Tag Archives: party building

Why We Need a New Communist Party

The following is a section from the October League (Marxist-Leninist)’s pamphlet Building a New Communist Party in the U.S., from the Encyclopedia of Anti-revisionism Online’s growing collection of U.S. New Communist Movement material.

In 1949, Mao Tsetung, Chairman of the Communist Party of China, summed up the experiences of the past three decades leading up to the victory of the Chinese revolution:

A well-disciplined Party armed with the theory of Marxism-Leninism, using the method of self-criticism and linked with the masses of people; an army under the leadership of such a party; a united front of all revolutionary classes and all revolutionary groups under the leadership of such a Party-these are the three main weapons with which we have defeated the enemy.[1]

Today, in many respects, the U.S. is different from China. China, of course, was a backwards, semi-feudal, semi-colonial country while the U.S. is an advanced capitalist country. China was a country oppressed by foreign domination while the U.S. today is one of the two main superpowers in the world which dominates the smaller countries. These differences (just to name a few) change the form of the class struggle here in the U.S. from that of the Chinese revolution, but the principles which have been accurately summed up by Comrade Mao Tsetung still apply and remain universal.

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FRSO: Resolution on the Struggle for Immigrant Rights

The following resolution is from the 6th Congress of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization:

Whereas:  It is imperialism that forces immigrants from their countries in the Third World to escape poverty and repression.  The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has opened up the Mexican economy to even greater penetration by U.S. multinational corporations and agribusiness.  U.S. backed governments and counter-revolutionaries in Central America have violently attacked popular movements and governments, leaving economic devastation in their wake.  U.S. imperialism has driven and continues to drive millions of Mexicans and Central Americans to the United States. 

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Revolutionary Students Union on Leninism and the Vanguard Party

The following video presentation, about Lenin’s book What Is To Be Done? and the Leninist theory of organization, is from the UVU Revolutionary Students Union:

Q&A follows: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJQqLJzO9bo

Jose Maria Sison: Tasks and prospects of workers of the world amid global financial and economic crisis

The following is from the International League of People’s Struggle:

_EUS6384_2Speech to the 25th International Solidarity Affair
By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson, ILPS International Coordinating Committee

On behalf of the International Coordinating Coordinating Committee and member-organizations of the International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS), I convey warmest greetings of solidarity to the Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU) and to all the delegations to the 25th KMU International Solidarity Affair (ISA).

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Freedom Road on the Mass Line

“The people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history.” – Mao Zedong

One of the main things that attracted me to Marxism-Leninism and the thought of Mao Zedong when I was becoming an activist and getting involved in popular struggles, particularly in the antiwar movement, was the revolutionary theory and practice of the mass line.

I was drawn to this method of organizing and leadership because it answers in a practical and straightforward way many questions that people have to deal with if they want to fight for fundamental change in society. When I was first beginning to organize and work is large mass meetings in the anti-war movement I felt the need for a revolutionary theory that could measure up to the test of practice. And the mass line measures up.

I first encountered the mass line in Quotations from Chairman Mao Zedong. Later I read other articles by Mao Zedong on the subject, such as Some Questions Concerning Methods of Leadership and his January 30, 1962 talk on democratic centralism. I also studied articles by other communists like Liu Shaoqi’s Concerning the Mass Line of our Party and the short collection of Lenin’s writings, Party Work in the Masses.

That being said, I just wanted to draw people’s attention to this newly released pamphlet by the U.S. Marxist-Leninist group, Freedom Road Socialist Organization on the subject, Some Points on the Mass Line. It is a study of the mass line that was developed by FRSO which explains many of the key points of communist organizing, theory and practice, philosophy and revolution, in a very clear way. If an activist/organizer wants to know what Marxism has to offer in practical terms, in terms of getting stuff done, talk to them about the mass line and show them this pamphlet. It is about how to organize for revolution and change the world.

Well, though it is being published officially by Freedom Road now, in February 2008, it is really sort of a re-release, because as a study it has been floating around for a while now. So at the very beginning of Some Points on the Mass Line it says, “This study was prepared by a leading member of FRSO in the late 1980s. Since then this study has been used extensively inside and outside our organization and it has been reprinted in a number of different political settings. The application of the mass line is basic to how we do our work in trade unions, in the movements of oppressed nationalities, in anti-war and other progressive struggles. It informs our work on building a new communist party.” So the real target audience of Some Points on the Mass Line is clearly Marxist-Leninists, though I think advanced activists and organizers who aren’t necessarily Marxists or communists could get a a lot out of studying it as well. When combined with a strong, Marxist-Leninist class analysis, a clear view of the national question in the U.S., and important texts like the Main Political Report and other documents from FRSO’s 5th Congress (2007) we see that this document on mass line organizing is well contextualized within the rest of what Freedom Road has to offer.

When you get right down to it, Some Points on the Mass Line is an organizing handbook, with 20 points dealing with various aspects of the mass line, and including study questions. Some Points on the Mass Line deals with questions ranging from the philosophical (Marxist theory of knowledge, relationship between theory and practice) to the political (democratic centralism and communist organization), to the very practical (methods of work and methods of leadership). It shows how the mass line allows organizers to deals with questions as seemingly simple as how to respond practically to apathy and cynicism. It discusses the importance of summing up experiences and the struggle for summation. It talks about how to do united front work. It even deals with questions regarding how to build a stable core of activists to mobilize masses of poeple. And, importantly, it links all of these points with deeper questions such as how to raise the level of people’s consciousness.

Finally, it is worth mentioning that there is recommended reading at the end. The point is made that “although the term mass line was coined by the Communist Party of China, the basic method of reliance on, and the mobilization of, the masses of people has been utilized by all successful revolutionary parties.” So along with the well known texts of Mao Zedong and Chinese communism, others like Lenin’s On Confounding Politics with Pedagogics and Stalin’s Armed Insurrection and our Tactics are listed there as well for people to do more research into the classics of Marxism-Leninism.

It is in the mass line that the dialectical relationship between theory and practice is the most clear. As a revolutionary method, the mass line has be proven by successful revolutionary movements all over the world. This pamphlet from Freedom Road shows, point by point, just how that works. I would highly suggest that people read it and apply it.

“The masses are the real heroes, while we ourselves are often childish and ignorant, and without this understanding, it is impossible to acquire even the most rudimentary knowledge.” – Mao Zedong

Study Guide: Revolutionary Organization – Party Building and Democratic Centralism

This a section of M-L Study Guide. The other sections are found here: https://marxistleninist.wordpress.com/study-guide/

“Once the political line is laid down, organizational work decides everything.” – Zhou Enlai, “How to be a Good Leader”


Beginning and Essential readings

Supplemental readings