|Vydavatežstvo:||VEDA, vydavatežstvo SAV|
POLITICS WITHOUT A MASK
Contribution to political discourse in Slovakia after 1989
Department of Political Science of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Slovak Republic
The presented work Policy without a mask constitutes a contribution to the analysis of Slovák society following the radical change of the government, which took place in the former Czechoslovakia late in 1989. The methodological basis of this analysis is historical materialism, worked out by K. Marx and F. Engels. We draw on the conviction that, despite its current rejection and even criminalization, Marxism still remains a relevant and progressive trend in the ínterpretation and understanding of the phenomena of the existing capitalist society.
By the transformation of the economic base, which occurred in Czechoslovakia in the course of 1990 dne to the political decisions of the new non-communist government, the country experienced a restauration of capitalism. The transformation brought about disinlegration oi the Ibnner (socialist) social ownership of the means of production and its replacernent by capitalist, private property. This gave rise to new relations of production, which in the legal framework correspond to ownership relations. The old-new ruling class was forrncd by a minority of private owners of the means of production - the bourgeoisie, which declared its dictatorship over the controlled and exploited salaried working majority to be a general freedom and democracy born in the struggle against the communist totalitarianism. The labour-capital opposition, which epitomises a social contradiction betwcen the salaried workers (the class of manufacturers) and the capitalist owners (the class of appropriators), has become a fundanicntal sociál characleristics of post-November society.
Based on the description of the class situation, we pay parlicular altention to post-November policy and ideology. The superstruclure of the capilalist mode of production inherently includes some of the key factors contributing to the maintenance of the status quo of the class dictatorship of bourgeoisie. Being established on the basis of disintegration oí the socialist sociál relations, it made the issues relatcd to the socialist period an integral part of its ideology and propaganda. Hence, the question of thc Cezchoslovak coup and the search for the causes of demise of Eastern European socialism cannot be avoided. Here, however, we reject the vulgar bourgeois periodization into the period of "oppression" (including the years of the communist rule) and that offreedom" (following the coup), implied by the concept of totalitarianism. which is currently in fashion.
In Chapter One we analyse the historical events that formed the background of the dismantling of the communist rule. The chapter serves as a springboard for seeking the root causes of the collapse of socialism in Eastern Europe, with the Soviet Union at its head. Chapter Three gives a brief outline of the development of post-November society with an emphasis on the changes in the ownership of the means of production through privatizatíon and the resulling political struggle between the two parts of the ruling bourgeoisie (comprador and national bourgeoisie). In Chapter Four we define some of the basic conditions for ensuring the political supremacy of the bourgeoisie (mostiy electoral systém). The nature of the ideological siruggle in Slovakia is the subject of the closing chapter of the work. It particularly discusses anti-communism, nationalism and clericalism. In order to eliminate the risk of the outbreak and escalation of social conflict between the salaried working majority and the minority owners of the capital, these ideologies disguise the class nature of post-November Slovak society.
In conclusion, we define some implications for the Slovak society arising from the post-November dictatorship and express our belief that the transformation of society can only be implemented through social change.