An uncomfortable truth that must be acknowledged, Trotskyists have more influence in the first world than Maoists do. If we are honest with ourselves, we’ll see that Troskyists are a growing influence in the U.S., while the Maoists are declining. We must see past the vitriol, and our feelings towards the reactionary Trotskyism to see the truth.
Where are the Maoists in the Untied States? Immediately we think Bob Avakian’s RCP, or even the Kasama project. Of these two groups, the RCP is still alive, however reactionary. Outside of these two groups we have collage activist circles trying to pass themselves off as legitimate revolutionary movements. The New Communist Party (a.k.a. the New York Maoists) has proclaimed itself to be “the leaders of the Maoist rebellion of New York.” The Revolutionary Communist Party of Canada literally claims to be doing People’s War. Both of these statements are utter nonsense, there is no war going on, there is no rebellion or armed struggle taking place. At best each is a few handfuls of people. They’re both collage activist groups composed of mostly upper-middle class twenty-somethings, whom one would be surprised if they even owned a gun.
Now, contrast this with the strength and popularity of Trotskyist groups. The ISO (International Socialist Organization) is a primary example. They’re a very large political group that stretches across many countries. They can even be found in places like Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Take a look at all the noise being made around Kshama Sawant in Seattle. A minor position in a city council is significant when compared to the influence and power Maoists have in the U.S. Socialists all across the first world are enamoured with her victory and it has garnered her Trotskyist group (Socialist Alternative) a lot of support. Her actions have also driven a lot of people towards Bernie Sanders (even though he’s not a Trotskyist). They have legitimate union connections all across the country, while the Maoists have none. This disparity in influence and power is plain to see, if people but only look. Are these Trotskyists revolutionary groups? No, they call for social democratic reforms.
Does that mean Trotskyism is correct and Maoism is wrong? Absolutely not. Trotskyism is a terrible reactionary, racist ideology, and social imperialist on a theoretical level. All I am pointing out here are their levels of popularity. Trotskyism clearly does wield much more influence in the real world. It does this over Marxist-Leninists as well. This is by no mean a failing exclusive to Maoism. What is important here is to acknowledge the reality of the situation. One group merely pretends to be revolutionary and have no support, while the other is openly reformist and enjoys large support.
Why is this happening? Essentially, this is a symptom of First Worldism. As there is no significant presence of a proletariat in the first world, people tend towards reform not revolution. The revolutionary potential is not there. Almost all activist groups openly reject the idea of revolution, while the Maoists promote revolution over reform. It should come as no surprise that Trotskyists have more support.
First Worldism is a reactionary tendency, it must be rejected.