Point/Counterpoint: Iranian Elections

IranElection

Point: We Must Support Rouhani as the Communist Candidate for Iran

by Worker’s Spatula Representative

Iran is a complicated place, with multiple nations living within its borders, a severely repressed trade unionist movement with roots going back decades, and extremely difficult contradictions with regard to women’s issues. There is no easy answer to the many problems that face Iran, from secularism to socialism, and we must make tactical compromises.

Under the current conditions, it seems that the Rouhani presidency can still play a progressive role. While there can be no substitute for a movement of the streets for Iranian comrades on the ground, they too would reluctantly agree that Rouhani represents the most progressive force possible at his level of “big” politics.

As one of the founders of the Worker’s Spatula Centre for Shariati Studies, I have long had a keen interest in Iran and its politics. As a supporter of the ICMLPO (Unity and Struggle), I am deeply interested in contradictions in the international arena. That’s why, in spite of my many criticisms of Mr. Rouhani, I have nothing but the strongest support for his plan to heal old wounds between our movement and the regime by promoting Hamid Reza Chitgar’s daughter as his choice for the next Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, following the death of Khamenei.

In spite of the Iranian regime’s many flaws, and many compromises with imperialism which possessed an opportunistic rather than tactical character, there is still hope for Iran, even within reformist elements of the regime. Rouhani’s recent interview in which he described Ebrahim Raisi as “a proponent of the revisionist Three Worlds Theory” represents such a hope.

Vote Rouhani in the upcoming Iranian elections, the only candidate who has read Alain Badiou!

Counterpoint: Vote Rouhani to Stem the Tide of Counter-Revolution!

by Twitter Left Representative

Iran is not a complicated country, with so-called “multiple nations” (as all true Marxist-Leninists know, this is an impossibility, as there can only be one Iranian nation), or so-called “contradictions”. It is quite simply this: the most heroic, self-sacrificing anti-imperialist state in the world!

Iran is the greatest, and anyone who criticises Iran for any reason is probably a Trot. Not only do the masses of Iranians wholly support their regime, which is almost as socialist as Syria or China, but the downtrodden peoples in all neighbouring countries, whether Iraq, Afghanistan, or Pakistan, all agree that Iran has always rushed to their defence in times of need.

Since Iran is good, and not bad, any challenge to the established order in Iran is plainly a plot by US imperialism, and must be fiercely opposed. Therefore, anyone who votes for, or encourages a vote for, or stands as a candidate against the legitimate President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, is an objective agent of US imperialism, and a wrecker who deserves no fate gentler than immediate execution.

To those who even dream of discussing what the effect of any change to the government in Iran might mean for the position of Supreme Leader following the latter’s death, know this: If the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran chooses to die at any point, this too represents an act of collusion with US imperialism. I call on Supreme Leader Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei to resolutely stand against the US imperialist plot of ageing and death, and instead live on forever, in hiding, much like Muhammad al-Mahdi.

In conclusion: Vote Rouhani for stability in the face of the Kurdish and Baloch ethno-nationalist plots of objective agents of US imperialism, like Worker’s Spatula.

Erkan Baş Speech Briefly Interrupted by Splitters

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İSTANBUL/STEMBOL – As Erkan Baş, the leader of the Communist Party of Turkey (also known as HTKP), took to the stage at the International Workers’ Day celebration in Bakırköy (Kurdish: Gundê Bekir), a group of neo-Trotskyite splitters from the TKP calling themselves “KP” began jeering at TÖPG’s favourite Brezhnevite, doubtless driven by jealousy of Erkan Baş’s formidable moustache.

“This is truly unacceptable,” explained leader of the KP pack and occasional reader of Nazım Hikmet poetry Emre Tokatçı to an EMEP-affiliated* Worker’s Spatula correspondent in attendance. “We only came because we thought we were going to be the centre of attention. If anyone is going to mention any other communists in Turkey, we’re going home.”

Following the completion of this sentence, all assembled KP members indeed began marching home, to the comfort of the Nazım Hikmet Kültür Merkezi in Ali Suavi Sk. (AKA Sanatçılar Sokağı) in Kadıköy.

For our foreign readers, the NHKM is a magical place where nobody ever mentions Kurds or popular fronts or any other such right deviationist nonsense.

By sheer coincidence, this move to abandon the International Workers’ Day celebration also meant that KP avoided any confrontation with the fascist Turkish police whatsoever.

The KP’s sister party in Greece, KKE, responded immediately with a statement condemning the entire Turkish left for “failing to defend KP, at a time when the sharpest and clearest contradiction in Turkish society is the defence of Kemal Okuyan”.

The Turkish Ministry of the Interior has issued a statement encouraging all young communists who insist on wasting their time with “that nonsense” to side with KP against all rivals (whether HTKP, TKP 1920, or KP-İÖ, if they still exist). The Turkish Foreign Ministry, meanwhile, has issued a statement encouraging all foreigners to simply ignore the whole affair, and indeed, anything that is not printed in an official AKP-approved press release.

*ESP and Devrimci Parti were mostly embedded in the fight for Taksim.

DSA Celebrate Loyalty Day

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CHICAGO – Following news that Donald “Chelsea” Trump had “proclaimed” May 1st to be “Loyalty Day”, History majors and long-time labour activists across the imperialist United States of Amerikkka have taken the occasion to remind everyone that “Loyalty Day” is a long-time reactionary tradition of the imperialist bourgeoisie in that country, and as such Trump has actually done nothing that any of his predecessors have not done to overshadow and delegitimise annual celebrations of the Marxist-Leninist holiday.

Reassured of the legitimacy of “Loyalty Day” in the eyes of the Democratic Party, the DSA, a small Stalinist entryist group within the larger Democratic Party plan to take to the streets to celebrate “Loyalty Day” in the loudest and most loyal way possible.

“I’m so glad to live in America, with its socialist police force, and not in anti-democratic Venezuela!” explained local white Chicago resident and DSA member Sean McGruder, as he handed out flyers inviting other members of the labour aristocracy to the DSA’s May 1st celebration. “God bless America!”

“May 1st is as American as July 4th or Labo[u]r Day,” concurred his friend Michael Del Franco, “We’re loyal to the US constitution, which is the real revolutionary tool of the working class to achieve political power.”

Not all were convinced by the DSA’s rhetoric, however. Local professor and known spoilsport Alfonso Casal said some things about “McCarthyism” and “wer hat uns verraten” to an assembled crowd of decidedly un-democratic socialists:

“I would call the DSA reformists, but they’d probably correct me and say that they aren’t interested in reforms, but democratic reforms. I would charge the DSA with the murder of Rosa Luxemburg, but they would probably respond by pointing out that Rosa Luxemburg was murdered by a democratically-elected government.”

For our part, the US wing of Worker’s Spatula will also be celebrating Loyalty Day. What follows is a statement endorsed by all our US correspondents, editors, and rabble-rousers:

We’ve never felt so loyal. Loyal to our accelerationist president. Loyal to a decreasing rate of profit, loyal to the increasing immiseration of the workers, which signals the gradual re-proletarianisation of the oppressor settler-colonialist Yankee nation’s labour aristocracy, and/or the coming rising up of the oppressed Afro-American people.

We predict a revolution in the US by the end of Trump’s second term.

After all, there’s no chance of the Democrats winning in 2020 if they put Jeb Bush up as their candidate again.

AMLU Caught in Theological Debate with Worker’s Spatula

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NEW BRUNSWICK, NEW JERSEY – AMLU youth at Rutgers University found themselves embroiled in an hours-long debate which quickly devolved into a discussion of Islamic theology with a Worker’s Spatula cadre tonight, causing the latter to question his faith in Hz. Ali and the former to question their faith in the rationality of material reality.

The German Worker’s Spatula cadre, recently kicked out of Turkey for alleged links to a proscribed “terrorist organisation” (in true Turkish fashion, the “terrorist organisation” in question was not even the one to which the cadre could realistically be linked), has been crashing on the couch of a US anarchist friend until he can determine which semi-colonial country he will be organising in next. To pass the time, he has been hanging out at various New Jersey universities talking to the heirs to the legacy of MJ Olgin about various theoretical, historical, and practical questions.

What started as a debate about national and class questions in the Black Belt South was quickly derailed, as is only natural, by a discussion about which Islamic sects most closely resemble which Marxist sects.

“Obviously Marxism is Islam because Marxism is true and real, like Islam,” began our German comrade, to nods of agreement from the New Jerseyite youth. “And as an Abrahamic faith, Marxism needs an Abraham.”

“Hegel, obviously,” responded a smirking young woman leaning against the wall in Brower Commons. “And Marx is Moses, come on, this is baby stuff.”

“Agreed,” said our Teutonic hero. “And obviously, Lenin is Jesus.”

“Because he is God in human form.”

“That, and because the Christians known as Trots accept him, but reject the final prophet, Stalin.”

With all present nodding in agreement, it seemed unity was close indeed. However, as is always the case with anti-revisionists, division would soon re-emerge.

“And then obviously, Mao is Ali. Because Shi’ism is a perversion of orthodox Islam,” offered a bearded young man in desperate need of a haircut.

“Excuse you?” asked our stunned exile, beginning a long shouting match that would continue outside Brower Commons for several hours after the group was kicked out because “We’re closed, can’t you fucking commies argue somewhere else?”

Arguments from both sides were impassioned, with the AMLU arguing that Hoxhaite fealty to the example of Hz. Stalin mirrored Sunni rejection of “Ja’fari Thought”, and that Maoist iconography mirrored Shi’a iconography. For our correspondent’s part, it was held that the acceptance of Sunnism as representative of “orthodox” Islam was predicated on popularity in a similar way to Maoism’s greater fame relative to that of the shining Marxist-Leninist path of Enver Hoxha.

Additionally, “everyone knows Abu Bakr supported the Three Worlds Theory.”

At time of press, no resolution had been found to the argument. All AMLU members had reportedly returned to their dorms, while the Worker’s Spatula representative was on Google frantically searching for Sunni mosques in the area at which to debate the finer details of the Sino-Albanian split.

HDK Parties Courting Fired Academic

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ANKARA – Fırat Önder, a left-wing academic recently fired unceremoniously from his position at Ankara University for his opposition to the Turkish state’s war on the Kurdish people, has been without any faint hope of another job since his passport was cancelled by AKP edict. However, he has not wanted for friends in these trying times.

This morning, TÖPG cadres reportedly showed up at the former History professor’s apartment door with a bouquet of flowers to ask him if he wanted to consider going out for a date sometime: “Any day you’re free, we can go to the park and distribute propaganda, or we can talk about dialectics. Whatever you want, abi,” said the young man clutching the yellow roses close to his equally yellow TÖPG vest.

Önder’s newfound popularity is not limited to TÖPG, the only element of the Turkish left whose cadre read as much Hegel as the Germans. Nearly every HDK party or group has come to him, hoping to win him over to their line. We sat down with Önder in his apartment in Çankaya to discuss his situation.

“It started with the letters of support from my students,” explained Önder to our correspondent over tea in his apartment, as SYKP cadre outside his window knocked on it, waving around pamphlets. “A Kurdish student who lost her little brother in the attack on Sûr told me that I was in her prayers. It breaks my heart to think about that.”

“I guess my students really liked me, because before long, they started getting involved in the campaigns for academics who have been fired. One of them joined Partizan and kept ‘bumping into me’ in the street. Now it’s like I’m in some Turkish film from the ’70s, where instead of being courted by men representing different social classes, I’m being courted by a bunch of 20-year-old revolutionaries who started reading Marx because of me.”

Attempts at courtship have varied in their scrupulousness: “Halkevleri approached me the other night at a bar. It was a man about my age and three much younger women whom he seemed to be offering as some sort of socialist concubines. I told them to fuck off, and they asked me, ‘what are you gay or something?’.

“Then there was DSİP. They said they would ring Callinicos for money for myself and other fired academics if I would help them attack EMEP and ESP.”

When asked if he thought he was going to get organised in the end, Önder nodded eagerly and said “Actually, I’m pretty sure I’m going to start working with Devrimci Parti, but they need to get me a few pairs of their trainers to sweeten the deal. I’m not going to give myself away so quickly and look cheap.”

 

Worker’s Spatula Credit Cards Maxed Out

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ANKARA – “You’re no longer in good standing.”

“What?” asked our shocked correspondent. “Why?”

“You know why. That money was for the conference,” explained the stern, leather jacket-wearing woman standing across from him.

“I did spend it on the conference! Didn’t the conference happen?”

“It did, but these receipts don’t add up. And even if they did, you took far more money than you needed to. You need to come up with the missing money, and fast.”

As his superior exited the room, our correspondent picked up his mobile and frantically dialled headquarters.

“Comrade, you’ve got to help me. I spent 1000 lira on bream and EMEP found out.”

“No can do, comrade. My account is empty and my cards are maxed out.”

“What? How?”

“Bream, mostly. I had to go to Malta to organise the local bream fishers, and also purchase all their bream, and try out several new and inventive bream recipes.”

“We’re prisoners to our bream addiction,” sighed our correspondent. “I’m skypeing [REDACTED].”

“They’re in Kosovo!” warned headquarters, just as they were being hung up on.

“Kosovo, eh?” said our correspondent, lighting his Stalin-pipe and puffing at it thoughtfully. “At least there’s no bream there.”

“Greetings comrade,” said our intrepid Balkan correspondent. “What’s wrong, you look down?”

“Money troubles. Is there any chance I could borrow 1000 lira to get out of a tight spot?”

“How much is that in Euro? 10? 100?”

“Not yet, I’m afraid. It’s still a bit over 250.”

“Allahu jedini! I’m a bit tight at present.”

“Why, trip to Kosovo set you back?”

“Well, it’s more why I’m here. It’s a good-will mission, I came by train. I have to bring the impoverished Kosovar children much-needed…”

“Bream, I know.”

“Yeah. You might consider asking our extremely wealthy editor-in-chief.”

“He’s gone.”

“What?”

“Yeah, he’s in Qendîl.”

“The only thing I can think to do then is this: I will stay here in Kosovo, embed myself among the local population, run for political office on a platform of inter-communal peacemaking and international solidarity, earn the trust of the Serbian Orthodox Church and the Bektashi Order in Kosovo, appropriate funds given by the faithful, and divert them to your bank account.”

“Can you do that in the next 48 hours?”

“Sure thing!”

sorted

Oscar Temaru Announces Candidacy for President of France

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FA’A’Ā, FRENCH POLYNESIA – After months of meetings secrètes avec les représentants de l’ICOR et de la CIPOML (maoïste) organiséd par le staff éditorial du Travailleur’s Spatule, le candidat whom we all know that France both needs and deserves has annonced himself before le monde: Oscar Temaru will be seeking le office du Président de la République française, running sur une plate-forme de contrôles d’immigration reinforcéd sur les blancs.

Speaking before a crowd composéd principalement de communistes et d’autres leftistes too hard for the fucking Parti de Gauche, Temaru a expliquéd ses plans pour sa présidencé: «Depuis trop longtemps, our borders have been flooded with white trash, thinking that they can just come in and just localise themselves without consulting the will of the people, and it’s got to stop. Nous, les polynésiens, sommes des peuples raisonnables, and we tried, I personally tried as président de la Polynésie, de proposer des changements raisonnables à la loi qui permettrait à notre peuple de vivre dans le comfort, mais le système colonial imposéd par le métropole ne permet pas de changements réels de la part de peuples subjects comme le nôtre.»

«As Président de la République française, je défendrai l’intégrité culturelle de toute la France contre la tide de l’immigration non-contrôléd. I have no intention to discriminate against white people. Le problème avec le régime current est que les blancs sont accordéd une licence spéciale to behave however they like, with no regard for les normes culturelles polynésiennes. Tous les nouveaux immigrants blancs à la France et à l’un de ses départements et territoires d’overseas must démonstrer leur capacité d’assimilation à la culture polynésienne.»

“Just to clarify,” asked incoming MLPD chair Gabi Gärtner, sporting a multicoloured lei around her neck, “Your plan is to solve the colonisation of Polynesia and racism in France by imposing Polynesian culture on the French metropol?”

“Yes,” responded Temaru.

“An extremely dialectical and elegant solution!” gushed Gärtner, who led the MLPD delegation in two minutes of sustained applause.

OCML-PV cadres have résponded immédiatement à l’annonce avec une campagne de graffitis around Paris: «VOTEZ TEMARU!» lire les graffitis, «VOUS ÊTES EN POLYNÉSIE, PARLEZ LES LANGUES POLYNESIENNES!»

Pour leur part, le PCOF, le parti local affiliéd de la CIPOML (hoxhaïste), a rejectéd cette campagne polynésienne as «insuffisamment danque et edgée», proposing instead that the goal should instead be to marcher sur Rome en concert avec their «Carthaginian sister parties» (de Maroc et de Tunisie).

Back in Fa’a’ā, local millionaire Lucas de Chevron Villette reacted to the scene of communists marching about with pictures of Temaru, declaiming their intention to rid France of white culture, with shock:

«Je ne reconnais plus ma France, je pense sérieusement à voter pour Le Pen.»

«Je ne suis pas raciste, mais…»

Enver Hoxha Elected President of the United States

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WASHINGTON D.C. – Following a tense campaign between feminist theorist Hillary Clinton and male underwear model Donald Trump, the polls for the 2016 US Presidential Election closed today with every single state reporting back a win for the late Albanian socialist Enver Hoxha.

Most analysts are at a loss for how the deceased anti-imperialist who is not even a US citizen could have beaten out the Clinton dynasty and Trump’s name-brand recognition as a famous academic and gourmet halal butcher. However, communists across the world are making the claim that the accelerationist strategy of the many US communists who infiltrated Trump’s campaign has actually paid off: The fascist threat was simply perceived as so great that the masses across the United States had nowhere to turn but a heroic anti-fascist partisan leader.

Across the United States, celebrating youth took to the streets with their Albanian flags. “It’s really happening!” exclaimed a young woman who identified herself as “Red Dawn”, with tears of joy in her eyes, “The revisionists are going to get it now! Throw ’em into the fire, break their backs!”

“We did it, comrades! Marxism-Leninism, Marxism-Leninism, Marxism-Leninism!” announced Hoxha campaign representative Alfonso Casal, from his personal bunker in Chicago. “Hope is all around us. Liberation is coming. I would like to announce my own candidacy for mayor of Chicago. I will be running on a platform of punching Rahm Emanuel in the fucking face.”

In her concession speech, Clinton stated that “Although I think expropriating the expropriators, national liberation, and bunkers from sea to shining sea are not the sort of policies that will help America, I believe in the peaceful transition of power. This is what makes our country truly great, and I call on all Americans to accept that we now live under a dictatorship of the proletariat.”

For his part, Trump responded to the question “How do you feel about losing?” by saying “Oh, did I lose?” before laughing a big belly laugh and evaporating before the very eyes of assembled reporters.

Our Santiago representative sat down with a young man in dire need of a haircut to discuss the international reaction to the Hoxha win:

“Well, tas tas tas, obviously.” explained the PC(AP) representative. “The ICMLPO is ecstatic, and ICOR elements are already looking into how to use this win as leverage in the campaigns to free Figen Yüksekdağ and Alp Altınörs.

“The RIM Maoists have declared it a win for ‘dogmato-revisionism’, but who really understands what those guys are talking about? Red suns and higher stages and dogmato-revisionism, it’s all quite spooky.”

The KKE also released a statement which summarised the win as representing “the will of the people of the United States, and proof that exclusively running in bourgeois elections while eschewing all compromise is a sure path to victory.”

While international communist response to the Hoxha win was generally cautiously optimistic to positive, the local official representatives of “communism”, the CPUSA, released the following statement:

“We condemn this adventurist victory on behalf of the Enver Hoxha campaign, which, like the Sanders campaign before it, could threaten the Democrats’ ability to control 100% of the senate and congress, which we must reiterate is the only way in which we can hope to subjectively intervene and present ourselves with better objective conditions.”

TKP/ML Doing Pretty Good, Report Other Groups in Turkey

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İSTANBUL/STEMBOL – An informal survey of various communists in Istanbul confirms that TKP/ML, the illegal Marxist-Leninist and/or Maoist party founded by İbrahim Kaypakkaya (following a split with Doğu Perinçek for being just the worst kind of revisionist) is “not doing half-bad lately, actually”.

“I don’t just mean that compared to the arch-sectarian RIM cultists in MKP, either,” said a representative of the DKP, speaking on condition of mentioning how fashionable his trainers looked. “They’re genuinely making good moves in Istanbul lately. Despite their wacky ‘People’s War’ in Dersim making them look like they’re still all kırdan şehre, I guess they are actually trying to reestablish relevance among the urban proletariat.

“Good for them” he concluded.

“The new songs are quite good, much better than ours,” confessed a representative of the MLKP, speaking through her Circassian-Turkish interpreter. “Not that it matters, since we can listen to anything the Kurds put out, but I’ll listen to that one about the homeland being a sea of blood. Goddamn Maoists know how to sing a tune, you know?”

Even cadres from the Marxist-Leninist-Lukácsist party TÖPG were complimentary: “If I was going to join an illegal party, it wouldn’t be my first choice,” said Fatma Kübra, one of their top cadres in Hatay. “But it also wouldn’t be my last choice? İbo was certainly more handsome than Deniz and Mahir. If I had to be waving around some dead man’s face for the rest of my life, I’d prefer it was him.”

“But Mao was quite ugly,” she added. “So that’s a minus. This is but one of many reasons why our party-initiative doesn’t have a bunch of dead men’s faces on flags.”

Not all Turkish communists agreed that the partisan forces of Comrade İbo were on the right track again. One of Worker’s Spatula’s own central committee members and proper EMEP man if ever there was one, [REDACTED], insisted that those elements impressed by the worker-peasant army were “betraying their petty bourgeois mentality” through their “fetishisation” of “this narodnik cult”.

DSİP cadres were similarly dismissive: “I don’t see how anyone can respect parties like that that hide behind the successes of an allied left group, in this case the Kurdish movement,” explained one “Levent Saygun”. “Unrelated, if you’re off to London, can you tell Callinicos his cheque was late again?”

Stefan Engel, who has been too busy with organisational details of this year’s ICOR Oktoberfest celebration in Bezirk Suhl, did finally pick up his phone to give his feedback on TKP/ML’s progress: “You know I’ve always liked them, I’ve always had faith they would do well in terms of… just a second… ARE THOSE SAUSAGES HALAL?… Yes, sorry. The issue is, they won’t join ICOR. I invited them, trust me. I invite them once a year. But they won’t join unless we explicitly take the line of Mao over Hoxha, which… I’m with the Kurds on this, in Turkey, you want to be on good terms with Hoxhaists.”

UPDATE: They fucked it all up again.

New “Stalin Biography” Composed Entirely of Apocryphal Quotations

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BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA – The academic community and “the anti-Stalinist left” are abuzz at news of a new biography of Joseph Stalin entitled “Stalin: Man or Monster? (Monster)”. The book was the work of professor of Polish Language and Literature at UC Berkeley, Philip Tannenbaum, and incorporates all of the most famous apocryphal Stalin quotes, as well as some new ones unearthed in discussion with various political figures around the world.

Tannenbaum describes the work as his own “humble contribution to the field of winning internet arguments”. “No longer will basement-dwelling Stalinists be able to smugly end discussions with basement-dwelling anarchists and Trotskyists by typing “[citation needed]”. Now people who say they like Rosa Luxemburg but clearly haven’t read Rosa Luxemburg can simply cite an academic work which contains all their worst fears confirmed without circumspection.”

Positive reviews for the work have been appearing in news sources from the New York Times to the Guardian to the Age, and top intellectuals otherwise not overly concerned with Soviet Historiography have made sure to put forth their highest praise:

“A masterwork which lays bare the paranoid and sociopathic mind behind the most frightening ideology of the Twentieth Century,” gushed reviewer and moral compass of the British left Nick Cohen. “Only by understanding the thought processes contained in pithy and more or less unverifiable quotes by Stalin can we properly identify the most dangerous elements in the regressive left today. Not reading this book is a wreckless and irresponsible act.”

The book, which contains no dates, sources, or information other than quotes designed to reemphasise the received knowledge of Stalin’s villainy, includes such classic quotes as “The death of one man is a tragedy, the death of millions is a statistic”, “Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas? ”, and “Death solves all problems — no man, no problem”. It also includes brand-new quotes, such as “Hitler and I are both socialists, fighting for the same things, chief among which is the annihilation of the Jewish race”, and “Whenever I use the word ‘dialectic’, it should be understood as a term which signifies a conspiracy lying deep at the heart of the Soviet state, and drawn directly from the Machiavellian writings of Hegel.”

The book has predictably been attacked by the marginal and useless loonies who still defend “Russia’s Hitler”, including Grover Furr:

“I just think people should assess the Stalin era on the basis of verifiable information in context, and judge Stalin himself as a representative of part of the party apparatus, rather than a sadistic mastermind who hurt people because he took some sort of perverse joy in the act,” said the raving lunatic when reached for comment from his office at Montclair State University.

Other insane communists similarly attacked the book as “pseudo-scholarship”, “slander”, “not actually a biography on purely technical grounds”, and “lolwut”.

Alfonso Casal, an academic chiefly known for his enthusiasm for all that is horrifying, from Albania to vampire films to Cuban cuisine, responded in a harshly worded public polemic which was later co-signed by Harpal Brar of the CPGB-ML. It reads, in part:

They say Stalin was a baddie. Well I say it’s good to be bad. I’m pretty bad myself. I wake up evil, eat a hearty breakfast of totalitarianism, and set off to work where I teach malevolent and harmful ideas to a generation that is already plainly rotten. But as much as I enjoy being a nefarious man, and as much as I hope to see everyone embracing the pure un-good that Stalin preached, you have to go about it the right way. Stalin was badder than the baddest you’ve ever seen, and I’m sorry to say that this book is quite bad at capturing just how bad Stalin was.

In the book, Stalin is just quoted as wanting to kill people. Shit, everybody wants to kill people. Three Trump supporters have expressed their desire to kill me today. Nobody’s impressed by that. If that’s your idea of bad, allow me to give you a lesson in the art of bad.

Stalin did some bad shit. One time, he had the Red Army march into Berlin and set up a people’s democracy in the baddest part of Germany. East Germany was the baddest Germany, and don’t you ever forget it. Another time, he smacked his son for thinking he could ever be as bad as his dad. He so excelled at the art of badness that he even banned George Michael and the Care Bears. But he never said that stupid shit that all of you people who think you know what it means to be bad claim that he said. He said much badder shit, publicly available in the form of his Collected Works. But that Trotskyite book you’re all quoting? That shit ain’t bad. It ain’t nothin’.