Poor, Poor Michael.  So possessed.  Couldn't even see the words "Gallup's poll is entitled 'Socialism Viewed Positively by 36% of Americans'"  Get over it Michael.  PLP is gone.  Stalin is gone.  Caroll and i and many others have already mentored the next generation and they're doing just fine. They are building a movement on the real concerns of Americans and not on some offshore model  I suggest that you check out the following and engage in the ongoing growing movement.  It is very refreshing.
We Stand With the Majority of Americans: Human Needs, Not Corporate Greed

October 2011 Human Needs, Not Corporate Greed [. . .the first part of a statement
and call to action taken from the website below. A listing of associated organizations
and individuals pledged to participate can be found there.]
http://october2011.org/standwiththemajority
I genuinely wish you well Michael.  I don't take your attacks personally.  You aren't the first person i've encountered with demons from hurtful early experiences.  In most cases engagement in ongoing struggles and the concomitant awareness of the optimism, good nature and willingness to change of Americans leads to a speedy recovery,
herb
On 8/11/2011 12:03 AM, Michael Balter wrote:
[log in to unmask]" type="cite">
Herb promises us "facts" instead of speculation, and then proceeds to
immediately engage in the most rank speculation of his own: That
20-30% of the voting population would be prepared today to vote for a
socialist party. And what is this based on? An opinion poll finding
that 29% (not 36% as Herb states) of the subjects polled have a
positive reaction to the word "socialism".

This is quite a leap of logic for a man of science. It would mean that
the 29% are ready to translate an abstract sympathy for socialist
ideas into an action that would, at least in many peoples' minds,
guarantee a Republican president from here to eternity. All the
socialist party needs is enough campaign funds and election monitors
to make it happen.

I suppose that a pretty high percentage of people would have a
positive reaction to the term "bunny rabbit", but I think it likely
that many fewer would want one for a pet, or want to eat one for
dinner.

Herb is certainly right that this 29% figure is encouraging and
something to build upon. But until socialists shed their
self-deceptions and fantasies, they will never be able to figure out
how to do it. And while Carrol is wrong to say that I have a phobia
related to all this, I do have fears, including the fear that the old
generation of leftists will die out still not having learned from the
experiences of the past decades, and thus unable to impart much wisdom
to younger generations of activists.

MB

On 8/10/11, herb fox <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
I hate to upset all this speculation
with facts.  Apparently if the
system weren't rigged and require
great scads of money to buy
elections, we could very well have a
Socialist Party today with anywhere
from 20% to 30% of the vote.  That
would be a decent base to build
from.  Of course the hard core
supporters of capitalism would try
to paint the U. S. Socialists the
color of Stalin or whomever; but if
the ability to reach the public did
not depend on immense resources, the
New Socialist Party would have a
chance to flesh out a program based
on the needs and expectations of the
U. S. working class.  If you don't
trust PEW, try Gallup:
http://www.gallup.com/poll/125645/socialism-viewed-positively-americans.aspx
Gallup's poll is entitled *Socialism
Viewed Positively by 36% of
Americans**.
*
What needs to be emphasized is that,
in spite of long standing propaganda
against socialism and  continuous
discrediting of it by relating it to
repressive regimes and painting
those regimes as evil as possible by
the main stream press and others, it
still is viewed positively by a
substantial portion of the
population.  Just imagine what kind
of support it would have if we had
democracy instead of
corporatocracy.  Anyways, i didn't
need these polls.  Working with the
foreclosure movement, youth doing
street theater and other art forms,
and organizing adjuncts (in spite of
being an old fart) i find a majority
consider that capitalism has failed
them.  They want an alternative and
have some pretty well defined views
of what some of its attributes
should be.  They don't seem to be
bothered by calling it socialism and
hardly ever refer to other countries
that use that word.  Unlike older
persons like Michael Balter they
don't even know who Stalin was and
what it felt like to be part of a
weirdo group like PLP.  As a matter
of fact what they do know about Cuba
and Venezuela is the cool music that
comes out of there.  They definitely
are tired of our being permanently
at war and the government not having
money for other more essential
things.  I will admit they generally
are not too happy with China, mostly
because the Chinese work for such
low wages that  they take our jobs
away  So their negative view of
Communism is of a nation full of
economic opportunity for dudes with
cash and hell for the workers, and
with a government that lies and is
not a government of, by, and for the
people--sort of like the United States.
Sweet dreams,
herb

Pew Research Center for the People &
the Press


  "Socialism" Not So Negative,
  "Capitalism" Not So Positive


    A Political Rhetoric Test

May 4, 2010

"Socialism" is a negative for most
Americans, but certainly not all
Americans. "Capitalism" is regarded
positively by a majority of public,
though it is a thin majority. Among
certain segments of the public --
notably, young people and Democrats
-- both "isms" are rated about
equally. And while most Americans
have a negative reaction to the word
"militia," the term is viewed more
positively by Republican men than
most other groups.

These are among the findings of a
national survey by the Pew Research
Center for the People & the Press
that tests reactions to words and
phrases frequently used in current
political discourse. Overall, 29%
say they have a positive reaction to
the word "socialism," while 59%
react negatively. The public's
impressions of "capitalism," though
far more positive, are somewhat
mixed. Slightly more than half (52%)
react positively to the word
"capitalism," compared with 37% who
say they have a negative reaction.

A large majority of Republicans
(77%) react negatively to
"socialism," while 62% have a
positive reaction to "capitalism."
Democrats' impressions are more
divided: In fact, about as many
Democrats react positively to
"socialism" (44%) as to "capitalism"
(47%).

Reaction to "capitalism" is lukewarm
among many demographic groups. Fewer
than half of young people, women,
people with lower incomes and those
with less education react positively
to "capitalism."

The survey, conducted April 21-26
among 1,546 adults, measured
reactions to nine political words
and phrases. The most positive
reactions are to "family values"
(89% positive) and "civil rights"
(87%). About three-quarters see
"states' rights" (77%) and "civil
liberties" (76%) positively, while
68% have a positive reaction to the
word "progressive."

Reactions to the word "libertarian"
are evenly divided -- 38% positive,
37% negative. On balance,
Republicans view "libertarian"
negatively, Democrats are divided,
while independents have a positive
impression of the term. "Militia"
elicits the most negative reaction
of the nine terms tested: Just 21%
have a positive reaction compared
with 65% who have a negative response.


      Partisan Divide over "Socialism"

The most striking partisan
differences come in reactions to the
word "socialism." Just 15% of
Republicans react positively to
"socialism" while 77% react
negatively. By more than two-to-one
(64% to 26%), independents also have
a negative impression of
"socialism." However, Democrats are
evenly divided -- 44% have a
positive reaction to "socialism"
while 43% react negatively.

"Capitalism" elicits a less partisan
reaction. About six-in-ten
Republicans (62%) react positively
to "capitalism," compared with 29%
who have a negative reaction. About
half of independents (52%) have a
positive impression while 39% react
negatively. Among Democrats, 47%
react positively to "capitalism"
while nearly as many (43%) react
negatively.

There is a substantial partisan
divide in views of the word
"progressive." However, majorities
of Democrats (81%), independents
(64%) and Republicans (56%) have a
positive reaction to "progressive."

More than four-in-ten independents
(44%) react positively to the word
"libertarian," while 32% have a
negative reaction. Democrats are
nearly evenly divided (39% positive,
37% negative). However, Republicans
on balance have a negative
impression of this term (44%
negative, 31% positive).

Majorities of Democrats (70%),
independents (66%) and Republicans
(59%) react negatively to the word
"militia." Nearly twice as many
Republicans (27%) as Democrats (15%)
have a positive view of this term.


      Young People Lukewarm Toward
      "Capitalism"

Young people are more positive about
"socialism" -- and more negative
about "capitalism" -- than are older
Americans. Among those younger than
age 30, identical percentages react
positively to "socialism" and
"capitalism" (43% each), while about
half react negatively to each. Among
older age groups, majorities view
"socialism" negatively and
"capitalism" positively.

People ages 65 and older have a
particularly negative reaction to
"socialism" -- 73% have a negative
impression of the term compared with
just 14% who are positive. But those
65 and older are no more likely than
those ages 30 to 64 to have a
positive reaction to "capitalism"
(56% vs. 55%).

More than twice as many blacks as
whites react positively to
"socialism" (53% vs. 24%). Yet there
are no racial differences in views
of "capitalism" -- 50% of African
Americans and 53% of whites have a
positive reaction.

Those with a high school education
or less are evenly divided over
"capitalism" (44% positive vs. 42%
negative). Among those with some
college experience, 49% react
positively to "capitalism" as do 68%
of college graduates. Those with a
high school education or less are
more likely to express a positive
view of "socialism" than do those
with more education.

People with family incomes of
$75,000 or more are the only income
group in which a clear majority
(66%) reacts positively to the word
"capitalism." Views of "socialism"
also are much more negative among
those in this income category (71%
negative) and among those with
incomes of $30,000 to $75,000 (64%
negative) than among those with
incomes of less than $30,000 (46%
negative).

Conservative Republicans stand out
for their overwhelmingly negative
reactions to "socialism" (84%
negative) and highly positive
reactions to "capitalism" (67%
positive). No more than about half
in other political groups, including
moderate and liberal Republicans
(51%), have a positive impression of
"capitalism."

Perhaps surprisingly, opinions about
the terms "socialism" and
"capitalism" are not correlated with
each other. Most of those who have a
positive reaction to "socialism"
also have a positive reaction to
"capitalism"; in fact, views of
"capitalism" are about the same
among those who react positively to
"socialism" as they are among those
who react negatively (52% and 56%,
respectively, view "capitalism"
positively). Conversely, views of
"socialism" are just as negative
among those who have a positive
reaction to "capitalism" (64%
negative) as those who react
negatively (61% negative).

There are some differences in the
relationship between these terms by
demographic groups, although the
association is not particularly
strong among any group. For
instance, among college graduates,
71% of those with a positive
reaction to "capitalism" have a
negative reaction to "socialism." By
contrast, among college graduates
who have a negative view of
"capitalism" a smaller proportion
have a negative view of "socialism"
(51%).



On 8/10/2011 12:28 PM, Kamran Nayeri
wrote:
Kamran, I'm out of posts today,
but perhaps you would care to post my
response to yours which is below.
That will be my last post for today.

thanks, Michael

---------- Forwarded message
----------
From: Michael Balter
<[log in to unmask]
<mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
Date: Wed, 10 Aug 2011 18:20:30 +0200
Subject: Re: Please apologize, and
soon
To: Science for the People
Discussion List
<[log in to unmask]
<mailto:[log in to unmask]>>

When it comes to Marxist analysis,
I'm an amateur and so is nearly
everyone here, although it would
be refreshing if they would admit it.

But more incisive analysts than us
have thought and written about
false consciousness (Stanley
Aronowitz and many others) and
sought to
explain the clear fact that it is
not just the working class being
badly led or mean capitalist
crackdowns a la Reagan that are to
blame,
but the consciousness of the
working class itself which has turned
away decisively from socialist
values over the decades. Or does
anyone
here want to argue that the
workers are just stupid and subject to
threats and suggestions and unable
to make up their own minds about
anything? The problem is that they
HAVE made up their minds, and the
job of socialists is to change
them. But JOB ONE has to be to
convince
workers that socialism doesn't
mean Cuba, Chavez, USSR, Chairman Mao,
etc. Is anyone other than David
Westman actually going out into the
street and trying to sell
socialist or Communist
publications? I did
it for years, and this is the main
argument I had to deal with every
time. Try it today, you will get
the same response.

MB


On Wed, Aug 10, 2011 at 9:25 AM,
Michael Balter
<[log in to unmask]
<mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
wrote:

    Kamran, I'm out of posts
    today, but perhaps you would
    care to post my
    response to yours which is
    below. That will be my last
    post for today.

    thanks, Michael

    ---------- Forwarded message
    ----------
    From: Michael Balter
    <[log in to unmask]
    <mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
    Date: Wed, 10 Aug 2011
    18:20:30 +0200
    Subject: Re: Please apologize,
    and soon
    To: Science for the People
    Discussion List
    <[log in to unmask]
    <mailto:[log in to unmask]>>

    When it comes to Marxist
    analysis, I'm an amateur and
    so is nearly
    everyone here, although it
    would be refreshing if they
    would admit it.

    But more incisive analysts
    than us have thought and
    written about
    false consciousness (Stanley
    Aronowitz and many others) and
    sought to
    explain the clear fact that it
    is not just the working class
    being
    badly led or mean capitalist
    crackdowns a la Reagan that
    are to blame,
    but the consciousness of the
    working class itself which has
    turned
    away decisively from socialist
    values over the decades. Or
    does anyone
    here want to argue that the
    workers are just stupid and
    subject to
    threats and suggestions and
    unable to make up their own
    minds about
    anything? The problem is that
    they HAVE made up their minds,
    and the
    job of socialists is to change
    them. But JOB ONE has to be to
    convince
    workers that socialism doesn't
    mean Cuba, Chavez, USSR,
    Chairman Mao,
    etc. Is anyone other than
    David Westman actually going
    out into the
    street and trying to sell
    socialist or Communist
    publications? I did
    it for years, and this is the
    main argument I had to deal
    with every
    time. Try it today, you will
    get the same response.

    MB

    On 8/10/11, Kamran Nayeri
    <[log in to unmask]
    <mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
    wrote:
    > Would you perhaps consider
    (1) the timing of the decline
    in membership (does
    > it not coincide with the
    anti-union push beginning with
    Reagan attack on air
    > traffic controllers strike),
    (2) inability /lack of
    interest of union
    > leadership to fight back
    (due to the rise of labor
    aristocracy and labor
    > bureaucracy that have more
    in common with the employer
    class than with
    > rank-and-file workers, in
    addition to the crimes of
    Stalinism?
    >
    > It is my observation (others
    can correct me if I am wrong)
    that Michael B.
    > typically blames "socialist"
    and "anti-imperialist"
    currents for much of
    > what is wrong with the
    world. This is a serious
    theoretical and
    > methodological error that
    share nothing with Marx's
    heritage if that is what
    > he aspires to follow.
    >
    > Kamran
    >
    > On Wed, Aug 10, 2011 at 8:48
    AM, Michael Balter
    > <[log in to unmask]
    <mailto:[log in to unmask]>>wrote:
    >
    >> Thanks to Carrol and Herb
    for taking my digs with humor,
    and to Herb
    >> for responding to them in a
    thoughtful way. Better
    responses than that
    >> of our moderator, who
    insists on silly apologies.
    >>
    >> The decrease in union
    membership can probably be
    traced to a number of
    >> factors, and anyone here
    who tried to explain it would
    probably just
    >> be guessing. My guess is
    that it is a combination of
    increasing
    >> disenchantment with the
    possibilities of socialism
    beginning in the
    >> 1950s with Hungary, the
    1960s with Czechoslovakia, the
    1970s with
    >> China, and the 1980s with
    the fall of the Soviet Union,
    along with
    >> capitalism's increasing
    ability to satisfy the major
    needs of an
    >> increasing number of people
    (a big middle class despite
    poverty and
    >> increasing wealth gaps.)
    Certainly the fall of
    Communism, which many
    >> on the American left have
    yet to come to grips with, has
    made
    >> socialist goals farther
    away than ever for both
    leftists and the
    >> people they might organize.
    >>
    >> But good to know that my
    remarks have generated a
    discussion, that's
    >> encouraging. I will keep on
    truckin.
    >>
    >> MB
    >>
    >> On 8/10/11, Mitchel Cohen
    <[log in to unmask]
    <mailto:[log in to unmask]>>
    wrote:
    >> > At 10:54 AM 8/10/2011,
    herb fox wrote:
    >> >>Apparently either unable
    or unwilling to investigate
    what actually
    >> >>is the political practice
    or position of those whom he
    judges, he
    >> >>cavalierly invents their
    views.
    >> >
    >> > Putting words in the
    mouths of one's opponents is
    an old
    >> > tried-and-true tactic.
    Sooner or later, some of that
    will inevitably
    >> > stick, tho' we never know
    beforehand which ones.
    >> >
    >> >>in 1952 (when this old
    fart's eldest son was born)
    21.6% of the
    >> >>workforce was organized
    and popular support was at
    75%.  Today about
    >> >>half, around 11% is
    organized and popular support
    of unions is below
    >> >>50%.  Explain that M. B.
    >> >
    >> > Similarly, let me put
    Michael Balter's inevitable
    one-note response
    >> > in his mouth. Why should
    Michael have all the fun?
    Michael says: No
    >> > doubt 10.6 percent of the
    workforce withdrew support
    from labor
    >> > unions because they were
    disgruntled with the Soviet
    Union. And Cuba.
    >> >
    >> > Isn't it obvious?
    >> >
    >> > :-)
    >> >
    >> > Mitchel
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> > http://www.MitchelCohen.com
    >> >
    >> >
    >> > Ring the bells that still
    can ring,  Forget your perfect
    offering.
    >> > There is a crack, a crack
    in everything, That's how the
    light gets in.
    >> > ~ Leonard Cohen
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >> >
    >>
    >>
    >> --
    >>
    ******************************************
    >> 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
    >>
    >


    --
    ******************************************
    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



    --
    ******************************************
    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