by L. Marcus
in the CAMPAIGNER, Vol.7, n°10, Oct. 1974.
I. Science And Socialism
Over a period of eight years the International Caucus of Labor Committees has grown from two persons into the dominant active socialist current among U.S. workers, and a force of significant influence among some of the major trade unions and socialist organizations of Western Europe.
Not since Karl Marx led the International Workingman's Association -- approximately a century earlier -- has so small an organization exerted a comparable influence upon the course of current history. Such credentials justify our claim to know how to use the principles behind our current success to begin a new age for humanity before the end of this decade.
To the outside observer of our 1974 activities, there are three features of the organization which appear to be closely connected to our effectiveness. First, there is general astonishment at the extraordinary ability of the membership to rapidly deploy itself innovatively as a political striking force under centralized direction. Second, as a financially threadbare organization of approximately a thousand inner-core, we consolidated an intelligence operation during January, 1974, which pieced together the essential features of the Rockefeller forces' maneuvers with only less exactness than the Rockefeller inner circle itself. In the same vein, there have been important aspects of recent developments in respect to which Labor Committee knowledge has been superior to that of the Rockefellers' top agents. Third, the membership has been able to integrate the Intelligence operations with its tactical deployments. These three facets, permeated by a general quality of hubris, have caused the Committees to make an impact of unprecedented quality among certain governmental and professional strata, as well as the more important and broader positive connections with sectors of the labor movement' s rank and file and some local trade-union leaderships.
It is urgent that workers now coming into collaboration with the Labor Committees, NUWRO (1) and the Labor Party (2) understand the principles which have made such apparent accomplishments possible. What must be done during the months and years just ahead depends upon the vast intellectual powers which exist, ready to be awakened for use, among industrial workers and others. The most essential of the reasons for Labor Committee development so far has been the organization's deepening understanding of the nature of such intellectual capacities among its own members and working people generally; what has been proven to work for a relative few must now become the property of the many. To the extent our collaborators understand how the Labor Committees came into existence and developed to the present quality, the North American and Western European working class has the potential to become an unstoppable force for entire world before 1980! Toward the of this we shall state what that change means and how it is possible to accomplish it.
ABC of Socialism
The reasons for Labor Committee achievements are not a collection of special "gimmicks." The present policies are essentially the same as those introduced by the present chairman at the beginning, eight years ago. Nor is there anything magical or bad in the fact that the organization was conceived, founded and significantly guided in its development by a single individual. The founder and chairman, best known by his pen-name, Lyn Marcus, was one of a handful of important intellectual figures developed by the post-war remnants of the socialist movement of the 1930s and early 1940s. Although he has contributed a few advances to socialist thought, the ideas which he brought from the old socialist movement to founding the new movement were mainly the effect on already established theory of eliminating the causes for the major blunders and collapse of the earlier organizations.
At least, there was nothing new to the socialist movement in the broad principles from which he began. It has always been ABC to socialists since Marx that working people mobilize themselves for political change only during or immediately following a major social crisis of capitalism, usually during and following depressions, major wars, or other profound political crises. There is nothing mysterious in this, nor did the socialist movements of the past see anything magical in it. As long as the workers can survive from day to day in the manner to which they have grown accustomed, the majority will continue to reconcile itself to continuation of capitalism, demanding only limited reforms. Major wars and depressions shake up the stability and authority of dominant institutions, causing workers and others to reexamine their own beliefs more or less profoundly. Under such circumstances they are intellectually open to considering new ideas, even drastic changes in political and institutions. For related reasons, great political and social movements tend to occur either at the onset of profound political crises or during immediately ensuing periods, during the remoralization which tends to occur at first signs of recovery from the crisis.
For such reasons, the socialist movement' s strategy has always been premised on foreseeing the predominantly economic process by which capitalism is heading into new crises, and directing the organization' s propaganda, educational and other tactical efforts toward appropriate preparations for such ensuing developments. This axiomatic strategic orientation of Marxian socialists was known as a conjunctural strategic perspective, or, for sake of brevity, simply conjunctural perspective. During the early 1950s or slightly earlier, varying from nation to nation, the leading socialist parties of North America and Western Europe abandoned this strategic outlook. The Communist Party of Italy, for. example, held on to a perspective of future socialist transformation of that nation until about 1954; the Communist Party of France gave up its perspective for workers' and farmers' government during approximately the same period. The despair struck the North American socialist organizations much earlier, approximately 1948-1949, and in a much deeper way.
In the U.S., where the Labor Committees were founded, there was a persistent net loss of membership from all socialist organizations from 1949 through 1958. This was drastic during the first part of that period and continued as a constant erosion thereafter until the 1957-1958 recession, when a tendency for a modest rate of net growth in total socialist membership began. These two developments, the loss of conjunctural perspectives and the inability to retain and develop a significarnt number of recruits from the generation born during the 1920s and 1930s, may be considered the two most drastic "factors" contributing to the demoralization and collapse of the 1877-1974 socialist tradition of North America.
In Western Europe, where socialist parties retained hundreds of thousands of members, the organizations survived, but the loss of conjunctural perspectives transformed the organizations into essentially reformist parties.
The abandonment of the conjunctural principle has devastating effects upon every aspect of the internal life and external practice of a socialist organization. Without such a strategic commitment, there can be no serious intellectual life in them. The task of analyzing the current capitalist development, to determine how and approximately when new crises will develop, requires a mastery of theoretical economics and consequently an extensive involvement by the organization's members in collecting and correlating the essential information upon which economic analysis of the current situation depends. Also, the organizing practice of a conjuncturally-oriented organization demands systematic analysis of. the processes by which workers' world-outlooks are transformed from a pro-capitalist ideology to a pro-socialist viewpoint. The importance of mastering this essential knowledge compels a socialist group to examine profoundly every aspect of the cultural life of the population. Without the stimulus of a conjunctural outlook, a socialist group' s intellectual life evaporates, their "socialist theory" soon degenerates into a recitation of pitiful dead literary doctrine of traditional homilies, and practice of banal cookbook-style tactical recipes.
The point to be made is illustrated by the significant number of older workers formerly associated with the Communist or other socialist parties who are presently being attracted to the Labor Committees. These individuals recognize certain general qualities in this organization which they associate with the best features of socialist organizations of their youthful experience. In the U.S., the Labor Committees have revived and advanced upon the American socialist tradition which developed over the 1877-1947 period. Although the connection to those roots.has been made to a present generation initially by a single individual from the old, the viable aspect of the past has been faithfully transmitted.
For similar reasons, the Labor Committees are ironically bitterly hated by many socialists still attached to the husks of former organizations. The Labor Committees represent to them the past they rejected on the premise that their former views had been proven unworkable. The rapid growth of our activities and influence confronts them with their own consciences in the most painful way; for some of them, the very existence of the Committees the cruellest insult one could throw into their faces.
It is to be strongly doubted that a viable new movement like our own could have been built in eight years except by a person or persons who been matured by the old movement. An isolated individual could conceivable master a formally-correct understanding of socialist theory within a year or so, but would not know what to do with this formal knowledge until he had also acquired significant practical experience in the problems of its use. Marcus' s special competence has been that he was an individual who developed leadership qualifications in the course of fighting within and fighting his way out of the old U.S. socialist movement and that he was the only leading figure to come out of it with a systematically developed conjunctural perspective. Given those facts, there is nothing miraculous in the fact of his role in initiating and leading the Labor Committee organization.
The essential nature of the views on which the Labor Committees were founded can be summed up this way. Marcus had established by an economic study completed during the late 1950s, that after approximately another decade the Bretton Woods post-war monetary system would enter into a series of monetary crises, leading toward a new depression potentially far deeper than that of the 1930s. During the late 1950s and after that, he proposed that all socialist work should be subordinated initially to building organizations of theoretically-trained cadres qualified to intervene in workers' ferment during the depression-connected social crises, cadres qualified to lead in forming mass-based organizations capable of establishing a workers' government. On the basis of forecast analysis of the contradictory social effects of developments during the early through middle 1960s, he proposed that there would be significant youth and minorities ferment, but no significant political ferment among North American industrial workers until crises began to strike the world economy during the later 1960s. He also located the nature of the impending struggle in the leading capitalist circle' s inevitable impulsion toward adoption of a two-fold alternative policy of Schachtian economics (and fascism) together with a new kind of approach to the underdeveloped sector.(3) The latter he later termed a "Third Stage of Imperialism." The upcoming struggle of leading capitalist circles to institute these two policies, he stipulated, would become the immediate issue of class political struggle between leading capitalists and workers throughout the advanced capitalist sector. (4)
This general strategic analysis was accompanied by certain other essential points which will be identified later.
None of the socialist organizations of the 1950s and early 1960s attempted to refute this thesis by arguing its merits, but rejected it out of hand on the mere grounds that it represented a conjunctural perspective. Any worker who has experienced the problems of attempting to organize others around him can understand the state of mind of the tired and aging socialists who made such an objection. We shall call it the issue of the difference between the scientific and neurotic world-outlooks.
The policy of subordinating everything in the short-run to preparing for a long-run objective was the practical issue. A conjunctural perspective demands that realpolitiking, short-run tactical successes or failures in getting organizational gate-receipts (members, sale of publications, sympathizers, and so forth) must not be used as a primary test of the correctness of policies. While it is of course necessary to survive and develop one's organization, the means used to do this must be limited to those consistent with and subordinated to the longer-run objectives. That means, to old socialists of the late 1950s or early 1960s, hanging everything, including the purpose of their existence, on developments approximately a decade ahead. It meant that day-to-day practical experience was of little use by itself; everything had to depend upon the correctness of scientific prediction of what conditions would be.
This is an example of what we mean by the conflict between two kinds of knowledge. The common sort of knowledge, associated with "common sense" or what philosophers call "empiricism," is based on short-run interpretation of day-to-day experience in the light of habits of thought carried over from previous experience. This sort of knowledge is crude but useful for dealing with simple kinds of problems under ordinary conditions of individual and neighborhood life, but fails miserably whenever there is a radical change in conditions or a more fundamental kind of problem to be considered. The second kind of knowledge, known as science, is based on discovering and mastering the use of fundamental underlying principles of cause-and-effect. The rightness or wrongness of ideas in each kind of knowledge is measured differently. With common sense, the opinion of the majority of persons sharing the same kind of experience is an appromixately reliable guide. By contrast, scientific knowledge is valid when rigorously proven so by a single individual, even if everyone else alive disagrees violently.
Scientific knowledge is indispensable for effective socialist work. Any self-styled socialist who bases his policies on common sense of the mere short-run opinion of various groups of constituencies is a fool and possibly even a public menace. The possibility of establishing a workers' government is generally limited, as we have said, to periods of social crisis, during which a majority of people have lost confidence in prevailing capitalist institutions, and are therefore open to considering alternatives seriously. These periods represent absolutely exceptional circumstances, under which.people generally think and act quite differently than they do under ordinary conditions. Their inclination to think and act in terms of a pro-socialist world-outlook exist as mere potentialities up to the point that socialist outlooks are brou.ght to the surface in them in an appropriate way. The socialist therefore enters such a period without any significant cumulative experience of general popular reactions to guide him. He must know in advance how masses of people will respond to his approaches, a knowledge which only scientific analysis can provide. If he attempts to govern socialist tactics by common sense, he will confuse workers and will inevitably lead them into counterinsurgency traps which the capitalist agencies design on the assumption that workers will react in a common-sense way.
This basic difference between the Labor Committees and most other professedly socialist groups is illustrated by the very fact that these other groups call themselves "Marxist-Leninist," "Trotskyist," "Maoist," "Third Camp," or what-have you. In other words, these groups admit that they base themselves on the interpretation of past experience as mere traditions of day-to-day tactics, as kind of accumulation of tactical cookbook recipes. Neither Marx, Luxemburg nor the Bolsheviks are to be blamed for this; anyone' s words can be ripped out of context and then pasted together as a catalog of cant phrases. In general, this practice among the modern socialist organizations begins with the founding of the German Social-Democracy at Gotha, Germany in 1875; nearly every socialist organization (but the Labor Committees) founded since then has degenerated into seeing itself as a new body of tradition branching off from the old traditions of the organization from which it either split away or in whose imitation it was formed.
As we said above, every worker who has attempted to win over other workers to his socialist ideas has some experience with the conflict between the two kinds of knowledge. It is everyday experience in every local Labor Committee organization in North America and Western Europe that at least one worker decides to begin organizing people around him to our program, who then becomes temporarily discouraged after a few days of such efforts. Usually, he still knows that he is correct in his socialist views, but he is depressed and loses confidence in himself and the possibility of achieving socialism, under the social pressure from the backward individuals around him.
In most of these cases, the worker who had decided to begin organizing around himself in the factory or neighborhood does this because he has thought through the current world situation in an approximation of scientific thought. He has considered the situation facing working people and knows that their self-interests demand that they get together to act as a unified force to change the circumstances in a definite way. The back-pressure he feels from his contacts does not diminish his confidence in the rationality of the need for socialist action; the difficulty of moving his fellow-workers undermines his confidence in the possibility of breaking through their stubborn backwardness. So, this socialist organizer gives up the effort after a few days' efforts, shrugging his shoulders : "What's the use?" It is also our typical experience that this worker comes back into the organizing efforts as soon as some of those formerly stubborn contacts begin to attempt to organize him. This experience is for him a valuable proof of the possibility of the triumph of reason over neurotic common-sense habits.
The individual who has gone through such an experience - and most socialists have at one time or another - knows that his mind seems to include two persons, one, looking at the world in a scientific way, the other a cynical philistine, who looks at the world in a narrow-minded common-sense way. If he thinks back on his own state of mind, as he shifted from one outlook to the other, he will agree immediately with our metaphorical description of two different personalities. When he is feeling political, reasoning things through in terms of the working class as a whole, he is pleased with the fact that he knows he is a far better and more effective person than he was before, when he temporarily backs off from a political commitment, he experiences a kind of sinking feeling, a feeling of self-degradation and angry impotence. The effective mass-organizer has always understood this in one way or another; as he organizes others, his approach is always guided by looking into the inner mental state of the person he is organizing, catching the shifts between the really human and philistine moods. The so-called "art" of mass organizing is essentially based on the ability to work from awareness of this internal struggle within the people one is organizing.
The difference between a mere ordinary "Communist," "Maoist," "Trotskyist," "social-democrat" and a genuine socialist organizer is that the former base their ideas about workers on seeing only the worker's common-sense side and ignoring his capacity for scientific thinking. The genuine socialist organizer bases his policies and tactics on patiently depending upon those circumstances in which the scientific side of the workers' personalities can be awakened among the millions.
For example, Georges Marchais, leader of the powerful and reformist Communist Party of France, has repeatedly - and fearfully - insisted during the Spring and early Summer months of 1974 that the French workers are not prepared to struggle for socialism. In fact, during the period he made that observation the entire French farm population was up in arms throughout that nation. Day after day the leading French newspapers report bands of farmers taking over entire towns, attacking police stations and other government offices with "honeywagons," pumping human and animal sewage into these offices. The small businessmen were reported to be on the verge of building barricades (and flying the red flag) in the streets. French workers are still awaiting the signal to go in protest against the Giscard-Chirac-Poniatowski government. The conditions of life in France are being driven down toward worse levels than existed during the immediate post-war period.
In this predicament, France is not alone. Since late January, the Labour Party government of Great Britain has existed by the permission and under the direction of the CIA-linked military forces of that nation, while the conditions of life are already worse on the whole than those immediately after the war. The British economy is a shambles. In Italy, the conditions for the poorest layer of the population are almost unimaginable and getting worse rapidly - with a powerful Communist Party and a large - Socialist party on the scene. In West Germany, the situation of the farmers is beginning to resemble that of farmers in France, while entire industries are. collapsing and a real depression-state is no more than a hair-trigger away. The conditions in Belgium are perhaps worse than in France. Dutch farmers have recently formed a common front with German farmers just across the border. All of the misery is directly caused by the Rockefeller interests, who have used the oil crisis, financial manipulations, and inside agents ("Eurotraitors" such as Giscard of France and Germany' s Schmidt) to bring this about. To add insult and more injury to this state of affairs, the CIA's own Shah of Iran has been busily taking over large sections of key European industries with the very money which Rockefeller has stolen from the Europeans through the oil and finance hoaxes! What must we conclude concerning a Georges Marchais who could imagine that European working class and farmers are not ready to the man to be called to heave the hated Rockefeller gangsters out of that continent? Obviously, Marchais and other reformists like him see only the most backward common-sense side of the workers and farmers.
The distinctive fact concerning the origins of the Labor Committees, that they are based on scientific principle rather than common-sense socialist traditions, makes it especially important that we inform workers organizing with us of the way in which our principal ideas were developed. The successful outcome of the struggle before us depends upon those workers understanding and mastering these ideas for themselves. For that reason we offer this conceptual history of what is rapidly on the way to becoming the organization of millions of workers in North America and Western Europe.
We begin that account with a brief political biography of Lyn Marcus. This is done both for reasons already given and because so much of the hatred of the Labor Committees by the New York times and the swamp-left organizations have been concentrated on creating all sorts of confusing, wild slanders and libels concerning the new movement' s present chairman. Then, we shall trace the highpoints of the eight-year development of the organization, and conclude with a summary of our program and strategy for establishing a new age for mankind by the end of this decade.
II. Who Is "Lyn Marcus"?
First, a few basic biographical facts to eliminate the numerous wild myths of the New York Times and others.
"Lyn Marcus" was born Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr. on Sept. 9, 1922 in Rochester, New Hampshire. His early rearing was emphatically "evangelical" Quaker, combined with a growing and encouraged fascination with things mechanical and scientific. In 1932, his family moved to Lynn, Massachusetts. There, within a year or so, the intensifying inner conflict between his religious and rationalist commitments impelled him into philosophy, so that he had become a fanatical Kantian by sixteen - thus temporarily reconciling his own youthful pietist and rationalist commitments. His first quasi-political experience occurred shortly after that, as he violated his family' s organic Republican traditions by joining the CIO shoeworkers' union in connection with a regular summertime job.
He entered a Quaker conscientious objectors' work-camp in Dec., 1942. There, during some heated occasional debates with some Socialist Party and former Communist Party members, he secured a copy of Capital, Volume I, as a matter of acquiring competence for further arguments with those individuals. Because of his earlier intense involvement with Kant, the initial chapters of Capital made him a convinced Marxist. (This could happen in that way only to a confirmed Kantian or Hegelian, for whom the solution to the Kantian predicament, implicit in those chapters, must have an impact far more profound than for the usual reader.) This change led him to volunteer for military service.
It was inevitable that he should head directly for Communist Party headquarters in Calcutta in early 1946 after his return to a nearby camp from Burma. Later, this brief attachment to the Communist parties ended abruptly the same hour he learned on the authority of P.C. Joshi (CPI secretary) that the CPI was ignoring the political opportunities of the Bengal revolution then occurring, in the interest of honoring Stalin' s agreement with Churchill on 1947 Dominion Status for that country. By the time he reached the bottom of the stairs, he was a sort of hardened Trotskyist.
The character trait which caused such an abrupt and lasting decision surfaced again in determining his later break with Trotskyist organizations. The individual whose development has placed his judgment and behavior under the compulsion of rationalist habits cannot subordinate issues which threaten the integrity of his identity as a person governed by reason. This same trait delayed his association with any Trotskyist organization until late 1948. Although he regarded Trotsky as correct vis-a- vis Stalin on all fundamental questions, the Trotskyists he met had a worse wiseacre attitude toward intellectual issues than he had recently encountered among the Bengal leadership of the CPI.
He joined the Socialist Workers Party' s Boston Local in early January, 1949, after a few weeks' probation, at the point that the national SWP was undergoing a drastic loss of membership. He joined, in fact, for the same reason that many were leaving : political reaction was on and there was no place outside an organized socialist group in which to act and develop as a socialist. It was at this point that he adopted the party name, "Marcus." The SWP membership application blank then in use required the applicant to designate a "party name." During the first months in the C.O. camp, he had been given the only nickname of his life, "Marco Polo"; "Marcus" was the result, and stuck through accumulated public identification with that name in his political work.(5)
His first bitter difference with the SWP occurred a few months after his joining. He secured employment at the GE River Works in Lynn, Massachusetts for purposes of "colonization," and was almost immediately in the thick of the fight between the Fitzgerald leadership of the UE and the raiders moving in to that union under direction of Walter Reuther. He proposed and initiated efforts to make a tactical alliance with the Fitzgerald faction against the Reutherites, and was soon put under local SWP discipline for this "offense." Bert Cochran and Farrell Dobbs had opted for the opportunist policy of attempting to build a "Third Camp" between the Reutherites and Fitzgerald. The reason for Dobbs' and Cochran' s policy was pure "Stalinophobia," as Marcus understood more clearly after later years' careful reviewing of the SWP's trade-union opportunism during even the 1934 Minneapolis strike and more open opportunism vis-a-vis the anti-Communist factions in the UAW and other unions after 1938. He swallowed this directive, but privately lost confidence in the SWP leadership's competence or political integrity in trade-union work. A protracted illness and convalescence during 1952 created the circumstances in which he was compelled to turn to more sedentary professional work in consulting. He used this profession as the basis in leisure opportunity for research activities thereafter, until he gave his field up entirely because of increasing demands created by Labor Committee development.
He secured a closer view of the national SWP leadership during late 1954 and early 1955, after moving to New York City for reasons of employment. He found them petty, banal and thickly larded over with compensatory strutting smugness. It was a petty wrangling of contending personal cliques in an organizational teacup, but unfortunately still the only tolerable socialist organizational alternative in sight. During 1955 and through 1957, he concentrated his available energies on an analysis of the post-war economy, maintaining nominal membership. This lessened political activity was not because of disinterest, but the painful turmoil his viscera experienced in each fruitless attempt to break through the incurable banality permeating the leadership and ranks.
The economic study was the first of two major research projects of the 1955-1960 period, on which the conceptions for the later founding of the Labor Committees were premised. The economic study itself in three distinct phases. The first, a study of longer-term capital formation trends in February, 1957, forecast the forthcoming recession to occur that year as exceeding those of 1947-49 and 1954, and to persist for an extended period. The results of this were the second significant thesis he introduced for adoption as SWP policy. The response was a shrug.
The second major research project originated in his private professional work. The study of capital formation trends and conditions, included in the first and second phases of the first project, indicated an attenuation of technologically-oriented expansion of plant capacity in the U.S.; and a correlated shift away from the policy of stockpiling cadres of corporate administrators and engineers, to a tighter administrative budget. This would create the conditions for significantly growing emphasis on the use of computer applications for corporate administration, not so much to reduce corporate administrative payrolls as to prevent them from growing at an accelerated rate. For this reason, he went back to his earlier grounding in Turing machines (10) and related topics and concentrated on developing appropriate computer applications models for the second-generation-type computers then in the offing.
By approximately mid-1960, he had worked out a model of computer application for use by either large corporations or entire economies, based upon principles developed from his economic study of the post-war economy. Technically speaking, this was the first dynamic form of computerized "total systems" realtime-simulation analysis based on the parameter of liquidity decreases or increases : pieces of this approach managed to get into circulation and use in field, bowdlerized form. The ultimate, and initially unexpected consequence to a large corporation or entire economy. It is obvious, or should be obvious that this limit is reached at the point that the development or consequences of technological changes in the economy or a major industry are confronted. It is at that point that the potential for logically analyzing processes ends and the creative aspects of human mental activity come directly into the foregound. He settled this problem for himself by attacking the fallacy of the efforts of Marvin Minsky and others to synthesize "artificial intelligence" for computers.
The point to be made is technical, but should be included to satisfy those readers who would justly complain if it were not mentioned. His approach to solving certain defects in Marx' s Capital during the early phases of the economics projects had depended upon a preceding study of the nineteenth century mathematician, Georg Cantor, and the geometric implications of what Cantor terms the "transfinite." (11) If one assumes the hypothetical case of a self-developing computer system directly operating an automated total economy, (12) one encounters the problem of the "transfinite" in another appropriate disguise. This demonstration provided a conclusive demonstration of the incompetence of the work of Minsky et al., and more positively provided the basis for Marcus' s single fundamental contribution to economic theory, upon which the Labor Committees' initial political commitment to a fusion power policy was based. (13)
Equally important, this disproof of Minsky' s hypothesis provides a useful complementary proof of communicating the Hegelian, Feuerbachian, and Marxian dialectics (respectively) to students with a directness and which was not otherwise possible. This method permits us today to rigorously isolate those aspects of individual mental activity which directly correspond to a dialectical world-view as distinct from the common-sense or reductionist axiomatic outlook which is the more familiar form of human judgement. The practical political importance of this is identified by stating that the worker who begins to think in socialist terms does so by beginning to employ his dialectical potentials. The secret of socialist organizing lies in knowing those forms of propaganda and organizing work which create the most favorable conditions for stimulating and reenforcing such innate intellectual potentials of working people. The Death of Trotskyism
At about the same time that this basic work was being completed, the SWP leadership tore itself apart. As an apparent result of the collapse of the 1958-1959 electoral alliance with former American Labor Party strata and an ebbing of the radical euphoria around the Cuban Revolution, the SWP was utterly demoralized. The pent-up hatreds among the various personal cliques erupted into an orgy of intra-party cannibalism over the Winter and Spring of 1961, with the result that the leadership effectively destroyed itself at the mid-year bi-annual conference. Some leaders soon dropped permanently from sight, others withdrew from activity for up to a year. while most of the remaining few played the role of vultures, conniving over the scraps of the party's corpse.
The last vestige of real socialist commitment and integrity within the leadership and most of the membership died with that conference. Beginning in early 1963, the party was pulled back together as a different sort of organization, adapting to various Ford Foundation and Office of Economic Opportunity counterinsurgency projects. The resolutions adopted at the 1963 conference represented a foot in the door for the organization' s ultimate conversion into the anti-socialist Kitson-model countergang it became from 1968 onwards. However, the 1963 development was only a foot in the door. It required two years of further degeneration under the counterinsurgency policy introduced that year by George Breitman before the organization was prepared to make the complete formal break with the past. That break was certified at the 1965 conference. This process took time to mature. Yet, in that sense, it was only a step from the 1965 conference to CIA-directed union-busting in 1968, and only a step from that to becoming the OEO- linked countergang pushing corporativist (fascist) policies, which the SWP has become today.
During 1963-65 Marcus went through the process of attempting to salvage some remnants from the SWP, and during 1964 through early 1966 from factions of the Trotskyist organizations based in Europe. That series of overlapping attempts came to its conclusion in June 1966, demonstrating to his satisfaction not only that Trotskyism was dead, but that if a viable socialist movement was to exist, he must begin it from scratch. As a perfunctory but morally mandatory gesture, he severed his nominal connections to those organizations and factions with the observation that he was committed to building a new international socialist organization on the basis of the principles he had set forth in opposition to those of these groups.
That parting announcement was referred to by various Trotskyist groups as a matter of ridicule for a couple more years. Not accidentally, it is not often alluded to by any of the remnants of those groups today. The professedly "Trotskyist" organizations have ceased to exist as even an appearance of a minority alternative anywhere but in Great Britain and in parts of Latin America. The "Trotskyists" have finally succeeded in destroying "Trotskyism," and only the Communist Parties, the continental social-democracies, and the Labor Committees exist as significant socialist tendencies in the advanced capitalist sector today.
Apart from the fact that some professedly Trotskyist organizations, such as the SWP, are outright advocates of fascist corporativism (Reesian pluralist "local control") today, one can readily understand why the professedly Trotskyist groups whether pro- or anti-corporativist, are all united in circulating almost identical slanders against Marcus. The very existence of the Labor Committees is prima facie evidence of their uselessness, a fact which drives all of them into imbecilic rage.
Some groups and persons have attempted to define the Labor Committees as "Trotskyist" on the basis of Marcus' transit through the SWP. As the article on Trotskyism in the Summer 1974 issue of the Campaigner demonstrates, although Trotsky was essentially correct in his opposition to both Stalin and the Schactman and Cannon tendencies among his nominal followers, the recurring error in his theory and practice is such that if he were adopted as authoritative for today, the crushing defeat of the working class would be absolutely ensured on that account. Trotsky' s recurring "cryptogenic" and actually psychogenic illnesses may be adequately diagnosed as seizures of the notorious Russian psychopathology known as "Oblomovism," but his own efforts to rationalize such behavior as a premise of his political tendency infects his political "tradition" with a fatal error. This is not a case of throwing out the baby with the bathwater. Trotsky made practical contributions to the socialist struggle, especially during the 1905-1906 and 1917-1933 periods, and certain of his writings have extraordinary critical merit. Contrary to his followers, he is not responsible for discovering any essential original contributions to socialist theory. In respect of those features of his analysis in which he was more or less correct. the Labor Committees' understanding is today significantly more advanced and free of Trotsky' s flaws. Trotsky is properly regarded as an historic figure. Trotskyism, whether based on Trotsky's actual views or the bowdlerized version of the best of his professed followers, would be a fatal encumbrance for any socialist organization today.
We base our struggle not upon the banalities of sentimental tradition, but upon scientific rigor in analyzing and mobilizing against the current situation.
III. How To Start A New Movement
Imagine yourself in the following situation. You have eliminated any immediate connection to any existing socialist organization in North America or Western Europe, not arbitrarily, but through a process of factional struggles and other experiences and study from within the movement. You are either absolutely alone in your committed strategic and tactical views, or have at most a single collaborator.
It is June, 1966. The first major wave of recessions in Western Europe and Japan is coming to an end. This has confirmed the analysis you completed six years earlier concerning the form and general timing considerations for an impending depression. You know that the first major monetary crisis of the world economy cannot be more than two years ahead, and that after that there will be a series of deepening liquidity crises leading directly toward a new world depression and massive social crisis. If you had a socialist organization of even several hundred qualified organizers, with your knowledge of the process, your strategic, programmatic and tactical knowledge, you know almost exactly how to establish workers' governments in North America and Western Europe within a period of a decade or slightly longer. But you are alone. What do you do? How do you start a new movement from scratch, and develop it in the short time available to meet the challenge ahead?
Do you attempt to influence some existing socialist group from within? Once you have struggled free of the sewer, you do not jump back into it in the hope that its sources have miraculously changed so suddenly. Even if you know that there are potentially valuable individuals in such organizations, you know that they can be effectively influenced only by the individual who uses an outside activist-socialist group to influence the larger social environment on which the target groups depend.
How do you construct a viable outside socialist group from scratch?
You will succeed only if you begin with classes in the fundamentals of socialist theory and practice for students. At first, this may seem a queer way to approach the building of a workers' political party. This is even more curious when one admits that radicalized university students, (and lumpens) as a whole are more easily subject to fascist than socialist impulses and ideas. In fact, any person who adapts to movements of radicalized university students or radicalized layers of permanently unemployed and semi-employed with the idea of building a socialist movement in that way is both a fool and a menace. There are two connected reasons for the classes. The first and most obvious purpose is to begin turning potential recruits into qualified professional organizers. The second purpose is to present the class material on a sufficiently high level of quality as to drive away a majority of radicalized university students. You begin with classes designed to produce a very small handful of carefully selected recruits from the mass of university radicals.
The Workers' Problem
But, why any students? Why not save time and begin with workers ? Every skilled or semi-skilled worker already has all the experience needed to prove the importance of socialist intellectuals to his own satisfaction - if he only looks at what he already knows in the proper light.
Capitalist society is a fundamental form of advance over all earlier forms of culture because of its emphasis on expansion based on continual technological advance. For that reason, the belief in the idea of progress and the existence of science both came into being with capitalism. However, because the capitalists determine how investments shall be made and used, the capitalists take direct control of both scientific development and knowledge and the ideas necessary for competently organizing production and distribution. The worker has his skill and his job. He does the job he is hired to do and uses the kind of technology his employers specify. Capitalism divides the totality of human creative activity into two seemingly opposite parts. Workers do their job; the world-wide flow of raw materials and semi-finished products and the stages of production in the particular factory represent a network of practical cooperation of workers on a world scale. For such reasons, Karl Marx describes the labor of working people under capitalism as cooperative labor. Scientific progress and improvements in the methods of organizing production are the right of the capitalists. However, mankind as a whole depends upon these scientific and administrative advances, or else the system of production would stagnate in technological obsolescence and chaos. Marx identifies this aspect of the total creative effort as universal labor.
Under modern capitalism, the split between cooperative and universal labor - called alienation - exists as a social split, between workers on the one hand and the scientists and administrators as part of the management class. This management class of scientists, engineers and administrators represents part of the professional strata within the petit-bourgeoisie. These are mainly a portion of the total number of university graduates.
As long as working people continue to accept the idea of living out their lives under capitalism, they accept this alienation, this deep social division between cooperative and universal labor. They accept the capitalist principle that it is the owners who have the right to decide what new scientific advances shall be made in production, how much production of what kind shall be made, and at what price this production shall be sold to whom. Workers may often have strong opinions on particular issues of technology, production-levels, and prices, but they accept the idea that they must limit themselves to attempts to influence the management or the owners; they accept the principle that science and the administration of production are the rights of management and owners.
As long as the workers continue to accept the idea of living out their lives under capitalism, they generally limit their struggles to wage-rates, working conditions, and so forth. In short, no matter how militant they may become over these issues, they usually accept the policy of "minding their own business" when it comes to management's rights concerning science and administration. This fact is the fundamental problem of socialist organization. Socialism is nothing but the principle that the working-class as a whole must take democratic responsibility for deciding the policies of scientific development and the organization of production and distribution. If an organization is not proposing alternative programs of scientific development and production reorganization to significant and increasing numbers of workers - to the best of its ability - it is simply not a socialist organization in reality. But, for as long as workers accept the idea of living out their lives under capitalism, their minds mysteriously "turn off" whenever such socialist ideas are presented to them for practical action. Under ordinary circumstances, they laugh at the socialist who tells them they should meddle in such matters. The worker' s problem in attempting to understand ideas involving universal labor is not that he lacks the mental powers to deal with them, but that in order to take such issues seriously, he msut think of meddling forcefully in the capitalists' rights.
During social crises, this attitude is easily changed. That fact is being demonstrated in many parts of North America and Western Europe today. Skilled and semi-skilled workers are beginning to discuss seriously fusion power development, agricultural development programs, and are already producing valuable proposals for the reorganization and expansion of the kinds of industries with which they are most familiar. However, they are doing this because New Solidarity - now published in English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, and Swedish editions - is bringing the basic outlines of such programs to them. The spreading of new intellectual life among these workers is a result of their involvement in understanding and further developing the programmatic material developed for them by the Labor Committee.
During social crises, the workers suddenly begin to develop a potential for thinking through problems in the area of universal labor. Their problem at that time is that they do not have the opportunity of years to work out the programmatic ideas they need; under conditions of crisis, events are proceeding too rapidly. However, they are fully capable of thinking in such terms if the program is already developed; they are rather suddenly fully capable of becoming socialists.
The Revolutionary Intellectuals
The tactic for the serious socialist group is to develop the basic program needed, years in advance of the actual crisis. It is essential to have both the program itself, and also a significant number of trained professional organizers capable of quickly mobilizing masses of workers around the program, and providing them with all the theory they immediately require for establishing workers' governments.
Where do you go to recruit such potential professionals - during those pre-crisis years when workers are not yet responsive to socialist ideas? One finds the suitable recruits from among the very strata of professionals which the capitalists train to perform scientific and other key management work for capitalism. Karl Marx is the ultimate example of this principle. Except; for the fact that Marx was a revolutionary socialist, (whom the professors and press are compelled to slander for that reason), he would be generally regarded by capitalist academic authorities as one of the two or three greatest geniuses of the nineteenth century - not only because of his fundamental discoveries in economics, but for his (1845) fundamental contributions to solving the most fundamental problems of scientific thought. The effective builders of the socialist movement have understood that a movement must begin with the recruitment and development of what is called a revolutionary intelligentsia.
This does not mean that even most of the top layers of university graduating classes are real intellectuals. In fact, most professors are what any skilled worker should consider as a distinctly "average" or mediocre thinker. They may have learned a considerable amount, which seems very impressive to the individual who has learned much less. Most of them have neither the habits nor inclination for really profound or creative thinking. They got where they are largely by passing courses - creating a favorable impression in the opinion of academic authorities - and they spend their professional lives continuing to worry first about the impression they are making on authorities, rather than primary concern for scientific truth- With students generally, the situation is much worse than with the professors. The overwhelming majority of radical university students of the 1960s and 1970s have been violently anti-intellectual. The local plant's young "Maoist" with the shifty eyes and the literacy of a high-school drop-out may have a master' s degree or at least several years of undergraduate studies.
Within the totality of university-trained individuals there is an extremely tiny majority whose outlook is based on a potential or actively-developed passion for more profound scientific accomplishments. The hard-core of recruits to a revolutionary intelligentsia is found mainly among the radicalized section of students of this superior type, usually between the ages of eighteen and twenty-five.(14)
But Not Ordinary Students
Labor Committee experience has demonstrated the following essential features of a recruiting program for candidate professional organizers. For workers, it is permissible and often necessary to have a variety of classes which serve as an introduction to the basic, "hard" course in method and economics. Those introductory classes are a useful way of providing the worker with a running start for the kind of intensive education the basic course represents. With radical students, no such mercy should be shown. A competent series in method and economics is the toughest course any of these students have faced. Let it be tough : that sorts out the genuine candidates from the mental weaklings quickly, and saves everyone much otherwise wasted time all around. Society has ample important work to be done by professionals of merely mediocre mental development; but that work will have to be found somewhere else than in the duties of the professional socialist organizer. It should not be surprising to learn that those Labor Committee members who have shown the greatest intellectual toughness in mastering theoretical questions usually have proven to be the most reliable organizers under fire when the situation becomes personally risky out in the field. There are exceptions to that rule, but the pattern among professional strata is essentially that intellectual toughness and the kind of physical courage needed to take command of a bad situation are one and the same thing.
The Labor Committees have some useful experience with this problem of courage. One case from the Fall of 1968 is typical of literally thousands of examples. The individual in question was an unusually talented local Columbia University campus celebrity, who seemed to understand and agree with most of the basic theoretical material - until suddenly one week that Fall. This person's obvious character defect was his eagerness to get to be the biggest celebrity possible in the shortest time. Our constant problem with him during the late Spring and Summer months was that each week, at least, he would propose some elaborate scheme for taking over part of some newspaper, or getting large amounts of money for a big circulation newspaper of our own - every week, he was going to make us all suddenly politically rich. He caved in that Fall under campus and radical pressure, refusing to associate himself with us any longer unless we stopped sabotaging the efforts of the Office of Economic Opportunity, the Ford Foundation and New York' s Mayor Lindsay to begin breaking municipal trade unions. He admitted that this strike-breaking, being done by most of SDS, as well as the Communist Party, Progressive Labor Party, and Socialist Workers Party was wrong; he opposed risking the possibility of cheap popularity by openly fighting against the left' s strike-breaking. We were right in what we said, he admitted, but wrong in doing anything about it.
His problem was a lack of guts. He had the ability to think, but would push for ideas only as long as he thought he could push such views and still hold onto his hopes of being a quick celebrity. When his ideas became a threat to his dreams of personal success, he would begin to adjust his thinking accordingly. After he left us, we watched his activities for about a year after that; his former power to think rapidly deteriorated, and he was soon treated as pretty much of a joke by even those for whom he attempted to make himself an ally and spokesman.
This type is familiar in all walks of life, academic, socialist and trade-union included. The difference between the intellectual and the trade-unionist is that the guy in the shop can be ordinarily a person you'd trust behind you back in a fight even if his specifically intellectual activity is not particularly consistent on more complicated questions. Ordinarily, a worker is trustworthy or a slimy character on the basis of his obvious moral traits. If he has good moral traits in his relationship to his family, friends and. the people with whom he works, he has a better than average chance to turn out well when the time arrives for his thinking seriously about socialist political ideas. The special problem of the intellectual is that his personal integrity is directly mixed up with the quality of his abstract thinking. If he thinks like an ordinary liberal, he will act like a slob under social pressure, and if he starts to act like a slob he will soon begin to think like a slob.
We have taken up the matter of classroom education. Classroom education by itself does not make a professional socialist organizer. The class must be accompanied by laboratory work of some relevant kind even before the basic course has been completed.
The student must be drawn into some form of socialist organizing work which will test his mastery of at least part of what he is learning in the classes. This in no magnificent discovery. In the Marcus course, somewhere between the fourth and seventh hour of the lectures some of the students in each class would begin asking about where to go to begin acting on the newly-discovered knowledge. For reasons which will become clearer later on, an analysis of the eight years past history of the Labor Committees must six distinct periods : August, 1966 - April, 1968; May, 1968 - June, 1969; August, 1969 - June-August, 1971 ; September, 1971 - December, 1972; January 1973 - December, 1973; and January, 1974 to the present. For the first four of those periods, the central feature of the Committees' activities was a combination of courses and increasingly advanced laboratory work both within the organization itself and in the field. Beginning in January, 1973, the emphasis on training of the core ended. The basic class-series continued for new recruits, but the majority of the members had graduated into the ranks of journeyman professional organizers, on their way to becoming masters.
From January, 1973 to the present, the organization's recruitment perspectives shifted fundamentally. The time for concentrating on campus recruits had ended; now was thetime to get down to the business of transforming the Committees into a working-class organization in social composition as well as in political purposes. The emphasis shifted toward making the Labor Committees the mass-based workers' political organization it is rapidly becoming today.
IV. How A Course Builds A Movement
From the outside, it must appear to be a wild exaggeration to report that an individual who has mastered a course in Marx's method and economic theories has become a superior person in every essential respect. He has not only learned more than he would have from most courses of the same duration, but both his intelligence and moral qualities have been substantially improved. The claim does not appear to be entirely exaggerated to the observer who has attempted to account for the powerful influence and other accomplishments of our relative handful of members during 1974. He admits that something very special must have occurred to bring such unusual talent and commitment. It can not be left at that; our task here is not to gain awe but comprehension. We shall not exaggerate. We shall not pretend that even a majority of members have completely assimilated Marx's method to all parts of their moral nature. Most have retained, to a varying degree, at least a small part of their old neurotic defects. They are not perfect geniuses, but merely superior in their intellectual and moral development to any comparable selection of individuals from outside the organization. This will not seem far-fetched any longer after we have explained the connections involved.
The Total Economy
Any skilled or semi-skilled worker can understand the key to the essential techniques of good capitalist management within a few hours. There are three basic analytical tools involved. The first is called a process sheet : simply trace out all the successive stages of production in a plant, showing how all phases of production move from the first step of producing an item, through every following workplace, until the item is packed for shipment. The machinery and equipment required at each workplace and to move work from one to the next is obviously identifiable. The kind of skill required, including tooling and maintenance, is also obviously identifiable. The first rough outline of a process sheet is completed by calculating the gross and net time and dollars required to process a certain lot-size through the network, both time and money for the total production and for each department and workplace.
The second analytical tool is the bill of materials ; for each lot-size of a product, list the materials, parts and supplies needed, including power. Indicate at what phase of the process sheet these are each required. Identify the amount of each material or part required, and add to cover scrap and other wastage. Calculate the cost of the material and deduct for sale of scrap. Identify the vendor from which the material or part is obtained in each case, and also estimate the delivery lead-time needed.
The third analytical tool is the bill of consumption : this is your family's housing, food, clothing, medical services, and so forth.
Now, assuming that the process sheet and bill of materials has been worked out for all production, the following analysis justifies itself. The process sheet connects to points outside the plant in two main ways. First, it leads to the firms which supply the buildings, machinery, equipment, tools, and so forth. Secondly, there is a bill of consumption for the household of each worker involved. The bill of materials leads to the outside firms which deliver and supply, each of which has its own process sheet, bill of materials, and bills of consumption of its employees. The worker who began to work out such an analysis for himself would find his mind racing around the world in two directions. Starting from the production on which he works, the outside firms on which this production depends for buildings, machinery, materials, and so forth, lead, step after step, several times around the world. Starting from the things his household requires for its consumption, he arrives at the plants which produce the things he consumes, and again goes many times around the world making connections.
This kind of exercise proves that the existence of every individual worker in the world depends upon the totality of world industrial, mining and agricultural production. It also proves that the possibility of generally improving the conditions of consumption and leisure of working people depends upon technological advances which enable labor to produce more and better with less time. Otherwise, the conditions of one worker can be improved only by either taking it away from either the capitalists or from other workers or farmers.
In short, the worker who says "Our union can take care of itself," or "Our industry will take care of its own problems" is really talking gibberish- This is not Intended to insult any particular workers; under capitalism, nearly everyone is guilty of such gibberish most of the time.
Science vs. Gibberish
Since any skilled or semi-skilled worker can easily prove to himself that we are correct in what we have just described, he must then ask himself why most working people generally believe in gibberish. In general, it isn't difficult to find a satisfactory and essentially correct explanation. Under capitalism, the worker is not concerned about the way world production is organized or developed. He is paid to do his particular job for his particular management, and what goes on in other plants is more or less "none of his business." For this work he is paid a wage or salary. His concern for the details of how the items his family buys are produced is "None of your business, if you don't mind." He can apply for a job at a different plant, try to change his trade or profession, and can shop around at different stores. He can negotiate or strike for higher wages - or used to be able to - and complain pretty loudly in his backyard or neighborhood bar, or vote for whatever Republican or Democratic jerk he chooses from the alternatives served up on the ballot. There his control ends.
In other words, "gibberish" is really an honest description of the quality of pro-capitalist thinking.
The simplest introductory definition of Marx' s method and economic theory is that they are simply non-gibberish. Marxism is not some exotic, mysterious collection of formulas. At the bottom it is simply the only known form of sanity in a world of gibberish. At least, that is the simplest accurate way of defining the basic difference between socialist and pro-capitalist thinking.
The worker has just one objection to this - at least, just one such objection as soon as he begins to think in socialist terms. His fear is this : "Isn't that collectivism? - Doesn't that mean that I'm just one more tiny cog drowning in a sea of blank faces ? What happens to 'me' under socialism? I mean, my individuality?" The answer begins to surface as soon as one asks the question: "Could a caveman, or a person without the equivalent combined training and experience of a high school education do a skilled worker's job?" What is your skill, your basic culture, your ability to develop new, more advanced skills? Isn't your culture made possible by your standard of living. your educational opportunities, your leisure, and so forth? In other words, if your rights to a higher standard of living, better education, and more leisure are not improved, your productive contribution will be less. You are not some special kind of mere animal; much more than your animal biology is needed to make you productive. It is the development of your mental powers which makes you important to the human race. To the extent you are able to develop those powers, you become more valuable to the rest of humanity.
It is not the simple existence of other human beings that is important to us. The important thing for each of us, from which each of us benefits in at least an indirect way, is the development of the mental powers of every other human being.
These points should be enough to indicate the reason for the superior moral qualities of the professional organizer over the average individual. Instead of playing the game of looking for cheap immediate personal recognition in the eyes of whomever he happens to consider important among those around him, the professional organizer is impelled to act in the way that will make his existence objectively important to the interests of humanity.
In the final analysis, there is no real distinction between morality and intelligence. At the same time, we are accustomed to discuss the moral side of individual intelligence as if this were a different quality than what we usually signify by the word "intelligence." Therefore, provided we agree on these two points, we can proceed to discuss intelligence in the ordinary way of using that word.
The compulsion to see only those things which are so to speak right under one' s nose and to "mind my own business" concerning the other neighborhood, the other factory, and so forth, is an enormous lowering of the individual' s intelligence. We could describe intelligence as the habit of thinking things through, which means seeing beyond what is right under one's nose. When we hear an individual justify some argument by the words "in my experience," we are usually listening to a man who has turned off most of his intelligence by "minding my own business," by attempting to understand the world mainly in terms of what occurs right under his nose, and usually limiting his attention to experiences and problems which are not the prerogatives of management.
Socialist organizers know this self-destruction of intelligence very well. At every plant gate, there is always the one who stands out by demanding, "What are you outsiders doing here?" The person who says that is suffering from a willing destruction of his own potential intelligence : he is describing himself as a person who refuses to think anything through.
Theretore, the individual who has mastered even the barest essentials of Marx's method and economic theory has already increased this available intelligence by a giant step. He has begun to see reality in a new, less neurotic way, he has begun to think in terms of the world as a whole, and therefore has increased his mental abilities enormously over the unfortunate individual who still thinks that socialist organizers are "outsiders," He has thrown off slave-mentality and has begun to think and respond to others like a free human being.
A Deeper Point
We could develop this discussion much further, going step-by-step in the same way we have developed this point so far. That is the task of the course we have identified, not this present brief history. We shall make one more point here. for the purpose of showing that we have only scratched the surface of what could be said on this subject. Once an individual has thought through and conceptualized the doubly-reciprocal relationship between the total world productive network and the bill of consumption of the individual worker's household. and has understood how this relationship develops under necessary conditions of rising standards of consumption and technological
advancement, he has mastered the most advanced and profound conceptions of which modern man is known to be capable, the kind of scientific conceptions for which Albert Einstein was still searching in physics during the last years of his life.
This fact leads to the important judgment that the continued difficulties leading scientists have confronted in the unsuccessful effort to master what are properly called self-reflexive conceptions of invariance is not a result of any hereditary biological detect in the mental processes of our leading thinkers. Since the difficulty is of the same form we experience in the defective thinking of the pro-capitalist .trade-unionist, we know that the main cause of the difficulty is neurotic, a neurotic impairment of mental powers characteristic of what philosophers would term technically the heteronomic characteristics ot capitalist culture.
It is conceded that few professional organizers have so far been able to completely conceptualize self-reflexive concepts with the directness we have implied. Yet, their mental development has moved toward that point to varying degrees in each case of those who have assimilated Marx' s method. Therefore, although they often fall far short of what is possible from such training, their limited progress represents a qualitative improvement in intelligence over comparable populations which have not benefited from such education and related organizing experience.
Although the technical details of a competent course in Marx's method and economic theory have the same sort ot importance for professional organizers as the details of any branch ot science, the most important result of that training is of the kind we have identified here. The most essential and fundamental object of the course was to transform a superior sort of university or graduate student from an inwardly frightened, alienated petit-bourgeois into a person of self-conscious moral identity and enhanced powers of general intelligence. This was accomplished by showing these recruits their connection to the development of the productive forces on a world scale.
The extent to which this could succeed among student radicals was limited by the especially vicious swinishness characteristic of petit-bourgeois social strata. Because the general run of petit-bourgeois bureaucrat or professional exists as a virtual house-servant of capitalist management and government, and because his real usefulness to humanity is often doubtful (for example, the wretched salesman) or he is too often even an outright parasite, the children of such households are raised lacking either in the worker's certainty of his social usefulness or any sense of direct moral connection to the rest of humanity. It was for related reasons that Karl Marx excluded the possibility that the petit-bourgeois stratum could perform a useful independent role during periods of social crisis. Except for those precious exceptions from which we recruit our leading scientists and revolutionary intelligentsia, a lifetime of education could not transform the typical petit-bourgeois into a morally cultured person, and no amount of socialist education of this stratum could enable it to comprehend Marx' s method or economic theory so long as capitalist relations predominate.
Although workers generally do not have the amount of formal education of the ordinary run of professionals, the workers' circumstances as cooperative labor is such that they have but to begin looking beyond the plant and neighborhood, and to think through the means by which they live, to arrive at the first approximation of the Marxian outlook. Once the social crisis emerges, this potentiality of the working class is quickly realized, provided there is an organization of qualified socialist professionals making the necessary connections for those workers.
This does not mean that the mass of petit-bourgeois are forever unsalvageable. It means that the majority of them are incapable of rising out of the muck of their present heteronomic, egoistical world-outlook, their anti-social greedy passions, until the emergence of a mass-based workers' political movement has drastically altered the social context for the population generally. The mass of the petit-bourgeois are capable of assimilating the beginnings of moral sanity only as they transfer their attachment from capitalist employment to the prospect of serving a visible mass-based workers' political movement.
V. How the Columbia Strike Happened
Although only insiders to the affair have generally known the fact, the Columbia University strike which erupted in April, 1968 was an indirect result of the Labor Committees' rapid development during the preceding Winter months. Rockefeller can give his CIA-man McGeorge Bundy credit for then several years our threat to become a influence in the North American left.
For two years, beginning during the Summer of 1966; the Marcus class at a ramshackle New York Free School premises on New York City' s 14th Street was the motor for the growth of a tiny group, the hard core of the future Labor Committees. (15) It was entirely not accidental that the majority of this small group was made up of Columbia graduate students. Although that university was already dissipating the quality of its faculty, it retained the reputation for excellence acquired during former years. It still tended to attract a significant proportion of the most serious type of future scholars among its student body as a whole.
It is the exceptionally gifted future scientist or scholar who is most immediately receptive to advanced Marxist thinking. This is especially notable if he finds a significant small ratio of persons of the same qualities in his immediate peer-group. It is for related reasons that for some years up through 1968, the best-rated universities deliberately seeded their first-year undergraduate and graduate school student populations with a proportion of maverick potential radicals. Not because the universities especially wished to increase socialist activities on their campuses, but because it is the same mavericks who often become radicals which yield the outstanding future scientist or scholar. University policy prior to 1968 was to encourage mavericks to sow harmless socialist "wild oats" in extra-curricular programs, and get this out of their system before settling down to focus their energies more exclusively on their future professions.
After the Columbia strike and the Nixon inauguration, this university recruitment policy changed. By the Spring of 1969, admissions offices had posted the sign over their door, "No more mavericks, if you please." (16) As the effects of the policy change took over the student populations, campus recruiting to socialist groups dropped off rapidly.
The significant proportion of Columbia graduate students within the initial Labor Committee membership was a result of the same kind of circumstances which otherwise encourage the development of leading socialist organizers from trade-union ranks. Intellectual life is essentially social. Ordinarily, the extent to which the gifted individual is capable of showing his potential for advanced mental activity depends upon the existence of at least a small number of persons receptive to discussing such ideas seriously in his peer groups.
Only a genius or otherwise psychologically exceptionally gifted person is capable of seeming to rise above the demoralizing effects of an entirely backward intellectual environment (not because he is less social, but because he works from a longer-range view than most).
We had similar experience in the founding of the European Labor Committees later on. A group of gifted medical students predominated in forming the nucleus in West Germany. As this nucleus developed it became possible to draw in other key persons from other parts of West Germany and Europe generally. In Europe, too, the selection and development of the nucleus was the outcome of training of what would be considered an exceptionally high level by graduate school standards.
Marcus' main tactical problem during the early Summer of 1966 was selecting some organizational framework within which selected graduates of his course could be held together and developed as a working group. His immediate objective was to move in on the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), and to collect from that broad stratum the relatively tiny handful of exceptional campus radicals qualified be developed into a revolutionary intelligentsia. At that moment, the largest visible concentration of such candidates was being drawn by default toward the Progressive Labor Party (PLP) - although the majority of PLP recruits were decidedly not worth having. A minority of PLP's new members and peripheries included the potential nucleus of worthwhile socialist organization in North America. The raid on PLP was Marcus' immediate target, but it would not be possible to go after that objective directly.
What was needed was some small fixed organizational base from which to launch and coordinate maneuvers into SDS and PLP ranks. The instrument for this was unintentionally provided by a pair of ambiguous characters, James Weinstein and Stanley Aronowitz, both of whom have undoubtedly cursed the day during years since.
Weinstein was the fund-raiser and therefore the virtual controller of a group that had taken over Studies on the Left, and was linked to a layer of ex-Communists deeply buried within the New York City Manhattan West Side reform Democratic Party organization. Aronowitz was an Alinsky-school community organizer working his way out of the Oil, Atomic and Chemical Workers union toward a career in OEO-type counterinsurgency projects. These two had met as a result of Aronowitz' s appointed leader, ship position in national SDS and association with Studies on the Left.
Appealing to Weinstein' s fascination with the pre-World War I Socialist Party of America, (17) Aronowitz had used Weinstein's fund-raising resources and West Side connections to instigate the establishment of an organization styled as. the Committee for Independent Political Action (CIPA). Aronowitz' s ambitions for this project caused him to offer Marcus and his sole collaborator of that time a "franchise" for lower West Side Manhattan.
Without reviewing a mass of details which are irrevelant for present purposes, the key to what followed was the fact that neither Marcus nor Aronowitz wished to be a captive of the other' s immediate organization. However, a broader base was urgently needed for Weinstein's Independent Socialist congressional campaign, and Weinstein was almost fanatical about building a broad organization on the basis of a diversified federation of right to left socialists like the old SP. Marcus and his collaborator wanted an organizational framework through which to establish what James Rodney Schlesinger would identify glaringly as a "foot in the door," for launching a movement on the basis of a Marxian program of expanded reproduction, and with a convenient proximity to SDS for the immediate future phases of this work. Thus was established the West Village-Chelsea Committee for Independent Political Action, generally more conveniently identified as "Lower West Side CIPA" or "West Village CIPA."
From this original base, the precursor organization of the Labor Committees issued its first publication, a mimeographed proposal for forming "A Second Front Against The War In Vietnam," on the basis of programs in the immediate interests of U.S. working people. This document included a statement of general tactical policy to that effect, and included an analysis and programmatic proposal on the New York City housing crisis as an immediate included feature and example of such a needed new tactic. The object of this housing program was to provide the funds at 'landlords' and bankers' expense, uniting tenants and construction workers around a common-interest building program under the slogan, "Tax Landlords, Not People."
At the same time this document was being produced, the Columbia members joined the SDS chapter being founded at that campus. With the circulation of the document around New York SDS, there was an immediate responslve ferment within PLP.
There were four major developments for this CIPA organization during 1967. The first was the initiative of the Columbia members of the organization in organizing and leading a Winter, 1967 SDS campaign to throw the CIA recruiters off that campus. That incident played an important part in enabling the Labor Committee to propose and lead the Columbia strike of April, 1968. The second was the establishment of the West Side Tenants' Union as a probing of possibility for organizing around the program for housing. The third development was the printing of 3,000 copies of Marcus' The Third Stage of Imperialism during the Spring of 1967. The fourth development was the cumulative outcome of the first three. The first Labor Committee was formed at Columbia University during early November, 1967, as a coalition between the CIPA members of Columbia SDS and the majority of the PLP members of that same SDS chapter.
Since the issuance of the initial mimeographed publication of "Lower West Side CIPA," in October, 1966, the New York PLP student clubs had been in a perpetual state of ferment concerning the conception of socialist program and tactics embedded in that writing. By early Fall of 1967, a handful of Manhattan PLP members working within SDS began to attend secretly Marcus' s Free School course. The proposal to SDS to form a support action for the impending January 1, 1968 transit workers' strike gave CIPA and its factional PLP allies in SDS the means for forming the Columbia SDS Labor Committee. They then pushed PLP and others to join them to effect a temporary takeover of New York regional SDS a short time later, around support of the transit workers and defense of the subway fare against proposed increases.
By late January, two developments emerged from the establishment of the Labor Committee. After a couple months, even the thick-headed leadership of national PLP began to realize that they had a potentially powerful socialist faction moving in on their peripheries and membership. A factional struggle erupted between SDS PLPers linked to the national PLP leadership and the CIPA members and their allies. By March, national PLP had lost that fight and withdrew from the Labor Committees. Meanwhile, the Labor Committee faction had moved toward a majority control of Columbia SDS.
While this shift in leadership of Columbia SDS was occurring, there was a scheduled election of chapter officials. The right-wing, anti-labor members of that chapter had 30 supporters, the Labor Committee had 30 supporters, and Mark Rudd and two cronies stood in the middle. Rudd used his middle position to negotiate the Presidency of the club for himself, and therefore maintained that nominal leadership even after the Labor Committee faction soon became a majority.
The Columbia Strike
While these matters were maturing, there were two developments which led directly into the organization of the later April Columbia strike. The first was the initial breakdown of the post-war monetary system Committee which occurred during late February and early March of that year. A chain-reaction leading from the action-devaluation of the pound led quickly into the first possible. major crisis of the dollar, forcing the International direct Monetary System to accept the U.S. Federal Reserve moving System's going off the gold standard. The process leading into the depression had begun. The second of a development was the assassination of Martin Luther King.
The immediate importance of the February-March dollar crisis for events in New York City was that this development represented a massive confirmation of the analysis of the economy as developed in Marcus' s course and CIPA publications. That confirmation of their ideas gave the Labor Committees the quality of confidence in their understanding necessary for.any handful attempting to assume mass leadership. The King assassination created a dangerous social crisis, demanding a positive intervention to supply the eruption with a healthy orientation.
Rudd and a handful of others attempted to exploit the King assassination with sit-in and related anarchist tactics, drawing some sympathy but accomplishing little. Meanwhile, two Labor Committee members, Antony Papert and Stephen Komm, concentrated on developing a tactic which conformed to our political overview of what the situation required. Komm drafted a program entitled "A Spring Offensive" and undertook the task of personally handling the unstable Mark Rudd. The program was adopted, a "scenario" which planned out step-by-step the sequence of actions and university administration reactions which would create a Columbia strike and then lead to a broader alliance with ghetto and labor forces. Komm's psychological-profile assessment of the Columbia administration and student population was excellent. The strike developed in the sequence Komm had outlined.
The result was the first serious tactical deployment by the Labor Committee organization as a whole. Factional relations between the Labor Committees and PLP had been serious but had not yet become as embittered as PLP was to make them over the months to come. Jake Rosen, a leader of national PLP consented to confer with the Labor Committee, and a for coordinated deployment around the strike planned anti-war demonstration of the following Saturday. The Labor Committee concentrated on mobilizing support marches for the Columbia strike from the East Side while PLP organized a march from the West Side. Before Saturday, several significant developments occurred within the strike itself. First, at the first rumor of police intervention, Rudd and his associates had dived out the nearest window for the leadership of the strike to Papert. With immediate direction of the affair under Labor leadership, it was possible to do what is elementary tactical competence, in any political strike - spread the strike as far and as fast as temporarily free of frightened Rudd' s influence, the strike leadership succeeded in the action rapidly over the next several days preceding the Rockefeller forces' gathering violent police action.
As a result of the police action, the strike took over the entire campus and began spreading rapidly into the surrounding communities. The Labor committee leadership moved in a series of rapid actions to consolidate this. We proposed that a broad, democratic strike committee be formed around the strike' s program, with one delegate for each on-campus or off-campus student, ghetto or labor group of seventy supporters. In addition, the Labor Committees began to educate those involved in the theory of the political mass strike while organizing a broad curriculum which would in effect keep the educational life of the university going as a program open to the broader community, but under the direction of the strike committee.
Bundy Steps In
The counteraction against the Labor Committee was handled principally through CIA-man McGeorge Bundy's Ford Foundation. The choice of Bundy for this job was obvious. Columbia University is a Rockefeller bastion, and the Bundy family has been a source of Rockefeller political intelligence operatives since World War II days of OSS, the Latin America n CIA and OWI. The Ford Foundation was created by the Ford family at Rockefeller instigation, and has been developed and guided by the oockefeller interests as a complement to the RAND Corporation, CIA, and various other branches of the Rockefeller family Anglo-American machinery. Furthermore, not only was Bundy a trained top CIA executive, but the Ford Foundation was one of the best-equipped and best-situated agencies to handle the job at Columbia.
There was no overreaction by Rockefeller and Company in deploying such a high-powered campaign against the tiny Labor Committee forces. The Rockefeller interests had ample reason to know that although the Committees were very small, the tactical conceptions used were of the most sophisticated sort. It was not possible for us to conceal this ominous aspect of our work. The CIA and similar "dark forces," with their vast resources, can direct their operations secretly from behing the scenes. In socialist political work, this is not possible. The essence of socialist tactics is openness. everything depends upon educating an ever-broader mass of those involved in the conceptions behind the tactics. In this way, it is possible for a tiny handful to both win acceptance for its proposed tactics among masses and to give those masses the means for developing effective tactical initiatives by themselves.
The Rockefeller interests evidence for the seriousness of the threat was of two kinds. The outbreaks in France and the effectiveness of the Columbia tactic itself strongly suggested that the recent outbreak of monetary crisis coincided with social potential for spreading actions of these types. It was important to the Rockefellers to attempt to contain any movements which might spark such a broader potential into actuality. Capitalist counterinsurgency containment has always meant finding the brains behind the potentially dangerous movements and attempting to isolate that hard-corefrom the masses. They had ample evidence to know that the Labor Committees represented the only brains in the situation.
In addition to the sequence of events at Columbia end the mass-strike materials published there, the Rockefellers' people knew The Third Stage of imperialism pamphlet. If today' s reader compares that pamphlet with what the Rockefellers are doing on a world scale during 1974, and the evidence that this present Rockefeller campaign has been in preparation for over a decade and a half, he can begin to understand the way in which the CIA think-tank saw the pamphlet back in 1967 and 1968. Here was the only opposition group in the world -- however tiny -- which understood exactly what the Rockefeller forces were planning to do. Ordinary big-mouthed super-militant "revolutionaries" absolutely do not frighten the Rockefellers. When one considers the way in which the Rockefellers have played the Soviet leadership from late March through the Cyprus affair of 1974, like a yo-yo, one is able to understand why those forces would consider the Labor Committees potentially as far more of a threat to their interests than any ordinary radical or socialist organization, Communist parties included.
McGeorge. Bundy' s forces launched three April-May 1968 main counterinsurgency actions for the purpose of isolating the Labor Committee hard-core. Former 0SS operative Dr. Kenneth Clark acted in several ways to break off key sections of black militant involvement from the strike. Clark, originally trained under Rockefeller-sponsored top intelligence operatives Kurt Lewin and John Rawlings Rees, was a member of Rockefeller's State Board of Regents, director of the Ford Foundation-sponsored Metropolitan Applied Research Center (MARC), and had been a key figure in various Rockefeller operations since the early 1950s. In addition, Clark's son had been the front-man for organizing the counterinsurgency Student Afro-American campus group during the early 1960s, as a calculated part of Rockefeller's many efforts at pushing racial segregation as his tactic for the 1960s and beyond.
The second Ford operation was directed at breaking away a large part of the general student support of the Columbia Strike Committee. During mid-May a large section of those student leaders split from the Strike Committee on the basis of a Ford Foundation grant for the formation of a "Students for a Restructured University." The third action was covert. Secret negotiations were made with Mark Rudd, who had been profiled as a weak link, and others. An earlier effort at intervention to abort the strike had been made by former OSS and CIA operative Dr. Herbert Marcuse. Marcuse had made the blunder of revealing his thinking to Papert and therefore failed in the initial effort to get by Papert and work through Rudd. However, Marcuse's nephew succeeded where the uncle had failed. Rudd and associates were given Ford Foundation funding through a covert conduit, (18) With this backing and assistance of SDS Alinsky-connected operatives moved into New York City for this proposed. Now under CIA control, Rudd carried out his assignment to dissolve the remainder of the Columbia Strike Committee as soon as the majority of students had left the campus.
Rudd was sent on nationwide tour, and linked up with an assortment of other agents planted around the student movement, adding the notorious Avakian and Klonsky to the Hayden types. Everything possible was done, using Rudd and other CIA-controlled agents, to head off alliances between socialists and workers and to foment insane terrorist-type actions. The Rudd-Avakian activities were an updated model of the French police agencies' financing and directing of anarchist terrorist gangs, in an earlier effort to discredit and destroy the socialist movement, during the late 1870s and 1880s.
CIA-man Bundy succeeded in his efforts to isolate the Labor Committees, and to so temporarily head off the kind of spreading political labor movement that the Columbia strike threatened to spark. However, the experience itself transformed our organization from a loose federation of young apprentice socialist organizers into a tough cadre organization with at least the training, experience and factional impact it needed to break out of a local New York City setting and begin the process of becoming a nationwide organization.
It was not entirely a victory for Bundy and Clark, either. As a result of the hardening experience of April through June of 1968, during the following Fall the Committees were able to intervene at a vulnerable point of Bundy's effort to break the New York City municipal workers' unions and sabotage a large part of the Ford Foundation-Lindsay campaign against the New York City United Federation of Teachers. The Labor Committees had passed through the preliminary stage of launching a new movement and were into the next phase of development.
VI. The Fight Against "Left Wing" Fascism
Earlier this year, while we were tracing through records of foundation grants, we discovered that Mark Rudd's faction of self-styled "crazies" had had its 1968 operations against the Labor Committees funded by the Ford Foundation through a cover provided by a newphew of former CIA operative Dr. Herbert Marcuse. We also recently turned up massive evidence of Saul Alinsky' s long-standing association with Rockefeller political intelligence and anti-labor agencies, and the role of Alinsky-trained and directed agents who assisted Rudd in the anti-Labor Committee Ford Foundation project.
This involvement of Marcuse' s nephew was not surprising to us. Marcuse himself had attempted to intervene in the Columbia strike along similar lines earlier, but had been blocked from doing so through Papert. When we put this sort of knowledge together with Ford Foundation overt operations through Kenneth Clark and "Students for a Restructured University," we have an overwhelming case to show that all of our major problems of the May-June, 1968 period were being created by the hand of long-standing Rockefeller protege and, more directly , CIA-man McGeorge Bundy of the OSS and, CIA Bundy family.
Even without such detailed background knowledge at that time, we already had overwhelming evidence by early June, 1968 that Mark Rudd had been transformed into a raving proto-fascist. As we noted in our publications of the early Fall of that year (19), Rudd's speeches had a remarkable resemblance on all main points to those of Benito Mussolini. During the June, 1968 national SDS conference, it became clear that SDS was headed for a three-way split among, first, a gang of professedly Maoist fascists, a group around the Progressive Labor Party, and the Labor Committees.
Marcus' s immediate tactical problem was that the proto-fascist organization around Columbia was made up substantially of persons from the immediate peer group of a significant number of Labor Committee members. Although our members privately acknowledged the hideousness of the policies being pushed by the self-styled "crazies," there was considerable reluctance to openly denounce the Rudd policies definitively for what they were. There was a tendency to minimize issues which might "unnecessarily" exacerbate the factional atmosphere, a reluctance to harden disagreements with those persons some of our members still vainly hoped to influence in a favorable direction. Although the Labor Committee members were committed to the view that our "constituency" was working people, not students, there was a significant emotional tendency to lose sight of that fact under pressures of the immediate petit-bourgeois peer-group. Unless this dangerous soft-ness was eradicated from the group, the Labor Committees could not survive and develop to the ends intended.
Immediately following the June national SDS conference, Marcus introduced a draft statement on that conference, posing the problem of "left-wing" proto-fascism in strong terms. The history of fascism was intensively considered, with exemplary clinical features of the Rudd faction. As a result of these deliberations, the group developed that new understanding and toughness which enabled it to play a critical role in the Fall, 1968 attack on the United Federation of Teachers. (20)
What Is Fascism?
Apart from a general consensus to the effect that fascism is somehow a bad thing, there has been no competent understanding of what fascism is, either in the schoolroom or even most of the socialist movement. Popular confusion on this issue is partly deliberately created. The schoolbooks and newspapers spread the lie that "communism and fascism are two extremes," as if political sentiments could be measured in pounds per gallon, and liberalism therefore explained as a political solution of "pH7." The Communists tend toward the nonsense-view in which fascism is explained simply as the imposition of military-police rule from above. Although there is a very faint resemblance to truth in the ordinary Communist's explanation, the implied analysis is so absurd, for practical purposes of preventing fascism, that it must be considered almost as false as the ignorant schoolbook and newspaper version.
Fascism is a product of two mutually-dependent agencies. At the bottom, from underneath as seen by the ordinary fascist dupe, it is a social movement based on enraged petit-bourgeois and lumpenproletarian forces. From the topside, as seen by its capitalist sponsors, it is a form of government in which, profits are maintained for zero-growth conditions by cannibalizing the consumption of the population generally. Its significance as a movement is that capitalists can not impose such cannibalistic zero-growth policies in a developed, industrialized nation without the aid of a fascist movement. However, it is impossible to have a large-scale fascist movement in an industrialized country without active direction and support from capitalists' funding and military and police agencies.
Although fascist movements, especially those of Mussolini and Hitler, did develop what are sometimes called "theories of fascism," such documents are useful for understanding the problem only in the same sense that the ravings of a madman are studied by a psychiatrist. They are merely part of the clinical record. The first successful capitalist effort to develop a working theory of how to create a fascist movement occurred during and after World War II, in studies by leading agencies of the Rockefeller-dominated Anglo-American political intelligence establishment. These studies were headed up by such agencies as the Tavistock Institute of London and Tavistock offshoots like the RAND Corporation. As a result of those projects of Rockefeller-dominated agencies, a radical change in the proposed political forms of fascism was made, typified by the present model regime in Peru and Spinola's Portugal.
On the basis of proposals developed by such Rockefeller family proteges as Kurt Lewin, John Rawlings Rees, and their collaborators, the concept of "fascism with a democratic face" was developed, producing a more deadly and efficient form of mass genocide than Hitler's organization ever conceived.
We have discussed the work of the Rockefellers on this in other locations. (21) For the moment, we can limit ourselves to those broad points on which modern Rockefeller designs for fascism are essentially identical with the Hitler and Mussolini forms of the past. We shall briefly review three points in succession: the internal social dynamics of fascist movements, fascism as seen from the top, and then the interrelationship among these two aspects. At first glance, fascist ideas have such an obvious appeal to enraged petit-bourgeois and lumpen strata that one might mistakenly conclude from this fact the possibility of mass-based fascist movements occurring without much help from leading governmental military and police agencies. Examining the inevitable contradictions within fascist movements, we discover that without support and tactical direction from military and police agencies, a fascist organization would tear itself apart and collapse as soon as it began to reach "critical mass" for such developments. This would necessarily occur long before it could become an actual threat to the existing state.
The natural tendencies of enraged petit-bourgeois and lumpen strata do tend to produce small, sect-like fascist organizations, but these cannot become part of a large-scale fascist movement until a leading strata of capitalists and governmental agencies sponsor and direct such a development.
For this reason, it was not legitimate for us to conclude that Rudd's "crazies" were necessarily a creation of government agencies on the basis of mid-1968 evidence. That fascist formation was still of the small dimensions which might be explained by "natural" occurrences within the ranks of enraged student radicals. By late Fall, we had good reason to suspect government agencies' hands behind the development. Later on, such evidence grew to the point of providing a conclusive case. During June-July, 1968, that more extensive evidence had not yet appeared to our knowledge.
How Fascism Develops
Unlike the industrial worker, the enraged petit-bourgeois or lumpenproletarian has very little sense of positive practical connections to the world outside his immediate neighborhood and other immediate social circles. Consequently, whereas industrial workers naturally tend toward broad economic and political associations, including large trade unions and trade-union alliances for mutual support, the ordinary petit-bourgeois liberal types and lumpens have a much, much lower endemic quality of social intelligence. The petit-bourgeois and lumpen strata also suffer an extreme sense of personal and social impotence. This is largely because their backgrounds and immediate practical experience deprive them of a sense of their own usefulness to the rest of humanity.
The industrial worker knows that he is useful to humanity generally, and more or less "instinctively" expects humanity generally to give self-interested opportunities support to his demands for wages, employment opportunities, and leisure needs which enable him to be productive. The petit-bourgeois and lumpen usually lack any confidence in their usefulness to society and therefore tend to see their existence as an immoral struggle against the rest of humanity, to see society as a jungle.
Under conditions of social crisis, without a socialist movement, the petit-bourgeois and lumpen rather instinctively demand "local community control." Their sense of belonging to society is generally limited to their immediate neighborhoods, and to a narrow selection of persons of similar radical and cultural backgrounds from the immediate locality. Their "instinctive" reaction to a social crisis is to attempt to seal off such local communities within virtual "national borders," and to accompany this with demands that the outside world deliver to such local communities certain goods and services, to be distributed under total control of local community self-government.
A notorious comparable outlook developed in parts of Melanesia, following U.S. and Anzac troop withdrawals from these regions at the end of World War II. The native Melanesians of these small Pacific islands had become accustomed to receiving a certain part of the food supplies and industrially-produced goods brought in by military transport. After the war' s end, some of these superstitious peoples developed what became known as "cargo cults." These were semi-religious political organizations, whose program for self-government was the prayer that ships bringing cargo would once again return to bring largesse, as they had done during the war.
This sort of "self-government" based on "cargo cults" around local community control is the essential feature of fascist ideology.
Parochialist local community control is obviously a form of insanity. The value of labor and price of commodities is not determined by local communities, but on the world market. The commodities on which personal consumption and employment depend in all communities are produced by a world-wide network, if society were to turn back the clock of history to the self-governing small communities of the stone age, the result would be that the world could support no more than a stone-age size of population. In fact, the human race would be virtually wiped out, since the natural conditions for stone-age culture have been permanently destroyed centuries ago. The fascist demand for "local community control" is essentially a demonstration of the form of insanity to which non-socialists among petit-bourgeois and lumpen strate are driven under conditions of capitalist social crisis.
The fascist says : "I demand this cargo; the trade-unionist must share his cargo with me -- his income, his job, and so forth. It must be mine, mine, mine, mine...!!!"
Local "community" bands of fascists are capable of ganging up on unions, more or less exactly as groups of rats might mass to gang up on a supply of food, but like bands of rats, they can not form a coherent large movement. Their natural insanity impels them to fight almost as viciously against one another as one can form a vicious mob SS, but not a coordinated movement, out of inidividuals and bands each shrieking out its demand "Let me get mine and to Hell with everyone else! "
From The Top
Seen from the top, the very qualities which prevent fascists from independently creating a mass movement fascism a powerful tool in the interest of ruling capitalists. With the aid of corporations and police agencies, fascist gangs can be used in campaigns organized around seizing trade-unionists' jobs, and will accept employment at wages and under working conditions much poorer than the workers whose jobs they steal. Once unions are broken, the fascist movement created by capitalists can be used to drive down wages and working conditions again and again, by playing one group of fascist "local communities" off against the other.
This is exactly the pattern of Brazil and what is being proposed by Rockefeller' s Democratic and liberal-Republican supporters in the U.S. today. The impeachment of Nixon was essential to the introduction of fascist type union-busting programs in the U.S.A., to break the power of conservative Republican and Democratic factions, and provide the so-called Eastern Establishment of the Rockefellers with a clear field. Nixon went a long way with the Rockefellers, notably crushing unions, but even to the extent of concealing the Rockefeller CIA establishment's responsibility for the Ellsberg affair, Watergate and the "cover-up." The conservatives were prevented from stopping Rockefeller's impeachment campaign largely because Nixon himself refused to defend himself by full exposure of the Rockefeller set-up. However, the fact that Nixon might have exposed Rockefeller shows in part the reason Rockefeller was impelled to get rid of him.
In Brazil we see epidemics spreading, creating virtual conditions of zero-growth genocide as a result of the Rockefellers' success in carrying out fascist economic programs there. The same type of "Cost-of- Living Indexing" and "recycling" of labor now being proposed for North America and Western Europe broke the Brazilian trade-union organizations, and drove down wages and working conditions, as layers of unemployed replaced employed temporarily, until they too were replaced by new masses of desperate unemployed.
By setting the employed and unemployed against each other through fascist programs of local control, the capitalists are able to use even "democratic" forms to make the systematic, genocidal depletion of the working class appear to be a "popular" program of reforms.
It is not the mass-based fascist movement itself which develops and directs such programs. The key to fascism is effective rule from behind the scenes by massive military and police terror. It is fear of military and police repression which impels the popular masses to seek solutions to their problems which are acceptable to military-police forces. The only "solutions" which the capitalist-controlled military and police will tolerate are of income- and work-sharing austerity varieties. That is the key to the modern Peruvian and Portuguese forms of fascism -- "fascism with a democratic face" - you are free to choose any "solution" which leads in the direction of mass genocide. "You local-control freaks are democratically free to fight it out among yourselves to decide which of you temporarily survives under the zero-growth conditions we are creating."
How Fascism Developed
Fascism developed during the early part of the twentieth century, beginning in France, as a certain stage in capitalist experiments with the use of police-sponsored anarchist organizations as tools for wrecking trade-union and socialist movements. Those experiments with police-controlled anarchist gangs began in France during the decades following the 1871 Paris Commune. Later, study of ideas of the type developed by the semi-socialist anarchist, Sorel, led to the cultivation of that special form of anarchist movement which became the basis of modern fascist organizations.
This was influenced by another parallel effort to prevent the spread of Marx's socialist forms of organization. Beginning in the 1870's, some capitalists turned to the right-wing factions of the Catholic hierarchy for help against the spread of Marx' s influence. As a result of this effort, the Papacy, taken over by a notoriously reactionary cardinal, produced the first of three papal bulls which have become the basis for the so-called Christian-Social movements. Italian, Austrian, and Bavarian fascist movements, as well as several fascist movements of pre-war Eastern European countries, are a direct outgrowth of this Papal doctrine of "corporativism."
Any competent social historian recognizes immediately the convergence between the fascist forms of anarchism and the "Christian-Social" varieties of corporativism - Both emphasize the autonomous "local community" using the same insane views of society, and both envisage a society based on a federation of autonomous local communities. Papal corporativism is distinct from secular forms of fascism mainly in the emphasis from the beginning on what is known in France and Italy as Proudhonist "solidarist" principles. This view explicitly proposed a unity of interest between capitalists and workers within the local community. The advantage to the capitalists of combining these two kinds of fascist tendencies into one is obvious enough.
In Italy, Mussolini depended upon the sponsorship and direction of the Italian army.
In Germany, Hitler was created as an agent of the German Army' s "covert" operations, and his control of the fascist movement in that country was made possible only by a combination of major industrialists and German army agencies. After his one effort to act independently of his sponsors, the famous beer-hall putsch for which he was lightly imprisoned, Hitler learned to behave only as his top financial sponsors permitted.
In the U.S.A today, the situation is analogous. The first important preparatory step toward fascism was instituted by Nelson A. Rockefeller in 1954, in the establishment of the Health, Education and Welfare Department. This was stepped up under the Kennedy administration, with the Office of Economic Opportunity and the aid of a wide assortment of Rockefeller-connected private foundations, including the notorious Ford Foundation. Every important fascist gang operating in the U S. today is under the control of at least one of a variety of "counter-insurgency" agencies of government, coordinated either by the Pentagon, the LEAA, the HEW, HUD, or other Federally-coordinated agencies, with cooperation of private foundations.
The now-fascist Socialist Workers Party has long been an adjunct of the Office of Economic Opportunity, and has recently been directly associated with the local com munity control operations of the LEAA. The Maoist Revolutionary Union, another variety of "left" fascist gang, has a number of ties, including the brainw ashing operations of the HEW and the hoodlum activities of the LEAA. The Congress of African Peoples (CAP), a catch-all coordinating agency for black protofascist and outright fascist groups, was headed up by Imamu Baraka, whose brainwashing was conducted under personal direction of top Rockefeller specialist, John Rawlings Rees. Baraka's activities were coordinated under the supervision of a Pentagon-linked intelligence operative, Gustav Heningburg. Baraka was directly linked with a variety of counter- insurgency fascist operations, including HUD, LEAA, and so forth.
The Symbionese Liberation Army was a product of the LEAA brainwashing program at Vacaville prison, and it may not be accidental that the LEAA' s sister agency, the FBI. mysteriously failed to rescue Patty Hearst from her kidnappers. The Black Liberation Army, another zombie hit-organization, is at least partly based at the De-Tox center of New York City's Lincoln Hospital, where brainwashing to create zombie-killers of police and others is directed with cooperation of doctors from the Albert Einstein Medical College of Yeshiva University. This operation is coordinated with the Revolutionary Union and some Puerto Rican "radical" organizations. which are also party of the Rockefeller-directed fascist network.
The Labor Committees' encounter with Mark Rudd' s transformation into a Ford Foundation-sponsored fascist in June 1968, not only helps to explain the nature and significance of the mysterious "Weatherman" organization, but it illustrates the way in which the Rockefeller-dominated establishment uses fascist forms of anarchism in attempting to build a fascist movement for takeover of the U.S. today. It was the Labor Committees' understanding of the nature of fascism which enabled us to sabotage part of the Rockefeller's effort to wreck the United Federation of Teachers union that Fall. For this, we have been hated and denounced by every "left"-fascist group of bandits since.
VII. The Discrediting of the Old Socialist Groups
By the end of 1968 most of the "Marxist-Leninist" and student-radical organizations of the U.S. had committed crimes against labor from which they themselves would never recover. These crimes were immediately fatal to national SDS, which dissolved itself at the outset of its June, 1969 Chicago conference. Workers World-YAWF and the Socialist Workers Party began to transform themselves into the fascist organizations they have become today. A chain-reaction erupted within the Progressive Labor Party, so that it began dwindling into a small sect by the Fall of 1969. The Communist Party, which led most of the hooligan attacks on union pickets during that Fall, 1968 New York Teachers strike, has never been able to free itself of the poison of that crime against labor. The only organization to emerge from that strike with the potential for leading future socialist movements of labor was the then still tiny Labor Committees.
Naturally, the scab-socialist organizations have attempted to explain away their conduct ever since by alleging that the issue of that struggle was the attempt of "racist teachers" to cheat masses of honest black militants of something or other. That story is absolutely a lie. In fact, there were so few black militants involved in opposition to the United Federation of Teachers that, according to Ralph Poynter, he personally had to lead a score or so of his tiny group from site to site around the city, in order to provide a show of angry black faces for the CBS-TV camera crews and New York Times photographers. Almost the entirety of the force of hoodlums attacking UFT picket lines was supplied by the Communist Party, Socialist Workers Party, Progressive Labor Party, and other professedly "revolutionary socialist" scoundrels !
Apart from these self-styled "revolutionary socialist" groups, the organized forces opposed to the UFT were under the direction of either Ford Foundation or Office of Economic Opportunity agents, or associated with the offices of Mayor John V. Lindsay. More to the point, the lockout which set off the strike was the result of a scheme directed by CIA-man McGeorge Bundy, whose purpose was to set a pattern for breaking every municipal employees' union in the U.S.A. The object was to establish "local community organizations" of variously white, black, Hispanic, and Chinese neighborhood groups, modelled on the Nazi NSBO union-busting organizations. The "oocal community" organizations in whose name the attempted union-busting was conducted were creations of CIA-man Bundy's Ford Foundation and under the im mediate direction of former OSS operative Kenneth Clark's Ford-funded Metropolitan Applied Research Center (MARC).
The Ford Foundation tactic has been to create such "experimental" school district organizations, largely on the basis of its own funding. Then, at a crucial moment, Ford cut off further funding. At this point, operatives connected with Clark' s MARC office suggested to the fundless groups that they get replacement funds by driving union teachers out of these schools and replacing them with raw recruits at the lowest pay scale. Mayor Lindsay, with the assistance of labor-busting agent John Doar (later of Nixon impeachment fame), supported these firings by effectively locking out the teachers' union. In response to this nullification of its contract, the UFT struck - with extreme reluctance.
The Ford Foundation line on the strike from the beginning was "white racist teachers." The New York Times and other leading local press accomodated Bundy and company, giving great prominence to quotations from black faces connected with the MARC operation. For some time, even this massive psychological warfare campaign did little to stir up any actual black ghetto mobilization against teachers. As we noted, Poynter, the leader of the black-faced roving goon squad, counted it a very successful day on which he could mobilize as many as forty "demonstrators" for the TV cameras. The mythical "black masses" were chiefly white "revolutionary socialist" groups.
As a result of our leading role in the Columbia strike and our summer's intense discussion of fascism, we were prepared to deploy our approximately fifty New York City members in a way which effectively sabotaged the Ford plans for mobilizing actual mass forces against the teachers' union. Our tactic was to use our exposure of the Ford Foundation operation in such a way as to create the maximum demoralization among the strikebreakers and strengthen the morale of the teachers. It succeeded. We did not deter the Communist, Socialist Workers or Progressive Labor parties, but we utterly demoralized the would-be strikebreakers within and around SDS and effectively sabotaged their efforts to link up with potential strike-breaking forces within the black and Hispanic ghettoes. Because we were the New York Regional SDS Labor Committees, with the authority of having led the Columbia strike, black and Hispanic high school youth stopped to consider our warnings very seriously. The Ford and OEO organized groups were enraged by our mass leaflettings and impromptu rallies; they refused to have anything to do with the anti-labor factions of SDS until those factions first shut us up. That tied the fasicsts and other student anti-labor types in and around SDS up for months, past the time the strike concluded with a de facto victory for the union.
Replay in Philadelphia
The development of the Labor Committee in New York had an echo in Philadelphia. One of the leading members of the original New York City group of PLP SDSers which fused with "Lower West Side CIPA" had transferred to Philadelphia's Temple University at the beginning of the 1967-68 year. He had found himself in a virtual political vacuum there, had recruited a group around him on the basis of study of Marcus's Third Stage of Imperialism, and had managed to establish a franchise of the group as the Philadelphia Regional SDS Labor Committee. During late May and early June of 1968, the New York and Philadelphia Regional SDS Labor Committees had been fused as publishers of a magazine, The Campaigner, which the CIPA group had begun publishing during January of that year. By early Fall, the Philadelphia organization had established footholds on several local campuses - Temple, Swarthmore and the University of Pennsylvania - and was active in exposing and attempting to eradicate a particularly nasty local practice of legally swindling (largely) black home-owners out of their homes through foreclosures on chattel mortgages. This latter issue was to play a decisive role in the Labor Committees' initial direction of a large strike centered on the Penn campus during the winter of 1969.
Since Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels drafted the Communist Manifesto, the fundamental difference between socialist and reformist tactics has been this. Where the reformist limits tactical issues to the immediate interests of some self-isolated "constituency," such as a local trade union, the socialist defines demands in terms of the common interests of all groups of unemployed and employed workers.
Socialist demands and tactics always flow from certain ABCs of economics. The way in which an industrial society increases the personal consumption, leisure and personal freedom of working people is through the technological advancement of all production, which requires the expansion of modernized employment to the ranks of the unemployed and marginally employed layers of workers. By increasing the total production of society in this way. the absolute amount of wealth per capita is increased, creating the basis for higher levels of consumption for all, and increased leisure. In its simplest form, the day-to-day form of the socialist labor struggle under capitalism is always to provide for the needs of all working people through demands involving the relevant forms of useful employment of unemployed and marginally employed sections of the working-class population.
In opposition to this, the reformist concentrates on immediate demands of particular groups, and tends to ignore the interests of other groups. "That's their business; this is our local problem," is the way in which this reformist approach is usually expressed. The reformist approach seems to work under conditions of capitalist expansion. It works only because the capitalists themselves are expanding production and employment. Under these conditions of capitalist prosperity, working people can be satisfied that they are solving their immediate problems if each employed group is able to secure regular improvements in income and leisure as its particular share of a general increase in the wealth of society. When the capitalist system enters a crisis, such as that which began to take shape after the middle of the 1960s, the reformist approach is a failure. The capitalists will make concessions to one group only at the expense of some other group. Under these conditions, one-at-a-time reformist methods tend to become outrightly reactionary. As long as the particular group is concerned only with its immediate interests, it can be easily played off against some other group, leading down the road toward fascist forms of austerity.
Since we were entering the beginning phases of an oncoming depression at the start, back in 1966, our constant policy had to be that of exposing the danger of reformist tactics and the need for a transition toward socialist tactics. We did not insist that these tactics be labelled "socialist." We merely insisted that they be socialist in the sense of representing the joint interests of trade-union and other parts of the working class.
During the period in which political awareness was still limited to student and ghetto layers, we concentrated on two things. Immediately, we focused on singling out those student and ghetto radicals who represented potential recruits to a revolutionary intelligentsia. At the same time, together with such individuals and their close associates, we concentrated on developing tactical alliances with those sections of organized labor which were most receptive to this and which had a most immediate common interest in the kinds of issues confronting ghetto strata.
Our work in the New York garment industry, among teachers, and among construction trades was typical of the early period. Every teacher with a sense of integrity had a real common interest with the ghetto students in attacking the problems causing classroom failure. The "ethnic" strata of the skilled and semi-skilled garment crafts had an immediate common interest in allying with black and Hispanic workers of that industry, to end the arrangement by which employers and ILGWU bureaucrats played off one racial and ethnic group against the other. The ghetto victim's need for housing and employment coincided with the employed construction worker's need for an expanded industry in which he could have job security. Although this work was unfortunately limited to propaganda and educational efforts - by circumstances over which we had no reasonable degree of control - it was imperative to keep on this course, knowing that we were sabotaging the employers' games of "divide and conquer" and also laying the groundwork for future struggles along the lines we were proposing.
This was key to our leading role in planning and initially leading the Columbia strike. We had no interest in sparking off some mere "student strike." Our object was to begin a process around which working people in New York City could begin creating effective democratic political organizations. Our object in initiating the Columbia strke had been to create conditions for organizing unorganized campus workers, provide the nucleus of mass organization for tenants' struggles against landlords, and provide a broad force to give necessary support to impending and potential labor struggles. Student struggles are useless - or worse than useless - affairs unless they are subordinated to the role of students can perform in furthering the struggles of working people.
The issue in Philadelphia was a massive housing shortage, unemployment among construction workers, and the looting and destruction of existing owner-occupied housing in West Philadelphia. The perfectly legalized swindle we uncovered was this. Homeowners buying a used car, a television set, or other such credit purchase would wake up one day to find that their home had been sold out from around them at an effectively secret sheriff's sale. At these sheriff' s sales, homes tied in as security for a purchase of used car or television set were auctioned off at a fraction of their purchase cost and market value. The buyers at these auctions were making a proverbial sweet little profit peddling these homes to groups such as those involved in collecting land for expansion of the University of Pennsylvania. (There are technical reasons for the use of tax-exempt institutions, such as universities or hospitals, for such financial operations. We shall not explore those reasons here.)
It happened that some of the land acquired in this way was the intended site for construction of a University of Pennsylvania "science center," which was strongly opposed by campus anti-war groups because of its discovered military uses. By November of 1968 we were virtually certain that the incumbent university officials would provoke a student protest strike over the "science center" issue. We developed a plan for diverting this student protest into a demand for housing construction. We would spread out our documentation on the sheriff' s sale operation and also wreck any student proposal which would in effect cut back on employment of construction workers.
The initial phases of our planned operation came off as we had intended the preceding November. A tactical error by our Philadelphia members caused them to delay for about three days the urgent work of bringing in large numbers of West Philadephia residents to take over control of the strike. This seemingly minor tactical error gave the local Philadelphia counterinsurgency network sufficient time to move in its agents and to sabotage the strike exactly twenty-four hours prior to the time the West Philadelphia people were scheduled to move in. To our disgust, but not our astonishment, the Socialist Workers Party intervened as the most vocal supporter of the counterinsurgency pimps, with the Communist Party playing the same rotten role in a quieter, behind-the-scenes fashion.
However, apart from the cited tactical error by our inexperienced members, the policy they carried out throughout the affair was correct. We came out of the strike with a wide base of support throughout the immediate region and a national standing which enabled us to begin extending our organization beyond the two metropolitan cities. Shortly after the Penn strike, we held our first national conference, became the National Caucus of SDS Labor Committees - with the stipulation that we expected to drop the "SDS" from the name within the few months national SDS would require to destroy itself.
To celebrate our successful emergence as an organization of growing influence, we were subjected shortly after the conference to our first major police frame-up. As was confirmed by admission of a police officer on the eve of the scheduled trial, the apartment in which Steve Fraser lived was put under constant surveillance by the local "Civil Disobedience" squad. At a convenient opportunity, a police officer entered the premises and planted a metal candy-box of what was reported to be some sort of "plastique" inside the refrigerator. Shortly after the occupants and their guests returned that evening, they were invaded by a force consisting of the CD squad and a TV camera crew from a leading local station. A few months later, a second frame-up was provided by an elaborate arrangement to defraud us of a ballot position in the Fall, 1969 local elections.
VIII. Waiting For Labor
Despite the first preliminary signs of a new labor upsurge during the Summer and Fall of 1970, the two-year period beginning about April-May of 1969 was dominated by an anti-left reaction throughout the U.S.and Canada. Although a few pathetic echoes of 1968 campus revolts occurred in isolated locations, socialist tendencies among student layers virtually evaporated in favor of a widespread migration toward the McGovern base of the Democratic Party and John D. Rockefeller III's "ecology movement." During this period.Labor Committee membership stagnated and even slightly contracted - because of the lack of appeal our pro-labor orientation found among the remaining small population of student radicals.
Despite these circumstances; and partially because of them, we were able to develop a hard-core of membership. It was this accomplishment which enabled us to grow at an explosive rate beginning June 1971 and to become the hegemonic current of socialist influence among working people during 1973 and 1974.
The Collapse of the New Left
From the beginning, Marcus' s tactical approach to the Students for a Democratic Society and its peripheries had been modelled on the example of the Russian socialist movement' s work in the Zubatov unions and Gapon movement at the beginning of this century. Just as Colonel Zubatov of the Czarist secret police (the Ohkrana) had organized trade unions in an effort to block the influence of Russian socialist organizers, the Central Intelligence Agency' s close collaborators had deliberately conceived and established SDS during the early 1960s.
SDS was created as a nominal project of the milksop League for Industrial Democracy, but was headed at the start by a hard-core of persons who had either been trained under top CIA operative Saul Alinsky or whose education had been guided by agencies with similar connections. Although SDS had off-again-on-again support from certain sections of the labor bureaucracy - such as the Reuther gang - which themselves had long-standing pro-CIA ties to Alinsky, the essential ideology of SDS from the beginning was devoutly anti-labor.
During 1964 and 1964, this anti-labor bias began to become explicitly fascist, as the old leadership of SDS began assimilating and retailing the overtly fascist ideology of the "Triple Revolution" statement issued by the Ford Foundation's Fund for the Republic. The hard-core of SDSers typified by Tom Hayden did not first pick up their outright fascist leanings during the Summer of 1968 and the formation of the Rudd faction. They had always premised their politics on the fascist perspective of an increasingly anti-labor alliance of the radicalized suburbanite petit-bourgeoisie and the so-called "poor."
However, in the effort to expand SDS during the 1965 through 1966 period, the leaders were compelled to loosen their ideological grip on the organization in order to accomodate the broader spectrum of political tendencies represented by the potential mass student base. In such an expansion, the CIA-linked Old SDS "honchos" exposed themselves to the same sort of counteraction which Czarist police agents Colonel Zubatov and Father Gapon had suffered during the pre-1905 period in old Russia. The attempt to concentrate the majority of radicalized students of the middle 1960s in a single organization created a loose federation of numerous political tendencies within which any small, qualified team of socialist organizers could quickly become a dominant force.
This had been the basis for the brief control of the Columbia University SDS and strike movement Labor Committees and the rapid growth of influence throughout SDS during the Fall and early Spring of 1969. The differentiation between Labor Committee and PLP recruits from SDS is useful evidence on the character of SDS (and student-radicalism) as a whole. The Labor Committees were identified throughout the left as the "super-intellectuals," the "elitists" who acted on their own judgement without "sufficient sensitivity" to the contrary views of "others." PLP, while professing a pro-labor and pro-socialist outlook, represented itself as being anti-intellectual, even simple-minded Maoist "activists," who were tolerated by anti-labor SDS types because PLP had participated in the general left effort of goonery and scabbing against the New York teachers' union. In short, PLP represented a muddled half-way point between the Labor Committee and the mindless, raving fascism of the super-Maoist Rudd faction.
With the ebb of the student movement and the crushing of pro-socialist organizations among ghetto blacks, the student movement collapsed, leaving four strata from old SDS relatively "high and dry" on the beach after the outgoing radical tide. The Labor Committees and PLP each were left with their respective organizations. The Rudd gang split among the Weathermen, Klonsky, Avakian, and several smaller gangs. In addition, there were numerous small scattered "honcho" groups each of from a half-dozen to a score of members distributed among various campuses. The majority of the latter either drifted into the future McGovern or "ecology" circles, or were gobbled up by the SWP' s YSA during the Summer and Fall of 1969.
As a result, the February, 1970 Cleveland conference of the YSA and its anti-war front group was in fact the largest SDS conference ever held. The February, 1970 Cleveland conference was deceptive. The turn-out was the result of a combination of energetic YSA organizing efforts and the impulse of SDS-type activists to find a momentary relief from the isolation they were experiencing on campus. The later brief upsurge over the Cambodia bombing and, more influential, the Kent State massacre, was just that - a brief echo of the past SDS ferment caused by extreme provocation, which soon sputtered out. Campus radicalism has been in conspicuous decline ever since, and will revive only in a new form, in response to political upsurges among trade-union and unemployed industrial and government workers.
The Fraser Tendency
Much of the internal development of the Labor Committees during the two-year period occurred in direct response to the only internal factional ferment we have so far experienced. A handful of demoralized activist members developed an alliance with a different social stratum represented by our tleast active members, erupting as a loose factional formation during the late Fall of 1969 and becoming an overt factional formation approximately a year later. The essential issue this faction raised was their lack of confidence in future emergence of a labor upsu~ge accompanied by demands for the Labor Committees' dissolution into John D. Rockefeller III's "ecology movement."
The faction was nominally headed by Steve Fraser, but was actually based upon and controlled by an individuals based on the Ithaca approximate score of and Rochester, New York campuses who had never fully broken from the pothead counterculture of the student-radicals around them.
Fraser's original proposal, submitted at the January, 1970 Labor Committee conference. was a muddle. It included the already established proposal of the Labor Committee leadership to intervene in the "ecology" terment on campus, both to attack the reactionary Malthusian revivals and to propose an alternative orientation centering on the development of fusion technology. It was the second part ot Fraser's proposal that was outrightly reactionary, his insistence that this tactic be accompanied by a perspective for dissolution of the Labor Committees into the "ecology movement."
The Spring of 1970 Was a bad period inside the organization. The majority of members were disturbed by the lack of serious opportunities for political work outside the organization, and mainly suffered the sentimental wish that Marcus and Fraser would become reconciled again. This brief period of lowered morale ended with the bankruptcy of the Penn Central railroad, and the remobilization of the membership around the "Draft Emergency Reconstruction Program" drafted and adopted during June and July of that Summer.
During the Summer months, the Baltimore local intervened in support of two strikes in that city. In the second of these, an organizing strike at Schmidt's Bakery, on the verge of being crushed, our intervention remoralized the strikers, brought considerable support from labor and other groups, and led to a victory for the union. Although the action was local and involved only a small union, there were echoes of supportive response from various parts of the nation, and the way we had conducted our work there was a model case for effective socialist work with trade unions.
At that point, the factional situation within the Labor Committees erupted, as Fraser and a group of approximately thirty supporters resorted even to desperate slanders of the Baltimore work in their determination to discredit our labor perspectives. The previous selection and development of the Labor Committees' members made the outcome of that brief affair a foregone conclusion. An anti-working-class tendency such as Fraser' s simply could not make any headway in our organization. The January, 1971 conference eliminated the problem . (22) The defeated faction was already tentatively committed to splitting to form a tiny organization. and was assisted out in February, on the basis of their efforts to seize various assets for use by their new grouping.
Fraser's new grouping maintained a fragile existence for a few months, and began to collapse over the Summer of 1971. A short time later, the potheaded majority of the tiny organization drove out Fraser and his immediate associates, and the group dissolved shortly after that, disappearing completely until a few of its former members made a fee ble reappearance as part of an aborted organization with a CIA trade-style Alternatives Group - NAG) used by the CIA's LEAA during November through February of this past Winter.
To sum up the facts about the Fraser group as briefly as possible, it was made up of two fundamentally dissimilar social tendencies. Fraser and a handful of close personal associates were eesentially "burned out" political candles. One must be fair to Fraser personally on this account. He had been twice framed up by Philadelphia LEAA-connected agencies during 1969, and found that few on the left or among civil liberties circles (outside the ACLU and ECLC) were willing to otter assistance in either case, despite the flagrantly false charges. He and a half-dozen ot his tired and frightened close associates essentially wanted to drop out of politics, but could not because they needed the Labor Committees' full-support to defeat the frame-up charges against them. So, instead of getting out of the organization as he would have done ordinarily. Fraser was easily tak en over as spokesman tor the small group based an the Ithaca and Rochester campuses.
This pattern is quite familiar to those who have observed the factional struggles which erupted in old socialist organizationsduring the onset of any period of or longer-term political reaction among the social strata on which the organization' s tactical activities have been principally based.
The Gains of the Experience
The major internal problem we had to overcome during the 1968-1971 period was the tendency of student radicals to demand that their national organizations exert virtually no centralized authority over local member groups. We had to combat such extreme expression of this as the demand that each Campaigner editorial and even articles be reviewed and amended by every local organization before publication. The possibility of continuing Ithaca and Rochester organizations with strong pro-counter-Cultural tendencies was a result of the reluctance of members generally to support proposals for a centralized, homogeneous national organization. This petit-bourgeois relic we had to get out of the members' systems.
The factional ferment around the Fraser group was an invaluable lesson in demonstrating to all members the direct connection between anti-labor and petit-bourgeois political tendencies and pluralist "participatory democracy." The factional struggle of the Fall of 1970 not only illustrated the social, class content of political factions, but also created a politically homogeneous organization with an efficiently centralized form of leadership and tactical deployment.
During this same period our work outside the organization had inevitably involved attempted collaborations and factional struggles with other professedly socialist organizations. When these external experiences were compared with our internal factional affairs, the membership was able to demonstrate to itself the essential similarities between the Fraser grouping inside and such petit-bourgeois groups as the Socialist Workers Party, International Socialists, Spartacists and Workers' League outside. In short, the members now understood practically as well as theoretically the significance of working-class versus petit-bourgeois politics and the, parallel distinctions between working-class and petit-bourgeois forms of political organization.
After the January, 1971 conference, the hundred-odd members of the majority faction had a sense of our capacity to cut through, opposing socialist groups' factional efforts like a hot knife through so much butter. Events almost immediately began to demonstrate that there was no exaggeration in this self-estimation of what we had become as a result of our experiences up through that point.
We began to grow rapidly in membership and influence, so that by the following June, a handful of our members carried the overwhelming majority of the 800-member Milwaukee PCPJ conference for a steel union support resolution, over bitter CPUSA opposition, and threatened to carry similar pro-labor proposals on the initiative of about forty of our members participating in the July NPAC conference in New York City. Following the July 15, 1971 collapse of the Bretton Woods monetary system, our influence zoomed.
At the January conference we had laid out and adopted our immediate perspectives for developing the national organization along lines corresponding to the concentration of industrial populations. (23) This meant, along the Eastern seaboard, from Boston, through New York, Newark, and Philadelphia, down through Baltimore and the industrial beltway of the Southern states, aiming in the direction of Atlanta and Birmingham. From Philadelphia and Baltimore, we projected establishing a base in Pittsburgh, and linking this up with a base in Detroit, from which we would also move southward, and westward by way of Chicago. At the same time, we concentrated on the Northwest, around Seattle, intending to develop San Francisco Bay Area as our last priority, preparatory to closing up the gaps between our various regional bases.
The August, 1971 collapse of the Bretton Woods system furthered our development in a different dimension. This development occurred in two quick steps taken during late August and September.
The immediate importance of the August 15, 1971 collapse was that it completely vindicated our analysis of the world economy in opposition to the analysis offered by every leading pro-capitalist economist and also every self-styled socialist organization and independent honcho (such as Paul M. Sweezy) of the left outside us. This development, together with the emergence of serious labor ferment, also demonstrated in experience the validity of every basic conception for which we had fought so hard against contrary opinion during the preceding years.
Tactically, August, 1971 meant that the world was now going to move rapidly into a series of new monetary crises and a depression. Unless the ruling circles poured out masses of credit, there would be a collapse as early as 1972. If the ruling circles succeeded in pouring out new credit at the same time that it succeeded in breaking the back of organized labor, the inflation resulting would delay the depression beyond 1972. In either case, we did not have long to make necessary preparations for the coming crack of the world economy. We had to recruit and develop members as future mass-organizers at a rapid rate, and also had to make certain changes in our internal organization in anticipation of the tactical requirements of the impending social crisis.
A two-part resolution was introduced and adopted at a plenary session of the National Committee during September. The first part featured the resolution Socialism or Fascism ? (24) and an extended oral presentation of the implications of this perspective for our work. The second part outlined the reorganization of our newspaper in conjunction with the establishment of an intelligence department.
The intelligence department was given several overlapping responsibilities. It was organized along the sectoral and topical lines of division of a major newsweekly or international press service, as a research arm of New Solidarity and the Campaigner. It was also delegated responsibility for briefing the National Executive Committee on matters relevant to leadership policy and tactical decisions concerning North America and our intention to establish an organization in Western Europe. These functions were to coincide with the broad objective of providing a weekly intelligence service (through our newspaper) the growing number of workers reading it, counter-acting the massive misinformation on the world and national situation to which those workers were subjected by major newspaper and TV media. The longer-term objective was to establish the kind of intelligence operations needed to coordinate effective deployment of workers in future mass struggles.
These changes, confirmed and further developed during the January, 1972 conference, had considerable shock effect for the membership at that time. They represented a shift in world-outlook, away from a self-image of a small group with a generally correct analysis and orientation, toward an organization that actually intended to lead tens of millions of working people toward workers' government in North America and to play a significant leadership role at some foreseeable point in Western Europe.
This changed self-image was strengthened by our challenges for debate with leading pro-capitalist economists during the Fall of 1971. We not only knew, but publicly demonstrated that we understood the world far better than those economists who advised governments and corporations. Meanwhile, although the development of the various sections of our intelligence department was uneven, we began to discover many things about the world, how its affairs were rigged, and how wildly false was the prevailing view of the leading newspapers and man-in-the-street on most of the important developments of the entire post-war period - and even earlier.
With the growing confidence in ourselves resulting from such many discoveries and validations of our leadership competence, we began digging into various aspects of the working-class movement with a new vigor. Since organized labor was generally demoralized by its leadership' s capitulations to Phase I and Phase II of wage-controls, our potential effectiveness during late 1972 and most of 1973 was essentially limited to the struggles of the black and Hispanic strata and the support for this which could be mustered from a handful of exceptional labor leaders.
By later Fall of 1972, we were situated for our effort to sabotage the imposition of union-busting slave-labor upon the unemployed and semi-employed strata of black and Hispanic working-class forces. By that point. we had virtual left-hegemony in the U.S. as the socialist organization oriented to working-class struggles. By the end of January, 1973, we were in our first serious struggle with the Rockefeller-directed forces, during which Rockefeller mobilized his supporters among the left against us, and when that failed, turned to outright use of police agencies in the effort to isolate and crush us.
IX. Operation Mop Up
1972 was the year that Rockefeller set up the Nixon Administration for the impeachment festivities of 1973 and 1974. It was also the year Rockefeller forces began to unleash their preparations for imposing a Schachtian form of fascist economy on North America. 1973 was the year the nucleus of a European Labor Committees organization was consolidated, providing the basis for the influential organization that exists there today.
We had foreseen Rockefeller' s dumping of Nixon as early as the Spring of 1971, which we analyzed in a feature article published in New Solidarity at that time. (25) We wrote then that Rockefeller use Nixon to impose phases of wage-austerity on the trade unions, but that as soon as the power of the unions had been broken, Rockefeller would dump him, probably through some approximation of a parliamentary dictatorship's weakening of the powers of the presidency.
The reason, as we gave it in that Spring, 1971 article, was that Nixon's conservative base of support represented a force of resistance and potential sabotage for the sophisticated "Third Stage" policies which the Rockefeller interests were impelled to adopt in the near future. That was almost exactly the way the impeachment process developed, although we did not - by any means - foresee the elaborate use of the CIA Watergate hoax which Rockefeller actually employed to execute that operation.
According to theNew York Times and other Rockefeller-supporting publications, the significant thing concerning the Labor Committees during 1973 was our physical show-down with the Communist Party. That account, like numerous stories created by leading newspapers, is essentially false. The Communist Party had been committing occasional assault and battery against Labor Committee members since the Spring of 1972, accompanied by some incidental hooliganism against our members by the Socialist Workers Party. In fact, it was in response to a threat by Communist Party members to assault us in various parts of the nation, following hooligan attacks on us by them in Chicago during the Summer of 1972,. which belatedly prompted us to form self-defense organizations. However, despite those attacks, we continued to propose tactical alliances with the Communist Party on a variety of specific issues, including the formation of the National Unemployed and Welfare Rights Organization of early 1973.
"Mop Up" grew out of the failure of various Health, Education and Welfare agents to stop our efforts to organize resistance to WIN and other union-busting slave-labor programs. On the eve of the founding NUWRO conference, during March, 1973, we publicly warned the Communist Party through New Solidarity, that government agencies were attempting to mobilize it as a stooge of HEW in last-ditch effort to stop NUWRO. Shortly after the published appeal to the CPUSA not to be trapped into that, but to join us in building NUWRO, the CPUSA openly joined in a union-busting slave-labor alliance with a notorious CIA operative, Ed Schwartz, in a much publicized call for a lynch-mob to stop NUWRO.
When the CPUSA not only continued that alliance in support of union-busting slave-labor, but proposed to organize hooligan attacks on NUWRO member, around various parts of the country, we broke the CP's campaign up by sending delegations into public Communist Party meetings, demanding that this criminal behavior of the CP leadership be openly discussed and voted down by the body assembled. We had been careful not to return blow for blow in previous instances of CP assault and battery against our own members, but we were not going to tolerate the CP leadership's public connivance with known CIA operatives in mobilizing labor and union-busting mobilization.
After one effort by CP goons to beat us up at such an intervention of this sort, there was no further violence in our campaign until Philadelphia CP members working under Schwartz' s direction gratuitously assaulted our members on the Philadelphia Temple University campus. In two instances on the same day, CP goons attacked New Solidarity distributors. Since a number of local CPers had been sympathetic to our work, a handful or our members went up to the campus CP youth-group office in an attempt to ward off a further occurrence of that sort. The CPers there attacked the delegation, one wielding a knife and attempting to cut out the tongue of one LCer while two other CPers held the intended victim. One of our women members formerly trained in self-defense led the attack to free the intended victim, breaking the noses of three goons with her fist in the process. Later, the press transformed this woman' s fist into a melee of "chains and clubs"
The Fascist SWP Steps In
The outcome of this event is most interesting. At this point, the SWP intervened, demanding a general bloodbath against the Labor Committees on account of the incident at Temple. One SWPer, who ironically had been beaten up by young CPers just a short time earlier, testified that he had been witness to the altercation and that there had been no knife-wielding. It happened that he was nowhere near the premises at the time of the affair, but the SWP used this lying report as the justification for its mobilizing goons to turn the issue with the CP into a general melee. For example, the SWP mobilized eighty goons which it marched into an electoral meeting at Columbia University,. blocking the Labor Committee squad defending Mayoral Candidate Tony Chaitkin, deliberately provoking a general altercation.
Naturally, every small crud organization which feared the Labor Committees' new hegemonic position on the left joined the SWP in the call for general bloodshed. Although the SWP generally limited itself to efforts to egg other groups into making these attacks, it carried out several isolated assaults in various locations around the nation.
In addition to the SWP, the CP was supported in a similar way by the LEAA's Lieutenant Fencl of the Philadelphia Civil Disobedience Squad. the same Fencl who had directed the bomb-plot frame-up hoax against Steve Fraser back in the Spring of 1969.
There is nothing surprising in the SWP's criminal behavior in the affair. It has become an outrightly fascist organization, devoted to union-busting in favor essentially of the same forms of antl-unlon organlzation proposed by the NSBO and other Nazi organizations in Germany of the early 1930s. It is actively connected, as a supporter, with various local community proj'ects of the CIA's domestic police arm, the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration, and is generally allied with every sort of "radical" OEO and Ford Foundation-sponsored fascist grouping throughout the U.S.A. In this light, it is not surprising that the same SWP which had refused to take any defensive action against repeated beatings of its members by CPers, should suddenly attempt to organlze a general bloodbath "in defense of" the CP when the issue was the CP, s new alliance with one of the most notorious CIA operatives in the U.S.
What Is The Present CP?
We are not taking the CP off the hook by placing the emphasis for criminality upon the (National) Socialist Workers Party. The CP leadership did not go into the criminal alliance with Schwartz with its eyes closed. That leadership knew that it was supporting union-busting slave-labor programs of the HEW and other Rockefeller-controlled agencies. It also knew very well that Ed Schwartz was not only a CIA agent, but that Schwartz had played a peripheral role in connection with the CIA operations behind the butchery of 100,000 or more members and suppOrters of the Communist party of Indonesia. In fact, the CP had publicly acknowledged as much during 1967.
However, although this criminal action by Gus Hall & Company was chiefly the result of rather massive CIA and related infiltration of the YWLL members grouped around Angela Davis's image, the massively CIA-infiltrated CPUSA is not a fascist organization. The SWP, like the "Maoist" Revolutionary Union, is.
There are two things which have constrained the COmmunist Party from permitting its CIA-infiltration to turn it into the kind of fascist group the SWP has become. First, its identification with the Soviet Union places outer limits on what the Daily World can advocate without being denounced worldwide by the leading Communist press of Europe. Second, unlike the SWP, which has not had a significant base in the labor movement since the early 1950s, the CP still keeps a tiny, dwindling investment in certain unions and is therefore checked from total of the fascism varieties of union busting which have become second nature to the SWP.
The CIA' s virtual takeover of most of the CP' s "community" activities in the U.S. has occurred in two main ways. A significant proportion of former CP members have made their way into prominent secondary position in the national Democratic Party. Vulnerable to FBI and similar blackmail because of their CP pasts, some of these former CPers have become the most vicious supporters of Rockefeller' s fascist policies. (26) At the same time, as old friends of the Communist Party, it is not difficult for them to play a "soft cop" role toward the CP members working within that same Democratic Party. "Going along with" former Cpers-turned-Rockefeller-agents represents the efforts of Gus Hall & Company to hold onto this portion of its dwindling gate receipts.
At the same time, the CP has suffered the same sort of counterinsurgency infiltration as the SWP. The Kitson-model black and Hispanic countergangs created by the Ford Foundation, OEO and other Rockefeller-controlled agencies represent a "controlled environment" of recruiting potential and apparent constituencies too attractive for the aging leadership of the CP to resist. During and after the celebrated trial of Angela Davis, the YWLL and CP itself became swamped with agents of the CIA and associated agencies. For example, at the time of SLA leader Freeze's funeral, Herbert Marcuse protege Angela Davis was prevented only at the last minute from involving the CP in endorsing that CIA terrorist gang, and, generally, the machinery and members which the CP has acquired through the Angela Davis defense committees is riddled with agents of various sorts.
In short, if Gus Hall & Company were to repudiate anti-labor fascist-type "radical" activities in the U.S.A., the Communist Party would be reduced to a small portion of its present nominal membership and gate receipts, would be cut back from a daily to a weekly press schedule as a result, and would be able to exist as a political force only as a tiny sect or as a supporter of the hegemonic Labor Committees.
"Win With WIN"
Workers in most sections of the nation have already experienced a bitter taste of the Rockefeller fascist scheme which the Labor Committee was opposing during the "Mop Up" period. HEW, HUD, DOL and the LEAA (especially) were engaged in a concerted effort to use welfare recipients, heroin addicts, unemployed youth, prison labor, and others as virtual slave labor to displace employed trade-unionists. This scheme was modelled on the "recycling" procedure in Brazil, where unemployed workers replace employed workers, and then those replaced, when reduced to misery, replace the workers who formerly replaced them. Each recycling is accompanied by reductions in wages (under "Cost of Living Indexing") and massive speed-up and deterioration of working conditions generally.
The gathering up of welfare recipients, heroin addicts and others to begin replacing union labor on hee job was intended, as has been the case, to be the first step in introducing such Brazilian models of fascistpractices into the U.S.
Part of the operation planned for 1973 was the pressuring of the leaders of the existing National Welfare Rights Organization into the role of herding the slaves into this fascist program. A number of NWRO leaders, headed by NWRO founder Jennette Washington, were determined to resist this takeover of NWRO. The Labor Committees, which had been collaborating with Ms. Washington and other NWRO leaders over a period of years, decided to commit our forces to fighting HEW on this issue, provided that the NWRO leaders wished to work with us for that purpose. A significant number of leading NWRO members agreed" and the Committee to Rebuild National Welfare Rights Organization (CRNWRO) was established out of November-December, 1972 negotiations and planning around this.
Led by OEO agent Frankie Mae Jeter of Pittsburgh, a small number of leading NWRO members decided to go the other way. However, the majority of the local NWRO leaders around the nation supported CRNWRO initially - until their ranks began to be thinned by FBI threats, mysterious burnings of their homes, and various Federal government and local police frame-ups of themselves and their children as well.
While Frankie Mae Jeter and Johnnie Tilmon of the NWRO national executive shamelessly supported Communist Party's closest NWRO contact, Saunders, tried to sit on both sides of the fence. Saunders' conscience was bought off cheaply enough by a grant to write a pamphlet entitled "Win with WIN." (WIN was one of the several union-busting slave-labor organizations being implemented under the provisions of the so-called Talmadge Amendment.) Saunders generally expressed the view that slave-labor Was bad, but that it was here and therefore one should hustle into slave-labor executive jobs and generally try to make the best of it.
Against this background, the hideous enormity of the Communist Party's crimes in the affair are obvious. The CP knowingly joined with a notorious CIA operative, Ed Schwartz, in the effort to organize riots against those courageous black men and women holding out under vicious attacks and frame-ups against the efforts of Rockefeller & Company to degrade the unemployed into slave-labor union-busting scabs! (27)
We would have been morally justified if we had set out to beat up such filthy traitors to workingpeople. It happened, we did not set out to do so, but rather to confront the consciences of the non-agents within the CP, and force the party to repudiate that criminal activity. It was when the fascist SWP intervened in the effort to provoke general bloodshed on the left in the interests of Rockefeller and the LEAA, that the minor bruising called "Operation Mop-Up" against the CP's crimes threatened to become a serious affray.
It is obvious, in any case, that anyone who attacks the Labor Committees on the issue of "Mop-Up" has revealed himself to be a vicious enemy of every employed and unemployed worker in the U.S.
X. The European Labor Committees
For over a decade, Marcus had been determined to create an international socialist organization' immediately based in North America and Western Europe. This was not, as some hysterical critics have suggested, a mere ambition, but a direct outgrowth of his strategic perspectives. Without the existence of such an organization prior to the decisive social crisis, the workers' movement would have virtually no hope of defeating the fascist threat which would become immediate at such a conjuncture.
Essentially, Marcus's approach to internationalism was the direct opposite of such "Third World" recipes as have been associated with the late Lin Piao and Che Guevara. The view that the so-called Third World could create a wave of revolutions ultimately overwhelming the advanced capitalist sector was suicidal for the socialists below the Tropic of Cancer and criminal in respect to its self-styled socialist advocates in the advanced capitalist sector.
This does not imply that the Labor Committees were unconcerned with socialist transformations in the semi-colonial sectors of the Southern Hemisphere. On the contrary, our opposition to Piao's and Guevara's desperation tactics was mainly premised on the certainty that their childishness must inevitably lead the semi-colonlal sector' s working class to defeat. The suicidal element of the Piao and Guevara "Third World" theses was the implied and sometimes stated mistaken assumption that nationalist movements expropriating imperialist holdings in the under-developed sector could solve, more or less hermetically, the principal problems of immiseration and underdevelopment. Their views represented miserably incompetent economic theory, and therefore a gross misestimation of the material correlation of class forces.
We had, and still have an active perspective for socialist organization and struggles in the semi-colonial sector. What we have proposed is the formation of vanguard and mass-based parties on an approximately continental, rather than tactically-puerile national scale. These continental vanguard organizations of Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and South and East Asia, must have the strategic leverage of direct affiliations with an international mass-based vanguard organization developing the struggle within the advanced capitalist sector.
In that sense, we repudiated the disgusting aspect of the majority of the U.S- Anti-Vietnam War "movement," which safely ensconced itself as a partisan grandstand spectator of the CIA' s Roman games of bloodbath in Southeast Asia.
To warn off those who like to toy with ideas of so-called guerrilla warfare, let us represent the world-wide class struggle as a unified conflict which may have military expressions in certain sub-sectors at any given moment.
The applicable essential lesson of such political struggles is that the main tactical thrust of an effective effort is provided by disciplined military or quasi-military units chiefly composed of professional socialist organizers and militant strata of skilled and semi-skilled industrial workers. The tactical deployments of such main striking forces are supplemented in an essential way by a broad base of many smaller local militia units.
Reducing the principles of political struggles (and therefore class warfare) to their abstract principles of deployment, the essential object of tactics is to obtain greater relative freedom for further effective deployment for one's own forces while simultaneously working to reduce the enemy' s freedom for such effective deployment. In military terms, this idea is most easily illustrated variously by model war-games between naval or air forces of equal static or an idealized model army combat on flat desert terrain. The object, in political struggles as well as in the special case of actual warfare, is not to secure an advantageous position for deployments, but to gain the advantage in terms of the "in-betweeness" as primary to competent tactics is analogous, conceptually to Descartes' location of the primary ontological feature of human development in the process connecting successive advances in particular kinds of knowledge.
Current examples of inconipetent political-military tactical thinking are readily adduced from the recent case of ex-President Nixon' s defeat by Rockefeller forces and the massive defeat recently suffered by the Soviet Union under its superstitious "winds of detente" outlook. Nixon's tactics are a model for the worst kind of military thinking; a succession of hopeless "Maginot Line" of "stonewalling" deployments, leading only to constant outflanking of his foolish fixed positions by mobile enemy forces, and his successive withdrawal to new, equally flankable fixed positions - until his last, residual base of support was almost overwhelmed.
The Soviet leadership can be characterized as making an identical kind of error. Defeated to a devastating degree in Latin America, in the Middle East, in Asia, and now facing crushing defeat in Western Europe, it withdraws repeatedly to a new fixed position, refusing to counterattack politically - even refusing hysterically to recognize the identity and uniform of its Rockefeller enemy. During the period since late March of this year, the Soviet Union has suffered at Rockefeller hands in a grave political strategic defeat comparable in that sense to early Nazi military advances of the Summer of 1941.
By contrast, the Yugoslav partisans and Greek fighters against the Nazis of the World War II period exemplify, in particular, effective principles of warfare - not as a model to be naively imitated, but as a case whose study illustrates the principle to be adduced for many different specific applications in politics and in warfare itself.
Once the principles of development underlying tactical deployment have been mastered two other things must be correctly established to situate tactics within an effective strategic outlook: one's ultimate objectives and one' s base of deployment must both be correctly identified.
It is the coordinated efforts of the disciplined striking forces and the harassing actions of the militia which combine to commit the enemy to deployments leading toward his ultimate disadvantage. The idea of guerrilla militia action or of merely striking-force action by itself is in each instance a guarantee of defeat against the capacities and resources of a modern capitalist opponent. The worst possible folly today would be to imagine that the enemy is essentially a national enemy merely with some external support and allies. A political struggle which is not designed to defeat not a national, but a supranational enemy - i.e., the Rockefeller family's Anglo-American machine - guarantees a rapid increase in the enemy' s freedom of action and an accelerating decrease of one' s own. The "theory" of national struggles is a consummately suicidal bit of political-military idiocy.
The point being emphasized is that without the striking force implicitly represented by an internationally-coordinated vanguard working-class movement in the industrially-developed sector, struggles by the "militia" forces of the semi-colonial sector are generally foredoomed to crushing defeat. Moreover, if the struggles in the advanced sector are compartmentalized as national struggles, the mere fact of the Rockefeller forces massive supranational deployment of Anglo-American forces assures the defeat of the movement throughout that sector, too.
Economics : Key to "Material Forces"
The essential fallacy of "Third World" nostrums of "national independence" or "socialism in one country" is aptly illustrated by the case of Cuba, which could not have survived the first year and a half of its revolution without massive Soviet economic as well as military assistance. The impotent "super-revolutionary" macho of Latin America, for example, retails gibberish of the sort: "We would have enough to meet the needs of our people if only we stopped the looting of our natural resources by the imperialists." Granted, the looting accomplished through supra-national corporations and international loans criminally exacerbates the material conditions of life in the semi-colonial sector. But, as any of the established independent national governments of Latin America, Africa, and Asia would insist from experience, merely stopping that looting does not solve the fundamental problems of the national economy.
The essence of human existence is development. This possibility of increasing the material conditions of life, leisure and effective political freedom of the population depends initially and fundamentally on expanded reproduction of modern kinds of production which are themselves immediately dependent on rapid advances in science and technology. The possibility of achieving such results in the semi-colonial regions is absolutely dependent upon massive imports of machinery and equipment. This is primary, and fundamental to everything to be considered.
The fact that the imperative for meeting the most ordinary needs of the national economy and population depends upon machinery and equipment which can be obtained only from the advanced sector is the deci .sive strategic feature of every socialist struggle in the developing sector. Whether the nations of those sectors can free themselves of worsened imperialist looting depends absolutely on the question of whether the advanced sector is capitalist or socialist. This does not mean that socialist revolutions in the semi-colonial sector are impossible until socialism is established in the advanced sector. It does mean that socialist struggle in the developing sector depends absolutely on coordinated efforts around the imminent prospect of the struggle for workers' governments in the advanced sector.
Hence, the strategy for socialism must be uniquely international, and the cited analogy of effective guerrilla warfare applies to understanding the essential interdependency of deployment of striking forces and militia in both advanced and developing regions.
The Labor Committees have always been guided by this perspective, and - with more recent visibility of that objective - have persistingly approached the coordination of our political work in the advanced and developing sectors from this standpoint.
During late 1968 and early 1969, we recruited a handful of leading secondary cadres from the Greek Communist organization, and were soon active in the backwash of the worldwide Greek diaspora of socialist resistance to Rockefeller' s Anglo-American junta in Greece. Our object was not to merely create a viable kernel of leadership within the Greek-language movement itself, but to work from a starting-point of Greek socialist internationalism to establish the foundations of a new international organization. The 1969 publication of the magazine, Epanastasi, was our first concrete step toward such multifarious but ultimately coherent objectives.
By the Summer of 1970 we established a tiny Greek-language section based in West Germany, and immediately received massive attention and "dirty tricks" by the CIA-NATO intelligence forces, and accelerating interest from Moscow and allied locations. A major criticism of us appeared in the Jan. 1971 Moscow-edited Neos Kosmos, including the first mention of an opponent socialist faction by name in that publication since the end of World War II denunciations of the Greek Trotskyist organizations. The CIA-NATO operated against us through various instrumentalities, both outrightly government and through coordinated activies of Anglo-American agents in both Mandel's "Fourth International" and the London-based "International Socialists" "Third Camp" organizations.
Despite Moscow criticisms and more unsavory activities of Anglo-American political intelligence agencies, by the Spring of 1971 our originally Greek base in West Germany been slightly broadened into the ranks of young German socialists and others. Although difficulties and lack of adequate financial resources by our U.S. organization prevented our European nucleus from growing significantly during the year following the Summer of 1971, by the Fall of 1972 we had a score or so members in West Germany and Sweden, essentially coordinated through the kernel created by the Epanastasi tactic's leadership.
During the Summer of 1972 Marcus made his first organizing trip to Europe, spending approximately a month in Great Britain and two weeks divided between West Germany and a conference at Linz, Austria. The object of this was to pull together the results of investigations being made simultaneously by several NCLC leaders, including himself, for the elaboration of a tactical approach to establishing a European Labor Committees organization. The general strategic tactical programmatic thrust had already been elaborated in several locations, including an article which had recently been written for the Campaigner. (28) The problem was to concretize the initial steps for consolidating an organization around the program.
The policy for a German-language periodical, the Internationales Bulletin, was projected as a result of that trip, and a program of classes in West Berlin and other locations was used to develop the political-theoretical qualities of the membership and its small periphery.
During the Fall and early Winter of 1972-1973, the emerging German leadership experienced problems broadly analogous to those encountered by the Summer, 1968 New York and Philadelphia organizations. In this case, the members were resentful at being impelled into hubristic confrontation with the swamp-like ideologies of the radical youth peer-groups of the sort typically encountered around West Berlin, but also proliferating widely enough in other parts of Western Europe. A lengthy January letter to Germany from Marcus effectively located the deeper problem for most of the members there, and they immediately began establishing that process of directed development out of which the present Europ ean executive committee and European cadre organizations have emerged.
There was an accelerated development, especially in West Germany, during the Spring of 1973, out of which a kernel of just over forty cadres was consolidated. Marcus' s six-week June-August and two-week September visits of that Summer accomplished the selection and concentrated development of a West German and Italian European leadership. Some further work in the U.S.A. over the 1973-1974 year-end completed the program out of which the present leadership and organization in Europe have emerged. This experience is remarkable and important because it proves way beyond the slightest reasonable doubt that we have developed the method necessary to rapidly transform potential mass leaders into effective world leaders of a quality not approximated by any previous socialist organization except through the experience of a mass-revolutionary struggle itself.
The accomplishments of our European members and leaders is ultimately their collective accomplishment. What we contributed from the U.S. was our developed capabilities of judgment to detect those members who had extraordinary leadership qualifications, and to supply them with the programs of self-development by which they have transformed themselves into persons of the quality of world leaders within a matter of relatively a few months.
It should be ABC that throughout the entire period from World War I, the objective interests of working people throughout the world have been constantly located in the need for establishment of workers' governments. Not only have the material conditions of life of the world capitalist population as a whole objectively deteriorated on the per capita average over this period, but this misery could have been readily avoided but for the depressions, wars and general technological stagnation of industrial and agricultural development, on the world' s average, over that half-century.
The principal reason we do not have socialism on a world scale is not a lack of overwhelming objective reasons for socialism, but essentially because of a lag in the subjective development of the working-class population. This lag involves several shortcomings in the development of mass-based working-class political parties, a lack of proper intelligence and nerve among existing working-class leaderships, and - more profoundly - a refusal by existing socialist parties to comprehend and act upon the ABCs of Marxian psychology.
As we emphasized at the beginning of this history of our organization, the individual worker under capitalism is the battlefield of a continual mental struggle between two opposite political tendencies. To the extent he identifies himself only with narrow personal interests, which he sees as involving competition with other workers, the worker is dominated by an empiricist or pluralist pro-capitalist world-outlook.
In a tiny handful of instances, it is feasible to bring forth the scientific world-outlook in one-to-one social relationships with individual workers. However, in general, man is a social not an individual being, and working people are the most intensely social in their nature of all layers of the population. Mental life is always both social and practical; the thought is the implicit deed affecting society by which its aims are realized. In general, the workers' ability to think in world terms is delimited by the actual process of development of organizations through which socialist actions become possible. The socialist is the worker who is beginning to experience manifestations of the scientific world-outlook in his wife' s attitudes, in the attitudes of workers around him, and who at the same time has some sort of organization through which he can connect his efforts to other developed socialists like himself.
In short, it is not possible to generate a socialist outlook among workers by exclusive emphasis upon either brilliant propaganda or forming mass organizations. The secret of scientific or truly professional socialist organizing is a mastery of the necessary interdependence of form and content between simultaneous attacks on the problem from both the propaganda and organizational standpoint. It is not a matter of creating an organization through mere propaganda, nor is it a matter of the secreting of effective ideas from the successful outcome of building a large workers' organization. Socialist organization is the outcome of a process, which is successful if for most of the time it seems to represent a failure of both its propaganda and organizational efforts. That is, for the short run, the only ultimately successful method of building a socialist mass-based organization is a tactic which must be seen as a hopeless failure from any empiricist's standpoint.
What in fact occurs, and there are many historical demonstrations of this point over the past century, is that a persistent effort to propagandize and organize builds up effects among workers without producing immediate direct signs of mass movement. In the course of accumulated effects of this seemingly fruitless effort, a state of what might be termed "critical mass" is reached. Decisive action by socialist leaders at such a point can rapidly transform that potential into an actual mass-based movement.\\ There is nothing mystical in this process. The principles involved can be empirically demonstrated in the context of any properly-oriented psychoanalytical group. Once a potential mass leader has experienced that demonstration and has then tested it in even limited mass-work practice, he or she is quite capable of conceptualizing those otherwise too-subtle shifts in mass behavior which represent movement toward the required state of "critical mass." This was the central feature of the special training Marcus gave to the European leadership during the Summer of 1973. It was for this reason that an SPD leader in West Germany confided to us following our impact during the Lower Saxony election campaign of this past spring, "You people have located a vacuum in the SPD, but we have not yet understood why you were able to succeed in finding and exploiting it."
We have referred to the essential point earlier in this brief history. The empiricist' s approach to politics interprets the of ideas in mechanical terms. He sees transmission of an idea to an individual as he sees the consumption of food, as the end-result of a process. What he is incapable of understanding in that state of mind is that there is a qualidifference between the mental outlook of the the individual who sees that same idea as the idea an ever-broader mass of people qualitative difference between these "consuming" an idea is identical with the between the empiricist and scientific world-outlook. The latter state of mind is essentially identical in form with what Hegel identified as the self-consciousness of being-in-and-for-itself. It is, as Marx was the first to show, the fundamental principle of successful socialist practice to concentrate on changing the prevailing state of mind of workers from an empiricist (class-in-itself) to dialectical (class-for-itself) world-outlook.
Whenever that process approaches "critical mass" the subjective preconditions for socialist transformation have been satisfied.
The distinctive quality of the potential mass-leader is his susceptibility to developing a class-for-itself world-outlook. Without that quality, it would be impossible for him to discern positive shifts in the outlook of the masses in the same direction, and therefore impossible for him to judge the appropriateness of socialist organization's tactics to the end of furthering such positive developments. In the individual member of the small socialist propaganda group the possibility of expressing the class-for-itself outlook in a practical way is essentially limited to theoretical problems. Hence, the only possible origin of an initial group of future competent mass-leaders is the best Marxist theoreticians.
Although the psychological problems of socialist leaders are immediately political problems, the tendency of the individual leader to collapse back into an empiricist state of mind involves his or her sense of identity, and is therefore largely determined by the same aspects of mentation with which clinical psychoanalysis is ordinarily concerned. The failure of otherwise qualified leaders to think clearly in matters of political organizing and so forth is always associated with emotional and psychosomatic problems of the same general type normally considered the province of psychoanalytical therapy. Part of the achievement of the European Labor Committees is the outcome of their mastery of the essential features of a major advance in psychoanalysis documented by Marcus in the late 1973 issues of the Campaigner.
It happens that the mental states associated with creative work and the class-for-itself outlook are identical in quality and basis. As a result of Marcus' s work of the late 195Os, in particular, he was able to isolate the correlatives of creative mentation with an exactness lacking in earlier work on this problem by Ehrenfels, Kohler, and Wertheimer. The application of these investigations to work of a clinical psychoanalytical type permitted him to identify those empirical features of individual mental life which cohere with such creative processes. By proceeding to examine the problem of mental health as neurotic sabotage of the individual's creative potentialities, a set of results was obtained which generally coincided with the phenomena as analyzed by leading psychoanalysts. However, this must be reported with the qualification that Marcus was able to show that the "ontological" features of mental processes were of a different kind than ordinary psychoanalytical opinion proposed.
In the case of the European Labor Committee leadership, Marcus had the advantage of a group which included a high proportion of individuals with medical and psychoanalytical training and professional qualifications. Therefore, it was possible to utilize those skills directly to realize the benefits of his theoretical discoveries under "safe" conditions.
Ironically, at just the point this training program was being completed, a leading European member returned from a disastrous month' s visit to East Berlin. After an hour' s initial interview, it was obvious that the apparent emotional disturbance was not an ordinary paranoid-schizophrenic episode, but the outcome of brainwashing. (Until the end of 1973, we believed, with strong reason, that this had been accomplished by the East German Ministry of State Security under orders from the Soviet KGB. Supplementary evidence pulled together at the end of the year proved conclusively that the tampering had been done by a NATO team working closely with British intelligence and the CIA, with the East Berlin operation being only an elaborate smokescreen operation.) The qualifications of our psychoanalytical team in breaking through the brainwashing and starting the victim on the way to his later full recovery, was the outgrowth of a competence which the enemy had not foreseen. As it has turned out, that initial experience with diagnosing and treating brainwash victims of Rockefeller' s Anglo-American network has proven to be a rather important weapon in our beating off later CIA and LEAA attacks upon us in the U.S.A. itself.
As a result of this acceleration of internal development during 1973 the European Labor Committees have grown from approximately sixty members in June, 1973 to a force which publishes magazines and newspapers in German, Italian, Swedish, and French, and is today the third leading socialist tendency in influence on the continent - after the mass-based social-democratic and Communist parties. Never before has the power of Marxian science proven its capacity to change people and events with such astonishing rapidity. The very existence of the European Labor Committees of today is itself unique scientific proof that we have mastered the essential principles needed to establish socialism in the period immediately ahead.
XI. Prospects For Socialism
According to the New York Times of August, 1974, Nelson A. Rockefeller is known as "Fang" to his intimates. It is an unusually appropriate nickname. The eldest of the Rockefeller brothers, the eccentric John D. III, collects oriental art and works at organizing a movement for worldwide genocide, proposing to wipe out as many as several hundred millions of people through starvation and disease during the coming decade and to reduce the world' s population by approximately one billion well before the end of the present century.
The youngest of the brothers, beetle-collecting David "Bugs" Rockefeller, operates from a base at Chase Manhattan Bank, where he performs a key role in ensuring that starvation and lack of hygienic and medical services are arranged to fit John D.'s plans. Nelson, who has specialized in secret police and other political work throughout his adult life, is "the enforcer," whose duty it is to see that no one protests effectively against John D.'s and David's activities.
John D.'s genocidal "zero growth" obscenity plays approximately the same part that Nazi propagandist Rosenberg' s crazy racial theories performed for the German fascist government. The real theory behind John's, David' s, and Nelson's fascist schemes is provided by academic economists who, like Abba Lerner, have more or less openly resurrected the policies of Nazi finance minister, Hjalmar Schacht. Since economic arguments do not make good propaganda campaigns for fascism, John D.'s fascist "ecology movement" has been emphasized to make fascist economic programs appear as somehow "natural," rather than as the genocidal conspiracies, they actually represent.
Since the first English Tudor monarch, Henry VII, until the development of fascist movements during this century, the central policy of capitalist society has been the so-called "Idea of Progress." The Tudors recognized, on advice from the economist Thomas Gresham and others, that the key to prosperity of the realm was technological progress in production. In the interest of securing that technological advance, the Tudors were among the first to sponsor public education for significant numbers of working people, and to make or permit other improvements in political and cultural institutions, at least to the extent they were convinced such new freedoms were necessary for the proliferation of both inventors and of mechanics capable of using new inventions for production. The Tudor policies had roots in the Spanish and Italian Renaissance, of course, and benefitted directly from major progress in Renaissance France, the Low Countries, and parts of Germany. However, the institution of these measures as national economic policies first occurred in late-fifteenth and sixteenth century England, where they provided the basis for the rapid development of world hegemony by that small capitalist island.
This development was not an expression of any special genetic superiority of the English people. The present disgraceful performance of the British labor movement and Labour Party are just as "genetically" English as sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth century progress. Since the principal economical mode of bulk transport of the sixteenth century (in particular) was by coastal waterways and rivers, the geographic situation of England and the Low Countries represented an enormous advantage for early capitalist development there, in contrast to France, Spain, and certain portions of Germany. The shift of the center of gravity of mercantile commerce to the North Sea and Atlantic Ocean, away from the Mediterranean, completed the balance of major circumstantial developments favorable to Low Countries and English development.
However, the peculiarities of English and Low Countries priority taken into account, the "Idea of Progress" which first notably flourished as state policy in those regions is the central, characteristic world-outlook of capitalist development in all its progressive phases. In the U.S., this outlook continued to be recognized up through the election campaigning of President John F. Kennedy and the "New Frontier." Industrial expansion and development, and advances in the technology of agriculture made possible by industry, have been the axiomatic outlook. Every problem of material wants, no matter how grave, was understood to have a basis for its solution in a combination of new scientific discoveries and the application of these discoveries to industrial expansion.
The feasibility of rapidly developing controlled thermonuclear fusion technology is a demonstration of the fact that continued technological progress is still the key to solving all the basic material problems of life throughout the world. Even if we limited our study of that technology to just one of its important features, the massive increase in cheap available energy for manufacturing, agriculture and household consumption, every major problem we now know could be quickly solved. In fact, the existence of those problems is largely the result of the willful suppression of such development by agencies linked to the controlling influence of the Rockefeller family machine.
The principle of the "Idea of Progress" is key to the odd forms of British "liberalism" and to dominant nineteenth-century U.S.A. - Jefferson the "liberal" and Hamilton and Madison, the relative "conservatives," were opposite only in the sense that they approached the objectives of progress with relative emphasis on different agencies. Today we have the ironical fact that the so-called "conservatives" together with a tiny minority of self-styled "liberals" represent traditional capitalist liberalism, while the majority of liberal politicians associated with Rockefeller's "Eastern Establishment" are to one-degree or another raving fascists in respect of the bills and other proposals they are currently promulgating.
Fascism's roots are found in the 1890s and the years immediately afterward. The emergence of "trusts" and "monopolies" during the 1880s and 1890s, typified by the Morgan and Rockefeller empires, shifted the emphasis from technological advancement toward monopolistic stagnation. Beginning with Mark Hanna as its first notorious spokesman, there emerged the "Civic Federation" movement. incorporating Gompers of the AFL and leading financiers into one, essentially corporativist (fascist), organization. With the rise of John D. Rockefeller II's control over his father's growing empire, the Rockefeller family performed a leading role in furthering the rudimentary corporativist outlook of Hanna et al., and the present generation of Rockefeller brothers has essentially taken over leadership of that apparatus from the Morgans. Roosevelts, Harrimans, Mellons, and so forth who used to be the leaders or at least equal partners of the dominant financier cabal of Anglo-American imperialism. Today the leading figures of the Morgans, Harrimans, Mellons, the British Rothschilds and the Shell empire are reduced to mere junior partners in the ruling, Rockefeller- family-dominated elite that runs the entire capitalist world. Today, the names Rockefeller, imperialism, and fascism are synonymous terms.
As Anglo-American finance came to dominate the capitalist world after the first World War, inter-imperialist rivalry largely vanished. However, the establishment of German fascism, a project launched by German financiers closely allied with the Rockefeller, Morgan and other Anglo-American interests (e.g.. I.G. Farben of Auschwitz fame) recreated a major rival to Anglo-American power in the form of Germany largely designed and created by the Nazi "liberal" financier Hjalmar Schacht (otherwise the father-in-law of Nazi "special forces" head and CIA "subcontractor" Otto Skorzeny).
Rockefeller policy toward the Nazis was to conquer the Nazi machine for the purpose of assimilating it. This was the role performed during the Second World War by the CIA, which was then under Nelson A. Rockefeller's immediate direction. This was the role performed by Rockefeller-connected Allen Dulles in Switzerland negotiations with Nazis from 1943 onwards. The Anglo-American intelligence services' buying up of Gehlen, Skorzeny, Schacht, and the Nazi Latin American network during the immediately after the last war is part of that takeover. At the same time, Rockefeller-sponsored agencies, such as the London Tavistock Clinic, were directly engaged, as was the Tavistock spin-off, the RAND Corporation, in studying the Nazi system for the purpose of designing an "improved model" to be imposed upon the entire world during the lifetime of the Rockefeller brothers.
The characteristic economic feature of the Rockefeller variety of fascism is the "zero growth" or "ecology movement" headed by John D. "genocide" Rockefeller III. Using various scoundrels from the academic world, and agencies such as the outrightly fascist cannibalism-advocating "Club of Rome," John D. and his proteges have attempted to show that without technological advancement we are rapidly approaching the point at which the world cannot sustain its present population levels.
That is no discovery. Marx made the same point concerning the eighteenth and nineteenth century, to refute the Physiocrats and Malthus. On this basis Marx demonstrated that the essential quality of capitalist development was its peculiar form of technological advance, and that the essential quality of productive labor was its potential for employment in more advanced forms of productive technology. Otherwise, John D. and his supporters are simply criminal liars. There is no population crisis, provided that existing forms of technological advancement are employed in the'same way that the earlier capitalists employed such scientific progress. The con-man' s sleight-of-hand in John D.'s fraud is located in the fact that he begins with the assumption that his family is going to suppress technological advancement.
It happens that the total real profits of capitalist economy are a sharing-out among individual capitalists of the margin of expansion of the capitalist economy as a whole. Without industrial expansion andc technological advancement, the capitalist system as a whole cannot have any real net profit as a whole. Under such conditions some capitalist firms can have profits only to the extent that this profit is extracted by looting of both natural resources and the very flesh and bones of billions of human beings. The "cost of living indexing" pioneered in fascist Brazil and now being proposed for Western Europe and North America is a system of slave-labor which aims at squeezing out, more and more, the existing wage-levels in the same way the Hitler machine did in both Germany and, more drastically, in connection with the populations of Nazi-occupied countries. This policy of "COL indexing" necessarily goes hand-in-hand with another Nazi principle, of eliminating "useless eaters," just as the pages of the New York Times and numerous other Rockefeller-supporting publications have already proposed !
Compared with the Rockefeller family, the worst of the Nazi's were shy humanitarians. Never before, even including the Nazis, has anyone proposed, as the Rockefellers have, to base a "new world order" on the genocidal extinction of hundreds of millions of human beings. The success of the Rockefellers' campaign to grab power for themselves would be the worst catastrophe in the entire history and pre-history of the human race. It is doubtful that humanity could survive the outcome.
The Rockefellers' fascist conspiracy and power drive are not merely the product of the moral of the Rocke'feller brothers. It is impossible to simultaneously develop our steel industry and continue to pay off the massive debt which has been piled upon that industry since the Morgans' establishment of the U.S. Steel Corporation. All other basic industries are in the same essential fix. Unless we are prepared to wipe out the mass of accumulated capitalist debt crushing the industries and governments of the entire capitalist world, there is no alternative for humanity but that proposed by the Rockefellers.
To propose to continue capitalism at this time is the same thing as to propose shoving your grandmother into a gas oven.
However to wipe out that debt - by placing a moratorium upon debt payment - demands efficient centralized means for maintaining the operation of essential institutions. There must be an agency which ensures an adequate and stable currency under conditions of collapse of the capitalist financiers. Pension and unemployed payments must be maintained without a break. Credit for the distribution of food and other essential commodities must be promptly available. Credit and production bookings must be supplied to the small businesses (retail stores. service establishments, and so forth) which do not fall into the class of major industries, but whose continued operation is essential to the population.
The Labor Committees' July 1971 "Emergency Reconstruction Program" is a model of the type of emergency legislation which must be prepared in advance and immediately applied by a workers' and farmers' government to ensure the continuity of life, of production and distribution, under circumstances of general economic crisis.
This is not a socialist society, but simply the direction of a society whose government and principal productive management has been taken over from the capitalists by a workers' and farmers' party-machine. All the major aspects of the economy would have to be democratically controlled by the government, but in the local communities, the government would be obliged to ensure that small capitalist businesses and farmer-owned farms would exist to approximately the same extent they do presently. Meanwhile, while the infrastructure of daily life was maintained in that fashion, the basis for the future would be established through trade and development agreements on a world scale, centering upon the development of controlled thermonuclear fusion technology together with a complex of short-term development and expansion projects needed to carry the world forward until full-scale fusion technology begins to become generally available to us.
There simply is no objective alternative to this. This is not yet socialism, but only an emergency by which working people and farmers keep society functioning in the popular interest until something better can be deliberately established.
What Is Socialism?
As we have stated several times before on this point, socialism is immediately a subjective question. It is a matter of self-organization of working people around a correct understanding of the objective reality of their present situation. Objectively, reality has made socialism only more or less urgently an immediate necessity for all working people at each moment and place during the past half-century. Objectively, now the feasibility of controlled thermonuclear technology is the high point of a broad range of technological advances for humanity generally, from which the proper socialists' program becomes immediately obvious as an objective imperative for the bare continuation of human existence. The only thing wanting to make objective necessity an actuality is the corresponding subjective "ingredient," consciousness of these facts and mass organization to accomplish the necessary steps.
Understanding is not essentially an individual matter. This point is made in a certain sense by virtually every worker in contact with the Labor Committees today. In one way or another, thousands of them have said already: "Your analysis is obviously right and your proposals are excellent, but isn't it too late to get us organized?" Workers who say that may not be aware of the fact that they are raising a most profound theoretical point. That same point is the kernel of Marx's "Theses on Feuerbach." He insists, "Who will educate the educator?" The psychological possibility of accepting certain ideas - such as socialism - as factual depends upon the possibility of effectively acting upon such ideas, in terms of organized social force.
In general, no one is capable of understanding objective reality individually unless he is also capable of envisaging the possibility of acting in the social way that reality demands. Essentially, this possibility is the forms of organization of masses of the population, upon which the individual depends for the of acting effectively in his own self-interest. In capitalist society, it is industrial workers - in an apparently instinctive way - who generally understand this theoretical point most readily. Consequently, there is a more or less immediate interdependency between individual workers' ability to think in socialist terms and the development of rudimentary forms of mass working-class political organizations.
The socialist organizer himself is no exception to that principle. The significant difference between today's socialist organizer and tomorrow' s masses of socialists is the difference in scope and time-span of outlook between the two kinds of individuals. The socialist organizer of the small cadre organization is different from most industrial workers in one important way. Whereas most industrial militants delay their socialist commitment until they see either an existing large organization or one being formed over a short time ahead, today' s organizer has responded to the future emergence of such mass organization over a period of months or even years ahead of the present moment.
The essential basis for different views of objective reality among the overwhelming majority of working people is only a different appreciation of the problem, "Can we do it?"
The same point can be restated in a more rigorous. scientific way. Mass organizations of workers are, as such, simultaneously objective and subjective features of the whole reality. Just as the mass organization provides the essential basis for giving actuality to individual knowledge of reality, It is itself immediately a part of that objective reality whose understanding it makes generally possible. It is socialist mass organization which dissolves the capitalist form of separation of the subjective and objective, and in that way combines the two into a single existence, termed either knowledge or reality. The existence of mass democratic political organizations of working people, which assume direct, conscious responsibility for the policies of fostering scientific research and technological advancement, means that the consciousness of those workers and reality itself have become one and the same thing in practice. The separation between theory and practice - between universal and cooperative labor - has been eliminated, and only that practical which represents an organic union of these two formerly alienated aspects of totality exists any longer.
That process of unification, a new society uniquely achieved through mass democratic political organization of working people, is socialism. There is no other short definition of that term.
Religion, Psychology. and Socialism
It is for these reasons that the Labor Committee' intense interest in psychology and the understanding of the psychodynamics of religious belief is central to our tactical approaches.
Today' s fascist-leaning sort of atheist "liberal" critics of the Labor Committees is at least unconsciously aware of some danger to his cause on this account. The most visible polemicizer against the Committees at Swarthmore College was Frederick C. Pryor. Pryor is best known as a convicted spy imprisoned by the government of the German Democratic Republic, who was repatriated. together with U-2 pilot Gary Powers, in exchange for Soviet KGB Colonel Abel. Although we have no other direct evidence of his being on the CIA payroll, his world-outlook is distinctly pro-Makhnist and otherwise identical with the anarchist point of view common to both "right-wing" and "left-wing" factions of CIA operatives generally. He also exhibited outburst of unnecessary pathological lying of the sort familiar among intelligence undercover agents. Pryor was the first of that strain to attempt to denounce the Labor Committees as "religious" - ironically, under the roof of that Quaker campus's Friends meeting-house! Pryor accused us of "Savanarolaism."
Pryor' s desperate epithet is typical of more recent CIA-LEAA propaganda against us. It is charged by those agencies that we are really offering a disguised form of religion. Hence - as our investigators have uncovered - the complicity of the FBI and other agencies in bringing convicted brainwasher-kidnapper Ted Patrick, into the abduction of Labor Committee member Gail Roeshman. Earlier, we learned through affidavits concerning that matter, there had been an aborted plan to induce parents of another Labor Committee member to abduct the member and subject him to Ted Patrick in the same manner as Roeshman.
Letters and other messages from the victim, Roeshman, have shown that the function of Patrick was not to accomplish her brainwashing. Patrick's hideous assaults certainly contributed in an incidental way to the later result, but his high visibility in the affair was essentially a deliberately-staged "geek act," to build the theme that Labor Committee outlooks were essentially synonymous with those of fundamentalist groups. According to the victim's information, her real brainwashing occurred after Patrick was out of the operation, conducted by professional brainwashers who informed her of their confidential relationship to CIA and FBI personnel, according to several reports she has made to this effect.
The use of Patrick's "geek act" coincides with the approach of Pryor and also coincides With efforts to lay the basis for the same point by the CIA-connected Boston rags, the Real Paper and Phoenix. Many of today' s known fascist operatives charge that we are essentially a religious organization. These agents allege that we act on the basis of a religious-like "belief structure" - brazening out the fact that the very use of that term is peculiar to CIA-LEAA operatives and brainwashers. They argue that our effectiveness is simply explained as the forcefulness of "religious ardor."
The majority of working people make the opposite observation. The worker who is individually inclined to agree with our analysis and proposals most frequently insists that while socialism is an excellent and correct conception, it is not possible in this world. He bases such characteristically religious doubts entirely on the argument that the secular human nature prevents people from being broadly organized for socialism, and often adds that this same rottenness would prevent a socialist society from functioning. More generally, a majority of workers have blamed the various actual and falsely-imagined faults of Soviet society on the lack of the essential moral qualities needed to make a society work.
On the issue of religion, we take the same standpoint , as Karl Marx, as we develop that point in "The Case of Ludwig Feuerbach." Modern man's concern with religious belief flows fundamentally from that inner quality which makes him distinctly human, which distinguishes him from a "mere beast." He has needed religion because he has a continuing need to find some means tor socializing that aspect of his own nature which separates him trom the relative bestiality ot his own daily practices. Denied the right to express his human qualities consciously in ordinary aspects ot daily pursuing a secularized hand-to-mouth apparent self-interest, the alienated individual manages to cling to his humanity by locating his human impulses in a religious form, and within the social context ot religious organizations. Since day-to-day secular life is relatively bestialized (or heteronomic, or pluralist), and is organized around false conceptions ot individual self-interest which are relatively bestialized, he locates that within himself which is human as belonging to another world, and locates his essentially human impulses as his connection to a "pertected being" outside this world. Unless realhumanity can be brought into the real world as an actuality, the majority of human beings will continue to find the only means for expressing the human quality of their existence in the form of religious beliefs.
When the basis for belief is understood in that way, it should clear that the possibility of developing an actually scientific understanding of man and the universe itself depends upon a prior profound comprehension of the basis for, and inner dynamic of religious beliefs generally. Unless we can account for the religious way men have seen the world as something more serious than a simple "mistake," we understand nothing of the actual processes of mind or, for this reason, of the basis for distinguishing between nonsense and knowledge in social practice generally.
Such inquiry has been in fact the historical basis for the development ot modern scientific achievements. The emergence of modern science began during the Renaissance in a way epitomized by the fifteenth-century Florentine, Ficino. The key to the great Florentine and other neo-Platonists who founded modern scientific thought is their effort to bring the idea of perfection down to earth from the heavens by equating perfection to individual man's powers to effect technological and related advances in the whole society through his inventions. The form of Ficino's brilliant inquiry is the basis for the founding of mathematical physics by Kepler, and is the central feature of the discoveries of the great Descartes. Spinoza, Leibniz, Kant, Hegel, Feuerbach, and Marx - as well as the "purely scientific" Riemann, Cantor, and Einstein - are directly outgrowths of the evolving outlook generated in this way.
Ludwig Feuerbach's brilliant, if aborted, effort to introduce a scientific approach to the question of religious belief was explicitly the basis for the achievements of Marx.
The problem, and the basis for all the falseness properly attributed to religion, is that religion justifies the toleration and, hence, continuation of the very bestiality against which it complains. Religious belief has been historically positive insofar as it has served as a social instrument for assisting the individual to develop and maintain humanistic moral qualities in face of the contrary bestialization of secular life. Religion is negative and reactionary to the extent it makes itself the ally of reaction, to the extent it relegates humanity to another world, and so induces the religious believer to make peace with Rockefeller bestiality in the real world. To free the individual from such superstition. we must free him from the circumstances which compel him to make his own humanity anobject of mere superstition. To end the the arrangement by which men relegate their own humanity to a world of superstition, it is necessary to bring the practice of humanity into the real world.
Socialism is in no sense a form of religion. It is admittedly an opponent of atheism, because atheism is in fact the worship of Mammon (heteronomic individual greed). Atheism is not antireligious; it is the religion of shame-faced devil-worshippers, who have made the bestialized essence of Rockefeller-dominated capitalist secular life itself God, heavens and earth. Socialism is not atheism, but a shrugging away of all such superstitions. Socialism is a practical opponent of religion in the specific sense that we are engaged in eliminating the basis tor superstition. However, without understanding the very real and fundamental human needs which religion satisfies in a superstitious way, it is impossible to establish socialism. To stop hungry people from eating retuse, is merely essential to provide them with good food, not to polemicize against eating, or hunger. Without that understanding, all literary expositions represented as ideas of socialism are well-meaning chimeras.
Individual Need and Value
The most etfective illustration of this point is obtained by examining closely the Christian' s impassioned concern with his "after-life." The bestialization of secular life, in which a chattel-like social identity is located in the carrying out ot routine acts decreed by employers and other authorities, is the cause for an awful despair which is usually identified as the "fear of death." "When I have died, will all this misery have meant anything?"
The agony which the individual associates with such tears of psychological death (the fear ot death is not primarily a fear of physical death), is only a way of giving concentrated focus for the sense of psychological meaninglessness which he otherwise associates with the moments of his day-to-day existence. The more successfully he pursues what his society seems to define as his individual self-interest, the more acute must be his sense of failure as a human being. The more he concentrates on denying others in the service of his narrow self-interest, the more he must sense his uselessness to others "won't miss me when I'm gone." "They will when they can share out what I have accumulated among themselves."
The association of impassioned religious conviction with cloistered "views of poverty" represents the desperate concern of the monk or nun to isolate something in oneself which is essentially human. The point of "poverty" is to deny oneself the distraction of secular bestiality, and hope that the conditions of life may hence be altered to the point that one ultimately contemplates within oneself only the isolated, uncontaminated residue of essential humanity. (This matter is otherwise a fascinating study in psychopathology, since it is the strongest guilt-feelings evoked by one's powerful tendencies for bestiality which would make the cloister appear usually to be a necessity. However, that important study is not immediately relevant to our point once we have acknowledged its existence.)
A lasting meaning for the individual life could be found only by showing that the human race as a whole was deprived in some general way by the loss of a particular individual. The useful individual is typified on this account by the whose discoveries become the increased of all living beings, and hence a lasting foundation for all the future achievements which succeed them. The particular discovery is the most superficial part of the matter. It is not the individual act of discovery which gives lasting value to the continued existence of an individual. Once the invention is completed, the need for that act of invention has ended. What is permanently useful in the continued existence of individuals is tjeir continuing power to contribute to the general adcancement of humanity.
Socialism is the form of society which uniquely satisfies that requirement of meaningful individual existence in a general way. The importance of the individual person is not merely his capacity for a useful act - animals can meet such a requirement. The importance of the individual person is uniquely his power to contribute to the further development of the quality of existence of his species. The importance of the worker is not his skill as such, but his power to develop new skills. On that latter power the possibility of continued progress and even human existence itself absolutely depends. Socialism is a society in which the population participates directly in contributing advances to the general form of human practice, a population whose capacity to learn and apply new skills makes those advances possible in reality. It is a form of society in which every human being is developed to know constantly the way in which the rest of his species needs his continued existence, and in which he lives in the active sense of his existence as something forever a good in the ongoing existence of his race.
The important point to be added to that, is that such a form of society is within reach during this century. We have before us the immediate need and possibility to establish an intermediate form of society known as workers' government, out of which in approximately a generation' s time, an actual socialist form of human existence can emerge. The Labor Committees' development of advances in scientific psychology, which have taken account of the historical fact of religious belief as a central feature of human psychology to date, enable us to understand the subjective possibilities for realizing the form of society which is so urgently, objectively required for continued human existence at this time. We have answered the challenge of the religious industrial workers, who argue that socialism can't work because of human nature. by showing that the existence of religious belief is proof of the fundamental importance and power of that formerly misdirected aspect of human nature which can be called forth in its rational form to establish a new society.
The attempt to explain what socialism is involves what may appear to be a most perplexing paradox. What we ought to mean by that term is so elementary and definite that any schoolboy under socialism could clearly and immediately understand it. Yet, it is extraordinarily difficult to explain that same so-elementary conception effectively to anyone who sees the world according to the commonplace mental habits of capitalist culture. For such reasons, socialists of the past have frequently preferred to define socialism as something that it was not, so deluding their audiences and themselves as well. They have preferred the search for cheap popularity, associating themselves with non-socialist ideas which were more easily accepted by victims of capitalist delusions.
This is not as much a difficulty as it might first appear to be. Marx attacked the old German Social Democracy in this connection in his 1875 "Critique of the Gotha Programme." We are not proposing to make a sudden leap from capitalist into socialist society. What we are proposing to accomplish during the immediate future is the establishment of a workers' and farmers' government. That kind of government has many of the familiar features of capitalist life. These carry-overs include the payment of wages for labor, the existence of a commodities market as the means for distributing a major portion of wealth produced for personal consumption, and many other forms of social life which are vestiges of the capitalist form of industrial society. The difference is that the democratic political institutions of working people and farmers are creating and administering the laws, directing the fostering of scientific research and development, and otherwise taking over all the authorities and responsibilities of government and major industries formerly held by the capitalists. Socialism is the society which must grow out of the development of society under a workers' government.
The need for clear conceptions of socialism is two-fold. First, without developing individuals who have mastered these apparently difficult conceptions, it is impossible to create the kind of vanguard political organizations, such as the Labor Committees, which are needed to catalyze the self-organization of working people into a mass political force. At the same time, since we are socialists, we are obliged to make as clear as possible what that further, deeper commitment means. The worker who clearly understand workers' government, but is hazy concerning socialism, will be justly suspicious, and may ask : "What you are proposing that we do together - this workers' government business - is all very fine, and I have no doubts about it. The thing that bothers me is the fear that you may be using this struggle to get us all into something else, something you aren' t telling us you're aiming for." The idea of socialism must be laid out as clearly as that worker demands of us.
Our classes have frequently used the following illustration of the general class of problem such workers are identifying for us. Imagine an anthropologist-geologist's difficulties as he seeks a means for explaining the concept "ore" to a long-lost tribe of New Guinea stone-age villagers. No matter how profoundly he masters their language, their customs, their prejudicEs, and so forth, he cannot succeed in presenting them with an explanation of that term. He cannot invent a term or phrase in their language which would be a reasonable translation of "ore" from mode.rn English. The practical actuality, "ore," does not exist for their experience. It is impossible to give them a term which could meaningfully identify an object which does not exist for them.
This illustration provides us with the example of an extreme case of the kind of difficulty we face in attempting to define socialism for the average individual of capitalist society.
The problem of communicating the concept "ore" as we have so far defined it shows only the simplest way of seeing the difficulties involved. Although naive opinion mistakenly assumes that names of objects (nouns) correspond fundamentally to objects as such, the idea of an object is not the outcome of direct sensory experience of something which is "actually there." What we call "perception," actually the habituated power to abstract the idea of a definite object from a cluster of mental-perceptual-practical activities, is not an instinctive or self-evident kind of knowledge. There is no such objective existence as a "self-evident fact." The perception of an object by the mind is the product of an habituated form of judgment. Even the pragmatist John Dewey admitted that fact. The original mental effort involved in such judgments has usually been long-forgotten, so that the individual comes to regard his seeing certain objects in a distinct way as "automatic," "obvious," or "instinctive."
For that reason, seeing the idea of some definite kind of object is misjudged by some unthoughtful professional psychologists and biologists to be the simple outcome of some instinctual feature of our sense-organs. The processes of perception are in fact dialectical, or, to use terms of approximation, dynamic rather than static. We do not "see" the image of an object because the object is "simply there," statically existing. The simplest biological aspect of perception, together with our activity on the environment in which perception occurs, and the power of abstraction, act in an interconnected way to enable us to abstract what we often mistake for a self-evldent image from an ongoing process.
It is useful, if not scientifically exact, to say that our ideas of objects are a product of our culture, not nature. They are not products of our existence as isolated biological individuals. The individual who hysterically denies this, who insists, "See this object" (his fist), is merely denying that he is the product of a definite culture. The idea of the object is always loaded with essential connotations concerning the way in which then individual in that society either uses the object or anticiptes that it might be used against him.
The perception of rocks and sand for members of a stone-age. village of just this point. cultures different from our own. We are learning less concerning those cultures as such than we are about ourselves. To interact with another culture demands that we attempt to the effect of our behavior upon persons at us through their eyes, from the standpoint of their culture. This prompts us to see ourselves in a more profound way than we might ever discover within the confines of our own language-group or neighborhood. We are compelled to see our culture as something which has developed, rather than as a "natural" way of being. We are obliged to judge ideas not as a "natural" way of looking at the world but as something which has been developed in us in a definite, peculiar way. The stone-age tribesman' s incapacity to grasp the idea of "ore" compels us to consider those differences of experience which account for such discrepancies between our more advanced mental powers.
"Ore" is not a practical experience for the tribes-man.The idea of differentiating among kinds of rocks and sands exists for him only in the realms that different qualities of rock are more or less susceptible. to definite methods and procedures for making useful stone-age tools, and so forth. To understand "ore" he must not only know that metal-based cultures are a superior mode of his people's survival, but that such metal objects are obtained through definite social, practices involving a different way of discriminating among rocks and sands. There is nothing intrinsically "ore"-ful in a rock. The perception of such a mineral quality is not the result of a natural biological exchange between the isolated individual' s perceptual apparatus and some rock. To see "ore" in a rock means to see, implicitly, the social-reproductive importance of metals, and to know also the kind of organization of a society' s practice through which metals are extracted from such a rock.
Any skilled worker can demonstrate the same principle to himself. (By skilled worker, we mean a person who has been educated to possess the cultural mental powers to quickly understand the basic features of any aspect of contemporary general productive technology.) To prove that point, we propose to him that he attempt to draft a scheme by which his family would produce all the elements of a modern standard of consumption by its own powers. It is soon proven to him - if he were not already convinced beforehand - that the objects on which his family' s life depends do not simply exist in some individual biological connection to him. They are brought into existence for his consumption through a worldwide, interconnected productive effort demanding production and trade on the scale of a population of billions of workers and farmers.
A point is made by challenging the same worker to show us why he and his household must have a certain quality of diet, certain quality of clothing, a certain kind of housing in a particular location, an automobile, books and other recreational materials, educational facilities for his family' s members, and so forth. He could not prove that he needed anything different than a stone-age savage, unless he could prove that this consumption was necessary to maintain workers' productive contribution to society in connection with a definite advance of technology.
If he examines this matter more extensively, he quickly shows that the connection between his contribution to a certain number of useful objects produced and the object of his consumption is a most profound and important question. Once he recognizes that advances in the quality of household consumption (representing important wage-increases relative to previous consumption), and also reductions in the number of hours worked, are the necessary basis for his family' s power to produce at a higher social efficiency (given advances in the technology of production), he has grasped the most fundamental principles of economics and the basis for the policies of a workers' government.
The valuation of objects, which is the entirety of perception, that is. the judgment of their existence by the individual, is inextricably connected with the social process governing the use and existence of those same objects.
The history of capitalism's influence on formerly stone-age and other backward cultures has proven that the nature of cultural variations in intelligence is social and not biological. The sons of stone-age and other backward tribesmen can do brilliantly at Massachusetts Institute of Technology or England's Cambridge, provided their families have been given the material culture and educational opportunities required. Although it is obviously not so far from capitalism to socialism as from stone-age culture to capitalism, the same principles apply.
The problem of the concept "ore," illustrates the point that the ability to understand more advanced ideas can be analyzed as a matter of definite forms of social practice. If we once conceive of any advanced idea, we tan directly discover how to make such an idea comprehensible to the mass of people, not merely by rewriting dictionaries, but by introducing the kinds of advance in general social practice and institutions which enable people to understand that conception.
This fact directly indicates the general solution to the problem we are considering. It is not necessary that workers directly understand all the advanced conceptions of socialism in order to begin moving toward it. It is sufficient to concentrate on making clear all the conceptions important to the establishment of workers' government. Once that is done, the workers generally can recognize, even from the standpoint of existing social practice, that those forms represent a more advanced form of society. In other words, the general understanding of socialism at this time is sufficiently advanced if we limit the problem of definition for general use to stating those forms of socialist practice of workers' government which we identify as the material basis for the emergence of socialist ideas.
This does not mean that socialist ideas are "merely" a product of those conditions. The direct, immediate notion of socialism involves as distlnct a qualitative leap upward in mental powers as the leap from stone-age idea of rock to the notion of "ore." It is not possible to develop a competent socialist vanguard organization except through the leading role of exceptional individuals who have made that leap. However, being scientists and not magicians. we cannot hope to directly win masses of people to any ideas but those for which the practical circumstances of social life have prepared them.
The prospect for socialism is the inevitability of such an outcome from the successful establishment of workers' and farmers' governments as the form of government existing throughout the world during this and following decade. Since the establishment of this first next step eliminates the possibility of powerful enemy classes to obstruct humanity in acting upon the new ideas which emerge from progress, the establishment of workers' governments throughout the world brings to an end the pre-history of mankind characterized by "class struggles," and begins real human history, in which it is sufficient to foresee the hegemony of new ideas as flowing from experience into deliberate progress on that basis alone.