Graeme Kemp

Can Soviets be Truly Democratic?

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Ian Birchall (April SR) does a good job in outlining what genuine democracy could look like, given past historical experiences. The only problem is this: how do you stop councils of workers becoming dictatorships of party officials?

The problem with many revolutions is that the successful revolutionary party believes that the people cannot be trusted and must be better led--led by the party, that is. Hence a degree of compulsion is needed. Liberty, free speech and 'opposition' must be curtailed, at least for a while, until people see the benefits of the revolution. Human rights are a kind of post-revolutionary experience.

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