Archive for the ‘New Left’ Category
Alain Badiou: I was wrong, innit?
“The Greatest Philosopher since Plato and St Ignatius of Loyola”, as Terry Eagleton calls him, Alain Badiou, a dapper gent, wears his 132 years well.
The Tendance interviewed him in Les Deux Magots.
“Cher Maître, is it ‘true’ that your latest book includes a 300 page self-criticism of your Maoist years and your support for the Khmer Rouge?”
“Indeed! Let me sum up my truth procedure: Regretter et se repentir, on peut toujours le faire. C’est très facile! One can always regret and repent, it’s always easy! As Spinoza said, it’s always a bit too easy. “
The great man paused, slipping into the fluent English he learnt as a Dalston pot-boy.
“I was wrong, innit?”
Dipping a chip into a bowl of mayonnaise he continued,
“When Mao launched the Great Cultural Revolution, it was a Communist Invariant. But now only 40 years later we have to admit that there were some errors. Humiliating professors, for example and not performing any of my operas. I remain, however fidèle to the Event. There have been dramas and heart-wrenching and doubts, but I have never again abandoned a love.”
“And Pot Pot”
“He was a bit of a lad, hein?”
“But times move on. L’Organisation Politique is set in new directions. After taking absolution I plan to retire to a Trappist Monastery in Belgium to brew an excellent beer. Here try some”.
Diagram of Badiou Truth Procedure.
There once was a Fourth International.
Liam Mac Uaid , who is a respected comrade, has roused an unusual unanimously hostile reaction on the left for this article.
We can agree or disagree with the Fourth International’s analysis: whether there is a ‘side’ worth taking, or not.
But these sentences have become notorious.
Putin’s strategy is to gouge out chunks of Ukrainian territory. He started with Crimea. That is roughly analogous to the north of Ireland. The British state has used the presence of a Protestant population which is opposed to a united Ireland to claim sovereignty over Irish territory.
Another analogy is the Israeli state. There, a settler population displaced the original inhabitants and denied them the right to a Palestinian state. Stalin’s tactics in Crimea were not too different from those of the Israeli state’s founders. He deported almost 200 000 Crimean Tatars and filled the gap with ethnic Russians.
Putin is planning to use the presence of Russian speakers in other parts of Ukrainian territory to annex them. This has even worried Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko. According to The Moscow Times he criticised Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea as setting a “bad precedent.” Even Putin’s friends in the region are twitchy now.
Northern Ireland, Israel, plenty more about Stalin.
A confused phrase stating that, “A defeat for Russian imperialism in Ukraine is both a victory for that mass movement and the Russian working class. “
This article, with the central analogies cited above, has caused great offence on the left, including some of my close comrades.
Mind you some individuals seem to think that Stalinism=Israel=Northern Ireland=Putin.
The magic of dialectical thinking at work no doubt.
Shiraz hits (Sean Matgamna) the right note,
The first thing that should be said and remembered about Tony Benn, who died on Friday 14 March, is that for over four decades he backed, defended, and championed workers in conflict with their bosses or with the “boss of bosses”, the government.
That put him decidedly in our camp. The political ideas which he too often linked with those bedrock working-class battles detract from the great merit of Tony Benn, but do not cancel it out or render it irrelevant.
And then this,
He shifted radically halfway through his life – back to the Radical seam in British political history….
Benn was a socialist. But first and foremost a British radical.
But not the socialist, in the European Marxist sense.
A wonderful type, I have no words to go on about this.
But not really “one of us.”