Mathematics student who upon completion of his degree was ripped from the university’s caring bosom and cast into the ghastly cold world of employment
Turns out being a foreign agent in China doesn’t make you James Bond tracking down Francisco Scaramanga, it means pretending to be a communications engineer to snatch 5G intel and then getting a visit on a suspicion from the police at midnight asking you what the sine of 2pi/3 is, and you can’t answer because you failed trig classes as a kid despite your 7th grade maths teacher telling you to prepare for this very specific edge case
I wonder how China will go about and deal with this bullshit as it emerges as the dominant political power. I don’t think they will want to keep sitting in the corner forever watching the USA install a hundred little Pinochets and Yatsenyuks everywhere, but installing puppets and doing counter-coups seems like too much of the American way, and direct intervention would be even more absurd. I suppose it is most likely they will finance friendly neighbouring governments to beef up their own military and intelligence such that they are just a constant thorn in the side of these putsch regimes, and then hope the prospect of impending collapse will eventually deter the USA from its usual practices
Remember that fascism is generated as a reaction of the capitalist class to protect itself against an emerging outside threat. Because it is costly to provoke this reaction, it can only be applied where the threat is also developing, which means that the time and place where it develops indicates the bourgeoisie’s forecast of where it expects to be attacked. Behind the apparent fascist control of the internet lurks a nascent force directed against capitalist interests which is so powerful and incorruptible that it cannot be dealt with in a less dangerous and costly manner.
That force, I suppose, is the increasing participation of the Global South in online discourse, which is currently being enabled by China’s Belt and Road initiative as well as its further economic investments in Subsaharan Africa and Latin America. Right now, Anglos disproportionately use the internet and social media in particular, and therefore it is no wonder that their opinions are disproportionately represented, but this is about to change. It will be a long journey, but once everyone in the world has internet access of similar quality, we will be seeing a lot more diverse worldviews on the internet, from people who have extremely bad experiences with US hegemony and the capitalist system, and this is a scenario the bourgeoisie desperately need to avoid.
However, while the developing world has only recently begun large-scale projects to distribute internet access, the social media use of the Anglosphere has already reached its upper limit. It is impossible for its citizens to stay inside the cocoon it has made for them forever, and it becomes progressively more difficult to keep up the monolithic hegemony of its economic and philosophical garbage.
Imagine giving birth to your child, caring for them during their entire life, looking out for their safety, helping them cultivate themselves and providing a nurturing environment for their studies, consoling them when they come home with bad grades, bringing tea to their bed when they are sick, and then the little shit decides to fuck off and go die in a ditch for the Empire
Except if you named them Skyler, should have seen it coming you fucking bozo wth
It doesn’t exactly come from the blue sky that the BBC tends to float such groundless suggestions which later turn out to be nothing but hot air. They take stories that are already on everyone’s radar, blow them out of proportion, and then cause a huge bloat of headlines until the whole thing just drifts by. British media should frankly suspend pumping up their articles with such overblown graphics when the obvious explanation is just flying over their heads
I am not saying Weimar was absolutely progressive, just by German standards. In German history, the 1920s Weimar state wasn’t exceptional in its hatred of communism and its infiltration by fascists in the military and the secret service. However, I think the difference is that communists were a greater threat to the system than ever before or since, and they managed to achieve things in Weimar which wouldn’t be thinkable in Western Germany until many decades after the Nazis: In terms of labour, workers in the Weimar republic had won the right to only work five 8-hour-days a week, a right that wasn’t won back in the West until 1994, the same year in which homosexuality was relegalised (which was legal in Weimar to begin with). In terms of religion, the Reichskonkordat established between the Catholic church and the Nazis is still valid to this day, which is why German pupils still are forced to attend religious education, the church can still levy its own taxes, and church properties still enjoy special protection.
I think you’re a little too harsh on the Weimar republic. You’re right that it fell to the Nazis eventually, but until 1933 it was the most progressive time that Germany had experienced up to this point. Of course, the system was littered with exploits since it was Germany’s first attempt at democracy, it was filled to the brim with corrupt conservatives and nationalists who wanted it to fail, and it was doomed from the start because of Britain’s and France’s high demands for reparations after the war, but in some places (labour, religion, sexual) it still had better laws than the FRG; and because the Nazis hadn’t gone to work on it yet, it was actually the main cultural and academic superpower in the world, having spawned both quantum mechanics, relativistic cosmology, and modern theatre.
You have to consider that you can really only criticise a government according to its alignment with “American values” since any statistical comparison in terms of public trust, infrastructure, quality of life, employment and job security, communal housing and amenities, buying power, access to clean water and electricity, disease control, literacy and numeracy, access to secondary and tertiary education, belief in science, and optimism for the future would inevitably be skewed against the United States
It is also unclear to me who is supposed to be in these tanks. If Ukrainians are going to operate them, even if they are already familiar with Western-type tanks, the entire reason Ukraine needs new tanks is that its old ones got destroyed, which presumably means there aren’t that many people left who can even do this. If it is going to be Westerners, they would be unused to waging battle where instead of them, it is the enemy who enjoys artillery support, air supremacy, satellite reconnaissance, numerical superiority, and technological advantage; and they would also be entirely unfamiliar to the geographical difficulties Donbass tends to exhibit with the changing seasons.
The putsch attempt - a failed storm on the German parliament on 29 August 2020 - was orchestrated by the Reichsbürger, a group of far-right conspirators who think the Federal Republic of Germany is a corporation established by the Allied Powers in 1945, and that the “real” Germany is still an empire with a monarch. Although they are a small group with no political representation or organisation, they have supporters inside the military so they are an actual danger.
In comparison to the Capitol insurrection on 6 January 2021, where there were about 120 000 Trumpists marching on Washington DC with over 10 000 of them storming the Capitol grounds, there were about 40 000 Reichsbürger, nationalists, and other right-extremists marching on Berlin and between 500 and 1000 of them breaking the first police barrier. However, the Reichstag is a smaller building than the US capitol because it only contains the lower house, and likely a smaller force would have been able to breach it.
During the FDR administration, specifically the war, American cinema was actually very sympathetic to the Stalin-era USSR. Numerous pro-Soviet films were produced which were later pulled and investigated by the House Committee. Some of those were Mission to Moscow, Miss V from Moscow, The Boy from Stalingrad, The Battle of Russia, Days of Glory, The North Star (1943), Three Russian Girls, Counter-Attack (1945), and Song of Russia.
There is no “new Cold War”. Thinking along these lines is exactly what got the West caught in a downward spiral of fear, failure, and crisis in the first place. In the Cold War, the West had no place in the vision of the Soviet Union, just like the Soviet Union had no place in the vision of the West. In contrast to the mutually exclusive outcomes of global capitalism versus global socialism in the Cold War of yore, China has a vision of an integrated global economy, but no intention of influencing the politics of foreign countries beyond achieving its economic goal. In the Chinese vision of the future, a country can pass whatever laws it wants, hold whatever elections, and have whatever culture it so pleases, as long as it does not conflict with China’s economic initiatives. China prefers to solve international disputes via the UN than via direct intervention, and it chooses to communicate through international organisations such as the IAEA and the WHO even if their Western bias is obvious and obscene, just because it benefits their economic grand design NOT to split the world into two blocs politically.
So why should we, as communists, believe in a China that upholds Western-biased institutions, that is willing to put up with regimes representing colonial politics, that does not support socialist insurrection in third-world countries? Because without the economic base to sustain it, socialism is no longer viable. It would cease to function on the world market in weeks, and its head of state would just be added to the long list of CIA-backed military coups. The only way any country can develop socialism in the era of globalisation is to build the necessary means of production first. These are the infrastructure, the assembly lines and mass-production factories which, if not for imperialism, would have been developed in the capitalist stage. China is offering to supply them with everything they need to do just that, and unlike the Soviet Union it is making this offer to everyone. By that, it is levelling the playing field between capitalism and socialism, such that eventually, every country will have an actual, free choice between the two. (Of course, under these circumstances it is only a matter of time until the widespread adoption of socialism)
The Western ruling class, of course, is in utter disarray over this prospect. Not only does its own vision of business-as-usual depend on its companies extracting dirt-cheap oil, rare earths, uranium, fruit, and herbs from the tropics, but just as it was in the Cold War, it is still built on a claim of direct and immediate hegemony over its sphere of influence within the world economy. Therefore, it is impossible for Western rulers to renege on neoliberal economics and all of its ideological baggage. Whereas China has early decided not to interfere in the internal matters of other countries if at all possible, the West must consider even the minutest deviation from the ideological line as a breach of trust. This is why Western favour is easily lost and hardly ever regained, making them not only an uneasy ally, but what is far worse, an unreliable trading partner.
And again, all of this self-injury is coming from the popular Western belief that a “new Cold War” is being fought. The merciless opposition of Western governments, corporations, media, and lobbyists against China is the exact reason no one wants to play with it anymore. During its fight against windmills, dictated by the neoliberal concept of the zero-sum economy, it has lost ally after ally due to petty political differences, and it has severed its own life-support by shutting itself inside for fear of being poisoned. All the paranoia that comes with this world view of the “new Cold War”, all the rearmament and the proxy conflicts, all the sanctions and counter-sanctions, all of it could have been avoided, had the West not been led by neoliberal, neocolonialist dogmatists stuck in the 1980s.
- The followers must feel humiliated by the ostentatious wealth and force of their enemies. When I was a boy I was taught to think of Englishmen as the five-meal people. They ate more frequently than the poor but sober Italians. Jews are rich and help each other through a secret web of mutual assistance. However, the followers must be convinced that they can overwhelm the enemies. Thus, by a continuous shifting of rhetorical focus, the enemies are at the same time too strong and too weak. Fascist governments are condemned to lose wars because they are constitutionally incapable of objectively evaluating the force of the enemy.
~ Umberto Eco, Ur-fascism
This is clearly a two-way carpet, you need to observe basic traffic rules