R48G: we are not required as ‘democratic market neo-communists’ required to defend the record of bolshevism…
November 10th, 2017 •
We can quote our brief remarks on this good essay from marxist.com (previous post):
It is important for leftists to make their case and try to set the record straight but the facts of the case are obscured on both sides. It is very difficult to fully agree with any account at this point, such is the confusion of historical/partisan accounts.
In any case we have suggested here many times the need for a new communism to distance itself from the history of bolshevism and focus on the future with a new framework rather than the past. As this article notes at the beginning the view of the public in general is so hostile that it is simply holding back the left to feel one has to justify the whole bolshevik legacy.
If the left has to constantly defend the record of Lenin and bolshevism the achievement of a new communism will never happen. It is to be sure essential to correct the distortions of conventional historians, but overall the movement beyond capitalism requires a new initiative whose answer to the charges against and citing the Russian Revolution is that we doing something different and don’t have to defend Leninism, etc…
It seems an elusive point for many marxist/leninists but the reality has to be faced. In our two manifestos we have suggested a new approach. In fact the formulation allows a series of approaches.
But the basic issue is that we have arrived at a stage of mature capitalism in countries that have bourgeois democracies. The model of the Russian Revolution is misleading everyone.
One interpretation of our framework is to simply expropriate capital and ecological resources to a Commons and not necessarily equate communism with the abolition of markets. In postcapitalism a combination of markets (in the context of public ownership), planning and a kind of ‘anarchist’ lower threshold or indifference level could enable a neo-communist matrix with a lot of reserve potential and diversity of methods.
The example of Lenin is not really what we should up to at this point. We might even interpret our framework as a ‘communist liberalism’ and/or a ‘liberal communism’.