The notion that a socialist party simply needs to manage the media better is a nonsensical proposition. The capitalist media is not there to be won over, it can't just be "managed" into giving socialists a fair and balanced hearing. Journalists and TV current affairs presenters are subjected to a 'filtering' process as they rise up the career ladder. They are selected for positions of ever-increasing responsibility only if they have demonstrated to the media owners, higher management and their superiors that they can be trusted to say and do the 'right' things; even to think the 'right thoughts'. As Chomsky explained to Andrew Marr, then the young political editor of the Independent and now with the BBC:
'I'm sure you believe everything you're saying. But what I'm saying is that if you believed something different, you wouldn't be sitting where you're sitting.'
You can't make concessions and compromise with interests who want nothing but your total destruction. We are required to make our own case for socialism with information and education the best way we can with our limited resources.
The Socialist Party does not say that the trends of capitalism cannot be hastened or slowed down by legislative measures, but he does emphatically declare that such modifications are slight and that the general problems of the system can neither be overcome nor circumvented by such methods. One thing can certainly be said of future developments—that, whatever they may bring, the workers will continue to get the worst of the bargain until they cease to be deluded by the red herring of reform, by attempts to patch up capitalism, and until they unite for the only programme that can solve their problems—the abolition of the whole rotten system itself and the establishment of socialism. Though there is abundant discontent, there is in actual fact a lack of class-consciousness and an abundance of the most confused thinking amongst the workers. This, to the Socialist Party, is lamentable— but understandable. Economic developments are producing conditions that make the case for socialism more strikingly clear than was possible in the past era of rampant individualism, and collectivist ideas of sorts are floating around and being discussed in the most unlikely circles. But in the building up of a sound and powerful party of socialists, for which The Socialist Party affords a nucleus, a very great amount of work remains to be done and must be done. If you are interested, fellow worker, study our principles. If you are convinced, join our ranks.
There is and can be, only one revolutionary measure and that is the dispossession of the capitalist class of their ownership and control of the means of production and distribution and the transfer of these to society as a whole. That act once accomplished, all the rest of the adjustments necessary after the abolition of capitalism will fall into line. But if that act is not accomplished then there can be no question of socialism. The basis of present-day society is the ownership of the means of living by the capitalists as a class. It is the class that holds the power; not a number of isolated individuals acting independently of one another. Capitalism survives as a system because it is organised. Many on the left-wing encourage the workers to fritter away their energies in sectional conflicts, thus reducing the ability of the workers to organise as a class for the establishment of a new system. The workers cannot gain possession of the factories by walking out of them, nor even by staying in, so long as the capitalist class controls the coercive forces of the State. The class struggle, therefore, necessarily assumes a political form. In the words of the declaration of principles of the Socialist Party:
"The working class, must organise consciously and politically for the conquest of the powers of government, national and local, in order that .this machinery, including these forces, may be converted from an instrument of oppression into the agent of emancipation.’’
The policy consistently advocated by the Socialist Party is the policy of those who understand their environment and adapt their efforts intelligently to it. Nothing finally produces greater apathy than the expectation of the impossible; yet these are the characteristic attitudes prevalent on the Left, whose leaders have affected, in the past, such hearty contempt for patient study and organisation. Sincerity without knowledge or intelligence is useless to any cause.