“Russia is an Imperialilst Country”

Comrades over at Mass-Proletariat recently published a great take on modern Russia’s imperialism; since there is much confusion on Russian imperialism, with some people refusing to believe it even exists, this should be mandatory reading for anyone who considers themselves a Leftist.

Link: http://www.massproletariat.info/writings/russia_is_an_imperialist_country.html

On Gaming: A Revolutionary Perspective on Modern Video Games

This was the second major piece I had written and it was, again, written for the Kasama Project. I had a great deal of enjoyment writing this piece since it enabled me to come further into textual criticism at a time when it was still fairly new to me. The piece deconstructs the reactionary, and sometimes progressive, elements of modern video games and posits a dialectical analysis of the video game industry. In the future, I think this is a piece that I would like to re-visit, especially in the light of GamerGate, but for now, I post it here for posterity.

~

Preface

                Video games have become a cultural icon. Despite both conservative and liberal demonization the onslaught has done little to stem the growth of the industry. With annual growth rates exceeding that of the U.S economy and billions of dollars in profits[1] the influence of video games is wide and varied. Many millions of people play these games; many are young, many more are older. There is no typical depiction of a gamer even though their average age is 30[2].

I myself game though not as much as I once did[i]. My early days spending in front of the television or portable game console taught me many things which I did not hear from teachers and certainly not from my parents[ii]. Things such as honor, respect, understanding and friendship, through the emotionally involving plots, these prized traits were drilled into my mind and greatly affected the person who I am today[iii].

You may laugh at this assentation, it is normal to do so[iv]. Yet it is unfortunate it is normal that many people probably did indeed laugh at the above statement. I consider this unfortunate because the medium is so rich and powerful that those who laugh do not understand the allure and potential of video games.

Such people do not understand that people of all shades, from all classes and political persuasions, enjoy these games. That for some it is a hobby while for others it is a job. For me it will only ever be a hobby, one that I indulge in on an increasingly rare occasion.

Yet this hobby has applications which I do not think have been seriously investigated by political forces outside of the developer’s narrow intentions. No organization has given its critique of online gaming[v], of how it relates to the struggle, or how persecution of video games hurts youth rights and workers’ rights.

Because this critique does not exist I decided to write one. I willingly spell out my thoughts in this matter because I believe that eventually someone, or some group, will formulate a successful cyber-approach and be skilled in nabbing people from the online gaming realm to enter their convoluted fold[vi] (whether religious, political or civil).

I do not claim this manuscript is a completed “end-all” draft or a master one that lays everything bare. I do not substitute it for street work or community organizing. Rather it is an exploratory work aimed at initiating discussion on a topic that I feel has been neglected.

The central question within is this: can the online masses be led to socialist thought and can the revolutionary gamer reach them through their favorite medium, or is it a dead end? This has been on my mind recently and is a topic that I feel needs to be explored.

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False Progress: Queer Equality and the Media

This was my first real paper that I wrote for a Leftist audience. It was originally written a few years back and published on the Kasama Project’s website. It is long, protracted, and offers up something that I felt passionately about. Though when I look back on it now I feel it was poorly written, I feel that there is redeemable side-effects to it. Additionally, I ultimately stand by its analysis; after all, the liberal bourgeoisie is likely the greatest obstacle to revolution, and their propaganda needs to be addressed. This piece at least makes a limited attempt to do just that– engage and critique, raise awareness and consciousness. (I post it here for posterity)

~

“Liberalism stems from petty-bourgeois selfishness, it places personal interests first and the interests of the revolution second, and this gives rise to ideological, political and organizational liberalism.” –Mao Tse-Tung

                The liberal establishment is, in regards to Queers, a contradiction. On one hand they promote social awareness of Queer causes while at the same time ‘jabbing’ Queer culture for laughs. Such actions are commonplace in liberal circles; they profess support while they jeer. The other hand stresses that even though the attention is bought at the price of debasement, it is nonetheless attention. Attention which never would have been garnered if not for the likes of Seth Macfarlane, Matt Stone and Tray Parker, Matt Groening, and Keith Olbermann. In light of these titans the big questions remain: are liberal “frenemies” proactive segments to the queer revolution or are they detriments? And what about the even bigger question- what effect does the propagation of such hypocrisy have on impressionable youth?

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A New Vision

(Comrades at the Kasama Project have posted a new unity document. While this blog will in the coming weeks critique this statement, for now, revolutionary oriented individuals should take notice of this statement as a Regroupment project’s subtle “inching” closer to an actual organization)

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This vision is not just a dream”

For the revolutionary overthrow of global capitalism and imperialism!

By THE KASAMA PROJECT

Over a long weekend this Fall, comrades of the Kasama Project from across the country gathered in the US south for anational conference, the first formal national gathering since our founding in 2008. With the goal of consolidating our project and strategizing a path forward for our work in the coming period, we adopted a new Political Unity statement, reflecting the understanding, experience, and unity forged over the half dozen years since our founding.

Over the course of a long pre-conference period and our four days together, comrades discussed our commitment, our work, our priorities, and our values, raising crucial points of criticism and self-criticism. We put special emphasis on continuing our mission of the creative regroupment of revolutionaries, and toward fusing our movement with the most advanced fighters among the people. We discussed how to investigate the state of the class struggle in the United States, and prioritized the importance of working with new generations of young potential revolutionaries.

Six years ago the Kasama Project agreed on this solitary brief statement: Kasama is a communist project that, in theory and practice, fights for the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions.” And so our new statement, reproduced below, marks a significant new period for us as an organization of committed revolutionaries. It reflects the significant theoretical and ideological growth and unity among us that is the fruit of our work, study and discussion over the past few years.

The road ahead is far from certain. In this nightmare world of capitalist brutality, racism, war, violence against the oppressed, massive police and government spying and repression, and lying, hypocritical politicians skilled at keeping the people in line, the challenges we face are immense. The stakes, as they say, are high.

In the words of Assata Shakur:

It is our duty to fight for our freedom, it is our duty to win. We must love each other and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains.”

Walk the revolutionary road with us! Join the Kasama Project!

The Kasama Project Statement of Political Unity

The Kasama Project stands for the revolutionary overthrow of global capitalism and imperialism and the initiation of a socialist transformation leading to the consolidation of a global communist society.

Capitalism and Communism

Global capitalism is unable to solve the most pressing problems confronting humanity and the planet because it is theirfundamental cause. The profit system is fundamentally incompatible with a just, decent, and humane society. A system where the collective wealth of humanity is owned and controlled by the capitalist class cannot but perpetuate the exploitation, oppression, and degradation of the people. Similarly, the deepening ecological crisis that threatens the complex natural systems on which all life on the planet depends can not be resolved so long as it is ruled by the imperative of capital accumulation.

By communism we mean: the abolition of all class distinctions that divide humanity; the abolition of the capitalist relations of production on which those distinctions rest; the abolition of all the other oppressive social relations that mutually reinforce these relations of production; the revolutionary transformation of all the oppressive ideas and values that have arisen from, or are attached to, all of these oppressive social relations; and finally, the abolition of the political instrument of class domination, the state.

When we speak of the abolition of all oppressive social relations we mean an end to all of the terrible ways that people treat each other in this society — the hateful hierarchies of race and nationality; family relations in which children are terrorized and the elderly are made disposable; the routine violence against, and sexual objectification of, women; the ways that the rich variety of forms of sexual expression and identity are alternately crushed or commodified; the imposition of gender norms and the often brutal and sometimes murderous repression of the transgendered refusal of those norms; the arrogance of intellectuals and the ways that those in positions of authority lord it over poor and working people. All of this and so much more about this society is intolerable and has to go.

This vision is not just a dream. For us, communism is not just a possible future but also the real living movement of the oppressed and exploited majority of humanity striving to become aware of its real conditions, and of its power to liberate the world from the death grip of capital. It is present in this society in a thousand ways and we understand our task as essentially one of hastening its development as a conscious and organized force.

Socialist Revolution

The path to communism runs through the process of socialist revolution. We can and must fight in the here and now for reforms and improvements in the lives of the people, both because they have their own urgency and because it is through such struggles that we learn how to fight. We already know, however, that it will take the revolutionary overthrow of the capitalist state, and the dispossession of the ruling class that it represents, to seriously address the most urgent problems facing humanity and the planet and to advance towards communism. Fighting explicitly for this understanding is an urgent and critical task.

Communism cannot be achieved overnight. It will necessarily involve a protracted struggle involving false starts, twists and turns, reversals, betrayals and defeats. But it is precisely through this process that the oppressed majority of humanity acquires the capacity to rule. The class and other struggles that characterize this society, however, do not just disappear with the overthrow of the capitalist state, but rather take on new forms during the process of transition that we call socialism.

Imperialism and Internationalism

We are internationalists. The fate of humanity worldwide is now entwined into one whole.( Socialist revolution is a world process of transition through which humanity ultimately realizes its collective potential. We either all get to communism or none of us do.

Lasting liberation requires transcending the current system of unequal and competing nation-states and the borders that enforce that inequality. Similarly, the escalating threat of ecological destruction and climate change cannot be reversed except through progress toward communism on a world scale.

U.S. imperialism is a central pillar of world capitalism. Every single day, it threatens, terrorizes and exploits people all over the world. As communists in the U.S., it is our special historic responsibility to struggle to destroy U.S. imperialism — as our main contribution to the liberation of people all over the world.

The dismantling of the U.S. empire internationally, the destruction of its military bases, the destruction of its international instruments of intrigue and domination like the CIA and NSA, are a necessary condition for the construction of the global human community we aspire to build.

The U.S. and its borders were defined through conquest, genocide and slavery. And the current U.S. today continues to enforce the oppression of many nationalities within those borders. As a key expression of our internationalism, we reject the notion that these U.S. borders are sacred or permanent. We uphold the principle of national self-determination for the oppressed peoples living within its current borders, up to and including the rights of political autonomy and independence.

Investigation and Reconception

Our politics must be grounded in both a concrete analysis of real conditions and a critical analysis of the historical experience of socialist revolutions in the 20th century. We strive to apply the mass line method of communist leadership by going among the people and learning from their struggles both through participation in them and through revolutionary social investigation, distilling their most advanced ideas and seeking to unite all who can be united on the basis of those ideas, and continuously repeating this process in order to transform ourselves and to raise up the revolutionary consciousness of the people.

There is much to learn from the socialist revolutions of the 20th century and from the experiences of earlier generationsof communists in those revolutions. They were heroic attempts to overcome and escape from the accumulated horrors of thousands of years of class rule. They were complex processes in which the oppressed in their millions took the stage ofhistory and accomplished great things. We must be as ruthless in our critical examination of the errors and the crimes that contributed to their ultimate reversal as we are unapologetic in our celebration of their accomplishments.

We study history not to confirm what we already think, but to learn from those who have struggled before us. We also know that every revolutionary wave is new and that each generation must reconceive the communist project in the face of new conditions as well as in the light of previous successes and failures. The need for communist reconception is especially important in view of the failures and defeats suffered by the socialist revolutions of the 20th century. We do not believe that there is a ready-made body of revolutionary communist theory just waiting to be picked up and applied by us. We take seriously the need to develop new theory and new practices in response to new conditions.

Organization, Regroupment, and Strategic Conceptions

The oppressed and exploited majority of humanity cannot win liberation, the communist future cannot be conquered, without revolutionary communist organization. The kinds of organization that we will need will vary depending on the tasks and the time. We draw on the rich and varied organizational experiences of previous generations of revolutionaries but also understand that the forms we develop must answer to the new and radically changed conditions that confront us in the 21st century.

We are committed to building a country-wide and multi-national organization of communist revolutionaries within the U.S. that is both serious and flexible, disciplined and anti-dogmatic, grounded in history and alive to what is new in this world. We do not believe that we are that organization yet or even that we necessarily constitute its nucleus. But we are seeking to help bring it into existence. We seek to regroup scattered revolutionary communist forces, not just the remnants of previous efforts but also, and more importantly, the new ones propelled forward by new struggles, and to forge along with them the organization that we need.

Serve the people, power to the people

We are guided by love for the people. We seek to embody a different way of living, the possibility of a different future. Communists should promote a style and aesthetic of humility, caring, militancy, universalism, a living radicalism, critical thinking, a deep practicality, and a respect for the planet’s life — its people, its many species and its biosphere generally. We should make a movement for total human emancipation seem like the most practical, radical, and loving thing in the world.

Only the people in their millions can make a socialist revolution in the United States. The organization we need will require the fusion of presently scattered conscious revolutionaries with whole sections of the oppressed in a process of mutual transformation to constitute a revolutionary people. We strive to identify the faultlines in this society along which struggles that have the potential to facilitate such a fusion are likely to break out and, as our forces permit, to support and initiate organizing projects to begin that process.

We welcome all who sincerely share our commitments.

Bourgeois Existentialism: Musings on the Anti-Suicide Mentality

(Part One: Music)

It needn’t be a large controversy that existentialism in general is largely a bourgeois phenomenon. From Heidegger to Sartre (perhaps problemtizing some of his later works), there exists this large trend of moralism which, despite the supposed emphasis on surmounting societal chains, shuns the ultimate in self-determination: suicide. This post, however, is not about the classical philosophers themselves, rather, how the theory which they have peddled has finally made its way into a full-fledged “under-ideology” (or, said another way, a ideological current which defines a part of society but in a subdued manner which the followers themselves are not aware of). As such, this post is focused on contemporary Western culture and how the capitalist mode of production fuses with reactionary moralism to negate actual-revolutionary-existentialism.

Existentialist titans Sartre and Camus both were vehemently against suicide. Each considered it as anathema to actual living, a retreat by which the true life was forfeited in exchange for permanent satisfaction. Outside of the religious inspired anti-existentialism of Mill, Kant, and Chesterton, this brand of bourgeois existentialism, that a person can overcome their hardships, is the most prevalent in contemporary society. Accordingly this is why you see phrases such as “suicide is a permanent solution to temporary problems.” Thinking such as this stresses the moral position of a specific situation: e.g., a person may be going through a hard spell due to a crises, but is suicide really the only way out? If this action was universalized, if suicide was the commonly accepted escape method for people the world over, then what would become of the world? The answer is something else than desirable; suffice to say people as people would cease to be autonomous and would exist merely as a means to an end. Of course, to any bourgeois, or pre-bourgeois thinker, this is unacceptable as the twin pillars of capitalism and religion demand something more of humanity, that humans exist either to worship or produce surplus-value; anything to the contrary negates this all-might mandate and accordingly is dismissed. The trappings and theory merely serve to camouflage, poorly, the real intent: that the higher classes, the capitalist and clergy, depend on the worker to make their life palatable.

For these reasons Hume and Locke argue that it is natural that men should desire life; presupposing material and emotional and mental anguish, it is but the natural state which propels people to enjoy life to its fullest. Obviously from a Marxist position this stance has severe limitations. Aside from being filled with moralist augmentations have no basis in reality (God and natural providence being the strongest features of the position), these positions are counterrevolutionary: they exchange concrete social-materialism in exchange for destructive idealism; the pursuit to ensure a means of mass-survival, in a situation which warrants no such conduct, guarantees that individuals who wish to end their suffering are targeted as part of a witch hunt.

During the modern millennium this witch-hunt takes the shape of media. Media which modulates mass perception and the attitude of the person who encounters the (suicidal) individuals who push against the conformist sway. I will best illustrate this point by demonstrating how such ideology manifests in the popular culture. Seeing as how such media has been shaped by the ideology-previously-described, I will illustrate how the reactionary palimpsest has engaged the bourgeois superstructure to create a self-absorbed construct capable of voiding even a revolutionary’s consciousness.

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Ex. #1

Pay attention to the lyrics: “Send it in a letter, make yourself feel better.” This line is the epitome of selfishness. Provided, the entire song is reminiscent of a greedy “I” centered mentality; nearly the whole edifice of the song is spent mourning over the passing of a beloved paramour; so while we may sympathize with the speaker over their loss and subsequent loneliness, we must oppose their ultra-individualism, their absurd whining over how they feel when their partner, the one who committed suicide, was obviously feeling such profound thoughts of depressing that they elected to take their own lives and become at peace. The ignoring of the “other’s” personage, however, is a hallmark of the bourgeois existentialist position as this stance is centered purely in the Objectivist sphere of “fuck everyone else” (even if a faction of Objectvists deplore the concept of suicide as counterproductive to capital accumulation). The goal here is to circumvent the other, which ironically, negates the other, and establish them as something external to you (“I”‘s) happiness. This hereby brings the entire project back to the Individualist centered praxis.

“There’s a devil in the church and this is going to hurt” & “A self-inflicted murder… you say it’s all a crisis… that is’s all a blur.”

What do these lyrics evoke? (1) Religious delusion (2) Theist morality, and (3) disregarding of the Other’s existential situation. All parts considered it is but a continuation of the previous section’s morality albeit in a new genre: hard rock, signifying that alternative rock does not stranglehold counterproductive metaphysics; that anti-existential self-determination is an enemy of multiply genres. The second quotation has profound impact on the lyrical meaning: here, though the genre is hard-rock, a kind of Christian morality has infected the song which leads the writers to proclaim that suicide is tantamount to murder, that penultimate sin. Additionally we see in this song promotes a negation of the Other in the form, which is common in anti-suicide songs, of the suicidal person being unreasonable, being mentally distraught, unable to make rational decisions, and simply being melodramatic; this sort of commentary adds to the reactionary social-commentary by reinforcing bourgeois notions of superiority, of one class of persons capable of articulating more than another and so able to shoulder the responsibility, not unlike that of “the White Man’s Burden”, of bettering their lesser man. And so the interpenetration is prominent on a level which transcends mere musical preference when combined with the god delusion.

“I wish you would step back from that ledge my friend. You could cut ties with all the lies you’ve been living in; and if you do not want to see me again I would understand” & “The angry boy a bit too insane icing over a secret pain, you know you don’t belong.”

Third Eye Blind’s “Jumper” is a anti-suicide track that while more sympathetic to the suicidal person, still treats them like a wounded child (as the constant references to youth indicate). References to a troubled childhood display a attitude towards suicide which is something more than merely a overly dramatic person making an irrational decision; it shows a understanding of interpersonal relations which goes beyond mere allusions. Even so, however, the content of the track still remains firmly in the bourgeois camp- “Jumper” retains the stereotypical “mentally ill underling needing to be saved by a superior mentor” of the preceding track while advancing a social dynamic that attempts reconciliation after the suicide attempt has been dealt with (aka- the lyrics pertaining to “not wishing to see me again”), a fusion of holier-than-thou sentiment validated by a seeming understanding of how a existentially determined person reasons.

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Regarding musical musing on how bourgeois existentialism manifests in music, we have reached the end of our lecture. While only a small sliver of what it is possible to critique has been explored I hope to have at least opened some tiny avenues of interpretation and reasoning as far as the unjustified, reactionary reasoning for many of these opinions rest upon. There will be other entries in this mini-series of posts, entries which deal with other societal segments. Until then please feel free to comment and submit your own theoretical pieces regarding suicide and contribute to a important field countering a growing field of revisionist thought.

Brief Thoughts on Moufawad-Paul’s The Communist Necessity

Recently I finished comrade Moufawad-Paul’s recently published polemic “The Communist Necessity.” In it he outlines what he calls the communist necessity, something when, simply spoken, is a renunciation of the vague “horizons” and “hypothesis” as put forward by Jodi and Badiou. Systematically the author demonstrates what he views as the fallibility of postponing communist agitation and revolution; Movementism, or the tactic of trailing movements with the hope of re-directing them to a revolutionary pole, is his prime target with Jodi and Badiou’s theory utilized as an example of the historical theory which results when movementism infects the orchestration of revolution itself and its intellectual wings.

Being a supporter of the PCR-RCP, Moufawad’s strategy is placed firmly in post-RIM politics: acceptance of universal PPW, that PPW is possible in the imperialist centers, and a traditional vanguard party built for the modern day is all that is needed (along with militant activism and revolutionary violence) to make a revolution work; this is, of course, a rather serious simplification of the book and says nothing of his sections on anti-revisionism, Third-Worldism (which he does not support), or the struggles of minority races, women, and sexual and gender minorities. So needless to say there are great aspects of his books which I agree with while other segments which I have a profound disagreement with.

Obviously I am not intending on critiquing his entire project in this post. In all likelihood I will not engage protractedly with his theory at all simply because at the end of the day there is certainly theory which warrants a mature engagement, but that for I personally, believe that the differences are not so stark as to warrant a lengthy rebuttal. Instead I will simply outline my core disbeliefs.

  1. The book’s length. This is a minor point but concluding only after 168 pages this is an interesting creative decision on the author’s part considering the amount of theory he is tackling. I am not faulting my comrade here with using non-academic language either. Rather I was mildly startled that for a book which is attempting to disprove so much theory, written by many of the titans of contemporary Marxism, Moufawad decided to write very tersely. In critiquing Badiou and Jodi he only presents a few minor selections from mostly second-tier books. His preference here is to attack Movementism while broadly associating it with the works of authors who he sees have fallen into the intellectual trap offered by Movementism. Since this is merely an outline of (presumably) more things to come, this is not a huge fault but even so it adds a large chunk of skepticism to any reader’s perception when he takes aim at such titans and then proceeds to merely glance and skid by, offering but a few dozen page citations for the entire book. He did not write this book as an academic manuscript. Fine. But when you are dealing with theory which is heavily academic I think more effort should have been given over to a more concrete engagement.
  2. Orthodox Position: Comrade Moufawad’s politics are, as previously spoke, post-RIM and as such steeped in adherence to traditional Marxism-Leninism-Maoism. In my own lingo I would dub this kind of politics Right-Wing (as opposed to Left-Wing Regroupment). While at a fundamental level I concur with his assertion of not withholding the activity which leads to revolution, I believe he offers a reductionist explanation which grossly simplifies events. For instance: while I agree with his critique of Regroupment projects in offering little hope for “leading” (as though regroupment projects had leadership in mind) the revolution, and while I acknowledge his statement that one does not need to mechanically reproduce theory, I think the author has idealized the struggle; to simply say that all that is needed is a vanguard party, a protracted peoples’ war, and anti-revisionism in order to have the tools necessary to make revolution and safeguard it makes the entire concept far too formulaic. In simple terms he is simply speaking of transplanting revolutionary organization into today’s period while proclaiming that all that is needed is merely some tweaks here and there to make [so and so theory] relevant to the imperialist center. It ignores the powerful contradictions at play in modern society as well as the temporal demands which will be leveled at any organization fighting for the overthrow of capitalism in a place where bourgeois order is unchallenged. He has sketched the overreaching superstructure but not the nuts and bolts which hold it together.

So to conclude, while comrade Moufawad’s book is a triumphant assertion of the superiority of the materialist dialectic and the social relations which communism promotes, as well as a powerful assault on those armchair theorists who nudge revolution towards a distant horizon, the re-articulation of dogma as anti-dogma can only have such an impact when the skin and organs are missing. To restate my earlier comment though I ultimately agree with the author more than I disagree; while I profoundly disagree on those parts which I find questionable, the ultimate discourse and conclusion I reached here was that once fully extrapolated upon, and perhaps broken away from some of its more doctrinaire approaches, the concepts Moufawad is entangled with are serious issues which I am happy he is speaking of since they are pressing concerns for any future struggle. So yes, there is more to do, as always, but in the end revolution is what matters and in the proverbial end his and I’s politics share many of the same family members (if not the same blood).

Explaining: ‘material conditions’

As Leftists with much to say, sometimes we can get ahead of ourselves when explaining concepts to those who spend time frolicking outside as opposed to wading through Capital. Recently I had an experience where I realized that some concepts need to be minutely taught in language accessible to the everyday person. That without understanding this facet of linguistics, your attempt to talk about materialism will come off as metaphysics, or worse, religion.

I say ‘religion’ because upon contemplating how revolutionaries theorize materialism, coupled with my own explanation, I realized that an improper dissemination results in pseudo-religious sounding dialogue. An epiphany such as this struck me after trying to explain to a friend the concept of ‘material conditions.’ To me it was a straightforward enough concept: the basis of which capitalist society is composed. Yet he did not understand my initial clarifications. While eventually some impasse was reached, I knew that I would have to consider how to relate this seemingly incorrigible concepts to people unversed in political economy. Juxtaposed against my own lack of engagement with people who actually listen when I venture a word about my political beliefs, this seemed to be an uphill battle.

In a way it still is. No matter the topic we will always face this challenge of being able to relate our obtuse theories to the working class. The spectacle of society, after all, has reached such a point where no one cares about these things anymore, so even something as seemingly simple as ‘material conditions,’ becomes a challenging obstacle to surmount.

So this being said, I did ponder how to best detail this concept without falling into intellectualizing tirades. I came up with the following: “Material conditions are what makes a society, a society. It is the amount of bridges, schools, power plants, and industrial factories; more to the point, it is also the condition of these infrastructure, of how long they last and how safe they are to use. It is the working conditions of the working class: are workplaces sanitary, well light, are the hours congregate to a living wage? Additionally, it is the state of minorities: where do ethnic and sexual minorities reside? In upper-class neighborhoods, or slums? How many slums are there? Are there more slums than suburban utopia? Yet material conditions also mean governmental assistance: is there a welfare state? If so than we may posit that the bourgeoisie is an imperialist one and therefore rich. Does the average citizen own a television, have access to the internet, keep up to date on all the latest happenings in the popular media? If so then we can, again, assume that there is an advanced capitalist society, as opposed to a weak one, which is influencing people’s opinions to embrace counter-productive social policies. Yet above all, material conditions can be reflected in the production and consumption ratio: how much (and what) is produced, and how does it get produced; meaning, to what extent is there poverty and how does this poverty, which intermingles with consumer culture, affect working class militancy? This is the basis of material conditions.” Admittedly, this is not the best explanation; it could be more revolutionary in places. Yet this is exactly part of the problem: in adding those revolutionary parts we must ensure that they are given in a manner which only assists the receiver in understanding instead of retarding their comprehension.

This can be a tall order. With so much to explain and so much history to cover, it is difficult sometimes to not skim content and resort to jargon as a quick fix. Even so, for those of us who engage in a manner less than missionary, we must take strides to remember how it was (sometimes long ago) when we first encountered revolutionary ideas, terms, and theory; we need to be sympathetic to those who struggle with accepting and understanding our viewpoint while creating a mode of explanation, and debate, which corresponds to their existential standpoint. For if we do not than I am fearful of any significant change occurring. In fact, I am positive nothing would change. Ever.