Monday, December 31, 2018

Revolution! Not Reforms!

We are living in terrifying times. Life is becoming more difficult for many. The causes we have struggled for are being pushed back.

It is the aspiration and aim of the Socialist Party that everyone should become socially conscious and effective in the class war against capitalism. Our goal is one for the working class throughout the world and it is the abolition of class-society itself. It is not a pious hope. But meanwhile, let us clarify our ideas and clearly understand our aims. Socialism means production is carried on for the social good, not for the profit of an exploiting class, not whether capitalists can sell it at a profit for themselves but produce for the needs of the people. Socialism thus revolutionizes the aim of production from production for profitable sale to production for social use. In so doing it frees humanity from the narrow limits of the capitalist economy and embarks upon a totally new era of social evolution. Socialism abolishes the chaos of capitalist production. It does away with the dog-eat-dog competition of capitalist industry, breeder of economic crises and war. It sets up instead a planned system of economy in harmony with the worldwide character of modern industry and social relationships. Only with socialism is such a planned economy possible and inevitable. A planned economy is one of the great contributions of socialism to humanity.

Capitalism robs the toilers of a large share of what they produce. It places restrictions on the development of the productive forces themselves. Under capitalism, science is a slave to the class interests of the bourgeoisie. Socialism will abolish the class division of society and it will abolish all forces of exploitation and oppression of man by man. Society will no longer consist of antagonistic classes in conflict with each other but will represent a united commonwealth of labour. For the first time in its history mankind will take its fate into its own hands. Instead of destroying innumerable human lives and incalculable wealth in struggles between classes and nations, mankind will devote all its energies to the development and strengthening of its own collective might. Socialist society will be State-free. With private property in industry and land abolished (but, of course, not in articles of personal use), with exploitation of the toilers ended, and with the capitalist class finally defeated and all classes liquidated, there will then be no further need for the State, which in its essence, is an organ of class repression. The State in the words of Engels, “wither away” and be replaced by a scientific technical “administration of things.” The guiding principle will be: “From each according to ability, to each according to needs.” That is, the distribution of life necessities—food, clothing, shelter, education, etc.—will be free, without let or hindrance. Socialist production, carried out upon the most efficient basis and freed from the drains of capitalist exploiters, will provide such an abundance of necessary commodities that there will be plenty for all with a minimum of effort. There will then be no need for pinch-penny rationing.

The Socialist Party stands for the abolition of every form of domination and oppression. We call for common ownership and democratic control of productive resources, for a guarantee to a fair share of society's product, in accordance with individual needs. we pursue the socialist transformation of society, focusing on production for need, not profit. The Socialist Party works to build world socialism in which everyone will be able to freely visit and to live wherever they choose. 

Without a vision of a better world and the organisation that goes with it, even mass protests of ordinary working people in response to injustice will likely go nowhere.  The Socialist Party offers a socialist vision of creating a society that serves the well-being of humanity and nature alike.  The dire consequences of this system are everywhere apparent. The workers are oppressed and deprived of much that makes for physical and mental well-being. Year by year poverty destroy more lives than all the militaries in the world. To preserve their privilege and power is the most vital interest of the possessing class, while it is the most vital interest of the working class to resist oppression, improve its position. Hence there exists a conflict of interests, a class war which can know neither truce nor compromise  so long as the few own and control the economic life of the many. For the masses of the people there is but an opportunity to work hard for  a bare living, which is not prosperity, but slavery. If men and women were free to labour to satisfy their desires there could be neither poverty nor involuntary unemployment. But men and women are not free to labour to satisfy their desires. The working population can labour only  when the capitalist class who own the industries believe they can market their  product at a profit. The needs of millions are subordinated to the greed of a few. Their greed come first—the people's needs, if at all, afterwards. The Socialist Party feels there are a great many flaws with the capitalist system resulting in human suffering. Under capitalism, the few own our industries.  The many do the work.  The wage earners and farmers are compelled to give a large part of the product of their labor to the few.  The many in the factories, mines, shops, offices and on the farms obtain but a scanty income and are able to buy back only a part of the goods that can be produced in such abundance by our mass industries.
The socialist movement owes its birth and growth to that economic development or world process which is rapidly separating a working or producing class from a possessing or capitalist class. The class that produces nothing possesses labor’s fruits, and the opportunities and enjoyments these fruits afford, while the class that does the world’s real work has increasing economic uncertainty, and physical and intellectual misery as its portion. Between the two classes, there can be no possible compromise or identity of interests. A society based upon this class division carries in itself the seeds of its own destruction. Such a society is founded in fundamental injustice. There can be no possible basis for social peace, for individual freedom, for mental and moral harmony, except in the conscious and complete triumph of the working class as the only class that has the right or power to be.

The Socialist Party is to-day the one democratic party of the worker whose object is to remove the cause of class struggles, class antagonisms, and social evils inherent in the capitalist system. The Socialist Party declares that the capitalist system has outgrown its historical function, and has become utterly incapable of meeting the problems now confronting society. We denounce this outgrown system as incompetent and corrupt and the source of unspeakable misery and suffering to the whole working class. We propose to transfer the industries of the world from private ownership and autocratic, cruelly inefficient management to common ownership and democratic control. 

The overwhelming majority of the people are being forced under a yoke of bondage by this soulless industrial despotism. It is this capitalist system that is responsible for the increasing burden of armaments, the poverty, slums, child labor, much of the mental illness, crime and prostitution, and much of the disease that afflicts mankind. Under this system, the working class is exposed to poisonous conditions, to frightful and needless perils to life and limb, preyed upon incessantly for the benefit of the controlling oligarchy of wealth. Under it also, the working class are doomed to ignorance, drudging toil and darkened lives. The Socialist Party declares that sufferance under these conditions is no longer possible, and our Party was founded with the purpose to end them all. We declare them to be the product of the present system in which industry is carried on for private greed, instead of for the welfare of society. We declare, furthermore, that for these evils there will be and can be no remedy and no substantial relief except through socialism where industry will be carried on for the common good.

The Socialist Party is the political expression of the economic interests of the workers. In the face of the economic and political aggressions of the capitalist class, the only reliance left the workers is that of their economic organisations and their political power. By the class conscious use of these, they may resist successfully the capitalist class, break the fetters of wage slavery, and fit themselves for the future society, which is to displace the capitalist system. The Socialist Party appreciates the full significance of class organisation and urges the wage-earners to organise for economic and political action, and we pledge ourselves to support our fellow-workers in their struggles for economic and socal justice. The Socialist Party is the party of revolution.

We, the Socialist Party make our appeal to the people as the only political movement standing for the principles by which the liberty of the individual may become a fact; as the only political organisation that is democratic, and that has for its purpose the democratising of the whole society. Capitalism is the enemy. The private ownership of the means of employment grounds society is economic slavery. Capitalism renders intellectual and political tyranny inevitable.

As a socialist party, we pledge our fidelity to the principles of internationalism, as embodied in the united thought and action of socialists of all the world. The interests of the world’s workers are separated by no national boundaries. The condition of the most exploited and oppressed workers, in the most remote places of the earth, inevitably tends to drag down all the workers of the world to the same level. The tendency of the competitive wage system is to make labour’s lowest condition the measure or rule of its universal condition. Industry and finance are no longer national but international in both organisations and results. The chief significance of national boundaries, and of the so-called patriotisms which the ruling class of each nation is seeking to revive, is the power which these give to capitalism to keep the workers of the world from uniting, and to throw them against each other in the struggles of contending capitalist interests for the control of the yet unexploited markets of the world, or the remaining sources of profit. The socialist movement therefore is a world-movement. It knows of no conflicts between the workers of one nation and the workers of another. It stands for the freedom of the workers of all nations; and, in so standing, it makes for the full freedom of all humanity.

 The Socialist Party came into being with the proposition of deliberately organizing society for the common good of all. Socialism means that all those things upon which the people in common depend shall by the people in common be owned and administered. It means that the tools of employment shall belong to the creators and users; that all production shall be for the direct use of the producers; that the making of goods for profit shall come to an end; that we shall all be workers together, and that opportunities shall be open and equal to all men and women. To that end  the workers may seize every possible advantage that may strengthen them to gain complete control of the powers of government, and thereby the sooner establish the co-operative commonwealth, the Socialist Party pledges itself to watch and work in both the economic and the political struggle for each successive immediate interest of the working class.

We lay upon every Socialist Party candidate elected to office the first duty of striving to procure whatever is for the workers’ most immediate interest, and whatever will lessen the economic and political powers of the capitalist and increase the like powers of the worker. But, in so doing, we are using these remedial measures as means to one great end — the Co-operative Commonwealth. Such measures of relief as we may be able to force from capitalism are but a preparation of the workers to lay hold of the whole system of industry, and thus come into their rightful inheritance. To this end we pledge ourselves, as the party of the working class, to use all political power, as fast as it shall be entrusted to us by our fellow-workers, for their ultimate and complete emancipation.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Never Forget the Class Struggle

“Most people look at the world as it is and ask ‘Why?’. We should look at the world as it could be and ask, ‘Why not?’ ” George Bernard Shaw

What kind of world do we want for the future? We want a world where people live in comfort and security, free from fear of poverty, hunger or conflict. We want a world with a new economic system where peoples of all countries have free access to resources, a system which aims instead at meeting the real needs of the human community in balance with the environment. We can choose the future world that we want. We must join together and work together to create it. In the world, as it could be, people would realise that they can collectively shape the future for a better world. 

Socialism, as it was understood by Marx and Engels, would be the creation of a society that would have no need for repression and oppression because it had overcome economic scarcity. Marx and Engels envisaged a society in which the social productive forces had developed to a point that they would be capable of producing such a surplus of goods and services that the majority of people would no longer have to spend the greater part of their lives in work. The planned allocation of resources and human labour, in such a future society, would also ensure that no one would have to degrade themselves by working for another human being in order to survive. Instead of work being something we all try to avoid, it would gradually be transformed into one of a wide range of creative activities people engage in to make their lives meaningful. They strived for a human society not dominated by exploiters, be they slave-owners or captains of industry. They sought a society in which human beings could enjoy the fullness of life without the need to make others their servants or to be servants of others. Marx and Engels expected that the development of the productive forces under industrial capitalism would for the first time in human history build the material basis for such a fundamental transformation of society. Human progress has until our day relied on the grossest forms of oppression and misery, economic exploitation and repression. These were regrettable but unavoidable features of human history as long as the combined output of human labour, science, the machines and technology were not large enough to provide sufficient food, shelter, recreation, education and necessary luxuries for everyone - economic scarcity.  Today, our productive forces have developed to an extent that nobody need go without what they need for a full human life. Socialism would be a society of free producers, working under a rationally planned economy and no longer made up of buyers and sellers trading goods through the market, but a community of people who turn out products for society at large and receive them for personal consumption from society’s common pool. This vision suggests a society so wealthy, so educated, so cultured that there would be no need or necessity for instruments of direct or indirect coercion. 

When we speak of socialism we are talking about a way of organising society based on the principle of 'from each according to ability, to each according to need', a society based on cooperation, mutual aid, solidarity and meeting human needs. There is no shortage of politicians or political groups claiming to have blueprints for creating a fairer society. However, socialism is not something which can be decreed into being but must be created by workers ourselves. Instead of ownership or control of the means of production - land, factories, offices and so on - being in the hands of private individuals or the state, a socialist society is based on the common ownership and control of those means. And instead of production for exchange and profit, socialism means production-for-use to meet human needs.

Already today, it is us workers who produce everything and run all the services necessary for life. We lay the roads, build the homes, drive the trains, care for the sick, grow the food, design and construct the products, and teach the next generation. Socialism means a money-free society where our activity - and its products - no longer take the form of things to be bought and sold. The principal concern most people hold as to whether a socialist society could is asking if humans really can produce enough for us to survive without the implicit threat of destitution, enforced by the wage system. For most of human history, we have not had money or wage labour, however necessary tasks still got done. In hunter-gatherer societies, for example, which were overwhelmingly peaceful and egalitarian there was no distinction between work and play. Even today, huge amounts of necessary work are done voluntarily for free. 

Many people think that socialism sounds like a good idea but doubt it would work in practice. However, surely, we should first ask if "capitalism works?" as billions live in poverty surrounded by unimaginable wealth, while we head relentlessly towards environmental catastrophe. Our answer is a resounding "no" and we believe there is ample evidence that socialism would function far better than the capitalist system for the majority of people.  Socialism can resolve the major issues we face today, like ecological devastation, freeing us to tackle much more interesting problems. Instead of the need to produce more and accumulate more, we can focus on how to turn our products into quality goods that will be repairable, reusable and recyclable.

With capitalism, there is injustice and exploitation but socialism creates the possibility for a world based on freedom and equality for all. Many of our fellow-workers are puzzled when they find that the Socialist Party claims to be opposed to the Labour Party the left-wing in general, not merely in matters of method, but also in respect of the object to be worked for. This is easy to understand. It arises from the use, by ourselves and by those other parties, of terms and phrases which appear to have a similar meaning.  When a member of the Left speaks of “nationalisation, ” the media will assume that what is meant is socialism, and those on the Left have no interest in correcting the false impression. The Labour Party stands for nationalisation, which is a form of capitalism embodying all of the chief features of the system of society which the Socialist Party works to abolish. It is the practice of many journalists to describe Labour MPs as socialists.

State ownership is capitalism in a new garb. The defect about nationalisation schemes is that they do not so much as touch the fundamental problem of the workers. What is the problem? It is that we live in a world where the means of production and distribution are the private property of the capitalist class. The workers produce everything that is necessary for the sustenance and continuance of society; the capitalist class owns it. The workers receive wages based roughly on what it costs them to live and be efficient and bring up families. The capitalist class keeps the remainder. That is the workers’ problem. That is why they are poor. There lies the cause of unemployment and wars. The solution is that the means of production and distribution should be made the common property of society as a whole. When that has been done there will no longer be a working class, producing wealth but not owning it, and a propertied class owning-wealth but not producing it. That will be socialism. Nationalisation do not solve that problem. They leave the property owners still in possession of their property rights, still able to live at the expense of the producers. The only difference is that they exchange shares in a private company for shares in a public utility company, or for Government securities. The workers are more or less where they were before, getting just enough to exist on, and faced with all the harrowing problems of how to make ends meet. Changing the form of capitalism from private companies to state-controlled concerns is a problem of interest to the capitalist class, the form of whose property is being changed, but it is not a question that is worth the attention of the workers. The next recession will surely be a humdinger! Would it be out of place, fellow-workers, to remind you that this is the wages-system, capitalism; and that socialism is a practicable alternative?

With socialism, there will not be a class of property owners, and a class of non-owners compelled to sell their labour power to an employer in order to live. The wages system will have disappeared for ever. Men and women will produce the articles all need, not for sale and for profit-making, but for the use of all. Socialism seeks to transform societies and persons, bringing them to a higher level of social justice than is possible under capitalist economic system. the limitations of capitalism are becoming ever more obvious, creating greater possibilities for the socialist movement. Socialism is a step toward the development of a democratic, and sustainable worldwide society, based on cooperation and solidarity, rather than domination and exploitation.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Building the Party of the Dispossessed

Today, millions of people await the future with apathy, fear or despair. A deep malaise has taken hold of much of society. We are witnessing an obvious tendency towards the increasing bureaucratisation of society, a managerial world of corporate CEOs, issuing life or death directives. The world we live and struggle in confronts us with a paradox. Conditions exist which should result in a very favourable ground for socialist activity. Yet a real socialist movement does not exist. There is discontent stirring among our fellow-workers, particularly as their living standards fall. Yet at the same time, there is widespread despondency. The media spreads the idea of capitalism is the only alternative.

Even though science and technology have made great advances, bringing new marvels the outcome is the threat of mass unemployment, environmental destruction and the ever-present menace of war. Science and technology have no power independent of the social groups who invented them, apply them, and bend them to their interests as they see them. The key problem is to subject science and technology to conscious social control in the democratically established interests of the great majority of human beings. To free them from submission to special interests, which abuse them regardless of the long-term interests of the human race. For that purpose, the organisation and structure of society itself must be subjected to democratically determined, conscious control.

The mass media broadcast news reports of famine and war around the globe, presenting the idea that there is nothing to be done about it, that the present social system is the only one possible, and what Marx called "a free association of producers" - socialism - is incompatible with human nature. 

The threat to the environment, a direct result of capitalism's uncontrolled expansion, can be answered only by the collective action of humanity as a whole. The activists in the Green movement has done important work in drawing attention to environmental issues yet many avoid the conclusion of often their own logic, how we change the system an change it into what. The real choice today is not "socialism or barbarism", but more ominous "socialism or extinction of humanity."

 New technology is not the enemy, but its perversion by the power of capitalists. Class society implies the systematic manipulation of "public opinion" as an instrument of class rule. The specific interests of the ruling class must be made to appear as the general interest. Capitalism abandons the satisfaction of the material needs of mankind. The fear of unemployment from automation among those who have jobs has weakened the working class and facilitated the worldwide capitalist offensive aimed at increasing the rate of profit through pushing down real wages and cutting social and infrastructural costs. The unions have capitulated before this capitalist offensive, and have accepted austerity policies, no matter how reluctant they have been in doing so. This has disoriented the working class and, made it more difficult for workers to undertake defensive struggles. Increasingly we see workers circumventing the need for action through the unions. This has contributed to the failure of the overall socialist objective, the absence of a conviction of the overthrow of capitalism and the advent of a class-free society without exploitation, oppression, and injustice. We have to face the reality that this is indeed a crisis of the credibility of socialism which must be overcome. The principal task of the Socialist Party is to restore the credibility of socialism in the consciousness of millions of men and women

 We have to reiterate that socialism is:

- no more classes or state, so no more private property.
- no opposition between town and country, humanity is spread harmoniously over the earth's surface.
- disappearance of the division between manual and intellectual labour, a reflection of the class struggle. Social man uses the productive machine to create a social product.
- dissolution of the opposition between private and public life. Social man has nothing to do with politics, since there are no men to be governed. There is the administration of things. 
We must restate that socialism will:
feed the hungry;
clothe the naked;
house the homeless;
provide proper medical care;
offer a dignified decent life to everyone.

Consequently, there are no further antagonisms between social man (a human being) and the species. Humanity has rediscovered its organic unity; no more dualism between leaders and masses. What socialism is all about in the last analysis is for the greatest possible number to decide their own fate in all key sectors of life.  Socialism is a society in which these masses decide their own fate in a free way  with democratically organised self-activity. None of this is dogmatic or utopian. 
 Until a socialist revolution is successful, the most important result of any struggle is the building of working-class self-confidence and organisation. Workers have no confidence whatsoever in the current political parties, left or right.

Means inevitably condition the ends and if we are aiming for a society guided by the working class, only self-emancipatory means would be effective in leading to it. Socialism simply put is post-capitalism, an economy that disallows private property of the means of production and has no social divisions.

The task of the Socialist Party is socialist education and propaganda. Humankind cannot be saved without substituting for this present society a fundamentally different society. You can call it anything you want to, the label makes no difference, but its contents have to be specified, the contents of socialism as it will be accepted by the masses. After the disastrous experiences of the Labour Party and Soviet state capitalism, the image of socialism can only be one of radical emancipation and defence of the environment. Socialism will be accepted only if it is considered emancipatory on a world scale without exception, reunifying socialism with freedom. Whoever commits crimes against human rights under whatever pretext in whatever country should be condemned by socialists. That is the precondition to restoring confidence among the people in the socialist movement. Once that confidence is restored we gain the moral high-ground. We make no predictions about the future. There is no better way to be a decent person in this world than to dedicate your life to the great cause, defending the exploited, the oppressed, the downtrodden, and the despised.

Friday, December 28, 2018

The Impossiblist Task

The decline of the impossiblist tradition of socialism – and it would be frivolous to deny this decline or minimise its extent – has led to its premature burial. Marx and Engels declared previous varieties of socialism to be “utopian” not because they anticipated a class-free, wage-free, money-free society, but because they failed to realise that such a society is possible only on the foundation of highly developed technology, which alone permits a life of leisure and plenty. To argue that to aspire to a free access society is utopian is an absolutist dogma. It assumes the continued existence of the capitalist market society to be inevitable. In a socialist society there will still be a wide range of talent, skills, and achievement, but in such a society there would not be economic exploitation of class by class. Because the true concern of the Socialist Party is fixed on achieving socialism its only legitimate form of activity in the existing order is preparing for the revolution. Therefore, ‘immediate’ or ‘partial’ demands – that is, demands that fall short of the socialist goal and may thus be granted within the framework of the capitalist system has no place in the Socialist Party’s platform.

The Socialist Party’s approach to class is an “objective” one. It distinguishes social classes in terms of the roles played by groups of men in the process of economic production. Ownership or non-ownership of the means of production becomes a central criterion for determining class membership. Generally speaking, a class develops particular forms of behavior and cultural outlets; it has a distinct prestige rating in society; it develops a unique community of outlooks, a class attitude.  the Marxist theory of classes is intended far less as a sociological device for social classification than a method for studying social change. It asserts that the major motions of modern society can best be understood in terms of class maneuver and class conflict.

Why has socialism failed to thrive? Perhaps, the great demand for labor power and the constant scarcity of labor meant, during most of the 19th and part of the 20th centuries, that the working class could enjoy relatively high wages. Simultaneously, the scarcity of labour stimulated the invention of labor-saving devices, which, in turn, meant a high level of productivity. Maybe because of the constant influx of immigrants, the working class was sharply split into native and newcomer, a split which postponed the emergence of class unity. Importantly, the damage done by Leninism and Stalinism to the socialist case is incalculable. Also detrimental was the reformers “here-and-now” politics proving to be a diversion. One of the false notions that have arisen in recent years is that the impossibilist socialist tradition failed because it was too “theoretical.” If anything it was the other way: the movement was not theoretical enough.

To declare that the struggle of the working class for emancipation ultimately turns upon the conquest of political power is by no means to say that the matter is a purely political one. The class struggle is both political and economic in character, not merely in the sense that the need to gain control of the machinery of government is necessary, among other things, to acquire control of all economic resources, but also in the sense that the workers, if they are to fit themselves for the attainment of their emancipation, must carry on the struggle on the economic field under capitalism. The trade union movement, despite its many shortcomings from the socialist point of view, is the expression of the workers’ attack and resistance against the power of capital in the economic sphere of social activity. The present-day trade unions may appear to many as reactionary organisations on account of many of their pro-capitalist ideas, besides the fact that the capitalist has largely adapted himself to their existence, but beneath the surface of this lies the dire necessity of the workers to carry on their day-to-day struggles through this or some form of economic organisation. The deeply-laid fact is that the master class has never failed to realise that the association of the workers for economic purposes, i.e., for rates of wages, hours and general conditions of employment, is a source of danger to the power of capital over wage labour. To in any way challenge the right of the capitalist to exact his full tribute from the productivity of the workers is fundamentally regarded by the capitalist class as any similar challenge made by the serfs against the feudal lords of a few hundred years ago, or by the slaves of antiquity against the slave owners—as a challenge to be crushed, compromised with, or cajoled, as the circumstances determine.

The International Working Men’s Association constantly stressed the importance of the workers' need to carry on their struggles through the medium of the trade unions, but, at the same time, endeavoured to get the unions to widen their outlook and broaden the basis of their activities. It is a socialist's profound conviction that some sort of fight, however instinctive, has to be made if the working class is to prove worthy of its emancipation from wage slavery and to prevent itself from becoming a permanent makeshift tool in the hands of the ruling class.

At the Hague Congress of the International, held in 1872, Marx proposed a resolution “on the political activity of the proletariat,” and among many other points, stated that:
   "The consolidation of the workers' forces attained in the economic struggle will also have to serve as a lever in the hand of this class for the struggle against the political power of its exploiters. In view of the fact that the owners of the land and of capital always utilised their political privileges to guard and perpetuate their economic monopolies and to enslave labour, the conquest of political power comes to be the great task of the proletariat."

Marx saw and experienced no great readiness on the part of the workers to respond to the socialist appeal, he did not on that account fail to back their efforts at trying to improve their lot through the trade union movement.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Who Will Change our World?

Is there hope for our planet, given that humanity is on the edge of an abyss due to global climate change?  The world is at serious risk of collapsing ecosystems, which can happen with remarkable suddenness and without warning. But sadly, it is patently obvious the public is not nearly as concerned with global warming as humanity's looming apocalypse warrants.

The planet will survive climate change. Life on Earth will survive climate change, although many species may not. Human beings will survive it, too, although many people may not and many more will experience needless suffering. Since the Industrial Revolution, the world has experienced historically unprecedented levels of growth, with capitalism raising the standard of living of many ye at the same time, capitalism has generated immense contradictions such as brutal exploitation of labour, the looting of natural resources, and has created huge inequalities and gross social injustice.  means the division of society into two opposing classes: the vast majority who work for a living, and the elite few who live off the proceeds of other people's labor by virtue of the ownership of capital. It means just about anything involving markets, or wage-labour or the profit motive. It is the concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a few. It condemns many to poverty and powerlessness, it erodes the mutual trust and affection without which a society cannot function happily or well. it’It's bad for the planet because it allows those at the top to use and abuse the environment - both as a source of raw materials and as a sink for the disposal of waste – at the expense of everyone else.  It doesn't matter whether we have a free-market economy or a state-run economy: the result will be the same; unpleasant outcomes for most of the people and for the planet, too.

The theory of surplus value is the cornerstone of Marx’s economic theory. According to the Marxian law of value, the value of every commodity is determined by the amount of socially necessary labor required for its production (or reproduction). In the highest stage of commodity production, the one in which it becomes predominant, namely, capitalism, labour power itself becomes almost universally a commodity, a peculiar commodity, it is true, but one whose value is nevertheless determined like that of any other commodity. The worker sells his or her commodity, as they must, to the capitalist. But, exploiter though he is, the capitalist pays the worker the full value (more or less) of his labour power. He pays him in the form of another peculiar commodity, money, which is a universal equivalent and with which the worker, in turn, acquires those commodities needed to live on (that is, to reproduce labour power). He, in turn, pays the full value (more or less) for these commodities. For the value of his or her labour power, the worker receives an equivalent value in other commodities. The bourgeois principle of equality is perfectly maintained. Equal values have been exchanged. There has been no cheating, no stealing. Commodity exchange can operate on no other principle, above all under the conditions of capitalism, than that of the exchange of equivalents.

Yet the capitalist exploits the worker. In paying for labour power at its value, the capitalist has the use of labour power, namely, labour itself, for a longer time than is needed to reproduce the value of the labor power he has bought. That is, he disposes of its use during the time when it is necessary labour, and during the time when it is surplus labour, that is, while it produces a value above that of the labour power purchased. The secret of surplus value is laid bare. No cheating, equal values fairly exchanged – and that is exactly how the worker is exploited and surplus value appropriated by the capitalist. Thus, the Marxian theory of value is nothing but the theory of surplus value. That is all it is or ever was.

The wage-worker sells labour power to the owner of the land, factories, and instruments of labour. The worker uses one part of the labour day to cover living expenses (wages), while the other part of the day the worker toils without remuneration, creating surplus value for the capitalist. This is the source of profit, the source of the wealth of the capitalist class. While increasing the dependence of the workers on capital, the capitalist system at the same time creates the great power of united labour. Marx foresaw ever-greater confrontations between capital and labour, only resolvable by the ultimate triumph of labour. Marx repeatedly exposed the way people fell victims of deceit and self-deceit in politics until they learned the ulterior motives behind the declarations and promises of the employing class. The supporters of reforms and improvements will always be fooled by the defenders of the status quo until they realise that it is maintained by the forces of the ruling class.

What would a post-capitalist society and a sustainable economy look like? The task of the Socialist Party is not to concoct utopian schemes but to enlighten and organise our fellow-workers. Protest marches are just not enough. We must do more than demonstrate. Socialism holds, first and foremost, to the unshakable commitment that building a better world and a better future by the workers’ own hands is both necessary and possible.  The Socialist Party holds to the belief that people can, individually and collectively, influence the shape of the world to come. To change the world and to create a better one, to free today's world of inequalities, hardships, and deprivations, is the aim of the Socialist Party. Socialism is the movement for transforming the world and building a free, equal and prosperous society.

 The Socialist Party reflects the vision and ideals of our goal. We are not reformers nor heroic saviours, seeking martyrdom for future humanity. We are not an organisation of know-alls laying out a blueprint for Utopia. What distinguishes our party is that, firstly, it champions the unity and common interests of the workers of the entire world, and, secondly, it represents the interests of the working class as a whole.  The interest of the workers is diametrically opposed to the interest of the capitalists and exploiters of the workers who, controlling the government and its agencies, strive to keep the workers down. The capitalists want to keep the old relations of exploitation. They fight the rise of the workers. But their only alternative is to plunge society into one crisis and one war after another. The victory of the workers cannot be forever delayed. The old relations of society must be rendered asunder. When the workers of the world unite then the rule over persons will give way to an administration over things. The state, with religion, will wither away. There will be no exploitation. There will be no classes. Each will receive according to what he or she put in, each will receive according to his or her needs.

Marx avoided all attempts to draw him into the construction of utopias. However, he did not hesitate to dwell on the strategy and tactics of the socialist revolution, but only the most general principles of rational organisation of the socialist society. But these principles have remained for the Socialist Party the very essence of socialism.

It has always been part of the Socialist Party’s case that socialism was not only desirable but is also practicable; that socialist society would revolutionise human relationships, replacing worship for property by respect for mankind, and replacing the consumerist society by the common weal. All forms of human oppression are rooted, ultimately, in the economic oppression arising from the private ownership of the means of production; and once these are socialised, the ending of other oppressions will rapidly ensue. Throughout the world, men and women are growing angry at the decades of hunger poverty and war.  Human beings are active creators and shapers of their natural and social worlds who find their scope for free action drastically constrained by capitalism.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

What we call socialism

The alternative to the present capitalist system of profit-seeking and monetary accumulation involves:

1. the absence of any property rights, private or state, over natural and industrial resources needed for production;
2. the existence of a non-coercive democratic decision-making structure;
3. the guaranteed access for all to what they need to satisfy their needs;
4. the orientation of production towards the direct satisfaction of real needs in a flexible and self-regulating way without the intervention of money and buying and selling;
5. the organisation of work as a voluntary service under the democratic control of those working in the various productive units.

We call this system “socialism”, but it is the content, not the name, that is important. It obviously has nothing in common with the previous existing state capitalist regime of the Soviet Union nor of China or proposals for state control (nationalisation) by the Left which is often erroneously called “socialist”. The means by which this new society can be achieved are determined by its nature as a society involving voluntary co-operation and democratic participation. It cannot be imposed from above by some self-appointed liberators nor by some well-meaning state bureaucracy but can only come into existence as a result of being the expressed wish of a majority—an overwhelming majority—of the population. In other words, the new society can only be established by democratic political action and the movement to establish it can only employ democratic forms of struggle.

Because the present system is an inter-related whole it cannot be abolished piecemeal. It can only be abolished in its entirety or not at all. This fact determines the choice as to what we must do: work towards a complete break with the present system as opposed to trying to gradually transform it. Gradual reform cannot lead to a democratic, ecological society because capitalism is an economic system governed by blind, uncontrollable, economic laws which always triumph in the end over political intervention, however well-meaning or determined this might be. Any attempt on the part of a government to impose other priorities than profit-making risks either provoking an economic crisis or the government ends up administering the system in the only way it can be—as a profit-oriented system in which profit-making has to be given priority over meeting needs or respecting the balance of nature. This is not to say that measures to palliate the bad effects of the present economic system on nature should not be taken but these should be seen for what they are: mere palliatives and not steps towards an ecological society.

The only effective strategy for achieving a free democratic society in harmony with nature is to build up a movement which has the achievement of such a society as its sole aim. The Socialist Party is a political party, separate from all others, Left, Right or Centre. It stands for the sole aim of establishing a world social system based upon human need instead of private or state profit. 

Socialism does not yet exist. When it is established it must be on a worldwide basis, as an alternative to the outdated system of world capitalism. In a socialist society, there will be common ownership and democratic control of the earth by its inhabitants. No minority class will be in a position to dictate to the majority that production must be geared to profit. There will be no owners: everything will belong to everyone. Production will be solely for use, not for sale. The only questions society will need to ask about wealth production will be: what do people require, and can the needs be met? These questions will be answered on the basis of the resources available to meet such needs. Then, unlike now, modern technology and communications will be able to be used to their fullest extent. The basic socialist principle will be that people give according to their abilities and take according to their self- defined needs. Work will be on the basis of voluntary co-operation: the coercion of waged work will be abolished. There will be no buying or selling and money will not be necessary, in a society of common ownership and free access. For the first time ever the people of the world will have common possession of the planet earth.

Most workers feel insecure about their future; many families live below the official government poverty line; many old people live in dangerously cold conditions each winter and thousands die; millions of our fellow men and women are dying of starvation — tens of thousands of them each day. A society based on production for use will end those problems because the priority of socialist society will be the fullest possible satisfaction of needs. At the moment food is destroyed and farmers are subsidised not to produce more: yet many millions are malnourished. At the moment hospital queues are growing longer and people are dying of curable illnesses, yet it is not "economically viable" to provide decent health treatment for all. In a socialist society, nothing short of the best will be good enough for any human being. The capitalist jungle produces vicious, competitive ways of thinking and acting. But we humans are able to adapt our behaviour and there is no reason why our rational desire for comfort and human welfare should not allow us to co-operate. Even under capitalism people often obtain pleasure from doing a good turn for others; few people enjoy participating in the "civilised" warfare of the daily rat-race. Think how much better it would be if society was based on co-operation.

The Socialist Party has no leaders. It is a democratic organisation controlled by its members. It understands that socialism can only be established by a conscious majority of workers — that workers must liberate themselves and will not be liberated by leaders or parties. Socialism will not be brought about by a dedicated minority "smashing the state", as some left-wingers would have it. Nor do the activities of paid, professional politicians have anything to do with socialism — the experience of seven Labour governments has shown this. Once a majority of the working class understand and want socialism, they will take the necessary step to organise consciously for the democratic conquest of political power. There will be no socialism without a socialist majority. Many workers know that there is something wrong and want to change society. Some join reform campaigning groups in the hope that capitalism can be patched up, but such efforts are futile because you cannot run a system of class exploitation in the interests of the exploited majority. There are countless dedicated campaigns and good causes which many sincere people are caught up in, but there is only one solution to the problems of capitalism and that is to get rid of it and establish socialism. Before we can do that we need socialists; winning workers to that cause requires knowledge, principles and an enthusiasm for change. These qualities can be developed by anyone — and are essential for anyone who is serious about changing society. Capitalism is a system of waste, deprivation and frightening insecurity. You owe it to yourself to find out about the one movement which stands for the alternative.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Socialism - The Solidarity Economy

The class division of the capitalism we live under is not a supposition but a fact; and the Labour Party is not going to abolish the class system, its class division, and class privilege. What they offer instead to any who do not see through the subterfuge, is to blur the class lines by stopping labelling employers and investors as the capitalist class, and justify privilege by saying that it is committed to social mobility. This will be satisfactory to the capitalists and their hangers-on, political and managerial, but what is there in it for the workers?

Fellow workers, when will you realise that you need not go short of anything that you, collectively, are capable of producing? Between the present extremes of wage-slaves, who can afford little more than the bare necessities of a working life, and capitalists, whose wealth finds expression in idle and extravagant luxury, lies the possibility of all people having their reasonable needs satisfied. This entails the abolition of capitalism and the establishment of a system of production solely for use, needing no money and therefore producing no money problems of any sort. It is within your power to bring such a society into being if you will only think and act in your own class interest, instead of in that of a class of parasites. Your wages will not buy the things you need, and you ask for more in vain because your masters also want more at your expense. It will remain so while they have the whip hand of ownership of the means of living and until you decide to relieve them of it by establishing socialism. In politics, the division is between those who want the capitalist system and those who want a socialist society.

The  Socialist Party is an independent political organisation that has neither allegiance to nor sympathy with, any other political party or group in this country. Socialism is a wage-free, money-free, class-free society of production for use in which each member of society would contribute to the wealth of society in accordance with mental or physical abilities and take from the wealth of society in accordance to needs. It is a system of social organisation where the basic problems that we live with today under capitalism—problems like poverty, insecurity, slums, crime, and war - that arise naturally and inevitably out of the capitalist scheme of production for profit would cease to exist. Socialism offers us an escape from the evils that afflict our society. Capitalism has fulfilled its historic mission: it has opened the womb of social labour and developed the resources of society to a point where social distribution is possible now.

In order that  a change to socialism, may be brought about it is necessary that a majority of the working class, armed with the knowledge of what Socialism involves and entails, should use the means at their disposal, the power of the vote—which they now dissipate in trying to make capitalism work—to consciously institute the change. Socialism, by its very nature, requires the conscious and knowledgeable participation of the majority from the outset. It cannot be brought about by minorities or "action groups" leading the way, no more than it can be introduced gradually by tinkering with reforms of capitalism. It is too easy to achieve a following in crises. In the heat of class struggle immediate and fickle political alliances may be achieved but, in the long run, such a struggle allows for few real conversions and when the crisis recedes the real casualties will be the working class,  splintered and fraught with bitterness. Capitalism is discrimination both political and economic.

 Even when its full range of “civil rights” have been achieved by the working class its problems remain—each finding its victims mainly among the working class. Indeed those sincere and idealistic people who carry on the struggle for “civil rights” do a disservice to freedom when they channel the discontent of the working class into the safe stream of political reformism and assert, if only by implication, that working-class problems will be either solved or basically eased by this or that reform. Why should members of the working class involve themselves in a campaign against some of capitalism’s lesser evils, a campaign rendered more difficult by capitalism’s built-in bias for the creation of sectional interests?

We hold enough power now in the votes of the working class to banish capitalism and all its problems and establish a free society of production for use. What the working class lacks is an understanding of the alternative to capitalism, Socialism. This can only be achieved by a sustained campaign among our fellow members of the working class. The present social and economic system stands self-condemned. It is our sincere belief that a world without money, a WORLD COMMONWEALTH, will make this planet a better place for us to live on. There will be many of our fellow-workers who will refuse to accept it because of its very simplicity. "It's all very well" they will say, "but--." Others will say "It's a lovely dream, although--." Still, others will say "There are so many snags, the unforeseen, the unexpected--it's just impossible." To these and other critics we pose the simple question, "Is there any practical alternative solution to the world's problems which offers so much for so little for all humanity?" That there will be snags is not in dispute, but have there not been difficulties in the way of every human achievement, and of every inhuman achievement as well? And were not those problems overcome? Could we not by our combined efforts, and with this goal in view, overcome those difficulties that might arise in the development of the WORLD COMMONWEALTH?

Why struggle for the apple when the same effort can bring us the orchard?

No Christmas Joy

Action for Children said a decade of austerity “has caused almost unrecognisable levels of poverty” in Scotland’s communities and a shocking number of children will be deprived of basics such as warm winter clothing, fresh food or celebrations this Christmas.
The charity cited official government figures suggesting 100,000 Scottish children aged 10 or below are in families with low incomes and material deprivation.
Paul Carberry, Action for Children’s director for Scotland, revealed the charity’s frontline services have seen a 30% rise in families seeking financial advice in the last three years.
He said: “Every day our staff see first-hand the impossible choices that families living in practically Dickensian levels of poverty have to make. Our services are helping thousands of families keep their heads above water through budgeting, providing a meal or making sure they get help from foodbanks.”
Carberry said, “Inequalities in health and life-expectancy remain as prevalent and after a decade of Tory austerity, the dramatic rise in the use of foodbanks tells its own sad story,” he said. “While the Conservative government claims that the era of austerity is over, it is impossible to see the evidence of this. Their policy agenda has caused almost unrecognisable levels of poverty in communities the length and breadth of Scotland.”

Monday, December 24, 2018

The Future Belongs to the People

Capitalism is not an abstraction, it is a concrete force. To understand socialism, one must necessarily understand that under capitalism, society is divided into hostile classes: an owning capitalist class, whose members have ownership of the various parts of the instruments of wealth production. A working class, whose members possess nothing but their labour power, which is useless to the worker unless he can have access to the raw material and the machinery of production, which is owned by the capitalist class. This being so, the worker, in order to live, must sell his or her labour power to the capitalist.

 Our immediate demand is not to tinker and dicker about with the capitalist system. The social revolution is no longer an aspiration of the future; it is a fact our immediate demand. Through revolutionary parliamentary action the working class meets the capitalists in a  political class struggle, and parliamentary action actively promotes the general revolutionary struggle organising into one unified revolutionary movement all the latent powers of the proletariat for the conquest of power. The unity of all is an indispensable condition for the social revolution. Until the workers consciously and directly carry on their industrial and political struggles, confusion and compromise will persist. No dependence upon “leaders” nor concessions to employers; the workers must act independently, free from any taint of opportunism. State capitalism is not socialism and never can become socialism. State capitalism cannot substituted for the industrial self-management of the workers. 

Global capitalism has shown more and more clearly and obviously that it can reap its profits only while increasingly ruining the entire world while imposing on the people mounting hardship, and sweated wage-slavery. The capitalist world stands on the edge of the abyss of environmental destruction. What they really fear is that climate change will drive the masses once and for all to revolution,  the final uprising of the world proletariat. The efforts by world summits to create some kind of order amid growing climate chaos results, not in solutions but growing discontent and anger. World governments are incapable of guaranteeing that workers receive satisfying jobs, nutritious food, decent housing, and healthy surroundings but they display great capacity in organising war against the world.

We are revolutionists, not bomb throwers. We want to destroy the whole edifice of capitalist society, not the offices of some government ministry or corporation. We are not after the life of this banker or that industrialist. The road to revolution lies in the mass movement of the organised workers. We openly proclaim that the workers, who, being the vast majority of the population, have a right to establish their own rule. It plain and self-evident that it would be ridiculous and stupid for us even to attempt to achieve all of these in a secret, concealed manner without the knowledge and behind the backs of the millions of workers. Our aim, the enhancement of class-consciousness, can only be achieved openly. 

The executive of the capitalist class — the Government - grasp what the working class has not yet grasped, namely, that every large economic struggle between capital and labor becomes a political struggle — that is, a struggle for political power. It is, therefore, necessary to wage a political struggle against the whole system of capitalist state power, independent of the capitalist political parties. The workers must have their own class party representing the interests of the whole working class - a socialist party. Our aim, the liberation of the workers, the abolition of wage slavery, working-class control of industry, can only be accomplished if the great masses of the workers understand and agree with us. 

The essence of the Socialist Party’s case is to convince the majority of the workers of the truth of the ideas of socialism and a unified struggle against our common enemy, the capitalists. We appeal to all workers. Are you sufficiently blind to your class interests as to be able to ignore the call to action? With the increased determination of the ruling class to grind the workers down, we must offer more resistance. It is no longer possible to remain outside of the struggle. All are concerned and all must prepare to participate. We cannot sit back and wait for capitalism to collapse of its own accord. While the capitalist class dominates we will suffer more bitterly. Rally to the call for total emancipation! Let our battle cry be:
“Workers of the World, Unite! You have nothing to lose but your chains; you have a world to gain."

Sunday, December 23, 2018

A Clarion Call

The time has come for revolutionists to make a statement of their principles in order to interest their fellow-workers in the class struggle which is the fight for economic and social emancipation and the abolition of class rule. The idea of class-conscious resistance against capitalist exploitation has recently been gaining ground. The quickened industrial strife, the rise in the cost of living and the worsening of working conditions have fanned the discontent always existing within the masses.  Help raise the banner of the social revolution and to free ourselves from capitalism.

There is a need for angry denunciations of capitalism. But there is also a need for inspiration, for a vision of the socialist goal. With capitalism, the class war is never calm for very long. We are always being told by politicians and the media that the capitalist class are the “Captains of Industry” without whom none of us could survive for long. However, they always remain silent on the embarrassing question that if the working class who produce ALL the wealth are not entitled to it, how is the Capitalist Class which produces NOTHING, entitled to any? The persuasive powers of the capitalist media will always try to divide the workers; this is an old game. The strength of the workers lies in their solidarity and, looking to the time when they really wake up and organise politically with us for socialism, a solid, world-wide, socialist working class would hold every trump in the pack. Any improvements or gains the workers can obtain under capitalism they, as the sole producers, are more than entitled to. The Socialist Party maintain that the hardships of capitalism arise, directly out of the fact that the means of living are owned by the few, the many are therefore a propertyless-class who must work for wages in order to live. The antagonism between employers and workers will know no end while the wealth of the one is derived from the exploitation of the other.  THE VERY EXISTENCE OF WAGES-SYSTEM AT ALL shows the economic enslavement of the working class to be a fact.

There are two delusions that cloud the minds and paralyse the hands of those who mistakenly believe that capitalism is evolving into Socialism. One is that the so-called Welfare State has changed the old order at home. The second is that global capitalism has been humanised into giving up the naked struggle for raw materials, strategic bases, and markets. This is supposed to have been brought about by the United Nations an many other international organisations. A glance at the world should blow away this dangerous self-deception. Capitalism without tears is the reformist version of socialism. 

Nothing so much arouses the hatred of the capitalist apologists, nothing so much enrages them and exposes their deep-seated chauvinism, is the socialist denunciation of  "patriotism," and the "the national interest". Any lie, any falsification will do to corrupt, and distort the real meaning and significance of the defense of one’s country. As industrial and technological development grows by leaps and bounds, monopoly capitalism, rather than narrowing national differences and ameliorating oppression, exacerbates them both. It is no wonder that the world is literally divided into rival competing nations. It imparts a great urgency for the revolutionary cooperation and solidarity of all workers. Only socialism, which is based on democratic planning and the common ownership of the means of production, can purge the world of capitalist chaos, its unpredictable crises, and the reign of the arbitrary based on markets, profits and share prices.

We have to refute the idea that socialism can be established before the understanding and acceptance of it by the majority of the workers. Despite all the defeats, hardship and bloodshed experienced by workers in trying to oppose the powers of the State machine by force, groups advocating such methods which, if put in effect, could only lead to further defeats. Despite all the experience they have to draw upon, they appear to have learned nothing. The Socialist Party has since its foundation stressed the need for the working class to organise consciously and politically for the conquest of the powers of government in order that the machinery of government, including the armed forces, may be converted from an instrument of oppression into the agent of emancipation.  Gaining control of Parliament to introduce socialism is not parliamentary expediency. When we of the Socialist Party have contested an election we have always put the socialist case. We have always requested the working class not to vote for the socialist candidate unless they understand and accept socialism. Up to the present the mass of the workers have lacked political knowledge and have voted for personalities instead of principles. When things go wrong they blame the party leaders. Unfortunately, the workers have not a clear consciousness of their position as a class. The only possible hope of the working class is common ownership of the means of production.  Socialism is the economic security for the human family.

Xmas Fact of the Day

Almost 13,000 Scottish children were homeless on Christmas Day last year – and the numbers have soared in recent times. The situation has been branded “disgraceful”. 

Saturday, December 22, 2018

A History of the Dispossessed

An interesting review in the Guardian of Tom Devine’s history of the Highland Clearances.

“...Clan chiefs in the Highlands were happy enough to have large populations at various points, especially during the Napoleonic wars. Devine demolishes the idea that Highlanders were by nature more martial than people in other parts of the UK. It was simple economics: the clan chiefs behaved as military entrepreneurs, providing recruits at a price. When the war ended and demand for soldiers fell, they looked for alternative sources of income. Sheep farming was one, and that meant clearing the land. Devine is fair-minded, acknowledging landlords and chiefs who tried to devise ways to keep people, but they were in a small minority. Coercion was employed widely and systematically, he concludes.

What The Socialist Party Stands For

Most people believe that things would be better and life would be easier if only prices were reduced. This is a complete illusion, a failure to understand how capitalism works. To start with nobody actually wants all prices to be reduced: what they all want is that the prices of the things they buy should be reduced and the prices of the things they sell kept as they are or increased. This includes the workers, none of whom want to see a reduction of their wages —which also are prices, the prices at which they sell their mental and physical energies (their labour power) to the employers. 

The workers also want “full employment”. Here they come up against the cruel truth about capitalism. The employers have paid off hundreds of thousands of workers because at present selling prices and costs of production (including wages) they cannot make a profit. If they saw the prospect of a profit they would re-engage them to-morrow. From the employers’ point of view, the solution lies in raising their selling prices, or reducing costs, including wages, or cutting their total costs by getting the same amount of work out of fewer workers. All of this is subject to the overriding condition that the goods produced can be sold, and at the present time world markets are shrinking and competitors abroad are also trying to cut their costs.

Would any of the various forms of controls of prices and wages avoid depressions? The answer is that every possible variety has been tried and failed. It may be hard to accept but is nevertheless true that there are no ways to prevent capitalism from behaving in accordance with its own economic laws. 

Capitalism drives and presses us all to buy to the limits of our means, and offers devices by which those limits may be apparently stretched. But the pressure must never be yielded-to by an inch beyond the limits. The point of marketing, after all, is not that goods shall be distributed but that they are paid for. He who, lured and compelled by deferred terms or slashed deposits or simple needs, fails to meet his money commitment is as far as possible prevented for the future from buying on those terms again. Morally condemned as well, for violating the golden capitalist rule that everything has its price. Most people under capitalism exist in desperation, hair-breadths away from financial calamity. 

There is a socialist alternative to capitalism. The Socialist Party is not Utopian. We know that such a system is possible. Everything necessary is present save one thing: a desire on your part to have such a system.

The Socialist Party does not exist to campaign for petty reforms within the capitalist system. We are a tool by which the working class can use to gain control of the machinery of government. Once in control, the workers can use this machine to dispossess the capitalist class by declaring all the means of life the common property of all society. This will allow the workers to take over the industries and to keep production going in the ways they will have worked out beforehand.  As soon as the last capitalist has been dispossessed then classes will have ceased to exist. It will no longer make sense to speak of a working class and a capitalist class. Everybody, including the ex-capitalists, will have the same status as free producers. Not that things will immediately be startlingly different from what they were before. Production will have to be kept going. Although such jobs as checkout cashiers would disappear, engineers would remain engineers and, perhaps, railway workers, railway workers and so on.  The conversion of the means of life from the private property of an exploiting class to the common property of society will establish the framework within which can be solved once and for all the problems which the working class face today precisely because they are the working class. Even today we can see that the world is quite capable of producing enough for everybody if only production were arranged with this object in mind. Socialism will allow this to happen. Mankind will have control over the means of production to use them as society think fit. Under capitalism there can be no genuine planning as the market is the real king. Firms turn out goods and hope the market will absorb them. Socialist society will estimate what will be needed in advance and then produce it. Allowances for changes in taste and natural disasters can be made by producing more than is needed as a kind of guarantee. The abolition of private property and the conversion of the means of life into the common property of mankind will allow society to set about tackling questions of economic organisation in a scientific way. As soon as the capitalist system has been abolished money become redundant as soon as common ownership has been established.

Summer School

Summer School 2017

Summer School 2017  21st – 23rd July Fircroft College, Birmingham   These days, con...