SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 1934 QUESTION BOX II. BRONX Question: The draft programatic thesis of the presents as a perspective the possibility that the working class movement in the United States may skip, or very rapidly pass through, the reformist stage. What is the basis for this? In this connection, would you explain the reason for the differences between the working claSs movement here and in Europe?
Answer: In Europe, at the time of the advent of capitalism as the dominating mode of production and the transformation of the state power to this mode, practically all the land was private property, to which, primarily, is due the sharpness to which class lines were drawn. only exceptional proletarians could climb out of their class inside the State boun darles. The surplus proletariat or the landless sons of farmers who sought a way out could find it only by migrating to the colonies of America, Africa, or Australia, where, by opening new land, mines, etc, the class relationships were renewed. In the mother countries, however, the class consciousness brought forth by the relative rigidity of class lines resulted in comparatively large organizations of the proletariat.
In the United States all this colonization. be cause of free land, took place within the state boun daries so that class relationships were in a constant flux, blurring the class lines and resulting in small working class organizations.
This entire development. occurred while capitalism was in its progressive stage, and at a time when it had the possibilities, with super profits extracted from the colonies. to bribe certain sections of the proletariat, to create an aristocracy of labor, upon which reformism bases itself and by means of whom reformism seized both the large European (we exclude Russian) and the small American labor move meats.
However, times have changed. The material basis for the blurring of class lines, free land, in the United States no longer exists. The number of farms in this country which increased from 1, 449, 0fl3 in 1850 to 6, 448, 343 in 1920 declined to 6, 288, 648 by 1930. In 1910. 12, 388, 309 people, 32. of the total.
were employed in agriculture. By 1930, these had declined to 10, 471, 998 or 21. of the total. The ending of this material basis for the political back wardness of the American worker, corresponds in point of time with the decline of capitalism inter nationally, and, with this decline, the end of the conditions which make reformism possible. as European experience so eloquently testifies.
This is the combined development to which we refer and which makes possible not only a rapid tempo of working class development in the country but a skipping over of the stage through which the European workers have gone.
To a great extent, of course, this will depend upon the ability of the new party to influence events in :1 revolutionary direction.
o C NEW YORK Question: Certain Socialists, with whom discuss, claim that the Austrian experience is proof that armed insurrection against the capitalist state is futile. How would you answer this?
Answer: One thing the Austrian experience does prove: To attempt almost any struggle, not to speak of armed insurrection, against capitalism, under the paralyzing leadership of the Social Democracy, is futile.
Actually, the relationship of forces favored the Austrian workers according to both Deutsch and Otto Bauer. Even if the reaction could count as reliable all the troops, police, Helmwehr, etc. it could muster no more than 60, 000 men as against 80, 000 Schutzbuilders. Two thirds of Vienna, 90 of the workers (i. e. the control of production, transport and communication. and 40 of the total Austrian population were Social Democratic, to which must be added the organs of local government of which the party disposed. Had the Austrian Marxist leadership wanted it, the prowling of arms would have been a comparatively simple matter under the circumstances.
Why was this immeasurably superior force defeated? It was betrayed. The enemy was systematically presented with the best political and material positions by the leadership of the Social Democracy, who placed their faith not in the masses but in Dollfuss and Miklas.
One could go into great detail to prove our point but let the following statement of Otto Bauer himself sutiice: We could have answered that (the dispersion of the Parliament in 1933. Ed. on March 15 with the general strike. Never were the conditions for a successful strike so favorable as on that day. The working unsses awaited the signal to fight. The military organization of the government was far weaker than in February 1934. At that time we alight have triumphed. See the Review of Otto Baner and Deutsch pamphlets in the New International of July 1984 for further facts. The Austrian experience also proved, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that it is impossible for the proletariat to come to power by parliamentary means.
Fascism will strangle the proletariat before it re(elves 51 of the votes. Armed insurrection is not only necessary but inevitable, if the working class is not to go down in defeat. The Austrian events showed that not the armed insurrection without which there can be no hope of the workers taking power but the manly mouthed, treacherous leadership of Austro Marxism was futile and disastrous for the proletariat.
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The Independent. Labor Party of Great Britain has issued a call to all working class political parties and organizations for an international united front against Fascism and war. An invitation to this conference was sent, among the others, to the International Secretariat of the Interna»
tional Communist League. The reply to this appeal by the French.
Communist Party. proposing our exclusion as a condition for its participation, is the subject of the letter of the International Secretariat Ed.
a o.
REPLY TO THE LLJ.
Copy to All Working Class Organizations Dem Comrades.
The French Communist Party in its letter of. 1934 has given its consent to your proposal to convene an International Conference to constitute a united front of struggle on an international scale on the condition that the organizations called Trotskyists be excluded.
This reservation cannot but cause astonishment: on the one hand the sections of the Comintern declare on every opportunity that the or»
ganlzations of Bolshevik Leninists. Trotskyist are an insignificant quantity On the other band the most important section of the Comlntern conditions its particha tion in :1 world congress on the admission or non admission of in iiuitesmal groups Every conscious worker will say to himself: Perhaps their quantity is not so neglibible.
The reasons that the French section of the Comlntcrn give for their attitude is that we, Bolshevik Len»
inists, are open enemies of the stupefying reason! The Comlntern is in united front nego tiations with the leaders of the Second International, Vanderveldc and Fritz Adler, and the French Stalinists run nftor Jouhaux for a united front. Vandervelde was always the opponent of the October Revolution, the official attorney of the terrorists who had attempted to assassinate Lenin and Trotsky.
Jouhaux (loos not see any principle difference between the Soviet gov»
crnment and the capitalist governments. In practice he is always ready to support his government against the workers state. All those facts do not hinder the Stalinists in the least since their last turn and until a new order from making or seeking a united front with these open enemies of the Soviet dictatorship. We see that the only argument advanced by the Stallnists against sitting at the same table with the Bolshevik Len.
inieis does not hold water. But to this must be added, and this is the decisive point, that far from being open or concealed enemies of the Soviet state, we are and will remain its most decisive defenders. Our international organization and our sections have always eliminated from its ranks those elements who did not; know how to discern under the nationally limited and conservative bureaucracy the basis of a workers state, which aided by the international revolution, can and should develop Victoriously towards the building of the socialist society.
Our real crime and this is the only one is that we always dis tinguish and teach the workers to distinguish between the bureaucracy, which, thriving on the defeats of the world proletariat, has be»
come an enormous tumor on the body of the Soviet state, and the workers state itself.
The bureaucracy of the Comintern not only has never wanted to admit this distinction, but has never permitted any of its members at any time during the last eleven years to raise the least supposition that the Soviet bureaucracy could have been able to commit any mlstakes. Our crime consists also in that, always remaining defenders of the as a vorkers state, we did not share the Stalinist dogma of the infallibllity oi the Soviet bureaucracy, which has detached itself from control by the masses in order to submit itself to a completely personal regime. We do not want to insist on the fact, although it is incontestahle, that everything that has been progressive in the activity of the Soviet bureaucracy (industrialization, collectivization. five year plan) was borrowed, later to be bureaucratl»
cally deformed, from the ideas and the program of the Bolshevik Leninists. Every conscious worker can verify this by looking at the documents, at. the deeds, year by year, month by month.
But what matters especially and what concerns the international conference is to emphasize that the principle of infalllbilty of the Soviet leaders is necessary for the Comlntern and its sections in order better to pretend their own infallibility. You know, as we do, that internal criticism no longer exists in the smlinist organizations. The most improbable turns are ordered by telegraph and often by telephone. The renunciation of the theory of the third period, of social fascism, and also the turn on the united front, are indisputably progressive steps But every conscious worker can and should say to him.
self that tomorrow these reforms can be changed just as unexpectedly by counter reforms, since the bureaucracy freed from control by Who Aretha Defenders of the The International Secretariat Replies to the Calumnics of the French Stalinist: the ranks obeys only the commands from above and pretends to infalli bility.
The Marxist method of the united front presupposes the right of every party to give its critical opinion on the attitude of its ally. It is only thus, in action, that the masses can be educated. The Stalinists, in rejecting the most elementary lessons of Marx and Lenin, have connected the realization of the united front with, the abandonment of reciprocal criticism. This is the only method at their disposal to preserve the myth of their infallibllity and one must look here for the explanation of the hatred and their fear of the insignificant quantity of Trot»
skyists whom they are very far from neglecting.
For eleven years we followed step by step the entire policy of the Comlnteru. Whether it con»
cerned the pretended workers and peasants parties for the Orient, the Chinese revolution with the subordination of the proletariat to the bourgeois party of the Km) Min Tang, the Anglo Russian Committee, the attitude of the Polish Communist party which supported Pll.
sudsky coup etat in 1926, the policy of the third period with its udventurist ravages, the theory and practice of social fascism which ll tl to the catastrophe in Germany, the same policy in Austria and Spain where it condemned to im«
potence the sections of the Comintern, finally the present policy of the French Communist Party which opposes the creation of the workers militia in all these decisive questions and in many other important cases we have always counterposed the Marxist policy to the Stalinist policy and predicted the fatal con sequences of the latter. Let every conscious worker compare our proposals and our prognoses with the march of events and he will know on whose side the trutbvrests. It is this situation that makes it an.
acceptable and impossible for the Stalinist sections to face as before an international proletarian forum.
From the moment when the walls of infallibility begin to crack the entire Comintern bureaucracy will fall to pieces. That is why the Stalinists carefully avoid contact with an organization which is deeply familiar with their history, their mistakes and even their crimes.
But whatever the psychological explanation for their attitude, it is political impermissible. The very meaning of the united front consists in that one does not demand from his allies a preliminary recognition of ideas and opinions which they do not hold. If the Trotshy»
ists are the open enemies of the Il. this should inevitably ap pear in common action and we will thus discredit ourselves in the eyes of the proletariat: vanguard. If the Stalinists truly believe in what they advance they should welcome our appearance beside them in an international working class forum.
But no, they are far from taking this road, and they are right, not as a revolutionary organization but as a conservative bureartcl zICy: open and candid discussion will leave not a trace of the prestige of infallibility.
The international prolelarian vanguard has the greatest, interest.
in hearing a clear opinion on this question, on which the devel opment of the world revolution de pends in great part. Abusing the prestige of the workers state, which we are the first to recognize and to support, and wasting its practically inexhaustible material, the apparatus of the Cominteru blocks the road to all revolutionary education, which can only be inculcated by free criticism in an at»
mosphere of loyalty.
We would seek in vain this loyalty in the attitude of the Stalin»
ists, even after their last turn.
Only yesterday they declared that the French Socialist party was the twin brother of fascism and the left social fascist. Today they denounce our French friends who joined the in order there to work loyally on the basis of their principles and their methods as the wreckers of the socialist party. They frntcrnaily warn Leon Blum and Paul Faure that our sham maneuvers threaten the unity of the and at the same time in the official publications of the Comlntern they denounce us as lackeys of Leon Blum and by that fact of Doumergue, and so on.
We believe that even the organizations which are quite hostile to the Bolshevik Lcnlnist conceptions have the supreme duty of refuting with every ounce of energy the pretension of the Stalinists of putting the workers world under the revolver of an ultimatum and poisoning the atmosphere of the united front by slanders and dishonest intrigues instead of assisting it by frank. criticism and loyal collaboralion.
The proletariau vanguard always and especially now after the terri ble defeats needs revolutionary clarity. We are far from contesting the right of the Stalinists, even the bureaucrats, to participate in common actions, but they should stop considering themselves as a special caste above the plebian pro»
lctariaus and above all they should use arguments and not insults. In the name of all our sections, which grow in influence and in number in nearly all the countries of the world. we declare ourselves ready to face the Stalinisfs and their necusntlons before any national or international forum. The International Secretariat of the International Communitit Imagine (Bolshevik Mninlists)
Spiking a Canard in the Daily Worker STATEMENT BY JOSEPH FOX ON HIS RESIGNATION FROM THE S.
To the Comrades in the and Workers in the Food Industry: The stool pigeon tactics to which the leaders of the Communist (Stalinist) Party resort against workers who disagree with their rotten policies and tactics of splitting the working class is best illustrated in the Workers Enemies Exposed columns in the Daily Worker.
There was not one single iota of truth in the slanderous accusations against me, and would have never bothered answering it were it not for the. fact that that statement plays into the hands of our worst enemies, the Department of Justice.
Furthermore, it gives the officials of the of justification for my expulsion. gives them ample reasons to refuse my reinstatement into the local, and helps the bosses to spread the blacklist against me, thus depriving me of the possibility of earning my bread and butter. resigned from the Communist Party because am in total dis agreement with its trade union policies and tactics, particularly with the policies the leadership of.
the Food Workers Industrial Union.
They advised and ordered me to carry out a line in Local 302 of the of which resulted in imprisonment of myself and five others for three and a half months in jail, expulsion of myself and 12 other oppositionists from the of the loss of our jobs and means of livelihood and the strengthening of the racketeering officials in the local to a position of absolute dictatorial power.
Today the leadership of the Industrial Union are in league with the worst strike breakers and racketeering officials in Local 302 and work hand in glove with them. have demanded to know on many occasions from the leaders of the Industrial Union, why they did not even in a single instance raise the question of our reenstatement into Local 302, and their replies were tantamount to a direct refu sal. have in my possession a letter dated June 11, 1934 and signed by the Secretary of the Food Workers lndusrtial Union addressed to Dear Comrade Fox wherein, amongst other things, he states that would therefore like to talk matters over with you as to what we could do in order to rectify some of our previous mistakes made. This flings the ugly word liar into the faces of the stoolpigeons in the who are responsible for issuing the expose against me in the Daily Worker. have issued a signed statement to my unit on the night of my re signation (four months ago) in which explained my disagree ments with the political line followed by the and and which Section No. 5, according to all indications, has suppressed to this very day.
The comrades in my unit have had only the highest regard and esteem for me, and up to date are still on the most friendly terms Out of For New Party The influence, of the new party movement, taking form in the approaching fusion of the and the is being felt in all sections and tendencies of the labor movement. Even the casehurdened, bureaucratic cell that is the Communist party is beginning to stir. Several weeks ago a leading Negro militant of the Philadelphia district of the joined our ranks. Last week we published the statements of two outstanding New York trade unionists placing the cross on their connections with Stalinism. Be low is a declaration of two rank and tile members declaring for the Fourth International and calling on other Communist party members to follow their example.
We are certain, that as the new party gains in force their example will be followed not by individuals but by tons and bandreds of workers disgusted with the rotten inner regime and the fatal policies of Stalinism. Ed. t Nov. 20. 1934 Dear Comrades: We the undersigned members of the Commuinst Party realize now that the mistakes of the Communist Parties of the world, arising out of Stalin theory of building socialism in onc country, have brought only defeat to the working class and have converted the Third international into a reactionary force in the working class movement. Stalin theory of the four class party in China resulted in a direct betrayal of the Chinesc proletariat: Warski, the oflicial leader of the Polish Communist Party, called upon the Polish workers to support Pilsudskl and played into the hands of the reactionary forces of Polish Fascism: the miserable theory of the united front from be low and social fascism were resmusiblc in great measure in defeating the working class of Germany and facilitating Hitler rise lo power.
We find from our experieHCe that the Communist Party is controlled by a bureaucratic clique who expel all members who dare question its policies. The minute we raised our voice, protesting against some of the policies of the party. we were promptly labeled counter revolutionary Trotskyites and isolated from the party membership.
Because the party members are stifled by this bureaucratic apparatus and the party is therefore an able to learn from its past mistakes and to correct these mistakes, we came to the conclusion that the downfall of the German Communist Potty without a struggle spelled the death of the Third International as a revolutionary force, lust as August 4th, 1914, revealed the bankruptCy of the second International and the necessity of building new revolutionary parties and a new International.
As honest revolutionists, our duty dictates that we place loyalty to the world revolution above party loyalty and join the ranks of those who are fighting for new revolutionary parties and a new, a Fourth International. Such a party is now being launched by the fusion of the Communist League of America and the American Workers Party. We feel that it is our revolutionary duty to join the ranks of this party and urge all our fellow Communists to follow our example. GREENBERG GREEN BERG Unit 2015. Organization Notes Our young Spartacan group in Newark has shown this week that it is an organization composed of real, two flsted fighting young workers, who don take no gaff from nobody; neither the Stalinists, the Socialists, the police, nor anybody else.
After our Spartacans initiated a united front against fascism, they were quietly ducked by the Young People Socialist League who shamefully capltuloted to the ultimatum of the Young Stalinists. United either wlth them or with with me. They realize that the failures in the unit are due to the stupid policies that they are forced to carry out. have spoken to many workers in the of with whom worked as a class conscious oppositionist In Local 302 and they are ever ready to attest their signatures to a statement about my revolutionary character and loyalty to the interests of the working class.
It is high time that the honest Communist workers put a stop to such open stool pigeon tactics of the leadership of the (LP.
JOSEPH FOX.
us.
Lawrence Dennis, the fascist, was scheduled to speak at the Universalist Church. On the same platform. Kingdon of the Socialist Party. on the invitation of the right Rev. Garner. was going to refute the Fascist arguments.
The united front made arrangements to picket the church.
Our young Spartacuns, slandered by the Stalinists, excluded by the united front, broke through these obstacles. came down thirty strong with their banners and flags the largest single delegation on the picket line; fought the police the hardest, and revealed their true colors. in action, to the workers of Newark.
They are now going ahead with plans to inform the Young People Socialist League of the action taken by their organization and will write a letter of protest to the Essex County executive committee of the Young People Socialist League. A l I)
The Convention Arrangements Committee wants the services of eight League or Spartacus Youth members throughout the conventions, to help in the kitchen. Retional Office.
PAGE WORLD OF Illicit THE NEGOTIATIONS The Events in Spain and the Fourth lutcmatiuml.
We are constrained to note rhut the Second International) and the, continue to view the question of thc united ront on an international scale not as a matter of revolutionary action but as a game of hide and seek and political alibis.
This time the has the edge. having addressed a letter to the Bureau of the it succeeded in obtaining a refusal. rcvious y tho. ominteru was opposed to every internatiomil proposition of the and favored common action of national sections only.
Today the prefers the national united front.
It has been taken in by the Stalinist maneuver. This has to be said not for the purpose of excusing the miserable answer of Vundorvelde and Adler but to understand the full significance of these negotiations.
They have retiring in common with revolutionary internationalism.
Insofar as the real existence of the Second International is concerned there are few illusions remaining in the left wing of French socialism. The comrades of Bataillc (Battle, organ of left wing in French i Ogant the nece sily of a new international, but label as as sectariaus or supersti tions people because we cling to the number four.
The number is of little importance, says la Bataille.
We fear that it is not merely an arithmetical (lif fcrcnce. When we say Fourth International we mean by an international whose platform will assimilate the positive, and negative experience of the Second and Third Internationals. Not a balance sheet of mistakes but a guide 10 action on solid foundations.
For this we have no faith in the Their intoruationaiisni is always limited to a warm exchange of telegrams.
An intel mltioual consisting of elements evolving in directly oppocito directions can only exist on paper.
While the Dutch social democrats rally to reactionury positions the old minlsters oi the Spanish bourgeois republic loud the armed illfllll Oi llOll.
But this very fact. that wherever there has been an armed uprising against llie bonupurtist. or fascist reaction. we and thc ll t socialists, with its progressive side and also its defects in a predominant role, leads us to poso lllt question: What has happened to the international appointed to lead the revolutionary struggles of the proletariat. llie Third Interns.
tionnl?
We have heard It Sillil that the. played a leading role in the Spanish evv However, every militant must avoid taking as revolutionary intornationaitsm. theatrical proclamations after the bottle, or the fearful llypnol isics of u Cochin on the dilntory response of thc What must be taken into account is the policy of the for preparation and support of the Spanish revolution.
In the September issue of the Communist International we are given a very clear answer on this question.
it really appears that the understood that the struggle of the Spanish proletariat would lead it to the brink of insurrection. The International speaks abstractly of these eventualitios and declares that the small communist party is better prepared for them than the big socialist party.
What were the directives of the in preparation for the insurrection? They try to pick a quarrel with Largo Cabal no They reproach this err refor mist with neglecting the struggle for partial demands. To abandon them, they say, means to from before the enrmy The continual capitulutiou of the Austrians before fascism consisted precisely in that. in other words. in a revolutionary period one must be careful to be more reformist than the rcfol rnists.
0n the other hand they abstractly pose the slogan of soviets. while they ignore the workers alliance as the organ of struggle, as the possible embryo of the organs of power. The Stalinists must baptisc every mass committee as soviet, and no matter what happens they continue to shout Soviets Everywhere.
In this connection let us recall the appreciation of I»lumanire for July 3rd. 193 on this workers al»
liance, printed in bold face: it concerns itself with the. tasks of the. atalonlan ll. is also necessary for it, said Perl. to denounce the pretentious Workers Alliance of Catalonia, a blue of rcucgudos from the party, of Trotskyists, anarchists, social fascists who fraudulently cloak themselves in the mantle of unity, but in reality support the policy of the Generalidad.
Besides this there is nothing in the article of the Communist International which allows us to believe that the revolutionary leadership prepared the masses for the general strike and the armed insurrection. Nothing Specific on the necessity of building the fighting organizations, the militia. Not a slogan on the arming of the workers. All that is left to the tender mercies of Largo Caballero and Prieto.
The lessons of October are transformed into abstract and pedantic propaganda. It is no longer part of the life of the Third International.
In those conditions. the necessity for a new revolutionary International. the Fourth International, becomes obvious. By its evolution towards revolutionary positions the left wing socialists are passing over the abstract lmllyhoo of the Stalinists. It is our (luty to accelerate this evolution by a firm and intransigennt struggle for the principles of Leninism.
Then the Road of October will no longer be a mere phrase for reviews of the eplgones. La Verite, Nov. 2, 1934.
a. llEPUBLICAN MILITIA MARCHES IN CHILE The rising wave of Fascism, that sweeps through Europe, reaches South America also. Fascist movement is developing in Chile under the protecting wing of the liberal Alessandri regime. The recent march in Santiago de Chile of several thousand members of the Republican Militia was a demonstration of force by the blackest reactionary elements of that country and a direct threat to he Chilean proletariat.
The Chilean Communist Left, conscious of its role as the workers vanguard, took the initiative in building up a serious united front movement that included the Socialist party and numerous trade unions. for the cnrrying on of an active struggle against the Fascist menace. general strike and counter demonstration were called by our comrades. number of the factories in and about the city were tied up as was also a large part of the construction industry. The local Stalinists contributed their share by impeding the spread of the general strike to the more basic industries. Impromptu Dance To Greet Delegates Coming For League Convention At Our Headquarters 144 2nd Ave.
port to Rose Karnser at the NaSaf. Nov. 24th p.