Juche: Philosophy of Victory

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Red Aegis on Tue Apr 10, 2012 10:17 pm

Pantheon Rising wrote:True, but technically all people who perform roles of administration in any State or Government are payed off surplus value (taxes).


They are paid with the surplus value of the masses, you're right there. The question is whether that payment is made with the legitimate consent of the people they 'administrate'. The current bourgeois government is not a system of legitimate government as certain members of society have vastly more power than others. Any steps toward equality are met with usually undemocratic response until great danger lies for the system. In a centrally planned society, I'll assume that you would have the administrators democratically elected, those members that run things may be legitimately elected as long as they serve the people if everyone has an equal say. This having an equal say in how society functions, however, runs counter to the power of the administrators. The reason that this is so is that if everyone has a choice in what to do collectively, then they must be given the choice of different policies. This would mean that the administrators, if they be legitimately in power, would serve more as think-tank members providing choices to the people to vote on. Then they would enact these policies with the people's blessing. The question that comes next is why these administrators are the only ones capable of coming up with these policies. Could there not be individual committees that could be selected for each type of policy and another committee selected for ensuring it's completion? If this is the case then what is the point of Central Planning? (this is as simple a case as I could make without writing pages of boring crap)

An ideal doesn't need to be a lie. The ideal can be something as simple as the nation itself - the people - the workers - the peasants. Now, I would certainly object to an ideal being created something ridiculous. Having a common ideal would bond the people of the nation together, encourage harmony, civilization, culture, and make it much easier to create a cooperative society. The party would most likely embody the ideal, and the ideal would be taught to the people upon the period of "Dictatorship of the National Proletariat".


This ideal would be nice if it was shared but there's no guarantee that it would be. It may, if it was universal, do everything that you say that it would. I just doubt that within any sufficiently large group that any ideal will be agreed upon. That is why the democratic approach is better; the disagreements are ironed out through debate, though not everybody may be happy with the outcome.

If the party were to embody this ideal, and that ideal were universal, that would be wonderful.

Don't you think that if the conditions were right for a revolution that most would already agree on the major direction things should go? What major bits of education would be left to do after a revolution if that revolution truly represented the will of the people?

All this said, I don't agree with the seeking of an ideal. I'm just addressing your points.

Theoretically, a ceremonial leader could embody an ideal. Be the utmost representative of that ideal. There was very good reasons groups in the past had ceremonial leaders, however that ties into religion and that is probably a topic we should avoid at the current moment in time.

Again, it would be nice, theoretically. These 'embodiment of ideals' could just be called 'good people' instead of being hoisted up on a pedestal. If the ideals were really that important, they should be expected to be shown without being excessively praised.

Yes, but I still think that any nation will need a centralized authority of some sort, at least at first to educate people. We will have to agree to disagree here.

I addressed this point above. If you don't want to discuss it further I can agree to disagree.

To be quite honest, I think progress is quite a subjective term - I don't see the need to identify oneself as a "progressive". Everyone can identify what their vision of human progress looks like.

Progress is subjective, that can be agreed upon.

Labeling oneself as a progressive means that the you support changing society towards some end that the person views as progressive. With that definition any revolutionary is also a progressive, but progressives may also be reformers.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Wed Apr 11, 2012 12:54 am

Pantheon Rising wrote:True, but technically all people who perform roles of administration in any State or Government are payed off surplus value (taxes).

Indeed, which is precisely why the people who produce the surplus ought to have the right to participate in democratically controlling the manner by which the government functions.

An ideal doesn't need to be a lie.

It obviously doesn't need to be, but, within in the context of our argument, there's no conceivable way that it couldn't be a lie. As I previously stated, there is no inherent meaning to life nor an objective method by which to discover one, and for someone to suggest otherwise is an indication of either ignorance or dishonesty. Upon evaluating my prior statement on this topic, you proceeded to respond by describing the hypothetical benefits which a campaign based on a bureaucratically determined meaning of life could generate. Such concepts are utterly Machiavellian in nature, and are therefore unworthy of serious consideration, let alone implementation.

Having a common ideal would bond the people of the nation together, encourage harmony, civilization, culture, and make it much easier to create a cooperative society.

Unless the institutional basis of society reinforces solidaristic and cooperative behavior, for instance, there's no reason to suspect that state-sponsored "ideals" will be capable of producing such results—which is the primary reason that the fascist tenet of class collaborationism, for example, was so transparently ridiculous. In other words, the organizational structure of economic firms, our consumption relations, and the nation's mode of governance (though not the sole factors) largely effect which, of our wide range of human behavioral characteristics, will predominate in society. Publicly funding television and radio programming, thereby enabling access to a wider range of views, will also result in far less uniformity of thought. This would be beneficial, as a socialist commonwealth should not aspire to be so collective that individuality is demonized. Genuine individuality (i.e., individualism which is not in the pursuit of socially destructive, egotistical objectives) should be regarded as just as important as equity and self-management, in my opinion.

The party would most likely embody the ideal, and the ideal would be taught to the people upon the period of "Dictatorship of the National Proletariat".

The nation itself will be the "ideal" (if you choose to call it that). As Red Aegis said, the very notion of a successful socialist revolution implies that a unity of vision already exists amongst the great mass of people. The challenge is in ensuring that the institutions which the revolutionaries establish are capable of fostering that sentiment.

Theoretically, a ceremonial leader could embody an ideal. Be the utmost representative of that ideal. There was very good reasons groups in the past had ceremonial leaders, however that ties into religion and that is probably a topic we should avoid at the current moment in time.

No worthy ideal would ever be embodied within a person. Human beings are fallible, and, in the modern era, a person held to such a standard would very likely disappoint those who happen to hold him or her in high regard, eventually. Even religions are careful to separate their omniscient deities from their human representatives. And once you begin the process of elevating individuals above one another in such a way, it isn't long before a cult of personality materializes. (The history of the 20th century should be sufficient enough to understand why that's not an advisable approach to take.)

Yes, but I still think that any nation will need a centralized authority of some sort, at least at first to educate people. We will have to agree to disagree here.

A governing body will undoubtedly be necessary. Centralization, however, will not be.

since the study was done on children (who are young enough to be doing arts and crafts in school) it makes me a bit skeptical as to whether it can be applied to governing a nation of adults as a whole.


If anything, the fact that it's adults we're considering here merely suggests that an even further degree of autonomy is within the bounds of reason. As I said, the Lewin study complements research conducted in other fields, e.g., workers' self-management.

I have never been advocating an unaccountable bureaucracy, but I suggested that people will in a democracy form a sort of hierarchy and authority for decision making - it doesn't conflict the keeping the hierarchy accountable and it doesn't mean a total separation from the group.

Our disagreement on hierarchy seems to be reducing to a matter of semantics at this point. You wouldn't say that an engineer hired by a corporation for a specific task would be in a position of hierarchical authority over that corporation's board of directors, would you? The engineer would obviously possess specialized knowledge which the members of the board of directors would not have, and would perhaps even have a degree of authority within his specific work project. But the engineer would ultimately be answerable to the corporation, ergo, far from being in a position of domination, he would be in a position of dependence and submission. The same logic applies to delegates elected by the people. A direct democracy, while advisable to the greatest extent possible, is just not practical for national government. The reason being that most people just aren't interested in learning the requisite information for making a reasonable decision in the realm of foreign affairs, or what have you. Thus, a socialist democracy would consist of elected delegates who are held accountable to the people. Such a form of government couldn't accurately be described as "hierarchical" for reasons previously stated.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Pantheon Rising on Thu Apr 12, 2012 5:32 pm

I've neglected this thread lately due to the arguments running into a matter of semantics, however, I wanted to comment.

Celtiberian wrote:It obviously doesn't need to be, but, within in the context of our argument, there's no conceivable way that it couldn't be a lie. As I previously stated, there is no inherent meaning to life nor an objective method by which to discover one, and for someone to suggest otherwise is an indication of either ignorance or dishonesty. Upon evaluating my prior statement on this topic, you proceeded to respond by describing the hypothetical benefits which a campaign based on a bureaucratically determined meaning of life could generate. Such concepts are utterly Machiavellian in nature, and are therefore unworthy of serious consideration, let alone implementation.

I think the main difference between you and I is that I am more of an existentialist. Sure there is no "inherent" meaning - people are always dreaming up meanings. However, society today is suffering from nihilism in which people have no meaning to their life and society as a whole is very nihilistic - they don't know their past and they have no idea where they are going. Socialism is to me, a means to an end, not an end in itself. Socialism will emancipate the people and allow them not only freedom, but chances to rediscover their identity and culture. Socialism in its truest form is nationalism and vice-versa. A healthy society should not feel like they have no meaning or have a meaning based in a hopeless material existence in which you "party it up" and just die. People should be encouraged to think - and any health society encourages a healthy family culture - as families are the base of existence for our people and a species as a whole. We want people to feel part of something for once. This is why the establishment of Gemeinschaft is so important over Gesellschaft.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:15 pm

Pantheon Rising wrote:I think the main difference between you and I is that I am more of an existentialist.

Existentialists generally believe in people finding their own meaning in life, not having it dictated to them from some external entity.

However, society today is suffering from nihilism in which people have no meaning to their life and society as a whole is very nihilistic - they don't know their past and they have no idea where they are going.

None of us know where we are going. As you know, life is utterly unpredictable.

Socialism will emancipate the people and allow them not only freedom, but chances to rediscover their identity and culture.

It will indeed provide them with the freedom to do so. But supporting bureaucratic campaigns which seek to instill certain mental conceptions in people violates that freedom in a profound sense.

A healthy society should not feel like they have no meaning or have a meaning based in a hopeless material existence in which you "party it up" and just die.

In your opinion, it shouldn't. It's up to the people to decide that matter for themselves.

People should be encouraged to think

Certainly. And the cognitive demands placed on workers in society incentivizes or deincentivizes this to a significant extent. Unfortunately, the division of labor and capitalism's hierarchical social relations encourages ignorance for the working class. As Adam Smith admitted, the division of labor inevitably "turn[s] working people into objects as stupid and ignorant as it is possible for a human creature to be." Our educational institutions having to cater to the narrow demands of the labor market also have the effect of encouraging creativity only amongst the children of the elite, and discouraging any such cultivation amongst those of the working masses. Socialism's basis in workers' self-management, and the fact that the labor market would be abolished, already establishes the conditions wherein thinking is encouraged. So too will a publicly-funded media, which enables a plurality of perspectives to be heard.

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"Nationality. . . is a historic, local fact which, like all real and harmless facts, has the right to claim general acceptance. . . Every people, like every person, is involuntarily that which it is and therefore has a right to be itself. . . Nationality is not a principle; it is a legitimate fact, just as individuality is. Every nationality, great or small, has the incontestable right to be itself, to live according to its own nature. This right is simply the corollary of the general principle of freedom."
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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Pantheon Rising on Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:44 pm

Celtiberian wrote:Existentialists generally believe in people finding their own meaning in life, not having it dictated to them from some external entity.

Indeed, but you are putting words in my mouth. No where have I ever said I wanted to dictate anything.

None of us know where we are going. As you know, life is utterly unpredictable.

I disagree. We can forge ahead in different directions, we can make paths, we can work for a future.

It will indeed provide them with the freedom to do so. But supporting bureaucratic campaigns which seek to instill certain mental conceptions in people violates that freedom in a profound sense.

In your subjective opinion, it violates freedoms. Having a society based around a healthy family culture is 10x as desirable than a society based upon nihilism and hedonism. If people disagree, that is fine, but they should migrate elsewhere and form a different State within a confederation.

In your opinion, it shouldn't. It's up to the people to decide that matter for themselves.

That's just rhetoric, every party claims they represent the people.

People should be encouraged to think

Certainly. And the cognitive demands placed on workers in society incentivizes or deincentivizes this to a significant extent. Unfortunately, the division of labor and capitalism's hierarchical social relations encourages ignorance for the working class. As Adam Smith admitted, the division of labor inevitably "turn[s] working people into objects as stupid and ignorant as it is possible for a human creature to be." Our educational institutions having to cater to the narrow demands of the labor market also have the effect of encouraging creativity only amongst the children of the elite, and discouraging any such cultivation amongst those of the working masses. Socialism's basis in workers' self-management, and the fact that the labor market would be abolished, already establishes the conditions wherein thinking is encouraged. So too will a publicly-funded media, which enables a plurality of perspectives to be heard.

Yes, but we are both Socialists here so this isn't up for debate.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:09 pm

Pantheon Rising wrote:Indeed, but you are putting words in my mouth. No where have I ever said I wanted to dictate anything.

You've implied as much by supporting state-sponsored "idealism." It may not be dictatorial per se, but it is manipulative and unjustifiable nonetheless.

I disagree. We can forge ahead in different directions, we can make paths, we can work for a future.

Absolutely, and humanity has continued to progress despite the sense of nihilism which you believe is so pervasive in society.

In your subjective opinion, it violates freedoms.

No, it objectively violates freedom by allowing the state apparatus to attempt to instill exogenous, arbitrary values in people. To claim otherwise is to entertain some Orwellian Newspeak definition of "freedom."

That's just rhetoric, every party claims they represent the people.

That may be true, but only those parties which are genuinely democratic can legitimately be said to be representative of the people's will.

Yes, but we are both Socialists here so this isn't up for debate.

I only mentioned that to explain how socialism will allow many of the values you uphold to come to fruition without need of recourse to idealism.

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"Nationality. . . is a historic, local fact which, like all real and harmless facts, has the right to claim general acceptance. . . Every people, like every person, is involuntarily that which it is and therefore has a right to be itself. . . Nationality is not a principle; it is a legitimate fact, just as individuality is. Every nationality, great or small, has the incontestable right to be itself, to live according to its own nature. This right is simply the corollary of the general principle of freedom."
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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Pantheon Rising on Fri Apr 13, 2012 8:11 pm

Celtiberian wrote:You've implied as much by supporting state-sponsored "idealism." It may not be dictatorial per se, but it is manipulative and unjustifiable nonetheless.

I do not think so. I think it should be our collective will to decide our own meaning, in my opinion, preferably based and steeped in in our identity. Let us remember, that the State of nihilism we see today was also forced upon the masses by an elite - that of the bourgeois and so bourgeois values became the values and morality of the masses. I think we will have to agree to disagree here. I support an organic family culture, tightly knit communities, and some traditional institutions and ideas, but it should be clear that those do not conflict at all with my revolutionary Socialism.

Absolutely, and humanity has continued to progress despite the sense of nihilism which you believe is so pervasive in society.

I think it is almost impossible to refrain from criticizing capitalism in the sense that it has caused a lot of nihilism and encourages a lot of unneeded hedonism which is destructive to society and the individual (and you would be correct if you argued this was due greatly to the alienation capitalism causes).

That may be true, but only those parties which are genuinely democratic can legitimately be said to be representative of the people's will

Let us remember that the people's will could always be sidetracked by forces hostile to not just the form of cultural idealism I am espousing but socialism in general. We are going to have to educate the people no matter what.

I only mentioned that to explain how socialism will allow many of the values you uphold to come to fruition without need of recourse to idealism.

I agree here, I think that many of the values will come to fruition with the rise of socialism. For example, men and women no longer having to worry about whether or not they can pay the bills or whether their spouse is going to lose their job can afford to have more children and have a much better and more beautiful family life - and likewise marriages will have nothing to do with property or ones income and we can see the reestablishment of marriage as an actual meaningful and spiritual connection between two individuals instead of it being based on shallow economic purposes.

However, I am not convinced that Socialism by itself can combat nihilism 100%.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Red Aegis on Fri Apr 13, 2012 9:04 pm

Pantheon, if you're saying what I think that you are. You support the community's authority to determine the rules of culture of that community. If that is the case then I agree, though I do not think that legislating on those cultural norms is necessary or even just, since those rules may change with each generation's fashions. If the traditions you espouse are truly good for the community then they will be upheld without the protection of the law. People are not stupid. They know what's good for them on the whole.

Also, in regards to your views on educating the masses on socialism I have said an extremely relevant statement earlier in the thread. Namely that if a socialistic revolution were to ever take place there would necessarily be a vast majority of the people that believe that socialism is the way to go. People understand democracy. They don't need their hands held. Organization can happen without the state to force it. Like I said, but it's worth repeating, by definition a socialistic revolution implies that a majority already wishes for socialism.

What do you think?

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Rev Scare on Sat Apr 14, 2012 2:02 am

Frankly, the philosophical doctrine of nihilism accurately depicts reality: devoid of any intrinsic meaning and value. Capitalism does not offer much in the way of exploring one's potential. However, the remedy is not to establish some state-sponsored institutional mandate that functions to indoctrinate citizens in a particular value system or set of ideals. Humans construct their own meaning, and I am inclined to agree with Marx that our Gattungswesen is to be creative social beings. People either find meaning in their lives or they do not, but the vast majority of people would, given the opportunity, explore and create (i.e., find meaning) in life rather than sulk in existential crisis. There is absolutely no justifiable reason to demand uniformity with respect to such a personal issue as an individual's life path (as long as it does not infringe upon the right of others to follow theirs).

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Sat Apr 14, 2012 6:36 am

Pantheon Rising wrote:I think it should be our collective will to decide our own meaning, in my opinion, preferably based and steeped in in our identity.

I disagree. I trust a community of people no more than a bureaucratic elite when it comes to determining what the meaning of life is. Once again, it's a question for which no unobjectionable answer can be given.

Let us remember that the people's will could always be sidetracked by forces hostile to not just the form of cultural idealism I am espousing but socialism in general. We are going to have to educate the people no matter what.

The masses will be educated before and during the proletarian revolution. The primary task of socialist and communist activism has always been to align working people's subjective mental conceptions with the objective reality that they are being exploited by the bourgeoisie, and to explain why their interests fundamentally lie in replacing the dictatorship of capital with an emancipatory socialist mode of production.

However, I am not convinced that Socialism by itself can combat nihilism 100%.

Combating nihilism has never been something which socialists thought worthy of addressing, nor should it be. The objective of socialism is to end the exploitation of man by man, and to replace capitalism with an equitable economic arrangement capable of providing for our needs and enabling everyone to develop and self-actualize their human capabilities.

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—J. B. S. Haldane Hammer Sickle

"Nationality. . . is a historic, local fact which, like all real and harmless facts, has the right to claim general acceptance. . . Every people, like every person, is involuntarily that which it is and therefore has a right to be itself. . . Nationality is not a principle; it is a legitimate fact, just as individuality is. Every nationality, great or small, has the incontestable right to be itself, to live according to its own nature. This right is simply the corollary of the general principle of freedom."
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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Pantheon Rising on Sat Apr 14, 2012 2:27 pm

Celtiberian wrote:I disagree. I trust a community of people no more than a bureaucratic elite when it comes to determining what the meaning of life is. Once again, it's a question for which no unobjectionable answer can be given.

If that is the case, I too, distrust the individual himself in establishing a meaning to life. As I have said in another thread, I think it should be our collective duty to reestablish meaning to our national life and not just justify the meaning of our lives but the very existence of our nation and community.

The masses will be educated before and during the proletarian revolution. The primary task of socialist and communist activism has always been to align working people's subjective mental conceptions with the objective reality that they are being exploited by the bourgeoisie, and to explain why their interests fundamentally lie in replacing the dictatorship of capital with an emancipatory socialist mode of production.

Of course, but I do not think the bourgeoisie, the bourgeois life style, and bourgeois values and morals, are free from a moral critique either.

Combating nihilism has never been something which socialists thought worthy of addressing, nor should it be. The objective of socialism is to end the exploitation of man by man, and to replace capitalism with an equitable economic arrangement capable of providing for our needs and enabling everyone to develop and self-actualize their human capabilities.

I simply think it is worthy of addressing, is all. Historical socialists also never had to deal with such wide spread nihilism and liberalism as well that is so deeply entrenched into our modern day societies.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Sat Apr 14, 2012 8:17 pm

Pantheon Rising wrote:If that is the case, I too, distrust the individual himself in establishing a meaning to life. As I have said in another thread, I think it should be our collective duty to reestablish meaning to our national life and not just justify the meaning of our lives but the very existence of our nation and community.

The difference is that the individual isn't in a position to impose what he believes the meaning of life is onto others, which is why it's preferable. No entity, be it the state or a democratic committee from the community, can honestly tell people the answer to a question for which no objective answer can be given. If people with similar thoughts on life want to voluntarily come together to share their views on that subject in their personal lives, they should be permitted to do so. Anything beyond that cannot be justified.

We're simply going to have to agree to disagree on this topic.

Of course, but I do not think the bourgeoisie, the bourgeois life style, and bourgeois values and morals, are free from a moral critique either.

Indeed, but any ethical critique would have to be systematic in nature due to the fact that the immoral behavior and values of the bourgeoisie aren't a result of their failings as individuals, but are rather attributable to the exploitative position they occupy within capitalism.

I simply think it is worthy of addressing, is all. Historical socialists also never had to deal with such wide spread nihilism and liberalism as well that is so deeply entrenched into our modern day societies.

I really don't think nihilism is as entrenched as you believe it is. The United States, despite being the hegemonic capitalist force in the world, still possesses one of the most religious populations in the global north. Those who are not religious also typically have their own theories regarding what the meaning of life is (and seldom do they think there is none). We revolutionaries have an immense number of problems for which to focus our attention on, nihilism isn't one of them.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Pantheon Rising on Sun Apr 15, 2012 7:19 pm

Celtiberian wrote:Indeed, but any ethical critique would have to be systematic in nature due to the fact that the immoral behavior and values of the bourgeoisie aren't a result of their failings as individuals, but are rather attributable to the exploitative position they occupy within capitalism.

I am talking more about their hyper-individualistic values and ideas, which goes along with their false notions of democracy and freedom (the liberal stance on these subjects). The idea that "do whatever you want as long as it doesn't harm another" is simply a ruse, a catch phrase, and it leads to the downfall of national morals as well as the contributes to national nihilism in which the nation has no center point on which to justify itself.

Surely, they tend to view us down here in the working class as "dirty proles" most of the time, but I would not restrict myself to the mere critique of the bourgeoisie's place in society which causes the systematic exploitation of the proletariat - I would also say we wage a revolutionary war against the prevailing bourgeois ideas that arose in the spirit of 1789.

That is not to say I reject totally the spirit of the French Revolution, as the corruption of the Monarchy and estates system was already apparent, but I think we need a good degree of "Conservative Realism" (I believe Strasser coined the term) following the proletarian revolution. An appreciation of the rational as well as the "non-rational" which the bourgeois class has worked to totally extirpate from society.

I really don't think nihilism is as entrenched as you believe it is. The United States, despite being the hegemonic capitalist force in the world, still possesses one of the most religious populations in the global north. Those who are not religious also typically have their own theories regarding what the meaning of life is (and seldom do they think there is none). We revolutionaries have an immense number of problems for which to focus our attention on, nihilism isn't one of them.

I at least think, the revolution itself needs to take on a sort of Existentialist character as many people such as Ernst Jünger argued, otherwise it will not root out national nihilism.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Mon Apr 16, 2012 5:37 am

Pantheon Rising wrote:I am talking more about their hyper-individualistic values and ideas, which goes along with their false notions of democracy and freedom (the liberal stance on these subjects).

Many of bourgeoisie's values, as well as their vacuous conception of freedom, are instilled in them by the system. To the extent those values are distinguishable from those espoused by the rest of society, they are derived from their position as expropriators of surplus value. However, as a result of the very nature of capitalism, the values which enable the system to be reproduced must be hegemonic across all social classes. Thus, capitalism not only generates obscene levels of competition (particularly with respect to conspicuous consumption), narcissism, and acquisitiveness, but is itself sustained by them.

The idea that "do whatever you want as long as it doesn't harm another" is simply a ruse, a catch phrase, and it leads to the downfall of national morals

'Live and let live' is generally an advisable approach to take with respect to mortality—which is inherently subjective. Important exceptions do exist, such as when society is affected by seemingly individual acts (e.g., drunk driving, pollution, immigration, etc.). Negative externalities are a defensible basis for government action.

as well as the contributes to national nihilism in which the nation has no center point on which to justify itself.

Nations justify their existence by providing their citizens with the means by which to lead fulfilling lives. The government's role, in a democratic nation, is to organize society in the manner mandated by the people. Social movements will undoubtedly emerge within socialist nations to encourage interest in particular projects, be they space exploration, raising public awareness of some social malady or another, and so on. But such campaigns will revolve around concrete issues, not philosophical questions for which no objective answers can be given.

I would also say we wage a revolutionary war against the prevailing bourgeois ideas that arose in the spirit of 1789.

What ideas would those be and why wouldn't they fade into oblivion upon the implementation of a socialist mode of production?

I think we need a good degree of "Conservative Realism" (I believe Strasser coined the term) following the proletarian revolution. An appreciation of the rational as well as the "non-rational" which the bourgeois class has worked to totally extirpate from society.

Why are you under the impression that the bourgeoisie has "worked to totally extirpate" irrational notions from society? Religion and superstition are tolerated, irrational infatuations with consumption are actively encouraged; so too is unemployment, waste, chronic instability, and all manner of economic irrationalities.

Otto Strasser's "Conservative Realism" was nothing more than a baseless rejection of materialism. Being a devout Catholic, he despised the rationalist basis for state secularism, and therefore rejected materialism in order to propose that organized religion be permitted to encroach into public life. Idealism gave Strasser carte blanche to advocate whatever nonsense he thought beneficial for the nation. I'm sorry, but irrationality should be relegated to one's private life.

I at least think, the revolution itself needs to take on a sort of Existentialist character as many people such as Ernst Jünger argued, otherwise it will not root out national nihilism.

I'm aware of Ernst Jünger abhorrent celebration of militarism and war, though I've not read any of his thoughts on the subject of revolution. I can't imagine them being very insightful.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Pantheon Rising on Mon Apr 16, 2012 8:25 am

Celtiberian wrote:Many of bourgeoisie's values, as well as their vacuous conception of freedom, are instilled in them by the system. To the extent those values are distinguishable from those espoused by the rest of society, they are derived from their position as expropriators of surplus value. However, as a result of the very nature of capitalism, the values which enable the system to be reproduced must be hegemonic across all social classes. Thus, capitalism not only generates obscene levels of competition (particularly with respect to conspicuous consumption), narcissism, and acquisitiveness, but is itself sustained by them.

I wasn't trying to conjecture where exactly their values and ideals come from; but rather that they are harmful to the creation of a true volksgemeinschaft as well as a healthy national community. If these values are rooted out with the rise of a socialist mode of production than so be it, all the better. Though I feel that there is a certain amount of bourgeois values which will always be eternal - mainly a fanatical individualist rationalism which can dominate the mind even with a socialist mode of production in tact.

Nations justify their existence by providing their citizens with the means by which to lead fulfilling lives. The government's role, in a democratic nation, is to organize society in the manner mandated by the people. Social movements will undoubtedly emerge within socialist nations to encourage interest in particular projects, be they space exploration, raising public awareness of some social malady or another, and so on. But such campaigns will revolve around concrete issues, not philosophical questions for which no objective answers can be given.

Just because something is an objective truth does not justify it in itself. Life is full of subjectivity, humans are a subjective species. You also make the false assumption that humans will only advocate campaigns around that which can be proved with a complete objective answer.

Also, in my opinion, nations can really justify their existence when a nation transforms into a civilization of which providing providing citizens with fulfilling lives is only part of.

I think we are mainly locked into a clash of idealism opposed to materialism here as well as the rational opposed to the irrational, and the objective opposed to the subjective.

What ideas would those be and why wouldn't they fade into oblivion upon the implementation of a socialist mode of production?

As I have said before, the hyper-rationalism associated with that class as well as the hyper-individualism.

Why are you under the impression that the bourgeoisie has "worked to totally extirpate" irrational notions from society? Religion and superstition are tolerated, irrational infatuations with consumption are actively encouraged; so too is unemployment, waste, chronic instability, and all manner of economic irrationalities.

When I speak of the "Non-rational", I speak of the subjective, the metaphysical, the spiritual, the idealism, and all that can not be measured or proven using instruments of measurement. These economic "irrationalities" are simply economic nonsense in that they belong to the realm of materialism and are subject to logical measurement and observation - and obviously all these economic ills should be eliminated.

Otto Strasser's "Conservative Realism" was nothing more than a baseless rejection of materialism. Being a devout Catholic, he despised the rationalist basis for state secularism, and therefore rejected materialism in order to propose that organized religion be permitted to encroach into public life. Idealism gave Strasser carte blanche to advocate whatever nonsense he thought beneficial for the nation. I'm sorry, but irrationality should be relegated to one's private life.

Now that is just a misrepresentation of Otto Strasser's ideals, you ought to know being a former Strasserist yourself that Strasser advocated for a secular State. Not because he was fanatically devoted to the rational as we all know, but, because he saw a secular State as allowing the free development of many different religions and spiritualistic ideas. I share Strasser's stance on the secular State.

Now, on Conservative Realism, it is not a baseless rejection of materialism at all. In his chapter in Germany Tomorrow Otto Strasser is quite clear about how dogmatic certain times have been in their utter elevation of ideals over matter. He gives full credit to liberalism and credits Marxism in particular for raising awareness about just how important the matter of material can be in society.

Conservative Realism is therefore a a healthy respect for materialism while a the same time a respect for ideas and the idealism which also impacts civilization.

I'm aware of Ernst Jünger abhorrent celebration of militarism and war, though I've not read any of his thoughts on the subject of revolution. I can't imagine them being very insightful.

He was of the opinion that the revolution needed an existentialist stance outside of material motives on which to pivot and justify itself, otherwise society would relapse into a vapid form of materialism. I suppose one could compare it to Georges Sorel emphasizing the importance of myths and ideas in one's life. Regardless of one's own opinion of his celebration of war, it is needless to say he advocated a surt of revolutionary idealism (at least early in life).

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Mon Apr 16, 2012 9:53 am

Pantheon Rising wrote:Though I feel that there is a certain amount of bourgeois values which will always be eternal - mainly a fanatical individualist rationalism which can dominate the mind even with a socialist mode of production in tact.

I disagree. Hyper-individualism has not been observed in any other historical epoch. To claim certain bourgeois values are "eternal" is to entertain the notion that they are immutable aspects of our human nature, in which case neither materialism nor idealism will be capable of overcoming them. Fortunately, I've not seen any compelling evidence indicating that such traits are immutable, and since the institutions of which socialism is based do not reinforce individualistic ideologies—on the contrary, they incentivize cooperative behavior—I suspect that hyper-individualism will diminish over time. Of course, I distinguish between bourgeois individualism and instincts of self-preservation and individual fulfillment. I believe Emma Goldman described the immense differences between bourgeois individualism and genuine individuality quite well when she wrote,

"Individuality is not to be confused with the various ideas and concepts of Individualism; much less with that 'rugged individualism' which is only a masked attempt to repress and defeat the individual and his individuality. So-called Individualism is the social and economic laissez-faire: the exploitation of the masses by means of legal trickery, spiritual debasement and systematic indoctrination of the servile spirit. . . That corrupt and perverse 'individualism' is the strait jacket of individuality. It has converted life into a degrading race for externals, for possession, for social prestige and supremacy. . . It has inevitably resulted in the greatest modern slavery, the crassest class distinctions driving millions to the breadline. 'Rugged individualism' has meant all the 'individualism' for the masters, while the people are regimented into a slave caste to serve a handful of self-seeking 'supermen'. . . Their 'rugged individualism' is simply one of the many pretenses the ruling class makes to mask unbridled business and political extortion."
Red Emma Speaks: An Emma Goldman Reader, pp. 112-113.

Just because something is an objective truth does not justify it in itself.

No, but it does warrant serious consideration.

You also make the false assumption that humans will only advocate campaigns around that which can be proved with a complete objective answer.

I'm assuming that people are rational enough to ensure that their public revenue is not wasted on meaningless pursuits to convince one another of things which are ultimately unknowable.

I think we are mainly locked into a clash of idealism opposed to materialism here as well as the rational opposed to the irrational, and the objective opposed to the subjective.

Apparently so.

He was of the opinion that the revolution needed an existentialist stance outside of material motives on which to pivot and justify itself, otherwise society would relapse into a vapid form of materialism. I suppose one could compare it to Georges Sorel emphasizing the importance of myths and ideas in one's life. Regardless of one's own opinion of his celebration of war, it is needless to say he advocated a surt of revolutionary idealism (at least early in life).

Georges Sorel and Antonio Gramsci certainly provided valuable insights into the implications subjective mental conceptions have for revolution which many socialists and communists have benefited from. Orthodox Marxists, while correct in stressing the central importance of the struggle over the joint product, may have overemphasized how potent a force that would be for organizing. Having a coherent and desirable post-capitalist vision, in my opinion, is far more important than Sorelian myths or what have you.

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"Nationality. . . is a historic, local fact which, like all real and harmless facts, has the right to claim general acceptance. . . Every people, like every person, is involuntarily that which it is and therefore has a right to be itself. . . Nationality is not a principle; it is a legitimate fact, just as individuality is. Every nationality, great or small, has the incontestable right to be itself, to live according to its own nature. This right is simply the corollary of the general principle of freedom."
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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Pantheon Rising on Mon Apr 16, 2012 4:57 pm

Celtiberian wrote:I disagree. Hyper-individualism has not been observed in any other historical epoch. To claim certain bourgeois values are "eternal" is to entertain the notion that they are immutable aspects of our human nature, in which case neither materialism nor idealism will be capable of overcoming them. Fortunately, I've not seen any compelling evidence indicating that such traits are immutable, and since the institutions of which socialism is based do not reinforce individualistic ideologies—on the contrary, they incentivize cooperative behavior—I suspect that hyper-individualism will diminish over time. Of course, I distinguish between bourgeois individualism and instincts of self-preservation and individual fulfillment. I believe Emma Goldman described the immense differences between bourgeois individualism and genuine individuality quite well when she wrote"

I suppose you are right in saying that they are not innately part of our human nature, nonetheless, there could be a tendency even within a socialist mode of production for individuals to become detached from the whole of the nation and simply see themselves as atomistic units with no relation to the greater whole. I feel that this is the sort of hyper-individualism of the bourgeoisie which is most destructive to society, as well as Emma Goldman's analysis which I happen to agree with fully.

I'm assuming that people are rational enough to ensure that their public revenue is not wasted on meaningless pursuits to convince one another of things which are ultimately unknowable

Well, we are getting into publicly funded campaigns now. I only meant to imply that humans being a species more inclined to view things from a subjective lens will not always put complete faith in that which is 100% objective truth and rational. Rationality is to respected and important, though rationality is hardly the give all, take all of human civilization if you ask me.


Georges Sorel and Antonio Gramsci certainly provided valuable insights into the implications subjective mental conceptions have for revolution which many socialists and communists have benefited from. Orthodox Marxists, while correct in stressing the central importance of the struggle over the joint product, may have overemphasized how potent a force that would be for organizing. Having a coherent and desirable post-capitalist vision, in my opinion, is far more important than Sorelian myths or what have you.

Agreed, Georges Sorel was suggested to me by a NatCom friend and is certainly a very intelligent theorist. I have yet to read much Gramsci. I believe both a desirable post-capitalist vision as well as a degree of Sorelian myths can be equally important in varying degrees mainly depending on where you deploy them to the public.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by SalfordAnarchist on Tue Aug 21, 2012 5:53 am

The bourgeois revolutions were amazing and to be supported, they revolutionised the mode of production, things became made in more efficient ways, the division of labour introduced and socialism became a possibility.

A) It is capitalism that revolutionised the way things are produced, for the capitalist to gain maximum profit by way of producing massive volumes of commodities, this has made it possible now for workers to have a revolution and seize the means of production and be able to produce everything we need and reach a state of post scarcity.

B) The bourgeois revolutions got rid of serf, guild master and lord and replaced them with two classes, worker and capitalist, they created the possibility for scientific socialism by creating the bourgeoisie and thus their contradiction, the proletariat. They need us to make the commodities to make them profit but they sew the seeds of their own destruction in that they make out of society their antagonistic class.

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Re: Juche: Philosophy of Victory

Post by Celtiberian on Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:07 am

SalfordAnarchist wrote:The bourgeois revolutions were amazing and to be supported, they revolutionised the mode of production, things became made in more efficient ways, the division of labour introduced and socialism became a possibility.

While I agree that capitalism has revolutionized the manner by which the social product is produced and distributed, I disagree with the view (occasionally espoused by Marx) that it's a necessary stage to undergo for socialism to materialize. Stalinism, for example, sufficiently demonstrated that a nation's productive forces can be developed without recourse to private ownership of capital or market resource allocations. Whether or not the Soviet Union was legitimately socialist is irrelevant, and largely semantic. The point is that when the Russian Federation becomes socialist, it will do so within a country whose industrial base was developed under non-capitalist social relations.

The materialist dialectic doesn't guarantee that socialism will be achieved, either. What it does is provide a period wherein the prevailing order undergoes a crisis of delegitimization, which in turn offers the potential for revolution. (That is why Kautsky was correct to emphasize the importance of education and organization in addition to agitation.) Dialectical materialism needs to be exorcised of teleology, in my opinion.

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"Nationality. . . is a historic, local fact which, like all real and harmless facts, has the right to claim general acceptance. . . Every people, like every person, is involuntarily that which it is and therefore has a right to be itself. . . Nationality is not a principle; it is a legitimate fact, just as individuality is. Every nationality, great or small, has the incontestable right to be itself, to live according to its own nature. This right is simply the corollary of the general principle of freedom."
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