Saturday, May 02, 2020

The Socialist Party's Answer

The work of the Socialist Party is modest indeed. It is to construct the only thing of worth to the cause of socialism — a body of intelligent working-class opinion. Our aim is toward socialism, then the path of our advance lies in "Talk Socialism," until working men and women cease to content themselves with any amelioration of capitalist conditions, and organise for their twofold task: to destroy the system that binds them to toil, and attain to freedom by building anew. The solution to this is in the hands of the working class. All that is needed is the political knowledge to apply it. Because capitalism does not change fundamentally. neither does the case for its abolition. We know why socialism must be established, and how, and who will do it. The one remaining question is: When?

Capital is a means of robbery, whether in the hands of the few or the many, and being so must be abolished. Robbery and slavery are the basis of present-day society, and that basis must be ended in the interests of toiling humanity. Capital is unpaid labour, therefore robbery and slavery are the terms used to denote the conditions of human beings who are compelled to submit to being robbed, bludgeoned, and butchered through their ignorance of the factors operating within the capitalist system and the means necessary to remove them. This ignorance is not dispelled by so-called socialist organisations preaching capitalist economics. If progressives believe that capital will exist under socialism—which they claim— and if capital can only arise through exploitation, then, clearly exploitation will continue! To take it a little further, if capital is taken out of the hands of the few and placed in the hands of the whole of the people as in cooperatives, then the people, collectively, are going to exploit or rob themselves collectively! The absurdity can be seen. Workers are not not the owners of capital. That is the role exclusively of the capitalist class, who exploit the workers, who assert their privileged standing through capitalism's laws and its coercive state machine but who are prepared to break those laws if they see it as being to their immediate advantage to do so. What we have is capitalism and socialists are doing their best to persuade the working class to get rid of it and replace it with a worldwide system of common ownership. 

Capitalism, by its very nature, cannot run smoothly. It is teetering on the edge of another war. The EU are at loggerheads with one another and with America. The wars in Syria, Libya and Afghanistan are helped along by outside nations anxious to sell their latest war equipment and to test its efficiency in the same way as during the Spanish Civil War. States not at war view battlefields as opportunities for making a profit.

The Socialist Party puts forward the case for a society of free access, a society without buying and selling, money and wages, employers and employees. This is what socialism really means. Over the years its meaning has been changed and distorted in so many different ways that in most people's minds socialism now means either the kind of dictatorial society that existed in Russia, or state intervention in industry and housing, or the promises of social reform, full employment, higher wages, etc. that come from the Labour Party. But socialism means none of these things. It means a society in which everything is owned in common and in which people democratically take all the decisions that affect their lives. The situation at present is that these decisions are left to a government which, whether right or left wing, can only act in the interests of the profit system and of that small minority of the population who own most of the wealth and who, through the profits they make, don't need to work for a wage in order to live.

Most of the problems, whether local or wider, which most of us experience (poor public services, not enough money, dissatisfaction at work, anxiety and stress, etc.) derive from the fact that we have extremely little control over our own lives. We are made unable to exercise control both because our personal resources are limited (lack of money) and because important social decisions are out of our hands (lack of democracy).

The Socialist Party answer to this is for people not to place  trust in leaders but to take action themselves, peacefully and democratically, to bring about a free access society without the use of money or any such thing where we all take freely what we need from the abundance of goods and services which with modern technology we are capable of producing. A society where we organise things for the benefit of all not in the interests of a wealthy few. This is an entirely practical proposition once the majority of people want it. The Socialist Party exists to help spread the idea and to encourage people to establish a society which will put it into practice.

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