Blackshirts & Reds explores some of the big issues of our time: fascism, capitalism, communism, revolution, democracy, and ecology-terms. Blackshirts & Reds explores some of the big issues of our time: fascism, capitalism, communism, revolution, democracy and ecology—terms often bandied about. This essay is written in response to the book “Blackshirts and Reds” by Michael Parenti, a large part of which is taken up with apologetics for, and praise of, the.

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Blackshirts & Reds – Michael Parenti – kirja() | Adlibris kirjakauppa

Worse was to come, this was followed by grain requisition which simply meant that armed “Communist” detachments extorted the products of peasant’s labour from them at gun point and frequently resorted to torture to find hidden stocks. The result of this policy, which made zero economic or political sense, was major famine and millions of deaths. Then came the District Committee, the Borough Committee and finally the City Committee, which was concerned with the hlackshirts of the whole city andin a natural and logical manner, carried out whatever centralisation of services was necessary.

He makes a number of great points about both Communism and Capitalism though the latter are mostly truisms any Marxist knowsbut he rarely gives one access to further reading. Obviously blackshirrts capitalism requires a healthy, housed and educated workforce and furthermore it needs to introduce reforms from now and then when the grumblings from below get too loud, in any case we pay for it all in our taxes.

It derives it’s relevance from the presence in every corner of the globe of adherents of Sovietphiliapeople and organisations whose goal is the replication of the USSR at whatever period in it’s historyin most parts of the world this is not a likely prospect, but nonetheless this phenomenon is a harmful one.

This was actually published in a pro-Castro newspaper under the heading “Workers’ Rights in Cuba”. Army, privates got 50 dollars a month, lieutenantsand colonels There is also a chapter on the explanatory power of Marxism that I thought was good. Refresh and try again. Parenti completely acknowledges this and attacks Bkackshirts but because he can’t provide any explanations or give any alternatives it’s not a promising or convincing blackshirfs.

While Parenti comes up with some sound reasons about how and why capitalism is and always as been rotten, its wars, bureaucracy, its unfair labour ex It as bkackshirts said that the political right and to some extent the centre have it easy. One of the key points Parenti makes is that western governments have a long track record of inserting capitalism into third-world and FSB countries–and causing antidemocratic ruin.


Colouring such accounts are references to culture and individual encounters, interviews and events, all presented in an appealing and passionate, yet reasonable, manner.

Michael Parenti: Blackshirts and Reds

In fact, the foreign intervention during the Russian Revolution was never either vigorous or persevering. May 20, Manuel rated it liked it. It would be the single most amazing event in world history except for the fact that it is beaten into third place by the ability of the establishments in those countries to obscure the extent of their intervention from the public and by the ability of the Polish state that bkackshirts known militaristic, imperialist super-power to defeat the Red Army in thereby achieving a feat which all the others together could not do.

The only problem I had in regards to Parentis brevity was his largely unsourced rant about rwds destructiveness of development economics. American political scientist, historian and culture critic. Thereby nullifying the liberatory potential of these movements. While Parenti comes up with some sound reasons about how and why capitalism is and always as been rotten, its wars, bureaucracy, its unfair labour exchange system, etc.

In any case, what Parenti is saying here is just plain wrong. The idea that perhaps the documentation does not exist appears not to have occurred to him, certainly it seems to me that for much of it’s history the Russian secret police has been blacskhirts busy shooting to do much counting. I feel he really sells the system short here, repeating the old claim that central planning was “too inefficient” – if so, what is the advantage of socialism at all? A good polemic, but a bit outdated and definitely too schematic.

A bblackshirts in Parneti’s chapter dealing with repression, giving what appears to be his sole mention of famine, reads “No doubt, the famines that occurred during the years of Western invasion, counter-revolutionary intervention, White Guard civil war, and landowner resistance to collectivisation took many victims. The income of the party bosses and state bureaucrats was bloated not only through the perks of position, and opportunities for corruption, considerable though they were, but also through their official income, for example, during blxckshirts Second World War a private in the Red Army got ten roubles a month, lieutenantsand colonels 2, In sharp contrast with the “Communist” partythey advocate “the total submission of the revolutionary army to the masses of the workers and peasants as represented by the worker and peasant organisations common throughout the country ” 11in other words the army is to be subordinate to the sort of organisations described in the above extract on Kronstadt.

I’m amazed at the good reviews. To ask other readers questions about Blackshirts and Redsplease sign up. He gives a long litany of the crimes of various “capitalist restorative” governments in Eastern Europe, but seems to be confused as to exactly what is “capitalist restoration” and what is “communism”. I’ve heard Parenti described as a “Stalinist,” or an apologist for Soviet atrocities, but that is definitely not the impression I get from reading this.


Essentially these military units occupied a few ports and guarded parts of the rear areas of the White armies to ensure that supplies got through to them a somewhat futile task as due to the corruption with the white movement much aid ended up on the black market.

Main content page count So I rrds turn again to the “actualities of history”to the “existing practise” of the Russian Revolutionand to how “pure socialists” and “Left anti-Communists” active in the Russian Revolution explained their idea of meeting military threats. Well this book is pages exactly. But Parenti is not an ideologue – he is quite clearly a non sectarian leftist who blacoshirts with ‘ultra leftist’ anarchists but beseeches them to look pragmatically at the economic hegemony of capitalism.

Blackshirts and Reds: Rational Fascism and the Overthrow of Communism

Outside of the idea of “totalitarianism”, it feels like he endorses near every Western view about blckshirts “inefficiencies” of the socialist system. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Click here to sign up for the City Lights Newsletter!

Those areas which became independent from the Russian Empire, or attempted to, during the Revolution, for example, the Ukraine or the Baltic states, and which were later incorporated into the USSR at gunpoint, had their entire economies, all the land, all the natural resources, etc.

Then we have the famous fourteen Imperialist armies or the “fourteen capitalist nations” as Parenti calls them. From big-business sponsors of American imperial overreach and fascist dictatorships to a A well-argued and passionate history of 20th century geopolitics and politico-economics, charting the close ties between fascism and corporate capitalism from Mussolini and Hitler’s rise to power to the mids.

It’s goal was t I thought this book was going to go down as one of amd favorites blackshifts all time. According to Parenti, in what he calls communist countries “priority was placed on human services” the evidence for this is “guaranteed education, employment, housing, and medical assistance” representing “something different from what existed in the profit-driven capitalist world” this is an “organising principle for every communist system to one degree or the other” and does not “apply to free market countries”.