Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Leftist Fantasy

"The doubts that drove us through the night as we two talked amain,
And day had broken on the streets e'er it broke upon the brain."

Typical accusation by the decent left about the Marxist supporters of Iranian insurgents argues that they are projecting their imaginary formula of social change to the current political situation in Iran. The critique is often accompanied with an emphasis on supposedly overlooked complexity of international politics: How could you fail to notice that imperialist puppeteers are pulling the strings just like in the case of Venezuela and in contrast to the collaborator pawns that speaks English, likes to mess around with Twitter and MTV, the majority of population is pleased with their despotic masters (I don’t endorse the regime in Iran however it is the materialization of Iranian subjectivity and it plays a progressive role by counteracting US-Israel imperialism in the Middle East).

Quite the opposite, I think that these noble and untainted critics of recent uprisings stick to their fantasy scene in which they unyieldingly go up against their native bourgeois even in a situation where their bourgeois too is unaware of what is really going on. Although the authentic political category of “imperialist conspiracy” seems indisputable, in the last analysis it is still a conspiracy theory which has been employed for avoiding to get tangled with the material conditions of a situation. In the case of Venezuela, the propelling motive behind the revolution was socialism, which was considered by the working class as the proper way to counter offense the American imperialism and the local politico-economical order that enables global capital to maintain its hegemony in Venezuela. Even the Venezuelan revolution has not being realized against some credulous students duped by American imperialism, it is against the seemingly invincible network of global economic system. But in Iran, the situation is different, if not completely irrelevant. The current Iranian regime does not only adhere to the fundamental economic premises of imperialism, but at the same time constitutes various pretexts that pave the way for continuation of imperialist aggression. In this sense, far from being an astute analysis, contemptuous & indulgent description of Twitter & MTV revolutionaries against uncompromising anti-imperialist posture of the Iranian Establishment is itself a compromising product of hygienic leftist fantasy.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Little Boxes

"...they all were put in boxes, little boxes all the same"

Yesterday, Maryam Namazie posted an interview with Hamid Taqvaee, leader of the Worker-Communist Party of Iran:

Although I find his opinion about the widespread opposition against the regime is slightly exaggerated, I agree with his conviction that it is inaccurate to call the elections in Iran as a farce whilst in actuality there has not been any elections whatsoever. It differs from elections in standard capitalist-democracy both formally and functionally. In the formal sense, participation in elections is strictly restricted by the Guardian Council of the Constitution to prevent any possible discrepancy within the current political arrangement from the start. Functionally, since an "apathetic public consensus" (Badiou) has already been established in Western democracies as a result of numerous years of practice and capital-labor friction has been comparably softened with some grease acquired through the imperialist plunder, a typical elections in Western democracy functions as a sham, but a sincere sham in which every four of five years people come together in a carnivalesque fashion and pit their insignificant differences against another just to confirm the comfortable delusion that they possess democracy which guarantees difference of opinion among people. Eventually the triumphant side seals the victory with a blissful musical gathering. (For instance, I'm very disappointed with the outcome of the latest elections in the U.S for the sole reason that they seized our modest enjoyment of listening Pete Seeger. That is all). But because democracy itself is a shameless sham in Iran, as Hamid Taqvaee puts it, elections functions to ensure the continuity of the regime, not as a celebratory ritual about public consensus but as a disturbing symptom which compensates and masks the absence of it.