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[Xmca-l] Re: With Marx and Engels



When I read Max's work, I am most struck by how NON-anonymous it really is.
Yes, it's about Marx and Engels, and yes, it's about Bolshevism and
Leninism, but it's also the feelings of a sixteen year old boy whose
experience of the class struggle seems to be mostly reading about it and
writing about it. I think the real tragedy is not so much that we have lost
a missing link, a desperately needed young mind who could have connected us
to future generations of revolutionaries who might have made at least some
of this visionary writing into a body of well worked out Marxist ideas. I
think the real tragedy is that he lost the chance to see the real class
struggle up close, and to learn that his stuff about Putin and the Ukraine
is no more relevant to it than his confused thoughts about communists in
private jets. It's far richer and far more confusing  and above all more
real--more wonderful and terrible--than a sixteen year old can really
imagine.Maybe that's the sense in which Max's writing is "anonymous" and
"revolutionary"--some day, potentially revolutionary for some person who is
now anonymous. Not here and not now, and now not for him forever, but
still...

A reminder of the strength and pain
Of being young: it won't come again
But is for others undiminished somewhere.

When I was Max's age, Obama and I both lived in Hawaii. Obama was going to
a ritzy private school called Punahou and I had left school early and
was working in a pineapple cannery to make money for college. I never met
Obama; I only mention him to drop a much weightier name on you.

The cannery where I worked was being organized by the Revolutionary
Communist Party of Robert Avakian, which was a Maoist sect locked in a life
and death struggle with the Communist Party Marxist Leninist of Mike
Klonsky. As part of this struggle, Klonsky brought a middle-aged factory
worker called James Veneris to the USA on a speaking tour, and as a young
kid fresh to Marxism (and also new to the working class) I went along.
Veneris was a "turncoat"--a young working class kid taken prisoner in the
Korean war who had decided to switch sides at the end of the war. When you
think about it (and I did), what he did was no more than what generations
of young Chinese-Americans and Chinese-Australians are doing now: jumping a
rather low political obstacle and building a life as an ordinary factory
worker on the other side. As a prospective Maoist I was really disappointed
that this guy was not a revolutionary at all but just an American-Chinese
factory worker, but as a young factory worker I was intrigued.

Ten years later, I met him again--I was on my way from Jinan to Beijing to
look for work, because I had decided to do what he had done (that was the
American-Chinese who wrote "In Search of China", Mike!). He looked at me;
there was a flash of recognition of his younger self, but the flash was
tinted with more horror than warmth. We both turned away to get on with our
lives (I remember thinking that if I really wanted to be like that I would
have to marry a Chinese soon, but it was another ten years before I
actually did).

I suppose the main thing people will remember about Veneris is that he was
one of the "traitors" whose defection at the height of the McCarthyite
scare led to a kind of obsession by psychologists with brainwashing. The
Freudians of the time attributed it to overbearing mothers enabled by
fathers absent during WWII and the behaviourists to the careful
manipulation of the prisoner's environment and of course it led to a spate
of bad movies like "Prisoner of War" (starring Ronald Reagan who was busy
driving Charlie Chaplin out of the screen actors guild), "The Manchurian
Candidate" and  eventually "The Bourne Identity". The truth was much more
wonderful and even more cinematic: Jim thought for himself and did what any
worker who thinks for himself should do.

I just learned, from THIS

http://www.nfb.ca/film/they_chose_china/

that Jim died in 2004.

David Kellogg
Macquarie University



I



On Thu, Mar 31, 2016 at 6:53 AM, Ulvi İçil <ulvi.icil@gmail.com> wrote:

> On 29 March 2016 at 13:13, Ulvi İçil <ulvi.icil@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > Thanks Andy. I am sure there will be thousands of teenagers to do this. I
> > will contact his parents and then I will write to you.
> > Ulvi
> >
> > On 29 March 2016 at 03:40, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:
> >
> >> His writings would be most welcome on marxists.org, Ulvi, all that is
> >> required is a volunteer to transcribe them.
> >> https://www.marxists.org/admin/janitor/why-not-writer.htm
> >> Andy
> >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> >> *Andy Blunden*
> >> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
> >>
> >> On 29/03/2016 1:26 AM, Ulvi İçil wrote:
> >>
> >>> http://theanonymousrevolutionary.com/2016/03/27/the-last-post/
> >>>
> >>> Hello, did anybody know this little but great  son of humanity?
> >>>
> >>> He died of terminal cancer.
> >>>
> >>> In his blog, in my views section, he advises, marxists internet archive
> >>> for
> >>> reading.
> >>>
> >>> I think that marxists.org can include his name in the list of
> thinkers,
> >>> publish his biography,  comments, entries.
> >>>
> >>> He deserves so much!
> >>>
> >>> Sorrowful, but what is much more important, so beautiful and so
> truthful,
> >>> when he says, among many others, happy 6-7 novembers, long live
> >>> bolshevism,
> >>> that he is a marxist and a leninist...those days...
> >>>
> >>> He is the author of a book just published.
> >>>
> >>> Ulvi
> >>>
> >>>
> >>
> >
>