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Historical Determinism Comrade 08/06/2020 (Thu) 09:00:46 No. 2916 [Reply] [Last]
Why some marxist use historical determinism as a pejorative and how can someone be marxist and reject determinism?
>>2916 Marxists acknowledge that contradictions are inherent to all things in themselves across all times. There is no such thing as an absolute harmony which can be disturbed or reach. Hence dialectics are anti-determinist at a fundamental zero-level.
Historical determinism is often used to mean the belief that history is outside the control of humanity and instead happens to them like the weather. Meanwhile Marx claimed that humans are capable of consciously changing their material conditions (by "revolutionary activity").

Which of these books do you recommend? Anonymous 04/04/2020 (Sat) 21:46:37 No. 767 [Reply] [Last]
And which should I skip?
70 posts and 9 images omitted.
Pynchon is very fun to read
>>767 My personal favorite is 77
>>2930 It’s not a book about ideology per se, however it’s an incredible book. It’s a story about childhood’s end, fear, anger, nostalgia, with some midlife crisis stuff thrown in. It’s great
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>>786 >lolita >my gf's favorite book
>>2951 lol She just thinks Nabakov was the century's finest prose stylist.

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The question is when Anonymous 07/27/2020 (Mon) 03:39:14 No. 2874 [Reply] [Last]
The late 2010's and early 2020's upheavals were predicted 10 years ago by a relatively simple model that accounts for elite infighting, income inequality, number of 18-29 y.o. people, etc. The same analysis was retroactively applied to many civil wars and revolutions throughout history and the results were pretty consistent: wars, revolutions and upheavals follow pretty deterministic patterns. The thing that's impossible to predict, is the trigger, the casus belli. In-depth paper in [1], 2020 prediction in [2]. On the other hand the rate of profit is falling (empirically proven in [3]), which makes the contradictions accelerate: median living conditions become increasingly unbearable, inequality between the working population and the elite skyrockets, etc. (coronavirus and climate change are just accelerating even further the process). The question is not if, but when, will capitalism collapse. Two options at that point: regression, the elite fights back and wins (fascism, neo-feudalism, apocalyptic-tier world wars, pick your poison) or progression, the working class fights back and wins (socialism, which means the long term construction of post-scarcity society i.e. communism). [1]: https://escholarship.org/uc/item/6qp8x28p [2]: https://www.nature.com/articles/463608a >Quantitative historical analysis reveals that complex human societies are affected by recurrent — and predictable — waves of political instability (P. Turchin and S. A. Nefedov Secular Cycles Princeton Univ. Press; 2009). In the United States, we have stagnating or declining real wages, a growing gap between rich and poor, overproduction of young graduates with advanced degrees, and exploding public debt. These seemingly disparate social indicators are actually related to each other dynamically. They all experienced turning points during the 1970s. Historically, such developments have served as leading indicators of looming political instability >Very long 'secular cycles' interact with shorter-term processes. In the United States, 50-year instability spikes occurred around 1870, 1920 and 1970, so another could be due around 2020. We are also entering a dip in the so-called Kondratiev wave, which traces 40-60-year economic-growth cycles. This could mean that future recessions will be severe. In addition, the next decade will see a rapid growth in the number of people in their twenties, like the youth bulge that accompanied the turbulence of the 1960s and 1970s. All these cycles look set to peak in the years around 2020. [3]: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/55894/1/MPRA_paper_55894.pdf >The downward trend of the rate of profit, its empirical confirmation, highlights the historically limited nature of capitalist production. If the rate of profit marks the vitality of the system, the logical conclusion is that it approaches further to an endpoint.
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>>2897 Well put comrade, have you read Hinterland, by Phil Neel?
>>2898 >I also am unclear why you find urban environments to be hostile. I agree with your opinion but my reasons are more mundane: vehicle traffic, noise pollution, actual pollution, lack of space for gatherings. None of these are inherent to the city-form. An advanced socialist city of the future could avoid or minimize these issues. I do not share the contempt for cities, but I admit that there is a large untapped potential to them. We could create clean, green, efficient, humane and beautiful cities - capitalism stands in the way.
>>2900 >None of these are inherent to the city-form Not that anon, but the entire history of cities is that of people being forced into them out of brute desperation in search of opportunities for sustenance, falling to ruin both as individuals and generationally all their time there, and fleeing as far from the city center as they can manage the moment they claw together enough resources to afford it. It's pretty obvious that people just really, really hate living in cities.
>>2896 Honestly, I'm against trying to predict the future, but I think it's hard not to let some of the "kill me now" nihilistic millennial humor creep into my thought process. Not least because I've been guilty of perpetuating that nonsense myself.
>>2901 >It's pretty obvious that people just really, really hate living in cities I disagree. People hate living in shitty cities.

Adorno Comrade 08/03/2020 (Mon) 15:00:52 No. 2855 [Reply] [Last]
Were his works a coping mechanism because dialectics failed?
No because it was based on Adorno’s misunderstanding of dialectics in the first place. If you actually pay attention to Hegel you’ll see that Dialectics and Negative Dialectics are pretty much the same.
>>2857 You're saying the only difference is that Adorno evaluates it negatively? There seems to be more to it from what I heard.
>>2903 From what I’ve read, Adorno tries to argue against the idea that, in substation, contradictions are abstracted rather than sustained, but it’s based on his own misinterpretation of how Hegel describes sublation rather than Hegel’s failure to understand it.
>>2904 >substation *sublation

Is math invented or discovered? Comrade 07/31/2020 (Fri) 07:24:37 No. 2780 [Reply] [Last]
Is mathematics invented, discovered or both?
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>>2859 this is just talking about CS though, not math.
>>2782 /thread Math is riddled with platonists and science is riddled with scientism and brainlets. Pop scientists are somehow many times worse. Here's a hot take though. Math is a set of games with different axioms and rules. Philosophy is the same, a game of words, except with informal logic and words.
>>2860 It was written for CS researchers but is is about proving things in mathematics. Just read it, it's short and easy to understand.
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invented. it has no objective basis in reality. it's simply an abstract mental construct used to describe reality.

BOOKS, THEORY, VIDEOS, DOCUMENTALS ABOUT CENTRAL AMERICA Comrade 08/04/2020 (Tue) 02:50:17 No. 2862 [Reply] [Last]
NICARAGUA COSTA RICA PANAMA HONDURAS EL SALVADOR Frankly I wanted more info and knowladge about these part of the world.
You want something cringe and fucking. See this documentary about the chief defender of child molestors visiting Nicaragua https://invidio.us/watch?v=RAFSwv_5Uc8

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Comrade 07/22/2020 (Wed) 01:18:54 No. 2647 [Reply] [Last]
why do leftists generally dislike Althusser?
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>>2801 he's unironically a great mathematician and programmer. I just find it annoying when people shill him on anything philosophy related.
>>2788 Can a mod or someone reach out to him and have him do an AMA here on a pinned thread? That would be cool
>>2811 Zizek is a fucking joke and the fact that you cite him favorably in a thread like this speaks volumes.
>>2820 Oh really? Compared to a non-theorist blogger? Zizek has serious work other than cultural takes.
>>2827 You're a silly person and I'm ending this here.

Comrade 07/22/2020 (Wed) 22:50:08 No. 2678 [Reply] [Last]
is there a literary historian that gives a structuralist reason as to why the Soviet Union fell without blaming "revisionism" or "totalitarianism"?
I guess Cockshott in "How the World Works". I described this take before quite a few times on /leftypol/ over the last month, so I am a bit tired of re-writing it here. The gist is this: >Falling rate of growth kicks in once the economy matures and all the labor available is mobilized from rural jobs into industrial ones >This causes a stagnation in economic growth >This causes real wage growth to slow down to a crawl >This pisses of the middle class, which is becoming envious of their western counterparts that have yet to experience the start of the death of the capitalist middle class >This, over the course of Brezhnev's premiership, ferments a political crisis of sorts >Different factions arise to solve the problem, mainly neo-Stalinist hardliners, Centrists and Reformists. >Statistical chance lands the power in the hand of reformers in 1985 >Their policies, while having some good points, accidentally also wreck the command economy, only deepening the crisis, while the decision to make the country more "democratic" lets reactionaries like Yeltsin, as well as nationalists, get more influence >This sets of the first few secession, causing more instability, which reactionary forces, specifically having influence in the army, use to seize power >USSR is undemocratically dissolved
>>2741 In this scenario what should have been done to solve the crisis? Was stagnation inevitable and just apart of socialism or was the solution just computerization like Cockshott proposes?
>>2678 repost from my posts at /his/ The problem of socialist economy was not output distribution, but input allocation. During 1930s, while the victory in economic front was significant, there was a sign of problem. With the appearance of new production sectors (due to completion of industrialisation), came the problem of fighting for input (funding and manpower). For example, the fight between Stalin and Trotsky was the precursor of that kind. Behind the ideological struggle was actually an economic problem. Trotsky wanted to turn USSR into an full military-industrialised country (similar to Nazi) in order to carry out world revolution (expansionist), while Stalin wanted to focus on building a robust autarkic economy that could survive the onslaught of enemies (isolationist). But why didn't they combine both approaches, wouldn't it be better than adopting only one approach? The answer was because of limited resources. If we thought of Stalin faction and Trotsky faction as two socialist enterprises, then it's actual a fight for funding. Another example was the fight between Lysenko school and Western genetics school in biology. Actually, nothing prevented both directions of research to cooperate with each other, but why they didn't? Because in a condition of limited of resources and manpower, if the Lysenko school gained a new researcher, it meant the genetics school lost a researcher (researchers as rare resources). The winning of one faction meant the losing of another one, in the condition of limited resources. As Lenin had said, we need to see the real economic struggle behind every ideological struggle, without doing so, history is still a picture shroud in mysteries. In the late 1950s, the problem was even more grave. With the advent of many new important economic sectors (nuclear, plasma, advanced agriculture, computing, rocket, space, etc.) the fighting for funding and input came to new level. Every sectors were important, but who would receive the most funding? After the disastrous failure of Khrushchev in his agriculture experiment, everyone was aware painfully that much resources thrown into a project didn't automatically mean success. The question of how to allocate resources raged fiercely. Eventually, the Kosygin's reform returned a mechanism of capitalism, that is, funding would be allocated accordingly to the PROFIT indicator. Of course, there were exceptions (military science, education, healthcare, etc.) but it's a beginning step for turning USSR (and also Russia) into oil-exporting country. In the 1980s, the oil crisis threw USSR into a crisis (which was understandable because they were socdem capitalist economy then). Due to the 2nd world nature of USSR (no colony), social welfare system and evenly distributed economy, it made USSR the bottom in the hall of fame of profitability. What to do, what to do? What happened was history, but I think everyone understand what I want to say here. What happened to USSR in 1985-2000, was a giant profitability crisis similar to the great 2010s crisis, the solution was also similar, disbanding most of social security system (a profit drain), discarded all unprofitable sectors (deindustrialisation) and finally turned USSR into a oil needle (the most profitable sector) As Engels had said, mankind made history, but the result most of them didn't turn out to what they wanted

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Marx on "Arbitrary Profit" Comrade 07/15/2020 (Wed) 23:19:26 No. 2478 [Reply] [Last]
In Section VI of Wages Price and Profit, Marx explains that prices approximate the true value of a commodity, but only over time as supply and demand average out. Having established this, he goes on to argue against the fallacy that profit is obtained by selling commodities above their value: >If then, speaking broadly, and embracing somewhat longer periods, all descriptions of commodities sell at their respective values, it is nonsense to suppose that profit, not in individual cases, but that the constant and usual profits of different trades spring from surcharging the prices of commodities, or selling them at a price over and above their value. The absurdity of this notion becomes evident if it is generalized. What a man would constantly win as a seller he would as constantly lose as a purchaser. It would not do to say that there are men who are buyers without being sellers, or consumers without being producers. What these people pay to the producers, they must first get from them for nothing. If a man first takes your money and afterwards returns that money in buying your commodities, you will never enrich yourselves by selling your commodities too dear to that same man. This sort of transaction might diminish a loss, but would never help in realizing a profit. Marx's argument against a fallacy rampant in the present day seems like it would be incredibly useful to learn, I cannot for the life of me parse what he is talking about. Thus, instead of ignoring this aside I come to /edu/'s help in making sense of it. To break it down: <What a man would constantly win as a seller he would as constantly lose as a purchaser. If every transaction in capitalism can be understood abstractly as buyers and sellers entering a marketplace - representing supply and demand by changes in stalls, shoppers, and salesmen, for instance - then each transaction with an arbitrary percentage of profit x applied would even out. This is what I assumed this sentence to mean at first. But even if this were the case, could each successive capitalist in the line from raw material to finished product not add a surplus onto the successively increasing true value of the increasingly complex commodity? Marx might say that the competition between capitalists (ignoring supply and demand, which self-cancel) would force this arbitrary "profit" to increasingly diminish to almost nothing if it were to ever exist at all, and force them to reduce the labor cost of their commodidies by increasing their productive forces. But I don't see a point where this bastardization of Marxist theory would reach a contradiction, resolving itself into the correct understanding. Where is the error here? Either way, it turns out the rest of the paragraph seems to have nothing to do with any of this. <It would not do to say that there are men who are buyers without being sellers, or consumers without being producers. It feels like it ought to be phrased the other way around - sellers without being buyers - when talking about a business making profit during sales, which must of course buy raw materials, land, and the MoP from another source. But I ignored this as a stylistic deviation, until the next sentence: <What these people pay to the producers, they must first get from them for nothing. "These people"? Who? The capitalists? The sellers of labor power? Who are the producers? Why is there a dual-transaction taking place here? <If a man first takes your money and afterwards returns that money in buying your commodities, you will never enrich yourselves by selling your commodities too dear to that same man. This sort of transaction might diminish a loss, but would never help in realizing a profit. This is the point where the absolute abstraction loses me entirely. Is the man "taking my money" another capitalist, who makes a profit off of me in selling me raw materials but loses his profit as he buys from me? Would this really even out, if you were to take it to its logical conclusion mathematically? It seems this cursory, metaphorical refutation is much harder for me to grasp than a refutation in the form of a full analytical explanation of how the system actually works, which makes up the rest of the text. If someone could put it to me in plain terms I would greatly appreciate it, and I would hope other anons could use it to teach others as well.
you faggots really don't know the answer to this? this is considered one of the easiest marxist works and you don't get it? back to /leftypol/ then.
>>2819 The reason no-one answered is precisely because its so easy, idiot.
>>2819 It's a dead board man; I don't know what you were expecting

The Leninist root of Third Worldism (Maoism) Comrade 07/10/2020 (Fri) 18:27:40 No. 2263 [Reply] [Last]
>Those workers (proletarians) in the developed countries who benefit from the superprofits extracted from the impoverished workers of developing countries form an "aristocracy of labor". The phrase was popularized by Karl Kautsky in 1901 I'm noticing this really is a recurring theme with Lenin, but I'll leave this for another thread... >and theorized by Vladimir Lenin in his treatise on Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism. According to Lenin, companies in the developed world exploit workers in the developing world where wages are much lower. The increased profits enable these companies to pay higher wages to their employees "at home" (that is, in the developed world), thus creating a working class satisfied with their standard of living and not inclined to proletarian revolution. It is a form of exporting poverty, creating an "exclave" of lower social class. Lenin contended that imperialism had prevented increasing class polarization in the developed world and argued that a workers' revolution could only begin in one of the developing countries, such as Imperial Russia. By contrast, the definition within revolutionary syndicalism is that trade union bureaucracy, 'yellow unions', or social democratic unions were labelled 'labor aristocracy', (the IWW for example instead being a revolutionary industrial union, created within the orthodox Marxist theories of De Leonism).
1 post omitted.
>>2264 This thread addresses Leninism primarily cunt.
bump
What is to be done as class-conscious proletarians of the developed countries if Revolution can only arise from developing nations, and those populations do not desire our adventurist migration there?
>>2734 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neI-ol2AowM >How to Think Like a Vietnamese Communist: An Intro to Dialectical Materialism!
>>2263 >The increased profits enable these companies to pay higher wages to their employees "at home" (that is, in the developed world) has anybody verified this using data if possible? doesn't this imply that as places like China become more 'developed' and wages rise, wages will balance out between the developed/developing world and perhaps agitate the proletariat in developed countries to revolution?

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