Writing in the Socialist Review, China Miéville supports space exploration while recalling Argentinian Trotskyist Juan Posadas, who looked forward to aliens arriving to “intervene…with the inhabitants of the earth to overcome misery.” As Miéville explains:
The rest of the left greeted this with baying derision. However, as not enough comrades are SF fans, they misunderstood why Posadas was wrong. The problem is not that he believed in aliens, nor that he thought them our superiors. The problem is that he drew the wrong political conclusions.Read the rest, if only in order to savor a piece of writing in which the phrase “the sofa cushions of social justice” makes perfect sense.
The American Marxist Hal Draper famously described the “two souls” of socialism as being the democratic tradition of socialism from below versus the elitist conception of socialism from above. As his quote shows, Posadas not only looked forward to visits from flying saucers—he demanded their intervention on behalf of earth’s oppressed masses. What is that but socialism from above? From way, way above?