Point/Counterpoint: Trotskyism

Trotskyism

Point: You’re a Trot!

by Communist Party of Australia Representative

Dear fucking God. I thought I had seen some Trots in my day, but this is a bridge too far: how dare you disagree with me, you fucking Trot! Only a Trot would question China’s socialism, only a Trot would imply something was wrong with the Soviet Union, and only a Trot would tell me to ‘read my Marx’! I know a Trot when I see one, you bastard, and you’re a fucking Trot!

We’ve had it up to here with Trots in Australia, and I can’t believe I’m wasting some of my precious time here in Germany, the land of Bertolt Brecht, heroic killer of Trots, talking to a Turkish Trot like you!

Off about your Trot business, you Trot!

Counterpoint: No, you’re a Trot!

by Maoist Communist Party (Turkey/North Kurdistan) Representative

You fucking Australian labour aristocrat pseudo-revolutionary! Clearly it’s YOU who is the Trot here. You are a representative of the modern revisionist Trotskyite Menshevik neo-opportunist front that must be brought down.

You aren’t struggling against fascism, you aren’t fighting in Dêsım, and Trotsky didn’t do either of those things either. Case closed, now do you have a cigarette by any chance?

Counter-counterpoint: Comrades, don’t you see who the real Trots are?

by Stefan Engel

Comrades, we all have our differences, and we should, nein, must struggle through them to reach a higher level of truth and unity. But for too long have we argued about who are the real Trots in our midst. We too have wasted precious hours attacking the DKP, but the real question is this: if Trotsky were alive today, which party would he support?

In their pseudo-radical posturing, in their empty anti-austerity politics that fail to confront the imperialist state which imposes the austerity, we all know who the real Trots are: Die Linke. Die Linke are the only Trots in our midst today.

So make haste comrades, tomorrow is for the debate, today is for the ice axes! Ice axes for Die Linke!

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Worker’s Spatula New Year’s Message and Self-Criticism

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“No, we see your point,” explained our host, politely. “His analysis of international relations IS good, but I don’t think we’ll be converting the entire party to Shi’a Islam on the basis of that alone.”

“We’re recording,” interrupted the Yank. “Read the statement.”

“COMRADES!” began a bearded comrade with an obnoxious English accent, drops of butter tea dripping down his moustache, “We, the central committee of Worker’s Spatula, the rebel base of Marxist-Leninist internet irony, are here in a mountain camp in Bhutan, in solidarity with the local Gonzalists and their popular war against Bhutanese happiness! MABUHAY!”

“Down with mirth! Fuck joy!” interrupted one of the guerrillas in the back.

2016 marked the first full calendar year of Worker’s Spatula activity. Despite a generally pessimistic mood in some corners, in many ways, we count this past year as a success: We successfully defended Jeremy Corbyn against the Blairites, we defeated Hillary Clinton through our accelerationist agent, the Donald, and we sold a few t-shirts.

Per our original self-description, we take no responsibility for the many setbacks the world revolutionary movement has suffered over the course of the past year. Further, we are responsible for all progressive motion and unity among the revolutionary masses and their vanguard. So one would think we have no room for self-criticism, but we do. And not only because we’re being hosted by Maoists.

First of all, during our New Year’s self-criticism last year, we promised video propaganda. We did produce one low quality video, and wrote two or three others, but we made the grievous error of trusting the Yanks with video production duties. Needless to say, we should’ve known from Hollywood that the US is the last country you can put your faith in for quality video work. Hopefully and إن شاء الله, 2017 permits us to produce those and other videos for your viewing enjoyment.

More importantly, if we’re perfectly honest with ourselves, Worker’s Spatula is altogether too accessible to people who don’t spend all day reading ROL newsletters and founding documents of Turkish Marxist-Leninist groups from the 80s and 90s. We are simply not weird and obscure enough. Sometimes we even catch anarchists reading our work. It’s extremely disheartening to see, and represents clear evidence of some deviation from the correct line handed down to us from the prophet Vladimir Lenin (SAW).

Prepare for a new year which is more brutal, more dialectical, and more materialist. Prepare for jokes that Die Linke people won’t get, and GegenStandpunkt will hate themselves for chuckling at. We’re going to make jokes about Hegel and Gramsci and Left Communism, we’re going to talk about the THKPC-MLSPB instead of the MLKP, and we’re basically going to make 90% of our readers and 50% of our own staff declare the Spatula to be a hateful, unreadable mess barely worth mentioning.

We’re going to make the RCPB-ML look like the fucking CPB.

And yet somehow we’re going to keep gaining followers, because this is the internet, and quality and quantity keep transforming into each other in the ways we least expect.

In this spirit, we call on all of you to make a New Year’s resolution with us: MAKE YOUR RESOLUTION, REVOLUTION. Resolve to join Worker’s Spatula in our regular reading of revolutionary texts, the Spatula Reading Group, and become part of the process of our interventions in practical politics by responding to them!

On the first and fifteenth of every month, we’re going to assign a different revolutionary text for collective reading. It may be from the Marxist-Leninist canon, or perhaps it will be Hegel, but we will provide a link to the text online.

We want you, the readers, to write a one-page summary, or response with your reactions, preferably in terms of how you were able to relate the reading to the material conditions in which you are doing revolutionary politics. Through this online reading and recontextualising, you will be taking part in the dialectic that underlies Worker’s Spatula. You can push the spiral upwards! Push it! Push it good! Push it real good!

Taking part in this campaign is a great way to improve your Marxist reading and help expand Worker’s Spatula’s collective consciousness of the theoretical and practical struggles in your life. We encourage all to take part, and to e-mail us at mastursublator [at] gmail.com

Finally, in spite of whatever setbacks may loom large in your sight, we hope all comrades will cling tight to hope and struggle on to great victories in the new year! In particular, we hail Oscar Temaru’s inevitable victory in the upcoming French presidential elections. When the power of the Spatula and the revolutionary masses are united, miracles are possible! We are right, we will win!

WORKER’S AND OPPRESSED PEOPLES OF THE WORLD – UNITE!

Upon completing the reading of the statement, all present raised their Kalashnikovs skywards and fired into the heavens whilst the Yank screamed: “DIALECTICS, MOTHERFUCKERS!”

Tsipras Calls on Greek Masses to Rise Up Against Him

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ATHENS – Greek prime minister and four-time European Governmental Head Cheese-Eating Champion Alexis Tsipras today called on the people of Greece to rise up against the “corrupt and incompetent Tsipras government”.

“We in Syriza stand with the people. The people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history. The protests, strikes, and riots across the country make clear that the people totally reject the austerity policies implemented by the EU and its puppet government in Athens, which is to say us.”

“Syriza should’ve never surrendered to the neoliberal blackmail and accepted the terms of the third international bailout. That traitor Tsipras must be held accountable!” Tsipras concluded.

Later in the day, while Tsipras was in a meeting with European creditors, Worker’s Spatula correspondents in Athens roamed the streets seeking opinions. It wasn’t long before they came across representatives of the KKE and Popular Unity.

“We always opposed Syriza, but we also always opposed any strikes or protests that weren’t organised by us, so we’re not actually sure how to respond to this.” a protesting KKE member said, chanting softly in an alleyway so as to not be confused with the rioters on the main street throwing petrol bombs at a bank. “Anyway, the revolution will come as soon as the Greek people vote us into power. Any day now.”

“This was quite a shocking development, honestly.” said a member of Popular Unity as she was handcuffed by the police. “We left Syriza because they didn’t support things like this, so now we’re thinking of rejoining Syriza, although they’re the government that we’re protesting against. I’m sure nobody outside of Greece knows what we Greeks are up to, but frankly neither do we. I’m just riding it out at this point. Something’s gonna happen, somewhow.”

From Germany, response was predictable. Die Linke condemned the “adventurism” of the Syriza government and called on them to take part in “principled” struggle, “ideally in the form of a politely worded editorial for junge Welt”. Meanwhile, MLPD chair Stefan Engel responded by saying “I’m sure the KOE know what they’re doing. Resistance and that.”

“Can we talk about Kurds again? I know what’s going on there at least.”

Ebert’s Skeleton Dug Up and Named Chair of Die Linke

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BERLIN – In a shocking twist even by the standards of the ever-dynamic world of German left politics, Die Linke has elected to dig up the remains of Friedrich Ebert and name it chairman of their party.

Unsurprisingly, the move to replace Kipping and Riexinger with the skeleton of the man whose government was responsible for the deaths of Rosa Luxemburg of Karl Liebknecht has caused controversy inside the party and out. SPD has immediately filed a lawsuit demanding Ebert’s remains be turned over to them, “since he is definitely ours and we would’ve done this already if only we’d thought of it first.”

Riexinger, who has been demoted to co-assistant to Chairman Ebert along with Kipping, responded defiantly to the SPD’s attempts to take away Die Linke’s newest asset: “Friedrich Ebert does not belong to the SPD alone, but to all who still dream the beautiful second internationalist dream here in Germany. We are the genuine left in Germany, and the German left is Ebert, so Ebert is us. He is our heritage, he is our future.”

Kipping added: “SPD needs to give it up. We’ve had about enough. It’s not hard to see, the corpse is ours.”

A small speaker has been installed in what remains of Ebert’s mouth which plays a loud recording of the German national anthem whenever someone in the area is detected engaging in ultra-left shenanigans. The ultra-leftism is detected through a complex network of cameras and microphones which feed information into a computer in the cranial cavity about the presence of red flags other than Die Linke’s or phrases statistically associated with ICOR troublemaking. If Stefan Engel’s name is uttered in the skeleton’s presence, the anthem will play at top volume while a signal will be sent to the police, so that they may come immediately to restore good patriotic German order.

Die Linke higher-ups refer to it as “a miracle of German engineering.”

In response to polite requests from the stupid proletarian members near the bottom of the party structure for an explanation of this warm embrace of Ebert while Die Linke still makes use of symbolism paying tribute to Luxemburg and Liebknecht, Kipping and Riexinger remained steadfast.

“If this is the only thing you find hypocritical about Die Linke policy, I’m not sure how qualified you are to speak about left politics either,” laughed Kipping. “I mean, where were we during negotiations with Greece? I’m really asking you, I was quite drunk for most of the negotiations, and I’m not sure what I got up to.”

Riexinger agreed: “Very, very drunk.”

“Anyone who’s been with us this long isn’t gonna go running off to join a proper communist party just because we ‘abandon’ Luxemburg now,” concluded Kipping. “And if they do, all the better. It’s because of troublemakers like that that we’ve got the Verfassungsschutz on our backs.”

The DKP reacted to the news with delight: “So if they’re appropriating Ebert now, does that mean we can have the Karl Liebknecht House and the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation? Not that we’re going to support any adventurist nonsense like Luxemburg and Liebknecht did, but it’d be nice to have more name-brand recognition.”

Stefan Engel, chairman of the MLPD and one true king of Narnia, was arrested within hours of Die Linke’s press release for physically assaulting the Ebert skeleton, whose skull he broke to pieces before the police arrived.

News in Brief: September 21st 2015

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BERLIN – Die Linke has released a press statement explaining their longstanding support for the German bourgeoisie as an internationalist tactical line. “As Lenin teaches us, there are inter-imperialist contradictions, and we’re trying to maintain the strength of the German bourgeoisie as a bulwark against the UK, the US, Russia, etc., giving our comrades around the world more imperialist powers between which to navigate.” CPUSA is expected to release a comparable statement in the coming days.

LOS ANGELES – At a “Red Guards” meeting of the Maoist NCP-LC earlier this week, a member is reported to have said that Cambodian leader Pol Pot was “probably the best Maoist who ever lived,” resulting in his being taken out back and thoroughly beaten. This follows news of an inter-NCP-LC beating in the Bronx where a new comrade reportedly defended Ho Chi Minh over Mao Zedong. No word from NCP-LC as yet on whether or not a defence of Lin Biao is beating-worthy, but analysts advise against it, on the grounds that “that’s the LLCO’s guy.”

OTTAWA – The NDP announced their “critical support” for all leftist organisations in Canada offering the NDP critical support. Analysts almost universally agreed that the RCP-PCR, CPC-PCC, and CPC(ML) had made a huge mistake by not backing the NDP the way that the Canadian IST affiliate International Socialists did, as the latter will surely now be able to build a worker’s state out of Canada and “the Stalinists” will be left far behind.

PARIS – In a heated confrontation at a demonstration yesterday, members of the PCOF nearly came to blows with members of the sole ICU organisation Lutte Ouvrière after the latter refused to apologise to the Hoxhaite party for Trotsky’s betrayal of Stalin. The PCOF has stated that it “firmly believes all the bad blood can be put behind us if only the Trotskyites would confess to and apologise for their crimes.”

LONDON – David Cameron fucked a pig, apparently.

Joint Statement by the German Left Denouncing “Adventurism”

BERLIN – At a press conference in Berlin today, several organisations of the German left came together to release a joint statement denouncing “adventurism”. In an unprecedented case of left unity, the German Communist Party (DKP), Die Linke (The Left), the movementist Interventionistische Linke, as well as various Trotskyist groups denounced every attempt of using militancy in pursuing socialism. “It just doesn’t work,” said the DKP representative at the press conference. “I mean, have you seen a successful revolution in Germany throughout the last decades? No, you haven’t. So we’ve got to end this and find a new strategy.”

The spokeswoman of Interventionistische Linke added: “We fully agree with our slightly Stalinist comrade. Or were they bureaucratic reformists? It doesn’t matter, we are now objectively on the same side. See, we have seen all these protest movements in Southern Europe that turned violent. We get it, the people are angry, as they are impoverished by German politics. But they can’t simply attack police officers or occupy open squares. At the same time, we cannot simply confront the German state because of its politics. I mean, there is democracy here, so we have to participate in elections and hope the German people elect us, so we can end austerity politics. Sorry, friends in the South, these are the rules.”

Upon being asked if the Interventionistische Linke wasn’t in fact a movement-oriented organisation that did not particularly focus on electoral politics, she responded: “Sure, that’s the historical subjective difference, but there’s no objective difference between what we are and leftist groups that don’t get elected. So you know, we just follow trends now. For example: ever since Syriza, we’ve decided we want to be the German Syriza. Our members are all presently working on modifying their appearance and mannerisms to resemble Tsipras. We’ve already got the bad English down, now we’re raising money for plastic surgery so that all our members, men and women, will physically resemble him.”

Further statements from other groups were scarce. Katja Kipping, co-chair of Die Linke said: “Our politics have always been non-confrontational and cowardly, so this isn’t really a new position for us. We love calling everyone ‘adventurist’. We have nothing to add.” While a joint delegate of various Trotskyist groups added: “We, as Trotskyists, are always with the people. The German people today are in their great majority boring petty bourgeois hacks. And so are we.”

After the press conference a small tumult broke out among the Trotskyist groups, because while the one delegate was speaking as agreed upon by all the other groups, several groups changed their minds about the proper procedure. After the fight (itself repeatedly condemned as “adventurist” by its participants while they were delivering blows to their rivals), the representative of NAO (New Anticapitalist Organisation) spoke to us: “No, we all agreed on the message. But we discussed who should present it up until the very last minute. Then the press conference began and we sent the one guy up, but continued discussing the procedure backstage, per our understanding of democratic centralism. That’s how the confusion arose.” Asked if the issue had now been settled once and for all, he responded: “I really doubt it, that wouldn’t be consistent with our overall political line.”

Stefan Engel, the leader of the MLPD, the only notable absent figure of the left in Germany, said the following while drinking in a Bavarian beerhouse with one of our correspondents: “You know what Lenin said about German revolutionaries, right? About how they buy a ticket before occupying a train station? Well, there you have it. The only alternative is my party, the MLPD, and that the downtrodden German peasants will recognise the correctness of our line and join our ranks in masses. We are just months away from declaring an open protracted people’s war on the German state.”

International reactions to the shocking announcement were mixed. A joint response by Marxist parties from Turkey including EMEP, BDSP, Devrimci Parti, SYKP, SODAP and TÖPG read: “Fuck the German left.” The MKP, TKP/ML, Bolşevik Parti, TİKB, and MLKP issued a separate statement that noted it was in full agreement with the aforementioned statement while adding the caveat: “Except the MLPD and our comrade Stefan Engel, the only hope for the fucking Germans.”

Joma Sison, founder of the Communist Party of the Philippines, released a video message on his Facebook page in which he spoke for approximately 15 minutes about Chairman Mao and the great struggle of the CPP-NPA before asking the viewer “So, what was the topic of my message again?” Answering himself, he said: “That’s right, the Germans have done it again. They are Germans, what else is there to say? My good friend Stefan Engel is German and he is not German, but an internationalist at the same time. That is why he is not like them. Also note that this is a prime example of Maoist dialectics.”

Sison then repeated the word “dialectics” intermittently every few seconds for two minutes before the video abruptly stopped.

Didi Zach of the Communist Party of Austria (KPÖ) addressed the issue at his 11 o’clock beer breakfast, where he stated: “We feel a little bit insulted. Why did they not ask us to participate? I am absolutely sure that we would have managed to create a wonderful alliance representing Greater Germany on this issue. I mean, ‘the German speaking world’, or how do you say that these days? You know what? Let’s go with ‘Greater Germany’. After all, our sole mission is to expel everything the old KPÖ stood for from our party and as it was the only party defending the Austrian nation against the ‘Greater Germany’ concept, I think that’s the concept we’ll follow.”