[lbo-talk] just don't do it

Carrol Cox cbcox at ilstu.edu
Tue Apr 20 10:58:12 PDT 2010

shag carpet bomb wrote:
> some confusion about my meaning.
> i'm trying to understand why people don't get involved. for instance, the
> election.

I don't think it is a valid question. Non-involvement is The Given. Why don't more people run around their desk inn circles three times in the morning and three times after lunch? The question is merely odd. So is your question.

The question is why _sometimes_ people do get involved, become active. Are those conditions describable in the abstract (i.e., can they be predicted)? If they are not predictable, what kind of activity makes most sense during periods whenn few become active?

Incidentally, I see no resemblance whatever between my assrtion that The Left does not (currently) exist and the Platypus claim that the left is dead. My claim was originally made, & still makes most sense, in the context of rejecting criticism of "The Left," especially criticisms that, at least implicitly, claim that The Left's non-existence is the fault of the left, and if The Left would only follow the critic's recommendations The Left would suddenly exist. My poin is _always_ accompanied, usually explicitly, with the observation that thousands or tens of thousands, perhaps more, _leftists_ exist. Platypus critics seem to claim that if only the left of the '30s or the left of the '60s had one things the correct way, they would not have been _defeated_ (though Platypus offers no criterira of what, in those periods, "Victory" would have consisted in. I would argue that until a better case can be made to the contrary we should regard both of those lefts as having been victorious: they 'won' what could have been won under the given conditions.

people on this list would talk about how great it was that young
> people were involved and doing stuff. there were great hopes pinned on this
> movement behind obama.
Electoral work is a route OUT OF politics; it represents despair.


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