Political parties are the product of the class struggle. In a class-free society which has rid itself of the remnants of class interests and ideology there will be no political parties. They will be unnecessary. But we have not reached the classless society. We are in the midst of a society torn asunder by class struggle, and the political parties of necessity express and reflect the interests of classes in conflict. The Socialist Party indicts capitalism at a barrier to the future evolution of civilisation and challenges its political spokesmen of whatever name or brand to defend it. The Socialist Party challenges the right of capitalism to exist and appeals to the world’s workers upon the lines of their class interests. In regards to the interests of the owners of production and distribution the Socialist Party have no concern, except to abolish that ownership.
Capitalism is founded upon production for profit. Socialism is postulated upon production for use. Whenever the owners of the world’s machinery of production and distribution fail for any reason to realise profit, it is in their power to cease production or distribution and the world’s workers may starve. Again, if the owners of the world’s machinery of production and distribution permit to be operated, they dictate the terms upon which the world’s workers may use that machinery. In other words, the only function of the modern capitalist is to own that which his brother man must use. The worker has naught but labour power, of hand or brain, to sell, and if he must sell labour power upon terms dictated by another, he or she is a slave. The war between capitalism and socialism resolves itself into the age-old question of human slavery. Until corporate wealth is supplanted by common wealth in the ownership of this nation, it will continue to write our laws and to enforce them or not, as best pleases its owners. The Socialist Party calls upon his brothers and sisters to join us in the overthrow of capitalism through capturing the powers of government and transferring the ownership of the world from capitalism to socialism. For the first time in the world’s history a subject class has it in its own power to accomplish its own emancipation without an appeal to brute force. This is the appeal which socialism makes to the workers of this nation and the world. It invites them to seize political power in the name of the working class, and to legally write their own economic emancipation proclamation.
Capitalism has survived beyond its time, and inflicted untold evil on the world, primarily because of the betrayal of the program and principles of socialism by those who pretended to speak in its name. The prolonged survival of capitalism, with all its frightful consequences, is due primarily to the influence of the reformist currents in the labour movement, falsely calling itself “socialist.” In every crisis, whenever the capitalists were no longer able to rule in their own name, they turned to the reformist labour parties to save their rule. That is the bitter fruit of opportunism and class collaboration policies.
We of the Socialist Party have nothing to do with these brands of so-called “socialism.” We are orthodox Marxists, because we know that Marxism is the only revolutionary socialism of the working class, and that is the only genuine socialism. History has demonstrated the spuriousness of every other brand. Marxism is a theory of social evolution which affirms that capitalism is obsolete and bankrupt, and that it must be, and inevitably will be, replaced by a higher form of social organisation which Marx and Engels called socialism, or communism.
Marxism teaches that socialism will not fall from the skies. Neither will it be gained by any appeals to the good will and compassion of the capitalist exploiters, as the Utopians, who preceded Marx, used to think, and as some people still seem to think. Socialism can be realised only as the outcome of the class struggle of the workers. The class struggle is the motive force of history. Politics has no serious meaning except as the expression of conflicting class interests. Marx and Engels asserted, and we repeat after them, that there is an irreconcilable conflict of class interests between the workers and their capitalist exploiters. The political programme of a socialist party must be determined accordingly. All the political actions and judgements of a workers party must always be directed against the capitalist class, and never be taken in collaboration with them. The class struggle is the central and governing principle of socialist politics. It is by carrying the class struggle to its necessary conclusion — that is, to the victory of the working class and the abolition of capitalism — that the socialist society will be realised. This is Marxism. There is no other way. And every attempt to find another way, by supporting the capitalists, by conciliating them, by collaborating with them, in peace or in war, has led not toward the socialist goal but to defeat and disaster for the workers.
The working class is on the verge of a great political awakening. All the more incumbent is it upon socialists to educate this working class in the true programme of socialism. And that is the programme of Marx and Engels. There can be no greater error than to miseducate or deceive this working class upon whom so much depends for the salvation of mankind. It is a crime to offer them a programme of reformist liberalism under the label of socialism. What hope can we ever have of socialism, or even of the preservation of the remnants of democracy, or even of the salvation of the human race, if we don’t resolutely oppose capitalism. take our position in this defence for the life and freedom and independence of mankind. And no one worthy of the name of socialist can do otherwise.