The Socialist Party, being the political expression of the working class, stands for the overthrow of the existing capitalist system and for the reorgansation of society into a social democracy. This will mean an end to the private ownership of the means of life; it will mean an end to wage-slavery; it will mean an end to the army of the unemployed; it will mean an end to the poverty. It will mean the beginning of a new era of civilisation; the dawn of happier days. It will mean that this Earth is for those who inhabit it and wealth for those who produce it. It will mean society organised upon a co-operative basis, collectively owning the sources of wealth and the means of production, and producing wealth to satisfy human wants and not to gorge the greed of the privileged few. The Socialist Party is the party of the dispossessed and the impoverished. It stands for a world-wide democracy, for the freedom of every man, woman, and child, and for all mankind. It realizes that education, knowledge and the powers these confer are the only means of achieving a decided and permanent victory for the people. The core idea of socialism is that we, working people, deserve better. We have a right to the wealth our labour creates. We demand freedom from a small group of the super wealthy live like modern-day kings. This is the ugly face of capitalism. We want a society based on common ownership, production for use expressing equality, solidarity, and freedom, not fear and hate.
What about the capitalist – the good, kind, benevolent employer, to whom the expropriated and exploited worker goes cringing for the privilege of being permitted to work? What is his place in our social system? It is to extort another huge slice out of the worker, by buying his or her services as much beneath their true value as he can possibly procure them, and selling them as much above their worth as the circumstances will permit him to extort.
Capitalism has solved the problem of production. The system of capitalism, which already exists over much of the world and is rapidly capturing the rest, has given birth to sufficient productive potential to satisfy all the reasonable demands of mankind. All that now remains to be done is to bring in a system in which these potentialities can be realised to the full. For this is where capitalism has failed.
The Socialist position is as follows: In society to-day there are two classes – the propertyless or working class and an idle class who own and control the means of producing and distributing wealth. The latter use this ownership and control to force the workers to work for them, and to submit to being robbed of the greater part of the produce of their labour. The master class, being but a tenth of the population can only keep possession of the means of production by their control (through the political machinery) of the armed forces. While the master class has that control it is hopeless for the workers to attempt to seize capitalist property. Let the workers learn their position in society and unite to obtain control of the machinery of government, including the armed forces. Such action will make it possible for them to take possession of the means of production and use them for the benefit of all. In that way alone will they be able to usher in a system of society wherein universal unity of interests will abolish all war, be it between classes or nations.
The working class has many things to remember concerning the history of political parties. The fact stands out clearly that all political factions have used every agency at their command to keep the working class in subjection. The race for profits by our masters is a race that means misery, starvation and premature death for its victims the workers. Therefore our policy must be one of unceasing hostility to capitalism, whether “reformed” or not. Unceasing hostility to all is upholders, whatever they label themselves. We cannot ever ally ourselves with that class whose hands are stained with the blood of our fellow toilers. We can never forget that in the struggle between the workers and the capitalists there can be no truce, no quarter, no compromise!
It is for us to point again the lesson that the armed forces of the State—nay, the whole machinery of the State—exists but to conserve the interests of the ruling class. The capture of this State machinery must then be the object of our endeavours. Vengeance and our emancipation are one and the same thing, and must both be sought on the political field. As the working class begins to understand the position they occupy in modern society; as they begin to take a hand in settling affairs of social importance, they will make many blunders and mistakes. In the main, however, these will be easily recognised and corrected. But the biggest danger that confronts them—the biggest mistake they can make—is to place power in the hands of “leaders” under any pretext whatever. It is at once putting those “leaders” in a position to bargain with the master class for the purpose of selling out the workers. It allows the master class to retain control of the political machinery which is the essential instrument for governing Society. All the other blunders and mistakes the workers may make will be as dust in the balance compared with this one, and not until they realise this fact will they be on the road to socialism.