The New York Communist The Executive Committee Statement The following letter was sent to The New York Call in answer to the Local Executive Committee. ulmse nhieh was published in that paper. In. tpite of N5 belief in the freedom of the press. which led it to publish such letters as Shaplert de ense of Kolr chnfi, The Cal related to publish this letter, which is one rid. ol the controversy now raging within the Socialist Party: DlmR of The Call: Permit me to answer the statement issucd by the Executive Committee of Local New York, and printed in Iii day i sue of The Call, pertaining to the left Wing controversy. In view of the gravity of the crisis precipitated by their illegal acts, and in view of their stntement which is nothing more than a tissue of lies concocted tor the purpose of fooling the membership as to the actual situation, feel that you will be fair enough to grant me space in which to reply.
In the first place, the Executive Committee is absolutely without any authority to reorganize any branches in New York, until the referendum issued hv the State Committee has been passed, and then they not only have that right but also the right to automatically expel them. Why thcrl docs the Executive Committee proceed to deprive Branches o the right to vote on thi! referendum by re organizing them now?
Their only semblance of an excuse for their wholesale re organizations is that at the last Central Committee meeting. Comrade Karlin, who was not chairman, moved that. when the Central Committee adjourns, it adjourn subject to call by the Executite Committee, and that the Executive Committee be empowered and instrucled to re organize Local New York and put it on a working basis.
This motion was adopted. This is a deliberate lie.
No such motion was ever put much less carried, for one reason. the meeting had been adjourned by the chairman: secondly, the room was in an indescribable turmoil with a police captain driving the delegates out. What really occurred and this will be corroborated by most of the unbiased members and delegates present, as. that during the height of the confusion Comrade Karlin, after consultation with the group around him, suddenly arose and cupping his hands over his mouth shoutcd above the din, that there would be no further meeling of the Cenlral Committee until the Broad tive Committee decided to call for same. We noticed the recording secretary writing furiously at this time and predicted among ourselves that they would claim that this motion was passed. As a mat ter of fact it was a physical impossibility for any one eilher to put a motion or have the vote counted.
Fights were going on simultaneously all over the hall. Members and delegates mingled indiscriminately. voices were shouting, hisses and epithets, and they have the audacity to claim that such a motion was pas ed at this time! by, in their sheet, The Socialist, they went furthel and purported to give the exact vote by which this motion was passed 71 to 36 are the figures given. This then is their basis or the Re organization methods. leave it to the comrades to judge the merits of their case.
In their natement they give an account of the rupture in the 17th showing how it led up to the fillibuster at the last Central Committee meeting. Aside from misstating the facts, distorting others. and omitting important ants, it is a fairly accurate account. The Executive Committee does not state why a branch could not withdraw and elect officers and delegates the same night, although there is nothing in the by Iaws prohibiting such action. The bv laws only relate to the annual nominations and elections. In recalling delegates and of ficers, the clause says nothing about such proce dure. As a matter of act this has been the rocedure for years! But when the Left Wing became a factor in the 8th and had an overwhelming majority in the branch and they proceeded to use their legitimate power to recall those pets of the Right Wing Machine. Waldman. Ice and Block, and elected three left Wingers in their place, the Central Committee refused to seat die new delegates on the grounds that a special meeting should have been called, nomination!
made. then and elections at the next meeting. The Left Wing in the 8th sure of their majority, complied with the unfair mling, and at a rubs qucnl meeting, having duly notified the members of the branch, recalled the old delegates and nominated new ones. Elections were held at the following meeting.
Now. then, the 17th realizing that if they recalled and clecled delegates on the same meeting night theywould besubjectto tiresome treatment. and further realizing that their normal majority would be sure to be dinfinisigd by the colonizing of their WWW. kitted to ranll Ill their officer: and By Maximilian Cohen delegates (excepting three. all to not, however, until new elections took place; The first meeting was packed by the Rights and the motion to 1003 was lost by nine roles; at the non meeting they succeed»
ed in recalling themt with the stipulation referred to above. They could have elected new officers and delegates right then, if they were so minded, so the charge that they wantonly dissolved the branch is pure bunk. They merely wanted to make sure that the Central Committee would soot their delegates.
The Right Wing was faced with the immediate loss of their majority in the Central Committee.
Action, and quick action was necessary. Other branches were in the process of recalling their delegates and electing Left Wingers in their places.
With the exception of the Finnish Branch (counterrevolutionnry and social patriotic in all their actions for the past year and a halfl, most of the lam guage branches were going to the Left. mention these facts to show the desperate situation the Right Wing was facing. What did they do?
Comrade Julius Gerber (whose heart was bleeding with righteousness and wrathl, issued a secret call for an organization meeting of his trusted croniEs on Monday, April 2Ist, at his office. In his letter (published in full in the COMMUNIST, May Istl, he says, Tuesday evening, the Central Committee meets. At this meeting the die will be cast as or a: Local New York is con corned. Funl ier on he continues, have for myself. decided as to my course and my action.
At this secret meeting this gang decided to push through by hook or by crook, the concurrence by the Central Committee with the action of the Executiw Committee, in illegally re organizing the ITlh wilh methods that would put the Tammany machine to shame. The only thing lacking now was official sanction by the Central Committee. Then they could sanctimoniously claim that the enlire action was legal and binding. That this was but the prelude to a series of wholesale such re organizations we were certain. nd openly charged them with it in the Central Committee, which they dared not refute.
It is true that the Left Wing delegates had a steering committee and we never hid that fact; in fact we openly stated so, and even gave Philli and Gerber copies of our rules. We entered tfie meeting at ten minutes after eight and found. contrary to the usual custom. most of the delegates in their seats and the meeting already opened; that meetings were never opened before eight fifteen is a well known fact. We were surprised, but on the vote for chairman realized that the meeting was packed and something was toibe jammed through.
We were not wrong in our surmise, when immediately after Comrade Ice blossomed out as a delegate from the 10th after having been repudiated by his own branch. Comrade Gerber called 05 the credentials of delegates from the illegally reorganized 17th ies from all over the house for the reading of the credentials from the legitimate branch caused that worthy to bow to the storm. He read them apologetically and with sneers. Thereupon, as pro arranged, Comrade Beckerrnan rose, was granted the floor, and moved that the Central Committee concur with the action of the Executive Committee in re organizing the 17th Granted the floor next, moved an amendment that a committee of seven be appointed from this body, three from the Right, three from the Left and an impartial chairman selected unanimously, who should investigate the case of the 17th and report back to the Central Committ at the next meeting. This amendment, eminently fair and just, was defeated. Later on, when appealed to the delegates to hear a committee of three bearing creden»
tials signed by 96 members of the 17th my appeal was again lost. Did not this rave that the Right Wing was out or to pound o flesh?
So much for evaiu. Now In us analyse their theoretical position, viz. Do not be deceived.
The question at issue in not merely one of revising our party platform or it: tactics. Differences of opinion on these molten are always in order. The constitution and by Iaws of the party give ample opportunity for discussing such questions and do ciding them by the will of the majority. Your Executive Committee has neither the right nor the desire to interfere in such matters. 0n the contrary, it is striving to maintain the normal conditions for free and fair discussion and decision.
This quotation is from their anemia it in to daiy Call. It sountb plausible. To the uninitiated it may even seem eminently fair. But in it? Let on Ice.
Any cane Socialist know: that the organisation of the Left Wing was due to the inertia and actual blocking by the oficiall of wary attempt of the rank and file to express itself ever lime the St.
Louis Resolution was adopted by the rank and file.
Permit me to enumerate them chronologically. I)
The Meyer London re nomination. 2) The Socialist Alderman and the Third Liberty Loan. 3) The Socialist Aldermen and the Fourth Liberty Loan. 4) The Socialist Aldermen and the Victory Arch appropriation. To say nothing of every attempt to consolidate the locals of Greater New York being blocked by the oflicialdom. To say nothing of the resentment of the rank and file against the Call attitude towards the Bolsheviki in Russia and the Spartacnns in Germany, which again was crushed by the officialdom, without redress by the members because the Call is not party owned or controlled.
These well known incidents give the lie direct to their claim that the regular party channels are open.
Slimily and hypocritically they prate of petty platforms and tac ics not being the main issue; giving the impression that they are in favor of a radical revision along LIIC lines laid down in the Left Wing Program. Here, we must call Comrade Cerber and Comrade Waldmau to testify. Comrade Gerber in his later to his cronies, for that secret meeting before the Central Committee meeting of April 22nd, lets the cat out of the bag; he says. While the control of the party by these irresponsible people will make the party an outlaw organ.
ization, and break up the organization. And yet what would these irresponsible people do?
Merely carry out the letter and spirit of the Manifesto and Program within the arty. Get that!
What has Waldman to say on is subject of re vision of party policies and tactics? The following, delivered at a speech in the Bronx and reprinted in the current issue of the Socialist, the official organ of the Right Wing: Industry must be under collective ownership. If an industry is municipalwide the municipality is the collectivity which in going to he possessed of the ownership of that industry. If on industry is state wide, in its nature, the state is going to be possessed of that industry.
If an industry is national in its character. such as railroad, waterways, coal mines. telegraph and telephones. the nation will own it.
This is the kind of Socialism advocated by the Right Wing. They talk about revising party poliv cies and tactics quite glibly, but only with the intention of side tracking the revolutionary sentiment of the rank and file who are clamoring for a thorough going change on the ba5is laid down by the Left Wing Manifesto and Program They do not wish to revise the party policies and tactics if they can help it; certainly they are not for the abolition of social reform planks; they are not for repudiating the Second International, they are not for alfiliating with the Third International, called by the Communist Party of Russia (Bolsheviki. They are not for making revolutionary industrial unionism, a part of its general propaganda. The quotation from Waldman e speech distinctly lulu what their conception of Socialimi is: nothing more or less than State Socialism in its most pernicious forms. They believe in preserving the capitalist state and utilizing it for the inauguration of Socialism. They are opposed to the dictatorship of the proletariat as a principle and violently opposed to it as the tactic of the revolution. are the exact counter parts oi the Ebert Scheidemarm moderate Socialists of Germany.
Bourgeois parliamentarian: is their moons and State Socialism is their goal.
Comrades! The Left Wing organization is the organization of the rank and file. It is your answer to the politicians, the oflicinls, the traitor: and the betrayers in our party, who seek to maintain themselves and their clique in control, despite the fact that the membership clmon for new policiu.
new tactics, new spokesmen.
Now a word as to the heinous crime of having an organization within an or anization. The Right Winger: claim that the uni and hit: have no control of such an organization. Our answer it that die rank and file have control, but the machine p034ticiaru have not. That in wh theylreop to it so bitterly. But let us put question in way.
Have the rank and file an op onunity of controlling organization: outside of the organization and: the Call and the Rand School?
We accuse them of having organized organizations outside of the organization. which are mod harmful to the Socialist movement. We occult: the Right Wing of controlling the mud casing to it that the ring and file have no any in their ment, ownership or control. II the red card per se an open sesame to those outside organizations?
The charge has been made in the oficial. organ of the Right Wing, The Socialist. that the ldt Wing is the only organisation where the red card is not honored. That in not true. The fact in that thallAaoocistion ndthol llndfimmLcldm