Monday, May 17, 2021

Capitalism is the workers’ real enemy.

 Whining about the "poverty” of "debt-ridden” America or  Britain cuts no ice with the World Socialist Movement. The capitalists of of the world are not poor. Despite the pandemic they are still rich enough to allow their providers, the working-class, a higher standard of living and still have plenty left over for themselves. The swindle behind the "we-are-poor-now” story is known to every business CEO. The capitalist class as a whole form themselves into a limited company known as the State. Thus they can incur debts collectively whilst as individuals they remain the owners of vast wealth.

Politicians have used the natural desires of working people for a better life to win power for themselves and by their ghastly failure have destroyed the aspirations of millions who might have become the builders of world socialism. Instead, cynicism and frustration dominate the working class political scene. For this crime the parties responsible must eventually suffer. Already, all the signs point to further and more convulsive crises, political and economic. Only socialism can save the world from more devastating catastrophes 

The position of the workers is unchanged. Denied access to the means of wealth production, except by the consent of the capitalist owners of those means of production, the workers suffer the misery arising from their enslaved condition. It is urgent that workers should not allow themselves to be ensnared in a trap that there seems no doubt will be spread by crafty rulers experienced in the art of converting mass emotion to their own uses. Capitalist ownership of the means of production is the real source of the workers’ poverty and misery. Capitalism, by whatever name it is called, is the workers’ real enemy.

Capitalism is not only the workers’ real enemy, but its periodical financial and industrial convulsions show how unstable it is and how incapable of running smoothly.  As socialists, we are bent on discovering by what means the position of our class may be advanced. Our class consists of all those people who, not being owners of property, must sell their mental and physical energies to those who are owners. This proposal must stand the general test—Is it or is it not one which is useful to the workers?

We are socialists, and do not ask you to seek salvation by reviving capitalist trade. We tell you there is only one solution to your problems. We say the alternative is SOCIALISM. This is the only remedy for present or future working-class ills, and one that can be applied as soon as the workers choose to apply it.

The common ownership and democratic control of the means and instruments for producing and distributing wealth, by, and in the interest of, the whole community.

 That is socialism, and anything based differently is not socialism. Government control or nationalisation of industries under the existing system does not comply with the demand of socialists, nothing short of the complete overthrow of the capitalist system and the establishment of the co-operative commonwealth will suffice. Never before in the whole history of the human race was knowledge so accessible to the multitude. What is it binds us in our present position? Fear? We have nothing to fear, nothing to lose but our chains. We have the weapon with which to free ourselves from economic serfdom and intellectual repression in the Socialist Party.

Myths on race, of racial differences and superiorities, are  rife. In its usual everyday acceptance the term “race" is loosely used to equate with “nationality." There is a widespread belief that there are inherent and immutable differences between “races" (meaning nationalities), and that one’s own is vastly preferable to all others. Such beliefs are dangerously reactionary. They very conveniently serve to conceal, to justify, or to help intensify the exploitation of one section of the world by another. The theory of inherent differences of temperament or outlook between racial groups is entirely baseless. It springs not from fact but from national prejudice. Nationalism exists and thrives on the entirely false belief that non-existent differences are innate and unalterable. Class distinctions are stronger and more apparent than national or racial ones. There is an infinitely greater resemblance between two workers of different race, than between a worker and a capitalist of the same race.

Race myths springs from and foments social prejudice. They assist political domination, that is, economic exploitation; they assist capitalist sections by encouraging jingoism and war-mongering; above all, they are invaluable in obscuring the class issue. By setting up barriers of superstition and prejudice among them, it prevents the workers all over the world from realising their common cause. The world is divided into two opposing classes, buyers and sellers of labour power, whose interests cannot be reconciled under capitalism. But the race case makes it appear that there are numbers of “races" (corresponding with political divisions) whose characteristics and whose interests are fundamentally and inherently at variance. That is mere nonsense; but the capitalists would rather the workers' heads were filled with such nonsense than with sense about the class struggle and how to end it. This particular nonsense is a useful spur to patriotism when national sections of the capitalist class come into conflict, and want the workers to do the fighting for them.

There is only one way to end all this confusion of thought, this muddle of prejudices and it is to remove the ignorance on which the exploiters trade upon. Do not allow the real nature of present-day society to be shrouded by these veils of misconception and falsification. By clearing away such false beliefs, we lay bare the class issue which is the crux of the world problem. The workers must understand, plainly and unequivocally, that society to-day stands on a basis, not of nationality or of race, but of private ownership of the means of life; that it is organised not for “progress" or for "enlightenment," but simply and only for profit.

 The sooner the workers grasp these simple facts and their implications, the sooner will they sweep away the present organisation of society and all its superstitions, and bring into being a state of things organised to produce not for profit but only for use. Not until the means of production are collectively owned and controlled by the whole community can class distinctions vanish. Not until then will the idea of race be wholly freed from these false associations that are bound to cling to it in capitalist society, which depends for its very existence on the exploitation of man by man.

No comments: