Gnostic Marxist

June 2022 Forums Socialist Standard Feedback Gnostic Marxist

Viewing 15 posts - 286 through 300 (of 447 total)
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  • #215935
    Matthew Culbert
    Keymaster

    Where does Marx ever use the terms ‘democratic social productionism in science’?

    Answer Robbo’s very simple straight forward question and point.

    Now deal with the arguments that demolish your crackpot non-Marxian idea about the need for scientific theories to be democratically voted upon by the global population.

    #215937
    LBird
    Participant

    Matthew Culbert wrote: “Where does Marx ever use the terms ‘democratic social productionism in science’?

    Can I take that as a No, Matt?
    That is, you don’t agree with Marx’s ‘democratic social productionism in science’?

    #215949
    Matthew Culbert
    Keymaster

    Marx did not use your terms ‘democratic social productionism in science’.

    Answer Robbo’s very simple straight forward question and point.

    Now deal with the arguments that demolish your crackpot non-Marxian idea about the need for scientific theories to be democratically voted upon by the global population.

    An adequate theory of history and social change is what Marx was to contribute to socialist theory, providing it with a scientific basis.

    The Socialist Party has further developed Marx’s theories, and has made plain where it disagrees with Marx. We do not endorse Marx’s ideas regarding struggles for national liberation, minimum reform programmes, labour vouchers and the lower stage of communism.

    On some of these points the Socialist Party does not reject what Marx advocated in his own day but rejects their applicability to socialists now. There are other issues upon which the Socialist Party might appear to be at variance with Marx but is in fact only disputing distortions of Marx’s thinking.

    For example, the ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ is usually understood in its Leninist interpretation.

    Indeed, it is a tragedy of world-historical proportions that Marx has been Leninized – what is basically a method of social analysis with a view to taking informed political action by the working class, has had its name put to a state ideology of repression of the working class.

    Instead of being known as a tool for working class self-emancipation, we have had the abomination of ‘Marxist states’.

    Undeterred by these developments, the Socialist Party has made its own contributions to socialist theory whilst combating distortions of Marx’s ideas. In the light of all the above, the three main Marxist theories can be restated as:

    The political theory of class struggle
    The materialist theory of history
    The labour theory of value

    These are tools of analysis, which have been further developed and modified by socialists, to explain how the working class are exploited under capitalism.

    Marxism is not only a method for criticising capitalism: it also points to the alternative. Marxism explains the importance to the working class of common ownership, democratic control and production solely for use and the means for establishing it. And while it is desirable that socialist activists should acquaint themselves with the basics of Marxism, it is essential that a majority of workers have a working knowledge of how capitalism operates and what the change to socialism will mean.

    #215956
    twc
    Participant

    lBird’s latest charm offensive…

    Anyone who refuses to sign up to his “democratic social productionism in science” must be a closet dictator.

    Never forget.

    On a previous charm offensive, lBird threatened to expose the SPGB as a closet dictatorship — a charming tactic, cognate to the psychological blackmail that “a true radical can’t possibly refuse to support the ‘democratic republic of <you-name-it>’.”

    * * *

    Given the circumstances, humans enthusiastically engage in collaborative activity.

    • Experimental research in physics and astronomy is allocated a time share on expensive experimental equipment. The resulting scientific papers regularly parade a vast tribe of specialist authors. Theoretical research in physics and mathematics also regularly proceeds by collaborative teamwork.
    • Volunteer science is an unsung social resource. It includes amateur astronomy, natural history, geology, mineralogy, palaeontological and archeological digs, specimen collection, preparation and cataloguing — often for no other recompense than the pleasure of personal achievement and contribution.

    * * *

    Here is a practical example of communal science in action. It is a collaboration between high-school students and mathematicians, attempting to replicate Isaac Newton’s 1665 computation of π to 16 digits precision, by the method outlined in post https://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/forum/topic/gnostic-marxist/page/19/#post-215922

    Take note lBird that the community never resorts to ‘democratically electing the Truth’. Instead it holds, with Marx, that “man must prove the truth … in practice”.

    In this fun exercise, the community effort falls short of Isaac Newton’s achievement.

    lBird might gain some respect for Newton’s towering intellect. Likewise for the towering intellect of Marx (whose achievement we will one day be able to discuss rationally as we do Newton’s).

    Here’s the video… Communal science

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by twc.
    • This reply was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by twc.
    • This reply was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by twc.
    #215970
    LBird
    Participant

    It’s amazing how hostile the reaction has been to talk of democracy within the communist mode of production.

    Not one of you has suggested who (and how they’ll do it) will control the power of social production.

    My best guess, based upon what’s been written here, is that the SPGB favours a non-democratic control by ‘Specialists’.

    That is, the social theory and practice of ‘physics’ will be controlled by an elite of ‘physicists’.

    The social theory and practice of ‘education’ will be controlled by an elite of ‘educationalists’.

    The social theory and practice of ‘academia’ will be controlled by an elite of ‘academics’.

    And so on…

    No mention whatsoever of the self-emancipation of the proletariat.

    I think that it’s very clear from Marx’s writings that he argued that the social theory and practice of ‘human production’ will be democratically controlled by humanity.

    All these social productive activities – physics, education, academia, and all others – must be democratically controlled, for the mode to be ‘democratic socialism’.

    I don’t think that there’s any political intention here to allow workers to decide for themselves. That, at least, has been made very clear.

    #215971
    robbo203
    Participant

    lBird’s latest charm offensive…
    Anyone who refuses to sign up to his “democratic social productionism in science” must be a closet dictator.

    TWC

    If anything is a recipe for a fascist dictatorship its LBird’s abomination of a scenario dressed up as “democratic social productionism” in science, truth, maths et al. Its amusing that he prattles on about Marx but is reduced to complete silence when asked to show where Marx supported the crackpot and insanely impractical idea that tens of thousands of scientific theories should be subjected to a democratic vote by the whole population

    LBirds view of democratic socialism is a complete distortion (or perhaps I should say abortion) of democracy. This is not what democracy is about. What he is calling for is more suited to hierarchical ant colony than a democratic human society

    Imagine if 8 billion of us were asked to vote on some “Truth” (yes “truth” is also something that would be subject to a democratic vote according to LBird). Since, it would be wildly optimistic to suggest that anything more than 0.00000057 percent of the global population would even bother to vote in such a ludicrous referendum what would happen once the “democratic will of the people” had been asserted. Would those of us who disagree with this ..er. .”socially approved” version of this particular truth, be rounded up and incarcerated? If not what was the point of the exercise?????

    The whole point of democratic decision-making is to arrive at decisions that are inherently implementable. So your local community decides between two of three options for building a new local school or hospital. It selects one and rejects the rest and goes ahead with implementing this democratic decision

    How is a democratic vote on some obscure scientific theory which most of us have never heard of – the mating habits of aphids, say – going to be enforceable? If it is enforced this will spell the end of science as a self critical enterprise. We will back to the days of the Holy Inquisition, when a tiny elite – and of necessity it will be a tiny elite because the vast majority are not going to bother to vote on the matter – will determine what ideas are deemed to be socially acceptable and the rest of us will just have to conform whether we like it or not

    Talk about 1984 and all that..

    #215972
    robbo203
    Participant

    It’s amazing how hostile the reaction has been to talk of democracy within the communist mode of production.

    More lies from our feathered friend.

    We have repeatedly said that means of production will be subject to democratic control in a communist society. We just don’t see the point of extending democratic decision making to such things such as the truth of scientific theories etc etc

    #215973
    ALB
    Keymaster

    There is an interview in today’s Times with Richard Dawkins on his 80th birthday in which the interviewer writes:

    “My all-time favourite Dawkins tweet is from 2019: ‘Accosted in restaurant by Flat Earth zealot who intrusively talked at us while friend & I were trying to enjoy our meal. Finally I lost it and said, ‘You are an ignorant lunatic’”.

    We know the feeling.

    #215974
    LBird
    Participant

    twc wrote: “…might gain some respect for Newton’s towering intellect. Likewise for the towering intellect of Marx…”

    This, in a nutshell, is indicative of twc’s belittling attitude to us workers and democratic communists.

    You’ve got it completely the wrong way around, twc.

    It’s Newton and Marx who will gain some respect for us.
    As will Einstein, Bohr, Schrodinger, Heisenberg, Hawking, and Engels, Kautsky, Plekhanov, Lenin.

    The self-emancipation of the proletariat means we will determine ‘science’ (both its theories and its practices), by democratic means.

    You’ve made a big political slip, and you’re letting your elitism show, twc.

    Who determines ‘Respect’, and how is it determined, according to you, twc?

    #215976
    robbo203
    Participant

    The self-emancipation of the proletariat means we will determine ‘science’ (both its theories and its practices), by democratic means.

    How? How are tens of thousands of scientific theories going to be voted on by the workers of the world (nearly 8 billion of us)?

    Why is it even necessary? What do you hope to achieve by voting on a scientific theory?

    Explain

    #215977
    LBird
    Participant

    ALB wrote: “There is an interview in today’s Times with Richard Dawkins on his 80th birthday in which the interviewer writes:

    “My all-time favourite Dawkins tweet is from 2019: ‘Accosted in restaurant by Flat Earth zealot who intrusively talked at us while friend & I were trying to enjoy our meal. Finally I lost it and said, ‘You are an ignorant lunatic’”.

    We know the feeling.

    So, Dawkins and The Times is ALB’s inspiration for insulting a Democratic Communist and Marxist worker who has read Marx and philosophy, and understand both better than ALB, and dares to ask ‘where’s the democracy?’ in ALB’s politics?

    It’s the materialist way, isn’t it? Don’t argue, because you’ll lose, just give false information about, and distort, what you opponent is claiming, argue with the strawman to ‘prove’ your case, and finally call them ‘lunatics’. Lenin’s method.

    Keep digging, ALB and twc!

    #215978
    LBird
    Participant

    robbo203 wrote: “[LBird wrote:] The self-emancipation of the proletariat means we will determine ‘science’ (both its theories and its practices), by democratic means.

    How? How are tens of thousands of scientific theories going to be voted on by the workers of the world (nearly 8 billion of us)?

    Why is it even necessary? What do you hope to achieve by voting on a scientific theory?

    Explain”

    Once more, robbo, if 8 billion workers (to use your terms) are not going to democratically determine science in its entirety, who is?

    Democracy is necessary because ‘democratic socialism’ implies democratic social production.

    I’m open about my argument, robbo, why can’t you be open about yours?

    It’s no way to continue, by refusing to state your case, and just insulting Marx’s. Marx argued for democratic social production. If you don’t, fair enough, tell us who and how ‘science’ is to be politically controlled, according to your case.

    If you wish to argue, for example, ‘science’ is too difficult for humanity as a whole, just say that, and acknowledge it implies no political control by democracy, of this social activity.

    In opposition to that, I’ve already argued that ‘science’ must be made understandable by us workers, and I’ve used the analogy of Bible, Latin and Priests to illustrate the problem of Reality, Maths and Physicists. Forcing the Bible to be published in the vernacular was a revolutionary act, and undermined the power of Priests.

    #215988
    ALB
    Keymaster

    I thought there was a danger of us feeding a troll here but it has turned out to be giving a man enough rope.

    #215989
    Matthew Culbert
    Keymaster

    LBird

    strangling sounds

    #215991
    robbo203
    Participant

    Once more, robbo, if 8 billion workers (to use your terms) are not going to democratically determine science in its entirety, who is?

    Once more LBird no one has to determine science in its entirety at all, and why should they? Where did you get this crackpot idea from? Don’t tell me it is from Marx because nowhere did Marx ever suggest that tens of thousands of scientific theories should be subject to a vote by the global population. Your view has nothing to do with Marx, it is entirely your own invention

    Insofar as Marx referred to the need for social production to be democratically organised he was emphatically NOT referring to the social production of scientific theories. If you think otherwise PROVE IT!

    Just becuase something is “socially produced” does not automatically mean it should be subject to a democratic vote. My breakfast is a social product inasmuch as the ingredients I consume are socially produced. Would you have that the world population vote on what I have for breakfast, eh?

    Once more you continue not to provide the slightest suggestion of a reason as to WHY scientific theories should be voted on. What purpose would a vote serve? Democratic decision making needs to be purposeful in order to meaningful

    Once more you fail to to explain HOW the fact that scientific theories would not be voted upon (and would have absolutely no need to be voted on) in communism, somehow gives the scientists some kind of “elite power” over others in a free access, voluntaristic society in which people will be free to determine their own needs and be free to determine their own contribution to society.

    Once more you fail totally to explain HOW you propose to organise a global vote on just one scientific theory, let alone tens of thousands of them. You seem to have zero understanding of what a massive undertaking this – and all for no good reason whatseover since you are never going to stop people disagreeing over the things like scientific theories. And why should they? New understandings arise from disgreements and debate which you want to stifle under your version of a revived Spanish Inquistion.

    You want to impose a conformist blanket on public opinion with your fascistic reoganisation of society in which THE TRUTH gets voted upon – FFS – and your tiny unrepresentive and undemocratic political elite (which is what it will be) gets to enforce what it claims “society” has democratically voted for. Even if (optimitically) only 0.000000057 per cent of the population voted!!!

    You are living in a complete dreamworld, LBird

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 3 months ago by robbo203.
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