IOO THE CLASS STRUGGLE as well as of the wisdom of those who attempted to harmonize it by straddling the issues and create a ﬁctitious majority where there was none. In our opinion this was a grave error, as our movement must be frank and sincere above all. If there was no possibility of agreeing on a declaration of principles which would satisfy the great bulk of those who are opposed to the present war, it would have been far better as suggested by the spokesman of the radical minority to have adopted no such declaration, but merely a program of action. As it is, the value of the program of action, which is fairly good, is largely vitiated by the unfortunate declaration.
We do not care to enter upon a discussion of that subject here, however.
For obvious reasons we cannot, under existing conditions, discuss the majority report fully and freely and we do not care to discuss it in a half way manner.
But more important even is the fact that we want the party to adopt the majority resolution. The draft of the radical minority is not before membership. Because a free discussion cannot be had under present political conditions, and in order to insure the defeat of the pro war substitute, therradical minority decided not to send its own draft to a referendum. The only two drafts now before the membership are, therefore, the majority report and the substitute of the Spargo Benson group. And as between the two there can be no doubt as to which we must support.
The majority report, with all its defects of statement and equivocations in matters of principles, is nevertheless clearly anti war, as least as far as the present war is concerned. The minority substitute is as clearly pro war, in the sense that it accepts the war, though it regrets the necessity, and seeks to make peace with it upon honorable terms. Which is exactly the position that the Scheidemanns have adopted when Germany entered the war, a position which has brought about the ruin of the socialist movement not only in Germany but the world over.
What the German Scheidemanns have begun our own Scheide manns seek to ﬁnish. They evidently consider that their GerTHE CLASS STRUGGLE 10 man prototypes have not completed their work of ruining the International socialist movement, so they want to help them ﬁnish the job.
The most curious thing about this business is that a good many of our Socialist patriots who now submit the substitute were among those who vociferously cmdemned the German Socialistpatriots for doing exactly the same thing. When the Germans did it, it was treason to Socialism. but when they do it, it is loyalty to the American working class.
Let the substitute be snowed under, so that there may be no mistake as to where the Socialist Party stands in this crisis.
Incidentally don forget to vote against the proposed plat form and the proposition to abolish the National Committee. DESERVED REBUKE The New Republic, one of the most enthusiastic supporters of the war, has administered a well deserved rebuke to Mr.
Gompers and the other labor leaders who have followed him into war camp, for their excess of pseudo patriotic zeal. The New Republic, as we have said, is enthusiastically pro war. But it is also intelligently so. It does not, therefore, feel called upon to wallow in the mire of patriotic servility. It realizes and recognizes that it cannot possibly be the duty of good citizenship to give up one right to freely criticize the conduct of public affairs because we happen to be at war. Such a renunciation of the rights of citizenship is undesirable even from the purely military point of view, as distinguished from a militaristic point of view.
The same is true of the rights of workingmen as workingrnen under the present system those rights which are secured to the workers by the law of the land or the power of their economic organizations. renunciation of these rights in war time is very far from being an act of good citizenship, and cannot be commended even from a purely military point of View, provided it be intelligent. The entire experience of this war in Fmgland as well as elsewhere goes to show that while it is natural to the militaristic cast of mind to make these demands upon labor, it is extremely stupid military judgment to require the workers