Thursday, May 11, 2017

Comey, Trump and the State

Philosophers have simply interpreted the world, the point is to change it. Marx

As we watch the meltdown of the Trump administration and seemingly, the US government in general, it is important for us as workers to understand what exactly is going on. I am sharing here what I came to understand as the definition of the government or the state apparatus to use another term. I can't even remember how I would have defined the state in my teenage years, probably never really thought much about it. It was just a history of kings and queens and their squabbles and how England ruled the world at one time.

It was being introduced to Marxist economics and philosophy that best helped me to understand the world around me. Marxism, and historical materialism, the Marxist view of history, is concrete and is connected to objective reality.  Religion and formal education just doesn't do it. Religion doesn't explain the world at all, just offers this phantasmagorical scenario that ends up offering two outlets at the fork in the road, heaven and hell. I never really agreed with the Christian philosophy that we were all born sinners anyway.

Organized religion as well, has its origins in the material world and class society. Catholicism was once the dominant religion of the European feudal ruling class. Protestantism of the rising bourgeois, the religion of the capitalist class. After all, a religion that looks down on commerce and business, is not good for business. Today, I would argue that Catholicism is the main religion of capitalism, but in the end, all the organized religions are.

I know there are workers, good fighters just through their class instincts, that think about these question or are interested in them, I think Marx's explanation of human society has the answers.

Here's a link to a couple of books that are useful. I should add that I mention in the video Lenin wrote State and Revolution after the Russian Revolution but it was a couple months before in the heat of the struggle for power, it was first published in 1918. You can also read these texts at the Marxist Internet Archive (MIA)

The State and Revolution: VI Lenin or at the MIA

The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State:   Frederick Engels at the MIA

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