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V.I. Lenin is the pen name of Steve Clark. Like Boomers worldwide, I came of age in the turbulent Sixties. I was compelled by the hypocrisy of mainstream American politics and culture to join the struggles against the war in Viet Nam and for civil rights and women’s liberation.
In 1973, after a stint at the Air Force Academy, graduation from Georgetown University (economics) and a go at law school, I "dropped out" to launch a non-profit, community-based, worker-managed, grocery cooperative (Stone Soup) in Washington, DC. After President Nixon labeled me and other anti-war protestors "communists," I studied Marxism and, eventually, took an active part uniting leftwing activists nationwide into the Communist Workers Party that survived into the 1980s. Through the Party and various other organizations, I worked for most of two decades as a community organizer. In the 1990s, I earned a master’s degree in education (George Washington University) and taught high school. In the last phase of my career, I was a communications professional and health writer on the union side of the construction industry.
Though our party-building experience had exposed fallacies in socialist theory and practice, everything else in life confirmed my early conclusion that revolutionary struggle is necessary to hold corporate capitalism to social and ecological account and build a better world. To this end, I maintained a constant interest in learning and summarizing what was wrong in Marxism by discovering the true realities of contemporary, real-world social change.
In this I found that my appreciation for the inevitability of global revolution was confirmed by many insights of modern social science – particularly the work of the Alvin and Heidi Toffler (The Third Wave), anthropologists Marvin Harris (Cannibals and Kings) and Helen Fisher (Anatomy of Love), partners Neil Howe and William Strauss (The Fourth Turning) and socioecologist Sing Chew (Recurring Dark Ages).
Beyond theory, intensifying hardship and struggle worldwide compelled continued allegiance to revolutionary aspirations. After 9/11 and the global financial crisis of 2008, it was clear to me that the world’s people and its corporate elite are now at a decisive crossroads.
Wishing not just to understand but, more, to help change our world, I launched GlobalTalk, a blog for global revolutionaries, in 2004. In 2011, I published Digging Out: Global Crisis and the Search for a New Social Contract (with my brother Charles) and opened LocalGlobalNexus.net to promote the book and its assessment. In May 2015, adopting the pen name V.I. Lenin, I updated and refocused Marxist theory for 21st century class struggle in What Is To Be Done?
Bottom line, I’ve always practiced that old Boomer mantra: Change the World!
Sooner, now, than later, as our consciousness and interconnections increasingly demand, the people of earth will rise up in coordinated social revolution and compel an accountable, new social contract from the corporate elite, one that puts the interests of the whole ahead of the parts. Can you imagine our world in another 50 years if we don't?
on Aug. 22, 2015 :
What is to be Done? by Steve Clark is the pressing question facing the world's peoples in the face of the planetary ecological and socio-economic crisis. Using Lenin and Marx as guides but not dogma, What is to be Done? refreshes and updates the class analysis so necessary to focus the struggle to effectively change the world. The corporate and finance stranglehold on the economy must be broken. A new social contract to re-balance the class interests must be forced on this monopoly system to prevent catastrophic climate change and a political dark age. The spectre of fascism looms. We need to unite the world and become a Global Problem-Solving Authority through our social networks and lead the revolution forward to the new Service Age of corporate accountability, full employment, peace, justice, social service, and a sustainable future. This line is laid out in the book as a lifeline to save the planet and the people from the status quo stranglehold preventing moving forward with this urgent task. Good start to the solutions we must all come up with for ourselves and our future generations.
(reviewed 9 days after purchase)