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Thursday, July 18, 2013

Revolutionary Cultism “Is A Right-Wing Revisionist Deviation”

Normally on this blog, I try to be understanding of various Maoist currents throughout the world. For a variety of reason, difference of education, local traditions, in some parts of the world Marxist or Maoist movements have decided to build up a single leader as a cult like figure. Even Mao actually did that and he (in my opinion) overdid it. But while this may work for some cultures, there are some obvious dangers to allowing it. The best example is the Communist Party of Peru, under the guidance of Chairman Gonzalo. His movement went well until he was captured with his entire central committee and all his plans. There were no back-up leaders. There were not back up committees or back up plans in case the leaders were caught. Since they were caught, the movement in the country side has nearly disintegrated. This is a warning to all parties—look ahead. Have more than one leader. Have back-up plans if the leadership is captured. Even the disastrous Pol Pot was able to avoid the “God-head” for two years.
-សតិវ អតុ
So for that reason, and I like to offer different Maoists their voice, I have decided to run this article;

1. Currently, there are only TWO places on Earth where anything remotely resembling a 'conventional' (lol) Maoist peoples' war is occurring: India and The Philippines. Yes, there are thousands of armed conflicts going on around the world at all times, but how many are struggling to establish an explicitly 'communist' regime, let alone a 'Maoist' one?

2. Currently, those with the loudest, most dogmatic pronouncements of their leader's or their organization's purported greatness or correctness cannot show and prove any of this purported greatness or correctness in a concrete, materialist way, in real life, except possibly in the past tense (and even that is debatable). And it's really a relative few who can truly claim that honor.

3. There is a very good reason that Marx said famously, "I assure you, Sir, I am no Marxist". 
As a genuine dialectical materialist, as opposed to a spook-worshipper who has traded in the oppressive, confusingly contradictory religion of his/her upbringing for the new "red" religion(s); as many parties and organizations have done today, he foresaw the creation of semi-factual, largely mythological narratives around leaders and their ideas; and the harm that these fairy tales do to a revolutionary movement, especially in light of repeated defeats and grievous errors throughout this movement's history. 

Mao himself wrote sharply against the 'Great Man Theory', a theory which has now has greater traction with the remnants of Gonzalo's organization, the followers of Bob Avakian, and even some of the youth in regards to certain writers, philosophers, and religious leaders; both within and outside Marxist/Leninist/Maoist traditions. 

4. This is due in large part to defeats for Maoists (and communists generally) around the world since 1976. With hindsight, we can now see there was also a retreat from real scientific method (especially when it comes to real-world, all-around investigation of cultural, social, economic, and political phenomenon; both domestically [and especially] internationally) around political and strategic questions. 

Revolutionary science and its methodology was replaced by the some of the worst symptoms of modern revisionism: cultism , dogmatism, and religiosity.around ideas, individuals, and organizations. This means, in practical terms, the growth and expansion of a reactionary interpretation of the world that concerns itself (almost exclusively) with what serves the interest(s) of the party, its legacy, and its leadership, rather than an interpretation of the world that asks and answers the question "Who, or what, serves the interest(s) of the international proletariat?" 

It is only the truth that serves the interest of the international proletariat, even if that truth is a harsh critic of some of the actors involved, including and especially any one claiming to be "the vanguard".

So yes, there are times when the destruction of a particular 'proletarian' party or organization serves the interests of workers more so that its continued existence does; even as it continues with a ever-growing list of grandiose claims around its correctness and righteousness (and that of its leadership) right up until its bitter end.

5. Dialectically, cults are actually a GOOD thing for this one reason, and one reason only: they help teach the proletariat how NOT to relate to world, how NOT to relate to each other, and how NOT to organize society. They exist as the 'next' bourgeoisie. And they're easy to identify. 

What is difficult, like the active prevention of revisionism of all types, is the detection of this particular type of revisionism its 'early' stages, especially when the cadre/group/party is already starting to be overcome and weakened by it. 

I would assert that the entire revolutionary movement is afflicted in someway by cultism, dogmatism, and religiosity; Maoists, Trotskyists, anarchists, etc, etc. No one is immune! And ALL should take heed to Mao's warnings about a new class of exploiters and oppressors being created within the party and the larger society. 

Indeed, Mao himself, on several occasions, should have listened to his own wise words...and acted accordingly! 

6. "Residents of slums, while only 6% of the city population of the developed countries, constitute a staggering 78.2% of urbanites in the least-developed countries"; and "China ... added more city-dwellers in the 1980s than did of all Europe (including Russia) in the entire 19th century!" -  "Planet Of Slums" - Mike Davis.

This fact throws into question the whole idea of the 'universality' of a peoples' war strategy. The only other military strategy for communist revolution is insurrection. The foco strategy was a successful, one-time event. And, no a coup by a clique of  'left-wing' military officers does not necessarily equate popular support for a revolution by a populace. 

Anything else is essentially excluding the proletariat from real freedom, justice, and equality; and encouraging the proletariat to pray to an invisible mystery spook in the sky that simply does not exist for a relief that will never come and stay powerless over their own daily lives.
And that is the worst type of cultism of all. The cult of the reactionary state and its supporters.

All Power To The Positive!
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