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Thread started 10/30/17 5:32pm

gimmesomehornz

What does it mean to be on the political Left?

If you're on the Left side of the political fence (liberal, progressive, leftist, socialist, Marxist, etc.), how do describe your politics? What are you for, what are you against, as a person of the Left?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
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Reply #1 posted 10/31/17 7:59am

2freaky4church
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Today's liberals are actually moderates. The whole political culture has gone far to the right since Reagan. The left starts with the enlightenment and the men that gave it up the most were Marx and John Stuart Mill's On Liberty. You also have Decartes and Rousseu. Then you have the left Anarchists Bukanin and Rudolph Rocker. Then you have Emma Goldman who coined the term, "property is theft." In the 30s you had socialist parties that did very well. Kansas farmers were big commies. The New Deal was proposed to quell the success of the far left. Also there were several red scares. Unions used to be radical. They were taken over by corporate thugs. In the 50s unions were big Commie bashers. The Communist party did help the organizing of the civil rights movement. Al Sharpton won't tell you that.

MLK was called by the FBI the most dangerous negro leader. Not the Black Panthers. Moral power is always more dangerous than Antifa stupidity. Cointelpro basically killed the black left. Liberals went into the democrats and become corporate neo libs. They now avoid deep class politics and black militancy is done.

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Reply #2 posted 10/31/17 8:14am

gimmesomehornz

2freaky4church1 said:

... The left starts with the enlightenment ...

From Wikipedia:

The (Age of) Enlightenment (Europe during the 18th century) included a range of ideas centered on reason as the primary source of authority and legitimacy

—and came to advance ideals like liberty, progress, tolerance, fraternity, constitutional government and separation of church and state.

...the central doctrines of the Enlightenment philosophers were individual liberty and religious tolerance, in opposition to an absolute monarchy and the fixed dogmas of the Roman Catholic Church. The Enlightenment was marked by an emphasis on the scientific method and reductionism along with increased questioning of religious orthodoxy....

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
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Reply #3 posted 10/31/17 8:27am

gimmesomehornz

2freaky4church1 said:

... Unions used to be radical. They were taken over by corporate thugs. In the 50s unions were big Commie bashers. ...

Communism = (from wikipedia) "ultimate goal is the establishment of ... a socioeconomic order structured upon the common ownership of the means of production and the absence of social classes, money and the state."

If being in a union is about earning better income, and better income is about having a better life (better than...) it would make sense that union members would be against Communism, no?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
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Reply #4 posted 10/31/17 8:41am

jjhunsecker

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2freaky4church1 said:

Today's liberals are actually moderates. The whole political culture has gone far to the right since Reagan. The left starts with the enlightenment and the men that gave it up the most were Marx and John Stuart Mill's On Liberty. You also have Decartes and Rousseu. Then you have the left Anarchists Bukanin and Rudolph Rocker. Then you have Emma Goldman who coined the term, "property is theft." In the 30s you had socialist parties that did very well. Kansas farmers were big commies. The New Deal was proposed to quell the success of the far left. Also there were several red scares. Unions used to be radical. They were taken over by corporate thugs. In the 50s unions were big Commie bashers. The Communist party did help the organizing of the civil rights movement. Al Sharpton won't tell you that.

MLK was called by the FBI the most dangerous negro leader. Not the Black Panthers. Moral power is always more dangerous than Antifa stupidity. Cointelpro basically killed the black left. Liberals went into the democrats and become corporate neo libs. They now avoid deep class politics and black militancy is done.

because Communist associations and assistance were used to attack and discredit the Civil Rights movement

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Reply #5 posted 10/31/17 10:50am

2freaky4church
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No and no.

"2freaky is a complete stud." DJ
"2freaky is very down." 2Elijah.
"2freaky convinced me to join Antifa: OnlyNDA
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Reply #6 posted 10/31/17 12:04pm

gimmesomehornz

2freaky4church1 said:

No and no.

? and ?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
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Reply #7 posted 11/01/17 5:27am

TonyVanDam

What does it mean to be on the political Left?

ANSWER: For liberals, it means to liberate. For progressives, it means to make progress via continuious changes. For radicals, it means to eradicate. For revolutionaires, it means to revolt.

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Reply #8 posted 11/01/17 5:35am

gimmesomehornz

TonyVanDam said:

What does it mean to be on the political Left?

ANSWER: For liberals, it means to liberate. For progressives, it means to make progress via continuious changes. For radicals, it means to eradicate. For revolutionaires, it means to revolt.

Liberate from what? Change what? Eradicate what? Revolt from what?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
~PrinceRogersNelson
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Reply #9 posted 11/01/17 7:06am

jaawwnn

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It means fuck all without a specific context.

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Reply #10 posted 11/01/17 10:16am

2freaky4church
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It means understand how power works and how to stop it and create diffused power with people in charge not central authorities.

Tony, we do not need your help. lol

"2freaky is a complete stud." DJ
"2freaky is very down." 2Elijah.
"2freaky convinced me to join Antifa: OnlyNDA
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Reply #11 posted 11/01/17 10:25am

2freaky4church
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Chomsky debunks Marxism, yes, Marxism:

See, that's the big problem with elite thought. If someone important like Marx has a bad theory but also has a good theory we use the bad theory to say that the good one should be abandoned. We do that with Michael Moore's films. If there is one error the whole film is worthless crap. Take what you can from what it correct, disgard the rest. Elites play this slick game with this.

"2freaky is a complete stud." DJ
"2freaky is very down." 2Elijah.
"2freaky convinced me to join Antifa: OnlyNDA
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Reply #12 posted 11/01/17 9:53pm

gimmesomehornz

jaawwnn said:

It means fuck all without a specific context.

i.e. "fuck-all" -- a largely Irish slang term meaning "nothing" or "zero." Example: "there's fuck-all in the bank."

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
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Reply #13 posted 11/01/17 9:59pm

gimmesomehornz

2freaky4church1 said:

It means understand how power works and how to stop it and create diffused power with people in charge not central authorities.

How is your "diffused power with people in charge" not going to be "central authorities" all over again?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
~PrinceRogersNelson
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Reply #14 posted 11/02/17 4:35am

jaawwnn

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gimmesomehornz said:

jaawwnn said:

It means fuck all without a specific context.

i.e. "fuck-all" -- a largely Irish slang term meaning "nothing" or "zero." Example: "there's fuck-all in the bank."

Ha! lol Is it an irish specific slang? Well I learnt something today.

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Reply #15 posted 11/02/17 4:39am

jaawwnn

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2freaky4church1 said:

Chomsky debunks Marxism, yes, Marxism:

See, that's the big problem with elite thought. If someone important like Marx has a bad theory but also has a good theory we use the bad theory to say that the good one should be abandoned. We do that with Michael Moore's films. If there is one error the whole film is worthless crap. Take what you can from what it correct, disgard the rest. Elites play this slick game with this.

That's a nice response he gives there. Was he just asked "what's your take on marxism" or what though? I'd like to see what he was responding to.

[Edited 11/2/17 4:39am]

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Reply #16 posted 11/02/17 4:52am

gimmesomehornz

jaawwnn said:

gimmesomehornz said:

i.e. "fuck-all" -- a largely Irish slang term meaning "nothing" or "zero." Example: "there's fuck-all in the bank."

Ha! lol Is it an irish specific slang? Well I learnt something today.

Largely, not specific.

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
~PrinceRogersNelson
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Reply #17 posted 11/02/17 5:19am

jaawwnn

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gimmesomehornz said:

jaawwnn said:

Ha! lol Is it an irish specific slang? Well I learnt something today.

Largely, not specific.

yes, yes

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Reply #18 posted 11/02/17 5:27am

TonyVanDam

gimmesomehornz said:

TonyVanDam said:

What does it mean to be on the political Left?

ANSWER: For liberals, it means to liberate. For progressives, it means to make progress via continuious changes. For radicals, it means to eradicate. For revolutionaires, it means to revolt.

Liberate from what? Change what? Eradicate what? Revolt from what?


Right there is the problem. The liberals in the USA has forgotten & abandon their roots. They were suppose to liberate their supporters from the very restrictions that the conservatives want to conserve.

But to answer your question, I can only speak based upon what I've studied. Most right wingers want to conserve AND maintain white European-American supremacy & white privilege.

Good people like ourselves should be liberate from that. We need changes. We need to see the evil of white supremacy and all types of racial supremacies eradicated. And if it comes to a point that we need a revolution [peacefully and/or violent], than so be it.

[Edited 11/2/17 5:43am]

[Edited 11/2/17 13:20pm]

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Reply #19 posted 11/02/17 5:31am

TonyVanDam

2freaky4church1 said:

It means understand how power works and how to stop it and create diffused power with people in charge not central authorities.

Tony, we do not need your help. lol


Let Gimmesomehornz be the judge of that. It's his thread, not your.

And besides, you need to use an American dictionary more. If you knew the root words of all of the American political idealogies, you would have better understand that most politicians are never who they said they are or what they stand for.


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Reply #20 posted 11/02/17 6:50am

deebee

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2freaky4church1 said:

Chomsky debunks Marxism, yes, Marxism:

See, that's the big problem with elite thought. If someone important like Marx has a bad theory but also has a good theory we use the bad theory to say that the good one should be abandoned. We do that with Michael Moore's films. If there is one error the whole film is worthless crap. Take what you can from what it correct, disgard the rest. Elites play this slick game with this.

I agree with pretty much everything he says here: I don't think we should deify Marx, and I think we should pick and choose critically between good and bad stuff. Yet I'd still refer to myself as a Marxist because, in reality, that's what Marxist thought has done for the last century-and-a-half. I sometimes prefer to say 'materialist' or 'historical materialist' because, yes, in some sense that's more precise, but I don't think the risk of idolatry is as pressing as Chomsky suggests it is in this clip - at least not today.

It's true that in the Soviet Union, there was an orthodoxy or 'Party line', though as Marshall Berman wrote in one of his essays: "Classical communist education was Talmudic, based on a study of commentaries, with an underlying suspicion of sacred primary texts [i.e. those written by Marx himself]." And I think up until, maybe, the 60s or so, there was a kind of 'canon' of ideas amongst Western Marxists (e.g. the stages of history, the state withering away, the dictatorship of the proletariat, etc). But one finds none of that today reading Richard Wolff or David Harvey or Jacobin magazine. In the literature, one finds all sorts of once 'sacred cows' gaily tossed out and the wide corpus of historical materialist works from the late 20th century in particular being drawn on widely.

It's why I get annoyed when one finds oneself up against someone who's skimmed a clunky textbook chapter saying, "But didn't Marx think such-and-such?" Yes, possibly, but IDGAF about that. Move on.

"Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced." - James Baldwin
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Reply #21 posted 11/02/17 7:08am

deebee

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^ Following on from my post above, the bit in the clip about Marx being a thinker who diagnosed the problems of capitalism rather than proposed a model for the way socialism or communism ought to be organised is pretty much true - in the sense that he gave sustained attention to the former task, and only sketched the latter in fragments (and refused to try to fashion any kind of political 'recipe book'). Even the Communist Manifesto is predominantly a work of analysis and critique with some key points thrown in. (That's the way I mean that I describe myself as a Marxist: it's in the sense that I critique capitalism drawing on those Marxian tools of analysis, but I certainly don't support some kind of Soviet-style dictatorship or state-dominated collectivism as a favoured political alternative.)

One of the reasons people used to make much of that was to show how Marx as a thinker couldn't be held responsible for the actions of dictators - which is correct, in my view. More recently, though, people like Peter Hudis have gone through his work compiling the fragments that he did write that are relevant to the kind of alternative he did favour, i.e. about what socialism ought to be like (see the clip below). What those reveal is a thinker who argued vehemently against people's alienation and domination by the state as well as the structures of the capitalist economy, and whose preferred alternative mode of organising society would be one based around groups of freely associated producers who would have full democratic control over all aspects of their lives - economic, political, social - not just ticking a box for one of two corporate hacks every five years. It's explicitly critical of the kind of state abuses that would follow in the 20th century. Richard Wolff's 'democracy at work' stuff arguing for worker cooperatives is a pretty decent contemporary approximation, whatever the difficulties of getting that to work may well be.

[Edited 11/2/17 7:14am]

"Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced." - James Baldwin
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Reply #22 posted 11/02/17 7:57am

OnlyNDaUsa

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to me, it seems to be more about letting the government handle things to protect us.

"I was raped by the Arkansas AG who then becomes Governor & President..." Juanita Broaddrick
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Reply #23 posted 11/02/17 7:57am

2freaky4church
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Deebee's a bad man. Only and DJ, listen to him.

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"2freaky is very down." 2Elijah.
"2freaky convinced me to join Antifa: OnlyNDA
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Reply #24 posted 11/02/17 2:51pm

gimmesomehornz

TonyVanDam said:

...Most right wingers want to conserve AND maintain white European-American supremacy & white privilege.

What are your examples of white supremacy and white privilege today?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
~PrinceRogersNelson
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Reply #25 posted 11/02/17 2:59pm

gimmesomehornz

deebee said:

... I don't think we should deify Marx, and I think we should pick and choose critically between good and bad stuff....

Should we pick and choose critically between good and bad stuff when it comes to Fascism and National Socialism too?

It's why I get annoyed when one finds oneself up against someone who's skimmed a clunky textbook chapter saying, "But didn't Marx think such-and-such?" Yes, possibly, but IDGAF about that. Move on.


Should we just "move on" when it comes to pro-Capitalist and anti-Communist ideologies as well? Choose critically between good and bad stuff?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
~PrinceRogersNelson
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Reply #26 posted 11/02/17 3:07pm

gimmesomehornz

deebee said:

... Even the Communist Manifesto is predominantly a work of analysis and critique with some key points thrown in.

How do you feel about Hitler's "Mein Kampf," if I may ask? Are there "key points?"

I'm not meaning to troll. But, Communism has undoubtedly done a huge amount of damage to humanity. Millions killed all over the world in it's name. This ideology is rooted in Marx's writings. Don't you agree there's an unavoidable turd in this punch bowl?

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
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Reply #27 posted 11/02/17 5:00pm

gimmesomehornz

It's been argued that the extremes of both Left and Right meet each other like hands on a clock and basically end up being the same malevolent thing.

What I'm trying to get at is...

What does it mean to be on the political Left?

What distinguishes the Left from the Right? What is the Left for that the Right is against, what is the Left against specifically (i.e. not just "the Right"?)

" Most people don't want to talk about politics and religion. They say, 'Let's talk about something else.' "
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Reply #28 posted 11/03/17 2:31am

jaawwnn

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gimmesomehornz said:



deebee said:


... Even the Communist Manifesto is predominantly a work of analysis and critique with some key points thrown in.




How do you feel about Hitler's "Mein Kampf," if I may ask? Are there "key points?"



I'm not meaning to troll. But, Communism has undoubtedly done a huge amount of damage to humanity. Millions killed all over the world in it's name. This ideology is rooted in Marx's writings. Don't you agree there's an unavoidable turd in this punch bowl?


Millions have died under every fucking regime since day one. Unchecked capitalism has brought the planet onto the brink of total extinction. Your red scare isn't a good enough excuse any more.
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Reply #29 posted 11/03/17 4:00am

deebee

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gimmesomehornz said:

deebee said:

... Even the Communist Manifesto is predominantly a work of analysis and critique with some key points thrown in.

How do you feel about Hitler's "Mein Kampf," if I may ask? Are there "key points?"

I'm not meaning to troll. But, Communism has undoubtedly done a huge amount of damage to humanity. Millions killed all over the world in it's name. This ideology is rooted in Marx's writings. Don't you agree there's an unavoidable turd in this punch bowl?

Well, I would agree that the political regimes you're likely referring to have done great damage to the lives of human beings, and I would oppose those. That would also be true of the entirely pro-capitalist political regimes you fail to refer to, such as Pinochet's Chile; the Argentine military dictatorship that waged a 'dirty war' using anticommunist death squads; the Contras in Nicaragua; the death squads in El Salvador; the business-friendly totalitarian theocracies in the Persian Gulf, notably Saudi Arabia; the massacring, thieving and enslaving colonial powers in Britain, France, Belgium, etc; slavery-era America; and even the illiberal pole of a dualised system currently operating in the Land of the Free, which casts its authoritarian net over an obscene proportion of the Black male population in particular. So, I think we could say that authoritarian political regimes that rule through repression are damaging to human lives, but note with honesty that these can be attached to very different economic systems, and not just the ones we don't like.

What I contest is the point you assert here but don't substantiate, which is that one can find an ideological basis for the horrors of Stalinism or similar forms of Soviet-style dictatorships in Marx's writing. I think that's untrue, for the reasons I've given: i) that Marx devotes very little attention to mapping out a political alternative to capitalism (i.e. what socialism, communism, etc, should look like); and ii) that what little he does say about the alternative - namely, that it should be organised so as to enable individuals to flourish and exercise control over their own lives, free from the forms of alienation and domination that would curtail that freedom - is radically incompatible with the kinds of regime you allude to. So, I would conclude Marx is our ally in opposing totalitarian regimes, whether they are nominally Left- or Right-wing.

The analogy with Hitler simply doesn't stand up. Hitler wrote a paranoid antisemitic screed, then took office and enacted genocidal political plans that were entirely consistent with that. That's simply not true of Marx, who i) never held power, and ii) offered no basis for those who did to institute totalitarian rule. But, if you think otherwise, you must be prepared to substantiate your claims - though this will have to rise above the simplistic and ill-informed associations upon which your brash but rather flimsy assertions have been based thus far.

[Edited 11/3/17 4:02am]

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