Politics of the State and Religion
by Li'l Joe
Wilhelm Reich: "What has to be explained is not the fact that the man who is hungry steals or the fact that the man who is exploited strikes, but why the majority of those who are hungry don't steal and why the majority of those who are exploited don't strike."
Critias: "There was a time when the life of men was unordered, bestial and the slave of force, when there was no reward for the virtuous and no punishment for the wicked. Then, I think, men devised retributory laws, in order that Justice might be dictator and have arrogance as its slave, and if anyone sinned, he was punished. Then, when the laws forbade them to commit open crimes of violence, and they began to do them in secret, a wise and clever man invented fear (of the gods) for mortals, that there might be some means of frightening the wicked, even if they do anything or say or think it in secret.
Seneca: Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.
Einstein: For example, most of the major states of history owed their existence to conquest. The conquering peoples established themselves, legally and economically, as the privileged class of the conquered country. They seized for themselves a monopoly of the land ownership and appointed a priesthood from among their own ranks. The priests, in control of education, made the class division of society into a permanent institution and created a system of values by which the people were thenceforth, to a large extent unconsciously, guided in their social behavior."
Medieval peripatetic philosopher and Christian theologian Saint Thomas Aquinas presented the State as an embodiment of a metaphysics in which the use of State coercion by violence to enforce instrumental institutions of class rule is asserted to have been to prohibit "sin". It is in the interests of the property owning classes to forge Commandments attributed to Yahweh declaring 'Thou shalt not kill'. Thus, faking 'divine authority' of Executives, police, judges and soldiers to arrest, beat, decapitate, jail and kill those among the dispossessed who rise up in armed struggle to take from the possessing classes. These rebels are denounced as law violators and criminals. They are also presented in religious language to be 'bad guys', 'evil doers' and 'sinners'.
Later, the Bible was used to associated king Ahaz, a man whose self-aggrandizement called himself 'son of the morning' (aka 'Lucifer') with the Devil, Satan (Revelation 12: 7-9). By this association rebellion against kings was made analogous to Satan's rebellion against God, so corresponding all revolutionaries similarly cast as evil. Invented by priests aligned with political rulers this anthropomorphic ideology is politically used to demonise rebels and revolutionaries.
Demons, devils, and rebels associated with sin and evil concoctions are nothing but words, words, words: ideologically loaded terms and buzz words constructed by religious representatives of the possessing classes and the State designed to make oppressed people gullible and submissive to a 'higher power'. But,from the standpoints of law and religious authorities it isn't sinful that the working classes and oppressed masses exist in propertyless poverty, as slaves, corvee labourers, serfs, share-croppers. Proletarian wage workers are exploited by the appropriators of the very wealth produced by these propertyless working classes and toiling masses. Labour classes produce and possessing classes appropriate.
To justify the empirical apparatus that is the State (government, bureaucracy, courts, police, soldiers, prisons) that is really an instrument of class politics and class domination the working classes and toiling masses are taught to subordinate their interests to the interests of the appropriating classes and submit, not just to the power but also the authority of the State: revolution and even rebellion against the possessing classes and their political association [the State] is inevitable. So, the function of religious authority is to manipulate oppressed people to internalise a belief system in which rebellion is not just criminal (illegal) but also a sin. This is Bible based. Saint Paul wrote in his Epistle to the Roman proletariat and slave converts to Christianity concerning submission to State power:
"Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: for he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing. Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour."
The appropriating classes are the possessing classes and thereby the ruling classes and the State is their physical power agents of special bodies of armed men, police, soldiers and prison guards. Everything these killers, torturers and State terrorists do is legal. Armed men and women wearing badges abducting oppressed people and rebels or revolutionaries is called a legal arrest. Tossing them into a cell is called justifiable incarceration, street killings of oppressed people and protestors is called justifiable homicide and prison killings called public executions. Sanctioned abductions and killings are legal because politicians legislate the laws and appoint the judges.
Legislators and courts are the political and legal agents of the State that make laws and authorize jailing, decapitating, assassinating and executing those among the producing classes and dispossessed masses who rise in rebellion. Let a homeless person enter a vacant house or building and he or she will be considered not just immoral but tried and jailed for the 'crime' of breaking and entering or shot and killed for stealing or 'resisting arrest'; these victims of State violence are denounced as sinners by priests and preachers along with politicians and the press. The entire official world is a collaboration that is the division of labour for the repression of rebels and revolutionaries.
So-called criminals are the rebels. It is rebellion to break the law. The hungry person who steals bread from possession of merchant capitalists is called a thief because it is legislated against the law by politicians and religion that theft is a 'crime' as well as a 'sin'. What is called 'justice' is punishment by the State for violation of the law. Laws are written, decreed or legislated by the political representatives of the possessing classes. The interests of the possessor and dispossessed are mutually exclusive. In the final analysis terms like crime, justice, good, evil, morality, immorality, bad guys, sin and sinner are just so many ideological notions to corroborate authority for State laws that legalise repression. Repression is required by the possessing classes to keep the masses of the dispossessed 'in line'.
Thomas Aquinas presented ideology rather than an empirical analysis because an empirical analysis of relations of production and appropriation would expose the basis of State power and repression. This would lead the dispossessed masses to recognise that gods and laws are nothing but ideological tools manipulating them to accept 'authority'.
I am not denouncing or even concerned with religion as such. The concern of this critique isn't denunciations by exegesis of religious texts. Rather, it is an expose and working-class critique of ruling class ideologies that have been written into the institutions of class culture itself __ whatever the source of such doctrine internalised -- individuated self-consciousness of social individuals. See the social epistemological theory associated with the philosophical tabula rasa arguments of John Locke and behaviorism of John B. Watson, Michael Pavlov, B.F. Skinner, Lev Semyonovich Vygotsky, the work in social psychology associated with Wilhelm Reich and Eric Fromm, the cultural materialism of Leslie White, Julian Steward and Marvin Harris. Fundamentally, Marx and Engels are proven correct. Religious doctrine doesn't determine economical relations, politics and culture. Rather the opposite: economic relations, politics and culture explain religious doctrine.
"The ideas of the ruling class are in every epoch the ruling ideas, i.e. the class which is the ruling material force of society, is at the same time its ruling intellectual force. The class which has the means of material production at its disposal, has control at the same time over the means of mental production, so that thereby, generally speaking, the ideas of those who lack the means of mental production are subject to it. The ruling ideas are nothing more than the ideal expression of the dominant material relationships, the dominant material relationships grasped as ideas; hence of the relationships which make the one class the ruling one, therefore, the ideas of its dominance".
It's a political issue. I have nothing to do with and resent being associated with reactionary and conservative 'New Atheists" __ viz. the likes of Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, Bill Maher and the late Christopher Hitchens. They are just as much conservative partisans of legitimacy of State Power as are the Reverends Pat Robertson, Al Sharpton, Michael Huckabee, Michael Eric Dyson, John Hagee, Cornel West, Hal Lindsey, and James David Manning. Colour and creed or lack of creed is irrelevant. Religion or lack thereof is not the issue. Profits of capitalist appropriating classes and wages of producing classes are inversely related. The respective class interests are mutually exclusive. There can be no reconciliation. Whether masquerading as Republican or Democrat __ or as Atheist or Christian __there is no such thing as 'economic justice' and is irrelevant. State power and its apologists are the enemy. Reactionary and conservative ideology must be refuted. State Power, along with the capitalist mode of production and appropriation itself must be destroyed. That's right!, Destroyed!
Wilhelm Reich: "Everything, without exception, which today bears the name of morality and ethics serves the oppressors of working humanity. We can prove both in theory and in practice that our new order of social life, just because it will be an amoral one, is capable of replacing the chaos of today by real order. Lenin's attitude to the question of proletarian ethics was unambiguously connected with the interests of the proletarian revolution. Whatever serves the revolution is ethical, whatever harms it is unethical. Let us try to formulate the question in another way. Everything that contradicts the bourgeois order, everything that contains a germ of rebellion, can be regarded as an element of class consciousness; everything that creates or maintains a bond with the bourgeois order, that supports and reinforces it, is an impediment to class consciousness."
Karl Marx referred to the modern State and its government management as "centralized state power, with its ubiquitous organs of standing army, police, bureaucracy, clergy, and judicature".
This has been so since the dawn of civil society, by which I mean class society and its politics.
States are by nature and definition political power of ruling classes predicated upon economic relations of production based on levels of development of productive forces. States are by nature and definition secular power.
Frederick Engels correctly observed:
"As the state arose from the need to keep class antagonisms in check, but also arose in the thick of the fight between the classes, it is normally the state of the most powerful, economically ruling class, which by its means becomes also the politically ruling class, and so acquires new means of holding down and exploiting the oppressed class. The ancient state was, above all, the state of the slave-owners for holding down the slaves, just as the feudal state was the organ of the nobility for holding down the peasant serfs and bondsmen, and the modern representative state is the instrument for exploiting wage-labor by capital."
This is the empirical world. In it there is no such thing as justice and there is no peace. The Sophist, materialist philosopher Thrasymachus in Plato's Republic, rather than the idealist Socrates was right about the world in reality: "justice is nothing else than the interest of the stronger".
Other than an ideological masquerade as the Word of God or philosophical myths churned out by Plato and Peripatetic metaphysics there is no such thing as justice and there has never been 'peace' in Class Society. Class society is Political society. There's no peace in class society. Justice is not a goal. It is an illusion. The clap trap about justice and fairness mealy-mouthed by prophets, priests, poets, preachers, philosophers, professors and professional politicians, pundits and social pimps is ideological smokescreens of convoluted metaphysics used to obfuscate material interests __ class interests in a class war in which the classes in possession of the social productive forces appropriate and exploit the labour of the producing classes.
Class content determines the political form of government that best represents the collective interests of the various appropriating classes: monarchy, tyranny, aristocracy, oligarchy, republican timocracies or democracies. This is because possessing classes are organised as the economically dominant classes that are the strongest, politically organised classes for which the organised bureaucratic-military State is an instrument of its class domination of coercion by violence.
Max Weber concurred:
"Today the relation between the state and violence is an especially intimate one. In the past, the most varied institutions--beginning with the sib--have known the use of physical force as quite normal. Today, however, a State is a [political apparatus] that claims the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force within a given territory. The state is considered the sole source of the 'right' to use violence."
There is no 'separation of powers'. The Executive, Legislative and Judicial authorities are used to give the appearance of legitimacy to the State's coercive powers. States are in a constant state of class war against its subjects (in kingdoms) and citizens (in republics). The ideological slogan of protest in the U.S. today, 'no justice, no peace' is nonsense. The pursuit of an illusory goal of actualizing hopes and dreams of social justice based on social peace is a red herring because the interests of the appropriating, exploiting classes and those of the producing, exploited classes are mutually exclusive.
U.S. President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder's speech campaigns claiming that the government and judiciary will reform police training and behavior to prevent cop killings of citizens is empty rhetoric. This is true also of Obama's and C.I.A. Director John Brennan's promise to governments of the world that the now officially acknowledged torture program is banned and will never happen again. Yes, it will. Domestic police violence includes police killings and jailing of citizens, the objective of which is repression of citizens deemed out-of-control law violators by methods of violent repression. This is what police are ideologically and militarily trained to do. This is an historically objective, demonstrable fact.
Shays Rebellion led by Daniel Shay against the State: When insurgents closed the Northampton Court of Common Pleas on August 29, 1786, Governor Bowdoin issued a fiery proclamation denouncing the disruption of the court as an attack on the government of Massachusetts: Bowdoin called on fellow Massachusetts citizens to defend the state against the violence and anarchy he believed would flow from the actions of the insurgents: as they would not deprive themselves of the security derived from well-regulated Society, to their lives, liberties and property; and as they would not devolve upon their children, instead of peace, freedom and safety, a state of anarchy, confusion and slavery,-- I do most earnestly and most solemnly call upon them to aid and assist with their utmost efforts the aforesaid officers, and to unite in preventing and suppressing all such treasonable proceedings, and every measure that has a tendency to encourage them. He therefore urged the necessity of speedy and vigorous measures being taken for the effectual suppression of the Insurgents, without which, the well affected might from a principle of self preservation, be obliged to join them, and the insurrection become general. An army of over 4,400 soldiers marched west under the command of Revolutionary War veteran General Benjamin Lincoln to put down what Bowdoin and other leaders considered nothing less than an out-and-out rebellion. Shays' Rebellion - Person: James Bowdoin
1800: Gabriel Prosser's rebellion: In the spring of 1800, Prosser, a deeply religious man, begins plotting an invasion of Richmond, Virginia and an attack on its armory. By summer he has enlisted more than 1,000 slaves and collected an armory of weapons, organizing the first large-scale slave revolt in the U.S. On the day of the revolt, the bridges leading to Richmond are destroyed in a flood, and Prosser is betrayed. The state militia attacks, and Prosser and 35 of his men are hanged. 1811: Louisiana revolt: Louisiana slaves revolt in two parishes near New Orleans. The revolt is suppressed by U.S. troops. 1816: Fort Blount revolt Three hundred slaves and about 20 Native American allies hold Fort Blount on Apalachicola Bay, Florida for several days before being attacked by U.S. troops. Independent Lens . NAT TURNER: A Troublesome Property . Slave Rebellions | PBS
"Slaveowners in the United States always insisted that "their" slaves were content and obedient. But research has documented at least 250 revolts, both large and small, in the U.S. during slavery times. And much was done to hide their existence. James Madison, the main author of the U.S. Constitution, warned in 1774 that it was best that "such attempts should be concealed as well as suppressed." One of the largest revolts was led by the slave Nat Turner in Southampton County, Virginia during the summer of 1831. August 13, 1831: The Slave Rebellion of General Nat Turner "Nearly twenty years after the revolutionary War began, the United States government faced a small-scale revolution by some of its own citizens. As in the previous war, taxes were a central issue. . . . In general, the citizens of that time felt negatively toward the idea of taxation. The farmers of western Pennsylvania, many of whom distilled whiskey and profited from its sale, proved outright hostile to the idea. In July of 1794, a force of disaffected whiskey rebels attacked and destroyed the home of a tax inspector. The rebellion grew in numbers, if not in actions, and threatened to spread to other states. ... Hamilton advocated the use of military force; President George Washington instead put state militias on the ready and sent in negotiators. When talks proved fruitless, Washington acquiesced to Hamilton's view. A force of 13,000 militia troops, led by Hamilton and Virginia governor Henry Lee, marched into western Pennsylvania. By the time the federal force arrived, the rebellion had collapsed and most of the rebels had fled." The American Experience | The Duel | People & Events | The Whiskey Rebellion
Coal field class war - coal miners strike suppression: The Southern Coal Field is in southern Colorado on the east side of the Rockies. Most of the miners lived in these canyons in company towns, in company houses, bought food and equipment at company stores and alcohol at company saloons. The doctors, priests, schoolteachers, and law enforcement were all company employees. ... The capitalists reacted quickly, bringing in strikebreakers, and the Baldwin-Felts Detective Agency from West Virginia. The operators also initiated a campaign of harassment against the strikers. The harassment took the form of high-powered searchlights playing over the colonies at night, murders, beatings, and the "Death Special," an improvised armored car that would periodically fire upon selected colonies with machine-gun fire. The Colorado Governor deployed the National Guard, which arrived in the coalfields in October 1913. The commander, General Chase, had been involved in suppressing the 1904 Cripple Creek Strike (Jameson 1998). Following the pattern set at Cripple Creek, Chase essentially declared martial law in the strike zone. Highlights of this period of unofficial martial law included the suspension of habeas corpus, mass jailings of strikers in "bullpens," a cavalry charge on a demonstration of miners' wives and children, the torture and beating of prisoners, and the demolition of a striker tent colony at Forbes. .. During the battle, four women and ten children took refuge in a pit dug beneath a tent. All but two, Mary Petrucci and Alcarita Pedregone, suffocated when the tent above them was burned. The dead included Mary Petrucci's three children and Alcarita Pedregone's two children. This pit became infamous as the "Death Pit." ... 10 officers and 12 enlisted men were court-martialled for Ludlow, by the Colorado National Guard, and exonerated.https://www.du.edu/ludlow/cfhist3.html
The existence of the State obviously rests on empirical social relations of production in which the capitalist appropriating class is the political ruling class. Clearly the material power and military function of armed State power is not politically neutral. Polis and it's derivatives __ political State __ police, politics, policy and polemic have the same etymology and history. Police and politics: every polis is a police state. Political and judicial officials of the State are political and judicial officers. Office and job descriptions determine the behavior of officials in the office.
"In the struggle against that state of affairs, criticism is no passion of the head, it is the head of passion. It is not a lancet, it is a weapon. Its object is its enemy, which it wants not to refute but to exterminate. ... Criticism dealing with this content is criticism in a hand-to-hand fight, and in such a fight the point is not whether the opponent is a noble, equal, interesting opponent, the point is to strike him. ... The weapon of criticism cannot, of course, replace criticism of the weapon, material force must be overthrown by material force; but theory also becomes a material force as soon as it has gripped the masses. Theory is capable of gripping the masses as soon as it demonstrates ad hominem, and it demonstrates ad hominem as soon as it becomes radical. To be radical is to grasp the root of the matter."(Marx)
There are hundreds of thousands of towns, hamlets and cities across the United States. In each and every one of them the police are an armed and trained presence of State mercenaries paid to control its citizenry. This is no different than U.S. armed forces __ National Guard and State Militias __ in each of the fifty States throughout the United States. The effort by U.S. politicians and news pundits to present the recent wave of police maiming and killings of citizens as anomalies that are incongruent and inconsistent with the function of the State __ exceptions to the rule rather than the norm __ is a false claim that is inconsistent with the facts of empirical data. Police are trained to intimidate citizens and to jail and/or kill those who cannot be intimidated.
This is objective and not subjective. Race, creed, colour and subjective intent of individuals in the office is irrelevant. There is no clairvoyance. There is no way of knowing the subjective mind-set, motive, belief, feeling and intention of officials in authority of office. Behavior is determined by rules. It is objective rules of engagement that determine behavior that we have to discover, analyze and critique. It may or may not be the case that this or that killer cop, prosecutor, grand juror, judge or trial juror is a man or woman, black or white, liberal or conservative, altruist or racist.
"A revolution is not a dinner party, or writing an essay, or painting a picture, or doing embroidery; it cannot be so refined, so leisurely and gentle, so temperate, kind, courteous, restrained and magnanimous. A revolution is an insurrection, an act of violence by which one class overthrows another." Mao
The ruling class have mobilised all manner and stripe of its cadres of 'black' politicians, lawyers, prosecutors, MSNBC, CNN reporters and pundits onto the airwaves obscuring and obfuscating clear cases of State armed agents (police) and judicial operatives killing U.S. citizens. Race is used for diverting from an objective critique of the State qua State __ viz. special bodies of armed men __ killing citizens to an issue of psychology of individual 'racists' __ 'a few bad apples' -- as Al Sharpton is paid to present the killer cops claiming to 'speak for blacks' rather than his paymaster (MSNBC) who have his scripts written in capitalist class interests.
Consequently this selected corp of bourgeois lickspittles functioning in the capacity of 'black' demagogues are advanced to portray the brutal policy of the State killing citizens as an issue of 'race' and 'racism' predicated upon clairvoyance rather than empirical category. Nevertheless workers of both genders of every ethnicity and creed are in the streets protesting police state repression by police killings. Opposition to this being openly endorsed by the State's judiciary ruling these killings justifiable homicide, the MSNBC, CNN, &c., black pundits and their 'guest' divert class politics to the psychology of 'racism', predicated upon colour complexion.
Attorney Benjamin Crump is no William Kunstler. Certainly gas-headed Al Sharpton is no Martin Luther King. Although __ at any rate so it seems! __ the parents of Trayvon Martin are manipulated -if not paid- and paraded around on television together with Crump and Sharpton to denounce 'violent' protests against State murder of citizens [which enable politicians and pundits legitimacy to address the nation to not just denounce but also provide these sycophants and lickspittles place in front of protest marches for MSNBC, CNN cameras but also to conduct press conferences to advocate that black angry men and women join and vote into office black Democrats, or Democrats period. Parents of Trayvon Martin are being political pimps. The father of Michael Brown who called for uprising in protest of the Grand Jury vindication of the killer cop that murdered his son is being attacked, ridiculed and denounced for 'inciting violence'. More nauseous.
What truly is at issue here is the political authority and military power of police to abduct ('arrest') kill (murder as 'justifiable homicide') jail, judge, imprison and execute citizens. This must end and end it will. However, by class war and not by demanding of the State that it's judicial branch investigate and arrest this or that individual armed agent being charged by other armed agents for 'abuse' or use of 'excessive force'. To call on the State to correct its officers -- this or that individual -- is to participate in the illusion that the State is there to 'protect' citizens from one another from a Hobbesian mythical 'war of all against all'.
Paleoanthropology and empirical analysis of hominin chronospecies has proved there never has been a war of all against all. That was never the case. The materialist premise of techno-economic, environmental determinism has been proven by archeology along with paleoanthropology: Relics of bygone instruments of labour possess the same importance for the investigation of extinct economic forms of society, as do fossil bones for the determination of extinct species of animals. It is not the articles made, but how they are made, and by what instruments, that enables us to distinguish different economic epochs. Instruments of labour not only supply a standard of the degree of development to which human labour has attained, but they are also indicators of the social conditions under which that labour is carried on.
Paleolithic hominin herbivores and omnivores scavenger-gatherers, hunter-gatherers; Mesolithic herders, pastoralists, and Neolithic horticulturalists were for hundreds of thousands and for tens of thousands of years gregarious matrilineal communities and never Hobbesian isolated 'selfish, greedy, ambitious men' in a war of all against all. Hobbes and the Enlightenment philosophers which followed him were wrong.
Their respective, successive and cumulative analysis were speculative rather than scientific empirical methodological inferences. Homo sapiens chronospecies were communal clans and tribes. There was no patriarchy and no State. Neolithic and Bronze Age agriculture and metallurgy gave rise to private property, patriarchy, war, classes, class politics and religious castes, and consequently political States came into being, in some areas, from 6000 years ago e.g. the Fertile Crescent. Class war is still the basis of political and judicial officials of the State.
"War is the continuation of politics." In this sense, war is politics and war itself is a political action; since ancient times there has never been a war that did not have a political character.... However, war has its own particular characteristics and in this sense, it cannot be equated with politics in general. "War is the continuation of politics by other . . . means." When politics develops to a certain stage beyond which it cannot proceed by the usual means, war breaks out to sweep the obstacles from the way.... When the obstacle is removed and our political aim attained the war will stop. Nevertheless, if the obstacle is not completely swept away, the war will have to continue until the aim is fully accomplished.... It can therefore be said that politics is war without bloodshed while war is politics with bloodshed. Mao
All States emerge from class conflicts as instruments of class domination. All are repressive. Slaves didn't have the right to bear arms. Neither did corvee labourers or serfs. Slave owners and feudal lords had the right to bear arms and use them against slaves and serfs. Feudal lords had the right to kill serfs. Slaves didn't have the right to kill slave owners. Serfs didn't have the right to kill lords of the manor. The Dred Scott decision of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling slaves had no rights was consistent with 6000 years of ruling class history and 'justice'. All States are political, not racial. Slavery is an economic category and not a racial classification. The Abolitionist movement wasn't against 'racism' on the part of slave-owners; but, for the complete destruction of chattel slavery. This political objective was accomplished by war.
The election to office of the Obama Administration with Democratic Majorities in House and Senate was in the interest of capitalist class domination, that once more proves that elections to government of bourgeois Party representatives (Democrats and Republicans) cannot bring about fundamental economic, social and political changes based on some demagogic slogans such as 'audacity of hope' and "change you can believe in". The emancipation of the working classes and toiling masses must be won by the working class itself. This economic emancipation from class relations of production and appropriation can be realised only by revolutionary negation of negation.
You are what you do - Anthony Thigpin
A change in the colour of skin does not change the essence of the State - DG Dedan
The State is what the State does.
In Philosophy of History, articulated by Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel in Lectures, he argues the case for a concept of historical inevitability indicating an external law governed process determines individual behavior independent of the consciousness, intention and will of individuals. By repetition that which at first appeared merely a matter of chance and contingency becomes a real and ratified existence. In cases of Revolutions __ e.g. the French Revolution __ Napoleon was twice defeated and the Bourbons twice expelled. This shows its historical necessity and historical inevitability.
Similarly in cases of States universal repetition of police killings prove it is neither accidental nor attributable to deranged minds of isolated killer cops, i.e. that this or that police officer of the State is restricted to he or she being a 'racist'. Rather, the State exists as special bodies of armed men maiming, jailing and killing subjects of kingdoms and empires and citizens of republics acting in the interests of appropriating classes against producing classes. Such killings are everywhere ruled justifiable homicide. Repetitions are in the millions. There is no legal category whereby killing cops is statutorily justifiable homicide. Since it is political representatives of the appropriating classes as ruling classes that decree or legislate law and enforce it there is no such thing as impartial law. There is no such thing as neutrality and justice.
An appointed hierarchy of strata of professional bureaucrats required to manage government and its functions and the unelected judiciary and officer corps of the military that direct training and activities of the country's armed forces remain even after a change from one president to another. Political rhetoric changes and new political appointees displace appointees of the previous administration. The staff of professional bureaucracy, the judiciary and the commissioned officer corps remain the same. Thus, the democratic political musical chair smokescreen notwithstanding, the State remains the same, unchanged. The continuity of hierarchical government and State professionals are unaffected by out going or incoming Presidential administrations.
The government of the United States is a union of federated States founded on violence in a double sense: 1) the violence of conquests by means of which capitalist modes of production and appropriation were established and expanded, by the State's deliberate policy of destruction of the modes of production and appropriation of indigenous peoples (violence of genocide and forceful removal); and; 2) the violence of the British colonies War of Independence. This genocidal violence was sanctioned by religion and the ideology of "Manifest destiny".
The U.S. economy was itself based on violence: 1) violence of the slave trade and violence of ruling class and southern States by means of which capitalist commodity production by chattel slave labour was maintained and expanded; 2) State violence used to subjugate 'poor whites', as in the suppression of the Shays Rebellion. Finally there was the violence of the War between the States. The Civil War was class war. War was the means by which industrial capitalist commodity production by wage labour characteristic of the North, the Union, triumphed against agricultural capitalist commodity production by chattel slave labour in the South, the Confederacy.
Administrators of the U.S. State's government Barack Obama and Eric Holder have been the official figureheads associated with the States' international and domestic violence. Barack Obama as biological son of an African father claims to be the actualization of 'the dream' of Martin Luther King Jr. In this regard also the materialization in his person the realisation of King's prophetic Mountain to vision. This correlation fusion among 'African-American' has preserved the political embodiment of so-called 'black power'.
Bureaucratic-military State officials used the Obama presidency to refurbish the image of the government. George W. Bush had been personally discredited. During Old Testament times the use of 'scape goats' was to heap the 'sins' of Israel upon it and send it into the wilderness. It has become something of a ritual that by the end of presidential terms their 'approval record' has declined, displaced by resentment, contempt and rejection. This was certainly the case by the end of the second term of George W. Bush.
Savage wars of imperialist intervention abroad and domestic barbaric State repression is just the same as it has always been. Obama is a very wealthy, conservative Democrat. and commander and chief of the U.S. international army bombing, murdering and destroying people and villages all over the world. There is nothing 'historic' about his presidency. "A change in the colour of the skin of state officials doesn't change the essence of the State" (D.G. Dedan) He is black. So is the legislative Congressional Black Caucus. Clarence Thomas is a judicial reactionary.
The ruling class has economic and political interests. Really, it don't give a damn about race, gender, religion, abortion, school prayer, God, aliens, the eye on the pyramid, Masons, the 'illuminati', Nephilim, Archon, or white supremacy - other than pragmatic use of ideological myths and terms used to distract and divert.
Oliver Cox had observed: "racial antagonism is essentially political-class conflict".
The race card has traditionally been used to manipulate working class whites to act and vote in opposition to working class interests. The ruling parties have financed campaigns and elections of such as George Wallace, Strom Thurmon, Ronald Reagan, George Bush Sr &c. Each of these used negative racial stereotypes __ black male citizens as "criminals" and "welfare bums'; black females portrayed as irresponsible, baby breeding "welfare cheats", and "welfare queens".
If it serve the interests of the ruling classes to place a racist in government, it will do so. Conversely, if it serve their interests to place a black, a woman or a Latino in office, it will do so. So, the fiasco of the ruined Bush presidency made it necessary for the political adjuncts of the ruling classes __ both in the United States and in Europe __ to distance itself from it and select a new face in office as the face of 'change'. The U.S. government needed radical plastic surgery. The smiling brown face of Barack Obama was just what the doctor ordered.
NATO, dominated by U.S. imperialism, is military power of the Western Axis. Its vicious face was exposed in all its ugliness by its bombing campaign in the Balkans and its bloody invasion and subsequent occupation of Afghanistan. The ideological, 'humanitarian' representative of NATO is the Nobel Foundation. It's contribution to providing the U.S. government its 'new' face was providing moral cover for the in coming mass murderous head of state __ Obama __ prior to inaugurating his own maiming and killing spree he was presented the "Nobel Peace Prize". Playing on his colour, rather than to the murderous president Woodrow Wilson, Obama was compared to Martin Luther King Jr.
New 'rational' and humanitarian', beautified faces of US imperialism turn out to be a masquerade. The race, gender, colour, religion and ethnicity of who is in office is irrelevant. The State is the State, class domination. The 'image' of the U.S. government and its troops as The Lone Ranger, in white outfit, become soiled by blood and oil: the blood of peoples all over the world. Domestically soiled by the mishandling of the casualties from Hurricane Katrina floods and damages. Demonizing Bush as the blood-thirsty leviathan and making an angel of Obama as Hopalong Cassidy, in black outfit, was a tactic. It was and is a red herring. Obama was the perfect foil.
The State is what the State does. The same savage military violence and destruction of peoples and villages in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and now Syria, together with funding and arming the violence of the Israeli garrison's State's violence of genocide in Gaza and West Bank Palestine. Police brutality and murder of U.S. citizens right here, right now, from coast to coast continue. The State continues its domestic politics of repressive violence against minorities and suppression of protesters and vicious deportation campaigns targeting Mexican and Meso-American migrant workers.
The illusion that 'justice' is an objective possibility and 'social justice' is a politico-legal goal or objective sought after has currency in American protest culture. This is because the bourgeois ruling class dominated culture presents ideological concepts of justice and legitimacy as the underpinning of State legitimacy and 'morality'. It is an aspect of bourgeois culture transmitted from generation to generation through social and political forces of enculturation.
As each generation is the product of the culture within which they are born and brought-up social individuals have internalised such illusions and taken to heart the belief that the State and its officials -- both elected presidents and legislators and unelected judges, police, soldiers and prison guards with guns operate to maintain a 'just' rule of law and the belief that those who make and those who enforce laws do so in the interests and for the Good of Society. Recall Saint Apostle Paul -- "rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: for he is the minister of God to thee for good." The only thing in the quote from Paul that's real, in an empirical sense, is that the State is a terror. The ideology of good and evil is predicated upon the Christian myths of creation, Garden of Eden, Adam, Eve and the Devil as talking snake and Saint Augustine's exegesis on 'Original Sin' and 'sinful flesh'. Yet individuals in America have been socialised to believe the myths are empirical history and the question of 'justice' is inextricably mixed with this mythical and theological basis. When bourgeois politicians and preachers in black-face advocate that this or that killer cop be 'brought to justice' is presenting this elusive goal as the objective of protests precisely because it is an illusory goal that re-establishes the legitimacy of the State -- its executive, legislative and judicial institutions.
Speaking to the residents of Ferguson, urging them to reject violent protest against the State of President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder and MSNBC professional propagandists (Al Sharpton c& ) exhorted that social 'change' in the U.S. be premised upon the legitimacy of the State and its institutions and agencies, thus focusing on bringing individual cops before judicial State bodies for justice according to existing laws. Thus they assert that social change in this country has always been by non-violent protest appeals to the moral compass of politicians in power, and to judicial appointees to the courts. U.S. history itself proves that this is a lie.
All fundamental changes in this country have been by organised class war. This is civil war. The Thirteen British colonies along the Atlantic Coast appealed specifically to the British Parliament's House of Commons. This political body owed its governing position directly to the success of the English Revolution of 1640 that led to Civil War. This war was won by the Independent Army led by Oliver Cromwell. It was against Cromwell's bourgeois proclivities however the Levellers initiated the concept of government by consent of the governed at the Putney Debates.
At the Putney Debates the republican faction of property interests, represented by Ireton and Cromwell, were opposed by the Levelers, the working-class republican communist faction of which was represented by Edward Sexby and Thomas Rainborough. Rainborough articulated the principles of taxation without representation is tyranny and government by consent of the governed [universal manhood suffrage] into the objective of the Revolution:
Colonel Thomas Rainborough: I desired that those that had engaged in it might be included. For really I think that the poorest he that is in England has a life to live as the greatest he; and therefore truly, sir, I think it's clear that every man that is to live under a government ought first by his own consent to put himself under that government; and I do think that the poorest man in England is not at all bound in a strict sense to that government that he has not had a voice to put himself under.
There followed a counterrevolutionary restoration of monarchy. This engendered a second revolution of 1688. As Hegel would say, the monarchy was twice overthrown. These successive revolutions and counter-revolutions were carried out by political violence, class wars. The primary ideologists of the 2nd, also called the Glorious Revolution, was John Locke -- specifically his Second Treatise on Civil Government. In it he repeated [a modified version of] the argument for government by consent of the governed. A monarchal figurehead government was established but real power was in the hands of the Parliament. Thus, when the Declaration of Independence written in the 13 colonies to Parliament in relation to king George in denunciation of 'his' colonial policies was an appeal in the language of Rainborough in paraphrasing of John Locke's arguments in 2nd Treatise . The language of the English Revolution and Civil War. It wasn't a non-violent appeal to king George's moral sensibilities. It wasn't a legal brief submitted to the courts. Locke:
"The reason why men enter into society, is the preservation of their property; and the end why they chuse and authorize a legislative, is, that there may be laws made, and rules set, as guards and fences to the properties of all the members of the society, to limit the power, and moderate the dominion, of every part and member of the society: for since it can never be supposed to be the will of the society, that the legislative should have a power to destroy that which every one designs to secure, by entering into society, and for which the people submitted themselves to legislators of their own making; whenever the legislators endeavour to take away, and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any farther obedience, and are left to the common refuge, which God hath provided for all men, against force and violence."
The Parliament didn't commiserate or sympathise with the Colonial rebellion any more than did the monarchists did with the English revolutionaries. The government and its supporters on both sides of the Atlantic knew the colonies Declaration was a declaration of war. The Government denounced the colonial leaders as usurpers and tyrants subverting the 'blessings of law and liberty' enjoyed 'by every British subject' and the government and press denounced participants in the colonial war of independence as traitors, criminals and terrorists and deployed troops to suppress them. It was a Civil War. Thus, the American nation was born of violence. Soon after the capitalists asserted their class domination in this new republic by violent suppressions of the Whiskey Rebellion and the Shays Rebellion. The subsequent (post independence) confrontation between U.S. Northern industrial capitalists and Southern agricultural capitalists was resolved by bloody Civil War.
What this today means is that American workers are also engaged in an economic based political battle. Just as warfare is politics with bloodshed, politics is warfare without bloodshed -- at any rate for now. Still, police killing of working class youth is warfare on working class youth. The current protests against police killings spreading across the country is the stir of the politicization of working class youth. Police are armed in war gear because they know this is a war.
The struggle of workers to displace capitalist lackeys in union leadership is itself class struggle. The economic struggle to evolve class struggle into conscious political struggle for power is to organise workers into the class party. This is itself the struggle to win political power by all principled revolutionary means necessary. The political aspect of it is the winning of the battle of democracy, which is to win the allegiance of the rank and file of the armed forces to desert the capitalist class parties and back the working class parties. The existing State, its institutions, bureaucracy, and armed components must be destroyed. The capitalist mode of production must be destroyed, displaced by social ownership of the means of social production by the working classes.
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