What’s wrong with Left? Learning from past mistakes

Divded We Fall pocast, episode 2

Last month, “The Barricade” launched a new series of podcasts under the title “Divided we fall,” where we discuss the Left’s ideological confusion, various strategical mistakes, its complete lack of courage, and sometimes its plain ignorance. All this has led to the current situation of utter weakness, isolation, and huge loss of legitimacy for the Left, particularly in the Global North.

In this present episode, Pat Byrne and Boyan Stanislavski discussed the Left’s inability to learn from the past mistakes of its organizations and leaders, including from some of its failed projects and experiments. Actually, it is not even willing to take a closer look at the existing systems that are alternatives to capitalism just because they’re not “socialist enough.”

One of the Left’s major mistakes in the last decades seems to be the complete disregard of the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc. With very few exceptions, the global Left has just given up on the very notion of a major systemic change (social-democrats). Alternatively, it has just added a few points about how the USSR wasn’t “really socialist” and thus failed (Marxist Left.) There was no critical reflection or serious moves to research what went wrong and why.

Part of the problem here is the fact that despite the general praising of democracy, the Left is very top-down. Such a structure lays the ground for the development of a particularly pathological political culture, one where no feedback is accepted and only the decisions of various “central committees” matter. This, in turn, produces a complete lack of flexibility and a ban on disagreements and eventually splits, as well as a sense of demoralization from the membership and disenfranchisement from the working class.

Watch the entire conversation on our YouTube channel and don’t forget to subscribe to and like the video. This will help us make our analysis more popular, and more people will have the chance to get familiar with the political, social and economic problems in Eastern Europe.

Photo: Pat Byrne (left) and Boyan Stanislavski (source: The Barricade)

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