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By Roger D. Harris

Posted on February 21, 2011 by the Marin County Central Committee

This article was originally published in Obama and the Current Capitalist Crisis (Institute for the Critical Study of Society, January 2010), and is reprinted by permission of the author.

The radical leftist assessment of current conditions is that only fundamental transformation of existing societal institutions can bring about meaningful change. Reformist activity – while tactically efficacious in certain circumstances – can ultimately be co-opted by the dominant powers in the absence of countervailing power from the popular classes. But what happens when there is not a strong countervailing power center rooted in the popular classes, when socialist revolution appears to some to be a fading dream, and when the extreme right appears to be looming ever more menacingly on the political horizon, as it does to so many activists today?

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