Revolutionary Marxist Caucus
Note on Issue Numbering for
Revolutionary Marxist Caucus Newsletter
Revolutionary Communist Youth Newsletter
The youth group of the Spartacist League began as the Revolutionary Marxist Caucus within SDS in 1970, around the time the Maoist Progressive Labor Party took over SDS after the walkout of the New Left at the Chicago Convention.
They published (stapled mimeographed legal 8 1/2 X 14 size sheets, 8 to 12 printed pages per issue, red ink for the banner) issues 1 thru 8 of Revolutionary Marxist Caucus (RMC) Newsletter. 8 issues total.
Then the RMC became the SL's national youth group, the Revolutionary Communist Youth (RCY). This published RCY Newsletter.
BUT, because it was a group in continuity with the RMC, they started numbering their newsletter with issue 9, the first 8 issues being RMC newsletter 1 thru 8. RCY Newsletter was in professional printed tabloid form.
Later, after publication of issue number 18 (nine issues total), the Revolutionary Communist Youth changed their name to Young Spartacus, and changed the name of its publication to Young Spartacus, too. But again, because this was in continuity with the previous organizations, the first issue of Young Spartacus was numbered 19, reflecting its previous "incarnations" as RMC Newsletter and RCY Newsletter.
Young Spartacus was published as a stand alone tabloid for issues 19 through 134 (March 1984). At that point, it was folded into Workers Vanguard, where it became an occasionally appearing section of the paper.
Markin comment :
One of the declared purposes of this space is to draw the lessons of our left-wing past here in America and internationally, especially from the pro-communist wing. To that end I have made commentaries and provided archival works in order to help draw those lessons for today’s left-wing activists to learn, or at least ponder over. More importantly, for the long haul, to help educate today’s youth in the struggle for our common communist future. That is no small task or easy task given the differences of generations; differences of political milieus worked in; differences of social structure to work around; and, increasingly more important, the differences in appreciation of technological advances, and their uses.
There is no question that back in my youth I could have used, desperately used, many of the archival materials available today. When I developed political consciousness very early on, albeit liberal political consciousness, I could have used this material as I knew, I knew deep inside my heart and mind, that a junior Cold War liberal of the American For Democratic Action (ADA) stripe was not the end of my leftward political trajectory. More importantly, I could have used a socialist or communist youth organization to help me articulate the doubts I had about the virtues of liberal capitalism and be recruited to a more left-wing world view. As it was I spent far too long in the throes of the left-liberal/soft social-democratic milieu where I was dying politically. A group like the Young Communist League (W.E.B. Dubois Clubs in those days), the Young People’s Socialist League, or the Young Socialist Alliance representing the youth organizations of the American Communist Party, American Socialist Party and the Socialist Workers Party (U.S.) respectively would have saved much wasted time and energy. I knew they were around but not in my area.
The archival material to be used in this series is weighted heavily toward the youth movements of the early American Communist Party and the Socialist Workers Party (U.S). For more recent material I have relied on material from the Spartacus Youth Clubs, the youth group of the Spartacist League (U.S.), both because they are more readily available to me and because, and this should give cause for pause, there are not many other non-CP, non-SWP youth groups around. As I gather more material from other youth sources I will place them in this series.
Finally I would like to finish up with the preamble to the Spartacist Youth Club’s What We Fight For statement of purpose:
"The Spartacus Youth Clubs intervene into social struggles armed with the revolutionary internationalist program of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Trotsky. We work to mobilize youth in struggle as partisans of the working class, championing the liberation of black people, women and all the oppressed. The SYCs fight to win youth to the perspective of building the Leninist vanguard party that will lead the working class in socialist revolution, laying the basis for a world free of capitalist exploitation and imperialist slaughter."
This seems to me be somewhere in the right direction for what a Bolshevik youth group should be doing these days; a proving ground to become professional revolutionaries with enough wiggle room to learn from their mistakes, and successes. More later.