Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Trotskismo - coisas boas, mas também más (II)

Continuando com o texto "The Dictatorship of the proletariat and socialist democracy": "Without full freedom to organise political groups, tendencies, and parties, no full flowering of democratic rights and freedoms for the toiling masses is possible under the dictatorship of the proletariat. By their free vote, the workers and poor peasants indicate themselves what parties they want to be part of the soviet system. In that sense, the freedom of organisation of different groups, tendencies, and parties is a precondition for the exercise of political power by the working class. "The democratisation of the soviets is impossible without legalisation of soviet parties." (Transitional Programme of the Fourth International.) Without such freedom, unrestrained by ideological restrictions, there can be no genuine, democratically elected workers’ councils, nor the exercise of real power by such workers’ councils."

"Restrictions of that freedom would not be restrictions of the political rights of the class enemy but restrictions of the political rights of the proletariat. That freedom is likewise a precondition for the working class collectively as a class arriving at a common or at least a majority viewpoint on the innumerable problems of tactics, strategy, and even theory (programme) that are involved in the titanic task of building a classless society under the leadership of the traditionally oppressed, exploited, and downtrodden masses. Unless there is freedom to organise political groups, tendencies, and parties, there can be no real socialist democracy."

"Revolutionary Marxists reject the substitutionist, paternalistic, elitist, and bureaucratic deviation from Marxism that sees the socialist revolution, the conquest of state power, and the wielding of state power under the dictatorship of the proletariat, as a task of the revolutionary party acting "in the name" of the class or, in the best of cases, "with the support of" the class."

"If the dictatorship of the proletariat is to mean what the very words say, and what the theoretical tradition of both Marx and Lenin explicitly contain, i.e., the rule of the working class as a class (of the "associated producers"); if the emancipation of the proletariat can be achieved only through the activity of the proletariat itself and not through a passive proletariat being "educated" for emancipation by benevolent and enlightened revolutionary administrators, then it is obvious that the leading role of the revolutionary party both in the conquest of power and in the building of a classless society can only consist of leading the mass activity of the class politically, of winning political hegemony in a class that is increasingly engaged in independent activity, of struggling within the class for majority support for its proposals, through political and not administrative or repressive means."

"Under the dictatorship of the proletariat in its complete form, state power is exercised by democratically elected workers’ councils. The revolutionary party fights for a correct political line and or political leadership within these workers’ councils, not to substitute itself to them. Party and state remain entirely separate and distinct entities. But genuinely representative, democratically elected workers’ councils can exist only if the masses have the right to elect whomever they want without distinction, and without restrictive preconditions as to the ideological or political convictions of the elected delegates. (This does not apply, of course, to parties engaged in armed struggle against the workers state, i.e., to conditions of civil war, or to conditions of the revolutionary crisis and armed insurrection itself, to which this resolution refers in a later point). Likewise, workers’ councils can function democratically only if all the elected delegates enjoy the right to form groups, tendencies, and parties, to have access to the mass media, to present their different platforms before the masses, and to have them debated and tested by experience. Any restriction of party affiliation restricts the freedom of the proletariat to exercise political power, i.e., restricts workers’ democracy, which would be contrary to the historical interests of the working class, to the need to consolidate workers’ power, to the interests of world revolution and of building socialism."

"Obviously such rights will not be recognised for parties, groups or individuals involved in a civil war or armed actions against the workers state. Neither do such freedoms include the right to organise actions or demonstrations of a racist character or in favour of national or ethnic oppression."

"In no way does the Marxist theory of the state entail the concept that a one-party system is a necessary precondition or feature of workers’ power, a workers state, or the dictatorship of the proletariat. In no theoretical document of Marx, Engels, Lenin, or Trotsky, and in no programmatic document of the Third International under Lenin, did such a proposal of a one party system ever appear. The theories developed later on, such as the crude Stalinist theory that throughout history social classes have always been represented by a single party, are historically wrong and serve only as apologies for the monopoly of political power usurped by the Soviet bureaucracy and its ideological heirs in other bureaucratised workers states, a monopoly based upon the political expropriation of the working class."


"If one says that only parties and organisations that have no bourgeois (or petty-bourgeois?) programme or ideology, or are not "engaged in anti-socialist or anti-soviet propaganda and/or agitation" are to be legalised, how is one to determine the dividing line? Will parties with a majority of working-class members but with a bourgeois ideology be forbidden? How can such a position be reconciled with free elections for workers’ councils? What is the dividing line between "bourgeois programme" and "reformist ideology"? Must reformist parties then be forbidden as well? Will social democracy be suppressed?"

"If the revolutionary party agitates for the suppression of social democratic or other reformist formations, it will be a thousand times more difficult to maintain freedom of tendencies and toleration of factions within its own ranks. The political heterogeneity of the working class would then inevitably tend to reflect itself within the single party."

"Thus, the real alternative is not either freedom for those with a genuine socialist programme (who ideologically and programmatically support the soviet system) or freedom for all political parties. The real choice is: either genuine workers’ democracy with the right of the toiling masses to elect whomever they want to the soviets and freedom of political organisation of all those who abide by the soviet constitution in practice (including those who do not ideologically support the soviet system), or a decisive restriction of these political rights of the working class itself, with all the consequences flowing there from. Systematic restriction of political parties leads to systematic restriction of freedom within the revolutionary vanguard party itself."

"When we say that we are in favour of a legalisation of all soviet parties, i.e. of those that abide by the soviet constitution in practice, this does not imply that we in any case underestimate the political confusion, errors, and even partial defeats which the propagation of wrong programmes and alien class influences upon the toiling masses by such parties could and will provoke under conditions of the dictatorship of the proletariat. Even more obviously do we not call upon the workers to build parties upon the basis of what we consider wrong programmes, platforms, or policies, nor do we advocate the creation of such parties. We only state that the artificial administrative suppression of such parties - artificial inasmuch as they continue to reflect currents among the masses even if they are legally suppressed - far from reducing these dangers, increases them. The political, ideological, and cultural homogenisation of the working class, bringing the great majority of its members up to the point where they are capable of substituting a free community of self-administered citizens to the survival of a state machine (i.e., able to achieve the building of socialism and the withering away of the state) is a gigantic historical task. It is not only linked to obvious material preconditions. It involves also a specific political training: "The existence of critically-minded people, opponents, dissidents, discontented and reactionary elements, gives the revolution life and strength. The confrontation of differences and polemics develop ’the ideological and political muscles’ of the people. It is a permanent form of exercising, an antidote to paralysis and to passivity.""

(bold e itálicos meus)

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