Political parties after the revolution

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Political parties after the revolution

Post by RedSun on Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:20 pm

I don't like party politics. I think it's among the biggest flaws of modern representative democracy (the biggest one would be, of course, that representative democracy isn't). Party politics often results in ineffectual governments and sectarianism, and ideally after the revolution I think there would no longer be such a thing as a political party. That said, I recognise the value of an organisation remaining post-revolution to promote Revolutionary Syndicalism and generally help guide the people, and therefore policy, in that direction. So should political parties even remain after the revolution? Should we follow the example of Cuba, where parties exist but are not permitted to nominate candidates for any elected position (although most candidates end up being members of the Cuban Communist Party anyway)? Should the revolutionary party receive state support?
This kind of ties into a question I asked on 'Socialist Governance, the Sequel' about whether nonsocialist political parties should be permitted.
My position is that parties should remain, but purely as organisations for the promotion of an ideology among the people, while any persons running for an elected office should do so on their own.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by 4thsupporter on Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:47 pm

I agree with you completely, if Political party's are to exist, they should only exist to represent those ideas, power for a party will inevitably lead( in my opinion at least) to some sort of none democracy, but i would prefer that they would be restricted because the ideas would still be allowed to flow without the organization of the multiple party's and the power struggle that may ensue due to this.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by Egalitarian on Thu Feb 23, 2012 3:11 pm

I agree – political parties are a misfeature to society. When a socialist government is at once established, nothing should be permitted to have even a remote chance of undermining its integrity.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by Celtiberian on Thu Feb 23, 2012 3:30 pm

There will likely be a period following the revolution wherein political parties remain intact. They would, however, be obliged to follow the nation's socialist constitution—which would have been drafted by the revolutionaries and ratified following the proletarian revolution—thereby significantly limiting their sphere of influence by restricting their function to the more benign areas of governance.

I share my views on political parties with Noam Chomsky, who, when asked about the topic said,

"I think it is fair to say that insofar as political parties are felt to be necessay, anarchist society will have failed. That is, it should be the case, I would think, that where there is direct participation in self-management, in economic and social affairs, then factions, conflicts, differences of interest and ideas and opinion, which should be welcomed and cultivated, will be expressed at every one of these levels. Why they should fall into two, three or political parties, I don't quite see. I think that the complexity of human interest and life does not fall in that fashion. Parties basically represent class interests, and classes would have been eliminiated or transcended in such a society."
Chomsky, Noam. Radical Priorities, p. 215.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by RedSun on Thu Feb 23, 2012 3:58 pm

Celtiberian wrote:"Parties basically represent class interests"

Do they? It seems to me that a lot of modern parties represent different groups among the bourgeoisie, generally divided by varying views on state economic influence and social issues such as LGBT rights, environmental protection, and welfare. Except perhaps for a few reformist socialist parties, I don't see any kind of class struggle in politics anymore.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by Celtiberian on Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:16 pm

RedSun wrote:Do they? It seems to me that a lot of modern parties represent different groups among the bourgeoisie, generally divided by varying views on state economic influence and social issues such as LGBT rights, environmental protection, and welfare.

This is objectively true, and Noam Chomsky certainly acknowledges it—as he often says, "[t]here is essentially one political party, the business party, with two factions." However, people tend to vote for the parties which they subjectively think represent their class interests (or at least their class ambitions). There are, of course, exceptions depending on the relative emphasis people place on matters beyond the realm of economics; and in cases where said emphasis is particularly strong, such individuals' vote will largely depend on the rhetoric the mainstream parties employ to cater to those groups.

Chomsky's point is that in a self-managed society, such matters will likely be handled without recourse to political parties.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by GF on Thu Feb 23, 2012 6:02 pm

If any party ought to have any sort of semblance of power it'd have to be a socialist party, but even then, a ruling socialist party's power ought to be gradually replaced by a democracy, as in my opinion, the only point to have a party with power is too make sure the nation stays on the road to socialism.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by Rev Scare on Thu Feb 23, 2012 6:21 pm

I believe that the vanguard party should replace the vacuum of power, but it should be organized to promote democracy to whatever extent possible. It should channel the will of the proletariat. At this point, I remain ambivalent as to whether or not the retention or formation of other political parties should be admitted. Reactionary parties should certainly be prohibited. The socialist constitution must explicitly proscribe capitalism. After a period of socialist development, and especially preceding the transition toward a planned economy, the vanguard party itself would preferably be dissolved.

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Re: Political parties after the revolution

Post by Jaycm610 on Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:43 pm

Rev Scare wrote:I believe that the vanguard party should replace the vacuum of power, but it should be organized to promote democracy to whatever extent possible. It should channel the will of the proletariat. At this point, I remain ambivalent as to whether or not the retention or formation of other political parties should be admitted. Reactionary parties should certainly be prohibited. The socialist constitution must explicitly proscribe capitalism. After a period of socialist development, and especially preceding the transition toward a planned economy, the vanguard party itself would preferably be dissolved.

I fully agree with this statement.
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