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Thread: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

  1. #16
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    I think the struggle was against a colonial power and that race was only superficially what it was about.
    So the colonial power was was an internal one, a "white minority state" but "race was only superficially what it was about"?


    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    The limits of the struggle in South Africa were that, as in Ireland, it didn't go beyond the level of replacing an imperial/colonial power with a local bourgeoisie. The economy remained in the same hands.
    If the colonial power was an "internal one" then these two sentences are entirely contradictory.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

  2. #17
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    So the colonial power was was an internal one, a "white minority state" but "race was only superficially what it was about"?


    If the colonial power was an "internal one" then these two sentences are entirely contradictory.
    I don't think so. The apartheid regime I think was correctly defined by the ANC as colonial. The real content of the struggle was against exploitation of the mass of people by a colonial elite. The ANC defined itself as a national liberation movement.

    Interesting to compare that with the situation with the North of Ireland today - by no means identical, but still worth thinking about.
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    I don't think so. The apartheid regime I think was correctly defined by the ANC as colonial. The real content of the struggle was against exploitation of the mass of people by a colonial elite. The ANC defined itself as a national liberation movement.

    Interesting to compare that with the situation with the North of Ireland today - by no means identical, but still worth thinking about.
    The apartheid regime was colonial, it was instigated by the Boers whom settled there and in the classic sense of stratification of the society, oppressed the black population. The black population believed the British in a way would provide a better alternative to the Boers whom were very nationalistic and viewed the local black population with suspicion.
    History is the only true teacher, the revolution the best school for the proletariat - Rosa Luxembourg

  4. #19
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    I don't think so. The apartheid regime I think was correctly defined by the ANC as colonial. The real content of the struggle was against exploitation of the mass of people by a colonial elite. The ANC defined itself as a national liberation movement.
    It is totally contradictory as far as I can see.

    You wrote:

    The limits of the struggle in South Africa were that, as in Ireland, it didn't go beyond the level of replacing an imperial/colonial power with a local bourgeoisie. The economy remained in the same hands.
    If the economy remained in the same hands (which it did, by and large) as you assert in statement [2] ...( i.e. the hands of a "colonial elite" in the ANC analysis) then nothing was replaced as you assert in statement [1]. The same bourgeoisie remained in power (which it pretty much did). There was no replacement of a colonial power with a local bourgeoisis. (though there has been a growth of black businessmen)

    As an aside I would note that I think the ANC analysis which you are embracing is incorrect and that is why you are running into logical problems.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    It is totally contradictory as far as I can see.

    You wrote:

    If the economy remained in the same hands (which it did, by and large) as you assert in statement [2] ...( i.e. the hands of a "colonial elite" in the ANC analysis) then nothing was replaced as you assert in statement [1]. The same bourgeoisie remained in power (which it pretty much did). There was no replacement of a colonial power with a local bourgeoisis. (though there has been a growth of black businessmen)

    As an aside I would note that I think the ANC analysis which you are embracing is incorrect and that is why you are running into logical problems.
    I was made the distinction between political power as a whole (there was a significant shift, and control over the economy.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_South_Africa

    Perhaps you would give your analysis and a critique of that of the ANC's, on the issue of colonialism ?
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    I was made the distinction between political power as a whole (there was a significant shift, and control over the economy.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_South_Africa
    Where did you make that distinction? You stated that the struggle had replaced the "colonial power" with a local bourgeoisie but no more.

    I'm not sure in what sense you can talk about a bourgeoisie without reference to the economy. There is such a thing as a "comprador bourgeoisie" which basically has political power and serves foreign capital but it still defined in relation to the economy. I have never heard of a bourgeoisie that is defined in a way that is totally unrelated to the economy where there is a distinction made between political power and control over the economy. According to you a new local bourgeoisie came to power in South Africa but nothing changed with regard to the economy. So how do you define the white owners of means of production in South Africa? They are no longer part of an "internal colonial power" because that has been overthrown but neither are they part of the "new local bourgeoisie which has replaced them." They have become ghosts?


    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Perhaps you would give your analysis and a critique of that of the ANC's, on the issue of colonialism ?
    Perhaps. Right now I am more interested in looking at the logic of your statement.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

  7. #22
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Lord View Post
    Where did you make that distinction? You stated that the struggle had replaced the "colonial power" with a local bourgeoisie but no more.

    I'm not sure in what sense you can talk about a bourgeoisie without reference to the economy. There is such a thing as a "comprador bourgeoisie" which basically has political power and serves foreign capital but it still defined in relation to the economy. I have never heard of a bourgeoisie that is defined in a way that is totally unrelated to the economy where there is a distinction made between political power and control over the economy. According to you a new local bourgeoisie came to power in South Africa but nothing changed with regard to the economy. So how do you define the white owners of means of production in South Africa? They are no longer part of an "internal colonial power" because that has been overthrown but neither are they part of the "new local bourgeoisie which has replaced them." They have become ghosts?

    Perhaps. Right now I am more interested in looking at the logic of your statement.
    This is what I said.

    The limits of the struggle in South Africa were that, as in Ireland, it didn't go beyond the level of replacing an imperial/colonial power with a local bourgeoisie. The economy remained in the same hands.
    The distinction should be plain enough.

    Your formulations are nothing to do with what I wrote.

    There was a shift in power from the old elite, politically, but there was a gigantic compromise on the economy, which rested in the control not only of the old political powers but also the World Bank.

    Under the ANC, there has been a Thatcherite approach to the economy, with privatisation and wage cuts, and nearly half the population unemployed, and the majority are "living" on under 2 dollars a day. But there is one man one vote.
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Is this based on a "stageist" approach to social revolution ?
    It was and continues to be classic 'stages theory' and the SACP are up to their necks in the blood of the South African working class defending it.

    among the latest pronouncements from the SACP

    The SA Communist Party on Wednesday vowed to defend President Jacob Zuma against being blamed for the country's problems.
    The people of this country believe and trust the leadership of the ANC led Alliance, led by President Jacob Zuma, representing the most genuine progressive and committed force for meaningful change in our country.

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    What is the SP view of the Irish Trade Unions, in comparison with the South African ones ?
    Interview with Mametlwe Sebei, Democratic Socialist Movement (CWI South Africa)

    http://www.socialistworld.net/doc/6068
    Last edited by Jolly Red Giant; 18-12-2012 at 06:41 PM.

  9. #24
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly Red Giant View Post
    It was and continues to be classic 'stages theory' and the SACP are up to their necks in the blood of the South African working class defending it.

    Interview with Mametlwe Sebei, Democratic Socialist Movement (CWI South Africa)

    http://www.socialistworld.net/doc/6068
    Can't listen to it right now, would you be able to respond to this question -

    What is the SP view of the Irish Trade Unions, in comparison with the South African ones ?
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

  10. #25
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    would you be able to respond to this question -
    The leadership of the Irish trade unions have been complicit in the massacre of irish workers.

  11. #26
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly Red Giant View Post
    The leadership of the Irish trade unions have been complicit in the massacre of irish workers.
    I assume you mean this metaphorically.

    In South Africa, new unions are being built.

    Do you think that is the way to go in Ireland ?
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

  12. #27
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    I assume you mean this metaphorically.
    Actually - I left out the word 'not' by mistake - the irony of it

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post

    In South Africa, new unions are being built.
    Yes they are - and the DSM in south Africa has played a significant role in this development.

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Do you think that is the way to go in Ireland ?
    At this point - no - the leadership of the trade unions in this country currently have a vice-like grip over the unions. However, when the workers in this country (and its a case of when - not if) move into the front lines of the class struggle then the current leadership can be swept away with a minor swipe of the hand. If the leadership resist the movement of workers from below and completely strangle the trade union movement as it currently exists (as the leadership of COSATU and the SACP have in South Africa) then it would be necessary to move to establish new unions. However, the power and position of the Irish bureaucrats is immesurably weaker than COSATU and the SACP in South Africa and They would not be able to use the entire might of the state apparatus against workers in this country - unlike what is happening in South Africa.

  13. #28
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Perhaps you would give your analysis and a critique of that of the ANC's, on the issue of colonialism ?
    The theory of "colonialism of a specal type" (CST) although embraced by the ANC was actually a creation of the SACP.

    A documant entitled "the Road to South African Freedom: Programme of the South African Communist Party", published in 1963, inaugerated CST as a theory which held that the structure of the South African economy and social order was in all essentials identical with the relationship betweena a colonial power and its colony. A key passage in the manifesto claims that although South Africa may not be strictly speaking a colony but an independent country, nevertheless:

    "... masses of our people enjoy neither independence nor freedom. The conceding of independence to South Africa in 1910 [...] was designed in the interests of imperialism. Power was transferred not into the hands of the masses of the people of South Africa, but into the hands of the minority alone. The evils of colonialism, insofar as the non-White majority was concerned [were] perpetuated and reinforced. A new type of colonialism was developed, in which the oppressing White nation occupied the same territory as the the oppressed people themselves and lived side by side with them."
    I'm having a look at it for you.
    Last edited by Sam Lord; 19-12-2012 at 07:38 PM.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

  14. #29
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Jolly Red Giant View Post
    At this point - no - the leadership of the trade unions in this country currently have a vice-like grip over the unions. However, when the workers in this country (and its a case of when - not if) move into the front lines of the class struggle then the current leadership can be swept away with a minor swipe of the hand. If the leadership resist the movement of workers from below and completely strangle the trade union movement as it currently exists (as the leadership of COSATU and the SACP have in South Africa) then it would be necessary to move to establish new unions. However, the power and position of the Irish bureaucrats is immesurably weaker than COSATU and the SACP in South Africa and They would not be able to use the entire might of the state apparatus against workers in this country - unlike what is happening in South Africa.
    The Socialist Party was established by people who spent nearly two decades in the Labour party. In that time they opposed any attempt to establish parties to the left of the LP. In was their position that the Labour Party at that point in time was a good enough instrument for the movement of the working class and that all progressive individuals should join and help move it to the "left". (Then when they were expelled from the Labour Party for factionalism or whatever they decided that it was in fact an outright capitalist party and should not be supported .. but that's another story).

    I'm seeing an amusing echo of this in JRG's assertion that workers in Ireland today do not need new independent trade unions, the existing ones are apparently good enough for defending workers rights. Apart from the amusing echo it should be noted that the SP's affinity with the current existing unions is probably deeply rooted in outlooks formed during decades campaigning for the Labour Party.

    There is absolutely no reason that I can see why workers in Ireland should not establish new unions. Anything which breaks up the existing hegemony has to be positive.

    And, bty, the notion that Trade Union bureaucrats anywhere are able to unleash "the entire might of the state apparatus against workers" is a ridiculous one. There is no country on the planet, South Africa included, where Trade Unions control the state.
    Last edited by Sam Lord; 07-12-2013 at 01:37 AM.
    Do not rejoice in his defeat, you men. For though the world has stood up and stopped the bastard, the (female dog) that bore him is in heat again. Bertolt Brecht

  15. #30
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    Default Re: Mandela was in fact a member of the Communist Party

    If new unions were established, how would they be different from the present ones?

    Would the leaders be elected? Would they be professionals or serving for fixed terms? Would they enter wage agreements? Would they ally themselves to political parties?

    For any union to be successful, it would have to show real gains in terms and conditions for its members. We have had many examples over the years in transport and elsewhere but eventually, the new union resembles very closely the old model.

    I don't have a solution and pose these questions to genuinely seek enlightenment.

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