The lower classes of the nation also benefit, to a lesser degree, from the colonisation, either for some directly by immigration (as colonist or civil servant) or by participation in company profits, or for the whole of the population indirectly by improvements (wages, prices, investments) granted by the leading classes, improvements which the latter deduct from the colonial profits. It should however be made clear that the uprising of a colony largely contributes to the overthrow of the leading class, and thus the colonised peoples can become allies with the exploited classes of the dominant nation. The advantages that the exploited classes can draw from colonisation are fewer than those which result from the defeat of their own national exploiters.
It often happens that the dominant class spontaneously abandons the national interests; when threatened by an uprising of its own people, it often prefers to choose submission to a foreign dominant class, which represents a lesser evil. Such has been the attitude for many years of a large fraction of the French and Japanese bourgeois classes, of Persian feudal systems and of some Arab countries towards the Anglo-Americans.
Within a dependent nation, the dominant class largely adopts this attitude; the only thing that counts for it is the survival of its privileges. No matter what the inconveniences of such an attitude may be, it will try its utmost to integrate the foreign ruling class, adopting the latter's culture and becoming its best auxiliary. Numerous French bourgeois were thus pro-German in 1940-1944; the majority of the feudal lords in North Africa were still until recently pro-French; the Ukrainian bureaucrats are in general pro-Russian, etc.
It is amongst these assimilated collaborators (who can also come from the other levels of society) that one finds the fiercest chauvinists of the conquering nation. The linguistic and cultural repression from which unconsciously but deeply suffer these assimilated peoples is the real cause for their aggressiveness and their imperialism. Through their struggle with the non-assimilated peoples, they are fighting their own subconscious, and they take their revenge for the repression they have suffered, by imposing upon others the same fate. This was the case of the Francisised Italian Bonaparte, the Russianised Georgian Djargachvisi Stalin, the Hispanised Portuguese Franco, the anti-Semitic Jews, the frenchified Occitanians of the "Action Francaise" (the latter partially, because their programme for "decentralisation" and defence of local dialects, is a survivor of the Occitanian consciousness opposed to their ultra-chauvinistic French nationalism).
In dependent nations, national interests, the language and the national consciousness are therefore only represented nowadays by the middle and lower classes, or part of these classes, along with some rare elements of the upper classes. For these classes, the struggle against the dominant strata and the struggle for national independence are in fact one and the same.
What often occurs when assimilation deeply affects the middle and lower strata is that a revolutionary avant-garde, on both the national and social front, appears to belong to the semi-assimilated members. The appearance of this avant-garde, rejecting assimilation and the foreign consciousness, is the prelude to political, economic and cultural freedom, which usually means a simultaneous change in the social structure.
Needless to say, this avant-garde goes through various stages of increasing radicalisation related to the circumstances, beginning by a "purely cultural" action, modest economic demands, vague and abstract "regionalist" or "federalist" ideologies, vague, typically amateurish organisations, before undertaking any cultural, economic and political action, driven by a concrete and coherent national and social doctrine, lead by strongly structured organisations.
The struggle for national independence is expressed by a political line of union of the national classes: farmers, upper-middle class, workers, national capitalists (or national bureaucrats), and the role of each of these classes can vary greatly in importance depending on the particular situation of each country.
Struggles between nations are not produced by class struggles; they can exist between classless nations: as are those between so-called primitive peoples. Neither the overthrow of capitalism, nor the disappearance of the class system, in themselves a guarantee against the domination of one nation by another. A classless nation can economically exploit and culturally assimilate another classless nation, and one can say in this case that the latter has been globally reduced to the level of an exploited class.
This type of procedure is at the origin of the existence of the class system, along with the division of work. Not only is imperialism a simple product of capitalism, but all class systems are direct or indirect products of imperialism. The Greek and Roman histories show this abundantly; was not Sparticus' only aim to take the slaves back to their country ?
Only the existence of an abundant production, obtained without unpleasant work on one hand, and the disappearance of chronic aggressiveness (psychosexual) on the other, can radically remove all attempts at national oppression. It is only because the disappearance of classes and of the state (i.e. communism) is organically related to these two conditions, that they will herald the defeat of imperialism.
In the hypothesis that socialism, having suppressed capitalism, can ensure a better exploitation of nature and a fairer distribution of the national income and culture, in so far as it tends towards communism, one can hope for an alleviation of imperialist tendencies.
Classes are without doubt a universal, sociological category; but as coherent and living groups, they only exist within the larger groups that are nations.
The social situation in a particular country certainly has repercussions on the social situation in other countries, but the class struggles and revolutions (seen as real historical movements) are essentially specific factors linked to relational problems with other nations.
What engenders the unequal development of capitalism and, more recently, the unequal development of socialism, are various aspects of a general phenomenon: namely, the profound originality of the history of each nation.
It seems obvious, but is necessary to remind "proletarian" messianists, that the world is not divided into two classes or class camps within which there is national differentiation. The world is fundamentally divided into nations; the class system only appeared after the formation of ethnic groups and within them, the history of nations and of their struggles and the history of classes and their struggles then developed interactively. The main contradictions remain imperialist conflicts and struggles between nations, and within each of these nations class conflicts continue to exist.
In the twentieth century, more than ever, one has to admit that progress (or, more precisely, socialism) cannot and must not in any way be imposed from the exterior on one nationality in the name of some so-called international proletariat or any other pretext, otherwise that nation will suffer a new and deeper alienation.
National independence appears more and more as the principal objective over and above all others (socialism, democracy, etc) which can only be truly achieved if such independence is allowed to flourish.
From an economic point of view, all nations need certain products imported from abroad and they themselves produce certain products other nations may desire. At the present time, total economic independence cannot be achieved by any nation, however rich it may be, and moreover such independence would mean serious hardships or a huge labour increase for the entire population. International commerce without exploitation and based on reciprocal interests is, therefore, highly desirable.
If one takes into account the number of nations and their great variety of economies, it seems certain that this type of commerce corresponding to the interests of all parties is almost always possible. Exceptionally, when such an agreement cannot be reached, the production of similar products in the country itself and even a momentary deprival are in the long term less prejudicial to the national interests than the alienation, be it partial, of national independence, or a "one-way" dependence.
In so much as the disparity of work productivity in the different countries tends to lead to a certain disparity in economic exchanges, only political independence, the possibility switching between rival imperialists, can lessen and reduce this difference. Any integration into a federation would only increase such diversity and, in the most favourable cases, in a development in a direction that does not corresponding to national interests, leading to an increase in the dependence on the other ethnic groups.
It is not by chance that in socialist and federative Yugoslavia, Montenegro with its Serbo-Croat population receives state subsidies that are four times greater per inhabitant than in Macedonia, which is just as underdeveloped but whose population is Bulgarian and Albanian.
The preservation of independence is perfectly compatible with total co-operation, as much as any federation, but it also gives the greatest guarantee that this co-operation will always be based in national interests. The supra-national authority (the federation) does not add anything to the possibilities of co-operation, but facilitates any imperialist bid by furnishing an institutional and legal framework within which it can function. Imperialistic tendencies continue to exist in a socialist world; a socialist supra-national economic entity is as harmful as a capitalist supra-national entity. Unless the world becomes a communist world, with no imperialistic tendencies and no state system, the national state remains the only valid political form to best ensure the economic development of the country. Moreover, along with formal independence, authentic ethnic forces must take the economy and the state in hand. Even as far as under-developed countries are concerned, it is now undeniable that the neutral nationalist line followed for years by several of these countries is the most adequate, allowing them in particular to obtain long-term loans at low interest rates offered systematically by the super-imperialists. They thus benefit from better advantages than those given to docile satellite countries to the east and west.
It should be stressed that total economic independence will be increasingly possible (which does not necessarily mean to say desirable), as man deepens his knowledge of nature's mechanisms and manages to reproduce them as he wishes. The utilisation of atomic and solar energy, the different methods of improving the soil and hydroponics agriculture, the manufacture of synthetic products and the transformation of metals, in theory could make total economic independence possible. Once the improvement of these techniques has made them all profitable, full national independence will only depend on the quantity of labour that the nation is ready to supply in order to achieve it.
In fact, there will be fewer and fewer irremediably poor countries. The wealth of a country partly depends on its natural resources (to a decreasing extent) but, above all, on the quantity and the type of labour that has been produced, whether it has been used to its best advantage and the local population's appropriation of the rewards of this labour. This means that the wealth of a country mainly depends on its socio-economic structure and its national independence.
The remarkable economic development of Iceland over the last fifty years shows how much independence is beneficial even for those countries whose natural conditions are the least favourable.
As power struggles between nations disappear, as systematic hostility and systematic servility resulting from any foreign interference also disappear, as peaceful relationships become more widespread, the knowledge of the different aspects of other civilisations becomes possible and rewarding and allows each nation to adopt the elements it finds positive. Such possibilities have, of course, always existed, but they were more limited and their rewards were often accompanied by drawbacks.
The wealth of a civilisation partly depends on the frequency and the variety of these cultural exchanges, and the multiform progress of humanity largely depends on the diversity of these cultures (allowing research, experiments, and innovations in all domains) along with the frequency of their contacts. No culture possesses universal superiority. The European civilisations that are far ahead in certain spheres (material techniques) and from whom other civilisations have a lot to learn in this domain, can lag behind in other spheres (knowledge of human functions and possibilities).
The best way of avoiding excessive immigration is to obtain a well-balanced birth rate in each country, corresponding to the optimum population level, any other measure being simply used to consolidate this situation.
If a civilisation is judged upon the degree of contentment it produces, it could be thought that certain American-Indian, South Asian and Oceanic peoples are more civilised than the Europeans. Progress in the eyes of some people may not be progress in the eyes of others, as only the members of a particular civilisation can judge what makes them progress and what enriches their civilisation. The members of another ethnic group can only make a judgement in relation to the natural conditions of their country and the criteria applied to their own civilisation.
Cultural contacts presuppose learning the widest possible variety of foreign languages. This varied multi-lingualism, based on the desire to understand the specific personality of others, is the opposite of bilingualism as part of the assimilation process which is based on the desire to impose upon others ones own personality, or is a form of contempt or the under-estimation of ones own values.
Finally, among the truly human exchanges, one should distinguish the temporary exchange of individuals such as tourism, the exercise of the right of asylum, study and training courses (which if they are healthily organised can only reinforce the cultural links and are a source of enrichment for all concerned) and the permanent exchange of individuals, by naturalisation and crossbreeding.
On a small scale, the drawbacks of such exchanges only concern those directly involved, namely the difficulties they represent by way of adaptation for the newcomers and their children, especially if the origin of the two peoples is very different. On a large scale, naturalisation and crossbreeding deeply modify the national character, and thus create social and cultural problems of which the natives as a whole are the final victims. The best way of avoiding excessive immigration is to obtain a well-balanced birth rate in each country, corresponding to the optimum population level, any other measure being simply used to consolidate this situation.
There are several writing systems: some are ideo-syllabic (Chinese script), others are syllabic (Indian scripts), others are alphabetic, but more or less mixed with ideo-graphism (Arab, French), whilst others are purely phonetic (Italian, Spanish, Turkish).
Whereas a language expresses a way of being rather than a way of doing, and whereas each language is preferable for its own nation, writing is essentially a technique and a worldwide hierarchy exists between the different systems.
One form of writing is superior to another when it reproduces the spoken word with the easiest precision, when it approaches alphabetical phoneticism, and when each sound is always represented by the same sign and vice-versa.
The introduction of elements other than alphabetical-phonetic ones in writing constitutes a perfectly useless and groundless complication. The language is itself sufficiently significant and its exact written reproduction is equally so. Any etymological additions, simply products of pedantry and attachment to the past, are totally foreign to the functional role of the written language; it is easy for anyone to be convinced of this by the usage of a phonetic spelling adapted to one's own language. This difficulty of all non-phonetic spelling, i.e. the majority of today's writing systems, expresses the conservatism of the leading classes (who, after much learning, can overcome the difficulties of these spellings) and constitute an obstacle for the rest of population in the acquisition of education.
Moreover, any non-phonetic alphabetic spelling contributes to conflicts between different age groups, leading to an oppression of children and youths by adults. By its irrational character, it constitutes a major obstacle to any libertarian education. The present-day spelling extravagances should be replaced by a phonetic system and a correct pronunciation from which, once the alphabet has been mastered, a correct spelling automatically stems.
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