IMT

An Opportunist’s Approach to the Question of ‘Marxism and the State’ (I-II)

The following article on opportunism and the question of ‘Marxism and the State’, a critique of IMT and its leader Alan Woods, was first published on the Marxist Tutum website.

Elif Çağlı
March 2010
Part one
Opportunism is the term used in Marxist movement to characterize those who substitute principled revolutionary policy with a timeserving political line. In the workers’ movement opportunism means sacrificing fundamental historical interests of the working masses for the sake of sectional self-interests and cheap political gain. The basic characteristic of opportunism is that it seeks to find within-the-system solutions when the decisive moment comes in the class struggle, not daring to take the revolutionary road which is perceived as hard. Opportunism is like an inclined plane where there is no stop once you place yourself in. Thus the projections of timeserving policy into Marxist movement produce an ever deepening opportunism and opportunist politicians turn more and more masters of a subtle and insidious opportunism.

However there is one unchanging truth about opportunism no matter it is the vulgar or subtle version on question. On both national and international level opportunism has always diverted the workers movement from revolutionary road and debilitated it. When you look into the various cases of opportunist tendencies within Marxist movement you cannot but see that a common feature of all opportunist tendencies is to turn a deaf ear to revolutionary criticism. Although the opportunists sometimes seem to accept general revolutionary principles when they are squeezed, in effect they keep following their well-trodden opportunist way. Thus opportunism makes upsurges that are generally unavoidable. Giving concrete examples will surely make clear these features of opportunism that we state here very briefly. As a striking example we can take the upsurge of opportunism in […]

By |October 26th, 2011|IMT|6,320 Comments

Committee for Marxist Revival and TANIT

During the past few days there have been a number of comments by some people that have caused confusion regarding the relationship of the Committee for Marxist Revival (CMR) and Towards a New International Tendency (TANIT). We have been asked whether we are ‘in’ or ‘out’ of TANIT.

At the April conference in Sweden, the Iranian Revolutionary Marxist’ Tendency (IRMT) and its international co-thinkers made one last attempt at defending the concept of the revolutionary vanguard party of the proletariat among the disparate group of people gathered together ‘in’ TANIT. None of the ‘experienced’ ex-IMT comrades supported this organisational concept that is absolutely crucial in organising and preparing the proletariat for the overthrow of the bourgeois class. Some other comrades had not made up their mind and needed more time to study all aspects of the arguments.

Since April, therefore, the IRMT has considered itself as not only ‘outside’ TANIT – leaving aside the sad reality that since TANIT is not much more than a discussion group being ‘in’ or ‘out’ is, at best, a rather vague concept – but has also taken concrete steps with its international co-thinkers to form a committee that can strive to revive Marxism and build a truly revolutionary international. During these months just one of our activists has been commenting on TANIT discussions in the hope that the small number of serious people remaining around TANIT can be made aware of our opposition to the organisational methods and political positions of TANIT.

We hope that the above explanation makes our position clear. Those who dominate TANIT are, at best, neo-utopian socialists and, at worst, liquidationists and reformists. We therefore call on all those who are still ‘in’ TANIT – but are […]

By |September 4th, 2011|TANIT|8,201 Comments

Towards What New International?

critique of views of comrade JC

 

“Reactionary epochs like ours not only disintegrate and weaken the working class and isolate its vanguard but also lower the general ideological level of the movement and throw political thinking back to stages long since passed through. In these conditions the task of the vanguard is, above all, not to let itself be carried along by the backward flow: it must swim against the current. If an unfavourable relation of forces prevents it from holding political positions it has won, it must at least retain its ideological positions, because in them is expressed the dearly paid experience of the past. Fools will consider this policy “sectarian”. Actually it is the only means of preparing for a new tremendous surge forward with the coming historical tide. Great political defeats provoke a reconsideration of values, generally occurring in two directions. On the one hand the true vanguard, enriched by the experience of defeat, defends with tooth and nail the heritage of revolutionary thought and on this basis strives to educate new cadres for the mass struggle to come. On the other hand the routinists, centrists and dilettantes, frightened by defeat, do their best to destroy the authority of the revolutionary tradition and go backwards in their search for a ‘New World’. ” (my emphasis)

Leon Trotsky, “Stalinism and Bolshevism”. 29th August 1937.

 

 

 

 

Part 1

Introduction

Comrade JC is apparently repulsed by “repetition of old phrases” by my writings, and as a comrade “with knowledge and experience”, his “intellect” has been insulted by the method used in my comments, that “method has predominated among those that call themselves Marxist for almost ninety years”. Then he calls for “enough”! of this type of discussion.
Well, I would like to express my profound apologies to comrade JC […]