Socialism |OT| The Dawn of a Red Era

What tendency/ideology do you best align with?

  • Anarchism

    Votes: 37 16.4%
  • Marxism

    Votes: 19 8.4%
  • Marxism-Leninism

    Votes: 11 4.9%
  • Left Communism

    Votes: 7 3.1%
  • Democratic Socialism

    Votes: 84 37.3%
  • Social Democracy

    Votes: 54 24.0%
  • Other

    Votes: 13 5.8%

  • Total voters
    225

Rupetta

Member
Oct 27, 2017
970
Boston/Helsinki
In order to believe in reparations as (even partial) a solution to economic injustice you must believe that capitalism is not founded on exploitation of labor and accumulation by dispossession - I would like to see the economic theory that such beliefs build on. And to be clear, I support reparations, but I have no beliefs that will address anything fundamental about economic (or social) inequalities.
 

Deffers

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,976
Ultimately, racism is something that voters are, but that racism is kept in place through rhetoric employed by the powerful consistently, starting from an early age onward. You can't begin to tackle an agenda like reparations without getting the wealthy who benefit from racism structurally out of the way. I'm not sure you can really do that within a wholly socdem paradigm, since you're continually outmatched by people with greater wealth.
 

TheHunter

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,619
If you take this reasoning to the end then we are to believe racism is biological? That's a very dangerous and unsubstantiated road (which I know many social progressives e.g in PoliEra have gone down)
No I'd say it's taught through generations.

A learned behavior but that's not the fault of capitalism or system. That's just parenting/family/community faults.
 

Deffers

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,976
No I'd say it's taught through generations.

A learned behavior but that's not the fault of capitalism or system. That's just parenting/family/community faults.
Honestly, I don't think racism in the home is enough to explain racism as a phenomenon. I believe moneyed interests perpetuating racist rhetoric through media provide the crucial cultural straitjacket necessary to keep people from being better-- stuff like FOX News, stuff like Sinclair, stuff like rhetoric put out by Republican politicians looking for the bottom line for their donors.
 

Mekanos

Member
Oct 17, 2018
14,135
No I'd say it's taught through generations.

A learned behavior but that's not the fault of capitalism or system. That's just parenting/family/community faults.
Capitalism thrives and functions off of an exploited underclass. Racism perpetuates class which perpetuates capitalism.

Black people weren't enslaved because white colonists were afraid of them and thought they were scary. They wanted a cheap and exploitable source of labor. That is what capitalism is at its core, cheap/exploitable labor.

Capitalism cannot function without white supremacy subliminally telling people that some humans have more value than others.
 

TheHunter

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,619
Honestly, I don't think racism in the home is enough to explain racism as a phenomenon. I believe moneyed interests perpetuating racist rhetoric through media provide the crucial cultural straitjacket necessary to keep people from being better-- stuff like FOX News, stuff like Sinclair, stuff like rhetoric put out by Republican politicians looking for the bottom line for their donors.
I think that it's family plus feedback loop myself.

Social media and the bubbles being the biggest example of that feedback loop.
 

TheHunter

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,619
Capitalism thrives and functions off of an exploited underclass. Racism perpetuates class which perpetuates capitalism.

Black people weren't enslaved because white colonists were afraid of them and thought they were scary. They wanted a cheap and exploitable source of labor. That is what capitalism is at its core, cheap/exploitable labor.

Capitalism cannot function without white supremacy subliminally telling people that some humans have more value than others.
I mean, I think it can but again Racism will still be here if and when Capitalism falls.
 

Deffers

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,976
I think you do that you'll find racism still here myself but hey.
I don't really disagree, but I think that absent the feedback loops that reinforce it, racism would begin to just kind of decohere. If there's nobody to stoke the fires of racism actively through the activity of capital, I think things can only begin to break down. The primary issue with trying to fix racism within capitalism is you're at best held in detente by better-connected and better-funded billionaires when you try to enact change.
 

Rupetta

Member
Oct 27, 2017
970
Boston/Helsinki
Liberals combines a drive towards ideals of political equality with an actual fostering of economic inequality in the words of MacIntyre. Nothing in this thread refutes that premise, rather everything put forward seems to support that critique.
 

Artdayne

Member
Nov 7, 2017
3,148
Racism on some level may still exist but it will mostly be defanged if Capitalism were replaced by Socialism.
 

Deffers

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,976
Come on, it'll still exist no doubt about it. And even in any realistic socialist style setup there will still be some institutional racism just because people are racist.
No doubt in my mind about that.

Personally, I'm of the opinion that racism will still exist without capitalism, but you CAN'T kill racism without killing capitalism.
 

DrSlek

Member
Oct 29, 2017
4,492
Give a bit of thought as to how Capital ties into Racism through the lense of the centuries old overpopulation myth.


Even today we have rich white billionaires trying to fight overpopulation through their various tax evading charitable foundations....always in Africa and Asia. Never in Europe or the United States. Hell the primary goal of Bill Gates' vaccination campaign was to get people in India and Africa to have fewer children.

Will racism still exist in a post-capitalism society? Very probs. Will it be as damaging to its victims? Hell no.
 

Deffers

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,976
Presented without comment:

 

Artdayne

Member
Nov 7, 2017
3,148
"May still exist"

Come on, it'll still exist no doubt about it. And even in any realistic socialist style setup there will still be some institutional racism just because people are racist.
I mean we're all talking about a hypothetical here. I don't think it will immediately go away, I'm thinking several generations down the line and even then I do think it will exist on some level but the power that it has would be significantly diminished. People are not inherently racist though, that comes from somewhere.
 

TheHunter

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,619
I mean we're all talking about a hypothetical here. I don't think it will immediately go away, I'm thinking several generations down the line and even then I do think it will exist on some level but the power that it has would be significantly diminished. People are not inherently racist though, that comes from somewhere.
Yeah, their families.
 

Mekanos

Member
Oct 17, 2018
14,135
Yeah, their families.
And where did their families learn it from? And their families before that?

Racism was not something that fell from the sky like a meteor. It is a system crafted by humans to marginalize and oppress groups for the benefit of the ruling class. Colonialists with power decided that black people, indigenous people, etc. were less valuable as living, breathing equal human beings, and used that power to murder and exploit them to their own benefit.

White supremacy is not some boogeyman that sits in the oval office with a bad wig. It is a systematic factor of our society after centuries of imperialism and Eurocentric influence.

Will racism exist after capitalism is abolished? Yes, most likely, the scars and trauma will remain for some time. It's not going to change overnight. What do racism and capitalism have in common? Both are systems of hierarchy that position some human lives over others. Abolishing hierarchies is the first major step in abolishing racism.

(going to bed so don't expect a response for a good 8-9 hours)
 

TheHunter

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,619
And where did their families learn it from? And their families before that?

Racism was not something that fell from the sky like a meteor. It is a system crafted by humans to marginalize and oppress groups for the benefit of the ruling class. Colonialists with power decided that black people, indigenous people, etc. were less valuable as living, breathing equal human beings, and used that power to murder and exploit them to their own benefit.

White supremacy is not some boogeyman that sits in the oval office with a bad wig. It is a systematic factor of our society after centuries of imperialism and Eurocentric influence.

Will racism exist after capitalism is abolished? Yes, most likely, the scars and trauma will remain for some time. It's not going to change overnight. What do racism and capitalism have in common? Both are systems of hierarchy that position some human lives over others. Abolishing hierarchies is the first major step in abolishing racism.

(going to bed so don't expect a response for a good 8-9 hours)
Tribalist warfare and us vs. them.

Racism was here before capitalism.
 

Rupetta

Member
Oct 27, 2017
970
Boston/Helsinki
Tribalist warfare and us vs. them.

Racism was here before capitalism.
Yes (while race has not been a category for exclusion throughout history), and that oppression existed before capitalism is something Marx acknowledges fully and Engels researched (when tracing the historical roots of oppression of women). But capitalism has a very particular relationship to oppression, which is rather central to grasp.

http://socialistreview.org.uk/369/marxism-and-oppression

If up for a long read - Cedric Robinson's Black Marxism is always worth a read in order to trace the genesis of racialized capitalism: https://libcom.org/files/Black Marxism-Cedric J. Robinson.pdf
 
Oct 25, 2017
6,123
Brooklyn, NY
more folks ought to read Racecraft (said the guy who still hasn't read it in its entirety)

It's just nuts, I had a guy that called himself a socialist in the election thread bitching about corbyn being far left and telling me anyone that opposed austerity in 2010 was crazy.
I don't think "people who call themselves socialist yet primarily/exclusively criticize politicians like Bernie/Corbyn and their supporters from the right" are a very large category but hoo boy do they drive me up a wall sometimes
 
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Televator

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,918
Speaking as a Mexican immigrant. I view “Berniebro” as a slur that works kind of in reverse. Calling me a wetback is to highlight my background as a derogatory. Calling me a Berniebro is to errase it by implying I’m just another white sexist dudebro. I don’t appreciate Eras liberals erasing my fucking shit.

Calling people liberals only means you want capitalism. Being “progressive” means you want regulated capitalism. It can be viewed as a subset of liberal.
 

Apharmd

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,502
I mean, I think it can but again Racism will still be here if and when Capitalism falls.
Without capitalism, racism (and other forms of bigotry!) are fairly toothless. Capitalism forces us to buy-in to racist institutions in order to get an education, to access health care, to feed ourselves and our families.

Agree to disagree; I feel that it is the people that are the issue and less the systems themselves.
This is my problem with liberalism, at its core. The racism is by design, to divide labor to be more easily exploited, to create pools of cheaper and increasingly powerless labor. When your ideology ignores that in favor of "we can educate individuals beyond prejudice" you are missing the forest for the trees. And you are talking about trying to work within a system that is fighting you every step of the way because its only concern is maximizing profit, which in turn it puts right back into the political system to create conditions where it can exploit labor even more, to create more profit, rinse, and repeat. It's why they've shredded unions. It's why health care in America is privatized and contingent on employment. It's why the social safety net has been gutted, why work requirements and time limits are tacked on to state welfare programs.

I'll also add that when you aren't willing to take meaningful steps to improve material conditions for marginalized groups, you aren't an ally. Simple representation through tokenism is no danger to the current hierarchy and so it is allowed. But if you aren't willing to address the entirety fucking system that created, and continues to foster, the socioeconomic conditions for racism, any pretense of being serious about ending racism is just performative, and I have no interest in it.
 

Televator

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,918
It’s easier to exploit labor from people you can be racist against. That’s always a consideration for capital
 

Mekanos

Member
Oct 17, 2018
14,135
Tribalist warfare and us vs. them.

Racism was here before capitalism.
This is a really downplayed way of saying "imperialism and colonialism" which are core tenets of capitalism.

Others have explained the other stuff well enough, but I think you are seriously trying to view racism as a personal problem individuals have and not a widespread, systematic issue that informs everything we see. Racism in capitalism is a feature, not a bug. Capitalism cannot function without an exploited, overworked labor force, and racism allows for an easy avenue to that labor force.

If you can't see that, then we're just not going to agree and others can keep up this discussion if they want to. Just don't be surprised that people in a socialism OT are hostile to the idea of capitalism.
 

umop 3pisdn

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,252
That's just flat out not true. Show me one documented example of racism before european imperialism.
Yeah. It was a while since I learned about this stuff in school but I remember the consensus across the humanities was that racism was an active social construction to justify imperialism, there wasn't any notion of humanity being composed of different 'races' prior to this, and the only reason we really continue to view humanity in those terms now is that we're left to address the consequences of that legacy.
 
Oct 25, 2017
6,123
Brooklyn, NY
the liberal approach is always to view racism as either an individual moral failing or as an abstract force that exists beyond history or politics. there's rarely any structural or material analysis of how racism is reinforced or perpetuated, and to the extent that liberals acknowledge systemic racism as a real thing, it's only as an indictment of the people who currently hold positions of power within the system and not the system in itself
 

Rupetta

Member
Oct 27, 2017
970
Boston/Helsinki
People seriously need to read up on history... it is fairly irrefutable that raacism as a systemic and instutionalized practice did not exist until the birth of capitalism, there are scattered examples of proto-racism in Europe (Spain in the Middle-Ages, and various positions of racial inferiority, treatment of the Roma/gypsies, nascent antisemitism) - but oppression and racism as a pattern and system is not visible and supported by most scholars of history and race. There was oppression, domination and othering but it did not follow racial lines. It is a bit scary how ignorant people are to the absolutely intimate relationship between capitalism and racism...
 

Artdayne

Member
Nov 7, 2017
3,148
Yeah. It was a while since I learned about this stuff in school but I remember the consensus across the humanities was that racism was an active social construction to justify imperialism, there wasn't any notion of humanity being composed of different 'races' prior to this, and the only reason we really continue to view humanity in those terms now is that we're left to address the consequences of that legacy.
Racism is inherently baked into the concept of race. White superiority over people of color is inherent to it. It was used as a means of building a coalition across class lines but among "white" people so that rich white people could stay in power.


Racism, Imperialism, Colonialism and Capitalism are all very closely tied to one another.
 

Snowy

Member
Nov 11, 2017
947
the liberal approach is always to view racism as either an individual moral failing or as an abstract force that exists beyond history or politics. there's rarely any structural or material analysis of how racism is reinforced or perpetuated, and to the extent that liberals acknowledge systemic racism as a real thing, it's only as an indictment of the people who currently hold positions of power within the system and not the system in itself
They also mostly ignore that giant international corporations are one of the primary vehicles by which wealth is parked where people of color are not likely to have access to it. Not to mention the destruction of local economies, the commodification of marginalized culture (which is largely what people are mad about when they get made about cultural appropriation, which makes “yelling at White dudes with dreadlocks” one of the most inscrutable and frustrating strategies out there), buying police protection for primarily rich and white stakeholders, etc.

Humans recognize racial difference, at least in terms of broad morphological difference, in infancy, and there’s no doubt that there are plenty of imaginable non-capitalist methods of social organizing, even socialist ones, in which prejudice would still be a major problem. But it’s also remarkably clear that current racial stratification is a function of capitalism, and any anti-capitalist activism is functionally anti-racist activism unless specifically constituted otherwise, even if not to a degree sufficient to fully dismantle the broad problem of capital-r Racism as it currently exists.
 

thepotatoman

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,453
Denver
Yeah. It was a while since I learned about this stuff in school but I remember the consensus across the humanities was that racism was an active social construction to justify imperialism, there wasn't any notion of humanity being composed of different 'races' prior to this, and the only reason we really continue to view humanity in those terms now is that we're left to address the consequences of that legacy.
They knew of societies with very different anatomical characteristics, and there is some funny descriptions and explinations they used when writing about it. But there's a clear difference between writings like that, and the ones of imperialsts trying to dehumanize other races to justify their actions.
 

TheHunter

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,619
Oh I have no problem with you guys not liking capitalism, my reason for being here isn't to change your mind but to learn! Also you guys are allies to me, we agree stuff is busted we just disagree how to fix it :)

Racism was uniquely weaponized through capitalism and imperialism but it has existed in some form. Much like Trump, imperialism and capitalism just acting on already existing feelings. They didn't invent the idea of the "other".
 

Deffers

Member
Mar 4, 2018
1,976
Oh I have no problem with you guys not liking capitalism, my reason for being here isn't to change your kinda but to learn.

Racism was uniquely weaponized through capitalism and imperialism but it has existed in some form. Much like Trump, imperialism and capitalism just acting on already existing feelings. They didn't invent the idea of the "other".
Yeah, but the thing is that racist animus has always been driven by narrative building through political machinations. I mean, shit, look at Caesar talking about the Gauls and the stories we have about druids-- then think, in contradistinction, about the ways the Romans treated Petra instead. The Knights Templar could tell you a little bit about why the Latinization of Muhammad's name, "Mahomet," is so very close to "Baphomet"-- and the implications about King Philip IV's accusations towards them take on a very familiar cast once you remember that and realize Philip IV owed the Templars a lot of money. What I'm saying is, racism has always been a top-down thing-- it's been a harnessing of the tribal nature of humankind that's served the interests of the ruling class since time immemorial. Race theories as we understand them today get their origin from the colonial period, and they were formulated in service to papering over the atrocities committed by European imperialism. Atrocities fundamentally motivated by trying to satisfy commercial appetites that were industrial in scale but pre-industrial in technology through the application of chattel slavery. Our globalized world has altered the purpose that race theory serves today, of course, but the same fundamental driving force is in play-- the utilization of that prejudice as a tool to strengthen the hegemony of the ruling class. The racial prejudice we have been steeped in all our lives, that defines our idea of what prejudice even is inherent to human nature? Is based off that, and is in many respects alien to the pre-colonial notions that existed in previous times. The expression of hatred towards the "other" that informs your ideas of human nature? Is cast entirely from the slice of human history we exist in today-- but its expressions are uniquely modulated by capitalism and MUST by nature be different as capital passes away.

Better things ARE possible.
 

TheHunter

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,619
Yeah, but the thing is that racist animus has always been driven by narrative building through political machinations. I mean, shit, look at Caesar talking about the Gauls and the stories we have about druids-- then think, in contradistinction, about the ways the Romans treated Petra instead. The Knights Templar could tell you a little bit about why the Latinization of Muhammad's name, "Mahomet," is so very close to "Baphomet"-- and the implications about King Philip IV's accusations towards them take on a very familiar cast once you remember that and realize Philip IV owed the Templars a lot of money. What I'm saying is, racism has always been a top-down thing-- it's been a harnessing of the tribal nature of humankind that's served the interests of the ruling class since time immemorial. Race theories as we understand them today get their origin from the colonial period, and they were formulated in service to papering over the atrocities committed by European imperialism. Atrocities fundamentally motivated by trying to satisfy commercial appetites that were industrial in scale but pre-industrial in technology through the application of chattel slavery. Our globalized world has altered the purpose that race theory serves today, of course, but the same fundamental driving force is in play-- the utilization of that prejudice as a tool to strengthen the hegemony of the ruling class. The racial prejudice we have been steeped in all our lives, that defines our idea of what prejudice even is inherent to human nature? Is based off that, and is in many respects alien to the pre-colonial notions that existed in previous times. The expression of hatred towards the "other" that informs your ideas of human nature? Is cast entirely from the slice of human history we exist in today-- but its expressions are uniquely modulated by capitalism and MUST by nature be different as capital passes away.

Better things ARE possible.
Indeed they are.
 

3bdelilah

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,183
So I'm a little confused. When exactly can someone be considered a "real" socialist? Is it enough to "merely" advocate for the basic tenets like equal/fair redistribution of wealth, and workers seizing the means of production, or are there also other fundamentals that one must adhere to before one is a socialist at heart?

The reason I'm asking is because this morning I stumbled upon a Reddit post where this person claimed to be economically left (as in abolishing today's capitalism, state-owning the most important aspects of the economy in order to offer everyone guaranteed access to basic human needs, etc.), but at the same time claimed to be socially conservative (specifically opposing LGBT+ rights). He or she emphasized not having any racist feelings whatsoever, even saying {paraphrasing here} systemic and institutionalized racism is a capitalist's tool for division, and that comrades should come from all colors, ethnicities, and backgrounds.

The thread got deleted, probably because the timing was a bit conspicuous, but regardless it struck me as an odd combination. Most of left-wing people tend to be left-wing all across the board, both socially as well as economically, but it made me think if it's possible to be a conservative socialist or whatever you'd call it? We already have the term liberal or just lib (albeit in a derogatory way) for socially left but economically center or even (center-right) people, but is there a term for the opposite? And how do you view these people?