Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Why the Socialist Party?

Capitalism has no policy to solve the crisis of climate change. Within the conditions of capitalist chaos there is no harmonious solution possible. Capitalism can only seek to prolong its life by throwing the burdens of the crisis on to the working people.

Many workers placed their hopes in the Labour Party to bring the solution to their plight and misery. The Labour Party spoke of social change and promised to realise it. Swift disillusionment has followed. Discontent is widespread. The condition of the workers has grown worse; there is no sign of any advance to an egalitarian society. The Labour Government has acted as a representative of capitalism against the workers. Why is this? The failure of the Labour Party is not an accident, not a personal question of this or that particular leader, of this or that particular policy. It is a whole system of politics — the whole system of politics of the supposed “alternative” to revolution that stands exposed in the record of the Labour Governments. They profess the aim of socialism as an ideal for the future yet at the same time they attack the necessity of the social revolution, which alone can realise socialism. They hope to reach their aim without the necessity of overthrowing capitalism, on a basis of co-operation with capitalism, on a basis of winning for the workers gradual gains within capitalism. Therefore their practice is based on capitalism, on acceptance of the capitalist State, on administering capitalism and helping to build up capitalism. This they term  practical and pragmatic policy for the workers to follow. Reformism was able to win small gains for the workers, But capitalism to-day is no longer willing to grant concessions to the workers, on the contrary, through austerity programmes it has cut concessions, made new attacks on  living standards and working conditions.

Millions of workers are turning from the Labour Party and seeking a new direction. What path should they seek? The only way forward is the struggle against capitalism, the path that leads to the social revolution, to socialism. The so-called “left” proclaim their “opposition” to the Labour Party policy and advocate supposed “socialist” alternatives. But on examination their policy will be found to be only the old policy of the Labour Party dressed up in new clothes. Although they speak roundly of “socialism” against “capitalism,” they do not propose the overthrow of capitalism, the working-class conquest of power, the expropriation of the capitalists; their basis is still the same basis of capitalism, of capitalist democracy, of the capitalist State, as with the Labour Party; and therefore the outcome can only be the same. Their only proposals are for the reorganisation of capitalism. But in fact, capitalist reorganisation in the  can only, if the capitalist burdens are maintained, be at the expense of the workers. The question of socialism or the common ownership of industry is explicitly stated to be placed on one side.

It is clear that we shall have to direct production to meet the needs of all. We shall have abolished the rule of class distinctions and privilege, and establish real democracy and freedom for all, the free and equal workers’ society, in order to bring the fruits of the revolution to all, in order to end the present reign of inequality — inequality in respect of every elementary human need of food, clothing, shelter, conditions of labour health, education, etc., and bring the material conditions of real freedom and development to all.

We are not speaking of some utopia, but only of what is immediately and practically realisable so soon as the workers are united to overthrow capitalism and enforce their will. It is  evident that, on the most immediate practical basis, and leaving out of account the enormous increase in production which will result from universal socially organised production, the workers’ rule will be able immediately, so soon as the change is achieved, to realise the most enormous advances in standards, hours, conditions of labour and social conditions. We shall immediately banish poverty.

The choice before the workers is civilisation collapse or the socialist revolution, leading to new life for all. That the workers can by the method of social revolution, and by the method of social revolution alone can rapidly reconstruct and extend production and win prosperity for all. The workers, if they depend on capitalism, can only go down with it.

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