[SUT.15.4.1] A Letter to Barry Lyndon on the Principle of Unity

Dear Barry,

I first want to say thank you on behalf of myself and Ben Seattle for posting Ben’s article, “Vacillating Ally or Strategic Opponent?” on to the Being a Socialist Facebook group. Ben and I think that the attention to the principles and arguments raised will benefit the working class. Ben spent many, many hours putting together the thoughts and words for the article, displaying an expectation of professionalism I envision that every Proletarist revolutionary will one day meet and exceed. I aim to meet and exceed that professionalism, and I hope you do too.

I have been thinking about my previous public quarrels with you for awhile. Most of these quarrels are rooted in a disagreement over how we view imperialism and what perspective brings the most clarity to the masses. I have decided to take a more relaxed attitude that these differences are fine—revolutionaries have debated over this for a hundred years, since Vladimir Lenin debated Rosa Luxemburg, and these quarrels and debates will continue until capital is overthrown. We both stand against US Imperialism, I shouldn’t overlook that.

Revolutionaries will continue to have quarrels, arguments, fights. Some of these quarrels will be political, others personal. These quarrels will sometimes make it difficult to work with each other, but we cannot stop doing that because such a divorce would be bad for our children—it would wreck our dreams and the dreams of our class. So long as we are on the same side, and share the essential political idea that we need to be independent of the class enemy, that we need political independence, and that the bourgeoisie and capital must be overthrown, to be replaced by the working class in transition to a classless, stateless society—we must do our best to prevent each other from being isolated and alienated. This idea dictates the need for us to be able to carry out productive, decisive work together.

I think in our quarrel I may have been too harsh in judging you. I didn’t think that you had the stomach or resolve to stand firmly on the side of the proletariat. I was public about my thoughts, but over time with the increasing clarity that some administrators were obviously promoting Social Democracy, and prejudiced with bourgeois ideology themselves—you opposed that. To answer one of your questions to me, I did take notice.

It was this contradiction of mutual interest and quarrel that lead me to try to reach out to you on the Facebook Marxist Internet Archive Discussion Group. That was before I was banned by David Faunt le Roy; for my questioning of his moderation practices in protest of the censorship of Rosa Lichtenstein. I asked for your help to post a counter-argument and you agreed to help. Barry, you also kept your end of the bargain which honestly, based on the hundreds of disappointments I’ve experienced in my political career—surprised me with delight.

I think I may have been wrong about you not having resolve or stomach Barry. I was probably too harsh. I was certainly wrong to write you off for as long as I did, and I am delighted to be wrong in this case. I hope you accept my apology. I also hope that we can work together more in the future.

For the Proletariat,
Art Francisco

One comment

  1. Not a bad letter. We all have a responsibility to do our best to prevent one another from being isolated and alienated, and to find ways to work together to build a pole in the movement which is independent of social democracy.

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