The class struggle is a political struggle
What the proletariat needs in order to begin the inevitably complex process of self abolition is total and comprehensive political power as an organized class-control over territory and means of production/reproduction enforced and imposed by its own apparatus of organized violence, which is to say state power.
It must first assert itself as a political subject in antagonism to the bourgeois within the capital relation and proceed to impose itself as the dominant term of the class contradiction systematically suppressing the bourgeois and abolishing commodity relations over the course of a complex and protracted process.
The idea of a sudden comprehensive abolition of capitalist production relations is a mirage without historical precedent-it ignores the experience of every actual revolutionary process and of every prior transformation of modes of production.
Bourgeois patriarchal civilization has reproduced itself throughout the world for centuries-there can be no moment of redemption, no messianic rupture, such hopes are contrary to all the laws of historical development.
What is required are partisan organizations devoted to the development of a popular counter power opposed to the political power of the bourgeois and its state-oriented towards the construction of a new political, cultural and economic order in the course of a long drawn out class war.
Concretely we need:
1: Cadre organizations developing a collective process of militant practice and theoretical development towards the formation of the Party-not a sect but the real nucleus and center of gravity of the revolutionary process. Which generate and engender a collective will to sacrifice and struggle while constituting a war machine capable of leading the assault upon the imperialist state.
2: Intermediate mass organizations which act to defend the specific material interests of the exploited on every front-against police, bosses, landlords, and prison bureaucrats while propagating a new culture, new norms of conduct and new means of resolving contradictions and disputes among the masses-outside the bosses law. Which form the skeleton of the mass organizations to form the substance of the new state.
3: Structures of defense and intervention which develop the capacity for unrestrained struggle against the enemy through practice-which constitute the instruments of proletarian military policy and develop the nucleus of the future Red Army.
There are no exact blueprints to follow (no such things exist in war!), there is however the rich historical experience of the world proletariat to serve as a basis for the articulation of a strategy adapted to the current conjuncture.
The organizational development of the Bolshevik party and the Russian revolutionary process culminating in the October insurrection, The experience of civil war gained by the early Comintern in Germany, Italy and Finland, The theorization of protracted people’s war over the course of the Chinese revolution and the development of similar strategies in the anti-colonial liberation wars worldwide.
The urban guerrilla in West Europe and Latin America and the People’s Wars throughout the neo-colonial world which continue today.
These are only some of the historical processes whose successes and failures should be rigorously interrogated in order to lay the groundwork of future strategy.
The armed struggle is the highest form of mass struggle
“We may advance a simple rule: the likelihood of significant social change in the United States may be gauged by the extent to which the covert, armed, guerrilla aspect of the struggle is developed and consolidated.
If the counterrevolutionaries and fools who parade themselves as leaders while resisting the development of the movement’s armed capacity are overcome-and the struggle is therefore able to proceed in a proper direction-I think we will see a revolutionary change in this country rather shortly.
If, on the other hand, this leadership is able to successfully do what amounts to the work of the state- that is to say, to convince most people to shy away from armed struggle, and to isolate those who do undertake to act as guerrillas from the mass of support which should rightly be theirs – then the revolution will be forestalled.”
None of this has anything to do with either militarist focoism or the heroic individualism of the anarchist underground. The unavoidable development and escalation of military confrontation with the bourgeois is only one indissoluble element of the total process of revolutionary construction, of the development of counter-power and counter-institutions.
The establishment of communist organizations as the nucleus of the protracted class war for the imposition of the dictatorship of the proletariat is the primary strategic task of revolutionaries today.
This entails the coalescence of militants within disciplined collective structures oriented to the simultaneous performance of practical and theoretical work, to the establishment of an autonomous political infrastructure and the development of a mass base for revolutionary politics.
Currently the provision of social needs and whatever concrete social struggles occur are dominated by the bourgeois state through the mediation of its soft and multi-faceted preventative counter-insurgency apparatus-the NLRB approved unions, the NGO and non-profit system, the churches and so forth.
These structures also provide a material basis for the reproduction of reformist and revisionist ideology among potential revolutionary militants.
Therefore communists should work for the establishment of base organisms outside the influence of the bourgeois and its reformist and revisionist agents-organisms which in their practice assert a autonomous proletarian politics and build up a collective subjectivity antagonistic to the state.
We already in this country see hints of the potential power of mass action which develops largely outside the institutional channels, the strikes in Georgia and California, the largely under-reported waves of high school walk-outs and the ruling class panic over flash mobs intensified by the specter of the insurrection in England.
The task at hand is the concentration of this energy around a strategy of protracted class war for the destruction of the bourgeois state and construction of new organs of power. An unavoidable first step is the regroupment of revolutionary militants into disciplined collective structures, the cultivation of the subjective factor through the training in practice of communist militants as full time political combatants.
The glorification of mass spontaneity is an alibi for the evasion of responsibility, without the organization of a communist core out of and within the mass movements to defend and assert a proletarian line the mass movements will inevitably remain under the ideological hegemony of the bourgeois or even fall under the influence of the radical right-wing and fascistic currents which are already proliferating in the putrid atmosphere of capitalism’s structural crisis.
Towards the construction of the party
Against all the fads of “informal organization”, “changing the world without taking power” and so on there is nothing to do but continue to obstinately raise the banner of the party as a weapon for the conscious transformation of the world through mass violence.
The authentic party of the class is not a debate club or newspaper selling sect-but the real organic coalescence of the most advanced elements of the mass struggles around the communist program.
It is the strategic nucleus which integrates all the partial struggles within a single long term process, which ties together and coordinates the immense network of base organisms in the struggle against the state.
It cultivates no false unanimity within itself but exists as the battleground for a continuous internal struggle of differing lines and perspectives.
Strategically centralized and tactically diffuse it can only be built up around the most oppressed elements of the class-subjecting the petty bourgeois and the labor aristocracy to proletarian leadership.
The party is a war machine: It is obligated to build up a clandestine infrastructure insulated from state repression from the very beginning even as it exploits to the fullest all opportunities for open and legal agitation and propaganda.
It must be capable of providing strategic leadership to both the legal and illegal struggles simultaneously while remaining rooted within a mass base. This entails the careful and patient construction of support networks and structures strong enough to weather the isolation campaigns of state counter-insurgency which will become progressively more violent as the class confrontation escalates.
The existence of such an organization cannot be declared on paper by some small group of intrepid activists it must a product of the convergence of communist organizations already experienced in various forms of struggle and possessing political infrastructure and strong connections to the masses.