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(en) US, Cincinnati based Anarchist zine, the Female Species - My Meeting With the ISO: is shit! Trotsky is Dead!

From Donald Nechayev <thefemalespecies@hotmail.com>
Date Fri, 4 Jul 2003 07:17:03 +0200 (CEST)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E

> The following is a short story and critique of the ISO.
On a rainy Cincinnati afternoon I met two leaders of the International
Socialist Organization. The ISO, an essentially unknown group until the
anti-war movement emerged, is a Leninist organization working towards the
creation of a new American left and eventually the rise of a revolutionary
vanguard party - “in the tradition of the Bolsheviks”. They spoke with a
calm optimism but two questions kept bouncing around in my head (and I
didn’t ask them): 1. Why must Bolsheviks still exist? 2. Why does the
obsolete notion of a vanguard party continue to rise its opportunist head
out of the the swamp of American radical politics?

As Noam Chomsky says simply about Leninism, “It is an ideology that
naturally appeals greatly to the radical intelligentsia, to whom it affords
a justification for their role as state managers. I can’t see any reason -
in logic or history - to take it seriously.”

Lenin wrote that the working class was only able to achieve “trade union
consciousness” and that the only way it could rise up in revolution was with
the help of a vanguard party. Were the events in Spain and Hungary not
enough to convince the ISO of the theoretical and practical shortcomings of

Their support for Nader in the last election is just as easy to denounce,
but I won’t even bother. Stop unburying Trotsky and Lenin - this is the
21st century!

To the Heart of the ISO:

1) The Soviet Union was state or bureaucratic capitalist.

2) In this, the Soviet Union was only a more complete variant of a process
that was common to the whole of Capitalism, that of bureaucratization.

3) Because of this, the contradiction between propertyless and
property-owners was replaced by the contradiction between ‘order-givers’ and
‘order-takers’ and that the private bourgeoisie was itself evolving via the
concentration and centralization of Capital into a bureaucratic class.

4) The advanced stage this process had reached in the Soviet Union was
largely the result of the Bolshevik conception of the Party, which seizes
state power from the bourgeoisie on behalf on the workers and therein
necessarily evolves into a new ruling class.

5) Capitalism as a whole has overcome its economic contradictions based on
the tendency of the rate of profit to fall, and therefore the contradiction
between order-givers and order-takers has become the essential mainspring
for revolution, whereby workers will be driven to revolt and achieve
self-management only by the intolerable boredom and powerlessness of their
lives, not by material deprivation.

This theory is strongly reinforced by the Hungarian uprising of 1956. Here,
without the intervention of a Leninist “vanguard”, workers’ councils formed
throughout the country in a matter of days and assumed the tasks of social
management as well as those of armed resistance to the Russian invasion and
the AVO military police.

The Female Species joins Subcomandante Marcos of the EZLN in saying, “We
shit on all the revolutionary vanguards of this planet!”

(To recieve a copy of the Female Species please visit us online at
http://www.geocities.com/yoshomon or email us at

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