No 1575 24th April 2020
Trumpite belittling of Covid pandemic goes far beyond stupidity. Instead it is the most disgusting expression of the cynicism and sickness of a desperate imperialist system ready to do anything, however ruthless or depraved, to wriggle and squirm its way out of the gigantic Catastrophe its private profit system has brought the world to. Despite a real enough shattering impact the deadly virus is not the CAUSE of world financial and economic collapse which was coming anyway, would have imploded anyway and will inflict far greater agony on the world than ten viruses, through Slump unemployment, starvation and the World War Three which is imperialism’s only “way out”. Mankind’s way out must be the total overturn of this foetid and rotten society of callous class exploitation and indifference. China’s brilliant example shows what collective society organised in a workers state can achieve, streets ahead of capitalism. But Beijing still hampered by revisionist retreat from class war revolution - & the fake - “left” more so
There is surely far more to the Trump White House’ wilful trampling across pandemic safety norms and lockdown measures than mere ignorance, Marie Antoinette disdain or a cover-up of early dunderheaded failure to understand the seriousness of the Covid outbreak.
Nor is it just bluster and dissembling to hide the hopeless inadequacy, unpreparedness, incompetence and unfairness of the American-led Western “free market” system and its ruthlessly individualistic “dog eat dog” society of privilege, spacious property and private medicine for the wealthy “winners” while the alienated working class majority, hammered by austerity, jammed into crowded housing and forced to work for a pittance in often unsafe and even unsanitary conditions, takes the brunt of the appalling consequences (not to mention the ruthlessly exploited Third World masses, facing far worse disease horrors amid deprivation and lack of even basic sanitation for hundreds of millions).
And it goes far beyond merely bowing to the growing pressure of the big monopoly corporations, callously indifferent to the suffering of the working class and danger to the poorer population in their desperation to keep profit-extracting production – “the economy” – underway, or re-start it and extend it (including privatising health and pharma-profiteering from vaccines and drugs).
Their soaking up of the aid and bailout funds to cheat the “risk” (possibility of failure) that is supposed to be the guiding principle of “free market competition” is a truly disgusting aspect of the crisis, in the same way that the bank bailouts were in 2008-9; and so too the outrageous profiteering of the hedge funds and speculators, and the opportunist expansionism by likes of Amazon.
All these are factors.
But Trump’s contempt is so extreme and dangerously perverse it cannot be “incompetence”.
It is deliberate policy.
And it needs a Marxist revolutionary perspective to grasp that and explain that its degenerate cynicism cannot be reasoned against, challenged “democratically” or be “proven wrong” to force a “change in direction”.
This is part of the demented and desperate plunge into world war belligerence and domestic repression by the crisis-threatened American Empire that can be stopped only by hammering class war defeats for its arrogance and the development of a worldwide struggle to overturn rotten and festering monopoly imperialism and build rational socialism, led by a consciously built revolutionary party.
For the pandemic itself, it was obvious from January onwards what kind of firm emergency action was needed everywhere to shut down virus transmission and contagion – and whatever the initial minor bureaucratic hesitations, China’s workers state demonstrated quickly and clearly how to do it, with the rigorously imposed lockdown in Wuhan and Hubei province, and nationwide testing, travel bans and contact tracing through all China and for international travel.
Every serious medical authority has now declared this to be the necessary path to save lives and return to more normal daily life (as further discussed below). Meanwhile China’s great example has stirred renewed debate and discussion everywhere about great advance for humanity that coordinated collective society – socialism in short – constitutes (see recent EPSRs).
To a varying extent some capitalist countries followed this strategy too, particularly those in Asia such as South Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong, with rigorous control, test and track programmes.
Most of those have previous experience of similar outbreaks like SARS, and MERS, and are close to or linked with China and all have managed to contain their national outbreaks at levels close to China’s. Again, as further discussed below, their choices frequently reflect the extent to which they tilt towards Chinese collectivism.
But from the beginning the deranged and increasingly overtly fascist wing of the US empire ruling class has done the opposite.
Trumpism has chosen to sabotage every move for containment and quarantine.
From the moment the spread of the virus was clear, it immediately decided (or had already been pre-planned and strategised – see the Crimson Contagion Pentagon wargaming of 2018) to let this rip, playing down the risk, disparaging its own science advisers, withdrawing funds to medical authorities both federal (its pandemics advice unit) and now international (the United Nations WHO), callously refusing federal aid and supplies to desperately ravaged New York where mass graves have been needed, mocking press concerns as “fake-news” or deliberate “fabrications to undermine the election campaign” and encouraging the mass US population to ignore the threat, or dismiss its significance, until it was knowingly too late, whatever crocodile tears were then poured out for the “very concerning death toll” and whatever half-hearted palliative measures have eventually been taken.
The same line more or less has been followed by the most reactionary and jingoistic sections of the world bourgeoisie, particularly those desperate to maintain alliances and stooge relations with Washington, notably the “mini-me” Trump-echo fascist Jair Bolsonaro regime in Brazil deliberately walking the streets to defy social distancing measures, sacking his own health minister for “too much concern about lockdown” and conflicting with those provincial governors who have imposed social distancing and quarantine measures, to the astounding extent now of calling for a military coup to act against them.
Latin America’s mid and late 20th century era of military rule was one of “disappeareds”, barbaric torture, widespread massacre, death squad terror and helicopter murder, across the continent, largely trained by US imperialism at the notorious School of the Americas.
So much for capitalism’s pretences of “democracy”, already twisted out of recognition for half a decade by the CIA-coached corrupt parliament and judiciary in Brazil (not so different to all bourgeois rule).
Initially at least, the British Brexit Tories too were on the “let it loose” path, notoriously dressed up as a “scientific herd immunity” policy, and cynically understood in some reactionary circles at least as a useful “cull the old and weak” policy –
A Telegraph journalist has suggested coronavirus could ‘prove mildly beneficial’ to the UK economy by killing off elderly Britons.
...Warner compared coronavirus with Spanish flu, and how the 1918 pandemic ‘disproportionately affected’ young people, unlike the Covid-19 strain which ‘primarily kills the elderly’.
He reasoned Spanish flu had a ‘lasting impact on supply’ because it killed off ‘primary bread-winners’, which he said is unlikely to happen with coronavirus. Then he said: ‘Not to put too fine a point on it, from an entirely disinterested economic perspective, the COVID-19 might even prove mildly beneficial in the long term by disproportionately culling elderly dependents.
Warner’s comments...received a strong backlash online, with readers blasting them as ‘despicable’ and ‘deeply sinister’.
Even wider public dismay and outrage at the huge projected death toll forced a backtrack, though in practice the lying Tories are still doing the same through prevarication, Brexit anti-EU belligerence, incompetence, laughable and repeatedly broken promises, and apparent floundering uselessness, all hidden behind a smokescreen of gross hypocrisy, ludicrously pompous “British is best” empire-nostalgia exceptionalist jingoism and outright lies about “protecting the NHS”, which they have been dismantling and privatising for years (and fully intend to continue doing for US trade deal and trade war alliance purposes).
But how to explain this deranged savagery still being stepped up by Washington, when surely a sick population cannot work well, and mass dismay could turn to revolt?
A dozen conspiracy theories about germ warfare are circulating blaming both China and/or the US, but they just confuse matters (interesting though such speculation might be and not necessarily without some foundation).
The most rational answer, and the most useful, is that which Marxism has long fought to explain.
Because far worse Slump and destruction was imminent anyway, unstoppable and in fact, needed by the ruling class, as it pushes the world war “solution” to the “overproduction” paralysing the whole system.
Everything pivots around understanding the crisis of capitalism in other words and just as importantly grasping its full revolutionary significance.
That means revolutionary in the deepest philosophical sense of ever-intensifying contradiction reaching a paralysing and intractable impasse solvable only by a titanic historic jump to a new level – as well as in the narrower political classwar sense of overturning the entire rotten system (and even that more limited understanding is avoided or not understood by petty bourgeois “leftist” fakery).
The immediate aspect of that explored by the EPSR (last issue) is imperialism’s need to step up the rapidly deepening and ever more aggressive trade war, already being driven to cutthroat levels by the crisis and inflamed by US Empire America First belligerence.
It is now so urgent that the ruling class is ready to tear up its always fraudulent claim to historic and moral justification through “protecting the people” (the basis for maintaining its military, police, intelligence services etc) in order to steal a march on its rivals.
It is equally tearing up its “international order”.
Such trade war imperative remains the case, with the insane heavy subsidies of new dollar printing for US industry ($2 trillion!!) used primarily to prop up the big US corporations (and not the small businesses being bankrupted or gobbled up by the big guys nor, obviously, the workers themselves) as a weapon against other big powers, particularly the European Union (and its German core).
It is a battle of “who blinks first” in the race towards world bankruptcy.
The grotesquely cynical calculation is that the 1% or so death rate for the disease can be borne (at least by the rich in their large houses and gardens) while leaving enough workers in the factories and farms, to win through, simultaneously giving the chance to further reduce wages and conditions for a desperate population.
The death toll, already mostly among the masses and particularly the doubly-oppressed black proletariat (BAME population), is a “price worth paying” as infamously declared over the half-million dead children caused by the vicious bullying sanctions siege of Iraq by the monstrous Madeleine Albright during the despicable Bill Clinton presidency which also presided over some of the opening shots of WW3 like NATO’s Serbia blitzing.
But the picture of calculated indifference has sharpened even further since, making it clear that this is only half the story.
Even winning trade war, an impossibility in fact, would not be enough to end this crisis.
The world is heading for total breakdown, almost certainly involving the collapse of the dollar itself, in raging inflation perhaps like that seen in the Weimar Republic, or forced onto countries like Zimbabwe, Venezuela or other victimised regimes deemed hostile to imperialism, through sanctions and siege blockades.
And the “trade war” and battle to survive for imperialism can only be “won” by the total devastation, through all-out world war, which the system is inexorably dragging everyone towards.
Only that will destroy enough of the “surplus” capital jamming the pores of the world trading system and ever increasingly blocking its capacity to make profit (as reflected in the virtually zero interest rates now paid on loan and investment capital) to offer any prospect of continued capitalist rule, which is anyway a very long shot given the turmoil and revolt that this crisis will trigger.
Exactly such destruction in the two giant inter-imperialist wars of the twentieth century gave the system a temporary new lease of life particularly after the 1939-45 WW2 phase (of what was in effect the same World War).
The sections of capital left standing, primarily in America, were able to invest once more in the cleared out rubble, making a “healthy return” which sustained two decades of boom conditions for the rich imperialist powers (divvied up according to their new rankings in the pecking order) if not the brutally exploited Third World.
It was enough even to sustain welfare reforms and improved living standards – again only for the metropolitan countries – to try and counter the obvious benefits of communism in the war-victorious USSR and East Europe.
The crumbs-from-the-table reforms were sold to the working class by treacherous TUC/Labourism as “proof” that reformist politics could change their lives and bring socialism, helping head off communist sentiment and understanding and fostering the anti-Sovietism which has saturated minds ever since.
Self-defeating revisionist retreats by Moscow (see EPSR Book vol21 Unanswered Polemics) helped this disastrous brainwashing by feeding notions of “permanent peaceful coexistence” and idiot delusions in abstract “democracy” by which it would now supposedly be possible to make progress all the way to a socialist world by “peace struggles” and parliamentary roads.
Not even disasters like the 1973 Chilean CIA-aided Pinochet coup butchery against the treacherous and deluded “peaceful road” politics fostered by the Salvador Allende, fatally disarming the working class, or the earlier slaughter of at least one million communists and fellow travellers in Indonesia through equally misleading anti-revolutionary notions, managed to stop this revisionist stupidity.
Such brain-softening nonsense is still hampering understanding and leaving workers vulnerable to coups and overturns to this day, notably across Latin America in the last ten years (Bolivia, Paraguay, Brazil, Argentina, Honduras and repeatedly tried against Nicaragua and Venezuela) and into the imperialist countries too, in half-hidden form such as the dirty-dealing insider sabotage by Labour party Blairite reactionaries, to stop even tepid and useless Corbynite “leftism” in its tracks, combined with the manipulated electoral coup carried out by Boris-ite Tories last autumn.
Temporary post-war boomtime could not last, and the relentless accumulation of capital and ever intensifying process of monopolisation quickly brought the crisis back to the surface from the 1970s, making it necessary for the ruling class to start stripping away these gains with aggressive “neo-liberal” privatisations and attempted crackdowns against union power etc, culminating in Thatcherism’s desperate 1984 civil-war fight against the heroic miners’ proletarian frontline.
It signalled forever the end of progress by class collaboration with capitalism, (only ever partially successful and reflecting deeper revolutionary pressure anyway) posing sharply the need for revolutionary politics.
Thatcherism/Reaganism was not some “new kind of more aggressive capitalism” that can somehow be reversed, regulated or made “nicer” as some desperate liberal or “old Labour” worthies are once again arguing as the pandemic throws a harsh light on capitalist inequalities – it is just the old monopoly capitalism pushing back desperately to survive by intensifying exploitation again to survive the already growing trade war competition.
Its new harshness was driven by intensification of the endless crisis of the system heading all the way to complete implosion and war via regional and partial collapses (1971 dollar crisis, oil “shocks”, repeated credit disasters in Mexico, Argentina, Asia currency breakdown, Japanese stagnation etc etc etc plus repeated “Black Mondays” on the Stock Exchanges) all culminating in the first the 2000 dot.com implosion and then 2008’s even more world scale bank collapses.
This is the great Catastrophe that Marxist-Leninism has urgently been warning the working class of, against all the fake-“left” complacency and anti-theory reformist activism (piling into Corbynism etc), demanding a rebuilding of revolutionary leadership.
As this unravelling crisis has deepened via multiple complications requiring non-stop analysis, the world has been driven towards a repeat of world war, starting with NATO’s bombing of tiny Serbia, and escalated hugely by the vicious lying wars on Iraq and Afghanistan to “shock and awe” intimidate the whole planet and make it pay for the American Empire’s bankruptcy.
Even this could not remotely stop its relentless deepening.
In fact, the great collapse which became universal in 2008 has never stopped for the great majority, with grinding austerity imposed throughout the lyingly hyped “recovery” since, and it has been teetering on the edge of further sudden and unstoppable implosion ever since, as Marxist science has constantly warned, reinforced by evidence of constant jitters and nervous prognoses from bourgeois economists and finance institutions (see multiple past EPSRs eg 1567 and basic Marxist science briefly quoted in EPSR application Box, and set out in the Communist Manifesto, Marx’s Capital and Lenin’s Imperialism).
Especially in the last year or two, all the major institutions like the IMF, World Bank and credit rating agencies have had non-stop alarm bells ringing that the bank bailout credit props like Quantitative Easing and ultra-low interest, which have just about kept the capitalist order above water, were about to give way again, or that economic implosion had possibly had started already.
Some of this emerges in current bourgeois press attempts to explain things, though already excessively focused on the virus as explanation:
the argument goes, when the International Monetary Fund says that the global economy is going to suffer its worst year since the Great Depression or the UK’s Office for Budget Responsibility pencils in a slump unmatched for three centuries, that has absolutely nothing to do with the way the world economy is organised or run. Covid-19 does not mean the end of globalisation: it is a freak of nature, that’s all.
The view that nothing fundamental will change as a result of the twin health and economic emergencies may be right. There was, after all, much talk of how global capitalism was going to be fundamentally reformed after the banking crisis of 2008, but that’s all it turned out to be: talk.
In retrospect, the big lesson to be learned from 2008 was that the global economic system was operating on terrifyingly thin margins. Banks were taking ever-bigger bets on products they didn’t really understand but had very little capital in reserve to cover any losses. There was virtually no slack in the system and this almost proved fatal when the bets went spectacularly wrong.
The same applies now, only on a much bigger scale. The financial system may perhaps be more resilient than it was in 2008 (!!?!!) but the global economy as a whole operates with the scantiest of safety buffers and with no margin for error. And that’s true from top to bottom: from the ultra-low interest rates that have been keeping the global economy afloat for the past decade to the scramble to find intensive-care beds in the NHS. When politicians say that the fundamentals of the economy are sound, they could not be more wrong.
Here’s the real picture. The past 30 years have seen global markets – especially global financial markets – increase in both size and scope. Long and complicated supply chains have been constructed: goods moving backwards and forwards across borders in the pursuit of efficiency gains; hot money flowing into emerging markets looking for high returns and flowing out again just as quickly at the first sign of trouble.
The development of stronger global institutions might have acted to constrain some of the excesses of transnational capital but not since the 1930s has multilateral cooperation been so lacking. The only effective form of international coordination comes from central banks, which ensure that money is cheap and plentiful. Any attempt to raise interest rates to what would once have been considered more normal levels is met by stock market panic and is quickly reversed.
this is not just a big-picture story. The reason the UK government has been pumping so much money into the health service, into wage subsidies, into support for the self-employed and for small businesses is that they were all only just managing before the crisis broke.
The weakest decade for real-wage growth since the 19th century meant that millions of workers are only one payday away from penury. For most, self-employment is a daily struggle to make enough to live on. Small businesses, such as family-run restaurants, operate on wafer-thin margins. For them, the cost of taking out an emergency government-backed loan (assuming they could get one) would wipe out their profits for the next two years.
What this amounts to is a world clinging on by its fingertips, even in what passes for the “good times”.
It would be an act of supreme folly to write off 2020 as an aberration and assume that everything can return to normal.
But as in this piece, petty bourgeois analysis is already confused, as the bourgeoisie wants it be, by the diversionary notion that the virus is the cause of the problem.
So too in the deluge of other articles and analyses poured out with terrifying and terrified warnings of the damage the world production shutdown is going to produce, on a scale far beyond the 1930s Depression (and yet to be felt) not least in the Third World where latest reports suggests mass starvation is going to confront hundreds of millions by the end of the year.
All use phrases like “the economic impact of the virus”.
That’s the point.
The bourgeoisie does not want anyone to see clearly the real culprit, capitalism itself.
Viscerally and by long practical experience, if not through rational understanding (which only Marxist dialectical science can fully attain) it knows utter disaster already faces the world and did anyway.
But if that is grasped by mass opinion so too will the need to overturn it, once it is made conscious by revolutionary leadership.
Hence a “dead cat on the table” distraction which the ruling class considers “worth it”.
War is the usual go-to get-out, to distract minds and whip up “patriotism” and jingoistic hatred; but while all kinds of partial onslaughts have been set going for two decades, especially in the Middle East after 9/11, they continually backfire, stirring more massive Third World hatred and hostility, and war weariness, dismay and resentment domestically.
Beyond that, convincing the world it needs another round of universal blitzkrieg destruction, against the great rivals like Japan, Germany (and increasingly the competition from China’s successful use of capitalist economic methods under overall workers state direction) which alone can destroy the mountains of capital “surplus”, is even more difficult.
Even the First World War had to be stopped through exhaustion, war weariness and changing consciousness in the disgusted masses, expressed in turmoil and revolt everywhere and most sharply of all in the historically shattering upheaval of the great Russian revolution throughout 1917.
For the first time it was demonstrated that workers could consciously end capitalism and its conflicts and start to build socialism, inspiring the working class everywhere with its possibilities for decades, (as it will again after the temporary hiatus of revisionist liquidationism).
Getting into the second part, WW2 in 1939 was much more difficult than simply shaming “unpatriotic workers” with white feathers and not least because of the new danger they too might turn communist.
All the vicious theatricality of the Nazi “new world order”, had to be drummed up, along with the “fight to stop it” eventually, to justify this new round of inter-imperialist gangster conflict to destroy Depression-causing surplus capital and to fight for world topdog exploitation rights (the “anti-Nazism” a giant fraud by the “good” imperialists like Britain, France and the US in fact, all with an even dirtier record of imperialist torture and massacre colonialism than anything Hitler ever managed).
And even then it backfired and the West had to compromise with the world socialist revolution (temporarily and treacherously) and the defence of the Soviet Union, once Hitler had attacked them, keeping the working class on side with the promise of social transformation when it ended.
For the Cold War which followed and saturation of minds with non-stop anti-communism to head off even more revolutionary thoughts, the capitalist system has had to pretend it too stands for world peace, internationalism, global “rule of law” justice and ever growing prosperity, stymied only by the “Communist threat”; a message which the class collaboration of TUC/Labour reformism helped promulgate (propped up by the fake-”left” Trots and revisionists).
It was always a gigantic lie, as testified by hundreds of mostly US led interventions, coups, massacres, assassinations, and outright wars, slaughtering multiple millions, to install or keep in place dozens of brutal local stooges and tinpot fascists, and to push back against national liberation and communist revolutions, but it “kept the peace for”, and maintained a kind of balance between, the pack of imperialist powers and their continued plundering and tyrannical exploitation of the Third World, whose natural resources and ruthlessly appropriated labour output provide the wealth on which the “advanced societies and decent living standards” are built.
But when the leading Soviet Union disappeared in 1989-91, its mostly brilliant 70 year long record of building socialism and supporting anti-imperialism not “collapsing” but liquidated by the revisionist stupidities of Gorbachevism, – the end point of the long steady philosophical retreat from revolutionary understanding which began in Stalin’s Moscow after Lenin’s death, – the well of “external threat” explanations began to run dry for imperialism.
From then on there was only the capitalist monopoly system left as clearly responsible for the chaos and turmoil and world warmongering horrors which inevitably followed because of its inbuilt contradictions, instead of the promised “golden uplands of prosperity and peace through democracy and entrepreneurship”.
The ludicrous and meaningless “war on terror” has done replacement service since as a bogeyman.
But it is thin gruel. In various forms such turmoil has already been fermenting for decades in hostility to imperialism, not least in the “jihadism” and “terrorism” erupting in the Arab world and elsewhere, but also in the insurgencies and anti-occupation struggles which were triggered by the Empire’s turn to outright bullying warmongering after 9/11, when the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq drove tens of thousands into revolts and tens of millions more in the Third World cheered them on.
Despite some manipulation of a few elements of this by imperialist agencies (though far less than assorted fake-“left” defeatism implies) and all kinds of backward or sectarian ideological leadership, the overwhelming aspect of this non-stop upheaval is its anti-imperialism, as the growing deployment of US, French, British and other imperialist forces to counter it throughout north Africa and the Middle East, indicates.
Imperialism’s great fear is that it eventually coalesces into a mass revolt, as it did in the gigantic 2011 street revolts in Egypt and Tunisia, toppling imperialist stooges. Those were just about headed off by NATO invasion of Libya, imperialist provoked civil war in Syria and CIA-Zionist backed counter-revolution in Cairo.
But all that has backfired too, failing to topple the not-compliant-enough bourgeois nationalist Assad regime and seeing the attempted manipulation of local sectarianism “blowback” with the ISIS eruption of fanatical Islam, as hostile to imperialism as it is to the Assad regime it was initially being cultivated to overthrow.
And while ISIS’ bizarre apocalyptic Caliphatism is no solution for the masses, and even counter-productive in its fanatical and ruthless religious puritanism, it still threatened to inflict blows on imperialism in Iraq, almost toppling the corrupt stooge government which the US occupation had just about managed to set in place to carry on after Obama-ism notionally pulled out (though leaving a network of bases).
Marxism does not support or advocate any such religious barminess but it always welcomes defeats for imperialism from whatever source.
If it were not for the complete craven and confused capitulation of all the fake-“left” to the imperialists’ “war on terror” nonsense, universally “condemning” such anarcho-religious upheavals as essentially another form of reaction even worse than imperialism (an utterly unMarxist notion) – that overrunning of Baghdad by ISIS would have further compounded the mess Washington has already got into.
Instead both Trots and revisionists have long gone along with imperialist police blitzing because of this craven failure to understand such jihadist turmoil as an expression of disgust and hatred for Western imperialist domination.
So dire is their retreat from any Marxist grasp that they have tolerated the continued imperialist Middle East rampaging because of their posturing idealism; even effectively allying with imperialism, like the Trots through backing the opportunist stooging of the YPG Kurdish nationalism which has worked hand in glove with US and other Western special forces, to suppress ISIS, or like the revisionists by supporting Syria’s Assad and the Iranians supporting him, again ending up alongside the American military, through the joint operations they were carrying through “against terrorism”.
While there is much more to try and get the brain around in the complexities of the Middle East, and growing jihadism, the critical issue here is that the “war on terror” has not won mass support for US imperialism and a rush of willing recruits for the world war it desperately needs.
Just the opposite, a key part of Trump’s populist appeal has had to be in withdrawing from such costly engagements (which Obama-ism was also notionally doing because of the quagmires they had become).
Far from stabilising the world for generations more of easy plundering, they have proved pointless failures, like the nearly 20-year long and costly war in Afghanistan, which the US is now pulling out from by negotiating with an undefeated Taliban, or Iraq which is an ever worsening mess with ever spreading outbreaks of revolt particularly in the Shia muslim south which was previously kept on side through tapping sectarian hostilities against the Sunni north (mainstay of ISIS).
Increasing outbreaks of riot and revolt continue in country after country across the world from Haiti, and Chile to much of Africa, in the Sahel areas like Mali, Chad and, it is suddenly revealed, all the way to the south:
An Islamist extremist group in northern Mozambique has killed dozens of villagers in its most bloody attack.
More than 50 people were massacred in an attack in Xitaxi in Muidumbe district after locals refused to be recruited to its ranks, according to police cited by local media. Most were either shot dead or beheaded.
“The criminals tried to recruit young people to join their ranks, but there was resistance. This provoked the anger of the criminals, who indiscriminately killed – cruelly and diabolically – 52 young people,” police spokesman Orlando Mudumane told the state-owned broadcasting service.
The attack occurred more than two weeks ago but details have only emerged now.
Militants have stepped up attacks in recent weeks as part of a campaign to establish an Islamist caliphate in the gas-rich region, seizing government buildings, blocking roads and briefly hoisting a black-and-white flag carrying religious symbols over towns and villages across Cabo Delgado province. The flag is also used by Isis and other Islamic extremists.
In March, the insurgents briefly occupied the centre of Mocímboa da Praia, a district headquarters, burning government facilities, including a barracks, and brandishing banners of affiliation to the so-called Islamic State.
A day later a second town was raided and the district police headquarters badly damaged. Those attackers too carried an Islamic State flag. Twenty to 30 members of Mozambique’s security forces were killed in both attacks, observers said.
Local security forces suffer from poor training, minimal equipment and low morale. Attempts to reinforce with expensive foreign mercenaries do not appear to have been effective.
At least 150 Russians linked to the Wagner Group, a company that has supplied mercenaries to fight in several African countries, were deployed last year but were forced to withdraw after suffering casualties.
The insurgency in the remote north began to grow about two years ago, exploiting widespread anger at the failure of central government to fairly distribute earnings from exploitation of the region’s rich natural resources. Discontent was exacerbated by endemic corruption and a brutal, indiscriminate military response to the violence.
The unrest has forced hundreds of thousands of locals to flee and raised concern among big energy firms operating in the region.
More than 200,000 people have fled the area hit worst by the violence, according to a local Catholic archbishop, Dom Luiz Fernando.
An organisation calling itself Islamic State Central Africa Province (ISCAP), affiliated with Isis, has claimed some of the attacks in the region since last year.
The insurgents are known locally as al-Shabaab (“the youth”), although they have no known links to the extremist group of that name operating in Somalia.
Such constantly spreading terrorist upheaval does not fit the fake-“left” explanations that fanatical Islamo-anarchic terrorism is either “even more reactionary than imperialism” or “the wrong way to do things” as most of the 50-shades-of-red groupings have all said since the 9/11 attacks, or “all run by the CIA anyway”, as increasingly convoluted revisionist sophistry has tried to maintain particularly around the Syrian civil war, to excuse itself for seeming too obviously lined up with imperialism when making equally craven “condemnations” (see EPSR 1123 on the barmy 9/11 conspiracy type “theories”).
Like the revolts in the Sahel, which French imperialism particularly has sent hundreds of troops to try and put down, (along with some British and even American special forces), this is clearly directed against capitalism such as “big energy firms” and “unfair distribution”.
If it is inchoate and its ideology religiously reactionary, still counter-productively sectarian, then blame the world “communist” leadership from Moscow which abandoned the revolutionary perspectives which such anger and hatred is obviously seeking, leaving a revisionist vacuum which first of all liquidated the giant achievements of the Soviet Union and East Europe and then left the mass of the planet disillusioned for the time being.
Leninist understanding will be rebuilt (if it is not already happening in small pockets across the world) which will provide the understanding and consciousness needed.
But it is up against the revisionist retreat still pouring out its confusions even as the pandemic is delivering huge lessons to the world masses on the cynicism and fascist viciousness of the US Empire and its “allied” stoogery, and still failing to draw the revolutionary lessons.
The biggest of these is obviously the overwhelming success of China in quickly containing and then stopping the disease in its tracks, and most importantly the fact that it could do that because it is a workers state.
And this is in contrast to either the incompetence or deliberate indifference of the Western countries.
As even Western medical expertise has said, (despite muddying of the “science” by the government) this stunning achievement was possible by a combination of initial lockdown, and isolation of the entire province in which it began, combined with a rigorous programme of checking the whole enormous population of China, some 1300 million people, over 20 times the size of Italy or Britain for example, detecting and isolating potential victims and then tracking their contacts, so that they too could be quarantined to avoid further spread. Everyone has been wearing masks.
As clear from news reports and video, the country used simple techniques like electronic handheld remote thermometers (not seen once in the UK !!) to pick up fever symptoms on those outside Hubei, and established a fully developed system of supply for food and other necessities to homes, inside the province and elsewhere.
It built several hospitals in record time.
And the entire resources of the country were brought under central command and direction to make all this work.
Since the start it rapidly analysed and publicised the genetic sequence of the virus and developed a sophisticated tracking system via mobile phone (ubiquitous in China since the mid-1990s) with a simple red-yellow-green system to show infection or contact status and allow those in the clear to travel or work, which is gradually allowing it to return to a more normal life, while maintaining necessary vigilance.
But instead of seeing these achievements, virtually the whole of the Western intelligentsia has been driven into a frenzy by these organisational methods, all with their knickers in a twist about “authoritarianism” and “intrusive state control” and “we could not do that here”.
Well precisely. And nor have “we”.
Of course a directed and organised society, which follows a clear leadership and accepts the necessary disciplining of individuals for transgressions from the rules has allowed the necessary rigour to deal with the epidemic.
Of course it is a dictatorship.
But the critical question is whose dictatorship? And what is its nature?
It is a class question. There is either the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie, hidden behind the pretences of “democracy” and “individual freedom” (meaning the “individual” right of property ownership to exploit and dictate to all the have nots) or there is the dictatorship of the proletariat, acting for the majority and able to do so because it has abolished private property ownership of the means of production.
And despite the constant hyping in the West of stories about alleged “terrible repression” built around the carping and axe-grinding complaints of whatever malcontents and “dissidents” can be found (always a few self-interested opportunists especially in a population as big as China’s) or can be induced to complain by promises of the “good life” in the West or by outright bribery, or simply by the deluge of illusions pumped out by capitalism’s non-stop lie propaganda machine, in the main the great majority support it.
The same was true for the Soviet Union despite its many flaws, mistakes and errors, particularly in the first years dragging a backward and uncultured society forwards against the encircling pressure of imperialism repeatedly trying to strangle this new society at birth by the most barbaric butchery it could manage.
Under the hidden rule of the bourgeoisie there is as much, in fact more, surveillance, monitoring, spying, control and repression than anything even alleged against the workers states, but carried out by the multiple secret spy agencies, organisations and private companies of the bourgeoisie and acting in their bourgeois class interests, both commercial (for advertising, sales etc); to manipulate even more effectively already gerrymandered, twisted and stitched-up public opinion, bent and distorted even more in the actual voting mechanics of electoral “democracy”; and for population control using every dirty and fascistic torture and assassination method in the book to suppress detected dissent or revolt, obviously in the exploited Third World, and behind the façade of bogus “democracy” and the “free press” etc in all the most advanced countries, (such as throughout the national-liberation war, to suppress the Irish nationalist struggle in the forcefully partitioned occupied Six Counties).
The fears expressed by the petty bourgeois commentators, that open ended surveillance and geo-position monitoring being suggested in the capitalist countries to allow them better medical tracking and quarantine control, would be misused and taken advantage of for sinister state monitoring are perfectly sound (inasmuch as they do not happen anyway already via the tens of $billions spent on the intelligence agency snooping centres like America’s National Security Agency and its British equivalent (and effective “subsidiary”) the GCHQ) in a society which is a bourgeois dictatorship ready to go to any lengths of repression as its system breaks down and it is obliged to abandon the hollow pretences of democracy.
In a workers state the only ones who need to be fearful are the remnants of the past brutal and arrogant class dominance, the tiny minority, and the counter-revolutionaries freshly generated within the new society by the petty bourgeoisie, which until the process of building a completely communist society can be completed, continues to exist for a long period constantly regenerating old attitudes.
Where workers states use capitalist methods (under workers state direction) to push their development, there is obviously added risk unless overall political leadership is firm and clear.
And of course there is constant deliberate skulduggery and subversion by the surrounding West using every means it can from non-stop press propaganda lies to deliberate provocations by planted or recruited agents on the ground.
It might be argued that some capitalist countries have also demonstrated a quick and effective response to the pandemic, and such is the anti-communism saturating Western culture that various press and technical comparisons arguing for test and track methods use these as examples while not even mentioning China itself.
But these are either special cases or not in the same league; “efficient Germany” for example, cited by many as providing many more hospital intensive care beds and early introduction of rigorous testing, has a death toll around 45 per million of its population compared to between 3 or 4 for China.
Germany, which decided on a “keep the workers healthy’ policy as its best means to wage trade war, proves mainly that British-is-best boasting about its capacities is and has long been, total horsedung.
The UK figures are much higher, at around 150, as are those for the US too, while Italy and Spain have tolls well above 250.
New Zealand also cited, has the advantage of its faraway island status, small population and the fact the ultra-rich favour it as an armageddon bolthole.
Some Asian countries do have a better claim to have contained the virus’ impact but examined closely there are particular reasons too; all having experience from past deadly virus outbreaks.
As this account from South Korea shows, it is also underlying revolutionary pressure which has pushed them, internally since the 90s currency collapses, and also not mentioned in the article, because of the growing influence of communist North Korea:
South Korea is one of the few countries that has succeeded in flattening the coronavirus curve. Its policy of testing, tracing and treating without lockdowns has been widely lauded. Some attribute this to South Korea’s experience of having dealt with previous epidemics such as Sars and Mers. Commentators in the US tend to stress the country’s effective leadership, contrasting it with that of Donald Trump’s. Others point to cultural factors, such as the willingness of the public to sacrifice privacy for the greater good.
What is often overlooked, though, is that at the roots of South Korea’s success against Covid-19 are a well-funded and efficient system of delivering public services. Without this baseline infrastructure, the policy of test, trace and treat could not have been sustained or expanded to the degree that it has. Likewise, effective leadership cannot achieve much if it lacks a well-oiled public service system that can deliver.
Take South Korea’s biggest international airport, Incheon. As a publicly managed airport, it is consistently ranked among the best in the world. Likewise, the Seoul metro system is world renowned for its cheap fares and efficiency, making it one of the top five underground systems. By far the most impressive aspect is South Korea’s single-payer healthcare system which was ranked the first among OECD countries in 2015. Although hospitals in Korea are mostly privately run, 97% of the Korean population is covered by the compulsory national health insurance scheme. This balance between privatised hospitals and public insurance system has ensured universal accessibility and ample resources, proving its effectiveness in the coronavirus crisis.
How did South Korea achieve this? Unlike in western Europe after the second world war, establishing a welfare system was not the priority of the dictatorships that ruled the country. Like many developing nations in Asia, the emphasis was on industrialisation and economic growth. At the same time, the dictatorship invested heavily in public infrastructure, viewing it as indispensable to Korea’s growing industries. In 1977, the country’s first national health insurance system was introduced, although this was nothing like the comprehensive healthcare of today.
The restoration of democracy in 1987 did not change this state-led economic model and infrastructure management. What changed, however, was the attitude of the people. The toppling of the military dictatorship in 1987 was the result of a series of nationwide protests. Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, South Korea saw numerous mass civil protests against a wide range of issues, from the import of US beef to government mismanagement of a ferry accident in 2014. The apex of this mass mobilisation were the demonstrations against the previous president, Park Geun-hye. The protests continued from October 2016 to March 2017. On 3 December 2016, an estimated 2.3 million people took to the streets, almost 4% of the entire population. These subsequently led to Park’s impeachment and imprisonment.
Korean politics since the 1990s can thus be characterised as a period during which citizens became increasingly emboldened in their relationship with the state, forcing governments to take their wellbeing seriously. One area that this has been the most conspicuous is in public transportation, energy and healthcare. For the average person, these are everyday services that all citizens have the right to enjoy, and which are paid for by taxpayers’ money. To put it in more utilitarian terms, they are the most tangible barometers with which to judge the government’s commitment to its citizens. Failure to improve their qualities and manage them properly almost always leads to a loss of votes for the ruling party in upcoming elections.
This sensitivity to public services and responsiveness to hold government accountable has been the spur behind the improvement of South Korea’s public services for the past 20 years. It also makes privatisation difficult to accept. Not only does it go against the ingrained sense of communal entitlement but also, seeing that services have improved under government, many question the logic of selling them to private companies.
The irony is that for many years, Koreans believed that having world-class public services was equivalent to becoming more democratic and thus more western. Many were unaware of the widespread privatisation and outsourcing of public services that was taking place in the west at the same time. The coronavirus crisis plunging Europe into chaos has shattered this idealised image.
This is not yet communism; in fact it shows a desperate attempt by Korean capitalism (and the US occupation still tied to the reactionary wing, with a huge military presence in the country to intimidate the North) to head off such developments, just as Clement Attlees’ “left” Labourism did in Britain while actually running the British Empire and suppressing communist developments with brutal wars like Greece and Malaysia.
The crucially missing point is that the only basis on which the ruling class ever makes reforms is under revolutionary pressure.
And the crucially missing point from the entire fake-“left” around all these developments is that of revolution.
The Trots, bent double under their petty-bourgeois hatred of workers state discipline, even play into the hands of the demented Trumpite campaign to demonise China and blame it for not just the pandemic but for the oncoming capitalist catastrophe economic disasters as well.
The absurd ground is that if the pandemic had been “stopped earlier” – almost certainly an impossibility, especially very early when noone even knew what they were dealing with or what its characteristics were (– does Trump suggest early victims should have been “injected” with “disinfectant or bleach”!!!!) – then the world economy would be steaming along.
Trotskyism’s bilious and defeatist nonsense that China has “nothing to do with socialism” or in most extreme cases, is now “just another capitalist power intent on maximising profit” continues to defy reality, and most obviously so in the light of precisely the unfolding pandemic.
Even worse is the near racist sneering at “disgusting wet markets” which are not necessarily unhygienic, and which are anyway not certainly the “cause of the outbreak”; as plenty of bourgeois press articles have pointed out, giant factory farms in America and elsewhere have distorted the relationship with nature so much that they are a permanent source of infections, disease and genetic disorder (with both pigs and chickens notorious for past outbreaks).
Others pandemics like the camel mediated Middle East Respiratory System, did not originate in China either (the clue is in the name) and other scientists have pointed out that genetic jumping and mutation of viruses can and does occur solely within humans anyway.
None of which says that Beijing’s leadership has been or is perfect.
Clearly there was an early problem of bureaucratic nervousness (not “fear”) resulting from an entire mechanical revisionist approach to party cadre training and constant open discussion.
It did not move fast enough, and even tried to suppress early medical fears reflecting complacency and woodenness (though as previously discussed, there was always a judgement to be made between sensible or premature public alerts when knowledge is limited, causing panic, perhaps unnecessarily).
And the continued pursuit of Western “brand” consumerism as an ambition for members of society is dire, not because of any “hair-shirt” puritanism about everyone having a fair share of a decent standard of living, – that is a major point about building socialism in the first place, – but because of its limited and narrow philosophical perspective.
But at least Beijing quickly reprimanded the local party mistakes, which is a good sign and moved fast afterwards.
Any delays it did have, around a fortnight perhaps, were far less than the delays of often many weeks in virtually every other capitalist country after that, which had the additional advantage over China of knowing more about what they were facing.
As the EPSR has said in the past (No956 30-06-98):
Even if there is never an end to Beijing’s Revisionist nonsense, failing to offer the slightest grasp in public of Marxist anti-imperialist science, the vital importance of the dictatorship of the proletariat (as opposed to the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie) is nevertheless still proving its worth despite everything.
The biggest problem with Beijing and one that had a dire effect on world understanding, is its continued sustaining of a “don’t rock the boat” revisionist line and one-sided pleas for “world cooperation” barely one level above the once much feminist-derided pieties of Miss World contestants “to have world peace”.
Just listen to this heap of fatuousness uncritically pumped out by the notionally “hard-nut Stalinist” Lalkar/Proletarian revisionists (now calling themselves “the Communists” while building the national-socialist Workers Party of Britain behind “left” parliamentary opportunist George Galloway):
The following joint open letter has been issued by more than 180 parties worldwide, including the Communist Party of China and our own party, the CPGB-ML.
Today (2 April 2020), as Covid-19 is spreading rapidly across the globe, it constitutes the most urgent and serious challenge to both the health of humanity and world peace and development.
Faced with this unprecedented situation, we, major political parties of various countries tasked with the weighty responsibility of improving people’s wellbeing, promoting national development and safeguarding world peace and stability, hereby issue our joint appeal as follows:
I We pay our loftiest tribute to all the people, health workers in particular, who devote themselves to saving lives and protecting people’s health.
We extend our heartfelt sympathies and solicitude to those who are suffering from pain and whose lives are under the threat of Covid-19 as well as the bereaved families of those deceased. We also express our deep mourning for the unfortunate loss of lives in the outbreak.
II We recognise that if the Covid-19 outbreak is not effectively and promptly contained, it will inflict even greater harm to the lives, safety and health of many more people, and exert a severe impact on the economic and social development of most countries as well as on international exchanges and cooperation.
We call on all countries to put the lives, safety and health of the people above everything else and take resolute and forceful measures to put an end to the spread of Covid-19.
III We support countries to put in place contingency plans and strategies for combating Covid-19 in light of their specific national conditions and to strengthen cooperation, with equal emphasis on containing the further spread and on patient treatment.
Meanwhile, modern science and technology must be applied to the full to ensure the quickest and best possible results.
IV We call on the general public of all countries to comply with prevention and mitigation measures with a due sense of social responsibility.
We encourage countries to fully leverage the strength of civil society organisations and volunteers with a view to unleashing the power of all social sectors to combat Covid-19.
V We encourage all countries, while devoting efforts to epidemic control, to adopt an integrated approach to ensure economic and social development, take targeted measures to protect vulnerable groups and SMEs, and honour their commitment to people’s living standards and social progress.
We call on all countries to step up the international coordination of macroeconomic policies to maintain the stability of global financial markets as well as that of industrial and supply chains, and to reduce or exempt tariffs for trade facilitation so as to prevent world economic recession.
Countries are also encouraged to maintain an appropriate level of international exchanges, in particular to facilitate the cross-border transportation of urgently needed medical equipment and protective materials for the fight against Covid-19.
VI We are aware that the virus respects no borders, and no country can respond to the challenges alone in the face of the outbreak. Countries must enhance their consciousness of a community with a shared future for mankind, proactively rendering mutual help and support to one another as the situation becomes more difficult.
Closer international cooperation, coordinated policies, concerted actions, and mobilisation of resources and forces globally will enable us to defeat this virus, a common enemy to all of humanity.
VII We take note of the significant progress in the fight against Covid-19 in China and some other countries, which has bought time and offered experience to the rest of the international community.
We highly commend countries including China for adopting an open, transparent and responsible attitude to disclosing related information in a timely fashion, sharing experience on response and patient treatment, and in particular providing medical and other supplies to the best of their ability to other affected countries.
These represent a major contribution to the global fight against Covid-19, boosting the hope and confidence of countries that they can win this battle.
VIII We welcome the Extraordinary G20 Leaders’ Summit Statement on Covid-19 and support countries to strengthen the sharing of experience and medical cooperation in containing the outbreak, including joint research and development of specific medicines, vaccines and tests.
We call on the provision of material, technical and other support to developing countries and countries with vulnerable public health systems. Let the sunlight of cooperation disperse the darkness of the pandemic.
IX We call for science-based professional discussions on issues like prevention measures and the origin of the virus. We strongly oppose the politicisation of public health issues and the stigmatisation of other countries under the excuse of Covid-19.
We stand firmly against all discriminatory comments and practices against any country, region or ethnic group, and call on governments of all countries to take proactive measures to protect the health, safety and legitimate interests of foreign nationals and students they host.
X We are of the view that the Covid-19 outbreak has laid bare the need for all countries to further foster the global governance outlook of achieving shared growth through discussion and collaboration and to support the leading role of the United Nations and the World Health Organisation in global public health governance.
We call for all parties to enhance coordination and cooperation within the framework of the G20 and other international mechanisms for effective international prevention and control as we strive to build a global community with a shared future for public health.
As major political parties from countries of the world, we undertake to maintain close communication under these unusual circumstances, and ensure better performance of the due role of political guidance for the purpose of injecting political energy into the global fight against Covid-19. We firmly believe that our current difficulties are only temporary, just as the sunlight shall eventually shine after each storm.
If the international community makes concerted efforts with confidence and resolve and takes a science-based and targeted approach, it will definitely win the final victory in the global blocking action against Covid-19.
It is our belief that, after the pandemic, the community with a shared future for mankind will emerge stronger and humanity will embrace a brighter tomorrow.
And we “call on” pigs (certified swine fever free of course) to fly????????????
It is hardly possible to know where to start with such a disgusting pap of sentimental wishful thinking and sub-Christian pieties, which does not even mention the raging crisis of capitalism nor the antagonism and deliberate warmongering hatred being fostered by Washington and the other not-transparent-at-all capitalist dictatorships, which are taking the world in exactly the opposite direction and which will not be stopped by any amount of “sunlight of cooperation”.
There are all kinds of diplomatic reasons why China might pursue temporary peaceful coexistence measures with other countries , but the overall political impact of this statement is dire beyond belief, especially if it is offered as a political statement about the world’s way forwards from this greatest Catastrophe ever, facing hundreds of millions, if not billions with disaster and death.
It certainly is completely damning of the political line being put forwards by the signatories as ostensible leadership for the working class, not least from the revisionists.
Who are these “180 parties” anyway – are they “communist” and are they supposed all to be supported whatever their class views?
The most damaging and self-contradictory part of this stuff is the notion that “we don’t want to politicise this”.
Read as a rebuttal of anti-Chinese criticism that does not seem so bad, but it is thereby immediately making a “political” point in itself (correctly).
And things get worse, when it sets “science based professional” opinion against “politicisation”.
As even many bourgeois press articles have been debating, there is first of all a range of scientific and medical opinion, sometimes taking opposite sides, and always setting out conclusions in terms of experimental and survey evidence, probabilities, uncertainties, and yet-to-be-gathered information (such as whether infection confers immunity, assuming recovery) and presented frequently as cost-benefit options from which decisions are made by politicians.
They then all claim to be “following the science” as the British government’s ministers do, in virtually every daily briefing despite swinging from “let it rip herd immunity” to “lockdown” – both “scientifically advised”.
Secondly “scientific opinion” is not class neutral but influenced and coloured by the entire societal and philosophical framework within which it operates, meaning bourgeois class society – from such crudities as the salaries and status held by the “advisors” to the one-sided way of thinking and operating which underlies bourgeois critical realism and mechanical materialism.
Historically it has made great advances over superstitious feudalism but remains partial and limited, and as capable of forging deadly nuclear weaponry without a murmur as of saving lives or improving daily life.
Thirdly, if it is science that should be guiding humanity than what more scientific approach to the world can their be than Marxism-Leninism, the highest point of dialectical-materialist science yet achieved by mankind and absolutely vital in finding a way forwards through the oncoming Catastrophe?
This stream of appalling disarming social-pacifist platitudes does not even mention the very basics of the international capitalist crisis, the class war, unsolvable antagonisms of capitalism and above all the only future, revolutionary overthrow of this now destructive system.
What it does do is suppress the basic Leninist understanding that a gigantic debate is needed by the whole of humanity, led and guided by the revolutionary party which consciously advocates and calls for such open polemical struggle.
This notion that “now is not the time for politics” is on a par with the backward and philistine nonsense seen in the Socialist Labour Party for example which declared against “internecine strife” and particularly in the run-up to elections when, as the EPSR pointed out (eg issue No 994, 1007 and others), such battles were precisely the time when the biggest and most extensive debate was required, so that members could work through all the doubts and confusions, to establish a clear philosophical line and thereby forge the only kind of class unity that is ever going to achieve anything, the unity around the best understanding of objective reality it is possible to achieve at any given moment (subject always to constant re-appraisal as new phenomena or information arises).
Otherwise it said (No 1079 06-03-01) there is a complete mish-mash of confusion:
Such is all that can be produced by the elimination of “internecine strife”, also, in the moribund Stalinist-Revisionist tradition. The real debate certainly needs to be restricted to those genuinely dedicated to a Marxist-Leninist, workers-state, proletarian-dictatorship, revolutionary perspective. But within that framework (on the doubtful assumption than any membership would be left to the CP Revisionist groups, the SLP, or the ‘Socialist Alliance’ on such a basis), -- unrestrained polemics should roar forwards on every contested issue of anti-imperialist struggle since the Bolshevik Revolution.
Instead, ‘debate’ is turned into mutual back-scratching with the sects, and philistine thuggery ejects any serious source of objective scientific inquiry or contribution.
As a world diplomatic statement on a par with the “non-aligned” movement (itself a dire revisionist halfway house, avoiding the revolutionary basis to philosophy and political struggle) there might just be some limited value to this 180-party collection of platitudes.
As a philosophical perspective from those claiming to be “Communists” it is totally shaming.
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