02 October, 2019

Issue 66: Holistic Materialism I





This is the first in a special two part series entitled Holistic Materialism. These issues constitute a set of loosely related papers by Marxist theorist Jim Schofield concerning his philosophy of science, and his application of Holism and Dialectical Materialism to the sciences, especially particle physics. This has been a historical and epistemological project as much as it has been a philosophical and scientific one. In order to understand the mistakes and impasses we are presented with in science today, it is imperative to go back and have some understanding of how knowledge and philosophy have evolved over human history.

But what exactly is Holistic Materialism? Holism is a word that means different things to different people, a seemingly vague term that is often abused and misused - ‘holistic medicine’ for example covers all sorts of pseudoscientific nonsense no empricial researcher would care to be associated with. However Holism as a philosophical concept refers to something quite specific, and for Jim Schofield it is encapsualted in its opposition to the Pluralist position (not to be confused with pluralism), which sees all entities and laws as separable - capable of being isolated and studied in isolation - but more importantly, that this separability will somehow unlock the truth of how things in reality work. Essentially it is the philosophy of reductionism and this underpins almost all contemporary scientific research. Jim Schofield’s work is a unique critique of the hidden assumptions which underpin all science.

This is not the first time the term Holistic Materialism has been used, however. We see it linked to biology and 19th century naturalists in the writing of Ernst Mayr.

“The discovery of the similarity between dialectical materialism and the thinking of the naturalists is not new. Several authors have called attention to it, particularly Allen... He starts quite rightly: “The process of natural selection is as dialectical a process one could find in nature.” Allen thought that the dialectic viewpoint of the naturalists had been lost between 1890 and 1950... Allen asserts that the “holistic materialism” of the naturalists had failed to incorporate two important dialectical views. First “the notion that the internal change within a system is the result specifically of the interaction of opposing forces or tendencies within the system itself.”

The Roots of Dialectical Materialism (Mayer, 1997)

In the work of Schofield we see this kind of holist view of natural systems but very much informed by the dialectics of Karl Marx. It is not enough to see the interconnected-ness of things but realise how natural dominances emerge, to the point of seeming universal, and also how these dominances can come crashing down as their internal contradictions finally play out. It is in these crucial events that we see the Emergence of the wholly new. In these papers we see how Pluralist science prohibits access to this fundamental feature of reality, and that while those 19th naturalists may have hinted at the way forward, holist science is something new.

01 October, 2019

Workplace Democracy and Democratic Ownership



"Workplace Democracy and Democratic Ownership: moving from theory to strategy". Richard Wolff and Gar Alperovitz at Left Forum, 2013.



Some very interesting and unexpected revelations come out of this debate - worker co-ops alone will solve nothing as they will inevitably recreate all of the same problems regarding market competition and consumption that you get with laissez-faire capitalism - the only difference will be workers rather than bosses will have to become cutthroat in order to survive. 

So what is the solution? Society must control the economy, not the other way around. Top-down Stalinist type controlled economies didn't work either - so what does the relationship between society and the workplace need to be in order to make work work for the benefit of all?

Gar Alperovitz hints at a possible way out looking his work with steel workers in Youngstown Ohio in 1977... democratic community ownership of companies and resources, rather than worker cooperatives, as a way of really democratising the means of production (and distribution and digital infrastructure, in the modern world), and subsequently the entire economy.

25 September, 2019

The Diverse Tasks for Revolutionaries


Revolution of the Mind

The essential modern extensions to a Marxist analysis of Capitalism are clearly underway with contributions like those of David Harvey. And, Richard Wolff correctly extols the virtues of Worker Co-ps as an alternative to Capitalist forms of production.

But these contributions are by no means sufficient to build an effective revolutionary organisation, capable, when a genuine revolutionary situation emerges, of leading the Working Class to finally overthrow Capitalism. Indeed, literally nowhere are such organisations being built!

I know because I spent a good part of my adult life in professedly Revolutionary organisations, yet none of them were anywhere close to being up to the competences required. And it was not just in their political organisation, or even their policies: they were, in retrospect, emasculated shadows of the real thing - embodied in such as the Russian Bolsheviks.

And, they were not only very top-down in their bureaucratic organisation, but also lamentably lacking in developing the essential and radically different Philosophy of Marxism - Dialectical Materialism!  Indeed, even their reasoning was dominated by the old Formal Reasoning, which had led to Hegel's attempt to correct its pluralist disabilities, via his instituting into it the directly contrary Dialectical Approach.

And as a professional physicist, I couldn't even raise any interest in the primary-philosophical-task still outstanding among self-professed Marxists - namely, both the philosophical, and the physical, defeat of the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory in Modern Sub Atomic Physics. Indeed, in bringing it up, I was admonished for using it to avoid the pressing day-to-day rasks of political Activism!

None of the parties I joined were general Dialectical Materialists: they were, in fact, well out-of-date, and inadequate purely economic Marxists, and political activists only, and they never discussed Marx's actual revolutionary philosophy at all. It most certainly did not guide their activities, or their publications.

Yet, it was undoubtedly Marx's creation of the wholly new philosophical standpoint of Dialectical Materialism, that enabled all his consequent contributions. But as a single individual, addressing the whole gigantic area of Capitalist Economics, he never had the time to address all the other crucial areas in the same way.

And, the most important of these, Science, has still not been addressed by any of the "Marxist" groups.

Marxism can only advance if it is diversified...


17 September, 2019

Organising for Real Social Change




In spite of several major crises, such as the decade-long slump in the 1930s, and the similar and still continuing Depression commencing in 2008, the problems which caused them have not, and indeed cannot, be solved, whilever we live within a Capitalist Economic System.

For, this system is driven by maximising Profit for the Few, while directly extracting the wherewithal to maintain and extend the System, from the the work and the pockets of the majority of the People - the Many! And, the consequences throughout the last century have been totally horrendous - TWO World Wars with literally Tens of Millions of Deaths - entirely due to rival Capitalist powers wanting bigger shares! Impending climate catastrophe as the system requires perpetual growth and the destruction of the natural world which that necessitates. And, also, there have been - Revolutions in TWO of the biggest Countries in the World, whose stated purpose was to build Socialism and bury Capitalism for ever.

So, how has Capitalism survived?

There is no easy answer, but one of the primary reasons the many haven't been able to overthrow the few is because literally ALL the means of disseminating Information are in the biased hands of the Wealthy, and even the apparently Democratic Political Systems, worldwide, have been bought to both speak and act always in a pro-capitalist way!

Yet, even so, it has all been insufficient, and we are now living within a period of literally constant wars - either to supress any divergence from the pro Capitalist Bloc, or to supress any challenge the dominance of the current hegemony of the Leading Capitalist Power - the USA!
And, no matter what setbacks the war-mongers get, they simply redouble their efforts, to maintain the status quo - one way or another. 

It is becoming an existential Crisis for Capitalism, and as they have NO solutions - they still carry on with the vast increases in Debt, which precipitated the continuing Crisis of 2008! It hasn't been a solution to that, so stepping it up again to even higher levels won't solve things now.

So, how can the People break out of their currently powerless position?

They have to FIRST bypass the usual means, and take to the streets!

And, then they must strive to build Socialist Political Parties with the Theory necessary to inform their actions.

And that MUST be Marxist - BUT NOT the distorted versions of the Stalinist/Communist and even the Trotskyist aberrations, but a NEW and Genuine Marxism, based upon the contributions of Karl Marx, but now finally extended into Science, where it is currently exposing the myths of Modern Sub Atomic Physics, as well as rejecting the many Damaging Revisions, in the name of Marxism, which are no such thing!

There is no shortage of Issues: get out there and DEMONSTRATE!

04 September, 2019

Natural Revolution (2019) A SHAPE film...



Natural Revolution

SHAPE Journal is proud to present a new film by Michael C Coldwell and Jim Schofield.

This is a film about revolution.

A film about how revolutionary emergences are a natural and crucial part of all developing reality. 

Based on a wide-ranging discussion between Marxist philosopher and scientist Jim Schofield, and filmmaker and researcher Michael C Coldwell, this essay film explores diverse themes, from Stalinism to the evolution of language, from the origin of life on earth to the failure of the 1960s revolutionary movement. The visuals are ripped and mashed from Youtube - archive footage, newsreels and films from the 20th century. Music is supplied by Conflux Coldwell and the Urban Exploration collective.

Revolutionary Socialism


The world has transformed substantially since the last time this was tried

What mechanisms of social change could finally enable a switch to socialism?


Do you really think that such a switch-over will be allowed to occur anywhere by countries like the USA?

What did you think the two World Wars, the Cold War, and the now constant local hot wars, have been about, first in Asia, and are still the case now in the Middle East?

The World Wars were about an attempted change in hegemony between Capitalist powers, while the Asian wars, and a series of others, were to suppress the attempted extension of Socialism, while later conflicts were back to hegemony once again.

Do you really think that the replacement of Capitalism will be allowed to happen peacefully by the Ballot Box? Know your History: and the current situation in the UK, for all tell us very clearly indeed that the answer is without any doubt - NO!

All the "versions" of Socialism, which insist that a peaceful transition will be allowed to occur, effectively disarm those fighting for Socialism, with strictly moral alternatives, which have never in the past, and will never now, change the World.
And, of course, there has, and continues to be, a sizeable penetration of the Socialist Movements by those who, in the last analysis, will actually fight against real Socialism's institution, and will show their true objectives by who it is that they militarily align when the crunch comes.

The Socialist movement has, since its very inception, been divided into Liberals and Revolutionaries. And, while the former have never established anything significant, only the revolutionaries have ever managed to succeed in challenging the injustices of Capitalism. And, that was never just via a totally committed militancy, but by a theoretical superiority, based upon an understanding of the trajectory of past histories and the dynamics of social change, with their absolutely essential Social Revolutions!

The wherewithall for the necessary breakhrough was achieved by an Historian follower of the Philosopher Hegel, who after over 2,000 years since the Greek Intellectual Revolution, finally addressed the debilitating Pluralist flaws in Formal Reasoning, with his attempted inclusion of Qualitative Changes into that Discipline. But, Hegel was an idealist philosopher, and it was in the switch of Hegel's modified stance, only by Karl Marx, that his objective was generally achieved, by applying the same reasoning, but with a Materialist Philosophical Basis.

For, Marx then knew what had to be done, and spent the rest of his life applying that Dialectical Materialism to a thoroughgoing critique of Capitalist Economics in his 3 volume work Das Kapital.

So, for the first time, History could be considered dynamically- in its vast qualitative changes, and in their key events - Social Revolutions - where such changes happen at a remarkable rate, but nevertheless could be understood on-the-fly- as they occurred, and, consequently, acted upon successfully.

Indeed, that evident Marxian understanding divided the sheep from the goats - only Marxists had any idea of what was happening literally day-by-day, and even hour-by-hour. For, Marx had been able to use Michelet's History of the French Revolution to extract the Dynamics of Revolutionary Change from that period of maximal Social Flux, in a generally applicable way. And, of course, also apply it to a remarkable degree in Das Kapital!

The application of Marx's methods within an actual Revolution, especially those due to Lenin, were also made available worldwide by both John Reed's Ten Days that Shook the World, and also Trotsky's History of the Russian Revolution.

Now sadly, the early deaths of both Marx and Lenin left Socialism without a first-rate Marxist theorist, and both inside and outside the Soviet Union (as post-revolutionary Russia became), the absolutely essential extension of Marxism into the still-outstanding Sciences, had never been undertaken, and a multitude of self-professed "Marxists" appeared everywhere, but literally without the understanding or necessary profundity of a Marx, or of a Lenin!




Indeed, the crucial assault upon the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory in physics, has only very recently been completed by this Marxist, mathematician and physicist, after a decade of study, and is as yet unknown in Socialist Organisations worldwide.

So, committed comrades in Socialist Organisations are still largely ill-equipped theoretically for the coming World Crisis, and unless something is done very quickly indeed, the madmen in power, and currently manipulating the present crisis will plunge us into what could be a terminal World War!

Can Socialists do anything if they limit themselves to blind activism and the Ballot Box? Current Elections have proved that Democracy can be effectively manipulated or even swept aside when it gets-in-the-way of certain politicians' purposes.

We surely must be prepared to act in a Revolutionary way to stop the Billionaires sacrificing millions of ordinary People via their dangerous and undemocratic plans...

SHAPE Journal has recently produced a documentary film on the theory of revolution, you can watch it below:



02 September, 2019

Beauty?


Scultpure by Henry Moore - its beauty is nothing to do with symmetry or formal perfection


As an artist (I am primarily a sculptor) as well as both a professional scientist, and a philosopher, I always justifiably jib at sweeping definitions of Beauty, from one or another supposedly fundamental stance! So, when today I was assaulted on YouTube by a series of such declarations, I was impelled to pen this essay.

The most glaringly false declarations, as you might have guessed, were inevitably about Mathematics!

Wilczek swoons at its towering and breath-taking "Beauty", while another is staggered by the importance of Number in the Universe.

But, it is also clear, that neither of these 'prophets' were in any way aware of the fundamental weakness at the very heart of that Mathematics, which makes it totally incapable of dealing with any qualitative developments whatsoever. For, its power resides solely in its artificial simplification of all things to reveal only their superficial Forms or Patterns.

Mathematics is the study of forever-fixed Pure Forms, and as such was, and is, a truly remarkable advance, but certainly NOT the Revealer of all, or even any, Causative Essence. The invention of this formal approach, by the Ancient Greeks, was indeed a major Revolution in intellectual studies: but it wasn't carried out by an omnipotent, all-knowing and all-seeing God - but by mere human beings.

Darwinian Evolution selects for Survival and effective Reproduction only - so our Hominid-Line knapped pieces of flint for literally millions of years, without any significant intellectual development occurring at all. For this 'intelligence' was not congenital, but certainly had-to-be both a solely socially-acquired, and passed-on ability.

Indeed, the undoubted proof is clearly evident, from the revealing studies of Palaeontologists, who also immediately recognised the tremendous significance of the Neolithic Revolution, when Mankind successively changed-over to staying-in-one-place with others of their kind to productively both Farm-the-Land, Domesticate Animals. and discuss with one another. Only then could increasing-social-interactions begin to develop in both the regular Exchanges of things, and revealing Discussions, delivering a consequent development of productive activities and crucially also both Language and indeed Thought itself!

Now, the above short diversion into Human Evolution was absolutely essential, as without it, the inevitably inaccurate initial misconceptions about the Nature of Mathematics would inevitably intervene to prevent any understanding of its accompanying significant weaknesses. So, unavoidably demolishing any promotion of it to a universally fundamental role in the Consciousness of Mankind!

The Ancient Greeks had achieved a remarkable thing conceptually, in their Intellectual Revolution - they invented a wholly new kind of Abstraction - with regard to Forms, that enabled the valid construction of the very first Intellectual Discipline in their History - namely Mathematics!




I call them "Simplifying Relatable Abstractions", and they were a remarkably empowering original invention! They stripped down certain formal conceptions to an absolute minimum content - indeed, so tiny were they, that they were useless in isolation - BUT, as connecting-enablers, they alone legitimately linked certain things together, delivering a sound means that could be legitimately repeated into delivering a substantial complex and coherent spatial Discipline.

But, there was a flaw!

All so-produced-things must be permanently fixed.

They could never change qualitatively into something else!

So, what had actually been inadvertently and unavoidably subscribed-to was the Principle of Plurality, and, most certainly, not everything was legitimately so permanently limited. But, abstract Form most certainly was!

Now, here beginneth the inevitable drift into significant Error, from this initial success. For, immediately, The Greeks, delighted with what they had been able to do with Form, exported the same sort of qualities into both Reasoning and a nascent Science, where they were wholly illegitimate as universal premises!

But, the disaster was, by no means immediately evident, particularly if those so-produced Disciplines were to be only used within naturally Stable and Unchanging Situations.
And also, crucially, in Science, investigators quickly learned how to both achieve-and-maintain such situations, for both relation extractions and also subsequent effective use of extracted eternal Natural Laws. While in Formal Logic, the Reasoning was limited to fixed concepts, which could suffice in most stable situations!

NOTE: But, almost immediately, Zeno of Elea had revealed the unavoidable falsities that emerged from Contradictory Fixed Concepts in his Paradoxes.

Now, as both a competant mathematician and a well-informed philosopher, I have developed these ideas, particularly with respect to the damaging Role of Pluralist Mathematics in Science, wherein I have established it as unavoidably both pluralistic and idealistic, and hence totally inadequate as any sort of assumed General Ground of Concrete Reality, i.e. in Science.

Indeed, all of its many extensions no longer exist within Concrete Reality at all, but are situated solely within Ideality - the realm of Pure Form alone.


Jim Schofield's Theory of Abstraction

So, when Wilczek and his like wax lyrical over the Beauty of Mathematics, he is actually describing situations in Form-Only Ideality!

The breath-taking intricacies and "beauties" of these investigators, are NOT about The Real at all, but, instead, only about the extensions of formal definitions into the infinite, but not concretely existing, features of Pure Form Alone within Ideality.

[It applauds the infinite extendibility and intricacy of Symmetry with Fixed Forms, and totally excludes the Real World Beauty of Creative Development entirely]

It just cannot be Science any longer: for it is, at best, a form of Art, based upon the Real, but artificially extended to extreme limits, outside of Reality, to display their Formal Beauty!

[Remember: Reality also contains properties, qualities and causalities, while Ideality contains only Form!]

But, why then is this unreal World indulged-in so extensively by scientists?

Having shot themselves in the foot via the Universal extension of Plurality to literally everything, they walled themselves off, permanently, from Developing Reality, and the Holistic and Dialectical means of dealing with it, so were forced to permanently give-up Understanding, for mere Prediction, and hence had to look elsewhere, NOT, it must be emphasized for Explanations, but instead, to seek only Descriptions-of-Forms that might possibly then be used as Disembodied Forms, enabling Prediction, without-Explanation or increased Understanding.

It is actually a retreat to an older pragmatism, disguised within sophisticated Abstraction!

26 August, 2019

Chomsky & Krauss



On Morality and Power
But NEVER, of course, Social Class


I have been listening to a questioning interview of Noam Chomsky, conducted by Laurence Krauss in the Origins series of Public Lectures at Arizona State University.

It was about the History of Mankind, and its frequently unspeakable bestiality, contrasting markedly with the approach, analysis and explanations, by philosophers such as Chomsky, who have always throughout that long history revealed and condemned such atrocities, and argued for a much more critical approach by the populace.

But, the questions, as defined by Krauss, were to do with the Nature of Mankind, which could be said to have, in the past, allowed such a History, and why they seemed to never listen, allowing such atrocities to have always continued - even getting vastly worse, over time. Krauss seemed to be implicitely questioning Mankind's essential natural Moral Fibre, by their forever ignoring of these clearly evident Truths.

But surely, the actual answers carried out were never instituted by the People, and were really about the very different Social Class Interests, always promoted by the Ruling Classes, who were always the sole deciders, and hence the real perpetrators, and those who had managed to both obtain and keep their Privileges, Class Policies and Power, by consciously and consistemtly ensuring their continued dominance, by their somehow regularly maintained Power, and the seeming multiplicity of possible policies, and purposely confused by added and profusely published lies.

So, that along with their Control, allowed them to enforce them as they pleased, and as a necessary defence against those who lusted after owning and them despoiling our resolutely defended rights!

Though Chomsky fought hard to deny the culpability of Mankind itself, by defending their moral fabric, it still allowed the opposite case of a general culpability to be posed.

And, of course, the mode of questioning, by Krauss, was about Mankind in general, rather than those means, by which clear minority groups and leaders were both originally established, and there-after maintained in power.

The actual modes of life involved, and the Classes that were then enabled to carry them out, and impose their explanations, were NEVER EVER addressed, for if they had been, the culprits would have been easily exposed, and perhaps the appropriate actions to remedy the various producing situations could have been discussed.

They weren't!

And that was because the whole issue was purposely cast into the "Advice of Wise Prophets" and the unwillingness of the People to listen to them - blaming the masses, basically.
And, how else could it have been exposed, when delivered solely by members of the "Wise Prophet clan" - The Intellectuals?

Many of that clan of Intellectuals were mentioned, but blatently absent of course, was Karl Marx, whose main contibutions via the adoption and use of Dialectical Materialism, and his characterisation of the nature of a whole series of different Human Societies - all determined by which Social Classes had achieved the power within each of them and knew how to maintain it.

For Marx was both a professional historian and a philosophic follower of Hegel, due to the latter's brilliant conceptions of the importance and significant occurrences of Qualitative Changes, which Marx immediately-knew had historically opened the door to explaining the natures and trajectories of such societies, as well as their ultimate demises in Social Revolutions!

Indeed, in the very way Krauss conducted the interview, the always unstated but nevertheless evident question was surely:

"Why didn't the people follow the prophets and change their societies?"

For, one after the other, NO such changes were ever suggested! What was the matter with them?

Krauss was evidently well aware of the unvoiced alternative, and he was clearly under pressure to keep the discussion where he needed it to be, so he increasingly guided the ensuing discussion, by posing past utterences by Chomsky, and asking him to defend them, until the overrun in time was sufficient for him to terminate the interview, without ever letting it explore the radical alternative.

It should be emphasized the the whole Origins Project (and indeed the significant building up of ASU) has been extensively financed by both billionaires and a series of major Capitalist Enterprises, and many of his chosen experts in the extensive Origins Project are both evidently and overtly often employees or even Owners or CEOs of major Capitalist Enterprises.

POSTSCRIPT:

Indeed, having perused most of the Lectures in the Origins Project, it soon became clearly evident that to Krauss, a unity of Academia with Big Business Finance and its supported technical endeavours is THE way forward for both Capitalism and Mankind, even though the evidence, as the current Crisis continues to unfold, quite clearly is only the sure way to Armageddon!

24 August, 2019

Dialectics: Fixed and Variable


The Profundity of Qualitative Changes

I have spent a considerable amount of time, over recent years, effectively condemning the Principle of Plurality outright, even though it was one of the most significant achievement of the Greek Intellectual Revolution of the 5th Century BC, and I necessarily did that not only to criticise its inherent weaknesses, but to also in addition simultaneously applaud its major contribution to Human Thought and Reasoning.

Both certainly had to be done! For all developments can never be purely absolute and positive: Reality does not deliver absolute Truth ever, but only aspects or parts of it, which unavoidably alight upon the easiest simplifications, which always have damagingly negative effects too. It is also an admission of the inadequacies of Thinking in Mankind, who were, after all, fairly recent originators of such wholly new processes in relation to addressing Reality.

Yet, the obvious alternative, the Principle of Holism, defined at about the same time, by The Buddha in India, certainly delivered no easy one-for-one superior replacement to Plurality. Indeed, it too has subsequently defeated the Buddha's disciples ever since, in attempting to deliver a coherent, useable and developable alternative, in spite of its undoubted wondrous moments of real Wisdom.




And, that turns out to be both its strength and its weakness: for no holistic system has yet ever been easily extracted from it, as a basis for Explaining the World causally - not least because it so frequently could clearly turn many situations into something quite different, or even their direct opposites.

Most important of all, in putting Qualitative Change at the heasrt of all Develoopment, it made the explanation of the consequent Emerging-New wholly impossible to derive directly from its producing circumstances.

The seeming impossibility of there being a useable System of Reasoning, tended to relegate its profound use to creative artists of various kinds, who, in individual Works-of-Art, could deliver profound moments of revelation only.

Yet, in spite of their Plurality, which considered all entities and processes as fixed, the Greeks' intellectual achievements remarkably included the invention of Mathematics, which as exclusively the study of Pure Forms alone, could indeed legitimately make that assumption, and when they illegitimately also extended that supposition to both Reasoning and Science, though generally undoutedly incorrect, it did indeed reflect the apparent constancy of most things - most of the time - the everywhere evidently temporary, yet long-lasting Stabilities of Reality, not only allowed Plurality to be a reasonable approximation, but it could also be guaranteed artificially by both greatly simplifying situations, and also holding things still.

It enabled Technology, but inhibited explanatory Science and developmental Reasoning. And, therefore, it was wholly incapable of explaing significant Developments both in an Evolving World, and in Creative Thinking.

It took all of 2,300 years before Hegel systematically tackled Dichotomous Pairs of contradictory concepts, with his attempt to include Qualitative Change into Formal Reasoning, which he termed Dialectics, though it was a member of his Young Hegelians, Karl Marx, who first extended it to the study of Reality with a vastly recast Dialectical Materialism, which he successfully applied to the current Capitalist Economic System in his major work Das Kapital.




Now, embedded in that work implicitly were the required definitions and Methodology of the New Stance, but he was actually developing it, as he also attempted to use it, throughout that excellent achievement. But, it was never overtly spelled out formally, nor could it be, until Marx's untimely death prevented his doing precisely that.

David Harvey's Lectures on Marx's Capital

And, it is only now that this necessary contribution has been achieved by Professor David Harvey in his series of lectures and YouTube videos. The whole series is remarkable: but his fourth Lecture upon Volume II of Das Kapital is magnificent!

But be prepared for contention!

Nothing is ever fixed forever - things which will be taken as fixed, will always cease to be so, as a consequence of natural development. But the Holist approach, in full flower, explains far more than any Pluralistic accounts ever could.

In this lecture he analyses what he terms as Fixed and Varying Capital, via Marx's Explanation of Capital as Value-in-Motion, a process totally impossible to address pluralistically, but only with Qualitative Changes throughout, with categories actually changing into their once totally-excluded opposites with such happening repeatedly, and therefore being incapable of either Description or Explanation by the still dominant Pluralist Stance in both Reasoning and Science.

Indeed, many of the changes occurring within Capitalism's trajectory, as it regularly morphs to climb out of its very regular Downturns, Recessions and even Slumps, by converting literally everything into monetary values, as the only measure, then inflating that value by competition on the Stock Exchange, by which they then corral it into their hands as the only ones who can afford it.

In the current period, late capitalism gets ever more desperate, and the cause of the last Recession in 2008 is simply repeated, once again, just as before, but with new ever more rightward directions, that they hope will mitigate the next inevitable crisis.

But, both the World and Capitalism itself, is running out of possibilities. Both Climate Change and ever increasing Pollution, are heading things towards an existential Crisis for Mankind, and Capitalism is running out of alternatives to perpetuate itself, as it is fast becoming a deteriorating situation.

10 August, 2019

The Collapse of Capitalism!




Having attended well to all the Critics of Capitalism, and been a committed activist against it all my life, I can only conclude that it will indeed totally collapse.

But, NOT with a Socialist Revolution!

For the task commenced by Karl Marx to theoretically equip the World Working Class to overthrow the bosses and establish Socialism, has all too often been betrayed by both the movement's leaders, and, most especially, their total abandonment of the essential development of empowering Theory required, along with political organisation, which could, and indeed should, by now, be embodied in the Dialectical Materialism, originated by Karl Marx, and initially developed in his critique of the status quo of Capitalist Economics in his revolutionary book, Das Kapital.

The trajectory of struggles since the publication of the Communist Manefesto (1848), have been betrayed sufficiently to leave the global Working Class totally bereft of either the Theory or the Organisations necessary to turn this terminal crisis of Capitalism into a successful Socialist Revolution.

Indeed, as has happened before, the decline has not produced any perspective or any confidence within the Class to see that as a solution, leaving them prone to populist rhetoric and Fascist-Nationalist "solutions" to their woes.

And, make no mistake, that would also be terminal for the planet!

Recall what fascist rulers like Hitler did, and think what such monsters could do now!

Remember, Nuclear Weapons were used by the USA against Japan - TWICE! Would they be used in this inevitable almighty disaster? What do you think?

At the very best, the World will be catapulted into a terrible Dark Age, even if we are not all terminated by such a cataclysm.

There must be no steady decline to oblivion.

Organise to Change things NOW!

END CAPITALISM!

Don't merely wait for it to end you.



More on these themes in our forthcoming film Natural Revolution


08 August, 2019

Brexit is about Tax Avoidance


Boris Johnson stands in front of Photoshopped Brexit Bus NHS
BREXIT: Funny how the EU's major Anti Tax Avoidance Directive NEVER comes up in the discourse, isn't it?

Can you honestly watch the likes of Farage, Johnson and the super rich eurosceptic Tory toffs of the ERG and believe they do what they do in the interests of ordinary British citizens?

While there is a left-wing case for Brexit (the fabled Lexit - EU is not remotely socialist after all) the Brexit project has never been a remotely left-wing cause. Since its inception it has been driven by the most right-wing actors in UK parliamentary politics. 

The hidden forces behind Brexit (and much of the current global shift towards right-wing populism) go completely unreported and unanalysed by most of the media. This well-researched answer on Quora comes closer to revealing the economic and material forces at work:

1 Tax avoidance
Throughout Europe, corporate tax avoidance is a colossal problem. The EU’s Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive (first proposed in 2016, implemented in 2019) seeks to tackle the thriving culture of corporate tax avoidance. It affects numerous major companies in the UK accused of tax avoidance, including several football clubs, retailers, technology firms and the Daily Mail newspaper.
Continuing membership of the EU, or just the single market, would keep the UK aligned with this anti-tax avoidance policy.
This is the plain and simple reason why the Daily Mail and so many leading Brexiteers who happen to be business tycoons suddenly began proclaiming that Britain had to leave the EU, the sooner the better. As soon as the tax-avoidance proposal was announced, and even more so when it was ratified, they set about portraying the EU as the great enemy of Britain, an “undemocratic elite” deliberately causing misery for ordinary Brits.
Sadly, many ordinary Brits fell for it.
But then things didn’t quite work out as planned.
After she became Prime Minister, Theresa May spent a long time working out a pragmatic Brexit deal with the leaders of the EU. When her Withdrawal Agreementfinally came out, however, some Brexiteers were very unhappy with it. Why? Because at the back of the huge document, there in black-and-white was a commitment by the British Government to retain the EU’s code of conduct for business taxation, including the new anti-tax avoidance laws.
May was suddenly a ‘traitor’.
But if another Prime Minister could be found — preferably an unprincipled opportunist who will say and do anything to get the job — perhaps he could convince the people of Britain that it would be best to just tear up May’s deal, blame the EU for something-or-other, and then simply wait for Britain to crash out of the EU with no deal whatsoever.
Then there will be no corporate tax laws for the tax avoiders to worry about.

Read the rest on Quora.

If anyone has any doubt that this is THE political issue driving things globally, have a look at today's news about Trump, US tech giants and tax.

Donald Trump warns no free trade deal if UK taxes tech giants.

What about sovereignty you say? What about taking back control?

Have a close look at who is taking control of what.


07 August, 2019

New SHAPE bookshop



Fantastic lecture from David Harvey



David Harvey deep reading Marx's Capital volume one.

Substrate Theory - Special print edition of SHAPE Journal



There is a fundamental flaw in Physics. Space is not empty.

Substrate Theory can help tackle all the biggest questions in physics, from the Spacetime Continuum to the Uncertainty Principle, from Casimir Effect, Redshift, Time Crystals, Superfluids and Dark Matter, to Virtual Particles and the work of Frank Wilczek.

This special print edition of SHAPE Journal has been produced to mark 10 years of the publication. Collated here in print are two issues (65 and Special 65), originally published in May and June 2019, which collect together key papers on Jim Schofield’s ground-breaking new theory of physics.








20 July, 2019

Vortices




The Vortex seems to be a very important feature of turbulence within the Substrate - particularly in on-going, constantly repeating situations, such as when associated with orbits. For, in the more usual transient situations, such as linear translational movements, the energy involved soon gets dissipated and lost. But, in those constantly repeating situations, as within the orbits of electrons in atoms, there is a chance, because of the regular return of the electron, that any so-caused Vortex could be regularly maintained by those many returns, and, via energy transfers in both directions, finally even arrive at a balanced situation, and a constant, stable state achieved.

However, in such situations, the vortices only occur if a prior Substrate has been dissociated, all along the orbital path, into individual Units, which are then further affected by the constantly returning electron, to be driven into separate vortices, as a kind of imposed Spin! It matters, of course, what the composing units are made of, and their properties, and finally, just how their imposed Spin will affect them.





Will, for example, a unit with an electrical charge, in such circumstances, produce a magnetic effect, due to the Spin, and deliver that effect along its axis? For, it is said that a spinning charged particle, like an Electron will do exactly that!

Now, also, a translationally moving charged particle, as well as carrying an electrical field along with it, will also produce a magnetic line of force perpendicular to its direction of motion that also moves along with it.

It will depend, of course, upon whether it is spinning or not! But, if it is spinning, the magnetic line of force will be in a single direction, determined by the axis of that spin. Whereas, if the magnetic lines of force emanate in every possible direction perpendicular to the direction of motion of the particle, AND the effect could then NOT possibly be due to the spinning of the particle, but something else.

NOTE: Indeed, an alternative was developed in earlier Universal Substrate Research, by this theorist. involving Magnetons, which certainly delivers all the directions perpendicular to the direction of motion case. These being due to detatched Magnetons from the charged particle's accompanying Electric Field, due to impacts with the Substrate it is passing through, and these are then ejected off, in all sideways directions, as linked magnetic lines of force.

BUT - as the magneton itself has an intrinsic Magnetic Dipole Moment, it too requires an explanation of its properties, which cannot involve itself!





POSTSCRIPT:

These ideas are consequences of the Holistic Stance in Philosophy, wherein many features are no longer mere sums of eternal Natural Laws (as with the Pluralist Stance), but, on the contrary, due to the simultaneous actions of many different factors, both affecting one another, and even naturally developing into stable balances of contentions, which though long-lasting, are never permanent.

And these are naturally of paramount importance in Holism, as they are the equivalents of the Permanent Stabilities of Plurality, but unlike in that stance, in Holism they are the means by which Qualitative Change occurrs in Natural Development, within short but crucial Emergent Interludes of Change.

Indeed, whereas in Plurality, not oly can Qualitative Change never be truly Explained: it is actually totally prohibited.

Reality is supposedly created solely out of eternal Natural Laws, which simply SUM, delivering only Complication, never the entirely new. Its sleight-of-hand in pretending to deliver Change by mere Quantity into Quality, totally omits any real explanation of how that actually works.

18 July, 2019

Coming soon... Natural Revolution




SHAPE Journal is collaborating with philosopher Jim Schofield and filmmaker Michael C Coldwell to make a documentary film about Marxism, Revolution, Science and Emergence

Practice without Theory: The Retreats in both Science and Marxism





For nearly 60 years I have been a committed Marxist and activist, while also being a professional Physicist. I am therefore equipped better than most to be critical of the evident and damaging declines in both of these absolutely fundamental disciplines. 

These failures have been generated within the hearts of the very organisations which should have been their veritable fountains-of-further-development, which should have fought for each of these crucial intellectual focii to generate the required research, analyses and consequent programmes of action, for the necessary (indeed essential) innovations within these areas, to enable them to equip their adherents to confidently achieve ever greater objectives!

However, such could have ONLY occurred, if, and only if, they continued to develop up to, through and even beyond, their own unavoidable crises and Revolutions - to ascend to wholly New and necessary Levels, capable of transforming Humanity upon this planet, beyond current limitations.

"But, what were you doing?" is likely to be the immediate response from Physicists and Marxists alike, "Why weren't you doing all that?" The right questions, for sure!

Well, I was only 19 years old and in my first term at University when I found myself disagreeing fundamentally with my professors, in my Physics degree studies. Here I met Marxists for the first time too and joined one of the Marxist Parties present in that University, and looked for answers, both within it, and in the University's excellent library, for alternatives to the evident prevailing decline in my studied subject.

I was a continuing student of Physics throughout my life, and in politics read a great deal, including Marx's masterpiece Das Kapital: but, nevertheless, as to The Marxist Analytic Method in politics, and my sought-for alternative to the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory in Physics, I was regularly coming-up empty on both fronts!




Very slowly, I began to realise where the problems lay.

It was in the inadequate Philosophies of the Theorists of the consensus groups in both of these fields!

They weren't the same problems, of course, but they were both, in different ways, embarked upon the wrong tracks. There was no real Theory going on in either discipline.

Sadly, I wasn't initially up to undertaking the tasks in either area, but I persevered in political activism, without myself developing very far, even though I continued to read extensively.

In Physics, I eventually gave it up as a bad job, and in spite of all my qualifications being in the area, I never professionally did Physics again. Instead, I taught Modern Mathematics and even Biology in Schools and Colleges, and latterly, in my afternoons off, did Mathematical Research using the local University's Mainframe Computer, which I taught myself to both program and use. And, in no time, I was also teaching these new-found skills to interested students from my College, ultimately developing one of the first such Computer Sections in the country. Later I was approached to write a Machine-independent Fortran Compiler, which I finally achieved...

It is a long story, but I finally got back into Higher Education, lecturing in Information Technology, and in that role was soon involved in assisting researchers across a wide range of disciplines. And, in that very varied and interdisciplinary work I finally began to see what was wrong with Physics!

I returned to tackling Copenhagen, but now increasingly equipped with ideas directly abstracted from Marx, which I slowly extracted from Das Kapital (by also reading David Harvey's superb analyses of Kapital's volumes I, II and III). The gains made in this work were purely philosophical, and centred upon the inadequacies of the Principle of Plurality which had actually underpinned all the major Intellectual Disciplines, ever since the Greek Intellectual Revolution of the 5th century BC. 

For, both Logic and Science had been wrongly assumed to be "just-like Mathematics", as wholly pluralistic- that is composed only of qualitatively-fixed concepts or Natural Laws, which naturally limited both these crucial Disciplines significantly to only maintained Stable Situations.

All real Development was wholly excluded!

A key epiphany came through my research in Motion Studies in the 2000s (the analysis and computerised delivery of accurate Dance Performance - complex creative movements captured dynamically via interactive video recordings and animation) remembering Zeno's crucial, dialectical Paradoxes. Without revolutionary means, neither Continuity nor Descreteness were ever capable of delivering real Movement.



Now 200 years ago, the idealist philosopher Hegel had realised such flaws in Formal Logic. It did not allow qualitative changes of any kind due to the assumed stance of Plurality. Hegel began to address this inadequacy with regard to Dichotomous Pairs of contradictory concepts (such as Continuity and Descreteness) - leading to his Dialectics!

Science and Logic cannot deal with contradiction and its role in change, and consequently considers only Fixed Natural Laws as capable of explaining absolutely Everything - and hence had no solutions to the many anomalies of the perplexing set of Double Slit Experiments, contradictions they "solved" by inventing Wave/Particle Duality, and the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory.

Unfortunately Hegel had been an idealist philosopher and had never seriously investigated anything beyond Human Thinking. So, his follower, the historian and philosopher, Karl Marx, immediately realised that an extended version of Dialectics also applied to all Development in Concrete Reality too - and revealingly also to the Developments in Human History!

For the first time, it would clearly be possible to address Historical Development, especially in those seemingly-unanalyse-able convulsions of Change termed Revolutions!

Now, all of this was certainly not yet available: no such explanations had yet been revealed! But, Marx knew that the alternative holist stance, concentrating-primarily upon qualitative change, could indeed deliver what the current wholly pluralist Disciplines never could. And, as a professional Historian, Marx knew precisely where to start - with the recently ended French Revolution, which had overthrown the Feudal State, and replaced it with a Capitalist alternative, but one which was definitely NOT delivering the Libert√© Egalit√© et Fraternit√© that it had promised to those workers who had carried in out.

So, Marx embarked upon the obvious research to reveal the Nature of Capitalist Economics, but only within the very process of establishing the required Holist means to do it! Das Kapital was never merely applying a ready-made method of doing this, as none yet existed at that time, but no one was better equipped to do it: for Marx had already devised Dialectical Materialism as his New Philosophy, but being Holistic, and hence including all Qualitative Change, it meant that a wholly new, as yet undefined Methodology had to be developed, and it would inevitably be far more complex and even more constantly-developing than anything employed previously.

These difficulties are clearly reflected in Marx's work, as in order to deal with these crucial changes, he had to first always establish a "basic" unchanging initial model (a Generality), and then as each dealt-with Phase led to another, he then had to retrace back to see how the new (Particular) Phase affected the initial one.


David Harvey deals with this aspect of Das Capital very well


NOTE: He was effectively involving the cyclical approach defined by The Buddha in his famed Loka Sutta, wherein each Phase, on completion, had to be repeated-from-scratch in the light of what it had produced.

It was a recursive, and indeed truly Holist, method!

So, Marx greatly simplified a Phase, in order to get an initial (General) handle upon it, but then, doing the same thing in the next Phase, he had to repeat, not only that current-Phase-reviewing process, but also to even adjust a prior Phase, due to changes due to a following (Particular) one!

[This is described elsewhere in a paper on Generalities, Particularities and Singularites, by this theorist]

And, many of the overall systems involved were cyclic, so, with all these recursive effects, would all take several circuits to into become settled repeating cycles! Many of the features described in Volume I of Das Kapital, were shown to be modified by subsequent processes, only reveealed in Volume II.

NOTE: Now, if this seems to infer an unavoidably infinite, never-ending sequence of necessary modifications, that would also not be true! For, though at some later and different stage the sequence of recursions would be necessary once again: for each and every set these would always terminate in some sort of "Balanced Result", which could be used effectively, at least for a while.

But, clearly, constant vigilance would still be required, just in case that balance was about to be challenged, precipitating a necessary whole re-assessment.

And, many such effects were never understood by readers brought up throughout their Education by systems which assumed total Plurality throughout. Most Marxists haven't grasped this aspect of Marxism, and Physicists don't even know the problem exists!


Ten Days That Shook the World, by John Reed


Reading "Ten Days that Shook the World" by John Reed, or the "History of the Russian Revolution" by Leon Trotsky, as well as accounts of Lenin's necessary switches at key moments in 1917 - all demonstrate what Real Marxian Dialectics was, in the hands of those who had understood what Marx finally arrived at.

But, it wasn't what I came into contact with during a whole lifetime in professedly Marxist parties!

And certainly, without any application of his method to the Sciences, what was then understood, though vital, would still necessarily be inadequate in many other very important areas.

Now, to finally return to my title for this key paper, namely Practice Without Theory!

These words have great relevance to both Politics and Physics - the current chaos in Sub Atomic Physics is clearly due to that Science's continuous and unspoken subscription to both Plurality and pragmatism - why question the method if it just seems to work?

The Real Philosophy of Science attempts to challenge the clueless scientific consensus and the somnambulant Marxists, by using one to explode the other!


The Real Philosophy of Science by Jim Schofield
A Marxist refutation of Science, which is also a scientific approach to Marxism


The more difficult role is actually presented by the "Marxists", who are still totally unaware of the true nature of Dialectical Materialism when applied to their own area of political practice (let alone Science), and hence are totally ill-equipped to do anything significant politically! 

Activism and political practice without the directing guidance of real theory can never succeed in preparing for a coming Revolution!

21 June, 2019

Special Issue 65: Towards the New Physics





by Jim Schofield


Part 2 of our special anniversary series on Substrate Theory is finally here!

This selection of papers constitute more recent additions to this burgeoning new Physics and many of these have never been published before.

Increasingly, I no longer feel like a lone voice in this. Other physicists are starting to move in this direction - Lee Smolin and Frank Wilczek are joining a growing group of dissenters in mainstream Physics, unhappy with its infinite descent into the Idealist wormhole, away from materialism and realism.

This series is a significant celebration of both the Journal’s (and its principle theorist’s) 10 years spent in theoretically addressing the current ever-deepening crisis in Modern Physics. This is represented by the now consensus position embodied in the premises of this subject as they are brought together in The Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Theory, which has steadfastly taken Physics away from physical Explanation of reality, and instead towards a wholly idealist stance, that assigns full causality only to the set of formal equations, primarily derived from High Speed Accelerator Experiments, primarily conducted at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN.

My hypothesis is that Copenhagen was almost universally instituted throughout Sub Atomic Physics, as a set of formal tricks for dealing with a missing / hidden Substrate - papering over the cracks of the waves in nothing.

Elsewhere, in my book The Real Philosophy of Science, these philosophical problems have been tackled, but here we must also tackle physically the very real possibility of an undetectable Universal Substrate - look at why it might have escaped detection and how we might finally prove its existence.

17 June, 2019

Substrate Theory continues... soon!


Image from Alternating Current by Michael C Coldwell


To celebrate their 10 year anniversary SHAPE Journal's epic series on Jim Schofield's Substrate Theory continues, with the next instalment due to be published in coming days...

Part 1 - The Lepton Substrates - Issue 65 was published last month: a bumper issue which collects all relevant papers documenting the evolution of this new physical theory, from the concept of a new aether of "empty photons" to a whole new look at the standard model, with magnetons made of Taus and Muons to the possibility of Neutrino-based gravity fields. 

Part 2 - Towards the New Physics - Special Issue 65 presents the latest research on this theory, examining how the Universal Substrate can help tackle all the biggest questions in physics today, from the Spacetime Continuum to the Uncertainty Principle, from Casimir Effect, Redshift, Time Crystals, Superfluids and Dark Matter, to Virtual Particles and the work of Frank Wilczek.

Watch this not-so-empty space...