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In the heady years of 1939, in a book called Council Communism, Paul Mattick, a sick man, once said:

Spontaneous actions of dissatisfied masses will, in the process of their rebellion, create their own organisations

Some eight years later he admitted:

As exciting as it is to recall the days of proletarian actions in Germany – the mass meetings, demonstrations, strikes, street fights, the heated discussions, the hopes, fears, and disappointments, the bitterness of defeat and the pain of prison and death – yet no lessons but negative ones can now be drawn from all these undertakings. All the energy and all the enthusiasm were not enough to bring about a social change or to alter the contemporary mind. The lesson learned was how not to proceed. How to realize the revolutionary needs of the proletariat was not discovered.

The question today is this: why do leaderless movements fail?

As Seymour says, such movements tend to become atomised, rather than strengthened. Throw in a reliance on social media, and the movement is glued to exclusivity and redundancy.

It’s not dehumanising language, hyperbole, looking dodgy, or links with counter-revolutionaries that will reduce anti-capitalist movements to dust. It is the pretence that excitement and left wing hedonism are all that’s needed to secure results.

The alternative

Stalin once said:

Education is a weapon whose effects depend on who holds it in his hands and at whom it is aimed.

This being about education, perhaps the students should take note.

We use our education today at the coalition government, but we learn from history that left wing hedonism has never led to success in  politics. And if the council communist scum can learn that in 8 years, then the autonomist sidewinders can give it a go today.

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