Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Living With Mental Illness in America: Schizoaffective Disorder

"I grew up stuck between two dramatically different factions in my head. When I was in a Manic State, I was accompanied by a trio of friends, an old man, a large dog, and a small girl whose efforts helped me to remain positive. When I was in a Depressive State, I was stuck in the middle of a war for my mind. Angels and demons battled it out, right before my vary eyes, in their effort to take over my reality. The chaos was unbearable, and there was no middle ground." - Kent Allen Halliburton

Schizoaffective Disorder is a mental disorder characterized by abnormal thought processes and deregulated emotions. The diagnosis is made when the patient has features of both Schizophrenia and a mood disorder, either Bi-Polar Disorder or Major Depression, but does not strictly meet diagnostic criteria for either alone. The Bi-Polar type is distinguished by symptoms of mania, hypomania, or mixed episodes; the Major Depression type by symptoms of severe depression only. Common symptoms of the disorder include hallucinations, paranoid delusions, and disorganized speech and thinking. The onset of symptoms usually begins in young adulthood, currently with an uncertain lifetime prevalence because the disorder's diagnosis has been refined over time. It is generally estimated that the disorder is prevalent in at least one percent of the population, and now includes an acceptance that symptoms can appear in pre-teens, as well. Diagnoses are based on observed behavior and the patient's reported experiences.

Genetics, neurobiology, early and current environment, behavioral, social, and experiential components appear to be important contributory factors to the onset of the disorder. Some recreational and prescription drugs may also cause or exacerbate certain emerging symptoms. No single isolated organic cause for the disorder has been found, but extensive evidence exists for abnormalities in the metabolism of neuro-transmitters like tetrahydrobiopterin, dopamine, and glutamic acid in people with Schizophrenia, Schizoaffective Disorder, and other psychotic mood disorders. People with Schizoaffective Disorder are likely to have co-occurring conditions which may include a variety of anxiety disorders and Substance Use Disorder. Social problems such as long-term unemployment, poverty, and homelessness are also common. The average life expectancy of people with the disorder is shorter than those without it due to increased physical health problems from an absence of health promoting behaviors, which may include a sedentary lifestyle, poor eating habits, and a higher suicide rate.

Schizoaffective Disorder is presently treated with a combination of Anti-Psychotic drugs, Mood Stabilizers, and Anti-Depressants, though there is growing concern by some researchers that Anti-Depressants may increase psychoses, mania, and long-term mood episode cycling in the disorder. When there is a risk to self or others, usually early in treatment, brief hospitalization may be necessary. Psychiatric rehabilitation, psychotherapy, and vocational rehabilitation are very important for recovery of higher Psycho-Social function. As a group, people with Schizoaffective Disorder tend to have a better outcome after treatment that do people with Schizophrenia. However, they do have variable individual Psycho-Social functional outcomes compared to people with other varied mood disorders, from worse to the same. There are studies comparing these diagnoses, but they have yet to be completed.

In the past Schizoaffective Disorder and Schizophrenia were not usually classified separately from one another in psychological studies. This, however, has begun to change. The definition of Schizoaffective Disorder began to change in the early to mid 1990s. The research conducted since this period is what has made it clear that there is, in fact, a difference between the two disorders. It is the fact that the hallucinations, paranoid delusions, and disorganized speech and thinking in Schizoaffective Disorder are accompanied by varied signs of Bi-Polar Disorder and Major Depression that make this distinction.

"It was not until just a few years ago that I began to get treatment for my disorder, and I am now finally approaching a sense of balance amidst the chaos. Unfortunately, that balance has come at a cost. See, while I was glad to see the angels and demons of my Depressive State go, I now feel a deep pain as I realize that my Manic friends have to go also as, over the years, I have developed a deep affection for them." - Kent Allen Halliburton

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Living With Mental Illness in America: Bi-Polar Disorder

"Imagine that you are on the fastest roller coaster you have ever encountered. You are blasting around turns at amazing speeds. Further, imagine that it is also taking you to the highest and deepest points you could have ever imagined. Now, imagine that the roller coaster is in your mind, and it won't shut off." - Kent Allen Halliburton

"When I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder the year I turned 50, it was certainly a shock. But as a journalist, knowing a little bit about a lot of things, I didn't suffer the misconception that depression was all in my head or a mark of poor character. I knew it was a disease, and, like all diseases, was treatable." - Jane Pauley

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is a mental disorder that causes periods of depression and periods of elevated mood. The elevated mood is significant and is known as mania or hypomania, depending on its severity, or whether symptoms of psychosis are present. During mania, an individual behaves or feels abnormally energetic, happy, or irritable. Individuals often make poorly thought out decisions with little regard to the consequences. The need for sleep is usually reduced during manic phases. During periods of depression, there may be crying, a negative outlook on life, and poor eye contact with others. The risk of suicide among those with the illness is high at greater than six percent over twenty years, while self-harm occurs thirty to forty percent. Other mental health issues such as anxiety disorders and substance use disorder are commonly associated with Bi-Polar Disorder.

The causes are not clearly understood; however both environmental and genetic factors are though to play a role. For many, genetic factors of may contribute to the disorder's manifestation. Environmental factors include a history of childhood abuse and long-term stress. The condition is divided into Bi-Polar I and Bi-Polar II. If there has been at least one manic episode, with or without depressive episodes, it will be classified as Bi-Polar I. It will be classified as Bi-Polar II if there has been at least one hypomanic episode and one major depressive episode. In those cases with less severe symptoms of a prolonged duration, the condition Cyclothymic Disorder may be diagnosed. If the condition is induced by drug use or physical medical problems, such as poor diet, the condition may be classified separately. Other conditions that may present in a similar manner include Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Disassociative Disorder, Schizophrenia, and Substance Abuse Disorder as well as a number of physical medical conditions. Medical testing is not required for a diagnosis, though blood tests or medical imaging can be done to rule out other problems.

Treatment commonly includes psychotherapy, as well as medications, such as Mood Stabilizers and Anti-Psychotics. Examples of mood stabilizers that are commonly used include lithium and various other Anti-Convulsants. Treatment in a hospital without the individual's consent may be required if a person is at risk to themselves or others but refuses treatment. Severe behavioral problems may be managed with short term Anti-Psychotics or Benzodiazepines. In periods of mania it is recommended that Ant-Depressants be stopped. If Anti-Depressants are used for periods of depression they should be used with a mood stabilizer. Electroconvulsive therapy, while not very well studied, may be helpful for those who do not respond to other treatments. If treatments are stopped, it is recommended that this be done slowly. Many individuals have financial, social or work-related problems due to the illness. These difficulties occur a quarter to a third of the time on average. The risk of death from natural causes such as heart disease is twice that of the general population. This is due to poor lifestyle choices made in various to self medicate the condition.

About three percent of people in the United States are estimated to have had Bi-Polar Disorder, or associated symptoms, at some point in their life. Lower rates of around one percent are found in other countries. The most common age at which symptoms begin is twenty-five. Rates appear to be similar in females and males. The economic costs of the disorder was estimated at $45 billion for the United States in 1991. This cost has since risen to an average of $52 billion a year. A large proportion of this was related to a higher number of missed work days, estimated at fifty per year. People with Bi-Polar Disorder also often face problems with the social stigma associated with the disorder, which tends tends to make dealing with disorder all that much more difficult.

"Most of the time, it feels like there are two different people in my head, and while each one is vying for total control, there is a blank canvas in the middle that is getting paint randomly strewn about on it. The struggle, of course, like an abstract painting, is to make something unique out of the chaos. The battle that then ensues is not for the faint of heart." - Kent Allen Halliburton

Monday, May 1, 2017

International Workers' Day

"Workers of the world unite!" - Karl Marx

International Workers' Day, also known as Labour Day in some countries, is a celebration of laborers and the working classes that is promoted by the international labor movement, socialists, communists, and anarchists. It is scheduled on the first day of the Month in May, which coincides with several ancient European spring festivals. The date chosen for International Workers' Day was picked by the Second International, a pan-national organization of socialist and communist political parties, to commemorate the Haymarket Affair, which occurred in Chicago on May 4, 1886.

The 1904 International Socialist Conference in Amsterdam, the Sixth Conference of the Second International, called on "all Social Democratic Party organizations and trade unions of all countries to demonstrate energetically on the First of May for the legal establishment of the 8-hour day, for the class demands of the proletariat, and for universal peace." This established a tradition that has been carried on in some form or another ever since.

Being a traditional European spring celebration, May Day is a national public holiday in several European countries. The date is currently celebrated specifically as "Labor Day" or "International Workers' Day" in the majority of countries, including those that didn't traditionally celebrate May Day. Some countries celebrate a Labor Day on other dates significant to them, such as the United States, which celebrates Labor Day on the first Monday of September.

Monday, April 3, 2017

What About Muh Freeze Peach?

"11. Demand a rejection of liberal ideas of "free speech," as tolerance be given to reactionary opinions. Free speech ends where oppressive speech begins."  - Refuse to Cooperate Program 

When Refuse to Cooperate released its formal program committed to a Marxist-Leninist position it ruffled a few feathers among its readership, but none of the points demanded by RTC caused the most heads to utterly implode as the eleventh, quoted above. 

Accusations of tyranny and "Stalinism" (whatever that is) and fascism quickly followed, much to our expectation. Their poor sacred cow was under attack! This, honestly, exposes that these people are okay with the already existing limits on free speech, as if they are supposed to be normal.

After all, how dare we challenge the liberal feeling of entitlement that people have to say anything whatsoever whenever they want, regardless of who it might hurt! To recognize that speech does not exist in a vacuum, that it affects people, that people act upon it, and sometimes in horrific ways is anathema. It seems to reject the idea that there might need to be limits placed on speech to protect the most vulnerable sections of society. Further, to suggest otherwise, is horrifying to those secure in their privilege.

How dare we even suggest that people ought to hold each other accountable for their statements!  To suggest that people's beliefs and opinions are not sacred or beyond critique, that they too do not exist in a vacuum, that people will act on those beliefs, sometimes horrifically, that we must hold each other accountable for our beliefs, what we support, what we vote for, what we tolerate instills dread into the mind of centrist and right wing liberal alike.

How dare we imply that the faith in the  "free market of ideas" used to rationalize unrestricted free speech is as baseless as faith in any "free market" and for the same reason!  As in any situation of open competition, winners and losers arise, and the winners consolidate their dominance. In the field of ideas, this is done through media and institutions allowing the dominant group to stifle opposing ideas (and the associated speech) while allowing status quo supporting ideas and speech to move unchecked and to the detriment of oppressed groups within society. Of course, there is no reason to think that the most dominant ideas are the most objectively correct, which is precisely what proponents of the free market of ideas assume.

Contrary to the overreactions of our ideological opponents, recognizing that speech has limits does not mean the implementation of some sort of top down tyranny.  Precisely because we at Refuse to Cooperate hold democracy and openness in such high regard, we  have actually gone out of our way to make certain that opposing views are heard within our group and even on our blog. In our view, a future socialist society would uphold democracy, just not an abstract and generalized democracy, but a class aware democracy, a democracy that serves working class interests rather than bourgeois interests; which understands that for freedom to be secured for the greatest number, freedom must be balanced with equality. 

How do we determine what is oppressive speech? Objectively oppressive speech is not merely speech that causes offense, if that were the case fart jokes might be labeled offensive. Nor is the term hate speech very good as it is emotional and lacks context, making it very subjective. The more specific term of oppressive speech, however, refers to language that promotes or reiterates oppressive social structures, and who decides where the line is drawn on these issues? In a socialist society, it is the working class themselves armed with clear materialist analysis. In our daily lives before then, in our groups and organizations, we decide what we will tolerate.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

The Goddess Land Empire - Lexa Moon

"I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion." - Alexander the Great

Last week in my AP Human Geography class, we were assigned a project that would involve creating a country. We all drew papers from a hat to see what type of state we would create. I drew “Empire,” so I created an Empire that I called Goddess Land, in tribute to my pagan beliefs. We were given the liberty to construct the government, create the people, and wildlife, and all other creative rights. I shared my project with Kent, the Founder of Refuse to Cooperate, and he thought the actual way I constructed the government was interesting, so I decided to share it with the blog readers. So, without further a due, this is the Goddess Land Empire.

The Government

The Goddess Land Empire is a Democratic Socialist empire. It has three branches of government; a Parliament, which makes the laws; a Judiciary, which interprets these laws; and an Executive, which is democratically elected to serve a life long term as Emperor/Empress. They are responsible for the lawful execution of the laws passed by the Parliament.

The Goddess Land Empire is made up of sovereign States, each with a standing High Court. Each High Court is made up of a certain amount of democratically elected nobles (depending on the population of the state) and each has a Prime Minister. The Prime Minister is democratically appointed by the High Court. Once a year all Prime Ministers meet up and form the imperial Judiciary, which is led by an appointed Speaker.

Each high court has the right to make laws regarding its own state. However, the Imperial Court has the right to make laws that govern the whole of the empire. Further, its rulings are expected to trump those of the lower courts.

In order for a proposition to become law, the proposition must have at least two noble sponsors and be approved by the appropriate standing committee in the Parliament. When the proposition is on the High Court floor, the court, with the exception of the Prime Minister will vote on the proposition. A simple majority will make the proposition law; however, if the proposition is split evenly on votes, the Prime Minister will serve as a tie-breaker.

The Executive branch is made up of the Emperor/Empress and his/her counsel of advisers. The job of the Emperor/Empress is to lead the empire on the right path, representing the Empire. The Emperor/Empress lawfully executes the laws passed by the Parliament and approved by the Judiciary. Further, they are to be the Commander-in-Chief of both the domestic and foreign arms of the empire's defense forces.

The Judiciary interprets cases and laws that come before it based on the concept of Legal Precedent. However, when, in their good judgement, precedent does not apply to a given case, they are authorized to rule in a case according to their good reasoning. They are also responsible for building a system of civil courts to adjudicate minor matters between citizens that do not require the full attention of the state authority.

However, none of these branches can change the unalienable rights of the people. The people are guaranteed the rights to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, education, work, food, housing, and health care.

The People of the Goddess Land 

The Empire's society is a highly developed society which mirrors a Victorian steampunk style of fashion, architecture, mode of energy, transportation, and much more.

The people of the Goddess Land Empire are very open minded to most everything, such as sexuality, magic, religion, style, and much more.

The major religion of the people is Paganism. However, there is no official imperial religion. People who practice magic are looked upon favorably, so much so that there is even a whole museum dedicated to magic, and its practitioners, located in the capital of the Goddess Land Empire, Moon City.

Imperial Nature 

The Goddess Land Empire's wildlife mostly consists of magical creatures such as unicorns, fairies, mermaids, trolls, and much more.

All intelligent life, such as trolls or fairies, is given citizenship and allowed to vote in elections that affect the lands that they inhabit; however, they are not allowed to run for office.

Wildlife that is not intelligent is given imperial protection from sport hunting.

The plant life is also very magical. A lot of plants are used by the defense forces for their magical properties.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Living With Mental Illness in America

"I start to think there really is no cure for depression, that happiness is an ongoing battle, and I wonder if it isn't one I'll have to fight for as long as I live. I wonder if it's worth it." - Elizabeth Wurtzel

"My depression has followed me around my whole life like a black dog, a spectre from which there has been no escape." - Winston Churchill 

"I speak of a clinical depression that is the background of your entire life, a background of anguish and anxiety, a sense that nothing goes well, that pleasure is unavailable and all your strategies collapse." - Leonard Cohen

"I have suffered with mental illness silently for the great majority of my life. Thankfully, for the past few years, I have begun to seek help. Admittedly, however, it has not been easy. The hardest part is being taken seriously." - Kent Allen Halliburton

Living with mental illness in the United States can be a nightmare. First, you have to get past the stigma. People with diagnosed mental illnesses are looked upon by many as either dangerous or a complete waste of flesh. They are not taken seriously, and they tend to get marginalized. This has an additional side effect. This treatment leads to many people with several mental illnesses living much of their lives in silent pain and suffering just to avoid the stigma of being declared mentally ill. For some, it gets so bad that they end up either dead from self medicating or homeless because they are unable to function normally. Further, in the past, admitting to mental illness carried an additional spectre. If a person admitted to being mentally ill, they could end up in a permanent facility for the terminally insane.

Once a person has managed to get past the stigma and is getting treatment for their illness, they have to spend months and even, sometimes, years going through examination after examination to find the right combination of medications that makes it possible for them to function normally in society. This struggle can be a massive pain all on its own. Unfortunately, for some, they are never able to reach normalcy, and they struggle their entire lives, even on meds, just to function like a human being. This trip can have severe negative effects on people. In between medications, people can end up in the hospital where they can be locked away for months at a time while medical professionals attempt to stabilize them.

Luckily, mental health is beginning to be taken more seriously and many more people are beginning to get the treatment that they need to function in normal society. However, there is much left to be done. New medications are coming out all the time, and many medications have side effects that are worse than what they are meant to alleviate. Further, people with severe problems, fearing the consequences, may not want treatment. This puts their future in a precarious position. Most mental facilities are no longer designed for permanent residency. This means that a person cannot be easily sent away for life. So, what happens if they have no family to live with? Further, what happens to them if they are poor or no one in their family can foot the bill for a life long care facility? Usually, they end up on the street.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, upwards of twenty-five percent of the American homeless population, in excess of five-hundred thousand people, is mentally ill. They admit, though that this number may be under estimated. This is so because their numbers rely on responses to in person examinations and logistical information gathered from local municipalities who measure mental illness among their local homeless populations. So, what kind of mental illnesses are Americans suffering from. Lately, because of the wars in the Middle East, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has come to the forefront of Psychiatric care. There are also illnesses like Schizophrenia, which is a mental disorder that is characterized by hallucinations, either auditory, visual, olfactory, or tactile, and delusions. It is usually treated with a combination of anti-psychotic medications and psychotherapy.

If you have a mental illness that is going untreated, please, do not be afraid to seek out the help that you need. Their are resources for you out there. You just have to look for them! If you have no other options and are beginning to feel helpless, check yourself into the hospital. They are obligated, by law, to get you the help you need. Remember that there is always tomorrow!

This piece is the beginning of a series of pieces on mental illness. The main goal will be to list major mental illnesses and examine exactly what they are and how they effect people.

Taking Trump DOWN!

"Democrats need to catch up with us, or we are leaving them behind!" - Lexa Moon

Are you wondering how Progressives can take down the Trump administration and corporate Democrats? Don’t worry, we Progressives have a secret weapon!

What is the Progressive's secret weapon? YOU!

According to info posted on PBS.org, there was a 58% voter turnout during the 2016 Presidential election. What were the results? We got a Republican victory in all three branches of government. These were not the results we wanted, but the Democrats didn’t give us much of a choice either, considering that they anointed Hillary Clinton long before the Democratic primaries every took place.

According to a Gallup survey posted on Salon.com, only 36% of the country identifies as conservative. This is down from 38% in 2014 and 40% in 2012. So, what does this mean? It means that a lot of Progressives did not vote. However, if they vote in 2018, we will have a solid chance to take back Congress!

What’s your job? Get involved! Join campaigns for real progressive candidates, such as those involved with Justice Democrats for a New Congress. Throughout the elections make sure to register as many people as possible to vote! Knock door to door to get more people on board so we can take back Congress and get big money out of government once and for all! Make congress and the politicians accountable for the mess that they gave us in the 2016 election!

Make your voice heard! I know I will!

Follow me and the RTC blog on social media:

Twitter- @lexa_moon

Instagram - @Lexa_moon_Official

Lexa Moon on YouTube

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Are You Troll Food?

When a person first gets on the internet to socialize, they try to justify how they were taught or what they learned, which means they argue with anything that does not line up with what they were taught. ('This is my opinion' + 'or you are' + '<insert insult here>'). They use the shame mentality to justify their opinions as if to disagree makes you less than perfect. Most think a Facebook group is akin to the cork board at the local laundromat that people post help wanted or for sale or local events to be monitored and rigidly cleaned up. Further, bad comments are to be deleted and difficult users are to be kicked out. This is farthest from the Truth. A Facebook group is more like a community meeting to discuss issues that are of concern. If you were attending a community meeting, it would be considered rude and inappropriate to tell someone to shut up or to kick them out of the community because they brought up an issue of concern that someone else did not like. This is called being intolerant of other opinions. Yes there is such a thing as Netiquette or a standard of internet conduct. Google it.

There are millions of Facebook Groups. The best ones for truth are the ones that let everyone have a say. They do not Police their sites as much as amateur admins do. Sure, they have a responsibility to keep the porn out, as well as, the sunglasses ads, but other than that, the admins job is not to play judge, jury and executioner to the disagreements in their groups, The more diverse the groups are, the closer to truth they get. We all have to step up, to create reason and to create open discussion. No one person will have all the answers, and on the internet, no one cares who you are. The internet is all about information. Since the inception of social media and discussion boards, people have been communicating their subjective opinions. Most are just echo's of how they were taught. Some were not taught and seek understanding, There are, however, hidden treasures on the internet. If you know where to look, you can find some really good stuff. Don't be so quick to block someone just because they say something you don't like. Maybe they are speaking a truth you need to hear?

There is no telling. What you choose to take in is your choice, not theirs. On the internet, if you react to baited attacks, you are Troll food. Trolls Love Emotional people. So, use your reason, and take your time to look for the good stuff. Jesus does not promote kicking people out of the club just because they don't agree.

"Matthew 25:39-41

39 When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 And the king will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’ 41 Then he will say to those on his right, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels."

Internet 101: DO NOT REACT!

You are responsible for how you react, not anyone else.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

The Refuse to Cooperate Platform - Part 3

The Demands of Refuse to Cooperate

As Marxist-Leninists We:

1. Demand that all means of production be in the hands of the workers through a socialist state. This state should be organized into workers' councils with a centrally planned economy geared towards meeting human needs.

2. Demand an end to all systems of oppression such as white supremacy, patriarchy, as well as. discrimination faced by lgbtq people, and the disabled.

3. Defend the rights of all people to quality healthcare, housing, food, and education organized and managed by the workers through the state without economic obstacles.

4. Demand an end to the drug war, the use of prison slave labor, and police brutality.

5. Defend the rights of all nations to self determination and national liberation, including the right of secession. Accordingly, we demand an end to colonialism and the return of native lands to their rightful owners.

6. Demand an end to all imperialist wars of aggression and stand firmly with all those groups fighting against imperialism and with the working class globally rather than the working class of any one country.

7. Demand a complete end to all government spying on its citizens, public ownership of all internet bandwidth, and the creation of copyright laws that protect the individual while also protecting the free flow of information.

8. Demand total amnesty for all immigrants and an end to all aggression against immigrants.

9. Demand reparations and cancellation of debts be given to all victims of imperialism and colonialism including the families of former slaves and former and current colonies.

10. Demand aggressive action against climate change and environmental damage, as well as, The implementation of ecologically friendly forms of power generation, waste management, emission controls, and widespread public transportation.

11. Demand a rejection of liberal ideas of "free speech," as zero tolerance be given to reactionary opinions. Free speech ends where oppressive speech begins.

12. Demand the creation of a working class, mass based, internationalist socialist political party to enact these demands

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Meanwhile in Australia.....

Australia's Fair Work Commission passed an act to cut Sunday and Public Holiday penalty rates on Thursday February 23, 2017; the day it was done is important, for workers in the hospitality, restaurant, pharmacy and retail industries. These are some of the lowest paid workers in our country, and if they feel like they have been kicked in the guts I am not surprised.

In our country, it has long been accepted that if you are working outside normal hours; basically 9-5, Monday to Friday, you will get a loading, or bonus, on your base rate. If your loading is 150% for a night shift, you will get $30 dollars an hour on a $20 dollar base rate. This has been our societal norm for about 100 years. If you work unsociable hours you get even further monetary compensation.

The usual squeals of anguish and acclaim has been heard from all the usual suspects. Unions claim rip off, probably correct, employers say not enough, probably correct too. Our federal government, liberal, or conservative, won't interfere with an independent authorities findings, good thing. The parliamentary opposition, labour, liberal/labour, socialist inclined, yeah I know its confusing, whom set up the commission in the first place want to introduce a bill to parliament to ensure that the commission cannot reduce wages. This is a good thing too.

Now, all this is just a giant shit fight but seems not to address the real issue. This is about the commodifying of time. Is your time just a commodity? Is every hour of every day worth the same as another? Is the time you spend at work worth the same as the time you spend playing football with your grandkids; and if not, should you be financially compensated?

The Fair Work Commission handed down its decision on a Thursday; they don't work weekends. Our parliament will make its decision on a weekday; they don't work weekends. The union leaders who are in uproar will make their announcement on a weekday; they don't work weekends. The Business Council of Australia will make their pronouncements on a weekday; they don't work weekends.

It seems to this writer that the commodifying of time only applies to the poorest members of our workers. Judges, commissioners, lawyers, politicians, managers, public servants,will have their cappuccino and croissant on a Sunday morning happy that they have solved a "labour" problem happy that only the the working poor's time has been com modified but their time is more important. Australia, we're standing in it.

The Refuse to Cooperate Platform - Part 2

 The Paris Commune - March 18, 1871 to May 28, 1871

We are Marxist-Leninists

1. Refuse to Cooperate roots its analyses in dialectical and historical materialism.

2. Refuse to Cooperate recognizes the necessity of revolution over the ongoing failure of reform.

3. Refuse to Cooperate rejects all idealism and liberal individualism.

4. Refuse to Cooperate upholds the necessity of Lenin's theoretical contributions to Marxism in understanding global capitalism and how to fight it.

a. Lenin's Theory of Imperialism is defined as:

"(1) the concentration of production and capital has developed to such a high stage that it has created monopolies which play a decisive role in economic life; (2) the merging of bank capital with industrial capital, and the creation, on the basis of this “finance capital”, of a financial oligarchy; (3) the export of capital as distinguished from the export of commodities acquires exceptional importance; (4) the formation of international monopolist capitalist associations which share the world among themselves, and (5) the territorial division of the whole world among the biggest capitalist powers is completed. Imperialism is capitalism at that stage of development at which the dominance of monopolies and finance capital is established; in which the export of capital has acquired pronounced importance; in which the division of the world among the international trusts has begun, in which the division of all territories of the globe among the biggest capitalist powers has been completed." - Lenin, "Imperialism: the highest stage of capitalism"

Simply being a capitalist nation does not mean a nation is imperialist if it does not meet the above criteria.

b. The Theory of Vanguardism is defined as:

"the most advanced and resolute section of the working-class parties of every country, that section which pushes forward all others" - Marx & Engels, "The Communist Manifesto"

This is further explained and expanded upon in "What is to be Done," by Lenin.

c. The Theory of Democratic Centralism is defined as:

This can be found in "Freedom of discussion, unity of action" - Lenin, "Report on the Unity Congress of the RSDLP."

d. The Theory of Socialism in One Country, formalized and applied successfully by Stalin, is here defined as:

"Uneven economic and political development is an absolute law of capitalism. Hence, the victory of socialism is possible first in several or even in one capitalist country alone. After expropriating the capitalists and organizing their own socialist production, the victorious proletariat of that country will arise against the rest of the world...." - Lenin, "On the Slogan for a United States of Europe"

"I know that there are, of course, sages who think they are very clever and even call themselves Socialists, who assert that power should not have been seized until the revolution had broken out in all countries. They do not suspect that by speaking in this way they are deserting the revolution and going over to the side of the bourgeoisie. To wait until the toiling classes bring about a revolution on an international scale means that everybody should stand stock-still in expectation. That is nonsense."  - Lenin,  (Speech delivered at a joint meeting of the All-Russian Central Executive Committee and the Moscow Soviet), 14 May 1918

5. Refuse to Cooperate upholds the right of Self Determination for all nations. A nation is here defined as:

"A nation is a historically constituted, stable community of people, formed on the basis of a common language, territory, economic life, and psychological make-up manifested in a common culture."
 - Stalin, "Marxism and the National Question"

Saturday, February 25, 2017

The Refuse to Cooperate Platform - Part 1

The Problem and the Solution

We, the members of Refuse to Cooperate, are determined to direct our resistance towards the central underlying problem of the capitalist mode of production. We point out the following problems:

1. Capitalism is inherently environmentally destructive. The chaotic and unrelenting competition for profits and the need for a continuous supply of new markets that is a defining characteristic of capitalism is ruining the life support system that is our planet. Capitalist governments and charities have shown themselves utterly incapable of stopping this process. The best that they can do is slow things down or fix them on a very small scale. We do not have time to wait for failing institutions to rescue the world from the very system of production those institutions depend upon.

2. Capitalism favors the few at the expense of the many. A system based on competition inevitably produces, like any game, winners and losers. The winners become the rulers and the losers become their subjects. As the game continues, the divide worsens and deepens. Such is the nature of competitive markets. In this way, poverty, homelessness, unemployment, and even starvation are inevitable byproducts of the system and are integral to its day to day functioning. Such a system that allows the wealth of the whole of society to pool in the hands of an ever dwindling elite class at the top, wile the many increasingly suffer, is inherently unjust.

3. Capitalism turns its subjects into slaves. Inherent to this system that we as a society have designed, is an exploitative relationship whereby the value produced by workers is taken from them for the benefit of a private owner with only a fraction of that value returned to workers as a wage. The degree the worker is dependent upon that wage is the degree to which that worker is enslaved. They are enslaved not by any one owner, as workers may occasionally choose a new one, but rest assured the owners make quite sure they are not usurped. At the same time, there remains, even today, large numbers of people forced into prison labor for maximum exploitation.

4. Capitalism is inefficient. A system dictated by profits rather than by projected needs leads to chaos in production. Huge surpluses of commodities are produced in some areas, whereas, massive shortages of those same goods are produced in other areas, with little regard to actual need or even the ultimate usefulness of the product. A system operating this way cannot never hope to meet the needs of its people.

5. Capitalism is bigoted. A system built upon inequality from the ground up will produce ideologies which are then institutionalized to rationalize conquest and exploitation. The ruling class will use these ideologies based on a variety of human differences, from national origin, to skin color, to sexuality, to physical and mental capability, as a means of maintaining control and keeping the masses divided. It is thus that capitalism either reshapes existing bigotries from previous systems (i.e. sexism) or creates bigotries to fit its needs (i.e. racism). These forms of oppression often interact and interlock, reinforcing each other.

Our solution to the question of human liberation is the Marxist mode of production, a society without classes, money, private property, and exploitation, where resources are produced and distributed based on need. The practical means of attaining communism is via socialist revolution and the building of a socialist society.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Frederick Engels', On Authority - Part 2

If man, by dint of his knowledge and inventive genius, has subdued the forces of nature, the latter avenge themselves upon him by subjecting him, in so far as he employs them, to a veritable despotism independent of all social organisation. Wanting to abolish authority in large-scale industry is tantamount to wanting to abolish industry itself, to destroy the power loom in order to return to the spinning wheel.

Destroying authority in industry is close to completely destroying industry itself. Man has conquered nature, only to subject himself to the rules of industry. Destroy the authority in industry and you risk displacing man into a lesser period of human technological development. Destroy the power loom to return to the spinning wheel.

Let us take another example, the railway. Here too the co-operation of an infinite number of individuals is absolutely necessary, and this co-operation must be practiced during precisely fixed hours so that no accidents may happen. Here, too, the first condition of the job is a dominant will that settles all subordinate questions, whether this will is represented by a single delegate or a committee charged with the execution of the resolutions of the majority of persona interested. In either case there is a very pronounced authority. Moreover, what would happen to the first train dispatched if the authority of the railway employees over the Hon. passengers were abolished?

In industry, the cooperation of a great deal of individuals is required during a precisely fixed period of time so that no accidents occur, whether it be in a factory or on a railway. Whether there is a single delegate or a committee serving as the will controlling this cooperation, authority is present. This authority is very strongly present and must be to ensure the safety of the workers and the proper operation of the machinery. Imagine what would happen to a train if the worker's authority over the railway's operation was not present. What would become of the train's passengers?

But the necessity of authority, and of imperious authority at that, will nowhere be found more evident than on board a ship on the high seas. There, in time of danger, the lives of all depend on the instantaneous and absolute obedience of all to the will of one.

On the sea, in a sailing vessel, the authority relationship is at its strongest. In times of danger their can be nothing but instant obedience to orders if the ship and its crew are too survive.

When I submitted arguments like these to the most rabid anti-authoritarians, the only answer they were able to give me was the following: Yes, that's true, but there it is not the case of authority which we confer on our delegates, but of a commission entrusted! These gentlemen think that when they have changed the names of things they have changed the things themselves. This is how these profound thinkers mock at the whole world.

Anti-authoritarians think that granting power to a commission of workers eliminates authority, when really all they have done is change the name of authority. The commission controls other worker's actions and the movements of the machinery. Call it whatever you want, this is still authority.

We have thus seen that, on the one hand, a certain authority, no matter how delegated, and, on the other hand, a certain subordination, are things which, independently of all social organisation, are imposed upon us together with the material conditions under which we produce and make products circulate.

Authority and subordination are things that work together to manipulate the material conditions under which we produce and make products circulate.

We have seen, besides, that the material conditions of production and circulation inevitably develop with large-scale industry and large-scale agriculture, and increasingly tend to enlarge the scope of this authority. Hence it is absurd to speak of the principle of authority as being absolutely evil, and of the principle of autonomy as being absolutely good. Authority and autonomy are relative things whose spheres vary with the various phases of the development of society. If the autonomists confined themselves to saying that the social organisation of the future would restrict authority solely to the limits within which the conditions of production render it inevitable, we could understand each other; but they are blind to all facts that make the thing necessary and they passionately fight the world.

The material conditions of production and circulation inevitably develop with large-scale industry and agriculture and grow in scope as industry and agriculture grow. It is absurd to consider the principle of authority an absolutely evil concept and the principle of autonomy as solely good. These principles are relative things whose spheres vary with the the development of the material conditions in a given society. Anti-authoritarians, by changing words, blind themselves to the reality of the material conditions that create authority and subordination.

Why do the anti-authoritarians not confine themselves to crying out against political authority, the state? All Socialists are agreed that the political state, and with it political authority, will disappear as a result of the coming social revolution, that is, that public functions will lose their political character and will be transformed into the simple administrative functions of watching over the true interests of society. But the anti-authoritarians demand that the political state be abolished at one stroke, even before the social conditions that gave birth to it have been destroyed. They demand that the first act of the social revolution shall be the abolition of authority. Have these gentlemen ever seen a revolution? A revolution is certainly the most authoritarian thing there is; it is the act whereby one part of the population imposes its will upon the other part by means of rifles, bayonets and cannon — authoritarian means, if such there be at all; and if the victorious party does not want to have fought in vain, it must maintain this rule by means of the terror which its arms inspire in the reactionists. Would the Paris Commune have lasted a single day if it had not made use of this authority of the armed people against the bourgeois? Should we not, on the contrary, reproach it for not having used it freely enough?

All socialists agree that, in time, the state's authoritative position will slowly dissipate from a political function to a purely administrative function, but anti-authoritarians believe that this transfer should happen immediately, even if the social conditions for such a drastic change are not yet ripe. Their first demand is to eliminate all authority, even though a revolution is one of the most authoritarian things that can exist, as one portion of the people imposes their will over another by means of rifles, cannons, and bayonets. Further, the revolutionary force must maintain their position with authoritarian measures, which rob some people of their rights. How long would the Paris Commune have lasted if it lacked an authoritarian power? Further, why were they not more authoritarian?

Therefore, either one of two things: either the anti-authoritarians don't know what they're talking about, in which case they are creating nothing but confusion; or they do know, and in that case they are betraying the movement of the proletariat. In either case they serve the reaction.

So, two conditions exist. Either anti-authoritarians don't know what they are talking about and are, thus, confusing everyone, or they do know what they are talking about, and are, thus, betraying the movement of the proletariat.

For further reading on this topic visit.....https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1872/10/authority.htm.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Frederick Engels', On Authority - Part 1

A number of Socialists have latterly launched a regular crusade against what they call the 'principle of authority.' It suffices to tell them that this or that act is authoritarian for it to be condemned. This summary mode of procedure is being abused to such an extent that it has become necessary to look into the matter somewhat more closely.

Mr. Engels noticed in his reading of socialist academic works, during his time, that people were sometimes much to quick to call something authoritarian; thus, he felt it necessary to clarify the meaning of the term authority.

Authority, in the sense in which the word is used here, means: the imposition of the will of another upon ours; on the other hand, authority presupposes subordination. Now, since these two words sound bad, and the relationship which they represent is disagreeable to the subordinated party, the question is to ascertain whether there is any way of dispensing with it, whether — given the conditions of present-day society — we could not create another social system, in which this authority would be given no scope any longer, and would consequently have to disappear.

Authority is the imposition of one's will over another person, and this presupposes subordination, in that one person is subject to the will of another. The question that Engels presents is here, is can this negative nature of authority be somehow changed or replaced with something better?

On examining the economic, industrial and agricultural conditions which form the basis of present-day bourgeois society, we find that they tend more and more to replace isolated action by combined action of individuals. Modern industry, with its big factories and mills, where hundreds of workers supervise complicated machines driven by steam, has superseded the small workshops of the separate producers; the carriages and wagons of the highways have become substituted by railway trains, just as the small schooners and sailing feluccas have been by steam-boats. Even agriculture falls increasingly under the dominion of the machine and of steam, which slowly but relentlessly put in the place of the small proprietors big capitalists, who with the aid of hired workers cultivate vast stretches of land.

Everywhere, combined action, the complication of processes dependent upon each other, displaces independent action by individuals. Now, whoever mentions combined action speaks of organization; now, is it possible to have organization without authority?

Supposing a social revolution dethroned the capitalists, who now exercise their authority over the production and circulation of wealth. Supposing, to adopt entirely the point of view of the anti-authoritarians, that the land and the instruments of labour had become the collective property of the workers who use them. Will authority have disappeared, or will it only have changed its form? Let us see.

Given then that a social revolution overthrows capitalism, who is to exercise authority over the production and circulation of wealth? Will collective ownership have eliminated the need for authority, or will it have just changed form?

Let us take by way if example a cotton spinning mill. The cotton must pass through at least six successive operations before it is reduced to the state of thread, and these operations take place for the most part in different rooms. Furthermore, keeping the machines going requires an engineer to look after the steam engine, mechanics to make the current repairs, and many other labourers whose business it is to transfer the products from one room to another, and so forth. All these workers, men, women and children, are obliged to begin and finish their work at the hours fixed by the authority of the steam, which cares nothing for individual autonomy. The workers must, therefore, first come to an understanding on the hours of work; and these hours, once they are fixed, must be observed by all, without any exception. Thereafter particular questions arise in each room and at every moment concerning the mode of production, distribution of material, etc., which must be settled by decision of a delegate placed at the head of each branch of labour or, if possible, by a majority vote, the will of the single individual will always have to subordinate itself, which means that questions are settled in an authoritarian way. The automatic machinery of the big factory is much more despotic than the small capitalists who employ workers ever have been. At least with regard to the hours of work one may write upon the portals of these factories: Lasciate ogni autonomia, voi che entrate! [Leave, ye that enter in, all autonomy behind!]

If no authority is to be exercised by the workers in a factory, then the workers must submit to the will of the machinery that produces the products in that factory. The machinery must move at a specific pace, produce a specific amount of product, and prepare that product for a specific distribution time. Either way, there is some form of authority being exercised.

For further reading on this topic visit.....https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1872/10/authority.htm.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Mao's, Combat Liberalism - Part 5

When conversing with just about anyone on any number of subjects, they always assume that the position that I am taking on the given topic of discussion is the liberal stance. Those from the right will call me a bleeding heart liberal in need of a good dose of fortitude, or something to that effect, and those on the left will mistake me for a liberal democrat or something similar, sometimes too liberal for their tastes. Whichever it may be, I always tell them that in order for me to be liberal, I would have to be a capitalist, which, I am not. I am a Marxist and cannot, thus, be a liberal, lest I betray the ideology that I have chosen to defend with much rigor. One of the best definitions of liberalism from a Marxist perspective is given by Mao in his brief work Combat Liberalism (September 7, 1937).

Mao then outlines several ways in which Liberalism can manifest itself. This is what liberalism is and Marxism is not.

Liberalism is a manifestation of opportunism and conflicts fundamentally with Marxism. It is negative and objectively has the effect of helping the enemy; that is why the enemy welcomes its preservation in our midst. Such being its nature, there should be no place for it in the ranks of the revolution.

Liberalism is opportunism and directly conflicts with Marxism. It is negative and works only to help the enemy; that is why the enemy hopes that liberalism will live on in society. Such being the nature of liberalism, Marxists cannot allow it to survive.

We must use Marxism, which is positive in spirit, to overcome liberalism, which is negative. A Communist should have largeness of mind and he should be staunch and active, looking upon the interests of the revolution as his very life and subordinating his personal interests to those of the revolution; always and everywhere he should adhere to principle and wage a tireless struggle against all incorrect ideas and actions, so as to consolidate the collective life of the Party and strengthen the ties between the Party and the masses; he should be more concerned about the Party and the masses than about any private person, and more concerned about others than about himself. Only thus can he be considered a Communist.

Marxism, positive in its nature, must be used to destroy the negative nature of liberalism. A Marxist should keep a large mind and remain active in the struggle against liberalism. The interests of the revolution are worth more than their life. They must wage a tireless struggle against liberalism, to the expense of their own interests. The purpose is to consolidate the collective life of the party and strengthen the ties between the party and the masses. The party and the masses are more important to them than their own life. When this is so, they will then be considered a Marxist.

All loyal, honest, active and upright Communists must unite to oppose the liberal tendencies shown by certain people among us, and set them on the right path. This is one of the tasks on our ideological front.

It is the duty of all good Marxists to oppose liberalism in all its forms. They must work to set all who practice liberalism correct.

If you want to read the rest of the piece that is the source for this commentary, visit https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/mao/selected-works/volume-2/mswv2_03.htm.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Mao's, Combat Liberalism - Part 4

When conversing with just about anyone on any number of subjects, they always assume that the position that I am taking on the given topic of discussion is the liberal stance. Those from the right will call me a bleeding heart liberal in need of a good dose of fortitude, or something to that effect, and those on the left will mistake me for a liberal democrat or something similar, sometimes too liberal for their tastes. Whichever it may be, I always tell them that in order for me to be liberal, I would have to be a capitalist, which, I am not. I am a Marxist and cannot, thus, be a liberal, lest I betray the ideology that I have chosen to defend with much rigor. One of the best definitions of liberalism from a Marxist perspective is given by Mao in his brief work Combat Liberalism (September 7, 1937).

Mao then outlines several ways in which Liberalism can manifest itself. This is what liberalism is and Marxism is not.

Liberalism is extremely harmful in a revolutionary collective. It is a corrosive which eats away unity, undermines cohesion, causes apathy and creates dissension. It robs the revolutionary ranks of compact organization and strict discipline, prevents policies from being carried through and alienates the Party organizations from the masses which the Party leads. It is an extremely bad tendency.

This basically means that liberalism is destructive to the collective in a revolution. It eats away at and destroys unity, creates neglect, and causes the people to give up on caring. It damages discipline, loosens order in the ranks, weakens the chain of command, and alienates leadership form the masses, which is very bad for overall cohesion.

Liberalism stems from petty-bourgeois selfishness, it places personal interests first and the interests of the revolution second, and this gives rise to ideological, political and organizational liberalism.

Liberalism stems from the selfishness of the petty bourgeois. It places the people's personal interests above those of the revolution, which gives rise to ideological, political, and organizational liberalism.

People who are liberals look upon the principles of Marxism as abstract dogma. They approve of Marxism, but are not prepared to practice it or to practice it in full; they are not prepared to replace their liberalism by Marxism. These people have their Marxism, but they have their liberalism as well--they talk Marxism but practice liberalism; they apply Marxism to others but liberalism to themselves. They keep both kinds of goods in stock and find a use for each. This is how the minds of certain people work.

Liberals look upon the the principles of Marxism as abstract dogma. They approve of the concept but are are not prepared to practice it in full. They are not prepared to replace their liberalism with full Marxism. The have both concepts, taking Marxism while practicing liberalism. They apply Marxism to others but liberalism to themselves. They keep both concepts together and use them when the situation sits, but they never commit to Marxism in full.

To be Continued…..If you want keep reading the piece that is the source for this commentary, visit https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/mao/selected-works/volume-2/mswv2_03.htm.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Arrg, Our Ability to Choose has Been Hijacked for an Hourly Wage!

"You and your dad are two different people." - Anonymous

There is a process I have observed as we are growing up. We are our kids best parent, our genes that get transferred determine this, which mean our kids are exactly like us, when it comes to what motivates them. We as Parents are responsible for motivating our kids anyway. We should understand what motivates us, so we can motivate them to give us less crap and still try to raise them to think for themselves. This may seem futile as we have been conditioned that it is Moral to Obey, not to question. So when do we get to grow up and make our own choices?

When we get to a certain age, puberty, we struggle with 'who' we are, as parents we want to guide our children through this 'transition' phase, to make it easier for them, but the very act of helping pushes them farther away from us, making us feel like failures, as though we are unable to help our own children succeed.

In this context, our kids do not distance themselves from us because they do not love us, they distance themselves so they can separate who they are, from who we are, to be able to distinguish between what their parents think of as right/wrong and what they think of as right/wrong. This is an attempt to 'Own' their own Morality.....

This process gets confounded, confused, hijacked, imposed, bullied, etc, etc, by the people who try to get you to act like them, so they can feel good about who they are. We struggle with the difference between what we were taught was 'right' and what we 'feel' is right.

Also, this process gets hijacked because this is around the same age as when we have to start working, so the 'obey' narrative from our childhood, gets reinforced by the Workplace. 'Do as you're told' is justifiable in the workplace because we don't know what we are doing starting out, so we accept 'do as you're told' and transfer this onto our sense of moral right and wrong because we can't pay the rent if we don't 'obey.'

We still are not allowed to determine what is right and what is wrong for ourselves. We have been conditioned by the Workplace to let others do it for us. We have sold our ability to choose for ourselves for an hourly wage.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Refuse to Cooperate - Foriegn Wars

In this brief video, I posit some questions in relation to Foreign Wars. Should they? Can They? Will They? and How will they?

Follow the Refuse to Cooperate blog at www.refusetocooperate3@blogspot.com

Sen. Warren Shutdown by Fascist Republicans

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like trying to administer medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

A few days ago, on February 7, 2017, Senator Elizabeth Warren was testifying against the nomination of Jeff sessions for Attorney General of the United States. Her speech was only one of many that night, all testifying against Jeff Sessions’ nomination.

Part of her speech was an excerpt from a letter written by the now late, Coretta Scott King. Mrs. King testified in 1986 against the nomination of Jeff Sessions as a Federal Judge. Part of the speech was “Not appealing” to Republican ears, so they decided to basically shut Senator Warren's speech down.

It started off with a warning as she was reading from the letter. The Senator was told to not impugned another Senator. The warning was over with quickly and she was allowed to continue reading. It wasn’t until the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, decided to shut her down completely, saying she broke senate rule 19 that her speech became an issue. The Senate then quickly took a vote, and she was asked to sit down.

My opinion on this?

BULLSHIT! What is the point of having a Senate hearing if you can’t present facts that support your idea! Poor Republicans, they couldn’t stand to hear that the Senator from Alabama was being exposed by not only the late Coretta Scott King, but by “Pocahontas,” the nickname for Senator Warren.

See, these are just the kind of things that really tick me off about American politics. When a party has the majority, either of the House or the Senate, they act as if rules only apply to the minority party, in some cases making up rules as they go along! Both Democrats and Republicans have a tendency of striping hearings of the rules when they testify only to apply them with excessive force when their rival party is prepared to speak.

This is complete and utter fascism. They are overstepping their power to force their agenda on others. I made a video where I talk more of this situation. See the link below. - Lexa Moon

Mao's, Combat Liberalism - Part 3

When conversing with just about anyone on any number of subjects, they always assume that the position that I am taking on the given topic of discussion is the liberal stance. Those from the right will call me a bleeding heart liberal in need of a good dose of fortitude, or something to that effect, and those on the left will mistake me for a liberal democrat or something similar, sometimes too liberal for their tastes. Whichever it may be, I always tell them that in order for me to be liberal, I would have to be a capitalist, which, I am not. I am a Marxist and cannot, thus, be a liberal, lest I betray the ideology that I have chosen to defend with much rigor. One of the best definitions of liberalism from a Marxist perspective is given by Mao in his brief work Combat Liberalism (September 7, 1937).

Mao then outlines several ways in which Liberalism can manifest itself. This is what liberalism is and Marxism is not.

To see someone harming the interests of the masses and yet not feel indignant, or dissuade or stop him or reason with him, but to allow him to continue. This is an eighth type.

This basically means that if you see someone actively harming the movement, and you do nothing to stop them, you are harming the movement just the same as they are.

To work half-halfheartedly without a definite plan or direction; to work perfunctorily and muddle along, "So long as one remains a monk, one goes on tolling the bell." This is a ninth type.

This basically mean that it you do work that is of no purpose to the movement and continue to do it, even though you have been corrected, you are harming the movement.

To regard oneself as having rendered great service to the revolution, to pride oneself on being a veteran, to disdain minor assignments while being quite unequal to major tasks, to be slipshod in work and slack in study. This is a tenth type.

This basically means that if you are given an assignment to do, but in your pride, refuse to do it because you consider yourself to be above such work, then you are damaging the movement.

To be aware of one's own mistakes and yet make no attempt to correct them, taking a liberal attitude towards oneself. This is an eleventh type.

This basically means that if you know that you have committed an error, but refuse to correct it, you doing damage to the movement.

We could name more. But these eleven are the principal types. They are all manifestations of liberalism.

Mao expands on much more in many other works. He expounds greatly upon the meaning of socialism and communism. Like others, he defines them, most basically, as being the common ownership of the means of production by the working class.

To be Continued…..If you want keep reading the piece that is the source for this commentary, visit https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/mao/selected-works/volume-2/mswv2_03.htm.

Friday, February 10, 2017

RTC Basic Reading List

This is a basic reading list for all new members of Refuse to Cooperate. It should get you up to speed on political ideology and analysis.

The Marxism Made Easy series:


Some basic Marxist texts:

Engels - "Principles of Communism" 1847

Marx & Engels - "The Communist Manifesto" 1848

Lenin - "3 Sources and 3 Component Parts of Marxism" 1913

Stalin - "Foundations of Leninism" 1953

Mao - "On Contradiction" 1937

Against Liberalism


Mao - "Combat Liberalism" 1937

And heres a useful resource for arguing with anti-communists:

What to read next when you're done with this stuff:

Mao's, Combat Liberalism - Part 2

When conversing with just about anyone on any number of subjects, they always assume that the position that I am taking on the given topic of discussion is the liberal stance. Those from the right will call me a bleeding heart liberal in need of a good dose of fortitude, or something to that effect, and those on the left will mistake me for a liberal democrat or something similar, sometimes too liberal for their tastes. Whichever it may be, I always tell them that in order for me to be liberal, I would have to be a capitalist, which, I am not. I am a Marxist and cannot, thus, be a liberal, lest I betray the ideology that I have chosen to defend with much rigor. One of the best definitions of liberalism from a Marxist perspective is given by Mao in his brief work Combat Liberalism (September 7, 1937).

Mao then outlines several ways in which Liberalism can manifest itself. This is what liberalism is and Marxism is not.

Not to obey orders but to give pride of place to one's own opinions. To demand special consideration from the organization but to reject its discipline. This is a fourth type.

This basically means that if you consider your own opinion to be more important than that of the movement, you are risking doing damage to the movement. When an order is passed down, you are obligated to obey it for the good of the movement.

To indulge in personal attacks, pick quarrels, vent personal spite or seek revenge instead of entering into an argument and struggling against incorrect views for the sake of unity or progress or getting the work done properly. This is a fifth type.

This basically means that if you are prideful and attack someone personally with emotion, rather than working out any problem that you may have with them by using reason and logic, you are running the risk of doing damage to the movement. You are creating unnecessary discord.

To hear incorrect views without rebutting them and even to hear counter-revolutionary remarks without reporting them, but instead to take them calmly as if nothing had happened. This is a sixth type.

This basically means that if you hear or see someone spreading disinformation or anything else that challenges the movement's ideology and you do nothing to correct it, you are doing damage to the movement. You essentially become and accomplice.

To be among the masses and fail to conduct propaganda and agitation or speak at meetings or conduct investigations and inquiries among them, and instead to be indifferent to them and show no concern for their well-being, forgetting that one is a Communist and behaving as if one were an ordinary non-Communist. This is a seventh type.

This basically means that if you are in a position to spread the movement's ideology to the masses, and you fail do so, you are doing damage to the movement because there is no telling how many people you could have brought along with you. After all, there is always power in numbers.

To be Continued…..If you want keep reading the piece that is the source for this commentary, visit https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/mao/selected-works/volume-2/mswv2_03.htm.