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Western Clarion Sep 16, 1920

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A Journal of
Official Organ of
Number 827
Twice a Month
Concerning "Rights"
IT is characteristic of the Classical Economists
that they should have taken the laws of private property for granted as something fixed and
immutable. This followed naturally from their belief in a "natural order" governed by "natural
k laws,'' and under which mankind were endowed
with "natural rights'*—the right-to life, liberty,
•property, contract, the pursuit of'happiness and so
forth. These beliefs formed the philosophic background for the principles. of individual initiative,
personal 'enterprise, free competition and "laissez
faire" which were the outgrowth of the conditions
following the revolution in industry 4n the eighteenth century; and which formed the intellectual
stock-in-trade of the l-ising middle-class, fast becoming dominant, and of their political spokesmen, the
Liberal party.
This may be observed in the literature of the
bourgeois revolutionary period as, for instance, the
Declaration of Independence and the Declaration of
the Rights of Man. It will also explain why the
petty bourgeois • reform parties are so much given
to insisting on "human rights." A case in point is
that of the S. L. P., who used to insist upon "the
inalienable right of all men to life, liberty and the
pursuit of happiness."
Sir Henry Maine has laid it. down as a generalization, that modern, civilization, considered as a
process, consists in a progression from status to
contract. That is to say, from a condition in which
a man's standing or position in society determines
his duties and privileges and the services to be
given or received, to a condition in which his actions are governed by contracts either implicit in
society or freely entered into. There is, under
feudalism for instance, no question of rights as we
understand the term. Custom, prescription and
birth dictated what one might require of others and
what one had to do in return.
This process, the substitution of rights for priv-
ileges, has gone on very unequally in various countries, being dependent on the" extent to which these
countries were industrialized. A new transition
period has, however, resulted in a general house-
cleaning in the matter of ideas and opinions and the
doctrine of "natural riglits" is now very generally
discredited. As a matter of fact there are no such
rights. A man living in isolation could obviously
have no  'rights" whatever.
"So far from being absolute or natural or
necessary to every State of society, these
Rights have always been limited, have always
been changing, and have their origin and
justification in social  expediency."—Ely.
Now, then, these rights, which we shall now
call legal rights, are fundamental institutions or conditions of the capitalist system and,
as they can no longer be takem for granted as having been "established by Nature," modern economists find it necessary to devote some space to some
account of their origin and nature and to show'
some cause for their continued existence. This
applies more particularly to the "right of property."
Such justification usually consists in an appeal to
their "social utility." It is argued that they are
necessary to the continued existence of society as
we know it and promote the well-being of men in
"History and facts show in that private
ownership has, up till now, been the best con
dition of utilizing wealth, the most energetic
stimulus to production."—Gide.
Hand in hand with the use of the bourgeoisie and
the development of industry there grew up the modern State.   Let"us hear Prof. Ely:
"For the maintenance of these fundamental
conditions of the existing social order which
we have described, we are dependent upon
the State. No other instrument of Society is
adequate to the task." v
We shall now hear Prof. Commons:
"The necessity of a sovereign power employing force is shown'by the-following facts:
(1) Private self-interest is too powerful, or
.     too ignorant, or too immoral to promote the
common good without compulsion.
(2) The common wants of society—justice,
roads, military defence, etc.,—can be supplied
only by compulsory contributions for individuals, and compulsory administration of government.
Law is the expression not of the whole society, but of the sovereign element or social
class. It is imposed simply by virtue of the
might residing in government. The most obvious characteristic of law is that it is coercive. Even when it operates in favor of the
legitimate actions of individuals, it does so by
restraining any interference with such action.
•At the same time, laws are not the fortuitous and blind coercion of nature. There are
always human purposes underlying the enactment of laws, and the'se are the purposes of
whatever may be the ruling political class at
the given time, and in the given country. These
may be good or bad. Historically considered,
they may be classed as follows:—
(1) The determination of the ruling classes
to exploit other classes.
(2) The desire of the ruling classes to realize
certain ethical and political ideals.
(3) The desire of the ruling classes to facilitate or suppress the industry of the country.
It is the function of the State, by means of law,
to create and define legal rights. This it does in
its legislative capacity.
It is also its function to aid and conserve legal
rights; to enforce the performance of contracts.
This is carried out by means of the courts and the
machinery "whereby the physical force of the State
is set in motion through appropriate State officers
to carry the judgment into effect."'
"A right (in general) is one man's capacity
of influencing the acts of another, by means
not of his own strength, but of the opinions and
the force of society. A legal right is a capacity
residing in one man of controlling, with the assent and assistance of the State, the actions of
others. TFmt which gives validity to a legal
right is, in every case, the force which is lent
to it bv the State.
< *
An analysis of a legal right shows it to be
the result of the following elements:—
(1) The person entitled—A person in whom
the right resides, or who is entitled to the right,
or who is benefited by its existence.
(2) The Object.—In the case of property
rights, an object over which the right is exercised.      ,
(3) The Act or Forbearance.—Acts or forbearances which the person in whom the right
resides is entitled to exact.
(4) The Person Obliged.—A person from
whom these acts or forbearances can be exacted; in other words, whose duty it is to act or
forbear for the benefit of the subject of the
Personal riglits have been variously classified but
may be given as:—
(1; Life.
(2) Liberty.—Personal freedom, freedom of
movement, of enterprise, of employment and of contract.
(3) Property.
Further consideration of this subject will involve some occount of each of those classes, and
will make clear the general bearing of these remarks and why personal rights are so important to
capitalist society. Sufficient for the present to gay
that the continuance of the capitalist system depends on the maintenance of certain of these rights,
for the simple reason that the legal claims which
result in the appropriation of the products of labor
as rent, interest and profit are based on them. The
S:ate, us we have seen, guarantees these rights and
the e'aims Wised on them. It is for this reason that
the apologists and defenders of capitalism agree in
denouncing the Socialist movement as an attack on
the State and society as at present constituted.
It is my opinion that they are quite correct.
The works quoted in the foregoing are :—
The Distribution of Wealth   Prof. Commons
Political Economy   Prof. Gide
Elementary Economics ........ Profs. Ely and Wicker
Jurisprudence  Holland
Socialist Party of
We, the Socialist Party of Cansda> affirm our allegiance to,
and support of, the principles and programme of the revolutionary  working elass.
Later, applied to natural resources, produces all wealth
The present economic system is hased upon capitalist ownership of the means of production, consequently, all the products of labor belong to the capitalist class. The capitalist
is   therefore,   master;   the  worker  a  slave.
So long as the capitalist class remains in possession of the
reins of government, i|ll the powers of the Slate Will be rtscd
to protect and defend its property rights in Ihe means of
wealth  production and  its  control of the product of labor.
The capitalist system gives to the capitalist an ever-swelling stream of profits, and to the worker, an ever-increasing
measure   of   misery   and   degradation.
The interest of the working class lies in setting itself free
from capitalist exploitation by the abolition of the wage
system, under which this exploitation, at the point of production, is cloaked. To accomplish this necessitates the
transformation of capitalist property in the means of weatlh
production   into  socially  controlled  economic   forces.
The irrepressible conflict of interest between the capitalist
and the worker necessarily expresses itself as a strugvle for
political   supremacy.    This   is   the   Class   Struggle.
Therefore, we call all workers to organize under the banner
of the Socialist Party of Canada, with the object of conquering the political powers, for the purpose of setting up and enforcing the economic programme of the working class, as
follows: ,
1. The transformation as rapidly ag possible, of capitalist property in the means of wealth production
(natural resources factories, mills, railroads, etc.)
into collective means of production.
2. The organization and management of industry by
the  working class  .
3. The establishment, as speedily as possible, of production for use instead of production for profit. PAGE TWO
Economic Causes of War
Article No. 12.
MOROCCO, on the African coast, opposite Gibraltar, is one country above all others that
brought about the cessation of the hostile attitude
of England towards France, which had existed for
centuries. The first International Convention over
the affairs of Morocco was held in 1880, on the
question of trade being extended to all nations,
largely owing to German influence. In 1890 Germany signed a commercial treaty with Morocco for
rive years, and informed the signatory powers of
the Conventoin of 1880 that she would not ratify
the treaty if they objected. Britain supported Germany at this time. It was at this period that the
Emperor visited England, once in August, 1889, and
again in July, 1891, where he became exceedingly
popular. Heligoland was transferred at this time,
and there were other transactions with Germany
in .1890, to withdraw her opposition to British enterprise in Egypt. Yet we are told that Germany prepared for forty years to make war on Britain.
In 1891 Lord Salisbury dispatched a-commission
to Morocco, defining British policy as having as its
aim the independence and integrity of Morocco. This
commission was supported by Germany, but was a
complete failure because of the intrigues of France.
The Moorish Minister prevented the Sultan from
concluding a British treaty, having received $10,000
from the French agent at Fez, the capital of Morocco. The French cause during the nineties advanced slowly, but in 1901 when Britain was busy
with the Boer war, France pushed ahead with a
burning wish to avenge her collapse in Fashoda,
where she had challenged Britain's position in
Egypt, but had to withdraw owing to the failure
of her ally, Russia, to come to her aid.
France annexed the Tuat oasis together with two
other places she had threatened in 1891. A French
subject was murdered at the psychological moment,
and the French Minister in Morocco demanded the
dispatch of a couple of men-of-war. The Sultan,
seized with panic, made an agreement with France.
This was the time the British press said: "If the
French cannot cease their insults their colonies will
be taken from them and given to Germany and
Italy." This was but fourteen years before the
Great War. The "Daily Mail," November 9th, 1899,
said: "The French have succeeded in thoroughly
convincing John Bull that they are his inveterate
enemies, and that all attempts at conciliation are
useless. There will be no more such attempts. England has long hestiated between France and Germany, but she has always respected the German
character whereas she has gradually come to feel a
contempt for France Nothing like an entente
cordiale can subsist between England and her nearest neighbor. Enough of France; she has neither
courage,"foresight, nor sense of honor."
In 1902 France approaches Spain secretly to divide up Morocco. The British lion hears of it, and
although France promises diplomatic support, the
Spanish Prime Minister takes cold feet and resigns,
The opposition returns to power at the general
election. The new Prime Minister, who favored the
treaty in the opposition, refuses to ratify it, and
then France begins to make overtures to John Bull.
The young Sultan of Morocco, who had become
Europeanized and extravagant, was unpopular. In
1903 he borrowed $4,800,000 from French, Spanish
and British syndicates. In the summer of 1904 these
loans were paid off, but only at the price of contracting a much heavier liability towards France
alone, amounting to $12,500,000 bearing interest at
five per cent. This loan was confined to French
banking establishments and was practically forced
upon the Sultan by M. Delcasse. M. Jaures in the
French Chamber, pointed out that by clever manoeuvring on the part of the French bankers in Morocco, that Morocco actually obtained $9,500,000
the banks made a profit of $2,500,000, Morocco paying interest on the full amount of the loan.   To
secure the interest on this loan, the Sultan consented to set aside 60 per cent, of the customs receipts, which virtually gave France control over
the customs to that extent. Further small loans
were contracted in 1905 and 1906. A portion of
these loans was spent in purchasing guns and am-,
munition from the French war industry, Le Creu-
sot. This firm, I may say in passing, refused to sup-'
*ply Britain with war material during the Boer war.
In 1904, Spain, France and Britain signed treaties regarding Morocco. They published that part
of them which dealt with the upholding of the integrity and independence of Morocco, but they
secretly agreed to divide her up whe'n the opportunity arose. This secret arrangement became public when the crisis of 1911 arose, when Germany
wanted to maintain the independence of Morocco.
In April, 1904, when the secret treaties were unknown, Prince Buelow, answering a question in
the Reichstag, declared he had no reason to believe
they were directed against Germany. Bi'itain's opposition to France in Morocco was bought off by
France withdrawing her opposition in Egypt, but
Britain stipulated that Spain would control Morocco opposite Gibraltar, and build no fortification's
or lease this to any other Power.
Article 10 of the secret treaty provides that all
schemes for public works, railways, etc., mineral
development and economic undertakings in general
in the French and Spanish spheres respectively,
shall be executed by French and Spanish enterprise.
Germany being alarmed, managed to get the Sultan
to call a general conference in 1906 of all the Powers
to discuss the status of Morocco. German trade
with Morocco amounted to over 14,900,000 marks.
M. Deschanel, President of the French Parliamentary Committee on Foreign Affairs, admitted they
could not ignore the German efforts in Morocco for
half a century; the travels of her explorers, the
activity of her colonists, her agricultural and mineral enterprises, her steamship lines and post offices. She participated in the tobacco monopoly, and
Krupp and other firms held a preponderant position
in the mining interests, extracting iron. Her enterprise developed harbor works and public drainage, a bank, a newspaper printed in German, and
a tobacco factory. The Germans held more land
paid for in cash in Morocco than all other nations
combined, and without massacre or pillage they
established industries by the peaceful penetration
At the opening of the Conference of Algericas,
an act was drawn up in the name of "God Almighty," based upon the sovereignity and independence of the Sultan, and upon economic liberty
without any inequality. All existing treaties were
to remain, but in case of any conflict the Algericas
Act fchall prevail. Britain, France and Spain signed this Act with the firm intention of never observing it. The French ignored the Act in 1911, applauded by the British press, and with the open
approval of the British Foreign Office the French
marched on Fez because it was reported to be
blocked by insurgents, and that Europeans were in
danger. Spain, despite French protests, proceeded
to occupy territory which was promised her in the
secret arrangement of 1904. This was the position
when Germany made the display at Agadir with
the warship "Panther." Lloyd George compared
Germany to Dick Turpin, and practically uttered an
ultimatum when addressing a meeting of bankers in
London, July 21st, 1911. .The Sultan of Moroccco
believed Germany to be his friend because she insisted on the independence of Morocco, but it was
discovered that she was willing to let France con-
Irol the country in return for compensation elsewhere. The crisis was ended by France ceding
(hat part of the Congo known as the Cameroons to
Germany, who recognized France in Morocco. So
near was war that Jowett, M.P. for Bradford, told
us that Britain had her torpedo nets laid, but the
differences in the British Cabinet and the unpre-
paredness of the German bankers enabled the inevitable clash to be postponed."
This was another example of the methods of the
upholders of integrity and independence, and a lesson on how to divide Morocco. Germany upheld
that independence, not because she is any better
morally than the others, but because of her economic interests.
Tardieu, in his "French Alliances," page 190,
quotes Prince Buelow >as saying in October, 1905,
''In Morocco we have important economic interests;
we intend to safeguard them." And on another
occasion: "I consider the duty of the German Gov- t
eminent to see that in the future our economic in-
forests are not injured If any attempt is
made to. modify the international situation in Mor-    i
oceo or to check the open door in its economic development, we must see more than ever that our
economic   interests   are not   endangered."      And    •
again: "Our interests are first and foremost commercial. . . . We owe it to ourselves to protect our
* |
commercial interests in Morocco, and we shall protect them."    Germany did not raise her objections
to  the French attitude in Morocco until Russia,
France's ally, had been defeated in the war with    i
Japan, yet Tardieu says on page 194: "In spite of
the disorganization (of- the Russian army) inevit-    „
ably caused by an unsuccessful Avar, England, who,
had France been willing, would have made war in    j
Although it was'1911 before France carried out    ■
her designs on Morocco, she bpmbarded Casablanca    '
in 1907 because some European workmen, who were    |
building a railway for a French syndicate, had been
killed.   This road was being built through a Moor-    ,
ish cemetery, the desecration of which created an
opposition by the natives that developed into a riot.
The  French permanently occupied Casablanca as
the first step in the greater grab of Morocco. France
also used the incident of a Frenchman being killed    ;
to enter the interior, and she never withdrew, al-    i
though Germany protested as she had a right to do    '
under the Algericas Act.   This Act also stipulated
that tenders for erecting public works or furnish-    i
ing supplies should not contain any condition of a
nature to violate the principle of free competition,
or. to place the competitors of one nationality at a     (
disadvantage against the competitors of another.
In the British and French agreement regarding
Morocco the governments declared themselves
"equally attached to the principle of commercial
liberty," also that they would not "countenance
any inequality either in the imposition of custom
duties or -other taxes or railway charges .... that
the trade of both nations should enjoy the same
treatment in transit through the French and British
possessions in Africa." *
For information in greater detail on Morocco I
would suggest the reading of Ed. Morel's "Ten
Years of Secret Diplomacy," or his "Secret Diplomacy in Morocco." A study of history has inevitably led me to the conclusion that British antagonism to Germany did not arise until 1904, and then
as a result of German commercial rivalry.
Moneys as under received by Local (Vancouver)
No. 1, S. P. of C, from Local (Winnipeg) No. 3 :—
Donation Local Winnipeg, S. P. of C $ 25.00
Donation R. C. McCutchan    10.00
Collection, minus.expenses, Winnipeg Workers' protest meeting, Strand Theatre,
August 15th  *    86.60
P   • j \,;
1',-St .  .
The Effect of the Peasants' Revolt
WE have noticed in previous issues that the
Peasants' Revolt was a secular rather than
religious movement. It was the culmination of an
effort on the part of peasant and artizan to wrest
certain privileges from the ruling class of England.
Still, the circumstances of the case forced the move-/
ment to assume a religious phase. There was no
possibility of the workers organizing in any other
than a religious manner.
In feudal England there was not that great
migration of workers from one section to another
that we find today. Most of the inhabitants residing in a manor had been born and reared in the
same locality. Manufacturing industry had not yet
developed to the stage where a large influx of workers, skilled and unskilled, was imperative. As the
whole social group was confined practically within
tjie boundaries of the manor it can easily be understood that the business of every individual would
be well known to all his neighbors. There would
be no opportunity for effecting a combination of
interests. along political or industrial lines.
Though the lord of the manor might, himself, be
absent from his domain for lengthy periods, his
affairs were always carefully attended to by his
agents who were left in charge. They would detect,
with little difficulty, any organized attempt on the
part of the workers to overthrow the power bf their
owners and rulers. The bands of armed followers
possessed by the feudal lords would soon make
known as Lollardy, which was founded by the
Eerfsi as the latter would be poorly equipped and
trained in a military way.
An organization making use of religious weapons,
however, would not be subject to the same scrutiny. Such was feasible. For many years previously religious divisions had existed. All sections of
the ruling class had not accepted the same plan of
salvation. From the rising manufacturing and trading classes bitter hostility to the Church of Rome
was becoming apparent. This antipathy had its
incentive in the wealth possessed by the church
rather than in the doctrines preached, and the
schemes formulated, for entering the kingdom of
heaven. The established church by relegating to
itself the right of specifying what should, and should
not, be investigated and explained had become a
decided brake on progress and, in consequence) incurred the enmity of those who found it compulsory to understand the ways in which nature worked, as well as the physical properties of the materials they used, before production and exchange
were at all possible.
The direct result, of this clash between those
economic interests was the religious movement
known as Lollardy, which was founded by the
famous ecclesiastic Wiklif. There was nothing proletarian about this religion. The fact that some of
the greatest dignitaries of state, persons of power
and affluence, aligned themselves with this attack
on papal authority is a pretty fair indication of
whose interests were best conserved.
But out of the ranks of the Lollards emanated
a force unseen by the leaders of church and state.
The "poor priests" whom Wiklif commissioned to
carry the new doctrines into the midst of the
populace carried them to a greater extent than
their masters desired. Those priests, coming in
contact with the peasantry and artizans of the town,
were not slow in seeing the identity of interests existing between all members of the lower orders, and
the necessity for combining their forces in opposition to lord and manufacturer. Those, them were
the agents chosen by the discontented serfs to further their cause and "present their demands in a
formidable manner. Thus, through the channel of
a religious movement, the secular interests of a
class were presented and advanced.
Just what followed the fateful day at Smithfield
is still problematical. Young Richard, mounted on
a fiery charger, receiving from the Mayor the head
of the rebel Tyler, and triumphantly dictating terms
to a broken and beaten mob would surely indicate
that the whole rebellion was a dismal failure, and
the conditions of the peasantry rendered doubly
unbearable. .But such a conclusion is scarcely warranted by the facts. The immediate victory lay
with the heads of the state. The rebels were dispersed. The Mayor — Walworth — was knighted
and given dictatorial powers over the city> while
the insurrections that still lingered or threatened
were suppressed by drastic measures. A number of
ring-leaders met their doom at the executioners
The Essex insurgents sent a committee to the
King to arrange affairs in an amicable manner.
They were told that the pledges made during Tyler's
regime counted for nothing, as they were extorted
by force. Anyway they did not conform with the
law of the land, and could not be binding. The
charters were soon declared invalid. The king himself was greatly incensed. His reply to the committee that ''Villeins ye are and villeins ye shall
remain," shows that no sentimental sympathy, as
told by some modern historians, was fostered by
the head of the realm. Now, with the conditions
favorable, he was doubtless anxious for vengeance.
His first step was to issue a proclamation which
formally revoked all the charters issued at Mile
End. Both those of manumission and those of amnesty for crimes done in the early days of the revolt were consigned to the flames. But, authoritative and arbitrary as were the measures devised by
Richard, it -must not be concluded that he possessed, even temporarily) the power to exact vengeance
in whatever manner he desired. The victory was at
no time so decisive as to warrant the annihilation
of the opposing forces.
Neither was London the exclusive scene of revolt.
In Kent, Essex, Norfolk, Suffolk, and Cambridge
they had outbreaks following that of London. The
means of communication in those days were crude
and unreliable. When the news of Tyler's revolt
reached the outlying shires, these in turn resumed
the attack, which was continued till several days
later, when the news leaked through of Tyler's defeat and death.
There is one thing we cannot fail to notice in the
course of the revolt. This is the fact that the most
violent outbreaks, and the most determined onslaughts, occurred in those shires where the conditions of the peasants were relatively good. In
Kent and Norfolk—the richest shires in England—
the greatest attempts at securing'freedom were
made. The stage they had already reached in their
development was sufficient to whet their appetites
for a larger measure of freedom even though they
had to secure it by armed force. Nowhere either
in England of 1381, or in Germany of 1525, de we
find those sections on which the feudal yoke pressed heaviest taking any i ive or stubborn part in
the rebellion. They were beyond the stage of asserting themselves.
When parliament met in the following autumn
the legislators were in an angry mood. They were
not in any degree the representatives of the enslaved class. The interests of their masters—the
landlords and manufacturers—were uppermost in
their minds. The illegality of the pledges and charters granted by the king was explained. The repeal of the charters was endorsed. They decided
that no manumission of serfs could be decided upon
without the consent of all who had an interest in
the matter. Still regardless of their partiality to
the owners, and animosity to the owned, they were
compelled to act wjith caution and deliberation.
Harsh measures would only lead to another out
break. Their experience in the last one was sufficient to convince them of the desirability for
peace. Another insurrection and all property
rights might collapse. With this in mind they applied the soft pedal. The king was advised to grant,
amnesty to all with the exception of a few of the
most violent and outspoken leaders. No obstacle
was placed in the way of manumission.
• In examining the authorities for a general summary of the revolt and its results we are unable to
find an unanimous verdict. Rogers and Stubbs are
convinced that though the formal victory lay with
the masters the real victory was with the workers.
Rogers, in particular, draws a rosy picture of the
results from the standpoint of the peasants. He
claims that all the demands of the landlords were
dropped, and that such terror was caused in their
ranks by the attack of the peasants that the latter
gained all the redress they demanded without delay.
The English labourer, he asserts, became virtually
free and constantly prosperous for a century or
more succeeding the revolt.
On the other hand Reveille, who probably examined more minutely than any other authority the
manorial records of the period, is not nearly so
confident concerning the rebels' success. In this
connection it may be, noticed that access to documents of several centuries previously does not necessarily imply that the conclusions arrived at are always sound, or the records properly studied. In
many cases two impartial judges might easily arrive
at altogether different decisions after viewing the
evidence. Maillard, Cunningham and Powell seem
to lean to the side of Reveille.
Oman probably sums up the situation as best as
such could be done in one paragraph when he says
that "Neither villeinage nor all the manorial grievances in the country-side nor the class wars within
the towns, were in any sense brought to an end by
the popular outbreaks that we have been investigating. The problems were settled so far as they
were ever settled, by the slow working out of economic changes."
To the student who makes use of the materialist
conception, to explain the cause, origin, and existence of social and political events, the path is clear.
The Peasants' Revolt is one of those inevitable
manifestations of discontent and violence that class
society engenders. There is nothing to be gained
either by lavishing sentimental eulogies on the rebel
peasants of '81, or by deploring the judgment of a
class who made a move to right wrongs that they
little understood. A moment's reflection suffices
to show that there are periods in the course of class
society when the economic conditions make imperative an outbreak on the part of the oppressed.
Such spasmodic clashes are inherent in a system of
slavery. Regardless of how little or much they
may accomplish, so long as the social structure is
built on a class foundation, rebellions and revolts
are a logical sequence.
The Peasants' Revolt did not terminate, any more
than originate, the conflict between landlord and
peasant, or merchant and wage laborer. The strife
continued afterwards as it had before. Villeinage
had started to make way for a new system long before the revolt. Gradually, changing conditions enabled the serfs to commute all liabilities for money
payments. The old system died from natural
causes over a period of several centuries. When it
ceased to function properly there remained but one
alternative—it must cease to exist. This villeinage
did. It vanished away almost imperceptibly as
social and economic changes demanded its removal.
The Peasants' Revolt remains as one of the landmarks, or decisive points, in a gradual change.
Western Clarion
A Journal of History, Economics, Philosophy,
and Current Events.
Published, twice  a  month  by  the  Socialist  Party  of
Canada 401 Pender Street East, Vancouver, B. C.
Phone  Highland   2583
Editor Ewen MacLeod
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AN astonishing document has been issued,
August, 1920, by the Department of Labor,
Canada, entitled: 'Information Respecting the Russian Soviet System and its Propaganda in North
We thought the day had gone by when any action
or pronouncement of Hon. Gideon Robertson, Minister-of Labor, would astonish us. By our estimate of
that worthy, based upon past experience, we did
not expect to experience surprise at anything he
might do. This pamphlet, however, is of the political muck-raking order, and it would seem that it
has been compiled by some press hireling whose
moral code is as loose as payment dictates. Everyone is familiar with the manner of propaganda that
evasively and scurrilously suggests, without the
appearance of direct lying and falsehood, the case
of an-opponent to be of such .a nature as is commonly understood to be subversive of the ordinary
decencies of life. This is just such a document. Its
opening paragraphs announce that'thi Department
of Labor has been at pains to gather information
from reliable sources respecting the Soviet system.
We hold no objection to that, but nothing in the
ill-conceived and shuffling paragraphs is presented
to show it. The usual half-truths that are in the
lying dailies are there, to be sure, and their ar-
jangement is not of a very clever order of workmanship. The attempts at discrediting the various bodies of working-men and others in Canada are crude
and amusing. That is where our astonishment
comes in. We did not think Hon. Robertson could
amuse us. The document places us in some queer
company, but it has just discovered that we are engaged in the spread of Socialist propaganda in Canada.   Alas for our efforts of many years.
And we have a grievance. The Hon. Minister
failed to send us a copy. From our examination of
the one we appropriated, we conclude that we shall
be glad to freely distribute the hollow screed as
fairly good propaganda—for us.
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A MAN who has frequented the halls of learning may conceive a grudge against us if we
should classify him as being in fit company with
such an example of mental artificiality as the Hon.
Robertson. And, to be sure, Ave are quite willing to
concede varying degrees of mental health in our
several opponents. In another column we present
the reply of our Winnipeg comrades to John Mac-
Lean (not the John MacLean) who has forsaken a
professorship in mathematics for the more lucrative practices of the law, with an ever open avenue
of relief in times of stress, in the press.
This John MacLean has been writing a series of
articles in the "Free Press"'(Winnipeg), on the
industrial situation in Canada, and in his seventh
article he devotes three columns to the Socialist.
Party of Canada. We usually are consumed with
awe in the presence of so learned a. person as a professional mathematician, and it is ordinarily our
pleasure to make haste to grant him a point at once,
bearing in mind always that a point has no dimension.
But the strange circumstance that surrounds our
opponents always is that they just will not gather
the information, about us, that lies at their door.
This one charges us with having changed front,
from a "ballot-box" party before the war, to a
party of reyolutionists after the Russian Revolution
of 1917, and the queer thing about it is that Mr.
MacLean bases his whole contention as to this
point, on the S. P. of C. Manifesto. He quotes the
Introduction to the Fourth Edition of that Manifesto in support of his claim, assuming that it was
issued for the first time in or after 1917, whereas it
was issued in 1916, and the Introduction to the
Fourth Edition appeared in the "Western Clarion"
of 1st February of that year. But this is not all.
He quotes various sections of the Manifesto to show
that we have changed front, since 1917, and these
paragraphs have been in the S. P. of C. Manifesto
in all its editions, for more thar! ten years.
So that, bad as Mr. MacLean thinks, us, we have
to say that he must have been asleep for ten years,
for we have not changed our fundamental basis in
that time, and he can locate the sentences which impress him so forcibly in our literature of that time.
Some other items might be dealt with, but we shall
leave him to the eager attentions of the Winnipeg
comrades. His critical and somewhat appreciative
testimonial to our reasoning capacity is quite welcome to us, but he doesn't have to lie about us.
When we proceed to a criticism of our masters, we
don't have to introduce the lying habit. If these
people who so dislike us would come to us for all
the information they need about us, we would be
awfully truthful. But then of course they won't,
because if they met with the truth it might consume them.
We would direct Mr. MacLean's attention to the
fact that the Fourth Edition is now entirely sold
out, and he may now provide a customer for a copy
of the Fifth. Our readers will see, elsewhere in this
issue of the "family journal," the text of the preface. The Preface to the Fourth will appear in the
new edition also.
Book Review
THE STATE AND REVOLUTION: Marxist, teaching on
the State and the task of the Proletariat in the Revolution.
124 pp. paper, Is. 6d- By V. I. TJlianev (N. Lenin). Published by the British Socialist Party and The Socialist
Labor Press.
THIS book is one of the finest I have read by
any Marxian scholar. He shows how Kaut
sky distorts Marx because of the conflict of Marx
and the opportunist, attitude of Kautsky. Lenin
resuscitates the real nature of Marx's teaching to
offset the widespread distortion of Marxism.
Lenin begins with Engels' "Origin of the Family," where Engels summarizes his historical analysis thus:
"The State in no way constitutes a force imposed on
society from outside.   Nor is the State the reality of
the "Moral Idea," the image and reality of Reason, as
Hegel asserted.   The State is the product of society at
a certain stage of its development.   The State is tantamount to an acknowledgment that the given society has
become entangled in an insolutable contradiction with
itself, that it has broken up into irreconcilable antagonisms of which it is powerless to rid itself.     And in
order that these antagonisms, these classes with their
opposing* economic interests may not devour one another and society itself in their sterile struggle, some
force, standing, seemingly above society, becomes necessary so -as to moderate the force of their collisions and
to keep them in the bounds of order.   And this force
arising from society, but placing itself above it, which
gradually  separates  itself  from  it—this   force  is  the
Lenin says that this expresses in all its clearness
the basic idea of Marxism on the question of the
historical role of the State.   When, where and to
what extent the class antagonisms of a given society cannot be objectively reconciled, the State is
the  product and  manifestation  of the irreconcilability of class antagonisms.
Lenin points out the attempt made by petit bourgeois to make the State an organ of the reconciliation of the classes, yet according to Marx the State
can neither rise nor maintain itself even if the reconciliation of the classes were possible.
The opportunists twist Engels' withering away
of the State as to mean a gradual process by means
of political representation and government majority. Lenin goes into the whole argument' and
points out that the capitalist State is destroyed by
the proletarian    revolution, while the    withering
away refers to the remains of the proletarian
State, which will become superfluous when it represents the whole of society.
The Kautskian opportunists repeat the phrase that
what Marx taught was "The proletariat need the
State." Lenin goes on to say that they forget,
however, to add that they need only a withering
away State, and the proletariat organized as a ruling
class need a State which is a' particular form of'
organization of force to hold down some class, in
this instance the exploiting class.
Lenin quotes from Marx's "Civil War in France,"
"The Eighteenth Brumaire," "Communist Manifesto," "Poverty of Philosophy," and makes
Kautsky look like ten pins.
When Lenin goes into the dispute between
Marx and the Anarchists, he points out that Marx
protested, not against the abolition of the State,
when classes disappear, but against the workers who
should deny the use of the State to break the resistance of the exploiters. The anarchist idea of
the abolition of the State is muddled and not revolutionary. Lenin points out that when Engels wrote
to Bebel on the nonsense of the People's Free
State, Engels said that during the period when
the proletariat need the State, they do not require
it in the interests of freedom, but in the interests
of crushing their antagonists.
This letter had been hidden for thirty-six years,
and first published in Bebel's "My Life". (1911).
Lenin says:
"Kautsky still continues to repeat those very mistakes
against which Engels gave his warning.''
Dealing with the religious question, Lenin points
out that Engels said in relation to the State "-religion is a private matter," but totUy the opportunists have twisted this to mean religion is a private
matter in the party.
Lenin is very lucid on the withering away of the
State, which also means the withering away of
democracy, and says:
"At first sight such a statement seems exceedingly
strange   and  incomprehensible-   Indeed   some   one  or
other may begin to fear lest we be expecting the advent
of such an order of society in which the principle of
majority rule will not be respected—for is not Democracy Just the recognition of this principle?   No, democracy is not identical with'majority rule.   Democracy
is a State which recognizes the subjection of the minority by the majority."
He points out that during the development of
Socialism into Communism, people will grow accustomed to observing elementary conditions of social
existence without force and without subjection.
"Between capitalism and communism there lies a period of revolutionary transformation from the former to
the latter. A stage of political transition corresponds
to this period, and the State during this period can be
no other than the revolutionary dictatorship of the pro
letariat." (Marx).
Lenn says:
"Marx grasped the essence of capitalist democracy,
when in his analysis of the Commune, he said, that the
oppressed were allowed once every few' years to decide
which particular representatives of the oppressing class
are to represent and repress them in Parliament."
I have only touched the fringe of the book, and
would advise all Socialists to get a copy.   It sells at
one shilling and sixpence, so that locals could order
bundles  from  either the  British Socialist  Party,
21a Maiden Lane, Strand, London, W.C.2, or The
Socialist Labor Press, 50 Renfrew Street, Glasgow.
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A Journal of History, Economics, Philosophy and
Current Events.
Official Organ of the Socialist Party of Canada
'Issued twice-a-month, at 401 Pender Street East,
Vancouver, B.  C.   Phone: High. 2583.
Rate:   20 Issues, for One   Dollar   (Foreign, 16
issues.)    Make all moneys payable to E. MacLeod.
For enclosed herewith
send • issues to:—
The Economic Development
.of Russia
' The subjoined letter has not, so far as we know, been pub
lirhed before in English. We translate it from the French,
in which language it was originally penned, towards the
year 1880. Found in Marx's posthumous papers, it was first-
published in a Russian periodical during 1888, was reprinted
by Nikolai-on as an appendix to his work upon the economic
development of Russia, and was reproduced in he Mouve-
ment Socialistc for May 24, 1902. In the aforesaid appendix
Nikolai-on explained that during the latter half of the decade
1870-80 there was a lively controversy in Russia anent the
ideas put forward by Marx in the first volume of Capital.
In 1877, Mihailovski, taking part in the controversy in answer
to critic of, Marx named Zhukovski, pointed out that in the
concluding section .of his book Marx was not merely concerned with giving a historical sketch of the opening phases
of capitalist production, but had done much more than this,
for he had expounded a complete theory of the philosophy of
This theory, continued Mihailovskii, is of universal interest; but for Russians the interest is supreme. If we fully
accept the philosophic system of Marx, according to which
every nation, in the course of historical development, must
incurably pass through the capitalist phase, then every
Russian disciple of Marx, if he desire to be consistent, must
play an active part in the process which divorces labor from
the means of production," which expropriates the peasants,
which mutilates the organism of human society, and threatens the future of the human race. On the other hand, this
same Russian disciple of Marx must regard as his ideal, that
ownership and labor should coincide, that the actual producers should own the land and the other means of production.
We had not had the advantage of reading Marx's letter
when we wrote the article "Short Cuts in Social Evolution,"
which appeared in the "Plebs" for February and March, 1918.
We now subjoin the full translation of Marx's reply to
Mihailovskii—E. and G P.
THE author of the article "Karl Marx before,
the Tribunal of L. Zhukoviski" is evidently a
talented man, and had he been able, in my account
of primitive accumulation, to discover a single passage in support of his conclusions, he would have
quoted it. In default of such a passage, he is compelled to avail himself of a controversial excursus
against a Russian belletristic writer printed in the
appendix to the first German edition of "Capital"
(suppressed in subsequent editions). In that appendix, what is the charge I make against the Rus-
sion writer? I declare that he discovered "Russian
communism,'' not in Russia, but in the book of Haxt-
hausen, a Prussian privy councillor. I show that in
his hands the Russian commune is used merely as an
argument to prove that Europe, aged and corrupt,
must be rejuvenated by the victory of panslavism.
The opinion I pass on the aforesaid Russian writer
may be sound or unsound; but it certainly cannot
be regarded as furnishing a key to my views concerning the efforts "which the-Russians are making to discover for their country a developmental
path different from that which'western Europe has
followed and is following."
In the postscript to the second German edition of
"Capital," I speak of an "eminent Russi'an critic
and man of science" with the deference which is
his due. This writer, in a series of remarkable articles, discusses the question whether, as the liberal
economists wish, Russia should begin by destroying
the rural commune in order to .pass to the capitalist
regime, or whether, without having to endure the
tortures of that regime, Russia can enjoy all its
fruits by developing her own historic possibilities.
This writer favors the latter solution. Now my
excellent critic would have just as much right to
infer from my appreciation for this "eminent Russian" that I share his views, as to conclude from
my polemic against the panslavist and belletristic
Russian writer that I reject the views held by the
But since I have no wish to leave my readers to
guess at my meaning, I shall speak without circumlocution. To enable myself to acquire a first-hand
knowledge of the economic development of contemporary Russia, I learned the Russian tongue, and
I then devoted myself for many years to the study
of official and other publications upon the subject.
I arrived at the following conclusions: If Russia,
continue to advance along the road entered in 1861,
she will lose the finest opportunity history has ever
offered any nation, and will expose herself to all
the vicissitudes of the capitalist regime.
In the chapter on ^ The Secret of Primitive Accumulation" I have merely attempted to trace the
steps by which, in western Europe, the capitalist
economic order emerged from the womb of the feudal economic order. This chapter describes thy?
movement whereby the producer was divorced from
the means of production; the movement whereby he
became a wage-earner ( a proletarian in the modern
sense of the term), and the means of production became capita!. In this history 'all revolutions are
epoch-making that act as levers for the capitalist
class in course of formation. ... The expropriation of the agricultural producer,- of the peasant,
from the soil is the basis of the whole process." A
little later, in the chapter entitled "The Historical
Tendency of Capitalist Accumulation," 15 affirm
that the last word of that tendency is the transformation of capitalist private property into socialized
property. I offer no proof of the assertion, for the
excellent reason that it is no more than a summary
restatement of the arguments given at length in the
chapters on capitalist production.
Noav, what application to Russia was my critic
entitled to deduce from the aforesaid historical
sketch1? Nothing beyond thfs; that if Russia attempt to become a capitalist nation, following the
example of the nations of western Europe (and of
late years Russia had taken a great deal of trouble
to achieve this end), she will not succeed without
the preliminary transformation of a large proportion of her peasants into proletarians. Thenceforward, having entered the capitalist fold, Russia,
like the rest of the capitalist flock, will be subject
to the enexorable laws of capitalistic development.
That is all. But it is too much for my critic. He
finds it absolutely essential to transform my sketch
of the genesis of capitalism in western Europe into
a hisiorico-philosophical theory of general social
evolution. According fo this theory, such an evolution is inevitably imposed on all nations, whatever
the historical conditions of their environment. According to this theory, they must all in the end
achieve an economic structure which will ensure,
concurrently with the highest development of pro-
ductice power for social labor, the fullest integral development for man. But I ask my
critic's pardon. He is at one and the same
time too kind and too unkind. Let me take
an example. In various places in "Capital," I refer
to the fate of the plebians in classical Rome.
Originally these plebians were free cultivators;
they were peasants, each tilling a plot of land on his
own account. In the course of Roman history they
were expropriated. The same movement whicii
divorced them from the #neans of production and
subsistence, implied, not merely the formation of
great landed estates, but likewise the formation of
large aggregations of money capital.. Thus it came
to pass one fine day, that there existed, on one side,
free men dispossessed of everything except their
labor power; and, on the other side, as potential exploiters of this labor power, the holders of all accumulated wealth. What happened? The Roman
proletariat did not become a class of wage workers
but a mob of idlers more abject than the .sometime
"poor whites" in the southern States of the American union. Side by side with this development, there
came into existence a method of production based
not on capitalism, but on slave-holding. Thus events
striking in their analogy, but occurring in different
historic media, led to totally diverse results.
Those who study these evolutions separately, and
who subsequently compare them, will readily discover the key to the phenomena in question. But
no one will ever unlock these doors with the master-
key of a historico-philosophical theory whose
•supreme virtue it is to be supra-historical.
"The Plebs" (London), May, 1920KARL MARX.
This pamphlet has been in the hands of the working ilass
for  ten  years.    Over  20,000   copies   have   been    •> i,   i.nu   \ *
the   demand   continues   unabated,   we   are   venturing   another
We have had criticisms from all partB of the English-
speaking world, and have, after much discussion, revised
some theoretical errors and obscurities. It has been our care
in making these corrections not to interfere with the work as
a whole, preferring to leave it, as far as possible, just as the
author, who is dead,' wrote it.
The Preface to the Fourth Edition draws attention to the
Great War, and was written shortly after the world went
mad, like the dog in the poem, for spite. The real causes of
the war were set down, causes which very few today care to
deny. We took the stand then that the war was not regrettable, and the grounds that "forward it must carry us
to the Social Revolution." And we set down this principle-
that the outbreak of peaVe would be ''as cataclysmic as the
I outbreak of war." There are other forecasts we could claim
credit  for, but let these suffice.
That we have been carried forward toward the Social devolution requires no proof. The Russian Revolution has been
carried through and the working class of Russia are masters
of that country. They have retained mastery after almost
three years of warfare against both the victors and vanquished of the Oreat War. They have overthrown the national autocracy which was suited to early capitalism, have ,'
conquered the seat of power from tne capitui.sto, i.-e '.it
down a dozen counter-revolutions of formidable character,
which were strongly * supported by foreign powers, have
driven several foreign armies from their territories, iyU have,
isolated from the civilized world, evolved an economy which
has fed and clothed, ami uruieu the men who aocoujpiiuaeu
this amazing  feat.
It is a working class achievement and harbinger of the
accomplishment possible when the workers take control of
social  life.
It is fortunate that Russia was the first to revolt. We, can
conceive ^-of no other country so admirably situated Which
could have withstood the rain of tire and brimstone showered down by the outraged Ood of Capitalism. Its geographical position prevented the capitalist world .from bringing all I
its tremendous resources to bear, and its wealth of natural resources neutralized the Allied blockade. If they- have sinned
against the Holy Ghost in revolting before the evolutionary
alarm clock culled them, we freely forgive them, and humbly
hope that those who await the appointed hour, will bear
themselves "as  manfully.
Other revolts which followed the war were for tho time
being crushed. The reports from Hungary show to what
lengths a master class will go in avenging itself upon an unsuccessful working class revolt. That the Hungarian revolt
was premature, in so far as the suffering entailed by Hungarian workers is concerned, we will concede, but social development is not concerned with human suffering ur human
happiness. We have all seen if we have not all \jeeu seized
with it, the madness that causes a man to strike blindly at
some inanimate'object, which iu some innocent manner causes
him injury. Aud in just some such manner do revolutions
occur, not frWfii any premeditated- design, but from the inherent consequences of a particular social condition. While
we confess the difficulty, nay. the well nigh impossibility,
of organizing a revolution, we can at least try to Understand
one when it occurs, and we can furthermore realize the inevitability of a social change iu a world where social changes
have been constantly occurring since the dawn of civilization
and  the  advent  of  slavery.
It is for the purpose of furthering an understanding of this
social phenomenon, inherent in a system where man is enslaved by man, where in the midst of plenty, the powerful
many are starved and sweated by the feeble few, that thiB
Manifesto  is  issued. '
A thorough understanding can only come by study of the
actual conditions which confront mankind. We do not pretend to reveal the secret in these pages. All we hope to
attain by inducing the members of our class to read this
book is, to call their attention to the fact that a thorough investigation has been made of society, and the results are
available to almost any one who will devote gome time and
a little cash to that end. '
The Great War has torn down, with that careless and
aimless ruthlessness manifest in natural forces, many barriers' to social progress. It has, just as the Crusaders did
for the rising capitalist class, thrust the working class into
positions of power which they cannot help but enlarge. It
has, just as the crusaders did to the feudal barons, torn from
the hands of the capitalists many of their most powerful
weapons. It has further, just as the Crusaders did, disrupted the economic machinery of the ruling class. It has
in short,   carried  us  forward  to  the  Social  Revolution.
This is so apparent, and the murmurings of revolt are so
frequent—thunderings would be a more appropriate word, but
we admire the soft pedal,—which, coupled with the manifest
stupidity of the official hirelings of the capitalist, might precipitate a revolution in half a dozeu countries iu Europe.
Socialist literature abounds with information which discloses
ihe economic motive underlying every move of the reoi ur
peace conference, and which also shows' the utter impossibility
of currying into effect the proposals of the Versailles Treaty,
or the League of Nations. Lloyd George can no more create
a nation than he can create the country they are to inhabit •
Millerand cannot extract tribute from Germany without injuring France any more than he could cut off his arms and increase his strength. These are facts known to all students of
Marxian'Socialism, to which this pamphlet is an introduction.
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An Answer and a Challenge
MacLean, ex-Professor of Mathematics in the
• Manitoba University (who for the past seven
weeks has been contributing articles to the Winni-'
peg "Free Press") has evidently forsaken the science of which he is an expert, to indulge in excursions into the realms of Economics, Sociology, and
the position or principles of the Socialist Party of
Canada, where he evidently has not made the same
thorough and systematic study as in mathematics,
or, allowing that he. has thoroughly studied the subjects mentioned, then he is guilty of misrepresenting or misconstruing, for such a mixture of truths,
half-truth's, un-truths and meaningless platitudes it
is hard to find anywhere, and any member of the
Socialist Party of Canada who has-, been a student
for six months would have no difficulty in answering the learned Professor.
In his seventh article, which is a general confusion
of words and ideas, the writer either misunderstands or is misrepresenting materialism, the Materialistic Conception* of History and the tactics of the
Socialist Party of Canada. Learned Professor,—
the philosophy of materialism has nothing to do with
the ideal motives of the individual, therefore, we
fail to see why Socialists, being Materialists, should
be the greatest, bluffers in the world. Materialism
in Philosophy is simply an explanation of the Universe, or a question whether we need go outside or
beyond the world that we perceive with our senses
to get to the "real world." Are the objects around
what they appear to be or do they possess something in themselves that is distinct and separate
from their qualities or attributes as perceived by
us? Do ideas have any real independent existence apart from matter or are they merely the reflection of the material world? The answers "yes"
or '"no" to these questions determine whether they
are Idealistic or Materialistic in character. Applying the materialistic principles to history we have
Historic Materialism, or the Materialistic Conception of History. In other words, are changes in the
material conditions of life caused by changes in
.ideas, or are changes in ideas due to the changed
conditions of life, which have largely been brought
about by changed methods of production and distribution? Do the general ideas prevalent in any
given epoch precede or proceed from changes that
have taken place in the way a people get their
The Materialistic Conception of History maintains
that in any given epoch changes in ideas are due
to changed material conditions of life, and while
many factors may enter to produce a change in the
material conditions of life, changed methods of production and distribution have basically been the
most important. Historic Materialism then, has
nothing to do with the influence of, or adherence to,
the ideal motives of the individual, nor with anyone wdio is gross, mean and egotistical and seeking
his own personal ends, or again, the materialist of
Professor MacLean's description, ''who may consider any means justifiable which will compass an
object one may have in view." Such are found
most anywhere and everywhere, even to adherents
of Idealistic Philosophies, who are but victims of
the system of competition under which they live,
and even the worthy Professor may not be altogether guiltless if he has written these articles for
a monetary consideration.
The tactics of the Socialist Party of Canada, we
are told, have been changed, first, from the use of
the ballot to the advocacy of direct action or use of
physical force and violence, and again since the
strike, reverted once more to the ballot, and so have
again come within the law. We are told that tho
first change was due to the Russian Revolution—
to the Bo'sheviki regime. That is, that the Socialist
Party of Canada, advocating direct action, was responsible for the Winnipeg general strike, which,
when not successful in producing a revolutionary
change, the ballot was again resorted to. This contention is not borne out by th#e facts. The Socialist
Party of Canada has always realized that it is an
educational body, using at all times, when possible,
the ballot by placing candidates in the field to that
end, because we realize that social production produces ideas of social ownership, and being victims of
the material conditions under which we live, naturally we are impelled to the spread of these ideas,
Avhich. when they permeate the minds of the majority of a population, that majority will seek to gain
control of political power, and when that occurs a
revolution has taken place, a political revolution,
which has follewed a revolution in ideas, and both
have been preceded by an industrial revolution.
Mr. J. MacLean, ex-Professor of Mathematics,
you will admit that when the majority are in favor
of a given solution to a question they are not .seditious in taking the necessary measures to apply it.
The Socialist Party of Canada, therefore, is more
concerned in making Socialists than in advocating
either party reforms or direct action, for reforms,
even when granted, do not materially benefit the
workers, nor do they prevent the accumulation of
wealth of those who own the means of life, or stop
increasing poverty and misery to the mass of toilers
who own nothing but their power to labor. As for
direct action, why the advocacy, when the majority,
having certain ideas, can take the necessary steps
to fulfil them?
But it is not always possible for the party to
nominate and run candidates for political honors,
sometimes due to financial reasons and at times due
to the bias existing. During the period of the war
Socialists were decidedly unpopular, when any of its
speakers might have been at any time victims of
physical force and violence. Nevertheless, the
Socialist Party of Canada contested various constituencies during the war period: 1916, B. C. Provincial Elections, four candidates; Alberta Provincial Elections, 1917, five candidates; one candidate
(B.C.) Dominion Elections, 1918.
The Winnipeg General strike was not caused by
the Socialist Party of Canada, or by any change
(which did not occur) in its tactics, but was the result of conditions. The workers had passed through
a war period, and while during that period their
monetary wages had increased, the purchasing power or real wages had decreased. Expressed in the
workers' terms, while the weekly pay envelope contained a twenty-five to forty per cent, increase during the period of the war, the cost of living nearly
doubled. Hence, not being able to maintain their
standard of living the workers made an effort, by
striking, to do so. Out of this general condition
arose- a general strike, which spread both East and
West. Revolution? Why mention it? The majority of the workers in Canada were not Socialists,
and therefore did not strike to realize social ownership. There was no attempt at revolution, peaceful or otherwise. The workers were not demanding
the full product of their toil, they were only striking to recover their standard of pre-war times.
Socialists know this, and knew it in 1919.
The Socialist Party of Canada did undergo a
change, like all other socialist organizations the
world over,, which was directly due to the success
of the workers in Russia. Prior to the Russian Revolution, Socialists, while considering the collapse
of capitalism in'evitable and that Socialism was the
logical outcome, still its establishment was considered vague and was a matter of speculation. Although Socialism is not the system of society in Russia, the workers have gained control, and control
through .their form of organization, namely, the
Soviet. The success of the Russian workers has
certainly acted as a stimulus to Socialists the world
over.   The establishment of Socialism is not now
so vaguely considered for the dim and distant future, but to the near future, because it has proven
•the Socialist contention that if the workers have
the necessary intelligence to produce the wealth of
the world under capitalism for their masters they
can also produce for themselves. Steps to this end
are now being taken in Russia. Social ownership
is the object. Social ownership of the means of
life is also the object of all Socialists, hence the
stimulus produced by the success of the Russian
worker, which, however, did not change an educational organization to advocate direct action, nor
turn a body of students into a band of bluffers who
would use any means to attain their object.
Professor John MacLean,—The Socialist Party of
Canada hereby issues a challenge to you to prove
in public debate your knowledge of Economics and
Sociology as represented in your articles, and also
to prove your statements respecting the tactics of
the party. In doing so we are governed by ideal
motives in that we desire to correct incorrect im-
presions, rectify half-truths and untruths, eliminate your meaningless platitudes ,and unravel the
general confusion of words and ideas so that you
may not in future impose too much upon a long suffering public without knowing better.
(Winnipeg Local No. 3).
Conflicting ,U. S.
THE fight that is now going on in the United
States between the steel interests, which function through the Democratic party, and the oil and
coal inerests, which function through the Republican party, for the control of the political machinery of state; the campaigns of propaganda carried
on by the oil.interests for intervention in Mexico;
the backing of the Polish invasion of Russia, and
for a mandate of Armenia by the steel interests, all
of which are of course carried on under the cloak
of looking after the welfare of those peoples, tells
its own story.
The steel interests, which have become international under the Harvey Steel Trust, are dependent
largely upon the oil and coal interests of the United
States and Mexico for their fuel. Therefore we see
Davidson, of the house of Morgan, becoming very
solicitous of the sufferings of Poland and Armenia
trying to bolster up the campaigns against Russia
by government appropriations, and failing these,
through the Red Cross and other benevolent activities.   Why?
That the steel interests may get hold of the vast
oil wells of Russia, thereby obtaining an independent supply of oil, the fuel of the immediate future.
On the other hand we see the coal and oil interests
(Rockefeller), blocking every move of the steel
interests (Morgan), in order that it may not have a
competitor for its own commodities nor lose the
markets which they now control.
To cover their ulterior purposes they both carry
on campaigns of falsehood, that the dear public, of
which they are mighty solicitous when they want
something for themselves, may be deceived into
turning over to one or the other of these vast interests the administration of the government for another four years.
We are paying a great compliment to Russia in
expecting her to accomplish her task of reconstruction which took us {hree times as long under much
less trying circumstances, after "our" revolution.
It only remains for the workers of the United
States to unite with those of England, France and
Italy in "Hands off Russia," and she will work out
her own salvation. KATHERINE SMITH.
Countering the Counter
DIPLOMACY goes softly through the bewildering tangle of cla'ss confusions, measuring, testing, guaging the temper and spirit of the times, balancing and calculating the conflicting powers of
progress and reaction, watching with the deep cunning of man, waiting with the infinite patience of
the wild for the psychological moment when, in its
ethic of frightfulness, it may set ignorance against
his brother discontent. And all at the behest of
a master class, soulless with the soullessness of
economic power, hesitating at nothing to preserve
its property right in social necessities.
When Imperialism first found itself checked by
Sovietism, it hurled its forces in terrible fury against
this emblem of social liberty. And diplomacy, true
to its nature and origin, fulfilled its mission perfectly, in so far as its purblind masters would permit. Thus Kolchak and his atrocities were curtained off from the world; it drew a veil over the
doings — or rather misdoings — of Denikin and
Wrangel; it excelled itself on the matter of the
Allied alliance with Von Goltz; and vindicated its
own ethic in the "white" regime of Mannerheim
and Churchill. Negotiations see-sawed in conformity with the movements of the field forces. When
counter revolution advanced, negotiations lapsed;
when revolution triumphed, negotiations were eagerly revived. Because, at no matter what cost, Bolshevism must be outfought, or outmanoeuvred. From
every point of the compass comes the same sordid
story, the same black duplicity, varying in cunning
and stagnation, constant in objective and force. Yet
Sovietism emerged from the ordeal, not scathless or
idyllic, but clear of mind and straight of purpose,
flushed with a new consciousness of power, passionate with a new meaining of life.
And now, again, is the scene changed.
Even as the first flood of military aggression
battered against Soviet Russia in vain, so now has
diplomacy recoiled before the gathering necessities
of social development. The triumph of the workers'
Soviet—that first faint harbinger of the civilized
commune—marks the beginning of a new epoch in
world development. And the failure of diplomacy
to effect a patchwork truce between the irreconcil-
ables (capital and Sovietism) marks the close of the
first chapter in the new era. For with the fall of
Poland—or even but a threat to its nationalism—
Sovietism has definitely entered the field for world
But while Russia is thus a rival with capital for
world dominion, it is not the old capitalist rivalry
of economic supremacy. It is, or! the contrary, the
rivalry of Socialist society, the fundamental rivalry
of a new social order, of communism against class.
We have, therefore, openly and unmistakably entered the field of class war, and the eventful times
of the immediate future will involve the world in a
struggle, the gathering forces of which it feels and
fears, but whose significance, as yet, it wots not of.
Undoubtedly, Britain is the world power of today.
Therefore must the Empire, whereon the sun never
sets, be flung to the forefront of the struggle, and
as the confines of that empire are world wide, so will
the struggle be world wide. Lloyd George is now
threatening Ireland with force. But the wily
"Davie" is bluffing. He knows (and we know)
that the struggle in Ireland is not of class. And
he knows also that although Ireland is the gateway
to the Atlantic trade routes, it is in the East that the
clash must come. And there will the accounting
be. Because Bolshevism, dominant in the West, inevitably threatens the East, and if the British Empire is shorn of its Eastern possessions, it will
crumble away like a cloud in high summer .
The riches of India, the oil of Persia and Baku,
the "mandates" of the Great War, and the desperate necessity of controlling the food-producing
countries will force the struggle out of the murky
shadows, or diplomatic duplicity into the open day,
will change the current of social movement from
imperialist expediency into the wider channel of
social necessity.
From which it follow* that while the common objective of property right will tend to unite capitalist countries against Sovietism and its works, the
conflicting Imperialist necessities and aggressions
of the individual powers will tend,—in an exactly
opposite direction —to divide their councils and
thwart their efforts, even against the common foe.
This mutual suspicion and distrust will weaken their
forces, make their shifty policies more vacillating»
increase internal unrest, and drift the working masses, more clearly, more consciously, and therefore
more determinedly towards the left.
The certainty that class conditions will continue
and increase in intensity, will augment and deepen
the desperate economic plight of the proletariat,'
will consolidate their efforts ,and ' everywhere
strengthen their resistance to the crushing power
of political domination. Out of their miserable necessity, in sheer defence of their very existence, the
workers will',be forced in a definite direction, will
be compelled to take a positive stand, and from those
actions, whatever they may "be, will proceed a new
conscibusness of the meaning of the struggle. With
that revelation will come the knowledge of what
and where to strike to emancipate themselves from
Surely the climax has come. The capitalist class
is now facing its Waterloo. It cannot trade, because, at the same time that capitalist concentration
has eliminated competition, it has also eliminated
the world market. In their confused bungling and
juggling with imperialist necessity, the capitalists
have forgotten (if they ever knew) the supreme
function of social organization—the essential, i.e.,
the economic welfare of the total society. In capitalist society, without the world market, the dispossessed producers must starve—and will starve
—until the movement of the social forces once more
vindicate their supremacy over man and his transient contrivances.
The dominant issue is not empire, but revolution.
The entire world is divided into two camps, and
they clash, sharp as steel, on the fundamental issue
of social control. Each side is gathering its forces
together, with stern intent, and conscious purpose,
and till that issue is settled—and it can only be settled in one way, there will be, there can be, neither
social peace nor social prosperity, nor the rectitude
of social sanity. R.
The Communist Party in
By Arvid Hansen.
IN all countries there are at present in the workers' movement ''Putschists"*—people who
think, or say they think, that knowledge, study,
preparation, are worth nothing, while action, immediate aetifin, is everything. Look at Russia, they
say, a people of illiterates, who really put over their
revolution, instead of talking about it. It is not
education, it is action that is demanded.
Reasoning of this kind may look very attractive
at first blush. The only hitch is that it is not the
illiterates who made the revolution, but, on the contrary, the most educated, most intellectual portion
of the working class, those who not only could read
and write, but also think, people who had acquired
a firm Socialist education and understanding, and
who had already shown themselves to be the possessors of an organizing talent great enough* to enable them to do away with illiteracy in the near
The Communist Party in Russia is not a very numerous party.   It counts not more than half a mil
lion members, but it is a party that has no members
on paper, a party of active units who are not only
masters of the language alphabet, but also of the
alphabet of revolution. Only through a united organization can the party control the situation.
In the larger cities, there are higher educational
institutions for the training of Communists, schools
in which instruction is given in history, particularly
in the history of revolutions, in social economy, and
social politics. Without a certain education, and
without having passed through a practical test, no
one is admitted to the Communist Party. Voluntary
courses in the Communist Party programme are now
to be found in most of the schools in Russia. The
young candidates to the party are sent out as state
employes on the most varying errands, and are
tested through a period of three months; only after
passing the test can they enter the party. They
ai'e then sent as party membei«s all over Russia, as
commissars in order to exercise control over the
administration. In every single school, every single hospital, every single railroad train, etc., etc.,
you will find at least one Communist. The Communists have better opportunities than others for
advancing and are more certain of getting decent
bread. But in return, they must devote their lives
to Communism. It is one of their privileges also to
be sent to the firing line, to the most dangerous positions, when the Soviet Republic, is threatened by
any enemy. During the combined offensive of
Yudenitch and Denikin, 20,000 Communists were
sent to the front at once from their work in the institutions, and it was 300 young officers in training
with revolutionary inspiration from the Moscow
War School, who prevented the Yudenitch vanguard
from' cutting off the railway line between Petro-
grad and Moscow. Very severe demands are made
on-the absolute unselfishness, zeal and idealism of
the Communists. Even a slight transgression of the
party programme detroys one's future. A crime
of selfishness, such as speculation or embezzlement,
if perpetrated by a Communist, is punished inexorably by death, at least in the more serious cases.—
"Soviet Russia," Aug 28, 1920.
*From the German noun "Putsch" an unsuccessful and
premature attempt at revolution.
-: O:
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Make all moneys payable to E.   MacLeod,   401
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(All above post free). PAGE EIGHT
Military Review
By Lt.-Col. B. Roustam Bek.
4t>"T~VHE victory is with the big battalions," said
A   Napoleon, "it can be obtained only by force
and no force is too strong to bring victory."
When the Polish military leaders began their offensive against Soviet Russia four months ago,
with Moscow as their strategical objective, they believed that their army was strong enough to accomplish this difficult task. The Russians, on the
other hand, although their military strength was
superior to that of the Poles, allowed the invasion
to proceed, while they mobilized an army with reserves sufficiently strong and numerous not only to
check.the Polish advance in'Rusisa, but also to resume a decisive counter-offensive.
Following the classical doctrine of Napoleon, the
Soviet strategists looked with indifference upon the
situation of the Russian frontiers, still unsettled
and uncertain, and did not trouble to guard them,
thus leaving open the gates of the Republic. The
attention of the Russian Supreme Revolutionary
Council was concentrated on the importance of uniting all the fighting forces of the Soviets in one
army, which should operate under one trusted leader.   This leader was Comrade S.'S. Kamenev.
Since the beginning of the Polish campaign, the
firm hand of the Commander-in-Chief of the Soviet
Army could be discerned in every movement of the
Red Army, during their most dangerous and daring
manoeuvres, and especially in their retreats. The
latter, on every occasion, were accomplished in extraordinary good order; there was never panic or
contusion. Even the enemies of the Soviets considered the flexibility of the Russian front as remarkable.
The Soviet's military command, with no desire to
achieve a cheap victory, very skilfully evaded the
battles in which their enemy was anxious to engage
the Russians, and did not hesitate to do this even
when the Reds were numerically Superior to the invaders. The main strategical aim of the Soviet
command is the complete annihilation of the enemy forces, and, in order to accomplish this, suitable circumstances must be created. When these
circumstances were lacking, the Russian commander held his forces in check, even at times when he
would have been able to inflict on the enemy's attacking army some considerable tactical reverses.
Let usfremember Kiev. There cannot be any doubt
now that the Russians could have defended the city
and stopped the Poles west of the Dneiper, as well
as prevented their crossing the Dvina and Berezina.
The huge Russian reserves were already in full
readiness about fifty miles east of the Dneiper, and
there was no difficulty in moving them to the battle
front in time. But Kamenev knew well that a battle for Kiev Avould certainly be followed by the complete destruction of this historic city, and, moreover, that it would have been less favorable for the
Russian strategy to engage the Poles west of the
rivers than to Counter-attack them after they had
accomplished the rather difficult crossings, which
they would be compelled to repeat during their retreat under vigorous pursuit by the victorious Red
Army. Furthermore ,thanks to the confusion which
overtook the Polish army Avhen it was forced back
across the Dneiper, Budenny was able to penetrate
in the rear of the Polish battle-front, and thus to
accomplish the gradual annihilation of the Polish
field army.
That this annihilation has been accomplished is
proved by the fact that the Russian Soviet army
not only was able to reach the gates of Warsaw on
August 15, but, as I predicted, entered, on August
17, the northeastern part of that city, situated on
the right bank of the Vistula, and known as Praga.
More than that: the fortifications of Modlin (Novo-
Georgievsk) were under the fire of the Russian siege
artillery. These fortifications, newly built to replace the former Russian fortress, are situated about
twenty miles northwest of Warsaw, where the river
Bug joins the Vistula, and. presents one single
stronghold, ably protecting the entrance to the city.
Furthermore, the appearance of the Russians at
Plock, about thirty-five miles west of Novo-Georg-
ievsk (Modlin), on the Vistula, and later in Wlo-
clawek, northwest of Modlin, thus completely cutting off communications between Warsaw and Danzig, both along the Vistula as well as by the War-
sr,w-Bromberg railway, proves that the Reds have
accomplished a gigantic movement, encircling the
whole Polish army in that region.
From a military standpoint, the Soviet troops
had already reached Warsaw on August 17. The
Russian cavalry, having crossed the Vistula at several points, entered Praga, as I have said, and we
must note that Praga is even closer to Warsaw than
Brooklyn is to New York. Being masters of the
the east of Warsaw, of Novo-Minsk (twenty-two
miles from Warsaw); Tluszcz (eighteen miles);
Radzimin (twelve miles); and* of several points
within range of field artillery ofthe city, and, at
the same time, encircling Warsaw on the northwest
, and northnorthwest, there could be no doubt in the
mind of aay military expert that Warsaw was
bound to fall, after the bombardment of the city,
the usual procedure in such cases.
I expected that at any moment we should hear
of the shelling of the city, which, from the tactical
point of view would have been a normal development of Ihe military .operation.
We must not forget that Warsaw is not a fortress, as I have already explained in my former
article. The population of this town is about
1,000,000, and it must have grown even more,
thanks to the presence of great numbers of refugees.
I must point out an important fact: in most cases
the military command of a besieged town is far from
any idea of surrender, and is forced to raise the
white flag either to avoid the useless bloodshed of
the civilian population, or compelled by the latter to
capitulate to the enemy under a menace of revolution. Military history is full of such examples.
The national spirit of the Polish people in Warsaw
was nt a high level of patriotism, which was strongly supported by the Catholic clergy. Therefore the
borbardment would have had to be of a most vigorous character, and consequently would have caused
tremendous loss of life and property.
As I have often pointed out, however, the Soviet
strategy aims not at the occupation of one town or
another, but rather* at the annihilation of the enemy's fighting force. Destruction of the enemy's
forces can only be accomplished in the field. It
has already been clearly shown in repeated instances that the Soviet strategy does not aim at un-
neeesary destruction. The recapture of Kiev was
accomplished without bombardment—the Poles left
ii. "tfhen they lost their battle in the field. Not one.
bomb was dropped from the air on Warsaw, while
leaflets covered all the streets of the city, after they
were dropped by the Russian airmen in great abundance. ,
Thiis it is clear that the Russian military command decided to forego the cheap and easy victory
of reducing Warsaw, hy terrible destruticon, in favor of the larger strategy of drawing the Polish
army out for complete destruction in the field.
Once more the Russian General Stajf has succeeded in deceiving the Franco-Polish command, as
was also the case during the "great offensive" of
the Red Army in April, which was considered by
. the Allies as a decisive movement on Warsaw.
The absence of bombardment by the Russian artillery was explained by the Polish military leaders
by a lack of guns in the hands of the Reds.   Finally,
as was anticipated-by the Russian command, the
Poles undertook a desperate sortie from Warsaw, a
movement which has been erroneously called in the
papers a Polish offensive.
Tn such cases usually a sortie is a very fierce venture, and as the Reds are weak in number, they rnusl^
lose ground in that sector and retreat towards
Brest-Litovsk, and even further to the east.
So, practically, Warsaw remains without any gar-
nson, as the latter was sent out to the field, while*
the city remained still encircled and seriously threat
ened, from the north and north-northwest, without
any hope of support irom outside.	
Suffering from a lack of reserves, and using even
battalions of women, the Polish centre is approaching the river Bug, where fresh Red reserves are in
full-concentration to meet the enemy's foolhardy
The southwestern Russian front is gradually advancing on Lemberg, which is now within range
of the Soviet artillery. I am absolutely convinced that the complete defeat of the Polish armed
force is a matter of but a short time, for%the following reasons: 1. The Poles have already lost
their field army, during the constant battles since
the beginning of March, 1920; their reserves were
already almost annihilated during their flight
from Kiev. They have at their disposition a
newly-formed militia, and the troops which garrisoned the fortresses, which they are now using
for their so-called offensive. 2. They have Hal-
ler's army in Galicia, of considerable Value, but
part of that army was removed to Warsaw at the
request of their French military advisers, 3.
The situation in West Prussia is very alarming for
the Poles, and requires serious consideration, because the hostile feeling of the German population
against the Poles is growing there, as may also be
noticed throughout Germany. 4. That the British intend not to interfere with the Soviets is becoming apparent, and Danzig may even be guarded by the British navy from any attempt by the
supporters of the Poles to send them arms, ammunition and men; this is sufficient for an understanding of the grave situation in which the Polish strategy is now placed. 5. The Polish command knows very well that it cannot count on
any reinforcement from the Allies, nor does it
count.at all on Wrangel's army in South Russia,
especially since England has pronounced her re-
cisive word and the workers of Europe have made
their final decision to prevent a war with Russia.
6. The morale of the Polish army is very high,'
supported as it is by the national and religious
feeling of the imperialistic portion of the Polish
population. The truth is hidden from the Polish
people very carefully, and the time is near when
it will come out; then the morale of the people
must collapse, and finally it will collapse in the
army also. 7. Three separate Polish armies, or
rather groups, are fighting the Russians now, and
in no case is the latter's army broken up; it is the
Polish "army that is broken into pieces that have
to act independently, in /several sections of the
theatre of war. Should one of these groups be
beaten, the remaining portions will perish, one
after another.
Some of the military critics tried to find a
similarity between the Battle of the Marne and
the so-called "release" of Warsaw. Such a'par^
allel is absolutely erroneous.
First of all, the Allies were in superior numbers to the Germans during the Marne battle, and
the Germans were forced to abandon Paris altogether. Paris is itself a fortress, while Warsaw
is not. Moreover, the Poles never can be superior
in number to the Russians.
"1 have not, however, any doubt that Warsaw
will' fall if war continues," declared Major-
General Sir Frederic Maurice, in the "Daily
News" of August 18. "By throwing in their reserves, the Poles can drive back the Russian ad-
.vanced troops and gain time," he continues, "but
the advantage of gaining time is small unless
there are fresh resources that can be brought into
play, and these the Poles have (not got. The Russians must win through in the end, and the sooner
that plain fact is recognized, the better for every
one.", %
Such a statement by this, important British general is of great significance, and absolutely corresponds with my standpoint, so often repeated in
''Soviet Russia," as well as in the American press.
The hours of the Polish army are numbered.
—"Soviet Russia."
 •- •


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