Thursday, August 11, 2005

Agorism Contra Marxism, part 2

[This continues a multi-part summary of known existing portions of Samuel Edward Konkin’s unfinished book Agorism Contra Marxism, which began, and ended, its serialization in Strategy of the New Libertarian Alliance #2, 1982-83.]

The Marxist Appeal

Karl Marx himself asserted that should History fail to bear him out, he would admit he was wrong.

History has passed judgment.

Just as Ludwig von Mises forecast in his landmark book Socialism (1922), in which the impossibility of economic calculation under Marxist statism was demonstrated, Marx’s economics failed horribly. This economic failure led inevitably to the failure of Marx’s political and historical predictions, and Marxist-controlled institutions today coast on intellectual capital and historical inertia.

But Marxism still won the hearts and souls of billions in the past century, and continues to do so among many even now. Why? What is Marxism’s appeal? Samuel Edward Konkin III wrote:

“The most appealing part of Marxism may well have been the vision of sociopolitical revolution as a secular apocalypse. While others offered explanations of Revolution, only Marx gave it such meaning. No longer were the oppressed to merely oust the old regime to bring in a new regime brutal in a slightly different way, but the Revolution would make things so great that no further revolution was necessary. Marx’s legerdemain was actually profoundly conservative; once the Revolution was over, there would be no more. Even diehard monarchists flinched from that much stasis.

“Yet the combination was unbeatable to motivate political activists: one all-out effort and then home free. More realistic presentations of Revolution tended to excite less dedication and commitment.”

But the truth remains: today, Marxism is bankrupt. On the Left, faith is gone, morale is low, and activism is paralyzed. The Left needs a new ideology to supplant its failed and discredited Marxism. Agorism — the purest, most consistent, and revolutionary form of libertarianism — is that supplanting ideology. Agorism can motivate and direct the underclass’s struggle against the overclass — and return the Left to its radical anti-state, anti-war, pro-property, pro-market historical roots.

To be continued...
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