Communism and its Tactics

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(1882 - 1960)
Estelle Sylvia Pankhurst (born 5 May 1882 in Manchester – died 27 September 1960 in Addis Ababa) was an English campaigner for the suffrage and suffragette movement, a socialist and later a prominent left communist and activist in the cause of anti-fascism and the international auxiliary language movement. She spent much of her later life campaigning on behalf of Ethiopia, where she eventually moved. (From : Wikipedia.org.)

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Communism and its Tactics

From : Marxists.org

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This document contains 13 sections, with 19,893 words or 128,575 characters.

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Workers Dreadnought VOL. VIII. No. 37 Saturday, November 26th, 1921 Under Communism all shall satisfy their material needs without stint or measure from the common storehouse, according to their desires. Everyone will be able to have what he or she desires in food, in clothing, books, music, education and travel facilities. The abundant production now possible, and which invention will constantly facilitate, will remove any need for rationing or limiting of consumption. Every individual, relying on the great common production, will be secure from material want and anxiety. There will be no class distinctions, since these arise from differences in material possessions, education and social status — all such distinctions will be swept away. There will be neither rich nor poor. Money will no longer exist, and none will desire to hoard commodities not in use, since a fresh supply may be obtained at will. There will be no selli... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought, December 3rd 1921 Since the overthrow of capitalism would be resisted by the possessors of wealth, whether this were effected by Act of Parliament or by a sudden revolt of the people, it is absolutely necessary for the Communists to prepare the working class for such resistance. Many people still doubt that capitalist resistance to the overthrow of capitalism will go to the length of civil war, yet there is abundant contemporary evidence to prove that such resistance will be made. Here in Britain we have the Ulster capitalists’ preparations for armed resistance to the Asquith Home Rule Act. The civil war threats and preparations by Ulster Capitalism were and are supported by British Toryism. That is why it succeeds. Since British and Ulster landlords and capitalists have thought it worthwhile to resort to the extreme of civil war on the Irish question how absolutely certain it is that they would do so to prevent the establ... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought December 10 1921 In Russia all this was done, and over vast districts, under the spur of need without preliminary thought or organization. In this country the workers cannot leave things to chance. Capitalism is highly organized here and will defeat the workers’ revolution again and again, unless the workers are organized efficiently. Moreover, in London and in the vast chains of towns which form our industrial districts we are so closely massed on the ground, so absolutely dependent on food brought in from outside, and upon the collective service of the whole industrial community, that unless production and distribution is well organized we must speedily starve. It will go hard with us if we have not created the machinery before the hour of revolution strikes. The machinery of the Soviets must obviously follow, and does so far as it is successful, the lines of need. Each workshop has its meetings and e... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought December 24th 1921 and January 21st 1922 We have seen that the Soviets are destined both to provide the organizational machinery of Communist society and to act as the instrument of the proletarian dictatorship during the transitional period in which, whilst capitalism has been overthrown, the dispossessed owners have not yet settled down to accept the new order. The Soviets may also conduct the fight for the actual overthrow of Capitalism, though in Russia the power was actually seized by the Bolshevik Party; then handed to the Soviets. Let us consider the essential structure of the Soviet, its particular characteristic, wherein lies its special fitness to function as the administrative machinery of the Communist community. The Soviet is constructed along the lines of production and distribution; it replaces not merely Parliament and the present local governing bodies, but also the capitalists, managerial staffs and e... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought January 28th 1922 Zinoviev, at the Second Congress of the Third International in Moscow, introduced a Thesis declaring that no attempt should be made to form Soviets prior to the outbreak of the revolutionary crisis. It was argued that, as such bodies would be powerless, or nearly so, their formation might bring the conception of the Soviets into proletarian contempt. The Thesis was adopted by the Congress, without discussion, and thereby became an axiom of the Third International. The question as to whether the mere borrowed term, Soviet, shall be reserved for use in the actual crisis of revolution is of small importance though, if not used previously, it would probably miss being adopted as the slogan of the revolution. The question of postponing the creation of the actual organization till the hour of a revolutionary crisis is, on the other hand, a fundamental one. The idea expressed and insisted upon in t... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought February 4th 1922 As we have seen, the main purpose of the Soviets is to minister to the needs of the people, in clothing, housing, education, recreation, transport and so on. The workers who are responsible for these services are linked together in their Soviets for the purposes of their work. The Soviet structure is efficient, because it is formed on the lines necessitated by the work; also because it gives every worker a responsible share in the common effort, and thereby encourages the cooperative impulse. Even under Capitalism the merits of the workshop council, which is the germ of the Soviet, have been discovered, not only by the workers, but by the capitalist himself. During the war, when the Shop Stewards’ Movement flourished, employers actually initiated the formation of shop councils and the election of workers’ stewards. The employers did so, not merely to forestall the rebel elements, but rather because,... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought March 11th 1922 The great task of the Communist revolution is ideologic. Communism entails the creation of an altogether new attitude of mind towards all social relationships, and the development of a host of new habits and impulses. In discarding our purse and our financial anxieties and calculations, in removing the dependence of the propertiless upon the propertied, we shall change the entire configuration of life. Communism will create for us a great fraternity, a great trustfulness, arising from a great security, an abundant enthusiasm for productive labor, because such labor will benefit all, and all will share responsibility for it. Communism necessitates the creation of a great initiative, which shall animate the entire people. Under Capitalism the masses are as a flock of sheep driven by their owners. Under Communism, on the contrary, they will be free cooperators, producing, inventing, studying, not under the... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought January 27th 1923 Under Communism all shall satisfy their material needs without stint or measure, from the common storehouse, according to their desires. Everyone will be able to have what he or she desires in food, in clothing, books, music, education and travel facilities. The abundant production now possible, and which invention will constantly facilitate, will remove any need for rationing or limiting of consumption. Every individual, relying on the great common production, will be secure from material want and anxiety. There will be no class distinctions. These arise from differences in material possessions, education and social status. All such differences will be swept away. There will be neither rich nor poor. Money will no longer exist, and none will desire to hoard commodities not in use, since a fresh supply may be obtained at will. There will be no selling, because there will be no buyers, since... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Those who are well to do under the present system are apt to oppose Communism, from conservatism and lack of imagination, and from anxiety lest the disorganizations of the transition period may destroy their present comfort. Some even fear that under Communism the emancipated workers may revenge themselves upon those who were of the employing class in Capitalist society, by degrading them to a subject position; but Communism has no place for subject classes. It has neither economic nor social distinction. It will emancipate the entire humanity. The hard toil of the business man and his manifold anxieties are continually cited as arguments against this or that amelioration of the lot of the workers to-day. Let the exacting toil, the stupendous financial commitments, the ceaseless stupefying anxieties be admitted: Communism will remove all these. It will emancipate the business man from his business: it will free him for useful, care-free work and pleasure, from... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought 10th February 1923 Nationalist struggles, though largely economic and bound up with the might of Empire, which assures to Big Business its control of markets, are less vital to the upholders of Capitalism, than the direct contest for the overthrow of the system itself. When the established order is in danger its beneficiaries arm to protect it; its supporters and opponents come to blows, civil war breaks out, and, for the time being, peace is no more. Is that as it should be? It is as it is. The inevitable must be recognized and prepared for. A determined struggle for supremacy inevitably accompanies the overthrow of Capitalism. Experience shows that the crisis arises suddenly: the old relationship has been growing more and more strained, and suddenly the bonds are snapped and the storm bursts. We do not say that a Parliamentary crisis, could not be the last straw that would precipitate the conflict, but in... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought 24th February 1923 The Soviets. The function of the Workers’ Councils, or Soviets, is to administer and co-ordinate production, transport and distribution. The functional units of the Soviets are the groups of workers of all grades, including those who are doing organizing or managerial work, in the engineering, textile, or boot factory, the dockyard, the mine, the farm, the warehouse, the distributive center, the printery, the laundry, the restaurant, and the domestic workers, whether engaged in the hotel or communal house or the individual dwellings — so long as individual dwellings continue to exist. The Soviet Structure. The generally accepted theoretical structure of the Soviets is as follows : Industrial Co-ordination. The Workshop Council, comprising all the workers in the shop. The Factory Council, comprising delegates from the Workshop Council. (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought 3rd March 1923. Those who have been students at a school of art and craft, which has been fortunate enough to be entrusted with some piece of work destined for actual use, will realize something of what industry will be under Communism. They will remember with pleasure the zealous fervor with which the students threw themselves into the effort, the friendly emulation in efficiency, the general determination to achieve as fine a result as possible in the collective work. Everyone was enthused by the thought that this was no mere exercise, but an object needed and desired. The finest and most difficult parts of the work were done by the teachers and more accomplished students, the easier and more mechanical tasks were willingly performed by those who were least advanced, who, nevertheless, felt that their turn to execute something ambitious would come with the acquisition of further skill. In the tasks set merely for their training, the stude... (From : Marxists.org.)

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Workers Dreadnought 10th March 1923 (Continued from last week.) C. Zinoviev, at the Second Congress of the Third International in Moscow, introduced a Thesis, declaring that no attempt should be made to form Soviets prior to the outbreak of the revolutionary crisis. It was argued that, as such bodies would be powerless, or nearly so, their formation might bring the conception of the Soviets into proletarian contempt. The Thesis was adopted by the Congress, without discussion, and thereby became an axiom of the Third International. This decision was of far-reaching significance: it meant that the Third International would no longer support the formation of Workshop Councils; and the building of an organization upon the foundation of the Workshop Councils, taking in all workers in all industries with the revolutionary purpose of taking over and managing industry. At its inception the Third International had made much of the British Shop Stewards... (From : Marxists.org.)

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March 04, 2021 ; 4:23:34 PM (America/Los_Angeles) :
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