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Soviet Union

The End of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat!

As everyone knows, there has been a Shakespeare industry for centuries. Thousands of academics—some wise, some foolish, some honest, some crooked—have made a nice living out of it. But it took a long time for a similar industry to develop about Marx; for most of the century since he died, the groves of academe in the main held a conspiracy of silence. He wasn't worth mentioning to students—who in turn became professors who were able to pass on their own ignorance to succeeding generations. Suddenly, in the last decade or two, all that has changed. The reasons need not bother us, but it's enough to make an SPGB cat laugh to find that there is now a flourishing Marx industry among circles which not so long ago "professed": "Marx? Never heard of 'im!"

Running Commentary: ''Communism' on the Stock Exchange'; 'Ronald Reagan'; ''Reforms' in China'; 'Redundancies in the Soviet Union'

'Communism' on the stock exchange

Among other effects of the coup in Poland was the sudden change in various prices in the West. Shares of various companies which had connections in Poland suddenly fluctuated. The dollar and the mark fell drastically on international currency exchange markets. Various metals, particularly copper, rose in price, some to all-time high spots.

"Gold", one financial commentator said, "was expected to shoot up in price in the event of anything like this happening in Poland, but surprisingly its price has not changed by anything like what everyone expected."

What can be concluded from this? Firstly, it demonstrates how capitalism is an interlinked, worldwide system, the various countries being components within it. It is not the case that each country has a separate economy, only superficially connected with other national economies.

Against the Left pt.3


    "Comrade Stalin, having become General Secretary, has unlimited authority concentrated in his hands, and I am not sure whether he will always be capable of using that authority with sufficient caution. Comrade Trotsky, on the other hand, as his struggle against the Central committee on the question of the People's Commissariat for Communications has already proved, is distinguished not only by outstanding ability, he is personally perhaps the most capable man on the present Central committee . . ." (Lenin's Testament, dictated between 23rd and 31st December, 1922)

The Gorbachev Cuts

When Mikhail Gorbachev offered to cut Soviet forces in Europe by half a million, there was an enormous surge in the dollar on world stock markets. The cold war is no longer good business.

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