Revolutionary Memes Extreme’s guide to Leftism Version 4.2
This guide is for you to learn about socialism, and what socialists believe. Maybe you want to learn to better argue against our ideas, or deepen your understanding of the broader left. You are not meant to go through ALL of the content, but it is supposed to give you answers, ideas, or new interests. I am a leftist, and I am a communalist, I want all biases clear, but shouldn’t you be learning what we believe from a leftist anyways. Ultimately this guide is for you, and what better way to learn what we believe than from a socialist.
Everything I post here besides one or two books at the end is found for FREE online.
2. Short Q&A’s
3. Types of socialism
4. What is capitalism? What are our critiques?
5. What does this matter to me?
6. Common arguments addressed.
7. Admin choice of educational, interesting, or entertaining content.
1. Definition cheat sheet:
“The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary” – your high school
—Capitalism: An economic system focused on the movement of Capital, it has three main characteristics; markets, wage labor, and private ownership over the means of production. It is a specific mode of production where production is done for exchange.
—Socialism: Where the workers own the means of production. It is a different mode of production, in which production is done socially instead of for exchange. In marxist theory it is the transitional phase to Communism.
—Communism: A form of socialism with no classes, no state, and operated on the economic principle of “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.” Generally considered moneyless as well.
—Capital: The private owning over wealth in the form of factories, firms, banks, or large swaths of money. Capital is used by the capitalist class (the people and shareholders that control these private entities) to accumulate profit. It is distinct from one’s personal house or wage as these are ends to living in themselves.
—Means of Production: From wikipedia, “the means of production are physical, non-human inputs used for the production of economic value, such as facilities, machinery, tools,infrastructural capital and natural capital.
The means of production includes two broad categories of objects: instruments of labor (tools, factories, infrastructure, etc.) and subjects of labor (natural resources and raw materials). If creating a good, people operate on the subjects of labor, using the instruments of labor, to create a product; or, stated another way, labour acting on the means of production creates a good.”
—Private v Personal property: Private property is the Means of Production, say a toothbrush factory or a large firm that owns thousands of empty or rented out houses. Personal property is your own personal property, say your toothbrush or your own personal house.
—Class: your role in society related to material conditions and economic/political/social power, including the bourgeoisie (capitalist class, 1%), and proletariat (working class) among others that exist today, and throughout history as different economic systems such a feudalism had (lord and serf, master and slave, ect.).
Search for a specific term:
2. Common Questions:
“No such thing as a stupid question, just stupid people” -our parents
Q: Has socialism ever worked before?
A: Yes there are numerous examples of it working in many forms!
See video: Socialism Has Worked for examples of socialism, marxism, socialist governments, anarchism, and communalism: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zIddCEBCKHQ
Q: Why hasn’t socialism won yet / out competed capitalism?
A: The simple answer is: it just hasn’t, we live in a world still dominated by global capital, it is sort of like asking “Why hasn’t capitalism won out yet” during feudal times.
Q: Isn’t it just government programs/nationalized industries/taxes?
A: Socialism is a mode of production, a government is apart of the system of capitalism and works within the framework of capitalism, the mode of production where there is exchange between commodities. To go beyond a private/public dichotomy is to understand that socialists want to change the very way we relate with production, products of society, and each other.
It becomes more apparent, that the state is a tool of a capitalist class, when you look at what laws are passed. The only people that have an effect, are the very rich. From princeton:
Also Marx was against taxes and the welfare state.
Q: Was Hitler/ Nazis socialist?
A: No, he privatized banks, busted unions and jailed socialists. The most famous poem from the period has the phrase “First he came for the socialists…” which Hitler literally did. But really we can solve this by asking this question: did the workers own the means of production in Nazi Germany? The answer, is no.
Q: Are the socialists gonna take my house / car?
A: There are five empty houses for every homeless person. Why would we be interested in that. We are interested in changing how people and society at large relate to our labor and production, and make it democratic in how it is done, what is made, and how it is distributed.
Q: But doesn’t communism have a strong state?
A: Communism is by definition a stateless society– all communists regardless of their tactics work towards this goal. The Soviet Union and its allies claimed to be socialist states; they saw this as a route to reaching communism. Many communists disassociate themselves from the actions of these states while others defend them. The topic of whether there should be a state, centralization of power, and organization of a state is still heavily debated amongst socialists.
Q: But isn’t anarchism chaos?
A: No! In fact it is organization! When we refer to anarchism we speak of social anarchism! Anarchy means, from its Greek roots “without rulers.” It is an anti-capitalist ideology that calls for no state with many forms, most of which having laws and straight forward ways of doing things. In fact, communism is a form of anarchism, along with syndicalism, mutualism, collectivism and others!
Q: Without money what will motivate us?
A:Research show that money isn’t the most powerful motivator, what drives us is purpose and we should make that purpose social!
Further information in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6XAPnuFjJc
Q: But don’t leftists just not understand economics?
A: Marx’s Law of Value (Labor Theory of Value) was confirmed to be an empirically correct theory of value under capitalism, and that only Sraffa’s (post-Keynesian) price theory even comes close, citing the conclusion of:
The Scientific Status of the Labour Theory of Value
by: W. Paul Cockshott and Allin Cottrell
Check out also (if you know a lot about economics):
3. Introduction videos into socialist schools of thought:
“If you don’t do theory, theory will do you” -Falguni Sheth
Marxism 101 by Richard Wolff
Introduction to Anarchism by Philosophytube:
The history of Anarchism in 8 minutes
Social Ecology on domination:
Intro into Communalism:
In depth introductory reading materials to tendencies:
Socialism: Utopian and Scientific:
What is anarchy?
More specific schools of thought:
Libertarian Municipalism and Democratic Confederalism
DeLeonism (with pictures and diagrams):
There are plenty others, including collectivism, mutualism, trotskyism, stalinism, titoism, and other tendencies. But google exists now, and these are just introductory materials not exceeding an hour of content for each.
4. Economics??? What is Capitalism? Why money? Why rich people? Why we no like?
“The social relations between people, become material relations between objects.” -me stealing a quote
A series of videos that are easily digestible to give you an outline of leftist economics. Make sure to watch it all the way through, common questions (certainly many I’ve seen in the comments section) get answered as the theory’s pieces are put into place. May require a few viewings.
Follow along with his blog here: https://kapitalism101.wordpress.com/2010/04/28/law-of-value-introduction/
“I watched the video series, I now want more!”
Excellent, there’s plenty of lecture series by anwar shaikh, david harvey, richard d wolff ect. That can help you go more in depth, and arent old dead white guys.
However, I would highly recommend the following books if you’re looking to get started, but make sure to read “Value Price and Profit” by Marx first if you aren’t exactly confident about the content in the videos. It’s short and assumes a completely free market, it makes it easy:
—Elgar Companion to Post-Keynesian Economics
—Elgar Companion to Marxian Economics
(If you can’t find the Elgar companion there’s plenty of other introductory books)
From there you can step off into other economic writings, maybe even have a go at the dreaded Capital, which I readily admit I haven’t read in its entirety.
“Dude this is a lot of information”
I know. These things get concepts down in less time but have less quality. Economics isn’t a walk in the park:
What is Class? by Phd Richard Wolff
Mexie, aspiring PhD, The Reserve Army of Labour
How Private Property Hinders Scientific Progress
Mexie “don’t let the title fool you” Finance, Crisis and Stagnation
The Myth of the Barter Economy
The wealthy in Florence today are the same families that were wealthy 600 years ago
Poor at 20, Poor for Life
Artificial Scarcity in a world of overproduction: an escape that isn’t
Falling Rate of Profit (Part One, watch both)
The Economy of the USSR (was it socialist?)
The Law of Value and Socialism
“Wait, where can I get a Phd Economist to give me weekly/monthly economic updates!?”
My man Wolff gotcha covered: https://www.youtube.com/user/democracyatwrk
“And other economic topics??”
New Economic Thinking is awesome, it covers a HUGE range of issues you may find interesting from how water and oceans are treated under capitalism, to the economics of aging:
Guy who makes great, short videos on the labor theory of value specifically? Meet Brendan Mcooney
Interviews from leftist economists on today’s issues and theory:
Yanis Varoufakis, the guy who could’ve fixed greece:
Yanis Varoufakis – Europe’s Crisis and America’s Economic Future
Capitalism: Competition, Conflict, Crises, Professor Anwar Shaikh
“This shit is complicated”
Yeah dude. Don’t worry. Sometimes it’s boring, sometimes you’re an ancap and are scared by actually defined terms. It’s okay. I’m working my way to understand Anwar Shaikh’s Capitalism. Pick up books by good authors and don’t be afraid of it all. Besides, we can’t economize all of the problems of the world. This is about understanding, critiquing, and imagining out of those things.
5. How does this affect me?
“You’re living in poverty, your schools are no good, you have no jobs, 58% of your youth is unemployed — what the hell do you have to lose?” -Trump
Capitalist Workplace vs. Socialist workplace:
Co-ops and Mondragon
On Wage Labor:
The case for Liberty by Libertarian Socialist Rants:
Cultural Commodification by Murray Bookchin:
Women, Race and Class
Hierarchy and Authority by AnarchoPAC:
Solving The Crisis of Our Environment
How Capitalism and Racism Support Each Other
Fred Hampton – “Political Prisoner”
Meat Markets and the Abolition of Gender and Sex
What is Socialist Feminism?
Patriarchy Gets Funky
6. Arguments against socialism:
“The philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways; the point, however, is to change it.” -Karl Marx
“I have some arguments against socialism and personally all I want to do is argue.”
We can do that in the comment section, however you might find some answers here, so check them out and we can talk afterwards:
Jerry Cohen – Against Capitalism
To Other Working Americans
Reading the Right – Volume One: The Bell Curve
Reading the Right – Volume 2: Cultural Marxism
Argument ad Venezuelum
Marx Believed in Human Nature
What drives us? (Latest research in what motivates people)
Why hierarchy creates a destructive force within the human psyche (by Dr. Robert Sapolsky)
Philosophy and the Science of Human Nature from a Yale Lecture series:
“Jordan Peterson says–”
Jordan Peterson knows less about marxism than my dog, has an infantile and incorrect reading of Nietzsche, and is a postmodernist without even realizing it.
Refuting Jordan Peterson’s Capitalist Realism (against common anti-leftist arguments)
Jordan Peterson- engaging with conservative rebels
Jordan Peterson and Progress
The Economic Calculation Problem
Generic Arguments Against Communism Refuted
Arguments against Anarchism
Debating Richard Spencer
George Orwell on Socialism:
Darwin, Conservatism, the Pill, and Black Pigeon Speaks
Does the Left Hate the Family? (how to address actual leftist theory)
7. MORE CONTENT, VIDEOS, DOCUMENTARIES, ECT
“In societies where modern conditions of production prevail, all of life presents itself as an immense accumulation of spectacles. Everything that was directly lived has moved away into a representation.” – Guy Debord
Murray Bookchin – The Real Roots of Traditional Libertarianism:
The start of Libertarian Socialist Rants–ummm– rant “The case against hierarchy”
The tragedy of the “Commons?”
Baltimore, the anatomy of an uprising
Labor Vouchers Explained:
The Capitalist Realism of Black Mirror
Manufacturing Consent 1 of 2 (Market Consent)
Manufacturing Consent (Chomsky’s theory)
The Paris Commune: Our First Revolution
Capitalism and Star Wars (the Slow Cancellation of the Future)
Racism, Law, & Politics (Race Part 1)
Why are we the good guys
The Philosophy of Antifa
Kill All Normies: The End of the Culture War? (“Cultural Marxism” and the alt right’s perceived culture war)
Introduction to Revolutionary Intercommunalism
Does the Left Hate Free Speech?
The rise of the Postmodern Politician
Taxi Driver A Study of Masculinity & Existentialism
Interviews, lectures, and talks from leftist thinkers:
Yanis Varoufakis on Europe, UKIP and Post-Capitalism
Europe is Kaput. Long live Europe! – Slavoj Žižek, Yanis Varoufakis and Julian Assange
Economics and the Moral Order
Debate Noam Chomsky & Michel Foucault – On human nature (turn on youtube subtitles)
Kill All Normies: Angela Nagle On The Alt-Right
Noam Chomsky (2013) “Pedagogy of the Oppressed”
Janet Biehl – From Marxism to Communalism and Confederalism: Bookchin and Öcalan
Murray Bookchin – Forms of Freedom – Talk – 1985
Michael Parenti: Capitalism vs. Reality
Report-back from the Revolution in Rojava
Angela Davis: Wars Against Women
Slavoj Zizek | How And Why Violence Functions
Murray Bookchin “Visions of a New Society” Interview
Articles pertaining to politics and leftism:
Capitalism vs. Socialism: a Changed Debate
Noam Chomsky Calls For ‘Militant Labor Movement’ To Transform American Politics And Fight Trump
Twenty-First Century Victorians
Fighting Climate Change and Capitalism at the Same Time
How Nonviolence Protects the State
The Economy of Rojava
Reason, creativity and freedom: The communalist model
the Future of the Left
Political Indifferentism by Marx
The Concepts of Ideology, Hegemony, and Organic Intellectuals in Gramsci’s Marxism
The Part played by Labour in the Transition from Ape to Man by Engels
The Darkness at the End of the Tunnel: Artificial Intelligence and Neoreaction
Pentagon Video Warns of “Unavoidable” Dystopian Future for World’s Biggest Cities
Just 100 companies responsible for 71% of global emissions, study says
Marxism And Darwinism
The Population Myth
Them and Us: four new essays by Subcomandante Marcos
Lumpen 130: The Municipalism Issue
Not All Politics is Identity Politics
The Soviet Union and Eastern Europe – The Roots of The Crisis (USSR Collapse Part 1)
Bolshevism, Real and Imagined
The Russian Revolution (1918) by Rosa Luxemburg
Lenin: A Study on the Unity of his Thought
“Can you just give me documentaries to watch, so I can sit, have a beer and have some popcorn?”
Suggested documentaries and movies:
Plutocracy #1, Political Repression in America: on the competing forces of labor and capital
Hypernormalization: On trump, Terrorism, and our current economic state
John Berger / Ways of Seeing , Episode 1
Reading the Right – Volume One: The Bell Curve
Reading the Right – Volume 2: Cultural Marxism
The Shock Doctrine
Manufacturing Consent (Chomsky)
The IWW: The one big union
Thomas Sankara: The Upright Man
The Zapatista Uprising (20 Years Later)
The Country of Two Rivers (Rojavan Revolution)
All Power To The People – The Black Panther Party & Beyond
Anarchism in America
History of Anarcho-Syndicalist Catalonia
“I like youtube videos, got youtubers?”
I personally recommend Zero Books, Anarchopac, Democracy at Work, Mexie, FreiHeitXXI and Philosophy Tube. However here is a large list
List of youtube channels:
FreiHeitXXI (Interviews and lectures on Social Ecology)
Xexizy (Perspectives of Leninism)
Democracy at Work (Economist P.h.D. Richard Wolff’s project, monthly economic updates and more)
New Economic Thinking (Many economic experts interviewed and giving lectures)
Brendanmcooney (makes short entertaining video about economic concepts)
DemocraticSocialist01 (Perspectives of a Democratic Socialist)
Libertarian Socialist Rants (Perspectives of an anarchist)
Anarchopac (anarchist perspectives)
Zero Books (Critical Theory publisher, analyzes pop culture and ideas in an entertaining video formats, along with a podcast)
Philosophy Tube (A channel that goes through philosophical concepts, such as race and power)
BadMouseProductions (an anarchist perspective)
The Finnish Bolshevik (A marxist leninist perspective)
Socialism Explained (Easily digestible bite sized videos on socialism)
Hbomberguy (Argues against racists and reactionaries, and analyzes video games, and the video game industries)
ProSocialism (A Trotskyist perspective)
Contrapoints (Educational topics, from race to gender)
Novara Media (Leftist, british media)
Mexie (a economist working towards a phd)
Herbal HRT Garden (Communalist perspective)
ForeverJameses (excellent video essays)
Short reading list, many of the readings are short, find a pdf!:
—Albert Einstein’s Why Socialism?
—Karl Marx’s Critique of the Gotha Programme
—The Conquest of Bread by Peter Kropotkin
—The Next Revolution by Murray Bookchin
—Rousseau’s Discourse on Inequality
—Rousseau’s Social Contract
—Tressell’s The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists
—Wilde’s Soul of Man Under Socialism
— Rosa’s Revolution or Reform
—Proudhon’s What is Property?
—The Society of the Spectacle Guy Debord
If you want more sectarian readings just ask!