Feminism is intimately allied with Left-liberal politics. The heavy treatment left politics has received at the hands of others might lead one to think that a refutation such as this is unneccessary . I do not agree: left politics still exerts a hold on the imaginations of the weak and the gullible, a hold that must be challenged if the ideal of pure capitalism is ever to be realized.
There are many good things in left politics – these coalesce around opposition to military coercion of disenfranchised males by the military-industrial complex. Libertarians must nod in approval at left-liberalism’s perennial opposition to war profiteering, conscription and other manifestations of plutocratic villainy. However, there are weaknesses even there: the denial of female complicity in such crimes, for example. Nonetheless, left liberalism’s basic stance is the right one and points towards the minimal interference by the military-industrialized State in the lives of individuals beloved of all libertarians. However, this respect for individual liberty is nothing if not extended into economic matters, also. To be free from the horror of conscription is fine, but to be also free of taxation is even finer.
The Flaws of Meta Theory
Left politics reveals its greatest conceptual weaknesses when it shows its hand as an all-explanatory (meta) theory. Marxism originated as a theory of 19th century economics. As an explanation of this conceptual field, it has comparative strength due to the empirical, a posteriori relationship of the theory to its referent. The greatest problems the left has faced arises from its attempts to explain other areas – ‘human nature’, gender differences, Third Wave society, the actual (as opposed to idealised ) working class, and so on. The reason for this is that it does not enjoy an a posteriori, empirical relationship with these fields as it did with 19th century economics. Consequently, Marxism/liberalism adopts a wholly prescriptive, a priori attitude to these areas which is easily refuted by empirical observation. This is because its views on those matters do not themselves arise from observation, but prescription carried from another conceptual field.
A tired but ever effective example would be gender differences. Marxism avers gender differences are largely a matter of socialization and that if economic relations between the sexes change then women cease to be sexually coy and stop objectifying men economically. This thesis has been roundly refuted by experience, for in an age where most women have attained economic independence they clearly remain sexually interested only in high status males. This remains as true of feminists as of other women. The consequential low birth rates and social instability are everywhere apparent. This is a perfect example of the dangers inherent in applying observations developed in one conceptual field (economics) to another (human biology). What emerges is theory that cannot be sustained by empirical observation except by blind, willful denial of brute fact – the simple case in left-liberalism’s attempt to explain ubiquitous female sexual bigotry.
The Mirror of Contradiction
A second major problem is left politics’ tendency to reflect pre-existing concepts intimately associated with the Capitalism they are trying to refute. The main one of these is obviously Christianity – in fact, left politics is essentially secular neo-Christianity. The central underlying concept of Marxism – collectivist Utopianism – owes itself entirely to the Judeo-Christian world-view. It is self-contradictory therefore when Marxists talk about religion being ‘the sigh of the oppressed creature’ – when their own viewpoint is essentially identical to that of the major Western religions. Other examples would be elitism, more particularly the spurious notion that the ‘educated’ middle class elite ‘know best’ or deference to women, both of which are central to traditional capitalist ideology.
How, though, does this feed back into Marxism itself, damaging its potential as a revolutionary organization? Well, the marginalized, middle class nature of contemporary left politics provides a clue. An organization is hardly likely to inspire the disenfranchised masses if it reflects the agencies of their daily oppression. The alienated working class will not follow those it hates in daily life. But pragmatic considerations aside, the ideological repercussions are also troubling.
In reality, the association of a revolutionary organization with the ideas of the existing Establishment discredits that movement in the eyes of the disenfranchised, and may even alienate them from its positive aspects. This is certainly the case in contemporary Britain, where left politics is despised as middle class hypocrisy by the broad masses of society and bloodlust, parochialism and violence are the counter-norm.
On top of this, holding establishmentarian views prevents the revolutionary party mounting effective opposition to the existing system – it is like trying to drown an ocean. For example, one middle class female activist declared after a run-in with the Police that she ‘felt sorry’ for them. Can a revolution be built from such sentiments?
More disturbingly, in the end establishmentarian radicalism becomes the establishment. This has surely occurred among the British left, for whom activism is merely a smokescreen for brokering over-paid jobs in the caring professions and opposing legitimate working class concerns about the diminution of their life opportunities due to ill-planned immigration policy. In this form, left-politics has become the active enemy of the working class. It has no legitimate foothold among them and ultimately despises and fears them. In this corrupt form it is purely integrated into capitalism as a recognition device and career ladder for the middle class.
However, these elements have always been present in left politics. Marx himself was a racist fanatic, eugenicist and anti-Semite. It is now known that Hitler used Marx to shape many of his policies, revealing a rhetorical, establishmentarian core to ‘revolutionary’ politics from its very inception. I would aver that the complete failure of left politics to change anything despite ruling half the world for most of the 20th Century derives from this. By contrast, Anarcho-Capitalism has wrought enormous changes despite occupying the peripheral world of art and literature. This is because libertarianism represents a cleaner break with the pre-existent cultural establishment.
Marxism has in many ways shown itself to be flat wrong in its predictions for society. For example, Marxism has always posited a pivotal status for religion in the pantheon of oppressive institutions. Yet religion is dead in the West and capitalism has never been more triumphant. If religion were as important as it stands in Marxist interpretation, its demise should have dealt a signal blow to capitalism. That it did not suggests that Marx was quite wrong in attaching such importance to it. In fact, organized religion is now almost exclusively an elite/middle class subculture, demolishing the Marxist interpretation of it almost totally.
Also, the emergence of institutions like the Welfare State was completely unlooked for in Marxism, and could never have arisen in a true capitalist society.
A New Order
Following on from the last point, society has clearly changed so much from the dark satanic mills of 19th Century Europe that Marxism is now meaningless as a tool of socio-economic interpretation. For example, 80% of corporate wealth now derives from knowledge, not from manufactured goods. The manual working classes are now too few in number and too economically marginal to effect social change. Their labor is simply no longer pivotal to the maintenance of capitalism. This was not so when Marx lived. Then, the manual working class composed some 80% of the workforce. Strikes, Unions and the other weapons of organized labor could bring a country to its knees. Now, they constitute only 20% and their power has diminished accordingly. In fact, society now is so wealthy that it can afford to keep large sections of the population unemployed. It is indeed more profitable to do so. These people are not starving or unhappy: in fact, most seem to prefer such a life to the humdrum, badly paid jobs that would undoubtedly be their lot. Maybe we are in fact quite close to the Marxist ideal, in that most middle class people do not mind supporting this group.
The increasing irrelevance of other archaic political forms (conservatism, socialism, fascism, parliamentary politics) seems to confirm the view that we now dwell in a totally distinct social paradigm to the one in which these ideologies arose.
All evidence seems to refute the notion that the working class are becoming more aware of their situation and thus more prone to revolution. Large proportions of the lower class have taken mass psychic leave of reality, explaining all phenomena in terms of extra-terrestrials and other media-shaped fantasies (25% of Americans think their country is run by extra-terrestrials, for example). This mass delusion is quite distinct from simple false consciousness and relates to the new social paradigm of post-processor society.
There are alternative explanations of things that are better than Marxism! Sociobiology is one of these. Sociobiology is a completely paradigm or conceptual model distinct from Marxism. It explains far more than Marxism does, though.
The profit motive isn’t the ultimate meta-theoretical motive for humans. Sex is. Men acquire wealth in order to get sex. Plutocrats start wars to eliminate low status men and thus enhance their own reproductive potential. In other words, the Marxist dynamic is undercut by a deeper, all pervasive motive explanation. Since this is so, Marxism is also undercut as a meta-theory as it cannot accommodate the fact that there are social phenomena that stand outside Marxist analysis.
Left politics isn’t extreme enough! This might seem a strange objection in any critique of Marxism, but it is surely true. This half-heartedness reveals its bourgeois reformist undercurrent. Take, for example, the case of rape – nowhere in orthodox leftist or left anarchist literature is rape lauded as a revolutionary force. Yet it surely can be – women are and view themselves as sexual possessions of the elite – and off-limits to low status men or men of ‘inferior’ racial stock – Jewish, black, Asiatic or whatever. What then could be more revolutionary than the rape of such women? US serial killers often rape and kill with conscious knowledge that such activity is revolutionary in that social context. Black activists also view rape of white women in such terms. Even Wilhelm Reich, vaunted father of sex-politics never saw women as the sexual fascists they are. This is an astonishing omission by the left in a culture where women act on the front line of plutocrat oppression of men via sexual manipulation. It surely reveals the half-hearted reformism at the heart of left-wing revolutionary overtures. In fact, the bourgeois ‘intelligentsia’ seems to suffer a general blind spot when it comes to analysing women and their behaviour – a by-product of Anglo-Saxon Puritanism and the inane deference associated with it – views that must be challenged if real social change is to occur.
The bold experiment of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia during the Seventies reveals a good deal about how to conduct an authentic revolution. In many ways, Pol Pot was way ahead of Marx and his occidental practitioners; and his dynamic work in Cambodia can offer the contemporary Left a great deal of inspiration. The revolutionary Left failed in the West because it did not expunge all elements of the pre-existing bourgeois culture, which persisted as residual memes in the post-revolutionary situation. This meant that counter-revolutionary forces always ‘hobbled’ the revolutionary enterprise at every turn, preventing a true revolution in mass consciousness and ultimately bringing down the revolution. In Cambodia, the revolution was total: the edifices of imperialism were renamed as ‘House Number 1’ or ‘K2’, redefining them in a totally new light. Liquidation of the bourgeois quasi-intelligentsia is the backbone of any true revolution, in that the quasi-intellectual classes guard the memes of the old, imperialist/Capitalist order in the post-revolutionary situation. Even mass murder represented a decisive break with the past, eschewing religious, bourgeois assumptions about the sanctity of life. Interestingly, Pol Pot is universally derided by the contemporary hard Left, revealing their stale, reformist and reactionary agendas.
Given that contemporary capitalism now differs from Marx's 19th Century model, with most wealth being generated by knowledge, not manual work, and classes being defined by attitudes, consumption patterns and other subjective traits, Pol Pot’s unique Cambodian Communism also reveals how a meaningful modern revolution must be managed. Instead of eschewing the psychological aspects of class, Pol Pot boldly embraced them: every member of the new Cambodian society was made to write a biography of him or her self. The illiterate were encouraged to tell their life story vocally for transcription. By analysing the writer’s style, assumptions and expectations, the Khmer Rouge were able to identify counter revolutionary sentiments and ruthlessly eradicate reactionaries. Unlike traditional occidental Marxism (which mislabels bourgeois Doctors and Lawyers ‘working class’ because Marxism’s presiding concepts have been obviated by economic change), Khmer Communism was as valid and contemporary as a modern Focus Group. In this subjective focus, as elsewhere, Pol Pot was ‘right on the money’.
The left are barking up the wrong tree. There is no true capitalist state in existence for them to criticize. The existing ‘capitalist’ societies are a mix of socialism, paternalistic/hereditary elitism and plutocratic oligarchy. In other words, true capitalism – anarcho capitalism – does not exist. Institutions like schools, the BBC, the State, the Army, the welfare state – are nothing to do with capitalism. In truth most ‘capitalist’ societies are socialist dictatorships. The left are in fact inveighing against the reality of their own ideology, not capitalism as such. In a true capitalist society income tax would be reduced to that needed to provide a minimal defensive army and a minimal police force. Schools would be abolished. The State would be abolished. The citizenry would be allowed to bear arms to defend themselves at all times. Murder would become commonplace, for little cause. People could have any kind of sex they wanted.
That is capitalism – not the Plutocratic Oligarchy we sicken under.