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Cognitive dissonance in leftist terminologies…

June 14th, 2018 · No Comments

Something we wrote today bears repeating: we quote it below. Our challenge to the idea of the ‘working class’ in terms of the universal class seems heretical but it is nothing of the kind: the two ideas are really bey similar but cast in different keys.

The normal idea of the working class is too narrow because it is really a ‘universal class’ that includes a prodigious range of ‘working stiffs’ in all walks of life, all classes and even managers in business outfits. Obsessive attempts to reinvent a working class movement are pointless without a global stance (nothing new in that, the idea of the ‘internationals’ pointed to just that, of course). But as noted a kind of cognitive dissonance in the way the terms used refer to some figment in the minds of western/us leftists and at one and the same time to the chinese monolith which calls itself communism but isn’t. No use trying to convince trump’s base that when you use the terms of discourse you aren’t referring to china or even north korea. You may be wasting you breath: china is a worker’s state, n’est ce pas? And so on.

A first consideration will strike many marxists as sheer heresy:
what is the obsession with the working class. In the us trump seems to have claimed a large chunk of it and it is decidedly not revolutionary. The real working class is global and current movements have no way to communicate effectively. It seems futile to speak of the working class without a direct reference to, say, the chinese proletariat that is a real proletariat for the us economy. Further a form of cognitive dissonance arises from the way such a proletariat is already, supposedly, part of a socialist worker’s state: the chinese/north korean systems are already workers’ states, yes…? quite obviously not but the shared terminology is jamming everyone’s thought lines. You have to press the reset button

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