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Nostalgic Marxism (was:Re:breaking blood ties)

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  • DRStarman2001@aol.com
    ... *******Well, Sheila, most of the time the only thing to do with Marxist ideologues is to ignore them. All of that sort of stuff has nothing to do with the
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 3, 2002
      > >>>I am ashamed and
      > horrified by your Mordorian statement "...where I see that
      > marxism-leninism was a nonvital ideology of healthy social
      > impulses...." This one statement opens your soul for what lives within, proving Dr. Starman's last message to you as
      > absolute Truth.
      > Sheila

      *******Well, Sheila, most of the time the only thing to do with Marxist ideologues is to ignore them. All of that sort of stuff has nothing to do with the current dialogue in the 'healthy' world.

      I was reminded of this last night when I went to see the restored version of Fritz Lang’s “Metropolis” from 1927, a very ambitious work which bankrupted the German film industry; it was a great piece of propaganda for its time, which gives some insight into the feelings of the German people in Steiner’s last years. Metropolis, the great city of the future, has a wealthy elite living in a city in the clouds, while the workers are reduced to a sub-human condition caused by the their life of drudgery of merely mechanical movements, and live in the depths below the earth. There are scenes of a human being chained to the clock, and a scene where an industrial accident metamorphoses into a human sacrifice on a pagan altar. I’m sure it was very effective in its day (when German workers WERE reduced to virtual servitude--- not by 'Capital' but by France & England & the Versailles Treaty terms, imposed with Woodrow Wilson's connivance).

      To a 2002 audience, however, it was a quaint relic from another era, like Victor Hugo’s description of the street revolutions of France in the 1800s or the labor movement songs of Joe Hill. As I said before, in the last years of his life people talked to Steiner of restarting the campaign for a threefold social order, and he said that they would have to rewrite all the literature from 1919, because things were changing so fast that it would now be not just years but CENTURIES out of date. Well, I’m not the only one capable of realizing when you see or hear a piece of propaganda about “the workers” in their “industrial conditions”, that as I look about me in the audience I usually don’t see a single person who has ever worked in a factory. Sociology expresses this by saying that we are now "postindustrial" societies, where the majority of people earn their living by manipulating information. Also, all these old clichés about labor and capital have nothing to do with the modern entrepreneurial society with anyone can start his own business, with Toffler's "Third Wave". They make distinctions no longer real. Marxist terms are a quaint anachronism, like the "antiwar movement" in America today, made up of Jane Fonda and other old people stuck in reenacting roles from 30 years ago--- with young people instead volunteering to FIGHT.

      What kills a spiritual movement is when people no longer have direct insight into what the founders could see, and instead words from a bygone age are frozen in time as if nothing will ever change. The reason why our movement is still alive is that, in teaching children in a Waldorf school you have to deal with the real children, not with ones in 1920’s Germany, and so you have to be creative with what’s handed down---- and in growing vegetables you have to try things and see what works, not merely believe that what somebody said is true. Here in the U.S., there is zero interest in the "threefold social order" stuff from the Society, because of all this antiquated baggage it carries. Civilization has evolved far away from everything pictured in those times, except in a few European countries still holding onto their socialism. But eventually the internal contradictions it causes will force those societies to discard it as well. They are irrelevant to the rest of the world and certainly can provide no help in understanding how to get at the principles underlying the threefold social order ideas. Steiner expressed them in 1919 using the then-popular Marxist language in order to reach his audiences; that would be used to maybe reach no one except left-wing college students today, a minority of a minority. Keeping it expressed in these terms is condemning it to irrelevance. None of that has anything to do with the world dialogue today, with the triumph of the free market and the revolt against world progress of reactionary Islam and religious fanaticism and ethno-nationalism---- which materialist Marxism can never understand or deal with, as its materialist bias that attributes everything to economic causes, says should not even exist. For the same reason, neither can it understand Anthroposophy.

      Dr. Starman
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