M-TH: RE: C'mon you lot!

1999-11-15 Thread Hugh Rodwell

Hi all,

Being a newcomer on this list, I don't know what you're talking about.  It
seems to me that we shouldn't be attacking people and we should
concentrate more on critiquing their ideas in a constructive manner so
that we can formulate better positions and act in the interest of the
working class.  Calling people scumbags doesn't help.


Issam mansour

OK, Issam, we're agreed on the need for constructive policy suggestions,
good positions and acting in the interests of the working class. However,
some of the old-timers here consider the people being attacked (the person
here being Louis Proyect, a well-known character in left cyber-space)
irredeemable sources of destructive criticism, dangerous positions and
disaster to the working class. So they attack them.

We've had some conflicting suggestions from Rob and Bob recently regarding
what should be done to end the horrors -- in Russia, say. What do you think
about their ideas? Do you think either of them is on the way to giving the
working class and its interests a shove in the right direction?

If you had to tell us what three positions you thought were central to good
working class policies today, what would they be?




"Changes dictated by social necessity are sure to work their way sooner or
later, because the imperative wants of society must be satisfied, and
legislation will always be forced to adapt itself to them."

Karl Marx, "The abolition of landed property -- Memorandum for Robert
Applegarth, December 3 1869"


This is published in the Collected Works of Marx and Engels, Vol 23
1871-74, p. 131, under the title of "The Nationalisation of the Land". It
was written in 1872 as notes for Eugene Dupont, the organizer of the
Manchester section of the Working Men's International Association. Dupont's
report at the May 8 meeting of the section was published in the
International Herald on June 15, 1872. This report, which differs slightly
from the notes published in the M-E Archives, is the text published in the
Collected Works.

* * *

"Though not in substance, yet in form, the struggle of the proletariat
with the bourgeoisie is at first a national struggle.  The proletariat
of each country must, of course, first of all settle matters with its
own bourgeoisie."

Communist Manifesto, 1848, end of first section "Bourgeois and Proletarians"

* * *

"The world political situation as a whole is chiefly characterized by
a historical crisis of the leadership of the proletariat."

Transitional Programme -- The Death Agony of Capitalism and the Tasks of
the Fourth International, 1938, perhaps the most important programmatic
document for which Trotsky bore major responsibility. Introduction.

* * *

And on  a lighter note:

His lockid, lettered, braw brass collar,
Shew'd him the gentleman and scholar.
[Rabbie Burruns, The Twa Dogs, 1.13]

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Re: M-TH: Re: C'mon you lot!

1999-11-08 Thread r.i.p

Still a monarchy?!

C'mon you cobbers- you've blown ya chance to avoid Charles III!


Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com

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Re: M-TH: Re: C'mon you lot!

1999-11-08 Thread Rob Schaap

G'day Russ,

I can't remember whether you're on LBO or not.  In case you're not (and in
case other Thaxists might be interested), here are a couple of perhaps
edifying (and mebbe not) snippets from there.

G'day all,

Well, the 'minimalist' republican option took a 54-46% kicking.  It seems
the richer and the more formally educated the cluster the more enthusiastic
the  republican sentiment (well, it was their sorta republic), and the
poorer and the less formally educated, the weaker the support.  Women, too,
voted much more strongly against it than men.

Them's the tea-leaves.  I'll leave it to my compatriots to read 'em.

I reckon any analysis should factor in just how much this is the
consequence of marketing from both sides that, I submit, has been the most
offensive load of crap I've yet had the misfortune to gag at.  The further
we sink into this power-suited, spin-meistered, populace-loathing,
slogan-chucking mode of public discourse, the ... well, I don't actually

One thing (it has occurred to me) that we should inform interested
Americans about, is that the Australian constitution (the effective focus
of today's expensive embarrassment) is unknown to all but a dozen lawyers
and a handful of lonely academics.  Our system is the product of a sorta
common-law process - entirely run on convention, and almost entirely
without recourse to the actual (and astonishingly dated and incongruent)
constitution - only almost no-one knows that either.

Still, if anything good has come out of this, it is that Australians still
won't know anything about the constitution in whose name they cast their
vote.  None of that hands-on-hearts stuff for us!  Well, except for this
nauseating Olympics business, which is only gonna get worse, I s'pose.  If
I stop smoking, d'ya reckon I could get a seat on the space-shuttle?


G'day Ange,

just look at the referendum result in australia.  most people voted 'no' to
the republic question.  only 9% of people in australia are monarchists.
rob noted that the people at the end of the scale voted 'no', but even he
couldn't bring himself to say that overwhelmingly it was the working class
who voted 'no'.  and we didn't vote 'no', those of us who did, because we
wanted a monarchy, but (as well as many other reasons), the kinds of
representational structures and organisations of working class aspirations
are not in place in australia that would have asserted itself as an
_identity_ within the framework of the referendum.  to put it another way,
the working class existed only as a resounding 'fuck you'.

If you mean there's nothing in the institutional setting, no channel for
expression or will-formation, no sense we're relevant to anything, no
respect for us whatsoever implicit in the glossy lying pap beamed at us by
PR professionals, nothing we're discussing featuring in any of the
orchestrated coverage, no connections being made between our material lot
and the contentious word changes - that the whole thing seemed like a tiff
about nothing, between our distant betters, with our money but not about us
- well, yeah, I agree with you.  Had their been a 'fuck you' box, I reckon
it would've got up.

a strongly-felt (as the pundits keep calling it) chasm between 'leaders'
and 'led'.

Which crisis, I reckon, either produces polarised collective politics, or
reduces us to a sullen aggregate of self-privatised individuals and
grouplets.  The far right's demonstrably better at the former, and the rest
of us are demonstrably inclined to the latter.

and there's no 'identity' because the prior forms of working class identity
have proved themselves to be little more than mechanisms of integration and

Well, I passionately agree with this - but I don't reckon most saw this in
such a finely tuned beam - we simply hate all authority more every day.
The 'no' brigade traded on this throughout, and it resonated.  'Course,
their particular deployment was both deceitful ('direct election' alone
would just get us more of the corporate party thing) and incoherent ('don't
fix what ain't broke' is an ill fit with 'don't trust your institutions').

which explains why traditional Labor Party electorates
voted overwhelmingly 'no' -- as did National Party (rural) electorates

Not to my satisfaction, Ange.  A bit of insecurity overload (generally a
conservative force); a bit of 'fuck all this
symbolism-for-the-cafe-au-lait-set shit' (an impotent bleat from a proudly
practical and unpretentious political culture which has to choose from two
words to express itself); and a dash of 'we the people should be trusted to
choose our president' (although we're happy not choosing our
primeminister).  That's my instinct, anyway.

you can't explain that without pondering the history of the collapse of
traditional forms of representation, organisation and identity, and
indeed without thinking a little of the ways in which working class
identity is being

The welfare state 

M-TH: Re: C'mon you lot!

1999-10-28 Thread Rob Schaap

G'day Jerry,

Jerry, what we'd like is for you just not to talk about this particular
non-subscriber's personal traits on Thaxis *at all*.  It's just about all
you do here, and it's all the more annoying for the fact you have much to
offer - if only you thought us worthy of your finer efforts.  We all know
how you feel now, so I reckon we're within our rights to ask, just this LAST
one time, that you desist.  


'Night all,

If you check the precise wording that I agreed to last month, you will see
that I have lived up to my end of the agreement. The agreement, though,
was violated when certain subscribers forwarded posts from another list
to this one by the non-person in question. At first I let it pass, then
after several occasions, I responded (without, btw, mentioning the name
of the non-subscriber). If you want me never to raise this issue again on
thaxis, just ensure that that non-subscriber's name never appears on this
list again. [There might be a technical way of doing this, btw, by
ensuring that said name is automatically deleted from any posts.]


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