The Inverse Totalitarian State and Lenin’s Continual Revolution

Steve Brown

“The Corporative State* considers private initiative.. as the most efficient and useful instrument of the Nation. State intervention in economic production may take place only where private initiative is lacking or is insufficient or when are at stake the political interests of the State.” — Benito Mussolini, Grand Council of Fascism, Labour Charter of 1927 stated in article 7 * “corporativismo” Italian translation

The New World Disorder

Sheldon Wolin’s theory on the evolution of the Inverted Totalitarian State was published in 2008,  “Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism” and I’ve seen no update since then, subsequent to the financial crisis of 2008-2009. Any attempt for my part to update Wolin’s theory — without participation of the author or those with authority on the work — would be presumptuous.  Even so, as the Captured State becomes ever more captured, further utterance about the theory is in order.

Since 2008, the specter of Inverse Totalitarianism is no longer a specter and  has manifested itself in reality,  consequent to the collapse of our previous financial system,  pre TARP-1.  For example there have been specific developments relating to the Surveillance State and its control of the media and government – well beyond Wolin’s theory –  beyond scope of this commentary.

So the idea here is to propose only one new component with regard to Inverse Totalitarian theory, new to the theory but in existence for more than one hundred years: namely the concept of Continual Revolution. Continual Revolution is simple in concept yet complex by manifestation, and treated here via the Plutocracy of the Captured State and not in the context of Marxist-Leninist theory in the ideology of the Socialist State .

To embellish Lenin’s ideas, “The Theory of Permanent Revolution” was written by Nikolai Bukharin in 1924. According to Bukharin, Continual Revolution is achieved when, “in the last analysis (we) will reach a stage when the workers will have captured political power.” In the Inverse Totalitarian State, we extend that to mean by corporate consolidation and conglomeration, the capture and control all markets, while ending/curtailing competition as J Pierpont Morgan advocated in 1907 for predatory capital.

Bukharin writes, “the revolution shall become unceasing until all the more or less wealthy classes have been removed from power and the proletariat has fully captured political power.” (Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, Volume 3, Gosizdat, 1921, p 501) In the case of Inverse Totalitarianism, the same is achieved when megacorporates and Oligarchs have complete political and monetary control of the media and electoral process, as they do today.

Because a corporation is by definition ruled by hierarchy and thus tyranny, corporations are  limited by their structure as top-down, and unaccountable. The incorporated world is  a hierarchy of change in itself, never static, managed and operated according to its own rules, and no others;  thus the Corporation is the perfect quintessential manifestation of tyranny.

In its static form, the corporation as tyranny must ultimately destroy itself by definition with regard to never-ending increased profitability, because the Corporation must grow ever larger by monopolization, consolidation, and conglomeration to become ever more profitable… or else die.

By extension, all tyrannical regimes rely upon the concept of Permanent (or continual) Revolution to become greater entities, because only by expansion can the tyranny of the corporate entity continue to exist.  Again, when the Corporate entity ceases to grow, it must die … by its own  definition of greater profitability only “justifying” the Corporation’s existence.

To develop the theory of Continual Revolution, think about the manner in which Corporations have hijacked Marxist-Leninist ideas. Bukharin states, “By uninterrupted revolution Marx conceived the prospect of the revolution taking a course in which the relation between forces continuously alters” and “constant changes in the social context of the revolution are taken into account. It reflects that, in the progress of  revolution, the relation between the conflicting classes constantly changes and the revolution in its development constantly marches forward from one stage to the next, without end.”

How neatly Bukharin explains the rapid state of change we see via this Continual Revolution ideology as expressed by Paul Singer who famously wrote, “Stability is not the way of the world.”  While the hierarchical class  – or ‘coup class’ as I call it – consolidates and leverages wealth and power exponentially,  we see that not much works in a world descending into Leninist chaos manifested by Predatory Capital instead of by the Commissars.

From public or private dispute resolution;  to monetary easing; to seemingly global unrelated events such as the “Arab Spring”; or Impressive Statecraft; or chaos within the electoral process; or the Surveillance State….  the list is endless.. With no desire for political or cultural stability, the coup class have deemed that “stability is not the way of the world’.

This rapid rate of change is seen via the lens of Permanent Revolution, as adopted by the predatory capital Coup Class. Lenin’s ideas on Permanent Revolution have thus been adopted  by Predatory Capital by their Corporate entities; and and as such describe the Inverse Totalitarian State.  As Bukharin described it, the State as we know it cannot exist without that change; the Empire of Chaos and instability demanded by ever-expanding power, control and profit.

Bukharin again, “the relation between the conflicting classes constantly changes, and that  revolution in its development constantly marches forward from one stage to the next”.  The perfect description of how the far less than 1% wield power – not in the form of some vague global conspiracy; but in the form of an intelligent tyranny in the manifestation of  greater global consolidation. The New World Disorder. So the Continual Revolution of the Corparateteer  Coup Class over the Great Unwashed becomes perfectly analogous to Lenin’s vision of tyranny by the workers over the wealthy.

The goal of constant Corporate evolution via rapid change and transformation into larger consolidated and conglomerated entities – always looking to redefine to some new and Larger State of Existence – has been emboldened since 2008. The path of  Inverse Totalitarianism  has not only been broadened, but reinforced by the ascendance of the Surveillance and Police States; by the “fake news” media and by constructed events. The ultimate irony is that Predatory Capital  has its own chosen entity – the modern mega-corporation – largely modeled on this Leninist idea of Continual Revolution.

So finally we are left with the question: is Lenin’s Continual Revolution necessarily a bad thing? If Lenin’s concept is used to promote for the greater good – or common good – then probably not.  But when Permanent Revolution is hijacked by incorporated powers to advance tyranny and oppression (the result of which is the decline of humanism in favor of the inhumanity of Corporate rule)  the end result is not just the specter of Inverse Totalitarianism, but its reality.

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