The importance of 'recall' as a democratic principle

From: Paul Zarembka (zarembka@BUFFALO.EDU)
Date: Sun Jun 06 2004 - 10:10:34 EDT

I went to a party yesterday.  I mentioned what an amazing thing is happening in Venezuela: "Recall' is on its national plate.  Where else in the world is this available for national leadership?

Few understood its significance, mostly because they didn't even know what's a'-happen'.  Marx did (see "Civil War in France").

I encourage wide dissemination of knowledge of what a dramatic democratic revolution is in progress when 'recall' has been put on the plate, particularly at a national level.  The possibility of 'recall' is a democratic discipline against leadership (particularly outside contexts like the U.S. of a lock by a two-party system).

To get there, Venezuela had to have a new constitution put before the people, have it passed, go through a military coup, go through a major lockout, put up with U.S. imperialist interference, and put up with outright fraud and major propaganda warfare ('recall' had been opposed by the right-wing opposition, until it was in place and they found it useful; we can be sure it will be eliminated if these people return to power).

One of Marx's crticisms of the Paris Commune was its insufficient military preparation for a counter-revolution.  I don't think Venezuela will be so accused.... which of course is no prediction as to outcome of the 'recall' struggle.

Paul Z.

Vol.21-Neoliberalism in Crisis, Accumulation, and Rosa Luxemburg's Legacy
RESEARCH IN POLITICAL ECONOMY, Zarembka/Soederberg, eds, Elsevier Science

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