The Lumpen: In The Imperial Core (Lumpen-Proletariat Class Analysis)
One thing this writing piece will be is a contribution to the extremely neglected revolutionary Marxist theory on The Lumpen.
Previously, any definitions of the lumpen we had were bizzare and overly-dramatic/cringe. Also written/produced by Marxists who’ve never even been lumpen or lived as the criminal element. I have had that practice, here is the theory.
A simple fact is that contemporary Marxists are a majority of comrades lacking lumpen-theory or its practice in proletarian historical struggle beyond what was written of them hundreds of years ago.
History & society has been evolving to its current stage of development leaving us where we are today: A period in time when the lumpen are still ostracized social outcasts as well as political outcasts in worker, student, academic dominated communist clubs which leaves the revolutionary recruitment of the revolutionary class in the hands of the Old Guard and the new Cringe Left.
To understand the lumpen holistically, we must look at and understand the sub-strata of the class. I have laid out the main class construction of the lumpen-stratas here.
Ya know, because class analysis is important to Marxists and all of that….
The Core Lumpen Classes
The Homeless —
Homelessness is a form of social coercion and nobodys willing to say that — They’re there, to basically scare the shit out of the middle and working class. — Chairlady Emily
Beggars who are regularly displaced around the wealthiest Cities in the world, literally shunned from the visibility from society despite their existence being a necessity for a capitalist society of exploitation lead by fear; the fear of being exposed to the raw earth elements, public judgement, economically deprived cultural shame & brutality.
Many of these proles come from working class homes and backgrounds or are often military veterans and have contributed to an ungrateful society for large portions of their lives. It could be you one day.
- The Prisoner — Not much better off than the ‘social scum’ that is The Homeless, but “at least prisoners get free food everyday”.
The caged human being imprisoned like a 1600’s peasant for stealing an apple.
The prisoner is a statistic guaranteed to emerge out of the capitalist privatisation of all necessary means of human survival (water, food etc).
Prisoners can go decades at a time being completely and utterly detached from the culture, society and crucial personal connections that humans need for the preservation of their humanity, a purpose in life and to feel included in the goings on of the world. Instead, technology develops and improves freely as these victims of the hoarding of resources literally lose all sense of time as even the Sun & Stars are a hoarded resource, made into a graceful reward the ruling class can grant prisoners if they should be successfully institutionalised and serve their poverty-inflicted sentences by the modern hangmen known as magistrates. Prisons breed criminals.
Prison life is an unimaginably violent one.
- The Chronically Unemployed — Again, this is a class that capitalism relies on their being as ‘surplus labourers’.
If a capitalist wants to open up a Mcdonald’s or a trendy store, there must be a surplus level of unemployed workers willing to be wage slaves for minimum wage — these can be made up of temporary workers of the gig-economy, or highered purely to cover seasonal peaks.
The chronically unemployed are also composed of a class of people who are unhirable or simply do not wish to be a wage slaves. Regardless of their lack of work-ethic or opportunity to actually be permanently employed, this is a class of able-bodied proles live on a full-time workers weekly wage over a period of a month.
The life of the chronically unemployed is a perpetuatingly boring one, consisting of nothing but TV, social media & a weekly drink/smoke funded by a group of friends. They barely have a means to survive while at the same time not having enough money to socially empower themselves with clothes to go out clubbing, for a meal in the City, let alone invest in personal interests. The chronically unemployed are some of the most insecure, weak, embarrassed group of people in the world. They are often seen as scruffs for not having the latest fashion on their skin or a decent pair of trainers, let alone multiple clothes and footwear so things like dating are much harder in a society where a saying is “you can tell a lot about a person by their footwear” Well, I myself have had holes in my shoes etc and felt that insecurity no doubt millions of others do too.
Many children who grow up within a chronically unemployed family are those who would be hospitalised due to malnutrition with over 4 million close to the same fate, affecting even workers as the British population needs to spend 40% of their income to get close to RDA of nutrition.
From a Marxist perspective, a distinction must exist between impairment and disability. While accepting the existence of impairment as a biological reality, and not denying the role of sociocultural determinants that operate at the superstructural level, it is important to recognize that the single most significant determinant of disability is the organization of the mode of production based on the maximization of profit. — Monthly Review
We are proletarians because we must sell our labour to a capitalist to make money in order to survive. Impairments and disability are inhibitors to the exploitation demanded by capitalist commodity production. The disabled are excluded from that process and thus are not deemed as “workers” and thus, all labour rights struggles all this talk about “workers uniting” directly excludes the disabled from this movement.
Indeed, there has historically been many Marxist eugenicists and still are some today who think non-working-abled-bodies are broken humans who shouldn’t have been born.
These reactionaries climax to the fetisization of the workers in an international proletarian struggle, while excluding by nature of not organising and supporting the disabled.
Let me quote some of Marx’s works to show the historical foolishness and necessity of this writing piece you’re reading now it the realisation of the necessity of this incorporation of a lumpen-class analysis today:
Described as “demoralised” and “ragged,” they were, Marx argued, “victims of industry, whose number increases with the increase of dangerous machinery
Insane in the membrane. Firstly, the ‘demoralised and ragged’ part is from Marx’s “analysis?” of the lumpen which is now moot. Also, just look at the crazed ostracization of the disabled by even Marx where he literally (it’s written in literal text before your eyes) did not recognise disability until it was a worker who got made disabled by capitalist machinery. Absolutely loco and anti-historical.
But we now know, marx himself was disabled. Whatsmore, is that at the time disabled people were left for dead in those times, so what we see here is Marx actually writing to distance himself from the categorisation of the disabled to preserve his own legitimacy as a man. A lumpen man. Ironic. But deadly today.
Point being; the disabled have been historically some of the most brutalised, alienated and ostracized people on the face of the northern hemisphere and it’s still happening today!!
Speak to your disabled comrades, invite them to organise with you and make every single fucking step you make as easy for them as possible to be side by side with you, because these comrades are being genocided.
The Criminal Elements
It is not surprising that in a system of society where the aim is to get rich by any means, crime of every kind should flourish. Faced by low wages and other impossible economic conditions on the one hand and by the corrupt example of capitalism generally on the other, many naturally take to lives of open crime and try to seize at the point of a gun what the capitalist “big shots” steal through exploiting the workers, by a corner on the stock exchange, or by corrupting the government.
-William Z Foster, Towards Soviet America, Curing Crime & Criminals
The lumpen criminal element are the lumpen strata whos survival depends on an illegal economy that exists outside of the capitalist economy.
Drug dealers don’t pay TAXes for example, or recieve salary. (small time non-capitalist ones, anyway)
The drug runner, the hustler and the thief tend to be but are not limited to a majority of ego-driven males who generally have a “Lumpen Realist” ideology/reality that acknowledges the social, historical facts of ‘thug life’ or ‘grafting’ for the poor classes and to those career criminals, there is no alternative as a means of existing, trading or thriving within an alienating, extractive, degrading, violent every-man-for-himself capitalism.
Actual Marxists will know that with dual power, comes the building a state behind of an existing state by way of community support, networking and solidarity for when the capitalist state crumbles, workers will be left without a ‘Nanny’ of sorts until we get Socialism up and running.
For the lumpen proles, the state has already undressed itself to it’s barebones and shown only it’s fascist face, “Fuck The Police” never came from the disgruntled workers, instead it came from the lumpen masses because the only forms of ‘Nanny state’ these criminal elements experience is the law enforcement and the prisons.
The criminal lumpen are the outcasts of society who’ve been forced to build their own bases, (gangland) their own communities(gangs), economes (black market) within one tailored to the corporate elite in the imperial core. The workers base-building is literally decades behind the organised underworld sculpted by the actions of historical ‘criminal’ roles these proles have participated in, creating not just a base but naturally the superstructure that emerges: ideas, culture, beliefs that you can see commodified through hip-hop, gangster rap, TV series/movies and fashion by the capitalists.
- The Lumpen Worker — These are full-time career criminals who make a living from thievery, drug dealing and (can’t think of a 3rd right now).
They are often very well connected with other lumpen workers, supporting each other as much as possible by trading black capital (drugs for example) at good prices between each other and are as such heavily invested socially to their reputation. Reputation is lumpen-capital. The streets are mean out there, ‘mans hungry’! So you don’t wanna be getting robbed like some dickhead or have nobody want to trade you the latest merch, so you need a good, violent reputation to ensure that the petty lumpen only trades with cool people as well as the the drugs they have traded(often on credit) will be paid for and will be advertised to other potential buyers.
Generally, the lumpen worker lives a better life than most working class people because of their income. Working often from 12pm-10pm, they can afford to fly abroad multiple times a year for festivals, holidays, have no problems getting a partner because they have more pairs of footwear alone than many unemployed or working proles have outfits and also these lumpen-workers are not scared to fight for themselves or defend their ego — in fact, as I said it is an economic necessity to fight for your image, reputation and to protect your ego.
As such, they are ridiculously sensitive, vulnerable and frankly pathetic in this regard because their need to defend their ego is a desperate attempt to not look weak, but their need to not look weak is inself laughable. It screams insecurity and I have personally mocked them repeatedly for this and have pointed out that their actions and words are not their own (lumpen-realism), but are a desperate attempt to protect their ego and respect within the gang they depend on to facilitate their getting black capital and trading it for profit (living time).
- The Petty-Lumpen — Not only are these actually part of the petty pig-class, but they also represent similar class roles as the petty-bouj proles in common Marxist analysis.
Gotta follow ya Sergants directions, else you get popped my the Smith N’ Weston — Eazy-E
These pigs are who exploit the lumpen-workers are often born into middle-class families, with their parents owning businesses. These had a better start in life and virtually have never once struggled financially for food, clothes, shelter and certainly not socially because they could always afford to (or ask mummy and daddy for money) do as others are doing.
Yet, despite this, you will find almost all these pigs own the monopoly of black capital and thus, violence. They are extremely privileged parasites in our communities who rather than get involved in the family business or well-paying careers, they want the lifestyle of the lumpen-workers — they want to go to the clubs, festivals, not have to do any labour and still get the girls. Whatsmore is they hold and deal in/produce the actual black capital needed by the worker lumpen, so they sell it to them, creating a power dynamic and with that comes the ideas of this lumpen ‘ruling class’ ideas being carried out by those in the criminal elements. What ideas are these? That gay people bad, coloured people bad, workers are punters, girls are hoes and whatever else you heard when you were 5 on the school playground — but these are full grown ideas repeating this shit at every opportunity for a potential laugh or to look better than anybody else.
Why? Because if they don’t bully gay people or see girls as just pussy well then, shit, they might be exposed to not being as ignorant as the rest of the lumpen — they might actually start to be seen as what they are, nothing but middle-class parasites in our poor communites. So they act like secondary school teenagers in this way to get cheap laughs from those who have literally not grown intellectually since secondary school. These people are not as ignorant as lumpen-workers.. Not at all. In fact, they use their sly fox like influence to exploit worker-lumpen all the time and the worker-lumpen are dumb enough to believe they are friends and not just a means of income to them. They don’t care if you go to jail. They already have the next dickhead in mind who will run about for them once you’ve been locked up.
Even if the worker-lumpen know this, they still are coerced by capitalism, a system that requires money to survive to give consent to themselves to be ruled by these pigs, comforted by they fact that when they will be imprisoned, at least this gang of dickheads will “look after them” stacking cash for them for when they get out or by telling prisoners on the inside to look after them.
Would also throw pips into this category.
- Lumpen-Capitalist — I’m confused at the time of writing because I struggle to separate the roles of petty-lumpen with lumpen-capitalist. I have limited experience with what I would consider “lumpen-capitalists” so i’ll leave what I have written for now
- The Joey/Drug Runner — These can often be teens as young as 13, even younger! You ever seen all those kids running around pickpocketing motherfuckers for that fiend on Oliver Twist?
There is always the role of Runner for the unemployed or unemployable to fill as the runner for a Lumpen-Worker or Petty-Lumpen.
Simply put these are those who drop off, deliver, pick up and do all the customer/punter-face to face work for money while the WL or PL sit back and exploit their labour as much as they can physically get away with. There are no trade unions. If you want better work conditions, you have to fight for it. Not as in the cringe worker “fight for better rights” I mean, they must physically enter combat to not be exploited as bad — but, the lumpen-worker have of course gang members so you’d never fight one pussy, you’d have to fight a gang of them.
- The Sex Worker — A class which I think maybe some may disagree, by their increasingly loud message (you’re welcome) that they are in fact workers. This is a class analysis, not an Op-Ed so I will not elaborate.
However, I do know some accept their place in the lumpen-strata. Again, I consider the criminal element to be trade outside the TAXable “legal” capitalist economy.
Sex workers are a class composed of all genders, naturally. To me, I would say the sex work industry is similar to the male-dominated drug dealing industry, where instead it’s dominated by females. I believe this is because it’s easier for toxic masculinity to sell drugs just as it’s easier for females to sell their sexual labour. Thus, all power to those who don’t want to live on a benefits system that is an extended starvation, in favour of a life where you can enjoy some of the better things in life, while affording nice clothes, holidays and pursuing personal interests.
This is unfinished. I’ll work on and update it for the rest of my life if I have to to ensure it stays based and accurate.
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Next writing pieces:
The Role Of The Revolutionary Lumpen Classes
Love and Solidarity Forever!