Collective Psychology of the Capital Political Economy and 'Psycho-History' of the Human Capacity for the Revolutionary Transformation to Political-Economic Democracy

I.    The Revolutionary Moment in Reich's Theory, And Its Necessity
II.    The Personal And The Social
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I.    The Revolutionary Moment in Reich's Theory, And Its Necessity

"It can be seen that the history of industry and industry as it object-ively exists is an open book of the human faculties, and a human psychology which can be sensuously apprehended. This history has not so far been conceived in relation to human nature, but only in a superficial utilitarian point of view, since in the condition of alienation it was only possible to conceive real human faculties and human species-action in the form of general human existence, as religion, or as history in its abstract, general aspect as politics, art and literature, etc. Everyday material industry (which can be conceived as part of that general development; or equally, the general development can be conceived as a specific part of industry since all human activity up to the present has been labour, i.e. industry, self-alienated activity) shows us, in the form of sensuous useful objects, in an alienated form, the essential human faculties transformed into objects. No psychology for which this book, i.e. the most tangible and accessible part of history, remains closed, can become a real science with a genuine content. What is to be thought of a science which stays aloof from this enormous field of human labour, and which does not feel its own inadequacy even though this great wealth of human activity means nothing to it except perhaps what can be expressed in the single phrase -- "need", "common need"? 1 -- Karl Marx in Economic-Philosophic Manuscripts

Many of the contemporary so-called 'Reichian' therapists totally ignore Reich's theories of social revolution, sexual-politics, of the characterological sources of totalitarianism, his theory of work-democracy, and his own practical involvement in the pre-World War II revolutionary movement in tenuous association with the German "Communist" (so-called) Party. Or they treat all of this as a youthful transgression, a relic of his early theory which he later abandoned absolutely, or with a few "eccentric", purely "personal" holdovers. They do not in any sense see Reich's social theory and his social involvement as a necessary moment of his psychological theory and practice, and as a principal reason for the effective murder of Reich the person by the U.S. State during precisely those "anti-revolutionary" later years. Thus they inadvertently perpetuate the murder of Reich in the sense of the murder of his work; the dismemberment of its essential unity, its marketing as a commodity spectacle, and its recuperation by capitalist ideology. The murder of Reich continues, and more insidiously because at the hands of those who claim to be his friends; those who (posthumously) represent him. The only other case of this kind of phenomenon in the twentieth century which surpasses this one in egregiousness is the expropriation and representation of Marx' work -- a critique of all ideology, and of every possible ruling class and form of class society -- by the bureaucratic ruling classes of the state-capitalist nations and their ideologies, and by their retainers or competitors in the form of the state-capitalist (the so-called "Communist", including the "Trotskyist" and "Maoist", etc.) parties all around the world.

For our part, we have no interest in the deification of Reich, whether as a psychologist, therapist, or as a revolutionary, and we are among the first to point out Reich's complicity in his own murder -- in all the senses of the term employed above. Reich's murder was committed in part with the aid of his own hand. We locate this complicity in Reich's failure to ever fully supersede the remnants of Leninism-Kautskyism that mar even his best contributions to revolutionary theory -- namely, the doctrine to the effect that capacity for self-management must be brought to the working-class from outside, by a bureaucratic Party and a "transitional" State.  Despite Reich's early development of the theory of state-capitalism 2, this failure, once he saw the monstrous outcome of this Leninist-Kautskyist practice in the Soviet Union, left him nothing but to bash his brains out in Kantian oscillation on the twin rocks of the Scylla of Stalinist state-capitalism on one side, and the Charybdis of private capitalism and Fascist state-capitalism on the other. Reich's inability to locate a third force in the history of proletarian revolutionary practice, a force opposed identically to both forms of capitalist class society, lead him deeper into isolation, cut him off from contact with the tiny agitational currents, such as that of the council-communists, which preserved the memory of that history -- the history of the workers' councils -- in a theoretical form during the long night of counter-revolution which began with the defeat of the Russian and German workers' councils in the 1920s and of the Spanish councils in 1937. Reich's failures are also related to his inadequate appropriation of dialectics -- his "functionalism" and his tendencies toward an uncritical rationalism, scientism, and positivism. But we see imbedded in his work a wealth of theories and practices in areas most revolutionaries have left untouched; areas vital to the development of a revolutionary movement which, this time around -- in the context of the global economic and general social crisis now opening -- has a chance to win.

The social moment in Reich's theory, and therefore also the social-critical or revolutionary moment, is indispensable, unavoidable, inescapable. Without it the theory is crippled, incomplete. Individual therapeutics is transformed into an ideology, to the extent that it claims to contain as such a method for solving the problem of individual character-deformation (what we will henceforth call "character-armor").

Amour and armor: in so many weighs, what's not to love?

Character-armor is essentially not a thing; not an atomic, separate fact, a self-evident discrete particular entity located uniquely in an isolated individual. Character-armor is essentially a social relation. It may in fact be manifested generally in social individuals at present, and with particular intensity in some, and it may indeed be mapped onto their bodies in the form of chronic contraction of various muscular segments -- the so-called 'muscle-armor'. But it is generated and reproduced in social relation, in social interactions, and, moreover, in definite, historically specific modes of social relation or forms of human intercourse -- in the present case, specifically capital; the capital-relation.

More precisely, character-armor is not simply a social relation, but a social relation of production, a relation of production of capitalist society. It is, in fact, a necessary aspect of capital, or, phrased another way, a necessity of wage-labor. (To any who have bothered to study the Marxian critique of political economy -- a group which includes surprisingly few of the self-proclaimed "Marxists" -- it is abundantly clear that capital is not essentially a thing, but rather the social relation of production of "capitalist" society).

One's character-armor is truly one's o[w]nly social value: anonymity for exchange

It is not mere accident or contingency, the formation of "neurotic" character in social individuals under capitalism. Rather, the production in individuals of specific pathologies, specific armoring patterns, is a necessary part of the reproduction process of capitalist society. Capital must find on the labor market proletarians whose personality structure is characterologically congruent with capitalist production practices. It must find individuals willing to alienate themselves, that is, to sell their time, to dis-own their lives 8 or more hours per day, to follow someone else's orders in producing, and to give up all control over the world which they produce. Authoritarianism is located, in capitalist society, not fundamentally in the family, which helps to reproduce it. Rather, it is a necessary aspect of capital, of the capital-relation itself. (It should be clear by now that by the term 'proletarian' we understand all those whose relation to production is the wage-labor relation -- all those who directly alienate [sell] their living-time in exchange for money. Thus the proletariat is the class of most of us -- of the vast majority of human social-individuals now living in the "First" and "Second" Worlds -- and not just of those of us who "work with our hands", wear "blue collars", etc.).

The production of this prostitute character is necessary in order that capital find on the market one of the means of production necessary to its production -- indeed, the most essential ingredient in its production: human labor-power. Just as much as the production of capitalist machines and of raw materials, the production of workers with the appropriate character-structure is necessary to the reproduction of capital.

Individual proletarians cannot long be "cured" of their character-armor in the environment of capitalist society simply because they need it to survive. Without it, they would become "trouble-makers"; blacklisted, unemployable -- of no further use-value to capital. And when a proletarian becomes useless to capital, what happens to him/her? To his/her use-value to himself/herself? Poverty, ostracism, imprisonment, confinement to a mental hospital, etc. Thus, under capitalism, each proletarian has an interest in his/her own deformation. His/her character-armor has a survival use-value for him/her, a use-value in maintaining his/her exchange-value; in getting him/her the exchange-value s/he needs to survive, and without which his/her own life has no use-value for him/her - namely, his/her wages.

Indeed, the products of contemporary individualist "Reichian" therapy are typically marginally employable or unemployable individuals who subsist on the periphery of capitalist society -- who either become "Reichian" therapists themselves or survive by various other modes of self-employment, involvement in handicrafts production, etc. The fact that this is usually by conscious choice and for good reason does not change the fact that these individuals are no longer characterologically congruent with the needs of capital, and that they will be among the first stricken as the developing depression-crisis sweeps away that periphery.

Proletarian character -- the propensity for self-disowning, the incapacity for social responsibility, the habit of submission, etc. is but another expression of that invariant which characterizes every aspect of social reality in fully developed capitalist society -- the law of value. In the form of this law, totalitarianism exists in even the most (bourgeois-) "democratic" capitalist republic. Certain character pathologies are a necessary part of the use-value of the worker to capital, are thus part of what the capitalist pays for in the worker s/he buys. The character-armor of the proletarian is worked up in him/her as s/he grows up by the labor of the various social authorities whom he confronts along the way -- by parents, by relatives, by church operatives, by teachers, by police, and by bosses as well, not to mention by his/her own peer group, and himself/herself. The encrustation of character-armor laminated around his/her also-developing core-self is thus the objectified labor-time of all of these "[anti-]social workers"; the value-added to his/her exchange-value as a commodity by this authoritarian labor.

Under capitalism, use-value splits up into use-value to capital (to exchange-value production maximization) and use-value to use-value (to use-value production maximization). We have all seen how the use-value to us of capitalist products is distorted in the interplay of these two, often contradictory, social imperatives -- cars designed to wear out faster and faster, throw-away products (like unrefillable pens), destruction of crops to support prices, production of means of destruction of real wealth on a massive scale ("military hardware") -- etc. Proletarian character is the name of the deformation of our use-value, to ourselves and to each other; the deformation of our capacities as human beings, by virtue of we ourselves being products of capital (that is, of the present mode and level of our own world-producing -- including self-producing -- praxis).

The learning of techno-practical skills by workers is necessary to useful production: it is a necessary part of their use-value to use-value production, hence of their use-value to themselves. But the learning by workers of proletarian character, on the contrary, is a necessity only to the preservation of the exchange-value (capital) system of producing use-value, and a direct fetter on the development of freely associated, democratically-planned production -- communist production. Proletarian character is thus the personal aspect of that deformation of use-value which is always necessary to the reproduction of exchange value; of the exchange-value system. The latter can be negated without negating, and in fact with the effect of enhancing -- the former.

The revolutionary project, the project of proletarian revolution, is that of the abolition of capital; of the deterrminate negation of the fully-developed exchange-value relation. It thus also contains the project of the determinate self-negation of the proletariat as such (as proletarian) and therefore also of proletarian character. But this project too remains impossible until it becomes necessary. The remainder of this document is devoted to demonstrating that, in the context of the world-wide depression-crisis now commencing, proletarian revolution is indeed becoming a practical necessity, and to demonstrating the crucial use-value of the work begun by Reich, and carried on in the work of those who study and follow him today, to the success of this necessary process of social revolution.

The handshake seals the deal of self[-less]-colonization

II.    The Personal And The Social

"Suppose we had produced things as human beings: in his production each of us would have twice affirmed  himself and the other. (1) In my production [AiD: With my self as among products of my labor] I would have objectified my individuality and its particularity, and in the course of the activity I would have enjoyed an individual life; in viewing the object I would have experienced the individual joy of knowing my personality as an objective, sensuously perceptible, and indubitable power. (2) In your satisfaction and your use of my product I would have had the direct and conscious satisfaction that my work satisfied a human need, that it objectified human nature, and that it created an object appropriate to the need of another human being. (3) I would have been the mediator  between you and the species and you would have experienced me as a redintegration [AiD: as a complement to and] of your own nature and a necessary part of your self; I would have been affirmed in your thought as well as your love [Catalysis: emphasis added]. (4) In my individual life I would have directly created your life; in my individual activity I would have immediately confirmed  and realized my true human and social nature. Our productions would be so many mirrors reflecting our nature." 3 -- Karl Marx in an essay entitled "Free Human Production"
Two cardinal realizations separate revolutionary theory from the state-capitalist ideologies which seek to recuperate and exploit it: As a revolutionary, you must start from your own subjective needs and desires, your own subjective existence. Revolutionary practice must, in assessing its success or failure, take as its starting and finishing point the personal life of each revolutionary -- not some moral principle, some projected ideal, some abstract, impersonal, mechanical "necessity". BUT, the personal life of each one of us is a global product. If we don't know ourselves as the historical and daily product of world-wide human society and, in particular, of the labor of the working-class of the entire world, then we don't know what and where we are starting from; we simply don't know ourselves.

Some people insist on getting to know themselves the hard way. And that hard way is right before us: the depression which has just begun will prove palpably to each of us our present absolute dependence on world-wide production, precisely by interrupting that production. Having the rug pulled out from under one reminds one of what one was standing on. We want to talk to people who don't so much need to learn this hard way -- who are ready to confront the tasks of self-organizing to take over the economy and society as a whole now, before it is too late to prevent the burgeoning of state-capitalist totalitarianism, and perhaps thermo-nuclear war, here and around the world.

Our very bodies are the products of human labor, through the food we eat, the clothes we wear, the structures in which we live, the instrumentalities we use, the practices we learn and the concepts we incorporate -- the very language in which this passage is formulated. We are the products of human sensuous activity in the form of the sexual act itself, the care and uncaring, the treatment and mistreatment we receive at the hands of other human beings -- parents, doctors, nurses, peers, etc. -- from infancy. Each of us is the spiritual and material product of the labor of the working-class of the entire planet, and of our own labor upon ourselves made possible by that labor. The simplest item of our consumption -- a button on a coat, a cup of coffee, a pen -- involves in the sources of its raw materials, the production of the machines which are the means of its production, the transport of all these, etc. -- labor-processes located all over the globe; production on a world scale. Ingredient in every loaf of bread -- seemingly such a simple, self-evident, self-subsistent thing -- is a world-wide orchestrated movement of human activity which alone makes the existence of that particular thing possible.

And, once again, the alienated "prime mover" loses his/her exchange-value....

Our lives rest upon a global dance of daily production, whose interruption for even a short time would prove to everyone its 'ingredience' in their most intimately personal lives, through the disappearance of its products from the shelves, followed soon thereafter by the disappearance, or significant disruption and drastic alteration, of those "personal lives" themselves.

AND THIS INTERRUPTION OF WORLD-PRODUCTION IS ABOUT TO BEGIN. It is what is known as a "Depression-crisis".     This one has been building up for decades, and it promises to be the worst ever. 4

This world-wide depression-crisis is now in its preliminary stages. A global chain-reaction cascade of bankruptcies is about to begin. The fact that most of the Leftist organizations and militants -- who claim to have appropriated Marx's analysis of capitalism -- don't know this, and continue to mouth the most insipid platitudes of modern-day bourgeois ideology about "built-in stabilizers", and "government controls", doesn't in the least prevent the majority of the American working-class who -- in the main to their credit, have never listened to these state-capitalist hacks and ideologues -- from knowing it (as witness the latest Gallup Poll, indicating that 52% of blue collar and 39% of white collar workers expect a depression, and 70% and 82% respectively expect continued economic worsening. 5 )

In the course of this crisis, with the stoppage of vitally necessary production, the working-class of America and of the world will be faced with the practical necessity of restarting production under its own management. Or, in the context of the takeover of all production by the large banks and the State, with the formation of state-capital on a hitherto unprecedented scale, accompanied by vastly increased unemployment, drastically lowered wages, speed-up and cannibalization of labor-power; the spread of state-capitalist totalitarianism, dictatorship and terror, Stalinist and Fascist, on a world scale; inter[-state-]capitalist war and preparation for war, we will find that the world proletariat -- that is, we ourselves -- will be faced with the choice of either ourselves taking over responsibility for social reproduction, or of passively witnessing, and suffering, the following out of the developments listed above to their logical conclusions -- immiseration, famine, perhaps world war, police-state terror, and finally devolution; the collapse of world production and world exchange; in short, the descent into barbarism.

The vital question whose answer will decide the outcome is: does the working-class have the capacity for self-management, or the capacity to develop that capacity in the course of the crisis now opening? Do we have the confidence and competence to seize social power from capital and to hold onto that power once we have seized it, or will we dis-own this power, re-alienate it to a bureaucratic party and a new State, out of incapacity for social responsibility and incapacity for democratic association itself?  This is, in part, a "psychological"; a characterological question. And this is where Reich comes in.

The general problem can be stated thusly: how can we, the proletariat, re-appropriate our own subject-ivity (subject-ness; subject-hood; our capacity to act the role of the subject, as opposed to the role of the object, in our own social life-processes). At the heart of capitalism lies an essential reification; an inversion of subject and object. The producers reduce themselves to pseudo-objects apparently ruled over by their own product -- capital -- their own alienated (sold) activity which thereby becomes a pseudo-subject. A pseudo-object is a subject whose subjectivity is blocked off by a layer of frozen subjectivity surrounding his/her self, and rendering his/her behavior predictable and manipulable according to certain pseudo-mechanical laws. How can we invert this inversion -- the process of "revolving" which is the essence of the communist revolution? We have alienated our subjectivity not only, collectively, to capital and to the state, but individually, personally as well. All of these forms of self-disowning are intimately interconnected, and together make up the totality of alienation. We have disowned our subjectivity individually in the form of disowned memories, emotions, and (traumatic) experiences (repression; muscle-armor), and in the form of various psychic totems and fetishes: moralisms, causes, sacred ideals, ideologies, and other projections. Ideology in general needs to be looked at from the standpoint of Reich's theory, as a kind of "intellectual neurosis"; a form of mental character-armor. That is, the deadening of subjectivity in practice as a whole includes the curtailment of mental subjectivity as well. Every fetish, every little reification, is a block against coherent and practical thought, a zone where the thought-process stumbles. Inability to think subjectively and timidity in thought is a mental illness endemic to capitalist society, a characterological problem, not just a "genetic", organic problem. Bourgeois ideology always attributes to "nature" its social problems. There is a connection between blockage in other areas of practice and blockage in thought-practice. Incapacity to play the subject role in general is related to inability to be the subject of ones own thought processes. People stop themselves in their thinking just as much as in their feeling. And fear of thinking can vitiate our revolution at least as thoroughly as any of the other forms of "fear of freedom" and "pleasure-anxiety", of which it is one of the most intimate varieties.

Self-disowning, i.e. "projection" in the Gestalt sense, or "alienation" in the Marxian sense, is the kernel of every ideology. And today it is ideology above all which fetters revolutionary movement, revolutionary practice. Every collective projection is a stumbling-block on the way to the re-owning of society as a whole by its producers. We need to explore methods capable of stimulating and catalyzing the re-owning of subjectivity on a social scale; the collective collapse of collective projections. For instance, we know that the experience of strong emotion welling-up from within is an armor-dissolving and subjectivity-liberating experience, and that social upsurges produce such experiences intersubjectively, en masse. Even certain vivid,  evocative spoken and written formulations can unleash such experiences in the appropriate experiential context/historical moment.  The problem: how to actively stimulate these experiences and raise their precipitation to the level of a conscious, deliberate self-power in our revolutionary agitation?

Sooner or later, with the occurrence of precipitating catastrophic events which will signal publicly the onset of the crisis, public discussion-meetings will have to be called in places of work and places of residence, both "spontaneously" by ad hoc groups of workers, and by already organized tendencies such as our own as part of a conscious self-organizing strategy, to discuss the crisis in our lives and what we are going to do about it. These meetings will have to discuss the ways and means of the expropriation of capital; of a working-class takeover of the means of production and of society as a whole, and of the democratic organization of social life. Out of these discussion-meetings can emerge the nuclear organizations of a class-wide revolutionary movement, embracing proletarians both employed and unemployed, "blue-collar" and "white-collar", black and white. A national and very soon international association of these, what we call pro-council committees in workplaces and communities can agitate openly for a program involving the formation of workers' councils, the society-wide expropriation of state and private capital by the working-class, i.e., the takeover of factories, farms, office complexes, etc., their operation and modification in accord with a democratically produced global plan, thus the abolition of wage-labor, and the dismantling of the capitalist state with the appropriation of all functions of social management by the world-wide system of workers' councils. (By this, we mean a system of unitary bodies, simultaneously executive, legislative, and judicial, and composed of base assemblies in workplaces and residential areas at the local level, bodies of mandated and recallable delegates emanating directly from these base assemblies at the regional level, and a world council of directly emanating delegates, again mandated, rotating, & recallable, at the global level, vested with day-to-day trusteeship of the global social property,and overall coordination of the plan, of course utilizing at all levels the modern means of voice/image communication, automatic data processing and display, etc.  This expresses in bare outline what we see as that concrete organizational instantiation of incipient communist society which fulfills the conception of the "associated producers" put forward by Marx, and which is diametrically opposed to private capitalism and state-capitalism alike; the form of the internally-democratic anti-state dictatorship of the proletariat and of the initial social relation of production of communist society. It is merely a conceptual elaboration of what the historical revolutionary practice of the proletariat has already produced again and again.

The characterological problems of self-management will make themselves felt from the very inception of these discussion-meetings. Confronting the problem of getting fellow workers to participate, and dealing with attrition of attendance after the first few meetings, will bring these to the fore. The fact that most workers feel so wrapped-up in their own "simple reproduction", and in their "personal" problems -- sexual, familial, financial, etc. -- that they don't have time or energy for "social" problems, the fact that these social problems are now visibly exacerbating their "personal" problems notwithstanding, will for the first time itself be confronted as a social problem. This is, in part, what could set the stage for a re-disowning of social power and the formation of a managerial bureaucracy in the aftermath of a social revolution. The problems of managing the discussions and conducting the work of these meetings democratically and efficiently will pose these problems concretely and immediately. All the resources of Gestalt therapy, Transactional Analysis, and Reichian theory that can be critically pillaged from these ideologies in dealing with the characterological problems of democratic association can be crucial to their success as revolutionary formations.

The useful developments contained in Reich's theory and practice and its development since his death by his followers must be appropriated by and pass into the stream of revolutionary theory-practice. A revolutionary social psycho-therapy is a necessity of revolutionary practice today. Such a social psychotherapeutic process was always there in-itself in the revolutionary process. Today, if we are to win, it must be there for-itself. Reich's concept of work-democracy needs to be criticized in terms of its ahistorical idealism (Reich's attitude to it as an ever present reality), and elaborated into a full theory of generalized self-management and of its historically-produced possibility only at and after a definite moment and stage in cumulative human-species historical social development.

We propose the formation of a task-force of socio-therapeutic workers, of specialists in the process of overcoming the fetters of specialism and of de-specializing their knowledge; a task-force aiming at the formulation of such a revolutionary socio-psychotherapy, flowing into the general theory of revolutionary practice. We are willing to help facilitate the founding of such a task force. Besides what we have already mentioned, we propose it concentrate on the following projects:
  1. A critique of Sex-Pol, with proposals for its supersession.
  2. Psycho-social analysis of contemporary ideological trends such as the "new" mysticism, neo-Christianity, and Leftist currents (Maoism, NCLC, etc.); also of developments such as the Zero-Growth/anti-population, the Black-racist, and the co-management (co-participation) ideologies now massively financed by the Rockefeller foundations and other big capitalist foundations, with development of strategies for their practical critique within our class.
  3. Surveillance and analysis of contemporary social trends such as the disintegration of the old-style nuclear family, compulsive promiscuity, etc. from the point of view of their implications for revolutionary practice.
  4. Specification of body-therapies, if any, for the individual bio-energetic treatment of authoritarian structure in terms of the location of specific muscular centers and armor-formations if such in fact exist.
  5. Reichian techniques for enhancing the moment of "simple reproduction" for revolutionaries, including body-techniques by which revolutionaries can watch out for and take care of themselves and one another. Since the notion of the abstract negation of character-armor (as expressed, for example, in the slogan "smash character!") stands convicted on the grounds of manifest imbecility, the maintenance of "revolutionary" or non-authoritarian character-structure once produced must depend on the transformation of unconscious, involuntary armoring into conscious arming of the self. Techniques for this.
There is much in Reich that remains to be criticized from the point of view of the theory of praxis, of the historical self-production of man -- of the theory most closely associated with the name of Marx. Reich's anti-dialectical functionalism, which expressed his failure to locate self-development as the "meaning" 6 (content) of the life-process was also related to his failure to locate his insights historically in terms of the self-development of human society as an historical totality; his failure to relate clinical discoveries regarding character to the critique of political economy in a rigorous manner, as expressions of the current level of the cultural and technical composition of capital; of the demands that capital makes upon the proletariat at a definite stage of its development, etc. Reich's failure to locate the problem of authoritarian structure concretely in terms of the historical development of the productive forces (of the social individuals) led, for example, to ahistorical abstractions like his concept of the "emotional plague", which obscures the real base of observation and insight.

But while some tendencies on the Left would today be capable of making such a critique of Reich, their own tradition-boundedness would prevent them from coming to grips with Reich's later developments, specifically, the orgone theory, which they would thus be forced to dismiss out of hand as the work of a madman. The recent developments in Kirlian photography, acupuncture, pyramidology, etc. which may turn out to confirm, empiracally and experimentally, elements of Reich's orgone theory, and the manifest connection of these with the ancient theories and practices of, for example, yoga, will remain a cause of scorn, masking fear, on the part of the epigones and hacks of the Left. Genuine revolutionaries must not be so narrow or so ungreedy. It may well be that in the conscious development of the higher self-powers bespoken by these discoveries lays the only hope for the success of generalized self-management and communist society.

Committee For Working-Class Self-Organizing
Berkeley, California, USA


1    T.B. Bottomore; Karl Marx, Early Writings; McGraw-Hill (New York: 1963); pages 162-163.

2    Wilhelm Reich; The Mass Psychology of Fascism; Albion Press (1970); reprint of 1946 Third Edition; Chapter IX, Section 7, pages 237-239 et. passim.

3    Easton and Guddat; Writings Of The Young Marx On Philosophy And Society; Doubleday (Garden City: 1967); page 281.

4    The theory we have used in our efforts to comprehend capitalist crisis is the theory of the accumulation of fictitious capital. We hope to offer a full exposition of this theory as it applies to the present crisis soon, in the form of a pamphlet. What suffices to establish the validity of this theory is the following: (i) that accumulation of fictitious capital is an unavoidable process for a capitalist economy; (ii) that, in the later stages, this accumulation expresses itself empirically as accelerating inflation and exponential expansion of debt, and finally; (iii) that the only solution to the crisis is the destruction of fictitious capital through depressionary deflation, inter-capitalist war, or expropriation of capital, either by the state or by the associated workers.

5    San Francisco Chronicle; Monday, August 19, 1974; page 10.

6    "The living simply functions, it has no 'meaning'." Wilhelm Reich; The Function Of The Orgasm: The Discovery of the Orgone; World Publishing (New York: 1971); page 235.

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