There is war. This is the class war. It is waged by one class, the oppressors, against another class, the oppressed. In this war, the State is always and invariably on the side of the oppressors. Some of its representatives may try to achieve the ends of capital by cajoling and wheedling. But they always keep the big stick ready. The State — that is the big stick of the owners of wealth, the big stick of the big corporations. Anyone who tries to persuade you that the State is your friend, your defender, that the State is impartial and only regulatory is deceiving you. They will tell you that the State is there to protect both industry and labor. But under capitalism you cannot protect both “industry” (meaning the capitalists) and labour (meaning the workers)! When you protect “industry” you give it freedom to exploit “labour”. When you protect labour you make it possible for labour to get more out of industry. Oil and water cannot be mixed. In reality the State is a more efficient instrument at the service of big capital. Under the pretext of regulating industry it has made it possible for the big corporations to gain additional power at the expense of the worker. Socialists are the only group in present day society who recognize the basic nature of the capitalist State. The forms change, differing according to time and place but the essence remains. The essence of the capitalist State is service in the employ of capitalism for the preservation of capitalism.
The liberals and progressives are unhappy with the functions of the State. They point out its short-comings. They do not close their eyes to the fact that there is inequality. They know the war-breeding nature of the capitalist State. But what do they propose to do? They propose a little tinkering here and there. But do nothing about the very nature of the State as a bulwark of private property and capitalist exploitation. Improvements to electoral laws no matter how important for the working class, does not touch upon the fundamentals of the capitalist State, namely, its being an instrument of power in the hands of the big owners of wealth. Reform the State and you have made it more flexible, more capable of adapting itself to circumstances; you have made it a better instrument of oppression. Progressives are not opposed to the capitalist system even in words. They propose to support such representatives of the Republican and Democratic parties as are willing to introduce reforms on behalf of labour. The Republican and Democratic parties are the parties of big capital. They may fight one another at the elections for the control of the administration, but they differ little from each other and they do the bidding of the corporations. Their campaign funds are filled from the coffers of the industrialists and bankers. To expect these parties will help the workers achieve their end is to expect that the leopard will change its spots.
The World Socialist Party, on the other hand, is opposed to the capitalist system, denouncing the evils of the capitalist system. We do not propose to “improve” capitalism by the power of prayer. The Socialist Party say there is a need of a revolution to achieve the cooperative commonwealth. In a class-free society there is nobody to suppress or keep in check. Highly cultured men and women, bred in a spirit of collective life, masters of their own society, do not need the big stick of the State. They manage their affairs without the State force. Mankind is free, forever.