revolution banner

Welcome to the revcom.us forum

The revcom.us forum is focusing discussion on the New Year's Statement from Bob Avakian, A NEW YEAR, THE URGENT NEED FOR A RADICALLY NEW WORLD—FOR THE EMANCIPATION OF ALL HUMANITY, and related questions.

We have posted, to begin, questions that were raised by participants during the February 6 "Zoom into the Revolution" online seminar. We invite everyone to submit your own comments and questions, including responding to those of other participants in this forum.

Does BA seriously think that the name—the words—“The New Communism” will ever fly in the USA?

Does BA seriously think that the name—the words—“The New Communism” will ever fly in the USA? The word, communism, alone has been demonized since forever. Why push this name which will be a failure. Use another name. The People’s Party? Something that represents the ideas of equality and the end of capitalist hegemony.

I know that a few people looked into this based on that alone that it’s labeled the new communism. Something has to be different about this way, than of the old ways. I’m not sure how many people really knew what happened during the few times that was tried and failed or defeated. Or weather they have other information of the past events they are comparing to the book. But they wanted to check it out based off it’s being said or labeled to be the New Communism...

I think it's important to start with: what is the problem and what is the solution? and also, very importantly, what method we are using to determine this, and analyze events in society and the world more generally. The problem is capitalism-imperialism, which constantly regenerates and perpetuates horror after horror for the masses of humanity, from climate destruction to imperialist wars, white supremacist terror and police murder and mass incarceration. The lives of literally billions of people are ground up, cut short, or their vast creative and full human potential is vitiated and snuffed out. We can identify the common cause and root source of the problem in the mode of production - in how society and specifically the economy is organized.

Under capitalism, we have a situation where the socially produced wealth of society is appropriated privately - by a class of capitalist (and imperialist) exploiters, and where the driving force of the economy is competition between these capitalists (they are compelled to feverishly compete with each other, lest they be "eaten up" by other capitalist sharks). This stands in sharp contrast not only to other ideas we can dream up about how society could be organized differently - but also to how we really *could* be living, in this real world. The material basis exists to implement this, given how capitalism has created a situation in which socialized production has become the way in which everything is produced in the world today.

To quote Bob Avakian, from his speech Why We Need An Actual Revolution and How We Can Really Make Revolution (2018), "The solution is to replace this system of private appropriation with a system where the socially produced wealth is also socially appropriated (by a government actually representing the masses of people, instead of a class of capitalist exploiters) and this wealth is utilized, on the basis of conscious planning, in the interests and for the benefit of the people of society, and ultimately the whole world. (How this can be done is spelled out in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America.)..."

But socialism is not just an alternative form of organizing society unto itself - it is also a society in motion and in transformation - it is most essentially *aiming* for the goal of communism.

The goal of this revolution, after all, is to achieve communism, throughout the world - to finally end all forms of exploitation and oppression. It is not for revenge, nor is it for any vague concept of "equality", or trying to make the existing system better. A communist revolution is the most radical revolution in human history. It involves the most thoroughgoing, radical rupture with all the prevailing traditional property relations, and also traditional ideas.

As BA cites in THE NEW COMMUNISM, "Marx said that the goal, the final aim, of the communist revolution is the abolition of all class distinctions among people; the abolition of all the production relations (the economic relations) on which those class distinctions rest; the abolition of all the social relations—such as the relations between men and women, or between different peoples and nations, or between intellectuals and people who do manual labor—that go along with and correspond to those production relations; and the revolutionization of all the ideas that go along with those social relations."

So THIS, and nothing less than this, is the goal of this revolution - the emancipation of all humanity. It's not a "populist" or "people's movement" in the wrong sense - and because we aren't that, and we are basing ourselves on a scientific understanding and analysis of the problem/solution (briefly outlined above, and gone into in considerable depth in Bob Avakian's works), we should step to people with *that*, as communists, not pretending to be, or posturing as, anything else or anything less.

And so what if most people have their heads up their asses and don't know shit about communism? All the more reason we need to provoke them to actually learn about it, challenge them to take up a scientific method and approach, and apply it to all spheres of life and the struggle, and inspire them with the liberating vision of a possible new world that such a method and approach reveals. AND all that involves sharply polemicizing against, and yes, when necessary waging struggle, even sharp struggle, with individuals. We shouldn't go by, or base ourselves on, what "most people are thinking" or even what they are doing at any given time. To do that would be actually betraying the masses of people, and confining ourselves to tinkering within the confines of what exists. And, to paraphrase BA, the politics of the "possible" really are the politics of *monstrosity* - and this is even more the case today, with this fascist juggernaut and very bad political polarization that now exists.

I think the topic may not have relevance in that when seeking acceptance from mainstream American the term communism is enough to immediately turn people off, much as Rosie O'Donnell said about the Refuse Fascism moniker. I don't think you need to mislead people or belittle the cause. Some mainstream "re-branding" or somehow utilizing pop-culture and/or social media. I don't care what it's called, I'd love to see one of Bob's videos go viral.

In reply to by Jim Rohan

To me, it is the question of truth and being scientific.

Many people used to think the world was flat (and a few people still do). The world is round (actually it is an oblong sphere), and it took science to answer the question (and some people were actually burned at the stake for fighting for this correct understanding: Copernicus, Giordano Bruno).

Communism has a specific definition and scientific outlook and approach to understanding the real world, and how to emancipate all of humanity. Many people have a wrong understanding of communism (yes, there have been mistakes made under the name of communism, as outlined in BA's New Communism and other articles), and the current rulers of capitalism/imperialism are doing everything they can to subvert this understanding and truth (much the way the Vatican did so 400 years ago) as it is not in their interests to be scientific and tell the truth. And this phenomenon has become much worse in the last 4 years under Trump and his fascist regime.

"Changing the name" won't resolve this contradiction. Fighting for the truth and objective reality with a scientific method and approach will.

Add new comment

Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
Name and Title fields are optional. Comment field must be completed.

 

Image

NEW YEAR'S STATEMENT BY BOB AVAKIAN, 2021

 

 

Sign up here to be part of the mass movement for revolution.

 

About the revcom.us forum