Re: (OPE-L) Re: Paresh Chattopadhyay 'Capital, The Progenitor of Socialism'

From: Rakesh Bhandari (rakeshb@STANFORD.EDU)
Date: Tue Dec 23 2003 - 12:11:02 EST

>You correctly understood my comment in your reflection below. BUT in
>asking  Mike the question at the end you seem to be forgetting 1
>point. France in 1871 was an Imperial Power , and the workers were
>fighting against that power during an inter-imperialist war.
>Venezuela is subject to the predations of imperialism and class
>conscious  workers have to formulate a different political
>programme. By preventing wholesale privatisation of the oil industry
>for a start,  we see a fundamental difference  brought about by the
>poor by 'ballot and bullet' .  The wretched article, as Mike
>correctly says,  from the NYT sent by Rakesh aims to cover up this
>distinction, one which workers in Argentina would not miss after the
>privatisations there of the 90's.

Why not say that Chavez's faux populism is covering up not only his
suppression of worker rights (he fired 18,000 ! workers--which seems
like a capitalist downsizing to me) but also his defacto
privatization of the oil industry, in particular his seemingly having
handed over the most profitable parts of the business to foreign
investors? Aren't the kinds of royalties that he is trying to impose
difficult to assess and easy for foreign investors to manipulate? And
what about these preferential taxes and incentives for private
investors. It's also difficult for me to understand why Marxists are
making the distribution of rent between foreign capitalists and an
authoritarian state one of the cutting edges of world revolution.
What is the source of the rent that Chavez hopes to capture?


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