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01 01 05 06 1917 22
01 01 05 06 1917 22 black white

38 THE CLASS STRUGGLE the front the common interests of the entire proletariat independently of all nationality. In the various stages of development which the struggle of the working class against the Bourgeoisie has to pass through, they always and everywhere represent the interests of the movement as a whole.
To think socially is a necessary premise of all solidarity. But to characterize social thought in this way in respect to form, does not determine the contents or substance, e. does not determine which solidarity of interests is considered the highest.
We can think perfectly in social terms whether we choose the Solidarity of classes of a country, or the solidarity of the workers of all countries as the supreme ideal. Which one is superior depends upon our understanding of the historical evolution of humanity. If a person believes that the International of the proletariat in the present historical situation is not the highest community of interest, or if he formerly believed that it was, but has since become convinced that it is not, we cannot find fault with him for refusing to adhere to a solidarity which his social process of thinking does not recognize. But on the other hand it would be just as mistaken to attach any blame to an internationalist in the Marxian sense if he values Solidarity of the World Praletarit above any other community of interests.
PART PARTY RULE All party work consists of action in common to realize the party program. The result in each instance depends on the decision of the majority of the integral whole. The operation of party rule is subject to two dangers: on the part of the majority and on the part of the minority. There is always the danger that the majority may arrive at a decision which is not in accord with the party program; this then involves a contradiction of principles fundamental to the whole movement, consequently of the supreme interests and purposes inherent in the party itself. There is the danger that the minority may break up the agreed basis of operation by not submitting to the majority, and by going its own way may impede the accomplishment of the result decided upon. Majority as well as minority may hinder the accomplishment of party purposes.
THE CLASS STRUGGLE 39 In general we surely agree that action in common by all as sembled is to be taken for granted, and that the democratic vote is the basic principle within the party, calling for the obedience of the minority. In the interest of the party and its development, the minority will submit to the decision of the majority even when convinced that the latter is not pursuing the proper course on the theory that, will stand by my brother though he be mistaken, rather than break with him and be righ.
But this course while proper in general, is true to a relative extent only. Situations are possible where the majority may so violate the common program, on which the solidarity rests, that the unity of the corporate whole is affected.
If a branch of the party decides not to remit any more dues to its local, but decides instead to join an association in its locality devoted to sports and amusements, then the Social Democratic minority of that branch, although outvoted, will nevertheless maintain solidarity, not with the branch, but with the local. And the same sort of thing will recur, only on a much larger scale if the majority of the party joins hands with the class combination of the country, thereby breaking through the Solidarity of the World proletariat and destroying the relation to the International, perhaps regretfully but inevitably.
The deviation from the International to the Union of classes actually makes a new solidarity supreme, and so the minority that continues to remain international is confronted by the question whether it is still possible to stand by my brother though he be mistaken.
The conclusion will depend on how far we have reason to hope that the mistake is transitory, and what the prospects are of rectifying it. If the majority of the party were to decide absolutely to become national we certainly cannot expect anyone who is international to recognize the supremacy of such a solidarity. If we have reason to hope on the other hand, that the majority will find its way back, then it is essential to take into account whether it is more important for the good of the whole movement during such a period, that unity of action be preserved, or that the minority make its influence felt in the right direction.