Yes, I do devote a few hours each week to randomly trawling blogworld, and when one blog seems to melt into another it is sometimes something as little as an eye-catching design or a “strange” blog name that arrests my attention.
MONKEY SMASHES HEAVEN is certainly an arresting name, and blog, both in terms of the heated text and the unique visuals. The blogger(s) at MSH identify themselves as communist. This is an extract of their philosophical statement:
“We revolutionaries are monkey kings. We will turn the world upside down — the messier, the better…”
– Red Guard leaflet
Monkey Smashes Heaven is a journal dedicated to smashing the old world to smithereens. The old world is rotten to the core. The First World as a whole exploits, rapes and plunders the whole planet and its peoples. It’s time to turn the tables.
Do they mean it is time for the “third world” to rape, plunder, and exploit what they call the first world? I am not so sure that means much of an improvement then. I certainly like their fighting spirit, and their discontent with the current state of affairs, but there are a lot of good reasons for even a committed Marxist-Leninist, which I am not, to take serious exception with the old Soviet model which seems to attract their sympathies. Nevertheless, I will read their blog and try to keep an open mind. I have not yet understood why much of it seems focused on Nepal, for example, with a detour into “KKKolumbus Day” (this ought to be the official spelling, but then that would mean keeping the day) so there is a lot more for me to learn.
15 thoughts on “Sucker for an interesting name: “Monkey Smashes Heaven””
Perhaps because its author(s) hail from Nepal, and live in the US or elsewhere in the West?
Interestingly put together and attractive.
3rd world vs 1st world?
The images are startling…
Guns. Bullets. Missiles. Angry faces.
What will happen when victory is at hand?
Will they act like the victors in “Animal Farm”?
They would first have to convince the “third world” that it is still “third world” and then to do something radically new: take a collective, global position against the West. It’s not totally impossible, and some very tepid quasi-steps in that direction — not war as such — existed in the past. When victory is at hand, I assume they will “smash heaven” — you know, if I were a better Catholic I might have been alarmed by this.
Man, when you close you eyes at night, all you can hope for is a chance to open your eyes to see tomorrow…
Their official statements alarm the hell out of me – not the pro ‘third worldist’ stuff, but the endorsement of the USSR and the PRC until the 5os/70s respectively. Weird.
Don’t worry about Heaven – in case it’s unclear, Monkey Smashes Heaven is a reference to the classic Chinese Text Journey to the West, in which “Monkey,” the Monkey King. In the beginning, this ‘arrogant’ monkey king decides to name himself the “Great sage equal to heaven,” and after f*cking heaven up for awhile, he is ‘tamed’ and punished by the Buddha by being trapped underneath a mountain for a while. Heaven never actually gets smashed (not entirely, anyway), but monkey’s assertive act insists on absolute equality, even with the gods.
Thanks Erik, had it not been for your note, I might have continued thinking that a Red Guard propagandist had dreamt up the image of the monkey smashing heaven, perhaps as a homage to evolutionary theory. Poor monkey, but anyway he can look forward to getting human rights soon.
Stalinist-Maoist fare. Thought this kind of stuff was over with.
…but it’s back…and this time with some amazing posters and YouTube videos…
Back, maybe, but probably in denial. The Communist world bloc is no more, Marxism-Lennism-Whateverism has been discredited with its passing, the capitalist world is in crisis. The former is providing no decent answers, and the only superpower is on a slow decline. I’ll go and order a Kitsch Chairman Mao t-shirt.
Ah as far as I can tell its an offshoot of the, slightly nutty, Maoist International Movement, which imploded in a ball of crazy some years ago. These guys , I think, take the somewhat questionable view that the working class doesnt exist at all in the west, or at least in the marxist sense (but yeah, its got me beat, I know my marxism pretty well and cant work out what the dickens their analysis has to do with actual marxism) and thus the worlds classes are now prolitariat=third world, bourgoise=first world.
Thus you see them cheering on the iran government crushing dissidents and the like. Its a bosses dream ideology in a sense because its awfully forgiving of bad behavior from third world ‘ruling classes’ and completely dismissive of the left in the west.
What the hell is the three worlds anyway. Is australia still a second world country? Is China now a first (it has imperial client states). Hmm. Not that useful.
There is another organization, which may still be an offshoot of MIM, from which this group broke off I think. I also find that they have a very stark way of casting the world in extremely “bipolar” terms (I don’t mean that in the clinical sense), very unforgiving towards the working classes in the First World. I also understand that the three worlds approach is no longer as useful as it might have been in the early 1970s.
I am not sure what they think of third world ruling bosses, since they never seem to mention them. I do agree somewhat with their view of workers in the first world — sorry for persisting with that terminology — as having derived greater benefits from the capitalist world system, and thus having gained at the expense of workers in the third world. But that only seems to work in extremely broad brush strokes, not as a more finely detailed analysis of gains and losses.
Incidentally, while I was not cheering on the government of Iran pounding dissidents, I was not especially attracted to those dissidents either, and I think that Mousavi was trying to engineer a coup in the most shallow and transparent fashion. Never an iota of proof about a fraudulent election, which in any case saw Mousavi declaring himself the victor hours before the counting started, only to then complain that the results started coming in too quickly (bizarro world anyone?)…and if one wants to see what a real fraudulent election looks like, check Afghanistan, with mountains of evidence…and we Westerners paid for that fraud. I just don’t care one bit about Iran’s election, period.
At the end of the day, what I like most about this group is Shubel Morgan’s absolutely caustic videos. I have featured some on this same blog.
The Third World “bosses” can be divided, broadly speaking, into patriotic bourgeoisie and comprador bourgeoisie. Compradors are proxies for imperialist powers. Thus there is no unity between the compradors and the Third World masses. Most Third World nations are dominated by compradors. The patriotic bourgeoisie, however, seek to develop their national economies and preserve the independence of their nations. The patriotic bourgeoisie often ends up taking up a leftist rhetoric in order to appeal to broader segments of the population. The patriotic bourgeoisie can be part of the united front against imperialism. However, they are usually vacillating in their commitment to the struggle. They can be allies, but not reliable ones. The Islamic regime in Iran is principally patriotic at the moment. The same is true of Cuba and Venezuela.
Hope this answers your question.
PS. The title of the journal is taken from Red Guard’s who saw themselves as Monkey from Chinese mythology. Storming heaven, raising Mao’s slogan “It’s right to rebel!”
“Maoist-Third Worldist” is correct in her/his/their explanation of the patriotic bourgeoisie in the third world countries. But I would add that the “third world bosses,” are overwhelmingly of a comprador, nation-selling quality. Even in Iran, “patriotic” forces (I use the term reluctantly, and thus the quotes) are very weak and it seems that the real power is in the hands of factions like those of Rasfanjani, which would seek to accommodate imperialism. That said, Iran is a litmus test of sorts when it comes to imperialism. Uniting with pro-imperialist liberals in the name of “supporting the people of Iran” is an incorrect standpoint.
MSH is really bad analysis. im a marxist-leninist and sweet on the PRC/USSR/Cuba/DPRK as much as any right thinking person, but really, its as if they got into a couple arguements with a racist blue collar worker and from that concluded the entire “first world,” from latino/a workers to african american workers to any number of poor whites, are totally incapably of working class politics or revolution. they must assume that fox news speaks for all of us or something
which is silly. a brief period of advanced conditions brought on by a limited supply of cheap oil and the total destruction of europe in ww2, and the forced opening of markets in all the wars the US has waged in the last 50 years isn’t going to elevate workers in the global north for very long, and any sense of superiority or racism or pro-imperialist attitudes can be broken down now with time and patience, and will naturally start to crumble as oil runs out, as people get tired of the wars overseas ,etc.
ive personally worked with a few coworkers and over the course of months have gotten them to see the follies of war, racism, and a pro-corporate business environment. they are foolish and lazy.
Thanks for the comment. They are definitely pretty absolute in their denunciations, and remind me of the Maoism of Sendero Luminoso. Interestingly, it is the advance of Maoism that is hardly getting even a blink in Western media, so focused as they are on “Islamics,” with very large advances in Nepal and India. My main interest in MSH and affiliated sites is an aesthetic one, looking at the images they craft, and the many videos they have produced–what one might call Maoist Techno Trance.
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