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Pioneers of Anti-Parlimentarism
by Guy A. Aldred

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with Parliamentarism; when Marxism was proclaimed as the only scientific socialism at a time when it was becoming a theology and a metaphysic rather than a science ; when Marxism degraded itself into a dull political class society electioneering, then Bakunin proclaimed his anti-Marxism in opposition to the negation of Socialist thought in action.

To Bakunin, exploitation and oppression were more than economic and political grievances. Hence, a fairer distribution of wealth, even if possible under the system, and a seeming participation in political power (democracy) were "{remedies" that did not meet the situation. Democracy was not the cure for poverty but only the perpetuation of the disease. Democracy was the criminal perpetuation of poverty. Bakunin saw clearly that there was one problem only: economic exploitation and submission was connected intimately with all forms of authority, religious, political and social : and this authority was embodied in the State. Hence anarchism, the negation of authority, the negation of priestcraft, was the essential factor in all real Socialism. To Bakunin, Anarchism defined Socialism as Submission defined Capitalism.

Bakunin did not confound "Government with "Administration." He did not confuse the "State with "Society." He did not pretend to believe in "Community" interest in a class society. He opposed class society and all its hypocritical masquerades. he proclaimed the need for freedom and defined Socialism as the proletarian determination to revolt to realize freedom. Thus, Bakunin opposed anarchism to Parliamentarism, Mental, personal and social freedom are to him inseparable - Atheism, Anarchism, Socialism, an organic unit. His Atheism is not that of the ordinary Freethinker, who may be an authoritarian and an anti-Socialist; nor is his Socialism that of a parliamentarian, albeit Marxist, who may be, and very often claims to be, an Authoritarian and a Christian, or speaks as though he were both; but his Atheism and Socialism complete each other. They interpenetrate and constitute a living realization of freedom, a social condition of happiness. The thoroughness makes Bakunin's Socialist propaganda unique.

If Proudhon's vision was blurred by a kind of bourgeois pacifism, Marx certainly sacrificed his own revolutionary understanding for political and personal dictatorship. He liquidated his great revolutionary work in an unscrupulous vanity and an all-consuming miserable pretension to absolute priesthood that knew no bounds. But for his desire to dominate, Marx would have been the great working class emancipator. his mighty mind descended to petty spleen because his will could brook no qualifying influences. Marx was his world - and his limitation. The self-immolation of a great intellect to a narrow will was nothing less than a terrible disease from which Marx suffered. It reduced a prophet to a priest and a great movement to an

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