Ho Chi Minh and Malcolm X were born today, colonialists fucking tremble.
(Picture via freedom road socialist organization)
Ho Chi Minh and Malcolm X were born today, colonialists fucking tremble.
— Eldridge Clever
Sometimes it is very clear that the BPP studied the Juche idea.
Young Pioneers in Vietnam
Young Pioneers in Cuba.
Young Pioneers are the theme of my week: How I was robbed of a proper childhood.
— J.S. The Foundations of Leninism
State planning a key ingredient for technological progress
“Global warming is the most urgent environmental challenge of our time. The raging debate has yielded numerous international summits among the world’s leading economies, but little has been achieved in terms of actually stopping or reversing the escalating threat.
Clean energy car,
Shanghai Expo, 2010
U.S. officials have consistently dug in their heels and stalled progress by demanding that countries with underdeveloped economies bear a greater share of the burden of emissions reduction. And China is their favorite scapegoat.
Yet China has invested billions of dollars to increase clean energy in recent years. Governmental policies and incentives encouraging energy efficiency have enabled the country to become one of the world’s leaders in clean-energy industries.
According to a recent report in the Seattle Times, “Overall clean-technology investments in China reached $34 billion last year, more than any other country and almost double the U.S. investment of $18 billion.” Initiatives also “include a cap on carbon, aggressive fuel-efficiency targets and a plan for $700 billion in investments over the next 10 years.”
This year alone, China has received more financing for clean energy than Europe and the United States combined. In the second quarter, funding for clean-energy technologies such as wind turbines, solar panels and low-carbon technology rose 72 percent to total $11.5 billion, compared with U.S. investment of $4.9 billion.
Kunshan, a city located an hour outside Shanghai, has become a leading center in the development of solar power, wind power and biotechnology. A goal has been set there to produce 400 million to 500 million solar panels.
Taiwanese manufacturer Motech Industries started mass production of solar cells in Kunshan just two years ago, but already demand is exceeding capacity. A company demonstration center displays “miniature homes of the future, with green roofs and solar-powered lights, new types of small wind turbines and ultrathin solar-cell material that can be used in roofing or curtains. They even have a model handbag designed to tap sunlight to charge cellphones.” (Seattle Times, Aug. 8)
This year’s Shanghai Expo was the largest of its kind in history, drawing more than 30 million visitors. It featured exhibits including electric cars, solar and wind power, and even power derived from algae. One of the electric cars absorbs carbon dioxide while simultaneously emitting oxygen.
In addition, utilities are being required to sell renewable energy to consumers at discounted rates. There will be a 50 percent subsidization of the investment cost for solar-power systems; and a 20 percent reduction in energy intensity coming on the heels of a 14.4 percent reduction in 2009. Energy intensity is the energy consumption per unit of economic output. (Associated Press, Aug. 9)
Leading polluters scapegoat China
Despite these remarkable Chinese achievements, U.S. government officials have continued to stall progress in climate change talks by demanding that developing economies—particularly China—bear a larger share of the burden of emissions reduction. U.S. pundits and politicians see China’s increasingly rapid rate of development as a threat to U.S. global economic dominance.
China is developing at an impressive pace. Its economy grew at rates of 11.9 percent and 10.3 percent in the first and second quarters, respectively. The country is fifth in annual percentage increase in industrial production, which includes manufacturing, mining and construction. In terms of total spending on fixed assets, such as factories, homes and inventories of raw materials, which provide the basis for future production, China ranks third. In contrast, the United States comes in at number 116 and 145, respectively, for the same indices. (CIA World Factbook, 2009)
China has become the world’s largest energy consumer and carbon emitter—but one in every five people on the planet live in China. Its population is well over 1.3 billion people; the U.S. population is just about 310 million people, far less than one quarter the population of China. As a result, China is still well behind much of the world in per capita energy consumption and emissions.
In fact, one would have to combine all historically dominant colonial powers—the U.S., U.K., Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, France, Germany, Belgium, Japan and Australia—and some of the dominant contemporary U.S. puppet regimes—Israel, Colombia, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, the Philippines and Indonesia—to even come close, yet still shy, of the total population of China.
The key to China’s clean-energy policies
The key to understanding the differences in development of clean-energy technologies between the U.S. and China is the continued presence of the Chinese Communist Party at the head of the state.
It is precisely because China’s energy sector is largely state-owned that the Chinese government is able to implement clean-energy policies.
In the United States, there is no centralized energy policy. Fossil fuel energy interests, as well as the emerging clean-energy industry, are controlled by private capital. The amount of resources invested into these industries, and the resulting dominance of one form of energy production over another, are entirely determined by how much profit they yield and their strategic value for U.S. capitalists.
Through decades of imperialist war, CIA-sponsored coups and the funding of loyal client regimes, the United States has secured control over or access to some of the world’s richest oil fields. This has yielded mega-profits for energy companies and a strategic advantage over other leading economies.
A sector of the U.S. capitalist class is becoming increasingly interested in the investment opportunities offered by the clean-energy industry. Further, some worry about U.S. dependence on oil. But even with all of that taken into account, the influence and power of oil interests, as well as the military-industrial complex interests to which they are inextricably linked, remain far superior.
As a result, while U.S. politicians and investors may tout clean-energy technology as the future opportunity for growth in industry, little action has been taken to promote it.
The U.S. Senate, for instance, recently failed to pass even problematic energy legislation to cap carbon emissions by utilities and set new renewable-energy standards. Opponents, likely all recipients of funding from the fossil fuels industries, claimed it would increase energy prices and restrict economic growth.
The contradictions in China
For the past three decades, increasing sectors of China’s economy have been transferred to capitalist forms of property. Private enterprise has developed, foreign corporations have gained access to the country’s economy and collectivized agriculture has been dismantled. However, in spite of the many capitalist reforms, socialism has not been fully eradicated. Public ownership of the means of production and central economic planning still exist, even if to a lesser degree than in the past.
Socialist and capitalist development are in direct contradiction. Central planning has allowed remarkable achievements in clean energy, but because of capitalist-oriented policies, these achievements have at times come at a price for China’s working class.
For instance, to reduce industrial waste, the Chinese government recently called for the closure of 2,087 factories with poor energy efficiency by the end of September, including 762 cement factories, 279 paper mills, 175 steel mills, 192 coking plants and an unspecified number of aluminum mills. Truly socialist planning would include guarantees to the workers in these industries, including the right to a new job and any necessary retraining, but capitalist policies of economic development have eradicated many of the protections Chinese workers once enjoyed.
China is attacked day in and day out in the U.S. corporate media, not because it has strayed from socialist principles, but because it has not fully adopted capitalist principles. A working-class critique, on the other hand, recognizes China’s remarkable achievements and defends its right to pursue economic development free from U.S. interference, without losing sight of the impact of capitalist development on the working class.
The remaining elements of socialist planning made it possible to prioritize clean energy in China. Without the active involvement of the Chinese Communist Party, the needs of capital would have taken precedence over all other considerations. Only through socialism—the eradication of the profit motive and private corporate authority over the economy—can rational decisions be made to restore and protect the environment.”
by J. Slavyanski
1. Constantly insist that Marxism is discredited, outdated, and totally dead and buried. Then proceed to build a lucrative career on beating that supposedly ‘dead’ horse for the rest of your working life.
2. Remember, any unnatural death that occurs under a ‘Communist’ regime is not only attributable to the leaders of the state, but also Marxism as an ideology. Ignore deaths that occur for the same reason in non-Communist states.
3. Communism or Marxism is whatever you want it to be. Feel free to label countries, movements, and regimes as ‘Communist’ regardless of things like actual goals, stated ideology, diplomatic relations, economic policy, or property relations.
4. If there was a conflict involving Communists, the conflict and all ensuing deaths can be laid at the feet of Communism. Be careful when applying this to WWII. Fascist movements who fought against the Soviets or Communist partisans are fine, but try not to openly praise Nazi Germany. Save that for private conversations if you must do so.
5. You decide what Marxism “really means”, and who the rightful representatives of Communism were. Feign interest that Trotsky was somehow robbed of power by Stalin, despite the fact that you hate him as well.
6. Constantly talk about George Orwell. Quote from Animal Farm or 1984. Do not worry about the fact that Orwell never set foot in the Soviet Union and both of those books are novels.
7. Quote massive death tolls without regards to demographics or consistency. 3 million famine deaths? 7 million? 10 million? 100 million deaths total? You need not worry about anyone checking your work, which is good for you seeing that you probably haven’t done any.
8. Everyone ever arrested under a Communist regime was most likely innocent of any crime. Communists only arrested harmless poets and political prophets who had a beautiful message to share with the world.
9. Everything Stalin did or didn’t do had some sinister ulterior motive. Everything.
10. Keeping with the spirit of #9, remember that Stalin was an omnipotent being, perhaps an incarnation of the Hindu deity Vishnu, who had full awareness of everything going on in the Soviet Union and total control over every occurrence which took place between 1924 and 1953. Everything that occurred during that time was the will of Stalin. Stalin knew the exact details of every criminal case that took place during that era and out of his boundless cruelty, had tons of innocent people shot for no reason regardless of where they were or their position in life. Being omnipotent, he was not dependent on information passed up from tens of thousands of subordinates.
11. Constantly attack ‘Communist’ regimes for actions that occur in capitalist regimes up to this very day.
12. Claim that Marxism is utopian because of its description of a possible future society. Alternately claim that Marxism failed because it never gave a detailed description of how a Communist society would look. Do not pay attention to the massive contradiction here.
13. Start referring to Marxism as being some kind of religious faith, Messianic, or whatever other spiritualist bullshit you can come up with. When people point out that you can draw similarities between virtually any political ideology and other religions, ignore them.
14. Remember the one-two anti-Communist attack: Attack the post-Stalin system on economic grounds, and claim it just doesn’t work. Since an informed opponent will most likely point out that actual socialist economics did indeed work during the Stalin era, and in fact worked very well, attack that era on human rights grounds.
15. Two words - Human nature. What is human nature? For your purposes, human nature is a quick explanation why political ideas or systems you don’t like are wrong.
16. Bolshevik revolutions were carried out with violence and bloodshed. Bourgeois revolutions were all carried out by democratic referendums, and there was no violence whatsoever.
17. Use words like ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy’ constantly. Do not accept any challenge to define these terms.
18. Communists can be for or against whatever is popular in your particular area. If you are preaching to a right-wing crowd, Communists are for degeneration and homosexuality. If you are preaching to a more mainstream audience, Communists were homophobic. Essentially, Communists are for moral degeneration and puritanical prudery at the same time. Again, do not notice the contradiction.
19. Constantly flog Stalin over the Molotov-Ribbentrop agreement, while totally ignoring massive support and collaboration with Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and Imperial Japan on the part of America, Britain, and France, long before the war and even after in some ways. As usual, do not allow your opponent to examine the context of the non-aggression pact.
20. Praise the newfound “freedom” of Eastern Europe. Ignore the massive depopulation via migration, plunging birthrates, huge alcohol and drug problems, political instability, civil wars, ethnic cleansing, sex trafficking and child prostitution, organized crime, high suicide rates, unemployment, disease, etc. Who cares about all that when you have freedom of speech?!
21. Constantly talk about the culture of fear in Communist nations, about that ‘knock on the door’ in the middle of the night. Ignore the ‘kick in your door in the middle of the night, stick a shotgun in your back, and haul your ass out of bed etc. because you are suspected of dealing,’ a normal occurrence in the American War on Drugs.
22. Attack Communists for suppression of religion. Attack Islamic fundamentalists for not being secular. What contradiction?!
23. Do not notice the irony that the US is currently fighting an incredibly expensive, losing war against an opponent which it funded, supported, and even handed its first victory in Afghanistan.
24. What should you say when confronted with all the continuing and often worsening problems in the world today, and asked for a solution? FREEDOM!! (Repeat as necessary until your opponent goes away)
25. Nothing from “Communists” can be trusted. Unless it somehow works in your favor, ala Khrushchev’s ‘Secret Speech’ from 1956, or anything Trotsky wrote.
26. Communist leaders were ‘paranoid’ for devoting so much time to security against counter-revolution. Ignore the mountains of evidence, including the restoration of capitalism in the East Bloc, that this threat was indeed real.
27. Communist regimes were never popular. If proof is presented in various cases to show otherwise, claim that the people were brainwashed. Make no effort to consider the budgetary and logistic constraints on such an undertaking.
28. Communist propaganda is crude and primitive. If someone mentions Red Dawn or worse, mentions the J. Edgar Hoover-endorsed comic book series known as The Godless Communists, run away.
29. Praise secularism in the name of ‘freedom’ and ‘pluralism’ until faced with a Communist. Then play the religion card.
30. Atrocities and other bad things that happen under non-Communist regimes are the fault of individual ‘bad people’. Anything bad that happens under a ‘Communist’ regime is the fault of the ideology and system. And Stalin.
31. Being an anti-Communist means not having to have any sort of ideological consistency whatsoever. Preach populist left-wing pseudo-socialism 90% of the time, and then compare the capitalist system to “Stalin’s Russia”(if you never really studied the subject, just read 1984 and Animal Farm). Complain about capitalism 99% of the time, but balk when someone suggests Communism as an alternative. Far right wing Fascist? Constantly complain about cultural degeneracy under capitalism, while remaining fanatically opposed to Marxism for no discernable reason save for your affinity for historic nationalism.
32. If you’re an anarchist, keep pointing out the ‘failure’ of Marxism while ignoring the fact that your ideology has a 100% failure rate throughout its entire history. Blame those failures on Communists, or stronger military powers. Ignore the fact that the most wonderful society is worthless if it can’t defend itself from reaction.
33. Neo-Nazi? Communism is Jewish!! Debate over.
34. Neo-Hippy? Tibet!
35. Constantly condemn the genocide that allegedly occurred under Mao, while ignoring the US’ relations with China established by Nixon, and the massive role capitalist China has played in the modern US economy. When you want to talk positively about China, it’s a capitalist country. If you need to criticize it, it’s still ‘Communist’.
36. Claim Marxism is not empirical. Neither are neo-liberalism, ‘democracy’, or ‘freedom’, but don’t worry about that.
37. Always insist that despite the location, country, historical era, past experience, and all other factors, Communists must want to recreate a modern-day copy of Stalin’s Russia, and all that entails according to you. Do not notice the inherent idiocy in this concept, such as your particular country being already industrialized, and not having a historical problem of severe backwardness.
38. Learn to use the magic word ‘totalitarian’. This word allows you to link two ideological opposites, Communism and Fascism.
39. Ignore the fact that socialist states experienced more economic problems parallel to the number of market reforms they made.
40. When challenged about numbers or historical context, resort to labels like “ruthless tyrant”, “cruel murderer”, and such. Remember, people like Stalin were mass-murderers because of all the people they killed, and we know they killed all those people because they were mass-murderers. It totally tracks!
“Patrick Stewart is Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov Lenin and sums up the main theoretical aspects of the revolution quite well in BBC’s The Fall of the Eagles (1974).”
How can this be real? Am I still asleep?
Some SPD propaganda from the 1920s, expressing their feelings about communism. Their refusal to align with the Communist party, murder of revolutionaries like Rosa Luxemburg, and parliamentary excuses for the Nazis led to the rise of fascism in Germany.
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Meeting and making radical plans with fellow workers and comrades from far away is exciting
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