Saturday, November 16, 2019

Let us work towards the cooperative commonwealth

The Labour Party in action has been making state capitalism, not socialism.  It abandoned the class struggle and became a social reform movement, occupied by parliaments and legislation, a movement for government ownership and the extension of the functions of the State generally. The Labour Party struck compromise after compromise, made concession after concession to placate the ruling class and to secure the support of non-socialists. It relegated the fundamentals of socialism to fancy speeches of a faraway future. The Labour Party has become a fetter upon the revolutionary development of the working class.

The Socialist Party is a class party. It frankly admits that as a political organisation is but an expression of class interest. It exists for the sole purpose of representing the producers of wealth, that is to say, the working class. The Socialist Party, with its clear cut and understandable discussion of the class struggle is the political expression of the dispossessed class.  it alone holds out any hope of liberation from the rent, interest, and profit wage-slavery. Representing, as it does, the working and dispossessed class of the state, and having for its program the abolition of the exploitation of the workers through rent, interest, and profit, there can be no compromise between the Socialist Party and the political expression of the owning class of the State. It will be satisfied with nothing less than the common ownership and democratic management of the means and instruments of production and distribution.

 Our fellow-workers may well be at the present time reactionary or apathetic, but if they cannot be won for socialism then socialism itself is impossible. It is for us to do all in our power to win them; to place no obstacles in their way; to sympathise with and support them even in the pettiest struggles in which the class war involves them; until they recognise that their work is futile unless its object is emancipation. The Socialist Party must become and maintain itself as the independent and autonomous representative of revolutionary socialism against all contenders. For this reason may be seen the necessity for rejecting any form of alliance with other parties, nor the acceptance of any reform programme, other than that of revolutionary socialism

Our goal is the abolition of poverty by the establishment of a socialist cooperative commonwealth. Socialism is a theory of a system of human society, based on the common ownership of the means of production and the carrying on of the work of production by all for the benefit of all. In other words, socialism means that the land, the railways, the shipping, the mines, the factories, and all such things as are necessary for the production of the necessaries and comforts of life should be common property, just as our public roads, our public parks and our public libraries are public property today, so that all these things should be used by the whole people to produce the goods that the whole of the people require.

Workers when they become socialists do not become different from the rest of the working class. Their change in thought is an evidence of gradual transformation in the working-class movement. They remain of the workers, struggling with them for emancipation. The progress of socialism is governed by the advance of socialist thought among the workers. The Socialist Party of to-day cannot bring socialism. The co-operative commonwealth will be inaugurated by the mass action of the workers. Steadily the workers move along the road to socialism. Circumstances compel them to take that path. Economic laws operate whether they are known or not, but if we understand their operation we can bend them to our purpose and assist society along the course it tends to travel. The Socialist Party must bring this knowledge to our fellow-workers.

The necessity for political action is taken for granted. Whenever the power of the governing class asserts itself, then the workers must fight. The State is the political expression of the dominant class, and since that dominant class uses the machinery of the State—law, justice, coercion—to maintain its own privileges and to impose its will upon the toiling masses, the workers contest their claims by political action. The reason why some socialists participate in the every-day struggle in the industrial field, and yet decline to take a part in political action, is that they regard industrial action as more important than political. That belief is without justification.

Let us hasten to usher in the era of peace and plenty. Wage-slavery will then be but a horrible memory.

Peace between the peoples! War against the exploiters!

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