07 August, 2009

Ernst Niekisch: National Bolshevik

Ernst Niekisch (May 23, 1889 – May 27, 1967) was born in Trebnitz (Silesia), and brought up in Nördlingen, he became a school teacher by profession. He joined the SPD (socialist party) in 1917 and was instrumental in the setting up of a short-lived Bavarian Soviet Republic in 1919. He left the SPD soon after and joined the USPD (leftist "Independent Socialists") for a time, before returning.

During the 1920s he stressed the importance of nationalism and attempted to turn the SPD in that direction. He was vehemently opposed to the Dawes Plan, the Locarno Treaties and the general pacifism of the SPD, so much so that he was expelled from the party in 1926.

Upon his expulsion Niekisch joined and took control of the insignificant Old Socialist Party of Saxony which he converted to his own nationalist form of socialism, launching his own journal Widerstand (Resistance). Niekisch and his followers adopted the name of "National Bolsheviks" and looked to the Soviet Union as a continuation of both Russian nationalism and the old state of Prussia. The movement took the slogan of "Sparta-Potsdam-Moscow." He was a member of ARPLAN - the Association for the Study of Russian Planned Economy - along with Ernst Jünger, Georg Lukacs, Karl Wittfogel and Friedrich Hielscher, under whose auspices he visited the Soviet Union in 1932. He reacted favorably to Jünger's publication Die Arbeiter which he saw as a blueprint for a National Bolshevik Germany.

When Niekisch’s circle gained new members from Beppo Römer’s nationalist paramilitary organization Bund Oberland around 1930, the “Widerstand movement” became more organized. It had contacts with Social Democrats, Communists, and trade unionists, but also to oppositional members of the military, police force and clergy. After the National Socialists took power, Widerstand became a magnet for national revolutionary opposition to Hitler, with Niekisch as its intellectual leader. An attempt to form a national revolutionary anti-Hitler front through contacts with Römer and the Reichswehr officer Scheringer, who had gone over to the KPD (German Communist Party), failed. Niekisch was arrested on 22 March 1937, because of his untiringly published observations on the “Third Reich.” He was sentenced to lifetime imprisonment by the People’s Court in January 1939, along with Joseph Drexel and Karl Tröger. Released from Brandenburg-Görden penitentiary in ill health in 1945, by which time he was blind.

Embittered against nationalism by his war-time experiences he turned to orthodox Marxism and lectured in sociology in Humboldt University in East Germany until 1953 when, disillusioned by the brutal suppression of the workers' uprising, he moved to West Berlin, where he later died.

01 August, 2009

Take the Class Consciousness Test!

Are you a Class Conscious cadre, ready for the revolution? Or are you an oppressed mope, the hod-man of the bourgeoisie? Back when I was a communist we were often asked to analyze popular culture and give a Class Conscious interpretation. Here's a sample test. Just view the video, form an opinion, and check to see what the Party Line is!

You could be a dedicated revolutionary
and not even know it!!!

Wow, that clever Jack Nicholson really put it to The Man there, didn't he? He's not bound by any bourgeois conventions, is he? He's no mindless conformist! The system wants to grind him down, but he was clever enough to get around their arbitrary rules, wasn't he? The fact that he didn't get his toast just shows you that, even if you play by the rules, The Man won't!

Well — wrong!

Here's some rich boy, who thinks his money entitles him to anything, crying like a baby the very first time his every whim cannot be satisfied. Instead of accepting the limited hospitality of the restaurant he throws a tantrum leaving a huge mess for the worker girl to clean up.

That's right — the proletarian waitress is the real hero of the scene! Pity the poor, overworked waitress, her options rigidly constrained by a system that tries to control her every action, facing a snotty wiseacre like Nicholson. Her bunions hurt, she's stuck in this dreadful job, she smells of grease when she gets home, and then she has to deal with shit-heels like him.

Let's stand in solidarity with the worker girl!

Andy Thayer: agent provocateur?

“Is World Peace Possible?”

A cabled reply to an American poll by Oswald Spengler, first published in Cosmopolitan, January, 1936

The question whether world peace will ever be possible can only be answered by someone familiar with world history. To be familiar with world history means, however, to know human beings as they have been and always will be. There is a vast difference, which most people will never comprehend, between viewing future history as it will be and viewing it as one might like it to be. Peace is a desire, war is a fact; and history has never paid heed to human desires and ideals.

Life is a struggle involving plants, animals, and humans. It is a struggle between individuals, social classes, peoples, and nations, and it can take the form of economic, social, political, and military competition. It is a struggle for the power to make one’s will prevail, to exploit one’s advantage, or to advance one’s opinion of what is just or expedient. When other means fail, recourse will be taken time and again to the ultimate means: violence. An individual who uses violence can be branded a criminal, a class can be called revolutionary or traitorous, a people bloodthirsty. But that does not alter the facts. Modern world-communism calls its wars “uprisings,” imperialist nations describe theirs as “pacification of foreign peoples.” And if the world existed as a unified state, wars would likewise be referred to as “uprisings.” The distinctions here are purely verbal.

Talk of world peace is heard today only among the white peoples, and not among the much more numerous colored races. This is a perilous state of affairs. When individual thinkers and idealists talk of peace, as they have done since time immemorial, the effect is always negligible. But when whole peoples become pacifistic it is a symptom of senility. Strong and unspent races are not pacifistic. To adopt such a position is to abandon the future, for the pacifist ideal is a static, terminal condition that is contrary to the basic facts of existence.

As long as man continues to evolve there will be wars. Should the white peoples ever become so tired of war that their governments can no longer incite them to wage it, the earth will inevitably fall a victim to the colored men, just as the Roman Empire succumbed to the Teutons. Pacifism means yielding power to the inveterate nonpacifists. Among the latter there will always be white men — adventurers, conquerors, leader-types — whose following increases with every success. If a revolt against the whites were to occur today in Asia, countless whites would join the rebels simply because they are tired of peaceful living.

Pacifism will remain an ideal, war a fact. If the white races are resolved never to wage war again, the colored will act differently and be rulers of the world.