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Western Clarion Sep 1, 1922

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A Journal of
Official Organ of
No. 874 EIGHTEENTH YEAR      Twice a Month
"A Corporation With a Soul!"
TLIE press throughout the country a week ago
carried big headlines featuring the action of
the U. S. Steel Corporation in voluntarily raising the wages of its employees, affecting many
thousands of men directly in the employ of the Steel
Corporation and lesser independent concerns, and
affecting indirectly wage rates in interlocking industries. The press throughout the country forgot
for the moment to hail this advance as an evidence
of capitalist kindness and, in its inability to understand the nature of the underlying forces operating throughout industrial life was surprised into a
confession that "this wage advance was a shock to
It is worth noting that "the commodity nature
of labor-power," constantly harped upon by Socialists, is accepted as the basis of wage labor and
recognized as such, and the record of it may as well
be set. down here for the attention of the reader,, to
shew that we are not merely theorizing but dealing
with facts as the employing capitalist concerns see
and recognize them:
"Widely varied motives were assigned for the move as
despatches from widely separated localities showed. But
the main reason for the advance probably is that-.the steel
mills needed labor, and went into the market for it just
as they would for any other commodity."
—"Province" (Vancouver) 23 Aug. '22
While the capitalist press has manifested some
interest on the probable general effect of the wage
advance made by the IT. S. Steel Corporation,, the
labor press has expressed some surprise. It is apparently unable to understand the matter and does
not attempt to explain it-, but considers "it is safe
to assume that there is a nigger in the woodpile
some where," (B. C. Pederationist, 25th Aug. 1922).
It is, of course, "safe to assume" that, but it is of,
little use in unfolding the "mystery."
Public attention has been rivetted on the United
States Steel Corporation during the past several
years: in the—for the steel-mill owners—prosperous
war years, and in the period of trade depression following that boom period. Any decision made by so
powerful a concern must necesarily make itself felt
throughout industrial life, particularly in related industries. The U. S. Steel Corporation owns 145 steel
works, over three quarters of a million acres of coke
and coal lands, 993 miles of railway, 1470 locomotive engines and 112 steamships. In addition to
these holdings and its listed assets of approximately
two and a quarter billion dollars, its directors are
directors also of express companies, telegraph companies, steamship lines and other industrial companies, and of banks and trust companies, with a
total capitalization of approximately 40 billion dollars.    (See "Atlantic Monthly," May, 1922).
Much advertisement has been made of the fact
that some few thousands of the Corporation's emn
ployees are "stockowners" but, needless to say, their
holdings affact the policies of the Corporation not
at all, and yield to their owners little beyond a
steady job and an enthusiasm for work. The total
number of stockholders of the Corporation amounts
to over 100,000, but the majority stock is held by less
than two per cent. Since lst April, 1901 (when the
TT. S. Steel Corporation was formed) the Corporation has gained an average net. income of 118 million
dollars per year (after making allowances for all
operating expenses, repairs, depreciation, and sinking funds), which means 13^ per cent, per annum
on the original capitalization of 868 million dollars,
over half of which in the first place represented nothing moi*e tangible than "good-will" "merger
value" and such like considerations.
What is it then that induces so powerful an operating concern, employing hundreds of thousands of
men, to voluntarily raise wages? It has persistently
refused to recognize trade unions and has always
maintained a virulent anti-union policy. It has always actively promoted the arts of union suppression practisel by lesser concerns: discharging union
•members* the black-list, maintaining the espionage
system, spies, hiring of detectives and so forth- active use of organized strike breakers; suppressing
public assembly; controlling the press and maintaining the pulpit: calling in State troops, and generally
doing well what lesser concerns would like to do in
controlling the productive energies of thousands of
men in its employ. Even its most shameless agents
would blush to call it friendly toward labor.
The steel industry of the United States employs
normally "probably 150,000 12-hour workers': . . .
In blast-furnace plants and often in open hearth departments these men work seven days a week. Once
in two weeks they have eighteen-hour or twenty-
) four hour turns." ("The Nation," N.Y., January
26, 1921). The IT. S. Steel Corporation in 1921 employed nearly 70,000 men who worked the twelve-
hour shift. In that year, prevailing unemployment
and the trend toward lower prices enabled the Corporation to reduce the wages of unskilled workers,.
by three successive wage cuts, to 30' cents per hour, '
a total reduction of over 40 per cent., allowing no
extra pay for overtime. The recent agitation for
the three-shift system gained ground through prevailing unemployment conditions, and, placed in
operation   by   about   "twenty   independent   steel
plants representing about 40 per cent, of the
industry" (see "The Nation," already cited) thc
results of this agitation, reported by Mr. Drury of
the TT. S. Shipying Board, showed that another
"shock to industry" had been well received:
"The managers of those steel plants which have
made the change are all glad it has been done. They are
convinced that it was "good business." Increased alertness of the men, with improved quality of product, less
waste, and less wear and tear of equipment have 'been reported; also less absenteeism and less carelessness; and
a better spirit has prevailed among the men. In some
cases the output has been increased and the costs lowered."
(The Nation, N. Y., Jany. 26, '21)
This account* for the changed attitude of Judge
Gary, Chairman of the IT. S. Steel Corporation, always a consistent opponent of the three-shift system. He remains unmoved by the recommendations
•of the Taylor Society, the Am. Soc. of Mech. Engineers and the Am. Inst, of Elec. Engineers. The actual operative experience of rival concerns he can
afford to wait for, and to Mr. Kirby Page.
"Judge Gary expressed the opinion ithat there would be
a heavy increase in labor-costs under the three-shift system. He pointed out that a numher of steel plants have
changed back to the two-shift system after experimenting
with three shifts." (Atlantic Monthly, May, 1922).
As a result of the experiments, the matter of the
possible adoption of the three-shift system, to be
thought of only in so far as it may not "interfere
with the natural and legitimate progress of business," as President Harding likes to put it, has
reached the point where it is under serious consideration as of possible adoption throughout the entire
steel industry, bearing in mind always Judge Gary's
objective for invested capital of a minimum return
of 15 per cent, annually.
"Abolition of the twelve-hour day in the steel industry
was favored by forty-one steel company executives from
all parts of the country who were guests at (the White
House on May 18, and who were asked by President Harding to consider the matter. By formal resolution, the steel
men authorized Judge Elbert H. Gary to appoint a committee of Ave to make a careful investigation of the matter
and report its conclusions to the industry." *
—(Current History. July, 1922)
The steel industry in the United States, employing
thousands of men under intolerable conditions of
labor at the subsistence level of wages has, necessarily, depended for many years upon a steady influx
xof uneducated immigrants into the country for its
supply of labor. Strong men used to long unregulated hours of hard labor have experienced the
meaning of "the right-to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" in the U. S. steel mills. The lesser
the degree of education the better they were received, for the easier were they exploited. Ignorant
and willing workers! So long as they came in sufficient number the steel mills were sure of the labor
•supply they needed.
But while capital likes to have on hand at all
times a plentiful supply of labor, it becomes uneasy
when the supply becomes over-plentiful and growls
hungrily on the doorstep of government offices and
municipal buildings. Thus, in face of a workless
army of millions of men, Congress proceeded to
regulate immigration and there went into effect on
May 19, 1921, the "Three per cent Restrictive Immigration Act," by which "the< annual immigration
from any country is limited to a fixed number, based
on the immigration from that country for a considerable period of years."
The records of the U.S. Immigration Department
show that whereas in the years 1910 to 1914 (inclusive) immigration averaged over a million per year,
the years 1915 to 1921 (inclusive) showed an average per annum of less than 344,000. (See "The
World Almanack," 1922). The total number allowed for by the quota given for 1922 is, according to
"The Province" (Vancouver) 28th Aug., 357,803.
The Act referred to, intended to be operative until
30th June, 1922, has been extended in effectiveness
until 30th June, 1924.
This, coupled with the returns of the U. S. Labor
Department showing a decrease in unemployment,
irrespective of unemployment through strikes and
lock-outs, explains how the U. S. Steel Corporation
went into the market for the commodity labor-power
and) was forced to shock industry by setting such a
bad example as to raise wages. Besides this, according to persistent evidences, there is a considei*-
fible stir in the iron trades and the coal and railway
strikes are, for the moment at anyrate, interfering
with what the manufacturers are interested in, productive and profit making enterprise. "Witness
Henry Ford's ultimatum that his plant will close on
(Continued on page 3) PAGE TWO
The Origin of the World
By R. McMillan.
DID you ever hear that there are more living
things born into the world today that can
possibly live? When a little boy was taken
by his father to see the three new babies which had
recently been born into the family, he looked long
and anxiously at them, and then said: "Pa, which
one are you going to keep?" He thought the babies
would be treated in the same way as kittens and
puppies. If we allowed all the kittens to live, or
all the puppies, the world would soon be overrun by
them. We have to keep some forms of life down for
the sake of the human race; and nature has to keep
some down; and she does so too, but not intelligently.
Nature is hidously cruel and wasteful, and has no
thought of suffering, no heed for sorrow, no plan, no
purpose, no ideal; but—there you are!
In Australia we have a plague of rabbits, and
you wonder why! The reason is very simple. When
the first ones got loose in the bush, they found life
very much to their liking, and very easy. Grass was
plentiful for food, and the soil was loose and friable,
and easily burrowed in; so they reproduced their
hind in obedience to that law which commands all
living things to be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth.
But suppose they reproduce to such an extent
that there is not enough food for them? What will
happen? Will the law be held responsible for having ordered them to reproduce? Oh, no!
They simply die off, as the flies die on a cold day.
Nature does not care. The law* has no sentiment, no
emotions, no care.
Take the flies, for instance. They are marvellous
insects; and if you get a miscrope and examine a
fly's wings, or a fly's eyes, or a fly's feet, you will
be lost in admiration. A "common" house-fly will
produce twenty-five million flies in a season. I have
another calculation made by an American professor
as to, how many flies would be produced by a single
pair in one season, and the number is so huge that
I am utterly unable to explain it or to understand
it, so I take Edward Clodd's moderate estimate of
twenty-five million. And yet a fly is a miracle of
organization. I have seen a section of a dragon-fly's
eye, and it was too wonderful to understand. Instead of two eyes, as we have, it has twelve thousand
eyes, each with its own cone, its own lens, its
own rod. And yet a dragon-fly lives for only a few
days as a dragon fly. Before it becomes a fly it
lives for several years as a pirate in a water-hole;
but that is a different story. The eye of a fly is
too wonderful for words; yet one fly will bring forth
twenty-five million flies with this marvel in a single
What law settles which of the million billion
flies shall live, or which of them shall die? They
have got to struggle to live, just as men and wolves
have; and any slight improvement in any of the billions and billions of flies which enables them to get
a living more easily is transmitted to their children,
and an improved fly results. Then the improved one
becomes the fashion, and it multiplies until is exists everywhere.
It is just the same with fish. T believe the cod
is the most prolific of all the fishes in the sea. It
is said that the roe of a cod-fish contains eight or
nine million eggs. If all that number lived, and
each one produced a like number, there would soon
be no room in the sea for all the codfish that were
What happens to keep them down? Nature,
"kindly Nature," provides other fishes which live
on the young of the cod-fish, and so a balance is
maintained, and the oceans are not overflowing with
cod-fish. If we allowed the rabbit to increase to its
full capacity, Nature would send an enemy to the
rabbit in the shape of disease or devouring animals.
But we trap rabbits, and export them to. England
for food; and we poison them and keep them down,
so that Nature has no need to interfere.
I have not quoted much from anybody, nave I?
It seems to me that I ought to quote from Charles
Darwin's Origin of Species in regard to the way
that Nature works in adapting her children to the
struggle for existence.   He says:—
"A man can produce, and certainly has produced,
a great result by his methodical and unconscious
means of selection. What may not natural selection
effect? Man can act only on external and visible characters. "Nature, if I may be allowed to personify the
natural preservation or survival of the fittest, cares
nothing for appearances, except in so far as they
are useful to any being. She can act on every internal organ, on every shade of constitutional difference, on the Avhole machinery of life. Man selects
only for his own good; Nature only for that of the
being which she tends. Every selected character is
fully exercised by her, as is implied by the fact of
their selection. Man keeps the natives of many climates in the same country; he seldom exercises each
selected character in some peculiar and fitting manner. He feeds a long and a short-beaked pigeon on
the same food; he does not exercise a long-backed
or long-legged quadruped in any peculiar manner;
he exposes sheep with long and short wool to the
same climate. He does not allow the most vigorous
males to struggle for the females. He does not rigidly destroy all inferior animals, but protects during
each varying season, as far as lies in his power,
all his productions. He often begins his selection
by some half-monstrous form, or at least by some
modification prominent enough to catch the eye
or to be plainly useful to him. Under Nature the
slightest differences of structure or constitution may
well turn the nicely-balanced scale in the struggle
for life, and so be preserved. How fleeting are the
wishes and efforts of man! How short his time!
And, consequently, how poor will be his results, compared with those accumulated by Nature during
whole geological periods! Can we wonder, then,
that Nature's productions should be far truer' in
character than man's productions; that they should
be infinitely better adapted to the most complex
conditions of life, and should plainly bear the stamp
of far higher workmanship?"
I must leave you that quotation to think about,.
and you are certain to see how important it is, and
how true it is—if not now, at least later on. There
are millions, billions, and trillions of things born
every year that cannot possibly find roon\ in the
world. If you cannot find room in the world to live,
you die; but very few people see that truth. Nature
has given nobody, no living thing, any "right" to
live. If a beast has longer legs or stronger teeth
than its neighbours, it has a better "chance" to live,
but it has no better "right." And this is the merciless law of life in all lands and times. The law never
alters, never falters, and it applies unfailingly to all.
You will find people who think that man is exempt from Nature's laws; but he is not. We are all
part of the world; we were all in the gaseous cloud
from which the world was developed; and when our
globe has spun round the sun for*its "little day"
(which is millions and millions of years!) and the
heat of the central sun has decreased, then our old
earth will tumble back into the sun and revert to
its original gaseous form. We are one people, all
of us, with one destiny.
Now I want to tell you one fact which will surprise you, I am sure. We know how big this world
is, and we know how much it weighs. We know
how many motions it has, and we fairly understand
. their direction and their velocity. We know also
that the population of the earth is about one thousand four hundred and eighty millions (1,480,000,-
000). I think we are safe in assuming that it has
been as thickly populated as that for many thous
ands of years, for the density of population has
varied in different areas in all times.   We know that
the average of human life is about thirty years, so
that three generations die in less than a hundred
years.    That is to say, more than three thousand
million people die every century.   Can you conceive
of such a vast multitude of human being dying
every century?   When you look around you, with
your friends and relations, and the townspeople not
very far away, you think of them all as being very
important.    But when you look further, and ask
about the origin of the world, you have to think in
vast times and great numbers; and thus you come
to think of the death of 3,000,000,000 people every
century, and you realize that our village, our town,
even our country—yea, our great world itself—signify but little.   Then you recall the words of Shakespeare, and his vision of the world, which,—
Like the baseless fabric of this vision,
The cloud-capp'd towers, the gorgeous palaces,
The solemn temples, the great globe itself—
Yea, all which it inherit—shall dissolve,
And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
Leave not a wrack behind.   We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life is
rounded with a sleep.
Talking about circulation and how to get it, Comrade Sanderson says wc might encourage the guessing habit, to help maintain interest in life if nothing
else. He says; "I suggest that you start a competition in the 'Family Journal.' Say that you put up a
$10,000-prize, to be won by the man who guesses
nearest to the date upon which the revolution takes
place; all guesses to be in prior to the revolution;
no payment to be made until after the revolution.
You could make the conditions that a man be entitled
to-one guess with each sub. sent in, and don't forget
to forewarn them NOT to mark their ballots "Horn*)
and Away."
We're on! Make it a million (or two). Might
as well be in the swim. What with forecasting the
weather, reading horoscopes, following the pennant
and the cup, there's no doubt the working-class is
taking an interest in something. First thing we
know we'll be guessing on what certain editorial
opinion w*ill be next week or the week after.
Anyway, here's seventy-odd dollars that there's
no guessing about excepting as to how to make it
meet a bigger sized bill. The hardest man we've met
at the guessing business is the hungry printer. Here
follows our financial story from last issue.
Following, $1 each—J. F. Tiderington, J. McKin-
ley, J. M. Brown, J. M. Jenkins, C. R, Williams, G.
Gerard, A. H. Russell, B. Peake, J. T. Reed, J. Fisher,
J. E. Anderson, M. Carpendale, H. Wilmcr, A. R.
Sinclair, G. Butt, Lealcss, C. Pakerman, W. H. Cam-
lield, R. Watt, M. Goudie, C. Steen, A. Toppane, B.
W. Sparks, A. Tree, A. Beaton, J. J. Zender, Donald
Smith, E. H. Cove, C. B. Robertson, W. A. Pritchard,
Sid Earp, T. E. Broadland, F. E. Moore, B. Shannon,
E. Simpson, W. Moore, C. F. Orchard.
Following $2 each—J. J. MacDonald, L. Garner,
R. Power, V. Benoit, G. Ewald, G. Lamont, J. C.
Blair, H. W. Speed, J. McDiarmid.
G. Bowden, 50c.; J. F. Kirk (New Zealand), $3.94;
Wm. Braes, $5; Dave Watt, $3; Sam Clementsi 10c.;
T. Smith, 65 cents; L. Audell, $3.
Above, Clarion subscriptions received from 10th to
29th August, inclusive—total, $71.19.
 :o:  •
J. M. Brown, $1; Miss Bell, $1; Mrs. Annie Ross,
$1; P. Wall, $2; J. J: MacDonald, $3.
Above, Clarion Maintenance Fund contributions
received from 10th to 29th August, inclusive—total,
Ourselves and Parliament:
ARISTOTLE, the greatest of the ancients, has
defined man as the political animal, though
we might with greater accuracy call him the
voting animal. It is possible to find other forms of
life which might be understood, in a broad sense,
to be organised politically, but no other form has
ever manifested the slightest evidence of submitting
the regulation of its conduct to a vote.
Within certain limits, and excepting certain periodic lapses, mankind does submit its life, and much
of its activity to the uncertain hazard of a collective
poll. The result may be of the gravest consequence,
but the seal of a voting majority having been announced, all and sundry shape their course accordingly. This is so, whether it involves dispensing
with booze, or endorsing a war.
The reasons are obvious and need not be labored,
the foremost being—that society could not be maintained, even on the lowest conceivable plain, where
every difference had to be decided by cutting throats
of bruising bones. There is, however, another factor which is often entirely overlooked, i.e., a prone-
ness to follow where the race has trod, an extreme
conservatism whieh prompts man to endure great
evils rather than, by a greater or less increase of
discomfort, finally abolish them. He will vote
against them in a feeble attempt to diminish or remove them, but if his other conditions are such that
he can live and hope to prolong life, he will not
readily '' take up arms against a sea of troubles, and
by opposing end them." So that even after having by a large majority set the seal of his approval
upon a certain course of action, he is likely to do
little more than curse if his august commands are
set at nought by those who are pleased to call themselves his servants. Thus tyrannies have been imposed upon free democracies time and time again
with singular ease. Indeed, the blood and suffering
accompanying all efforts to overthrow tyrannies is
in amazing contrast to the facility and perfectly
peaceful manner with -which they are imposed. 1
ihink a very limited range of historical reading
Avould furnish many examples of this social anomaly.
The great voting jag however is when we are
called upon to select a government. This is a periodic affair in all well regulated democracies, and
notwithstanding the tinsel and the trumpets, the
corn broom torches and the band wagon, or the
dawning of the morning after, our fellow's in misery
pursue the even tenor of their way, ploughing and
reaping, spinning and weaving, leaving to their elected representatives the task of governing them. The
fact that these representatives rarely concern them-'
selves about the voters' worries, or their own election promises, has engendered an abiding contempt
for parliament and all its works. However, whether
Galileo said so or not the world does move, and
so do the people of it. Then comes a burst of energy, a contempt for death, and unquenchable demand for change, and—
"The moving finger writes, and having writ
Moves on.   Nor all your piety, or wit,
Can lure it back to cancel half a line:
Nor all your tears wipe out a word of it."
Naturally we conclude that revolution is the
stuff. What's the use of voting when we can get
what we want by fighting? Of course, but softly:
who did the voting and who the fighting? We are
still in the same world, and are still moved by the
same senses, affections, passions; but in a different
fashion, I, fancy. What changed these hurt-fearing
death dreading humble conservatives into revolutionists, welcoming suffering and glorifying death?
Whatever the cause, we may be sure their ideas
had "suffered a sea change into something rich and
The Irishman*of 1913, for instance, might have
had a wish to enjoy all that a 1921 Irishman desires,
but with this difference; in 1913 it was a wish, not
worth tne loss of a meal except to a comparative
few, while in 1921 it becomes a consuming and imperative necessity, cheap il purchased with the last
pang of physical endurance, animating all except a
comparative few. The compunction to fight arose
from the fact that a power existed which could set
their vote aside. But no power existed in Ireland
itself, which would have embarked upon so desperate an adventure. Parliament as we knew it a decade ago has changed. Today it appears as a formal
body giving legality to the will of a select committee known as the Cabinet. Members of parliament have repeatedly deplored the subordinate, if
not obsequious nature of their office. But even so,
we cannot view the financial and social standing
of these mighty ministers of the Cabinet without remarking that they too are subordinate, and very
obsequious to some other power. We see a French
President lodged in an asylum, an American President next door to it, and we read of Lloyd George
tottering to a fall, of Orlando and Clemenceau
banished to the limbo of political lost souls. Evidently there is a power to which the mighty must
render an account.
There is no mystery about this to anyone who
has had some acquaintance writh the Marxian school
of thought. We know that governments are dominated by the powerful commercial and industrial
interests, and we know that parliaments are and
must be the tools of those interests. In spite of this
we constantly hear that parliament has ceased to
function. This is correct if we view the institution as functioning in the interests of all. But to
those Avho adhere to the class nature of society it is
merely confusion worse confounded. True, as we
have remarked, parliament no longer decides, or even
debates to any appreciable degree the issues of
natiorfal, or international policy, but they do stamp
this policy with the print, image, and superscription
of the nation and if it is not-entirely opposed to
the immediate and perceptible welfare of the nation
no question-is made of it.
So that all matters of public policy are subjected
to an extensive and intensive measure of propaganda. Whatever the needs of the dominating
powers might be, they are always very careful to
color those needs in idealistic and patriotic garb,
to the end that the dear people might, in their folly,
find solace in misei-y. This is done by methods that
have long proven their efficacy. Catch phrases such
as free trade serve to delude the voters. If we
realize this, we can also estimate the folly of those
who denounce participation in parliamentary elections.
The Socialist Party of Canada has entered all
such contests with the prime motive of giving the
workers an understanding of the world in which
they live; they have always subordinated the chances
of electing a candidate to that of making Socialists. Whatever the conduct of our elected members has been in Parliament, or will be, we have always held it as of little importance. It is what they
did outside the House which gave us reason to applaud or condemn. And we have had reasons to
do both.
We are under no delusions as to ever being able
to revolutionize society by an Act of Parliament
alone; not that parliament is in itself not so constituted as to effect such a desirable consummation,
but because a master class, entrenched for centuries in all that makes for wealth and privilege, would
not submit, if there was any chance of procuring
workers foolish enough to fight their battles.
It might interest those who decry the contesting
of parliamentary seats, to recall that history records
not one successful i*evolution which did not first
manifest itself as a victory or near victory at the
polls. And so far as that goes few unsuccessful
ones, where the revolutionists had an opportunity
to so express themselves. And this is true1 of today
more than at any other period in the world's hisf-
tory; owing to thc intricacy of the death dealing
machinery, not to mention the intense specialization
of national production. Tho master class always
ignited the revolutionary spark, even when they
did not actually start and feed the conflagration.
So too we have never been deluded enough to suppose that a people too mentally confused to vote
for something would ever fight for it, while in that
state of mind. And if they should develop the temper requisite to a great enterprise, I think, in time
of peace at least they would register that temper
in ways that those who run might read, and those
who read might run, in case they were not like
Parliaments, and cabinet ministers are the tools
of a certain dominant social class, who by virtue of
this domination control all the public forces
of a nation. If we, the Avorkers, could control these
forces Ave Avould be masters, if we cannot we will
remain slaves. This control is supposed to be vested
in parliament, aud for all practical purposes is,
but only when parliament conforms to the historic
economic needs and moral standards of the nation.
Thc national flag, passing through the nation's slums
Avill be received with transports of delight. The
national anthem is baAvled Avith vigor by hungry
slaves. Thousands of Aveary toilers rush through
thronged streets and stand for hours to catch sight
of a prince. Anyone Avho expects revolution from
a people so minded has broken with the real Avorld,
has fashioned an ideal Avorld of his own, and is in
the same mental latitude as the school girl who hopes
one day to displace Mary Pickford, or the school
boy Avho has decided to lick Jack Dempsey.
To those who still see the world as it is, there appears a task of giant proportions, a task almost beyond their strength, and that is the removal of all
sentiment and ideology of master class character
from the minds of the Avorkers, and the introduction
of Avorking class needs, and knoAvledge. To thai
end alone is our aim devoted, and to that end do wc
contest politieal elections. If we should elect a
member, Ave see a member of our class endowed
Avith leisure and funds to instruct himself, and
others. And if he does this, let the votes fell where
they may.
♦—Reprinted from Western Clarion No. 847  (July 16,
1921).    See Secretarial Notes in the present issue.
(Continued from page 1)
September 1.6th unless coal supplies are available;
which means that if labor can't be reduced to terms
in the time exhausted since April 30th, then, gihee
labor is immediately required in basic industries, the
battering doAvn process will have to be immediately
successful or will have to suspend operation until
the need for labor is less urgent.
So "the steel mills needed labor, and went into
Ihe market for it just as they would for any Other
commodity," and the "mystery" is explained. The
apparent kindness is wrapped up in profit percentage, the guiding principle of all capitalist enterprise.
But how did wo come to locate "A Corporation
With a Soul?" Well, the story is told of twenty-
four men once caught in the floAV of molten steel
caused through a break in an improperly packed
tap-hole. "The company, with a sense of the proprieties, Avaited until the families of the men moved
before putting the scrap, which contained them,
back into the furnace for re-melting."
Thc very limit in kindly consideration! "A Corporation With a Soul!"   , E. M. PAGE FOUR
Western Clarion
A Journal, of History, Economics, Philosophy,
and Current Events.
Published twice a month by the Socialist Party ot
Canada, P. O. Box 710, Vancouver, B. C.
Entered at G. P. 0. as a newspaper.
Editor Ewen  MacLeod
Canada, 20 issues     $1.00
Foreign, 16 Issues     $1.00
«»I( this number is on your address label your
H7fcsub8CTlpiion expires with next issue. Renew
" * "promptly.
■        VANCOUVER, B.C., SEPTEMBER 1, 1922
A proposal to recommend to the Canadian Government that a credit of 15 million dollars
be extended to Soviet Russia, made to the
Canadian Trades Congress last week in Montreal,
has brought forth from Mr. Tom Moore, re-elected
president, the statement that he might consider the
matter when the Soviet Government removes its
bayonets from the breasts of the workers of Russia.
Yet, though the Canadian Trades Congress is affiliated Avith the A. F. of Li, and though members of
the A. F. of L. in the U. S.A., in the mining industry,
steel industry, textile industry and so on have become fully familiar with U. S. army bayonets during
the past few years, not a word was heard as to these
little matters. Recent Canadian labor history is not
short of evidence as to the prompt attention Canadian labor receives from Canadian army bayonets during strike times. Indeed, Mr. Moore might have
betrayed a little anxiety over the presence of armed
soldiers sent to Nova Scotia on the announcement of
the miners/ strike and present, there when he was
worrying about Soviet Russia.
HoAvever, Mr. Moore has lost no reputation whatever, for the reason, mainly, that he has none to lose
in this connection. Nobody is surprised anyway.
He is chief trumpeter in this country for Mr. Gompers, and little matters like these "at home" are in
the hands of "good government." No doubt if the
government "at home" would consent to plaster a
union label on army ammunition the country's good
name Avould be beyond evil!
THE two articles,'' Ourselves and Parliament,' -
by J. Harrington, and "The Will of the People," by "R," appeared in the "Western
Clarion," the former in No. 847 (loth July, 1921),
and the latter as an article pertinent to the Federal
election of 6th December last, in No. 853 (15th Oct.
Last January we received a criticism of these tAvo
articles from Comrade John A. McDonald, written in
December when he was in NeAv Zealand. We had
in mind then the interest that might be taken and
the attention that might be given to a discussion on
the matter of parliaments, and left the matter over
until a sufficient time had elapsed to reprint the
articles, whicii is now done. Comrade McDonald's
article, entitled "Parliament or Cabinet—WhichV"
will appear in our next issue, incriticism of the two
articles referred to, together with replies from Comrades Harrington and "R." Comrade McDonald is
now in California and will, consequently, be near
enough to enter further criticism if he desires, in
which event Comrades Harrington and "R"1 will be
entitled to further reply, or to close the discussion
to .whatever length it may go.
• *   •
Through the reprinting of the articles aforesaid
wc have on hand this issue a little more copy than
usually falls to us as our just reward, and an arti-
•      <*le by "R," entitled "The Genius," is held over
nnd will appear in our next.
• •   *
A new feature is introduced this issue under the
pen of Comrade Earp: "The Clarion Mail Bag." The
ide,a is to got Locals and individuals throughout the
country to maintain a correspondence relative to
activities wherever they may be situated. This is
a beginning, and Comrade Earp will look for a
Aveighty mail bag full of interest to record each issue
in future. Give us the neAvs of the movement, so
that we can spread it around.
#   #   *
Street corner meetings every night corner Carrall
and Cordova Street, Vancouver, at 8 p.m. Literature
sellers need help in the work to be done. Get in
and lend a hand.
That "Clarion" sub. that you have in mind, your
own. or your neighbor's, bring it along .It's a queer
circumstance, but we've never been overburdened
with subs, at any time.
Sherlocko on Wages
HE stepped out of the book he Avas buried in,
looked discreetly between pages 234 and 236,
tore off a piece of the cover for further examination, said: "Aha! The paper is made of pulp,
and the tree was cut two feet three and one-quarter
inches from the ground." Then noticing me he exclaimed : " Ohum! Conan Doyle is busy with his false
photographs of fairies, and Watson is left behind.
So I concluded that you are, the only one I can talk
1 nodded agreement.
"Well," he said, "I came across a very complex
case the other day; but, thanks to my inductive
methods, I have it almost solved."
•' Why—is there a conspiracy afoot to destroy
our military virtues by flattening all the bean-bloAV-
ers before Halkyvveen?"
"No, that's not it," he said, 'for all something
like that was done in Washington last winter. You
remember the second-hand book store Avhere you
picked me up, that is, picked up the book I popped
out of?"
1 remembered it.
"And you remember how I was so advantageously placed in the window. At half past seven every
morning a man walked by, each time carrying the
same tin box. His countenance was so bestial that
I became suspicious, and the morning before yesterday I jumped into his tin boxT There was a horrible odor of garlic. It contained slightly poisoned
foodstuffs. I was convinced-of some nefarious plan,
so I followed him. He passed by several places that
Avould have been agreeable to stop at, and at last
turned into a very untidy place still in the process
of construction. There Avere other men similar to
himself. They all laid down their boxes of poisoned
food with their coats (Avhich latter had germs of all
sorts and in some cases the notorious pediculusi ves-
limenti) and then started to mix concrete. They
worked at a tremendous speed, the sweat dropping
from them. Some more men asked if they could help
but w*ere sternly forbidden. That's additional evidence. So I set out to assume a disguise like one of
"Hoav did you accomplish that?" I asked.
"First I took a bath Avhere the sewers empty, to
get rid of this pleasant fragrance of ancient yellow-
leaved volumes, then picked up some clothing from
the dumps, begged a quarter and ate a meal in a
cheap restaurant to give me the proper air. By the
time I returned it Avas noon, and the man I had followed Avas actually eating the food from his tin box
as he sat on some lumber on the sidewaljc. 1 Avas
astounded and so, for all it may have seeined an indiscretion, I asked him straight out! 'What do you
work here for?' "
, He answered: "For four a day."
"Four what" I asked.
"Why, four dollars," he said. "Four dollars is
the wages on this job, and I'll be damned if you can
find better."
"Oh! you work for wages?" I asked him.
'' What else do you think I work for—exercise ?''
he exclaimed, and looked at me with such astonishment that I dAvindled doAvn the street and crept into %
my trusty book cover.   It Avas a mystery for sure,
but I already had the solution at hand.
"Why, where's the mystery, Sherlocko, and
what's the solution?" I asked him.
"Their peculiar conduct and the nefarious plot
they were participating in! But if you'll folloAV me,
I'll explain it all by my inductive method."
"I'll follow, "I said.
"Well, in back of me on the self were some dusty
old tomes on economics. I asked them what wages
Avere. One fat one Avith a priestly air said: "Wages
are the reward of labor." And another that always
lay tilted toward the sky said: "The natural wages
of labor is its full product." But I pressed them
bard# and got it out of them that Adages mean the
price men get for selling their ability to Avork. So
you see I had the mystery solved."
1 confessed to Sherlocko that as yet I saw neither
mystery, nefarious plan nor solution.
"Well" he said, "Its all contained in the implications of wages. You see, if the man could give no
better reason for his Avorking there than that he
worked for wages, it implies a whole wages' system;
otherwise he would have had some special reason for
working for wages, such as to master the craft of
Avheeling a barrow or the art of handling a shovel; .
And again, as all the books on economics agreed that
it is impossible to sell anything unless someone else
has a" use for it, it implies that others could use
these men's ability to work. That, in its course, implies that these other persons had that upon which
the men's ability to work could be used. Now, again,
all the books on economics agreed that a certain reward called, not Avages, but profits, accrues to those
Avho own that by which or upon which the labor of
others is expended. Since the men. worked for Avages
it is beyond a doubt they would' have liked the profits too. That is, it would have been to their advantage to have OAvned the things by which and upon
Avhich their labor Avas expended. Since tftey work
for wages, it therefore follows that they cannot own
these things. Thus a Avages system implies a certain technical development where the means for
production are too great to be owned by the man
Avorking with them. So wages imply that profits, in
proportion "to the greatness of the means of production owned, accrue to those who own them. You
can folloAV it out for yourself," said Sherlocko,
'' and you will see that when that fellow told me he
Avorked for Avages, he explained all about the germs
in his clothes and the poison in his food, why he
Avorked so hard and Avhy the men outside Averen't
permitted to Avork* and further, all about the nefarious plan that he participated in."
"You're right Sherlocko," I said. "Wages imply all that. But where does this nefarious plan
come in?"
"Why, working for wages they were party to a
plan for robbing millions of everything worth while,
of starving others, of spreading disease, of breeding
wars for profit, of making the world miserable in
general.   Isn't that a nefarious plan enough?"
"It is," 1 said.   "It's all clear to me now."
"Not-all clear yet," said Sherlocko. "You see,
AA'hen that felloAV told me he worked for wages, for
all it implied all this, I'm sure he didn't know what
all he said. If he knew as much as he told me, the
men' Avho work for wages Avould take the means of
produation for their own collective use, and then
get the profits too and live decently. But they
don't, and that's the thing not solved yet."
As I pondered over this Sherlocko disappeared
into thc book. But I thought if I were to record this
conversation* for some slave to read, he might delve
into Marx's Capital (which Sherlocko's language
shoAved he was not familiar Avith) or some other -
good booS-.fl on economics and there learn the truth
that will make him and me and our fellow slaves
Concerning Value
"When therefore I say that a commodity has a definite
value, I say:—
1   That it is a socially useful product.
2. That It is produced by a private (individual On his
owfi' private account.
3. That though it is the product of private labor it is,
nevertheless, at the same time and similarly, without his
knowledge or consent, the product likewise of social labor,
and what is more of a fixed and determinate quantity of
such social labor, which is arrived at in a social way by
means of exchange.
4. I express this quantity not in labor itself, in so
many hours of labor, but In another commodity.
If, therefore, I say that this watch is worth as much as
this bale of cloth and both of them are worth fifty shillings,
1 say that in the watch, the cloth and the money an equal
amount of social labor is embodied. I state, consequently,
that the social laibor represented in them has been socially
measured and found to be equal. But wot directly, absolutely, as people measure labor-time to days or hours of
-labor, etc., but indirectly and relatively by means of exchange. I cannot, therefore, express this determinate
quantity of labor-time in hours of labor, for their number
remains quite unknown to me, taut only in a roundabout
way, and, as I say, relatively in another commodity which
represents the expenditure of an equal amount of social
"Exchange-Value and Price merely obtain as- a relation
between commodities, whereas true Economic Value exists
in the commodity per se, as the ground principle of its exchangeability." y
E. Belfort Bax: Outspoken Essays, p. 15(5.
"In the Hegelian scheme of things the only substantial
reality "is the unfolding life of the spirit. In the neo-Heg-
elian scheme, as embodied in the materialistic conception,
this reality is translated into terms of the unfolding
(material) life of man in society. In so far as the goods
(commodities) are products of industry, they are the output-of this unfolding life of man, a material residue embodying a given fraction of this forceful life-process.
In this life-process lies all substantial reality, and all
finally valid relations of quantivalenoe beltween the products of this life-process must. mn. in its terms.   .   .   .
. . -This balance between goods in respect of their
magnitude as output of human labor holds good indefeas-
ibly, to point of the metaphysical reality of the llfel-prooess,
whatever superficial (phenomenal) variations from this
norm may occur in men's dealings with the goods under
the stress of the strategy of self-interest. Such is the
value of Dhe goods to reality; they are equivalents of one
another in the proportion in which they partake of this
substantial quality, although their true ratio of equivalence
may never come to an adequate expression in the transactions Involved in the distribution of the goods. This real
or true value of the goods lis a -fact of production, and
holds true under all systems and methods of production,
whereas \h% exchange value (the 'phenomenal form' of the
real value) is a fact of distribution, and expresses the
real value more or less adequately according as the scheme
of distribution to force at the time conforms more or less
closely to the equities given by production.   ....
. . Under the capitalistic system the determination of
exchange value is a matter of competitive profit-making,
and exchange values therefore depart erratically and to-
contJnenitly from the proportions that would legitimately
be given them by the real values whose only expression
they are."
Veblen: The Place of Science, etc., p. 420.
THERE are, no doubt, many who will dissent
from the view here set out. We shall be told,
by Mr. Louis B. Boudin, for instance, that
- ■ Marx knoAVS of only two kinds of value: use-value
and exchange-value, and Avhenever he says simply
'value' he means exchange-value." (Theoretical
System of Karl Marx. p. 91)
Now, it is my impression that Marx was very
careful in matters of this kind, nevertheless it is
true that he sometimes does use the one term in
place of the other, but only in cases where the term
occurs before the distinction has been developed or
where it is not necessary for the purposes of the
argument. He, himself, points this out. For example :—
"When, at the beginning of this chapter, we said, in
common parlance, tbat a commodity is both a use-value
and an exchange value, we were, accurately speaking,
wrong.   A commodity is a-use-value or abject of utility,
„ and a value. It manifests itself as this two-fold thing, that
it is, as soon as its value assumes an independent form—
viz., the form exchange value. It never assumes this form
when isolated, but only when placed in a value or exchange relation with another commodity of a different
kind. When once we know, this, suchsa mode of expres
siiion does no harm; it simply serves as an abbreviation.-'
Capital, Vol. 1, p. 70.
See also the foot-note on page 62 concerning
another important distinction.
It will be just as well to see Avhat Marx actually
does say on the subject:—
"In tbe labor-process, therefore, man's activity, with
the help of the instruments of labor, effects an alteration,
designed from the commencement, in the material worked
upon. The process disappears in the product; the latter Is
a use-value, nature's material adapted by a change of form
to the wants of man. Laibor has incorporated itself with
its subject: the former ris materialized, the latter transformed. That Avhich in the laborer appeared as movement, now appears in the product as a fixed quality without
motion. The blacksmith forges and the product is a forging." Capital, Vol. 1, p. 201.
That is to say the strength, skill and dexterity
of the blacksmith, constituting the use-value of his
labor-power, being employed in a special Avay upon
appropriate material results in the production of a
specific use-value, a forging of some kind, say, a
horse-shoe. Labor, considered in this aspfect, is
called by Marx "useful-labor" to indicate that it is
homologous with use-value in commodities. It is
qualitative in its nature and effects a qualitative change in the material on which it is
exerted. All this, it Avili be seen, is matter-of-fact.
The Avhole process can be observed from bar iron to
completed, horse-shoe and the duration of this labor
* ean be accurately noted.
Now, if our blacksmith could possibly be thought
of as an isolated individual apart from society,
there would here bo an end of the matter. But we
have to consider him as a unit in a society based
upon division of labor and. exchange of commodities.   In such a society and under such conditions
"the labor of the individual producer acquires socially
a two-fold character. On the one hand, it must,
as a definite useful kind of laibor, satisfy a definite social want, and thus hold Its place as part and
parcel of the collective labor of all, as a branch of a social
division of labor that has sprung up spontaneously. On
the other hand, it can satisfy the manifold wants of the
individual producer himself, only in sio far as the mutual
exchangeability of all kinds of useful private labor is an
established social fact, and therefore the private useful
labor of each producer ranks on an equality with that of all
others. The equalization of the -most different kinds of
labor can be the result only of an abstraction from their
inequalities,' or of reducing them to their common denominator, viz., expenditure of*human labor-power or human labor in the abstract. The two-fold social character of
the labor of the individual appears to him, when reflected
in his brain, only under those forms which are impressed
upon that labor in everyday practice by the exchange of
products. In this way, the character that his own labor
possesses of being socially useful takes the form of the
condition, that the product must be not' only useful, but
useful for others, and the social character that his particular labor has oif being the equal of all other particular kinds of laibor, take*? the form that all the physically
different articles that are the products of labor, have one
common quality, viz., that of having value."
Capital, Vol. 1, p. 81.
Labor, regarded from this point of view wears
an entirely different aspect. It is social, "abstract,
universal and homogeneous." (Critique p. 33). It is
social because, though expended by individuals such
as our blacksmith it is expended by him in his capacity as a social unit contributing-to a social want
and receiving in return similar social services. It is
universal and homogeneous because it is the use of
the ordinary human energy put forth by the average
human being Avhen he engages in productive activity.
It is abstract because it is considered Avithout any
regard to the special manner in Avhich it is employ
ed.   In a word, it is simple, undifferentiated human
labor regarded in its purely social aspect.
We may therefore consider the blacksmith, the
Aveaver and the tailor, the butcher, the baker and the
candlestick maker as individual producers each expending a special kind of useful labor or we may
regard them as social units each contributing his
share to the aggregate social production.
"On thc one hand all labor is, speaking physiologically,
an expenditure of human labor-power, and ln its character
of Identical abstract human labor, it creates and forms
the value of commodities. On the other hand, all labor
is Ihe expenditure of human labor-power in a special form
and with a definite aim, and in this, its character of concrete useiul labor, it produces use-values.
Capital, Vol. 1, p. 54.
It is this labor that forms the "substance of
value." Commodities, considered as values, a*re
"crystals of this social substance," "congelations
of homogeneous human labor, of labor-power expended without regard to the mode of its expenditure."      (p. 45)
Value is therefore to be thought of as a substance. Not. of course, a material substance out,
nevertheless,, an independent entity Avhich '-'although invisible . . . has actual existence."
(p. 107) in commodities.
Noav, this "unsubstantial reality" (p. 45) is the
substance, the "thing-in-itself," of whieh exchange-
value is the phenomenal form, the visible manifes-
tion. "The progress of our investigation," says
Marx, "Avill show that exchange-value is the only
form in which the value of commodities can mani)-
fest itself or be expressed." (p. 45)
But exchange value is not a thing, it is a ratio;
a matter of proportion between quantities or magnitudes. The value creating substance must therefore
be present in the commodities concerned in exchange
and will, of course, be present in definite quantities.
Social labor is, as Ave have seen, undifferentiated in respect of its nature, consequently the only
difference which can exist is a matter of the quantity
of it incorporated in the commodity.
Social labor, then, counts quantitatively as distinguished from useful labor which counts qualitatively.
"The substance of value is nothing but expended labor-force" and "the production of value is
nothing but the process of this expenditure."
Now, the expenditure of any force (intensity
been given, as it. is in this case, and being, in addition, a constant factor) can only be measured by the
amount of time during which such expenditure lasts.
From these considerations avc conclude that the
amount of value incorporated in any given commodity ATill vary Avith the quantity of labor-time consumed in its prodm-tion. It further follows that, if
for any reason, such as the use of machinery, the
productiveness of labor is increased, the amount of
labor-time embodied in the given commodity Avill be
less per unit.
It must not be supposed from the use of the
phrase "measured by time" that the amount of
social labor-time incorporated in any commodity
can bc actually known. This, of course, we cannot
Iuioav. seeing that value can only find expression as
exchange-value, that is, in the social relation between commodities.
But the production of a commodity is a social
act looking to the satisfaction of a social want.
Value is, therefore, a social fact. For this reason
the only labor that can make itself effective, that
ean count towards the value of commodities, will
only be that amount which is socially necessary for
their production.
"The labor-time socially necessary is that required to
product* an article under the normal conditions of production, and with the average degree of skill and intensity
prevalent at the time."   (Capital vol. I. p. 46.)
(Continued on page 8) ■■P
Economics for Workers
ALTHOUGH Ave had a great outcry concerning
increased prices previous to 1914, it was very
feeble compared with the outburst during the
Avar period itself, when prices rose very rapidly. If
we compare the commodity prices of different countries during this period avc find a close relationship
existing betAveen currency inflation and increased
prices. Mr. MeKenna, ex-Chancellor of the British
Exchequer, Avho is very high up in the banking and
financial Avorld, said on one occasion that the British
currency had increased 125 per cent., and prices also
had increased 125 per cent. He was addressing the
shareholders of tho London Joint City and Midland
Bank. ♦
Let us study the figures of the principal countries
during the Avar, bearing in. mind always that gold is
a commodity.
The following table sIioavs the 1914 currency in
$ millions; also that of 1919.
' 7.5
Countries             Gold. Notes.
Austria   254 464
Canada      94    162
France     806 1301
Germany  298 692
Great Britain  195 140
Italy  236 337
New Zealand     30 10
United States  1023 1056
The Allies had 17.1 per cent gold backing Avhile
the Central Powers had only 1.7 per cent gold to
their notes.
In the thirty principal countries of the world,
currency in face value increased from $7,250,000,000
in 1914 to 50,000,000,000 in 1919. This Avas a 600
per cent increase, Avhile the production of gold had
only increased 40%.
We heard some labor men say that because of a
labor government in Ncav Zealand, prices did not increase to the same extent there. If we study the
above currency table we will find that New Zealand's currency was on a gold basis and gold was at
a premium on the Avorld's market, therefor her currency Avas representing some tangible value, gold,
the value of which lies in the labor embodied in its
The following illustrates some of the peak prices
I have been able to trace.
Peak prices (from the 100 of 1914).
Germany 700. Gold per cent to currency fallen from
43% 1914, to 3.5% 1919.
Italy 675. Gold per cent to currency fallen from 70%
1911, to 7.5% 1919.
France 575. Gold per cent to currency fallen from 62.0%
1914, to 9.6%, in 1919.
Bri'taiin 320. Gold per cent to currency fallen from 14i0%
1914, to 22.9% 1919.
Canada 260. Gold per cent to currency fallen flrom 58%
1919, to 40.9% 1919.
U. S. A. 275, Gold per cent to currency fallen from
99.6%  1914,  to 52.3%  1919.
Here are two tables to make on large charts for
analysis before the class. The first sIioavs prices
rising highest in those countries Avhere inflation of
the currency has been greatest.
The second goes a long way to explain the various differences of the exchange rates between the
countries, when Ave keep in view gold as a commodity Avhich is used as a basis to balance international debts.
The British pound Avas Avorth double the number
in French francs and could realize still more Italian
currency than preArious to the war. The same pound
had fallen AA'hen realized in American or Canadian
dollars. Thc Canadian dollar had fallen alongside
the American. This variation has quite a-close relationship to the percentage of gold behind the currency Avhich the above table sIioavs.
Therefor the great increase in prices during the
Avar Avas mainly a result of the inflation of the vari-
out currencies, ma-king a demand on commodities
Avhich, although being increased with greater efficiency could not keep pace with inflation. This inflation caused larger savings expressed in dollars,
increased the money of account in the banks,- an increased purchasing poAver by the bank cheques all
adding to the power of inflation to increase prices.
Henry Drayton, in his budget speech in the Canadian House of Parliament, pointed out that the
Canadian Currency had increased J.08 per cent. Avhile
Britain had increased hers 207 per cent, and the
IT. S. A. 70 per cent from 30th June 1914 to 30th
June 1919. The increase in deposits in Canada was
87 per cent. Britain's 115 per cent. U. S. A. 80 per
cent.   "With the end of the war, business collapsed
Avith the elimination of the war market. Factories
shut down and there being uo demand, prices fell.
With falling prices, incendiary fires followed,
to obtain insurance on the goods stocked before
prices fell too far. We had also an increase in business failures.
W. Sandfc'rd lEvans' Statistical Serviwe gave
the folloAving report, up to Nov. 11th 1921
"The farmers delivered this year, 1921, 132,022,-
412 bushels for 127,000,000 dollars, while they received in 1920 $234,657,775 dollars for only 109,000,-
000 bushels."
Almost 24,000,000 bushels more sold for $107,-
G59,775 dollars less than the previous year.
Fanners Avere burning grain for fuel because it
Avas cheaper than buying coal. Then Ave saw another
contradiction of capitalism. The more money wages
can buy, the Avorse the Avorker is, because of his
being unemployed as a result of stagnation in business caused by falling prices. The falling prices
have helped along the deflation of the currency;
the further deflation continues the harder will it be
for countries to meet their debts, because debts contracted Avhen commodities sold at high prices, and
paid back during fallen prices, means a greater return payment. This can only be obtained by a
greater exploitation of labor, so the prospects of
labor are anything but rosy if they keep on haggling
over wages alone.
Our politicians being ignorant of the economic
laAvs at Avork in society, are in a terrible plight to
bring things back to what they calt "normal." No
matter which way they turn they find obstruction.
Some have advocated immediate currency deflation, but, if they forced matters, prices would fall
so fast that business conditions would be rendered
chaotic. Some said "make Germany pay," but the
more Germany pays the more unemployment appears in the allied countries, as witness the effect
of reparations in ships and coal on Great Britain's
industries; the contradictions in capitalism are so
sharply drawn that the apparent settlement of one
problem for our masters simply means the appearance promptly of another.
I think I have given enough food for thought on
the subject of Prices to arouse discussion in any
economic class.
Next Lesson: PROFIT.
The Clarion Mail Bag
A glance through the letters received during
the past month sIioavs that a steady interest
is being maintained in the work of the Party
and its official journal.
Writing from St. John, N. B., Comrade Goudie
semis a word of cheer and a sub, with a hint of more
to be expected. From OttaAva comes a similar message and two subs. A comrade in Port Arthur sends
a pithy note: "Enclosed find one dollar for the
Clarion; it's all right." Just what Ave thought.
From Brandon, Man. come two renewals, also an
enquiry from St. James. Com. Robertson of Three
Hills, Alta., sends a dollar sub and comments on the
poor prospects for the farmer.
Writing from Edmonton, Com. Smith asks for
some pamphlets and Clarion renewal to the end of
the year. From Edmonton and Glenbrea, Sask., also
come renewals of subs.
G. Lamont sends a few lines asking for sample
copies and enclosing two subs. Walter Ridout from
Prince Rupert affects facetious wonderment at
things in general and sends eight dollars in cash on
Local account.
From 59 Mile House, Clinton, B. C, Com. Robson
writes, "Find enclosed tAvo bones; 1 for Clarion and
the other for Maintenance Fund." Bones is good.
J. M. Brown, Bonanza Y. T. does) the same thing in
more classical language. To make three of a kind
comes a similar request from Ben Dworkin, Hanna,
Com. Redfern, Moose JaAV, asks for "Causes of
Belief in God" "Pritchard's Address to the Jury."
and renews his sub to the Clarion.
John A. Mitchell Avrites from Pakan, Alta., enclosing one dollar sub.
Com. R. BroAvn is in Sicamous, he sends for
"Economic Determinism," and wants his sub to the
Clarion reneAved. Asks to be remembered to W. A.
Sydney Rose, Winnipeg Avrites a cheery note and
encloses four dollars for the Clarion. John A. Beckman sends kind regards to Vancouver comrades and
encloses two dollars for the Clarion. He is in Meeting Creek, Alta. B. E. Polinkos writes from Whitla,
Alta., asking for a copy of "Capitalist Production,"
and reneAval  of his  Clarion  sub.    Thos.  Hanwell
Avrites from Brandon, Man. asking for renewal.
Com. Clarkson, Sandon, B. C. gives new address
and sends one dollar to Maintenance Fund. A. E.
Cotton, Topaz Harbor sends for renewal. F. Var-
ney, Victoria does likeAvise. E. Simpson, Victoria,
sends greetings and $3 for sub. reneAvals, J. BroAvn,
Cumberland, B. C, writes for copies of "Evolution
of the Idea of God," and "Evolution Social and
Organic." Roy Reid changes his address to Rimbey,
Alta. William Braes writes cheerfully from Cumberland and encloses $5 for subs. An article for the
Clarion from him would bc Avelcome. A renewal of
his sub comes from H. Edwards, Oromocto, N. B.
From San Francisco come letters from Wm. Cam-
field, F. Cassidy, J. Knight and Chas. Pakerman,
containing greetings to Vancouver comrades and
subs to the Clarion.
Letters also come from Los Angeles and Venice,
California, the latter from Com. J. J. MacDonald.
Sam Clements sends change of address and best
Avishes from Susanville, California.
E. Staples Avrites a long letter from Sydney,
Australia, full of interest, and expressing regret that
the Clarion is not more widely read in Australia as
the need for a sound exposition of Marxian economics is everywhere apparent. He will be returning to Auckland, New Zealand, in the near future.
An enquiry for the Clarion also comes from Will
(Continued on page 8) WESTERN   CLARION
The Will of the People
SHORTLY, Ave shall be called upon to decide the
political policies to be adopted in thelse trying times by "our" country*. The issues and
slogans are now being prepared, and, we have ns
doubt, many wonderful things will be promised,
many agreeable changes predicted, with the advent
of a new government, "safely and sanely" elected
by the democratic will of constitutional usage. Of
course! We are a free and a great people, having
things done in this, "our" country, just as we, "the
enlightened people," desire them. Not at all like
those unfortunate "Bolsheviks," under the dictation of a fanatic clique of extremists, druuk Avith
power, Avho have twice ruined Russia—being the
occasion of a blockade Avhich denied the means of
production to those sAveet people; and the direct
cause of this present famine. 0, "Bolshies," Iioav
shall we give you an accounting?
Some of us proud British born possess the prerogative of suffrage. But the possession of a privilege carries AA'ith it the advantages of its powers and
benefits. If we use the former at all, the profit of the
latter must surely accrue to us. In these circumstances therefore, the present social condition of
society must be the "will" of society. Is that so?
If so, why is society restless and discontented, riotous and unruly? Why does it manifest such aversion to its own "order?" Why this continual need
for the appearance of change? Why so many laws
enacted contrary to majority interests? . If the
"people" are responsible, Avhy are they ignorant: of
their own enactments? And their fateful consequences to themselves? It will not do to say it is
"original sin." That is the antithesis of the premise—thc intelligent majority. And, it does not explain hoAv the derivable advantage is invariably on
*he upper side. Nor is the "Will of God" any better. That is but another "Bolshevik" usurpation
of the "people's" authority. For, it surely cannot be
contended that since we are an enlightened and democratic people Ave cannot control our own social organization. Especially Avhen human control is everywhere evident.
Yet, nevertheless, the "will" of God is the cause
—albeit, it is neither the "God of Bethel," nor any
other human abstraction, but the omnipotent "god
of the machine." We cast a ballot, it is true, and
change the name of the government. Which signifies nothing. Beeause,we were not informed enougli
to elect and vote for our own nominees.
One or other section of the capitalist class ahvays
nominates the members-elect. They are selected
either directly from the ruling class itself, or from
its pendant following of capitalist ideation. Individually they have, therefore, the same class viewpoint—and interest—private property. The "class"
provides its nominees with a "platform" and a
"AvatchAvord," Avith propaganda and campaign necessities. The former is the transient economic interest, and the key and motive of its monetary "philanthropies" and hurrying activities; the latter is
the veil and orange blossom with which that interest is bedecked and jeAvelled, so that we may be1 enticed into matrimony Avith the painted conscript.
For by that union is the privilege of property guaranteed. The ruling class, through personal initiative,
private influence, and publicity Availing, puts forth
every effort to get its representative elected. For
this suddenly important individual is, in reality,
their class representative—the political expression;
of their economic interest, the embodient of their
sovereignty of poAver.
The ruling class—as a Avhole—possess all the
means of education, all avenues of information and
knowledge, all channels of publicity and research
and to the fullest of its ability—which, in this direction is of a high order—it uses those means to distort the fact, to suppress the truth, to veil the issues
of reality, in order to preserve intact its sacred right
*   Reprinted from Western Clarion No. 853 (October 15,
1921).   See- Secretarial Notes in the.present issue.
of property. To be sure, betAveen the capitalist factions there is considerable "muckraking" continually going on (Avhich becomes very marked during elections, for the savor of plunder is in their
nostrils) but they contrive that nothing inimical
to ther common capitalist property ever sees thc
light of day. Not if any means can obliterate it.
They see, of course, that their greedy quarreling
over the spoil draws unwelcome attention to their
methods, and its fruits, but it is the fatal necessity
of capital to educate its support, both theoretically
and practically, and for it (capital) education becomes tire "snaro of the foAvler."
On the other hand, through the blindness and
apathy of the slave class itself—a product, of course,
of capitalist evolution—through the general condition -of adversity and the constant necessities of
livelihood, the labor press is so circumscribed and
narrow orbited, its influence (because of its poverty) so negligible, and local and Avorking class ideation and effort so awry and disjointed, that no efficient organization can be put against its opposing
propagandist to clothe and dignify the ne\v ethic of
the rising social power with visible authority. Or,
to put it better, to gather the disjointed efforts and
vague aspirations of social production into the coordinated invincibility of Socialist society. For, the
power of the eaptalist class lies in its control of the
forces of the state, i.e., its authority is the state
itself. A fact which proclaims the futility of all reform Avithin the sphere of capitalist activity, and
which, in due time, under the increasing pressure
of economic circumstances must compel us for our
emancipation, to the assumption of State authority.
Our changeful times ave hastening on that necessity to the ripest maturity, and the forward pressing
social forces cannot be much longer restrained in the
seething abyss of effete capitalism.
Hence it comes that our minds take on the hue of
our capitalist environment. So Ave are confused with
the shifty, kaleidoscope of capitalist property right.
So we eagerly run after the fleeting rush-lights of
transient self-interest. So the social traditions of
a vanished past, bind us to the indiA'idualist present. So the partial equality of a rising era veils
our social evolution, and sacrifices us on the developed antagonisms of class laAV and to the harried slaves of today presents, as a Utopian dream-
Avorld, thc kindling aspirations, the fore-glimpsed
grandeur, the achieved fraternity that "trails a
cloud of glory" on the certainty of the Socialist
humanity of tomorroAv.
The working class of today has no identity of interest Avith any other section of society. It possesses neither "right" nor "equality," and on its economic inequality its political subservience hinges, and
its social disadvantages automatically follow. Tho
Avage slave is allowed to vote. Yes. But he cannot
vote in his OAvn interest. Because he does not possess
the data necessary to form a true judgment. Because the knowledge necessary to sift the issue—
the one issue—at stake is suppressed. Because thc
trained powers to detect and expose the subtlety of
treachery around him is denied to him. And (because
nf those thines in turn) he lacks the principle of public interest wherewith to determine public freedom.
That is Avhy all of us burn "strange fire" on the
altars of ancient gods.
For those reasons the "popular" Avill is an illusion. In political democracy, the representation of
all interests is an impossibility, because constitutional government, signifies the law ofthe ruling class,
symbolizes the dominance of the modern capitalist
class and its exploitation of Avage-labor. The government is the council board of that class, and it is
amost entirely composed of class members with
class philosophy, whose business—and interest—it
is to protect class privilege. No other will be nominated and elected to that position. And whatever
stray members from the slave class succeed to that,
"honor" are either revisionists (or worse), or are
so hopelessly outnumbered as to be negligible.
Like everything else, parliament is the -result of
a long, evolutionary process. It has its roots deep in
unfamiliar and forgotten ages. It was the couu.:-.il
of tribal communities—a council of equals, lt became the "moot" of the communal middle ages, and
developed into the representation of the third estate—the commoners, i.e., the rising merchant and
trading classes of the early capitalist period. And
noAv, with the completed development of capitalist
society, it is no more than a name. It lives on the
prestige ol its ancient traditions. It is stripped of
all real authority, it has been shorn of its privileges;
its functions have passed into the higher control of
the modern cabinet, and its poAvers are but the mockery of "sanctioning" what the cabinet decrees. Because, just as the tribal commune Avas more and
more invaded, and dominated by the flourishing process of exchange, and greAv gradually into chattel
slavery, so the council of equals lost its original character of equality and became obsolete. Just as
the accumulating merchant of the middle ages broke
up the natural economy of the feudal fiefs, so the
communal village moot lost its pristine nature and
significance.' And just as the nation of manufacturers and traders has progressed into the all-absorbing commercial empire, so the young parliament
of the commoners has disappeared in the over-
shadoAving might of the Imperial Cabinet. That is
why the ''will of the people" is but an empty name,
the shadow of a substance, distant by thousands of
Political "representation" is economic interest.
Nothing more. And so long as it remains in existence, so must slavery endure. For it is but the expression of that slavery. Slavery is exploitation,
and today, exploitation is accomplished through
Avages. Therefore, thc one interest of the slave class
is the abolition of the wages system, that is to say,
of capitalist society. And that abolition must be entirely effected by ourselves, the new developed
medium of social progress. Master class and slave
class interests are diametrically opposite, and no
Avise scheme or glamoring reform ean over abrogate
their opposition. There can be only common interest when there is a common class, i.e., Avhen there is
Socialist society. Then Avith economic freedom, wc
shall be equals,-with the privileges of equals—with
the guaranlee ot everything that this highest of
human societies can encompass and achieve. There
is no other issue. R.
Elizabeth WordsAvorth once wrote a rhyme containing the following lines:
"If all good people Were clever.
And al clever people Avere good.
The world Avould be nicer than ever
We thought it possibly could."
Which is very true. Our Avise forefathers, ere
they Avere gathered tb the worms, invented a saying
to the effect, "If the sky would only fall we could
catch larks." Very vulgar people have been heard
to assert that if our aunts had had Avhiskers they
would have been our uncles. There is something
strikingly similar in the attributes of God Almighty
and those Avho preface their remarks with that funny
little Avord "if." With both "all things are possible," and Avith both unemployment and ineffectual-
ity seem to be chronic diseases. Take a fond lingering look at this from last Aveek's "Socialist":
"If every munition Avorker, every metal worker,
every Avood Avorker, every transport Avorker. etc., organized for the purpose of one Industrial Union on
a programme to expropriate the small coterie, of
magnates and bankers Avho hold the means of production and distribution, in a disciplined manner, it
could be done quite peaceably. You could keep the
capitalist class from setting guns, aeroplanes, also
the transport Avorkers could keep their police and
soldiers from shifting. There Avould bc no fear then
of shooting peaceful, sleeping miners or their babes
and wiA'es. You could put an end to hooligans and
general anarchy by your organized industrial power.
That is the lneaninsr of 'revolution.' "
That damned ''if."'' —'' Glaseow Worker.'' PAGE EIGHT
Socialist Party of
(Continued from page 5.)
"Wo. tha  Socialist Party of Canada affirm our alloc-
lanoo to, and support of  tha principles and proaratnma
of aba revolutionary working olaaa.
Labor, applied to natural reaouroaa, produeaa all
waalth. Tha preaant aoonomlo system la baaed upon
oapitaliat ownership of tbe maana of produotion, oonee-
quently, all the product* of labor belona; to the oapitaliat olaaa. The oapitaliat la, therefore, maater; the
worker a alave.
So long aa the oapitaliat olaaa remalne ln poaaeaalen
of tha relna of government all the powere of tbe State
will be used to protect and'defend Its property rlghte ln
the meana of wealth produotion and Ita eon-trot of tbe
produot of labor.
The oapitaliat eyatem gIvee to tba oapitaliat an erar-
■waning- atream of proflta, and to tha worker, aa •▼•"*-
Increafiina; measure of misery and degradation.
The Interest of the working olaaa Ilea ln aettlng itaelf
free from capitalist exploitation by the abolition of the
wage aystem, under which this exploitation, st the point
of produotion, ls cloaked. To aocompllah tlule neeeaalt-
atea the transformation of oapitaliat property ln tbe
means of wealth produotion into aoolally controlled eeen-
omlc forcea.
The Irrepressible conflict of interest between the aep-
ttall-rt and tha worker neoeeaarlly expreaaea itaelf ma m
struggle for polltioal aupremacy. This Is tba Class
Therefore we call upon all workera to organise under
the banner of the Soolallat Party of Canada, With the
object of conquering the political powers for tba purpose of setting up and enforolng ths economis programme of the working clsss, ss follows*
1—The transformation, aa rapidly as possible,
of oapitaliat property ln ths means of
wealth production (natural raaouxoea, faotor-
torlea, mUle, railroads, «to.)# into eolleotlve
meana of production.
I—The organisation and management of industry
by the working olaaa.
I—The establishment, aa speedily as possible, of
production for use Instead of produotion for
— of th* —
(Fifth Edition)
Per copy 10 cento
Per 25 eopies  |S
Post Paid
Prefaoe by the author.
132 PAGES.
Per Copy, 26 Cents.
Ten eopies np, 20 eents eaob.
Post Paid.
Socialist Party of Canada
STAR THEATRE, 300 Block, Main Street
Speaker; W. A. PRITCHARD
Speaker: C. LESTOR
All meetings at 8 p.m.
Questions. Discussion.
"... labor is represented by the value of its product and labor-time by the magnitude of that value." (Capital, vol. I. p. 92)
"We see then that that which determines the magnitude of the value of any article is the amount of labor
socially-necessary, or the labor-time socially necessary for
its produotion." (Capital vol. I. p. 46.)
"The value ol* a commodity, therefore, varies directly
as the quantity, and inversely as the productiveness, of the
labor incorporated in it." (Capital vol. I. p. 47.)
"Every commodity can realize its value only in the
process of circulation, and whether lit realises its value,
and to what extent it does so, depends on the prevailing
market conditions."    (Capital vol. III. p.p 749)
"... exchange value is the only form in which the
value of commodities can manifest itself or 'be expressed."
(Capital vol. I. p. 45.)
From all of which it would appear that exchange-
value is simply another name for price. If it cannot
be identified with market-price it is certainly the
same as what is sometimes known as "normal"
price. Normal price we may roughly define as being
the average of market prices taken over a long period
In this ease exchange value would tend to coincide
with the price of production. In any case exchange-
value and price are practically identical and I. have
already given half-a-dozen reasons for a divergence
between value and price. In addition, there are several more which, however, may be more appropriately discussed under the heading of "Price."
It will, perhaps, be well to add a few words concerning the phase "socially necessary labor."
This phrase is somewhat ambiguous and may be
used in a sense much more comprehensive than that
in which it is used in connection with the theory of
(1) It may mean the average labor time socially
necessary for producing a certain commodity at any
given time.
(2) It may mean the social labor-time necessary
to produce the commodity if it were produced according to the general average of social efficiency
in production.
(3) It may mean "that quantity of labor-time
which is necessary for the production of the socially
required total quantity of commodities of" any kind
on the market under the existing average conditions
of social production." (Capital, vol. III. p. 751)
In the first case the* "socially necessary labor-
time" corresponds to the value of the commodity;
in the second ease to the price of production and in
the third case to the price.
It is, however, clear that the amount-of labor
socially necessary to produce a certain article under given conditions is a very different matter from
the amount of labor socially necessary to produce
the total amount of any given commodity represented by the' entire solvent demand for it in the
Readers (I suppose there are people who read
this stuff) may look up this matter in Capital vol. I.
p. 120 and in vol. Ill pages 221 to 226 and also on
p. 745.
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(Continued from page 6)
Dixon, Hurstville, New South Wales.
In Vancouver the Avork of education is being vigorously carried forward. Propaganda meetings are
held every night on the corner of Carral and Cordova Streets and good sales of literature are being
made. The regular Sunday night meetings at the
Star Theatre, Main Street are attracting big audiences. Fine lectures and lively discussion features
the situation here, as also in Calgary and Winnipeg.
~ Comrades who are out of town would do well to
keep in touch with headquarters. Letters are welcome, also requests for sample copies of the Clarion
and other literature will be promptly attended to.
The situation which is now confronting the working
class calls for earnest and concerted effort.
Keep in the struggle for emancipation!
All prices include Postage.
Make all moneys payable to E. McLeod, P. O. Box
710, Vancouver, B. C.   Add discount on cheques.
Alii above literature can be obtained from J. M.
Sanderson, Box 2354, Winnipeg, Manitoba.
(This is as handy a way as any to send your subs.)
Western Clarion, P. 0. Box, 710.
Vancouver, B. 0.
Official organ of the S. P. of C.   Published twice
a month.
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