We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore LappĂ©, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Posts that I especially recommend today: Sunday, June 7, 2020

Not only anti-Communism is a religion, but capitalism is as well. Unlike Vltchek, I was thoroughly indoctrinated in capitalism having been born and raised in the USA. But I was exposed to other versions of political reality in my young adult years. So I gradually became immune to the incessant propaganda that I was subject to the rest of my life. Because I had doubts in 1959 and subsequent years about what I was told to believe about Cuba and its revolution, and I sought out obscure periodicals in the library at a university that I was attending. These provided a very different version of political reality regarding their revolution. Since then, I uncovered one lie after another while being subject to an incessant, 24/7 propaganda barrage disparaging communism (a Marxist variant on the theme of socialism) and celebrating the fake version of "democracy" which I soon discovered as the bourgeous or capitalist version of democracy. I became convinced that capitalism was the root cause of so many social problems.
However Vltchek never directly answered the question posed early in his article in a quote apparently by his friend Aleksandr Buzgalin: “How is it possible that a system so logical, progressive, and so superior to what is, up till now, governing the world, failed to permanently overthrow the nihilism and brutality of capitalism, imperialism and neo-colonialism?” Obviously he lays the blame on capitalist propaganda. But, what would you expect other than their use of propaganda together with all other weapons at their disposal in order to destroy a system that was a major threat to capitalist rule?
I have since studied this question and have concluded that the Soviet Union was so damaged after their revolution in 1917 due to foreign invasions and trade boycotts by capitalist countries that they soon succumbed to a self-serving bureaucracy led by Joseph Stalin, and from which they never recovered. In effect, a bureaucratic ruling class was established. In addition, Lenin and his Bolsheviks knew that in order to succeed, other revolutions needed to occur in advanced capitalist countries which did not happen because they were crushed by the capitalist ruling classes.
Now I would answer this question by stating that "a system so logical, progressive, and so superior" to capitalism is no guarantee that it will survive and thrive. Even if the USSR had anything like a real communism, history has offered proof of this. I think that a communist system might still succeed if humans had a future beyond a century with the (doubtful) assumption that humans could avert a catastrophic nuclear war. But they do not. Because capitalist activities have so polluted our skies, oceans, and trees with greenhouse gases, the human species has insured its own extinction within a few decades. 
Karl Marx got one thing wrong--the inevitability of communism for the salvation of humans. Why should humans unlike all other species have this quality of endurance?