By Huey Dessalines
February 3, 2020
SAINT LOUIS: Comrades of FTP-STL (For the People, Saint Louis) conducted the second monthly group cohesion exercise beginning at 12:30 PM. A local nature preserve served as the staging area for this exercise due to the availability of trails (a comrade brought his infant daughter) along with off road areas leading to the Meramac River. The exercise began with a study of the pieces “To Criticize and Repudiate Revisionism, It is Essential to Combat Self-Interest” and “The People’s Liberation Army Firmly Backs the Proletarian Revolutionaries,” extracted from the Peking Review. These pieces were chosen because it is important to actively combat vestiges of the bourgeois way of thinking and doing among comrades. We particularly focused on this aspect:
“Combatting self-interest and criticizing and repudiating revisionism are two interrelated matters. In order to criticize and repudiate revisionism, it is essential to combat self-interest. Only when we have successfully eliminated self-interest, shall we be able to carry the struggle against revisionism through to the end more effectively. Combating self-interest means struggling against self-interest as manifested in the concept of private ownership, self-interest as manifested in selfishness. The concepts of private ownership and selfishness grow out of the economic base of the system of private ownership and they in turn serve this same economic base. They are the ideological source for the emergence and development of revisionism.”
We discussed ways in which bourgeois self-interest harms group cohesion and discipline and the importance of actively and conscientiously making efforts to humble oneself in the face of criticism and be accountable to the collective. The physical training portion of our exercise consisted of marching drills, with comrades learning how to keep step, call cadence and adhere to formation. During our rest break we discussed further the importance of adhering to discipline and keeping in shape to better serve the people and the revolution. Comrades performed well and maintained group cohesion and discipline. A criticism was made that our efficiency would have been advanced by wearing uniforms, this will be adopted before our next exercise. Overall, this was a successful exercise that will only be sharpened through further practice and the inclusion of more comrades in such activities, working up to conducting exercises with advanced strata of the masses and other organizations.