Profit and interest, only come from the exploitation of wage labour. The capitalist needs efficiency in his wage-slaves for the production of profit, just as the farmer needs well-fed cattle. Capitalists cannot by legislation solve the fundamental conflicts between contending classes. They cannot permanently make the working class content with the capitalist economic system. We do not underestimate the enormous obstacles in the path to socialism. The greatest obstacle is to get the workers to understand and want socialism. The Socialist Party alone has seen that there must be socialists before there can be socialism and acts on it. The great mass of workers do not understand socialism and do not want it. Until there are sufficient socialists, organised in a socialist party, there will not be socialism. The way to increase the number of socialists is to support the Socialist Party. Our method, and the only effective method of building up a genuine socialist party, is to base our organisation on socialist knowledge, and the clear grasp of socialist principles by each member. Socialism, as a system of society, cannot be carried on, nor can power for socialism be obtained without first securing a socialist majority. The Socialist Party takes its stand on the policy so clearly stated and defended by Marx and Engels that the working class must, as a preliminary to the establishment of socialism, gain control of the political machinery of society. They can do this in the advanced capitalist countries through political organisation and the use of the vote; the working class possessing, as they do, the overwhelming majority of votes. The Socialist Party is not prepared to join with parties whose aims and methods are contrary to the interests of the working class and a hindrance to the achievement of Socialism.
The object of the capitalist class, in general, is to exploit the working class. When capitalist states quarrel, the object of the quarrel and the prize for the victor is a re-division of the wealth of which the working-class is, under capitalism, normally robbed. Armaments exist to give the capitalists security. The position of the workers is as secure or insecure in defeat as in victory. The workers have nothing to defend. National defence is a purely capitalist question. Not national defence, but the overthrow of capitalism is the object of the Socialist Party. Socialism alone is worth struggling for. That is the message of the socialist to all the working-class dupes of the closely-allied superstitions of religious, racial and patriotic rivalries. The cost of war casts a shadow over civilians as well as combatants. Death and mutilation, the loss of health, the breaking up of homes and the frustration of hopes and plans. Under the cloak of patriotism and national defence, the blessing of the press and the politicians, workers are thrown against each other in battle. They do not know that they are fighting to defend or to extend the interests of the class that lives by robbing them of the fruits of their labour. For the working people in all countries every death, every wound and every hour of suffering is in vain. War solves no working-class problems, and from a working-class point of view, is a crime.
No "remedy" for unemployment is worth considering which leaves untouched the private ownership and control of the means of production and distribution, and leaves the workers dependent for their livelihood on the possibility of goods being sold at a price profitable to their masters. The Socialist remedy is the common ownership of the means and instruments for producing wealth, and the production of goods for the use of the members of society in place of production for sale and private profit. There is no other solution of the unemployment problem. The Socialist Party, right from its foundation, attacked the policy of political bargaining. We held then, as we do now, that a Socialist Party must be independent and must be based on the demand for socialism, not on a programme of reforms to be obtained by cooperating with capitalist parties.
If the workers would turn their attention to socialism, the whole form of the struggle with the employing class would change. So far, despite heroic fights by trade unionists against wage reductions, the employing class have never had reason to fear that the working class were turning away from their belief in the capitalist system. But when a considerable body of workers learn the lesson that no reformist policy or party is of any use, and begin to understand and support the demand for socialism, we can confidently anticipate a less aggressive and less cheese-paring attitude on the part of employers. They will, when that time comes, be anxious to surrender part of their wealth in the hope that by so doing they may stave off the day when they must yield it all. We shall then be well on the way to the acquisition by society of the means of wealth production now privately owned by a privileged class.
The Socialist Party tells the workers that socialism is the only remedy for their troubles. There is no time which is not a proper time for them to work for socialism. This is true whatever the excuse offered by defenders of capitalism. Whether the crisis is a war crisis or a trade crisis, the Socialist Party will continue to promote socialism. Workers who understand the working of capitalism will see through the excuses to the capitalist interests behind them and will help us with our task.