a perspective on revolution from “New Democracy”


Richard Moore

Dear friends,

I'm setting up a series of mini-seminars on revolution for when I'll be on
the US & Canadian East Coasts later this month.  Many of the people I'll be
visiting (in company of some cadre cohorts) were recommended by Carolyn
Chute, revolutionary, and Secretary of the 2nd Maine Militia (the "no wing"

One of the people we'll be meeting (in Boston) is John Spritzler, editor of
New Democracy.  I sent him the little piece about "cars, parts, and
coalition" and I found his response (below) to show very solid thinking.
Following his comments below is my response to him.


Date: Mon, 8 Jun 1998
    > John Spritzler
    > editor, New Democracy
    > http://users.aol.com/newdem

Hi Richard,


In response to your point about coalition among groups, I think we both
agree that a revolution requires millions (billions?) of people setting out
to make it happen, and people act collectively in groups of all sorts,
including many that are not explicitly political. So in general, I agree
with you. Our main success in working with other groups so far has been
with small groups of industrial workers who publish independent
newsletters, and this is just beginning.

We are working towards a coalition  that is based on building a
revolutionary movement to win the class war and  to shape the world by the
values of solidarity, equality and democracy, although the exact basis will
be determined by a meeting in October. We are not trying to form a
coalition based on some set of reform demands. (This happens plenty without
people needing us to make it happen.)

We are proposing to other organizations that they set their goal to be
revolution, because to the extent that organizations have good goals, the
values which motivate people to want those goals can only truly flourish
when the relations of power in society are changed and there is true

The main obstacles that prevent organizations from making their goal
revolution seem to be three: 1. They are often controlled by the elite. Or
2. They are controlled by the Left, who privately may want a revolution,
but who are convinced that being openly for revolution leads to isolation
from ordinary people. Or 3. The membership thinks that calling for
revolution will lead to isolation.

In the case of 2 and 3 the key question is one's view of ordinary people,
and this is why we make this the focus of New Democracy. I think
organizations will become revolutionary when the membership sees the
revolutionary significance of the everyday efforts of ordinary people to
live by values that contradict capitalism.

In terms of the letter you attached, which says "What is missing is the
assembler  of the vehicle.", I would say that what is missing is a
widespread conviction  that revolution is _possible_. When that exists, the
various organizations and groups will have a common goal of revolution for
a world where people support each other and share things amongst themselves
as equals.  Until then, the different groups have reform goals which are
all, of necessity, various compromises with capitalism, and as such they
accept the logic of  capitalism, which is that everyone and every group is
in competition with all  the others. The only real basis for true unity is
a revolutionary goal. When we meet I hope to understand better what exactly
you envision the  coalition among groups to entail.



Dear John,

As to your comments on coalitions, I thought they were outstanding, and I
posted them to some friendly little lists (without your email address, to
save you from an uninvited deluge of responses).

Lots of autonomous groups, all beginning to align themselves to
Revolutionary North... that makes lots of sense.  When _that gets to
significant proportions, _then a larger umbrella coalition could begin
naturally (and with some help) to form.  And _then, _finally, it makes
sense to start staking out a coalition _platform.



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