maandag 29 september 2008

About revisionisme (5)

I suggested that for to prove the existence of the revisionism in the international communist movement, I would use the concrete example of revisionist development in a communist party I know very well: the Workers Party of Belgium. (read the beginning of this serie of articles here)
And IN the WPB, I would give a concrete example of a
revisionist: cadre with perhaps revolutionary conceptions in the past, but who can now be seen as a to bourgeois degenerated element: Boudewijn Deckers (you can read here more about Boudewijn and his conceptions)
The struggle against revisionism INSIDE the communist movement is in fact a form of class struggle. It is the essence of what is called « the struggle between two lines »: the proletarian revolutionary line against the bourgeois reactionary line (of protecting as much as possible the further existence of capitalism)
Before I go further with my analysis of the development of revisionism in the perhaps rather unknown (and most of all of his INTERN contradictions) little communist party of a little country; I will analyze the development of revisionism in the CCP with the concrete example of Deng Xiaoping.

So every-one can better judge if my analysis is correct or not, because everyone can find al information and historical facts about the CCP and Deng Xiaoping

I want now first of all sum up several similarities (I will not use here "the proof with analogies"):

It concerns in both case old respected cadres of th
e highest level. Both « recognized » that they had their « mistakes » and « deviations ». But both are generally recognized as well-known experts in the case of Marxist analysis and all the books of Marx, Engels and Lenin and also Stalin and Mao Zedong.
Their level of cadre of highest rank and their generally accepted authority make that in the party there is no doubt about the Marxist content of their analyses.
There are a lot of other cadres (most are younger and not so long member and know not so much of the history of the party) that have no defence against that; and integrated the opportunist and revisionist conceptions in their thinking and way of analyzing.
By those « old and experienced » cadres every correct historical collective knowledge is erased. Instead they created their own conceptions into « historical generally known facts ». And with these own created historical facts they « prove » their revisionist theory.
Militant activism becomes the most important property of the communist militants and cadres. For own study and own analysis, there is no enough time. So creates this militant activism political suivism.

Certain « ideas », but in fact bourgeois conceptions
ABOUT historical facts, are accepted AS historical facts. This because they are often repeated and « proved » on the base of idealistic-metaphysical analysis, DISGUISED as « Marxist » or « dialectical-materialist » analysis.
The IDEALIST historical analysis of those « old experienced » cadres is the base of the pseudo-Marxism of the revisionists.
In fact you can say that the revisionist line is based on LIES and MISLEADING. These are essential properties of the bourgeois ideology!
Because these « old and experienced » cadres must know that they are lying and misleading, you can say that the development of revisionism by them is a CONSCIENT CHOICE for the bourgeois class.
And that is the difference between opportunism and revisionism. But the development of revisionism « uses » existing forma of opportunism (as dogmatism, empirism, economism etc.)hat are not beaten or countered.
Therefore I will precede the further analysis of development of revisionism by Boudewijn Deckers with a analysis of the evolution by Deng Xiaoping. So you can better understand my theory of CONSCIENT choice of the revisionist road and the CONSCIENT manoeuvre to made the revisionist line the political line of the whole communist party.

To understand the importance of the struggle against all forms of opportunism and the connection with it with the struggle against revisionism it is good to read Lenin’
s book « the proletarian revolution and the renegade Kautsky » In this book I think Lenin analyses the self chosen evolution of the opportunist Kautsky to the revisionist (« renegade ») Kautsky.
For Deng Xiaoping it was important that all collective historical knowledge that the CCP and her cadres and militants had about the struggle against revisionism of the years 60 and 70 was erased.

So would slacken the vigilance against the danger of step by step growing of the same revisionism in the CCP, that had taken place in the CP-USSR.

« At times, Khrushchov also talks about struggle between the two different social systems. But how does he see this struggle?

He has said, “The inevitable struggle between the two systems must be made to take the form exclusively of a struggle of ideas. . . .”[1]

Here the political struggle has disappeared!
He has also said:

The Leninist principle of peaceful coexistence of states with differing socio-economic and political systems does not mean just an absence of war, a temporary state of u
nstable ceasefire. It presupposes the maintenance between these states of friendly economic and political relations, it envisages the establishment and development of various forms of peaceful international co-operation.[2]
Here, struggle has disappeared altogether!

Like a conjurer, Khrushchov plays one trick after another, first reducing major issues to minor ones, and then minor issues to naught. He denies the basic antagonism between the socialist and capitalist systems, he denies the fundamental contradiction between the socialist and the imperialist camps, and he denies the existence of international class struggle. And so he transforms peaceful coexistence between the two systems and the two camps into “all-round co-operation”.[3]

Well, in 1980 Deng Xiaoping said:

« Revolution means carrying out class struggle, but it does not merely mean that. The development of the productive forces is also a kind of revolution -- a very important one. It is the most fundamental revolution from the viewpoint of historical development. [4]

And a lot of sympathisers with socialism in China who were just about to learn what Marxism is, (as myself !) believed that Deng Xiaoping meant by « productive forces » in the FIRST place the most IMPORTANT and DECESIVE productive force: the proletariat.
And we thought that he was speaking over the importance of class struggle (economical ,political and ideological) to build socialism.
And for me, and I thought that Deng meant also that, « developing the productive force: the working class » is developing its political and ideological knowledge and conscience to be able to run socialist plan economy and to be able to implement the proletarian dictatorship in alliance with the peasants.

Than in 1987 Deng Xiaoping said:

« The primary task for socialism is to develop the productive forces. Our seizure of state power in 1949 liberated those forces as a whole, and the agrarian reform liberated the productive forces of the peasants, who constitute 80 per cent of China's population. So far so good. But we did a poor job of expanding the productive forces. That was chiefly because we were in too much of a hurry and adopted ``Left'' policies that hindered their development instead of accelerating it. We began making ``Left'' mistakes in the political domain in 1957; in the economic domain those mistakes led to the Great Leap Forward of 1958, which resulted in enormous damage to production and much hardship for the people..[5]

It sounds correct. But here Deng profited from all the bourgeois « historical » studies of the revolution in China that « proved » that the Great Leap Forward was a terrible mistake creating chaos, hunger and misery. But of course that is just the point of the bourgeoisie: all real experience in socialism creates chaos, hunger and misery….. where capitalism is perhaps not the perfect but at least a better alternative.
When you study on the history of the Chinese revolution of that period you will see that this is not correct. In 1987 I didn’t know the all the texts and analyses of Deng. But in 1991 after the « Tien Anmen happenings » and all the contra revolutionary and anticommunist « analyses » I began for myself to study on the history of the Chinese revolution…. And also of the Great Leap Forward.

The Great Leap Forward was just the continuing of t
he ongoing socialisation of the society. And it was just what the building of socialism needed in China. And in fact Deng Xiaoping had the possibility to implement his « reform and opening » on the ACHIEVEMENTS of the period before (inclusive the Great Leap Forward)
The socialising of the society in China was just the reason that it was possible
to overcome the two difficult years 1960-61. The results were much better than in INDIA were they had the « Green revolution » aided by capitalist forces…. But no cooperative movement and without altering the ownership of the land. The hunger and misery was bigger in India in the years 1960-61 but also BEFORE and AFTER those years!
Out of my report that I made in preparation of the 4th
Congress of the WPB (you can read it here, but in Dutch and with all the references):
Out of bourgeois « historical analyse »:

The debacle of the Great Leap Forward led to the biggest hunger of human history. The number of deaths was outnumbered by 20 million and probably was nearly 30 million..."

: in the next table are the population numbers, the mortality (0/00) and the calculated numbers of deaths.
........................population..................... mortality.................... number of
..............................IN MILLION. ....................IN 0/00 ..............deaths (MILLIONS)
1952 .........................
574.82............................. 18................................10.34
582.6.............................. 17..................................9.9
649.5.............................. 11.................................7.14
675.69............................. 25.6............................17.29
970................................... 7.................................6.79

So in 1960 died about 17 million people. Half of that number you can put on the account of result of the indeed serious hunger, so about 8 à 9 million. That are NOT 30 million
, you have to look at China in the context of the development in ALL the countries of the Third World that same period.
For example India: « Also the age-structure changes in rather bad direction curiously by circumstances that are by them self favourable
. Because the mortality decreased in 1900 to 1960 from 48,6 0/00 to 23,4 0/00. » [6]

So in a country left totally on her own (China) the mortality increased TEMPORARLY to the level that exists in a similar Third World country that try to develop itself wi
th the help of imperialism (India)

On the figure you see the comparison between kilo grain per capita in China and in India.
By mistakes and objective problems the production of grain per capita decreased and there is hunger. But in India the production per capita is, in despite of the Green Revolution is lower. And India survives only because of big imports. By the way: China has to feed en third of people MORE than India with (in percentage) less arable surface than India. But China realises a bigger production.

(approx.)IN MILLION KM2.................................. 3.26................... 9.5

IN %:

agriculture and tree-culture
of which
-irrigated : .........................................................8.4
-fallow: ..........................................................................6.9
useful land
pasture ..........................................................................4.3...................... 6.5
wood and forest
.............................................................19....................... 12.7
other use
.......................................................................4.7....................... 4.9
not productive
...............................................................10.1..................... 12.5
ot classified .................................................................0.6

Deng Xiaoping in 1988:

« Marx said that science and technology are part of the productive forces. Facts show that he was right. In my opinion, science and technology are a primary productive force. For us, the basic task is to maintain socialist convictions and principles, expand the productive forces and raise the people's living standards. To accomplish this task, we must open our country to the outside world. Otherwise, we shall not be able to stick to socialism. …
When I met with Husak recently, I mentioned that Marx was quite right to say that science and technology are part of the productive forces, but now it seems his statement was incomplete. The complete statement should be that science and technology constitute a primary productive force.”[7]

The proletariat as most important productive force has disappeared for Deng Xiaoping, the bourgeoisie exist no longer « as class », in socialist China as Deng Xiaoping says elsewhere…. So under socialism there is no longer class struggle?….

In a next article I will come back on conceptions that Khrushchov defended, and where judged as revisionism in the analyses of the CCP, texts that were edited by Deng Xiaoping who had the responsibility from the CCP to lead de discussions with the CP-USSR. Because the conceptions of Deng in 1978 were similar with those of Khrushchov, he has to erase a whole historical period in de development of the political line in the CCP. For me this is an example of historical idealism of a conscious revisionist.

[1] N. S. Khrushchov, Report to the Session of the Supreme Soviet ofthe USSR, January 1960.

[2] N. S. Khrushchov, “Answers to the Questions of the Austrian ProfessorHans Thirring”, Pravda, January 3, 1962.


[4] Out « Selected works of Deng Xiaoping »: « TO BUILD SOCIALISM WE MUST FIRST DEVELOP THE PRODUCTIVE FORCES April-May 1980 »Talk with some leading comrades of the Central Committee, April 1, 1980

[5] Out « Selected works of Deng Xiaoping »: « TO BUILD SOCIALISM WE MUST FIRST DEVELOP THE PRODUCTIVE FORCES April-May 1980 »Excerpt from a talk with Alfonso Guerra, Deputy General Secretary of the Spanish Workers' Socialist Party and Vice-Premier of Spain.


[7] Out « Selected works of Deng Xiaoping »:SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY CONSTITUTE A PRIMARY PRODUCTIVE FORCE September 5 and September 12, 1988,Excerpt from a talk with President Gustav Husak of Czechoslovakia and excerpt from remarks made after hearing a report on a tentative programme for the reform of prices and wages.

zaterdag 13 september 2008

About revisionism (4)

In the previous article (you can read here) I let explain by an ideologist of the CCP how the salary-policy-part of the « reform and opening »-policy is ”approved” by Marx in « Critique of the Gotha-program » and by Lenin in « State and Revolution ».
In fact it was a proof of a revisionist type of« Marxism »: cutting a suiting quote or to make a personal interpretation of what they pretend that Marx or Lenin said.
But when we take bigger quotes of Marx and Lenin, we see that Marx and Lenin said totally other things.
I showed this in the previous article with a bigger quote of Marx and with a first quote of Lenin out of his « State and Revolution ».

Lenin writes further:
« Until the "higher" phase of Communism arrives, the Socialists demand the strictest control by society and by the state of the measure of labour and the measure of consumption; but this control must start with the expropriation of the capitalists, with the establishment of workers' control over the capitalists, and must be exercised not by a state of bureaucrats, but by a state of armed workers.
The mercenary defence of capitalism by the bourgeois ideologists (and their hangers-on, like Messrs. the Tseretelis, Chernovs and Co.) consists precisely in that they substitute controversies and discussions about the distant future for the vital and burning question of present-day politics, viz., the expropriation of the capitalists, the conversion of all citizens into workers and employees of one huge "syndicate" -- the whole state -- and the complete subordination of the entire work of this syndicate to a genuinely democratic state, to the state of the Soviets of Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies.”

My comment:
This misleading with the use of Marxist phraseology, is in fact what the actual revisionists in the CCP also have done.

Lenin further:
“Actually, when a learned professor, and following him the philistine, and following him Messrs. the Tseretelis and Chernovs, talk of unreasonable utopias, of the demagogic promises of the Bolsheviks, of the impossibility of "introducing" Socialism, it is the higher stage or phase of Communism they have in mind, which no one has ever promised or even thought to "introduce," because it generally cannot be "introduced."
And this brings us to the question of the scientific difference between Socialism and Communism, which Engels touched on in his above-quoted argument about the incorrectness of the name "Social-Democrat." Politically the difference between the first, or lower, and the higher phase of Communism will in time, probably, be tremendous; but it would be ridiculous to take cognizance of this difference now, under capitalism, and only individual anarchists, perhaps, could invest it with primary importance (if there still remain people among the anarchists who have learned nothing from the "Plekhanovite" conversion of the Kropotkins, the Graveses, the Cornelissens and other "stars" of anarchism into social-chauvinists or "anarcho-trenchists," as Ge, one of the few anarchists who have still preserved a sense of honour and a conscience, has put it).
But the scientific difference between Socialism and Communism is clear. What is usually called Socialism was termed by Marx the "first" or lower phase of communist society. In so far as the means of production become common property, the word "Communism" is also applicable here, providing we do not forget that this is not complete Communism. The great significance of Marx's explanations is that here, too, he consistently applies materialist dialectics, the theory of development, and regards Communism as something which develops out of capitalism. Instead of scholastically invented, "concocted" definitions and fruitless disputes about words (what is Socialism? what is Communism?), Marx gives an analysis of what might be called the stages of the economic ripeness of Communism.
In its first phase, or first stage, Communism cannot as yet be fully ripe economically and entirely free from traditions or traces of capitalism. Hence the interesting phenomenon that Communism in its first phase retains "the narrow horizon of bourgeois right." Of course, bourgeois right in regard to the distribution of articles of consumption inevitably presupposes the existence of the bourgeois state, for right is nothing without an apparatus capable of enforcing the observance of the standards of right.
It follows that under Communism there remains for a time not only bourgeois right, but even the bourgeois state without the bourgeoisie!
This may sound like a paradox or simply a dialectical conundrum, of which Marxism is often accused by people who do not take the slightest trouble to study its extraordinarily profound content.
But as a matter of fact, remnants of the old surviving in the new confront us in life at every step, both in nature and in society. And Marx did not arbitrarily insert a scrap of "bourgeois" right into Communism, but indicated what is economically and politically inevitable in a society emerging out of the womb of capitalism.
Democracy is of enormous importance to the working class in its struggle against the capitalists for its emancipation. But democracy is by no means a boundary not to be overstepped; it is only one of the stages on the road from feudalism to capitalism, and from capitalism to Communism.
Democracy means equality. The great significance of the proletariat's struggle for equality and of equality as a slogan will be clear if we correctly interpret it as meaning the abolition of classes. But democracy means only formal equality. And as soon as equality is achieved for all members of society in relation to ownership of the means of production, that is, equality of labour and equality of wages, humanity will inevitably be confronted with the question of advancing farther, from formal equality to actual equality, i.e., to the operation of the rule, "from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs." By what stages, by means of what practical measures humanity will proceed to this supreme aim -- we do not and cannot know. But it is important to realize how infinitely mendacious is the ordinary bourgeois conception of Socialism as something lifeless, petrified, fixed once for all, whereas in reality only under Socialism will a rapid, genuine, really mass forward movement, embracing first the majority and then the whole of the population, commence in all spheres of public and personal life.
Democracy is a form of the state, one of its varieties. Consequently, it, like every state, represents on the one hand the organized, systematic use of violence against persons; but on the other hand it signifies the formal recognition of equality of citizens, the equal right of all to determine the structure of, and to administer, the state. This, in turn, results in the fact that, at a certain stage in the development of democracy, it first welds together the class that wages a revolutionary struggle against capitalism -- the proletariat, and enables it to crush, smash to atoms, wipe off the face of the earth the bourgeois, even the republican bourgeois, state machine, the standing army, the police and the bureaucracy, and to substitute for them a more democratic state machine, but a state machine nevertheless, in the shape of the armed masses of workers who develop into a militia in which the entire population takes part.
Here "quantity turns into quality": such a degree of democracy implies overstepping the boundaries of bourgeois society, the beginning of its socialist reconstruction. If really all take part in the administration of the state, capitalism cannot retain its hold. And the development of capitalism, in turn, itself creates the premises that enable really "all" to take part in the administration of the state. Some of these premises are: universal literacy, which has already been achieved in a number of the most advanced capitalist countries, then the "training and disciplining" of millions of workers by the huge, complex, socialized apparatus of the postal service, railways, big factories, large-scale commerce, banking, etc., etc.
Given these economic premises it is quite possible, after the overthrow of the capitalists and the bureaucrats, to proceed immediately, overnight, to supersede them in the control of production and distribution, in the work of keeping account of labour and products by the armed workers, by the whole of the armed population. (The question of control and accounting should not be confused with the question of the scientifically trained staff of engineers, agronomists and so on. These gentlemen are working today in obedience to the wishes of the capitalists; they will work even better to morrow in obedience to the wishes of the armed workers.) “

My comment:
This was judged as «egalitarism » by the revisionists of the CCP …..And Boudewijn Deckers and Peter Franssen of the WPB agreed.

Lenin further:
“Accounting and control -- that is the main thing required for "arranging" the smooth working, the correct functioning of the first phase of communist society. All citizens are transformed here into hired employees of the state, which consists of the armed workers. All citizens become employees and workers of a single nationwide state "syndicate." All that is required is that they should work equally, do their proper share of work, and get equally paid. The accounting and control necessary for this have been s i m p l i f i e d by capitalism to the extreme and reduced to the extraordinarily simple operations -- which any literate person can perform of supervising and recording, knowledge of the four rules of arithmetic, and issuing appropriate receipts.
When the majority of the people begin independently and everywhere to keep such accounts and maintain such control over the capitalists (now converted into employees) and over the intellectual gentry who preserve their capitalist habits, this control will really become universal, general, popular; and there will be no way of getting away from it, there will be "nowhere to go."
The whole of society will have become a single office and a single factory, with equality of labour and equality of pay.”

My comment:
Politically and ideologically the building of the communes was for the workers and peasants the learning school to carry out the dictatorship of the workers in alliance with the peasants.
The dismantling of the communes and the cooperatives means a weakening of the dictatorship of the workers in alliance with the peasants. The rest of the policy « reform and opening » forms a preparation of a future dictatorship of the bourgeoisie.

Lenin further:
“But this "factory" discipline, which the proletariat, after defeating the capitalists, after overthrowing the exploiters, will extend to the whole of society, is by no means our ideal, or our ultimate goal. It is but a necessary step for the purpose of thoroughly purging society of all the infamies and abominations of capitalist exploitation, and for further progress.
From the moment all members of society, or even only the vast majority, have learned to administer the state themselves, have taken this work into their own hands, have "set going" control over the insignificant minority of capitalists, over the gentry who wish to preserve their capitalist habits and over the workers who have been profoundly corrupted by capitalism -- from this moment the need for government of any kind begins to disappear altogether. The more complete the democracy, the nearer the moment approaches when it becomes unnecessary. The more democratic the "state" which consists of the armed workers, and which is "no longer a state in the proper sense of the word," the more rapidly does every form of state begin to wither away.
For when a l l have learned to administer and actually do independently administer social production, independently keep accounts and exercise control over the idlers, the gentle folk, the swindlers and suchlike "guardians of capitalist traditions," the escape from this popular accounting and control will inevitably become so incredibly difficult, such a rare exception, and will probably be accompanied by such swift and severe punishment (for the armed workers are practical men and not sentimental intellectuals, and they will scarcely allow anyone to trifle with them), that the
n e c e s s i t y of observing the simple, fundamental rules of human intercourse will very soon become a h a b i t.
And then the door will be wide open for the transition from the first phase of communist society to its higher phase, and with it to the complete withering away of the state. »

My comment:
You see that for the revisionists, class struggle and dictatorship of the proletariat DISAPPEAR, where by Marx and Lenin in all they say and argue, their is a presumption of Class struggle and dictatorship of the proletariat. Of course you can selectively quote Marx and Lenin where they not always use those terms. Therefore you must study their texts as a whole.
Another problem for the revisionists is that in these large quotes of Lenin, Lenin SEEMS to say things which are in opposition with what the revisionists are claiming that Lenin says about his NEP, with their “proof” in the form of a selected and limited quote of Lenin.
In fact, when you read well, is Lenin saying (here above in the text out of “State and Revolution”) things that the revisionists are judging as « Left » deviations. (So where Mao Zedong with his Great Leap Forward and Cultural Revolution is also judged “left” by the actual revisionist, perhaps Mao is MORE Leninist than the revisionists selectively quoting Lenin)
So when the revisionists are using quotes of Lenin as their apology for their policy against the « left » policies of the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution, they have to ignore the quotes of Lenin here above. They mention the text, without quoting, while giving THEIR conclusions, interpretation or “summary”…. hoping that no-one will ever study the whole text.
I will go further now in a next article with the analysis of the revisionism of Boudewijn Deckers. In my email to him I named him empirist (empirism as a form of opportunism). I shall further explain the reason that for me, Boudewijn Deckers is NOW a conscientious revisionist an NOT a communist with political deviation of opportunism.

[1] When most of the functions of the state are reduced to such accounting and control by the workers themselves, it will cease to be a "political state" and the "public functions will lose their political character and be transformed into simple administrative functions" (cf. above. Chapter IV, § 2, Engels' "Controversy with the Anarchists").

vrijdag 12 september 2008

About revisionism (3)

I argued that after 1978, or better after the dead of Mao Zedong in 1976, the development of revisionism had a breakthrough in the CCP. (Read more about my arguing starting here)
As revisionism is the bourgeois line INSIDE the communist party, the objective goal of the revisionists is to PROTECT further existence of capitalism and the capitalist class, reject the possibility of socialist revolution and AFTER an eventually revolution to ABOLISH the dictatorship of the proletariat and
STOP all class struggle that is focused on the further development of socialism to communism.
Of course, I have to prove my statements. I will to this later.
But for the good understanding of my analysis, I will give now an example of how revisionism works and how revisionists ABUSE Marxism or the scientific socialism and spread IDEALISM and METAPHISICS under Marxist phraseology.
I will use the text of the Chinese economists of the CCP, I spoke about in my email (read here) to Boudewijn Deckers, leading cadre of the WPB. The text itself you can read here.
To give (only) an example of the manner of arguing of revisionists I give some quotes out of this text.

The Chinese author in the book “China’ socialist economy”:

“In the Manifesto of the Communist Party published in 1848, Marx and Engels analysed the innate contradictions of capitalism and predicted its inevitable doom and its replacement by a communist society free from all class exploitation. Later, in the light of historical experience, they gradually realized that communism would also develop from a lower to a higher stage. After the failure of the Paris Commune in 1871, Marx reviewed the new experience it had provided and, in his 1875 manuscript. Critique of the Gotha Programme advanced for the first time the thesis that "between capitalist and communist society lies the period of the revolutionary transformation of the one into the other" as well as the theory of the two stages of development of communist society.
According to this theory, at the lower stage of communism, i.e. the stage of socialism, public ownership of the means of production by the whole of society would be established and classes abolished. But the traditions and birthmarks of the old society would have to be retained and the principle of "to each according to his work" followed in the distribution of the means of subsistence.
Marx assumed that such a distribution would be conducted by means of labour certificates issued in direct proportion to the amount of labour provided by the producers and not through the market or the commodity-money relationship. Only at the higher stage of communism could payment for labour be abolished and the principle of “from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs" carried out. Marx lived in times when nobody had any practical experience with socialism. Thus he could not have elaborated on the laws of socialist economic development. Nevertheless, he applied "the theory of development - in its most consistent, complete, considered and pithy form - to modern capitalism. Naturally. Marx was faced with the problem of applying the theory both to the fortltcor7riitr: collapse of capitalism and to the future development of future communism."
[1] On the basis of his overall understanding of the law of social development, Marx criticized Lassalle's theory of undiminished, fair distribution of the proceeds of labour and made the above scientific prediction about future socialism and communism. A systematic exposition of these ideas of Marx was provided by Lenin in the State and Revolution. (…)
After the Third Plenary Session of its Eleventh Central Committee, the Party proposed various measures to carry out the principle of "to each according to his work", pointing out that wages should depend not only on the quantity and quality of each person's work labour time, labour intensity and the degrees of labour proficiency and complexity but also on the contribution each person makes to the state, that is, the economic results of his labour.
As the growth level of the productive forces in China is rather low, not only will collective economy exist for a fairly long time but it is necessary to arouse the initiative of those engaged in individual undertakings in the sector under collective economy, it is also necessary for the tens of thousands of small- and medium-sized enterprises under ownership by the whole people to assimilate some of the principles followed by units under collective ownership and lo link. To a certain extent, labour remuneration with the enterprises' profits.
At the higher stage of communism, the laws peculiar to the period of socialism will cease to function. Having accomplished their historical tasks, they will disappear from the scene of history.
But then the law of securing the maximum satisfaction of the ever-growing requirements in the life of the whole people through expanded production on the basis of higher scientific and technological standards will operate on a full scale. The needs of the people will grow with expanded production, never to be fully satisfied. Thus the contradiction between social production and social demand will exist forever and become the motive force of the progress of communist society.”

My comment:

The goal is to restore the commodity character of the workforce of the workers, and give possibility to get surplus value out of the labour of the workers. This for the elements of a future capitalist class who will once own the means of production, meanwhile CONTROLE the means of production long as all dictatorship of the proletariat is not totally abolished and replaced by the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie.
As long as dictatorship of the bourgeoisie has not been restored, the bourgeois elements has to use pseudo-Marxist arguing and try to get total control over the existing communist party and the minds of the workers.
The revisionists have IDEAS over how they see a « development of socialism » To PROVE this IDEA as a real necessary development they search quotes by Marx, Lenin and co that seems to PROVE their IDEAS.
The revisionist are cutting in texts of Marx and Lenin to let Marx and Lenin agree (out of their graves) with the IDEAS as laws of development or agree with their ideas about necessary political line. (PARTS of) concrete conclusions from a concrete analysis of a given concrete problem are for them GENERAL LAWS that fit for (judged as) « analogue » historical situations. « THAT is using scientific socialism » are they preaching to less formed party-members.

For example the author gives a quotation of Marx:

« Between capitalist and communist society lies the period of the revolutionary transformation of the one into the other", to conclude with «A systematic exposition of these ideas of Marx was provided by Lenin in the State and Revolution. »

Indeed Lenin gives (in State and Revolution) the SAME quote of Marx but he gives a longer quote:

« Marx continues:

"Between capitalist and communist society lies the period of the revolutionary transformation of the one into the other. There corresponds to this also a political transition period in which the state can be nothing but the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat." ….. »

And Lenin himself gives clearly another interpretation than the Chinese author of the CCP:

« Marx bases this conclusion on an analysis of the role played by the proletariat in modern capitalist society, on the data concerning the development of this society, and on the irreconcilability of the antagonistic interests of the proletariat and the bourgeoisie.
Previously the question was put in this way: in order to achieve its emancipation, the proletariat must overthrow the bourgeoisie, win political power and establish its revolutionary dictatorship.
Now the question is put somewhat differently: the transition from capitalist society -- which is developing towards Communism -- to a communist society is impossible without a "political transition period," and the state in this period can only be the revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat. »

The Chinese author speaks about salary or remuneration of the workers while quoting Marx. Let’s face a bigger quote out of Marx’ « Critique of the Gotha Programme »:

« Let us take first of all the words "proceeds of labour" in the sense of the product of labour; then the co-operative proceeds of labour are the total social product.
From this must now be deducted:

, cover for replacement of the means of production used up.
Secondly, additional portion for expansion of production.
Thirdly, reserve or insurance funds against accidents, dislocations caused by natural calamities, etc.
These deductions from the "undiminished proceeds of labour" are an economic necessity and their magnitude is to be determined according to available means and forces, and partly by computation of probabilities, but they are in no way calculable by equity.
There remains the other part of the total product, intended to serve as means of consumption.
Before this is divided among individuals, there has to be deducted again, from it:

First, the general costs of administration not directly belonging to production
This part will, from the outset, be very considerably restricted in comparison with present-day society and it diminishes in proportion as the new society develops.
Secondly, that which is intended for the common satisfaction of needs, such as schools, health services, etc.
From the outset this part grows considerably in comparison with present-day society and it grows in proportion as the new society develops.

Thirdly, funds for those unable to work
, etc., in short, for what is included under so-called official poor relief today.
Only now do we come to the "distribution" which the programme, under Lassallean influence, alone has in view in its narrow fashion, namely, to that part of the means of consumption which is divided among the individual producers of the co-operative society.
The "undiminished proceeds of labour" have already surreptitiously become converted into the "diminished" proceeds, although what is withheld from the producer in his capacity as a private individual benefits him directly or indirectly in his capacity as a member of society.
Just as the phrase of the "undiminished proceeds of labour" has disappeared, so now does the phrase "the proceeds of labour" disappear altogether.
Within the co-operative society based on common ownership of the means of production, the producers do not exchange their products; just as little does the labour employed on the products appear here as the value of these products, as an objective quality possessed by them, since now, in contrast to capitalist society, individual labour no longer exists in an indirect fashion but directly as a component part of the total labour. The phrase "proceeds of labour," objectionable also today on account of its ambiguity, thus loses all meaning.
What we have to deal with here is a communist society, not as it has developed on its own foundations, but, on the contrary, just as it emerges from capitalist society; which is thus in every respect, economically, morally and intellectually, still stamped with the birth marks of the old society from whose womb it emerges. Accordingly, the individual producer receives back from society -- after the deductions have been made -- exactly what he gives to it. What he has given to it is his individual quantum of labour. For example, the social working day consists of the sum of the individual hours of work; the individual labour time of the individual producer is the part of the social working day contributed by him, his share in it. He receives a certificate from society that he has furnished such and such an amount of labour (after deducting his labour for the common funds), and with this certificate he draws from the social stock of means of consumption as much as the same amount of labour costs. The same amount of labour which he has given to society in one form he receives back in another. »

For my, it is clear:
What Marx here describes, is in fact corresponding with the policy that the workers, under leadership of cadres and members of the CCP (working among them and with them), tried to implement in the cooperatives an later in the communes. That was in fact a part of the essence of the campaign « learning from Datchai » (as I will explain later). As Marx says (and that is NOT quoted by the revisionist « quote-pickers » :

Within the co-operative society based on common ownership of the means of production, the producers do not exchange their products; just as little does the labour employed on the products appear here as the value of these products, as an objective quality possessed by them, since now, in contrast to capitalist society, individual labour no longer exists in an indirect fashion but directly as a component part of the total labour

How the revisionists leaders of the CCP in charge after 1978 applied a policy, AGAINST the analysis that Marx made in « Critic on the Gotha program » (so selective quoted by them) you can read (as example, as an illustration, not as a overall proof) in a part of a text of William Hinton, I put here on my web log)
In a next article (to read here)I will put Lenin
s analyze of Marx Critique of the Gotha Programme in his « State and Revolution » against the analyse of the revisionists in the CCP.

[1] V.I. Lenin. The State and Revolution,. FLP. Beijing. 1976. pp. 102-03.

woensdag 10 september 2008

About revisionism (2)

In February 2004 Boudewijn Deckers (leading cadre of the WPB) wrote an article in Solidair, the weekly newspaper of the WPB about the development of socialism in China. (You can read it here in French) It was a résumé of his article in Marxist Studies. (You can read the first article her about this topic)
I react, not with an INTERN note as a member, but with an e-mail as an attentive reader of Solidair. I sent this mail to the chief-editor of Solidair (David Pestieau) and to the editorial staff. My intention was to have a discussion IN the columns of Solidair. This would be good and very possible, I thought. My intention was NOT to have a personal polemic OUTSIDE every control of the other readers and the editorial staff….. Boudewijn Deckers, as you will see, thought otherwise….

Now follows a short exchange of mails.

My mail:

Date: Monday 16 February
Subject: To Boudewijn about his article about socialism in China

As Boudewijn write an article about China in Solidair, than is that in fact the point of view of the WPB. He is an openly known national cadre of the WPB.
So then, the purpose of an article about socialism in China is:
- To make people enthusiastic about the alternative for capitalism with a concrete example of existing socialism
- To indicate clearly how the building of socialism proceeds
- To indicate the problems and contradictions that can occur
- To evaluate how a sister-party is working, in a spirit of critic and self-critic, mutual respect but with a sharp analysis of the struggle between to lines were he is aware of. And so he gives a friendly support to a sister-party.
While learning as much as possible as communist party.
This is what Ludo Martens (president of the WPB) did in 1989. He took the responsibility to correct an ameliorate the political line of the editorial article then (I think it was called « A bloody drama in Beijing »)
He explained the contradictions in the Communist Party of China and the double role that Deng Xiaoping plaid in it. A certain right-opportunism was the reason of not good handling the political situation. This gave fuel to the development of a contra revolutionary movement that made a clever use of a certain discontent by a relatively little part of the population. There was then a contra revolutionary uprising. It was CORRECT of the government of the Peoples Republic of China to react on the VIOLENT acting of that contra revolution. It was NECESSARY to protect the existence of socialism in China.
Boudewijn disregard all this:
« In 1989, after what happened on Tien AnMen, we had the impression that capitalism developed wildly and was threatening to become the chief aspect in China » (hereby then the note: Ludo Martens, Solidair nr 23, June 7th 1989)
Of course Boudewijn does not say it clearly, but with HIS very short résumé -in one sentence - of all the articles that wrote Ludo Martens at THAT moment (and you have to be a weirdo as me to do a research in all those articles of 1989) he disregard all analyze about the struggle between two lines in the CCP… and just repeats the points of views of Deng Xiaoping (in the article in Marxist Studies). In Solidair he writes: « The CCP seems to be rather unified about the actual policy of reforming ».
On a very essential question « China had the last thirty years very thorough reforms. Don
t lead this to a deviation of socialism? » he answers very vaguely and evasively. He is not analyzing (and as a cadre of a party that bases itself on scientific socialism he should know to analyze)
You can learn MORE about the development of the points of view of the CCP and about an analysis of it reading the OLD articles of Ludo Martens of many years ago…
Boudewijn is starting from only his personal impressions during his last visit, actual statistical facts and from the answers he gets on personal asked questions in China. That is the base of HIS analysis. For me is that empiric, not Marxist!
« You cannot understand the policy of the CCP and recognize the realizations when you don
t accept this reality », he wrote.
The economic policy of the CCP TODAY is based on (an) analyze(s) that the CCP, or at least a certain number of cadres made in the years 1978-begin eighties. Those analyses are available. In those analyses they put forward what they see as laws of development of socialism, and how they argued about the Marxist character of their analyses and conclusions.
It is from THOSE analyses that Boudewijn ought to start
I send as attachment with this mail the conclusions of a study made by some economists of the CCP on instruction of the CCP. In this study they justify how far they base themselves on Marxism and for example on the book of Stalin « Economic problems of socialism in the USSR ».
That study of Stalin is very pertinent. I think that you can use it as scientific analysis, as reference, about the laws of development of socialism. In those conclusions the Chinese communists are arguing how THEY understand that analysis and how they want to applied it in the concrete Chinese situation: for example about the law of value, about market economy en their possibilities and limitations in a socialist plan economy.
I think that you cannot « understand the policy of the CCP and recognize the realizations » when you have not made that study. (The theory as concentrated direct experience, read about this in « about the practice » of Mao, a text that he wrote AGAINST dogmatism and empirism in the CCP)
I want also recommend the studies made by William Hinton about the effect of the reforms on the agrarian sector.
The points of view of Boudewijn give fuel to the reasoning of the bourgeoisie that China is the proof that for « modernizing » « socialist » solutions - the « inefficiency » of a socialist plan economy with state-enterprises - fail and therefore privatizations and private ownership of means of production and wage-labor leading to private appropriation of the surplus value has to be implemented.
« According to the CCP, the reforming of the state-enterprises is globally finished. The biggest part is privatized. The around 15.000 big enterprises that according our conversation-partners are still in the hands of the state have made PROFIT for the first time, what give working-space to the state. »
Can you speak about state-capitalism or still about socialism? Is this a correct method strengthening socialism or can you speak about opportunism endangering socialism later? I think that a study of Stalin
s « economic problems of socialism in the USSR » can bring forward some Marxist developed point of view (as the possibility of making of PROFIT by socialist state-enterprises… for example)
Or for example a comparison of the principles developed by Stalin in that study and the implementation of those principles in the USSR by a Communist Party that made hereby right opportunist mistakes. (Thereabout gives the book of Ludo « another view on Stalin a lot of elements)
Now Boudewijn is only complaining: « It is impossible for us to judge all aspects of this question. We don
t know why the experience of industrialization, the collectivization and the centralized plan economy of the thirties can not be applied a way or another in China of today. We can also not make a complete balance of the whole Chinese experience until the end of the seventies, nor the later ones. »
And this should satisfy our curiosity…

Greetings of a concerned reader of Solidair and Marxist Studies


PS In attachment the conclusions out of the book « Chinas socialist economy »

In the attachment was the chapter « Conclusions » out of the book “China's socialist economy”, First Edition 1981 Revised Edition 1986 ISBN-083SI-1592.5 (Hard Cover) ISBN-098351.1703.0 (Paperback) Copyright 1986 by Foreign Languages Press Published by the Foreign Languages Press, 24 Baiwanzhuang Road, Bering, China. Printed by the L. Rex Offset Printing Co. Ltd. Man Hing Industrial Godown Bldg., 14/F. No.4, Yip Fat St., Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kong
Distributed by China International Book Trading Corporation (Guoji Shudian), P. 0. Box 399. Beijing, China[1]

Apparently my mail to Solidair was forwarded to the personal email account of Boudewijn Deckers.
So Boudewijn react on my readers-mail, not with a reaction in, for example, the readers-section of Solidair. No, he preferred to make a « personal » reaction, far away from discussion or struggle between two lines.

From: (Boudewijn Deckers)…… (so NOT with ……
Sent: Monday, February 16, 2004.…
To: (Nico)……


Thanks for your reaction.
I don
t have any time to answer to all your remarks
To answer a remark or a question seriously can need more time than the making of the remark itself.
« So then, the purpose of an article about socialism in China is:….. »: as far as I know, there are no general rules to what an article about China necessary must correspond. Of course you have the right to have your expectations. But when an article not corresponds with those, it doesn
t mean that it is not to the point. The interview-article is an elaboration of a rapport that the delegation made after her visit to China, prepared and followed by a study of some documents of the Chinese CP- but NOT of an all-side study. To reassure you: Ludo Martens himself found this rapport important enough to publicize it. This doesn’tt mean that it should be necessary his vision, if he could work further on the subject.
Fifteen years ago we were totally engaged with the beginning of the anti-communist campaign. Today there are about five countries that refer to communism. Today the mean question is restoring the unity of the communist world movement, above all differences of opinion.
Today it is necessary to be on our guard for dogmatist behavior certainly toward other
s and toward those 5 socialist countries of the Third World.-who each for themselves search their own way to socialism. The facts are that China developed not into that chaos that we (and I also) with the Politic Bureau and Central Committee feared that would be created, in 1989.Ludo Martens made the remark after our visit of 1996, that we made tó left and narrow sight evaluations at that time (we spoke to quickly about « restoring of capitalism »), not beginning with the spectacular realizations. While revisionism in the Soviet Union was coupled with a fast and continue degradation on economic level, with growing demobilization and loss of motivation by the population, in China however we conclude already 20 years the opposite. He judged that the reality forced us to recognize that things are more complex. Better that we made not to fast our conclusions….
s a complete mystery where that you get it from that I take distance in the article in Marxist Studies from the repression of the counterrevolutionary uprising of Tien Anmen. As far as I know it is not treated in the article-interview. You can be sure: We have repeated again in China that we supported the reaction of the government on that moment and that we stay supporting it.
The Chinese CP does not repeat the analyses that she made at the beginning of the reforms. They say today that the way that the Soviet Union has followed is not applicable on China. There are clearly points of view in the CCP that say that Stalin made there some important mistakes. But I have no documentation about that although I know that those documents exist - only in Chinese. As I say in Marxist Studies that question stays for us unanswered.
As Ludo Martens wrote in « the Collapse of the Soviet Union » Lenin himself suggested that there are more and different experiences in socialism needed, before real laws can be theorized. « State capitalism or socialism » is precisely a too simple way of schematizing that we want not to apply. As we say in the article, in China exist now a mixed economy in a socialist state leaded by the Communist Party. As ludo Martens said earlier: « in a Third World country the building up of socialism needs probably a certain level of development of capitalism ». In the industrial countries we have highly developed modern production forces. In a Third World country, still mainly agrarian, it is not the case! How China will develop I don
t know. I have also my questions and fears - but that is another matter.
And yes we (the president included) think that we should be very careful in our judgment of the developments in China be on our guard for to fast analyzing. I think that we asked in our text in Marxist Studies enough critical questions our made enough critical remarks, starting with an attitude of support to the Chinese Marxist-Leninists. We make our image of how and what socialism in Belgium and in the imperialist country will be more or less. We are responsible for the line that we give to the revolutionary struggle in Belgium. But we have to be on our guard not to judge to fast about the line that the CCP follows in a totally other situation.
That a serious study of the economic and political evolutions in China is preferable, I can agree. That it will lead to argued critics on the actual policy of the CCP, it seems to be evident to me. But that was not the subject of this rapport-article-interview. And it has not to be necessarily so.
These were some fast remarks at your remarks.



Then I reacted again with a mail in which I thanked him for his fast reaction and that I don’t want to make a personal discussion (between only our two) because that would lead to nothing.

Dear Boudewijn,

Thank you for your fast reaction It gives by the original sender, so by me, at least the subjective feeling to be taken seriously.
I just want to react on it. You have not to be afraid that I want to start now an email polemic. So I don
t expect now another elaborated answer to this.
But to make something clear: to the base of my first email laid a subjective feeling of disappointment and annoy.
Personally (and I should perhaps read the texts again) I found nothing new in your analysis.
As far as I know has the WPB never said (I think I have NOT read it nowhere in the articles from Ludo of
89 an 90 about CHINA) only perhaps to hastily about the USSR: « Restore of capitalism ».
If the Politic Bureau or the Central Committee feared that China would develop in a chaos, I don
t know. I dont have found it (yet) in any article that I red in 89 and 90. Contrary, I found the articles of Ludo very equilibrated and comforting. They were refreshment on all those « left » or « right » panic reactions elsewhere in the press.
At THAT moment the point of view of the WPB (at least that from Ludo) was: study the things thoroughly, not prepossessed or dogmatic, we can not know all things instantly.
I, for myself, collected al lot of material and study al lot. So I have made photocopies of a book, of which you have got the conclusions (in the former attachment). This book I have borrowed that time from someone who was himself member of the WPB or at least known in the circles of the WPB.
So I presumed that inside the WPB certainly by the delegations to China that book was studied IN ADVANCE. That was the reason that I expected a deeper analysis of the building up of socialism in China in Marxist Studies. So I bought it at once…..
I mean that if Ludo Martens should stay fifteen years to the same point of view « that we should be careful with our critical remarks about revolutionaries of a certain country », he never would have written those books about Congo or the rising of revisionism in Eastern Europe and the USSR.
For the revolutionaries in Congo and in the East, and for us those analyses form a contribution to KNOWLEDGE as base for their and our ACTING.
To give one example:
In that document of Stalin and (as far as I can see- I don
t have red so much yet) in accordance with the conclusions of Marx and Engels, the Chinese communists introduced again the principle of work remuneration « for each in accordance with his of her work ».
They add to it the principles of quantity and quality of the work done, the intensity of the work, the degree of technical skill or schooling and the complexity of the work.
In 1986 they add to it: the measure of contribution of the person to the state, so the economic results of the work of a person.
I want to make here some remarks to this (and perhaps I have not enough knowledge about China AND the applying of Marxism):
« to each according to his or her work » is applicable to WORK remuneration (so for people who just can live - also in the first stage of communism - of the selling of their workforce and whose work forms a part of the overall production of material richness of the country)
Is their not a danger hidden (and that should NOW well been KNOWN) in allowing the Chinese capitalists, to “enrich themselves” ?I it so or is it not so, that it is (legally!)allowed to them to keep for themselves a big part of the PROFIT of the enterprise, they manage (or even partly OWN) as personal income (and that is no remuneration of WORK as far as I know) Because the ECONOMIC results with which their enterprise contribute to the GNP is bigger when those capitalists lower the production costs (and not allow that the salary of the workers raise to fast) or raise the productivity (and the exploitation?) of the workers. Lays there not clearly the danger of development of the capitalists as a class?… that danger not becoming bigger when it is allowed to capitalists to become member of the communist party?

I mean that the WPB should know to make a judgment of the Marxist argumentation of the CCP to defend their economic policy. And when the conclusion of the WPB should be that it is a real Marxist analysis than during a next visit they could by asking questions or collecting material see if their actual economic policy is in accordance with their original justification. At that moment it would be possible to lay a base of the knowledge in a new Communist International about the « laws of socialism ».
t see it as a too personal critic. I just give here my personal (and so perhaps subjective) meaning about the articles in Marxist Studies and Solidair.

Friendly, Nico

In a next article (you can read here) I analyze further Boudewijns argumentation.
But first I will do some analyzing (you can read here) of the text I send in attachment to Boudewijn.

[1] In the next article (you can read here) more about this book or at least that chapter…..