Thursday, October 22, 2015

Production for Use instead of for Profit

Socialism can be described as the transformation of the socialised process of production into socialised ownership. Products socially produced by the workers must be owned by those workers and ordinary people. Then there is no barrier to restrict production. Production is no longer guided by profit of the handful of owners but by the requirements of the workers, who now own the means of production, and the other sections of the people around the workers. This is production for use and not for profit. The market is ever expanding; the productive forces are released to serve its requirements. Economic crisis is abolished because its cause is destroyed. This is the basis for socialism. Commonly the word “socialism” is mis-used.  Various “workers” parties are called “socialist”. It is also suggested that countries with large welfare state programmes are socialist and that nationalised industries are socialist. These have nothing to do with the socialism dealt with here where the collective producers become the social owners. The working class alone is interested in the removal of social inequality, and that can only be accomplished by a revolution. The workers must take over and operate all the means of production and distribution for the well-being of all of humanity.

Bloody wars, untold misery and dire poverty are the living facts that prove that capitalism doesn’t work – not for the working class, anyway. If the present system cannot give peace and plenty to its people, socialism will. Socialism means production for use and not for profit. The criteria for production under socialism would be – how much is needed?  A demand for production for use and not for profit has distinctly revolutionary implications and presupposes revolutionary action for its realisation. Today capitalist ownership of the means of production and its legal right to exploitation of labour stands in the final analysis determines all political relations; which is another way of saying that those who own and control the means of production are those who rule. The mere change to government ownership or public ownership, so long as these capitalist relations remain in effect, would therefore not suffice. It is nonsense to assume that production for use, which pre-supposes the expropriation of the means of production and the transfer of the ownership thereof to the producers, can find its realisation without the overthrow of capitalist rule. In other words it can find its realisation only through the socialist revolution.

Capitalism distorts human individuality, subordinates men and women to the needs of the profit system and sets them against one another. In capitalist production everyone produces blindly for a market whose laws are unfathomable. Mankind has lost control of his and her social relationships. Capitalist society does not function to achieve social goals the community as a whole regards as desirable, but rather operates to achieve the goals considered desirable by a small part of society, the ruling capitalist class, which places its profits as the paramount concern of society. Society does not exist to satisfy the requirements of the community but the profit needs of the capitalist class. The government, no matter whether conservative or liberal, remains a social organization whose purpose is to insure the rule of the capitalist class, and by its policies to assure the receipt of profits, which is considered the first claim on society. When the needs of the great majority of society come into conflict with the capitalist system and the capitalist class, the government’s role is to ascertain that the latter triumphs. Capitalist class parties may differ and sometimes do differ deeply on how to achieve the purpose of the state, but despite these differences all capitalist parties serve , poorly or well, the interests of the capitalist class.

To repeat, production in capitalist society depends upon profit, upon the accumulation of capital and increasing opportunities for profitable capital investments. Profits are realized surplus value produced by labor; these are converted into capital and provide the basis for further accumulation. Expansion or contraction of production is determined primarily by profit possibilities and not by social needs; nor is production carried on for the benefit of the society of producers. It is the capitalist rulers who are unwilling to grant the workers the right to a job that affords them a decent living. They are callously indifferent to the needs of the people arising out of the calamities generated by their own system. Only the capitalist ownership and control of the means of production stands in the way of the economic well-being that this world can and should provide.

Socialism aims to develop individuality by creating a society in which exploitation and poverty are ended, and the resources of science and technology used to reduce the time spent in monotonous and mechanical jobs to a minimum, and vastly increase the amount devoted to leisure and creative work. Because in socialism the industries and means of production would be owned in common, all the wealth they produced would be available for the use of the people as a whole. The economic nightmare of this crazy world can only be straightened out through socialist production for USE instead of capitalist production for profit!

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