Edit: I’ve redone this post because my first response was poor. This one is more formal.
Paper will tolerate anything. Daniel Buntovnik’s recent attacks on myself and Leading Light Communist Organization are a bungle of lies and misinformation. Much of his polemic comes down to the accusation that “Third Worldism” is a First World thing. In sophomoric style, he peppers his polemic with the likes of Edward Siad, Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, and who cares. Said is rolling in his grave. It is almost embarrassing how easily Buntovnik’s nonsense is exposed. Is “Third Worldist” political economy a First World thing? One only need to look at that most famous resident of Denver, Colorado, Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first prime minister, who had this to say about the global class struggle:
“It is said that capitalism managed to prolong its life to our day because of a factor which perhaps Marx did not fully consider. This was the exploitation of colonial empires by the industrial countries of the West. This gave fresh life and prosperity to it, at the expense, of course, of the poor countries so exploited.” (1)
Julius K. Nyerere, the first president of Tanzania, and resident of Ontario, similarly stated:
“The only difference between the two situations is that the beneficiaries in the international situation now are the national economies of the rich nations — which includes the working class of those nations. And disagreements of the spoils, which used to exist between members of the capitalist class in the nineteenth century, are now represented by disagreement about the division of the spoils between workers and capitalists in the rich economies.”(2)
Kidding aside, I could have listed a dozen similar examples of Third World writers and revolutionaries articulating “Third Worldist” political economy. Even more humorous is that, in his own document, Daniel Buntovnik points to Lin Biao as an example of “Third Worldism.” Lin Biao wasn’t a First Worlder last time I checked. The reality is that “Third Worldism” has a long heritage that includes numerous Third World and First World writers. As a trend, it is bigger than myself, Prairie Fire, or LLCO. Daniel Buntovnik’s orientalist and sectarian lenses erase a major intellectual trend so that only myself and Prairie Fire remain in his reality. He is guilty of exactly of what he accuses others of. In his mind, he only hears our two voices because he fails to listen to the chorus of others, including Third Worlders, who say the same thing.
The reality is that Leading Light Communist Organization is the most important example of political trends going back a half century. It is an astounding level of arrogance and ignorance that prevent Daniel Buntovnik from seeing what is obvious to anyone who has been paying attention. Leading Light is a multinational revolutionary organization that publishes in many languages. It is an organization with a multinational leadership. For example, the majority of Leading Light’s top leaders are from the Third World. Daniel Buntovnik wears the lenses of orientalism. He only sees what his imperial provincialism will let him see. And, in his world, Third World people can’t lead global organizations or trends. The reality is that Leading Light of the Bangla Zone, like Leading Light in North America, has a long distinguished history. It emerged from the National Socialist Party and People’s Army of Bangladesh. The reality is that Leading Light has villages that it organizes in on a daily basis.
Here are Leading Lights organizing women for revolution and against domestic abuse on international women’s day in one of the villages:
Here is a Leading Light leader speaking at a meeting of activists and intellectuals:
Here is a class organized around Leading Light Communism:
Here are tribal people’s from one of the villages giving a red salute in Leading Light uniforms:
This is just a small sample of the work of Leading Light is involved in on a daily basis. But, again, these people in the images are invisible to Daniel Buntovnik. The only image he sees of “Third Worldism” in action is that of myself and Prairie Fire. There is an old Maoist saying of those fools who cut the toes to fit the shoe. That is exactly what he does. Anyone looking at Leading Light honestly would see that most of their work is in the Third World, most of their cadre, most of their leaders. But, his worldview just won’t let the data speak for itself.
Perhaps, Daniel Buntovnik could show similar images of his own work, or the work of those he champions in Bangladesh. Of course he can’t because the reality is he has no interest in what is really going on on the ground there. We do. He is only interested in sectarian attacks against myself and the Leading Light. It is pathetic that a First Worlder like himself would attack the poorest people in the world just because his ego got bruised.
He says he’s only seen myself and Commander Prairie Fire involved in Third Worldism. This is only because he hasn’t looked. A wealth of third world people have made Third Worldist arguments. He claims Third Worldism is a first world thing, if he thinks that, then he’s clearly done no investigation. The first prime minister of India is a simple example. Although he was a reformer and a social democrat, he had Third Worldist political economy.
It appears this way to him because he’s trapped in his First Worldist, bubble. He accuses us of orientalism (racism), yet he’s so blinded by his own first world centric view, that he hasn’t even bothered to look at actual third world intellectuals. This is actual racism.
All his post really did was produce an overly long blog post with as much BS as possible as an angry response to his inability to demonstrate he was correct in a debate. It’s just a dressed up wall of text intended to appear as an academic paper. He’s thrown in so many false accusations and dressed them up in an academic way. It’s sophomoric.
What makes Third Worldism correct over First Worldism? It’s ability to provide better explanations for phenomena and predictions of outcomes. This is not scientism, we’ve gone into great detail that he clearly hasn’t read.
- Turning Money Into Rebellion edited by Gabriel Kuhn, Pg. 30
- Turning Money Into Rebellion edited by Gabriel Kuhn, Pg. 31