Quote of the Day
Stalinism is not just a possible interpretation of Marxism. In the annals of revolutionary movements it is without question the prevailing one. Of all the interpretations of Marx’s doctrine since the Communist Manifesto, it is overwhelmingly the one adhered to by the most progressives for the longest time. Maoism, Castroism, Vietnamese Communism, the ideologies of the actually existing Marxist states — these Stalinisms are the Marxisms that shaped the history of the epoch just past. This is the truth that leftist intellectuals like you are determined to avoid: the record of the real lives of real human beings, whose task is not just to interpret texts but to move masses and govern them. When Marxism has been put into practice by real historical actors, it has invariably taken a Stalinist form, producing the worst tyrannies and oppressions that mankind has ever known. Is there a reason for this? Given the weight of this history, you should ask rather: How could there not be?