The apparent contradiction between the maturity of capitalism and the backward stage of the subjective preparation of proletariat through its political party, non-existent today, has a solution in the essence of communism, that is not an utopia or an ideology amongst the others and it's not dead at all, but it's a real movement toward the future.
"The news about my death have been grossly exaggerated", Mark Twain commented, reading his own obituary in the news papers. That communism is dead is a large opinion, but opinion is other thing from demonstration. Sure, from Marx and Engels' work onward, the word communism has been tested out by history, different "marxisms" were born and still today in the world there are thousand of communist parties and groups that refer to it. All differents and, at the same time, almost all so similar. If communism was really that mixture of utopy, petty political pragmatism, democracy, parliamentarianism, partisanship, statalism etc. that today almost everybody believe to be, its disappearance would be an advantage for the social change. But communism, fortunately for humanity, is not this kind of shoddy goods.
Today an uncontested bourgeois "order" seems to reign not only in Warsaw and Berlin, as it was said in tragic circumstances, but everywhere. An adulterated communism conform itself to this order getting along in a plethora of organisms, particularly far from metropolis. Nevertheless we well know that it's not finished here.
When communism – which, as we'll see, is a really material change that continuously happens under our eyes – will have evident effects from social point of view, "communist" political acts will spring up like mushrooms. There will also be a political expression of the outstanding revolution, and this will have some difficulty to assert itself as regards to the "old tinsels" (Marx), but in at first old corpse will be re-exhumed, made up and withdrawn, often shown like something absolutely new. Almost as it happened in the 68th and, with opposite result, in February of the 1917 in Russia.
Pseudo-communism is a tested expedient (resource), efficacious to lead back in the ranks of traditional politics a movement which would rush itself in the future sweeping away all that should hamper it. There is no restraint in "politics": they called "communism" the more efficient anti –communist policeman of the established order never existed in the history, it could happen again. Nobody succeed in cheating workers better than every kind of reformists, who are called at the government when others failed, at least since Sheidemann and Noske spontaneously offered themselves like "bloody dogs" in the repression of the German revolutionary risings of the 1919th ( and they gave the definition themselves).
"The order reigns in Berlin. Stupid cops! Your order is built on the sand", a great revolutionary woman wrote few days before she was killed by Noske soldiers. Order is transitory like a hardly probable state of matter. Order, chaos and new order are determined to follow one another as long as humanity will be able to put into operation what–since long time - distinguishes itself from the animal kingdom: the reversal of the primordial praxis of nature, the project.
Besides, Every fascism, is nothing else than the subject that practically realises old and inconclusive reformist politics, and it's natural that last ones spontaneously transcends toward the first, to be then massacred, at last useless. Historically fascism comes after democracy, so is more modern, more progressive. For this reason it lost the war on military plan but it won it on economical and political plan. Today the political understanding is on the side of the winner of the wars of a century, America, which proclaims economic liberism for others and practise the world-wide control and planning of economy for his own advantage. For sure this is reformism, i.e. fascism, not like the black and brown shirts. Together with the old and conceited national bourgeoisie of Europe like watch-dogs for its own proletariats; "stupid cops" doing something for someone else, terrorised every time that Uncle Sam breathes on rates, shakes petrol in front of whom is without it or drop some bombs to clarify to universe the old question of the knife's upper hand.
Maybe one day, when humanity will be finally free to write its own history without ideological prejudices, it shall be clear why partisan and antifascist ideologies were so strong in this century. Because fascism is here, and it is strong. The bourgeoisie can't allow itself to leave the huge economic net in the hands of private capital, neither can't allow itself to lighten the preventive control on proletariat.
The counter-revolution exists because revolution is a real fact, present in the dynamics of the so-called progress. Social facts are always complementary. America seems to contradict this law, but it is not so. There were not great workers parties, neither reformists nor revolutionaries, because, on one hand, for historical reasons, they don't need intermediate and corporate cops like in Europe; on the other hand, because the party of revolution, in that context of highest and modern social productive force, from more than a century couldn't have a democratic structure (therefore intrinsically reformist) because this is already the State, which at the end of the 19th century left to pass the first bills and acts against the wild capital. In United States, then, we can't imagine not even slightly, a revolutionary party based on the "political" model of the European ones. In America the revolutionary party, when it will develop, will surely be organic and centralised, like an industry which overtakes itself, in optimised instrument going toward a goal, that in this case is the new society. As absurd it seems to be, there is more communism in that pragmatic, Quaker and bigot America than in the old philosophical Europe.
Here we live on reflected light and of crumbs fallen down from the greatest imperialism's table. "Libido of serving" the existent system by old equipment will not die until the system itself will not die. Then the decisive jolt will come from West and will walk toward East, as , always, our school says (even Russia exploded like weak ring of the European capitalism in crisis, and later China exploded).
Because communism is not an idea, but a real movement that bourgeoisie must contrast with real instruments, the European milieu produces what it knows, that is the old and whorish politics full of ideologies and compromises, of large theoretical systems and little academic bickerings.
In such a context, as history didn't do the favour of shaping a new more powerful term to define what Marx meant communism, we'll use easily the classic one to take again the thread. Revolutionary change is not a problem of words or forms, but of material processes and of strength. And we don't need to wait for an future, this changing is always in process.
The work that this revue wants to diffuse, began since twenty years, is based on elementary premises within the reach of everybody: they lies in refusing, taking away, neutralising ideological store stratified on the meaning of communism in taking again the research on social phenomena with the original method, extraordinary bear out by all following scientific disciplines.
It's not true that revolutionary theory, sprung out from communism, is "difficult". Difficult is to accept it against the stream, against the prevailing political conformism, not to understand it. Difficult is to stop repairing under the umbrella of some religion, revealed or laic it would be, with its divinities, paradises and prophets. The communism, because it is a doctrine, has to be faced up as integral part of human science, in its constant boost towards more mighty levels. The world is more interesting than what all kind of clerics are prepared to admit on the basis of their self-constructed and then self-referenced gospels. And communism is also constant struggle for a future free from churches, from clerics and their methods, it is the solution of the enigmas which people tried to solve with philosophy's hypothesis, and it is aware to be this solution, Marx says, as modern science is aware to be the solution of those problems which, in ancient time, were faced up with religion and philosophy.
The Neue Rheinische Zeitung, the first communist periodical, which Marx and Engels gave a fundamental contribution, to outset not so much for stigmatise the present bourgeois politics as to denounce the presumed socialist critic to it. Through a materialistic research of facts, it was proved, directly and indirectly, that the "socialist" critic was anyway developed with existent ideological and philosophical categories, then bourgeois. The existent system was instead criticised by communists not from inside, a thing impossible to do, as it was later proved by the modern epistemology, but setting outside of it, on a higher level.
Today shouldn't have any sense a continuous critic to the thousand of big and small organisations which claim what they call communism. Everybody can verify from their programs, on the basis of already acquire theory, what are the differences and the similarities between them and what the coherence with the theory. By strictly keeping ourselves strictly to the original meaning of "communism", we'll be concerned with revealing the point where the intense work of revolution is within this society and to which depth the deadly galleries are, dug by the old mole under the pilasters of the old system. As it is already clear, we'll bring everybody who has the patience to follow us to ask themselves just one question, as fundamental as simple: what we have really to mean with communism. Because in indissoluble welding between praxis and theory has derived, from here and just from here, the answer can come only with respect to what we must do to be coherent with the original meaning.
After the decline of the First International Marx was forced to say he was not a Marxist. He was yet alive and someone already tried to transform him in a "harmless icon". Engels didn't be able to check the development of "Marxism", and his battle around the outset of the Second International failed at the beginning. Lenin had the possibility, offered by a very important revolution, to unify the theory of social transformation, sprung out from modern capitalism, that praxis imposed by backward conditions. He contributes to found the Third International. He died perhaps before to be routed. Stalin was, from the same conditions, elevated to author of the greatest anti-Communist counter-revolution of history. Trotsky had to regress, from the rank of great "attacker" of the armed revolution, to counsel for the defence of it. His addresses ended up by making use of democratic pre-Marxist arguments. Other militants were wiped out by civil wars, by firing squads or simply by weakening of historical memory.
The resort to the names of various personages has to be considered on a level with useful simplification, and it's a damnation that people has to resort too often to "isms" with personalised root. Strictly it should not exist a "marxism". Studies by Marx followed a revolution of the social productive force, to which he contributes as much as the other scientists of his time. The collective knowledge of species uses nets of relations, not imaginary ingeniousness kept separate from the whole. On the other hand this revolution was product and factor of scientific theories, then the whole of discoveries left an irreversible sign on the life of the same species itself, beyond the names of protagonists. Moreover, all this is part of the communist process and sure it cannot be considered "dead".
Marx called "communism" the concrete movement of demolition of old relations of production and old ideologies, and he called "communists" those who had to represent the future of the process. The hired class should be the main instrument of this process, but only for its capacity to surpass the condition of class for Capital and to become a class for itself. Therefore, in 1848, with Engels, he wrote not a sociologic essay but the manifesto of revolutionary party. It is since that time that the concept of party, for communists, is different from that of organisation, of grouping according to compatible opinions. For us political organisation and party are not synonymous, also if the communist party has its organisation, or better, its organisations. Communism clashed immediately with the old utopias, as an advancing reality overwhelms myths. The new theory recognised at once to be a part of a global process: while Marx and Engels used scrapers in social field, they looked with satisfaction at the contemporary fall of that building based on immutability of nature and living species. The historical party was in motion. And it was a practical fact, independent from the opinions of Darwin, Lyell, Maxwell about society.
With regard to mathematics and physic revolutionised world, the battles dotted as always the research, but nobody imagined to create scientific movements like hilbertist, maxwellist, boltzmanist, hamiltonist, peanist, poincarist etc., while in those fields implicating man and his misthic, like biology and social sciences, outset for examples darwinisms, marxisms, and their contrary: hardly masked religions, with their gods and prophets which also today provoke interpretation, adoration or visceral aversion.
In the attempt to theoretically systematise the overtaking of old concepts, Marx and Engels took clear and efficient notes, i.e. in the first pages of German Ideology: revolution is not product of philosophical propositions, to which you can only oppose other propositions; it is product of industry, of machines, of railways, of telegraph, of classes, of a material process which really changes the world and which has to be known, anticipated in his further development. It is from this material process that spring out proletariat and modern revolutionary party; spring out, at the same time, those elements which are destroyers of the old form and creators of the new one.
Therefore, when they say that communism- identified with a terrible politic season which places side by side to the other not less terrible season of this century- is dead, they say a non-sense. When they say that proletariat doesn't exist anymore, that class struggle is declined forever, that capitalism beaten, they capitulates simply in front of the opponent's hopes, and of its propaganda.
These assertions, justified in the bourgeois field, represent a real "military" collapse from the communist point of view. They clinch an irrational, immanentist approach to the problem of the human becoming, which bourgeoisie necessarily sees forever bourgeois. Communism, in the original meaning, is identified with the real becoming. If capitalism beaten, for this reason communism is not dead at all. Because for Marx capitalism is the fundamental base for communism, because it is, more than other existent social forces, the negation of itself. Capitalism at its apex is working with a will, by all the most and full of potentiality instruments, for the overtaking of itself. Today these instruments – automatons, informatic nets, largest socialisation of work, supercentralised industries, extreme financialization, etc. – exceed and substitute the old industry, the old machines, the old communications. In place of crying at the successes of bourgeoisie, we should regret it can't faster generalise its own realisations. Because with the development of the social productive force, the base of its own existence is taken off the feet of the capitalist class, to say it with already-said words.
The made-proletarian human mass has never been so large in the history of humanity and neither more than today so subject to the fluctuations of world-wide capital. Far from to be materially broken up, as it looks, it is objectively welded in invisible but powerful relations, going through the same destiny of all trades and productions in the world. A world which becomes more and more a global system subjected to a single law, that is the real and not only the formal domination of Capital. Out of all proportion, it increases the number of persons who depends totally from plusvalue extracted from the proletariat in proper sense and distributed in society to maintain boundless sectors of "unproductive services" and a even more boundless "relative overpopulation".
As the entire world-wide agriculture is, since long time, subject to the direct control of the States, the peasant rabble itself, ancient reservoir of all counter-revolution of history, is at this age not influent like particular class in an eventual revolution; obviously it's not disappeared as anagraphic element, and in fact it is still numerous, but it doesn't represent anymore a social force able to influence like in the past and to create a "peasant question", i.e. to stir up particular problems of tactic in the future revolutionary process. The variegated peasant classes constitute part of the destroying strength of the totality of the world's disinherited mass, and this fact is much more revolutionary than the old password "the land for them who work on it", more populist than communist.
The class struggle in the proper sense never die. The highest level of exploitation reached in the industrial sectors and the complete social control demonstrate that the continuous war is managed from the bourgeoisie; but the increase of the relative overpopulation prove that the bourgeoisie itself needs to keep a large and unproductive mass of people. This mass benefits of a social income, largely described in the bourgeois statistics, which can come only from distribution, spontaneous or directed, of a great part of plusvalue produced.
United Nations calculate that less than 20% of humanity is involved in some job which it takes an income for itself and for its family. In this 20% are included, besides the industrial and service sectors, the peasant, millions of children and women in slavery, large production sectors with a very low intensity of capital, little trade. just this single datum has great implications, because point out three fundamental problems: first, the mass of without-reservations people increased with an expropriation which eroded numerically other classes; second, the apparent social complications, consequence of the increase of "spurious" classes, is , in reality, a simplification of class when you consider the great division between humanity without-reservations and humanity with-reservations; third, social time of working for reproduction of species is enormously reduced, then the working time could be immediately diminished by eliminating useful and harmful activities. Humanity is already potentially free from the punishment of the waged work.
The particular condition in which the western proletariat is, it's not new. To have some reservations and to benefit of a wage's differential in relation with the proletariat of other countries is a phenomenon that Marx and Lenin already described with regard to the English proletariat of their time. Sure it's a question of brutishness of venal social corruption, as Lenin said, or, as the current to which we refer said, is a question of "industrial colcozism", because the Russian colcozian, in spite of its miserable existence not only from a material point of view, was ideologically linked to the land, had something to lose concerning the pure proletariat and he took from that some forms of political defence. The West proletariat's condition in the accounts for its lack of class combativeness, but i's not a fact that authorises special theories. It's true that large sectors of western proletarian people have what in other times – or somewhere else today- they obtained with hard struggles. But it's not, and cannot be a definitive fact. The condition of these proletarians confronted itself with that of all the other proletarians in a globalised world, and if conditions are not already worst is because States intervene to avoid social tensions.
The remarks of a communist can't depend on the social cycle's duration inside a certain means of production. These cycles can prepare phenomenons more explosive than in the past. It's absurd to have a distorted view of the workers class, taken from the time in which it was a minority in a society full of peasants, craftsmen, servants, shopkeepers and other not clear social levels, and to expect it should behave following this archetype completely subjective and arbitrary. It's absurd to put down questions of tactic like they were put down, at the best hypothesis, during the degeneration period of the Third International. It's absurd to imagine the future revolutionary process like a mere repetition of the past one. Surely we revendicate the teaching and positive realisations of that period, but in particular we distillate from it the anticipations, so well pointed out and studied from the Communist Left, called improperly "Italian", in defence of communism.
As we can demonstrate that some statistics about class decomposition are mere sociologic exercises of the bourgeoisie, we can prove easily that it's out of place the subjective impression of the de-structuration of a "residual worker class" by new technologies and new industrial orders. "Residual" can be only the very comfortable settling down in commonplaces. Saying that there is the necessity to refuse some interested and revealing language of the opposing propaganda, everybody has a little experience in trade-union organisation knows that doesn't exist limits to the devisable struggle forms and knows that the success of the struggle doesn't depend from the possible forms.
Recently in Korea, Indonesia and other oriental countries have been large significance strikes in spite of limiting laws and absolute unfavourable conditions (military answer of the governments). In the United States, more important example and paradigm for the future struggles, there were important strikes of which nobody spoke. Just the great strike in the UPS have been so large and enduring to appear in European newspapers. A very particular and typical situation of this "new" working class about which someone speak so much, brings the workers, deeply divided for interests, scattered in the huge country, always moving on the vehicles and led by informatic equipment, to an exemplary struggle. They proved they could organise and win in spite not only of the extreme division and lack of organisation, but thanks to that, because, for their situation, they were forced to make use of the ultra-technologic organisation system of the bourgeoisie, i.e. the enemy's weapon. This is a classic situation either in the daily struggle or in the final revolutionary outlet: also the conquer of the enemy's State and its destruction are followed by another State, the proletarian one; the State is an institution which belongs to bourgeoisie, because humanity without classes won't need it. Workers of the UPS were able to use in the best way the technologies which capital put at disposal, finding immediately a formidable unity in spite of the impossible physical contact, blocking the huge delivering machine in an age when industries, working just-in-time, have vital need to be supplied.
For us, is interesting that thousand of workers can organise sudden pickets by terminals linked together in Internet, can meet in the planned positions by the satellites' net employed by the autovehicles to follow the optimised maps of deliveries (Global Positioning System, GPS), can give permanent tele-assemblies and so on. It's not by accident that the strike of UPS forced the experts of company organisation to examine the intrinsic frailty of over-modern integrated systems of production and distribution.
To estimate available instruments and their potentialities it has always been a primary task in strikes' organization. Now, just in these same days, the main firms of the world are giving away computers connected to the net to their employers. Maybe they think it is a further element of social control, or maybe they don't think anything, because present times infuse security to the capitalist. Maybe, better, they want just to invest in "human resources", as they say, with a large didactic operation for the "hands". But if we be in the Ford capital's shoes, which took the initiative to give to each of it's 350.000 employers a computer and an Internet access, we would feel a genuine terror to think at the possibility, even if remote, they could connect together in a world-wide organised net.