Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Biological solution

So, Castro has retired.

Good. The last thing the Earth needs is another dictator.

Readers may remember this article of mine, which was translated into Spanish by some Cuban social-democrats. The idea of aiding Cuban opposition (albeit largely of a nationalistic flavour) is one of the prouder moments of my miserable political career.

On another aside, this comes just when I've been wading my way through some actual writings by Trotsky - largely as a means of discovering that I've not missed nothing by not reading Trotsky before - he really was a one trick pony "What you need to do is prepare a military dictatorship and wait for civil war" - it surprising how few Trotskyist groups do seem to take the grand old man's advice.

Here we have Trotsky projecting like a fiend:
A fool, an ignoramus or a Fabian can see in Cromwell only a personal dictatorship. But in fact here, in the conditions of a deep social rupture, a personal dictatorship was the form taken on by the dictatorship of a class which was, moreover, the only one capable of liberating the kernel of the nation from the old shells and husks. The British social crisis of the seventeenth-century combined in itself features of the German Reformation of the sixteenth century with features of the French Revolution of the eighteenth century. In Cromwell Luther joins hands with Robespierre.
Of course, the grand old man who bestrode Soviet congresses in his dress General's uniform would see no contradiction between dictatorship of one man and class liberation. Indeed, Trotsky would have argued that being shot like a partridge by the workers' dictator would be wholly different to being shot like a partridge by the capitalists' dictator. You'd have to be a fool and a communist not to see the difference.

On the other hand, British toytown revolutionaries aren't living the prescriptions of Trotsky, but enjoying the fantasy of ruthless violence - just as they project Cuba as their utopia and live vicariously through the dictatorship of Castro. The danger, as ever, is the intrusion of fantasy into the real world - then they would move from being disturbing to being dangerous.

Without the sacred/symbollic dictator in the physical form of Castro, they may give up their fantasies - but worse, may try to enact them themselves. With his symbollic presence gone, though, in Cuba, maybe a different set of fantasies may be lived out - you know, little ones like human rights and democracy.

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Blogger blackstone said...

Excellent article. I can't believe you took the time to read some Trotsky. If the people have no power there is no revolution. If the people were in control of the Cuban "revolution" since day one, there would be no fear of revertion to capitalism or becoming a colony in the case of Castro or any other elite dying.

8:52 PM  

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