Humourless Marxist Reviews: Confederate

Confederate

Knowing Worker’s Spatula’s popularity among the rebel youth and our passion for the subject, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, the duo better known as HBO, have invited several Worker’s Spatula writers to a special screening of the pilot episode of their new documentary series, Confederate.

Confederate tells the story of how the US, as a major imperialist state, has somehow managed to preserve slavery as a major pillar of its domestic economy well into the 21st century. The series’s pilot episode begins with a narrator explaining the history of the Republican Party, which began as a bourgeois revolutionary institution bent on overturning slavery. However, the party’s reliance on the imperialist bourgeoisie engaged in settler-colonial conquest of North America meant that the Afro-American masses and the radical left of the party were betrayed to the very southern slave-owning aristocracy the party set out to overturn in the first place.

The narrator is then revealed to be an Afro-American political prisoner in a forced labour camp, explaining this history to his fellow prisoners as he finishes his sub-par meal in a crowded cafeteria.

The pilot unflinchingly portrays the trials and tribulations of modern-day slaves in the United States today, through vignettes of their everyday lives, including painfully rare and short breaks for family, violent confrontations with labour camp guards, and struggles with mental health issues. If the pilot is anything to go by, this series will be extremely uncomfortable, but necessary, viewing for US audiences.

Creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss hinted at big plans for on-screen depictions of relevant historical and social issues in the future during the question and answer session with the Worker’s Spatula team, including an alternate history drama in which Hitler had been born in the Americas and committed genocide against indigenous peoples of the continent, and a drama about a dystopian future in which fascists and socialists are frequently depicted as part of one common ideology known as “totalitarianism”.

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News in Brief: July 15th 2017

CitizenMaxIsHauntingUs

THE INTERNET – Some years after Tumblr stopped being even a vague cultural influence on left-wing politics and well into the division of its former users into those who are engaged in quite broad front practical politics and those who have retreated from politics entirely, Marxist-Leninists on the internet remain convinced of the importance of fighting “SJWs” who are supposedly to be seen at every protest telling white male workers to “check their privilege”.

“Identity politics is dividing the working class,” explained a white man in an imperialist country to his internet audience of other white men in imperialist countries. “How does anyone expect to win over the working class when they talk about gay people and racism all the time?” referring to the all-white, all-male class which he has been extremely successful in winning over, unlike those horrific SJWs.

ST. PETERSBURG – Russian communists are trying to piece together what exactly the US government is accused of doing with the Russian state.

“So… the ‘resistance’ in the US refers to those people who feel the US state is not fighting hard enough for global hegemony?” asked local Враг Капитала reader Vladimir Semyonovich.

“I’m for revolutionary defeatism without exception,” protested Russian Maoist Party member Anna Mikhailovna, “so I don’t want Russian capital interests defended in Washington DC. But is there no one in the US who feel that the interests of capital in Washington DC should not be judged based on their Russianness?”

NEW YORK – ROL infiltration of the DSA is reportedly well underway, with the DSA already embracing national liberation for Afro-Americans and sending off martyrs to die in ICOR-approved armed struggle. Boston-based analysts expect the DSA to be a complete ROL front by 2019, right around the time the Democratic Party officially embraces the Three Worlds Theory as its lone “concession” to “the left”.

ANKARA – Worker’s Spatula correspondents are nervously considering whether or not to publish a story about Erdoğan condemning the French for celebrating Bastille Day, as he might do.

“Like, the joke is about how the Marxist tradition appropriates the French Revolution, and how Erdoğan is an arch-reactionary, and that,” explained [REDACTED 1] to her comrade during a Worker’s Spatula meeting.

“Right, but, even making a joke these days in Turkey makes you wonder,” replied [REDACTED 2]. “Erdoğan could easily say that the storming of the Bastille inspired the July 15th Coup Attempt, and…”

“Yeah…”

“Yeah…”

Unclear if DSA Declaration of “Irony” as Highest Stage of Capitalism Itself Ironic

DSA

NEW YORK/CHICAGO – The DSA have stirred up great controversy in US left circles, still reeling from the discussions of “Marxism-Leninism-Maoism” as the “third and higher stage” of communist ideology several decades too late, with their latest declaration that capitalism itself has reached a qualitatively new stage of irony.

“If you consider Marxism primarily from the perspective of alienation, it’s actually quite obvious,” explained Michael Foreman, a Bronx native and DSA member, to our local corespondent. “Capitalism has advanced so far in terms of alienating us all that even our own internal mental processes have a clear dual audience. Commodification is so total that we can only articulate resistance to the profit motive in terms of ironic humour, even to ourselves.

“O shit waddup,” he concluded.

In the past few months, large numbers of young Marxists have joined local branches of the DSA, an organisation dedicated primarily to making the Democratic Party add “vigorous defence of the legacy of Comrade Stalin” to their Party Platform. Consequently, theoretical discussion at various branches of the DSA have become more rigorous than ever before, with the legacies of such US radical martyrs as Malcolm X, Michael Israel, and Bernie Sanders being mainstays of discussions at meetings. We spoke to Alfonso Casal, professional Malört sommelier and anti-revisionist Marxist-Leninist, about developments within the DSA in terms of theory and practice.

“Basically, it’s not untrue that our innermost psychological health is being harmed by capitalism, and that capitalism’s tendency to commodify all things has brought us to this point. The disagreement we have with the DSA is mostly over whether this process, which has been quantitatively increasing since capitalism-imperialism became globally hegemonic, has actually reached some new qualitative stage.

“There was far more merit to the discussion, very popular since the 2008 Crisis, of neoliberalism, with its basis in profit-exploitation, as a qualitatively higher stage of capitalism-imperialism. In this vein, it is our view that the DSA themselves represent a new stage of revisionism. We had the classic revisionists like Bernstein or Kautsky, and then we had the ‘modern revisionists’ of the 20th century that our ‘anti-revisionist’ Marxism-Leninism defines itself in opposition to. However, these have descended so far into revisionism that they are no longer central to our discussions as revolutionaries. In the place of CPUSA or the CPB, we are now primarily concerned with the revisionism of the DSA and Momentum.”

Asked how he perceived a coming struggle with the DSA, Casal responded: “It’s very difficult to say. Just as defectors from the CPUSA played an important role in the struggle with modern revisionism decades ago, I predict contradictions within the DSA will lead to new formations, some of whom will have ideas close to our own.

“Pretty IRONIC, don’t you think?” winked Casal, who, before an explanation could be sought, pulled out an air horn and blew it into the air multiple times. “Capitalism, more like CRAPitalism, AMIRITE?”

The ISO, despite being mentioned much further down the page than they would ever read on a website as “Stalinist” as this one, also had their own analysis of the DSA’s growth and development. We sat down with one of their representatives at Fanxi’s Famous Foods in Manhattan:

“The DSA are reformists, which presents a clear risk of Stalinist growth within their ranks. On the other hand, they call themselves democratic socialists, and we Trotskyists are the real democratic socialists, since we have always militantly defended democracy for the working class, so perhaps we’ll be able to recruit some of them or take them over from within.

“It’s difficult to say, because we always had trouble telling which of their public declarations were ironic, and their latest declaration hardly does anything to clear up that confusion.”

At time of press, the ROL.

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Humourless Marxist Reviews: Band Aid

BandAid

“Band Aid” is actor Zoe Lister-Jones’s first foray into directing, and a bold foray it was. Not only did she manage to pull off the twin duties of actor and director with significant skill for a first timer, but she did so with an all-woman crew, a choice which makes perfect sense when one considers that Band Aid is a dramatic retelling of the story of Yenigün Müzik Topluluğu, the “women’s choir” Turkish musical group best known for writing songs about 1990s MLKP martyrs.

Set in the United States, this dramatic retelling imagines what it would be like if the Istanbul-based group had been formed in California. And somehow it works! Despite lacking the obvious context of Gazi Mahallesi, watching Lister-Jones’s depiction of dozens of young people raise their fists to martyr songs brought a tear to the eyes of everyone in the audience at our special and exclusive Worker’s Spatula screening of the director’s cut of the film.

Watching “Band Aid” was a unique glimpse into the personal experiences of the women who would go on to sing songs of the struggle within Yenigün Müzik Topluluğu. The role of women in all parts of struggle, the role of arts in morale and healing, the motivation to carry on against all odds in the memory of the lost children whose laughter will be our revenge, truly this is a film that can make even the most foreign leftist feel right at home in this story of Turkish militants. It is astonishing how Lister-Jones is able to tie in music and everyday struggle so masterfully, to the point where the escalation of violence in concert with progressively more melancholy music feels the only natural choice for the audience.

*SPOILER ALERT*

Truly nothing can match the feeling of revolutionary determination one feels together with Lister-Jones’s character in the final scene where she approaches George Zimmerman, to avenge Trayvon Martin’s death by detonating the bomb strapped to her own body. Right at the moment of the detonation, the screen goes black and the soundtrack is silent, and you can hear the people on each side of you breathing, before “Yasemin” starts playing.

Hardcore stuff.

Speaking of bodies and “hardcore”, though, it was a bit unfair that we didn’t get to see Adam Pally’s erect penis during the nude scenes. What gives, Zoe?

Happy Mother’s Day from Worker’s Spatula

IvanaMama

“Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!”

“Oh, thank you so much sweetie, you really didn’t have to…”

“Go on, Mom, open it, open it!”

Worker’s Spatula’s Oakland correspondent watched excitedly as her mother opened up the long box.

“It looks like some kind of bazooka!” exclaimed our correspondent’s mother, sitting up in bed. Our correspondent rolled her eyes:

“Mom, don’t be ignorant, a Kalashnikov and a bazooka are entirely different weapons.”

“Well I’ve never held one of either before, have I?”

“Mom, we’ve got to fight ISIS.”

“I thought we were going out for mimosas!”

“We’re going to have brunch on the flight to Iraq, which I’ve also paid for.”

“Oh shoot, I don’t know about all that. I had really just wanted some mimosas and maybe some avocado toast.”

“Mom, don’t you see, what we’re fighting for is the right of all women to drink mimosas. We’re fighting to the defence of Yezidi children from the fascist ISIS thugs. This is for the Cumartesi Anneleri and the democratic revolution in Turkey, not only the Roja Rizgariyê of the ezilen Kürt halkı. This is the most dialectical Mother’s Day gift I could possibly give you!”

“[REDACTED], I don’t want you to misunderstand me on this, because you know I support you in all your little… projects, but I don’t actually know what some of those words mean. I’m pretty sure a few of them weren’t actually English.”

At this juncture, our Oakland correspondent snatched the rifle from her mother’s hands. “Whatever, Mom.”

“No, I didn’t mean to say I didn’t like it!”

“WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN, MOM? WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO LIKE SOMETHING? IT’S OBVIOUS THAT YOU DON’T SEE YOUR REFLECTION IN IT! YOU’RE ALIENATED FROM MY WONDERFUL MOTHER’S DAY GIFT OF REVOLUTION, WHICH MEANS I HAVE FAILED AS A DAUGHTER AND AS A REVOLUTIONARY VANGUARD.”

“No, you’re a wonderful voluntary van guard! Really!”

“I don’t WANT to be a voluntarist, mother!” shrieked our correspondent, letting off several rounds into the ceiling in rage. “God, I wish I was never born!”

Our correspondent’s mother sat in silence in her bedroom, watching the dust float down from the bullet holes in the ceiling.

[REDACTED] poked her head back through the doorway sheepishly, “So, um… should I go get the car and we can go get some omelettes or something?”

“That sounds wonderful, sweetie. I’ll just get dressed real quick.”

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO ALL OUR COMRADE MOTHERS WHO HAVE MADE US WHO WE ARE TODAY.

SOLIDARITY WITH THE CUMARTESİ ANNELERİ.

DSA Celebrate Loyalty Day

DSA

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

AMLU

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.

Subtitle of Grover Furr’s New Book Just Opening Statement for Speaking Appearances

Furr

MONTCLAIR, NEW JERSEY – Reasonable man and friend of the Spatula Grover Furr is to release a new book entitled “Falsification of the Famine”, whose subtitle is obviously just the opening statement he will be making at all speaking apperances to which he is invited:

FALSIFICATION OF THE FAMINE: Anti-Soviet propaganda has become increasinly normalised since the fall of the Soviet Union after years of decline following the rise to power of the Khrushchev clique, and one can now find baseless slander with no basis in the historical record bandied about as if it were reputable information. Today, the idea that the Stalin-era Communist Party of the Soviet Union organised a genocide called the “Holodomor” is not only an acceptable avenue for historical inquiry and research, but an unassailable dogma. This is despite the known fact that these absurd claims were invented by the fascist Nazi regime. But tonight I intend to show not only that there was no such massacre of innocents, but that indeed the Communist Party of the Soviet Union heroically saved the lives of many Ukrainians from what would have been certain starvation prior to the establishment of the Soviet Union!
by Grover Furr

Sources close to Furr report that the book was the result of a fevered night of writing fueled by tobacco smoked out of a pipe and vengeful rage directed at “the Trotskyites” who wrote hatemail to the Montclair professor in response to his CounterPunch article on the subject of the so-called Holodomor published earlier this month.

The book is expected to be a niche hit in India and spur significant discussion among progressives in various Western European countries, but the English-speaking imperialist countries will likely ignore it as successfully as they ignore everything communists in those countries do.

In unrelated news, every ten seconds, a child dies from hunger in a world without actually existing socialism, a capitalist world in which the profit motive ensures a constant artificial scarcity, including of life essentials like food and medicine.

Trots Secretly Reading Worker’s Spatula

Secret

AUSTIN, TEXAS – Following over a year of publicly referring to Worker’s Spatula as “the worst”, “diet Assadism”, “tankie nonsense”, and “Stalinist idiocy”, several “in the know” sources have confirmed that the Trotskyists secretly can’t stop reading Worker’s Spatula.

“The other night I woke up and realised I was in bed alone,” one source told us, in lurid detail: “I went into the living room and saw my partner was awake and staring intently at his laptop screen. He slammed it shut when he saw me, so of course I assumed it was pornography.

“While he was in the bathroom, I entered his password, which I guessed was the same as his e-mail password: P3rm4n3nt. He hadn’t even had time to close the incognito window, which was full of Worker’s Spatula tabs. I had to close the lid before he came out, so I couldn’t tell you what the pieces were, but at least one of them was about Žižek.”

Local Austin Socialist Alternative cadre have likewise been spotted checking the Worker’s Spatula reading list since the start of 2017. Mere hours after the latest reading list assignment was posted, suddenly all the younger cadre were reportedly discussing the importance of Hegel’s stance on the French Revolution, having previously been unconcerned with Hegel or the French Revolution.

One ISO affiliate met with us on condition of anonymity. We can reveal that she had with her a Barnes & Noble bag which contained the Foundations of Leninism.

“You’re not the sort of Stalinists I expect, I’ll give you that. Sometimes you make fairly good points and force me to rethink some of my positions, instead of just appealing to a caricatured anti-imperialism combined with an overly defensive posture about so-called ‘socialist states’. I am a little concerned that you keep joking about murdering Trots, but that is just a joke, right?”

Our ISO source ascribed the lack of reports of SEP and Solidarity affiliated Trotskyists reading the Spatula to Solidarity having “no sense of humour about themselves” and the SEP having “no sense of humour at all”.

A similar investigation was planned to determine the extent to which the “China is still socialist” crowd read the Spatula, but it was called off upon being unable to find any representatives who could confirm reading anything longer than 140 characters.

News in Brief: March 11th 2017

NormieBrother

MANILA -Reports indicate that [REDACTED], a Worker’s Spatula correspondent formerly based in Malaysia and now based in the Philippines, is hosting his fucking normie brother, who is in town on a business trip.

At press time, the former’s ideology was almost revealed when the latter burst into his room unannounced. Although the CPP propaganda was quickly thrown under the bed, our comrade’s normie brother still requested to see it.

An initial attempt to quell interest failed when being told it was “just my porn” only piqued the normie brother’s interest. Our comrade then calculated that choosing this moment to come out of the closet would result in less family strife than the revelation of his communistic views, and the subject was quickly changed.

OMAHA, NEBRASKA – Caleb Maupin is reportedly touring county fairs in Nebraska and Iowa, attempting to convince the local white population that imitating China today is the path to social harmony and progress for the United States.

While he has been largely unsuccessful at converting others to his particular brand of “socialism”, the mission has not been without incident: a 23-year-old man driving an SUV responded to Maupin’s request to “learn about Deng Xiaoping” by saying “I don’t really like Chinese food”. Maupin later barely escaped a beating by a Trump supporter by informing the latter of his close ties with the Donald.

STEMBOL – As PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan’s isolation continues, sources in touch with his lawyer have become increasingly concerned that he may have been replaced by an “Ölacan” figure.

“I mean, my god, I have spoken to my good friend Abdullah Öcalan quite recently *sniff*,” explained Öcalan’s lawyer. “And, this is to say, as we used to say in Yugoslavia, you know, the thing is, he is writing a new book.”

The reported title of the book, apparently about the Imagined, the Symbolic, and the Real of Kurdistan, is “the Mirror Stage: Libidinal Dynamics of Anatolian Resistance”. Öcalan’s lawyer also shared with us the following “very dirty joke, but also, it is completely true and serious”: The cover of the book will be the famous painting from the İmralı cell, of a labia shaped approximately like the map of Kurdistan.

BRIGHTON, ENGLAND – Local teenage Marxist Frank Hobbes has elected to join the SPGB, making him the first young person to join the party in decades.

“I just wanted to be part of a party that understood that everything literally and immediately reduces to class, in the first and final instance, and no other discussion of theory or practice is helpful, or even interesting.”

Tragically, his best internet friend, Mark Anson, another teenage Marxist from Florida, is unable to find a local equivalent organisation in which to act out the part of the caricature of Marxism that anti-Marxist liberals believe the rest of us actually are.