Review: Marxism and Anarchism

marxism and anarchism cover finalThe 2008 economic collapse had a radicalizing effect on students and young workers, who are always the first to respond to these earth-shaking events. In the face of all this, however, the politicians who purport to represent the working class (Labour in England and the mass ‘socialist’ and Stalinist parties throughout Europe) have only collaborated in the crimes against working people everywhere. It is only natural that in reaction to this betrayal, the awakened youth has developed a distaste for political organization, and have turned to the seemingly novel ideas of anarchists like Noam Chomsky, Michael Albert, and David Graeber. In reality these ideas are far from new, dating back to the struggle between Marx and Bakunin in the First International. If we seriously want to overthrow capitalism and build a socialist society, we must study the theoretical, tactical, and historical aspects of this debate. It is in this spirit that this collection, Marxism and Anarchism, was put together: to educate a new generation of revolutionaries in the best and most effective traditions of the working class movement.

WWI—Part Four: Into the abyss

german-revolution-ends-horror-of-war-2The tensions between the major European Powers, which were ultimately rooted in the struggle for markets, colonies and spheres of interest, were increasing steadily in the decades before 1914. They found their expression in a series of “incidents”, each of which contained the potential for the outbreak of war. If they did not reach this logical conclusion that was because the objective conditions were not yet sufficiently mature. These incidents are similar to the small landslides that precede a major avalanche in the above example.

The Puzzle of Productive and Unproductive Labor

digging-a-holeIn their desperate search for profitable fields of investment, the capitalist class, especially the financial oligarchy, has presided over an explosive growth of unproductive expenditure that today threatens to undermine the very edifice of capitalism. As more and more surplus value is siphoned off into unproductive activities, the issue of “productive” and “unproductive” labor has once again resurfaced as a factor contributing to, and a reflection of, the present terminal decline of world capitalism.

WWI—Part Three: The Strange Story of the Kaiser and the Tsar

german-revolution-ends-horror-of-war-2The Austrian attack on Serbia did not lead immediately to war with Russia. In St. Petersburg the generals were impatient to take action. However, Russian foreign minister Sazonov seems not to have shared the blind confidence of his generals. He feared the effects of war on the unstable political situation in Russia and was not convinced that the Russian army could win in a conflict with the formidable German military machine.