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Case against Hierarchy Comrade 08/04/2020 (Tue) 11:32:58 No. 2866 [Reply] [Last]
Appealing to nature as an argument for hierarchy is a reactionary point of view used by many societies to make its underclasses tolerate their plight. There is a common misconception that natural selection always acts for the good of the species, therefore we should not bother changing anything about ourselves. Natural selection does not produce organisms perfectly suited to their environments. Social hierarchy typically runs counter to the needs which human beings have and creates conditions under which people become alienated from the valuable capacities that they possess. If we want human beings to thrive and realize their potential, we ought to meet their essential needs. Since hierarchy runs counter to these needs, it ought to be dismantled whenever possible. Human nature, far from being an argument against anarchism is a strong case for it, as a non-hierarchical society creates conditions under which human beings can unleash their true potential. Capitalism is one of the most dehumanizing forces in the world. It dehumanizes workers and bosses because it is a system that is inherently anti-human nature and human needs, forcing people to act more like robots who never get sick, rarely desire vacations, and never desire self-actualization, all to turn a higher profit. I think Marx's theory of alienation is spot on. Capitalism alienates humans from their own humanity, and it turns sacred things into commodities. The conditions of social hierarchy in which people are subjected to control from above, and in which people are encouraged to compete with one another for power and resources, creates an environment in which the needs for competence, relatedness and autonomy are not met, resulting in ill-being and alienation. Subordination to authority undermines autonomous motivation, reduces our intellectual and creative faculties, and ruptures our relationships with our peers. A human nature argument for anarchism can begin with something called the self-determination theory. Initially founded by Edward Deci and Richard Ryan, SDT posits that human beings have three key psychological needs: competence, relatedness, and autonomy. In a nutshell, we need to feel that we are effective in dealing with the environment around us and that we are good at what we do. We need to feel a sense of connection with the other human beings around us and that we are cared for by others. We need to feel that we have some sense of control over our lives, that we aren't just pawns on a chessboard, and that we are acting in accordance with our integrated sense of self and the values that we have developed over time. According to SDT, these essential needs are not learned but are inherent to human nature, and exist across all societies and cultures. Remember the human need for relatedness and consider that cooperative conditions are far more suited to meeting this need than competitive ones. As anarchists, we promote cooperation over competition precisely because we see cooperation as being fundamentally more in line with our human need to feel connected to others. To the extent that these needs are met, well-being is enhanced, and to the extent that there are thwarted, we can expect people to become ill and alienated. The model of human nature that SDT supports is, in my opinion, a stable base that lends itself well to anarchism. SDT shows that we call for anarchist forms of organization, because the core needs and drives we possess as human beings require it, and because social hierarchy runs counter to these needs and drives. A 2003 study published in the *Journal of Personality and Social Psychology* found support for the notion that we have a need for autonomy, and that this need is cross-cultural. >We found that whatever cultural practices one is considering, there appears to be a positive relation between more internalized or autonomous regulation of those practices and well-being, as measured through both hedonic (happiness) and eudaimonic (self-fulfillment) indicators (Ryan & Deci, 2001). Specifically, we found that whether one's behavior and attitudes are individualistic, collectivistic, horizontal, or vertical in nature, more autonomous enactment is associated with greater well-being. These findings support SDT's position regarding basic psychological needs and, more specifically, the controversial idea that autonomy is a basic human concern. >However, when considering horizontal versus vertical dimensions, we see more reason to hypothesize differences in the degree to which each can, on average, be more fully internalized. Specifically, we see the very nature of vertical social arrangements as more inherently conflictual, vis-à-vis SDT's postulated basic needs for autonomy and relatedness. Vertical societies frequently require individuals to forgo autonomy and to subordinate themselves to heteronomous influences. In addition, vertical societies place boundaries around those with whos intimacy and connectedness can be established. >In sum, this study shows that, across diverse cultures, the issue of autonomy can be similarly understood and that, across diverse practices, autonomy is associated with well-being. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/275714384_Differentiating_Autonomy_From_Individualism_and_Independence Another study by Edward Deci and Richard Ryan looked at the well-being of workers in state-owned companies in Bulgaria, and compared this with workers in a United States corporation. They found that, >The degree of autonomy-supportiveness of the work climate did predict overall need satisfaction in each culture, and need satisfaction in turn predicted both task engagement and well-being. Thus by showing that satisfying these needs promotes motivation and mental health across cultures, results of the study are consistent with the view that these needs are universal. https://selfdeterminationtheory.org/SDT/documents/2001_DeciRyanGagneLeoneEtal.pdf Autonomy is also an important need not just for adult workers, but for young people in school. A study looking at adolescent satisfaction with life in school found a relationship between support for autonomy and well-being across different cultures, particularly Denmark and the United States, >To the extent that adolescents felt that their parents and teachers understand their perspectives and allowed them to make their own choices, adolescents positively perceived their lives and their experiences in school. In contrast, when adolescents felt controlled by their parents and teachers, and felt that these authorities treated the adolescents' own experiences and choices as relatively unimportant, they reported lower satisfaction with life in school.

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>>3902 At this point I'm pretty sure that anon is a teenager who decided he wanted to be a communist so he read a handful of short articles and thinks we know what lens he's using when he takes the negative positions itt. Upon being correctly dismissed for failing to present any logical case for his position he doubled down with obtuse examples that make sense from his frame of reference but have left us mystified because he never really elaborated on what he means by "competition" as it pertains to the OP or why every analysis of human interaction has to specifically reference propagation of the species. Hopefully in the future he reads more theory because the path of contrarianism leads more easily to reactionary thought.
>>3896 >social power imbalances that exist outside of material conditions within the bourgeoisie - proletarian paradigm but from those posts it seems like “hierarchy” is just a system of privileges. privileges are really just your rights to interact with certain items in a certain way. that’s the whole basis of property. which puts it under the Marxist definition of class.
>>3872 >>3897 >>3899 This is the type of person who uses "anarkiddie" unironically. Take a good look so that you know what kind of galactic intellect you're up against.
>>3906 >galactic intellect Nothing i said is hard to grasp, actually. OP argues that hierarchy prevents the full potential of humans and is therefore in contradiction to their nature. He ignores that individuals may benefit from supporting a hierarchy that is detrimental to society as a whole. In such a scenario there is no contradiction between human nature and the negative consequences thereof. The only way such a scenario can not exist is if selection operates not on the level of the individual, but that of the collective. >>3903 >but have left us mystified because he never really elaborated on what he means by "competition" Why am i asked to specify a term that OP used before me? It's fine if he uses it, but if greentext it then i suddenly have to "define" it? Get that shit out of here faggot. >or why every analysis of human interaction has to specifically reference propagation of the species If you talk about human nature and "key psychological needs" while coming up with a model that doesn't include evolution you are a brainlet, plain and simple. Not to mention that OP never specified why "competence, relatedness, and autonomy" are the end all be all of human nature. Selective sourcefagging.
>>3904 Forgive me for answering your question with more questions, but do you consider the leaders of the vanguard party to be proletarians? Would you say that they have more agency/autonomy than workers, the same because they represent the class, or less because they have to realize the ideals of a class that may not best represent their material interests?

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How to improve English writing? Comrade 06/19/2020 (Fri) 00:47:10 No. 1973 [Reply] [Last]
I am an ESLer. How do I improve my English writing? My grammar, and punctuation is terrible. My writing vocabulary is terrible as well. Sometimes when I write, I take a long time because the right word or phrase is not on my mind. I have a large passive vocabulary, but I don't know how to use it, and turn it into active vocabulary. I am looking to improve my writing ability to a level where It would be easy for me to write papers for academic journals, and conferences. If you have any recommendations, please do post them.
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>>3803 >>3804 Why learn Latin? Could I learn Greek instead?
>>3875 Because Latin makes up like 80% of a our vocabulary whereas Greek only 6%? And those 6% came to us through Latin.
>>1973 Might sound obvious but read more books? Including fiction (ones that are considered to be well written that is)

/lit/ Comrade 04/12/2020 (Sun) 10:02:55 No. 808 [Reply] [Last]
What is your favorite book? What book influenced you the most? What do you like about books? what are you planning to read? What are you reading now? Saw this in /hobby/ but thought it fit more here
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Oh you like reading, eh? Name every book.
>>808 >What is your favorite book? Dandelion wine by ray bradbury >What book influenced you the most? State and revolution by Vladimir Lenin >What do you like about books? There’s more room for interpretation than other forms of media >what are you planning to read? Haven’t read for whom the bell tolls yet, I was thinking of reading that >what are you reading now? Fall of the ottomans by Eugene Rogan
>>2818 magnet:?xt=urn:btih:e9e73292b797b1617869320745503b7447102324&dn=J.%20R.%20R.%20Tolkien%20-%20The%20Lord%20of%20the%20Rings%20(HarperCollins%20e-books%2C%202009)
>>2935 This led me nowhere
>What is your favorite book? The Non-Existent Knight by Italo Calvino because its genuinely funny and I like what it says about how we define our identities. >What book influenced you the most? Manufacturing Consent because it really opened my eyes to how different the world from how it was being presented to me. Maybe some poems in there as well about community but that's harder to pin point. >What do you like about books? Being able to talk to people about them and see how they relate to other things in culture >what are you planning to read? I want to find something about Weimar Berlin because I feel like that's relevant rn >What are you reading now? Boneshaker by Cherie Priest. I wanted to read something steampunk because that's where my mind was aesthetically when I started but it seems to be more about zombies than a cool Victorian alternative universe.

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Historian 03/01/2020 (Sun) 12:29:42 No. 291 [Reply] [Last]
Would anime today be better if Americans rightfully executed the Emperor for his war crimes after the second world war instead of blaming it all on Hideki Tojo?
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Japan surrendered. There would have been no grounds to execute the head of state.
>>3865 They could have easily executed him for the war crimes he was responsible for. In fact the Americans had to do a lot to deceive the judges at the Tokyo trial into sparing his life.
>>3867 Yeah. The Nazis got the worst of it in comparison, yet many of their crimes were left unpunished.
What do communists do with inbred parasitic royalty?
>>3869 We shoot them or make them spend the rest of their life as janitors doing it for FREE

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Comrade 08/26/2020 (Wed) 19:59:30 No. 3775 [Reply] [Last]
I've been reading a lot about classical economics, or classically-trained economists (mostly cause I live in a small town and my local library only has capital and i feel im not ready yet for that). How much classical or "mainstream" economics should I read before getting into marx and marxist theory proper? I should mention Im only doing this in the first place cause I'm a literal brainlet when it comes to economics so I'm trying to learn basic economic concepts in order to build on later with the marxism. Also when it comes to philosophy, should it go plato--->aristotle--->hegel---->marx? Or should I add a few more or maybe skip some? pic unrelated
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>>3775 Depends how smart you are. Capital is pretty easy (the language of the first chapter is quite difficult though. Honestly just skip it and come back later), if you have read any classical economics go for capital right now. If you want the most basic Marx reading I'd recommend Critique of the Gotha program, as it's very basic and easy to read. In general I find Engels/Lenin is easier to digest. To understand the philosophical background, I recommend this short read https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1886/ludwig-feuerbach/index.htm After this and the first 2 books the other guy recommend, I think you would be more than ready to read Capital. But it does depend on the angle you're going for, if you're interested in philosophy, definitely read Hegel. However if you're interested in economics, as it seems, I would deem Hegel a waste of your time right now and just read the link I sent. From philosophy you need to be well acquainted with these terms though as a Marxist (start from the link I sent) -idealism -materialism -dialectics
>>3784 >>3785 thanks for effortposts comrades
>>3775 In regards to philosophy, I'm a layman myself, but please don't start with the Greeks it's a meme. They are not relevant anymore the few things that are relevant get repeated and explained by modern philosophers enough. Start with the young Hegelian: Marx, Engels, Feuerbach and Stirner. And from there on you can read whatever you like. A personal recommendation from me would be the early Frankfurt school and Bakunin, but it's just what I enjoy the most.
Read Smith, then Capital. Nothing else is needed IMO.
I asked this on /leftypol/ but I think I'll get an answer here: Is there a consensus on which English translation of Capital is best? I have a paper version of the Moore and Aveling translation but I'm considering getting a different one (Fowkes I guess), since this one is too bulky and I've heard about quite a few translation errors in it. Is it worth being picky over the mistranslations? I'm just worried that I'll fail to notice the errors and then pick up a wrong interpretation of Marx.

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What is IQ really? Comrade 07/09/2020 (Thu) 13:33:17 No. 2243 [Reply] [Last]
Is IQ even real? Can it reliably measure someone's "intelligence"? What even is intelligence, and is it really primarily genetic? Is IQ really tied to race? I keep seeing a lot of conflicting opinions on this but I'm too much of a brainlet to find a satisfying answer.
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>>2255 Yes, look at your own map, most blue countries/regions are descended from Europe: Canada, US, Argentina, Europe, Russia, Australia. China and Japan are outliers, if anything it proves that one can train for the test, and that is what they do, they literally train how to take these standardised tests. Both China and Japan have cultures where academic success is respected and something that people strive for, so of course those countries will have higher test AVERAGES, because there are simply more of them who do well.
IQ is a bit meh. Of course, there are various aspects to what is considered intelligence; so even if you have good measures for the aspects, it's somewhat arbitrary how you weight them. Extremely bad results can tell you whether somebody is disabled. We know IQ tests aren't perfect, the weighting issue aside. There are programs for solving IQ tests, yet this doesn't give us a general simulation of human intelligence. The way IQ talk is used in political discussion – as a cause, not as both cause and effect – is asinine. If you are malnourished and live in a polluted area, you get brain-damage from that, no matter how great your genetic potential is. There is some correlation between very good IQ results and doing well in school. But it doesn't make sense to obsess over two people being ten or fifteen points apart. IQ test results are NOT stable over life, that's a big lie that I suspect people tell who know better and who want to score above the herd. You can definitely practice for these tests and improve by twenty to thirty points. I don't think you can get from 80 to 150 though. >>2249 Your argument about test-making and solving assumes a symmetry that isn't there. I can create a vocabulary test against a dictionary without having perfect memory about what's in the dictionary myself. I can set a higher time-limit for myself as a test-maker than I allow for the test-taker and I can allow myself to use certain tools that I don't allow the test-takers to use. I can make very hard puzzles about shoving pieces around by going backwards from the solution, that doesn't mean I can solve puzzles of similar complexity myself. It's easier to multiply prime numbers than to be shown the result of that multiplication and having to find the prime numbers from that.
>>2249 >IQ was designed in the same way, European (white) males are taken to be the standard against which others are tested. I’m not incredibly pro IQ or anything but this is such a bullshit argument. IQ was created by the school board to identify students with learning disabilities.
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>>3850 >IQ was created by the school board to identify students with learning disabilities. The original IQ test as created by Binet, yes, it was meant to identify children with learning disabilities. But then the Americans took it, and created the Stanford-Binet scale, among others. That is the IQ test we talk about and know today. I'm not talking out of my ass, I got my info from pic related. It's a good book and you should read it. >Your argument about test-making and solving assumes a symmetry that isn't there. My point is that the test (actually, in the beginning there were two tests, for literate and illiterate people, it's actually a very interesting story, but I digress) was designed in a way that it presented people with problems and then timed them on how fast they're able to complete the tasks, if at all. Now, why would the test-creator assign tasks that he himself cannot solve? The original IQ test asked things about days of the week, about American culture, asked them about radio, etc. basically, it tested white, middle-class intelligence. Poor whites also did poorly on the tests. The test didn't test "intelligence", but integration into American society, it asked questions that the test-makers knew the answer to. And I ask again, how can someone ask a question they themselves can't answer and then judge someone on the validity of that answer?
>>3856 >how can someone ask a question they themselves can't answer and then judge someone on the validity of that answer? That question was already answered ITT, you are just too dumb to get it :/

Theories of Imperialism Comrade 08/18/2020 (Tue) 13:24:03 No. 3026 [Reply] [Last]
I don't know much about Imperialism. Can someone summarise the key differences between the Luxemburgian theory of Imperialism and the ML theory of Imperialism? Where do they differ and which of them is, in your mind, more accurate? I have unfortunately not the time to read "Die Akkumulation des Kapitals." or "Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism" as I have to do a lot of reading for uni at the time and my tbr list is already way too long. It´s a topic I'm really interested in and I would appreciate it if you could help me out here. Maybe you know a shorter, more accessible introductional book on imperialism.
>>3026 >industrial capital merges together with bank capital, creates financial capital >creating of trusts, monopolies, bourgeois unions, and so on >trusts destroy and choke the competition, capital centralizes even further >centralization means monopoly over natural resources >regional goes national, national goes international >biggest firms own the capital in other countries, exploits further their resources and labor force >world is now partitioned between the most developed capitalist states. further repartitions will cause wars >imperialism Correct me if I missed something, comrades.
>>3816 You missed the part about the banking hegemony where countries are invaded when they stop using the dominant financial transaction system. You know like in Libya the first thing the counter revolutionaries did was create a new central bank to undo the Gold-dinar that Gaddafi had implemented. I think this is a relatively recent development of imperialism.
>>3817 Monopolies became entrenched around the late 1800s before the formation of our modern credit system. A credit system which Lenin nor Marx could not commentate on as the the gold standard had not been dropped in place of the US dollar yet. Libya's threat to the US dollar would lower the demand for the US dollar and weaken its purchasing power. The US has a trade deficit, thus its dollars flood foreign markets, particularly those which it extracts value from. Its military opens up new markets and creates more capital in the process of capital accumulation. Michael Hudson explains this much better than I can, and he is foremost the leading economist in formulation of American imperialism and the debt economy.

Linear Algebra General /LA/ Comrade 08/24/2020 (Mon) 21:27:33 No. 3446 [Reply] [Last]
-Linear Algebra General- Welcome to /LA/ comrades. In this thread we will work together more or less in line with the MIT OCW Linear Algebra syllabus. The OCW page can be found here: https://ocw.mit.edu/courses/mathematics/18-06-linear-algebra-spring-2010/index.htm On the OCW page you can find the calendar, recommended readings, lectures, and problem sets and exams. The lectures are done by Gilbert Strang who also wrote the recommended textbook. I think he is a very good instructor and I believe you should certainly give his lectures a watch if you are interested in learning more. The Calendar is divided into 40 sessions which correspond to 40 assigned readings and lectures. There are 10 problem sets and 4 exams with all the solutions online. This thread will serve as a place to discuss lectures, readings, and, probably most usefully, ask other anons for help on problem sets or exams.
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>>3759 Thank you anon this was actually very helpful. I appreciate you taking the time to lay this out for me.
>>3760 You're very welcome, I won't be doing the course but will check here regularly to help the best I can!
What's the point of learning this bourgeois mathematics? How will it ever help the working class?
>>3808 This is the language of how the planet is *actually* run. Without this we would never be able to run world wide distribution networks (read Cockshott)
>>3808 I hope you're baiting lol

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Comrade 05/13/2020 (Wed) 16:07:07 No. 1603 [Reply] [Last]
I'm looking for book recommendations on Operaismo, Operation Gladio and the Marshall Plan. If anyone has suggestions, then it would be much appreciated.
here's the obvious one
>>1603 Are these letters soyfacing?
>>3791 Brain damage as a result of forced memes.
>>1603 These are not books entirely about what you requested but there is good info on Operation Gladio and the Marshall Plan in these PDFs
>>3791 someone make a tronti soyfacing wojak >>3797 thank you! I really appreciate it

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The truth about Stalin Comrade 07/15/2020 (Wed) 17:34:14 No. 2473 [Reply] [Last]
I want to learn more about the dogmatism that surrounds Stalin in socialism by looking at the actual historical evidence. I know there are books by Grover Furr that discuss this subject. but I want to additionally know what are some books with direct counter-arguments to Grover Furr's claims, and which of Grover Furr's books I should read first. any suggestions? pic unrelated.
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>>2476 >Which of Furrs books Khruschev Lied is an excellent one and I also suggest his work on Katyn which you can find on his website. https://msuweb.montclair.edu/~furrg/research/furr_katyn_preprint_0813.pdf >source His response to Mike Ely: https://stalinist75.rssing.com/chan-52237329/all_p1.html Someone elses response to Ely as well: https://www.revleft.space/vb/threads/142976-Response-to-Kasama-s-attack-on-Grover-Furr
>>2473 <Domenico Losurdo <Stalin: The History and Critique of a Black Legend <The figure of Stalin occupies a central position in the history of the twentieth century. Bloody dictator but also organizer of an empire of immense size, creator of the gulag and destroyer of the Nazi concentration camps, cynical manipulator of the ideals of social renewal and object of an unprecedented cult of personality, the judgment on the "iron Georgian" followed closely the luck of his character until the final sentence after the fall of the Berlin wall. Domenico Losurdo returns to analyze the myth of Stalin to describe its rise and fall.
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<Q: Fidel, for most Latin American revolutionary leaders, the current crisis of socialism has a mastermind: Josef Stalin. A: I believe Stalin made big mistakes but also showed great wisdom. In my opinion, blaming Stalin for everything that occurred in the Soviet Union would be historical simplism, because no man by himself could have created certain conditions. It would be the same as giving Stalin all the credit for what the USSR once was. That is impossible! I believe that the efforts of millions and millions of heroic people contributed to the USSR's development and to its relevant role in the world in favor of hundreds of millions of people. I have criticized Stalin for a lot of things. First of all, I criticized his violation of the legal framework. I believe Stalin committed an enormous abuse of power. That is another conviction I have always had. I feel that Stalin's agricultural policy did not develop a progressive process to socialize land. In my opinion, the land socialization process should have begun earlier and should have been gradually implemented. Because of its violent implementation, it had a very high economic and human cost in a very brief period of history. I also feel that Stalin's policy prior to the war was totally erroneous. No one can deny that western powers promoted Hitler until he became a monster, a real threat. The terrible weakness shown by western powers before Hitler cannot be denied. This at encouraged Hitler's expansionism and Stalin's fear, which led Stalin to do something I will criticize all my life, because I believe that it was a flagrant violation of principles: seek peace with Hitler at any cost, stalling for time. During our revolutionary life, during the relatively long history of the Cuban Revolution, we have never negotiated a single principle to gain time, or to obtain any practical advantage. Stalin fell for the famous Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact at a time when Germans were already demanding the delivery of the Danzig Corridor. I feel that, far from gaining time, the nonaggression pact reduced time, because the war broke out anyway. Then, in my opinion, he made another big mistake, because when Poland was being attacked, he sent troops to occupy that territory, which was disputed because it had a Ukrainian or Russian population, I am not sure.

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