the difference between Marxism and original communist theory/ideology

April 2024 Forums General discussion the difference between Marxism and original communist theory/ideology

Viewing 15 posts - 106 through 120 (of 411 total)
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  • #120747
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    SocialistPunk wrote:
    There is a possibility in the future that the earth will no longer go around the sun. There's the possibility it will end up being swallowed up by the sun.

    Actually in around 5 billion years or so that's precisely what will happen and as I know very little about astrophysics I'm quite prepared to accept the calculations of those who do.   No vote by the then inhabitants of planet earth, in the unlikely event the human species will have survived that long, will alter that "truth".

    #120748
    LBird
    Participant
    SocialistPunk wrote:
    LBird wrote:
    I've given ALB the opportunity, several times, to agree that 'the earth going round the sun' is a socially-produced 'truth', and that in the past 'the sun went round the earth', and that in the future it is possible that 'the earth will no longer go round the sun'.

    There is a possibility in the future that the earth will no longer go around the sun. There's the possibility it will end up being swallowed up by the sun.

    As usual, you're misunderstanding what the issue is.The issue is, how do you know that the sun goes round the earth now, not in some putative future.You'll be forced to say that 'it really does' and that your 'knowledge' of this is a reflection of that 'reality'. And you'll say that that 'reality' can't be changed.This is also Lenin's 'reflection theory of knowledge', just as it was Engels'.Marx, though, argued that we create our knowledge, by our social theory and practice.Thus, our knowledge is not a reflection of something 'out there', but a reality-for-us, which we create, and thus we can change.

    #120749
    Bijou Drains
    Participant
    gnome wrote:
    SocialistPunk wrote:
    There is a possibility in the future that the earth will no longer go around the sun. There's the possibility it will end up being swallowed up by the sun.

    Actually in around 5 billion years or so that's precisely what will happen and as I know very little about astrophysics I'm quite prepared to accept the calculations of those who do.   No vote by the then inhabitants of planet earth, in the unlikely event the human species will have survived that long, will alter that "truth".

    You see Gnome, that's where you're wrtong, that will only happen if the workers democratically vote for it!

    #120750
    LBird
    Participant
    gnome wrote:
     No vote by the then inhabitants of planet earth, in the unlikely event the human species will have survived that long, will alter that "truth".

    A perfect statement by a 'materialist', that workers will not be allowed to vote to change 'Truth'.This belief appears to be at least un-official policy of the SPGB.Why not make it official, and stop pretending to workers that they will democratically control the production of their own 'truth' in the SPGB's version of 'socialism'?

    #120751
    LBird
    Participant
    Tim Kilgallon wrote:
    gnome wrote:
    SocialistPunk wrote:
    There is a possibility in the future that the earth will no longer go around the sun. There's the possibility it will end up being swallowed up by the sun.

    Actually in around 5 billion years or so that's precisely what will happen and as I know very little about astrophysics I'm quite prepared to accept the calculations of those who do.   No vote by the then inhabitants of planet earth, in the unlikely event the human species will have survived that long, will alter that "truth".

    You see Gnome, that's where you're wrtong, that will only happen if the workers democratically vote for it!

    More contempt for 'workers' and their abilities and potential development.Keep it coming, boys!You'll be changing your party title to the Superior People of Great Britain – tagline: The Party that knows the Truth already, so you dumb workers don't have to bother becoming active!

    #120752
    Bijou Drains
    Participant
    LBird wrote:
    Tim Kilgallon wrote:
    gnome wrote:
    SocialistPunk wrote:
    There is a possibility in the future that the earth will no longer go around the sun. There's the possibility it will end up being swallowed up by the sun.

    Actually in around 5 billion years or so that's precisely what will happen and as I know very little about astrophysics I'm quite prepared to accept the calculations of those who do.   No vote by the then inhabitants of planet earth, in the unlikely event the human species will have survived that long, will alter that "truth".

    You see Gnome, that's where you're wrtong, that will only happen if the workers democratically vote for it!

    More contempt for 'workers' and their abilities and potential development.Keep it coming, boys!You'll be changing your party title to the Superior People of Great Britain – tagline: The Party that knows the Truth already, so you dumb workers don't have to bother becoming active!

    Actually it's not contempt for workers, it's for the idealistic claptrap you peddle in the guise of pseudo intellectualism. Your idea that we can vote away any unwanted realities, is akin to the Pope and the Catholic Church asking workers to pray to get rid of world poverty.

    #120753
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/preface.htm

    Quote:
    Once upon a time a valiant fellow had the idea that men were drowned in water only because they were possessed with the idea of gravity. If they were to knock this notion out of their heads, say by stating it to be a superstition, a religious concept, they would be sublimely proof against any danger from water. His whole life long he fought against the illusion of gravity, of whose harmful results all statistics brought him new and manifold evidence. This valiant fellow was the type of the new revolutionary philosophers in Germany.

     

    #120754
    LBird
    Participant
    Tim Kilgallon wrote:
    …idealistic…

    The usual reply by 'materialists', when questioned about modern developments in politics, philosophy and physics since the 19th century heyday of materialism, is to revert to the good-versus-evil approach.That is, materialists wear the white hats, and the evil idealists wear the black hats.They got this from Engels, too.What any worker, who knows about 20th century physics, and has read Einstein, Bohr, Heisenberg, Schrodinger, Plank, de Broglie, Born, Smolin, Rovelli, etc., makes of this ancient, outdated, 'materialism'……anyway, it's certain that the 'materialists' haven't read what those physicists say about physics.They'd all be called 'idealists'.

    #120755
    LBird
    Participant
    alanjjohnstone wrote:
    https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/preface.htm

    Quote:
    Once upon a time a valiant fellow had the idea that men were drowned in water only because they were possessed with the idea of gravity. If they were to knock this notion out of their heads, say by stating it to be a superstition, a religious concept, they would be sublimely proof against any danger from water. His whole life long he fought against the illusion of gravity, of whose harmful results all statistics brought him new and manifold evidence. This valiant fellow was the type of the new revolutionary philosophers in Germany.

     

    nice try, alan.Unfortunately, it only exposes your distance from any understanding of the issues (which you yourself have admitted in the past), and leaves you lining up behind the 'materialists' in seeing any developments as 'idealism'.This always surprises me more, in your case.

    #120756
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    Only quote on gravity i could find as follow-on to my earlier post. As you say…i am always left in the dark by these sort of debates…Reminds me of Rosa Lichtenstein's contributions to dlalectics…i'm sure what she is saying is contributing something, but i don't have an earthly clue what and don't really care…luckily i'm supported by  Paul Mattick.https://www.marxists.org/archive/mattick-paul/1960/new-physics.htm

    Quote:
    Unfortunately, however, the persuasive power of historical or dialectical materialism — as it came to be known — was great enough to carry away even Engels, who spoke of its universal validity. While some tolerant critics found this merely amusing,[5] the less well-disposed used this over-zealousness as an excuse to reject the whole of Marxism as just an oddity of German mysticism. But while the notion of the ‘universality’ of the dialectic process is not defensible, neither is it essential to Marxism, which loses none of its force by omitting it. Marx, at any rate, did not concern himself with the ‘dialectics of nature’. However, it is not the ideas of Marx but ‘Marxism’, as the ideology of the rising European labour movement and of the self-declared ‘socialist’ states of the Eastern power bloc, that nourishes Western anti-Marxism. And it is for this reason that the struggle between the ‘Marxist’ East and the anti-Marxist West, however real, tells us nothing about the validity or invalidity of Marxism for our time. 

    But i found something in Mattick's article that i think you are trying to convey, my apologies in advance if i misunderstood

    Quote:
    ‘Laws of nature’ relate not to ‘ultimate reality’ but are descriptions of the behaviour and regularities of nature as perceived by men. Perceptions change with the change of knowledge and with social development which affects the state of knowledge. Concepts of physical reality relate then not only to nature and men but also indirectly to the structure of society and to social change and are therefore historical … In Marxist values, man is the measure of all things and science should be science for men. As socialism implies the further growth of the social forces of production, it also implies that of science. It intends to add to the principle of scientific objectivity that of social responsibility. And just as it rejects fetishistic capital accumulation, so it rejects ‘science for the sake of science’. This fetishistic attitude towards science, supposedly based on an innate human need to search for ultimate reality, is actually only another expression of the lack of sociality in class society and the fierce competition among scientists themselves. The irresponsible, irrational and self-defeating disregard for humanity on the part of many scientists today, who defend their work in the name of science even though it has often no other but destructive purposes, is possible only in a society that is able to subordinate science to the specific needs of a ruling class. The humanisation of science presupposes, however, the humanisation of society. Science and its development is thus a social problem.

     

    #120757
    ALB
    Keymaster
    alanjjohnstone wrote:
    Mattick wrote:
    ‘Laws of nature’ relate not to ‘ultimate reality’ but are descriptions of the behaviour and regularities of nature as perceived by men. Perceptions change with the change of knowledge and with social development which affects the state of knowledge. Concepts of physical reality relate then not only to nature and men but also indirectly to the structure of society and to social change and are therefore historical

    That's what Pannekoek said too:

    Quote:
    The human mind is entirely determined by the surrounding real world. We have already said that this world is not restricted to physical matter only, but comprises everything that is objectively observable. The thoughts and ideas of our fellow men, which we observe by means of their conversation or by our reading are included in this real world. Although fanciful objects of these thoughts such as angels, spirits or an Absolute Idea do not belong to it, the belief in such ideas is a real phenomenon, and may have a notable influence on historical events.The impressions of the world penetrate the human mind as a continuous stream. All our observations of the surrounding world, all experiences of our lives are continually enriching the contents of our memories and our subconscious minds.The recurrence of nearly the same situation and the same experience leads to definite habits of action; these are accompanied by definite habits of thought. The frequent repetition of the same observed sequence of phenomena is retained in the mind and produces an expectation of the sequence. The rule that these phenomena are always connected in this way is then acted upon. But this rule – sometimes elevated to a law of nature – is a mental abstraction of a multitude of analogous phenomena, in which differences are neglected, and agreement emphasized. The names by which we denote definite similar parts of the world of phenomena indicate conceptions which likewise are formed by taking their common traits, the general character of the totality of these phenomena, and abstracting them from their differences. The endless diversity, the infinite plurality of all the unimportant, accidental traits, are neglected and the important, essential characteristics are preserved. Through their origin as habits of thought these concepts become fixed, crystallized, invariable; each advance in clarity of thinking consists in more exactly defining the concepts in terms of their properties, and in more exactly formulating the rules. The world of experience, however, is continually expanding and changing; our habits are disturbed and must be modified, and new concepts substituted for old ones. Meanings, definitions, scopes of concepts all shift and vary.

    But why feed him? He won't take any notice and will just keep on repeating the same lie about what we stand for. You can't have a proper discussion with him. He just an obsessive. Tim diagnosed his problem the last time round.

    #120758
    LBird
    Participant
    alanjjohnstone wrote:
    Only quote on gravity i could find as follow-on to my earlier post. As you say…i am always left in the dark by these sort of debates…Reminds me of Rosa Lichtenstein's contributions to dlalectics…i'm sure what she is saying is contributing something, but i don't have an earthly clue what and don't really care…luckily i'm supported by  Paul Mattick.https://www.marxists.org/archive/mattick-paul/1960/new-physics.htm

    Yeah, I can recommend Mattick's book Anti-Bolshevik Communism, which contains the essay Marxism and the New Physics, and another on Karl Korsch. Both of these are thought-provoking, even if I have some criticisms.And Pannekoek, like Marx, Mattick and Korsch, stressed the creativity of workers in building their knowledge. This is very different from 'materialism' (of both Engels and Lenin), which emphasises 'passivity' in the face of 'matter'.And I've got a lot of time for Rosa Lichtenstein, who I've discussed with a few times! Although, yet again, I have differences with…Keep asking questions, alan, and something will 'click' at some point, about the difference between 'bourgeois materialism', passivity in workers and an elite group of 'knowers', compared with Marx's view that humans create their own objects, and that Communism is this creative act put under the democratic control of all.

    #120759
    Bijou Drains
    Participant
    LBird wrote:
    Tim Kilgallon wrote:
    …idealistic…

    The usual reply by 'materialists', when questioned about modern developments in politics, philosophy and physics since the 19th century heyday of materialism, is to revert to the good-versus-evil approach.That is, materialists wear the white hats, and the evil idealists wear the black hats.They got this from Engels, too.What any worker, who knows about 20th century physics, and has read Einstein, Bohr, Heisenberg, Schrodinger, Plank, de Broglie, Born, Smolin, Rovelli, etc., makes of this ancient, outdated, 'materialism'……anyway, it's certain that the 'materialists' haven't read what those physicists say about physics.They'd all be called 'idealists'.

    What a very strange creature you are, L Bird. In one breath you talk about the need not to partonise the intelligence of worker, yet in another you advise the "less class conscious workers" to vote for Corbyn. You then go on to assert that current scientific thinking is undemocratic and anti the interests of the working class, yet reference the merits of reading bourgeois scientists such as "Einstein, Bohr, Heisenberg, Schrodinger, Plank, de Broglie, Born, Smolin, Rovelli, etc." then to further discredit yourself you state that "it's certain that the 'materialists' haven't read what those physicists say about physics" having previously derided other contributors for allegedly holding to the concepts of certainty and truth.It makes me think of a comment by a lecturer I had back in the 80s "Philosophy is just psychology for posers"

    #120760
    Sympo
    Participant
    LBird wrote:

    "You've quoted yourself, Sympo, in those two lines above."Which two lines? "'Objective truth' implies 'an elite who establish'."I wouldn't say so. What leads you to this conclusion?The world would exist even if I would not exist. Things exist in a physical sense even if there is no human that knows that it exists. I think there is a difference between "truth" and "what most people assume to be true". What we assume can change. Truth itself can not be affected by us, right? "If that wasn't your belief, you'd agree that 'objective truth' can be voted on."I don't understand. What is your definition of truth? How does our subjective views change whether or not something is true?If most people think elves exist, do they exist because most people think they do?I'm sorry if these questions are dumb but I'm confused by what you're writing.

    #120761
    ALB
    Keymaster
    Tim Kilgallon wrote:
    It makes me think of a comment by a lecturer I had back in the 80s "Philosophy is just psychology for posers"

    As a student of philosophy I was taught that "psychiatrist" rhymed with "trick cyclist" ….

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