must be analysed in the context of the establishment of the 
>    specific way in which they constitute a manifestation of the 
>    essence of imperialism.

Give it up George, you've been rumbled. You were trotting out a vulgar
conception of dialectics to shore up your own dogmatism.

Witness this monstrosity:

>    The numerical growth of the working class is not necessarily 
>    progressive. The American working class is among the biggest in the 
>    world and yet it is quite reactionary in political character 
>    --essentially it supports American imperialism.

You cannot be serious. You are really saying that the American working
class is *essentially* pro-imperialist! Talk about being ensnared in
surface appearances. You seem indifferent to the spectacular assault on
the living standards of the working class in the nineties. Presumably
these greedy yanks have got it coming.

>    The issue is not so much a matter as to whether the size of the 
>    working class is growing or not --Jim seems to have a penchant 
>    these days for mathematical relations. 

More juggling to avoid the issue. Marx makes the simple point that
capitalism creates its own grave-diggers. The growth of the working
class internationally is of course a very positive feature, for all

>Today it is the political 
>    character of the working class that is significant and not  as some 
>    neo-Pythagoreans may think the size of the working class. 

As if these two were mutually exclusive factors! Sheer sophistry.

>    objective conditions for communist revolution have been present for 
>    some time now --whether the working class is growing in size, then, 
>    cannot be significant. 

No, of course not, nothing new is remotely significant to the dogmatist.
All the appropriate material conditions insists George were in place
since 1848. No need then to take an interest in what is new. No insight
into the international significance of the creation of an industrial
working class in East Asia. None of that is of any interest to the Euro-
centric socialist.

>Perhaps Jim's view is that  the bigger the 
>    working class grows the better the politics.

This entirely a leap of your own.

>    Anyway even Jim's abstract claim that the working class is growing 
>    is rather questionable --again the absence of dialectics.

I had to laugh when I read this. Of course I referred to the commonly
know fact that the industrial working class has grown in size, but
George the dogmatist imagines that this is a question that can be
meditated upon philosophically.

If he really want to 'question' he might have looked at the facts before
'dialectically' divining the answer out of his own dogmatic beliefs.

> In much 
>    of Africa it is questionable as to whether the working class is 
>    growing. Some would say it has been shrinking. 

Who? Who would say it has been shrinking? Only someone who did not know,
and was happy to substitute prejudice for fact. In the developing
countries the numerical growth of the industrial working class was
greater than in any other part of the world in the thirty years from
1960 to 1990. It grew from 88 million to 192 million.

In the Newly Industrialising Countries (the so-called Tiger economies of
SE Asia and some of Latin America) the industrial working class
increased from 12 million to 33 million. In the advanced capitalist
countries the industrial working class grew from 159 million to 189

>The making of 
>    abstract statements such as Jim's do not amount to a contribution 
>    to the debate.

George, the only thing that was abstract about my comment was the
assumption on my part that, as someone who purports to an interest in
these matters, you might have shown some passing familiarity with the
facts. But I guess you must be taught your ABC about the empirical
conditions as you must about dialectics.

By all means reply when you have an informed contribution to make.
Jim heartfield

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