There's no good hard left wiki. Instead of fixing this problem, we've been sitting on our ass. This site has been a viable candidate for a while now, but because the admin has previously written on it using a slightly spooked "anti-Stalinist" perspective, it has been rejected. That's stupid. We can turn it into whatever we need it to be.
Anyone even remotely knowledgeable should start writing articles. The internet needs a website like this. Write on whatever topic related to Marxism and leftism. Worker cooperatives, cybernetic economic planning, dialectical materialism, maybe even internet drama could have a place on there… Whatever works for you. At the moment I mostly want to get a place like this off the ground.
We can change that. I've already placed a disclaimer at the top of the FAQ page and the admin seems fine with it.
that's not spooked, that's reasonable
Sure. It just isn't a good position for a Wiki like this to take. Ideally it should attract a broad base of Marxists and Marxist sympathizers.
Just edit wikipedia. It's literally a libsoc governance structure based on mutual aid and voluntary cooperation. Protected editing is just like seniority that you would see in any worker's union, and it's based off your editing history, contributions, and ability to cooperate with other workers. The bylaws that govern editing on wikipedia largely prevent evangelizing and historical revisionism beyond what already exists within the current state of scholarship. If you want to propagandize instead, the wiki is a poor format. If you want to combat poor scholarship and historical revisionism, that can be and is done both within wikipedia and academia itself.
That article was when the admin was still writing from an exclusively left-communist perspective. It's the "anti-Stalinist spookery" I mentioned in OP. It would be a great help if someone could help rewrite it in a less biased way.
USSR wasn't real socialism etc. It's alright to go into perspectives like that on the wiki, but it should be alongside other Marxist analyses, clearly delineated from each other. Maybe the best way to tackle 20th century communism is not from the "Is it real socialism or not?" angle but from "Was it an effective project to move towards socialism?" Explain the successes and failures. Explain how the historical conditions played into this and how we could improve upon it today. The "real socialism" question can be dealt with in a separated section for it. In
Go for it.
Are you the owner? I took a look around the wiki and it seems pretty left-com-ish. I'm writing an article but it will take long since I want to source everything and check if I'm not making any mistakes. I'm assuming you don't have to write from certain lens, right? I'm neither a left-com or ML so I can feel the threat of a gulag if I don't go with the general consensus. Anyways I'll try to contribute the best I can.
I'm not the owner but they seem fine with whatever. Just go for it.
moments later… Both Chris Hedges and Helen do not seem to understand the history or talk pages. Helen handwaves it away by saying no one has time for checking sources, and then immediately denigrates people for using wikipedia as being lazy and not looking at sources. The fact that wikipedia has been repeatedly demonstrated to be more accurate than Brittanica is never mentioned. Edit warring, biased editors, shadowfunded edits, and so on are all a reality. Wikipedia isn't perfect or completely accurate or free from bias. Literally nothing is. Pretending it isn't credible is completely idiotic though. Look at the sources yourself. Many times you will find they are peer-reviewed journals of high quality, and if the sources are low quality that's what the gigantic warning at the top of the page means. If it isn't there, you can put it there yourself.
I've done my best to write a comprehensive history about the fall of USSR(marxistpedia.org/wiki/Collapse_of_USSR). I aplogize if somethings is spelled wrong, isn't sourced, spelled wrong, or simply doesn't make sense. I'm going to improve this page but for now I'm done, i've spent good few hours re-reading books and trying to condence them. If anyone can help me it's with writting the 1991 coup attempt which pretty much comes out of nowhere without any background given in my text. Some parts I've left out but I, like any other human, need to sleep. anyways say if somethings is wrong or you don't understand it. Every criticism is appreciated. Cheers!
I did some basic editing of the article. Good work. This topic is a clear example of why we need an alternative to Wikipedia. Their articles on it are filled with liberal bias.
good work comrade.
Thanks. I'm going to complete it today and add sources. Thanks especially CyberSynGANG for editing the article. I've also sent an email to the admin of this site if non left-com content is permissible but I haven't recieved anything back so far.
I've recieved a response from the admin. It's fine to have differing views on there. And yes I know how funny the name CrispyCactus is
What are some examples of Wikipedia being unfair to Soviets?
I mean I'm pretty much all for Stalin here but it's fine to have a diversity of critiques in an article including Trotsky. All these people are dead, folks! It's okay to have articles that include different perspectives.
I think it'd be fun to copy from the Soviet Encyclopedia, with a note saying where it's from. It's all open source. I want to look at this closely.
As a 'Stalinist' myself, I agree. Criticisms by Trotsky should be added as well. I think there are two ways to learn Marxism: reading Marxist texts and reading non-Marxist texts. Doing the latter gives a better understanding of Marxism too (like how NOT to think, the thought-process liberals use, etc.)
Marx, Engels, Lenin… everyone used to do that. I think Mao mentions this too.
Of course to do so you have to have a basic grounding in Marxism.
I've given sources to the collapse of USSR article. Like I already said if something is wrong or you don't understand it; say it in this thread. Later i'm going to add how Gorby completely fucked up the rise of nationalism.
While not the soviets or unfair the article on one of Mao's wifes makes it seem like he executed her. If you go into her page it's says the full story. I can't seem to find it now thought.
People can do both. I could see Marxistpedia becoming like the cliff notes version of Marxists.org. There's so much stuff on the latter that it's hard to contextualize it all.
This seems like the best way forward.
I don't think so. Wikipedia is seen and edited by too many people, add to this the fact you have to remain "neutral", which means stale articles that don't say much at the end. Marxistpedia is better since it has a left leaning view of topics and doesn't need to compromise. This of course doesn't mean we should write in there lies. Everything should be sourced and researched.
Where does credibility stem from in class societies? I'll let you figure it out.
"Neutrality" in the liberal sense is also this phony ideology with all sorts of biases attached to it. I mean, we will straight up admit this is an ideological project, and about the "cliff notes" thing, one of the things that is fascinating about Marxism to me is how there is this active process with different schools of thought within it.
On the "cliff notes," thing: I'm basically interested in all kinds of Marxist thought and debate. You know, I'm interested in Marxist critiques of the USSR as state capitalist, at that. There's a book by a Marxist scholar named Paresh Chattopadhyay that argues this but it also – unlike most Marxist works – does not imply much of an argument against it on that basis. I think if we contribute to this project in a serious way we can approach it like adults.
I'm interested in leftcom stuff, Hoxhaist stuff, whatever. It's all good.
Can you give examples of "stale" articles where Marxistpedia could do better?
Tankies OUT Make your own maopedia, thanks
Marxistpedia should ideally do wikipedia's neutrality thing but in the context of left-wing thought. Like, present the different theories on a subject so readers can compare them, just don't shy away from the conclusions being drawn out of trying to be non-political.
How about the Collapse of the USSR article mentioned earlier in the thread? Wikipedia has a very thorough description of the events as they unfolded, but makes little effort to do an overarching analysis.
This was my thought as well. The wiki should aim for a neutrality within the left. Dismiss Friedrich von Hayek all you want (although it's also interesting to see what we can learn from thinkers like him) but don't treat Karl Kautsky the same way
If anyone wants to help I have drawn the data that showed why the shops sold out in the Perestroika period but I'm a brainlet and can't make the articles show it clearly. If anyone wants to edit feel free. marxistpedia.org/wiki/Collapse_of_the_USSR
Anti-stalinism is spooked. An actual balanced view on Stalin is reasonable. that wiki tends to do the 'muh evil dictator' shtick except its more low-key than when liberals do it.
Also look up stuff with the keyword 1991 in leftybooru, you'll get some good stuff.
I did it for you. Please fix the reference though. "IMF 1992a" doesn't refer to anything in this context. Find and name the precise publication.
You're making the same error in all your sources. If you're copying from a book there should be a bibliography specifying which works these shorthands refer to.
I can't seem to find anything more than that. The bibliography says "Official Soviet data cited in International Monetary Fund 1992a: 49, 56." which is what I've cited. The International Monetary Fund Annual Report of 1992 is in part online. I will try to fix what I can.
Can someone change Stalinism to Marxist-Leninism?
There's a section called "Bibliography" at the back of the book, just before the index. This section says, >International Monetary Fund (1992a), Economic Review: The Economy of the Former USSR in 1991, Washington, DC: The International Monetary Fund. Sadly I can't seem to find any online version of this document.
I'm not berating you if you haven't seen this, just trying to help. It's great that you're developing new research skills.
I'd suggest we split it into two pages. The post-Stalin USSR was anti-Stalinist and pro-Marxist-Leninist, so the terms aren't entirely interchangeable. There are also a lot of self-described Marxist-Leninists who are critical of Stalin.
Thanks for saying that. It's the first time I even wrote any article so I'm showing my peak brainletism. Again thanks for the help. Have you seen the new page I created for the Soviet newspaper? It's surprisingly still active and has an online site.
The Stalinism page has a Hoaxhaism and Maoism subcategory. We can put Stalinism there and change the main article name to Marxist-Leninism.
You're hopeless if you don't understand that some things are true and false. There are matters of fact, and credibility can and should be considered on how closely a source adheres to facts.
The term "Marxism-Leninism" is ideologically loaded in itself because several tendencies, most notably Trotskyism, claim Lenin's legacy as their own. The whole topic is full of weeds if we want the whole community to contribute. Here are my suggestions (as a Trot / councilcom, for what it's worth):
* Main page should be called Marxism-Leninism, with queries for "stalinism" redirecting to it. Clarify in the first paragraph that several tendencies call ML "stalinism", which goes beyond Stalin himself and extends to Khrushchev, Mao, etc. * The ideology took shape under Stalin's leadership of the USSR, and was codified in a series of books in the 1930s written by Stalin / written in his name. Marxism-Leninism came to be the declared ideology of all 20th century socialist states, with the exception of Yugoslavia and Cambodia - I think most MLs can agree with this * Topic should be focused on what distinguishes ML as an ideology, not the specific historical experiences of the various states * Hence, there should be a separate page for "atrocities committed by Stalin's USSR" detailing the show trials, 1932 famine, etc. - let the shitflinging / Furr citing take place here and not the ML page * Tabs for Anti-Revisionist ML, Maoism, Hoxhaism, etc. with separate page links if necessary * Most important: section with larger separate page for "criticism of Stalinism / Marxism-Leninism" for Trotskyist and other arguments. There can also be a "ML criticism of Trotskyism" if you like, but please refrain from the "he was a literal agent of Hitler" and keep it to ideological differences.
TIL, I always assumed that they realized that the writings of Marx / Lenin explicitly condemned "market" socialism and didn't try to claim their legacy. Cambodia may be the same, not super familiar with them. Regardless, both states did not fit the traditional "ML" model and I think that should be clarified in the article.
Stalin wrote the stuff "written in his name." There were many Soviet officials who used ghostwriters, but Stalin wasn't among them.
"Foundations of Leninism" was published in 1924 and was pretty much the start of Marxism-Leninism (or, if you prefer, "Stalinism") as an ideology.
The Yugoslavs after their split with Stalin declared that the USSR had deviated from Marx and Lenin and that it was necessary to "return to Marx" for a better understanding of socialism. It's why the Communist Party of Yugoslavia was renamed to the League of Communists of Yugoslavia (meant to remind people of the historic Communist League.)
If you read Yugoslav stuff on workers' self-management, there's a lot of words on the need to overcome alienation and other subjects that the USSR and friends were accused of having failed to take into account.
The Khmer Rouge also claimed to be Marxist-Leninist during the 1970s, although to quote a Christian Science Monitor article from 1984:
I've never been able to find a conclusive answer on whether or not Stalin used ghostwriters; both liberal and Trotskyist sources have claimed either "contrary to popular belief, Stalin refused to use ghostwriters" or alternatively just state "ghostwritten" as if it were an established fact. My conclusion had been that Stalin was the sole / primary author of early writings like "Foundations of Leninism" but gradually distanced himself as the years went on (although he still had the final say on their content).
I remember this quote from Khrushchev's secret speech claimed one of the biggest ML canonical works, the Short Course, was ghostwritten:
The Short Course was indeed a case where Stalin did not, in fact, write the entire text. Although to be fair attributing the entire Short Course to Stalin took place only after WWII.
Even before the opening of Soviet archives settled the matter, there were remarks like the following by historian Leonard Schapiro: "Although ostensibly the work of a commission, Stalin was certainly responsible for [the Short Course's] final shape, and indeed its gnomic style bears all the marks of his pen."
Would you say that my original conclusion (Stalin was the sole / primary author of early writings like "Foundations of Leninism" but gradually distanced himself as the years went on (although he still had the final say on their content)) is accurate?
All of them.
As far as I know he wrote pretty much everything attributed to him (the Short Course being an obvious, though partial, exception.) "Marxism and Problems of Linguistics" and "Economic Problems of Socialism" for instance were written by him, and are his last major works.
this looks fine but why cant i edit without creating an account? wikipedia lets me do that
That was for quality control, from when accounts were only given out to certain people but I have changed the settings for leftypol, so anyone can edit now.
You sure thats a good idea? It isn't like this board doesn't have few lurking Zig Forumsyps.
It's easy to rollback edits from users, especially if it's all from one IP or account.
I'll leave it to you folks to hash out edits over Marxism-Leninism but I'm inclined to add some entries on local / regional stuff like historical communists from my area:
The article barely mentions her communism but she was actually the secretary of the communist party here and wrote a bunch of theory on the Mexican national question. A lot of opportunities to do this at Marxistpedia and Wikipedia is fair use for the large part so you can copy over what you want.
(me) Or maybe not… reading the guidelines… hrm
If you're able to give more information than Wikipedia then that's a great idea, but just copying biographical details by itself is kind of pointless.
Rog. I think I've got it. The part about "added value" is key.
If it were a psyop they wouldn't be this transparent about it.
We need suggestions.
What's the problem about following people you disagree with?
Haha, what? Wikipedia is all about getting yourself a merry band of ideologues or sockpuppet accounts and promoting them to adminship where they can then selectively enforce the rules around your articles of choice by banning people for having the wrong opinion. Wikipedia is a wonderful format for propagandizing.
Sources may or may not be credible. A wiki "article" is a collection of those sources that can usually be edited at any time in the future by anonymous users. Wikis by their malleable nature have no inherent credibility.
The sad thing is that Hedges interview doesn't even really get to the heart of the corruption on Wikipedia. If you ever follow contentious topics and arbitration committee rulings or Jimbo Wales' talk page for any significant period of time, or even several of the regular Wikipedia criticism websites, you will find that it is far worse than that interviewee made it out to be.
you don't know how bad it is on twitter. the shills are really blatant. Last time OP shilled marxistpedia everyone told him to fuck off because the articles he wrote were absolutely terrible. we should probably continue with that now.
I'm wondering if Marxistpedia is worth using. I want to write a short article about the post WW2 soviet zone and the German revolution of 1918 but the Twitter account and "Stalinism" made me go yikes. Would it be hard to make a leftypol wiki? I can't imagine it's that hard to create sites like this. On the other hand they said A Marxist Leninist perspective could be allowed after I replied on marxistpedia.org/wiki/Talk:FAQ