“The effects of this on working-class consciousness and democratic capacities was chillingly captured by what a leader of a local trade union committee at the Volga Automobile plant expressed in 1990, just before the USSR collapsed: “Insofar as workers were backward and underdeveloped, this is because there has in fact been no real political education since 1924. The workers were made fools of by the party.” The words here need to be taken literally: the workers were not merely fooled, but made into fools; their democratic capacity was undermined. The Russian Revolution yielded not so much a “deformed workers’ state” in the authoritarian Communist regimes as a deformed working class. There is indeed a lesson here. If the revolution party, after a long and active process of class formation, proves incapable of effecting a state transformation that in fact yields a “maximization of democracy,” the effect of this will be class deformation.”
Really liked this part of the article.
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