The “Reform versus Revolution Antinomy” –
Dialectical Synthesis Solution.
The ‘dialectogram’ JPG image, posted below, describes a predicted dialectical synthesis solution to the “social revolution versus social reform” supposed ‘Kantianoid’ antinomy that Marx also envisioned, as evidenced by the three quotes from Marx’s [and, in one case, also from Engels’s] writings and speeches that are included in that ‘dialectogram’.
“Social Revolution” does not necessarily require barricades and blood in the streets. “Social Revolution”, in its Marxian meaning, does not necessarily exclude lawful, non-violent means, if the resulting reforms institute changes of sufficient depth. “Social Revolution”, in its Marxian meaning, applies to any movement for societal change that accomplishes a change in the prevailing ‘“social relations of [societal self-re-]production”’ of a given human society – e.g., to an «aufheben» of the capital/wage-labor relation [Marx], yielding a new, higher “social relation of production” -- notwithstanding if that change in fundamental social relations is achieved without criminal violence, and in accord with the rule of law, by means of majoritarian, democratic, legislative and constitutional amendment enactments.
Pseudo-Marxian “Marxists” – e.g., Leninists, Trotskyists, Stalinists, and Maoists – want you to think that social revolution and social reform constitute an [undialectical] radical diremption because, without mass violence, and a consequent breakdown of the rule of law, their little putschist parties cannot hope to launch their coup d’état, imposing their one-party police-state dictatorship OVER the proletariat, i.e., upon the majority class, and thereby winning for themselves all of the perverted perks of power that they wet-dream about every night.
The capitalist ruling class ruling faction will, of course, attempt to suppress such social change with police and military criminal violence, but, as was shown by the circa 1989 revolutions that overthrew Stalinist, pure-state-bureaucratic-ruling-class state-capitalism in East Germany, Russia and Eastern Europe, sufficiently majoritarian popular support for such a social revolution can stay the hand of police and army, and enable an overthrow of the old ruling class – as it did with the Stalinist national ruling classes there -- with amazingly little public violence. Of course, the unstayed hand of the Western, ‘Rocke-Nazi’ ruling class ruling faction soon imposed a profound Mafia and “social shock treatment” collective punishment on the Russian people, and on the peoples of Eastern Europe, which did later lead to counter-revolutionary social violence.
Quotations from Marxian writings and speeches that demonstrate Marx’s [and Engels’s] distance from the “MarxIST” pseudo-Marxians include the following –
When Marx and Engels participated, personally and signally, in the European continent-wide revolutionary uprisings of 1848, Europe was ruled largely by violently-repressive monarchical police states. Marx and Engels thus saw no way forward for humanity’s evolution other than by way of violent revolution. But the progress of capitalist representative democracy during Marx’s lifetime led him later to revise his views regarding the necessity of violent revolution for the supercession of capitalism --
“Someday the worker must seize political power in order to build up the new organization of labor; he must overthrow the old politics which sustain the old institutions, if he is not to lose Heaven on Earth, like the old Christians who neglected and despised politics. But we have not asserted that the ways to achieve that goal are everywhere the same.”
“You know that the institutions, mores, and traditions of various countries must be taken into consideration, and we do not deny that there are countries -- such as America, England, and if I were more familiar with your institutions, I would perhaps also add Holland -- where the workers can attain their goal by peaceful means.” [Marx, 8 Sep. 1872, Amsterdam, Address after the Fifth Congress of the International Working Men’s Association [“First International”]].
The key to the “institutions, mores, and traditions” that make possible a relatively peaceful transition to what we name ‘political-economic democracy’ is, according to Marx, the advancement of capitalist representative democracy to the point of universal suffrage -- to the right of the “propertyless” working-class majority to vote in national & local elections:
“...the first step in the revolution by the working class, is to raise the proletariat to the position of ruling class, to win the battle of democracy.” [Marx and Engels, 1848, The Communist Manifesto]; “But universal suffrage is the equivalent of political power for the working class of England, where the proletariat forms the large majority of the population, where, in a long though underground civil war, it has gained a clear consciousness of its position as a class, and where even the rural districts know no longer any peasants, but only landlords, industrial capitalists (farmers) and hired labourers. The carrying of universal suffrage in England would therefore be a far more socialistic measure than anything which has been honoured with that name on the continent. Its inevitable result, here, is political supremacy of the working class.”
[Marx, 1852, commenting on the Chartist movement].
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