Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Murray Bookchin, Abdullah Ocalan and Social Ecology

From Bookchin, Ocalan, and the dialectics of democracy by Janet Biehl:
"But Öcalan, in the same 2004 work (In Defense of the People), also sends a contradictory message about the state: “It is not true, in my opinion, that the state needs to be broken up and replaced by something else.” It is “illusionary to reach for democracy by crushing the state.”  Rather, the state can and must become smaller, more limited in scope. Some of its functions are necessary: for example, public security, social security and national defense. The confederal democracy’s congresses should solve problems “that the state cannot solve single-handedly.”  A limited state can coexist with the democracy “in parallel.”[32]

This contradiction seems to have bedeviled Öcalan himself, who admits in seeming exasperation, “The state remains a Janus-faced phenomenon.”  I sense that the issue remains ambiguous for him, and understandably so.  Insightfully, he observes that “our present time is an era of transition from state to democracy. In times of transition, the old and the new often exist side by side.”[33]

Bookchin’s communalist movement never got as far, in practical terms, as Öcalan’s has, but if it had, he would surely have faced the same problem.  The concept of a transitional program, which Bookchin invoked in such occasions, may be useful here.  He used to distinguish between the minimum program (reforms on specific issues), the transitional program (like Öcalan’s), and the maximum program (socialism, a stateless assembly democracy). That distinction has a revolutionary pedigree—Murray used to credit it to Trotsky. It’s a way to retain a commitment to your long-term goals and principles while dealing in the real, nonrevolutionary world."
See also Biehl breaks with social ecology

5 comments:

Buy Essay said...

Buy Essay
The first several months of my site there were no comments; just give it time; now they come in like crazy every day! Thanks.

Buy Essay said...

Animation Service Provider
The first several months of my site there were no comments; just give it time; now they come in like crazy every day! Thanks.

Buy Essay said...

Company Logo Design
The first several months of my site there were no comments; just give it time; now they come in like crazy every day! Thanks.

Buy Essay said...

Content Writing Services
The first several months of my site there were no comments; just give it time; now they come in like crazy every day! Thanks.

Buy Essay said...

Animated Explainer Video
The first several months of my site there were no comments; just give it time; now they come in like crazy every day! Thanks.