The New York Communist A Reply to a Non Partisan League Farmer (Continued from last week. Have we not in North Dakota a Soviet of Partners?
No! This question deals with the difl ereucea be tween the Soviet and the bourgeois parliamentary :tate. First of all, your Soviets are based on the ponderoua apparatus of universal suffrage. genuine Soviet replies immediately on such or anic groups as shop, factory. mill and so forth. Second: Your Soviet has no serious guarantees of immediate and direct relation between elected and electors. Thirdly: Your Soviet is chosen by an amorphous mass of electors who entrust full power to others for a year or so. In the genuine Soviet however, the Soviet electors remain always united by the conditions of their work and their existence.
The Soviet delegate is always before the workers eyes. And he can be ordered, censured, removed and replaced at any moment. In a real Soviet the representatives are directly concerned with industries. Here the right to vote is no privilege or charity, but a right only of a laboring citizen. Under the Soviet rule no agent of a capitalist political party drives any one to the ballot box. Because the Soviet voter must join a workers organization, there can be no mass of indifferent oters as under parliamentary democracy.
Aside from the above it must be remembered that a Soviet represents only the industrial and the agricultural populations. It does not allow the exploiters, owners of farm for spa ulative purposes, for example, representation. The North Dakota Soviet is based on a union of all classes, big bourgeois, little bourgeois and workingmcn.
The arbitrary, geographical nature of the bourgeois state is still retained by your Soviet. Did not the bulk of your Soviet voters go to the Re»
publican Party the last Congressional elections?
But how long ago was it that the Non Partisan League farm owners. controlling your Soviets were dickering with the farm laborers, the agricultural proletariat, about the wages to be paid the latter? Arc these industrial workers allowed 3? your Soviet. it is not true that the :gncuitural proletaria. the farm hands, are unable i participa te in the voting for your Soviet be cause of their lack of proper residential qualifications? No, you have no Soviet. in a real Soviet mly the agricultural and the industrial laborers rte and rule. Yours is a political organization patrolled by farm owners and not by farm laborera The Socialists of North Dakota. who have become the backbone of the Non Partisan (class peace)
league have. like moderate Socialists the world over. a middle class conception of the State. This pcnception arises from the latest tendencies in eup ltalism. The smaller capitalists are being pressed iard by centralized capital and by the men rising ran. the ranks and the wage working class. Your North Dakota farmers are prefixed by the large trust :orupanies on one side and by the agriculturLl proetariot on the other. Therefore your North Datota Soviet is socializing many terpriaes to ielp the farm owners. The middle class bases its Iopu on an extension of state activities By the ntellectual proletariat. another section of the niddle class, the extension of state activities is specially welcomed, for many new oficial jobs e opened up. To get thme jobs, examinations at be passed. And who can pass them better in the intellectual proletariat? Thus the enire middle class sees in the state a glorified instimtion a means of saving the world! The middle class ideal state is a state which controls industry and rewards each according to his ability. The tragic phase of this state and municipal ownership is that it is haalded as Socialism in practise.
The middle class is anxious to a the luxuries of the rich. consequently their soci demands aim at incomes. Whereas. the demand of the wage laborer is for the social control of wealth created by labor in order to achieve economic freedom But a careful examination of the various state enterprises definitely shown that they do not make or the economic freedom of the laborer. but that they rather strengthen capitalism and class rule.
The growing industrial unrest com ls all propertied interests to more and more re y ou the state. Public order must be maintained. In society name the state must crush strikes. The capitalist class contends that the state represaits aociety in order to hide the clue uafure of the state. The left Wing holds that reform nostrums are means of misleading the American proletariat. The hourgeoisie fear a class conscious proletariat and hence they strive to confuse the workers. National and municipal control are inherent in the higher stage of capitalism. Municipal and state ownership are as much steps toward Socialism as the general trend towards concentration and neutralization of By Jay Lovestoue capital is. Because our ruling class was men cad by a foreign ruling class, America adopted many asuch measures of Socialism With America entry into the war. state enterprise was nursed to a gigantic size. Today the American bourgeoisie is compelled to extend state control because it desires to hold the markets it has won during the war. What is more, industrial unrest must he curbed and the workers must be disciplined. The nominal wages may rise but only at the expense of the proletariat being tyrannized by the oficial bureaucrats. Whatever freedom the working class had. is fast disappearing. And the proletariat social position is being lowered.
An extension of state control means a further extension of bourgeois control of the press and educational institutions.
The interests of the bourgeoisie manifesting themselves in these, mold the laborer political ideas.
To make still more secure the bourgeois control of the state, the working class, though at great disadvantage, is never allowed to decide really important measures in capitalist society. Was the American working class given a chance by its democracy to pass upon the declaration of war, financing of the war, conscription, the Espionage Act? No!
Though the American capitalist class was very well equipped to win such a test, yet, these matters were too vital to capitalism to even take the least chance with interference of their realization.
Capitalism is in its death throes. lts inherent contradications have become a fetter on the system of production. it is for this reason that in the last decade or two capitalism is relying ever more on the state, State control really means a better organized capitalism. and it is the last effort of the bourgeois class to stave off its downfall.
VI. Shall We Refuse a Baby. Cry for Food Because I: Can Eat Meat?
This question touchm the heart of the social reform controversy. It deals with the mulled immediate demands.
At the outset let us leak into the why and wherefore of capitalist reforms. It must be kept in mind that when one speaks of reforms, he is well aware of the fact that the capitalist system is not yet overthrown and that the reforms are to be granted by capitalists. Why do capitalists grant reforms?
There are two reasons. First, in order to stifle the ever incrmsing class eonsciousnas of the workers. To the capitalist class, as to others, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. By granting certain improvements in the immediate conditions of the workers, the capitalist hides the class nature of the present system of production. By apparently being kind to the worker, the capitalist hide the conflict of interests and promotes the proletariat belief in the brotherth of labor and capital. Thus the spirit of independent class action by the proletariat is dampened. Reflect for a moment over the effect of the Welfare Bureaus, of profit sharing, and other immediate reforms on the anployees. The extensive social reform program of Germany played no small part in cementing the proletariat loyalty to the kaiser. The heralded constructive reforms fought for by the Social Democratic Party are to a great extent responsible for the bloodshed in Germany today.
Moderate Socialism in Germany. as everywhere, ascribed to bureaucratic petty bourgeois reforms a creative revolutionary value. The effect of these reform campaigns has been to dupe the prolbtariat as to the class nature of the state and bourgeois democracy. The German proletarix! was misinformed as to the nature of the Communist order.
And today Germany is not a land of soviets but a bloody bourgeois republic!
Tbae is another reason for the capitalist; grant.
ing improvements in the workers conditium.
The only use the capitalist has for the prolet arist.
is exploitation. But to be capable of exploiflllon a laborer mint exist. He must do more than that.
He mint live. broken down worker is ineficient.
On the whole, the bourgeoisie are not as stupid as some of our twentiethcentury utopian Socialists believe. Their investigators have made extensive studies roving that eficiency can be inch by shorter ours, and improvements in working coaditiom The improved methods of production Ind busine organization intensify the degree. of exploitation. Hence, capitalism can well. stand rdorm or change a tactics in its exploitation of the working class.
All Left Wing Branches are mud to postpone business meetings. street meetings.
hem s, etc. and support Friday Square all. Shall we fight for or against thme immediab improvements? cakes the moderate Seem From this we lre led straight to the object of revolutionary Socialist political party. What is the purpose of a class conscious prolaarian pint?
Its object should be none other than to always hold before the working masses the ideal of revolution, the ideal of a new society a Communist society. Socialist Party should broaden the acti of the proletariat into class activity, and shall always point out the nature of capitalism. The 50cialists should not wage campaigns for the Earformation of the state or for the enlarging of it!
functions. Socialist political party must alwaybc on guard against the seduction of the proletariat by the state activities in his benefit The par liamentary campaign and the legislature ofl a us a means of expressing our elm interests. and of exposing bourgeois class intamta.
The policy of the Left or revolunonary Socialism, is neither to opposemgr to rope e than immediate danands, these social: reforms this whole gamut of beneficial state activities or state capitalism. The social reform of state italism is today a fact to which Socialism must adjust itself.
The Left Wing does not intend to abandon the immediate struggle. To the Left Wing the inn»
diate demands that arise serve as the dynamo of all action. By means of than we generate revolutionary currails amongst the proletariat.
aggrmsively engaging in this struggle the revolutionary spar latent inthe proletariat can he fanned into revolutionary fires against the hourgeoisie. We anploy this struggle as a mum of promoting the final struggle.
An analysis of the immediate problem confroning the American working class will he us clarify this mailer. Let us one yze the attitu ot revolutionary and petty bourgeois Socialism thwart them. First, let us take the unemployment robin.
The tide of unemployment is rising. we say to the capitalist class Get out and presto than will be no unanploymeut?
The left Wing holds that umploymmt rnhs disemployment is an inherent characteristic of capitalism. As long as capitalism exists there will be disemploymeut. The problan cannot be solved as long as capitalism is intact. Unlike petty bourgeois Right Wing Socialism, the 1d!
Wing believes that not even the capitalist state. that miracle organ, that God of Right Wing Socialifll.
can solve this problg I:l ber efore the left disdain: petitioning reside t,. organ of Right Wingism, The Call, has tn. will not petition even a fourteen point capitalin champion for the (establishment of Government Employment Bureaus. What more dungeons weapon against the prolaariat could be given the hour government than control of employmatt.
chance would a labor Ipokmman, a bounded 15itator, have of getting a job? Pelt pa this accounts for. Mor Nero icy in coiuribming thousands of do Iars for the mainsmalme of these public anploymeut bureaus! dn Io solve this problem of capitalism; reactionary.
utopian Socialism agitates for amployment insurance. insurance ever done away with mployment anywhere? No! Not even in Gummy where the Socialists now have a majority!
But cannot any at all be done to combat the immediate distress o unemploymmt? Yam Left Wing has a plan of action in meeting immediate demand. And in this struggle the Wing sees a means of promoting the final struggla Suppose there are today two million unemployed in America. Shall we invest our energy in tons of paper (petitions. Shall we appeal for the votes of all liberty loving either. and rumithem a solution insurance? No! Wing would me be and tram II mploymatr. mg advtage of this cuisine capitalism and spread vlutionary propaganda mmtbe uumployed. would not stop that; The Left Wing. p»
and work for county wide strike for shortmen so that fewg workers might be diam played.
ls this an abandonment of the immediate snuggle?
Why wmeenergy insult! ting tosolvatheillolvable. the contradinious o capitalism. Why If.
dirmt the efforts of the working class what cpldid opportunity is aimed to lead than into lutionary channels? Is this demanding all or nothing? la such. pol as outlined above bad on the notion of dung immdiate but its ad the worse the butt. claw,