Monday, February 24, 2014

Capitalism or Socialism


The world in which we live is in a desperate situation. Poverty and unemployment, disease and war, are endemic in the modern world. Industrialisation have wreaked havoc on the environment. People starve, not because there is no food, but because food is distributed only when it can make a profit. Corruption is rife in politics and commerce. Work, for most people, means drudgery. A sense of community in our world is increasingly missing in our daily lives. The answer lies in ending the separation of economics and politics. It involves people taking control of their workplaces, their neighbourhoods, their communities – directly and without mediators. Without bureaucrats, capitalists and managers standing in the way, it should be possible to build a sense of community, of unity, of cooperation. Either we do this or we will destroy ourselves.

The class struggle is simple to understand. A handful of industrial and financier capitalists who are in control of the factories, the banks, the natural resources and the government, are steadily whittling away at the living standards and democratic rights of all the working class. The Socialist Party proceeds upon the understanding that society is at present divided into two classes, whose economic interests are antagonistic. The Socialist Party calls on the workers of to unite for their common cause.  We must pit the unity of the workers against the unity of the exploiters.  We must match the solidarity of the working class whose ideal is freedom, with the solidarity of the employers whose aim is exploitation. The task for the capitalists and exploiters is unfortunately comparatively easy as they control both the capitalist state, the media and the education of the workers; and it is knowledge which sheds light on social and international questions. History and facts are falsified to present a skewed picture of reality.

The great majority of workers struggling to resist the employers are still under the influence of reformists who can only think of how to solve problems within the framework allowed by capitalism. As sops to the  workers, the capitalists have introduced some nationalisation  here and there but industries nationalised are no cure for wage-slavery, because they are still carried on for profit; and nothing but the socialisation of the means of life under a free co-operative commonwealth will abolish the present system, and give the wealth of the world to the workers of the world. The last thing reformists strive for is the  reconstruction of society and the abolition of wage slavery. That is what the Socialist Party stand for. The workers of the world have tried every other way and found it leads up a blind alley. The question for the workers is how to combine industrially and politically to got hold of the means of production and distribute their products throughout the whole community, according to the needs. It’s not such a difficult question to solve. Why do the workers continually turn away from it?

The Socialist Party is not a political party in the sense that other parties are - it has no reform to advocate.  This party cannot, and will not, free the workers; the workers must free themselves. The workers who would be free must organise and must educate themselves to obtain the knowledge which will enable them engage in the revolutionary work necessary to change the era of wage-slavery into the era of the Co-operative Commonwealth.

The gains of the past must be defended now. But the best way to do this is by understanding that unless the capitalist system itself is overthrown, those past gains and any temporary victories will be reversed by the needs and drives of the bosses who own and control it. Capitalism has brought technology and the organization of production to a point where the potential to adequately feed, clothe and house the entire world population is reachable. But the creation of abundance would end exploitation and destroy profits, so the capitalists themselves stand as a barrier to a society fit for human beings. Socialist revolution is the only solution! Socialism is the system of society in which production would be controlled and directed by the community in the interest of all of the society. It is the alternative to the existing system. The workers’ socialist revolution is the only “practical” politics, not a “wild" unrealisable notion but the sole constructive path.  Nothing is more certain than that any alleviation of the workers’ lot involves the capture of the State. The battle between the workers’ needs and capitalism grows ever fiercer. It can only end in revolution.

The only path before workers is Revolution. All the reformist remedies not only fail to touch the root  — the burdens of capitalist disorganisation and parasitism, and the gulf between growing productive power and mass impoverishment. They can only intensify the disease. The capitalists look for the solution in fiercer competition, in restricting production, in cheapening their own costs of production, in cutting wages against their competitors, in increasing their own competitive power, in fighting to enlarge their own share of the market. But these measures are pursued by the capitalists in every country. Although one set or another set may gain a temporary advantage for a short time, the net effect can only be to deepen the crisis. The net effect of every advance of technique, of every wage-cut, of every cheapening of costs and intensification of production, is to intensify the world crisis. The crisis is not a crisis of natural scarcity or shortage.  Millions of workers are willing and able to work; but existing society has no use for their labour. The crisis is a crisis of capitalism alone. Every advance of production only intensifies the crisis, intensifies the ferocity of capitalist competition for the market.

All the leaders of capitalism, economists, financiers, politicians, are at sixes and sevens. Many would-be reformers of capitalism (including many on the Left) urge that if only the capitalists would pay higher wages to the workers, enabling them to buy more of what they produce, there would be no crisis. This is utopian nonsense, which ignores the inevitable laws of capitalism — the drive for profits, and the drive of competition. The drive of capitalism is always to increase its profits by every possible means, to increase its surplus, not to decrease it. Individual capitalists may talk of the “gospel" of high wages in the hope of securing a larger market for their goods. But the actual drive of capitalism as a whole is the opposite. The force of competition compels every capitalist to cheapen costs of production, to extract more output per worker for less return, to cut wages. It conceals the real process of capitalism at work. Capitalism has no solution. The most the capitalists can see is to wait amid the general misery until the universal stagnation, destruction and stoppage of production has produced such a vacuum that “demand” will again arise, beginning a new trade cycle, and leading to a new and greater crisis. But of any attempt to organise the growing productive power to meet human needs — the question does not even enter into their heads; it cannot arise within the conditions of capitalism.

Capitalism to-day is no longer willing to grant concessions to the workers, on the contrary finds itself compelled to withdraw existing concessions, to make new attacks, to worsen conditions.  To enforce worsened conditions on the workers in order to save capitalism has been the role of the Labour Governments. The Left proclaim their “opposition” to the Labour Party policy and advocate so-called “socialist” alternatives. But on examination their policy will be found to be only the old policy of the Old Labour Party, dressed up in new clothes. Although they speak roundly of “socialism” against “capitalism,” they do not propose the overthrow of capitalism, the working-class conquest of power, the expropriation of the capitalists; their basis is still the same basis of capitalism, of the capitalist State, and therefore the outcome can only be the same. In the end where will all the policies of capitalism lead? They will not solve the crisis. On the contrary, the more they increase the impoverishment of the workers, the more they increase competitive power, the more they intensify the crisis. The same types of policy are pursued by all the capitalists. The only viable proposal for change is the reorganisation of capitalism.

Only socialism can bring the solution. Only socialism can cut through the bonds of capitalist property rights and organise production to meet human needs. Once capitalism is overthrown, then and only then can production be organised in common for all, and every increase in production bring increasing abundance and leisure for all. This is the aim of the working-class revolution. Only the organised working-class can fight and destroy the power of the capitalist class, can drive the capitalists from possession, can organise social production. The capitalists and their propagandist reformists, try to frighten the workers from revolution by holding before them the spectre that revolution means civil war violence and starvation and that the workers depend on capitalism for their existence. The contrary is the truth. Already millions are unemployed or under-employed,  brought down to the barest subsistence basis. Deprivation spreads and the demand for food banks grow.

The issue of class-power, the issue of capitalism or socialism draws close. Forward to the social revolution! There is no time to lose. To-day the workers are mobilising their forces to meet the new capitalist attacks. The spirit of fight is rising in the working-class. Forward to the fight for socialism!

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