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Mr. Balter is raising, in his own confused way, the question of "how do 
you tell fake socialism or communism from the real thing?".   And he 
acknowledges, at least implicitly, that mere labels do not help you 
here.   What he has not yet done is recognize that the issue of 
revisionism, Marxism which has been revised at its core to expunge 
revolutionary politics, is key here.   This is connected to his stance 
as a "left anti-communist" which provided no room for exploring this 
issue.    But if he took up the politics of anti-revisionist Marxism, he 
would see that there is a way out of his quandry, and I would hope he 
could recognize that.    Genuine socialism (as opposed to the 
social-democracy practiced by the European parties which are socialist 
in name only, and capitalist in practice, with a "human face" that is 
becoming increasingly downcast in the last few years), rests on building 
a revolutionary party that practices the politics of class struggle, and 
has as its goal the ultimate transition to communism.    This path was 
aborted by the Stalinists, and their fellow revisionists in the 
Trotskyist and Maoist camps have persisted in this erroneous path for 
the entire 20th century and up to the present day.    So what needs to 
be done here is to repudiate the bankrupt politics of the 
social-democrats of Europe (who also have followers in the USA among 
left-wing Democrats, Greens, and other groups), and the modern 
revisionists (also including Castroists and the faux socialists of Latin 
America such as Chavez and Morales).    The Augean stables must be 
cleansed of this filth of the past century, and anti-revisionism is the 
only way to go about this.

David Westman

On 5/15/2011 12:38 AM, Michael Balter wrote:
> Larry asked yesterday about the situation in countries that are 
> "socialist" rather than Communist, if indeed any such exist. Last 
> night the leading presumed candidate for president on the French 
> "Socialist Party" ticket, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, was arrested for 
> allegedly sexually assaulting a hotel maid. DSK, as he is known, is 
> also head of the very capitalist I.M.F.
>
> So yes, we need a democratic socialism of the type Larry refers to, 
> one that suffers neither from the authoritarianism/totalitarianism of 
> so-called "Communist" states and parties, nor the "capitalism with a 
> human face" outlook of the so-called socialist parties one finds in 
> Europe.
>
> MB
>
> -- 
> ******************************************
> Michael Balter
> Contributing Correspondent, Science
> Adjunct Professor of Journalism,
> New York University
>
> Email: [log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>
> Web: michaelbalter.com <http://michaelbalter.com>
> NYU: journalism.nyu.edu/faculty/michael-balter/ 
> <http://journalism.nyu.edu/faculty/michael-balter/>
> ******************************************
>
> “Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that 
> there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy on the proof."
>                                                   --John Kenneth Galbraith
>