The New York Communist Marx Critique of the Gotha Program manuscript published herewith the eccompanying letter to Bracke u well as the criticism of the proposed platform was sent in 1875, shortlv before the. Goths fusion cows, to Brat kc, to be further communicated to Goth, Auer, Babel, and Liehknecht, and later on to be returned to Marx. Since the Halle convention put the discussion of the Goths program on the puty a order of business, would consider myself guilty of wrongful aupprasion were still longer to withhold from the public this important document perhaps the most important document bearing on this discussion.
But the manuscript has also another, and still more far reaching significance. Here, for the first time. is clearly and definitely set forth the attitude of Marx on the course followed by Lusalle since his entrance upon the agitation, both in lation to Lassalle economic principles and to a tactics.
The relentless vigor with which the proposed platform is analyzed, the inexorbleness with which the results arrived at are pronounced and the weak aims of the platform exposed all this can no lbnger offend now, after fifteen years. Specrfic Iassalleans exist nowadays only in foreign parts, like isolated ruins, and the Gotha platform was given up in Halle by its own makers as altogaher inadequate.
Nevertheless, wherever it was not essential to the subject. have omitted some severe exprustona and opinions concerning some mdivtduals. and tndicated the emissions by hterisks. Marx himself would have done so had he published the mnuv script now. The occasional vehemence of his language was provoked by two circumstances. In the first place. Marx and were more intimately connected with the German movement than with any other; hence the decidedly backward step evidenced in this platform was particularly calculated to excite us. But in the second place, we were then. hardl two years after the Congress of the Internationals the Hague, involved in a most severe conflict will Bakunin and his Anarchists, who held us responsible for everything that transpired in the Labor Movement of Germany; he therfore had to expect that the secret fatherhood of this platform would also be ascribed to us. These considerations have passed away. and with them has passed the necesstty for the passages in question.
Likewise some passages are merely indicatecLby asterisks, owing to considerations having to do with the press laws. Where a milder expression had to be chosen it is enclosed in brackets. Otherwise, the publication is faithful to the letter.
Fncoemcx Exams.
London, January 1891.
arm LETTER ro mcxa london, May 5, 1875.
Dear Bracke; After reading them you will be so kind as to communicate to Geih, Auer. Bebel and Lieblmecht, the suhjoined critical comments or: the fusion platform. am over worked and compelled to work bevond the limits prescribed by my physician. It was therefore by no means a pleasure for me to write such a tape worm. But it was necessary, so that the party friends, for whom this communication is intended, may not misinterpret the steps to be taken by me later on. It is indispensable, since outside of (yerA many the notion altogether erroneous. but fostered by the enemies of our party 4: entertained that we secretly from here direct the movement of the socalled Eisenach party. For instance, in a recent Russian publication, Bakunin makes me. responsible for all the platform declarations. etc. of thatparty.
Aside from this it is my duty not to recognize.
even by a diplomatic silence. platforrnthat is in my opinion altogether objectionable and demoralizing to the party.
Every res advance step of the movement II more important than a dozen platforms. If therefore. it was impossible and the circumstances of the time did not permit it to advance beyond the Eisenach platform, then you should have simply concluded an agreement for action against the common met my.
But when you formulate platforms of principles (instead of postponing this work until such time as you have become prepared for it through continued common action. then you establish landmarks by which all the worlt. gauge the height of the party movement. The chiefs of the Laasslleans came to you because the conditions forced them.
Had you declared to them from the outset that you would not enter on any diokering in principles, that they would have been obliged to content themselves with a program for action, or a plan of organisation for common action Instead of this.
on allow them to come used with credentials as iodina: and o urrender at discretion to those ilp. To up the climax, they 3. at. nm u lie ore the compromise cougreu. while our own party holds its convention poi: enun. Everybody knows how pleased the workingmen are with the bare fact of a unim, but you are mistaken if you believe that this nomentary success is not bought too dearly.
Besides the platform is good for nothing, even irrespective of the canonization of the Lausllesn maples of faith. ith best tin. ours, 8 Kant. Manx.
COWIEN S on Tar. current or in: czluuul M80! PAR Labor is the source of all wealth and of all civilization. and since useful labor is possible only in and through society, the proceeds lErtrag) of labor belong, unabridged and in equal right, to all the members of society.
First pan I the paragraph: Labor is the source of all wealth and of all civilization, Labor is run the source of all wealth. Nalure is just as much the source of use values (and these certainly form the material elements of wealth) as labor. which is itself only the expression of a natural force. human labor pews. The above phrase is to found in every child primer and is correct ix: so far as it is assumed that labor starts out equipped with the requisite materials and But a Socialist platform should not let such middle class phrases pass. and permit, by ailawe, the condition: that alone give sense thereto to be suppressed. And in so far as man stands toward Nature the first source of all the means and ob«
jerts of labor in the relationpf proprietor, in so so far as he treats Nature as belonging to him, his labor bot smes the source of use values. hence also of wealth. The capitalists have very good reasons for imputing to labor supernatural creative powers, because from the nature imposed necessity of labor it follows that ihe man who possesses no property but his labor power must. under all. conditions of society and civilization, he the slave of those other men who have made themselves the posseawra of the material conditions for labor. He can work only with their permission, hence live only with their permission.
But let us take the sentence as it runs. or rather limps. What should we have expected as the con.
clusion? Plainly this. Since labor is the source of all wealth, no one in society can acquire wealth except as the product of labor. Therefore, if he does not work himself, NATIONAL LEFT WING 0 F R N E to he held JUNE 21 12 AT MANHATTAN LYCEUM as am an. arms ADMISSION BY PARTY CARD AND INVITATION CARD ONLY Apply to Maximilian Cohen, a W: th St. LEFT WING EXCURSION Saturday, July 12th At Fro. Mark Shoot Pier to Bear Mont II Under the auspices of First and Second Assembly Districts. Left Wing Section Socialist Party ON THE SIVIUS Tish t, incl. Tau IS. day of Excursion 3L.
LEFT WING PICNIC 1, August 24th. 191. It EASTERN BOULEVARD PARK Eastern Boulevard and For! Road. Wastelassht, Bruux. Oriental Dances by Miss Kataysms and Troupe.
Other attractions to be announced later. Red Picnic Great Time For a Red Cause. Men, Women and Children of the Working Class. Come and enjoy yourselves!
Picnic starts 10 AmundbythshftWiu Io hsnoflm Admission I. also at (at.
he lives upon the labor of others. and also with.
lhis share of civilisation at the expeue of other?
sour.
Instead of this, another sentence is attached by means of the phrase and since, in order to draw a conclusion from this latter salience. and not from the former.
Second par: a the paragraph: Useful labor possible only in and through society.
According to the first proposition labor was the source of all wealth and civilization; hence no society was posihle without labor. Now we lean. on the contrary, that no useful labor is possible without society. a It would have been as sensible to say that only in society can uselas and even publicly injurious labor become a branch of industry, that only in society can men live in idleness, an, eta in short, to copy the whole of Rousseau.
And what is useful labor? Plainly. only the labor that produces the desired serviceable fleet. savage a man is a savage after he has ceased to be an ape a savage who kills an animal with a stone, who gathers fruits, an, dos useful labor.
Thirdly, the conclusion: And since useful lav bar is possible only in and through society (be proceeds of labor belong unabridged, in equal right, to all the members of society. beautiful conclusion! lf useful labor is posr sible only in and through society. then the proceeds of labor belong to society and the individual laborer receives only so much u is not neces sary for the maintenance of the prerequisite of labor qwiety.
Indeed this has been the regular claim made by the champions of each succeeding social system First come the claims of the government and all that hangs thereby, since it is the social organ for the maintenance of the social order; next come the claims of the various sorts of private propaty, for the various sorts of private property are the foundations of society, etc. It is plain, such hollow phrase can be turned and twisted at will.
The first and the second part of the paragraph can have any sensible connection only in the fol.
lowin form. La or can become the source of wealth and civrlization only as social lab :r, or, what mm.
to the same thing, only in and through sociay.
This proposition is indisputably correct, for era: if isolated labor tits material pro requisites re supposed can create usevalues, yet it can pr neither wealth nor civilization.
And just as indisputable is this other stalwart. In measure that labor is developed socially, and thereby began? pt: alource of wealth and civi ization. are eve o a to ye and adation on the side of the laborerrwearllh and flighution on the side of the non laborer.
This is thalaw of all history up till now. There fore, instetd of talking in general terms abon labor and society, it should have beat clearly pointed out how, under present capitalist society the conditions. material and otherwise, are at Ian produced. which enable, and indeed compel, the laborers to break through that social curse.
But. in fact. the entire paragraph faulty both in style and contents appears here only in order to inscribe the Wheat cstchword of the unabridged proceeda of labor as the watchword an the flag of the party, shall come back later to the proceeds of labor, the equal right. an, as the same thing recurs in somewhat difl enmt form. To be continued. LeftWing Mass Meeting SUNDAY, JUNE 22, st P.
At Manhattan Lyceum 66 4th Street Admission Frue MASS PROTEST MEETING IN. NEWARK TQPROTEST THE CLOSING o the PORTS T0 DEMAND THE IMMEDIATE RELEASE OF ALL. POLITICAL PRISONERS My, p 30. u. mun. ski An ad alt u SI. Newark.
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