THE 21st CENTURY SOCIALISM All previous socialisms wished to change the world but only demonstrated that the world changes socialisms because they did not have a workable theory of the world's changes. Socialists were not proficient physicians with deep erudition curing social diseases but patients vainly striving for health because they spread them as germ-carriers. If they recovered from inflections it was because the economic body allowed their political minds to get better and they pretended effective assistance by using shaman tricks. Now we are standing on the threshold of a new century and want to cure imperfections of previous socialisms by letting them inbreathe viruses of our sick age. The dark age of shadow black economy, fattening oligarchs, fanatical fundamentalism, raving astrology, prosperous occult sciences, raging religious wars, overwhelming military crusades...? Bah!Every inflammation has its incubation term and it is only the mid-2030s that can greet the coming of a new bright age in Europe. That is why Socialist political strategies in the economic cycle 1997-2035 must be negative, preventive and self-defensive: they should defend humanity against destruction, production against acquisition and plundering, direct democracy against plutocracy, corruption and lobbying, science against astrology and irrational speculation, art against commercial crap, health care against charlatan homeopathy, law against lawlessness and high criminality and education against prostitution.
The most influential contributions to new perspectives of Socialism in the post-communist era were made by Eric Olin Wright's Neo-Marxism and Noam Chomsky's Libertarian Socialism. His philosophy coincides with Anarchism in attempting to maximise individual freedom and human rights at the expense of minimising the coercive authority of the centralist bureaucratic state. It refuses 'wage slavery' and corporate business as well as state ownership because they all become instrumental in reinforcing the economic control of working masses. Chomsky supports reforms carried out by President Hugo Chavez who has nationalised several foreign companies exploiting raw materials in Venezuela. Chavez propagates the teaching of Simon Bolivar and spreads the Bolivarian Process in Latin American countries. His upholders regard him as the founder of the 21st Century Socialism and refer to his ideas as Bolivarianism, Chavism or Chavezism.
Chavez's political theories were developed by his consultant Heinz Dieterich Steffan who launched a New Historical Project defending social reforms in Venezuela. Its theory stands on four main pillars of Socialist statecraft, on equivalence economy, plebiscite democracy, basic participative democracy and citizen-oriented legislation. His book The Socialism for the 21st Century (2006) warns against dangers of American globalism as well as Stalinist tendencies to bureaucratic etatism. Alternative proposals have been made by the American Marxist Alan Woods, who considers the Bolivarian Process as the beginning of a new world revolution.
Most Socialist parties are found in a pitiable state since they have been bereft of all traditional Marxist theoretical outfit and nobody can offer them a tantamount substitute to show them guidelines out of this crisis. Zeroth International has prepared a project of New Marxism that does not explain social evolution in vague speculations about long-term formations but in a wide variety of economic cycles covering the whole human history. It shows that all formations develop in similar series of shorter periods so that our contemporaries tackle the same problems under similar conditions as our predecessors many times centuries ago. The regular periodicity of demographic and economic growth makes New Marxism able to elucidate our historical situation in accord with modern macroeconomy in terms of 4-8 or 20-50 economic cycles. It dismisses as irrelevant all utopian dreams and deals with social systems as real live organisms with all their assets and liabilities. Its key political doctrine, denoted as Demotism, is designed as an ideal strategy recommendable for all left-wing democratic parties. This teaching is based on generalisations of strategies of democratic movements since Pericles and the Gracchi brothers up to now but with a reservation that their policies prevail only half a decade in a century. The rest is occupied by semi-demotist policies of progressive sub-elites and counter-demotist policies of conservative hyper-elites. As a result New Marxism is tailored as a systematic politology delineating workable strategies for all political parties.
The democratic left will not be able to face the coming menaces until we know where we truly stand, where there are trenches of our adversaries and what are probable chances of future victories. Zeroth International sheds light on our historical situation by setting up long-time chronological tables and graphs plotting the curves of periodic downs and ups of social development. The theory of classic socialism needs revisiting and completing with a much more detailed elucidation of historical development up to our days. Many hypotheses of classic socialism have proved false since they were not supported by comparison to similar democratic movements in the past. It was erroneous to believe that Socialist revolutions will start in the most advanced states because all colonial empires (Ancient Sparta, Rome, Spain) eliminated them by employing their plebs as new colonial gentry. All Protestant reformations started as uprisings of resistance in the oppressed countries (England, Netherlands, USA).A deeper account of modern socialism may be obtained only if we understand it as a lawful continuation of Protestant reformations. It reappears as a rehearsal of the Athenian democracy, Renaissance, Enlightenment, Slavic Resurgence and other bright ages of history. These eras of blooming heyday were followed by disastrous eras of counter-reformation that did not impeach their historical mission but only validated their rightfulness. Terrorist extremes of modern religious fundamentalism hence urge us to defend the sozialer Rechtsstaat and its democratic liberties.
WHERE WE ARE
Naive busybodies believe that Socialism was defeated as an erroneous futurologist conjecture and dispatched to the land of oblivion but its defeat was the same as that of Wycliffism, Hussitism, Lutheranism or Calvinism. Their democratic program was exhaustingly fulfilled by the enlightened secular rule of Renaissance Humanism that liberated broad masses from serfdom and science from medieval scholastics. After the initial revolutionary upsurge these movements began to expire and lose their raison-d'être by inner oligarchisation to such an extent that they felt pressed to negate their progressive democratic left-wing origins. After ruling a few decades as a conservative Protestant right, they began to neglect the initial democratic message and prepare the coming of a new counter-reformation. The progressive legacy was buried by the rise of new rich aristocracy that fortified its rule by restoring bondage, slavery and scholastics again. Every bright age hence prepares its burial by bringing welfare to new oligarchy that acts as its grace-digger and calls for new dark ages.The same story occurred to the post-war Communism in Eastern Europe and the Third World. This era did not enjoy the delights of a bright age but had to do with the grim fate of the Valdenses, Albigenses or Jansenists who flourished in the short interbellum between two strong gushes of religious crusades. The failure of Soviet Communism did not mean a defeat of Marxist theory but only a victory of the 20th century catastrophic scenario with two genocide wars. Our Postmodern Age continues these scenario instructions by new fundamentalist crusades between Christendom and Islam. The twilight of dark ages hovering over Old Europe cannot put out Socialist hopes in Latin America and Southeast Asia. Latin America is now inspired by Bolivarianism and proves that there are global zones marching according to another historical clock.
SCIENTIFIC SOCIALISM All previous Socialist theories sinned against dialectic laws by insisting on one normative approach to all phases of social development. They prescribed only one admissible political recipe regardless of changing conditions and passed all other alternative trends off as deviations from the correct standard. They absolutised the utopian idyll of a perfect social model without dialectics understanding that the social body dynamically evolves and unceasingly requires new and new adaptive redirections. Its left is formed by the masses that have to adopt different strategies in changing conditions and cope efficiently with an equally changeable adversary. The contest between masses and elites pursues a sinusoid curve of economic growth elevating or flattening the hierarchy of revenues.The essence of most Socialist ideologies consists in generalising the optimal tactics of broad masses in a given 8-year economic cycle. The sinusoid curve depicted below demonstrates that every boom starts with an ascendent onset of constructive progressive sub-elites (scientists, engineers, teachers, physicians) and ends with a stagnative back-pressure of conservative repressive counter-elites (clergy, army, police, justice). This is why every ruling garniture begins with progressive reforms and finishes by taking regressive measures. From the end of the 19th century left-wing intellectuals engaged in movements of anarchism, anarcho-communism, bolshevism, Trotskyism and Bukharinism until the upswing of right-wing ideologies in 1933 conjured them by traditionalist conservatism. After the war this dark plurality-to-totality cycle continued by a bright totality-to-plurality cycle that brought progressivist movements of communism, empirism, constructivism and democratism. Their rule was interrupted by stagnative or regressive phases of etatism, petty-bourgeoisism and formalism comming in descendent slopes of the curve. The anarchist left turns up in booms of pluralistic decadence, communism appears during the postwar booms of reconstruction and state centralisation, petty bourgeoisism is a typical disease during booms of industrialisation and the infection of conservative traditionalism plagues all parties in the period of stagflation (stagnation + inflation). Anarchism and Trotskyism are expedient for liberal periods of free trade with pluralist governments while communism flourishes in dirigist economies but both movements are supported by similar groups of intelligentsia. Scientific Socialism comes with a general theory delineating the generalised strategies of the left as well as the middle and the right as reflections of social transformations in all cycles of global, zonal or regional market economy. It is a systematic politology defining Socialism as the theory of social and cultural health obliged to to defend humanity, science, arts and culture against forces of political, military and clerical reaction. Its remedies are equally indispensable in victorious periods of left-wing cabinets as well as in catastrophic crises and the least favourable conditions.Scientific Socialism does not mean eclecticism reconciling all Socialist movements and mixing them into one blend but a well-thoughtout typology of Socialist trends interpreted as generalizations of political strategy in different phases of economic growth. Commmon working-class masses, peasantry, progressive sub-elites, regressive counter-elites and rich hyper-elites confess mutually incompatible ideologies but their social thought alternates in various cycles according to the instantaneous degree of distribution and concentration of wealth. Most people assume that the most leftist party are Communists, while Social Democrats stand on centrist positions. A more realistic view says that almost all varieties of utopian communism have a base in progressive sub-elites seeking support in broad masses while working classes traditionally find their natural spokesmen in trade-unions and social democracies. Proletarian masses act as a mainstream only in the initial puritan phase of revolution, afterwards they recede into the background dismissed as futile by the red tape.Ideologists preaching ideologies call for a complete reform of fashion, arts, morals and laws but they prescribe only short-time provisional remedies helping out of one crisis. Their one-sided propaganda inspires one generation of younger people who glorify them as heroes and bring them to electorial victories but their treatment soon brings retardation as they tend to overdose the social body with one strong drug. Scientific Socialism differs from ideologists by accelerating development, foreseeing the commensurable proportional dosing and relaying ruling garnitures. It explains ideologies as linear directions in the abstract political space, expressing insuppressible tensions in the economic body. It even finds their partial justification and helps them formulate their goals without self-deceptions and forcible vivisection.
CHANGING POLITICAL STRATEGIES