We are on the threshold of a remarkable leap in the productive process. Automation, robotics and Artificial Intelligence is not merely ‘a little more of the same.’ It will have consequences upon economy. Like all technical innovations worthy of the name, automation is a way of producing more, better, with less labour-time. That can spell trouble for our economic system. For capitalism tends to reverse the normal ways of thinking about economic problems. What comes to everybody’s mind when he hears that we are piling up large inventories of goods, if not ‘trouble ahead’? And if we are very low on goods, that is taken to mean that we are in good shape. Because it is an economy of production for profit rather than for use, it thrives on scarcity, and collapses as a result of the very situation that men should be happiest about: what is called a ‘glut’ of the things we consume.
Political democracy is only one feature of complete democracy. Complete democracy necessarily includes industrial democracy. Without industrial democracy, political democracy is merely a preparation for democracy. Industrial democracy involves the collective ownership and democratic management of the socially necessary industries. The existing political parties are owned by the capitalist class and stand for the interests of the capitalist class. They stand for the private ownership of the means of subsistence, for the exploitation ol the workers, and for wage-slavery. They are all the mere puppets of the ruling class. They are literally bought, paid for and owned, body and soul, by the powers that are exploiting this nation and enslaving and robbing its toilers. Against these corrupt capitalist parties is the Socialist Party, the party of the awakening working class, whose red banners, inscribed with the inspiring class-conscious solidarity, proclaiming the coming triumph of international socialism and the emancipation of the workers of the world. The Socialist Party is positive and constructive. It stands for complete political and industrial democracy.
On one side are the corporations, the banks, the plutocrats, the politicians, the bribe-givers, the oligarchs, the parasites, retainers and lackeys of the filth, and slime of ruling class politics, glorifying in its plundering and profligate regime.
On the other side are the workers, the producers, coming into consciousness of their interests and their power as a class, filled with the spirit of solidarity and with the confidence that throbs within them; scorning the capitalist parties that promoted industrial robbery and political rottenness. We are not here to play the filthy game of capitalist politics. Capitalism, having its foundation in the slavery and exploitation of the masses, can only rule by corrupt means.
The Socialist Party as the party of the working class stands squarely upon its principles in making its appeal to the workers. It is not begging for votes, nor seeking for votes, nor bargaining for votes. It is not in the vote market. It wants votes, but only of those who want it - those who recognise it as their party and come to it of their own free will. we want all the votes we can get but only as a means of developing the political power of the working class in the struggle for industrial freedom, and not that we may revel in the spoils of office. The workers have never yet developed or made use of their political power. They have played the game of their masters for the benefit of the master class - and now many of them, disgusted with their own blind and stupid performance, are renouncing politics and refusing to see any difference between the capitalist parties financed by the ruling class to perpetuate class rule and the Socialist Party organised by the workers themselves as a means of wresting the control of government and of industry from the capitalists and making the working class the ruling class of the world. We are united and enthusiastic as never before. There is but one issue - the unconditional surrender of the capitalist class. It proclaims the identity of interests of all workers and appeals to them to unite for their emancipation. It points out the class struggle and emphasises the need of the economic and political unity of the workers to wage that struggle to a successful end. It declares relentless war upon the entire capitalist regime in the name of the working class and demands in uncompromising terms the overthrow of wage-slavery and the inauguration of industrial democracy.
To this end the Socialist Party has been organised; to this end it is devoting all its energy and resources; to this end it makes its appeal to the workers. The Socialist Party has no blueprints to offer the world. Its task is to mobilise the workers for the destruction of the system which robs them of the fruits of their labour. That is our only purpose in calling upon them to organise for the conquest of political power.