Skip to main content

Full text of "The socialism of to-day; a source-book of the present position and recent development of the socialist and labor parties in all countries"

See other formats








Mrs. J. R. Sackrider 












CoPYRiaHT, I91G 


Pablished May, 1916 







For many years all books about Socialism — whether in 
favor or against it — were concerned mainly with theory. 
About the year 1900, Socialist and Labor parties grew to 
be political factors of importance in several of the great 
nations, developing programs of reform, the sincerity and 
practicality of which were beginning to be tested by experi- 
ence. Then the second stage of Socialist literature set in; 
Socialism was presented, both by Socialists and by anti- 
Socialists, as a movement. 

The time for a third stage is at hand, and it will 
mark a revolution in the treatment of the subject. Even 
when Socialism is regarded as a movement, the diffi- 
culty remains that it must be presented by an individual, 
who is either a Socialist or an anti-Socialist. In either 
case partisanship almost inevitably creeps in, and the 
reader's only recourse is to refer to a number of vol- 
umes before he can be certain he has secured a non- 
partisan and balanced view. The time has arrived when 
the educated public will demand that this great movement 
be discussed in a more rigidly scientific manner — a treat- 
ment that can be secured only by the publication of 
original documents with the minimum of editorial com- 
ment, the selection of such documents being made ex- 
clusively with a view to their importance and without 
regard to their tendency. 

Wel)elieve that tJie present volume is tJie first interna- 
tional and compreliensive source-hook dealing with the 
Socialist movement in any language. The Socialists have 
limited their collection of documents either to single na- 


tions or to the proceedings of the International Socialist 
Congresses. We have utilized all of these sources together 
with many others, such as Socialist speeches in parlia- 
ments, and in this way we have endeavored to cover all the 
important nations, and all the topics that have been in 
the foreground of discussion in recent years. The only 
exception is the relation of the Socialists to war, which is 
covered in a separate companion volume edited by one 
of our editors {The Socialists and the War, by W. E. 
Walling, Henry Holt and Company). We devote an im- 
portant chapter, however, to the Socialist position on mili- 
tarism, without duplicating any of the documents of that 
volume — since we here deal chiefly with the domestic 
aspect of the question. 

We believe the recent development of the world's So- 
cialist and Labor parties has shown that they have enough 
in common to justify their treatment as a more or less 
unified whole. We have made no effort, however, in our 
selection and arrangement of quotations, to suggest agree- 
ment between the various parties or even between the fac- 
tions of the same party. Whether the obvious differences 
at present existing are merely temporary or crucial and 
irreconcilable it remains for history to show. 

The book has been edited with the genuine co-operation 
of a number of persons. Those mentioned as editors have 
done the bulk of the work. Others contributing substan- 
tially were Alice K. Boehme, Joseph L. Cohen, Paul H. 
Douglas, Felix Grendon, Nicholas Kelley, Paul Kennaday, 
Margaret Rambaut, H. D. Sedgwick, John Spargo, Caro 
Lloyd, and Alexander Trachtcnberg. 

The editors and all who co-operated with them are mem- 
bers of an organization of college men and women devoted 
exclusively to promoting the study of Socialism, and they 
were chosen and delegated by this organization to carry 


out the present work. We believe that the Intercollegiate 
Socialist Society has demonstrated, by publications and 
activities extending through ten years, that it is equipped 
to perform such a task efficiently and was to be relied 
upon to execute it in a liberal and non-partisan spirit. 
Although a large part of our membership is composed 
of Socialists, we include the most divergent schools of 
Socialist thought, while a large portion of our members 
are non-Socialists, and some are anti-Socialists interested 
in securing a broad and reliable discussion of the subject. 
Therefore, the present volume, like all the rest of our 
work, is dedicated to all persons who wish to understand 
the Socialist movement as it is — whatever may be their 
personal opinions concerning it. 

The Editors. 




Section I 


I. The Socialists and the New International ... 3 

Historical Sketch — First Congress of Paris, 1889 — 
Resolution on the Eight Hour Day — Congress of Brus- 
sels, 1891 — Congress of Zurich, 1893 — Admission of 
Labor Unions Under Certain Conditions — Political Tac- 
tics — Congress of London, 1896 — Political Tactics — Ex- 
clusion of Anarchists — Second Congress of Paris, 1900 — 
Political Tactics — Question of Coalition Ministries — 
Formation of International Socialist Bureau — Congress 
of Amsterdam, 1904 — Political Tactics — Coalition Min- 
istries — Discussion Between Bebel and Jaures — Vote of 
the International Socialist Movement. 

Section II 

socialism on the continent of eubope 

II. Germany 27 

The Socialist Vote — Relative Strength of Political Par- 
ties — Recent Political Development — Party Membership 
— Strength of Socialism in Advanced Sections — Occupa- 
tions and Religion of Socialist Members of Reichstag — 
Program of Party — Socialist Appeals on First and Sec- 
ond Ballots in 1912 Elections — Private Agreement — Op- 
position Within the Party — Action of 1912 Party Con- 
gress — Kautsky and Bernstein on Meaning of the 
Socialist Victory — The Test Year in the Reichstag — 
Socialist Program in Prussian Elections, May, 1913 — 
Republican Demonstration in the Reichstag, June 3, 1914. 

III. Fbance 57 

Introductory — Electoral Tactics — Resolution on the 
Election of 1914 — Election Manifesto of Socialist Party — 
— Results of Election — Jean Jaur&s on Victory. 



IV. Belgium 70 

Introductory — Socialist Tactics in Election of 1914 — 
Results of Election — Causes of Victory — Manifesto of 
Labor Party — Reorganization of Party. 

V. Italy 76 

Introductory — Declaration of Socialist Party Against 
War in Tripoli — Split in Party — Declaration of Regular 
Party — Declaration of Reformist Socialist Party — Elec- 
toral Tactics in 1913 Elections — Action of Executive 
Committee — Tactics on Second Ballot — Electoral Mani- 
festo — Situation Before the Elections — Results of Elec- 
tion — Comments on Socialist Success — Resolution of 
Parliamentary Group After Election — Resolution upon 
Resignation of Giolitti Ministry — Discussion of Free- 
masonry at 1914 Party Congress — Disobedient Party 
Deputies After the Congress — Disobedient Party Branches 
— Further Effects of Position. 

VI. Russia and Finland 95 

Introductory to Russia — Elections of 1912 — Tactics 
and Composition of Social Democratic Group in Fourth 
Duma — Expulsion of Members and Resignation of 
Milinovsni from Duma — Republican Demonstration in 
Duma — Russian Social Democratic Unity Conference, 
Brussels, 1914 — Constitutional Struggles in Russia — 
The Movement in Finland — Social Democratic Party 
Convention, 1914. 

VII. Holland (and Switzeeland) 108 

Introductory to Holland — Party Congress of 1914 — 
Socialist Party Program — Results of Elections — General 
Political Situation — The Ministerial Crisis and the So- 
cial Democracy — History of Swiss Social Democratic 

VIII. Denmabk, Sweden and Noeway 129 

Introductory to Denmark — Socialist Support of the 
Government — The Constitutional Crisis — General Suf- 
frage — Effect of the War on Suffrage — The Political 
Situation — Introductory to Sweden — Socialists Favor a 
Republic — Swedish Parliamentary Elections of 1914 — 
Election Appeal — Results of Election — The Question of 
the Coalition Ministry — The Party Congress of 1915 — 
The Elections of 191.5 — The General Position of the So- 
cialist Movement in Norway. 



IX. Austria and Hungary 155 

Introductory to Austria — Bauer on Perils of Reform- 
ism — Introduction to the Hungarian Movement — Con- 
gress of Social Democratic Party, 1913 — Political Jug- 
glery in Hungary, 1914. 

X. Spain and Portugal 172 

Introductory to Spain — Iglesias on Situation in Spain 
— Introductory to Portugal — General Political Situation. 

XI. RouMANiA, Bulgaria and Greece 181 

Introductory to Roumania — Socialist Party Political 
and Agrarian Programs, 1910 — Plea for Unity Among 
Bulgarian Socialists — Introductory to Movement in 

Section III 


XII. The Present Status of Socialism in the United 

States 191 

Membership of the Socialist Party by Years — By 
States — Membership in Proportion to Population of 
States — Vote Compared with that of Other Parties — 
Socialist Vote of 1914 — Officers of the Party. 

XIII. The National Program 199 

The Socialist Party Platform— Report of U. S. Con- 
gressman Berger. 

XIV. The State Programs . . 210 

Report of Committee on State Program, Convention of 
1912 — New York State Program, 1914 — Pennsylvania 
State Program, 1912 — Montana State Program, 1912 — 
Oklahoma State Program — Wisconsin State Program, 
1912 — Socialists in Wisconsin Legislature. 

XV. Policy and Tactics 221 

Discussion of the Importance of Political Action, by 
Victor Berger, Charles Edward Russell, William D. Hay- 
wood, Eugene V. Debs — Party Organization — Constitu- 
tion of Socialist Party — Amendment to Constitution 
Regarding the Party Owned Press — Regarding a Change 
in Members' Pledge — Proposed Union of American So- 
cialist Parties — Report of Socialist Party Delegation to 
the International Socialist Congress, Copenhagen, 1910. 



XVI. Canada 235 

History of the Canadian Socialist Party — Socialist 
Party in 1914 — Platform — History of the Social Demo- 
cratic Party — Platform — The Labor Movement in Canada. 

XVII. Central and South America 243 

Address of de Larra of Mexico — Proclamation of So- 
cialist Party on Mexican War — Introductory to Argen- 
tine Republic — The Argentine Party and Nationalism. 

Section IV 

XVIII. The British Independent Labor Party and the 

British Socialist Party 255 

Introductory — Excerpts from Constitution of British 
Labor Party — Growth of Labor Party — Program of Inde- 
pendent Labor Party — Parliamentary Activities — Criti- 
cism and Defense of Labor Party, by Robert Smillie, J. 
Ramsay MacDonald. Philip Snowden — Resolution Against 
British System of Party Legislation — Speech of Mover — 
Speech of F. W. Jowett — The Basis of the Socialist Party 
— The Conference of 1914. 

XIX. The British Labor Party 266 

The British Labor Party in Parliament, 1912 — The 
Party Conference of 1913 — Labor Party in Parliament, 
1914 — Discussion of Party Tactics — Conference of 1910 — 
Labor Party and a Program. 

XX. The Fabian Society and Socialist Lenity . 285 

Introductory to Fabian Society — Basis of the Society 
— The Fabians and Socialist Unity — Annual Conference, 
1914 — Socialist Unity on the Basis of Common Action 
•with Labor Party — Manifesto of International Socialist 
Bureau — The Unity Conference — Discussion of British 
Socialist Party — Declaration of Executive Committee of 
B. S. P. 

XXI. Ireland 299 

The Political Situation in Ireland — Speech by James 

XXII. Australia 309 

Tlie Australian Labor Party — Introductory — Elections 
of 1913 — National Referenda — Federal Elections — Growth 
of the Labor Party Elections, 1913 — Comment in Labor 



Vote in 1914 — The Labor Party in the States — Manifesto 
of the Labor Party Elections, 1913 — Comment in Labor 
Leader, Vorwaerts, Neic Statesman, The Socialist, on 
1913 Elections — Election Manifesto of Australian Labor 
Party, 1914 — Election Campaign of 1914 — Legislative 
Achievements — Future of Labor Party — Report of Aus- 
tralian Socialist Party to International Socialist Con- 
gress of Vienna. 

XXIII. New Zealand 340 

Introductory — From Editorial in New Statesman — 
Foundation of Social Democratic Party — Program of So- 
cial Democratic Party, 1913 — The Election of 1914— Re- 
view and Forecast — Questions for Parliamentary Candi- 
dates Proposed by the Social Democratic Party, 1914 — 
The Labor Representation Committee. 

XXIV. South Africa 354 

Introductory — The Labor Party and the Elections of 


Section V 


XXV. China 357 

Introductory — Interview with Sun Yat Sen. 


I. Socialist Parties and the Labor Unions .... 373 

The International Congress of Stuttgart, 1907 — Congress 
of the French Party, 1907 — Same, 1912 — Discussion in 
the United States — Syndicalism Defined — Convention of 
1912 — Debs on Industrial LTnionism — Spargo, Socialist 
Convention, Haywood, Debs on Sabotage. 

II. The General Strike 389 

The International Socialist Congress of London, 1896 
—Of Amsterdam, 1904— Of Stuttgart, 1907— The Gen- 
eral Strike in Belgium, 1913 — Causes Leading to Strike 
— Special Congress of Labor Party, 1912 — Speech of 
Vandervelde — Preparations for Strike, Congress of 1913 
— Report of Anseele — Speech of Vandervelde — Resolu- 
tion Adopted — Conclusion of Strike, Congress of 1913 — 
Speech of Vandervelde — Discussion of Success of Strike 



— Correspondence in Voricaerts — In New Statesman — 
The Proposed General Strike for Equal Suffrage in 
Prussia — Resolution of the Party Executive — Resolution 
of the Minority — Scheideman Speaking for the Executive 
Committee — Bernstein for the Majority — Rosa Luxem- 
burg for the Minority — Bauer for the Majority — Lieb- 
knecht for the Minoritj' — Statement of Belgian Delegates 
— Scheideman, Closing the Debate — Voricaerts, Editorial 
Summary — The General Strike in Italy, 1914 — The Gen- 
eral Strike in Russia, 1914 — The General Strike in New 
Zealand, 1913. 

III. Compulsory Arbitration of Labor Disputes . . .431 

Discussion at Conference of British Labor Party, 1913 
— Experience of New Zealand — Compulsory Arbitration 
in Australia. 

IV. The Socialist Program of Labor and Social Legisla- 

tion 438 

Program of Copenhagen Congress, 1910 — Resolution at 
British Labor Party Conference, 1913, on the National 
Minimum — Conference of British Labor Party, 1914, the 
Feeding of School Children. 

V. Unemployment 441 

The International Congress of Copenhagen, 1910 — The 
German Congress of 1913 — Official Report to the Pro- 
posed International Congress of Vienna, 1914, by 

VI. The High Cost of Living 446 

The British Labor Party Conference, 1914, State Regu- 
lated Prices — The French Party Congress, 1914 — The 
Webb Report for the Proposed International Congress of 
Vienna, 1914. 

VII. Agriculture 453 

The International Congress of London, 1896 — Official 
Report to the French Party Congress of 1912 by Cora- 
pere-]Morel — The Program Adopted by the Danisli Con- 
gress, 191,3 — Recent Tendencies of Agricultural Concen- 
tration in the United States, by A. j\I. Simons — The 
Agrarian Program in the L'nited States, 1912 — The 
Agrarian Program in Oklahoma, 1912. 

VIII. The Land 469 

The British Labor Party Conference of 1914 — Confer- 
ence of British Independent Labor Party, 1914 — Con- 
ference of British Socialist Party, 1914. 



IX. The Trusts 475 

The International Socialist Congress of Paris, 1900 — 
Of Amsterdam, 1904. 


The Socialist Group in the German Reichstag, 1913 — 
The British Labor Party Conference, 191.3 — The Report 
on Currency to the National Committee of the Socialist 
Party of the United States, 1914. 

XI. Import Duties 481 

The Italian Congress of 1914 — The American Conven- 
tion of 1912. 

XII. Taxation 4S5 

The German Congress of 1913 — Article by Wendel — 
Report by Wurm — Resolution of Congress. 

XIII. Immigration and the Race Problem .... 495 

The International Congress of Stuttgart, 1907 — The 
American Congress of 1910, Asiatic Immigration — Con- 
gress of 1912, Same — Resolution on the Dillingham Bill 
— The American National Committee, 1913 — Debs on the 
Japanese Question — The American Party and the Negro, 
Resolutions of 1901 — The Australian Labor Party, 1914 
The Australian Workers' Union, 1914 — The South African 
Labor Party, 1913. 

XIV. Militarism 509 

The French Congress of 1912 — Jaur&s on Militarism in 

the Chamber of Deputies, 1913 — The Italian Congress 
of 1914 — The American Party Congress of 1912 — Con- 
scription and the Australian Labor Party, from the 
Daily Citizen (London), the International Socialist Re- 
view, the A^ew5 Statesman (London). 

XV. Proportional Representation 523 

The American Congress of 1912 — The Conference of 
the British Labor Party, 1914. 

XVI. Municipal Socialism 532 

The International Congress of Paris, 1900 — The Berlin 
Municipal Election of 1913 — The French Party Municipal 
Program, 1912, on Political, Economic, Financial, Educa- 
tional, Charitable, Health and Housing Reforms — Co- 
operation with Other Parties in Municipal Elections, Dis- 
cussion at Italian Congress, 1914 — Resolution Adopted — 
Criticism by Oda Olberg — The Municipal Program — The 



Italian Municipal Elections of 1914 — General Results — 
Victories at Naples and Ancona — The General Strike and 
Municipal Elections — The Municipal Program in the 
United States — Discussion of the Commission Form of 
City Government at the Convention of 1912 — A Suggested 
Model City Charter — A Suggested Municipal Program — 
Municipal Platform of New York City, 1913 — Socialist 
Administration in Berkeley — Socialist Administration in 
Butte — Message of Mayor Lunn of Schenectady — Social- 
ist Municipal Platform in Schenectady — Message of 
Mayor Seidel of Milwaukee — Accomplishments in ^lil- 
waukee — Socialist Municipal Platform — Municipal Taxa- 
tion, from British Fabian Tract by Sidney Webb. 


International Congress of Copenhagen. 1910 — American 
Socialist Convention of 1912 — The Majority Report 
Adopted by the Convention — The ilinority Report — 
Speech of W. R. Gaylord, Favoring the Report. 

XVIII. The Drixk Question 586 

Report to the Proposed International Socialist Congress 

of Vienna, 1914, by Vandervelde — The French Congress 
of 1914 — The American Congress of 1912. 

XIX. Woman Suffrage 594 

The International Congress of Stuttgart, 1907 — The 
Conference of the British Labor Party, 1913 — Congress- 
man Berger's Resolution, U. S., 1912. 

XX. Education 602 

The Struggle of the Belgian Socialists for non-Sec- 
tarian Education — Manifesto of the General Council of 
the Labor Party Against the Sectarian School Law — 
Declaration of the Socialist Group in tlie Senate After 
the Passage of the Law — Report on Industrial Educa- 
tion, American Party Convention, 1912. 


Pbepabedness 609 

Index 633 






"On one of the last days of November, 1847, a handful 
of political refugees, mostly Germans, met in an obscure 
clubroom in East London to hear the report of two of 
their associates who had undertaken to prepare a state- 
ment of principles to be issued in the name of their organ- 
ization, the Communist League. It was a most unusual 
document, that Communist Manifesto, to which they lis- 
tened in rapt attention — a searching analysis of modern 
society in the light of historical and economic science; a 
challenge to all established powers, a ringing battle-cry, 
a comprehensive program, and all within the space, say, 
of eight pages of this [the Metropolitmi] magazine. At 
the closing words — 'Workingmen of all countries, unite! 
You have nothing to lose but your chains; you have a 
world to gain ! ' — the little gathering voted enthusiastic ap- 
proval and resolved to give this declaration the widest 
publicity their scanty means would permit. They felt that, 

* This brief statement of the origin of the Socialist movement, by Al- 
gernon Lee, one of the best known of American Socialist writers, ap- 
peared in the Metropolitan Magazine for July, 1914. 



though the words were the words of Karl Marx and Fred- 
erick Engels, the real author was the working-class itself, 
then just beginning to wake to a consciousness of its 
wrongs, its rights, and its power. . . . 

"The Socialist movement, which was born that Novem- 
ber day, grew very slowly at first. The International 
Workingmen's Association did not come into being till 
1864. Twelve years later it was dissolved, and its enemies 
joyfully announced that 'Socialism is dead.' Their re- 
joicing was premature. The preceding year, 1875, had 
seen the foundation of the Social Democratic Party in 
Germany, in several other countries Socialist parties were 
taking form, and it soon became evident that the move- 
ment was actually stronger than ever before. No national 
frontiers could confine it, no racial antipathies could with- 
stand the force with which it fused the working-people 
into one brotherhood. Wherever the railway and the fac- 
tory made their appearance, wherever peasants and handi- 
craftsmen were being transformed into industrial wage- 
workers, there Socialism sprang up, with Trade-Unionism 
by its side. . . . 

"In 1889 the first of a new series of International So- 
cialist Congresses was held at Paris, and similar gatherings 
have since taken place at intervals of two to four years. 
The ninth was the special congress which met at Basel in 
November, 1912, to concert measures for preventing the 
Balkan conflict from embroiling the great nations in a 
general war. . . . 

"The new International is not a centralized body. The 
party in each country enjoys full autonomy, but all are 
kept in mutual touch through the permanent Interna- 
tional Socialist Bureau, which has its office in Brussels; 
and all send delegates to the congresses, where questions 
of principle and policy are discussed with the utmost 


freedom, sometimes so sharply that outside observers think 
the movement is sure to split in twain. . . . 

**In every country the nucleus of the movement is an 
organized party whose members pay monthly dues and 
which carries on a many-sided and year-round campaign 
by means of lectures, study classes, mass meetings, street- 
corner speeches, sale of newspapers, magazines, books and 
pamphlets, distribution of leaflets, and other activities. 
Germany has, of course, the largest party, with more than 
a million members; the United States already has over 
one hundred thousand. . . . 

"Ten years ago the voting strength of Socialism 
throughout the world was between five and six millions. 
To-day, on the most moderate computation, it exceeds 
eleven millions. Taking into account the limitation of 
the suffrage in various countries, it is safe to say that the 
number of its avowed adherents is three or four times 
greater than that shown at the polls — say ten per cent of 
the adult population of the civilized world." 

The following review of the first seven International 
Congresses — from that of Paris in 1889 to that of Stutt- 
gart in 1907 — is taken from the account of Jean Longuet, 
grandson of Karl Marx, and one of the secretaries of the 
French Socialist Party, in the volume entitled Le Mouve- 
ment Socialiste Internationale of the series called the En- 
cyclopedic Socialiste, edited by Compere-Morel. The ac- 
count of the Copenhagen Congress (1910) is taken from 
the report of the American Socialist delegation. The re- 
ports to the proposed Vienna Congress of 1914 are from 
the summaries of the Socialist press. 

All important Socialist discussions and resolutions relat- 
ing directly to war are to be found in William English 
Walling 's volume. Socialists and the War. Thus the 


special congress of Basel (1913), the discussion of meas- 
ures to be taken in case of war at the congresses of 1891, 
1893, 1900, 1907, and 1910, the discussion of colonialism 
in 1910, and the report on imperialism for the proposed 
congress of Vienna (1914) are omitted from this volume 
and presented in the other. 


(From Longuet) 

"The first congress of the new International Socialist 
movement was held at Paris on the one-hundredth anni- 
versary of the taking of the Bastile, July 14, 1889. Be- 
sides 221 French delegates, it included an imposing dele- 
gation from beyond the Rhine. Our German comrades 
were then in the midst of the full tide of Bismarckian 
reaction and the regime of the anti-Socialist law — under 
which the entire Socialist press was suppressed, and mili- 
tants filled the imperial prisons. But their superb organ- 
ization came out victorious from all these trials, and they 
sent 81 delegates. In their name, the old soldier of the 
revolution, William Liebknecht, said: 'Laboring Germany 
and laboring France are uniting at this moment. This is 
not a congress of ideologists; we are contracting an alli- 
ance which will have its effect in the entire world.' 

"In the German delegation, besides Liebknecht, were 
Bebel, Bernstein, Molkenbuhr, Vollmar, Clara Zetkin, and 
the majority of the Socialist members of the Reichstag. 

"England had 22 delegates, among whom were J. Keir 
Hardie, John Burns, Eleanor Marx (youngest daughter 
of Karl Marx), and Cunningham Graham. 

"Belgium had 14 delegates, including Anseele, Cesar 
de Paepe, Jean Volders, Defuisseaux; Austria had 8, one 
of whom was Victor Adler ; Spain sent 2, one being Pablo 


Inglesias; Holland sent 4, including Domela Nieuwenhuis 
and van Vliegen ; Italy 5, including Andrea Costa and A. 
Cipriani; Russia 6, among whom were Pierre Lavroff and 
Georges Plechhanoff. There were also at the Congress 
3 Swedish comrades, 1 Bulgarian, 5 Roumanians, 5 Amer- 
icans, 3 Norwegians, 3 Danes, 1 Portuguese, 1 Bohemian, 
5 Poles, including L. Winiarsky, 3 Hungarians, including 
the former minister of labor of the Commune, Leo 

"Never before had there been so representative an as- 
sembly of the proletariat of all countries. Never had the 
International appeared more alive, more vigorous, than in 
arising from the tomb in which the reaction following the 
Paris Commune of 1871 had seemingly buried it. 

''French Socialism at this time was marred by deep 
internal discord. The groups of the 'Possibilist' Labor 
Party, together with the Parisian labor unions, quar- 
reled with the groups of the Labor Party of Guesde, the 
central revolutionary committee, and the national federa- 
tion of unions, over the right of representing France at 
the Congress. 

"The Germans tried to arrange a preliminary confer- 
ence so as to elect a common organizing committee for 
the Congress. The 'possibilists' refused to participate in 
it or to meet with the other French groups. The latter, 
therefore, in conjunction with the delegates from the Eng- 
lish Social Democratic Federation, and certain English 
trade-unionists, organized separately. The Belgian, Ital- 
ian, and Dutch delegates participated in both assemblies. 
Thus two congresses developed and continued to meet 
separately. Fusion was not effected." 



(From Longuet) 

"This Congress brought about the union of the elements 
represented in the two separate congresses of Paris. For 
the first time since 1882, they deliberated together — 
though only for a few days — the antagonistic factions in 
the French section still needing many years for the real- 
ization of complete unity. Besides the resolution on war 
[which is included in Socialists and tlie 'War'\ this Con- 
gress concerned itself with defining the Socialist attitude to- 
wards social reform and labor legislation. The Congress 
'placed itself on the ground of the class struggle, in the 
conviction that there can be no possibility of the emancipa- 
tion of the working-class as long as there are ruling 
classes.' This resolution was voted unanimously. The 
eloquent young leader of the Belgian Socialists, Emile 
Vandervelde, celebrated the occurrence in these terms: 
'For the first time revolutionary Socialists and Trade- 
Unionists have found themselves in agreement in proclaim- 
ing the necessity of the class struggle. There is a new 
fact without precedent; the Socialists of the entire world 
are united, according to the words of Karl Marx: "Pro- 
letariat of the world, unite." ' " 

For a further account of this Congress see Part II, Chapter IV, 
"Labor Legislation." 

(From Longuet) 

"This Congress concerned itself chiefly with considera- 
tion of the general strike as a means of preventing war 
and 'parliamentarism.' 

"The admission of the 'anarchists' to the Congress had 


first to be considered. [By ' anarchists, ' Longuet here means 
those revolutionists who, while seeking a socialistic order 
of society, yet oppose political action as a means for at- 
taining it, or who favor political action in elections only 
as a means of agitation, but without reliance upon par- 
liamentary action]. This question was complicated by 
certain German anti-parliamentarists ('Independents' 
and 'Young Socialists,') who had withdrawn from the In- 
ternational after the Congress of Erfurt, 1891, and who 
were claiming admission to the Zurich Congress. The 
debate was violent and absorbed the first two days' ses- 
sion. After a vigorous speech by Bebel, 'who defined 
political action as the utilization by the proletariat of 
political rights and legislation for the conquest of po- 
litical power,' and who asked 'why they were going to lose 
three days in discussing with people that it would be 
necessary to put out at the end of the third day,' the 
Congress adopted by vote of 16 nationalities against 2 
(Spain and France) the resolution which has become 
famous under the name of the Resolution of Zurich. 

"One of its leading principles was as follows: 'All labor 
unions, as well as those parties and Socialist organizations 
which recognize the necessity of working-class organiza- 
tion and of political action, are to be admitted to the 
Congress. ' 

"The Congress adopted Bebel's definition of political 
action as given above, and the anti-parliamentary factions 
were excluded. 

"The proposal of an international general strike against 
war was brought up by the Dutch, but the immense ma- 
jority voted against it. They also asked that the Con- 
gress should recommend to the labor parties of all coun- 
tries to ' make use of the elections solely as a means of 
agitation,' and to 'forbid the elected representatives of 


the proletariat from taking part in the labor of Parlia- 
ment. ' 

"Liebknecht forcefully refuted this conception. Tac- 
tics are a matter of an essentially practical nature : There 
is no such thing as revolutionary or reactionary tactics. 
Only the aim is revolutionary. Tactics vary from one 
epoch to another, from one country to another. If Ger- 
many was to-day in the situation of Eussia, the German 
Socialists would employ no other tactics than those of 
the Russian terrorists. . . . Like tactics, political power 
is itself neither reactionary nor revolutionary. What it 
is depends upon those who exercise it. It is only an instru- 
ment which does whatever the party that manipulates it 
wishes. . . . 'Let us believe in acts, rather than in words,' 
he declared. 'If the proletariat wishes to emancipate 
itself from the capitalist yoke, it must first emancipate 
itself from the yoke of the revolutionary phrase.' " The 
following resolution was passed: 

" 1. It is necessary that the workers of all countries should 
organize nationally and internationally into labor unions and 
other organizations for struggling against their exploiters; 

" 2. Political action is necessai-y not only from the point of 
view of agitation and of the affirmation of Socialist principles as 
a whole, but also from the point of view of the realization of 
reforms of immediate interest. Consequently we recommend to 
the workers of all countries to conquer political rights, and to 
make use of them in all legislative and administrative boards, 
for the purpose of realizing the demands of the proletariat, and 
to gain possession of political power which is to-day only an 
instrument of capitalist domination in order to transform it into 
a means of the emancipation of the proletariat; 

"3. The form of political and economic struggle must be de- 
termined according to circumstances by the various nationalities. 
But in all cases the revolutionary aim of the Socialist move- 
ment must be made fundamental. Namely the complete trans- 
formation of present society from the economic, moral, and po- 
litical points of view. (Our italics.) 


" In no case can political action be used for compromise or for 
alliances, which would contradict the principles and the inde- 
pendence of Socialist parties." 

This resolution was adopted by all the nationalities, 
except Holland. It was supplemented by an amendment 
in favor of the initiative, referendum, and proportional 


(From Longuet) 

"'The battle between the parliamentarians and the anti- 
parliamentarians was renewed with vigor. Divisions 
among the French delegates added to the intensity of the 
conflict. Under the leadership of Pernand Pelloutier, 
secretary of the Federation of Labor Exchanges, 'syndi- 
calists' sought admission to the Congress as representa- 
tives of the labor exchanges. They were supported by 
the 'Allemanistes' and 'Blanquists.' A majority of the 
French section endeavored to secure repudiation by the 
Congress of the Zurich resolution of 1893, but the Con- 
gress reaffirmed this resolution by vote of 17 nationalities 
against 2 (France and Holland), and declared: 

^' 1. The Congress means by political action all forms of organ- 
ized struggle for the conquest of political power, and its use in 
the legislative, and administration of state and municipality by 
the working-class for the purpose of its emancipation. 

" 2. The Congress declares that the conquest of political power 
is the best means by which the woi'kers may achieve their emanci- 
pation, the freedom of the man and the citizen, the best means 
by which they can establish the Socialist Republic. 

" It appeals to the workers of all countries to unite in a party, 
separate from all bourgeois political parties, and to demand 
adult suffrage, the second ballot, and the initiative and refer- 
endum, nationally and locally. 

" 3. The Congress declares also that the emancipation of 


woman is inseparable from that of the worker, and appeals to 
the women of all countries to organize politically with the workers. 

"The adoption by the Congress of the following motion 
of Wilhelm Liebknecht established a precedent which has 
effected the exclusion of anarchist factions from all fur- 
ther congresses of the International: 

" The executive of the Congress is instructed to issue an invita- 
tion to the next congress, exclusively to the following: 

" 1, The representatives of groups which aim at the substitu- 
tion of Socialist property and production for capitalist property 
and production, and which consider legislative and parliamentary 
action as one of the means necessary to attain this end. 

" 2. To organizations of a labor union character which, though 
undertaking no aggressive politics, acknowledge the necessity of 
legislative and pai-liamentary action. As a consequence, the 
anarchists are excluded." (Our italics.) 

(See also Part II, Chapter II, " The General Strike.") 


(From Longuet) 
"This Congress was held under very unfavorable con- 
ditions. The 'ministerial question' was raging, the So- 
cialist Millerand having accepted a portfolio in the French 
Cabinet without the consent of the French Socialists. Vio- 
lent controversy had arisen with regard to his conduct 
and the precedent involved. This controversy was taken 
to the Congress for adjudication. After a vigorous po- 
litical debate in which Ferri, Kautsky, Auer, Guesde, 
Jaures, Vandervelde, and others took part, a finely shaded 
motion, edited by Karl Kautsky, the great theorist of the 
German movement, was adopted, as follows : 

" The proletariat in a modern democratic state cannot obtain 
political power accidentally. It can do so only when the long 
and difficult work of political and economic organization of the 


proletariat is at an end, when its physical and moral regeneration 
has been accomplished, and when more and more seats have 
been won in municipal and other legislative bodies. 

" But where the government is centralized, political power can- 
not be obtained step by step. If an individual Socialist becomes 
a cabinet minister, that cannot be regarded as a normal com- 
mencement of the seizure of political power by the proletariat. 
It must be looked upon only as a temporary makeshift. 

" Whether in any particular set of circumstances such a make- 
shift ought to be adopted is a question not of principles but of 
tactics, on which the Congress can make no decision. But in any 
case this dangerous experiment can be of use only if it is agreed 
upon by the party as a whole, and on the understanding that the 
Socialist minister is, and remains, the representative of this party. 
(Our italics.) 

" Where the Socialist minister becomes independent of his party, 
where he ceases to be its representative, his entry into the Cabinet 
becomes a means of weakening rather than of strengthening the 
proletariat; it tends, not to bring nearer the time when the pro- 
letariat shall have political power in its own hands, but rather 
to postpone it. 

"Plechanoff proposed the following amendment, which 
was also adopted : 

" The Congress lays it down that a Socialist is bound to resign 
from a bourgeois cabinet if the organized party declares that 
the Cabinet has in any way acted unfairly in the economic 
struggle between Capital and Labor. 

' ' This resolution was adopted by the votes of 24 nations 
to 9 (each 'nation' had two votes). The opposition was 
made up of the 2 votes of Bulgaria and Ireland and 1 
each of Poland, Russia, Italy, the United States, and, of 
course, France. 

"On the question of alliances with other parties, the 
Congress declared: 

" The class struggle forbids every kind of alliance with any 
faction whatever of the capitalist class, unless exceptional cir- 


cumstanees may make coalitions necessary in some places — that 
is, without any confusion of program or tactics — coalitions which 
the party must reduce to the minimum until their complete 
elimination; they cannot be tolerated except in so far as their 
necessity is recos^nized by the district or national organization to 
which the groups which compose them [i.e. which enter them] 

This Congress also laid the foundation for the first 
permanent organization, to continue the work of the Inter- 
national Congresses. This resulted in the formation of 
the International Socialist Bureau. The bureau is com- 
posed of permanent delegates from each country, called 
"international secretaries" — the larger countries naming 
two each, the smaller countries one. It held one or more 
sessions every year from 1904 to 1914 inclusive. In the 
meanwhile it was represented by an executive committee, 
composed of Belgian Socialists, with its headquarters at 
the Maison du Peuple at Brussels. From its organization 
up to the present time Emile Vandervelde has been the 
chairman of this committee and Camille Huysmans has 
been its secretary. 


(From Official Report) 
At this Congress, as at the Congress of Paris, the chief 
subject of discussion was whether or not Socialists should 
be allowed to form a part of progressive capitalistic gov- 
ernments in coalition with non-Socialist parties. Mil- 
lerand's participation in the recent Waldeck-Rousseau 
ministry still occasioned acrimonious controversy. The 
French Socialists were at this time divided into two en- 
tirely separate parties: one, headed by Jaures, indorsed 
Millerand's action; the other, headed by Guesde, opposed 


it. As the Socialists of the South German countries, 
Bavaria, Wiirtemberg, and Baden, had shown by recent 
action that they were in substantial agreement with 
Jaures — at least to the extent of voting in favor of the 
budgets of existing governments, under certain circum- 
stances — the matter had been taken up by the German 
Party at their recent congress at Dresden, where a resolu- 
tion had been passed by a majority of 288 to 11 votes, 
condemning the Jaures "revisionist" position. This same 
resolution was presented to the Amsterdam Congress, and 
adopted by a vote of 25 to 5 (12 not voting). It was 
known as the Dresden resolution, and was as follows: 

The Congress expresses its entire disapproval of the revisionist 
policy — that is, of the attempt to change our well-tried and suc- 
cessful policy of the class war by giving up all efforts to seize 
the political power out of the hands of our opponents and replace 
such tactics by compromising with them. 

The result of the revisionist tactics would be that the party 
which is striving for the speediest replacement of the existing 
system by one on Socialist lines, the party which, therefore, in 
the best sense of the term is revolutionary, would become merely 
one for amending existing society. 

And, therefore, the Congress holds, in disagreement with the 
revisionists, that class opposition cannot be smoothed over, but 
that, on the contrary, it becomes constantly greater, and it de- 
clares : 

1. That the party declines all responsibility for the political 
and economic conditions which arise out of the capitalist system 
of production, and accordingly refuses to support any action 
which tends to keep the existing ruling class in power. 

2. That in accordance with the resolution of Kautsky at the 
International Socialist Congress in Paris in the year 1900, Social 
Democracy cannot exercise supreme power in society as at present 

The Congress further disapproves of any attempt to make light 
of class differences in order to smooth the way for union with 
the non-Socialist parties. 

The Congress looks to the Social Democratic parties to use 


the influence which an increased membership and an increased 
number of votes gives them, to continue to spread information 
as to what is the aspiration of Social Democracy, and in accord- 
ance with the principles of our program, to push forward with 
all their might the interests of the working-classes, to extend 
and to safeguard political freedom and equal rights everywhere, 
to oppose even more energetically than before the spirit of mili- 
tarism, whether on land or on water, to oppose all colonial and 
imperial policy, and all injustice, oppression, and exploitation 
in every form, and finally to extend social legislation in every 
direction and to make it possible for the working-classes to fulfill 
their destiny in the political and the general life of the age. 
(Our italics.) 

Kautsky's resolution with Plechanoff's amendment, as 
adopted by the Paris Congress of 1900, was reaffirmed. 

The discussion at this Congress was of such exceptional 
importance that we quote the very significant speeches of 
Bebel and Jaures on the two sides of the question at issue, 
the fundamental question of Socialist politics. 

The speech of Jean Jaures was, in part, as follows : 

We demand that we [the International Congress] take account 
of the Socialist, revolutionary, republican proletariat who have 
opposed those of the other Socialist faction in France who 
declared that the republic, and the secularization of the schools 
were not worth an hour's time of the proletariat, and ought to 
be sacrificed for the hope of the automatic installation of a col- 
lectivist regime through the play of blind forces. It is we who 
will demand an account of Vaillant for his denial of the secular, 
revolutionary, republican traditions of the Blanquists. (Ap- 

It is not the situation in France that disturbs me. I thor- 
oughly recognize that impliedly or explicitly the Dresden resolu- 
tion recognizes the double necessity of an immediate and of a 
revolutionary Socialist action. It is right in saying that Social- 
ism must be carried on by a class organization, independent in 
its end and actions and devoted to the complete transformation 
of the capitalist system with the object of abolishing all ex- 
ploitation and restoring to the collective workers all the fruits 


of their labor. All our reforms have for their revolutionary 
object the emancipation of oppressed and exploited labor. (Ap- 
plause.) But you must recognize that Socialism must make its 
appeal to all the forces of democracy if it is to accomplish im- 
mediate reforms. We must not cease to gi-asp and to utilize 
democratic evolution to further proletarian evolution whenever 
it has need of such assistance. 

I have heard Guesde [leader of the French Socialist faction 
opposed to Jaures] at a previous meeting, where we have spoken 
together in Socialist propaganda, declare that out of thirty-seven 
million citizens, not more than two hundred thousand individuals 
had purely capitalist class interests. I have heard Bebel say 
the same thing. It Avould be foolish to leave this half -developed 
democracy to itself. This is why it is necessary that the pro- 
letariat with its close organization must make use of all democ- 
racy. The " Socialistic Radical " Party of France is neither 
proletarian nor capitalist, counting among its members the 
artisans of the small industries and the country workers. This 
party will accept partial reforms such as secularization, pro- 
gressive income tax, inheritance tax, and the progressive social- 
ization of mines, insurance, sugar factories, and all monopolistic 
industries. We do not need to merge ourselves with them, but 
we would be fools and criminals to reject their co-operation if 
we may thereby realize possible reforms which would hasten the 
coming of the new era. (Applause.) 

That which leads me to vote against the Dresden resolution 
is that it appears to me to be an attempt to set forth as a 
supreme formula of Socialism what is really but a Socialist 
tradition. To Bebel, Fern, and Kautsky I will say that it is 
a singular method of establishing Socialist unity in France to 
place a weapon in the hands of one of the factions to be used 
against the other. Above all else, I am opposed to the Dresden 
resolution because it implies a sort of deep distrust of the pro- 
letariat. Its authors seem to fear that the proletariat will com- 
promise itself and lose itself through its collaboration with 
democracy. The International Socialism which would renovate 
the entire world and free it from capitalism speaks to the pro- 
letariat which it expects to accomplish this as if it were an 
incompetent minor incapable of directing itself, — a blind man in 
a strange city. It is as a protest against this position that we- 
oppose the Dresden resolution. It is because it would seek to- 


limit the diverse activity of the proletariat by narrow rules and 
bind and injure the working-class where it has the need of the 
greatest liberty of initiation and activity. 

The more mature and stronger the proletariat is in any coun- 
try the more decisively does it move toward our tactics. Wherever 
freedom of movement and action rules, there new problems arise. 
So it is in Italy, where the bourgeois democracy is ready to take 
new forward steps if Socialism does not neglect to fulfill its 
political role. In England labor organizations are beginning to 
come to Socialism. Bebel says that it was the reforms of the 
English bourgeoisie which prevented the adherence of the pro- 
letariat [there] to class-conscious Socialism. I think, on the 
contrary, that class-conscious Socialism has not in its beginning 
had a sufficiently close contact Avith labor organizations. It was 
a misfortune that the Socialist parties were not closely united 
to the ti'ade-unions at the beginning and that they were so 
dominated by revolutionary catastrophic theories. Because they 
stood waiting for a catastrophic revolution the English Socialists 
have not been able to become a part of the gi-eat labor movement. 
The bond between the proletariat and Socialism is just now grow- 
ing, but this is because of Socialist political activity in social 
reforms. In Belgium it is possible to overthrow the Clerical Party 
within two years if the Liberals and Socialists unite. . . . 

When the German Socialists brought this resolution before the 
International Congress they labored under a fatal illusion because 
they thought that their national rule might be made to serve as 
a uniform international regulation adaptable to the internal sit- 
uation of every country. ... In seeking to force their Dresden 
resolution upon us they but communicate to the International 
Congress the spirit of uncertainty and of hesitation with which 
they are stricken. You have given to International Socialism a 
method of action and of systematic organization. You are a 
great party, and to you belongs the future of Germany. . . . 
But there is a great contrast between the appearance and the 
reality of your great force in spite of your electoral success. It 
is apparent to the eyes of all that this formidable electoral force 
of yours, valuable as it may be for propaganda, has little effect 
because you refuse to utilize democratic instruments which are 
necessary to Jiive it effect. The Dresden resolution will impose 
upon the whole international movement the rules of inaction and 
necessity of inaction which it has imposed upon the German 


movement, which have taken the instruments for transformation 
from the German pi-oletariat. . . . They have not conquered uni- 
versal suffrage and democracy, they have received it from above, 
and to-day those who gave it threaten to withdraw it. And so 
it is that you in your " red kingdom " of Saxony may find your 
universal suffrage taken away from you without a possibility 
of resistance. . . . You have no revolutionary tradition. You 
are the only country in the world where Socialism will not be 
enacted when it secures a majority. You have no true parlia- 
mentary regime, for your parliament is, after all, but a play- 
thing in the hands of more powerful forces. You are, therefore, 
neither parliamentary nor revolutionary Socialists. To be sure, 
you are large and strong; you have your destiny. Humanity 
vraited upon your Congress at Dresden. At least Voricaerts has 
proclaimed that the kingdom was yours after the election and 
that you would convoke the International at Berlin, but the fact 
is that you are powerless. (Applause.) You have blindly groped 
hither and thither and concealed your powerlessness of action by 
taking refuge in theoretical formulas that conceal the political 
aim. (Applause.) And now you would seek to bind the Inter- 
national with all its forces, all its powers, and make it share 
your temporai-y powerlessness, your momentary inactivity. 

Where then does your movement encounter opposition? In 
France, Belgium, England, Switzerland, those countries where 
democratic life is most intense and most effective, and it is just 
th*s fact which proves that your Dresden resolution is a menace 
to the International. 

August Bebel replied, in part, as follows: 

The speech which Comrade Jaures has made to-day would give 
you the wholly false impression that we German Social Dem- 
ocrats had called forth this debate. Neither before nor since the 
Dresden Congress have we thought of such a thing for a moment. 
It is due much more to a fraction of the French comi-ades who 
believe that our Dresden resolution should be adopted as the 
foundation of the tactics of the Social Democrats in all par- 
liamentary ruled countries. . . . The causes that had led us to 
adopt it in Germany have appeared in a large number of other 
countries. . . . Events since the Paris Congress of 1900 have 
shown that, in spite of the unanimous adoption of the Kautsky 
resolution, these tendencies, these practices have continued to 


advance and in many countries have secured an important influ- 
ence. Therefore, it is doubly desirable to pass judgment on these 
tendencies. ... 

Jaures says [the Dresden resolution] belongs only to mon- 
archical Germany. To be sure, Germany is not only one mon- 
archy, it is almost two dozen monarchies. . . . It is a reactionary, 
feudalistic, police dominated land — one of the worst-ruled coun- 
tries in Europe. We know this who have to fight this system 
day after day and who bear the traces of its workings upon our 
bodies. We do not need anyone from other countries to tell us in 
what miserable conditions we are. But the facts are such that 
our resolution may perhaps give the correct tactics to be fol- 
lowed in other countries. 

My opinions on monarchy and republic have been frequently 
given in no unmistakable manner in the bourgeois press. ... It 
goes without saying that we are republicans, SociaUst republicans, 
. . . but we do not rush after the bourgeois republic. However 
much we may envy you French on account of your republic, and 
however much we may wish it, we do not think it is worth while 
to let our heads be cracked for it. (Thunderous applause.) 
Whether bourgeois monarchy or bourgeois republic, both are class 
states, . . . supporters of the capitalist social order. . . . 

Monarchy is not so bad as you paint it, nor the republic so 
good. Even in our military, agrarian, police Germany we have 
institutions which would be ideal in comparison with those of 
your bourgeois republic. Look at the tax legislation in Prussia 
and other individual states and then look at France. I know of 
no other country in Europe that has so oppressive, reactionary, 
exploiting a system of taxation as France. In opposition to this 
exhausting system with a budget of three and a half billion 
francs, we at least have a progressive income and property tax. 

And so far as concerns the improvement of the laboring-class, 
the bourgeois repi;blic also utilizes all its forces asrainst the 
laborer. Where are the laborers used with a more universal and 
oppressive brutality than in the great bourgeois republic on the 
other side of the ocean, the ideal of so many of you "? In Switzer- 
land also, a far more democratic republic than even France, sis 
times in this last short summer the militia has been used against 
the laborers who sought to make use of the richt of coalition and 
union through their small strikes. I em^ you and your republic, 
especially on account of the universal suffrage for all repre- 


sentative bodies. But I tell you frankly that if we had the 
suffrage in the same degree and with the same freedom as you, 
we would have shown you something wholly different (tremendous 
applause) from what you have yet shown us. . . . 

What is your militia to-day other than a most acceptable instru- 
ment for the maintenance of class dominion? There has been 
no great battle in the last four years, either at Lille, Roubaix, 
Marseilles, Brest, Llartinique, or more recently in Normandy, 
against the striking workers in which the Waldeck-Rousseau- 
Millerand ministry and the Combes ministry have not used the 
military against the laborers. In November the Paris police broke 
into the Parisian labor headquarters in the most shamefully 
violent manner and wounded and clubbed 70 laborers, and then 
some of our Socialist friends in the Chamber refused to vote 
for the punishment of the chief of police. (Hisses.) Jaures 
has delivered a lecture to us about what we should do. I will only 
tell him that if in Germany anyone had thought, for the sake of 
favoring the Government, of supporting an order of the day 
which surrendered the most important interest of the proletariat, 
he would find himself on the next day without any vote (tre- 
mendous applause), he would not remain a representative of the 
people another hour. We are too well disciplined for that. 

Jaures said that the Dresden resolution betrayed a spirit of 
uncertainty and doubt. I am greatly astonished that so widely 
cultured and historically correct a man as Comrade Jaures should 
make such a statement concerning the Dresden resolution and the 
German Social Democracy. With the exception of Turkey and 
Russia we Germans have the worst-ruled government in Europe. 
But, in spite of that, by means of the universal suffrage in the 
Reichstag and the corrupted suffrage for the individual states, 
we have sent a great number of representatives to the legislative 
bodies of Germany. Have these representatives ever rejected 
any reform, ever refused to support an advance*? Just the con- 
trary. If we have secured the least little bit of political and 
social advance in Germany, we Social Democrats can ascribe it 
alone to our account ("Bravo!"). , . . Only by us are they 
forced and whipped on to reform, and the Social Democrats are so 
charitable as to accept all concessions that they can wring from 
their opponents, whenever an advance is actually offered, whether 
to-day from the Government, to-morrow from the Liberal parties, 
or the day after from the Center. But in the next hour we will 


fight them all, Center, government representatives, and Liberals, 
as our constant enemies. The bottomless abyss between us and 
the Government, as well as the bourgeois parties, is not forgotten 
for a moment. In England, also, the Government gi-ants its re- 
forms only because it would hinder the rise of a powerful Socialist 
movement. The English bourgeoisie is the shrewdest in the world. 
("Hear! hear!"). If in the universal elections next year Eng- 
lish Liberalism is victorious it will make one of you [perhaps 
John Burns] an under state secretary, not in order to advance to- 
ward Socialism, but in order ... to hold the votes of laborers and 
to avoid Socialism. (Stormy applause from the English delegates.) 

What sort of services has Jaures perfomied through his alli- 
ances? If the republic of France was in danger the last few 
years [I accept that as a fact], you were wholly right when you 
worked with the bourgeois defenders of the republic to rescue it. 
We would have done exactly the same. Neither do we offer you 
any reproach for your struggle against clericalism. Unite, if you 
are alone too weak, with the Liberals for this purpose. We would 
have done the same, but after the battle we are different people. 

And where was it during the last few years that Jaures has 
rescued the world's peace from danger? We also have spoken for 
the peace of the world, but in contrast to us you voted for a 
military and naval state (the Jauresists, "No!"), for a colonial 
state (Jauresists, "No! "), for indirect taxes, for the secret fund 
(objections among the Jauresists), and thereby supported every- 
thing that endangered peace. (Loud applause.) We cannot give 
a vote of confidence to the budget of a capitalist government. 
(Loud applause.) 

Jaures hopes through this co-operation with capitalist parties 
to secure the nationalization of railroads and mines. One of the 
most important points in his progi-am, then, the monarchical 
Germany has already accomplished. (Merriment.) If we in 
Germany really wished such an advance we would naturally have 
also supported the bourgeois parties, but we would have rejected 
most decisively any permanent alliance with these elements. . . . 

I have never heard a more outrageous, contradictory assertion 
than that the Dresden resolution arose from a spirit of doubt 
and uncertainty. It was directed at just these doubters and 
uncertain individuals who sought to corrupt our old and tested 
tactics. . . . 

Jaures spoke further of the political powerlessness of the 


German Social Democracy. What did he expect us to do . . . ? 
Three million [votes] is not enough for us . . . when we are 
opposed to a capitalist majority of eight million. . . . To-day we 
have only the moral weight of a strong minority. ... Certainly 
the proposed laws that we support with our votes often find their 
way into the Government waste-basket. So much the better for 
our agitation. If reasonable and necessary propositions do not 
become laws we thereby gain. But, says Jaures, " as soon as we 
had received our three million votes the idea was suggested to 
abolish the Reichstag suffrage." But, Comrade Jaures, what 
does that show, except the fright of the bourgeoisie? . . . But 
Avhat do you think would happen in France if you had two million 
votes'? Do you think your bourgeoisie would look on peacefully? 
Just wait and see. " Your helplessness arises from the fact that 
universal suffrage was given to you. You have no revolutionary 
principles." So says Jaures. ... It was not the fighting spirit 
of the French comrades which gave them the republic, but 
Bismarck's victory, which forced your captured emperor to give 
you a republic. That is no disgrace. And in Germany when 
Bismarck gave us universal suffrage he was obliged to refer it 
to the revolutionary traditions of 1848 and 1S49. That his plan 
to hold the bourgeoisie back with the help of a little Socialist 
Party was not carried out is due to the German Social Democracy. 
The Millerand episode has now gone by, but the quarrels arising 
out of it, and which so greatly injured the French Socialist 
movement, still continue. Concerning this confusion of minds 
a fine statement was made by Jaures in the Cosmopolis of 1898. 
(Cries of "Hear! hear! ") : " Socialists cannot take power grad- 
ually. One must wait until it can all be taken. (Jaures, 'Very 
true.') We can co-operate in securing partial reforms, but who- 
ever sets a new life principle as a goal in place of the existing 
one can only accept the entire power. If we were to take but 
a part, this influence would be paralyzed by the present social 
order. The new ideal would not thereby be realized by compro- 
mise. We can attain to this in a crisis and cannot come out of 
it again." ("Hear! hear!") How prophetically, Comrade 
Jaures, have you foreseen developments. (Jaures, "No! no!" 
Great merriment.) You yourselves have made the worst com- 
promise by your continuous support of Millerand. . . . Millerand 
did not greet the International Socialist Congress of 1900, but 
rather made his obeisance before the bloodiest despot in Europe — 


the Czar. And when we went to Pere La Chaise to honor the 
murdered Communards by laying a wreath upon their graves, 
then were we greeted by the infantry, cavalry, and artillery of 
the Waldeck-Rousseau ministry, and they did everything possible 
to make an International recognition of the Communards im- 
possible. This one thing should have been enough to have made 
Millerand for them impossible. (Cheering and applause.) And 
since then we have seen that in every vote in the French Par- 
liament the Jauresist faction has split into two or three divisions, 
such as is seen in Germany only in the most decadent cap- 
italist party, the National Liberals, and now a fraction of the 
proletarian party in France offers us this same spectacle, with 
the natural result that the party is compromised and demoral- 
ized. We should vote for the Dresden resolution. I have no fear 
of the consequences. The French proletariat is not what it is 
my firm conviction that it is if it does not accept the warning of 
the Congi'ess. (Tremendous applause followed this speech, and 
broke out again and again long after Bebel had returned to his 
place. Countless cheers broke through the sound of hand- 
clapping and many delegates were on their feet waving their 
handkerchiefs. ) 

(See also Part II, Chapter II, "The General Strike.") 

The Stuttgart Congress of 1907 is treated in the chap- 
ters on Labor Unions and Woman Suffrage, the Copen- 
hagen Congress of 1910 under Co-operation and Unem- 
ployment, the proposed Congress to have been held at 
Vienna in 1915 under The High Cost of Living, Unem- 
ployment, and the Drink Question. 




first take part 

Country in elections 1914 1910 1907 1904 

Argentina 1896 48,024 7,006 3,495 1,257 

Austria 1893 1,081,441 1,041,948 1,041,948 780,000 

Belgium 1894 483,241 483,241 469,094 305,361 

Bulgaria 1900 85,489 25,265 13,360 10,652 

Canada 1903 17,071 10,929 3,670 2,867 

Chile (?) 1903 18,000 18,000 18,000 12,000 

Denmark 1872 107,015 98,721 76,566 55,593 

Finland 1903 310,503 336,659 329,946 100,000 

France 1881 1,106,047 1,106,047 877,999 860,827 

Germany 1867 4,238,919 3,259,020 3,259,020 3,010,771 

* Greece ( ?) . . . . 12,000 34,000 

t Great Britain.. 1895 529,193 376,645 342,196 100,000 

Holland 1880 144,375 83,362 65,743 39,338 

Hungary 1902 85,266 80,000 80,000 8,000 

Italy 1882 822,280 345,615 326,016 326,016 

Luxemburg(?) .. 10,000 6,100 4,000 4,000 

:J:New Zealand .. 1905 9,091 2,521 2,521 91 

Norway 1894 124,594 91,268 43,134 24,779 

Portugal(?) ... 15,000 

Roumania 2,057 1,557 .... .... 

Russia (?) 1906 300,000 300,000 200,000 

Servia 1903 30,000 9,000 3,133 2,508 

Spain 1891 40,991 40,991 26,000 23,000 

Sweden 1890 172,980 112,293 26,000 10,000 

Switzerland ....1884 105,012 87,766 64,389 64,389 

§ United States.. 1888 931,381 641,789 438,509 441,776 

Uruguay (?) ...1910 10,000 80,000 

Totals 10,739,970 8,599,744 7,414,739 6,183,225 

* Where the exact date of elections does not correspond with the 
periods used iu this table, the vote of tl)e last electiou has been used. 

f The vote includes the Labor Party, the Independent Labor Party and 
the Social Democratic Federation. 

X Socialist vote. The vote of the Labor Party omitted as not being 
strictly Socialist. 

§ Including the vote of the Socialist Party and the Socialist Labor 




First Soc. No. of Deputies. Pet. No. of Deputies. Pet. 

Country elected in Soc. Total Soc. Soc. Total Soc. 

Argentina 1904 7 120 5.12 1 120 0.80 

Austria 1901 88 516 17.06 10 425 2,29 

Belgium 1894 40 186 22.18 30 166 18.07 

Bulgaria 1903 22 275 8.06 2 275 0.83 

Denmark 1884 32 114 28.08 16 114 14.04 

Finland 1904 90 200 45.00 1 200 0.50 

France 1885 76 584 13.01 48 587 8.19 

Germany 1867 111 397 38.81 81 397 20.38 

Great Britain .... 1894 41 670 6.12 8 670 1.18 

Holland 1897 18 100 18.00 7 100 7.00 

Italy 1892 63 508 12.45 28 508 5.65 

Luxemburg 10 53 18.87 5 48 10.42 

Norway 1903 24 123 18.70 4 117 3.42 

Portugal 1911 1 164 0.65 .. 148 

Russia 1906 17 442 3.82 

Servia 1906 2 160 1.25 .. 160 

Spain 1910 1 406 0.25 .. 404 

Sweden 1896 66 230 27.82 4 230 1.81 

Switzerland 1892 17 189 8.56 6 145 4.19 

Uruguay 1911 1 69 1.33 

Totals 728 5,223 13.19 265 4,671 5.64 





The very rapid growth of the Socialist movement in 
Germany is indicated by the increasing Socialist vote for 
members of the Imperial Parliament, or Reichstag: 

Popular Percentage Socialists 

Year vote total vote elected 

1871 124,655 3.0 2 

1874 351,952 6.8 10 

1877 493,288 9.1 13 

1878 437,158 7.6 9 

1881 311,961 6.1 13 

1884 549,990 9.7 24 

1887 763,128 10.1 11 

1890 1,427,298 19.7 35 

1893 1,786.738 23.2 44 

1898 2,107,076 27.2 56 

1903 3,010,771 31.7 81 

1907 3,259,020 28.9 43 

1912 4,250,329 34.8 110 

Two additional Socialist members were elected at special 
elections in 1913 and 1914. The Reichstag consists of 397 
members ; the Socialists are already the strongest party in 




it, and if they were represented in proportion to their 
popular vote they would have 138 members. 

One of the chief effects of this growth of Socialism in 
the Reichstag has been to shift the balance of power con- 
tinually in the Socialist direction. In the elections of 
1912, for example, the growth of the Socialist vote put the 
Reichstag for the first time into the hands of the National 
Liberals — although the National Liberals had received that 
year a smaller proportion of the total vote than at the 
previous election (1907). 


The following table shows the change in the complexion 
of the Reichstag from 1907 to 1912 : 










fr4 fc. C 

o o > 











+ 991.372 

+ 30 



People's Progressive. 





+ 263.108 

+ 21 



National Liberal 





+ 32,089 




Center (Catholic) and 





- 195,014 




Conservatives] ^„„ 
and Imperial L„°?' 

Economic [««;f 
Union J ^''® 





- 197,208 

- 10 









(The smaller parties are not included.) 

In 1912 the Socialist party membership was 970,112 
(839,741 men, 130,371 women). In 1913 the membership 
rose to 982,850 (841,735 men, 141,115 women). 


A special effort was made to get new members in 1914. 
In a single week in March (The Red Week) 148,000 were 
obtained. The dues-paying members in the summer of 
1914 exceeded 1,080,000, of whom nearly one million are 

In 1913 the party had 91 daily newspapers and jour- 
nals with a circulation of 1,800,000. During the Red 
Week (1914) 82,539 new subscribers were gained. 

The German Socialists have 364 "education commit- 
tees," numerous libraries for men, women, and children, 
a highly elaborate system for the diffusion of Socialist 
principles among all classes, and over 12,000 Socialist 
members of town and village councils. 

Some parts of Germany are largely agricultural and 
backward, others are highly industrialized and advanced. 
Moreover, many parts of this federal empire enjoy a large 
measure of autonomy. The relative advance of Socialism 
in the more industrialized districts, the fact that Socialism 
has gained three-fourths of all the voters in Hamburg, 
a majority of those of the whole kingdom of Saxony, and 
practically half of those of Berlin is peculiarly significant. 
The following table is of interest : 


Per cent Per cent (1913) 

of total of total No. of 

Vote in vote Vote in vote party 

1907 1907 1912 1918 memhers 

Kingdom of Saxony. .418,570 48.5 513,216 55.0 159,913 

Berlin ....291,939 40.6 418,848 49.1 28,842 

Hamburg 251,215 66.2 307,762 74.9 118,828 

Province of Branden- 
burg 112,892 60.6 138,343 61.2 61,823 

It will be seen that in these instances the Socialist vote 
does not correspond very closely with Socialist Party mem- 


bership — there being, in 1913, in the whole country, about 
23 Socialist Party members to each 100 Socialist voters. 

It may be of interest to note the occupations of the 
Social-Democratic members of the Reichstag elected in 
1912. By occupation 80 of the 110 were wage-earners; 17 
being metal workers, 9 wood workers, 8 cigar makers, 7 
printers, 6 shoemakers, 6 tailors, 4 from the building 
trades, 3 from the textile industry, 2 being transport 
workers, 2 office emploj^ees; and nearly all the other 
important trades and industrial employments were repre- 
sented by one member each. Of the 30 remaining mem- 
bers 3 were merchants and 27 were members of the pro- 
fessions, the latter being divided as follows: 8 lawyers, 7 
writers, 5 teachers, 4 editors, 1 referendar, 1 ex-officer,. 
1 preacher (Paul Goehre). The ex-officer was von Voll- 
mar, the leader of the Bavarian Socialists. 

In religion, 22 belonged to the established Protestant 
churches, 17 to other Protestant churches, 4 to the Cath- 
olic Church; 7 were Jews. Fifty-eight belonged to no 
church, 6 of these declaring that they had no religion, 
whatever. Two were non-committal. 


While the oldest, perhaps, of all the programs of the 
world's leading Socialist parties, that of Germany is of 
special significance as being the prototype of nearly all 
other Socialist Party programs, and as having remained 
unmodified since its original adoption at Erfurt in 1891. 
It is as follows: 




The economic development of bourgeois society leads by natural 
necessity to the downfall of the small industry, whose founda- 
tion is formed by the worker's private ownership of his means 
of production. It separates the worker from his means of pro- 
duction, and converts him into a propertyless proletarian, while 
the means of production become the monopoly of a relatively 
small number of capitalists and large landowners. 

Hand in hand with this monopolization of the means of pro- 
duction goes the displacement of the dispersed small industries 
by colossal great industries, the development of the tool into the 
machine, and a gigantic growth in the productivity of human 
labor. But all the advantages of this transformation are monop- 
olized by capitalists and large landowners. For the proletariat 
and the declining intermediate classes — petty bourgeoisie and 
peasants — it means a growing augmentation of the insecurity of 
their existence, of misery, oppression, enslavement, debasement, 
and exploitation. 

Ever gieater grows the number of proletarians, ever more 
enormous the army of surplus workers, ever sharper the oppo- 
sition between exploiters and exploited, ever bitterer the class- 
war between bourgeoisie and proletariat, which divides modem 
society into two hostile camps, and is the common hallmark of 
all industrial countries. 

The gulf between the propertied and the propertyless is further 
widened through the crises, founded in the essence of the cap- 
italistic method of production, which constantly become more 
comprehensive and more devastating, which elevate general inse- 
curity to the normal condition of society, and which prove that 
the powers of production of contemporary society have grown 
beyond measure, and that private ownei-ship of the means of 
production has become incompatible with their application to 
their objects and their full development. 

Private ownership of the means of production, which was 
formerly the means of securing to the producer the ownership 
of his product, has to-day become the means of expropriating 
peasants, manual workers, and small traders, and enabling the 
non-workers — capitalists and large landowners — to own the 


product of the workers. Only the transformation of capitalistic 
private ownership of the means of production — the soil, mines, 
raw materials, tools, machines, and means of transport — into 
social ownership and the transformation of production of goods 
for sale into Socialistic production managed for and through 
society, can bring it about, that the great industry and the steadily 
growing productive capacity of social labor shall for the hitherto 
exploited classes be changed from a source of misery and op- 
pression to a source of the highest welfare and of all-round 
harmonious perfection. 

This social transformation means the emancipation not only 
of the proletanat, but of the whole human race which suffers 
under the conditions of to-day. But it can only be the work of 
the working-class, because all the other classes, in spite of mutu- 
ally conflicting interests, take their stand on the basis of private 
ownership of the means of production, and have as their common 
object the preservation of the principles of contemporary society. 

The battle of the working-class against capitalistic exploitation 
is necessarily a political battle. The working-class cannot carry 
on its economic battles or develop its economic organization 
without political rights. It cannot effect the passing of the 
means of production into the ownership of the community with- 
out acquiring political power. 

To shape this battle of the working-class into a conscious 
and united effort, and to show it its naturally necessary end, is the 
object of the Social Democratic Party. 

The interests of the working-class are the same in all lands 
with capitalistic methods of production. With the expansion of 
world-transport and production for the world-market the state 
of the workers in any one country becomes constantly more 
dependent on the state of the workers in other countries. The 
emancipation of the working-class is thus a task in which the 
workers of all civilized countries are concerned in a like degree. 
Conscious of this, the Social Democratic Party of Germany feels 
and declares itself one with the class-conscious workers of all 
other lands. 

The Social Democratic Party of Germany fights thus not for 
new class-privileges and exceptional rights, but for the abolition 
of class-domination and of tlie classes themselves, and for the 
equal rights and equal obligations of all, without distinction of 
sex and parentage. Setting out from these views, it combats in 


contemporary society not merely the exploitation and oppression 
of the wage-workers, but every kind of exploitation and oppres- 
sion, whether directed against a class, a party, a sex, or a race. 

Immediate Demands 

Setting out from these principles the Social Democratic Party 
of Germany demands immediately — 

1. Universal equal direct suffrage and franchise, with direct 
ballot, for all members of the empire over twenty years of age, 
without distinction of sex, for all elections and acts of voting. 
Proportional representation; and until this is introduced, re- 
division of the constituencies by law according to the numbers 
of population. A new legislature every two years. Fixing of 
elections and acts of voting for a legal holiday. Indemnity for 
the elected representatives. Removal of every curtailment of 
political rights except in ease of tutelage. 

2. Direct legislation by the people by means of the initiative 
and referendum. Self-determination and self-government of the 
people in empire, state, province, and commune. Authorities 
to be elected by the people; to be responsible and bound. Taxes 
to be voted annually. 

3. Education of all to be capable of bearing arms. Armed 
nation instead of standing army. Decision of war and peace 
by the representatives of the people. Settlement of all inter- 
national disputes by the method of arbitration. 

4. Abolition of all laws which curtail or suppress the free 
expression of opinion and the right of association and assembly. 

5. Abolition of all laws which are prejudicial to women in 
their relations to men in public or private law. 

6. Declaration that religion is a private matter. Abolition of 
all contributions from public funds to ecclesiastical and religious 
objects. Ecclesiastical and religious communities are to be 
treated as private associations, which manage their affairs quite 

7. Secularization of education. Compulsory attendance of 
public primary schools. No charges to be made for instruction, 
school requisites, and mamtenance, in the public primary schools; 
nor in the higher educational institutions for those students, 
male and female, who in virtue of their capacities are considered 
fit for further traming. 


8. No charge to be made for the administration of the law, 
or for legal assistance. Judgment by popularly elected judges. 
Appeal in criminal cases. Indemnification of innocent persons 
prosecuted, arrested, or condemned. Abolition of the death 

9. No charges to be made for medical attendance, including 
midwifery and medicine. No charges to be made for death 

10. Graduated taxes on income and property, to meet all 
public expenses as far as these are to be covered by taxation. 
Obligatory self -assessment. A tax on inheritance, graduated ac- 
cording to the size of the inheritance and the degree of kinship. 
Abolition of all indirect taxes, customs, and other politico- 
economic measures which sacrifice the interests of the whole 
community to the interests of a favored minority. 

For the protection of the working-class the Social Democratic 
Party of Germany demands immediately — 

1. An effective national and international legislation for the 
protection of workmen on the following basis: 

(a) Fixing of a normal working-day with a maximum of eight 

(6) Prohibition of industrial work for children under fourteen 

(c) Prohibition of night-work, except for such branches of 
industry as, in accordance with their nature, require night-work, 
for technical reasons, or reasons of public welfare. 

(d) An uninterrupted rest of at least thirty-six hours in every 
week for every worker. 

(e) Prohibition of the truck system. 

2. Inspection of all industrial businesses, investigation and 
regulation of labor relations in town and country by an imperial 
department of labor, district labor departments, and chambers 
of labor. Thorough industrial hygiene. 

3. Legal equalization of agricultural laborers and domestic 
servants with industrial workers; removal of the special regula- 
tions affecting sei'vants. 

4. Assurance of the right of combination. 

5. Workmen's insurance to be taken over bodily by the Empire ; 
and the workers to have an influential share in its administration. 

6. Separation of the churches and the State. 
(a) Suppression of the grant for public worship. 


(&) Philosophic or religious associations to be civil persons 
at law. 

7. Revision of sections in the Civil Code concerning marriage 
and the paternal authority. 

(a) Civil equality of the sexes, and of children, whether natural 
or legitimate. 

(&) Revision of the divorce laws, maintaining the husband's 
liability to support the wife or the children. 

(c) Inquiry into paternity to be legalized. 

(d) Protective measures in favor of children materially or 
morally abandoned. 


In view of the momentous victory gained by the So- 
cialists in the Eeiehstag election of 1912, their address to 
the voters issued just prior to that election is of excep- 
tional interest: 


On the 12th of January, 1912, the general election for the 
Reichstag takes place. . . . This election will determine whether, 
in the succeeding years, the policy of oppression and plundering 
shall be carried still farther, or whether the German people shall 
finally achieve their rights. 

In the Reichstag elections of 1907 the voters were deceived by 
the Government and the so-called national parties. . . . The 
Reichstag of the "National" bloc from Heydebrand down to 
Weimar and Naumann has made nugatory the laws pevtaininu to 
the rights of coalition ; has restricted the use of the non-Germanic 
languages in public meetings; has virtually robbed the youth of 
the right of coalition, and has favored every measure for the 
increase of the army, navy, and colonial exploitation. 

The result of their reactionism is an enormous increase 
of the burdens of taxation. In spite of the fact that in 1906 
over 200,000,000 marks increase was voted, in stamp tax, tobacco 
tax, etc., in spite of the sacred promise of the Government, 
through its official organ, that no new taxes were being con- 


templated, the Government has, through its " financial reforms," 
increased our burden over five hundred millions. 

Liberals and Consei-vatives were unanimous in declai'ing that 
four-fifths of this enormous sum should be raised through an 
increase in indirect taxes, the greater part of which is collected 
from laborers, clerks, shopkeepers, artisans, and fanners. Inas- 
much as the parties to the Biilow bloc could not agree upon 
the distribution of the property tax and the excise tax, the bloc 
was dissolved and a new coalition appeared — an alliance between 
the holy ones and the knights (Block der Ritter und der 
Heiligen), This new bloc rescued the distiller from the obliga- 
tions of an excise tax, defeated the inhentance tax, which would 
have fallen upon the wealthy, and placed u2Don the shoulders of 
the working-people a tax of hundreds of millions, which is paid 
through the consumption of beer, whisky, tobacco, cigars, coffee, 
tea — yea, even of matches. This Conservative-Clerical bloc fur- 
ther showed its contempt for the working-people in the way it 
amended the state insurance laws. It robbed the workingman 
of his rights and denied to mothers and their babes necessary 
protection and adequate care. 

Since that date every by-election for the Reichstag, as well 
as for the provincial legislatures and municipal councils, has 
shown remarkable gains in the Social Democratic vote. The 
reactionai'ies were consequently frightened, and now they resort 
to the usual election trick of diverting the attention of the voters 
from internal affairs to international conditions, and appeal to 
them under the guise of nationalism. 

The IMorocco incident gave welcome opportunity for this ruse. 
At home and abroad the capitalistic war interests and the nation- 
alistic jingoes stirred the animosities of the peoples. They drove 
their dangerous play so far that even the Chancellor found him- 
self forced to reprimand his junker colleagues for using their 
patriotism for partisan purposes. But the attempt to bolster 
up the interests of the reactionary parties with our international 
complications continues in spite of this. 

Voters, be on your guard ! Remember that on election day 
you have in j'our hand the power to choose between peace or 

The outcome of this election is no less important in its bearing 
upon internal affairs. 

Count Biilow declared, before the election of 1907, " the fewer 


the Social Democrats, the gi-eater the social reforms." The 
opposite is true. The last few years conclusively demonstrate 
this. The socio-political mills have rattled, but they have pro- 
duced very little flour. 

In order to capture their votes for the " national " candidates, 
the state employees and officials were promised an increase in 
their pay. To the high-salaried officials the new Reichstag doled 
out the increase with spades, to the poorly paid humble em- 
ployees with spoons. And this increase in pay was coun- 
terbalanced by an increase in taxes and the rising cost of 

To the people the Government refused to give any aid, in spite 
of their repeated requests for some relief against the constantly 
increasing prices of the necessities of life. And, while the 
Chancellor profoundly maintained that the press exaggerated the 
actual conditions of the rise in prices, the so-called saviors of the 
middle class — the Center, the Conservatives, the anti-Semites and 
their following — rejected every proposal of the Social Democrats 
for relieving the situation, and actually laid the blame for the 
rise in prices upon their own middle-class tradesmen and manu- 

New taxes, high cost of living, denial of justice, increasing 
danger of war — that is what the Reichstag of 1907, which was 
ushered in with such high-sounding " national " tom-toms, has 
brought you. And the day of reckoning is at hand. Voters of 
Gennany, elect a different majority! The stronger you make the 
Social Democratic representation in the Reichstag, the firmer you 
anchor the world's peace and your country's welfare ! 

The Social Democracy seeks the conquest of political power, 
which is now in the hands of the property classes, and is mis- 
used by them to the detriment of the masses. They denounce 
us as " revolutionists." Foolish phraseology ! The bourgeois- 
capitalistic society is no more eternal than have been the earlier 
forms of the state and preceding social orders. The present 
order will be replaced by a higher order, the Socialistic order, 
for which the Social Democracy is constantly striving. Then 
the solidarity of all peoples will be accomplished and life will 
be made more humane for all. The pathway to this new social 
order is being paved by our capitalistic development, which con- 
tains all the germs of the New Order within itself. 

For us the duty is prescribed to use every means at hand for 


the amelioration of existing evils, and to create conditions that 
will raise the standard of living of the masses. 
Therefore we demand : 

1. The democratizing of the community in all of its activities. 
An open pathway to opportunity. A chance for everyone to 
develop his aptitudes. Special privileges to none. The right 
person in the right place. 

2. Universal, direct, equal, secret ballot for all persons twenty 
years of age without distinction of sex, and for all representative 
legislative bodies. Referendum for setting aside the present 
unjust election district apportionment and its attendant electoral 

3. A parliamentary government. Responsible ministry. Es- 
tablishment of a department for the control of foreign affairs. 
Giving the people's representatives in the Reichstag the power 
to declare war or maintain peace. Consent of the Reichstag to 
all state appropriations. 

4. Organization of the national defense along democratic lines. 
Militia service for all able-bodied men. Reducing service in the 
standing army to the lowest terms consistent with safety. Train- 
ing youth in the use of arms. Abolition of the privilege of one- 
year volunteer service. Abolition of all unnecessary expense for 
uniforms in army and navy. 

5. Abolition of " class-justice " and of administrative injus- 
tice. Reform of the penal code, along lines of modern culture 
and jurisprudence. Abolition of all privileges pertaining to the 
administration of justice. 

6. Security to all workingmen, employees, and officials in their 
right to combine, to meet, and to organize. 

7. Establishment of a national department of labor, officials 
of this department to be elected by the interests represented upon 
the basis of universal and equal suffrage. Extension of factoi-y 
inspection by the participation of workingmen and working- 
women in the same. Legalized universal eight-hour day, shorten- 
ing the hours of labor in industries that are detrimental to 

8. Reform of industrial insurance, exemption of farm laborers 
and domestic servants from contributing to insurance funds. 
Direct election of representatives in the administration of the 
insurance funds; enlarging the representation of labor on the 
board of directors; increasing the amounts paid workingmen; 


lowering age for old-age pensions from 70 to 65 years; aid to 
expectant mothers; and free medical attendance. 

9. Complete religious freedom. Separation of church and 
state, and of school and church. No support of any kind, from 
public funds, for religious purposes. 

10. Universal, free schools as the basis of all education. Free 
text-books. Freedom for art and science. 

11. Diminution and ultimate abolition of all indirect taxes, and 
abolition of all taxes on the necessities of life. Abolition of 
duties on foodstuffs. Limiting the restrictions upon the importa- 
tion of cattle, fowl, and meat to the necessary sanitary measures. 
Reduction in the tariff, especially in those schedules which en- 
courage the development of syndicates and pools, thereby enabling 
pi'oducts of German manufacture to be sold cheaper abroad than 
at home. 

12. The support of all measures that tend to develop commerce 
and trade. Abolition of tax on railway tickets. A stamp tax 
on bills of lading. 

13. A gTaduated income, property, and inheritance tax; inas- 
much as this is the most effective way of dampening the ardor 
of the rich for a constantly increasing army and navy. 

14. Internal improvements and colonization; the transforma- 
tion of great estates into communal holdings, thereby making 
possible a greater food supi^ly and a corresponding lowering of 
prices. The establishment of public farms and agricultural 
schools. The reclamation of swamp-lands, moors, and dunes. 
The cessation of foreign colonization now done for the purpose 
of exploiting foreign peoples for the sake of gain. 

Voters of Germany! New naval and military appropriations 
await you; these will increase the burdens of your taxes by 
hundreds of millions. As on former occasions, so now, the ruling 
class will attempt to roll these heavy burdens upon the shoulders 
of the humble, and thereby increase the burden of existence of 
the family. 

Therefore, let the women, upon whom the burden of the house- 
hold primarily rests, and who are to-day without political rights, 
take active part in this work of emancipation and join them- 
selves with determination to our cause, which is also their 

Voters of Germany! If you are in accord with these prin- 
ciples, then give your votes on the 12th of January to the Social 


Democratic Party. Help prepare the foundations for a new 
and better state whose motto shall be: 

Death to Want and Idleness! Work, Bread, and Justice for 

Let your battle-cry on election day resound: Long live the 
Social Democracy! 

Executive Committee of the Social Democratic 
Representatives in the Reichstag. 
Berlin, December 5, 1911. 

2. support of progressives on the second ballot 

The general election being over, the executive board 
of the party issued the following public statement, ostensi- 
bly designed to govern the action of Socialist voters in 
casting their second ballots in the by-elections (second 
ballotings) which were soon to follow: 

Comrades : 

The 12th of January has fulfilled our hopes. The working- 
class of Germany has had a thorough reckoning with the parties 
of the Conservative and Catholic Alliance. Our party has been 
wonderfully successful. We have won 65 seats in the general 
election, received about 4,250,000 votes; we will participate in 
121 by-elections. 

Let us finish the work that this general election has so glori- 
ously begun. We can win countless numbers by drawing upon 
our last reserve forces for the second ballots. 

In many districts our vote was so small that our candidates 
do not enter into the by-elections. We must therefore decide 
whether or not we may support one of the candidates of the 
other parties. 

According to the decision of the Party Congress of Jena, 1911, 
our comrades may support only such bourgeois candidates as 
will pledge themselves either in writing or before witnesses: 

1. To the support of the existing suffrage rights to the 

2. To oppose any infringement upon the right of free assem- 
blage and free organization. 


3. To oppose any attempt to increase penal laws for political 

4. To oppose exception laws (Ausnahmegesetze) in any form. 

5. To oppose the increase of existing import tariffs or the 
levying of new tariffs on articles necessary for the consumption 
of the masses. 

6. To oppose the increase of existing or the levying of new 
indirect taxes upon articles necessary to the masses for their 

Should in any one district both candidates pledge themselves 
to fulfill these conditions, the Liberal candidate is to enjoy the 
preference over the Conservative. In every other case our sup- 
porters are absolutely to refrain from voting. 

According to these instructions, with due regard to the per- 
sonality and record of the candidate in question, the Socialist 
vote is to be decided. 

Now, let us get to work. Let our watchword be: 

Down with the Tax-Robbery of the Fusionists ! 

Down with the Opponents of Free Assemblage. 

Down with the Foes of Popular Elections to the Reichstag. 

On with the Battle. The last Barricade must be overthrown. 

We must do all in our power to drive the nobility, the powers 
of the church from their strongholds in our government. We 
must finally and for all time overcome the foes of the progress 
of the working-class, the opponents of the harmonious develop- 
ment of the German Empire ! 

Yours for solidarity, 

The Executive Board. 

After the by-elections were over (they had yielded to 
the Socialists 46 additional seats), in addition to issuing 
the above public statement, it became known that a con- 
fidential circular of very different purport had been sent 
by the board to party representatives in certain weak 
districts, designed to render ineffective in those districts 
certain of the directions conveyed in the public statement. 
This confidential circular read as follows: 


We have entered into a conference with the Progressives con- 
cerning" mutual support in the by-elections. With tlie close of 
the general election, the Progressives found themselves in an 
unfortunate situation, from their point of view, and there was 
great danger that they would unite with the parties of the Right. 
By so doing they would not only have decreased our parlia- 
mentary representation but would have rendered futile our at- 
tempt to shatter the Conservative and Catholic alliance. Under 
the circumstances it seemed to us inadvisable to refuse to con- 
sult with them. At the same time we emphatically refused to 
sacrifice any district where we had even a remote chance of elect- 
ing our candidate by our own strength, or where there was 
any chance of holding what we had gained in pi'evious elections. 
We insisted, further, that absolute reciprocity characterize the 
whole agreement. The Progressives have i^ledged us their support 
in cei'tain districts. 

We, on the other hand, besides promising the usual support 
in such districts where we do not participate in the by-elections, 
according to the mandates of the Jena Congress, made this con- 
cession : that we would subdue our agitation in districts in which 
we could under no circumstances elect our candidate should the 
Progressives imite with the parties of the Right. 

The central committee of the Progressive People's Party will 
publicly call upon its constituents under no circumstances to vote 
in favor of a Conservative, a National Party candidate, a candi- 
date of the Center or a member of the Wirtschaftliche 
Vereinigung (a small group of agrarian reactionaries). It will 
proclaim that political necessity demands the overthrow of the 
blue and black bloc. The Pi-ogressive People's Party will further, 
in a confidential circular to the local committees, call upon them 
to support our candidate in the first-mentioned districts. We, 
on the other hand, have promised to hold no meetings, to dis- 
tribute no leaflets, to hand out no ballots in the above-mentioned 
16 districts before the election, not to try to get the voters on 
election day to the ballot-box. On the other hand, we may dis- 
tribute ballots on election day in front of the election booths. 
We are convinced that this agreement serves the best interests of 
the party and of the general public, and request you, therefore, 
to inform your district and do all in your power to enforce this 
agreement under all circumstances. 


This secret agreement occasioned widespread dissatis- 
faction within the party, and much bitter criticism. The 
matter was carried before the Congress of the party in 
1913, where Scheidemann, defending the executive board, 

Unless we are willing to be used as willing tools of the Con- 
sei'vatives, the subdued campaign carried on in the 16 districts 
which you so severely criticise was an absolute necessity. In 
these districts a compact bourgeois majority stood opposed to 
us. . . . 


Karl Kautsky, summarizing the results of the election 
in The New Review some months later, wrote: 

Apparently the election of 110 Social Democratic deputies has 
altered nothing. The Government and the majority of the 
Reichstag are just as reactionary as before, social reform lags 
as it formerly did, and the rivalry in armaments goes merrily 
forward. But those who expected that the elections could and 
would make any change in these respects were pinning their 
faith to unrealizable illusions. No bourgeois majority, no matter 
what its composition may be, will ever conduct an energetic 
struggle against the Government in behalf of a genuine parlia- 
mentary regime, against miUtarism and the increase of the naval 
forces, and for radical social reforms. Such a struggle can to-day 
be expected of a Social Democratic majority only. And it was 
obvious in advance that the majority of 1912 would not be Social 

The advantage for which we are fighting in an electoral is, 
above all, a moral one. Our most important duty does not consist 
merely in enlightening and organizing the proletariat, but also 
in inspiring it with the consciousness of its own power. If 
there are still many workers who assume a hesitating, apathetic, 
or even hostile attitude toward Socialism, this is not because 
they disapprove of our aim, but because they doubt our power 
to realize it. To prove that we are a mighty foi'ce becomes even 


more important than to prove that we are in the right. TVe 
succeeded in doing this most brilliantly in the last Reichstag 
elections. Over 4,250,000 votes and 110 seats in the Reichstag; 
a third of all the votes east, and more than a fourth of all the 
Reichstag seats, Social Democratic — that speaks so clearly and 
plainly for itself that even the most apathetic understands it 
and even the most timid is encouraged. It plainly means that 
the German Social Democracy has ceased to be a mere propa- 
ganda party, that it has entered upon the practical struggle for 
power. . . . 

But the election districting favored the agrarian wing and 
procured for it more seats than the number of its votes war- 
ranted. It depended upon the attitude of the Social Democracy 
in the secondary elections whether or not the agi'arian wing was 
again to win for itself a majority in the Reichstag. . . . 

"We succeeded in depriving them of this majoi'ity. . . . Con- 
servatives and Center combined do not form a majority this 

Naturally it would have been a delusion to believe that a ma- 
jority of combined Liberals and Social Democrats would usher 
in an era of democracy and social reform. The Liberals not only 
lack the necessary strength and courage, but above all the desire 
for it. That the latter did not gain a majority sie-nifies a 
negative, not a positive advantage. . . . It is indeed to be ex- 
pected that the Government will succeed in bringing the National 
Liberals and the " Black-Blue Bloc " into one camp. But it can 
hardly accomplish that without creating rebellion among a con- 
siderable portion of the supporters of the National Liberals as 
well as of the Center. . . . 

So long as a Social Democratic majority is not attainable, we 
are obliged to limit ourselves to preventing the Government from 
obtaining a safe majority, to depriving it of the power necessary 
for violent measures against the working-class; and we must 
strive to place the bourgeois parties in the situations in which 
they found themselves before the election, either to sen-e the 
purpose of the proletariat or to lose their proletarian follow- 
ing. . . . 

The high cost of living continues to rise. Class antagonisms 
are becoming ever more acute, the mass of the population is 
becoming more and more embittered against existing conditions. 
And we are making gigantic strides toward the time when we 


shall have half of the votes cast, and shortly after that half of 
the seats in the Reichstag. 

Kautsky being the editor of the official party weekly, 
Die Neue Zeit, may be presumed to have expressed in the 
above article the view of the majority in the German 
Social Democratic Party. The view of the moderate wing 
of the party has been expressed as follows — in the Sozial- 
istische Monatshefte — in an article by Eduard Bernstein: 

Impressive indeed is the demonstration which the January 
elections have given of the spread of Socialism in Germany. . . , 
The whole of the increase in the votes polled for all parties, 
with 47,000 votes beyond, flowed into the party of the working- 
class. This is the more significant, inasmuch as according to the 
census of employment only some 60 per cent of the new voters 
can be counted as working-class voters. . . . The indeterminate 
voters may be regarded as of steadily decreasing importance in 
the accumulation of Socialist votes, but they still play a very 
important part in the distribution of seats. . . . The fight for 
parliamentai-y seats is in a high degree a fight for the indetermi- 
nate voters. And if these voters must not be reckoned as party 
gains, they do, none the less, give the party a sort of vote of 
confidence, for to an extent the non-party elector in the polling 
booth votes according to his own judgment, and not under pres- 
sure from a superior, he votes for the party in which he has 
the most trust. 

The Reichstag elections just concluded, and the position created 
by them have paved the way for a segregation of groups into 
two main parties, comparable with the division of the French 
party groups into opposing camps. ... 

The line of demarcation, which has now brought together on 
one side the Liberal groups and the Social Democrats, and on the 
other side the Center (Catholic) and the Conservatives, with the 
smaller groups of social reactionaries associated with them, leaves 
still many illogical features. But the division it makes corre- 
sponds to a logical divergence of basic principles. What has 
determined the present line of demarcation is the attitude of 
the parties to the principle of established authorities in govern- 
ment and society, to clericalism in the state and the school, to 


agrarian feudalism, to the reactionary economic demands of the 
small traders and other forms of corporative legislation, to the 
three-class franchise, the bureaucratic system, and the right of 
association among the working-class. 

Attempts will be made from many quarters to bring into 
existence a working majority of National Liberals, Center, and 
Conservatives. The Government is closely interested in this 
project. ... If the bulk of the National Liberals refuse to make 
common cause with the Consei^vatives and Clericals, a working 
agreement between the parties of the Left in the Reichstag in 
opposition to those of the Right will become inevitable. . . . 

The general feeling of the Social Democratic Party is certainly 
in favor of that being done. It is no easy matter, and demands 
the suppression of many natural antipathies. But the strongly 
developed political sense of the German Social Democracy has 
often before conquered such aversions, so long as it has been 
clear that no fundamental prmciple of the party would be com- 
promised or abandoned. This condition must be obsen'ed in the 
present instance also. Without it the agreement would be futile 
and unworkable, as the party would be lamed by internal strife. 
But such abandonment of its principles is no more involved in 
the proposed agreement with the Left parties in the Reichstag 
than it was in the many agreements which have been made in 
the course of election fights. The agreement will be arrived at 
for certain definite purposes, reserving in all else the complete 
independence of the agi'eeing pai'ties. No sacrifice of convictions 
will be offered or demanded. . . . 

Vorwaerts and other party organs have mentioned some of the 
questions which come into consideration — the extension of the 
rights of the Reichstag, especially the right of interpellation ; the 
reform of parliamentary procedure; the removal of the inequali- 
ties of the electoral districts; the establishing of the right of 
association ; opposition to all new or increased indirect taxation ; 
reduction of the food taxes. This is not suggested as even a 
skeleton program, but as an indication of the class of measure 
to be fought for. . . . 

In the course of time the completion of the division of the 
Reichstag into two main parties would be of immense assistance 
to the development of parliamentarianism — it is, indeed, indis- 
pensable to it. for without great party coalitions no real system 
of parliamentary government is attainable. . . . 


(Article by George Ledebour in Die Neue Zeit) 

"The first session of the newly-elected Reichstag closed 
on May 22, 1912, with a stormy discussion. The hopeful, 
living idealism of the Socialist movement measured its 
thought with the aged, decrepit, but still powerful reac- 
tionary might of a capitalist society. . . . 

"Those who are disappointed because our group of 110 
Social Democrats, as the largest party in the Reichstag, 
could not control the policy of the Government, must 
have peculiar views concerning the activity of a party 
which can function only as a party of the minority — 110 
against 287. . . . That is the proposition that makes it 
impossible for our party to win even the smallest victory 
for its Socialist ideals. For in these ideals it stands un- 
alterably opposed to all other parties. 

"But they, too, have been sorely disappointed who 
hoped for an aggressive, progressive fusion of Liberal and 
Socialist forces, which would enforce radical constitu- 
tional reforms, putting aside, for the time being, all funda- 
mental differences which divided them. We soon discov- 
ered that the Liberal Party was bound to the other reac- 
tionary parties with ties that were far stronger than its 
radical sympathies for the Socialist movement. Between 
Social Democrats and Liberals there were possible only 
temporary agreements on this question. The election by 
the combined Left of Scheidemann as vice-president proved 
prophetic for the course of the whole session. The election 
failed to get the ratification of the Reichstag because the 
National Liberals at the last moment remembered their 
duty to the State, to the bureaucracy and the reactionary 


"The increased influence of the Social Democracy be- 
came evident in a more negative form. We succeeded in 
nipping in the bud a number of reactionary plans. The 
grouping of parties in the present Reichstag makes it 
extremely difficult for the avowed reactionaries, the Con- 
servatives, the Free-Conservatives, and the anti-Semites, 
to gain a majority for their purposes. In the previous 
Reichstag they could accomplish this either with the two 
Liberal parties (the Biilow bloc) or with the Center 
(the Bethmann-Hollweg bloc). Both these possibilities 
are out of the question at present because of the increased 
strength of the Social Democracy. They must secure a 
combination which includes not only the Center but also 
at least the National Liberals, in order to carry out reac- 
tionary measures. . . . The Center and its opponents, 
the National Liberals, in order not to compromise 
themselves unnecessarily before their constituents, are 
driving each other into more radical positions. . . . The 
deciding influence of the Social Democracy became evident 
on other occasions. . , . Together with the Center and the 
Polish representatives, the Socialist Party succeeded in 
repealing the act granting subsidies to officials in districts 
where there is a large Polish population, who are active in 
the spread of the German language and German views 
( Ostmarkenzulage fiir Reichsbeamte). This fruit of the 
anti-Polish agitation of the Hakatist Society was passed 
in the last session owing to the cowardly desertion of the 
Progressives. Our colonial policy, too, was strongly influ- 
enced by our Social Democratic representation. It was 
due to our agitation that the Reichstag, in spite of the 
vehement opposition of State Secretary Solf, nullified the 
barbaric prohibition of intermarriage between whites and 
negroes. . . . 

"The Government, and with it the parties of the Right 


and the Center, strove to enforce new taxes on articles of 
general consumption. The liberal parties demanded the 
introduction of direct taxes. Finally a compromise was 
effected which provides that for the next two years the 
increased expenditures shall be covered by a whisky and 
a sugar tax, but that, after October 1, 1916, a new direct 
tax shall be introduced. All capitalist parties united upon 
this motion. The Social Democracy, alone, refused to in- 
dorse it. . . . Another bill, which calls for the introduc- 
tion of an inheritance tax, received the indorsement of 
the Social Democrats with the understanding that the 
money thus collected be used to wipe out an already exist- 
ing indirect tax. As the National Liberals, however, de- 
clared, when they voted for the adoption of this measure 
against the parties of the Right and the Center, that they 
would prefer a property tax, the realization of an inheri- 
tance tax at the present time is exceedingly doubtful. 

"Though in the discussion of the military and appro- 
priation bills the sharp contrast between the Socialist and 
the other parties came out clearly enough, the discussions 
became even more heated when our representatives at- 
tacked the renewed activity of the spirit of absolutism in 
the German Government. Whenever the fundamental 
questions of our national life come to the fore, there the 
unalterable enmity between the party of the proletariat 
and its capitalist opponents makes itself poignantly felt. 
The Social Democracy may, temporarily, unite with other 
parties to insure the passage of individual reforms which 
lie along the lines of our general movement. But the 
stronger we become, the more clearly comes the under- 
standing, here as well as there, that in the struggle for 
our fundamental ideals we stand alone and must fight 
unaided for their realization." 


MAY, 1913 

The Social Democracy demands equal, direct adult suffrage in 
the Diet and in municipal elections. 

The Social Democracy demands legislation by one house only, 
and abolition of the House of Lords (Herrenhaus) with its 
inherited and arbitrary power to rule. 

The Social Democracy demands the abolition of the privileges 
of the nobility which still exist and hinder the free development 
of the nation. 

The Social Democracy demands absolute separation of church 
and state. 

The Social Democracy demands free education and school sup- 
plies, the expense to be borne by the nation. Only mental ability 
should be considei'ed in the choice of pupils for higher schools; 
free meals for needy school children ; abolition of the clerical 
control of schools. 

The Social Democracy demands that all charitable institutions 
be conducted by the nation. 

The Social Democracy demands the abolition of the system of 
SeigTiorities (Gutshezirke) which hinder all cultural development 
on the one hand and try by everj' possible trick to dodge the 
support of their poor. (A Gutshezirk is an agricultural estate 
having political autonomy, controlled by the owner of the estate.) 

The Social Democracy demands increased factory inspection 
and the employment of workmen as factory inspectors. 

The Social Democracy demands a more marked progression of 
the existing income tax for high incomes, a decrease in the tax 
upon incomes xuider 3,000 marks. Abolition of existing indirect 
state and municipal taxes. 

The Social Democracy demands the improvement of the care 
of public health by the nationalization of the whole medical pro- 
fession, as well as the drug and medicine industries. 

The Social Democracy demands a decrease of prison labor and 
the employment of prisoners for state and road improvements. 

The Social Democracy demands increased wages and salaries 
for laborers, employees, and the lower officials in national indus- 
tries (railroads, forestry, mines). 

The Social Democracy demands the extension and improve- 


ment of our railroad system; a decrease in the rates for second 
and third-class cars, and the eventual introduction of zone or 
district rates {Zonentarif). 

The Social Democracy demands the building of streets^ bridges, 
and water-works by the nation. 

The Social Democracy demands abolition of the existing excep- 
tion laws concerning sei'vants and domestics. [Gesindeordnung] . 

The Social Democracy demands the right of national employ- 
ment and the right of laborers to organize. 

The Social Democracy demands a liberal and modern revision 
and reform of the Prussian mining laws, aside from its demand 
for national mining legislation. 

The Social Democracy demands that all superfluous expendi- 
tures be avoided, such as are incurred to-day for purposes of 
representation by the Prussian nobility. 

The Social Democracy demands the employment of workmen 
as associate judges (ScJioeffen) and jurymen; the payment of 
fees for the performance of such duties. 


At this congress (1913) a new majority was made up of 
the Center and the moderates against the radicals. Thus 
for the first time in the history of the party the radicals 
were defeated and the moderates were victorious. The 
moderates not only won by majorities of more than two 
to one on the military and taxation issue, on the general 
strike issue, but also elected their candidates to all im- 
portant party offices. The resolution and the discussion 
on the military question are given in Mr. Walling 's The 
Socialists and the War. We present in later chapters brief 
summaries and abstracts indicating the attitude of the 
Congress toward the problem of the high cost of living, 
unemployment, taxation, and the general strike. 


JUNE, 1914 

Less than two months before the outbreak of the war, 
on the last day of the last Reichstag session preceding the 
great conflict, occurred one of the most important events 
in the history of the German Party. The Reichstag ses- 
sions are closed by standing cheers for the Kaiser. The 
custom of the Socialist members has been to absent them- 
selves in a body. On this occasion they decided — though 
only after a long discussion and a close vote (51 to 47) — 
to take a more positive stand. In remaining seated they 
committed an act which would be a crime, lese-majesfe, 
if done outside the Reichstag. Our documents are illus- 
trative of the discussions which this action aroused in the 


(Editorial in Vorwaerts [Berlin], June 5, 1914) 

That the Socialists remained seated during the cheers for the 
Kaiser may not have pleased the Liberals, but it cannot be con- 
tested that it was their good right to act as they did. 

But what shall be said of the fact that there are party com- 
rades . . . who hardly differ in their arguments from the Lib- 
eral press? That Edmund Fischer is among these party com- 
rades does not astonish us. ... He looks at politics from the 
standpoint of the trader who wishes to come to terms with his 
creditors. Any kind of settlement seems a gain to him. ... No 
further argument is necessary for this sort of politics. . . . 

It is more regrrettable that Comrade Wolfgang Heine also 
speaks against the demonstration in the Reichstag. His principal 
argniment is one of civic law. He does not deny that the Gov- 
ernment in the Empire and in Prussia carries on a spiteful policy 
against us and treats us as if we stood outside of the law. He 

"But it is against the fundamentals of a modern parlia- 
mentarist state to hold the emperor personally responsible for 


the policy of the Government. ... If we make the emperor 
responsible for all politics, that is an acknowledgment of the 
thing we oppose. . . . The battle-cry ' for or against the em- 
peror ' . . . has always been used against us with good success 
by the reactionaries. It is our task to keep the person of the 
monarch out of all political struggles. The Socialist Reichstag 
group, by its recent behavior, has drawn his person into a 
struggle of this kind and has given its opponents the right to 
do the same." 

Since when has it been Socialistic policy to take fiction for 
reality? ... Is monarchical power lessened when ignored? or 
[rather] when opposed? 

Of what civic law does Heine speak? Of one explained to 
suit his wishes, not of a real one. For the real civic laws give 
the monarch in Germany and Prussia a power which exists in 
no other state, excepting Russia. And this power to-day stands 
at the disposal of the opponents of the working-class. Not be- 
cause our opponents cleverly identify Government with the per- 
son of the monarch, but because the monarchy has become the 
means of their class rule. And should we leave the basis of the 
German constitutional misery untouched and pass it by, pre- 
tending to be deaf and blind, merely because Heine fears the 
inciting of the monarchists could be harmful to us in some po- 
litically backward regions? 

The principle of keeping the person of the monarch out of 
all political discussions is understandable for countries like Eng- 
land, with purely parliamentary governments, but it is a danger 
for the political development of semi-absolutist countries like 
Germany. It is bad enough that the Liberal press fails to under- 
stand this, but it is beyond comprehension how a Socialist like 
Heine can blow the same horn and talk of the lack of respect 
of the Socialist group towards the Reichstag. No, if we have 
to talk of lack of respect — though a fighting party like ours 
cannot give or obtain much respect — it should be of the want of 
respect shown to the convictions of the lai'gest party of the 
German people. We consider it a presumption and an intolera- 
ble coercion to try to foi'ce us to participate in a demonstration 
which is against our convictions. The angry howls of the reac- 
tionaries show us how right we were in our action and how 
important Byzantinism is to them as a support of their rule. 
The conduct of our group during the cheers for the Kaiser 


would not be so important had it not caused all this uproar. 
LTnder these conditions it may become the means of carrying our 
convictions regarding the development of the constitution to the 
furthest circles, increasing the interest in our fight for the estab- 
lishment of a democratic constitution. Let the Liberal press con- 
tinue to do the work of its opponents, that will not keep us from 
continuing our work of enlightenment with increased intensity. 

Let our Liberals wail aloud in their political nursei'y, which 
they never seem able to outgrow, we are big and strong enough 
to stand this. The result of the demonstration does credit to 
those who advised it. 


(Editorial in the Muenchener Post [moderate Socialist]; quoted 
in Vorwaerts, June 6, 1914) 

It is said that the Socialist Party offended the monarchical 
feeling of the other members of Parliament, remaining seated 
when the rest of the members arose to show their respect to the 
emperor. We permit ourselves to remark (apai't from the con- 
sideration of the feelings of the 111 comrades) that we do not 
believe in the genuineness of these monarchical sentiments which 
only exist as long as they coincide with the business interests of 
the ruling classes. We also do not believe in them because his- 
torical experience proves that these inherited sentiments leave no 
trace behind when the political system changes. 

More important is the objection that we in particular — from 
our own point of view — iiave no cause to demonstrate against 
the person of the monarch. Of course the refusal to give homage 
is naturally not meant against " the person." But the bearer of 
the Crown (considered impersonally) is not immaterial under the 
present German political system. It would of course be different 
had we the parliamentary system; then it would indeed be 
ridiculous and obtrusive to strike, by such action, the entirely 
irresponsible representative of a country. But in Germany the 
monarch selects his government, no politics are carried on without 
him, and against his wish no law can be passed, no administrative 
measure concluded. The bearer of the Crown is, under present 
conditions, actually responsible for the entire politics of the 
countiy. He is responsible for the fact that a third of the 
German population is treated as having no rights. This is our 


position: it is not to be expected that a large party should par- 
ticipate in an act of homage so long as the Crown really bears 
the responsibility for a policy of oppression and persecution of 
this party. Only when the German monarchs decide to elect 
governments which will respect the equality of all subjects of 
the state — only when they withdraw and remain neutral towards 
all parties — that is, reign in a really parliamentary way — will 
anti-monarchical demonstrations be discontinued. 


(From Wolfgang Heine's reply to his critics, as published in 
Vorwaerts, July 2, 1914) 

The ballot in its bearing upon the decision in the Socialist 
Reichstag gi'oup has already been discussed upon several occa- 
sions. Fifty voted for and 47 against seated [during 
the cheers for the Kaiser]. Later on 2 more positive and 8 more 
negative votes were added, making the final total 52 for and 55 
against the group, at the time having an enrollment of 110 
members. Even if all three of the uncast votes had been con- 
sidered as being in favor of remaining seated, contrary to all 
parliamentary practice, this faction would still have been in the 

From the accentuation of the republican character of the party, 
contrary to the opinion of the Leipzig Volkszeitung, no actual 
benefit will result. The republic is, indeed, an ideal state form, 
the only one, in fact, which may rationally be established, and 
thousands of things which we endure in Germanj'^ because of the 
monarchical type of government are not even encountered in the 
republic. But we must express rational ideas in a rational way, 
not with manifestations utterly inconsistent with rational thought. 

Besides, the chance of establishing a republic in the German 
Empire at present or in the near future is so beyond the bounds 
of possibility as to render absurd any effort to assign it as the 
goal of our present policy. There are no longer any German 
Social Democrats who still believe that the task confronting us 
to-day is the forcible overthrow of our present form of govern- 
ment; and yet this would necessarily be a presupposition in con- 


nection with the formation of the German republic. No, the 
party has different goals and tasks before it, tasks more near 
at hand and more practically conceivable in view of prevelant 
economic conditions and our present political power. Work in 
behalf of these aims is now most important. 

(See — for the position of the German Socialists on other ques- 
tions — chapters on " The High Cost of Living," " Unemploy- 
ment," " Taxation," " The General Strike," and " Government 



By the elections of 1914 the French Socialist Party — 
or, as it is officially named, the French Section of the 
Workingmen 's International — secured one-sixth of the 
total vote of the country and one-sixth of the members of 
the Chamber of Deputies (101 members). By this it be- 
came the second most important Socialist movement in 
the world, being exceeded only by that of Germany. Nor 
can its influence be gauged entirely by its votes, for it 
has given rise to semi-Socialistic groups, such as the Inde- 
pendent Socialists, represented by the present Premier 
Viviani. It has also given the country several ministers 
in former cabinets, such as Briand and Millerand, and 
finally it has tinged with its views on present-day politics 
the governing party in the country, the so-called Socialistic 

The following (from the Appeal to Reason) gives an 
idea of the growth of the Socialist movement: 

* ' There was some Socialist organization in France before 
1870, but the suppression of the Commune in 1871 broke 
it up and led to the death or exile of the leaders. In 1877 
the paper L'Egalite was founded to advocate the prin- 
ciples of Karl Marx and its program was adopted in 1879 
at a trade-union congress at Marseilles which adopted the 
name of 'Socialist Labor.' The party was unsuccessful 
at the election of 1881, and a few years later it was split 
up into five divisions. At the election of 1893, 40 Socialist 


deputies were elected by a popular vote of nearly half a 
million. At the general election of 1906, 54 Socialists were 
elected by a vote of 877,999, In 1910 the party grew to 
76 and the poll to 1,125,877, The party has since been 
reduced to 71, but the diminution is only apparent, for 
there are also, in the French Chamber, small groups of 
'Independent Socialists' and 'Republican Socialists,' as 
well as over 200 Eadical Socialists who sympathize more 
or less with the ultimate aims of Socialism. In reality the 
France of 1914 is more Socialistic even than Germany, 
although its forces are not concentrated into a great cen- 
tralized machine. It shades off on one side into syndical- 
ism and anarchism, and on the other side into radicalism. 
At the municipal elections of 1912. the number of com- 
munes captured by the Socialists was 282, while 5,530 So- 
cialists were elected." 


Precisely because it is a party of incessant combat, the Social- 
ist Party takes present developments and events into account. 
To-day as ever it is able to distinguish among the capitalist par- 
ties those which are most threatening to the working-class and 
to Socialism. It knows who have been the accomplices of Radical- 
ism in the Moroccan venture, who have been the defaulters in 
the struggle against the three years' law. 

But above all it abhors and denounces nationalism, imperial- 
ism, and militarism, which by their reactionary conceptions and 
cut-and-dried policy disorganize the defensive forces of the coun- 
try, dissipate the spirit of sacrifice and the citizens' desire for 
independence, insult both the people and the army by putting 
them in opposition to one another, burden production, unbal- 
ance the budgets, fatally increase taxes, dry up the resources 
of social reform, and deflect to sterile and profitless expenditure 

* This resolution was unanimously adopted by the Congress. 


the thousands of millions needed for the works of civilization 
that have been abandoned. 

It detests and denounces, above all, this reactionary national- 
ism, which is already a peril, and which, if it gets the mastery, 
will create war, will crush the working-class, and exile and mas- 
sacre its militants. 

It knows also the danger which menaces it in Briandism, the 
strike-breaker, father of the three years' law, double-faced ac- 
complice of the most retrograde militarism, parody of political 
organization which combmes in one fusion ticket all the powei-s 
of reaction conspiring against democracy and the proletariat. 
The Socialist Party knows that to-day, as yesterday, it stands 
alone in an uncompromising struggle for the guaranty of French 
independence and international peace by means of the organiza- 
tion of "an aiTued nation" [militia]. 

In fighting the three years' law it is fighting not only an absurd 
and disastrous law, but it is fighting all the political policy of 
ignorance, of reaction, of brutality, of which it is the effect and 
the symbol. 

Responding to the appeal of the International at Basle, in 
the effort begun at Berne, it wishes to go to the very root of 
European antagonisms in contributing its share to the common 
task of the proletariat of all countries and in working for that 
Franco-German " rapprochement " which will permit of the defi- 
nite alliance of France, England, and Germany, a necessary 
condition for the peace of the world. 

The Socialist Party pledges itself to electoral reform and the 
passage of proportional representation, and will give its efforts 
to this end all the more as it is a preparation for the constitu- 
tional revision and because it lessens the power of the reactionary 
Senate which has been and is so hostile to the workers. 

It is in this spirit, with the strength of all its political and 
social claims, that the Socialist Party goes into the battle. 

On the first ballot it will have in each department its candidate 
as bearer of its propaganda, of its entire doctrine, of its complete 

And on the second ballot, continuing the first, it will contribute 
all its strength to laying low the militarist i-eaction. Recognizing 
no allegiance except to the cause of the proletariat and to So- 
cialism, but not seisarating itself from the republic, from anti- 
clericalism, and from peace, wherever it has no direct chance of 


victory, it will g:ive its co-operation freely to the candidates of 
the two other parties in proportion to the vigor and thoroughness 
of their fight against the three years' law, against war, against 
jingoism, against the military and clerical coalition. 

It is to its responsible [branch] Federations that it refers with 
confidence the task of best determining the Socialist and the 
republican interest. 


(January 25-29, 1913) 

The representative of the Federation of Drome intro- 
duced a resolution providing for independent action in the 
first election, and that, in the second election. Socialists 
could support, if necessary, those radicals who pledged 
themselves to vote against the three-years' service law, and 
who were in favor of lay schools and tax reform. 

Compere-Morel declared that the Socialists must pursue 
independent action and refuse any fusion either with reac- 
tionaries or radicals. He favored a direct program of the 
re-establishment of the two-years' law, the adoption of the 
income and property tax, the protection of lay schools, and 
the revision of the constitution, together with the abolition 
of the Senate. As regards the second election, there were 
two possibilities of action. It was possible, he declared, 
to follow the resolution of Chalons, which permitted each 
federation to make an independent decision concerning 
its action during the second election, or to allow the 
national council to decide the matter. He favored inde- 
pendent action of each federation, as it would permit 
elasticity and adaptabilit3\ He attacked the proposal of 
Herve, who had advocated a fusion with the radicals in 
order to obtain a victory on the question of militarism. 
Compere-]\Iorel said that the autonomy of the local federa- 
tions should be limited by a declaration by the general 


body announcing the dangers of combinations with other 

Vaillant also opposed fusion. He proposed that the ad- 
ministrative commission should issue a proclamation before 
the elections which would appeal to the people themselves, 
and would show that the party was not only the party 
of the workers but the promoter of all progress. The 
second election does not differ greatly from the first, he 
declared, and the Socialist propaganda should also be used 
in the latter. The national council should have the con- 
trol over complicated cases. 

Herve made the point that militarism was the great 
issue, and that effectually to oppose this it was necessary 
that there should be a coalition of the parties of the Left. 
Herve said that he did not propose fusion but merely a 
hloc, in order that those parties who were united on this 
issue might act in a united manner and bring pressure to 
bear on the government that otherwise would be lacking. 
He read the resolution of the Paris Congress of 1900, which 
permitted co-operation with bourgeois parties in excep- 
tional cases, and said that such an exceptional case was 
then present. The Radical Left and the Socialists were 
really united on three demands : 1, opposition to the return 
to the three years' military service; 2, tax reform; 3, lay 
schools and an anti-clerical policy. Herve closed by saying 
that the Radical Party could not govern alone, and that 
if a Socialist did not support it, it would be compelled to 
seek help from the conservative and reactionary Right and 
would then continue to compromise the Republic. 

Albert Thomas opposed Compere-Morel's idea that gen- 
eral principles only should be advanced at the first election 
and that in the second election propaganda should be 
restricted to certain immediate demands. Thomas believed 
that, to have efficient propaganda, one must advance cer- 


tain actual problems, such as the military situation in the 
first election. If the situation concerning militarism was 
as extraordinary as Herve claimed, then he too would be- 
lieve in fusion ; but no such situation existed. 

Jaures declared that the discussion showed that the ques- 
tion of fusion was non-existent. Once before they had 
allied themselves with a fraction of the bourgeoisie in order 
to gain the ends of secularization, which was consistent 
with revolutionary tradition. Yet the government (Bri- 
and's) that resulted from it was weak in its unity and the 
overthrow of Briand was greeted with such joy by the 
Socialists that his successors were actually popular for 
a short time. Now we are in the midst of a social war, he 
declared, with such economic problems at stake that na 
revolutionary tradition can make united action possible. 

Jaures then took up the question of electoral reform and 
declared that, though this was still important, neverthe- 
less the war in the Balkans, which caused the growth in 
both nationalism and militarism, had pushed this issue 
back in relative importance. Electoral reform was neces- 
sary, but the way of attainment was not to be found 
through a coalition of parties differing from the Socialists 
on basic general principles. 

Jaures said there was really only one election : the first. 
If the Socialist propaganda was carried on clearly and 
powerfully in this election, an impression would be made 
upon those who did not vote for the Socialist candidate 
at the first election. The second election, he declared, was 
only a continuation of the first. Herve said that the So- 
cialists of France had theory on one side, while he pro- 
posed action on the other. Jaures declared that theory 
and action were not separated and that neither was possi- 
ble without the other. He pointed to the splendid record 
of the party, to the fact that it was the only party which 


had the courage to oppose the colonial policy of France, 
and was the first to recognize the reactionary effect of the 
Moroccan adventure upon the domestic and foreign politics 
of the country. Jaures declared that the power of inter- 
national Socialism was the reason for the strength of its 
fight against militarism. 
Jaures concluded: 

Many resigned themselves to the three years' service law be- 
cause they believed that the increased term -was the only pro- 
tection against invasion. But the Socialists would say to the 
people : " Your willingness for sacrifice has been misused ; those 
in power could not find a new international pi'ocedure, and 
indeed they did not wish to, because they use the army as a 
weapon against domestic enemies." (Stormy applause.) 

The deficit is so terrible that the bourgeois politicians are 
afraid to handle it. If it is necessary to raise a billion [francs] 
each year, the tax reform which has been promised for 30 years 
will probably be carried through, not to aid the farmer, not 
for social reform nor to better the educational system, but to 
cover the immense debt caused by militarism. If we show all 
this to the people, they will realize the effect of the three years' 
system and will understand that it will only increase the struggle 
of the nations. They will realize that Socialism alone, which 
unites all nations, is capable of guaranteeing unarmed peace and 
civilization. And when we have shown the people this solution 
"we shall in our struggle untangle all questions such as electoral 
reform, the revision of the constitution, and protection from the 
Senate. If all this is done in a first election, and if we have 
candidates with this program all over France, I am not anxious 
about the way in which we give our support and second election 
to other parties. The division of seats will be accomplished 
easily under the stimulus of the first election. How can you 
waver in your choice if it comes to that between a militaristic 
Clerical and a Radical who stands for the two years' sei'vice 
law? Recruiting work for Socialism is only possible when we 
do our republican duty. We should declare, although not setting 
up an exclusive compulsory clause : first, all fusions are pro- 
hibited which would bring Socialist votes to a militaristic reac- 
tionary; second, the Socialists should support those Republicans 


■who are opposed to the three years' service and who favor the 
lay school system. A central committee should decide excep- 
tional cases, so that the party might not be hindered in the re- 
forms which it advocates. 


We are not only a party of social transformation. We wish 
to give to the world of labor greater possibilities of carrying on 
the struggle, thus preparing it for the great work of social reno- 
vation which is incumbent upon it. We want to obtain, to seize, 
the maximum of political and social reforms obtainable under 
the present social system : 

Solid organization of national defense by means of an imme- 
diate return to the two years' law, and the progressive substitu- 
tion of a militia for the barracks army. 

Pacific external policy, extending the present narrow system of 
alliance by a Franco-German rapprochement. 

Development of public instruction by all possible resources. 

Organization of the democracy by means of proportional repre- 
sentation and the revision of the constitution. 

Fiscal justice by the taxation of incomes and of capital. 

A complete system of social insurance against old age, acci- 
dents, sickness, and unemplojTnent. 

Freedom to organize for all, including officials. 


At the first ballot (April 26) the Socialists elected 40 
members of the Chamber of Deputies, instead of 29 at the 
former first ballot. That is, in 40 out of 602 constituencies, 
the Socialists had a majority over all other parties to- 

At the second ballot, the Socialists, supported by the 
unified Radicals and independent voters, secured 61 more 
seats. But the Socialists gave the Radicals almost exactly 
an equivalent vote. So that the total number of seats won 


(101) is almost exactly the number to which the Socialists 
would be entitled under proportional representation. For 
the vote obtained, 1,400,000, is one-sixth of the total vote 
(8,329,000), just as the seats won are one-sixth of the total 
number of seats. 

The growth of the vote and of the number of Socialist 
members of the Chamber is shown in the following table: 

Year Votes Members of Chamber 

1906 878,000 54 

1910 1,110,000 76 

1914 1,400,000 101 

The following table shows the number of seats in the 
Chamber of Deputies held by the various parties since 

Parties 1902 1906 1910 1914 

Monarchists and Nationalists 121 100 86 68 

Progressists and Republicans of the 

Left 178 141 149 146 

Radicals and Socialistic Radicals 242 230 260 208 

Independent Socialists 12 20 32 29 

Socialists 37 54 76 101 

This table shows the growth of the parties to a degree 
tinged with Socialism. By adding together the first two 
party groups, we note the steady decrease of the con- 
servative members of the Chamber from 299, to 241, to 
235, and finally to 214. At the same time, if we add to 
the Socialists the Independents, who claim to be Socialists, 
we see a steady and corresponding increase of the 
extreme Radicals from 49 to 74, to 108, and finally to 130. 
(Figures taken from Le Radical, official organ of the 

In the previous Chamber, that of 1910, the Socialists 
had lost 9 members during the session, mostly through 


desertions. These and other former Socialist deserters 
were either defeated, like Zevaes and Allemane, or lost a 
large number of votes, like Briand and Millerand. 

The Socialist vote rose more rapidly in certain agricul- 
tural sections than in most industrial centers. In 9 agri- 
cultural departments (out of a total of 87 departments) 
the Socialist vote increased by 191,000 votes — or two-thirds 
of the total Socialist increase in the nation. The per- 
centage increase is still more disproportionate, as the popu- 
lation in these provinces is scanty. As will be seen from 
the following figures, these provinces now lead the country 
in their Socialism: Allier and Haute-Vienne, both being 
agricultural : 

Of every 1,000 registered electors 123 voted Socialist, as 
against 98 in 1910, 642 for the various other parties [677 in 
1910], while 235 did not go to the polls [225 in 1910]. In 32 
departments the Socialist vote is less than 5 per cent [in 1910 
there were 48], also in 32 departments the Socialist vote exceeds 
10 per cent [25 in 1910]. The heaviest Socialist vote was cast 
in the following departments: Hante-Vienne. 37.3 per cent; 
Allier, 33.5 per cent [where we lost two seats] ; Ardennes, 30.3 
per cent; Nord, 29.1 per cent; Seine, 25 per cent, and Pas-de- 
Calais, 23.2 per cent. In the South the party has done well in 
purely agricultural districts, viz. : Var, 28.2 per cent ; Gard. 22.5 
per cent ; Herault, 19.7 per cent ; also in the central department : 
Cher, 25.7 per cent ; Nievre, Yonne, etc., where there are great 
numbers of small farmers working their farms on sharing terms 
with the landlords [metayer system]. 

These are percentages of the total vote registered, not 
of the total vote cast. Partly on account of the agitation 
of certain labor union leaders and other syndicalists ab- 
stentions were larger than ever, having risen according to 
the Berlin Vorwaerts from 225 per thousand in 1910 to 
235 per thousand in 1914 (nearly twice the Socialist vote). 
It was to this cause that Vorivaerts attributes the defeat 


of the well-known conservative Socialist Rouanet. In his 
district 8,000 of the 27,000 voters failed to vote. 

Though the Socialists elected 40 members by a majority 
of those voting, they nowhere had a majority of the voters, 
according to Vorwaerts — a fact it accounts for as follows: 

This is explained, in the first place, by the composition of the 
population, the numerous groups of middling and small property 
owners. Even if the peasants are at all accessible to our propa- 
ganda, at the very best they offer greater difficulties than an 
industrial population. In the second place one must not under- 
value the importance of those other parties which in regard to 
freedom and democracy are decidedly radical, and still live up 
to the traditions of the Revolution. 

The middle-class problems that confront the French So- 
cialist Party are also indicated by the occupations of its 
members in the Chamber. In sharp contrast with the So- 
cialist group in the German Reichstag, only a little more 
than half are wage-earners — against nearly three-fourths 
in Germany. They are divided as follows: 

55 Wage-earners. 4 Merchants. 

6 Farmers. 9 Professors, etc. 

5 Teachers. 6 Lawyers. 

6 Doctors and Apothecaries. 1 Engineer. 
10 Journalists. 


(Editorial by Jean Jaures in L'Humanite. Reprinted in the 
Vorwaerts, May 17, 1914) 

The victory is the outcome of the new industrial advance of 
France and its economic development, which is taking place 
intensively and rapidly all over the country. In this manner we 
have conquered the five new election districts which were created 
through the duplication of the old, where the population had 
increased on account of the gi'owth of industry. Another cause 
of the growth of Socialism is the awakening of the republican 


democracy, which was deeply injured by the reactionary and 
dubious policies of the bourgeois politicians. The Socialists were 
the first to fis:ht these politicians. 

The electoral successes of our party, even those in the second 
election, were not the results of an artificial combination [with 
other parties]. It is true that the failure of the most advanced 
Radicals was in our favor, but in a nv;mber of election districts 
our votes helped the Radicals to election. The trend towards the 
Left, which showed itself all over the republican country, would 
not have been so noticeable had the Socialists not made their 
stren^h felt in 420 election districts. 

It is a fact that the number of our seats tallies exactly with 
the number of our votes. The 102 Socialist deputies represent 
a sixth of the House, just as the 1.400,000 Socialist votes repre- 
sent a sixth of the voters who had gone to the polls. "We are 
now sure that we have to work only to strengthen and develop 
our organization in order to be certain of the victories already 
realized, and to prepare in large measures for new conquests. 
The " libertarian " philosophy still exists in a few minds, but 
the sentiment that could be called negative anarchism is about 
to disappear. The best-known adherents of abstention from 
voting, its apostles in fact, have participated in the election 
struggle, publicly and officially. They declared that it was neces- 
sary to make use of the ballot on account of the military reaction. 
The syndicalists greeted the victories of the Socialists as a " vic- 
tory of civilization." The proletariat, encouraged, by the vic- 
tories already gained, believes that the gates of the future are 
open. It knows that we almost obtained a victory in 50 addi- 
tional election districts, and it is beginning now to count on the 
possibility of capturing the Government and of placing the po- 
litical power at the service of the working-class. As soon as the 
Socialists have broken the barriers of the Senate, which even 
to-day only retards the movement, instead of bringing it to a 
standstill, we will become the guiding power of the republic. 

The proletariat knows this well, and this alone is an event in 
our democracy of the greatest political and moral importance. 
What increases its importance is the fact that the peasants of 
France are beginning to come into the Socialist Party. They 
are passionate democrats and resist violently all clerical interfer- 
ence; they further detest the armament policies and are indignant 
about the difficulties with which the militarv reaction burdens 


them. On the other hand, they are becoming more and more 
convinced that national independence, which they have much at 
heart, finds its best guarantee in the organization of the armed 
nation. They further have to fight capitalism in the form of 
middlemen. As their narrow individualism is beginning to be un- 
dermined by the practice of the co-operative system, they are 
entirely prepared to enter into the democratic and republican So- 
cialist Party, and the day will come when they will join the 
masses of industrial workers under the flag of the social republic. 
Of course this will not come about without long and patient 
effort. We are not blind to the difficulties of the future nor to 
those of the present. In the beginning of July we will have a 
parliamentary situation of extreme complications to contend with. 
We will have to realize the fiscal, social, and military reforms 
which are contained in the latest decision of universal suffrage — 
in a very immature and embryonic state. At the same time we 
shall have to avoid any sign of confusion, any modification of 
the distinctive characteristics of our party. This task does not 
overtax the strength of French Socialism, for it has reached a 
sufficient stage of organization. But it will frequently be very 
difficult. More than once we shall have to pass through phases 
where the true motives of our actions will first not be evident. It 
will be necessary that our comrades from the International Bureau 
put their faith in us. But the movement is strong, the party 
healthy and as far removed from any kind of verbal radicalism 
as it is from compromise. It would be too early at present to 
draw up our plan of action. This plan will be discussed by 
our members of Parliament as soon as the Chamber assembles. 
But we hope to be able to render good service to social progress 
as well as to world peace, in which the German-French " rap- 
prochement " is an essential condition. 

(See also chapters on "Agriculture," "Unemployment," "The 
High Cost of Living," "The Drink Question," "The Labor 
Unions," "Militarism," "Municipal Socialism.") 



It is impossible to show accurately the recent growth of 
the Belgian Socialist Party either in membership or in 
the number of votes obtained. The votes may be gauged 
roughly, however, by the number of seats obtained in the 
Chamber of Deputies: 

In 1900 33 Socialist deputies 

" 1902 34 " " 

" 1904 28 " " 

" 1906 30 " " 

" 1908 34 " " 

" 1910 35 " " 

" 1912 39 " " 

" 1914 40 " " 

In 1900 the Chamber had a total of 166 members j it 
now has 186. 

The increase of the Socialist vote cannot be shown be- 
cause of amalgamation with the Liberals in a number of 
districts in 1912. The election of 1914, however, indicated 
a gain of nearly 10 per cent for the combined opposition, 
while the Catholics lost 5 per cent. As the Socialists main- 
tained their candidates in the latter election, their vote 
could be reckoned separately and was considerably more 
than half of the opposition. It was also calculated that 
the majority of the voters had become oppositional, al- 
though only half of the country had an election in this year. 
Owing, however, to the inequality of election districts, each 



Catholic had less than 14,000 votes and each opposition 
candidate more than 16,000. The Catholics preserved their 
control of the Chamber — though losing their majority. 
(The votes referred to are still plural votes — as explained 
below under the caption General Strike.) 

It is impossible to give the party membership, because 
members of Socialist trade-unions and co-operative are 
reckoned together with members of purely political organ- 
izations. In 1913, for example, there were 270,000 members 
of the three kinds of organizations, but less than 16,000 
or 5.6 per cent of these were members of political groups. 
While having some advantages, this system also has its dis- 
advantages and is now being remodeled. While the close 
relation between Socialist unions and the Socialist Party 
is to be maintained, the latter is to have a more or less 
separate organization, more similar than at present to other 
countries (see below). 

If we judge the growth of Socialism by that of the So- 
cialist unions, this growth has been especially rapid of late. 
The following statement concerning this development was 
made by the Belgian leader, Vandervelde (in The Metro- 
politan Magazine) : 

The great bulk of the union men who recognize the class 
struggle are affiliated with the Union Commission, whose rapidly 
increasing strength is shown by the following figures : 


In 1905 34,000 

In 1910 69,000 

In 1911 77,000 

In 1912 116,000 

In 1913 131,000 

If one takes into account the whole number of industrial 
workers of the country — 1,200,000 men, women, and children, of 
whom it might be possible to organize 800,000 — the percentage 


of organized working-people with Socialistic tendencies is still 
too small. 

The sudden increase of membersliip in 1912 was due to 
preparation for the general strike for equal suffrage in 
1913, and the increase in the latter year within a few 
months after the strike is another evidence of its popu- 
larity and success among the working-classes. From 1908 
to 1911, when the union movement was chiefly economic, its 
growth had been very slow. 


(From Vorwaerts) 

"The elections of 1912, as is known, were 'fusion elec- 
tions.' The Liberals and Socialists together were to take 
political clericalism by storm. The result is remembered: 
the desertion of the moderate and floating elements of 
Liberalism to the clerical government; IM. de Broqueville 
returned to Parliament with 16 majority instead of 6 as 
previously. These experiences have brought this advantage 
that they allowed principles and interests to come into clear 
expression again in an election — in which, for Socialists at 
least, it is a question not only of a political program, but 
equally of the visibility of principles and ideals. A number 
of election meetings in which Liberals and Socialists came 
into serious conflict and even to blows, allowed the opposi- 
tion between the two parties to be seen in all its acuteness, 
and the speeches on both sides, robbed of their fusion 
glamour, appeared before the voters in the guise of pure 
class conflict. 

"The abandonment of the fusion policy, of course, has 
in no way lessened the intensity of the electoral struggle 
against clericalism and the clerical majority — certainly not 
in the Socialist, and scarcely in the Liberal camp. 


"Though the election covered only one-half the country, 
the Government's majority fell from 16 to 12. The So- 
cialists gained 1 and the Liberal opposition, 3 votes. The 
gain in opposition votes has already been referred to. 

"The election means a condemnation of the tax-policy 
of the scandalous and ruinous waste of the majority, its 
costly militarism, and above all, of the very school law upon 
which the majority based its hopes of success and of in- 
creased strength. 

"In their calculation of success, the clericals also relied 
confidently upon the issue of the general strike. The 
clerical organs claimed incessantly that the general strike 
was the cause of the economic crisis! But this plot also 

' ' The election has borne out absolutely the view of those 
who opposed the Liberal-Socialist fusion policy at the time 
of its enforcement, on the ground that it would damage 
both of the allies, without accomplishing its purpose — the 
overthrow of the clerical majority. This time there was 
common action of the two parties in two instances only. 
At the same time both parties gained votes in nearly every 
constituency. ' ' 

The manifesto of the Labor Party (the Socialist Party) 
after the elections thus commented on the election re- 
sults : 

The head of the Cabinet himself [de Broqueville] said : " There 
is but one normal, regular way to bring about any change in 
the very practical situation that confronts us: the body of 
electors must speak . . . and then, if the electoral body declares 
itself, there will be an exact indication for every loyal person 
to follow." 

Well, the electors have given that indication this 20th of May 
in a striking manner. 

The figures of the election show that if the results of 1912 
and 1914 are added togethei-, the three opposition parties which 


had an equal suffrage for their platform obtained 1,327,887 votes 
against 1,321,848 votes for the government candidates. 

It is not only the actual majority ( f the country, it is the legal 
majority, the majority of plural votes which condemns the plural- 
ity system. . . . 



[It will be seen from these extracts that it is proposed to 
take the party from the control of the labor unions and 
to give it a more or less independent political organization, 
more like most other Socialist parties] : 

The project proposes two kinds of organizations which can be 
affiliated with the Labor Party, and defines their functions as fol- 
lows: (a) political organizations, (b) economic organizations. 

The purpose of this change is to brmg about the creation of 
organizations specifically devoted to political propaganda, the 
need of which is being more and more felt. (See Introductory to 
"Belgium" above.) 

By specific political propaganda we mean the systematic dis- 
tribution of Socialist publications, propaganda through the press, 
the sale of pamphlets, the organization of political meetings and 
lectures. . . . 

Members who are especially interested in political questions 
ought to have an oi'ganization where they can discuss and develop 
their general knowledge along that line. Up to the present, with 
only few exceptions practically, the political propaganda has 
been carried on either by a central committee composed of dele- 
gates from all the various gi-oups of the party and having its 
headquarters in the commune, or by a single one of these groups, 
a labor union, a co-operative society, or a mutual benefit asso- 

We certainly ought to confess that, although this situation was 
satisfactory and gave good results until recent years, this is no 
longer the case, and at present we must perfect our organizations 
if we wish to maintain and improve the positions gained. While, 
on the one side, the need for a permanent form of action is 


becoming greater and greater from the political standpoint, our 
economic organizations are more and more absorbed in their 
own affairs and cannot guarantee a sufficient political propaganda 
except to the detriment of their own activities. ... 

[The commission, while demanding a certain degree of 
separation between party and unions, nevertheless recom- 
mended that the unions be permitted to continue to act 
''within the party," which gave rise to the following dis- 
cussion] : 

Comrade Vandersmissen, representing the commission appointed 
last year, has the floor. He declares : " Our pr-esent party statutes 
are, for the most part, over twenty years old; the trade-unions 
are losing their local character more and more. They are begin- 
ning to extend over large industrial centers. They are no longer 
in a position to carry on political propaganda. The same thing 
can be said of the co-operative associations. The concentration 
of co-operatives is advancing. It is impossible to develop political 
activity in communal territories without a special [political] 
organization. Political action is necessary. The financial re- 
sources of the party must be increased. More and more is de- 
manded of the national council of the party. We can no longer 
depend on extraordinary and voluntary contributions." As to 
representation at the yearly congi-ess, Vandersmissen demands 
that not groups, but federations, should have the right of repre- 

Brouckere speaks at length on the method of organization in 
Germany, England, France, and Italy. He speaks against the 
proposed system of party cards. This would lead to a sort of 
plural vote. It would keep out the non-union men. Those who 
cannot be organized in trade-unions must be allowed to pay their 
dues to one of the political groups. 

Brouckere proposes the following resolution : 

The Congress authorizes the general council of the party to 
lay before the next congress an outline of the statutes in a form 
that will embody proposals made at this congress. Comrade 
Vandersmissen accepts this proposal. 

(See also " The General Strike" and " Education.") 



The greatest turning-point in the history of the Italian 
Socialist Party occurred in 1912 when four of its members 
in the Chamber of Deputies — including its most noted 
orator, Bissolati, and the editor of L'Asino, Podrecca — 
were expelled from the party because of their compromis- 
ing attitude on the war in Tripoli (see below). Sixteen of 
the 39 Socialists in the Chamber then formed a new Re- 
formist Party — which has grown both in membership and 
in representatives in the Chamber, but less rapidly than the 
regular or revolutionary party. 

The growth of the party before the split — on account of 
internal friction and the struggle with the Syndicalists — 
had become somewhat discouraging. It was as follows : 

1900 19,000 members 

1902 37,000 

1904 45,000 

1908 40,000 

1910 30.000 

1912 25,000 

Immediately after the split an improvement began, 
though it must be attributed in part to the enthusiasm 
aroused by the first election under an approximately equal 
manhood suffrage. 

From the official report in 1914 it appeared that since 
July, 1912, when the Reformist Socialists (group Bissolati) 



were compelled to leave the party, the membership had 
steadily increased from 28,689 (July, 1912) to 30,936 (De- 
cember, 1912), 37,000 (December, 1913), and stood at over 
49,000. In 1913 the percentage of the total vote going to 
the regular party rose from 10 to approximately 21 per 
cent, in spite of the fact that the new party received over 
4 per cent of the total vote. 

The increase of the vote of the whole party is as follows : 

Year Votes Deputies 

1892 26,000 6 

1900 175,000 32 

1904...*. 320,000 27 

1909 339,000 40 

1913 1,160,000 72 (out of 508) 

The large number of deputies elected in 1900 was due 
partly to a fusion with the Radicals. In 1913 the vote and 
representation in the Chamber of Deputies were divided 
between two Socialist parties, the increased vote being 
partly due to the extended suffrage. 

The attitude of the party toward the war may be under- 
stood from the following declaration : 


Workers ! At this moment the Socialist Party reminds you that 
the colonial war, which was prepared with unparalleled astute- 
ness by a band of pirates of high finance, has had for champions 
all the Italian bourgeoisie, from the Clerical to the Democrat, 
driven by nationalist madness. We ask that those who desired 
this terrible war should suffer its consequences now. The workers 
who have already paid for the foreigia insanity a far too heavy 
tribute in victims and in blood should prepare at once to ask 
for an account at the time of the electoral fight from those who 
are responsible for the horrors of war. The Socialist Party, 
faithful to the ideal of the international proletariat, calls on 


the laboring class of Italy to fulfill their sacred task and demand 
a rendering of accounts. 


Although the attitude of the majority of the party to- 
ward the war was an uncompromising one, nevertheless 
there was an important minority that wished to temporize 
on the ground that it was inopportune, while the country 
was at war, to abide by the decisions of the majority. This 
division of opinion became serious. 

At the Party Congress in July, 1912, a motion to expel 
the four opportunist deputies, Bissolati, Bonomi, Cabrini, 
and Podrecca, was carried by a vote of 12,556 against 9,883, 
with 2,072 abstaining. 

The Socialist Party proper, in order to make their gen- 
eral attitude clear, adopted the following statement, pro- 
posed by Lerda: 

The Congress, after discussion as to the proper program and 
tactics for the party in the political elections : 

First of all, reaffirms the fundamental doctrine of the class 
struggle as the theoretical basis and practical guide for all So- 
cialist action ; and 

Considers that the Socialist Party cannot but be, on account 
of its essentially revolutionary character, a party of agitation 
and education, never a government party, and proclaims that for 
the logical continuity and fighting efficiency of the party it is 
absolutely necessary to put an end to the system of local autonomy 
by intrusting to the executive committee [la Direzione] elected 
by the Congress the interpretation and the execution of the de- 
cisions of the Congress; and 

Declares it to be incompatible with the principles, the methods, 
and the ultimate aims of Socialism, that those persons should 
remain in the party who accept Socialist pai'ticipation in power, 
or who share the conception of the new Social Democracy [that 
looks to the collaboration of classes in political-economic matters] 
and have approved the oresent military-colonial undertaking; and 


Declares that all support to the schemes of the Government is 
opposed to the fundamental theories of Socialism and to the 
interests of the proletariat, and claims for the party the right 
to exact from all its members, including deputies, a strict observ- 
ance of the decisions of the Congress; and 

Reaffirming the anti-monarchical character of the party, lays 
it down that, in the coming political elections, the method of no 
compromise [il metodo intransigente] must be followed, as the 
logical and necessary corollary from the theory and practice of 
the class struggle, which does not permit solidarity of interest 
between the ruling class and the servant class; and, in conse- 
quence, decides to have in the coming elections in every electoral 
district its own candidacies, of persons who have been regularly 
inscribed in the party for at least five years, giving permission 
to the executive committee to authorize the sections to take part 
in ballotings for candidates of other parties; and 

Resolves to shape the electoral propaganda according to purely 
Socialist principles, but pledges its own candidates to strive in 
Parliament for that program of reforms which the proletariat 
in its economic organizations desires and claims. 

The expelled deputies and their adherents formed a new 
party, the Socialist Reformist Party, whose principles were 
formulated by Bonomi, at a congress held in December, 
1913, as follows: 

Reforms should be formulated in relation to the economic and 
political forces of the working-classes and of the forces opposed 
to them. The party adheres to the proletarian International, 
and assumes the task of educating the people in the feeling 
of solidarity, but not without taking into account, for the sake 
of the defense of the national whole, the actual conditions of 
international life, with the hope that the success of the working- 
class movements in the greater states of the world will make 
possible a general, simultaneous disarmament. We have no 
prejudice against the democratic parties; whether we are to keep 
clear of those parties or to adopt a policy of alliance will depend 
on whether or not the respective programs are similar. An 
accord in a common opposition, or in suppoi't of an accepted 
measure of the Government, shall be made or revoked according 
to circumstances; and it is understood that in the laboring-class 


those categories are also included which do not come under the 
head of wage-earners but approximate to the type of the little 
working-class proprietors. 


In 1913 the elections were held under the enlarged fran- 
chise, and many questions of how best to approach the new 
voters were discussed and settled. 

a. Tlie Action of the Executive Committee 

At a meeting of the executive committee of the party, July 16, 
the following electoral platform was adopted : 

The executive committee of the Italian Socialist Party, having 
considered the coming electoral struggle, 

Confirms and reasserts the tactics and the policy of no com- 
promise whatever adopted by the Congress at Reggio Emilia, and 
by the former meetings of the executive committee, and 

Decides to use the period of electioneering first of all to lay 
befoi-e the millions of proletarians called on to vote, for the first 
time, the whole Socialist program in its methods and in its aims, 
explaining the value and the part of parliamentary action in the 
whole work of the Socialist Party, in order not to deceive the 
masses nor to let them be deceived ; and 

Holds that the coming parliamentary Socialist action, to which 
we ask popular adherence, must set forth, besides a resolute and 
continual affirmation of Socialist principles, 

(1) A firm and systematic opposition to the policy of colonial 
A-entures and military budgets; 

(2) A customs policy frankly free trade, especially in view of 
the renewal of the commercial treaties, and in strict opposition 
to industrial and agrarian protectionism; 

(3) Social legislation that shall not consist only in partial and 
ephemeral reforms, but shall resolutely deal with the more serious 
problems of the industrial and agricultural life of the pro- 
letariat ; 

(4) A policy of taxation and expropriation that shall serve 
to fill the deficit caused by the war, throwing the whole burden 


on the capitalistic classes, and that shall permit the destination of 
a thousand millions of lire to provide means for the social 
projects we demand ; and 

(5) An educational policy that shall give to the new genera- 
tions of the proletariat the means and methods of obtaining a 
large, modern culture, releasing it from illiteracy. 

b. The Second Ballot 
(From Vorwaerts' Report after the First Ballot had been taken) 

"The Socialist Party called upon its members to sup- 
port those candidates who took a stand against the Tripoli 
war and pledged themselves in writing to stand against the 
increase of military burdens. The resolution of the party 
executive mentioned these candidates by name. Among 
them are three Republicans. The Socialists also supported 
the Reformist Socialists, with the sole exception of Ferri, 
who could not be considered. Finally the party executive 
demanded the support of the Liberal Pinchia, who wrote a 
book against the war, and of Prince Caetani, who voted 
against annexation. By a bare majority the executive 
also favored the support of the former Socialist, Labriola, 
in Naples. 

"The Reformist Socialists supported the Socialists in 
every instance; the Republicans abstained from voting 
where there was a Socialist candidate; the Radicals, no- 
where supported by the Socialists, everywhere gave the 
Socialists their support." 


Electors of Italy! 

The events of the last two years have demonstrated that it is 
vain to hope from the Government parties a relief from the 
evils of our present social life. 

While, in face of the development of capitalistic civilization. 
Socialistic aspirations towards the regime of justice and equality 


have become the onlj' hope of all the exploited laborers in our 
country, war, the execrable war of conquest, before which all bow 
down, has upset, by the insatiable exigencies of militarism, the 
proposals of better things and of civil progi-ess that you pro- 
claimed five years ago. War has devastated all our national life; 
in politics it has given the predominance to the regime of the 
sword, to the omnipotence of the police, to the encroachment of 
the church ; in economics it has increased the high cost of food, 
the low rate of wages, chronic lack of employment, the difficulty 
of business; everywhere it has sown sorrow, tears, and sacrifice. 

The Government statement for the dissolution of the Chamber 
may extol the fiscal absorption of the finances of the state as an 
index of national prosperity, but it ought to acknowledge the 
neglect of public hygiene, the increase of juvenile delinquency, 
the persistence of illiteracy, the hopeless condition of the peasants 
of southern Italy, and the fact that social conflicts become sharper 
and more widely extended. 

The enlargement of the suffrage has multiplied your strength 
and you have greater power at your disposition to defend your 
rights, your liberties, your lives and those of your families. 
Make use of such power to refuse your vote to all those parties 
and to all those candidates who move in the orbit of the state 
and its institutions; keep it for our party, which alone has 
declared a wish to fight against war, against mihtarism, against 
the reaction, whether lay or ecclesiastical, of the present political 

Fellow workmen! 

Parliaments are the instruments par excellence of bourgeois 
dominion : we send to them our political representatives, not for 
the purpose of co-operating with the class that lives by exploiting 
labor and accumulating capital, but in order to maintain in the 
face of the nation the interests and the aspirations of the pro- 
letarian class. For this reason our candidates do not present to 
you a program of illusory, homeopathic reforms — the constitu- 
tional opposition promises 30 centesimi [6 cents] pension to old 
and crippled laborers — but they assert the necessity of a systematic 
continuous legislative struggle against armaments, against pro- 
tectionism, against the parasitical classes of the state and of the 
church, for expropriation by taxation, for a greater conquest of 
proletarian rights, for universal suffrage of men and women. . . . 



(From The New Statesman) 

"The number of parliamentary electors has been in- 
creased from 3,247,000 to 8,635,000. The third reading 
[of the bill to increase the number of electors] was carried 
by 284 to 62 in a Chamber of 508 deputies, 

* ' The Clericals were generally regarded as likely to profit 
by it, and it has been widely suggested that it was part of 
the price which the Government had to pay for clerical 
support in the Tripoli war ; but though the increase of the 
electorate may be an electoral advantage for the moment, 
it is doubtful whether the Vatican regards it with real 

"To understand the situation one should remember that 
the unification of Italy was the work of the Liberal bour- 
geoisie of the towns. In the country districts the peasantry 
could not be trusted with a vote. It was therefore a po- 
litical necessity in the early days of Italian unity to restrict 
the suffrage, and this was effected to some extent by a 
number of small property qualifications, but far more 
drastically by a really strict educational test. 

"As an educational test is often recommended by poli- 
ticians of a certain school, it may be well to note its results 
in Italy, where ... it was introduced not to strengthen 
but to preclude reaction. With equal electoral districts 
based on population, the restricted suffrage produced 
startling differences in the number of electors in the vari- 
ous constituencies. In prosperous urban or semi-urban 
districts in the North the number of electors may have been 
three or four times as great as in the rural constituencies 
in the center and South, and the difference between town 
and country was further aggravated by the Papal injunc- 


tion to Catholics not to vote, which was far more effective 
in rural districts. In the great mass of constituencies the 
independent electors were far too few to defeat the gov- 
ernment candidate, backed by the disciplined army of low- 
paid government officials, carefully trained by the Prefect, 
upon whom they depended for a career. . . . 

"This explains the absence of strong political parties 
based on ideals and principles, and the degradation of po- 
litical life. The fate of governments did not depend on 
outside public opinion, but on their power to control the 
elected deputies, upon whom the arts of political corrup- 
tion had to be freely exercised. There was another serious 
result, in that every government has in the end to pay some 
attention to public opinion, and as the only public opinion 
which could make itself heard was that of the North, suc- 
cessive governments have been compelled to have regard in 
their fiscal legislation mainly to the interests of the North, 
always the richest portion of Italy and the least in want of 
government assistance. This is the explanation of the high 
import duties to protect the industries and such agricul- 
tural produce as is peculiar to the North, e.g., the grain of 
the Lombard Venetian plain and the beet-sugar of the 
Emilia; and the southern agriculturist is only just begin- 
ning to understand why he has to pay such high prices 
for his agricultural machinery, and why he is unable to 
buy the cheap sugar which would enable him to utilize 
the fruit crops on which he mainly depends. 

' ' The political problem of Italy is to combine in the same 
principles of administration the wealthy progressive North 
and the destitute and stagnant South. . . . 

"In considering the electoral prospects of the various 
parties, not always clearly defined, we find that the last 
Chamber consisted of 19 Republicans, 37 Socialists, 54 
Radicals, and 420 so-called Constitutionalists. The Repub- 


licans and Socialists may be regarded as in permanent 
opposition to the Government. They appeal mainly to the 
lower middle-class and the literate artisans of the town. 
The Republicans are a dying group with a creed sadly 
lacking in actuality, and they are not likely to increase 
their numbers. The Socialists have a future, and may in 
time convert the new electorate; but while they alone of 
all parties have a program they are very divided as to the 
methods of attaining it, and their very uncertain attitude 
towards the war will not help them. The Radicals are 
usually in opposition to the Government, but support it 
when its measures are opposed by the more conservative 
groups of Constitutionalists. They have no real program, 
and are difficult to distinguish from the more advanced 
Constitutionalists, except in that they are more markedly 
tinged with anti-clericalism. The Constitutionalists com- 
prise a number of heterogeneous elements, some few Con- 
servatives usually in opposition to the Government, soixie 
thirty Clericals, and forty more who, though not Clericals 
in name, are quite aware that they owe their election mainly 
to clerical support. The remainder can usually be relied 
on to support the Government. The system of government 
is that of parliamentary bargaining, in which Giolitti, the 
outstanding personality in Italian politics, is an adept. 

"The Clericals prefer to call themselves Catholics, but 
that terminology conveys the wholly fallacious impression 
that they alone are practicing Catholics. On the other 
hand, the term Clerical does not mean that they are in 
favor of the restoration of the temporal power, and outside 
Rome, where the conditions are peculiar, there are very 
few Clericals who desire it. They have ideals and enthusi- 
asm, but no program. As a rule they support Giolitti, and 
in many cases will obtain government support at the polls. 

"The Government boast that they have no program, but 


rely upon their record, and they have some grounds for 
doing so. The war was immensely popular, and having 
regard only to national considerations it at last welded the 
country into a nation and made the extension of the suf- 
frage a safe policy. Apart from the administration of the 
war the Government can point to a long list of democratic 
and social measures, the extension of the suffrage, the 
introduction of a more humane penal code, the abolition of 
the hateful domicilio coat to, the state purchase of the rail- 
ways, the unification, under Government control, of the 
maritime services, the transfer to the state of life insur- 
ance, and a great number of measures dealing with public 
health, education, afforestation, and local government gen- 
erally. Though the credit may not be wholly his, Giolitti 
can point out that since he became the virtual ruler of 
Italy some twelve years ago there has been, in spite of an 
unprecedented earthquake and a war, an extraordinary in- 
crease of prosperity. Flourishing industries have in the 
interval been firmly established and the value of agricul- 
tural land in the North has nearly doubled, and though 
the South has not kept pace, it nevertheless shows sub- 
stantial improvements in all directions. ' ' 


The elections were held under the new election law that 
gave the vote to the overwhelming majority of male adults 
instead of restricting it to less than one-half, as in the 
elections of 1909. 

According to the new electoral law of 1912-13, practically 
all adult male Italians were given the right to vote at 
parliamentary elections. More specifically, this right of 
suffrage may now be exercised by three classes of citizens : 
(1) all literate male Italians who are 21 years old; (2) 


illiterates who have reached the age of 30 ; (3) all who have 
served in the Italian army or navy, even though they have 
not attained the age of 21. Thus the number of possible 
voters has been increased from less than 3,500,000 to more 
than 8,500,000— an addition of over 5,000,000 illiterates. 

However, only a little more than half the total vote was 
cast, that is, less than 4,500,000. Besides the usual motives 
for abstention, — inertia and indecision, — a considerable 
part of the non-voters were undoubtedly wage-earners 
reached by the widespread Syndicalist agitation in favor 
of a Socialist revolution by other means — by the general 
strike or insurrection. 

The Socialist vote is best measured — both on account of 
the new suffrage and because of the widespread abstention 
— by relative instead of by absolute figures. In 1909 the 
vote was 339,000. In 1913 the combined vote of the two 
parties which had been formed out of the old was 960,000 
for the regular party and 200,000 for the reformists. In 
1909 the Socialists had received only about 10 per cent of 
the total vote cast. In 1913 they received approximately 
25 per cent. 

In 1909 the Socialists elected 40 out of 508 members of 
the Chamber. In 1913 they elected 72. Of these 51 were 
regulars (formerly 24) and 21 were reformists (formerly 
16). In the face of this the increase of the reactionary or 
Clerical members from 20 to 33 has comparatively little 
significance, especially as it was accompanied by a similar 
increase of anti-clerical members, counting the Socialists. 

The Socialists, moreover, elected 36 members on the. first 
ballot, i.e., without Radical, Independent, or Reform So- 
cialist support. The Reformist Socialists elected 3 on the 
first ballot. 



a. From Article hij Oda Olberg (Rome) in Die Neue Zeit 

' ' The success of our party in this election was a pleasant 
surprise after our rather pessimistic expectations. Never- 
theless there are only very few cases that could be spoken 
of as a leap forward. 

"In the old Chamber of Deputies there were 8 Socialists 
from the Piedmont, in the new, 11, the vote having in- 
creased, in round numbers, from 86,000 to 150,000. Lom- 
bardy increased from 3 to 7 deputies (65,000 to 160,000) ; 
Venice, from 1 deputy to 4, 2 from districts which were 
once before in our possession (30,000 to 88,000 votes) ; 
Liguria, from 1 to 2 (19,000 to 36,000 votes) ; the Emilia 
and the Romagna, from 8 to 16 (62,000 to 155,000 votes). 
Upper Italy, therefore, in increasing its representation 
from 20 to 40 deputies, has grown in strength in about the 
same proportion as the country as a whole. In middle 
Italy, Tuscany had the largest increase, from 2 to 7 depu- 
ties (34,000 to 99,000 votes), the Marches held their 1 
deputy (14,000 to 30,000 votes), while Latium lost its 1 
Socialist representative (from 7,500 to 36,000 votes). 
Southern Italy and the Islands, where hitherto no Socialist 
had ever been elected, sent 4 Socialist deputies to the new 
Chamber. These seats were won in Naples, in Gallipoli 
(Apulia), in Torre Annunciata, the manufacturing suburb 
of Naples, and in Iglesias, the center of the lead industry 
in Sardinia. The vote in southern Italy shows an increase 
from 22,000 to 74,000. In the three districts last men- 
tioned our party had polled a large number of votes in 
past elections. 

"Our success was doubtless due to the new election pro- 
cedure rather than to any broadening of election laws. 


This new system of voting, which was looked upon, at first, 
with such great suspicion, has, as a matter of fact, given the 
popular vote a secrecy that was hitherto out of the question, 
"It is, however, far from my purpose to deny that the 
new election laws have given a wider and deeper signifi- 
cance to the Italian Socialist movement. It has fired the 
party to an unprecedented pitch of enthusiasm, and in- 
spired thousands upon thousands of meetings in which the 
Socialist message was carried out to the most forsaken 
hamlets of the nation. But the reward for this agitation 
will come to us only in future years." 

b. Berlin Vorwaerts — Correspondence 

"The disagreeable surprises for the bourgeoisie con- 
nected with this election fight will not end with the 52 
Socialist delegates that have been elected to the new house. 
Besides this number of the official party, 3 other Socialists 
were elected, namely Ciccotti, Altobelli, and Vigna (La- 
briola does not rank as Socialist or Syndicalist) ; also 2 
Syndicalists, de Ambris in Parma and Area in Calabria. 
The number of Reformists has grown from 15 to 23, an 
unpleasant surprise for the Government, because of elec- 
tion districts newly won by the Reformists in Sicily and 
southern Italy. Upon the whole, the Government realizes 
with astonishment that the new voters consider matters 
from different angles to those from which the old voters 

"It must be understood that our party suffered losses 
also ; the loss of the first Roman election district was most 
bitter and serious — bitter in so far as the district was won 
by a Clerical Nationalist, after it had been imagined for 
years that the Clericals in Rome were of no significance as 
a political power. Hand in hand with nationalism we see 


the workers of the Vatican appear upon the horizon. The 
loss is serious becau>se a Clerical Nationalist was also elected 
in the fourth district and the two losses defeated the 
famous "bloc," the anti-clerical administration of Rome. 
The municipal administration of the capital will now be 
given to a royal commissioner. After seven years of anti- 
clerical rule in Rome one does not care to see the Clericals 
again take hold of public affairs. 

"The elections will further show retirements in mu- 
nicipal administrations in other large cities, especially in 
Turin and Milan, where our party won three out of the six 
mandates. In both towns the city council has retired 
already. ' ' 


The Socialist parliamentary group at the reunion of its mem- 
bers, conscious of its power and of the duties that come to it 
from the great affirmation of Socialism made by the proletariat of 
Italy in the political elections, in spite of the violent acts of the 
Government, especially in the South, in spite of the corrupt 
practices done and tolerated in many election districts; 

Renews its unconditional adherence to the program of imme- 
diate action which the Socialist Party proclaimed during the 
election, condemning unreservedly the accursed Libian Affair, 
laying stress upon opposition to military expenditures, denounc- 
ing protectionist parasitism, and urging its abolition as speedily 
as possible; 

Declares itself firmly decided to set forth its work of uncom- 
promising opposition, and agitation of social and political prob- 
lems in Parliament and in the country, without suffering itself 
to be deceived by the usual promises with which the discourse 
by the Crown will be larded nor by the stratagems with which 
Giovanni Giolitti will continue his policy of dissolving the op- 
position ; 

And finally asserts that this line of conduct, inspired by its 


office of champion of the class struggle, will never induce it to 
confound its own specific activity with that of any other par- 
liamentary group whatever. 


Considering that the political situation, created by the Gio- 
littian coalition of all the bourgeois parties in the last general 
election, continues in the present government which rests sub- 
stantially on the same majority, to subserve the same interests; 
and that 

In face of the financial consequences of the war, till now con- 
cealed from the country, and of the imposition of militarism, 
in-econcilable with the growing needs of civilization, the proper 
mission of the Socialist Party is more than ever that delineated 
by the necessities of the defense of the proletariat, threatened 
to-day as it was yesterday by blood-sucking taxation and by the 
increase of the internal public debts which takes capital away 
from productive investment and brings back an economic crisis, 
lack of employment for workmen, and emigration; and that 

The silence of the Government upon the necessity of gradually 
reducing protectionism, proves that the present ministry is bound 
ever to the same plutocratic coalition ; and that 

These tendencies are confirmed by the maintenance of the 
financial provisions proposed by the preceding cabinet, while the 
masked threats to the liberty of economic action of the railway 
employees, and the insufficiency of the pledges of social legisla- 
tion, demonstrate the opposition of the Government to the most 
urgent claims of the laboring-classes as well as its ill-concealed 
reactionary spirit; 

The parliamentary group determines to persist energetically in 
opposition to the Government and to the majority, an opposition 
that should never serve the prearranged views of an insincere 


The Party Congress was held at Ancona in April; the 
resolutions proposed on the subjects of protectionism and 
militarism were passed as a matter of course, but the policy 


as to Freemasons and tactics in municipal elections was 
discussed with spirit and revealed considerable difference 
of opinion. 


Mussolini recommended the expulsion of the Freemasons. 
He said, that "even if the party lost many members 
through this action, this should not be a cause for worry. 
Socialism is only a problem of mankind inasmuch as the 
proletariat is the largest part of mankind. The Socialist 
in the freemason lodge suffers a change, just as an animal 
changes its skin in a cellar." (Applause.) 

"Under the present mistrust," Lerda declared, "it is 
impossible to live in the party. But it must not be for- 
gotten that reality demands its right: to-day the Masons 
are expelled, to-morrow the university men, etc., always in 
the service of an abstract idea, in the striving for absolute 
purity. The intention may be good, but the question is, 
will the results serve the cause of the proletarian ? ' ' Lerda 
in closing his speech pointed out the various functions of 
the party and explained that the Socialist conviction does 
not depend on a membership card of the party. 

The resolution passed was : 

The Congi'ess invites comrades who are in the Masonic Order 
to end all relations with that institution ; and 

Declares that it is incompatible for Socialists to enter and 
remain in the ]\Iasonie Order, and invites the section to expel 
those comrades who will not make their future conduct conform 
to the rules here laid down. 

The vote was : for expulsion, 27,378 ; for making a de- 
mand to withdraw, 2,296 ; for the motion which stated that 
this question does not concern the party, 2,485; and for 
the alliance of freemasonry and party, 1,819. 



(From several Vorivaerts dispatches) 

* ' The Executive Committee of the Italian Socialist Party 
has requested the deputies Raimondo, Senape, Lucci, and 
Sandulli, who stood and were elected as party candidates 
in San Remo, Gallipoli, Naples, and Torre Annunziata 
(near Naples), to resign. These deputies have refused to 
comply with the resolutions of the Ancona Congress. Rai- 
mondo and Senape, both being Freemasons, have not left 
the order, whilst Lucci and Sandulli have acted against 
the resolution on independent tactics in the municipal elec- 
tions. All four have therefore been expelled from the 
party, but have retained their seats. The executive can- 
not, of course, compel them to resign, but evidently wishes 
to test the feeling in the constituencies. 

"The decision of the party Congress of Ancona, which 
prohibited the conclusion of electoral alliances in municipal 
elections has, up to the present (May 16, 1914), caused the 
following branches either to leave the party or to announce 
that they would refuse to obey its decisions : Naples, Torre 
Annunziata, Caserta, Rivaroco, Legure, and 20 branches in 

''Furthermore, the following branches have refused to 
obey the decision of the Congress to exclude Freemasons: 
San Remo, Voltri, Ria, and Crevari. In all these places 
the party executive will proceed forthwith to found new 

"In explaining its reason for seceding from the party, 
the Naples branch agreed in principle with the non- 
compromise policy, but said that conditions in Naples and 
in southern Italy generally were so peculiar that it would 
not be possible to do any satisfactory work for Socialism 


and for the interest of the working-classes on the basis of 
the Ancona resolution forbidding alliances with non- 
Socialist groups and persons. The resolution concluded 
with an expression of hope that it would be possible later 
to rejoin the party. 

"The Socialist member for Gallipoli will also probably 
leave the party on account of the vote of the Congress on 
freemasonry. This vote and the measures to be taken have 
been before the parliamentary group, which has discussed 
it at two meetings. It was finally decided that the par- 
liamentary group had no power of expulsion, and that only 
the branch to which a member belonged had power to act 
in this matter. The members of Parliament who are Free- 
masons were therefore requested to make this known to 
their branches. It is stated that 14 of the Socialist parlia- 
mentary group are Freemasons, but that 12 of them would 
leave the order rather than the party." 

(See also chapters on "Municipal Socialism," "Tar- 
iffs," "The General Strike," "Militarism.") 




Russia has three distinct and flourishing movements of 
a Socialistic character. Delegates from the Social Revolu- 
tionary and Social Democratic parties are always present 
at the International Socialist Congresses and the sessions 
of the International Socialist Bureau. At international 
meetings of the Socialist members of Parliament repre- 
sentatives of a third movement, the Labor Party, were also 
admitted, and this movement is classed as Socialist in the 
publication of the Bureau. This so-called labor group, 
however, is in reality merely a more or less Socialistic 
peasants' party. But it has been in close league with the 
Socialists and still has immense prestige among the peas- 
ants in spite of the fact that the number of representatives 
of this group was reduced from over a hundred in the first 
Duma to 10 in the fourth. This reduction, be it said, was 
due largely to the change in the election laws and to police 
oppression, which is more effective in the country than in 
the towns. 

The Social Revolutionary Party has almost been driven 
out of open electoral activity. The central committees and 
permanent organization of the peasants' party — because of 
the vulnerability of rural agitation — have also been almost 
annihilated. The leading organized movement is therefore 



that of the Social Democratic Labor Party, — with its vari- 
ous factions and affiliated national groups. 


The suffrage in Russia is unequal, indirect, and com- 
plicated in many other ways. Nevertheless, the elections 
indicate the growth of the movement better than the mem- 
bership of the two Socialist parties, both of which have 
usually been "illegal" — even when not given over to vio- 
lent resistance to governmental despotism. Membership in 
these parties is usually a punishable offense. But voting 
for Socialist candidates — often undeclared, and only iden- 
tified by the voters through personal knowledge — is usually 
safe, in spite of police supervision and interference. 

In the face of steadily increasing electoral restrictions 
and police interference, however, the Dumas have become 
more and more oppositional until the last (fourth) Duma 
actually refused to approve the budget, the purpose for 
which it was created. This refusal was largely due, no 
doubt, to the persecution of the capitalist and business 
interests at the hands of the reigning bureaucracy, sup- 
ported by the military, ecclesiastical, and landlord caste. 
But it was also due in part to the rise of the Socialist vote 
among the middle classes of the cities and towns. 

On account of increasing governmental oppression the 
Socialists were unable to increase their delegation to the 
fourth Duma, though they re-elected the 14 representatives 
as in the previous Duma. 

These results indicate that under equal suffrage the So- 
cialists, together with the Laborites, would again sweep 
Russia as in 1907. For under the more favorable, but 
extremely undemocratic, electoral law of the second Duma 
(1907) the Socialists secured 101 and the Laborites 116 
out of a total of 504 deputies. The Socialists continue to 


hold the overwhelming majority of the wage-earners, and 
besides make steady progress among the poorer profes- 
sional classes and other elements of the lower middle 
classes of the towns. 

In six of the largest purely Russian cities, the electoral 
law reserves six representatives to the wage-earners. All 
six of those elected were Socialists. Eight other repre- 
sentatives were elected with the aid of the middle-class 
voters, and especially of those of persecuted nationalities. 
So in Warsaw the Polish and Jewish Socialists elected their 
common candidates with the help of other radical voters 
of their nationality, while a full delegation of Socialists, 
as usual, was returned from the Caucasus. So also other 
oppressed nationalities such as the Tartars and Letts tend 
to support Socialist candidates against the Government. 


The Social Democratic group in the fourth Duma num- 
bers 13 deputies. A representative of the Polish Socialist 
Party, not affiliated with the Russian Social Democratic 
Labor Party, has been admitted into the group with the 
right to vote on all questions pertaining to Duma matters. 
Thus the group has altogether 14 members. In many of 
their activities they are supported by the so-called "Labor 
Group," representing mostly peasants and having 10 depu- 
ties in the Duma. The Social Democratic and the Labor 
groups are looked upon in the Russian Parliament as the 
extreme Left, and are treated as such by the reactionary 
Right and conservative Center, the latter being the party 
in power. 

The 14 deputies composing the Social Democratic group 
are divided according to their occupations as follows : 


Workingmen 10 

Joui'iialists 2 

Bookkeeper 1 

Merchant ]. 

The Social Democratic deputies consider that they were 
elected by the votes of 1,300,000 workingmen. 

In the first session of the fourth Duma (November, 1912- 
June, 1913) the Social Democratic group acted as a unit, 
all the 13 members agreeing on the questions of tactics in 
the Duma, while still differing as to various party policies. 
The difference of opinion mainly centered around the same 
questions that have split the party. Some claim that the 
party must try to adjust itself to the present conditions 
in Russia and endeavor to do as much work as possible 
in the open, thereby being able to reach larger numbers 
of the laboring class. The old underground method of 
work, due to the changes in the Russian political and 
economic conditions, they claim, is but a waste of energy, 
and accomplishes nothing. The advocates of this policy 
are called by the opponents "liquidators." Seven out of 
13 deputies uphold this policy. On the other hand, the 
remaining six, comprising what is known as the Lenin fol- 
lowers in the Social Democratic group, consider the rest 
traitors to the cause of the revolutionary Social Democracy 
in Russia, for they believe that the only way left for the 
Russian Social Democratic Party to remain true is to go 
back to the old method of work — the underground method. 

At the beginning of the second session of the Duma 
(fall of 1913), these 6 members demanded from the 7 
other members that they as a unit shall have equal power 
to decide questions of tactics in the Duma activities with 
the other group, though the latter had a majority of 1. 
The majority group refused this and two separate Social 
Democratic groups in the Duma resulted. 


This split called forth protests from many of the workers 
in Russia, and resolutions were passed condemning the 
actions of the groups. It led to bitter internal strife and 
to discussions in the party press. . . . 

Hence the unsuccessful attempt of the German Socialist 
Party to bring unity between these different factions. 

The Social Democratic deputies missed no opportunity 
to speak on every subject under consideration. Their 
knowledge of facts and their fearless manner of presenting 
them from the tribune of the Duma began to worry the 
Government, particularly as their speeches were later 
printed in all the newspapers of the country, in accord- 
ance with the established custom of printing stenographic 
reports of all the sessions of the Duma. It often hap- 
pened that a Social Democratic deputy was stopped from 
continuing a speech or excluded from several sessions of 
the Duma for using disrespectful language or for other- 
wise conducting himself in a manner unbecoming a mem- 
ber of the Imperial Duma. When the Social Democratic 
deputy Petrovski, for instance, spoke in the Duma about 
the increase of accidents on the railroads, and placed the 
crime at the doors of the Government, he was excluded 
from the Duma for five days. 


(From an account by David Cummings in the New York Call, 
July 12, 1914) 

*' 'The only reform we can adopt in order to make the 
Senate a real defender of justice is to abolish the monarchy 
and establish in its stead a democratic republic. ' 

''It was in the course of the consideration of a bill 
relating to the reformation of the Senate that Tcheidze 
made the stirring revolutionary remark. In a fiery ad- 
dress he pointed out that the Senate, the highest tribunal 


in the country, is dominated by a small clique of the Czar's 
puppets, which tramples on justice and the rights of the 
people. He declared that the only workable reform would 
be the 'establishment of a democratic republic which' — he 
never had the opportunity to finish the sentence, because 
of the howling and shouting of the Black Hundred 

"The Duma, though black in its makeup, has been of 
great value to the revolutionary movement. It has, for a 
long time, been the only place where the few representa- 
tives of the revolutionary working-class could voice the 
sentiments of the oppressed people in Russia and let the 
civilized world know of the real status of affairs in the 
Czar's empire. It was the only place where free speech 

"But the Government evidently realized that the fre- 
quent disclosures made on the floor of the Duma by the 
few Socialists, of the oppression and persecution, which 
were being sent out broadcast by the representatives of 
the press, were not a desirable thing for the Government. 
And an attempt to curb free speech followed. 

"It was several days after Tcheidze made his revolu- 
tionary address that Maklakov, the Minister of Interna- 
tional Affairs, appeared in the Duma and demanded that 
Tcheidze be prosecuted for violating Section 129 of the 
code relating to sedition and treason. He also demanded 
that the Laborite (or Peasant Party) Deputy Kerensky 
be prosecuted on a similar charge. 

"The reports current are that the Cabinet approved of 
the proposed plan to prosecute Tcheidze, but that it was 
opposed to prosecuting Kerensky. But Minister Maklakov 
went to the Duma, it is said, at the behest of the Czar, who 
wanted both prosecuted. 

"This action of the Government not only aroused the 


indignation of the Socialist and Labor deputies, but also 
of some of the Conservative deputies. It had for a long 
time been the opinion that the deputies had a right freely 
to express their views on any subject under consideration, 
a right provided for under Section 4 of the rules of the 

"But to prevent the prosecution of Tcheidze, whom the 
Government wanted punished immediately, some of the 
deputies proposed that the Duma lay over the budget until 
that time when the bill relating to free speech was to be 
taken up. 

" 'We will say anything we wish to express, regardless 
of the punishments that may be inflicted on us,' began 
Kerensky. 'When we find it necessary to point out that 
the existing conditions lead to a new form of govern- 
ment ' 

"At this point Kerensky was called to order by Presi- 
dent Rodzianko, an Octobrist, who evidently feared that 
he, too, would be persecuted for permitting such a speech 
in the Duma, and requested Kerensky not to speak about 
the form of government. 

" 'We cannot have any respect for those who sing praises 
of the monarchy which ' 

"Here again Kerensky was interrupted with a request 
not to refer to the monarchy. 

" 'We have a right,' continued Kerensky, 'to express the 
opinion that against the monarchy we must put forward 
the ideal of a republic ' 

At this point President Rodzianko refused to permit 
Kerensky to proceed. 

"With a great deal of formality President Rodzianko 
opened the session the next day. The gallery was packed 
with government officials and an army of reporters. Quiet 
reigned in the Duma as the ministers, led by Premier 



Goremykin, entered and seated themselves in the Cabinet 

"President Rodzianko took up the proposal of the So- 
cialist and Labor group to postpone action on the budget 
until the free speech measure had been considered. 
Tcheidze was called upon as the first speaker. He pointed 
out that the Socialist deputies are always persecuted, and 
declared that the situation was becoming worse daily. 

" 'Of late we are prohibited from speaking in this 
tribunal about things that were spoken of even during the 
darkest periods of the reaction. No longer may we speak 
about a democratic republic. We cannot any longer speak 
about republican ideas.' 

' ' He was called to order by the president. 

" 'They won't let us speak,' continued Tcheidze, 'about 
the republican flag, the republican form. . . . Remember, 
sooner or later, we will come to a democratic rep ' 

"Here again he was called to order by Rodzianko. As 
he attempted to continue, the president stopped him, amid 
the shouts of the Black deputies. . . . 

"But the real dramatic incident occurred when the So- 
cialist Tschechenelli was asked for a statement. 

" 'What is the use of talking about free speech when 
you have no idea what freedom is ?' he began. ' Slaves you 
are and you will remain. But on the other side of the 
Tauris Palaea (the place where the Duma has its quar- 
ters) stand the masses. They will abolish your sys- 
tem ' 

"He was interrupted by the president several times, 
and he left the tribunal for his desk. 'Here I will remain,' 
he exclaimed. 'Throw me out bodily if you want to.' It 
was at this point that the soldiery was sent for to exclude 
Tschechenelli, who left, exclaiming: 'If you practice force 
I will leave here, vou band of slaves.' 


* ' During this incident Vice President Kohevalov left the 
Duma, slamming the door behind him. 

"Prince Gelovanny, a Laborite deputy, was next 
called. 'We know that you, the reactionary majority, will 
conquer us. But we assert that the people are with us 
and therefore I have joined the obstruction,' he said. 

' ' Socialist Deputy Kerensky then was called. ' "We know 
very well that in the struggle we are engaged in against 
these gentlemen (pointing to the Cabinet members) you 
will be on their side. But we are certain that, though we 
are persecuted, we are the only true representatives of the 
Russian people. As long as the illegal government tram- 
ples on the rights of the people we will carry on the fight 
against the present system. We know what awaits us, but 
we are willing to sacrifice ourselves in order to establish 
a government that the people will manage on the principles 
of universal suffrage.' 

"He refused to leave the Duma and the soldiers were 
ordered to exclude him. He left, exclaiming: 'Force 
reigns here, but freedom will be the victor.' 

"With the Socialist Petrovsky the same scene was en- 

These events were followed, during the next month 
(July) by the remarkable general strike of which an ac- 
count is given in Mr. Walling 's volume on The Socialists 
and the War. 


In 1907 the Socialist Party elected 80 deputies (9 of 
them women) ; in 1911 the deputies were 86 (9 women) ; 
and in 1913, 90 Socialists were elected, the other four par- 
ties numbering 29, 28, 28, and 25. It casts approximately 
40 per cent of the total vote. 



(From Die Neue Zeit, Berlin) 

"The development of the Finnish Socialist Party has 
taken place up to the present in two curves. At the found- 
ing of the party in 1899 it had 9,446 members. This num- 
ber sank in 1901 to 5,894. Immediately after the revolu- 
tion — 1906 — this membership increased to 85,000. Then it 
decreased again and in 1911 the party had 48,406 mem- 
bers. The year 1912 again brought an increase in member- 
ship to 51,798 members. 

"Of a different character from the increasing and de- 
creasing curve of the membership are the inner life and the 
inner strength of the party. For instance the number of 
organizations which have joined the party has increased 
from year to year. This number grew from 64 in 1899 to 
1,552 in 1912. The number of workingmen's clubhouses, 
which the Finnish comrades must provide themselves with, 
since Finland has no restaurants with meeting or assem- 
bly rooms, increased in the same period from 14 to 796. 
There are more clubhouses here than there are churches. 

"The libraries in the clubhouses also grow from year 
to year. In the year 1899 these contained 3,312 volumes, 
while in 1912 this number had increased to 82,000. The 
wealth of the organizations connected with the party 
amounted in 1899 to 285,098 Finnish marks. This amount 
had increased by 1912 to 6,256,886 marks. 

"The same development has taken place in connection 
with the press and other periodical literature. The present 
number of papers is the following: 

"In six larger towns — Helsingfors, Tammerfors, Abo, 
Wiborg, Uleaborg, and Lachtis — daily papers are issued. 
The central organ, Tyoemies, in Helsingfors, has a circula- 
tion of 30,000, a large number for Finland, and, by the 


way, the largest in the country. To these we must add 
4 daily Finnish Socialist papers in America, 1 woman's 
paper, 2 comic journals, and 2 magazines which are also 
read in Finland. 

"The emigration from Finland to America has been 
going on for decades. The small three million nation of 
'the country of the thousand lakes' has sent many thou- 
sands of her sons and daughters over the big pond, because 
the fatherland had become too small for them! (Finland 
is almost as large as Prussia.) The Finnish workers in 
America form Socialist organizations after the type of the 

''Their number is about 15,000. They have their own 
party school in Smithville, Minn. The Finns are credited 
by the American comrades with good organizations." 



(From Vorwaerts) 

"The chief question discussed at the Eighth Convention 
of the Social Democratic Party of Finland, held in Tammer- 
f ors, the Finnish Manchester, in 1914, was : Shall the Social 
Democratic group have the right to elect one of its own 
members as president of the Landtag, and if so, under what 
circumstances? The Socialist representatives last spring 
participated in the election of a president of the Landtag 
and elected a comrade, Oskar Tokoi. The action of the 
group was criticised within and without the party as op- 

"In the Convention a large majority of the speakers 
expressed themselves in favor of the action of the Landtag 
group, although a number of them pointed out the danger 
of going too far along this line. 


"The Convention decided that, as a rule, no member of 
the Social Democratic Party should be a candidate for the 
presidency. Where, on account of capitalist intri^es or 
capitalist exploitation, it seemed advisable to elect a So- 
cialist to the presidency, permission, however, was granted 
to do this, providing the comrade in question was immedi- 
ately freed from the impossible situation as soon as the 
necessity which furnished the motive for the election had 
disappeared. A strong minority of 44 out of 89, on the 
other hand, demanded that a Social Democratic president, 
once elected, should hold his seat till the end of the 

"The Convention also adopted a sharp resolution 
against the plan of the Russian Government to levy a 
grain tax on the Finnish people, and struck a blow at the 
same time against the Finnish landowners who were openly 
or secretly supporting the new measure. The tax, it was 
declared, would increase the price of the bread by one- 
third, practically prohibiting the importation of German 
and American grain. 

"The Party Convention was again forced to protest 
against renewed instances of capitalist-class justice. There 
are generally a number of Socialist editors and agitators 
in jail. On this occasion the protest was made against 
Eussia on account of its unwarranted prosecution of Fin- 
nish officials. A steadily growing number of Finnish 
magistrates were languishing in the jails of St. Petersburg 
for refusing to assist in the execution of the illegal demands 
of the Russian Government. Although the proletariat itself 
had often suffered from the partisan spirit of these same 
officials, it gladly tendered them its tribute in such cases 
where they had defended the laws and the autonomy of 
the country. 

"In considering party matters, the question of the rela- 


tion of the party to its newspapers was found of particular 
importance. A number of years ago the question arose as 
to the advisability of bringing the largest Social Demo- 
cratic newspaper, Tyomies, the central organ of the party, 
with a daily circulation of 27,000, published in Helsing- 
fors, into closer contact with the party. The workingmen 
owners of the paper feared that the proposed changes 
would rob the Tyomies of its proletarian character, inas- 
much as they considered the majority of the party more 
or less revisionistic. 

"At this convention the executive board presented a 
resolution recognizing in principle the right of the party 
to control its chief organ and insisted, among other things, 
that the editorial staff be appointed by the executive 
board. After a lively discussion this resolution was 
adopted with a vote of 51 to 39." 




The Social Democratic Labor Party was founded in Hol- 
land in 1894. Three years later at the general election it 
polled 13,000 votes and elected 3 deputies in a chamber of 
100. In 1901 its vote grew to 38,279 and its deputies were 
8. In 1905 its popular vote was 65,743, but its deputies 
only 7 ; in 1910 it had 82,494 votes and still only 7 deputies ; 
but in June, 1913, with a popular vote increase to 144,000, 
it secured 19 seats in Parliament. The party has 1 daily 
paper, 14 weeklies, and 7 other periodicals. 

(From Vorwaerts) 

"The first day of the Congress was devoted to discussion 
of the year's report made by the executive committee, and 
to the report of the parliamentary section. A short dispute 
took place between delegates Mendels and Troelstra, rela- 
tive to war budgets, Mendels declaring that each war 
budget showing increased expenditures must be opposed; 
Troelstra, on the other hand, declaring that under certain 
conditions the party must support a war budget to prevent 
the overthrow of an electoral franchise cabinet. 

"At the afternoon session a resolution of the executive 



committee regarding election agitation was discussed. The 
Congress voted unanimously in favor of setting aside a 
week day for a demonstration on this subject. All work 
was to stop, in ease the Upper House opposed the revision 
of the constitution. A proposal to co-operate with the Lib- 
erals in certain provincial elections was accepted by a large 


At the eighteenth Party Congress which took place at 
Leyden in April, 1913, the discussion and adoption of a 
new program aroused greatest interest. The program ex- 
plained by Troelstra and van der Goes was accepted in the 
following form: 

The development of society has led to a form of capitalistic 
production in which the mass of producers is separated from 
the means of production. This enables owners to make profits 
from workers, who are driven by necessity to sell their pro- 
ductive powers. Two classes, the proletariat and the capitalistic 
class, are opposed to each other continually on account of their 
varying interests. 

Under this system competition and profit force a continual 
improvement of the technique for the reduction of wages. They 
lead to accumulation of wealth by the capitalistic class, and to 
poverty, uncertainty of existence, and dependence, trjdng, monot- 
onous and unhealthy work of men and women, overlong working- 
hours and unemployment, child labor, destruction of family life 
and the weakening of the physique in the proletariat. It also 
leads to continued pauperism and prostitution, alcoholism, and 
crime. The working-class, where it is unable to check the cap- 
italistic hunger for profit, falls a prey to deterioration and 
misery, only limited by the natural bounds of human privation 
and by the requirements of the capitalist interests themselves. 
The disproportion between the increasing productivity of the 
workers and the small consuming powers of the masses and the 
absence of social regulation of production lead again and again 
to crises in industrial life, which still further intensify tendencies 
of capitalistic production. 


This causes resistance among the proletariat. The workers 
organize themselves into unions and into parties on the political 
field. They realize more and more that it is their task to fight 
capitalism as a system and to try to take over the management 
of society. In its fight for political rights and social reform, 
the working-class, as long as it is in the minority, comes up 
against the superior force of the ruling class, which, under the 
influence of the growing power of the proletariat, meets the 
demands of the latter reluctantly, and only as far as the main- 
tenance of their domination and the nature of the capitalistic 
system permit. 

In the meanwhile, capitalistic development itself creates the 
economic preliminary condition for a new productive system, 
which does not depend on the suppression of one class by the 
other, but on social ownership and administration of the means 
of production, the object of which is not the profit of individ- 
uals, but the satisfaction of the needs of all classes. 

Competition and the advance of science force us towards pro- 
duction on a large scale, and, on this account, decrease the im- 
portance of smaller industries, make the smaller manufacturers 
dependent on the large industrial undertakings, or force them 
to become wage-earners. 

Though this process of concentration of management does not 
show itself to-day in the same manner in agricultural under- 
taking as in trade, transportation, and industi-y, one can see the 
gradually increasing power of capital in the spreading of the 
leasing system, and also in the growing influence of industrial 
undertakings in agriculture, and the movement towards the 
monopolization of the market by large capital. Wherever the 
agrarian small undertaking holds out against the large enterprise 
or spreads itself, we can be certain that those who find their 
existence by it overwork themselves and live in privation. This 
proves that the small farmer in the future, with his demand for 
a higher standard of living, will unite with the working-class. 
In addition to this, an increasingly large part of actual agrarian 
work has been taken over into the sphere of industiy, through 
the development of the factory system. 

The continued development of large-scale production competi- 
tion endangers profits; this again leads to a further increase of 
capitalistic monopoly and to further restriction of the sphere of 
the competition. Industry and commerce come more and more 


under the rule of banking capital; profit becomes independent 
of any function in production and exchange. The capitalist loses 
his importance as a manager of an industrial enterprise and 
becomes nothing but a parasite. The management is aiTanged on 
such a footing that it is ripe to be taken over by society. With 
this stage, the foundation is laid for the Socialistic system of 
production and for production for the general good. In the 
meantime, numerous industries are already bemg conducted by 
public instead of private administrative bodies and the co-opera- 
tive system also limits the sphere of private life. 

With the increasing possibility of Socialism there develops a 
growing desire for it, along Avith the power to realize it. The 
immense increase of wealth and luxuries of the capitalists in- 
duces the worker to demand more of life's comforts, while the 
increase of rents, a consequence of overpopulation in large 
towns, and the increased cost of living, lower his condition. The 
divisions inside of the capitalist class become less evident the 
more the pressure of the workers for new rights and reforms 
increases, and the more dangerous he becomes to society and the 
capitalist system. This is proved by the formation of employers' 
unions opposing the trade-unions of workers, just as in the 
political field. The magnates of capital, at the head of giant 
trusts, who make entire society tributary by their control of raw 
m»terial, transportation, and the means of production, understand 
how to make use of administrations and legislation. They drive 
governments to imperialism and colonial politics, and in connec- 
tion with these to increased military burdens and increasing dis- 
cord in international relations. 

At the same time, the power of the workers against capital is 
increasing. A growing numerical preponderance of the pro- 
letariat follows industrial concentration. A new element develop- 
ing in its ranks is the " new middle-class," technical experts, and 
employees of large industries, who, in regard to uncertainty of 
existence and dependence on the capitalists, resemble the workers. 
With it come groups whose interests, though not directly opposed 
to those of capitalism, have no share in its management. . . . 
The proletariat receives in and through the class struggle an 
experience, a scientific and political education, a social and ethical 
improvement, and an expansion and strengthening of its organ- 
ization, that will not only fit it to break the resistance of the 
ruling class but which wall also fit it for the task of filling their 


place. It is invincible in this aspiration because it has to fulfill 
its historical task of freeing society from a system which has 
become economically obsolete and which is ethically condemned. 

The proletariat can break the resistance offered by the capital- 
istic class to the taking over of the management of industries 
from private to collective ownership only through the conquest 
of political power. For this i^urpose the workers, who have come 
to a consciousness of their task in the class struggle, have organ- 
ized all over the world. 

The Social Democratic Labor Party in the Netherlands has as 
its goal the organization of the proletariat of the Netherlands 
into an independent political party for the participation in the 
international struggle of the working-class. It aims at unity in 
the proletarian class struggle, and supports, as far as it can, 
every economic and political movement of the workers which 
strives to better conditions of living in such a manner that the 
class consciousness of the workers is strengthened and their power 
as against that of the ruling class is increased. 


By F. M. Wibaut. (1913.) 

* ' The Social Democratic Labor platform in the past elec- 
tion was practically a demand for universal suffrage. It 
is well known that the Marxian Socialists in 1909 de- 
manded that the question of universal suffrage be made 
our sole issue. At that time we also emphasized other 
demands, such as old-age pension, the ten-hour day, etc. 
Our agitation in the last years, though not lacking in 
energy, was carried on in such a manner that no serious 
differences arose between the 'reform' and 'Marxian' 
wings of the party. The feeling that no reforms can be 
won until general suffrage is an accomplished fact has 
taken root everywhere, and the whole party is unani- 
mously in favor of making the struggle wholly a fight for 
the right to vote. 

"Our program included only one other demand, namely, 


that the free old-age pension of at least two gulden weekly 
for men and women over 70 years of age, that has just 
been accepted by the Parliament as introduced by the Gov- 
ernment in its invalid bill, be sustained should the parties 
of the Left demand the nullification of the invalid insur- 
ance bill. . . . With this one exception, our party declared 
that the Government could not be regarded as a body fit 
for effective legislation until at least manhood suffrage had 
been made a fact by constitutional amendment. This sit- 
uation forced the parties of the Left to promise their sup- 
port of a universal suffrage measure in order to retain its 
power. Our party waged an energetic fight against in- 
creased tariffs, but our attention was concentrated mainly 
upon the one question of universal suffrage. . . . 

"The Free Liberals accepted the phrase 'General Suf- 
frage,' but desired to offset its evil effects by giving in- 
creased powers to the Senate, the upper Chamber. To- 
day our Senate can only adopt or reject bills. . . . Our 
party is opposed to the Senate, even in its present re- 
stricted form, because of its plutocratic character and its 
firm opposition to all labor legislation. 

"When, therefore, we were called upon to decide what 
should be our participation in the by-elections, we de- 
manded from all candidates of the Left the promise 
that they would unqualifiedly oppose any increase in 
the powers of the Senate in the coming constitutional 
revision. . . . 

"Three days before the by-elections, when they saw 
that our party insisted upon a definite personal acceptance 
of our, proposal, they all accepted except one Free Liberal 
candidate. . , . 

"Then, and only then, did our executive board call 
upon our voters to support the candidates of the Left who 
had definitely promised to support our measure in the 


coming session. Not one among all the candidates of the 
Eight favored extended suffrage. In the general election, 
of course, we supported only our 94 candidates against the 
Left as well as against the Right. In the by-election we 
supported the Left only where it positively guaranteed its 
position as the ruling party. There Avas nothing resem- 
bling a fusion between the Progressives and the Social- 

*'The results in the by-elections were as follows: 

New Parliament Old Parliament 

Catholics 25 26 

Calvinists 11 20 

Christian Histories 9 13 

— 45 — 59 

Liberal Union 20 21 

Free Liberals 10 4 

Progressive Democrats 7 9 

— 37 — 34 
Social Democratic L. P 18 7 

18 — 7 

100 100 

"Our party had advanced, as the table shows, from 7 
to 18 seats. With this great increase, we hold to-day the 
number of seats that approximately corresponds to the vote 
cast for our party. . . . 

"The Catholic-Calvinistic government was overthrown. 
. . . The only [non-Socialist] group . . . that reported 
a marked gain were the Free Liberals, the representatives 
of large capital. . . . The Progressive Fusion will head the 
government. It will only hold its place, however, if it 
holds to its election promises, and carries out our demands 
quickly and faithfully. 

' * Some time ago it was maintained by our Marxists that 
the party was more influential in the outlying agrarian 


districts than in the larger cities. They feared that this 
might have an unfavorable effect upon the movement and 
might cause it to degenerate into middle-class reform chan- 
nels. In 1909 we received the first comforting assurance 
that this fear was groundless. 

"In this election we show an astounding increase, par- 
ticularly in the large cities and industrial centers, among 
the people from whom we may expect the most enthusiastic 
support of our purely Socialist propaganda. 

"The election percentage of the Social Democracy aver- 
ages as follows : 


1901 1905 1909 1913 

1. In large cities including more than 

one election district (Amsterdam, 

Rotterdam, Haag, and Utrecht). 10.9 15.7 21.3 32.8 

2. In smaller cities which form one 

election district ( Groningen, 

Haarlem, Leiden, Arnhem) 13.4 12.5 13.3 23.1 

3. In those districts where a small city 

holds more than one-half of the 

voters of the district 13.5 13.9 16.8 26.4 

4. In industrial districts in the coun- 

try 17.6 17.9 19.7 22.9 

5. The remaining districts, usually 

wholly or at least half-agrarian 
(not including the provinces Bra- 
bant and Limburg) 17.4 11.7 9.6 12.4 

"These figures prove that in the large cities every third 
voter cast his ballot for the Social Democratic Labor ticket, 
while in 1909 only 1 out of 5, in 1905 less than 1 out of 6, 
in 1900 only 1 out of 10 were with us. In the other munici- 
pal districts as represented by groups 2 and 3 of the table, 
every fourth voter voted our ticket. In 1909 the propor- 
tion was 1 out of 7, in 1905, 1 out of 8. This shows that 


universal suffrage will soon give us the majority of votes 
in the large cities. 

''On the other hand, we find that in 1901, 65 out of 
every 100 Socialist votes came from the country, while 
only 35 came from city districts. In 1913 this proportion 
was already reversed. Now 53 out of every 100 votes came 
from municipal and only 47 from country districts. This, 
too, proves that our party is growing chiefly in the sections 
occupied by the modern proletariat. . . . 

"The growth of our membership and the great increase 
in the circulation of our party press during the past years 
justify the most sanguine expectations. This may be 
ascribed, partly, to the systematic, intensive distribution 
of good leaflets during the past two years. A great part 
of our success, however, we owe to our growing deepening 
agitation for the right to vote. 

"Our suffrage agitation is carried on, at all times, for 
men and women alike. The election program of the pro- 
gressive parties of the Government does not demand 
woman suffrage for the coming constitutional amendment. 
There is little hope that we will succeed this time in doing 
more than to keep out of the constitution all clauses that 
may become a hindrance to the passage of a women suffrage 
bill in the future. . . . 

"Besides the 144,375 Social Democratic Labor votes cast 
for our party, there were other Socialist votes. The Social 
Democratic Party, the party of the Marxians, who left our 
ranks at Deventer, had nominated candidates in 18 dis- 
tricts. Their total vote was 1,340. Four years ago they 
polled 542. At that time there seemed a possibility of 
their development into a real political party. Since then 
the S. D. P. has constantly insisted that it alone represents 
Marxism in Holland, that the proletariat of the large cities 
would join its ranks. The vote cast in its favor in the 


4 Amsterdam districts was 56, 117, 18, and 147, as com- 
pared with 1,837, 7,309, 1,511, 8,204 in the same districts 
in favor of the Social Democratic Labor Party." 


(From Vorwaerts, December 18, 1913) 

' ' The Dutch Social Democracy is living through stirring 
times. The first part of the year 1913 was completely 
taken up with the enthusiastic campaign, culminating in 
a glorious victory on June 25, But . . . right after the 
election the party faced, for the first time, the difficult 
task of deciding for or against participation in the forma- 
tion of a ministry. It was only after an extremely heated 
discussion that a final decision was reached on August 
10 . . . [against such participation]. Though the party 
remained united, it is hardly to be expected that any 
movement should pass through such a crisis unscarred. 
. . . We need hardly say that the capitalist press is unani- 
mous in denouncing us as traitors to the cause of democracy 
and social reform. In the meantime only 2 of the 5 special 
elections in the districts that we had captured in June 
resulted in our favor. . . . The loss of 3 out of 18 seats 
has made a deep impression within as well as outside the 
party. . . . The time was ripe for a union of capitalist 
forces against us in the by-elections. The suppression of 
the Social Democracy must be accomplished at all cost. 
Our action in the ministerial crisis may, perhaps, have 
been an added factor. . . . 

**How does our parliamentary group stand toward the 
Government? In general the party is following out its 
usual tactics; it supports every measure that is in the 
interest of the proletariat and opposes everything that 


may harm the labor movement. . . . For the first time 
Holland has a Cabinet that depends considerably upon our 
support, whose program, as a whole, includes the most 
progressive measures promised to our party by the Liberals 
before the by-elections. Already a bill providing for the 
extension of free old-age pensions to cover all aged people 
has been placed upon the order of business. . . . The self- 
evident tendency of the last elections makes it impossible 
for a government to refuse to carry out the reforms that 
stand at the zenith of popular interest. . . . Our parlia- 
mentary tactics must now be concentrated upon the realiza- 
tion of the governmental program in all of its reform 
measures. But that does not mean that we sell out, body 
and soul, to our capitalist rulers. We fully uphold our 
right, our duty, as Socialists, to criticise everything the 
Government, the administration, the judiciary may do. 
The necessity of preserving this liberty was, in fact, one 
of the main arguments in favor of our refusal to join the 
Ministry. This is the more necessary, because the govern- 
mental program is double-faced. On the one side it shows 
the reform, while on the other side is revealed, with brutal 
frankness, the upholding of militarism. That is the dark 
cloud in the beautiful sky of bourgeois democracy. The 
Crown speech contained the following sentence: 'For the 
defense of Netherland-India, we propose the building of a 
dreadnought, the cost of which shall be covered from In- 
dian funds.' 

' ' This marks the first invasion of imperialism on a larger 
scale into Holland. . . . The invasion of capital into the 
Far East calls forth there the same struggles that marked 
colonization along the Atlantic and the North Sea a hun- 
dred or more years ago. We know that this means in- 
creased armaments. The mad rush for military supremacy, 
in small countries like Holland, is fatal to all social prog- 


ress. Into this world-pool our little nation is being 
drawn. . . . 

' ' It is plain demagogy ... to try to prove that the mili- 
tary budget would be entirely different if the Social Demo- 
crats had not refused to elect members into the Ministry. 
. . . [Certain comrades] favored participation in minis- 
terial government, partly because [they] feared that the 
failure to form a Liberal-Socialist cabinet would mean a 
cabinet that would support the Right in the question of 
increased military expenditure. ... In our opinion, ex- 
actly the reverse is true. The Liberals were so insistent 
in their request that we form a ministry in conjunction 
with them because they desired to stifle our opposition to 
their military plans at the outset. One ean hardly con- 
ceive of a more beautiful opportunity to make us share 
responsibility for new, oppressive military appropria- 
tions. ..." 


By J. Fedder, Amsterdam 
(From Vorwaerts, August 30, 1913) 

' * Shortly after our comrades in Denmark had refused to 
send a number of its members into the Ministry, the ques- 
tion of ministerialism arose in the party of Holland. . . . 
[The] form of ministerialism, in which Social Democrats 
accept a place in the Ministry as the representatives of 
their party, is of far greater consequence to the movement 
than is the case of Briand or Millerand, who were called 
upon, as individuals, to participate in the administra- 
tion. . . . 

"Let us see what happened. . . . 

' * The Vorwaerts has already reported the wonderful sue- 


cess of our Social Democratic Labor Party in the last elec- 
tion, where our vote increased from 82,000 in 1909 to 
144,000, and our representation from 7 to 18 men. 

"Immediately after the by-elections which decided the 
fate of the clerical majority, the Christian ministry was 
compelled to resign. After a conference with the most 
prominent political leaders, among them, for the first time, 
one of our comrades, Troelstra, the Queen called upon the 
Radical leader. Dr. Bos, to form a ministry 'out of the 
whole Left' (as we read in the communication of the 
press). On July 12, Comrade Troelstra, as chairman of 
our group, received a communication in which we were 
officially offered the privilege of electing three members to 
a ministry, for whose activity Dr. Bos presented the fol- 
lowing program : 

1. Constitutional amendment providing general suffrage for 
men, without altering the rights of the Upper House. Removal 
of all hindrances to the adoption of woman suffrage. Removal 
of all hindrances to the right of women to hold office. 

2. Extension of the Invalid bill just passed, so that its free 
old-age pension may apply not only to wage-workers, but to all 
needy aged people. 

3. The money necessary to defray these expenditures to be 
raised by levying direct taxes (chiefly income and property 

' ' This program was the exact expression of the last elec- 
tion, and was a reiteration of the affirmative answer to 
our demands given us by the Liberals before the by- 

"In his answer. Comrade Troelstra wrote that the pro- 
posed program was, in every sense of the word, a 'sound 
basis for any ministry which would take the reins at the 
present time.' 

"But he called attention to one dark spot in the letter 
which offered to our party the ministerial portfolio; it 


contained not a word to prove the absolute necessity of 
a co-ordination between Liberals and Social Democrats. 
This, however, was necessary, because the Social Demo- 
crats would not consider participation in the Ministry 
unless this necessity was clearly proved. Our action was 
based upon the resolution adopted by the International 
Congress of 1900. (See Chapter I, Part I.) To us there 
existed only one question: was the necessity such that it 
would warrant our sending ministers to take an active 
part in a capitalist administration? 

"A clear answer to this question was the more necessary 
— as Comrade Troelstra showed clearly and uncompromis- 
ingly — because a Liberal-Socialist ministry must be much 
more powerful to withstand clerical attacks than is neces- 
sary for one that is formed of Liberals only. 

"The capitalist character of the state had been ratified 
by the votes of more than 82 per cent of the nation, and 
must therefore bring with it a capitalist government. This 
was a necessity, which could not be avoided at present, not 
even if three Socialists should enter the Ministry. 

"In every question of fundamental importance, as for 
instance, our colonial policy, militarism, judicial prob- 
lems, the attitude of the Government toward strikes and 
lockouts that are sure to take place, in a hundred minor 
questions of daily routine business, the impossibility of 
harmonious co-operation between Socialists and Liberals, 
the eternal conflict of their views in international and po- 
litical problems, would become increasingly evident. This 
would inevitably injure the activity of the Ministry. 

"This is the more likely because the Clericals still hold 
a majority in the Upper House, which can be held in check 
only by a strong Ministry. Comrade Troelstra asked, 
therefore, the open question: Is the co-operation of the 
Social Democratic Party with the Fusion of the Liberal 


parties a condition sine qua non if the proposed program 
is to be carried out? 

"Realizing our responsibility to the proletariat in the 
struggle for universal suffrage and for a free old-age pen- 
sion, the Social Democratic group, through Troelstra, de- 
clared its readiness to support a ministry that should carry 
these points as important parts of its program. It even 
promised to support the military budget during the time 
necessary for the passage of the above bills, provided the 
total of this budget was not larger than that of the budget 
for 1912-1913. 

' ' There would be no complete fusion of the two parties, 
[but] for a definite period of time, to be determined be- 
forehand, we promised our support, because we feared that 
the Clerical minority would vote against the budget, in 
order to prevent the passage of the reform measures, by 
precipitating a new ministerial crisis. 

"Dr. Bos' answer to this letter and the demands made 
therein was very unclear. . . . 

"Thereupon a conference of the executive board, the 
members of Parliament, and the editors of our organ, Het 
Volk, was called July 19, which rejected the offer of three 
portfolios by 13 votes against 8. The minority feared the 
uncertainty likely to result from our refusal and pre- 
ferred taking the more certain path. The majority was 
composed of two groups, those who absolutely refused en- 
trance into the Ministry at the present time, and those 
who were willing to consider it in time of necessity, but 
were of the opinion that this necessity did not exist at the 
present time. ... On July 30, the Liberal Fusion an- 
swered by refusing to undertake alone the formation of 
a ministry, in spite of our promised assistance. . . . 

' ' The chairman and vice-chairman of our party, the Com- 
rades Vliegen and Schaper, after visiting Dr. Bos, called 


a second party conference. The following questions were 
discussed: (1) Does this refusal of the Liberals constitute 
the necessity mentioned in the Amsterdam resolution? (2*) 
Would the participation of the Socialists in the Ministry 
increase the possibility of carrying out the program pro- 
posed by Bos? 

"The majority of the Conference now favored the ac- 
ceptance of cabinet portfolios. Two resolutions were pre- 
sented and an extraordinary party convention called. 

"The Convention met in Zwolle on the ninth and tenth 
of August. After a heated discussion, the resolution pro- 
posed by the minority of the party conference was adopted 
by a vote of 375 against 320. The resolution expressed 
the following : 

A party like the Social Democratic Labor Party, that is in 
its origin and character unalterably opposed to capitalist rule, is 
not obliged to enter a capitalist Ministry. 

The Social Democratic Labor Party has done its full duty in 
the fight for universal suffrage and old-age pensions by its will- 
ingness to support every cabinet which will strive to realize 
these reforms. 

On the other hand, the Liberal Fusion has made the solution 
of this problem exceedingly difficult by insisting upon a Liberal 
Socialist jMinistry. 

This action of the Liberals does not follow from a lack of 
power, but rather from a lack of good will. The exceptional 
necessity that is mentioned in the Resolution of the International 
Congress of 1900 does not exist. 

The participation of Socialists in a capitalist Ministry would 
not be in the interests of the proletariat, therefore, considering 
the present political situation. 

"Our participation in the Ministry would have com- 
pletely changed our method of political combat, and our 
attitude toward the other parties for some time to come. 


In this case we would have rested on our arms and de- 
clared a temporary peace with progressive capitalist par- 
ties. The issue at stake in this case, as a constitutional 
amendment, necessitates a parliamentary discussion of the 
question in two sessions, as well as a dissolution of both 
Houses and a new election. In consequence this co-opera- 
tion of Socialist and Liberal forces would necessarily 
extend over a period of years (at least five or six). During 
this time all open warfare between the party, as the po- 
litical representative of the proletariat, and its capitalist 
opponents, would be practically at a standstill. Dr. Bos, 
even in his first request for participation, spoke of the 
necessity of a union of forces in the Government, in the 
Lower House, and in the nation, 

"The last years have brought to Holland a notable in- 
crease in the strength and militancy of its labor unions. A 
union with the Liberals would, in all probability, mean a 
disturbance in the present harmonious and profitable rela- 
tions between the labor unions and the party. 

"But even from a purely political point of view, the 
party would inevitably be discredited. The speaker of 
the majority pointed out that, as a part of the Ministry, 
we would be held responsible for its activity, a fact that 
would surely cost us the sympathy of a large part of the 
general public, unless we were in a large majority in the 
cabinet. It is more than doubtful, however, whether this 
condition will ever be fulfilled, whether, in this advanced 
stage of the class struggle, we would still be asked to 
take a portfolio in a ministry. For, after all, this request 
to join the Ministry is a sign of our weakness rather than 
of our strength. 

"These are two dangers that should not be taken too 
lightly, dangers that are practically sure to result. Added 
to these considerations is a third which must not be over- 


looked. We are risking the unity of our movement. A 
complete change of party tactics, such as is here involved, 
must needs arouse a storm of bitter recriminations between 
the representatives on either side, would strike into the 
parliamentary group, and would greatly impair the ef- 
ficiency and energy of our organization. And this at a 
time when the Socialist movement in the Netherlands is 
just slowly beginning to unite its forces, at a time when 
the enemies of our movement, the Syndicalists, who are 
still powerful in a number of industries, and a small party 
of the Marxians, would profit by our quarrels. . . . 

''The old-age pension bill has become more and more 
popular as a result of 15 years of Socialist agitation. . . . 
We could not allow this reform, whose realization has been 
practically assured by the election, to vanish into thin 
air. , . . Let us examine for a moment the general po- 
litical influence of the decision of this Convention. 

''The Holland Parliament is made up of two large 
divisions: on the Right, the Christians, composed of two 
evangelic-clerical parties and one Catholic party (which 
is by far the strongest of the three), who together are^ 
known by the collective name, 'The Coalition'; on the 
Left are three closely united progressive parties, known as 
'The Concentration,' and the Social Democracy. This 
division into two fields, the so-called antithesis between 
believers and unbelievers, is a heavy burden upon our in- 
ternal politics, and particularly weakens the working- 
class. Its ranks have been split by the struggle between 
these elements. The Clericals especially have enjoyed the 
implicit support of a considerable number of workers who 
under all circumstances will vote in their favor. 

"The active and independent campaign of the Social 
Democratic Labor Party for universal suffrage has, for the 
first time, succeeded in shaking the allegiance of a large 


number of these Christian voters. This fortunate begin- 
ning would have been severely hampered by a strengthen- 
ing of this line of religious opposition. The deepening of 
this line of demarcation between believer and unbeliever, 
which would have resulted from a fusion of our forces with 
the Liberals, would have been anything but favorable to 
our influence upon this part of the population, 

' ' Even from a purely parliamentary point of view, such 
a fusion would . have been unwise. Dividing the Parlia- 
ment into two opposing bodies would have meant to sacri- 
fice the vote of those Clericals who, otherwise, would have 
voted in favor of a general suffrage bill. As a constitu- 
tional amendment, however, this bill required a two-thirds 
vote of Parliament in its favor, while the combined forces 
of the Liberals and the Socialists number only 54 out of 
100, making a considerable number of Clerical votes neces- 
sary to secure its passage. 

"Why is the decision of the party Convention of such 
extraordinary importance ? 

"Because, apparently, we have entered upon a new 
stage in Dutch politics. The slow disintegration of the 
once powerful Liberals is already so far advanced that, 
even in a particularly favorable political situation, they 
were able to unite only about 80 per cent of the total vote 
upon their candidates, and could win, with our assistance, 
only 38 seats. So it has come about that the Liberals, 
without our support, are powerless in Parliament, . . . 
If, now, the Liberal Concentration were truly democratic, 
it would not hesitate for one moment to pass those reform 
measures, so necessary in our reactionary little country, 
with the help of the Social Democrats. . . . 

"But, alas, . . . their democratic wing is damned to 
eternal incompetence, is heard bravely and confidently 
only when it is in the opposition. (In Holland one must 


be careful not to identify the expressions 'Left' and 
* Democracy. ' The parties of the Eight, on the other hand, 
include a goodly number of democratic supporters, uphold- 
ers of universal suffrage. . . . ) 

"There is only one consideration that might lead [the] 
reactionary enemies of the working-class to push the re- 
forms that we demand, reforms that they themselves have 
bitterly opposed up to very recent times. That is the pos- 
sibility of breaking up the power of the proletarian po- 
litical movement. Everything indicates that this was in 
truth their secret aim — slowly to transform our own virile, 
thriving party into a sort of Liberal Labor Party, to bind 
our young movement to their own aged decrepit parties. 
This ambition has suffered a pitiful shipwreck upon the 
hard rocks of our solidarity." 


The Social Democratic Party of Switzerland was 
founded in 1888. In 1910 it had only 10 seats in a Par- 
liament of 189 members. In 1912 this number had been 
increased to 17, and in 1913 to 19. The party has also 1 
representative in the Upper House. The election of 1914, 
held after the outbreak of the war, was only half con- 
tested and did not show any material change. In the 1915 
elections the Socialists retained their membership of 19. 

The report of the Swiss Party for 1913 shows an increase 
of 1,852 in membership, which, at the end of the year, 
stood at 33,236, in 609 branches. In 1915 it was reported 
as 29,585 members. 

At the cantonal elections of 1914, a Socialist loss was 
suffered in Basel, where the representation was cut down 


from 47 to 43 — still about one-third of the total. In Bern 
the delegation was increased from 15 to 16. In Geneva, 
where proportional representation was applied for the 
first time, the Socialists elected 10 members, as against 22 
members elected by their opponents. 




In Denmark the Social Democratic Party was founded 
in 1878; since 1901 its membership in the Folkething 
(House of Representatives) has increased from 14 to 16, 
to 24, to 32, and at the last general election (May, 1913) 
the Socialists, with 107,000, obtained the largest popular 
vote of all the political parties. They have 33 daily pa- 
pers, with a circulation of 170,000 copies. 

In 1903 the party had 56,000 ; in 1909, 93,000 ; in 1910, 
98,000 votes (29 per cent of the total votes), so that the 
rise has been more rapid than ever in recent years. 

The party has been especially successful in municipal 
elections, and has one-half of the members of the Copen- 
hagen municipal council. 

As the Radicals secured 31 seats in 1913, and the Lib- 
erals and Conservatives together held only 51, the com- 
bined opposition (Socialists and Radicals) had a majority. 

Following the election the Government introduced a 
measure in the Lower House enfranchising all men and 
women, but it did not secure a majority in the Second 
Chamber, which was accordingly dissolved. The result of 
the elections which followed (in 1914) was that the new 
Landsthing contains 38 supporters of the bill and 28 op- 
ponents ; the old Landsthing had 33 on each side. 



Of the elected members of the new Upper House, 4 are 
Socialists, 5 are Radicals, 20 are Liberals, 5 are "Free" 
Conservatives, and 20 are Conservatives unqualified. The 
king has the power to nominate 12 members. Of these 9 
are supporters of the government bill. 

The Parliament met in July, but the constitutional 
change required for its final adoption a second election in 
August — which was interrupted by the war. 

The growth of the Socialist vote, as has been said, has 
been very rapid— from 56,000 in 1903 to 107,000 in 1913 
(out of a total of 366,000). The vote of the Radical Party 
has also grown from 41,000 in 1906 to 67,000 in 1913 ; so 
that the two parties together already have almost a 

(From The New York Call) 

"The last general election in Denmark resulted in a 
majority for the opposition. The ministerial crisis placed 
squarely before the Socialists the question of participation 
in the Ministry and of parliamentary collaboration. Con- 
sultations on this subject were held by the Radicals and 
the Socialist Party, the latter finally rejecting the pro- 
posals that they participate in the formation of a cabinet 
of the Left. 

' ' The Socialists, however, engaged to support the Radical 
government until such time as the reform program should 
be completely realized. This program includes the aboli- 
tion of electoral privileges, universal suffrage without dis- 
tinction of sex, and other things. 

"They, therefore, are pledged to approve the budget now 
presented by the Radicals. The Danish budget is very 
modest compared with those of the larger European na- 


tions, and only amounts to 126,000,000 crowns (a crown 
is 27 cents), 

"But the present budget also comprises some reforms. 
The military expenditures are, for the first time, not in- 
creased. In fact, there is a decrease of 1,000,000. And 
the Government has included several measures to satisfy 
the Socialist Party, without the support of which it could 
not exist. 

"Large bounties are granted to agricultural workers 
wishing to purchase land in the insufficiently cultivated 
districts. A large part of the Socialist Party's support 
comes from these agricultural workers and small farmers. 
The working-class industrial schools are also subsidized, 
and the Government even proposes to vote a subsidy of 
2,000 crowns to a school founded by the Socialist Party. 

"About 4,000,000 crowns are to be devoted to sick and 
unemployment relief funds. This sum will be paid into the 
treasuries of the labor unions. Old-age pensions (payable 
at the age of 65) will cost the Government 6,250,000, and 
about 250,000 crowns are to be expended for the relief of 
those 'temporarily' in poverty. 

"To insurance against industrial accidents 207,000 
crowns will be apportioned ; 200,000 for the relief of widows 
and orphans ; 2,000,000 for the combating of tuberculosis. 

"Viewed merely in the light of a reform party, the So- 
cialist Party of Denmark would seem to be fairly successful 
in its efforts." 


In the fall of 1913 the following constitutional changes 
were proposed by the prime minister and formed the issue 
of the following election campaign : 

"Active and passive suffrage in Parliament is given to 
women. The age of suffrage is lowered to 25 instead of 


30 as hitherto. The length of the sessions is increased to 
4 years instead of 3 years as hitherto. The privileged suf- 
frage for the first chamber is to be abolished as well as the 
clause which allows the king to name 12 of the 66 members. 
These are now to be elected by the other 54. ' ' 


(From Vorwaerts, April 15, 1914) 

"The Conservative Party (Hoeire) had become so weak 
in 1901 that it was no longer able to govern. The peasant 
party (Venstre), which was in the majority in the Folke- 
thing, was asked'to take over the government. This action 
meant acknowledgment of parliamentary rule by the king 
and the fight for this principle was won. 

"After the attainment of this goal, it naturally followed 
that the Socialists should start an agitation for a revision 
of the constitution and for universal and equal suffrage. 
This demand was made in common with the government 
party, but this party was now not very enthusiastic for the 
execution of its program. 

"The Left, which had grown out of the party of down- 
trodden peasants, had, in the course of time, undergone 
some changes. The peasants, which still make up the 
nucleus of its voters, have not remained the despised and 
downtrodden class. Good organizations and the benefits 
derived from co-operation in the service of agriculture (co- 
operative dairies, slaughter houses, and so on) have con- 
tributed to establish a well-to-do peasant class. The peas- 
ants who liad charge of the government felt very far 
removed from the working-class, and their leading poli- 
ticians seemed attracted to the upper class. 

"The politics of the new government party were by no 


means democratic. On the contrary, this party carried 
through military, custom's tariff, and [other] policies ac- 
cording to the best conservative models, whereby the 
working-class had to bear the heaviest burdens. 

"The party was able in 1908 to pass a new communal 
election law, which did away with the two-class electoral 
law, and gave general suffrage to all taxpaying men and 
women of 25 years of age, as well as to all married women 
whose husbands were taxpayers. On account of the work 
of certain allied conservative elements in Parliament, this 
law did not prove a thoroughgoing democratic reform, as 
the upper classes in the country had the privilege of using 
their influence in selecting the county councilors (an insti- 
tution which in certain cases formed the superior court for 
community representation) . 

' ' This policy, carried out in alliance with the Right wing, 
had its effect. The Left wing was badly beaten at the 
elections by the Socialists. Moreover a split occurred in 
the Left, the democratic elements forming a new party — 
the Radical Left. The party of the Left, which, in 1901, 
had 92 seats out of 114, had gradually melted away, so 
that at the election in 1910, 57 seats, just half of all the 
seats of the Folkething, could be claimed by it. In the 
following years the Left, on account of a number of very 
costly military laws, favored a very undemocratic policy 
which called forth a storm of indignation. 

' ' The party decided on a special move shortly before the 
new elections to the Folkething, calculated to help them 
over all difficulties and re-establish them completely. In 
October, 1912, the Government submitted to Parliament a 
bill for the change of the constitution, corresponding with 
the program of the Left, which called for general and equal 
suffrage and abolished privileged election rights. The 
party asked all other democratic parties to support this 


bill. As a co-operation of all democratic parties was neces- 
sary to carry it through, and as the Socialists realized that 
they could not gain their other demands, they, as well as 
the Radical Left, gave their support. The Conservatives, 
of course, fought this bill . . . [but] at the elections to the 
Folkething, May 20, 1913 ... the Left, the Radicals, and 
the Socialists, each with their own candidates, supported 
[it.] Election results showed that the Left had retained 
[but] 44 seats, while the Socialists rose to 32 and those of 
the Radical Left to 31. The Conservatives found that their 
numbers had been reduced from 14 to 7 seats. . . . 

''The losses suffered by the party of the Left induced it 
to withdraw from the Government, but it promised to assist 
further with the suffrage bill. The leader of the Socialists, 
as the largest element in the Folkething, was called before 
the king and he was offered the formation of the govern- 
ment — perhaps in connection with the Radical Left wing. 
This petition he refused, explaining that a party of the 
Left could be formed which would have the necessary ma- 
jority in the Folkething. The Left would not hear of this. 
The Radical Left then declared itself ready, after con- 
sultations with the Socialists, to form the government and 
to make the revision of the constitution its most important 

"In September, 1913, the new government submitted the 
bill, which the Left had drawn up, and which had been 
sanctioned by the Folkething before the last election. This 
bill was again accepted by the Folkething and the discus- 
sions with the Landsthing [the Upper House] began. The 
strength of the Conservatives in the Landsthing had been 
reduced to 34 members. The so-called constitutional par- 
ties, the 3 democratic parties, had 32 representatives. 

"It was rumored that the Landsthing would be dissolved 
in order to bring about a 'constitutional majority,' when 


Estrup, who had carried through the privileged election 
law of 1866, died, and a Liberal was elected in his place. 
As the Conservatives appoint the president, and as he has 
no vote, 33 votes of the constitutional parties opposed 32 
Conservative votes. 

''Under the pressure of this situation, the preparations 
in this matter have been completed and the members of 
the three constitutional parties will recommend to Parlia- 
ment a bill which will give to Denmark one of the freest 
constitutions in the world. 

* * The contents of the bill are as follows : 

"The bi-cameral system will be retained, but both 
Houses will be elected by general suffrage. 

"The age of voters for the Folkething is 25 years 
(formerly 30). Women and servants, who have hitherto 
been excluded, get the vote. The election to the Folke- 
thing takes place in 120 individual districts, and, besides 
this, all participating parties get a share of the supplemen- 
tary seats (20), according to the votes cast in their favor. 
In this way each party will get a fair deal. 

"The same general and equal suffrage will be carried 
through for the elections to the Landsthing. The age of 
the voters has to be 35 years, but the present voters of 30 
to 35 retain their Election rights. The women and servants 
also get the suffrage for the Landsthing. The manner of 
election is the same as formerly, through electors. 

"Neither a tax qualification nor any kind of privilege 
exists at the elections. In contrast to the present suffrage, 
this means a mighty advance. The political power of the 
privileged class, which they have had on account of money 
and property, disappears. Three-fourths of a million citi- 
zens, men and women between 25 and 30 get the vote, and 
the representation of the election districts in the towns and 
in the country is equally divided. If everything goes as 


calculated, the new constitution will be carried through in 
a very short time. By its means the working-class of Den- 
mark faces a better future. ' ' 


(Correspondence of Vorwaerts, Copenhagen, October 1, 1914) 

"After a victorious election for the Landsthing (Sen- 
ate), the constitutional reform which brings to all men and 
women universal, equal, and direct suffrage, which had ab- 
sorbed the strength of all political parties throughout the 
year, was brought to a conclusion. Our party and the 
radical Left (progressives) had obtained a majority in 
the election of the Folkething (Parliament), by means of 
which, in spite of our refusal to take part in the govern- 
ment, the way had become free for election reform, when 
the war gave the Conservative majority of the Landsthing 
the welcome opportunity to lay aside temporarily this very 
unwelcome business, on the ground of threatening external 
dangers, and to wait for more peaceful times. 

"The progressive government was now forced to occupy 
itself with the task created by the war. That in these 
critical times a radical government is at the helm, which 
is strictly dependent upon the Social Democrats, was of 
the greatest importance both in internal and external af- 
fairs, especially for the working-people. The peaceful in- 
tentions of this government are just as sincere as our own, 
so that the party under present conditions gives it all 
possible support. "We decided to do our best to keep the 
present officials of the Government in power, and for this 
reason the Socialist group voted in favor of the proposed 
military measures, and in favor of a loan of 10,000,000 



By Gustav Bang 

"The Danish constitution, in its present form, was passed 
in 1866, at a time when the proletariat was entirely unde- 
veloped, when the class consciousness of the farming popu- 
lation was still in its infancy, when the great landowners 
had nevertheless already begun to fear our opposition. It 
was a time exceedingly favorable for reactionary measures ; 
the unsuccessful war of 1864 had brought in its wake a 
deep nation-wide depression, and had resulted at the same 
time in the complete downfall of the liberalism of the more 
intelligent classes. The great landholders found but little 
difficulty in pushing through a constitution that reflects 
clearly their own class interests. As under the previous 
constitution, the new legislature consisted of two houses 
practically co-ordinate in importance and power. The new 
constitution differed, however, from that of 1849 by virtue 
of the fact that it applied the principle of universal suffrage 
only to the election of the Lower House, whereas the 
former constitution applied it to both Houses. The Folke- 
thing was elected by the general vote of all men of good 
character, over 30 years of age (servants excepted), and all 
votes were of equal importance, aside from the difference 
made by the varying size of the election districts. 

' ' The Landsthing, on the other hand, is controlled by the 
wealthy classes and the landowners. Of its 66 members, 
12 are appointed by the Government, while the other 54 
are elected by a complicated system based upon a clever 
admixture of universal and privilege suffrage laws. In 
Copenhagen an income of more than 4,000 crowns (about 
$1,000), in the provinces more than 2,000 crowns (about 
$500), being necessary to a voter of the first class. These 
well-to-do voters first vote together with the others for 


one-half of the electors, then alone for the other half ; these 
electors, in turn, electing the remaining members of the 
Landsthing. In the country districts the wealthy enjoy 
even greater political privileges. Here a number of 
wealthy landowners, as many in number as there are town- 
ships in the election districts, meet, as members in their 
own right, with the elected members of the board of 
electors. In this way every landholder has in the Lands- 
thing an influence equal to that of all the citizens of his 
township taken together. In the country districts, there- 
fore, the wealthy are greatly benefited by the apportion- 
ment of the election districts, which assures the domina- 
tion of the rich over the poor, and makes the big land- 
owners the political masters of the urban population. 

"Here are two extreme cases. In the last general elec- 
tions to the Landsthing in 1906 and 1910, 1,111 land- 
owners and wealthy farmers elected 19 members, while 
61,659 Copenhagen voters, who owned less than 4,000 
crowns, elected only 3. This system has steadily become 
more unbearable. The two Houses are in constant con- 
flict. Representing the interests of two entirely different 
classes of people, they necessarily stand in frank opposition 
to each other upon every important question. The capital- 
ist Landsthing has always used its advantage in a most 
brutal manner, in order either to block entirely the meas- 
ures passed by the Folkething, or at least to rob them as 
far as possible of all practical value. 

"With one stroke this whole situation was changed, 
when on October 23, 1912, the prime minister, Klaus Bernt- 
sen, presented to the Folkething a bill providing for a 
new constitution, absolutely democratic in character, at 
the same time warning the Conservatives that this measure 
would not be dropped from the order of business, that he 
would brook no compromise, and that its principles must 


be adopted in their entirety. Various motives may have 
prompted this action on the part of a representative of 
the Liberals, who, up to this time, had shown but little 
interest in political reform. The strongest was, beyond 
doubt, a vague fear of the coming election — after a session 
in which taxes, and especially indirect taxes, had been 
screwed up to an unprecedented height in order to cover 
great military expenditures. The ruling party had been 
steadily losing its ground with the lower farming popula- 
tion and feared, not without just cause, a terrible downfall. 
There was only one possibility, an active campaign against 
the privileged landowners, a return to power under a new 
democratic standard, with the votes of a great mass of the 

"Whatever the motives may have been, to us they are 
of interest only in so far as they will influence the passage 
of the bill. The measure itself is a great step forward 
from the conditions existing under the present constitu- 
tion. It increases the number of voters for the Folkething 
by granting a vote not only to servants but also to women, 
and by reducing the minimum age from 30 to 25 years. 
The Landsthing is to be elected by city and town boards. 
As practically all men and women over 25 years of age 
have the right to vote in municipal elections, with the 
exception of Copenhagen, where only taxpayers are voters, 
the Landsthing also will become more democratic, and will 
be elected, although, in a different manner from the Folke- 
thing, by the vote of the people. It will thus become a 
more reliable expression of the will of the population. . . . 

''Needless to say, we are by no means entirely satisfied 
with the bill as it stands. The political demands of our 
program go a great deal further. But, on the whole, it 
represents such a striking improvement, and will be fol- 
lowed by so great an increase of our power, that we have 


promised the Government — after the party had given its 
unanimous consent — to support the bill in its present form. 
The same course was taken by the Radical Party, which 
represents the intelligent element of Copenhagen. So it 
was that the amendment was passed in December, with 95 
votes against 12 in the Folkething, and then went on to the 
Landsthing, where the Conservatives hold a small majority 
of seats, 34 out of 66. The amendment precipitated a 
veritable panic among the Conservatives, for it put an end 
to the beautiful era of compromise that had enabled them, 
with the help of the Liberals, to force their will upon the 
Government. They tried every conceivable means to force 
the Ministry out of office, to cloud the whole situation, but 
in vain. When they saw there was no way out of it, and 
were forced to present substitutes and amendments, they 
became completely helpless. They published not one, but 
a number of bills, some of which were absolutely senseless, 
bills that contradicted each other, that had but one feature 
in common — the substitution of new property qualifications 
for the old. And when at last, on April 3, the original 
bill went before the Landsthing for its second reading, the 
whole discussion was cut short by the adoption of a resolu- 
tion. The fight between the Ministry and the Landsthing 
was on in earnest. But as the Folkething election was 
almost due — its term ended on the twentieth of May — the 
Government decided to let the voters speak. The election 
became a sort of referendum for and against the constitu- 
tional amendment of the Government. The whole cam- 
paign centered on this question. Our propaganda was, 
naturally, radically influenced by the entire situation. As 
we here have no by-elections, it was to be feared that a 
splitting up of the votes among Liberals, Socialists, and 
Radicals would make possible the election of a Conservative 
in a great many districts. We decided, therefore, to re- 


frain from nominating candidates in a number of districts, 
where we usually polled a large vote, and called upon our 
comrades to support the Liberal or the Radical candidates. 
We did this with a light heart, for we used this campaign 
for active Socialist propaganda and showed, in no meas- 
ured terms, the difference between the Social Democracy 
and the others, even where we went hand in hand with 
them. Everywhere we emphasized the importance of po- 
litical reform for the future of the Socialist movement. 

"On May 29 the election for the Folkething was held. 
Its results were very favorable. . . . We had held 24 dis- 
tricts out of 114. Of these we lost 4, but this loss was 
made good by the gain of 12 new districts, making a net 
gain of 8 districts. This represents an increase of the 
number of Socialist representatives from 24 to 32. Our 
vote also increased from 98,718, in 1910, to 107,365. Thirty 
per cent of all voters voted for the Socialist ticket. We 
are to-day the largest party; the Liberals, who held the 
first place, fell to 100,894 votes. The two other parties, 
the Conservative and the Radical, fell far below this num- 
ber. We gained this result, although we nominated can- 
didates in only 68 out of 114 districts. Had the Socialist 
voters of the other 46 districts had the opportunity of 
voting as Socialists, our total would have been much 
larger. Our success in the country districts was particu- 
larly gratifying — almost half of the Socialist districts were 
agricultural. The election showed plainly that the small 
farmers and farm hands are coming to us in steadily grow- 
ing numbers. . , . 

"The following figures will show how steadily the So- 
cialist Party has grown in the last 18 years, after the en- 
forcement of the election laws, in comparison with the 
other parties whose votes fluctuated from election to 


Votes Districts "Votes Districts 

1895 24,510 8 1906 76,612 24 

1898 31,870 12 1909 93,079 24 

1901 43,015 14 1910 98,718 24 

1903 55,989 16 1913 107,365 32 

"The outlook for the proposed amendment was most 
promising. Hardly a quarter of the vote cast had been 
polled by the Conservatives against the bill proposed by 
the Government. More than three-quarters were cast for 
the three parties that supported the demand for universal 
suffrage. The Conservatives lost 6 of their original 13 
districts. . . . The 7 Conservatives, when the election was 
over, stood opposed to 107 Liberal, Socialist, and Radical 
members, all of whom were pledged to political reform. 
The amendment had received an overwhelming ratifica- 
*tion. It is true the Liberal Party had lost votes. . . . 
[They] fell from 57 to 44, while the Socialists won 32, 
the Radicals 31 seats. But the Liberal Party was still the 
strongest of the three parties that had united to introduce 
political reform, and the other two parties had promised 
them their unqualified support. . . . With the tremendous 
majority pledged to its support, the whole question should 
have been settled in a few months' time. . . . 

' ' But opposition began immediately. A part of the Lib- 
eral Party declared, as soon as the election was over, that 
their party, because of its numerical loss, was no longer 
entitled to control the Government. They demanded that 
the Social Democrats and the Radicals, who, together, con- 
stituted the majority in the Folkething, form a new Min- 
istry. They demanded this with such insistence that the 
Ministry was forced ... to resign. . . . 

" [This development] was due to the peculiar class inter- 
ests of the Liberal farmers, . . . who form the chief ele- 
ment of the Liberal Party [and] are not greatly interested 


in maintaining the present constitution — since they them- 
selves are shut out from the qualified election rights to 
the Landsthing. On the other hand, they fear the danger 
that lurks in general suffrage, because they know that in 
a few years the far greater number of small farmers and 
workers will control both houses of the national legisla- 
ture. . , . 

''If the Liberals had entered the Folkething with so 
large a majority that they could have formed an alliance 
with either Conservatives or Socialists, as it pleased them, 
this would have given them an opportunity to come to 
some sort of a compromise by dealing with both sides. 
Thus they might have hindered, at least in a measure, the 
growth of proletarian influence upon the Government. As 
matters stood this was out of the question. This was 
probably the reason that led the Liberals to refuse to take 
the leadership in the question of political reform. 

"This was the situation in the Social Democratic Party 
when the problem of accepting a position in the Ministry 
presented itself. In 1909 the party had adopted a resolu- 
tion which forbade, under all circumstances, the election 
of a Socialist into a capitalist Ministry. Had we consid- 
ered the possibility of forming a coalition Ministry with 
the Radicals, it would have been necessary to call a special 
party convention. . . . The chairman of our party, Stau- 
ning, who upon several occasions was called to confer with 
the king, declared, by instruction from the Socialist Par- 
liamentary group and the Executive Committee of our 
National Committee, that we believed it to be in the best 
interests of political reform that the late [Liberal] Min- 
istry be reinstated. The suggestion that we form a So- 
cialist, or a Coalition Ministry, was emphatically repudi- 
ated. One possibility was seriously considered by the So- 
cialist members: whether it were possible to enter into 


a Ministry formed by all three parties, whose only duty 
should be to push through the suffrage amendment. We 
all recognized that such an experiment was exceedingly 
hazardous, and it was doubtful whether we should receive 
the indorsement of the party convention. On the other 
hand, the practical question at issue here [the suffrage 
amendment] is of the highest significance for the future 
of the party, and it is absolutely necessary that the three 
parties work together to enforce its speedy realization. 
For both the Folkething and the Landsthing must be dis- 
solved and re-elected before the reform becomes a law, 
and small disharmonies between the three parties may 
help the Conservatives to win, thus cutting off for many 
years to come every possibility for election reform. But 
as the Liberals emphatically refused to participate in such 
a 'Triple Entente,' the whole thing was out of the ques- 
tion. ... A purely Eadical Ministry was elected. 

' ' The new Ministry under Zahle is at the present time oc- 
cupied solely with the passage of the proposed amendment 
[which] . . . will be settled before the budget discussions 
begin. Then the bill will be submitted to the Landsthing, 
and we will wait to see whether Conservatives have be- 
come less stiffnecked, or whether they will open up the 
fight once more by a second refusal to pass the bill. Of 
course the Social Democracy will give the IMinistry its full 
support; but the Liberals, too, are so undeniably bound 
up with the amendment that they dare not repudiate it, 
so that we need hardly fear a betrayal from this quarter. 
The consequences for them would be a terrible downfall, 
when next they come to their voters for support. Noth- 
ing can dam up the flood of political reform once it has 
been started." 




The Swedish Party has now been in existence for 25 
years. Founded in 1889, with a membership of 3,000, it 
advanced slowly during the first few years, and reached 
its maximum in 1907. As the party is based on the trade- 
unions, the crisis commencing in that year, and the con- 
sequences of the general strike of 1909, reduced its mem- 
bership along with that of the unions. It was at its lowest 
point in 1910, with 55,248 members, and stands now at 
about 70,000. {Justice.) 

The growth of the vote is shown in the following table : 

Members of 
Vote Parliament 

1902 8,751 4 

1905 26,083 17 

1908 54,004 33 

1911 172,000 64 

1914 230,000 73 

1914 (September) 257,000 87 

It is to be noted that the suffrage was greatly extended 
in 1911, and the total number of members of Parliament 
increased from 165 to 230. So the increase of the Socialist 
vote and of Socialist members elected has been a steady 
one. There are 519 representatives on the town and bor- 
ough councils, and about 3,000 on the village or parish 
councils. As to the district or county councils, the party 
has 182 members, in spite of the enormous handicap of 
the plural vote in force for these councils. 


In 1912 the Socialist leader, Lindhagen, introduced a 
bill in Parliament to abolish the monarchy. Another 


leader, Branting, opposed the introduction of the mo- 

Lindhagen, in supporting his measure, said among other 
things that the differences in the Socialist groups arose 
from the fact that Branting and his faction went upon 
the materialist conception of history and wanted to wait 
until the time was ripe, while he was of the opinion that 
the ideas of men could be affected in such a way as to 
bring about this ripeness. 

After a short debate the measure was lost by a vote of 
118 to 12. There were at this time 65 Socialist members 
of Parliament. 

(From Vorwaerts) 


"Thb Executive Committee of the Swedish Socialist 
Party has published in its party press a manifesto to the 
people of Sweden . . , which points out the position of 
the Socialist Party. It first confirms the fact that the 
king's speech to the peasants . , . demanded armament 
policies differing from those which the Government de- 
sired, [and] that through this defiant personal interfer- 
ence of the king the administration of 1911 had dissolved, 
and that a new one had to be called. This latter cabinet 
was ordered to uphold the royal decree, either by means 
of promises or pressure. 

"The appeal further characterizes the agitation of the 
armament agitators as being in effect as follows: 'The 
voters should, at least once before the general elections in 
the autumn, wage an election fight, in which every weapon 
should be used, including terror and pressure, lies and 
slander, in order to change public opinion, if possible, and 


to make the people a willing footstool to the king and to 
the capitalistic powers.' 

**The election fight is waged either for or against the 
personal power of the king. . . . 

*'To a challenge of this king the only answer the people 
can give is that no other than the will of the people shall 
rule. It must be settled once for all whether, in our coun- 
try, [the Government] can ... be again suddenly inter- 
rupted ... in its work because it pleases royalty to . . . 
declare that 'he does not share such an opinion' and that 
he will not swerve from certain demands. 

''That part of the appeal which deals with the arma- 
ment question is of special interest. It states . . . that 
influential Liberal papers boasted that their military pro- 
gram hardly differed from that of the Conservatives. . . . 
The promise by the Liberals of a decrease in the high 
cost of living is, seen in this light, nothing more than mere 
words. The Conservatives . . . demand one year of mil- 
itary service, a fleet, and a hundred million yearly budget 
for armament purposes, as a result of which not only the 
taxation laws and the increased cost of living will be per- 
petuated, but social reform will become an impossibility. 

"The Socialist Party, on the other hand, wishes to do 
away with the existing weaknesses in the country's de- 
fense by arming the reserves, increasing the marine, and 
by adding torpedo and submarine boats instead of the 
crazy ' F boats, ' which cost fifteen million apiece, but which 
are not suited to oppose the large giants of other sea pow- 
ers. A decrease ... in expenditures by shortening the 
time of military service to six instead of eight months is 
also demanded. . . . Instead of expending eighty million 
kronen, this plan called for seventy million only. This 
expense . . . would have to come out of an armament tax 
levied upon the well-to-do classes. 


' ' The appeal closes : ' Good prospects everywhere for the 
Socialist candidates. May the red vote increase enor- 
mously. May a stronger Socialist parliamentary fraction 
constitute the answer of the people to the challenge of the 
king and to the ill-considered military program of the 
royal government.' 

"The appeal was signed by every member of the Ex- 
ecutive committee, as well as by those who had stood for 
a purely negative program in regard to the question of 
the country's defense. The unity and solidarity of the 
party in the past struggles have gone on record and suc- 
cess is certain." 


1911 1914 

Seats Votes Seats Votes 

Conservatives 65 189,000 86 286,000 

Liberals 101 243,000 71 245,000 

Socialists 64 172,000 73 230,000 


By Hjalmar Branting, Stockholm 
(From Vorwaerts) 

" . . . The three parties divided amongst themselves the 
voting population — of which this time 72 per cent voted 
in contrast to 75 per cent in 1911 — so that the Socialists 
have now 30 per cent, in all 230,000 votes; the Liberals 
a little more than 32 per cent, 245,000 votes, and the Con- 
servatives about 37y2 per cent, with votes in round figures 
of 285,000. The respective figures in 1911 were as follows: 
28.5 per cent, 40.2 per cent, and 31.5 per cent. The actual 
voting increase of the Socialists amounted to 57,000; of 
the Liberals, 2,000 ; of the Conservatives, however, to about 
98,000. . . . 

*'It can be said that the increase of the Conservatives 


turned out to be larger than seemed at first probable. The 
position of the Liberals in the peasant provinces of Middle 
and North Sweden was weaker than [was] expected. . , . 
The clerical influence in certain parts of the country is 
not to be undervalued. The priests and ministers in those 
secluded parts, all imbued with a strange Finnish sec- 
tarianism, called Lastadianismiis, had spread the tale that 
the Socialists were preparing a general slaughter of Chris- 
tians. In the southern part of the same election district, 
which reaches as far north as the Bottisch gulf, women 
agitators visited the peasants and asked whether they 
really intended to dethrone the king, because he wished 
to protect them against the Russians. In spite of all this 
agitation our comrades won in these districts two out of 
the three seats. The Liberals, however, were completely 
defeated. . . . The Swedish nation, by a vote of 475,000 
as against only 285,000, declared itself opposed to the ar- 
mament program of the king and his government ..." 


(Interview in The Daily Citizen of London) 

" 'The election,' he said, 'was very short, but very in- 
tense. The military question dominated everything, and 
I must tell you at once that the manner in which the Con- 
servatives conducted the fight was most scandalous. Their 
plan was a concentrated scare. "The Cossacks had 
landed!" "The Russians were at the gates of Stock- 
holm!" and so on, in the most extravagant fashion. Of 
course that was intended to sweep the waverers into their 

" 'Well, the Socialist Party made great efforts to resist 
this panic, and succeeded, I think, for you see we have 


captured nine new seats. That is good. They are mostly 
from the Liberals, who have, however, paid the heaviest toll 
t(J the Conservatives. 

' ' ' One thing I must explain to you is this : The election 
just concluded in no way interferes with the triennial elec- 
tion which comes on in the autumn of this year.' 

'* 'How do you find your system of proportional repre- 
sentation working?' 

*' 'It was used for the first time in 1911,' replied Herr 
Branting, 'and increased the electorate by 600,000. The 
Socialist Party's experience of it has been very good.' 

"In reply to a question about future policy the Socialist 
leader said that they were pledged to the general Socialist 
program, the betterment of conditions of labor. They 
were striving for an eight-hour day. They were in favor 
of the full enfranchisement of women, and as the evolu- 
tion of democracy proceeded they would be more and more 
successful. Meanwhile the armaments and the related 
constitutional question overshadowed everything in Sweden. 

"Sweden, he pointed out, has a total population less 
than that of London — 5,500,000 to be exact, of whom 
1,500,000 are adult men. Yet there are more than 150,000 
workers organized, and more than 70,000 members of the 
Social Democratic Party. 

" 'We have,' he said, 'nine Socialist daily papers with 
splendid circulations. Our Labor and Socialist press has 
been our most important weapon. These papers rose from 
small beginnings and gradually helped us to make the 
organization, and now the organization is "making" the 
papers. We would not be without our Socialist press, for 
we have found that if ever we discontinued any one of 
them there was lost ground.' " 



The elections of September, 1914, showed a most remark- 
able increase of Socialist votes over those cast in the 
spring. The victory of the Socialists in the September 
elections made them the largest party in Sweden, giving 
them over one-third of the members of the Parliament, 
and brought up the question of a possible coalition Min- 
istry, to consist of Socialists and Liberals, to go into effect 
at the end of the war. On October the 7th the party 
Executive voted : 

That it was the duty of the largest party of the Left to take 
the initiative in negotiations with the Liberal Party. It should be 
inquired what is the possibility of a program of the Left in respect 
to work for democratic and social political reform, which is ex- 
pected by the electorate and must be begun with all energy as 
soon as the present war crisis is ended. . . . Should coalitions 
be formed which assure a democratic majority in the second cham- 
ber, the party Executive believes that our party must draw the 
necessary parliamentary conclusions. . . . The party Executive 
recommends to the party Congress that a definite union for im- 
mediate reform work be made with the Liberal Party under these 

The previous year, 1913, had brought forth the consid- 
eration of the coalition government in Holland and Den- 
mark, but the proposal was refused by the Socialists in 
both countries. Its acceptance by the Swedish Socialist 
Congress on December 1 is the more remarkable and im- 
portant, constituting, as it does, a reversion to the position 
taken by Jaures and certain Socialist groups in France 
and other countries before the International Congress at 
Amsterdam endeavored finally to put an end to all coali- 
tion governments except under very extraordinary circum- 



(From Vorwaerts, Summarized by Wm. E. Bohn, in International 
Socialist Review, February, 1915) 

"The party decided at this Congress to take part in a 
coalition government with non-Socialist parties — after the 
war. In Sweden the Socialists are now the strongest party 
in the Lower House of Parliament. They have 87 votes, the 
Conservatives 86, and the Liberals 45. The situation is 
a tempting one for the party leaders. The new cabinet 
must be made up either of Socialists or Conservatives. 
By combining with the Liberals the Socialists can have 
the naming of the chief ministers and a chief part in draw- 
ing up a government program. . . . 

"The party Congress met at Stockholm during the last 
days of November. There were two important matters up 
for discussion, militarism and participation in the govern- 
ment. Action on both matters went the same way. . . . 

"The party program demanded a progressive reduction 
of expenditures for army and navy to the point of dis- 
armament. It was charged that the Socialist deputies had 
not lived up to the requirements of this program. . . . 
We cannot disarm, [they] said in effect, before disarma- 
ment is brought about by international agreement. This 
position was approved by a vote of 70 to 61. 

"With regard to participation in the government there 
was a sharp discussion. . . . But the party Executive 
Committee, represented by Branting, carried the day . . . 
by a vote of 90 to 58. In accordance with [their] proposal 
the Socialist deputies are to meet the Liberals and attempt 
to draw up a common program. If they succeed in doing 
this they will be at liberty to form a cabinet made up 
of representatives of the two parties." 


(From Vorwaerts) 

"The number of members of the Socialist Party of 
Sweden increased from 75,444 to 84,410 — almost 9,000. 
Four hundred and twenty-six party members were elected 
to city councils against 360 in the preceding year, and the 
number of county representatives increased from 442 to 
754. The influence of the party can also be noticed in 
other directions. Four thousand seven hundred and 
ninety-five are active in municipal corporations, on school 
boards, etc., compared with 2,691 in the preceding year." 




In the 1915 election the participation of the women in- 
creased the vote in Norway to 612,000 votes. This meant 
an increase of 108,000 votes over those cast in former 
elections. One hundred and ninety-eight thousand votes 
were cast for the Left, 196,000 for the Social Democrats, 
186,000 for the Right and the Liberals, 26,000 for the 
Labor Democrats, and 6,000 for representatives of other 
parties. In 1894 there were but 732 Socialist voters in the 

The Socialist vote recorded the largest increase. Their 
vote increased about 55 per cent. The Left and the Labor 
Democrats together had an increase of 15 per cent, the 
Socialists 40 per cent, and the Right as well as the Lib- 
erals only 5 to 6 per cent. The Government Party, how- 
ever, remained secure in its majority. The party of the 
Right lost in the first election three of its election districts. 


The new Storthing is composed of 21 members of the 
Eight and Liberals as compared with 21 in the last 
Storthing; 78 members of the Left and Labor Democrats, 
as against 76 in the last Storthing ; 20 Social Democrats as 
against 23, and 4 deputies representing no special party. 


Years Representatives Socialist Votes 

1894 732 

1897 947 

1900 7,013 

1903 4 24,526 

1906 10 43,100 

1909 11 91,268 

1912 23 120,077 

1915 20 196,000 

In the municipal council of Christiania, 29 of the 84 
members are Socialists, and of these 3 are women. 

In the beginning of 1914 the Socialist Party claimed a 
membership of 50,000, an increase of 6,000 over the previ- 
ous year. The principal organ was the Sozialdemokraten, 
published in Christiania, with a circulation of 31,000. It 
is estimated that 103,783 people of Norway subscribed in 
1914 to the 8 Socialist dailies and 18 weeklies. 




Socialism was not organized in Austria until the late 
'eighties and it was only in 1901 that it made its appear- 
ance in the Reiehsrath with 10 deputies. In January, 1907, 
a law was passed giving the vote to all men over 24. This 
law produced its inevitable fruit at the general elections 
held in the following May, when 87 Socialist deputies were 
elected to a house of 516 and the Socialist vote was 1,041,- 
948, or nearly one-third of the total. The popular So- 
cialist vote increased in 1911 to 1,081,000, but the number 
of deputies was reduced to 82 — still more than one-sixth of 
the total number. 

By Otto Bauer, Vienna 
(In Die Neue Zeit) 
"The Convention of the Social Democracy of Austria, 
which met in Vienna in . . . November, 1913, merits the 
attention of our comrades outside the Austrian boundaries. 
. . . Though its [the Austrian proletarian's] develop- 
ment be radically different from the normal, straightfor- 
ward progress made in other countries whose people are 
not divided by prejudices of nationality and race, never- 



theless our Convention was controlled by the same great 
question that has for years been the basis of earnest dis- 
cussion in all international congresses and national con- 
ventions of the International Social Democracy : the strug- 
gle between reform and revolutionary Socialism. 

"The appearance of this question . . . has been forced 
upon us by bitter political experience. Up to the year 
1904 the Austrian Social Democracy was a small organiza- 
tion. From 1904 to 1907 it grew by leaps and bounds. 
This period of prosperity encouraged a rapid growth of 
the labor-union movement ; their number increased . . . 
from 189,000 to 501,000. Countless strikes won for them 
higher wages, shorter hours, and more favorable contracts. 
These splendid successes on the industrial field went hand 
in hand with remarkable political victories. 

"The Hungarian military conflict, that forced the 
Crown to threaten the House of Lords with the introduc- 
tion of universal suffrage, encouraged the Austrian labor- 
ing-class to take up the struggle for the right to vote. 
The Russian revolution added strength and fervor to the 
movement. Together with the Crown and the bureaucracy, 
the proletariat put an end to the power of the ancient 
feudal nobility and the bourgeoisie. 

"These victories brought numberless new recruits to the 
Socialist movement. But their ideals . . . were thor- 
oughly reformistic. They had been won for the party by 
the popularity of our victories of 1904-1907. They ex- 
pected an endless chain of similar victories. They looked 
to the new Parliament, elected by the votes of all the 
people, with the most extravagant hopes. . . . The pro- 
letariat hoped that the successful climax of their struggle 
for a general equal ballot would usher in an era of social 
reforms, would make possible a rapid, peaceful union of 
all proletarian forces, and would bring with it the gradual 


undermining of capitalist society. . . . But here, as else- 
where, these hopes met with bitter disappointment. 

"The industrial prosperity of the people suddenly van- 
ished. ... In 1908 we suffered a severe industrial 
crisis. . . . 

"Since 1907 the increase in wages, even of the steadily 
employed worker, has been much less than the increase of 
prices and rents. A large part of the laboring-class has 
lost what it gained in former years, its shorter hours, its 
better pay, and tens of thousands have been unemployed 
for many months. 

"Into these years of terrible sufferings came the dis- 
astrous turn of affairs in our foreign political relation. . . . 
Twice within four years a large part of our army was 
mobilized. In the last year tens of thousands of reserves, 
tens of thousands of fathers stood, for eight months on the 
Servian border. Militaristic agitation set in with redoubled 
force. . . . With these happenings came a change in 
the attitude of the ruling classes toward the Social Democ- 
racy. Where the party of the working-class, in 1905 and 
1906, had been a welcome ally to the Crown against the 
privilege Parliament, now as the only firm opponent of 
imperialism and militarism it became the Crown's bitter 
enemy. Government and judiciary became more brutal to 
the working-class than ever before. 

"Parliament was helpless before these new develop- 
ments. The introduction of universal, equal suffrage had 
deepened and complicated the struggle between the Aus- 
trian nations. Nations that had been voiceless under the 
old laws, after the suffrage became democratic, entered, 
with their full strength, into the political arena — this was 
the case with the Ruthenians and the Slovenians. The 
past years had increased their self-confidence. . . . These 
small peoples could not hope to win a majority for their 


demands in the Parliament, so they used the weapon of 
obstruction. . . . The large nations, however, — the Ger- 
mans, the Tchechs, and the Poles — did not dare to de- 
prive them of this weapon. For not one of these has 
a majority in the Parliament, and each trembles at the 
possibility of being overpowered by a coalition of its ene- 
mies. Each party, therefore, desires to hold fast, as a 
last resource, this possibility of obstruction. . . . Parlia- 
ment was powerless in the hands of two dozen Ruthenians 
or Slovenians. . . . So it finally devolved upon the bu- 
reaucracy to take matters into its own hands. In accord- 
ance with the notorious paragraph 14 of the fundamental 
state law, the latter passed laws without the consent of 
the Reichsrath. 

"But even at those times when Parliament was not 
weakened by obstruction it was anything but the body 
that the proletariat masses had expected. In Austria, as 
elsewhere, the class lines have developed very rapidly. . . . 
The tendency toward a union of forces on the part of the 
possessing classes against the proletariat was strengthened 
by the election reform. Where, formerly, they had strug- 
gled and battled with each other with impunity, they now 
saw only their common enemy, the Social Democracy. 
With the exception of a handful of Progressives, the other 
parties all united against us. Every attempt to force 
workingmen's protective legislation upon this Parliament 
met with a determined opposition of the united capitalist 
forces. . . . 

"Matters had come to a crisis that was entirely un- 
looked for on the part of the masses. Instead of an era 
of 'positive results' of social reform, instead of an 'under- 
mining of capitalism,' there came an epoch of high prices, 
an industrial crisis, increased armaments, a mobilization 
of forces, and nationalist obstruction on the one hand, 


and on the other absolutism, a coalition of capitalist par- 
ties, the complete failure of all social legislation. 

"The people now hoped to meet this new development 
with clever tactical moves. ... It was the common belief 
that co-operation between Crown and the International So- 
cialist movement against the bourgeois nationalist forces 
was still a possibility. . . . But the Crown had deserted 
the cause of democracy, had made peace with the feudal 
nobility of Hungary, had dropped its fight for election 
reform, and established the dictatorship of Tisza. Im- 
perialism and militarism . . . have forced the organized 
working-class into active opposition to the policies of its 
rulers. These facts have badly shaken the popular faith 
in the possibility of renewing the political relations of 
1905 and 1906. . . . 

"Powerless to change the course of political events by 
their own actions [violent revolts against high cost of liv- 
ing], the masses once more pinned their whole faith to 
their parliamentary representatives. They still believed 
that the expected reforms must materialize, if only their 
representatives would use the right methods. . . . 

"The district organizations of Vienna — Meidling and 
Graz — presented resolutions to the party Convention de- 
manding that the parliamentary group should not be satis- 
fied with mere opposition, but should obstruct the meas- 
ures of the Government, especially the military bill, until 
an old-age and invalid pension as well as several other 
important social and political reforms had been secured. 
The debate that followed showed plainly that this concep- 
tion had taken root in the minds of a large number of our 
party members. . . . 

"The party Executive Board and the deputies were 
opposed. They showed the situation in Austria as it is 
to-day. The long years of obstruction in the Bohemian 


Landtag . . . has brought, in place of popular rule by 
the national government, a system of bureaucratic absolu- 
tism. A similar change is taking place in Galicia. It will 
be but a matter of years before government by commis- 
sion, appointed by the administration, will take the place 
of the popular Landtag, in all states where there are a 
number of nationalities represented. Just as obstruction 
has been the forerunner of absolutism in the states, so it 
will be in the nation. No parliament can rule when to-day 
this, and to-morrow that party hinders all work. . . . 

"Hitherto obstruction has been used only in nationalist 
conflicts. Its use by the Social Democrats would make it 
a weapon in the class struggle. Every class would then 
adopt its use — to-day the worker, to-morrow the middle- 
class man; to-day the agrarian, to-morrow the capitalist. 
The nationalistic obstruction alone was strong enough to 
disrupt Parliament, to pave the way for paragraph 14. 
Social political obstruction would completely destroy Par- 
liament, would fix absolutism firmly in the saddle. . . . 

* ' The Convention accepted, after a long debate, a resolu- 
tion presented by the delegates of German Bohemia, that 
condemned obstruction as a normal weapon in the struggle 
for reforms, and declared its use permissible only in ex- 
treme cases of parliamentary self-defense. 

"Important as this ruling of the Party Convention 
doubtless is, . . . much more important to our movement 
was the debate itself, fixing our attitude toward parlia- 
mentarism and toward the whole capitalist state. The 
whole discussion showed that it is insane to believe that 
positive results, social reforms, the undermining of the 
whole capitalist system can be accomplished by skillful 
tactics and clever political tricks. It affirmed that it is 
the duty of the party to lead the great masses, blinded 
by the victories of 1904-1907, back to our old Marxian 


principles, to show them that capitalist evolution does 
not mean a gradual and peaceful improvement of con- 
ditions, but rather growing poverty, sharper class-lines, 
increased exploitation, until we are strong enough to over- , 
throw the whole world of capital. . . . 

"This change in our attitude toward capitalism as a 
whole marks, at the same time, a change in our attitude 
toward the Austrian state. The frenzy of our victory for 
election reform implanted into the heads of our comrades 
the idea that Austria could be made a sort of model na- 
tion, a second Switzerland, a country that would show 
to the world that eight nations could live together in peace 
and freedom under the roof of one government. . . . The 
destructive interior struggles of recent years, the Balkan 
catastrophe that lost Austria its recognition as a European 
power, these have effectually rid our members of this false 
hope. This party Convention showed for the first time how 
completely popular faith in the future of Austria has been 

"The period of the revolution of the past has built 
national states upon the wrecks of old feudal and absolute 
state formations. It has established Austria as the sum 
total of a great many national units that were left unan- 
nexed in the general nationalization process of the times. 
It is uncertain whether this Austria will become a united 
nation of free states, welded together by the revolutions 
of the future, or whether it will disintegrate and its 
nations fall under the power of other stronger nationalities. 
In other countries it may seem possible that the proletariat 
will gradually grow, by a peaceable evolution, until it is 
ripe to take into its hands the whole industrial machinery. 
In our country, however, it is clear that the national gov- 
ernment, of which we wish to take possession, must first 
be amalgamated. . . . 


"To be sure, these are not new discoveries. In Austria 
there have always been comrades who warned against the 
reform tendencies, who tried to educate the masses in 
revolutionary thought. But in the past their words fell 
on deaf ears. The Party Convention showed that at last 
our party membership was beginning to awake to the dan- 
gers of reform tactics. ... It showed the danger of awak- 
ening in the masses extravagant hopes of ' positive success, ' 
showed that they would lay the blame for their suffering 
not upon the capitalist system, but upon the Social Dem- 
ocratic Party. . . . 

"True, it will not be easy to teach the great working- 
class to change its manner of thinking. It will need years 
of education. . . . That the first step toward this task 
was taken by the Convention of Vienna gives it a peculiar 
significance in the party history of the Austrian movement. 
For this reason it merits the attention of our comrades 
outside our boundaries. . . . Our country has often been 
called the model of international reformism, the Austrian 
Socialists have enjoyed the reputation of being the leaders 
of the revisionist movement in the International. Well 
then, Austria has demonstrated to the whole International 
the dangers of following a policy of 'nothing but reform' 
agitation. May our experience be a lesson and a warning 
to our comrades in other countries." 



The suffrage in Hungary is so restricted that the 85,000 
Socialist votes cast do not give an adequate idea of the 
strength of the movement. A better measure is the fact 
that the Socialists have 136 members in municipal coun- 
cils. The membership of the party is also narrowly re- 


stricted by hostile legislation, but its recent growth is well 
indicated in the 1913 report of the Party Congress. 

The trade-unions, which form the backbone of the party, 
increased their membership from 95,180 to 111,966 [in 
1913]. The number of members in the unions paying the 
party dues rose from 52,733 to 59,623. The party organ, 
Nepszava, for the first time in its existence, showed a sur- 



By E. Varga, Budapest 
(From Die Neue Zeit) 

"On October 30 the Hungarian Social Democratic Party 
met for its twentieth convention. A review of the history 
of the Hungarian labor movement and the Social Dem- 
ocratic Party, as presented in a small six-page booklet 
that has just been published, may well justify a feeling of 
pride in our work. In a country that is economically and 
culturally far beneath the standard of other European 
nations, ... we have still succeeded, by untiring agita- 
tion and organization, in rallying a large part of the 
working-class under the standard of our movement. The 
last ten years, particularly, show rapid development. 

''The growth of the Social Democratic press is more 
than gratifying. The income of the Nepszava and the 
Volksstimme alone has increased tenfold in the last ten 
years. The past year has seen active work in the improve- 
ment and circulation of our papers. A number of weeks 
ago a new paper, printed in the German and Hungarian 
tongue, called the Bergarheiter (The Miner) made its first 
appearance. This is dedicated to the organization of the 
miners of Hungary, about 100,000 strong. 


"Besides these party successes, the co-operative societies 
have increased their business tenfold in the last five years. 
An attempt has been made to organize co-operative farm- 
ing societies, patterned after those of Italy, with a dif- 
ference, however. While in Italy these societies enjoy the 
support and assistance of the administration, here every 
attempt to organize farm-workers meets with vehement 
opposition from the ruling class and its class government. 

"Prom the historical point of view we have no reason 
to complain of the Hungarian movement. But one look 
at its present situation shows a different picture. A heavy 
industrial crisis has been resting upon the country since 
the outbreak of the Balkan war. The constant danger of 
war for more than a year has injured all industrial and 
commercial enterprise. Unemployment is intense. Though 
we have no real employment statistics, we may 
safely assume, from the reports of the co-operatives, the 
sick benefit societies, and the state employment bureaus, 
that at least 15 to 20 per cent of the workers of Hungary 
to-day are unemployed. 

"Building during the past year has been practically at 
a standstill. Not only do the banks refuse credit, but, 
owing to their financial stress, municipalities and the state 
as well as the railroads, have reduced their investments 
to a minimum. Military preparations have swallowed up 
the money of the nation. The misery of the working-class 
is beyond belief. 

"There is only one escape: emigration. But the Gov- 
ernment uses every possible means to prevent this. No 
man of military age has been allowed to cross the border 
since the beginning of the Balkan troubles. Bitter need, 
however, has made our people clever. They use the most 
impossible ruses to pass the countless armes de garde that 
make the border well-nigh impassable. The emigrants 


go disguised as pilgrims wandering to some holy place. 
They climb high mountains or cross the water in light 
rowboats. Some have escaped across the border line by 
buying a load of pigs with which they travel as caretakers 
until they reach Vienna, where they sell the pigs and go 
on their way. Others arrange appointments with prom- 
inent physicians of Vienna. A book could be written de- 
scribing the numberless tricks resorted to by these unfor- 
tunate Hungarians, that they might shake the dust of 
their fatherland from their feet forever. Conditions are 
so terrible that a borough president reported the other 
day to the Minister of the Interior that in his district there 
are 10,000 unemployed who, together with 40,000 members 
of their families, are facing starvation. . . . 

"Between the undeveloped industrial life and the over- 
developed militaristic aspirations of our monarchy, there 
is a bottomless chasm. Year after year our military de- 
partment clamors for more soldiers, more money. But in 
its undeveloped condition, the country cannot support its 
own population. When the soldiers are mustered, fre- 
quently more than 50 per cent of the recruits fail to ap- 
pear. No border police, no whining will bring them. Nor 
will the new practice of examining emigrants on the Aus- 
trian border as severely as has been the case in Hungary 
itself alter the situation. The people have no bread and 
they will go where it can be found. 

"It is only natural that this hopeless industrial situa- 
tion should react unfavorably on the labor movement, both 
in its industrial and its political organization. This is 
probably the explanation for the passive endurance by the 
Hungarian working-class, yes, by the whole Hungarian 
population, of the absolutism of the Tisza clique. 

"The political situation of Hungary remains practically 
unchanged since our last report. Since the dropping of 


the general strike and the passage of Tisza's election re- 
form, a certain lethargy has overcome all of our fighting 
spirits. The working-class has not been able to muster 
its forces for serious action. In the ranks of the oppo- 
sition . . . conservatism is gaining the upper hand. The 
whole opposition has been boycotting Parliament. Party 
lines have been changed through the founding of a new 
party under the leadership of the great landowner, Count 
Andrassy, a notorious enemy of union labor in his former 
capacity as Minister. This new conservative-opposition 
party claims that it is able to sustain the unity with Aus- 
tria and has embodied this with the development of mili- 
tarism in its program. Concerning election reform, the 
new party, while demanding more liberal provisions than 
those passed under Tisza, refuses to support the demands 
upon which our party and the opposition have united. . . . 

"Though the leaders were profuse in their assurances 
that they would adhere to their election promises, they 
looked calmly on while the Government robbed the people 
of its last vestige of power. The right of public assemblage 
was curtailed by a bill making speakers and officers in a 
public meeting personally responsible for the maintenance 
of order. The jurisdiction of the jury courts was limited 
and political newspaper cases were assigned to judges 
instead of jury courts. Press laws were increased in se- 
verity. A new law, that permits the arrest of unemployed 
who are unwilling to work as vagrants, and their confine- 
ment in the workhouse, makes it possible to wage war upon 
striking workers. . . . 

"It was to be expected that these occurrences should 
find expression at the Convention. Some of the speakers 
insisted that our fusion with the opposition was doing us 
more harm than good, that it was obliterating the class-line 
for the workers to see their leaders make common cause 


with such notorious reactionaries as are some of the mem- 
bers of the opposition. Others insisted that these common 
meetings give our speakers a chance to address people whom 
we can otherwise never hope to reach. . . . Some were 
sure that the opposition would betray the cause of election 
reform as soon as an opportunity presented itself. After 
a thorough discussion a resolution was adopted indorsing 
the party tactics of the past and assuring all opposition 
groups of our support, provided they not only declare 
their satisfaction with Tisza's election reform, but demand 
an election reform, at least as far-reaching as the measures 
decided upon by our party in conjunction with the parties 
of the opposition last year. This excluded the Andrassy 
party. At the same time the resolution reaffirms the neces- 
sity of carrying on an intensive campaign for the funda- 
mental suffrage demands of our party, the right of general, 
secret, and equal suffrage for both sexes. . . . 

"It is easily possible that the election reform of Tisza 
may never take effect. It cannot become effective before 
a year after a reapportionment of election districts has 
passed Parliament. But this bill has not even been drafted, 
and the term of this Reichstag expires in the spring of 
1915. If, therefore, this bill is not presented within the 
next few months, the coming election will be conducted 
under the old election laws, an eventuality that, we firmly 
believe, would be acceptable to all parties. In 1915 or 
1916 a readjustment of the Austro-Hungarian agreement 
will be reached, presenting a splendid opportunity for 
postponing election reforms for another five years. 

"This was the first time since the founding of the Hun- 
garian Socialist Party that a speech concerning our for- 
eign policy was delivered before a party convention. A 
resolution was adopted protesting against the aggressive 
policy of our monarchy, demanding that our nation pro- 


tect its national strength, not by constant armaments, but 
by the peaceful methods of internal social and industrial 
development. ' ' 

(In Justice, London) 

"The electoral law of Hungary has been very little im- 
proved by the reforms introduced by the present govern- 
ment. On three different occasions within the last eight 
years has manhood suffrage been promised in speeches 
from the throne, but the ruling caste in Hungary has 
managed to balk the intentions of the sovereign. It must 
not be supposed that the latter had suddenly become a 
democrat. Far from it. The pronouncement in favor of 
manhood suffrage was made to break the resistance of the 
Hungarian governing class, the landowners of Magyar na- 
tionality, for an increase in the army, and to hold up by 
that means also the movement of the same class for still 
greater independence. 

"It was calculated in court circles that, with a wider 
suffrage, the other nationalities in Hungary would obtain 
enlarged representation (at present the Magyars, with 55 
per cent of the population, hold 393 seats, the other na- 
tionalities, altogether about eight millions, have 20 seats) ; 
further, that the lower middle class and the workmen 
would form new parties, and that with a parliament thus 
split up the Crown would have less difficulty than with a 
parliament dominated by one class and one race. The 
Magyar nobles, however, are skilled politicians. They saw 
through the game; the increases of the army were voted; 
and the electoral reform was carried out in such manner 
that in all essentials the rule of the Magyar aristocracy 
is not seriously threatened. At first our party, when it 


became clear that nothing approaching manhood suffrage 
could be expected, decided on boycotting the elections and 
to carry on the agitation for a thoroughgoing reform. 
Gradually, however, it was recognized that it might be 
worth while to try whether, even under this new law, a 
breach might not be made and some Socialists returned to 
this, the last parliament of Europe without any Socialist 

"Under the new law the vote by ballot is secured for 
63 electoral divisions in cities and boroughs. The fran- 
chise is granted to the town workmen who are 30 years 
of age, can read and write, and fulfill a few other con- 
ditions. What this means may be seen from the fact that 
in Budapest there are close on 100,000 workers over 24 
years of age, but the number of voters of all classes will 
not exceed some 40,000. The greatest factor in pro- 
letarian politics, the numerical preponderance of the 
labor vote, is therefore absent. 

The first stage in the electoral struggle, once participa- 
tion in it had been decided upon, was to get the working- 
class voters registered. To keep them off the register as 
much as possible the local authorities ordered the educa- 
tional tests to take place nearly everywhere on week days 
during working hours, reckoning that many workmen 
would not care to lose a day's work for the sake of a vote. 
In some districts the regulations also prescribed a personal 
individual application to be made by the citizen who 
wished to be put upon the register, which in most cases 
would have meant another day lost. 

"Our party set to work and succeeded in getting these 
regulations altered, so that the qualifying educational tests 
now take place in the evenings, and notices for admission 
to the voters' lists can be given by third persons. In all 
districts where our party has sufficient adherents to under- 


take a contest electoral associations have been formed, and 
the work of propaganda and collection of names has been 
carried out. For the 22 Budapest constituencies 5,000 
comrades volunteered for this canvassing work, which was 
done in the second week of May. The total number of 
names handed in by the party organizers was more than 
30,000, the number of individual applications for the whole 
of Budapest only about 1,000. Probably a certain number 
of applications will still be rejected, as elementary educa- 
tion is sadly neglected in Hungary; and, in the hands of 
unscrupulous persons, as most of the officials of adminis- 
trative authorities are, the educational tests may easily be 
used to deprive workmen of the vote. 

"However, the preliminary work of collecting names, 
of explaining the provisions of the electoral law, holding 
meetings, and selling literature, etc., has put new life into 
the party, which was greatly discouraged by the non- 
success of the movement for manhood suffrage, and saw 
its funds depleted by the terrible economic crisis through 
which the working-class has passed since the commence- 
ment of the Balkan wars. The party will therefore be on 
the alert to prevent violation of the law by the officials, 
and to see to it that the Socialist Party at the election gets 
its full chance of bringing its voters to the poll. The 
Central Committee for Budapest, which conducts all the 
administrative work of preparation and organization, and 
which is appointed by the municipality, has two Socialists 
amongst its members, comrades Buchinger and Weltner, 
who will keep their eyes open for any tricks that official- 
dom might like to play. It is not known yet when the 
election will take place, but at the latest it must be in 
May next; probably, however, it will be in the autumn 
that the Hungarian working-class will get its first chance 
of voting. 


"There is no possibility of doing anything in the coun- 
try districts, where open voting is still the law. It is here 
that the mass of the proletariat of the Magyar race toils 
for the lords, where the worst conditions obtain, and the 
most rigorous terrorism and oppression will be applied to 
secure electoral success for the governing class. The num- 
ber of Magyar agricultural workers is estimated at 
630,000, the non-Magyar, mostly Roumanian and Slavonic, 
at 49,000. The town workers are computed at 250,000 
Magyars and 160,000 non-Magyars (German, Slavonic, 
Roumanian, etc.). Among the farmers and peasant free- 
holders the Magyars are in a decided minority, so much 
so that in numbers the Magyars are only three-eighths of 
the land-owning classes all told, whilst, as to the extent of 
property held, the proportion is the reverse, if not more 
so, the vast estates being the property of Magyar nobles 
almost exclusively." 




A Spanish Socialist Party was founded in 1879, but 
held its first congress in 1888 at Barcelona. By 1913 the 
party had 12,000 members, divided into 198 groups. Its 
daily organ, El Socialista, was founded at Madrid that 

In 1891 it received 5,000 votes at the national election; 
in 1896, 14,000; in 1898, 23,000; in 1904, 26,000, and in 
1907, 23,000. 

At the election of 1910 there was a considerable increase, 
the party receiving approximately 41,000 votes. This in- 
crease continued in the elections of 1912, when Pablo 
Iglesias received over 40,000 votes and was elected to the 
Cortes from Madrid— being the only Socialist member of 
that body. In 1910, however, a close electoral alliance 
had been formed between the Socialists and Republicans, 
who are 16 in number in the Cortes. 


By Pablo Iglesias, Madrid 
(From Vorwaerts, May 15, 1914) 
"Spain is in a serious, critical situation. The Con- 
servative Party, now in power, is divided by schisms, which 
threaten the life of the party and the monarchy. 



"Maura, the former leader of this party, has withdrawn 
from political life. Between him and his aid, the present 
prime minister, Dato, and all his followers, exists serious 
dissension. This withdrawal from political life is not taken 
seriously, for Maura's son, Gabriel, as well as some other 
followers of Maura's, are busily engaged in exciting public 
opinion against the government. The object of this attack 
is to arouse friendly feelings towards the man against 
whom hate and disgust arose in all civilized countries when 
he had Ferrer shot. 

"The agitation of these followers of Maura's is turned 
not only against Dato's government, but also against the 
king. In spite of their assurance of monarchical loyalty, 
these monarchists neglect no opportunity to attack Al- 
fonso XIII. Gabriel Maura declared at a recent meeting 
that his father had not been in favor of the Morocco 
war. Although several skirmishes between Spanish troops 
and Arabs had taken place in 1909, he declared these 
could have been suppressed through police measures, as 
they were only disturbances of the peace. Maura ap- 
proved of these police measures, and these only. Maura's 
son intended by this statement to place the blame of the 
unhappy war on the king. 

"Maura is finding that the secret hatred which his fol- 
lowers have against the king is reacting against himself. 
The king is endeavoring to crystallize public opinion 
against him for the purpose ultimately of pushing him out 
of public life. In order to attain this end, he has reached 
an understanding between the leaders of the largest Lib- 
eral groups and Dato. It is possible that the king might 
be able to defeat Maura once for all, but not without dan- 
ger to the monarchical regime. 

"Like the Conservative Party, the Spanish Liberals are 
divided among themselves. Their majority collects 


around Count Romanones, the predecessor of Dato. The 
smaller group of the Liberals has Garcia Prieto as leader. 
It was he who signed the treaty between Spain and France 
when he was state minister in the cabinet of Romanones. 
This group, which works against the present government 
and secretly against the Liberal Party, calls itself now 
the Democratic Party. These are the parties which give 
their support to Alf ouzo's monarchy. 

"There are other monarchical elements, but they are of 
less importance. One, for instance, is the Regionalists, or 
Spanish Separatists, a group of politicians from Cata- 
lonia, anxious to secure autonomy for that province. It 
is their custom to associate with Conservatives, Carlists, 
and other minor groups. 

"Opposing these monarchical political powers are the 
Republican and the Socialist parties. The Republicans 
command large masses of people, while the Socialist Party 
counts among its members all class-conscious workers. The 
party is excellently organized. The Republicans and the 
Socialists form a coalition, founded in 1909, with the idea 
of overthrowing Maura. Personal ambition induced some 
of the Republican leaders to withdraw from the party and 
to become adherents of the monarchy, provided this mon- 
archy took up more liberal and democratic policies. It is 
needless to say that these political deserters, at the head of 
which were Melquiadez Alvares and Azcarate, were 
sharply criticised by all advanced political elements. 

"The principal reason for Spain's sad condition lies in 
'our international politics.' The Spanish rulers, who are 
stupid and servile, have entered into treaties for the coun- 
try which only serve the selfish interests of French 
and English citizens, and which flatter the imperial long- 
ings of the king and the militarists who for selfish reasons 
pretend to be devoted to the monarch. 


' * The war in Morocco is a result of the policies pursued 
by this government. This war has lasted five years al- 
ready, and has not only cost the country human lives, but 
also many millions of pesetas, and has brought nothing in 
return but the loss of Spain's reputation. At present the 
army which is stationed in Morocco costs the country one 
million pesetas ($200,000) a day. 

''Another result of the activities of this government is 
the erection of a new fleet, which has so far cost $40,000,000 
— this sum might as well have been thrown in the water — 
and the preparations for new and expensive coast defenses. 

' ' The building of an electric railway from Madrid to the 
French frontier is still another outcome of this policy. 
This will also cost several million pesetas, its purpose being 
to transport troops from France to Africa, or from Africa 
to France, when the international situation demands such 

"These immense expenses gradually exhaust the coun- 
try, especially as Spain has such a very small taxing power. 
The debts grow greater and greater, and with them the 
taxes, while, as a result, the cost of living increases. Em- 
igration, on account of the misery and the war, is ex- 
ceedingly great. The war in Morocco finds no supporters 
in the entire country. The supporters of the war them- 
selves, the king, several dealers, and the military group 
who prosper by it, do not dare to defend this adventure. 
The entire country is against the war, and the Republican, 
and especially the Socialist Party, are continually protest- 
ing against it in their press and at their meetings. It is 
possible that the immense cost of the war, the stupidity 
of the militarists, and the attitude of the king — it is said 
that he carries on the war behind the back of the govern- 
ment — may lead to an uprising. . . . 

"As in former elections, the delegates who belong to the 


Spanish Cortes, owe their seats to the misuse of the general 
suffrage by the government, or through the phitocratic ele- 
ments, so that the present Parliament resembles the former 
almost wholly. Practically all the politicians who are to 
blame for the misery of Spain were again elected. Among 
the 408 delegates are 228 Conservatives, 120 Liberals and 
Democrats, and 16 of the Republican and Socialist coali- 
tion (among these only 1 Socialist). The remainder is 
made up of a number of smaller groups. 

"It is almost certain that the government will not find 
a Conservative majority. To continue to live it will have 
to solicit the help of the Liberals, under the leadership of 
Eomanones. Everyone believes that the life of this par- 
liament will be very short and very unfruitful. The pres- 
ent government or its successor, which will be of the same 
political complexion, will try to rule without Parliament, 
as has been the custom in Spain. 

"During its short life this Parliament will have a very 
stormy career. The immense folly of the war in Morocco 
will be laid bare before this assembly and King Alfonso 
will be branded as the principal culprit. Perhaps this 
criticism will press the people to free themselves from 
those who plunge the country into ruin." 



At the Fifth Congress of the Portuguese Socialist Party 
(July, 1913) 50 local organizations were represented. The 
chief demands discussed were compulsory voting, propor- 
tional representation, the referendum, and woman suffrage. 

In the November elections, the Socialists failed to in- 
crease their delegation in Parliament, which consists of 


one member, Manuel Jose da Silva, of Oporto. In Decem- 
ber, however, they elected 11 members to the municipal 
council of Oporto, gained a majority in Covilha, and elected 
members for the first time in several other towns. 


(A. F. G., in The New Statesman, January 3, 1914) 
' ' The party now in power is that of the Democrats, under 
the leadership of the Premier, Senhor Affonso Costa. The 
organs of this party are A Patria and Mundo, and, non- 
officially, Seculo. There is the Unionist Party, under 
the leadership of Senhor Brito Camaeho, with its organ, 
A Lucta, which has during the past year lent its support 
to Senhor Costa, and furnished him with a working ma- 
jority in the Chamber. Violently opposed to Senhor Costa 
and the Democratic Party are the Evolutionists under 
Senhor Antonio Jose de Almeida, with their organ, A Re- 
puhlica. This party represents the real constitutional op- 
position within the republic. Its program is much more 
moderate than that of the Democrats, and its leader is a 
man of ability; but it has not hitherto shown that it pos- 
sesses strength to assert itself or even to play a prominent 
part in practical politics. Besides these three Republican 
parties there is the group of Independents, also intensely 
Republican, but opposed to the republic as at present con- 
stituted. The leader of this fourth party is Senhor Ma- 
chado Santos, its organ Intransigente. The Royalists no 
more than the Republicans offer a united front. There are 
the supporters of King Manoel, the supporters of Dom 
Migoel (whose organ, A Nagao, was temporarily suspended 
owing to the wrecking of its offices by the Carbonarios), 
and a third party of Royalists, who may be called Sehas- 
tianistas. These last are filled with a vague discontent and 


look unfailingly to the return of former conditions, but 
know not exactly what they want or what prince they 
would have to reign over them. These indefinite and 
idealistic Royalists in Portugal occupy much the same posi- 
tion as the Carlists in Spain. 

"A fourth Royalist Party is composed of unpatriotic 
persons, who desire foreign intervention and persuade 
themselves that order will be thoroughly restored only 
under a foreign prince, with foreign troops at his back. 

''Then there is the Socialist Party, with its organ, 
Socialista, which has gained somewhat in strength recently, 
and has attacked the republic as it perhaps never at- 
tacked the monarchy, complaining that the lot of the work- 
men has grown worse, that the governments of the re- 
public have been as selfish and incompetent as those of 
the monarchy, and that the main difference has been that, 
whereas under the monarchy there was a vigorous opposi- 
tion press, no such press has been allowed to exist under 
the republic. The Syndicalists, with their journal, Sin- 
dicalista, also have many adepts among the workmen and 
in the navy. There exist, too, many anarchist manufac- 
turers of bombs, and many Radical Republicans, who have 
already made several attempts to effect a coup d'etat and 
replace the present ]\Iinistry by a IMinistry of a more 
frankly popular and Socialistic character, and to inaug- 
urate the Repuhlica Radical, of which the conspirators 
wore the yellow badge. 

"And through all these groups and parties runs the 
sinister vein of the Carhonaria, the white Carbonarios, 
the black Carbonarios, the 'Sons of Night' {Filhos da 
Noite), the devotees of Senhor Costa. It would require 
a Talleyrand to thread these mazes. Yet it is a country of 
but six million inhabitants, and the census taken at the end 
of 1911 records the number of those who can neither write 


nor read as 75 per cent of the entire population. These 
illiterates have not the vote and are for the most part indif- 
ferent to polities; so that we have this dozen or more of 
contending parties in a million and a half inhabitants. 
. . , The Democrat Party cannot be acquitted of the chief 
responsibility for the widespread discontent and for the iso- 
lation in which the republic now subsists. Far from seek- 
ing to win over opponents, it has heaped insults and insin- 
uations even on fellow Republicans whom it has suspected 
of a tendency to moderation, and has encouraged the Car- 
bonarios to spy out and persecute. And its leader, Senhor 
Costa, is, like Janus, double-faced. On the one hand he 
represents himself (especially in his intercourse with the 
foreign ministers) as a man of sense and moderation, on 
the other hand he freely indorses the outrages committed 
by the Carbonarios. He is thus more likely to succeed for 
a while than to bring any true or permanent improvement 
to the state of Portugal. Like the performance of a rope- 
dancer, his administration is unlikely to be prolonged and 
may end in disaster, however skillfully he maintains his 
balance for the moment. 'He knows that Portugal is 
threatened by only one danger — bankruptcy,' said his inti- 
mate friend, the editor of the Mundo, last March ; and to 
the abolition of the deficit Senhor Costa has devoted much 
of his energy. But since the effect of his policy has been 
to drive capital from the country, the distress in Portugal 
has become worse than it was before the revolution, the 
exchanges have gone down and emigration has gone up. 
It may be argued that this is but natural after a revolu- 
tion. But the revolution of October, 1910, was not in itself 
a great upheaval, and it was followed by an attitude of 
expectation and, in parts of the country, of welcome. The 
ignorant, who had been led to look for the Millennium, 
were, of course, doomed from the first to disappointment; 


but level-headed observers have been not less deeply dis- 
appointed in the results of the revolution. Socialista 
wrote as follows last July : 

" A violent change of government may be welcomed by honest 
Republicans and sincere patriots who desire a modern, tolerant, 
and progressive republic, and an era of tranquillity, work, and 
study for their country. . . . Like Joao Franco and all tyrannical 
despotic governments, Senhor Costa's government has produced 
an effect profoundly revolutionary. By his attitude in power 
he has made more anarchists and syndicalists than have been 
secured by all the work of propaganda. 

" And in many camps, openly or underground, men are work- 
ing and plotting to undermine the present administration." 




The Social Democratic Party of Roumania was organ- 
ized at Bukharest, February 2, 1910. For several years 
prior to that date, the movement had no political character, 
consisting mainly of scattered ' ' circles, ' ' whose chief activ- 
ity was the organization of trade-unions and the holding 
of occasional lectures and mass meetings on timely topics. 

Since 1899, which year marked the disappearance of the 
first Socialist or pseudo-Socialist movement in Roumania, 
by the wholesale abandonment of its intellectual leaders, 
all of whom joined the so-called Liberal Party, and — as 
in France — assumed leading positions within it, Roumania 
has been without any definite Socialistic organization. In 
1905 Dr. C. Racovsky, who, with C. Dobrogeanu-Gherea, 
Roumania 's foremost economist and literary critic, were 
the only remaining loyal Socialists, began to tour the 
country, getting in touch with stray comrades in various 
localities. At the same time, Racovsky and a few comrades 
at Bukharest commenced issuing a weekly, the Romania 
Municitoare (Laboring Roumania). This activity resulted 
in the formation of the circles above mentioned. These 
had no organic connection, nor, for that matter, any definite 
program of activity until 1910, when, following the passage 
of a law prohibiting government employees from joining 



labor-unions, the movement considered the possibility of 
saving itself by the formation of a political party. 

The first national Executive Committee — and members of 
this committee are even at the present time the most active 
members of the movement — were: C. Racovsky, D, Mari- 
nesco, M. Gh. Bujor, N. C. Georgesco, I. C. Frimou, Al. 
Constantinesco, and C. Vasilesco. 

As the party is now constituted, it consists of a central 
organization at Bukharest, with branches, called "clubs," 
in the principal cities. Besides conducting the political 
part of the activity, these clubs also assist in the organ- 
ization of trade-unions. The two phases of the movement 
are very closely allied. The trade-union membership is 
at present about ten thousand, and includes only private 
employees. The official organ, Romania Muncitoare, now 
appears three times a week. One-half of each issue is de- 
voted to the Socialist movement and the other half to 
the trade-unions. The movement also conducts a publish- 
ing enterprise, issuing original or translated pamphlets 
and books from time to time. There is also a monthly 
scientific and literary magazine, Viitorul Social (The So- 
cial Future) of about the size of the Neue Zeit. Then 
there are various trade papers, one of the waiters, metal- 
workers, railroad men, and one or two of the other trades. 

The movement has passed through important crises since 
its organization. The first was in 1907, following the 
Peasant Rebellion, when the party was almost completely 
annihilated. All clubs were closed, books and cash con- 
fiscated, and the members mobilized, and almost a thou- 
sand native Jewish party members expelled from the coun- 
try. The Government, in its fury, instituted proceedings 
against Dr. Racovsky, and by means of documents subse- 
quently proved to be false, denied the latter his citizen- 
ship, and in his absence as delegate to the International 


Congress at Stuttgart, declared him expelled from Rou- 
mania. Racovsky made several attempts to re-enter the 
country, each time at a different point, in order to have 
himself brought before a court where he could prove his 
citizenship. But in each case he was arrested and clan- 
destinely returned across the frontier. It was only in 1912, 
after a change of cabinet, and after innumerable efforts 
of friends, that he was finally permitted to present his 
claims before the court. He did so, and his citizenship was 
restored to him. 

The second crisis was in the nature of an internal strife 
in 1913, at the time of the Balkan War. As is well known, 
Roumania did not participate actively in this struggle. 
The great victories of Bulgaria, however, aroused the Rou- 
manian Government's jealousy, and it began to wage a 
campaign of hostility against that neighboring country. 
When the war fever was at its highest, a Roumanian army 
was dispatched across the Danube and occupied a small 
province (Silvestria) which the Bulgarians were unable 
to defend. Some of the intellectuals of the party, notably 
two lawyers, N. D, Cocea and Th. Dragu, were caught in 
the whirl of patriotism and defended the war in spite of 
a contrary action of the party. This led to such marked 
dissatisfaction within the ranks that these two were forced 
to resign. On this occasion the party got rid of a few 
obstreperous opportunists, and now presents a strictly So- 
cialist front. The last convention in 1914 ratified the 
stand of the central party organization at the time of the 

Although numerically and politically weak, the party 
put up candidates in a number of campaigns in several 
localities. The vote is necessarily small, but contributes 
to the political education of the masses. At Galatz and 
Tulcea, however, the vote exceeded all anticipations. 




a. Equal direct and secret universal suffrage for all inhabitants 
above 20 years, irrespective of nationality, creed, or sex, not 
subjects of any other country; as well as for aliens residing in 
the country 10 years or more, renouncing all foreign allegiance. 
Proportional representation ; holding of elections on a legal holi- 
day; compensation for the elected officers; abolition of the Senate. 

b. This can all be summed up in the initiative, referendum, 
and recall; extensive administrative decentralization and local 
home rule. 

c. Abolition of the expulsion law, and sundry other exception 
laws. (This law nominally applicable to foreigners has been 
extensively used against Socialists, native Jewish members of the 
party, having been expelled by the hundreds, especially daring 
the peasant outbreak in 1907.) Equalization of the rights of 
the inhabitants of Dobrudja. (This province was acquired from 
Turkey following the Independence War of 1877. Ever since the 
province has been subject to exception laws, inhabitants being 
deprived of the suffrage or parliamentary representation.) Com- 
plete equalization of the civic and political rights of native Jews 
with those of other citizens. (Although the native Jews are 
subject to civic and military duty, pay taxes, etc., they are en- 
joying no political freedom whatever, always being implicitly 
included in any act applicable to " foreignei's.") 

d. Restitution of political and civic privileges to all city, dis- 
trict, and state employees. 

e. Equalization, political and legal, of the sexes, and the fos- 
tering of paternal responsibility upon the father for his illegiti- 
mate children. 

/. Punishment by law of public employees who interfere with 
the exercise of the political rights of the citizens. 

g. Establishment of honest, equitable, and independent justice. 
Gratuity of legal processes, damages for illegally arrested or 
prosecuted citizens, right of appeal, election of judges and jurors 
by popular vote. 

h. The establishment of the right of appeal against all admin- 


istrative and judicial decisions for the benefit of all public em- 

i. Free and compulsory education for children of all creeds 
and nationalities, with due regard for the languages of the various 
ethnical groups. Secularization of education. Equalization of 
the village school with the town school. Establishment of voca- 
tional and agricultural schools. Compulsory education to 14 
years. Generalization of school lunchrooms. Free clothing, food, 
books, and school supplies for needy children in primary, sec- 
ondary, and vocational schools. Assistance to needy and deserv- 
ing pupils for the continuation of their studies. 

j. Direct proportional and progressive income and inheritance 
tax. Gradual abrogation of all indirect taxes, incomes of 3,000 
francs or less to be exempt from all taxation. 

k. Separation of church from the state, leaving church admin- 
istration to the care of its members. 

I. All city, district, and state employees to be under civil 

m. Considering the army only as a means of protecting the 
country, and in no way as an instrument of repression against 
the working-class and its struggles for freedom, we demand the 
transformation of the standing army into a national militia; 
until such change is effected, we demand the reduction of the 
military service to one year. Abrogation of court-martials; 
compulsory education in barracks and camps. 


o. Abrogation of all feudal remnants in the relation of 
agrarian production. 

b. Abrogation of feudal contracts, as tithes, and other hidden 
forms of servitude. All agreements and payments to be made 
in specie. 

c. Compulsory expropriation as far as possible of gi'eat por- 
tions of extensive land holdings. 

d. All such expropriated lands to form a national fund under 
state supervision. Individuals or peasant associations to rent 
from this fund parcels of land for terms of not less than 50 
years. Right of renewal of contract to be vested in the tenant's 
heirs (wife, children, etc.). Tenant to be allowed to subrent his 


parcel to a third party, the only condition being that the latter 
work the parcel himself. 

e. Amount of rent to be decided by a commission of peasants 
and landowners, so constituted as to safeguard the interests of 
the peasants. These prices to be universally prevailing and 
applicable to all owners. 

/. The income of the fund to be divided in two, as follows: 
One part for the payment of interests and amortization of the 
capital expended in buying. Second part, less administrative 
expenses, to be distributed among all communities and to be used 
only for public welfare work, improvement of agricultural work, 
or increase in holdings. 

g. Special legislation to facilitate the formation of peasants' 
associations, providing for city and state assistance in the form 
of procuring seeds, fertilizer, and modem machinery. 

h. Organization of a rural bank to lend money to peasants on 
a nominal interest in proportion to the latter's holdings. This 
bank also to make provisions for the wholesale and common 
disposal of the agricultural products of its members, as well as 
for the purchase of seeds and machinery. This bank to be a state 

i. Expropriation of inalienable city or private pasture 
grounds at prices to be established as above provided for. 

j. Total prevention of the sale of land or forests belonging to 
the state or cities to private individuals. The same to apply 
also to all other natural resources — waterfalls, rivers, mines, 

A:. Encouragement by the state and cities of systematic agri- 
culture and breeding, by means of traveling instructors, experi- 
ment stations, etc. 

I. Practical agricultural instructions by means of special 
schools, or special courses in existing iniral schools, in the latter 
case not at the expense of the regular coui-se of study. 

m. Improvement on rivers, creation of canals for irrigation, 
drainage of swamps, installation of artesian wells, etc. Construc- 
tion of public highways and railways for local purposes. Arti- 
ficial forestation. 

n. Tenants of parcels of land to be entitled to compensation 
for any improvement which adds to the value of the land. 

0. Abolition by law of the right of landowners to prosecute 
or attach the product of the soil. The establishment of a reserve 


of instruments, products, fertilizers, head of cattle, indispensable 
to every household and forever inalienable. 

p. Establishment of a minimum wage by the commission for 
journeymen and seasonal workers. 

q. All laws protecting labor to apply to rural labor as well, 
with due regard to the particular circumstances. 

r. To reduce to a minimum the transportation cost on rail- 
roads for agricultural workers, especially during the season. To 
facilitate the movement of such workers to places best suitable 
for them. 

s. Abrogation of all land taxes for peasants working their 
fields by hand. 

t. Reduction of transportation costs for fertilizers, machinery, 
and agricultural products. 

u. Freedom of game and fishing, except such restrictions as 
are necessary for the protection of the game and for the preven- 
tion of damage to the crops. 


(From Vorwaerts) 

The International Socialist Bureau has addressed to the 
Socialists of Bulgaria the following communication: 

For many years the International has looked upon the struggle 
among the Socialists of Bulgaria with a heavy heart. In spite 
of the resolution adopted by the Amsterdam Congress concerning 
united action on the part of all Socialists, a resolution which 
was first carried out by our French comrades and which will 
again bear fruit in the union of the British parties, the Bul- 
garian parties have yet to take the first step toward a mutual 
understaiiding. While you preach " Peace between all nations," 
you tear each other to pieces and present to the world a picture 
of senseless and unfounded enmity. 

At the last elections, particularly, the worst passions entered 
into play. Grievances were painfully dragged out, mutual accu- 
sations and reci'iminations were the order of the day. And now, 
after the dissolution of Parliament, we observe a bitter struggle 


between Socialists, where the combat should be fought, with 
united forces, against the capitalist class. 

Comrades: Your country is practically devoid of any laws for 
the protection of the working-class. You live under a system of 
government that is hardly more than a caricature of freedom 
and democracy. A new outbreak of hostility threatens the 
Balkan nations, and you are neither strong enough, nor numerous 
enough, to face this militaristic combat. 

Comrades of both parties : We have the right to speak in the 
name of the whole international movement, when we ask you 
to put an end to your differences, which serve only to decrease 
your own influence, to fill your enemies with joy. In all our 
parties there are various shades of theoretical opinion. We were 
not Socialists if we did not desire, as men who think for our- 
selves, to find the truth and to fix our tactics according to the 
change of conditions and times. We ask you, therefore, to listen 
to us and to pave the way for a union of the Bulgarian Socialist 

Even if this union be difficult at the present time, some under- 
standing must be reached at the time of the election. Do not 
place opposing Socialist candidates into the field. 

You are called upon to become an influential and perhaps 
a deciding factor in the coming struggle. You have no right to 
squander your forces uselessly to diminish your strength. The 
victory of democracy in the East means a wonderful strengthen- 
ing of democracy in the West, signifies the coming triumph of 
modern ideas in the whole world. 

For the International Socialist Bureau, 
The Executive Board. 

E. Vandervelde, 

E. Anseele, 

L. Bertrand, 

C. HuYSMANS, Secretary. 


Greece has experienced a rapid industrial development 
during the last 15 years. As far back as the year 1885, 
Dr. Dracoules began with his propaganda work. In 1893, 
as leader of the Greek Socialist Party, he secured 4,000 


votes in Athens, and in 1901 he was elected to the Greek 
Parliament, where he served several years. 

Attempts have often been made during the past few 
years to establish a consolidated economic or political or- 
ganization, but up to the present without any satisfactory 
results. This regrettable state of affairs may be attributed 
to the fact that emigration is increasing day by day, and 
it is just the most skilled and intelligent workers who are 
driven from their homes on account of their unfortunate 
political and economic conditions. At any rate, the con- 
stant agitation of a more progressive body has already had 
a great influence upon public opinion, and it is to-day gen- 
erally recognized that the present conditions are untenable. 

It was in 1909 that the military arose and swept away 
the existing government. The movement was supported 
by a great mass of the people, because an improvement 
in their conditions was hoped for as soon as new members 
were elected to the government. The new government 
relied to a certain extent upon the Socialist or semi- 
Socialist elements which had arisen from the Dracoules 
propaganda, and had developed a program "of struggle 
against the plutocracy. ' ' Venizelos, the skillful prime min- 
ister, succeeded in turning a part of the movement to his 
purposes, at the same time that he was building up the 
Balkan League against Turkey inspired by the idea — 
launched by the Socialists — of a confederation of all the 
nations of the peninsula. 

The government also succeeded in serving their own 
financial interests under the cloak of a propaganda cam- 
paign against modern capitalism. The people were forced 
to put up with this because they were helpless and dis- 
united. The new political power offered brutal opposition 
to any attempt on the part of the workers to organize. Dr. 
Dracoules, in 1912, secured 12,000 of the 48,000 votes of 


Athens, and was almost elected in another district where 
he was also candidate. Nevertheless, the propaganda and 
the rising number of votes for the new movement resulted 
in a small progressive group in Parliament pushing forward 
with the labor laws. 

In the meantime a Socialist weekly paper was estab- 
lished for the purpose of furthering the propaganda and 
organization work systematically. This was the first neces- 
sity — having regard to the great disruption in the existing 
groups. There is a very mixed "Labor Federation of 
Athens and Piraeus, ' ' to which 17 industries belong, whilst 
1 yellow organization has compromised 14 groups since 
1910. Some 15 organizations, which are naturally still 
weak, both numerically and financially, belong to a third 
tendency. They represent no unity, it is true, but there are 
hopes of building up modern organizations with these as 
a basis. The followers of Dracoules created a labor league 
in 1909, which comprised two separate organizations — one 
Socialist Party and one trades-union center. This league 
has organizations in several towns. It propagates an un- 
derstanding between the workers of the other Balkan 
States, hoping to put an end to the race hatred which exists. 




The following statistics will make clear the status of the 
Socialist Party in 1914. 

It will be noticed that the high-water mark of member- 
ship was reached in the presidential year, 1912; that the 
figures went down in 1913, rose past the 100,000 mark in 
the first five months of 1914, but fell so far in the latter 
half of that year (the breaking out of the European war) 
as to bring the membership for the whole year even below 
that of 1913. This fall has continued during 1915. 


The Socialist Party was organized early in August, 1901. 
The records are too incomplete to determine just how many 
members we had in the years 1901 and 1902. The mem- 
bership for each year since then was as follows : 

1903 15,975 1910 58,011 

1904 20,763 1911 84,716 

1905 23,327 1912 117,984 

1906 26,784 1913 95,401 

1907 29,270 1914 (first 5 months) . .106,097 

1908 41,751 1914 (entire year).... 93,579 

1909 41,479 1915 85,000 




Table for 1912. Order of Rank 

> o 

9 Name of slate 

1. Nevada 687 

2. Alaska 407 

3. Washington 6,326 

4. Idaho 1,673 

5. Wyoming 696 

6. Montana 1,611 

7. Arizona 689 

8. Oregon 2,205 

9. Oklahoma 4,775 

10. North Dakota 1,662 

11. Minnesota 5,514 

12. California 5,962 

13. Colorado 1,864 

14. Wisconsin 4,635 

15. Utah 729 

16. Pennsylvania 12,689 

17. Kansas 2,603 

18. Ohio 7,090 

19. New Jersey 3,486 

20. Massachusetts 4,519 

21. Connecticut 1,505 

22. Indiana 3,469 

23. New Hampshire 545 

24. Illinois 6,727 

25. Texas 4,583 

26. Florida 861 

27. Michigan 3,176 

28. New York 9,801 

29. West Virginia 1,175 

30. Vermont 303 

31. Missouri 2,749 

32. New Mexico 273 

33. District of Columbia... 267 






































































g Name of state g g i, 

(§ <Ba 

34. Iowa 1,806 

35. Rhode Island 439 

36. Nebraska 806 

37. Arkansas 1,103 

38. Delaware 136 

39. South Dakota 375 

40. Maine 460 

41. Maryland 635 

42. Louisiana 550 

43. Kentucky 500 

44. Alabama 377 

45. Tennessee 368 

48. Virginia 229 

47. North Carolina 200 

48. Mississippi 148 

49. South Carolina 102 

50. Georgia 150 2,609,121 17,394 

Table for 1914. Alphabetical Order 

Alabama 217 Kentucky 270 

Alaska 546 Louisiana 462 

Arizona 460 Maine 407 

Arkansas 533 Maryland 481 

California 5,252 Massachusetts 4,830 

Colorado 1,237 Michigan 2,943 

Connecticut 1,368 Minnesota 4,965 

Delaware 35 Mississippi 124 

District of Columbia .... 251 Missouri 1,806 

Florida 696 Montana 1,589 

Georgia 39 Nebraska 559 

Idaho 905 Nevada 614 

Illinois 6,562 New Hampshire 596 

Indiana 2,222 New Jersey 3,364 

Iowa 1,070 New Mexico 191 

Kansas 1,959 New York 10,717 




■ (£sa 


































North Carolina 75 Vermont 206 

North Dakota 1,644 Virginia 224 

Ohio 4,626 Washington 3,241 

Oklahoma 7,039 West Virginia 850 

Oregon 1,306 Wisconsin 3,885 

Pennsylvania 7,648 Wyoming 648 

Rhode Island 545 unorganized 

South Carolina 81 Members-at-large 32 

South Dakota 427 Hawaii 33 

Tennessee 221 French Federation 193 

Texas 2,893 

Utah 448 Total 93,579 


(From Party Builder, No. 17) 

2 U O o 

- 2oO 

"Soj iS o^ J, 

■— S O "" m 9 

" - -^ o =3 Z 

state ^-2 - ^Sgo- 

* > E-t >a;jz; 

Nevada 3,313 20,115 5 

Oklahoma 42,262 254,389 5 

Arizona 3,163 23,722 6 

Montana 10,885 79,826 6 

Washington * 42,026 322,819 7 

California 79,201 672,527 8 

Idaho 11,960 105,755 8 

Oregon 13,343 137,040 9 

Florida 4,806 51,891 10 

Minnesota * 29,717 334,219 10 

Ohio * 92,553 1,033,558 10 

Texas * 25,326 302,768 11 

Utah * 9.532 112,385 11 

Wisconsin * 34,003 399,972 11 

North Dakota 6,966 86,580 11 

IlUnois * 85,344 1,146.173 12 

Kansas 26,779 365.497 13 

Pennsylvania * 84,318 1,220.201 13 

Arkansas 8,153 124,029 14 



state 1 1 

Colorado * 16,893 

Louisiana 5,249 

Wyoming 2,760 

Indiana * 40,061 

Connecticut * 11,316 

New Mexico 2,859 

West Virginia 15,336 

Michigan * 24,463 

New York * 67,632 

Missouri * 30,244 

Nebraska 10,219 

New Jersey * 17,250 

South Dakota 4,662 

Iowa 16,967 

Mississippi 2,061 

Rhode Island * 2,285 

Massachusetts * 13,932 

Kentucky * 12,603 

Alabama 3,029 

New Hampshire 1,980 

Maine 2,541 

Maryland * 4,318 

Vermont 928 

Tennessee 3,492 

Delaware 556 

Georgia 1,028 

Virginia * 870 

North Carolina 1,025 

South Carolina 164 


<a o o 



































































Total for United States . *930,601 15,039,475 16 

* Since it was cast for Socialism against capitalism, we have in- 
cluded the Socialist Labor Party vote of 29,240 in this table, distributed 
among the states marked with an asterisk where it was polled. 


The foregoing tables reveal some interesting facts re- 
garding the geographical distribution of Socialism. The 
manufacturing states, New York, Massachusetts, Connecti- 
cut, Illinois, etc., are well toward the lower half of both 
lists, while the leading states in proportional Socialist vote 
and membership are those devoted to the extractive indus- 
tries, mining and farming. 



Bryan (Dem.) 6,409,104 

Taft (Rep.) 7,678,908 

Cbafin (Pro.) 253,840 

Gilhaus (Soc. Labor) 13,825 

Debs (Soc.) 424,488 


Wilson (Dem.) 6,291,878 Loss 117,226 

Taft and Roosevelt (Rep.)... 7,608,234 Loss 69,674 

Cbafin (Pro.) 203,762 Loss 45,078 

Reimer (Soc. Labor) 29,240 Gain 15,415 

Debs ( Soc.) 901,361 Gain 476,873 

"The figures given are according to the latest official 
information. The slight revisions that may yet be made 
will not affect the showing. 

"The table disproves the popular impression that there 
was a Democratic landslide. As a matter of fact, Wilson 
in 1912 received 117,226 less votes than Bryan in 1908. In 
spite of their victory the Democrats have, therefore, lost. 
Taft this year received only 3,484,806 votes. Adding to 
this the 4,123,428 votes that Roosevelt received, the com- 
bined Republican-Progressive vote still falls 69,674 short 
of the Republican vote of 1908. The Prohibitionists are 
also on the toboggan slide. 

"On the other hand, both the Socialist Party and the So- 
cialist Labor Party more than doubled their 1908 vote." 



The following table of the 1914 vote is incomplete, as 
the returns from some of the states had not yet come in 
by the end of the year. A decided falling off is noticeable, 
however, not only from the presidential year 1912, but even 
from the corresponding year 1910. The vote given is for 
governor, unless otherwise specified. 

1914 1910 

Alabama (3) 1,159 1,633 

Arizona 2,973 .... 

Arkansas 10,434 9,196 

California 50,716 47,819 

Colorado (1) (3) 13,943 9,603 

Connecticut (1) 5,914 12,179 

Delaware (2) 463 556 

Florida (5) 4,806 10,204 

Georgia (4) 224 224 

Idaho (1) 7,967 5,791 

Illinois (3) 39,889 49,896 

Indiana (1) (3) 21,719 19,632 

Iowa (1) (3) 8,462 9,685 

Kansas 20,360 16,994 

Kentucky (1) (3) 4,890 5,239 

Louisiana (4) 706 706 

Maine 1,872 1,641 

Maryland (3) 3,255 3,924 

Massachusetts 9,520 14,444 

Michigan 11,056 10,608 

Minnesota 17,225 18,363 

Mississippi (4) 23 23 

Missouri (3) 16,853 19,957 

Montana (2) 9,430 5,412 

Nebraska 5,754 6,721 

Nevada (1) (3) 5,426 3,637 

New Hampshire (1) 1,423 1,072 

New Jersey (1) (2) 14,581 * 10,134 

New Mexico (2) 1,101 1,787 ' 

*Vote for 1913. 


1914 1910 

New York 37,793 48,982 

North Carolina (3) 425 437 

North Dakota 6,019 5,114 

Ohio (1) 48,596 62,356 

Oklahoma (1) 52,570 24,707 

Oregon 14,284 19,475 

Pennsylvania 40,115 59,690 

Rhode Island 1,691 529 

South Carolina (1) 84 70 

South Dakota 2,664 1,675 

Tennessee 1,671 4,571 

Texas (1) 28,000 11,538 

Utah (3) 5,257 4,889 

Vermont (1) 541 1,067 

Virginia (4) 987 987 

Washington (3) 30,234 15,994 

West Virginia (2) 11,944 8,152 

Wisconsin 25,917 40,053 

Wyoming (1) (4) 2,155 2,155 

603,091 609,521 

(1) Unofficial. 

(2) For representative in congress. 

(3) For United States senator. 

(4) Vote for 1910. 

(5) Vote for 1912. 


The national program of the Socialist Party is set forth 
authoritatively in the official platform, which, after being 
adopted by the delegates to the National Convention, must 
also be passed by a referendum of the party membership. 
This document is here reproduced entire, as adopted by 
National Convention, May, 1912, and by membership refer- 
endum, August 4, 1912. 


The representatives of the Socialist Party, in National Con- 
vention at Indianapolis, declare that the capitalist system has 
outgrown its historical function, and has become utterly incapa- 
ble of meeting the problems now confronting society. We de- 
nounce this outgrown system as incompetent and corrupt and 
the source of unspeakable misery and suffering to the whole 

Under this system the industrial equipment of the nation has 
passed into the absolute control of plutocracy, which exacts an 
annual tribute of hundreds of millions of dollars from the pi'o- 
ducers. Unafraid of any organized resistance, it stretches out 
its greedy hands over the still undeveloped resources of the 
nation — the land, the mines, the forests, and water-powers of 
every state in the Union. 

In spite of the multiplication of labor-saving machines and 
unproved methods in industry, which cheapen the cost of pro- 
duction, the share of the producers grows ever less, and the 
prices of all the necessities of life steadily increase. The boasted 
prosperity of this nation is for the owning class alone. To the 
rest it means only greater hardship and misery. The high cost 



of living is felt in every home. Millions of wage-workers have 
seen the purchasing power of their wages decrease until life 
has become a desperate battle for mere existence. 

Multitudes of unemployed walk the streets of our cities or 
trudge from state to state awaiting the will of the masters to 
move the wheels of industry. 

The farmers in every state are plundered by the increasing 
prices exacted for tools and machinery and by extortionate rent, 
freight rates, and storage charges. 

Capitalist concentration is mercilessly crushing the class of 
small business men and driving its members into the ranks of 
propertyless wage-workers. The overwhelming majority of the 
people of America are being forced under a yoke of bondage 
by this soulless industrial despotism. 

It is this capitalist system that is responsible for the increas- 
ing burden of armaments, the poverty, slums, child labor, most 
of the insanity, crime, and prostitution, and much of the disease 
that afflicts mankind. 

Under this system the working-class is exposed to poisonous 
conditions, to frightful and needless perils to life and limb, is 
walled around with court decisions, injunctions, and unjust laws, 
and is preyed upon incessantly for the benefit of the controlling 
oligarchy of wealth. Under it also the children of the working- 
class are doomed to ignorance, drudging toil, and darkened lives. 

In the face of these evils, so manifest that all thoughtful ob- 
servers are appalled at them, the legislative representatives of 
the Republican and Democratic parties remain the faithful 
servants of the oppressors. Measures designed to secure to the 
wage-earners of this nation as humane and just treatment as is 
already enjoyed by the wage-earners of all other civilized nations 
have been smothered in committee without debate, and laws 
ostensibly designed to bring relief to the farmers and general 
consumers are juggled and transformed into instruments for the 
exaction of further tribute. The growing unrest under oppres- 
sion has driven these two old parties to the enactment of a 
variety of regulative measures, none of which has limited in any 
appreciable degree the power of the plutocracy, and some of 
which have been perverted into means for increasing that power. 
Anti-trust laws, railroad restrictions, and regulations, with the 
prosecutions, indictments, and investigations based upon such 
legislation, have proved to be utterly futile and ridiculous. 


Nor has this plutocracy been seriously restrained or even 
threatened by any Republican or Democratic executive. It has 
continued to gxow in power and insolence alike under the ad- 
ministrations of Cleveland, McKinley, Roosevelt, and Taft. 

In addition to this legislative juggling and this executive con- 
nivance, the courts of America have sanctioned and strengthened 
the hold of this plutocracy as the Dred Scott and other decisions 
strengthened the slave-power before the Civil War. They have 
been used as instruments for the oppression of the working-class 
and for the suppression of free speech and free assembly. 

We declare, therefore, that the longer sufferance of these con- 
ditions is impossible, and we purpose to end them all. We 
declare them to be the product of the present system in which 
industi'y is carried on for private greed, instead of for the wel- 
fare of society. We declare, furthermore, that for these evils 
there will be and can be no remedy and no substantial relief 
except through Socialism, under which industry will be carried 
on for the common good and every worker receive the full social 
value of the wealth he creates. 

Society is divided into warring groups and classes, based upon 
material interests. Fundamentally, this struggle is a conflict 
between the two main classes, one of which, the capitalist class, 
owns the means of production, and the other, the working-class, 
must use these means of production on terms dictated by the 

The capitalist class, though few in numbers, absolutely con- 
trols the govei'nment — legislative, executive, and judicial. This 
class owns the machinery of gathering and disseminating news 
through its organized press. It subsidizes seats of learning — 
the colleges and schools — and even religious and moral agencies. 
It has also the added prestige which established customs give to 
any order of society, right or wrong. 

The working-class, Avhieh includes all those who are forced 
to work for a living, whether by hand or brain, in shop, mine, 
or on the soil, vastly outnumbers the capitalist class. Lacking 
effective organization and class solidarity, this class is unable 
to enforce its will. Given such class solidarity and effective 
organization, the workers will have the power to make all laws 
and control all industry in their own interest. 

All political parties are the expression of economic class inter- 
ests. All other parties than the Socialist Party represent one 


or another group of the ruling capitalist class. Their political 
conflicts reflect merely superficial rivalries between competing 
capitalist gToups. However they result, these conflicts have no 
issue of real value to the workers. Whether the Democrats or 
Republicans win politically, it is the capitalist class that is vic- 
torious economically. 

The Socialist Party is the political expression of the economic 
interests of the workers. Its defeats have been their defeats and 
its victories their victories. It is a party founded on the science 
and laws of social development. It proposes that, since all social 
necessities to-day are socially produced, the means of their pro- 
duction and distribution shall be socially owned and democratically 

In the face of the economic and political aggressions of the 
capitalist class the only reliance left the workers is that of their 
economic organizations and their political power. By the intel- 
ligent and class-conscious use of these, they may resist success- 
fully the capitalist class, break the fetters of wage-slavery, and 
fit themselves for the future society, which is to displace the 
capitalist system. The Socialist Party appreciates the full sig- 
nificance of class organization and ui'ges the wage-earners, the 
working farmers, and all other useful workers everywhere to 
organize for economic and political action, and we pledge our- 
selves to support the toilers of the fields as well as those in the 
shops, factories, and mines of the nation in their struggles for 
economic justice. 

In the defeat or victory of the working-class party in this new 
struggle for freedom lies the defeat or triumph of the common 
people of all economic gi'oups, as well as the failure or triumph 
of popular government. Thus the Socialist Party is the party 
of the present-day revolution, which marks the transition from 
economic individualism to Socialism, from wage-slavery to free 
co-operation, from capitalist oligarchy to industrial democracy. 

Working Program 

As measures calculated to strengthen the working-class in its 
fight for the realization of its ultimate aim, the co-operative com- 
monwealth, and to increase its power of resistance against cap- 
italist oppression, we advocate and pledge ourselves and our 
elected oflBcers to the following program: 


Collective Ownership 

1. The collective ownership and democratic management of 
railroads, wire and wireless telegraphs and telephones, express 
services, steamboat lines, and all other social means of trans- 
portation and communication, and of all large-scale indus- 

2. The immediate acquirement by the municipalities, the states, 
or the federal government of all grain elevators, stock yards, 
storage warehouses, and other distributing agencies in order to 
reduce the present extortionate cost of living. 

3. The extension of the public domain to include mines, quar- 
ries, oil wells, forests, and water-powder. 

4. The further conservation and development of natural re- 
sources for the use and benefit of all the people : 

(a) By scientific forestation and timber protection. 
(6) By the reclamation of arid and swamp tracts. 

(c) By the storage of flood waters and the utilization of 

(d) By the stoppage of the present extravagant waste of the 
soil and of the products of mines and oil wells. 

(e) By the development of highway and waterway systems. 

5. The collective ownei'ship of land wherever practicable, and 
in cases where such ownership is impracticable, the appropriation 
by taxation of the annual rental value of all land held for 
speculation or exploitation. 

6. The collective ownership and democratic management of 
the banking and currency system. 


The immediate government relief of the unemployed by the 
extension of all useful public works. All persons employed on 
such works to be engaged directly by the government under 
a workday of not more than eight hours and at not less than 
the prevailing union wages. The government also to establish 
employment bureaus; to lend money to states and municipalities 
without interest for the purpose of carrying on public works, 
and to take such other measures within its power as will lessen 
the widespread misery of the workers caused by the misrule of 
the capitalist class. 


Industrial Demands 

The conservation of human resources, particularly of the lives 
and well-being of the workers and their families : 

1. By shortening the workday in keeping Avith the increased 
productiveness of machineiy. 

2. By securing to every worker a rest period of not less than 
a day and a half in each week. 

3. By securing a more effective inspection of workshops, fac- 
tories, and mines. 

4. By forbidding the employment of children under 16 years 
of age. 

5. By the co-operative organization of the industries in the 
federal penitentiaries for the benefit of the convicts and their 

6. By forbidding the interstate transportation of the products 
of child labor, of convict labor, and of all uninspected factories 
and mines. 

7. By abolishing the profit system in government work and 
substituting either the direct hire of labor or the awarding of 
contracts to co-operative gi'oups of workers. 

8. By establishing minimum wage scales. 

9. By abolishing official charity and substituting a non- 
contributory system of old-age pensions, a general system of 
insurance by the state of all its members against unemployment 
and invalidism, and a system of compulsory insurance by em- 
ployers of their workers, without cost to the latter, against 
industrial diseases, accidents, and death. 

Political Demands 

1. The absolute freedom of press, speech, and assemblage. 

2. The adoption of a graduated income tax, the increase of 
the rates of the present corporation tax, and the extension of 
inheritance taxes, gi-aduated in proportion to the value of the 
estate and to nearness of kin — the proceeds of these taxes to 
be employed in the socialization of industry. 

3. The abolition of the monopoly ownership of patents and 
the substitution of collective ownership, with direct rewards to 
inventors by premiums or royalties. 

4. Unrestricted and equal suffrage for men and women. 


5. The adoption of the initiative, referendum, and recall and 
of proportional representation, nationally as well as locally. 

6. The abolition of the Senate and of the veto power of the 

7. The election of the President and the Vice-President by 
direct vote of the people. 

8. The abolition of the power usurped by the Supreme Court 
of the United States to pass upon the constitutionality of the 
legislation enacted by Congress. National laws to be repealed 
only by act of Congress or by a referendum vote of the whole 

9. The abolition of the present restrictions upon the amend- 
ment of the Constitution, so that that instrument may be made 
amendable by a majority of the voters in the country. 

10. The granting of the right of suffrage in the District of 
Columbia, with representation in Congress, and a democratic 
form of municipal government for purely local affairs. 

11. The extension of democratic government to all United 
States territory. 

12. The enactment of further measures for general education 
and particularly for vocational education in useful pursuits. The 
Bureau of Education to be made a department. 

13. The enactment of further measures for the conservation 
of health. The creation of an independent bureau of health, with 
such restrictions as will secure full liberty to all schools of 

14. The separation of the present Bureau of Labor from the 
Department of Commerce and Labor and its elevation to the rank 
of a department. 

15. Abolition of all federal district, courts and the United States 
Circuit Courts of Appeals. State courts to have jurisdiction in 
all cases arising between citizens of the several states and for- 
eign corporations. The election of all judges for short terms. 

16. The immediate curbing of the power of the courts to issue 

17. The free administration of the law. 

18. The calling of a convention for the revision of the Con- 
stitution of the United States. 

Such measures of relief as we may be able to force from 
capitalism are but a preparation of the workers to seize the 
whole powers of government, in order that they may thereby lay 


hold of the whole system of socialized industry and thus come to 
their rightful inheritance. 


The Socialist national program first entered into actual 
American politics with the election of Congressman Victor 
L. Berger, in 1910. The following is Mr. Berger's report 
in the 1912 convention : 

The fall election of 1910 marked a new epoch in the history 
of the Socialist movement in America. A Socialist was elected 
to the Congress of the United States. 

Naturally I considered it a great honor to be the first repre- 
sentative of the class-conscious proletariat of America in the halls 
of our national legislature. But having been in the fight for 
the emancipation of the working-class for almost a generation, I 
also at once realized the difficulty of my position. I was the 
only member of a much-feared and much-hated party in the 
lower House, with 391 other members of the House and 96 
Senators absolutely and uncompromisingly opposed to me on all 
vital political and economic questions. . . . 

The majority of the members of Congress belong to what I 
would call the upper middle class. . . . 

As everybody knows, there are a few workingmen in the House 
of Representatives — about half a dozen so-called card men — men 
with union cards in their pockets. They do in no way, however, 
differ from the other representatives of the capitalist parties in 
their votes, argumentation, or method of thinking. 

Practically all the work of Congress and of the House of Repre- 
sentatives is done in the committees. There is hardly any 
possibility of rejecting a bill that is proposed by the ruling party 
in the House of Representatives. Of course the bills are dis- 
cussed in the committee of the whole and smaller amendments 
are occasionally agreed to. Bui, as a rule, the Democrats will 
vote absolutely with the Democratic leaders and the Republicans 
with the Republican leaders, and everj'one knows beforehand 
what the fate of the bill is going to be when it is once reported 
to the House. 


There is no such thing as an adverse or unfavorable report in 
the House. A bill reported always means favorably reported by 
the majority of the committee. If the minority disagrees it can 
make a minority report. Of the many thousand bills introduced 
only very few are reported. 

Of the nearly 40,000 bills introduced in the preceding Congress, 
only 700 became law — the great majority of these were admin- 
istrative acts of small importance to the country in general. 
Besides these. Congress passed about 6,000 private pension 

Such are the parliamentary conditions that confronted your 
first Socialist Congressman. 

I could not afford to do or say anything that would make our 
cause and our party ridiculous before the many millions that 
are not yet with us. There was no precedent in the experience 
of any other party in our country to guide me, because ours was 
essentially a two-party country in the past — the People's Party 
never got a real first hold in Congress. 

In Germany they always had many parties, and three Social 
Democrats were elected right from the beginning to the Reichstag 
in 1867, so that was no criterion to go by. Our parliamentarism 
is of an entirely different make-up. It is based upon the two- 
party system. 

There were two ways before me. I could maJce a free-speech 
fight all alone, try to break down all precedent and all barriers, 
speak about the coming revolution and the co-operative common- 
wealth, as long as my lung power would hold out, and wind up 
my short parliamentary career by being suspended from the 
House, and thus also make an end to political action by this 
" direct action." 

Or I could pursue the other course, obey all rules and precedents 
of the House until they are changed — get the respect and the 
attention of my fellow-members, speak sparingly and only when 
measures directly concerning the tcorking-class are up for dis- 
cussion, giving, however, close attention to all the business before 
the House of Representatives. This latter course I decided to 
follow — and this I did follow from the very beginning. (Italics 
ours. ) 

Owing to the unique position I held, however, I was from the 


beginning called upon to do a greater variety of things than any 
other CongTCSsman in Washington. 

Not only did ray correspondence grow to such enormous pro- 
portions that it kept three secretaries busy, although only about 
three per cent of this cori'espondenee came from my district. But 
the answering of these letters was only one part of that work. 
I was also considered a court of last resort for a gi'eat number 
of men and women who had real or imaginary grievances against 
our government and our federal courts, or even against state 
governments and state courts. Moreover, I was the recipient of 
requests for investigations of all kinds in the various departments 
of our government, and of course was asked to protect numerous 
immigi'ants all over the country who were either to be sent back 
to Europe or were refused admission for various reasons, some 
of them being political refugees. 

In each and all cases I did examine the evidence and the cir- 
cumstances, and wherever there was even the slightest chance of 
making good on the case, I took it up with the respective depart- 
ments. And I succeeded in very numerous instances. 

The work of the departments was exceedingly laborious, and 
took a great deal of time, not only of myself, but also of my help- 
mates in the office. On this occasion I want to acknowledge my 
appreciation of the very valuable services of my secretary and 
comrade, Wm. J. Ghent, not only in answering letters, but in 
helping me to frame bills. 

In the framing and introducing of bills embodying the de- 
mands of the platforms of the Socialist Party of America and of 
the Social Democratic Party of Wisconsin, I saw one of my 
most important duties — because thus I gave expression to the 
concrete demands as well as to the hopes and ambitions of my 
class. As to my votes in the House, I tried to follow strictly not 
only the letter but the spirit of our platform. 

I may divide my work on general lines in legislative activities, 
work before committees, and departmental activities. 

I have tried to do my duty fearlessly, faithfully, to the best 
of my light. You always want to keep before you that I was 
only one man with work enough for 300 Congressmen and 60 
Senators and a President of the United States; that I was not 
only alone, but I had to hew my path through this " wilderness " 


and had to overcome mountains of prejudice and a sea of ill- 
will. I believe that I have cleared a modest path on which other 
comrades can jom me, which we can widen and which will finally 
wind up in a clear road for Socialism and the emancipation of 
the working-class as far as the legislative halls of our nation are 

It is for you, comrades, and for the working-class to elect the 
many who will accomplish this. 


The state programs of American Socialism have played 
a part in the political arena for some years, notably in 
Wisconsin, where Socialists have held legislative repre- 
sentation for a number of years. While the state organ- 
izations have complete autonomy, yet the National Conven- 
tion, by appointing a committee to draw up a model state 
program, has made an attempt to secure harmony in the 
demands of the various sections. 


OF 1912 


Socialism cannot be carried into full effect while the Socialist 
Party is a minority party. Nor can it be maugurated in any 
single city. Furthermore, so long as national and state legis- 
latures, and particularly the courts, are in the control of the 
capitalist class, a municipal administration, even though abso- 
lutely controlled by Socialists, will be hampered, crippled, and 
restricted in every possible way. 

We maintain that the evils of the present system will be re- 
moved only when the working-class wholly abolish private owner- 
ship in the social means of production, collectively assume the 
management of the industries and operate them for use and not 
for profit, for the benefit of all and not for the enrichment of 
a privileged class. In this the Socialist Party stands alone in 
the political field. 

But the Socialist Party also believes that the evils of the 
modem system may be materially relieved and their final disap- 



pearanee may be hastened by the introdi;ction of social, political, 
and economic measures which will have the effect of bettering the 
lives, strengthening the position of the workers, and curbing the 
power and domination of the capitalists. 

The Socialist Party therefore supports the struggles of the 
working-class against the exploitation and oppression of the capi- 
talist class, and is vitally concerned in the efficiency of the parlia- 
mentary and administrative means for the fighting of the class 

Furthermore, it should be distinctly understood that the fol- 
lowing suggested municipal and state program is not put forth 
as mandatory or binding upon the state or local organizations. 
It is offered as suggestive data to assist those localities that may 
desire to use it, and as a basis for the activities of Socialist mem- 
bers of state legislatures and local administrations. 

State Program 

Labor Legislation 

(1) An eight-hour day, trades-union scale, and minimum wage 
for both sexes. 

(2) Legalization of the right to strike, picket, and boycott. 

(3) Abolition of the injunction as a means of breaking strikes 
and the establishment of trial by jury in all labor disputes. 

(4) Prohibition of the use of the military and the police power 
to break strikes. 

(5) Prohibition of the employment of private detective agencies 
and police forces in labor disputes. 

(6) The repeal of all military law which surrenders the power 
of the governor over the militia to the federal authorities. 

(7) Requirements that in time of labor disputes advertise- 
ments for help published by employers shall contain notice of the 
fact that such labor dispute exists. Provision to be made for 
the prosecution of persons who shall employ workers without 
informing them that such labor trouble exists. 

(8) Prohibition of employment of children under the age of 
16, compulsory education, and the pensioning of widows with 
minor children where such provision is necessary. 


(9) The organization of state employment agencies and rigid 
control of private agencies. 

(10) Suitable safeguards and sanitary regulations in all occu- 
pations with ample provision for frequent and effective inspec- 
tion of places of employment, machinery, and appliances. 

(11) Old-age pensions, sick benefits, and accident insurance to 
be established. 

(12) Workingmen's compensation laws to be carefully drawn 
to protect labor. 


Home rule for cities. 


Public Education 

(1) Compulsory education of both sexes up to the age of 16 
years with adequate provision for further courses where desired. 

(2) Establishment of vocational and continuation schools and 
manual training for both sexes. 

(3) Free text-books for teachers and pupils; uniform text- 
books on all subjects to be furnished free to public schools. 

(4) Physical training through systematic courses of gymnastics 
and open-air exercises. Open-air schools and playgrounds. 



(1) A graduated income tax; wages and salaries up to $2,000 
to be exempt. 

(2) Graduated inheritance tax. 

(3) All land held for speculation and all land not occupied or 
used by the owners to be taxed up to full rental value. 


Public Works and Conservation 

(1) For the purpose of developing and preserving the natural 
resources of the state and offering additional opportunities of 
labor to the unemployed, the states shall undertake a compre- 
hensive system of public works, such as the building of roads, 


canals, and the reclamation and irrigation of land. All forests, 
mineral lands, waterways, and natural resources now owned by 
the states to be conserved and kept for public use. 

(2) The contract system shall be abolished in all public works, 
such work to be done by the state directly, all labor to be em- 
ployed not more than eight hours per day at trade-union wages 
and under the best possible working conditions. 



(1) The legislature of the state to consist of one house of 

(2) The initiative, referendum, and recall to be enacted. 


Equal Suffrage 

(1) Unrestricted political rights for men and women. 

(2) Resident qualification for all elections not to exceed 90 

(3) The right to vote not to be contingent upon the payment 
of any taxes, either in money or labor. 



(1) Extension of the State Agricultural and experimental 
farms for crop culture, for the distribution of improved seeds, 
for the development of fertilizers, for the design and introduc- 
tion of the best types of farm machinery, and for the encourage- 
ment of the breeding of superior types of stock. 

(2) All land owned by the state to be retained, and other 
land brought into public ownership and use by reclamation, pur- 
chase, condemnation, taxation, or otherwise: Such land to be 
organized into socially operated farms for the conduct of col- 
lective agricultural enterprises. 

(3) Landlords to assess their own lands, the state reserving 
the right to purchase such lands at the assessed value. 


(4) State insurance against pestilence, diseases of animals and 
plants, and against natural calamities. 


Defectives and Delinquents 

(1) The present unscientific and brutal method of treating 
criminal persons, defectives, and delinquents to be replaced by 
modern scientific and humane methods. This to include the aboli- 
tion of all death penalties, of the prison contract system, of 
isolated confinement. Penal institutions to be located in rural 
localities with adequate healthful open-air employment and hu- 
mane treatment. 

The above program is in general typical of those actu- 
ally adopted by the different states. The extracts which 
follow will illustrate the variations and additions dictated 
by local conditions in New York, Montana, Oklahoma, 
Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, In each case only such por- 
tions of the program are given as show an emphasis ap- 
preciably distinctive. 


In the system of capitalism the condition of the workers is 
always precarious, and unemployment is chronic, but the present 
industrial depression, now particularly intensified, has made the 
evil unusually acute. Hosts of unemployed are forced to wander 
from one industrial center to another in desperate quest of work. 
As a consequence, homes are destroyed, wives and children de- 
serted and left to starvation. 

Our agricultural population is equally at the mercy of the 
exploiting class. The farm laborers are an intensely exploited 
group of workers, and even the so-called independent small 
farmer, like the wage-workers, is systematically plundered by 
the capitalist owner of the means of production. Rents on land, 
interest on mortgages, excessive transportation rates, storage and 
commission charges, extortionate prices exacted for farm im- 
plements and machinery, rob him as effectively of his product as 
the wage-worker of the industrial cities. . . . 



The enactment of a legal maximum workday of eight hours and 
its gradual shortening in keeping with the increased productive- 
ness of modern machinery, and a rest period of a day and a half 
in each week for workers in all industries. . . . 

Laws providing proper protection for the safety of the lives 
and health of the workers, and strict enforcement of such laws. 
For the latter purpose, inspectors elected by the workers in the 
respective industries should be provided in addition to the official 
state inspectors. 

A system which shall provide state insurance to all workers 
against unemployment, sickness, invalidity, and old age, without 
contribution on the part of the workers, and state insurance for 
farmers against damage from diseases of animals and destruc- 
tion of crops; the Compensation Act of the state to be amended 
to include all workers and to provide compensation equal to the 
full economic loss. . , . 

Prohibition of employment of women during three months be- 
fore and after childbirth, the state to reimburse the mother for 
loss of earnings during such period. State pensions to dependent 
mothers with children under the age of 16 years. . . . 


Equal suffrage for all adult men and women. . . . That all 
adult inhabitants of the United States be entitled to the exercise of 
the suffrage after three years' residence in this country, and the 
declaration of intentions to become a citizen of the United States. 

Equal pay for equal work to men and women employed by the 
state or any of its subdivisions, and unrestricted right of such 
employees to organize. . . . 


The Pennsylvania platform reflects state conditions in 
its demand for the abolition of the poll tax, and especially 
in its denunciation of the state constabulary, a force that 
has become extremely unpopular by its employment in the 
breaking of strikes. 



More efficient and scientific inspection of coal and metalliferous 
mines. . . . Six hours to be a day's labor for all underground 
workers and workers in the mills and smelters of the mining 
industries of this state. 

Enactment of a law requiring a semi-monthly pay-day for 
wage-earners in all industries. 

The abolition of the profit system in the state penitentiary, 
and the employment of the convicts in useful out-of-door 
labor. . . . 

Coal lands owned by the state to be developed and operated 
by the state directly and the coal to be sold to municipalities 
and by them marketed to consumers directly at prices that cover, 
but no more than cover, the actual cost of such production and 

Exemption from taxation and execution of real and personal 
property to the amount of $1,500. 

The portions just quoted from the Montana state plat- 
form are interesting in their care for the w^orkers in mines. 
The demand for the exemption of small personal prop- 
erties from taxation indicates that Socialism in Montana 
appeals to the small farmer and craftsman as well as to 
the wage-worker. 

We print a large portion of the platform of Oklahoma, 
one of the strongest Socialist states. 



Art. 5. We denounce the Democratic Party for the deceit 
practiced upon the people of this state in promising to incor- 
porate in the constitution of this state the initiative and refer- 
endum as adopted and applied in the state of Oregon, when in 
truth and in fact they wrote into the constitution provisions 
wholly different from the Oregon act; and afterwards passed 


statutory laws that have practically destroyed the initiative and 
referendum in this state. 

Art. 11. We promise the tenant and mortgaged farmer, and 
the working-class generally, that upon the accession of the So- 
cialist Party to power in the state we will establish a state bank 
with branches at each county seat, and that all the moneys of 
the state and county and all monej^s in the hands of the fiscal 
agencies shall be loaned to the working-class of the state through 
such banks. 

Art. 12. We demand that the state shall engage in the business 
of life and fire insurance to the end that the citizenship of the 
state may obtain protection of this character at actual cost. 

Art. 13. We demand the establishment of a state printing 
plant in which all public printing shall be done, including state, 
county, and other municipal records, and also the publishing 
of school books for the common schools to be furnished to the 
public school children free. 

Art. 18. We demand that all mme inspectors shall neither be 
elected by the people nor appointed by the governor. The 
criminal loss of life in this state among the miners is directly 
traceable to inefficient supei-vision, and we demand that all mine 
inspectors shall be elected by the organized miners themselves, 
and the inspectors' salaries paid by the state. And we further 
demand similar provisions in behalf of the railway workers and 
workers in all other dangerous occupations. 

Art. 19. , . . that provision shall be made for medical services 
and medicines at the expense of the state. And this shall not be 
construed in the light of charity, but as a partial restitution to 
the working-class for the robbery and exploitation suffered by 

Art. 22. We ui-ge upon the renters of this state that they 
organize on the industrial field into a renters' union for the 
betterment of their condition and to resist as best they may their 
ruthless exploitation by the landlord class. 

Art. 24. Usury. — The Democratic Party has repeatedly prom- 
ised the tenant and mortgaged farmers that it would place upon 
the statute books a usury law which would protect them against 
the exorbitant interest rates charged by the bankers of this state. 
We call the attention of the tenant and mortgaged farmers of the 
state to the fact that the Democratic Party has been faithless 


to every such promise, and that by reason of such faithlessness 
they are now subjected to the most brutal exploitation by the 
money-lending class. 

The last platform quoted, that of Wisconsin, is to be 
read in the light of the analysis which follows, compiled 
by Mr. Carl D. Thompson from first-hand information 
regarding this state. The Socialist group in the Wis- 
consin legislature is the only one that has passed from the 
stage of protest to that of actual law-making; and it will 
be noted that, in addition to the usual Socialist planks, 
its platform contains specific and detailed demands that 
stand a good chance of actual accomplishment. The liquor 
and white-slave problems are definitely touched upon. A 
declaration is also made regarding the merely palliative 
character of most of the reforms advocated and the neces- 
sity of moving on beyond them to real Socialism. 


Cities and villages shall be brought within the state banking 
law, to enable them to place their bonds on deposit with the state 
treasurer as collateral security, against which the city or village 
treasury may receive savings deposits, as is now customary with 
savings banks. This obviates the necessity of issuing municipal 
bonds of small denominations. 

Assessment on rental value of land throughout the state, rather 
than on improvements. 

An income tax based on unearned incomes only, graduated so 
as to increase the return to the state from the larger incomes. 
We condemn the present form of the income tax law, because it 
was intended to place a heavier burden directly upon the workers. 
The representatives of the Social Democratic Party did not pro- 
pose to be held responsible for the defeat of income-tax legisla- 
tion in the last legislature; but they ai'e not responsible for all 
the provisions of the present law. 

We condemn the attempt of the old parties to exempt the 
judiciary from the recall, and regard as ridiculous the assumed 


sanctity and superior wisdom of persons who may happen to 
hold the office of judge. 

We demand that all mineral rights reserved in title deeds be 
acquired by the state, exercising the right of eminent domain. 

We demand that no land belonging to the state shall be sold; 
and that all land sold for taxes shall be bought by the state. 

We demand the extension of the forest reserve; the erection 
and operation of state mills for handling the timber product, to 
the end that the cost of lumber to actual settlers and home 
ownei-s may be reduced to the cost of production. 

We demand adequate pay for members of the legislature. 

We hold that intemperance in the use of liquor is the result 
of the present enervating economic conditions. With the growth 
of a people strong in physique, intellect, and popular morals, 
intemperance will gradually disappear and temperate habits in all 
things prevail. We condemn the attempts at sumptuary laws as 
inimical to the cause of economic and personal liberty. Until 
the profit system has been abolished and a more harmonious 
economic order has been established, the attempts of well-meaning 
people to introduce temperate habits by law will prove only an 
evasion of the real issue. 

We recognize that capitalism is the cause of white slavery and 
prostitution. The only complete remedy, therefore, is to abolish 
the capitalist system. Nevertheless we support every measure 
tending to lessen this evil. We pledge our local officials to the 
fullest possible carrying out of the existing laws against the 
exploiters of this traffic. 

Secure payment of wages in lawful money, not less often than 
once a week. 

Safeguard the right of the worker, especially in lumber and 
mining camps, to spend his wages as he sees fit, and abolish 
company stores. 


Mr, Carl Thompson has made a special analysis of the 
actual accomplishments of the Wisconsin Socialists in 
1911, from which we give several paragraphs. Their pro- 
gram covers also a variety of social legislation, with definite 
accomplishments in several lines. 


1. Municipal Legislation. Fourteen different bills introduced 
by the Socialists bearins: upon this problem were passed during 
the session of 1911. These provided, among other things, for 
a greater degree of home rule for the city, secured the right of 
" excess condemnation," enabled the city to embark in the public 
ownership of certain public utilities, and gave it the right 
to secure land and property with which to begin the building of 
workingmen's homes. 

2. State Ownership. The same year, the Socialists secured 
the passage of a joint resolution for a constitutional amendment, 
providing for the ownership by the state of the lands, mineral 
rights, water-powers, and other natural resources. 

3. Constitutional Convention. They also secured the passage 
of a joint resolution calling for a national constitutional con- 

4. Political Measures. Socialists secured the passage of a law 
providing for a municipal initiative and referendum; another 
providing for a half -holiday on election days; another providing 
that women may use the voting machines. 

5. Public Utilities. The Socialists secured the passage of a 
law repealing the " exclusive " clause in the franchise of the Mil- 
waukee Gas Light Company; another legalizing the bonds issued 
by the city of Milwaukee for an electric lighting plant and 
declaring invalid certain injunctions brought against the city 
to restrain it from erecting the plant; another authorizing cities 
operating heating plants to install and operate pipes and mains 
in the same way as for waterworks. 



The general question as to the importance of political 
action in the class struggle is of such interest that we 
print several extracts from representative American So- 
cialists. The first is from an article in a non-Socialist 
magazine by Victor Berger, the former Congressman, 
representing the extreme right or moderate wing of the 


(Prom Article in The American Magazine, " Socialism, the 
Logical Outcome of Progressivism ") 

I have no hope that the Socialist Party will elect its candidate 
for President in this election. With us the Socialist movement 
.and its prmciples are paramount — not the candidate. 

The Socialist Party stands for the collective ownership of all 
the social means of production and distribution in the interest 
of the whole people. 

Socialists say that this step is the necessary and natural out- 
come of the concentration of wealth and of the development of 

Political liberty and economic despotism are incompatible. 
The Socialist Party proposed to supplement our political 
<democracy by industrial democi'acy. 

The Socialist Party has not a majority as yet. But SociaUstic 
ideas have permeated the great majority. The trusts and economic 
'evolution on one hand — and the natural discontent of the people 



■with the lowering of their standard of living on the other hand, 
ai'e working for Socialism. 

Therefore we laugh at the contention that the Socialist Party 
is still comparatively small. Every great party has had a small 
beginning — and the Socialist Party is growing exceedingly fast. 

To the common citizen, the workingman, the underpaid clerk, 
the disappointed professional man, — to the disinherited of every 
description — we Socialists say: 

Better vote for what you want, even if you do not get it, than 
vote for what you do not want and get it! 

Why should we wait with our work until the majority of the 
votes is with us? The majority is always indolent and often 
ignorant. We cannot expect them to be anything else with their 
present social siiiTOun dings. 

The majority have never brought about consciously and delib- 
erately any great social change. They have always loermitted an 
energetic minority to prepare the way. But the majority was 
always there when the fact itself was to be accomplished. 

Therefore, our sole object in state and nation for the next few 
years is to elect a respectable minority of Socialists. 

We want a Socialist minority respected on account of its num- 
bers, — respected because it represents the most advanced economic 
and political intelligence of the day — respected because it con- 
tains the most sincere representatives of the proletariat, the class 
that has the most to gain and nothing to lose. 

Given such a respectable minority in Congress and in the legis- 
lature of every state of the Union within the next feiv years — 
the future of our people, the future of this country will be safe. 
(Italics ours.) 


The next selection is from Charles Edward Russell, who 
polled a large vote for governor of New York State in 
1912. (From "Rational Political Action," International 
Socialist Review, March, 1912.) 

When I was a Washington correspondent some years ago there 
fell under my observation of the shifting show two facts about 
government by a political machine that seemed to me fairly 


The first was that while it was one of the dullest of all human 
devices it was endowed with extraordinary power to bedevil and 
frustrate good intentions. 

For instance, one of the most familiar spectacles was the young 
member that had come to his first term in Congress with really 
high ideals and a sincere purpose to be straight and serve the 
people. In every case the machine made short work of such a 
one. . . . 

The second fact was that judged merely on the basis of ef- 
ficiency and nothing higher, the machine style of government 
was a failure. ... No matter which party might be in power, 
the result was- always the same. The party would come in with 
a program and a lot of beautiful promises and then fail utterly 
to carry them out. It could not carry them out, even when it 
wished, even when they were plainly advisable, for the reason 
that the machine style of government was a worthless instru- 
ment. . . . The party in power had no tool. It was tied up with 
a system, and that system was the real government; the rest was 
but a counterfeit, and would be so long as structural conditions 
remained unchanged. 

It made no difference how progressive and admirable might be 
the ideas that were sought to be established. . . . The Populist 
Party had an admirable program; it aimed far above the greasy 
thought of its day and stood for a measure of real democracy 
and political and industrial democracy and political and industrial 
freedom. . . . Having some of the best purposes that up to its 
time had ever been enunciated in a platform, it went the road to 
destruction because it insisted upon playing the game and getting 
entangled with the system. 

It went out to get offices and put men into jobs. That fin- 
ished it. 

Seeing so many of these wrecks about me, a vague notion 
began to form in my mind that this was not the best way to effect 
things; the system wasted too much in time and effort and never 
aiTived. So long as a party made its object the getting of votes 
and the filling of offices it would land where the Populist Party 
had landed, and that no matter how lofty might be its aims. 

Much as we used to make fun of it (under orders from head- 
quarters) we knew that it had a rational and admirable progi'am 
and that it never ought to have gone to smash. But that is just 


where it went, nevertheless, through trying to get into the dirty- 
game on the bargain counter. Suppose, instead, that it had kept 
itself intact and independent, standing aloof and insisting always 
upon its ideas as the only salvation for the nation. It could have 
raised in this eounti-y an incomparable amount of trouble, it could 
have seen a handful of its ideas put into practical operation and 
itself a vital power instead of a sign of laughter. 

This was felt by more than one of us, though we did not go 
far enough to fonnulate a basic idea of it. Some years after- 
ward I found the identical thing lucidly and firmly expressed in 
one of Wendell Phillips' incomparable orations. " Give me," 
said Mr. Phillips, "fifty thousand men that will stand together, 
shoulder to shoulder, without compromise and without surrender, 
insisting upon an ideal, and they will rule the nation with their 
ideas." (Italics ours.) 


"We quote next from William D. Haywood, representing 
the extreme left wing of the party, in a speech at Cooper 
Union, New York. (From the International Socialist Re- 
view, February, 1913.) 

Socialism is so plain, so clear, so simple that when a person 
becomes intellectual he doesn't understand Socialism. (Applause.) 

I am not here to waste time on the " immediate demanders " or 
the step-at-a-time people whose every step is just a little shorter 
than the preceding step. (Laughter and applause.) I am here 
to speak to the working-class, and the working-class will under- 
stand what I mean when I say that tinder Socialism you will need 
no passports or citizenship papers to take a part in the affairs 
in which you are directly interested. The working-class will 
understand me when I say that Socialism is an industrial democ- 
racy and that industrialism is a social democracy. 

Under Socialism ice workers will not he subjects of any state 
or nation, hut we iiill be citizens, free citizens in the industries 
in which we are employed. 


I want to say at this point, and emphatically, that with the 
success of Socialism practically all of the political offices now 
in existence will he put out of business. (Applause.) I want 
to say also, and with as much emphasis, that while a member of 
the Socialist Party and believing firmly in political action, it is 
decidedly better in my opinion to be able to elect the super- 
intendent in some branch of industry than to elect a Congressman 
to the United States Congress. (Applause.) More than that: 
under Socialism we will have no congresses, such as exist to-day, 
nor legislatures, nor parliaments, nor councils of municipalities. 

But remember! We also [in Cripple Creek] believed in po- 
litical action, and had elected one of our own class as governor 
of the state. And he called out the militia to protect the miners 
and put them in between the warring factions and told the deputy 
sheriffs that if they didn't disband he would fire on them as in- 
surrectos. You understand, then, why I believe in political action. 
(Applause.) We will have control then of whatever forces gov- 
ernment can give us, but we will not use them to continue to 
uphold and advance this present system, but we will use the 
forces of the police power to overthrow this present system. 
(Applause.) And instead of using the powers of the police to 
protect the strike-breakers, we will use the powers of the police 
to protect the strikers. (Applause.) That's about as far as I 
go on political action. (Applause.) But that's a long way. 
And the reason that I don't go into the halls of Parliament to 
make laws to govern the working-class is because the working- 
class is working with machines, and every time some fellow has 
a thought, inspiration, the machine changes, and I don't know 
that laws can be made quick enough to keep up with the changing 
machinery. And I know this: that laws, under Socialism, will 
not be made to govern individuals. We have got too much of 
that kind of law, and we want a little freedom from now on. 
The only kind of government that we will have then will be that 
kind that will administer industry. (Our italics.) 


The declarations of Eugene V. Debs regarding political 
action, as on many other matters, may be taken as repre- 


senting the views of the great majority of American So- 
cialists. (From "Sound Socialist Tactics," International 
Socialist Review, February, 1910.) 

While the " game of politics," as it is understood and as it is 
played under capitalist rules, is as repugnant to me as it can 
possibly be to anyone, I am a thorough believer in political organ- 
ization and political action. 

Political power is essential to the workers in their struggle, 
and they can never emancipate themselves without developing and 
exercising that power in the interests of their class. 

It is not merely in a perfunctory way that I advocate political 
action, but as one who has faith in proletarian political power 
and in the efficacy of political propaganda as an educational 
force in the Socialist movement. I believe in a constructive po- 
litical program and in electing all the class-conscious workers 
we can, especially as mayors, judges, sheriffs, and as members 
of the state legislatures and the national congress. 

From "A Plea for Solidarity," International Socialist 
Review, March, 1914": 

At bottom all anti-political aclionists are to all intents 
anarchists, and anarchists and Socialists have never yet pulled 
together and probably never will. 

Now the industrial organization that ignores or rejects po- 
litical action is as certain to fail as is the political party that 
ignores or rejects industrial action. L^pon the mutually recog- 
nized unity and co-operation of the industrial and political 
powers of the working-class will both the union and the party 
have to be built if real solidarity is to be achieved. 

To deny the political equation is to fly in the face of past 
experience and invite a repetition of the disruption and disaster 
which have already wrecked the organized forces of industrialism. 

The anti-political u/nionist and the anti-union Socialist are 
alike illogical in their reasoning and unscientific in their eco- 
nomics. The one harbors the illusion that the capitalist state can 
be destroyed and its police powers, court injunctions, and gatling 
guns, in short its political institutions, put out of business by 
letting politics alone, and the other that the industries can be 
taken over and operated b\' the workers without being industrially 


organized and that the Socialist republic can be created by a 
majority of votes and by political action alone. 

It is beyond question, I think, that an overwhelming majority 
of industrial unionists favor independent political action and that 
an overwhelming majority of Socialists favor industrial union- 
ism. Now it seems quite clear to me that these forces can and 
should be united and brought together in harmonious and effective 
economic and political co-operation. 

Let us suppose in this country a political party with a pro- 
gram that proposes a great and radical transformation of the 
existing system of society, and proposes it upon lofty grounds of 
the highest welfare of mankind. Let us suppose that it is based 
upon vital and enduring truth and that the success of its ideals 
would mean the emancipation of the race. 

If such a party should go into the dirty game of practical 
politics . . . it would inevitably fall into the pit that has engulfed 
all other parties. Nothing on earth could save it. It would be 
adopting the iron-walled path of the machine system of govern- 
ment and down that path it must inevitably go, for from it there is 
absolutely no escape, and at its end is ruin. 

But suppose a party that kept forever in full sight the ulti- 
mate goal and never once varied from it. Suppose that it strove 
to increase its vote for this object and for none other. Suppose 
its membership to be held together by the inspiration of that 
purpose, to be informed of it and prepared to work for it un- 
swervingly, to wait for it if necessary. Suppose this party at 
all times to insist in its agitation upon this object and to pro- 
claim that it would never be content for one moment with any- 
thing else; that this reform and that reform were well enough 
for other parties but for this particular party nothing would be 
accepted but the fullest measure of its ideals. Suppose that by 
agitation, propaganda, education, literature, campaigns, meetings, 
a party press, and every means in its power it steadily increased 
its membership and its vote. Suppose it regarded its vote as the 
index of its converts and sought for such votes and for none 
others. Suppose the entire body was convinced of the party's 
full program, aims, and philosophy. Suppose that all other men 
knew that this growing party was thus convinced and thus deter- 
mined, and that its growth menaced every day more and more 
the existing structure of society, menaced it with overthrow and 
a new structure. What then? 


Such a party would be the s^reatest political power that ever 
existed in this or any other country. It would drive the other 
parties before it like sand before a wind. They would be com- 
pelled to adopt one after another the expedients of reform to 
head off the increasing threat of this one party's progress toward 
the revolutionaiy ideal. But this one party would have no more 
need to tcaste its time upon palliative measures than it would 
have to soil itself with the dirt of practical politics and the bar- 
gain counter. The other parties would do all that and do it well. 
The one party would be concerned with nothing but making con- 
verts to its philosophy and preparing for the revolution that its 
steadfast course would render inevitable. Such a party would 
represent the highest possible efficiency in polities, the greatest 
force in the state, and the ultimate triumph of its full philosophy 
would be beyond question. 

In other words, and to dro}) all supposition, we can have a 
vote-getting machine and go to perdition with it; or we can 
have the Co-operative Commonwealth and working-class govern- 
ment. But we cannot have both. (Our italics.) 


Several questions of controversy have centered about 
the matter of party organization, as set forth in the Na- 
tional Constitution. As it is impossible to give this consti- 
tution at length, we give only those sections which have 
been the subjects of recent referendums or which throw 
definite light on the party tactics. 

The portion of the constitution that has caused most 
serious discussion is Article II, Section 6, relating to 
sabotage and its advocacy. The debate on this section in 
the National Convention will be given at some length 
below. When the constitution was submitted to refer- 
endum of the party, the opposition to the section took the 
form rather of a defense of free speech than of a defense 
of sabotage, and accordingly the vote on the referendum 
can hardly be said to be an index of the party opinion of 
sabotage. The section was carried by a large majority, 


but the fact that a substitute section also received a ma- 
jority has given rise to still further criticism of the vote 
as a definitive expression. 


Amended by the National Convention of the party, May, 1912, 
and approved by referendum August 4, 1912. 

Article II 

Sec. 1. Every person, resident of the United States of the 
age of 18 years and upward, without discrimination as to sex, 
race, color, or creed, who has severed his connection with all 
other political parties and political organizations, and subscribes 
to the principles of the Socialist Party, including political action 
and unrestricted political rights for both sexes, shall be eligible 
to membership in the party. 

Sec. 2. No person holdmg an elective public office by gift of 
any party or organization other than the Socialist Party shall 
be eligible to membership in the Socialist Party; nor shall any 
member of the party accept or hold any appointive public office, 
honorary or remunerative (civil service positions excepted), with- 
out the consent of his state organization. No part}' member 
shall be a candidate for public office without the consent of the 
city, county, or state organizations, according to the nature of 
the office. 

Sec. 5. All persons joining the Socialist Party shall sign the 
following pledge : " I, the undersigned, recognizing the class 
struggle between the capitalist class and the working-class and 
the necessity of the working-class constituting itself into a 
political party distinct from and opposed to all parties formed 
by the capitalist class, hereby declare that I have severed my 
relations with all other parties, and I indorse the platform and 
constitution of the Socialist Party, including the principle 
of political action, and hereby apply for admission to said 

See. 6. Any member of the party who opposes political action 


or advocates crime, sabotage, or other methods of violence as a 
weapon of the working-class to aid in its emancipation shall be 
expelled from membership in the party. Political action shall be 
construed to mean participation in elections for public office and 
practical legislative and administrative work along the lines of 
the Socialist Party platform.* 

Article X 

See. 3. The platform of the Socialist Party shall be the su- 
preme declaration of the party, and all state and municipal plat- 
forms shall conform thereto. Ne state or local organization shall 
under any circumstances fuse, combine, or compromise with any 
other political party or organization, or refrain from making 
nominations, in order to favor the candidate of such other organ- 
izations, nor shall any candidate of the Socialist Party accept any 
nomination or indorsement from any other party or political 

No member of the Socialist Party shall, under any circum- 
stances, vote in primary or regular elections for any candidate 
other than Socialists nominated, indorsed, or recommended as 
candidates by the Socialist Party. To do otherwise will constitute 
party treason and result in expulsion from the party. 

Sec. 4. In states and territories in which there is one central 
organization affiliated with the party, the state or territorial organ- 
izations shall have the sole jurisdiction of the members residing 
within their respective territories, and the sole control of all 
matters pertaining to the propaganda, organization, and financial 
affairs within such state or territory'; pi'ovided such propaganda 
is in htarmony with the national platform and declared policy of 
the party. 

Sec. 8. All state organizations shall provide in their consti- 
tutions for the initiative, referendum, and imperative mandate. 

All sections and paragraphs of the constitution, platform, and 
resolutions were adopted, most of them by large majorities. 

* The vote on Article II, Section 6, of the constitution, the 
original section as adopted by the Convention, was. Yes, 13,215; 


No, 4,196. The vote on the alternative or substitute section was, 
Yes, 8,216; No, 7,371.* (Our italics.) 


During the year 1914 two important amendments to the 
constitution were passed. The first of these related to 
the party press. 

a. The Party-Owned Press 

All fear of the party-owned-press bugaboo was practically 
wiped out when the Socialist Party national committee meeting 
here voted 45 to 10 to convert The Party Builder, the official 
party organ, into a weekly Socialist paper. 

The motion of Committeeman Hillquit as adopted was: 

That it be the sense of this committee that The Party Builder 
be converted into a weekly Socialist paper along the line suggested 
by the committee and that the national executive committee be 
directed to make inquiries as to the cost and feasibility of the 
undertaking and to proceed with it as soon as practical in view 
of the financial situation of the party. {The Party Builder, May 
16, 1914.) 

In harmony with the above action, Article VII, Section 
3, was amended so as to read as follows : 

The executive secretary shall cause to be published in the official 
organ of the party all important official reports and announce- 
ments; a monthly report of the financial affairs of the party; 
a summary of the conditions and the membership of the several 
states and territorial organizations; the principal business trans- 
acted by the national officials, and such other matters pertaining 
to the organization of the party as may be of general interest to 
the membership. 

As a result of this amendment The Party Builder has 
* S. P, Bulletin, September, 1912. 


been converted into a weekly paper, The American So- 

b. Change in the Members' Pledge 

The following change in the membership pledge was also 
adopted : 

New Article II — Section 5 

All persons joining the Socialist Party shall sign the following 
pledge : 


I, the undersigned, recognizing the class struggle between the 
capitalist class and the working-class, and the necessity of the 
working-class organizing itself into a political party for the pur- 
pose of obtaining collective ownership and democratic adminis- 
tration and operation of the collectively used and socially neces- 
sary means of production and distribution, hereby apply for mem- 
bership in the Socialist Party. 

I have no relations (as member or supporter) with any other 
political party. 

I am opposed to all political organizations that support and 
perpetuate the present capitalist profit system, and I am opposed 
to any form of trading or fusing with any such organizations to 
prolong that system. 

In all my political actions while a member of the Socialist 
Party I agree to be guided by the constitution and platform of 
that party. 


Since 1900 there have been two Socialist Parties in the 
United States, the present Socialist Party, with a mem- 
bership of about one hundred thousand, and the Socialist 
Labor Party, from which the former is an offshoot, but 
which has dwindled to about one thousand members. For 
a generation the leader of the Socialist Labor Party was 
the late Daniel De Leon, editor of the official organ, The 


People. (From the Report of the Socialist Party Delega- 
tion to the International Socialist Congress, Copenhagen, 

Daniel Be Leon, speaking on the Unity resolution, charged that 
the Socialist Labor Party had made offers of unity to the So- 
cialist Party, but that they had been rejected by the Socialist 

Morris Hillquit replied to Be Leon. In part, he said : " The 
Socialist Party in America stands for the union of all Socialist 
forces in the United States. It does not stand for this simply in 
a platonie manner, but has shown its sincerity by its deeds. Our 
party is itself the product of unity. In 1900 the Socialist move- 
ment of America was split into various parties and groups. The 
Socialist Party became the center of unity and invited all So- 
cialist organizations to send delegates to the Unity Convention of 
1901. All such organizations responded with the exception of 
that wing of the Socialist Labor Party which was headed by 
De Leon." 

Replying also to Be Leon, Victor L. Berger said: "The 
American Socialists are unanimous for unity. We will vote for 
the Unity resolution and promise you that within the next three 
years we will completely solve the unity question, for by that 
time only Be Leon himself will stand outside the party. We in 
America are also working all the time for unity." (Our italics.) 

Daniel De Leon, leader of the Socialist Labor Party, died 
in the spring of 1914. 

In 1914 the Socialist Party of New Jersey passed reso- 
lutions urging the union of the Socialist Labor Party and 
the Socialist Party. 

The following paragraph is from Eugene V, Debs' arti- 
cle, "A Plea for Solidarity," in the International So- 
cialist Review, March, 1914 : 

On the political field there is no longer any valid reason why 
there should be more than one party. I believe that a majority 
of both the Socialist Party and the Socialist Labor Party would 
vote for consolidation, and I hope to see the initiative taken by 


the rank and file of both at an early day. The unification of 
the political forces would tend to clear the atmosphere and pro- 
mote the unification of the forces on the industrial field. 

A referendum has been proposed by certain locals, and 
is now under consideration, to the effect that a committee 
of five from the Socialist Labor Party be invited to meet 
a similar committee from the Socialist Party, with a view 
to union. 

(See also ''Militarism," "Trusts," "Proportional Rep- 
resentation," "Woman Suffrage," "Tariffs," "Govern- 
ment Ownership," "Labor Unions," "Labor Legisla- 
tion," "Co-operation," "Immigration and the Eace Ques- 
tion," "The Drink Question.") 



In the year 1890 a group of men dissatisfied with both 
Liberal and Conservative program and methods gathered 
in Montreal for the purpose of forming a new political 
organization, and organized a local of the Socialist Labor 
Party of America. This is the first group of men known 
to have organized under the banner of Socialism. Locals 
were afterwards formed in other cities. The executive was 
established in Montreal. 

On the 18th of May, 1899, the Canadian Socialist 
League was organized in Montreal as a result of dissatis- 
faction with the methods of the executive of the Socialist 
Labor Party in New York, and also as a result of a desire 
to establish a Canadian Socialist movement. The move- 
ment grew rapidly, about 60 leagues being established in 
Ontario. The executive was moved from Montreal to 
Toronto and afterwards to Vancouver. 

In 1901 the Socialist Party of British Columbia was 
formed, and made good progress. In 1905 the Socialist 
Party of Canada was established as a result of a coalition 
between the Socialist Party of British Columbia and the 
Canada Socialist Leagues. The headquarters of the party 
was in Vancouver. The Western Clarion became the of- 
ficial organ. 

The growth of the Socialist Party of Canada is shown 



by a table of the vote since 1903, compiled by "W. Watts 
for the Western Clarion. The table is as follows : 

Votes Votes 

Dates received Dates received 

1903 3,507 1910 10,929 

1907 3,670 1911 15,852 

1908 8,697 1912 15,857 

1909 9,688 1913 17,071 

"The first notable election took place in the Province 
of British Columbia in 1903. From then on the elections 
have been contested stoutly and with excellent results, till 
in the election of 1913 the Socialists cast 15 per cent of 
the total vote. 

"The movement has unusual difficulties. Not the least 
of these is the Labor Party. Another is the strong influ- 
ence of the Catholic Church in the Dominion and the gen- 
eral state of agricultural prosperity." 


By J. H. Borough, Dominion Secretary 
"At present we have no parliamentary representatives. 
In the past we have had four in the legislature of British 
Columbia, these being gradually reduced by the unscrupu- 
lous tactics of the capitalist politicians in whose hands 
rests the administration of the election acts, and by the 
action of the large employers of labor in the mining cen- 
ters of the province in shutting down their works about 
a month previous to election, in order that our supporters 
might be compelled to leave the district in search for other 
jobs. This has been done repeatedly, with — to them — sat- 
isfactory results. In addition to this difficulty, this prov- 
ince contains the largest proportion of migratory workers 
of any in the Dominion. . . . 

"The vote has increased from 3,500 in 1903 to approxi- 


mately 9,000 in 1912 in British Columbia, the Vancouver 
vote rising from 1,611 in 1903 to 5,767 in 1912. 

"In Alberta, the second province in membership and 
first in organization, we have only secured as yet one seat. 
This was in the Rocky Mountain district, partly a mining 
and partly an agricultural district. The seat was cap- 
tured in March, 1909, by Comrade C. M. O'Brien by a 
small majority. In the succeeding election (1913) the 
seat was lost, the boundaries having been especially al- 
tered to secure that result. The majority of the miners 
were out. In the Dominion elections of 1908, the party in 
Alberta ran two candidates and received 1,300 votes. In 
the provincial elections of 1909 it ran two, receiving 1,400 
votes. In the provincial elections of 1911, three candidates 
were placed on the ticket, receiving 2,300 votes. , . . 

"At the general elections in Manitoba in July, 1914, the 
party nominated two candidates in center Winnipeg, who 
received 928 and 921 votes respectively, notwithstanding 
the fact that it had to encounter the opposition of all kinds 
of reform candidates with and without the misleading 
cognomen of 'Labor.' " 



We call upon all workers to organize under the banner of the 
Socialist Party of Canada, with the object of conquering the pub- 
lic powers for the purpose of setting up and enforcing the eco- 
nomic program of the working-class, as follows : 

1. The transformation, as rapidly as possible, of capitalistic 
property in the means of wealth production (natural resources, 
factories, mills, railroads, etc.) into the collective property of 
the working-class. 

2. The democratic organization and management of industry 
by the workers. 


3. The establishment, as speedily as possible, of production 
for use instead of production for profit. 

The Socialist Party when in office shall always and everywhere 
until the present system is abolished, make the answer to this 
question its guiding rule of conduct : Will this legislation advance 
the interests of the working-class and aid the workers in their 
class struggle against capitalism? If it will, the Socialist Party 
is for it; if it will not, the Socialist Party is absolutely opposed 
to it. 

In accordance with this principle the Socialist Party pledges 
itself to conduct all the public affairs placed in its hands in such 
a manner as to promote the interests of the working-class alone. 


The provincial convention of the Socialist Party held at 
Toronto on May 24, 1910, gave birth to a new party in 
Ontario, which has since spread from Atlantic to Pacific. 
Owing to the autocratic position taken by the executive 
of the Socialist Party of Canada at Vancouver in expelling 
the Toronto local, consisting of 210 members, 13 other 
locals seceded with about 700 members, and in April, 1911, 
at Toronto, was organized the present Social Democratic 
Party of Canada. This organization has spread to almost 
every province, until to-day it consists of 230 locals, 82 in 
Ontario, 46 in British Columbia, 45 in Alberta, 20 in 
Saskatchewan, 28 in Manitoba, 8 in Quebec, and 1 in Nova 
Scotia. The headquarters is at Berlin, Ontario. It has a 
membership of over five thousand and a paid secretary. In 
British Columbia two members have been elected to the 
House, Jack Place for Nanaimo and Parker Williams for 
Ladysmith, both members of the party. 

In 1912 the party affiliated with the International Bu- 
reau. James Simpson is a member of the board of control 
of Toronto. Niagara Falls has one Socialist alderman. At 
Lindsay a member of the party has been mayor for two 


years. In the Ontario election held on June 29, 1914, the 
total vote ran over 6,000, with 14 candidates in the field. 
In July the Social Democratic Party candidate in Winni- 
peg, Manitoba, received 2,000 votes to 2,500 for the Lib- 
eral and 3,000 for the Conservative. 


As a means of preparing the minds of the working-class for 
the inauguration of the co-operative commonwealth, the Social 
Democratic Party of Canada will support any measure that will 
tend to better conditions under capitalism, such as: 

(1) Reduction of hours of labor. 

(2) The elimination of child labor. 

(3) Universal adult suffrage without distinction of sex or re- 
gard to property qualifications; and 

(4) The initiative, referendum, and right of recall. 


"It has often been a matter of surprise to political ob- 
servers that the labor movement has made such compara- 
tively little progress in Canada; its political success, at 
any rate, has been relatively small. At present it is repre- 
sented by one member in the Dominion House and by one 
in each of the Ontario and British Columbia Legislatures. 
Once the great western city of Winnipeg elected a labor 
representative, through the co-operation of the Liberals, 
but on the whole the political influence of the Labor Party 
is slight. While the electoral strength which it exhibits 
at the polls increases year by year, its actual effect upon 
the monopoly of the two historic parties has been sadly 
limited. What are the reasons to account for the backward- 
ness of the labor movement in Canada as compared with 

* The New Statesman, July 18, 1914— signed J. A. S. 


its progress and strength in the other Dominions? They 
are many. 

"In the first place, the trade-unions in Canada are all 
more or less affiliated to the American labor organizations. 
The geographical condition of the two countries necessi- 
tates this. Unless a Canadian union had the guarantee of 
the co-operation of its coordinate American union its 
powers of negotiating or striking would be definitely lim- 
ited and in the end ineffective. But what is a benefit for 
economic warfare is a barrier to political success, inasmuch 
as it brings the labor movement into definite opposition 
to the sentiment of Canadian nationalism. There are a 
great many of the Canadian working-classes who have a 
strong sense of prejudice, often ill-founded, against Amer- 
ican institutions, and, believing that the Canadian trade- 
unions are more or less subservient to the vaster American 
organizations, hold aloof from them. . . . 

"The Labor Party, too, has suffered too often by the 
defection of its leaders to the capitalist ranks. If they 
were clever men they saw before them facile opportunities 
of making money and speedily acquired an economic se- 
curity which put them out of sympathy with their less 
fortunate brethren. Great corporations, too, assist in this 
process, and if they see any young man coming forward 
as a leader of his fellow-employees they have a wise habit 
of offering him a comfortable executive job which removes 
him to another sphere. All these causes have contributed 
to the comparative failure of the Labor Party to make the 
same headway that it has achieved in the other overseas 

"But there are signs that a change is now in sight. Can- 
ada has been suffering from a period of financial stringency 
and her expansion has been very severely curtailed. . . . 
The workingman may have higher wages than in the older 


countries, but the advantage is completely destroyed by the 
tremendous cost of living. Labor in Great Britain com- 
plains that within the last decade the cost of living has 
gone up 15 per cent, but during the same period in Canada 
it has increased 51 per cent, and there has been no propor- 
tionate increase in wages. Most ominous of all is it that 
while in Great Britain and the United States the most 
recent index tables show some decrease in the cost of living, 
in Canada the upward rise relentlessly continues. Ten 
years ago it was possible for workingmen in Winnipeg to 
secure comfortable houses at a rent of $8 per month ; now 
the meanest abode costs at least $16 per month. All these 
factors have begun to bring the laboring-class to a sense 
of their true position and to realize that migration to a 
new country of vast undeveloped resources has in many 
cases failed to improve their economic position. There is 
now a decided demand for better terms for labor, and labor 
is beginning to realize that better terms can only be secured 
by political action. Neither of the existing parties shows 
any decided inclination to meet these demands, and as 
a result labor is beginning to strike out for itself. There 
have, of course, been many active and capable leaders of 
Canadian labor, and if the parliamentary success of such 
as have been elected to Parliament has been inconspicuous 
it was largely due to the lack of a real, driving, well- 
organized force behind them. But in every city there are 
signs of an awakening. In Montreal, Mr. Alphonse Ber- 
ville, who is a Liberal-Labor representative and a very 
outspoken democrat, represents by a huge majority Mais- 
soneuve, which is the largest constituency in Canada, and 
held it at the reciprocity election in face of determined 
attacks. At the last municipal election in Toronto a So- 
cialist was elected as one of the city controllers, and in 
Winnipeg Mr. R. A. Rigg, the leader of the Labor Party, 


was chosen as an alderman. In Vancouver and other 
Pacific coast communities there has always been a strong 
Socialist element which elects some representatives to the 
local House and municipal offices. . . . " * 

*In 1912 the "Independent Labor Party" elected a Socialist, Allan 
Studholme, to the provincial parliament of Ontario. The member of 
the Dominion Parliament above referred to vs^as a member of the 
"Labor Party." 



"Comrade Chairman and Comrades, I come here to this 
convention as a fraternal delegate of the Socialist Party in 
Mexico. I have a mission in coming. . . . Our comrades 
in Mexico have indorsed the principles of the revolu- 
tion. . . . They called on me to come here and explain to 
you about our revolution, and to ask you to pass some 
energetic resolutions in regard to it. 

"Comrades, the revolution in Mexico is a fight of the 
past hundred years. It is the fight of the farmers, the 
tillers of the soil, who became the owners of the lands that 
they are tilling. A hundred years ago the revolution in 
Spain was carried out by the tillers of the soil to get the 
lands from the big landowners in Mexico at that time. 
The big landowners were the church and the aristocracy. 
After 10 years of revolution, independence was recognized. 
But the revolutionists were not wise enough to carry out 
the revolution in a practical way. They were tender and 
satisfied to have an independent country and a flag. But 
soon they realized that they had not been fighting for such 
a small question as that. So they went ahead with the 
revolution, and about 15 years later, that is, in the year 
1834, they were very nearly in a position to take away the 

* The following address was delivered at the 1912 convention of the 
Socialist Party of the United States. 



land of the church and give it to the common people. If 
they did not accomplish this, why not? Because the 
church was not only the big landowner in Mexico, but also 
controlled the conscience in that country, and you know 
how hard it is for the agitator to take away from a man 
the idea of his wealth in heaven and his poverty on 
earth. . . . 

"The church went to work, and was able to elect as 
president a man that came to enforce its rights of the 
church and the aristocracy. But this man found that he 
was unable to destroy the rights of the revolutionists ; that 
the people had a higher passion in their hearts, the pas- 
sion of patriotism, and that patriotism was arousing the 
Mexican people to become an American nation. 

' ' In the meantime, in the United States the slave-holders, 
who needed to increase the power of slavery, tried to arouse 
the patriotism of the American people by an international 
war. There was a common understanding between the 
slave-owners in the United States and the landowners in 
Mexico that an international war would make the common 
people of Mexico forget the issue of the ownership of the 
Mexican lands and make the American people forget the 
issue of the emancipation of the slave. . . . 

''After the war was over, the Mexican people, defeated, 
were unable to carry on the revolutionary issue of the 
ownership of the land by the toilers of the soil. . . . 

" So . . . another revolution started in Mexico. . . . This 
new revolution of the fifties was for the purpose of . . . 
framing a new constitution that would embody the necessi- 
ties and the aspirations of the common people in Mexico. 
That new constitution, which is the constitution of to-day, 
was proclaimed on the 5th of February, 1857, and . . . 
gave to us all the freedom that we needed; free speech, 
free press, and free compulsory education. But the great 


point . . . was that it took away the land from the church, 
proclaiming that the church, being a divine institution, had 
not the right to own anything else. So about two and a 
half to three millions of toilers of the soil thus became 
owners of independent lands. 

"Immediately on the adoption of this constitution, the 
wealthy class of Mexico, the church and the aristocracy, 
found that a tremendous blow had been struck against 
them. The church and aristocracy claimed the army in 
Mexico in those years. . . . There was a civil war of three 
years between the church and army and the common peo- 
ple, and after it the common people were able to entirely 
defeat the church and the aristocracy. When the church 
and aristocracy surrendered, then they sent delegates to 
Europe to ask help in order that the European powers 
might send their armies to Mexico for the purpose of re- 
storing the lands to the church and to the aristocracy. 

"In the year 1861, England, France, and Spain agreed 
to send their armies to Mexico, and those armies were sent. 
But as soon as England and Spain realized their mistake 
and the trouble they were likely to have on their hands, 
they withdrew their armies. But Prance . . . invaded 
Mexico and placed Emperor Maximilian in power. This 
invasion was nothing else but a tool used by the Mexican 
church and Mexican aristocracy, and a tool also used by 
the Pope of Rome and the Emperor of France in order 
that they might come and, in the name of some farcical 
laws, take away the lands from the common people and 
restore them to the church and aristocracy. 

* ' This international war lasted about nine years, and you 
who read Mexican history from an economic standpoint 
can see how by this time the Mexican people had twice been 
able to accomplish the fact of giving the lands to the 
common people. A foreign invader had come into Mexico, 


but had been compelled to surrender after having come to 
give back the lands to the church and aristocracy. That 
has been the only purpose of Mexican foreign wars. After 
the French war was over, the Mexican people were entirely 
broken down by those nine years of war. A republic was 
established, and the people began to take up the question 
of the lands. 

' ' But after a few years the church took back the stranger 
and allied with the aristocracy and the army. . . . After 
a while they succeeded and gained power, but they were 
foxy enough to understand that by this time the church 
was not in condition to become the owner of the land, 
and then they took this land from the common people and 
gave it back to the favorites. That was the only cause of 
the despotism maintained by Diaz during the 30 years in 
which he carried on his military despotic autocracy. 

"Comrades, a year and a half ago another revolution 
started, with the same old question, the lands for the 
common people. That was the only purpose of the revolu- 
tion, and will be the only purpose of any revolution in 
Mexico. Mr. Madero, to-day's president of Mexico, came 
to the revolutionary movement at the last moment. . . . 
We, the old revolutionists, the pioneers of the revolution, 
know that Madero will be unwilling and unable to accom- 
plish a solution of the question of the ownership of the 
lands by the common people. . . . 

"Madero belongs to a very wealthy family of multi- 
millionaires. They own immense tracts of land in Mexico ; 
and does anybody suppose that Mr. Madero and his . . . 
relatives are going graciously to give up their lands to the 
common people? They are not. So the revolution is now 
in a critical moment. . . . 

"Comrades, the revolution is going to succeed. In the 
next two or three months there will be a beginning, at 


least, in the division of the lands, and before the revolu- 
tion is ended the division of the lands will be accomplished. 
After that . . . will come a government, elected, of course, 
by these small landowners, and this government will legal- 
ize this part of the revolution that has been accomplished. 
It is not a question of the government's dividing the land. 
The lands are going to be taken by the men themselves, 
and the government after that will legalize what has been 
done. That is the scheme; that is the plan of the revo- 
lution. . . . 

"So the issue is very clear now. The division of the 
lands will be accomplished. The revolution will be suc- 
cessful, but there is the threat of the old times, the Amer- 
ican Government doing everything possible to interfere in 
Mexico, with the only purpose to compel the Mexican work- 
ers to serve their masters and to protect the property of 
American citizens. They say that the intervention of the 
American Government will be only for the purpose of pro- 
tecting American life and American property in Mexico, 
but it will be with the purpose of carrying on the issue 
so that it is well understood by the master class, and that 
issue is that the class-conscious master class in the United 
States feel the necessity of helping their brothers, the 
master class of Mexico." 


Again we are being lashed into war by those who profit from 

Capitalist drums are beating, trumpets blaring, and forces re- 

All this that the nation may be goaded into war and the 
workers made to consent to shoot and be shot. 

For centuries the resources of Mexico have lain dormant. Of 
late that country has been touched by the magic wand of capital- 


ism and the same development is taking place there that always 
takes place when modern capitalism clashes with backward 

Ninety per cent of her population are still landless and prop- 
ertyless. For hundreds of years the Mexican people have strug- 
gled against almost insurmountable difficulties to overthrow 
tyrants who have ruled and ruined them. 

For hundreds of years the Mexican people have been in a 
state of continuous revolt because the great majority are in con- 
dition of peonage. Robbed of their land in an agricultural 
country, the change from the Spanish rule to an independent 
republic avails the Mexican people little or nothing. So long as 
peonage remains, revolt must follow revolt. 

In vain did the Mexican people elevate Madero to the presi- 
dency. Their hope that he would recognize their need and 
restore the land to the people was not fulfilled. They are still 
fighting to win Mexico for the Mexicans. 

In Sonora, Durango, and Chihuahua, where the revolutionists 
are in control, the people are taking possession of the land. Now, 
when the revolutionists believe that victory is in sight, the great 
American republic, controlled by sinister capitalist interests and 
without a declaration of war, lands an armed force on Mexican 
soil. No nation in modern times has ever begun hostilities upon 
a pretext so shallow as the flag incident at Tampico. 

The war will inevitably unite all factions in Mexico against 
the invaders of their country. Their resistance to the forces of 
the United States must fail, yet it will cost thousands of lives 
through bullet, bayonet, and disease. 

In order to subdue Mexico, the American army must march 
across that country like Sherman marched to the sea. Our army 
"will leave behind a path of desolation, ruined homes, and death. 

And finally, when American arms have triumphed, who will 
be the winners'? The American people will not win. The Mex- 
ican people will not win. German, English, and American cap- 
italists, backed up by our army, will exploit Mexico and the 
Mexican peon as capitalism always exploits the working-people 

Moreover, the effect of the war on our own country will be 

War strengthens every force hurtful to civilization, every force 
hurtful to labor. While war lasts there will be no social legisla- 


tion. Enough money will be used up in dealing death to human 
beings to provide old-age pensions, accident, sickness, and unem- 
ployed insurance for every worker in America for a generation. 

Every piratical power will seize this opportunity to prey upon 
our people. Exploiting capitalism will meet every attack by 
wrapping the American flag around its plunder. 

Remember that the capitalist class in Colorado, destroying with 
machine guns American workers struggling for better conditions, 
is the very same class that seeks to rule Mexico. 

The Socialist Party is opposed, as a matter of principle, to 
every war of aggression. We believe that there is but one justi- 
fication for war, and that is to fight for freedom. Our freedom 
has not been assailed by the Mexicans. There is no reason why 
American workingmen should leave their homes and families to 
have their bodies mangled on Mexican battlefields. 

In the name of two million American Socialists, in the name 
of thirty million Socialists throughout the world, in the name of 
humanity and civilization, we protest against the war with 

By the National Executive Committee of the Socialist Party. 

Victor Berger, 
Adolph Germer, 
Geo. H. Goebel, 
James H. Maurer, 
J. Stitt Wilson. 
Attest: Walter Lakfersiek, 

Executive Secretary. 


The Socialist Party was formed in 1896, but elected its 
first deputy, Alfredo Palacios, from Buenos Ayres, in 
1904, with 1,257 votes. This number rose to 7,006 in 1910. 
In 1912 the suffrage laws were changed, Palacios was 
elected with 32,000 votes, and Dr. Juan Justo with 23,000 
votes— also in Buenos Ayres. In 1914 the Socialists elected 
all seven candidates in that city— which, added to the 
above two, re-elected in 1913, when half the Chamber of 
Deputies was voted upon, gives a total of nine. 


The election for the Chamber of Deputies shows that the 
Socialist vote ranged from 40,014 to 43,336 for the seven 
men the workers elected, with their Radical opponents 
polling only from 32,074 to 37,517, and the other two 
bourgeois parties trailing hopelessly in the rear. 

The seven Socialists elected to the Chamber are Fran- 
cisco Cuneo, Mario Bravo, Nicolas Repetto, Enrique Dick- 
mann, Antonio De Tomaso, Antonia Zaccagnini, Angel M. 

All of these men are active workers for the Socialist 
cause, Dickmann being editor-in-chief of La Vanguardia, 
the big Socialist daily of this city, and De Tomaso national 
secretary of the Socialist Party. 

In the election of 1913 the Socialists cast 48,024 votes 
for their highest candidate, but the total vote then was 
larger and the Socialists elected but four candidates. 

The total membership of the Argentine Chamber is 120, 
and the reaction is in control in the provinces outside of 
Buenos Ayres. 

Besides the 43,000 votes in the city of Buenos Ayres, the 
Socialists secured in 1914, 8,700 votes in the province of 
that name, 2,000 in Santa Fe, and 1,500 in other districts 
— a total of 55,000. The votes for the other parties in 
Buenos Ayres were : Radical, 37,000 ; Civic Party, 20,000 ; 
Constitutionalists, 13,000. 

The following were the chief planks of the Socialist 
platform : 

Abolition of the taxes that increase the cost of living, the 
application of progressive taxes upon land. 

Limitation of the compulsory military service to three months. 

Abolition of the law permitting the expulsion of foreigners 
without trial. 

Laws providing for hygienic and safe conditions in factories 
and compensation for accidents. 

Maximum working day of eight hours, and minimum wage of 


seven shillings per day for all workers employed directly or 
indirectly by the state or municipalities. 

Universal suffrage in municipal elections. 

Separation of church and state; amendment of the divorce laws. 

Abolition of the penalty of death. 


By W. Thiessen 

The development of the Socialist Party in the Argen- 
tine Republic is described by W. Thiessen (of La Plata) 
in the Neue Zeit. Its origin is purely international, the 
party at first, some 25 years ago, being composed of three 
groups — a German group, called the Vorwdrts; a French 
group, Les Egaux; and the Italian, Fascio dei Lavoratori. 

The Spanish-speaking Argentine Socialists were only 
a small group at the commencement, but from 1894 on- 
wards, when the paper. La Vanguardia, was started, have 
increased in numbers and now form the bulk of the party. 
This development is quite in accordance with the economic 
facts, Argentine industry, or, rather, industry in the Argen- 
tine, being almost entirely the result of the introduction 
of European capital and of European labor, both skilled 
and unskilled. Even now this is apparent at a glance at 
a business directory of Argentine towns, where Italian, 
German, and French names can be found in abundance. 

As a party of foreign workmen, it could, of course, 
have no influence on the politics of the country, and only 
as the membership was drawn more and more from the 
Argentinos did the voting strength of the party increase. 
In 1903, of 884 paying members in the city of Buenos 
Ayres, 467 were Argentinos and 417 foreigners; in the 
provinces, the proportion was 373 Argentinos to 479 for- 
eigners. At the present time the foreigners are still about 
30 per cent of the membership. At the Congress held last 


May in Rosario, the delegates represented organizations 
with a membership in Buenos Ayres city of 1,201 and in 
the provinces of 2,310. 

In the National Congress the party has nine repre- 
sentatives, in the Senate one, in the Provincial Assembly 
of Buenos Ayres tvro, and in Mendoza one. . . . 

While in 1903 half the party members vrere of for- 
eign birth, in 1914 this was true only of one-third. 

The party has still a hard task in front of it, as the 
industrial working-class, upon which it must rely in the 
main, is still largely cosmopolitan, the Italians predom- 
inating. In order to increase its membership in full citi- 
zens from that class, a rule of the party says that for- 
eigners cannot become members of the party unless they 
get themselves naturalized, an exception being made only 
in the case of those workers to whom the authorities refuse 
naturalization, a not unusual occurrence. 

At the elections other sections of the population have 
contributed largely to the success, such as state and munici- 
pal officials of the lower ranks, private employers, and a 
certain proportion of the smaller shopkeepers and trades- 
men. Among these, as indeed is the case with all Argen- 
tinos, the nationalist feeling is very strong. One prom- 
inent Socialist and former Senator, Manuel Ugarte, who 
for some years represented Argentina on the International 
Socialist Bureau, seems to have gone over entirely to the 
Nationalist Patriotic Party, and devotes himself now to the 
advocacy of the idea of an America latino, a movement di- 
rected against the growing influence of the United States 
in the South American republics. Arising out of some 
article in Vangiiardia, the party organ, which to him 
seemed to be derogatory of the dignity of the Latin races, 
as they described the backwardness of Central America, 
he commenced a campaign in the capitalist press against 


the party, accused it of being anti-patriotic, etc., and 
finally challenged a Socialist deputy, Palacios, to fight a 
duel. Ugarte was thereupon expelled by his organization 
and is now no longer to be considered as a Socialist. 

The Vanguardia had merely declared that the opening 
of the Panama Canal would bring a new life to Central 
America. Hereupon a furious nationalistic onslaught was 
unchained. It vdiolly dominated the electoral agitation 
of 1914, and the party was forced to take a definite stand 
on the question, Nationalism and Socialism. A part of the 
comrades then made considerable concessions to national- 
ism. Another part arose vigorously against it. These dif- 
ferences were the chief feature of the Party Congress in 
May (1914). No important decision was reached, however. 


(Excluding Canada) 



The Socialist political movement in Great Britain finds 
its chief expression in the British Labor Party, which is 
primarily a federation of those trade-unions which stand 
for progressive labor legislation, with the Independent 
Labor Party, which is definitely committed to Socialism, 
and with the Fabian Society, an educational Socialist or- 
ganization. The British Socialist Party, the third of the 
leading Socialist organizations in Great Britain, which, for 
many years, stood apart from this federation, applied for 
membership in May, 1914, as a result of the suggestion of 
a committee on unity, appointed by the International So- 
cialist Congress. 

The constitution of the party declares (1914) that its 
object is "To organize and maintain in Parliament and 
the country a political Labor Party," and provides that 
"Candidates and members must . . . appear before their 
constituencies under the title of labor candidates only; 
abstain strictly from identifying themselves with or pro- 
moting the interests of any other party; and accept the 
responsibilities established by parliamentary practice. 



"Before a candidate can be regarded as adopted for a 
constituency, his candidature must be sanctioned by the 
national executive; and where at the time of a by-election 
no candidate has been so sanctioned, the national executive 
shall have power to withhold its sanction." 

The constitution further provides that "The national 
executive shall consist of 16 members, 11 representing the 
trade-unions, 1 the trades-councils, women's organizations, 
and local labor parties, and 3 the Socialist societies, who 
shall be elected by ballot at the annual conference by their 
respective sections, and the treasurer, who shall also be 
elected by the conference." 


In 1912 the membership of the Labor Party was esti- 
mated at 1,895,498. The trade-unions contributed the bulk 
of the membership — 1,858,178. The Independent Labor 
Party and the Fabian Society contributed 31,237, of which 
the I. L. P. possessed nearly 30,000. 

The executive committee of the Labor Party gave in 
1913 the following estimate of growth : 

Trade-union societies Total 

membership membership 

1900-1 353,070 22,861 375,931 

1901-2 455,450 13,861 469,311 

1902-3 847,315 13,835 861,150 

1903-4 956,025 13,775 969,800 

1904-5 855,270 14,730 900,000 

1905-6 904,496 16,784 921,280 

1906-7 975,182 20,885 998,338 

1907 1,049,673 22,267 1,072,413 

1908 1,127,035 27,465 1,158,565 

1909 1,450,648 30,982 1,486,308 

1910 1,394,402 31,377 1,430,539 

1911 1,501,783 31,404 1,539,092 

1912 1,858,178 31,237 1,895,498 

The report of the Executive Committee for 1913 declares : 

The Labor Party is . . . primarily a political organization 
controlled by the British labor unions. But [with the] affiliation 
of the British Socialist Party . . . there will be nearly 50,000 
Socialist Party members, who are also members of the Labor 
Party. Though less than three per cent of the total membership, 
they have furnished [1913] 7 of the 40 Labor Party mem- 
bers of Parliament. . . . 


The true object of industry being the production of the require- 
ments of life, the responsibility should rest with the community 
collectively, therefore : 

The land being the storehouse of all the necessaries of life 
should be declared and treated as public property. 

The capital necessary for the industrial operations should be 
owned and used collectively. 

Work, and wealth resulting therefrom, should be equitably dis- 
tributed over the population. 

As a means to this end we demand the enactment of the fol- 
lowing measures : 

1. A maximum of 48 hours working week, with the retention 
of all existing holidays, and Labor Day, May 1, secured by law. 

2. The provision of work to all capable adult applicants at 
recognized trade-union rates, with a statutory minimum of 6d. 
per hour. 

In order to remuneratively employ the applicants, parish, dis- 
trict, borough, and county councils to be invested with powers to : 

(a) Organize and undertake such industries as they may con- 
sider desirable; 

(b) Compulsorily acquire land; purchase, erect, or manu- 
facture buildings, stock, or other articles for carrying on such 
industries ; 

(c) Levy rates on the rental values of the district, and borrow 
money on the security of such rates for any of the above pur- 

3. State pensions for every person over 50 years of age, and 


adequate provision for all widows, orphans, sick, and disabled 

4. Free, secular, moral, primary, secondary, and university 
education, with free maintenance while at school or university. 

5. The raising of the age of child labor, with a view to its 
ultimate extinction. 

6. Municipalization and public control of the drink traffic. 

7. Municipalization and jDublic control of all hospitals and 

8. Abolition of indirect taxation and the gradual transference 
of all public burdens on to unearned incomes, with a view to 
their ultimate extinction. 

9. The Independent Labor Party is in favor of adult suffrage, 
with full political rights and privileges for women, and the 
immediate extension of the franchise to women on the same 
terms as granted to men; also triennial Parliaments and second 


The report to the Party Congress of 1914 dwells upon the 
Socialists' fight for woman suffrage and for a better finance 
bill, and their agitation against the increase of armament, 
the action of the Dublin police, the deportation of trade- 
union leaders, etc. The report deals with the manner in 
which present parliamentary procedure leads to ineffective- 
ness. It reads : 

The relations of the I. L. P. members of the Labor Party with 
their trade-union colleagues continue cordial. The composite 
character of the Labor Party and the differences of political 
training and economic views to be found among the members of 
the Labor Party should be kept in mind. 

So long as the House of Lords exists in its present form, 
with power to suspend legislative measures for a period of two 
years or more, necessitating such measures being passed by the 
House of Commons in at least three successive sessions, there 
will be a great deal of time wasted which might otherwise be 
devoted to new measures, and there Avill be a natural disposition 
not to throw away the advantage which has been won by stages 


already passed on the road to the final enactment of measures. 
The Parliament Act, while restricting the powers of the House 
of Lords, has created new difficulties for the House of Commons, 
and the present situation is one which cannot be permanently 
endured. . . . 

It is not likely that the Government will endeavor to pass a 
comprehensive reform bill in this Parliament, but should they do 
so, we shall do all we can to secure the enfranchisement of 
women in it on a comprehensive basis, or failing that we shall 
oppose the further extension of the male franchise. The position 
of the Woman Suffrage question, though for the moment par- 
liamentary interest in it is quiet, is hopeful. If nothing is done 
further in this Parliament it will be necessary to make this a 
prominent issue at the next general election, so that the Gov- 
ernment will not be able to make the excuse that there is no 
popular mandate for the reform. 

The Labor Party has been extremely active during the present 
session. It has raised debates of first-class importance on the 
action of the Dublin police and the deportation of the South 
African trade-union leaders, accidents in mines and on railways, 
the condition of the blind, and other matters. Neither in regard 
to Dublin nor South Africa was any satisfaction obtained from 
the Government, but promises of legislation or inquiry were 
made in regard to the other matters. 

The Government's extravagance in naval affairs continues, and 
this year the Admiralty have presented navy estimates of over 
£50,000,000. The I. L. P. members have offered a united and 
strong opposition to this expenditure. The opposition to this 
criminal extravagance was left mainly to the Labor Party. The 
Radicals seem to have forsaken all the principles of economy 
in Avhieh they have been trained. We shall continue to oppose 
this expenditure on armaments, not only because of the waste of 
national wealth which is involved, but in the interests of inter- 
national goodwill. 

A vast amount of very useful work has been done by the I. L. P. 
members in quiet and unobtrusive ways, on commissions and 
committees, and in attending to complaints about the adminis- 
tration of laws. 

We do not submit to you this short and incomplete report 
of the work of the past year with a feeling of complete satis- 
faction with our achievements. On the contrary we are very 


fully aware of how small and inadequate it is compared with 
what we should like to see accomplished. We are hampered by 
the special circumstances of the parliamentary situation, and 
by the smallness of our numbers; and as I. L. P. members, whose 
aim is to advance the cause of Socialism, by the variety of 
economic thought and political sympathy in the Labor Party. 
We recognize the advantages of labor generally by .such a com- 
bination of Trade-Unionists and Socialists as we have in the 
Labor Party, but we have never been blind to the fact that if 
we, as Socialists, are to get the benefit of the support of our 
trade-union allies it must involve some sacrifice of our own inde- 
pendent action as an I. L. P. We are constantly having to 
consider cases where the opinions of the Labor Party and the 
I. L. P., as expressed by the resolutions of the two conferences, 
differ or conflict. 

Occasionally loyalty to the Labor Party alliance involves the 
sacrifice of I. L. P. resolutions. This difference sometimes, as 
in the case of the Plural Voting Bill and the Insurance Bill, 
leads to divisions among ourselves. This is a difficult situation, 
and one which is perhaps inherent in the present stage of the 
development of a parliamentary labor party, but it would be 
well if the Conference at its special sitting to discuss parlia- 
mentary policy would give some attention to this matter. 

J. R. Clynes, 
J. Keir Hardie, 


J. Ramsay MacDonald, 
James Parker, 
Thos. Richardson, 
Philip Sxowden. 

3. criticism and defense of the labor party by the i. l. p, 
party conference, 1914 

The chief criticism in the Party Conference of 1914 cen- 
tered around the rumored alliance between the Labor 
Party and the Liberal Party. In the British Parliament, 
if the House of Lords vetoes a bill, this bill must be passed 
three times in succession by the House of Commons before 
it becomes a law. If the Government Party — in recent 


years, the Liberal Party— should be defeated in any meas- 
ures proposed by it, the Cabinet usually resigns and an- 
other election is called. If the Government Party is ousted 
before the bill is passed the third time, the bill must go 
again through the same course. The three most important 
bills before Parliament, prior to this conference, supported 
by the Liberal and Labor parties and vetoed by the House 
of Lords, were the Home Rule Bill, the Plural Voting Bill 
(which purports to make it impossible for any man to 
vote more than once), and the Welsh Disestablishment Bill. 
It was often necessary for the Labor Party to support the 
Liberal Party in its proposed measures if it desired to 
retain the Government in power and thus to save the three 
foregoing bills. This support, among other things, led to 
rumors of an alliance. 

Robert Smillie, president of the Miners' Federation, de- 
clared in the Conference that he would rather have a 
parliamentary party of 7 which refused to enter an alli- 
ance than one with 40 which joined hands with the Lib- 
erals; that if such a calamity as an alliance occurred, 
neither he nor the miners' organization would be any party 
to it, even though the party conceded, as an inducement, 
the installment of satisfactory life-saving apparatus in the 
mines or the fixing of a minimum wage by law. 

Philip Snowden, M. P., said that whether or not there 
was any alliance, understanding, or agreement with the 
Liberal Party, the policy of the Labor Party was in very 
little sense different from that which it would have been 
if there had been an open and acknowledged alliance. 
Whenever a resolution tabled for introduction to the 
House was discussed by the Parliamentary Party, he 
stated, it was minutely scrutinized to see whether it could 
possibly be supported by the Tories and thus endanger the 
existence of the Government. 


When Mr. Hardie was chairman of the Labor group 
he had said he would not go cap in hand to the Govern- 
ment; the Labor Party room was number 40, and if the 
Government whips wanted him, he was there. That, Mr. 
Snowden declared, was the only self-respecting attitude to 

He had not lost faith in the Labor Party, he said, but 
it had to face, as alternatives, either subservience to a 
capitalist government or independence. As for him, he 
believed that a small party of six, if determined, class- 
conscious, and self-conscious, would be worth the whole 
of the present party. 

J. Eamsay Macdonald, M. P., chairman of the Labor 
Party, defended the position taken by the parliamentary 
group. He declared that there was no such thing as an 
alliance with the Liberals; that there had not even been 
any discussion of such an alliance, and as far as he was 
concerned, no approach to an agreement had been 
made between the Labor Party and the Liberal Party 
which meant the change by one hair-breadth of the 
policy of the Labor Party. There had been talks be- 
tween individual members, perhaps, but no official con- 

It was not a question of agreements, he declared, but 
the Labor Party was bound to take into consideration 
whether it was going to undo by its electoral policy what 
it had asked the Labor members to do during the life of 
the present Parliament. 


W. Leach, of Bradford, introduced the following resolu- 
tion, urging the parliamentary group to disregard certain 
of the so-called exigencies of parliamentary rule : 


That cabinet rule, which involves the suppression of the rights 
of the private member to any adequate voice in the policy of 
his party, and which implies the resignation of the Ministry and 
the dissolution of Parliament when proposals of the cabinet are 
negatived, besides making almost impossible the free consid- 
eration of proposals which have not received the cabinet hall- 
mark, is inimical to the good government of the country; that 
with a view to the ultimate break-up of this system, the Par- 
liamentary Labor Party be asked to take no account of any such 
considerations and to vote on all issues only in accordance with 
the principles for which the party stands. 

Speech hy F. W. Jowett, M. P. {the new chairman of the 

I. L. P.) 

F. W. Jowett, M. P. (Bradford), supporting the resolu- 
tion, pointed out that the Radical Party had once been told 
that if they did not accept the estimates they could not 
destroy the veto of the House of Lords ; and that the Irish 
Party had been told that if they did not accept them the 
Government would be turned out of office and they would 
not get Home Rule; the AVelsh Party had been told that 
if they did not vote for the Government they would not 
get "Welsh Disestablishment ; and the Labor Party had been 
told they would not get the Osborne Bill or insurance 
against unemployment if they failed to support the Gov- 
ernment. He continued: 

If the Labor Party [he added] were in the position of the 
Irish Party with one outstanding measure, caring nothing for 
the general ruck of legislation and intent on one measure alone, 
they could say to the Government, " We hold 39 votes. Give us 
this measure and we will keep you in power: we will keep you 
in even if by doing so we have to give a vote against 21 shillings 
a week for railwaymen." 

Of course we cannot do it. We cannot carry out such a con- 
tract, and consequently that system of bargaining openly is not 
possible to the Labor Party. The Bradford resolution did not 


merely suggest ignoring a bad system, but it called for the 
application of common honesty to public government. The 
present system would be absolutely punctured if any large body 
of the members of the House of Commons determined to vote 
on the merits of bills that were introduced, to treat of ques- 
tions as questions of conscience and to vote accordingly. 

Let me say here, I don't want a cabinet system under even 
labor domination. I have no wish to see ministerial control ap- 
plied to any department of state even if the minister be a 
Socialist — because it means bureaucracy; because it means the 
people are not having control. . . . Even if it were a labor 
government I should regard a government of ministers, each with 
sole control of a public department, as exceedingly bad for the 
public. . . . Certainly we will not go so far as to say we will 
cover up the iniquities of a government with which we do not 
agree in other matters in order to get the things we desire. The 
history of the past few years shows that there have been votes 
which it is exceedingly difficult for us to defend. Those votes 
would not have been given had it not been for the fact that 
we were doing this for the deliberate purpose of keeping the 
Government in office in order that they might pass home rule 
or some other measure. . . . 

Are we to be deprived of the right to register a solemn censure 
on one question because of a bigger question for which the Gov- 
ernment stands? If so, in my judgment neither in your day 
nor in mine shall we be free of some great political question 
which will keep us bond-slaves. I for one refuse to be a bond- 
slave. I will be free. 

The resolution was carried by a vote of 233 to 78. 


The British Socialist Party was formed at the end of 
1911, from the amalgamation of the Social Democratic 
Party (founded in 1884) and several other Socialist organ- 

The following resolution was carried unanimously at the Unity 
Conference at Manchester on September 30, 1911 : 


" This conference of Socialist organizations, believing that the 
difference of opinion and the adoption of dissimilar tactics, which 
have hitherto characterized the various sections of the British 
Socialist movement; have arisen from circumstances peemliar to 
its initial stages, is convinced that the time is now ripe for the 
formation of a United Socialist Party, and the delegates pledge 
their organizations to co-operate in the unification of their forces 
on the following basis of common agreement: 

" The Socialist Party is the political expression of the working- 
class movement, acting in the closest co-operation with industrial 
organizations for the socialization of the means of production and 
distribution — that is to say, the transformation of capitalist so- 
ciety into a collectivist or communist society. Alike in its 
objects, its ideals, and in the means employed, the Socialist Party 
is not a reformist but a revolutionary party, which recognizes 
that social freedom and equality can only be won by fighting 
the class war through to the finish, and thus abolishing for ever 
all class distinctions." 



At the Party Conference in 1913, the Labor Party sub- 
mitted its parliamentary report, describing the order in 
which the group in Parliament decided to submit its bills, 
and its continued ill fortune in securing an acceptable 
place in the balloting. It also dealt with the activity of 
the group in the coal and Port of London strikes, and in 
connection with the home rule, Welsh disestablishment, 
franchise, trade-union, railway, education, and other 

The report reads in part as follows : 

It was decided the following bills should be balloted for in the 
order given: Trade-Union Law Amendment; Right to Work; 
Education (Administrative Provisions) ; Eight Hours' Day; Rail- 
way Nationalization; Compulsory Weighing; Eviction of Work- 
men during Trade Disputes; Blind Aid; and Local Authorities 

The party's ill fortune in the ballot in previous sessions was 
continued in this. . . . The Trade-Union Law Amendment, Right 
to Work, and Education (Administrative Provisions) bills were 
reintroduced, but made no progi-ess. The short bill to legalize the 
feeding of school children during holidays, introduced last ses- 
sion, was again brought forward, but although the Government 
declared their agreement with it, no time was allotted to secure 
its passage. . . . 

The Coal Strike and the Coal Mines {Minimum Wage) Bill 

A very important part of the party's work during the session 
was in connection with the national strike of miners. Throughout 



the dispute the party was in close touch with the Miners' Fed- 
eration and carried out all the wishes of the Federation to the 
best of its ability. In order to settle the strike the Government 
brought forward a bill to establish a minimum wage for miners, 
but no precise figures were set forth. The party therefore moved 
an amendment fixing the minimum at five shillings a day for 
adults other than piece-workers, and two shillings a day for boys. 
The Government refused to accept this proposal and it was 
rejected. Other amendments were moved with a view to improv- 
ing the bill, and some were carried. In consequence of the defeat 
of the five shillings and two shillings amendment, however, the 
miners in conference advised opposition to the third reading of 
the bill and the party acted accordingly. 

The Port of London Strike and the Industrial Agreements Bill 

This dispute also played an important part in the work of the 
session, and it is a matter for regret that the result was unsatis- 
factory. The party did all it could to help the men, and during 
the latter part of the dispute had a representative on the strike 
committee. The strike was really due to certain employers in 
the port not obsenang agreements come to between representa- 
tives of the employers and employed. In consultation with the 
Transport Workers' Federation, the party put fonvard a proposal 
that where an agreement had been come to between representa- 
tives of employers and employed it should be made legally binding 
on the whole of the trade in the district, and a bill on these 
lines applying to the Port of London only was subsequently 
introduced. It should be clearly understood that the sole object 
of the bill was to enforce an existing voluntary agreement on 
any section in the district that was unorganized and unrepre- 
sented at the conference where such agreement was come to. 
The agreement would presumably be for a certain term, and the 
workmen would not or need not accept any agreement which 
would render them powerless in the event of a new situation 
arising. Therefore, the right to strike was in no way infringed 
except in so far as an agreement voluntarily come to might 
specify. The bill made no progress. . . . 

Government of Ireland Bill and Established Church {Wales) Bill 

The session has been mainly taken up with fulfilling pledges 
given in respect to three big political measures, two of which 


were the Home Rule and Welsh Disestablishment Bills. In 
respect to these the party generally had made most definite 
promises to the constituencies and it did its best to get the meas- 
ures carried and put out of the way. 

Franchise and Registration Bill 

. . . The party has amendments down to secure fviU adult 
suffrage, a three months' qualification, and the repeal of the 
pauper disqualification. . . . 

Trade-Unions Bill 

From the party's special point of view the chief bill of the 
session was the Trade-Unions (No. 2) Bill. This bill did not 
seek to reverse the Osborne Judgment, but it gave the unions 
power to add political objects to their rules, provided that a 
majority of the members by ballot had so decided. It also gave 
to members who objected to pay to the Parliamentary Fund the 
right to withhold payment altogether. . . . The party exerted 
every effort to improve the bill and to secure its passage . . . 
should it be acceptable to the movement. [A special national 
conference of delegates was called to consider the matter.] 

Railways Bill 

In pursuance of a promise given by the Government to the 
railway companies at the time of the railway strike, a bill was 
introduced empowering the companies to increase their rates and 
charges to an extent sufficient to cover any extra cost entailed 
by the improved conditions of service of the employees. The 
bill as it was worded threw the onus of proof on anj" aggrieved 
person that an increased rate or charge was [excessive], and 
there were other objectionable proposals. . . . The bill was sub- 
sequently withdrawn. Another bill [was] substituted and it pro- 
vides that it shall lie with the company to prove that any pro- 
posed increase is justifiable. . . . But the party has decided to 
oppose it on the ground that the railway companies have largely 
recouped themselves for any concessions they may have given 
to their employees. In addition the party is opposed to giving 
further powers to monopolies because trade-union action has 
resulted in securing improved conditions of service for the em- 



At the Birmingham Conference a resolution was carried re- 
questing the party to appoint a committee to consider the general 
question of educational reform and draw up a report thereon. 
The committee was to consider 

(1) A modification of the curriculum in primary schools, in 
order that in the later years of school life more time may be 
given to instruction in the duties of citizenship; 

(2) The raising of the school-leaving age to 16 years, and the 
right of children in primary and secondary schools to mainte- 
nance allowances; 

(3) The limiting of the hours of boy and girl labor up to the 
age of 18 to 30 per week, so as to provide 20 or more hours per 
week for physical, technological, and general training; 

(4) The establishment of medical treatment centers in connec- 
tion with each primary school or gi'oup of schools. 

Policy and Propaganda 

The party has considered the political situation and its bearing 
upon parliamentary action and energetic propagandist efforts 
throughout the country in the immediate future. Committees 
have been appointed to consider the drafting and introduction 
of bills dealing with the nationalization of mines and railways, 
the problem of poverty on the lines of the recommendation of 
the minority report of the Poor Law Commission, the abolition 
of sweating by the development of the Trade Boards Act, ex- 
tensive housing reform, a further application of the taxation 
of unearned incomes, the compulsory feeding and medical treat- 
ment of school children throughout the year, and a general reduc- 
tion in the hours of labor. 

A committee is considering the problem of rural housing, 
the importance and practicability of fixing a minimum 
wage for agricultural laborers, the extension of small hold- 
ings, the putting of land to its best use, and the questions 
of taxation and public ownership. In order that the in- 
quiry may be full and complete the committee is taking 
evidence and examining schemes in the hope that the pro- 


posals in its report may be practical and comprehen- 

The group also opposed an investigation into the causes 
of industrial unrest, on the ground that these causes are 
already known. It urged legislation securing the right to 
work, unemployment insurance, a maximum eight-hours' 
working day, a minimum wage, and the nationalization of 
the railways, mines, land, and other monopolies, to remedy 
the situation. 


Chairman Roberts dealt, in his address, with a number 
of the salient issues before the party, including the value 
of political vs. direct action, and the desirability of legisla- 
tion dealing with the franchise for men and women, with 
housing, the condition of the agricultural worker, and rail- 
road nationalization. His speech, in part, was as follows : 

Recently we have witnessed a recrudescence of the allegation 
that political action is futile and direct industrialism the only 
certain means of realizing working-class aims and aspirations. 
The Labor Party challenges that view with the assertion that 
both means are necessary. None can avoid a sense of disap- 
pointment at the results of political action. And is it not equally 
so with the strike policy? The truth is that while the highest 
expectations formed of either are unfulfilled, yet considerable 
advantage has accrued from both. In either case the comparative 
failure is identical. . . . Given a more thorough education and 
organization of the workers, their political and industrial activi- 
ties would be correspondingly the more productive. . . . 

Direct actionists affect to repudiate the representative govern- 
ment of modern democi'aey, and have aroused the suspicion that 
they favor violence rather than discussion and reason. My sub- 
mission is that polities cannot be dispensed with, and that the 
perfect state will only come through well-ordered effort and 
schemes, and not through a purely economic outburst. Let it be 
remembered that the state is as yet imperfectly democratized. 


Our object is to make the state synonymous with the people. 
When a popular franchise is attained, the people by political 
organization can master the state and use it for popular pur- 
poses. . . . When industries are brought under public control 
political methods ■will be necessary to determine principles of 
administration. Again, the attainments of force can only sub- 
sist by the sanction of force. If Parliament is vacated by labor 
the control by opponents of public revenue, the naval, military, 
and civil forces would speedily encompass the downfall of the 
new system. Neither is it wise to stake everything on a single 
policy of forceful action. This is a reckless gamble. Moreover, 
do not direct actionists minimize the resisting jDower of employers 
and possessors? Simultaneously with the cessation of labor occurs 
a cruel aggravation of the hardship and suffering of women and 
children — a risk which cannot be lightly encountered. 

. . . While heartily Avelcoming the movement towards less 
unions and more unity, together with the closer federation of 
workers, there is need to emphasize the point that salvation 
evolves from the use of both arms — the industrial and the po- 
litical. . . . 

An example substantiating the foregoing is found in the miners' 
strike of last year. Having exhausted every conciliatory and 
negotiatory means without avail, no alternative remained to the 
Miners' Federation but to call upon their members to " down 
tools." This soon paralyzed industry and transit. The owners 
were implacable and unyielding. Confronted by this crisis the 
Government was comiDelled to seek a solution. Its intervention 
took the form of a Minimum Wage Bill. Throughout, the Par- 
liamentary Party had kept in contact with the Miners' Federation. 
Immediately legislation was contemplated they placed themselves 
unreservedly at the disposal of the miners. That valuable aid was 
rendered in fashioning this measure is gratefully acknowledged 
by the miners. With all its shortcomings and disappointments 
the act bears eloquent testimony to the worth of political repre- 
sentation. . . . 

In the succeeding Transport Workers' strike the influence of 
the party unquestionably frustrated the full use of armed and 
civil powers being placed as heretofore on the side of the em- 
ployers and in the protection of blacklegs. Further, as the strike 
was traceable to the refusal of certain firms to conform to agi'ee- 
ments entered into between the several unions and employer's 


representatives the party, in conjunction with the men's leaders, 
gave careful consideration to that point. As a result a bill was 
introduced to give legal sanction to agreements voluntarily made 
between bodies appropriately representative of employers and 
organized workmen. The proposal in no way conflicts with the 
right to strike. It would simply make obligatory on all em- 
ployers in a given industry the conditions negotiated by cus- 
tomary trade-union practice. . . . Admittedly some apprehension 
exists respecting the operations of such a measure. . . . Extreme 
care must be exercised in making agreements, and nothing be 
accepted that vitiates the principles or freedom of trade-unions. 
Having secured this, no danger arises in compelling workmen 
and employers alike to conform thereto. . . . 

Acknowledging as I do that contractual obligations should be 
honored, and that only in the case of great provocation should 
agreements be broken, I nevertheless view with grave misgiving 
the prominence accorded compulsoiy arbitration. This device 
would assuredly prove disastrous to effective industrial activity. 
The swift and mobile disposition of forces is a strategic necessity 
in labor struggles as in actual warfare. Delays imposed by 
arbitrative proceedings might seriously jeopardize the prospects 
of victory. Constituted as the state is at present, restrictions 
of this character must be resisted, for it is difficult to conceive 
a tribunal that would merit our whole-hearted confidence. . . . 
Believing that the strike . . . will increase in efficiency as more 
workers pay into unions, I would jealously preserve all existing 
faculties. . . . The right to relinquish work is the heritage of 
every free worker. . . . 

To win back for trade-unions the right of political action has 
constituted the chief duty of the session. That a complete re- 
versal of judge-made law is not yet attained is regretted, and 
must still be pursued. . . . Comprehensive political work can be 
undertaken, and appeal must be made to those invested with 
exemption thereunder to recognize that as political action is a 
necessary form of trade-union equipment, none should shirk their 
responsibilities, especially as none would deny the benefits 
gained. . . . 

Whilst regretting the abandonment of the Franchise and Regis- 
tration Bill, we must now prepare for the future. That it has 
been proposed to base the right to vote on a simple residential 
qualification ; to abolish the anomalies of plural voting and 


university representation; to aim at continuous registration, ac- 
companied by a general systematization and simplification of 
electoral machinery, is commendable. . . . The Conference should 
decide on the principles it favors for insuring that while ma- 
jorities shall rule, minorities get due representation. . . . The 
second ballot is now discarded for the alternative vote. This 
contemplates a system of universal single-numbered constitu- 
encies, whereunder voters would be required to declare a second 
preference to take effect in the event of their first choice being 
unsuccessful. Whilst this would secure that a majority in a 
constituency would win the seat, it affords no guarantee that the 
smaller parties would get fair representation. . . . 

The question of women's enfranchisement is unfortunately still 
undecided. The labor movement has consistently urged that all 
adult persons, regardless of sex, should enjoy the full rights of 
citizenship. In accord therewith the party strives to secure the 
enfranchisement of women on the same terms as now suggested 
for men, that is, for adult suffrage. . . . 

Every Socialist and Laborist will agree that adequate remunera- 
tion is the title of every worker. If an industry does not yield 
that it is parasitic in character, its deficiencies having to be borne, 
in various forms, by other industries. Thus we insist that the 
agricultural laborer, with all other workers, shall have a reward 
equal to meeting the whole necessities of life. Placing this obliga- 
tion upon agriculture will, it is believed, compel cultivators to 
adopt more scientific methods, whereby the productivity of land 
can be enormously increased. 

No less urgent is the question of housing. The agricultural 
laborer is frequently tied to a house as a condition of employ- 
ment. From this he must be released, as it fetters his action 
and restricts his liberty. There is no hope that this problem can 
be dealt with without state aid. Private enterprise has particu- 
larly failed in rural parts. True, this proposal of state assist- 
ance cuts athwart the preconceived economic notions of some, 
who see in it nothing but a subsidy to employers and landlords. 
These overlook the moral factor. Give the rural worker a rea- 
sonable wage, with a free home in place of the tied-house, then 
he acquires a sense of manliness and freedom which eminently fits 
him for progressive developments. The experiment of the Irish 
Laborers' Acts, under which some 42,600 houses have been built 
by state aid, gives confirmation to this theory. 


Were all sections of labor to unite, definite steps in the direction 
of public ownership could be taken. Railway nationalization, 
for instance, is a practicable proposition. With the pooling of 
interests, and the amalgamation of rival companies, great admin- 
istrative economies are being effected and a huge trust being 
created. Labor is speeded up, its status reduced, prospects of 
promotion decreased, and the railwayman tends to become chained 
to a subsistence level. Trade and commerce are in the grip of 
a great menace, being unable to contemplate either lowered rates 
or enhanced facilities. Transit is a public necessity which should 
not be privately exploited. Last year the telephone service was 
transferred from company to public ownership, with scarcely a 
ripple disturbing the country. A similar transference of rail- 
ways could be as orderly and easily accomplished. . . . 

The manner in which consumers suffer in the prices of coal 
make it desirable that the same principle be applied to mines 
and coal suppl3\ ... A demand for land stimulated by a Small 
Holdings Act causes an unwarranted rise in price. The only 
effective remedy is to enable public authorities to acquire land 
on the basis of public valuation. Whilst holding the time oppor- 
tune for the acquisition of rural lands, I would, as a temporary 
expedient, place higher taxation on urban values. This does not 
imply acceptance of the single tax theory. The only defensible 
single tax is that of graduated income tax, for here is assuredly 
reflected a person's ability to pay. Yet one exclusive form of 
taxation is not expedient. Other considerations enter, such as 
the moral desirability of limiting consumption in the case of 
intoxicating liquors, and with land taxation the forcing of land 
into use. Unearned increment exists in all forms of swollen 
wealth. Wherever found, these social values should more and 
more be diverted to social utility. 


Very much the same measures were discussed in the 
report before the 1914 Labor Conference as in that of 1913. 
The question of education receives extensive treatment. 
The report in part is as follows ; 



It was decided that the party should ballot for the Right to 
Work Bill, but unfortunately not a single member secured a 
place that would give this bill an opportunity of a second reading 

The following bills were introduced officially during the session : 

Agricultural Laborers (Wages and Hours). 

Education (Administrative Provisions). 

Education (Provision of Meals). 

Labor (Minimum Conditions). 

Nationalization of Coal Mines and Minerals. 

Prevention of Unemplojonent, 
and others were introduced by members of the party. 

None of the bills made any progress. . . . 

King's Speech 

The king's speech, ... in referring to the estimates for the 
year, stated that they could be recommended for favorable con- 
sideration with the more confidence in view of the sustained pros- 
perity which . . . the people continued to enjoy. 

The party thereupon moved the following amendment : 

" But humbly regret, having regard to the existing industrial 
and social conditions of large masses of the people arising from 
a deplorable insufficiency of wages, which has persisted notwith- 
standing the sustained prosperity as reflected in the statistics of 
trade and employment and a great expansion of national wealth, 
conditions which have been aggravated by a considerable increase 
in the cost of living, that your Majesty's gracious speech con- 
tains no specific mention of legislation securing a minimum living 
wage and for preventing a continuance of such unequal division 
of the fruits of industry by the nationalization of land, railways, 
mines, and other monopolies." 

The Government's reply to this was that a bill would be intro- 
duced extending the Trade Boards Act to the trades of shirt- 
making, linen embroidery, sheet steel, and iron hollow-ware, and 
sugar confectionery and fruit-preserving. This was as far as the 
Government would commit itself, and in the division on the 
amendment 41 voted for and 199 against. The majority was 
composed of both Liberals and Tories. 



The party was almost as unsuccessful in the ballots for mo- 
tions as in that for bills, only one evening being secured. The 
motion moved was as follows: 

" That the right of every family in the country to an income 
sufficient to enable it to maintain its members in decency and 
comfort should be recognized; and this House is therefore of 
opinion that the Trade Boards Act should be so extended as to 
provide for the establishment of a minimum wage of at least 30 
shillings per week for every adult worker in urban areas and a 
minimum wage that will secure an approximately equal standard 
of life for every adult worker in rural areas; and this House 
also declares that the Government should set an example by 
adopting the minimum of 30 shillings per week in its own work- 
shops and insert it as a condition in all contracts." 

The motion was " talked out " and no division on it was pos- 
sible, but the frequent presentation by the party of the case 
for a living wage is making it more and more a practical issue. 


The cost of living and the burden of taxation on the working- 
classes were again raised on the second reading of the Finance 
Bill, the party moving the following amendment : 

" That this House declines to assent to the second reading of 
a bill which continues the system of taxing the food of the people, 
whereby the unfair proportion of taxation imposed upon the 
poorer classes is aggravated, instead of abolishing such injurious 
and indefensible forms of taxation and raising the necessary 
revenue by increasing the direct taxes on unearned incomes and 
large estates." 

Government of Ireland and Established Church (Wales) Bills 

These bills were again put through their stages in the Com- 
mons, and on being sent to the Lords were rejected a second 
time. The bills are important in themselves, but a point of the 
very greatest weight for the party is that they are now under 
the Parliament Act, and their final passing becomes a matter of 
special importance. The party thought the Parliament Act cum- 


bersome (as indeed it has been proved to be), but the authority 
of the elected House ought to be maintained in the teeth of the 
strenuous opposition which vested interests are offering to it. 
The bills will have to be passed through the Commons again 
next session and will then become law in spite of the Lords and 
irrespective of their opinion. 

Plural Voting Bill 

The Government introduced and passed through the Commons 
a small bill to abolish plural voting at general elections. The 
weakness of the bill is that it does not apply to by-elections, but 
the reason given by the Government for the narrow scope of the 
bill was that a measure to deal completely with the question 
would require more time than could be found in the already 
congested session. This view thp party did not indorse, and it 
protested against it during the debate on the second reading. 
However, the bill was rejected by the Lords and, like Home Rule 
and Welsh Disestablishment, is now going through the stages 
of the Parliament Act. 


In pursuance of a resolution carried at the Birmingham Con- 
ference, a committee of the party has drawn up a Memorandum 
on Education. The resolution was as follows : 

" In view of the fact that the education of the mass of working- 
class children to-day begins and ends at the elementary school, 
this conference is of opinion that there is urgent need for a 
generous measure of educational reform in the direction of pro- 
viding facilities for liberal, as distinct from technical, education, 
thus laying the basis of the national life in an educated democ- 
racy. This conference therefore directs the party in Parliament 
to appoint a small committee to consider the general question of 
educational refonn and draw up a report thereon. In this con- 
nection, the committee appointed is specially directed to consider: 

" (1) A modification of the curriculum in primary schools, in 
order that in the later years of school life more time may be 
given to instniction in the duties of citizenship ; 

" (2) The raising of the school-leaving age to 16 years, and 
the right of children in primary and secondary schools to main- 
tenance allowances; 


" (3) The limiting of the hours of boy and girl labor up to 
the age of 18 to 30 per week, so as to provide 20 or more hours 
per week for physical, technological, and general training; 

" (4) The establishment of medical treatment centers in con- 
nection with each primary school or groups of schools, 

" Further, this conference urges the party to press the Govern- 
ment to appoint a royal commission to consider the matter of 
university endowments, with a view to their adaptation to the 
educational requirements of the people." 

The report, prepared and presented by the education committee, 
was adopted by the party as a whole, and is as follows: 

It is impossible within the limits of a report of this character 
to do anything more than indicate the general lines along which 
it appears most desirable the educational policy of labor should 
be developed. The matters to be dealt with may be conveniently 
divided under three heads: 

(1) Those concerning elementarj' education; 

(2) Those concerning continued and secondary education; 

(3) Those concerning university education. 

(1) The matters relating to elementary education which ap- 
pear to be of special importance and most urgent in character 
are : 

(a) The raising of the school age. The reports of the Poor 
Law Commission, the Committee on Partial Exemption, and the 
Consultative Committee of the Board of Education, as well as 
previous decisions of the Conference render it unnecessary to 
advance arguments for the raising of the school age. The only 
question is how this can be done with least disturbance of existing 
arrangements. The best course would appear to be to secure 
legislative enactment for the immediate abolition of partial ex- 
emption and at the same time determine in advance the dates at 
which the age of full-time attendance is to be further raised in 
the future. 

(b) An extension of the powers of local education authorities 
in the matter of regulating the employment of children and of 
street trading generally. It is recommended that local authori- 
ties should be empowered to make regulations with regard to the 
emplojTnent of children in any occupation, and to place the 
licensing of street traders in the hands of education authorities. 

(c) The development of medical inspection and treatment, so 


as to include the provision of school clinics, school baths, open-air 
schools, and an extension of the provision of meals for school 
children. For this purpose the present inadequate grants from 
thevBoard of Education should be considerably increased. 

(2) (a) Continued Education. — At whatever age full-time at- 
tendance ceases, it will still be necessary to provide continued 
education for the vast majority who do not pass to a secondary 
school. A system of compulsory half-time attendance at a con- 
tinuation school is required after the age of exemption from full- 
time attendance has been reached. This compulsory attendance 
at continuation classes, however, is out of the question unless the 
hours of labor are reduced. 

(6) Secondary Education. — At present the passage of children 
from elementary to secondary schools is hindered by a variety of 
causes : 

(i) Because in some districts only those children are likely 
to win scholarships from the elementary school who have 
been prepared for the scholarship examination. 

(m) Children who win scholarships are constantly pre- 
vented from accepting them by the poverty of their parents. 
{Hi) The rule as to the provision of 25 per cent of free 
places in secondary schools for children from elementary 
schools is sometimes evaded. 
The only satisfactory method of dealing with these difficulties 
is a gradual extension of the system of providing free places in 
secondary schools until they are entirely free and maintenance 
grants made available in cases of necessity. 

(3) Universities. — What is specially required in connection with 
the older universities is : 

(a) A reform in the constitutions of the governing bodies which 
would place popularly elected representatives of the public upon 

(&) A reduction in the cost of living in colleges, and a change 
in the award of scholarships so that only those students who 
require financial assistance may receive advantage from endow- 
ments expended in monetary grants. 

(c) The extension of the non-collegiate systems in order to 
facilitate the entrance into Oxford and Cambridge of men who 
do not desire to reside in college. 

In accordance with the resolution of Conference, a deputation 
from the party has waited upon the pi'ime minister to urge the 


appointment of a royal commission to inquire into the admin- 
istration and finances of the universities of Oxford and Cam- 
bridge. Notwithstanding the fact that the demand of the deputa- 
tion was not acceded to, it is recommended that the party con- 
tinue to press for an inquiry and also that its scope should be 
enlarged to include inquiiy into the administration and finances 
of the endowed public schools. 

National Insurance Act Amendment Bill 

The party took a very active part in the consideration of this 
bill to amend some of the provisions of the National Insurance 
Act. It contained 11 clauses when introduced, and provided addi- 
tional money being granted from the treasury, the repeal of the 
provision for reduced benefits for those over 50 years of age, 
and one or two other matters. 


The Labor Party left important marks on both the Insurance 
Bill and the Trade Boards Bill. It has once more drawn atten- 
tion to the unsatisfactory condition of the Factory Department, 
to the burden of armaments, and many other details of wrong 
suffered by the common people, many of which it has succeeded 
in remedying. Its vigilance in connection with private bills — like 
Railway and Harbor Bills — has produced excellent results. , . . 


Party tactics was also a feature of this conference. Sev- 
eral members contended that the parliamentary labor group 
had not shown proper militancy, while others protested 
that it was far more militant than the majority of its trade- 
union constituency. 

The official report of the discussion was, in part, as 
follows : 

Mr. W. C. Anderson [Independent Labor Party] said he was 
glad that an opportunity had been given for what he hoped would 
be a quite frank and friendly discussion of labor policy. . . . He 


knew the feeling among a large number of members — not only 
I. L. P. members — was that the policy of the party in the House 
of Commons was not sufficiently distinctive from the policy of 
other parties in the House. Recently in Liberal, Torj^, and Nation- 
alist newspapers the Labor Party had been referred to as part of 
the coalition in the House of Commons, and the word was not 
used in the sense that the party had betrayed its independence. 
The idea was that those questions before Parliament which loomed 
large in the minds of Liberals and Nationalists were also the ques- 
tions that loomed large in the mind of the Parliamentary Labor 
Party. Many people felt that the only thing that could justify the 
existence of a Labor Party separate from the other political parties 
was an unwearied championship of working-class questions. In 
the last two or three years the workers' battle had been more 
strongly fought by industrial methods outside than by political 
methods inside the House of Commons, and he thought there ought 
to be a reflection in the House of Commons of the heat and pas- 
sionate indignation that had moved large masses of work-people to 
revolt. If that was not done the party was not going to win over 
the large mass of trade-unionists who, as revealed by recent bal- 
lots, were indifferent or hostile to the party. They had not con- 
vinced the average trade-unionist that in his battles he ought 
to look to the Labor Party to do his political work just as he 
looked to his union to do his industrial work. It was sometimes 
said that the party was not so free to fight because Home Rule 
or something else was in the way. He was as anxious to see 
Home Rule passed as anyone, but he felt that those directly con- 
cerned about Home Rule had a responsibility towards labor just 
as labor had a responsibility towards Home Rule, and the sacrifice 
ought not to be all on one side. . . . The party might give in too 
much to parliamentary exigencies and parliamentary expedi- 
ences. . . . 

Mr. W. S. Sanders [Fabian Society] said that . . .the party 
had to convince not only the other members in the House of 
Commons by their quiet work, but convince the country outside 
by a strong and, if necessary, dramatic work that the party was 
a necessary and permanent institution. He wished to give one or 
two concrete instances. They would all remember how gratified 
they were with the first two years' work of the Labor Party. 
All the papers in the country, Tory and Liberal as well as Labor, 
said truly that the gi-eat Liberal Party, on three measures, had 


had to do what the Labor Party wanted. In a word, it was the 
Labor Party justifying itself as the new pioneer in legislation. 
Why did they do that? Because their victories were forced 
openly from the Liberal Government. . . . They had got to get 
back to the old position of fighting in public and forcing things 
from the Government, otherwise they would be looked upon as a 
mere body of people who followed in the wake of Mr. Lloyd 
George instead of making Lloyd George follow them. 

Mr. Tom Shaw [United Textile Factory Workers] pointed out 
that the party consisted roughly of two millions of members, 
less than 35,000 of whom were avowed Socialists or, at any 
rate, organized Socialists. In the minds of those 35,000 people 
the policy of the party was not militant enough, but was there 
any Socialist present who believed that the policy was not mili- 
tant enough for the remaining 1,900,000 members? If it was 
admitted that the policy was as militant as those 1,900,000 mem- 
bers desire, what was meant by the statement that the rank and 
tile were disaffected? He knew something of the mind of the 
rank and file, and he knew that so far as the rank and file of 
his acquaintance went their opinion was that the policy was too 


(Conference of 1914) 

J. Bruce Glasier, of the I. L. P., introduced a resolution 
at this conference which practically indorsed the Socialist 
program of collective ownership. The resolution was car- 
ried. The report of the conference is, in part, as follows : 

Mr. J. Bruce Glasier [I. L. P.], moved the following reso- 
lution : 

" That this conference expresses satisfaction at the growth of 
political organization among the workers of our own and other 
lands, which has advanced the whole sphere of social and indus- 
trial legislation. It again affirms that the aim of the labor move- 
ment is to abolish poverty and class oppression by bringing land 
and industrial capital under the ownership and control of the 
community for the collective good of all, believing that only by 
this means and by establishing complete political freedom will 


society be placed on a true human basis and the higher individual 
and social capacities of the race have freedom to evolve." 

He said . . . the object of the resolution was not to impose a 
creed en the party; it simply meant a public confession of faith 
on the part of the Conference. . . . 

Mr. J. Battle [United Textile Factory Workers] said he was 
exceedingly anxious, especially as regarded land, . , . but he 
could not agree in every detail with the . . . proposal . . . that 
a tax should be placed on land and that the money which thereby 
accrued should go to the repurchase of the land of their birth. 
He held the view that the land of every country undoubtedly 
belonged to the people of that country, and . . . the necessary 
conclusion was that the people had a right to resume control 
without being compelled to purchase. He suggested that a tax 
should be placed on land so high as ultimately to take possession 
of the value of the land, and the present owners would then see 
no use in holding it any longer. 

Mr. R. Clements [Birmingham L. R. C] supported the resolu- 
tion, and said that by means of a tax thej' might regain possession 
of the value of the land, but the most important thing was 
control of the land. 

The resolution was put and declared carried. 


(Conference of 1914) 
Several efforts have been made to get the Labor Party 
to adopt a definite program. A motion to that effect was 
put at the 1914 Conference : 

Mr. J. Brand [Railwaymen] moved the following: 
" That in order to give the working-classes of this country an 
opportunity of clearly understanding the fundamental differences 
between the aims of the Labor Party and those of the capitalist 
parties under legislation, this conference decides to draft a pro- 
gram to be adopted by the party, the same to consist of such 
items as shall tend to strengthen the working-class in their 
struggle for emancipation." 

He said the framing of a program would stimulate public 


opinion and further the interests of the party in the country. 
It would materially assist the propaganda work. 

The previous question was moved and seconded . . . the re- 
sult was as follows: 

For 1,078,000 

Against 785,000 



The Fabian Society is not primarily a political organiza- 
tion, although it has exerted a considerable influence on 
British politics and especially on the Socialist movement. 

The Fabian Society was founded in 1889 for the pur- 
pose of Socialist education and propaganda. It is demo- 
cratically organized and open to the public, but has never 
had more than a few thousand members. Its influence, 
however, is far greater than its numbers would indicate, 
as the names of its two best-known organizers, Bernard 
Shaw and Sidney Webb, will prove. Besides these, it has 
on its roll the names of hundreds of writers and lecturers 
well-known in Great Britain and a considerable number 
internationally known also. 

The society has always sent delegates to the Interna- 
tional Socialist Congresses and takes an active part in elec- 
tions. Though it ofScially supports the Labor Party, its 
members are free to vote for whomsoever they choose in 
elections. They must, however, sign the following "Basis" 
on joining the society : 


The Fabian Society consists of Socialists. 

It therefore aims at the reorganization of society by the 
emancipation of land and industrial capital from individual and 
class ownership, and the vesting' of them in the community for 



the general benefit. In this way only can the natural and 
acquired advantages of the country be equitably shared by the 
whole people. 

The society accordingly works for the extinction of private 
property in land and of the consequent individual appropriation, 
in the form of rent, of the price paid for permission to use the 
earth, as well as for the advantages of superior soils and sites. 

The society, further, works for the transfer to the community 
of the administration of such industrial capital as can con- 
veniently be managed socially. For, owing to the monopoly of the 
means of production in the past, industrial inventions, and the 
transformation of surplus income into capital have mainly en- 
riched the proprietary class, the worker being now dependent 
on that class for leave to earn a living. 

If these measures be carried out, without compensation (though 
not without such relief to expropriated individuals as may seem 
fit to the community), rent and interest will be added to the 
reward of labor, the idle class now living on the labor of others 
Avill necessarily disappear, and i^ractical equality of opportunity 
will be maintained by the spontaneous action of economic forces 
with much less interference with personal liberty than the present 
system entails. 

For the attainment of these ends the Fabian Society looks 
to the spread of Socialist opuaions, and the social and political 
changes consequent thereon. It seeks to promote these by the 
general dissemination of knowledge as to the relation between 
the individual and society in its economic, ethical, and political 


The following questions are addressed to parliamentary- 
candidates by the Fabians: 

Will you press at the first opportunity for the following 
ref oi-ms : 

I. — A Labor Program 

1. The extension of the Workmen's Compensation Act to 
seamen, and to all other classes of wage-earners? 

2. Compulsory arbitration, as in New Zealand, to prevent 
strikes and lockouts? 


3. A statutory minimum wage, as in Victoria, especially for 
sweated trades'? 

4. The fixing of " an eight hours' day " as the maximum for 
all public servants; and the abolition, wherever possible, of 
overtime ? 

5. An Eight Hours' Bill, without an option clause, for miners ; 
and, for railway servants, a forty-eight hours' week? 

G. The drastic amendment of the Factory Acts, to secure 
(a) a safe and healthy work-place for every worker, (h) the 
prevention of overwork for all women and young persons, (c) 
the abolition of all wage-labor by children under 14, {d) com- 
pulsory technical instruction by extension of the half-time ar- 
rangements to all workers under 18? 

7. The direct employment of labor by all public authorities 
whenever possible; and, whenever it is not possible, employment 
only of fair houses, prohibition of subcontracting, and payment 
of trade-union rates of wages? 

8. The amendment of the Merchant Shipping Acts so as (a) 
to secure healthy sleeping and living accommodation, (6) to 
protect the seaman against withholding of his wages or return 
passage, (c) to insure him against loss by shipwreck? 

II. — A Democratic Budget 

9. The further taxation of unearned incomes by means of a 
graduated and differentiated income-tax? 

10. The abolition of all duties on tea, cocoa, coffee, currants, 
and other dried fruits? 

11. An increase of the scale of graduation of the death duties 
so as to fall more heavily on large inheritances? 

12. The appropriation of the unearned increment by the taxa- 
tion and rating of ground values? 

13. The nationalization of mining rents and royalties? 

14. Transfer of the railways to the state under the Act of 

III. — Social Eeform in Town and Country 

15. The extension of full powers to parish, town, and county 
councils for the collective organization of the (a) water, (b) gas, 
and (c) electric lighting supplies, (d) hydraulic power, (e) 
tramways and light railways, (/) public slaughter-houses, {g) 


pawnshops, (h) sale of milk, (i) bread, (j) coal, and such other 
public services as may be desired by the inhabitants? 

16. Reform of the drink traffic by («) reduction of the number 
of licenses to a proper ratio to the population of each locality, 
(b) transfer to public purposes of the special value of licenses, 
created by the existing monopoly, by means of high license or 
a license rate, (c) grant of power to local authorities to carry on 
municipal pubhc houses, directly or on the Gothenburg system? 

17. Amendment of the Housing of the Working-Classes Act 
by (a) extension of period of loans to one hundred years, treat- 
ment of land as an asset, and removal of statutory limitation 
of borrowing powers for housing, (6) removal of restrictions 
on rural district councils in adopting Part III of the Act, (c) 
grant of power to parish councils to adopt Part III of the Act, 
(d) power to all local authorities to buy land compulsorily under 
the allotments clauses of the Local Government Act, 1894, or in 
any other effective manner? 

18. The grant of power to all local bodies to retain the free- 
hold of any land that may come into their possession, without 
obligation to sell, or to use for particular purposes? 

19. The relief of the existing taxpayer by (a) imposing, for 
local purposes, a municipal death duty on local real estate, col- 
lected in the same way as the existing death duties, ( b ) collecting 
rates from the owners of empty houses and vacant land, (e) 
power to assess land and houses at four per cent on the capital 
value, (d) securing special contributions by way of "better- 
ment " from the OAvners of property benefited by public im- 

20. The further equalization of the rates in London? 

21. The compulsory provision by every local authority of ade- 
quate hospital accommodation for all diseases and accidents'? 

IV. — The Children and the Poor 

22. The prohibition of the industrial or wage-earning employ- 
ment of children during school terms prior to the age of 14? 

23. The provision of meals, out of public funds, for neces- 
sitous children in public elementary schools? 

24. The training of teachers under public control and free 
from sectarian influences? 

25. The creation of a complete system of public secondary 
education genuinely available to the children of the poor? 


26. State pensions for the support of the aged or chronically 
infirm ? 

V. — Democratic Political Machinery 

27. An amendment of the registration laws, with the aim of 
giving every adult man a vote, and no one more than one vote? 

28. A redistribution of seats in accordance with population? 

29. The grant of the franchise to women on the same terms 
as to men? 

30. The admission of women to seats in the House of Com- 
mons and on borough and county councils? 

31. The second ballot at parliamentary and other elections? 

32. The payment of all members of Parliament and of par- 
liamentary election expenses, out of public funds? 

33. Triennial Parliaments? 

34. All parliamentary elections to be held on the same day? 


On December 11, 1914, the Fabian Society took the 
stand on the unity question indicated in the following 
report (from The Fabian News, January, 1915) : 

The following was submitted to the consideration of the meet- 
ing by the Executive Committee: 

The following resolution was passed at the Conference of the 
executives of the I. L. P., the B. S. P., and the Fabian Societj^, 
held on December 13, 1913, at the request of the International 
Socialist Bureau : " That in view of the desirability of securing 
Socialist unity on the basis of common action with the Labor 
Party, this conference requests the representatives of the 
three bodies to lay before their members the question of putting 
forward a proposal to the Labor Party Conference in 1915, per- 
mitting any candidate who may wish it to describe himself as a 
Labor and Socialist candidate." 

W. Stephen Sanders stated that the resolution passed at the 
Conference of the executives of the L L. P., the B. S. P., and the 
Fabian Society was simply a request that the proposal that 
candidates of the Labor Party might be permitted to describe 
themselves as Labor and Socialist candidates, if they desire to 


do so, should be submitted to the members of the three bodies. 
It was not binding on the three organizations to accept the pro- 
posal, and it was therefore open for the meeting to accept or 
reject it. 

Miss Susan Lawrence moved that no action be taken. She 
stated that if the present arrangement, under which candidates 
of the Labor Party were always described as Labor candidates, 
was upset, a great deal of fi-iction and waste of time would 
result in connection with the selection of Labor candidates. 
Local labor parties would find that lengthy discussions would 
arise with regard to the title under which their candidates were 
to run, with the result that real unity would be hindered. 

IVIrs. Sidney Webb seconded the motion. 

Bernard Shaw objected to no action being taken. He urged 
that the name Socialist ought not to be buried. In every coun- 
try in Europe there was a Socialist Party, and Great Britain 
ought not to be the exception. 

On a vote being taken there were : for the motion, " No 
action," 25; against, 20. The motion was therefore carried. 


This conference was held at Clifford's Inn Hall, Fleet 
Street, on Saturday, July 4, 1914. It was attended by 11 
delegates from 9 local Fabian societies, 13 delegates from 
9 university societies, 1 delegate from 1 London group, 
11 delegates from 4 subject groups, and 17 members of the 
Executive Committee, in all 53 delegates and 24 organiza- 
tions, including the executive committee. 

The Conference voted down a resolution proposing a 
revision of the Fabian Basis. 

Perhaps its most important action was the adoption, by 
the unanimous vote, of the following resolution of the Ex- 
ecutive Committee: 

That, in the opinion of this conference, it would be of advan- 
tage to the Socialist movement if, in order to secure more united 
action among Socialists in each country, and among the Socialist 


movements in the different countries, the International Socialist 
Congi-ess and its Bureau could devote some attention to the 
problem of how industry and public services may best be organ- 
ized so as to secure the utmost freedom and the best results 
for producers and consumers alike; and that the British section 
be requested to do their best to insure the passing at the Inter- 
national Socialist Congress of the resolution on this subject which 
the section has sent it. 

In The New Statesman, Sidney Webb had issued two 
studies of this question in 1913 and 1914 (the third and 
final study appearing in 1915). The Fabian Society, 
therefore, through its Research Department, was prepared 
with a preliminary report on "The Control of Industry" 
— which amounts to an entirely new and independent in- 
ductive foundation for Socialist policy. The three studies 
take up collectivism, the organization of producers, and 
the organization of consumers — the latter being chiefly con- 
cerned with labor-unionism and co-operation respectively. 



In accordance with its general principle of unifying the 
Socialist parties of the various countries, the International 
Socialist Bureau appointed a committee on unity to in- 
vestigate the British situation, and to find out under what 
conditions it would be advisable for members of the British 
Socialist Party to affiliate with the Labor Party. The 
Bureau, on January 13, 1914, issued the following 
manifesto : 

13th January, 1914. 

Comrades : 

We address this Manifesto to you in the name of the whole 


When we met your delegates at the preliminary conference 
on the 18th July, 1913, the executive committee of the Interna- 
tional Socialist Bureau was already acting in the name of all 
the afBliated parties, in pursuance of the resolution of Amster- 
dam on Socialist unity. The International as a whole showed 
its desire, by the presence of all its delegates in London on 
13th December, to give open approval and encouragement to our 
efforts in favor of the establishment of Socialist unity in Great 

There is no doubt that in principle all convinced Socialists 
recognize the utility and the necessity of opposing to the gi-ow- 
ing concentration of the capitalist forces the effective concen- 
tration of the forces of the working-class. 

This is proved by the fact that as long ago as 1904, at the 
Congress at Amsterdam, the British delegates, without dis- 
tinction of shades of opinion, unanimously adopted the well- 
known resolution of unity, which was signed by Bebel, Adler, 
Kautsky, Troelstra, and Vandervelde. 

The Executive Committee of the bureau was then in duty bound 
to seize the most favorable moment for bringing about an under- 
standing, and it cannot be reproached with having attempted to 
" rush " matters, since it has waited nine years before taking 
any action. 

Great Britain has presented to the world the spectacle of a 
country where capitalist evolution has taken place more rapidly 
than anywhere else. The hope was justified that Socialism would 
follow a similar evolution. But unfortunately it has turned out 
that regrettable differences have arisen, and even to-day it seems 
that in certain quarters there is more inclination to cultivate a 
sectarian spirit than to march in common agreement against the 
common enemy. Such a mistaken policy must not continue ! The 
consequences would be ruinous for the class-conscious proletariat, 
for more and more we are finding that all over the world So- 
cialism only plays a part worthy of itself when it is solidly 

From a practical point of view, moreover, we cannot see that 
the differences of outlook are greater in your country than 

Look at France. Has she not given to the Socialist world 
an admirable example? The French Socialists, in spite of old 
quarrels now forgotten, have established a powerful, unified 


party — thus giving to all an example of political wisdom and of 
loyalty to the principles so solemnly affirmed by the congresses 
of the International at which you were represented. 

Socialism must not be obscured, and the Socialist movement 
must not be hindered, even temporarily, by considerations of 
secondary importance, by personal differences, by a sectarian 
spirit, or by divergent conceptions of political methods. Those 
who are guilty in this respect commit a real crime against the 
working-class, for they retard the hour of complete victory. 

The delegates of your three parties have realized this. Their 
unanimous vote proves that there no longer exists any plausible 
reason for refusing the necessary agreement. The Executive 
Committee of the B. S. P. has already recommended to its mem- 
bers that they should affiliate to the Labor Party on condition 
that the Labor Party recognizes their position as Socialists aim- 
ing at the abolition of capitalism. 

We also appeal to our comrades of the I. L. P. and the Fabian 
Society to use their influence within the Labor Party to obtain 
for candidates at elections the right to run as Labor and Socialist 
candidates. The slight alteration in the constitution necessary 
for this purpose will only mean the formal recognition of what 
already exists in fact — the alliance of Socialism and Trade- 

We renew our appeal to our comrades of the B. S. P. to bear 
in mind the truth, which is recognized everywhere, that trade- 
union action can have no other logical issue than the abolition 
of capitalism and that Socialist ideas must inevitably prevail in 
organizations which are in fact carrying on the class struggle. 

The final request which we make is that you act quickly and 
without hesitation. At the Congress of Vienna, British Socialism 
must speak with one voice. You must give to the Socialist world 
a new example of discipline, in order to enable us to continue 
elsewhere the work of consolidation and harmony, on which de- 
pends the ultimate triumph of the Socialist movement. 

For the International Socialist Bureau (Executive 
Committee) : 

(Signed) E, Anseele, 

E. Vandervelde, 

L. Bertrand, 

C. HuYSMANS, Secretary. 



(Called by the International Socialist Bureau, December 13, 


The Bureau held a joint conference with the executives 
of the three national Socialist organizations in Great 
Britain — the Independent Labor Party, the British Social- 
ist Party, and the Fabian Society — with a view to bringing 
about unity between them. The differences which have 
divided the three British organizations have been purely 
differences of method. On the right wing, the Fabian So- 
ciety has pursued the policy of "permeation," and, whilst 
affiliating with the Labor Party, has not demanded that 
its members shall individually dissociate themselves from 
either the Liberal or the Conservative parties. On the 
left wing, the British Socialist Party has adopted an atti- 
tude of strict independence, not only of the Liberal and 
Conservative parties, but also of the Labor Party, since 
the latter party does not insist upon acceptance of So- 
cialism from affiliated organizations. In the center, the 
Independent Labor Party has declared its antagonism to 
both the Liberal and Conservative parties, but has co- 
operated whole-heartedly with the trade-unions in the 
Labor Party, believing that Socialism can only be attained 
by the development of Socialist conviction in the working- 
class movement. The I. L. P. has a membership of approx- 
imately 50,000, the B. S. P. of 10,000, the Fabian Society 
of 5,000. 

After a vigorous discussion, Mr. Sidney Webb finally 
got each section of the British movement to agree to the 
following resolution: 

That in view of the desirability of securing Socialist unity on 
the basis of common action with the Labor Party, this conference 
requests the representatives of the three bodies to lay before 


their members the question of putting forward a proposal to the 
Labor Party Conference in 1915, permitting any candidate who 
may wish it to describe himself as a Labor and Socialist can- 


(Conference of 1914) 

The British Socialist Party, the left wing of the So- 
cialist movement, held a heated debate on the question 
of affiliation, Dan Irving, H. M. Hyndman, the veteran 
leader, and others urging a compliance with the request of 
the International Committee, and H. Pearce and others vig- 
orously protesting. 

The report of the conference discussion is in part as 
follows : 

Dan Irving: The International Socialist Bureau was trustee, 
not of Laborism, but of the Socialist movement of the whole 
world. Under very much more arduous conditions m the main 
than ever we are called upon to face they proved, by a lifetime 
of devotion, service, and suffering, that they could be trusted to 
advise that which tended to help forward the Socialist movement. 
They might now say to the B. S. P., "For nine years you 
have sought to carry out the mandate, and are now as far from 
carrying your specific views as at the commencement, if not 
farther away. In the interests of Socialism we call upon you, 
who are only a section of the movement in Great Britain, and 
the recalcitrant section so far as we are concerned, to realize the 
mandate of the Amsterdam resolution in essence and spirit, and 
to face every danger for that vital consideration, the consolida- 
tion of the working-class." 

Mr. H. Pearce [N. West Ham], who followed, opposed the 
motion of the executive to affiliate, declaring that such action 
would mean affiliation inside of the House of Commons as well 
as outside. He described what he considered to be the short- 
comings of the Parliamentary Labor group, and said that the 
I. L. P., the Fabian Society, and the Labor Party had never 
stood on the basis of the class struggle. Some of the members 
of the Labor Party, he asserted, had declared themselves anti- 
Socialists and most of them acted as non-Socialists. While he 


favored Socialist unity, he did not believe that unity of Socialists 
and anti-Socialists could ever bring any good to the Socialist 
movement. He did not believe that the B. S. P. would be able 
to force the Labor Party to take the stand it wished them to 
take, but rather that the B. S. P. would be swamped by the other 

As to the International Socialist Bureau, he had challenged 
some of the advocates of affiliation to show him in any part of 
the world a party that the continental Social Democrats would 
have w'eleomed into their movement which was comparable with 
the Labor Party. 

H. M. Hyndman said that the S. D. F. was in its early days 
a purely propagandist body; but when that propaganda had 
in a measure succeeded, he was sorry to say — although he advo- 
cated it at the time — the S. D. F. left the Labor Party. Hnd 
we remained, that party would have had a different history. The 
present conference did not show that the 33 or 34 years of 
Socialist propaganda had produced a satisfactory result, and 
the reason was that we had never got near enough to those 
we wanted to convert. To a large extent they even looked 
upon us as enemies. If we went in we should do so with the 
red flag flying, in order to take Socialism to them and help 
them to victory. Our presence inside that party would increase 
our influence tenfold upon the working-class of this country, 
who only wanted to understand the truth to come out, side by 
side with us, for the conquest of the future. In these days 
when the capitalist class was banded together, we must get all 
the forces of the proletariat under one flag, and take care that 
in the future that flag should be the Red Flag. 

A motion to apply for affiliation was finally carried. 


(May 27, 1914) : 

To the Members of the British Socialist Party 
Comrades : 

The referendum of the financial members of the British So- 
cialist Party on the proposals submitted by the International 
Socialist Bureau has now been taken. They have decided in 
favor of Socialist unity and affiliation to the National Labor 


In taking this step the British Socialist Party does not lose 
its identity or surrender its position in any way. It retains 
complete freedom of Socialist action both in the propagandist and 
electoral fields. It is not committed to any compromise of prin- 
ciple or policy. 

The Labor Party in the country and its parliamentary group 
must not be regarded as one and the same thing. Already many 
of the trade-unionists who constitute that party recognize that 
the Labor Party in the House of Commons has not shown the 
political independence which was the main reason for the forma- 
tion of the Labor Party. The growing demand within the Labor 
Party itself for complete political independence will unquestion- 
ably be stimulated and strengthened by the addition of definite 
Socialist forces, determined to push forward Socialist principles 
and ideas with vigor and persistence. Within the Labor Party, 
therefore, our criticism of the parliamentary group, whilst aiming 
always at being helpful, must be no less forceful and pointed. 
We shall find that this necessary criticism will have much greater 
weight than hitherto, now that we shall form a left wing of the 
Labor Party. 

Comparisons have been made between the situation in this 
country and abroad. Whatever difference there may be in the 
situation arises from the fact that on the Continent the organ- 
ization of the trade-unions has grown out of the Socialist con- 
ception of the mission of the working-class; whereas in this 
country the trade-unions arose out of a vague feeling of working- 
class solidarity, coupled with the necessity for organization to 
resist the pressure of capitalist exploitation. The class struggle 
abroad is far more class conscious than it is here. Our purpose 
now, as always, is to convert the organized workers of Great 
.Britain to our Social Democratic ideals, and to convince them 
of the reality of the class struggle and of its revolutionary 

The trade-unionists constitute the best, the ablest, and the 
most energetic of the British working-class. There is no better 
field for the propaganda of our revolutionary doctrines. Our 
best work has been and must be done among them; and we 
shall do it much more successfully in the future within the Labor 
Party than hitherto outside. 

Moreover, we shall help, as a definite organized Social Dem- 
ocratic Party, the work of those of our members who, as trade- 


unionists, have been doing all they can to secure thoroughgoing 
political independence in the Labor Party itself. Affiliation to 
the Labor Party will enable us now to proceed immediately to 
establish the Joint Socialist Council with the I. L. P. and the 
Fabian Society, and prepare the way for the realization of 
united Socialist action. Here, again, patience and persistence 
are both essential to our work. The principles of revolutionary 
Social Democracy, revolutionary in the sense of being thorough 
and uncompromising, will make more rapid progress if we avoid 
antagonizing unnecessarily those who may not see altogether with 
us at the moment. 

Comrades, you have given us the mandate to affiliate to the 
Labor Party. We shall carry out that mandate with the su- 
preme confidence that by the time of our next annual conference 
the B. S. P. will have so strengthened its position and increased 
its membership as to encourage those who have worked for this 
step towards Socialist unity, and to remove all doubts from the 
minds of those who, sincerely opposing it, will yet loyally abide 
by the decision of the majority. 

The Executi\'e Committee of the British 
Socialist Party. 

[Note— Because of the refusal of the Labor Party to allow any of its 
candidates to list themselves as Labor and Socialist candidates, the pro- 
posed unity was not carried out. See above, pp. 290 and 294.] 



(From Vorwaerts, September 10, 1913) 
''The recent events in Dublin will strongly promote the 
split which has been noticeable for some time past, in the 
apparently closed ranks of Irish Nationalism. This is the 
opinion of Comrade Connolly, now in prison, the historian 
of the Irish proletariat, as well as of Comrade Sheehy 
Skeffington, the biographer of Michael Davitt. Skeffing- 
ton prophesies for the coming Irish Parliament the follow- 
ing political line up : the reds against the blacks. 

"Up to the present, Ireland has known but two parties, 
separated from each other by religion and race. The Na- 
tionalists have the power in their hands in three out of the 
four provinces. Their party membership consists almost 
wholly of Irish Catholics, but also contains a small num- 
ber of Protestants. ... In Ulster, the fourth province, the 
population is half Nationalistic and half of Unionistic 
sentiment. Ulster is strongly industrial. The Unionists 
are the descendants of English and Scotch pioneers, who 
took possession of the estates from which the Irish Cath- 
olics were driven in the sixteenth and seventeenth cen- 
turies. These form 'the Protestant garrison' of England 
in Ireland, oppressed for centuries. They favor the union 
formed in 1800 between the two islands, support the 
English Conservatives, and are violent opponents of 
Irish self-government. They fear religious, political, and 
economic oppression from a predominantly Catholic Par- 



liament in Dublin. The Nationalists, on the other hand, 
go with the English Liberals, who have given them as a 
sign of gratitude for their support the Home Rule Bill, 
This party struggle has lasted, with slight interruptions, 
for several centuries. 

"The future fate of the Nationalistic Party is of the 
greatest interest to us. This party has so far been able 
to hold together the opposing elements of the Irish nation 
by the declaration that all class interests must be checked 
for the sake of the holy, patriotic, general cause. 

"How strong Nationalism is in the Irish capital can be 
seen on entering the town. The street signs do not alone 
show the name of the street in English, but also in Irish, 
which is spoken and understood only by a few inhabitants 
in the extreme west of the country. If you ask a man in 
Dublin to guide you to Sackville Street, he will think you 
are a Tory and say: 'I suppose you mean O'Connell 
Street ? ' The Dubliner refuses to call the principal street, 
in which stands the monument of the liberator, 'Connell, 
the emancipator of the Catholics, by anything but O'Con- 
nell Street. The Government, by the way, has forbidden 
the use of this street to the workers on Sunday, although 
the Nationalistic leaders have frequently held undisturbed 
meetings. This Nationalism is strongly nursed by the Eng- 
lish Government, which never allows the Dubliner to forget 
that he lives under foreign rule. 

"The police of the capital, known for its brutality to- 
wards the public, is directed by the English governor, or, 
better, the arrogant English bureaucrats, who look down 
upon the 'wild Irish,' live in a part of the town by them- 
selves, and avoid the society of the inhabitants. These 
apparent signs of foreign rule are still more noticeable in 
the country. Here the trained Irish constables rule with 
gun and bayonet. The large number of policemen bears 


no proportion to the number of crimes, which are smaller 
in proportion to population than in Great Britain. It 
were a wonder if the Nationalistic Party, led by the 
bourgeois elements, would not have a hold on the minds 
of the people in such a country. 

' ' But the developments of the last years have shown that 
the discipline in the ranks of the Nationalistic Party has 
become less, and that portions of the party have been sep- 
arated from it. The land question and the Home Rule 
Bill have played the most important part in the politics 
of Ireland for the last generation. But now, since the 
land question has been solved for the present by the Land 
Act, and since Home Rule is only a question of months, 
the people are beginning to look around. The predom- 
inantly small-bourgeois Nationalistic Party has for some 
years past been ready to become entirely a Catholic party. 
Its former election organization, ' The United Irish League, ' 
the direct successor of the land league, recedes more and 
more before the 'Ancient Order of Hibernians,' led by 
Delegate Devlin, who pretends to be a believer in democ- 
racy. The United Irish League is an organization which 
has Catholic and Protestant members, while the rapidly 
growing Ancient Order of Hibernians admits Catholics 
only. But this gradual spiritual change in the party has 
not been the only change. Large capitalistic, bourgeois, 
and proletarian-democratic elements have also withdrawn 
from 'official' nationalism. 

"First mention must be made of the small, independent 
Nationalistic Party, whose delegate in the Parliament at 
Westminster is the deputy, Healy, most faithful to the 
high clergy of the Catholic Church. The financier of this 
party is the Dublin merchant, Murphy, who has declared 
war against the working-class movement. The Healyites 
look and find support among the English Conservatives, 


in whose ranks are many adherents of the high church, at 
heart Catholics, who have a strong influence. According 
to Healy, the English Conservatives, not the English Lib- 
erals, are the natural allies of Irish nationalism. As an 
example, he cites the local administration acts of the Con- 
servative Party of the year 1898. The law gave local home 
rule to the Irish, whose local affairs, up to that time, had 
been attended to by 'grand juries' made up principally of 
Protestant landowners. 

"Several years ago bourgeois and proletarian elements 
broke away from the other wing of the party and founded 
the all-Irish movement. The new party, opposing the 'of- 
ficial' Nationalistic Party, called itself Sinn Fein, which 
means 'We ourselves.' It was a seceding, radical Nation- 
alism which found expression in this movement. It ex- 
pressed itself in the cultivation of the Irish language and 
the Irish industries, in attacks on the parliamentary party, 
and even in attacks against the clergy. A large number 
of Socialistically inclined workers joined this movement, 
among others, Connolly, Daly (secretary of the Irish 
Trade-Union Congress), and the trade-union secretary, 
Partridge. The workers, who had greeted the Sinn Fein 
Party as a democratic people's party, and had worked 
hard to spread it, found before long that they had been 
cheated. The leadership was gradually and quietly taken 
over by Irish industrials, who got rid of the democratic 
and anti-clerical influences and changed the all-Irish peo- 
ple's party into a movement for the introduction of the 
protective tariff. To-day, now that the Sinn Fein Party 
has lost its working-class leaders, it has deteriorated into a 
small sect without a future. 

"The Socialist working-class movement has taken its 
place. This movement has so far had little chance to de- 
velop in Ireland. The Irish 'Independent Labor Party,' 


which was formed two or three years ago from two So- 
cialist unions, has at present about 800 members. Some 
of the best known and most influential union secretaries 
belong to it. Not much older is the Irish Workingmen's 
Party, which is the acknowledged representative of the 
Irish unions. This party's effort to have their representa- 
tives elected to various town councils met with unexpected 
success. In Dublin, where the town council consists of 80 
members, the Workingmen's Party has 7 representatives; 
of the other members, 10 are from the Union Party ; 3 or 4 
of the Smn Fein Party, and the rest from the Nationalist 
Party, the United Irish League, and the Ancient Order of 
Hibernians. The youthful party has 6 town representa- 
tives in Sligo, 4 in Wexford, and 3 in Waterford. It is 
expected that larger results will be obtained at the next 
election. It is the intention of the party to oust the Na- 
tionalists at the county elections. 

"All this has created a depressed feeling in the ranks 
of the Nationalistic Party. This party realizes that the 
support of the workers is lost. It has partly been able to 
check the aspirations of the Workingmen's Party. After 
the proposal for the Home Rule Bill, the greatest number 
of seats available to the representatives of the workers is 
40 out of 164. To gain a larger representation the workers 
would have to go back to the old parties. The Catholic 
clergy are working strenuously to check the growth of the 
Workingmen's Party. Their fight is directed principally 
against Socialism. Comrade Larkin and his associates are 
heralded as monsters. The fight is nevertheless difficult 
for the priests. For Larkin, who is hated by the prop- 
ertied class, is loved by the people. The Catholic worker 
says: 'Jim Larkin might be a Socialist, but he is a good 
fellow just the same.' The clergy is striving hard to 
dispel this opinion. 


*'The Nationalistic Party has been discredited by the 
workers. The secretary of their strongest party organiza- 
tion created the yellow street car union, which found so 
much favor in the eyes of Mr. Murphy. It was the Govern- 
ment which the party supported that trampled down the 
representatives of the Dublin workers, without the public 
protest of one member of the Nationalistic Party. Na- 
tionalistic employers follow Mr. Murphy in his attack on 
the transportation workers' union. 

"It is now quite apparent that a split will occur in the 
near future in the Nationalistic Party. Probably two par- 
ties, the Socialist Party and the Clerical Party, will before 
long be opposing each other in the future Irish Parlia- 
ment. The fact that up to the present time the oppressor 
of the Irishmen was in many instances their religious and 
national opponent, gave little opportunity for the growth 
of class consciousness among the Irish wage-earners. The 
new political situation has cleared matters to a certain 
extent. Even the union worker of Ulster will soon recog- 
nize who in the new Ireland is his natural ally. A Dublin 
union employee said to me: 'When the Belf asters see that 
home rulers have no intention of bringing the pope to 
Ireland they will become reasonable and unite with us.' 

"Comrade Connolly, secretary of the Belfast section of 
the Irish Transport Workers' Union, declared: 'The Bel- 
fast workers will supply us with the most able men in 
the workingmen's movement.' 

"The clearing of the air in the labor movement result- 
ing from the struggles in Dublin in this time of transition 
seems to indicate a rapid development of the Irish workers 
toward political independence. Perhaps some of the Irish 
comrades are too optimistic and undervalue the power of 
the Catholic clergy, which functions as the most aristo- 
cratic election agent of the Nationalistic Party. One thing 


is certain: The stone has been set rolling in Ireland and 
the Irish working-class, which has sacrificed many martyrs 
to nationalism, has become class conscious." 


Speech by James Larkin, Chairman 

We are living in momentous times, but we who have been 
elected to take up and carry still further the banner which was 
hoisted by the pioneers 21 years ago in this city cannot afford 
to make mistakes. The knowledge gained in the bitter days of 
the past should strengthen us in our deliberations and work in 
the future. We are now on the threshold of a newer movement, 
with a newer hope and new inspiration. The best thanks we 
can offer those who have gone before and who have raised the 
Irish working-class from their knees, is to press forward with 
determination and enthusiasm towards the ultimate goal of their 
efforts, viz., a " Co-operative Commonwealth for Ireland." In 
the meantime, the immediate work to hand is the establishment 
of a new party — a Labor Party — an industrial army; a political 
party whose politics will be the assurance of bread and butter 
for all. . . , 

The question of Home Rule — the question of what some people 
called religion — has been used to divide us in the past. The 
question of religion is a matter for each individual's conscience, 
and in a great many cases has been the outcome of birth or 
residence in a certain geographical area. Claiming for ourselves 
liberty of conscience, liberty of worship, we shall see to it that 
every other individual enjoys the same right, for intolerance 
has been the curse of this country. . . . 

The Irish working-class are now rising from their knees and 
attaining full stature. The new Irish party has come of age, 
entered into its inheritance, and will stand erect upon its feet 
from this day onward. Looking back over the immediate past — ■ 
more particularly the long months of 1913 and the early months 
of 1914 — we see there the attempt of an organized, unscrupulous 
capitalist class composed of men of different political parties and 
holding different sectarian views, who have combined together 
for the purpose of destroying organized labor in Ireland. The 
lockout of 1913 was a deliberate attempt to starve the workers 


into submission and met with well-deserved failure. The workers 
emerged from the struggle purified and strengthened, with a 
fierce determination and a fixed purpose. The employers' attitude 
was a direct attack upon the essential principles of trades- 
unionism. The outcome of the attack has been the initiating of 
a new principle of solidarity inside the unions, and for the first 
time in the history of the world the beautiful and more humane 
principle has received universal recognition, viz., " An injury to 
one is the concern of all." That motto will be emblazoned on the 
banner of labor the world over in the future. . . . Once again 
the Dublin worker stands as pioneer in the upward and onward 
march of labor. . . . 

As much as I respect the church to which I belong, and the 
view of those who are interpreters of the dogmas of that church, 
and as much as I respect the opinions of members of any and 
every church, I make this claim — that as long as the working- 
class allows any churchman to abuse his trust and interfere in 
working affairs in the industrial world, so long will they have 
to submit to hunger, privation, and wage-slavery. In matters 
spiritual the workers will obey the church, but on the economic 
and industrial field we will be guided by knowledge gained by 
long and hard servitude. I submit that the working-class have 
as much right as any section or class in the community to enjoy 
all the advantages of science, art, and literature. No field of 
knowledge, no outlook in life should be closed against the work- 
ers. They should demand their share in the effulgence of life, 
and all that was created for the enjoyment of mankind. And 
here do I appeal to those who cannot see eye to eye with us, 
who feel that they cannot come all the way, to come with us as 
far as their knowledge will permit — come at least to the bottom 
of the boreen, and then, if we must part, the pioneers will con- 
tinue on and up the mountain to meet the dawning of the new 
to-morrow. The working-class must be free, not only econom- 
ically but intellectually. 

I desire to bring you back for the moment, and would speak 
■with 3'ou on one or two points of the struggle in Dublin last 
year. We saw too plainly then that sectionalism carried with 
it defeat amongst the working-class. We had 37 unions engaged 
in the struggle, each acting upon its own line of defense and 
attack and according to its own methods. Those who were 
engaged had shown magnificent courage. Women and men, aye, 


and little children, had proved their heroism. Hmiger, the jail, 
and death itself did not deter them. Let us not forget our 
comrades, Brady, Nolan, and Byi-ne, who were murdered in the 
streets of this city by the hired hooligans of the capitalist class — 
the police. We found that no political party, no church, made 
a protest against the abuse of the laws by the capitalist class. 
During that period it was shown clearly that there was neither 
Unionist nor Nationalist among the employing class. There were 
but two camps — employers and workers. "We found no Redmond- 
ites, Carsonites, or O'Brienites then ; the enemy were all employers, 
and every weapon they could wield — political, social, and admin- 
istrative — they used unsparingly. 

Let us not talk of wooden guns or tin guns. "What the working- 
class wants is the gun of intelligence. Let solidarity be the 
watchword, and a few years will broaden out the liberties cur- 
tailed by the most unscrupulous and most vindictive capitalist 
class that any country ever was cursed with. Police, politicians, 
press, and the judges on the bench are simply the tools of the 
capitalist class. . . . 

The cursed lines of sectarian and political demarcation must 
be wiped away; they must hunt the fomentors of such bigotry 
and intolerance out of the trade-union movement. No emploj'er 
ever asked a man whether he was a Nationalist or a Catholic, 
Unionist or Protestant. If a worker entered Queen's Island ship- 
building yard and stated that he would not work with an Orange 
lathe, a Protestant pneumatic riveter, or a Catholic anvil, he 
would be fired out at once. The workers must drop these party 
distinctions. One union is the way out, that union to embrace 
ail departments of industry — engineers, shipbuilders, distributive 
trades, and transport workers, each of these sections looking 
particularly after its own work, but all of them bound together 
and working for the betterment of all men and women. Those 
who will not assist in this one union movement are on the side 
of the capitalist ; they must either be with us or against us. We 
have no time to argue further with these men and women who 
stand for sectionalism; we must simply march over them to the 
conquest and control of industry and our own destiny. 

There is another side of our lives which has been too long 
neglected — a line of advance which has not been taken seriously 
into consideration — the safest line of advance I speak of now, 
viz., the co-operative movement. In this city at the pi-esent 


moment the annual congress of the British Co-operative Move- 
ment is being held. It is being attended by women and men from 
all parts of the earth. It would be news to many to know 
that we here in Ireland were pioneers in co-operation long before 
the Rochdale pioneers. There was a communistic colony down 
on Usher's quay, but it was crushed out by jealous and restrictive 
laws, like every good thing Ireland ever started. England made 
it its business to put a stop to it. The working-class of Ireland 
should be compelled to understand the worth of co-operation. 
Through its agents we could supply all that life needs by them- 
selves and for themselves. It needs no further argument to 
favor it. Life itself is co-operation in its truest sense. . . . 

To-day we see the birth of an Irish Labor Party, in which 
there will be no room for the old lines of cleavage; no politics, 
no disagi-eements, no misunderstandings. Cemented by their 
common needs, a working-class party that will concern itself with 
seeing to it that sufficient food, clothing, and shelter are enjoyed 
by women, men, and children. We have seen, too, during the 
last few months that the lawbreakers in Ulster have been allowed 
to break every law in the land, and, on the other hand, when 
labor held a constitutional meeting, we have witnessed the arrest 
and imprisonment of the leaders. That should be a lesson to 
the workers; the question of Redmondites, O'Brienites, or Car- 
sonites should be a thing of the foolish past. We must unite 
as Laborites in the three-leaved shamrock of fellowship, with 
faith in our cause, hope in the realization of our cause, and 
charity to all men. 

Throughout this country we have made a name of which we 
need never be ashamed. I hope we will see the day when we 
will take full advantage of our opportunities, cry finis to our 
differences, obliterate all jealousies from our ranks, when we 
will truly be Irish of the Irish, and give ear to all men who do 
worthy woi'k. Let us be comrades in the truest sense of the 
word and join with our comrades the world over to advance the 
cause of the class to which we belong. On that day we will 
put upon our escutcheon a mark worthy of the trust reposed upon 
us twenty-one years ago. ... I claim we have an opportunity 
given us of achieving much in the future in our beloved country, 
to work and live for, and. if need be, die, to win back, in the 
words of Erin's greatest living poet, for Kathleen Ni Houlihan 
her four beautiful green fields. 



The Australian Labor Party is not a Socialist Party. 
But neither is the British Labor Party, which the Aus- 
tralian Party in many respects resembles. The British 
Party, however, is not only admitted to the International 
Socialist Congresses, but is given a larger vote there than 
all the British Socialist parties combined. Moreover, these 
latter organizations have voluntarily joined or applied for 
membership in the Labor Party. We may therefore con- 
clude that Socialists are for the most part more than 
friendly to all genuine Labor parties. We therefore in- 
clude the Australian Labor Party in the present volume. 


In the elections of 1911 the Labor Party had secured 
a majority both in the federal Senate and the federal 
House of Representatives. They found themselves seri- 
ously hampered by the federal constitution, especially since 
it prevented both thoroughgoing regulation or nationaliza- 
tion of trusts and corporations and the extension to the 
nation of the governmental regulation of wages and labor 
contracts. A referendum, proposing to legalize these two 
classes of national legislation, had been defeated in 1910 
by a large majority. The Labor Party, however, was 



forced once more to put forward these same issues, and, 
at the elections of 1913, they were again put to a refer- 
endum vote. 

The Labor Party was opposed by a coalition of the other 
two parties. But in spite of this it increased its majority 
in the Senate, lost the House by only one vote, and was 
defeated in the referenda by margins so narrow that a 
change of one per cent of the votes cast would have given 
the Labor Party a complete victory — an astonishing ad- 
vance in three years, indicating an almost certain victory 
in the near future. 

The National Referenda 

Nearly 1,900,000 votes were cast. The two labor meas- 
ures were defeated by 31,000 and 37,000 votes respectively. 
The four measures dealing with the regulation of corpora- 
tions and the nationalization of monopolies were defeated 
by majorities varying from 37,000 to a bare 14,000. 




"S ^ ii ^ 


New South Wales 3 6 

Victoria 1 3 2 4 

Queensland 3 3 3 6 

South Australia 3 3 3 5 

West Australia 3 3 3 6 

Tasmania 3 5 

Total 10 18 11 32 

Total Anti-Labor. 8 7 4 





21— 4 




10— 4 




7— 4 




5— 2 




5— 1 



75—26 42 37 40 
49 33 38 35 



In the Federal Parliament 

The progress of labor through the five Parliaments of 
the Commonwealth is as follows : 

Senate Representatives 

Tear -5 a Year 

h^ •< E-i kI <1 tH 

1901 8 28 36 1901 16 59 75 

1903 14 22 36 1903 25 50 75 

1906 15 21 36 190G 26 49 75 

1910 23 13 36 1910 42 33 75 

1913 29 7 36 1913 37 38 75 

1914 32 4 36 1914 40 35 75 


The federal elections of September 5, 1914, resulted as 
follows : 

The Senate — Votes in Thousands 

Labor Anti-labor 

1913 1914 Gain 1913 1914 Gain 

Queensland 144 to 146 2 107 to 111 4 

New South Wales... 324 to 343 19 318 to 341 23 

Victoria 327 to 332 5 285 to 292 7 

South Australia 108 to 112 4 87 to 90 3 

West Australia 63 to 67 4 54 to 60 6 

Tasmania 38 to 40 2 36 to 39 3 

1,004 1,040 36 887 933 46 

In approximately 2,000,000 votes the Labor Party re- 
ceived over 100,000 majority. It carried all six states, 
though the vote was very close in New South Wales and 
Tasmania (as may be seen from the table above). As the 


Labor Party majority in these two states was considerably 
larger in the previous year, it would seem that it stands in 
danger of losing them. All the other four states, however, 
seem to be firmly held. 


(April, 1914) 

The following is the position of labor in the state Par- 
liaments : 

State Legislative Assemblies 

State Anti- mem- 
Labor labor bers 

New South Wales 49 41 90 

Victoria 20 45 65 

Queensland 24 48 72 

South AustraHa 16 24 40 

Western Australia 33 17 50 

Tasmania 15 15 30 

All State Assemblies 157 190 347 

State Legislative Councils 



New South Wales 6 

Victoria 4 

Queensland 2 

South Australia 6 

Western Australia 7 

Tasmania - 


















The State Legislative Councils are either appointed or 
elected under restricted suffrage laws, which have come 
down unchanged from the undemocratic state constitu- 
tions that preceded the formation of the Federal Common- 


wealth in 1901. If the electoral conditions were the same 
as for the elections to the lower legislative assemblies, the 
Labor Party would control, as the above figures show, not 
only Tasmania — as at present — but also New South Wales 
and Western Australia. 

If we judge by the federal elections to the House of 
Eepresentatives, the Labor Party would control all the 
states except New South Wales. 

Or, if we judge by the federal elections to the Senate, 
the Labor Party would firmly control Victoria, Queens- 
land, South Australia, and West Australia, and would 
have a bare majority also in the other two states. 

7. manifesto of labor party for elections of 1913 

Fellow Electors: 

On the 31st of May you will be called upon to elect a new 
Parliament, and to vote upon six jjroposals to amend the con- 
stitution. There are but two parties before the country, and 
these the same as in 1910. 

You are again asked to choose between the Labor Party and 
the Fusion Party. In view of the respective records of the two 
parties, the issue — notwithstanding the most desperate efforts 
to mislead the electors by flagrant misrepresentation, by dis- 
tortion, by suppression of the truth — is clear, simple, and hardly 
in doubt. The facts of the country's prosperity, its amazing 
strides in trade, manufacture, banking assets and deposits, the 
savings of the people, and the increase of population, both 
oversea and native born, are before the people and cannot be 
explained away. They furnish the most complete and crushing 
refutation of all those dire prophecies of evil with which the 
fusion leaders and the fusion press attempted to alarm the 
people at the last election and which they are again repeating. 

The Labor Party's Record 
The Labor Party has been in office three years. It has been 
a party of action. Its record is before the people. We have 
not space to deal with that record in detail, but may fairly 
remind the electors of two points, both of first importance. 


One: The fact — rare, if not unique in this country' — that every 
promise made to the electors in the 1910 manifesto has been 
faithfully performed. Where the constitution pennitted, legis- 
lative effect has been given to our policy. What we promised, 
that we have performed. 

The other: That we have not only put our policy on the 
statute book and energetically administered it, but that its effects 
have been most salutary. 

The Fusion's Tribute to Labor's Record 

The first tribute to the value of our policy is the attitude of 
the fusion, which, after denouncing and abusing the Labor Party 
and all its works, dare not venture to say it will repeal one act 
of the 83 which we have passed. This is surely the best testi- 
mony the electors can have of the value of the Labor Party's 
work, and conclusive proof of the hollowness of the fusion's 
denunciations and abuse of the Labor Party and its platform. 

The Three Great Questions 

The three great questions that force themselves upon the atten- 
tion of the people of all civilized nations to-day are: (1) Indus- 
trial unrest; (2) the operations of trusts and combines; and 
(3) increased cost of living. These three things go down to 
bedrock. They touch and condition the lives of 95 per cent of 
the people. In every country they exist, and exist alongside each 

That they are here in Australia Ave know perfectly well, and 
any party which seeks to govern a country must not only recog- 
nize their existence, but put forward a policy to cope with them. 
And as these great factors have their causes deep down in the 
very roots of modern industrialism, no policy which does not 
deal with basic causes as well as their effects can help the people. 

The Fusion Policy 

The Fusion Party does not even attempt to put forward such 
a policy. So far as it deals with industrial unrest, and high 
cost of living, it declares them to be purely local phenomena 
confined to Australia. It lays the responsibility for their exist- 


ence at the door of the Labor Party. As for trusts and combines, 
it now declares the existing law to be amply sufficient. And the 
Fusion remedy for all these things, in common with every other 
ill from which civilized man suffers, is — to put the Fusion Party 
into office. 

The Power of the Trusts 

Now, what are the facts relating to industrial unrest, the high 
cost of living, and the operations and power of trusts and 
combines ? 

When we were before the electors in 1910, we pointed out 
the increasing powers of what are known as trusts and combines. 
During the last three years many convincing proofs have been 
given as to the influence of these great organizations of capital 
and of the world-wide scope of their operations. 

Although in Australia these combinations have not, perhaps, 
reached the stage of development that they have in other coun- 
tries — notably in the United States — their existence and power 
are manifested in almost every part of the commonwealth. That 
state of things in which individual traders and manufacturers 
competed against one another, and the consumer obtained the 
goods at the lowest price compatible with a fair and reasonable 
profit, has completely disappeared in many if not in most lines. 
There is, of course, keen competition amongst retailers, but the 
prices at which retailers sell to the public are naturally governed 
by the prices at which they can buy of the wholesale merchants. 
And in most eases wholesale prices are fixed by arrangement 
either by these merchants or by the greater organizations who 
really control the output and distribution of the goods. 

Exorbitant Profits and High Prices 

It therefore follows that the prices the people pay for most 
of the things they eat, drink, wear, and use are not " competitive 
prices," but fixed and arranged prices; and as those who fix or 
arrange these prices are concerned chiefly with getting exorbitant 
profit, these prices are not " fair and reasonable," but are con- 
siderably higher than would be the case under free competition. 

This is only natural. When a few practically control the 
output and distribution of any article which the people must 
have, they are in a position to fix the highest price that the 


people can possibly pay. The only limit, therefore, to the prices 
fixed by combines and " honorable understandings " is the limit 
of the people's purse. If the trusts charged more, the people 
could not buy. The combine seldom charges less than the very 
most that the unfortunate consumer can pay. This is the present 
position of the people, not only in the commonwealth, but 
throughout the world. It is a position which, on the face of it, 
is quite incompatible with democratic government. Theoretically, 
freedom of trade and freedom of access to opportunities are 
open to all, practically, where a few men with a tremendous 
amount of capital control the means by which modern production 
and distribution must necessarily be carried on, the rest of man- 
kind can only live upon sufferance. 

Control of Trusts 

The present position is intolerable. The interests of the people 
must be protected, and the policy of the Labor Party is to take 
whatever steps are necessary to protect them. . . . We are not 
opposed to combination. We believe indeed that combination 
is infinitely better than cutthroat competition, provided that the 
interests of the people are properly safeguarded. But to allow 
a few individuals to control the production and distribution of 
the necessaries of life, to fix what price the people must pay for 
what they must have, is to place the whole community at the 
mercy of the few. Combination makes for efficient and econom- 
ical production. Properly controlled, it is a benefit to the 
community. Uncontrolled, it is a menace to the liberties and 
the very existence of democracy. 

Cost of Living and Industrial Unrest 

These are the facts, and they are indisputable, yet in the face 
of them the Fusion says that the Labor Party is responsible 
for the industrial unrest and the high cost of living. Such a 
statement is an insult to the intelligence of the electors. Let us 
prove it. Australia is the only country m the world where the 
Labor Party is in pow'er and in office. 

But industrial unrest is world-wide. There is not one civilized 
country where it has not manifested itself during recent years. 
In Great Britain, America, France, Germany, Austria, and Italy, 


upheavals — compared to which those in Australia appear quite 
insignificant — have taken place in the last three years. 

The Cause 

The same may be said of the high cost of living. This, too, 
is a Avorld-wide phenomenon. To say, as the Fusion Party does, 
that the Labor Party is responsible for it, is an audacious and 
willful misrepresentation of facts. The cost of living in the 
United States is 16 per cent higher than in Australia, but there 
are no wages boards in that country, and no Labor Party in 
office or power. And the same is true of Great Britain, where 
the cost of living has, according to the board of trade returns, 
gone up to such an extent that what cost 20 shillings in 1909 
costs 23 shillings in 1912. The Fusion Party insults the intelli- 
gence of the electors by declaring that high wages are the cause 
of high prices. The exact opposite is true. The people must 
live, and to live their wages must be sufficient to purchase the 
necessaries of civilized life. High prices cause and compel a 
demand for higher wages. The endeavor to enforce the demand 
causes industrial unrest. 

High Prices 

Only in Australia is the Labor Party in office. Only here and 
in New Zealand are there arbitration courts and boards for 
fixmg wages. But in every country trusts and combines control 
the means of production. In every country they regulate output, 
they fix prices, they exploit the people. And in America, where 
they are most powerful, the cost of living is higher than in any 
other country. We have tracked the thing down. It is obvious 
that the main cause of the increased cost of living is the ex- 
orbitant profits extracted from the people by the trusts, and the 
immediate cause of industrial unrest arises out of the increasingly 
difficult struggles of the people to make both ends meet. 

Amendment of the Constitution 

In order to control trusts, combines, corporations, and great 
monopolies, which now exploit the public, and to deal with indus- 
trial unrest and the high cost of living, amendment of the con- 
stitution is imperatively necessary. Without such amendment 
it is futile to attempt to deal with these great questions. 


At present the Commonwealth is for all practical purposes 
powerless. In order, therefore, that these great questions may 
be effectively dealt with, the amendments of the constitution 
now before the people must be made. . . . 

Reasons for Amendment 

We have not space here to repeat the arguments there set 
forth. But briefly, the reasons why the electors should vote for 
the six amendments are as follows: 

Our constitution, which is copied from the American, gives 
us the same powers over trusts, industrial and other cognate 
matters as that of the United States. It leaves the states the 
same powers as the United States Constitution leaves the states 
of America. In America, after 20 years of the best efforts to 
deal with trusts by federal and state laws, the position, as stated 
by Senator Chauneey Depew, one of the most notable American 
statesmen of our day, is : 

" There are ten men in the city of New York who can in 24 


What a travesty on the declaration that this is the government 
of the people, by the people, for the people, when ten 

MEN CAN MAKE STARVING BEGGARS OP 100,000,000 people in 24 


Present Constitution 

The net result of all this legislation — the most drastic possible 
under constitutions like ours, and that of America, is that the 
trusts after 20 years of it are the most numerous and powerful 
in the world, gnd control not only the industrial, but also the 
commercial, financial, and political lives of the American people. 
The laws, both state and federal, have been enforced in many 
cases, and a great number of convictions have followed. But 
the trusts laugh at convictions and grow fat upon them. The 
Standard Oil Trust, for example, was only recently convicted, 
heavily fined, and solemnly dissolved by the Supreme Court of 
America. This ought to have been the end of the trust, but its 
power to exploit the world is not lessened. To-day it is as strong 
as ever, and Rockefeller and a few of the great shareholders 
have made £40,000,000 as a direct result of the conviction! 


The fact is that while the constitution remains as it is, no 
power exists either in America or here that can cope with trusts. 
State laws cannot do it, and the federal arm is cramped. 

Protect the People 

Every federation in the world, except America, has these 
powers. Canada has and always has had them. In the face of 
these facts, why should the people of Australia hesitate to take 
these powers, the lack of which has placed America under the 
heel of the trusts to such an extent that, to repeat the words of 
Senator Chauncey Depew, " Ten men can make starving beggars 
of 100,000,000 people in 24 hours." 

Proposed Amendments 

1. Control of Trusts. — And now, having stated the issues 
before the electors and the necessity for amending the constitu- 
tion, we come to the policy of the Labor Party for the next 
Parliament. If the proposed amendments are carried we shall 
pass legislation to control trusts and combines in the public 
interest, and to create machinery for reviewing and, where 
necessary, regulating prices in cases where effective compe- 
tition does not insure a fair and reasonable price to the con- 

The Fusion says that the regulation of prices is impossible. 
But regulation of prices by the trusts in their own interests 
is the dominant feature of our age. Why should public regula- 
tion of prices in the interests of the people be impossible? It 
is not impossible, and it is absolutely necessary. Those who 
know most about the matter strongly favor it. 

Andrew Carnegie, of the great American Steel Tmst, says : 
" Granted combination, there must be regulation, and as no 
judge the world over is allowed to sit in judgment in a ease in 
which he is personally interested, so no producer can ever be 
JUDGE OF PRICES. It follows, then, that an industrial court must 
be formed which shall fix the maximum prices, that the con- 
sumer may be protected against extortion." And ex-President 
Roosevelt says: "This control (over trusts) should, if 



are now controlled." 

2. Nationalization of Monopolies. — ^With regard to monopolies, 
these will be generally dealt with in the same way as trusts and 
combines. The broad principle upon which legislation will be 
based is that where the welfare of the people demands it, the 
law will exercise a vigilant supervision over the operations of 
these great organizations of capital. We shall make provision 
to prevent individual traders and manufacturers being crushed 
out by combines or attempted monopolies. We shall protect the 
public by regulating prices where these are exorbitant. Where 
the interest of the Commonwealth can in no other way be pro- 
tected, w^e shall exercise the powers given by the amendment of 
the constitution and nationalize the monopoly. 

3. General Company Law. — We shall pass a General Company 
Law designed to encourage legitimate trading and prevent unfair 
trading, and to protect the interests of shareholders and the 
public. At present there is no power to pass such a law, and 
yet no legislation is more badly needed. 

New Protection 

We shall introduce at an early date such legislation as may 
be necessary to give effect to the policy of the new protection. 
As there is some room for doubt as to what new protection is, 
we here set forth what it means. Unlike the old protection, the 
benefits of the new protection are not to rest wholly with the 
manufacturer, but are to extend to the workman and the con- 
sumer. The workman is to get a fair and reasonable wage and 
decent conditions of labor. Where the State Wages Boards give 
him these, well and good. Where they do not, federal courts will 
do so. And the consumer is to be protected against exorbitant 
prices. In this way protection becomes a national policy in the 
true sense of the term, and is not, as at present, mainly confined 
to one comparatively small section of the community. The 
manufacturers of Australia are entitled to protection against 
unfair competition; they are entitled to a fair and legitimate 
profit; they are entitled to settled industrial conditions. These 
things we shall endeavor to secure for them, but they are not 
entitled to exploit the workmen or the general public, and we 


shall therefore pass such legislation as will, while protecting 
Australian manufacturers, also protect the community. 

Industrial Peace 

The present industrial powers of the Commonwealth are quite 
inadequate. It cannot prevent industrial disputes. It cannot 
deal with them when they arise unless they extend beyond the 
limits of any one state. And it is absolutely powerless to deal 
with the most common form in which great uidustrial disputes 
extending beyond the limits of one state occur. The " sympa- 
thetic strike " — the most dangerous and affecting the greatest 
number of people — is, in nine cases out of ten, beyond its juris- 
diction. The cause of such a strike may be the demand of a 
union inside a state. With that dispute the Federal Conciliation 
Court cannot deal. But until it is settled, the " sympathetic 
strike" of unions outside the state cannot be settled. The arm 
of the federal court is tied. It cannot act when action would 
be most likely to prove effective. It must sit down supinely 
and watch the trouble become more and more serious, extending 
from one small center until it envelops the whole state, and still 
do nothing. Not until the dispute reaches such a stage as to 
make settlement an almost impossible task can the federal court 

This is not only absurd, but a deadly menace to the best interests 
of the community. If industrial peace is worth having we ought 
not to tie the hands of the court created to maintain it. 

The facts and the best authorities on the Fusion side both 
support our contention that the constitution ought to be amended 
so that the Commonwealth's powers may be such as to preserve 
the industrial peace of the community. 

If these amendments are approved by the people, we shall 
clothe the Federal Arbitration Court with power to prevent dis- 
putes, to deal effectively with such disputes as do arise, wherever 
and in whatever circumstances they may arise, if state courts 
cannot or do not do so. For this purpose we shall make pro- 
vision for subsidiary industrial tribunals, wherever and whenever 
the circumstances call for them. 


The Fusion and the Farmer 

It is said also that the Commonwealth will take over the 
railways. This is, of course, a downright untruth, as those who 
make the statement know full well. The amendments do not 
give the Commonwealth power to take over the state railways. 
They do not even give power to deal with state trade and com- 
merce carried on state railways. They do not give the Com- 
monwealth any more power to fix freights and fares than it has 
now. So much for that audacious attempt to mislead the electors ! 

The Fusion, in its usual fashion, attempts to save its friends, 
" the great trusts," by endeavoring to frighten the small farmer 
and storekeeper and make them fight its battles. Before the 
1910 election the Fusion, at the instance of the great landlords 
of Australia, dreading the progressive land tax, told the farmer 
that the effect of the land tax would be to ruin him. They said 
that the £5,000 exemiDtion was only an election cry, and that if 
we got in we would take it out and tax the small man. Time 
has nailed those lies to the wall. The £5,000 exemption remains, 
and we again pledge ourselves not to remove it during the next 

The Fusion saj^s, first, that the proposal to fix pi-iees is 
absurd, and second, that the Labor Party will fix the prices of 
the produce of " the man on the land " and the goods of the 
retail storekeeper. Such a statement is utterly untrue. Like 
the land tax lie, it is a cunning attempt by the monopolists and 
great vested interests to save themselves. 

We have already said that we shall not attempt public regu- 
lation of prices, except where these are regulated by trusts, com- 
bines, monopolies, rings, or " honorable understandings." We 
shall not attempt to regulate prices received by " the man on the 
land " for his produce. It is not by the farmer that the public 
is squeezed, but by those to whom the farmer sells his produce. 

The farmer is squeezed by the freight ring and by other rings. 
We shall endeavor to protect him. 


The Fusion says that, if the electors approve of the sixth 
proposed amendment, the Labor Party will at once nationalize 
every industry in the country! That i4 will nationalize every 


small storekeeper, and that even " the i^oor widow " in her tiny 
little store will be taken over by the Federal Government ! Such 
statements are not only gross misrepresentations, but are plainly 

It is not the small storekeeper, or the widow in her little store, 
that menaces the welfare of the people, but the great monopoly 
which holds the community in its ruthless grasp. When one 
company or combine has destroyed all its competitors, it has 
the community at its mercy. When, as is the case with more 
than one combine here, it controls the production, manufacture, 
and sale of something which the people must have, a state of 
things exists which is incompatible with free government, and 
cannot be tolerated. It is to deal with such great monopolies that 
this amendment of the constitution is required. And it is abso- 
lutely necessary. 

We shall not nationalize the small shopkeeper, or the 
BIG shopkeeper EITHER. This is not a remedy to be applied to 
retail traders amongst whom competition insures fair profits, 
and fair profits only. But it is for use, and if we are returned 
and this amendment is carried, we shall use it against those great 
monopolies whose exactions are unendurable, if regulation of 
their operations cannot be effected in any other way. 

Initiative and Referendum 

True democratic government demands that the people's will, 
continuously ascertained and expressed, shall be supreme, but 
representative government does not, in many cases, permit the 
people to make their desires known or to see that their desires 
are given effect to. At the election of a Parliament the people 
really rule; during the intervals between elections their power 
is confined to criticisms, and to such means of approaching Par- 
liament as are afforded by petitions, public meetings, and the 
columns of the press. Generally Parliament responds to public 
opinion thus manifested — but not always. Besides, public control 
in this way is not only uncertain but indefinite, and entirely 
unsanctioned by the law; and Parliament can, if it chooses, wholly 
disregard it. What is wanted is a means by which the people 
may, in a clearly defined and legal way, express their disapproval 
of any legislation proposed or passed by Parliament, and initiate 


such other legislation as circumstances in their opinion warrant. 
In this way the people's control over Parliament would be con- 
tinuous. They could veto such legislation as was objectionable, 
and comi^el attention to matters of great importance which might 
arise between elections, and upon which the Parliaments had not 
been instructed. 

Protection and Defense 

Protection is the settled policy of the country. The Labor 
Party, therefore, will take such steps as are necessary to make 
that policy effective, and will at an early date bring down such 
amendments of the present tariff as will protect the manufac- 
turers and producers of the Commonwealth against unfair out- 
side competition. 

As the fiscal question is not included in the platform of the 
Labor Party, the views of members of the party have been 
ascertained. It has been found that the great majority of mem- 
bers support the promise given by the prime minister at Mary- 
borough on March 31 to bring down a scheme of effective pro- 

Believing as we do that customs duties for revenue are no 
part of the policy of protection, and therefore should be made 
as light as possible, we propose to reduce such duties on the 
necessaries of life imported from other countries. 

Our policy of national defense, military and naval, has been 
already stated by the prime minister at Maryborough. That 
policy we shall resolutely and energetically carry out. Everything 
necessary to Australia's defense and to make her contribution 
towards imperial defense a real and effective one will be done. 

We shall prosecute with diligence and energy a policy of 
national development. The settlement and development of the 
Northern Territory will be pushed on with. The construction of 
the Transcontinental Railway will be energetically carried on. 
A vigorous policy of railway constiniction will be undertaken. 
We believe in Australia and in her greatness, and shall do all 
that is possible to hasten her development. 


We shall pass a general insurance law, regulating the opera- 
tions of all insurance companies. The measure introduced last 


session broadly indicates the lines along which we think such 
a law should proceed. It is much needed, and we shall place it 
on the statute book at an early date. 

In addition to regulating the operations of private insurance 
companies, we shall establish a commonwealth insurance depart- 
ment, controlled and guaranteed and carried on by the Govern- 
ment. It will be based upon sound business lines, and will 
engage in all kinds of insurance business. The operations of 
the New Zealand Government Insurance Department have been 
most successful, and not only does the institution show a good 
margin of profit, but the exorbitant rates charged by private 
insurance companies — more particularly for tire insurance — have 
been gi-eatly reduced through government competition. There is 
ample justification for the establishment of a similar institution 
here, and we shall take steps to do so as soon as possible. 

A Great National Policy 

Here then is our policy. It deals with those great issues now 
compelling the attention of the whole civilized world. And it 
goes right down to bedrock. It is a policy for the whole people, 
and not only for a privileged few. It is a policy of action, put 
forward by men who have proved by their record that they are 
men of action and true to their pledges. It is a great national 
policy that will develop the best that is in Australia — a policy 
that will protect our country from dangers within and without. 

With full confidence in the justice and patriotism of the Aus- 
tralian people, we invite them to attach to it the seal of their 

Andrew Fisher, 
Commonwealth Offices, Melbourne. 

D. Watkins, Plattsburg, 

Secretary Federal Labor Party. 


a. From Vorwaerts (Berlin) 

"A noteworthy feature of this election campaign was 
the great bitterness with which it was fought and the 


sharp class lines that appeared on the surface during the 
struggle. The Labor Party lost a large number of its 
middle-class and farmer supporters, elements that have 
hitherto been a hindrance to the party movement. About 
one-half of the seats of the Labor Party won in the last 
election (1910) were gained in the farming and country 
districts, territory that had no industrial population worth 
mentioning. About one-half of these seats were lost in 
the recent election. On the other hand, the industrial 
proletariat stood solidly behind the Labor Party. They 
put up a hard fight against the well-organized onslaught 
of the Liberals with their powerful press. 

"In a country with such great distances, as is the case 
in Australia, newspaper agitation must naturally play a 
very important part. The labor press of Australia is still 
in its infancy, while the Democratic organs, which for- 
merly supported the Labor Party, became very uneasy 
over its new collectivist policy and edged away from this 
dangerous movement. This was true, for instance, of the 
Melbourne Age, a paper that, in 1910, was to no small de- 
gree responsible for our success in Victoria and Tasmania. 
This paper, too, has become afraid of the so-called extreme 
elements that have taken hold in the Labor Party. More- 
over, the better class is still haunted by the memory of 
recent strikes. It looks with distaste upon the Fisher 
Ministry, with its friendly attitude toward the labor move- 
ment. It cannot forget that this ministry, in January of 
the previous year, refused to send out troops against the 
striking street ear employees in Brisbane when it had been 
requested to do so by the Liberal state administration of 

"Besides, the wealthier class generally felt that the col- 
lectivist principles of the Labor Party were ceasing to be a 
dead letter in its program and that it would now proceed 


without ceremony to abolish all constitutional hindrances 
to the success of its aims. It proposed to begin a general 
nationalization of industries with the creation of a national 
steamship mail service between Tasmania and the main- 
land. ... 

' ' The Labor Party, on the other hand, can point out real 
achievements for the social and cultural life of the nation. 
Only last year it created a maternity pension, providing 
for the payment of five pounds to every woman who gives 
birth to a child. It has opened up the northern territory 
and has taken the first steps toward the building of a great 
railroad that shall cross Australia from east to west. If 
it has not accomplished more along the line of social and 
industrial reform, constitutional restrictions, not the party 
itself, are to blame." 

b. W. C. Anderson, in leading article of The Labor Leader 

"With two points in Australian policy we do not agree, 
but we frankly admit that Australia has its own problems, 
and the solution of them may be safely intrusted to the 
Australian workers themselves without undue outside inter- 
ference. The Australian workers believe that their eco- 
nomic position would be made worse by Chinese and 
Japanese immigration, and this explains their strong plea 
for a 'White' Australia, and their apparently harsh atti- 
tude toward colored races. Many of them believe also in 
the possibility of military invasion by the yellow races, 
and that is the real explanation of their attitude toward 
conscription and national defense. Nevertheless, on the 
question of national defense, the Australian Labor Party 
has indorsed a policy which would not be supported by 
the international movement. In Australia itself there is a 
large volume of Socialist opinion opposed to conscription, 


and this feeling is certain to grow. At the same time, 
it may be admitted that there is less aggression in the 
arming of Australia than of any other country. "... 

c. Article hy Alf. James, The Socialist {Melbourne) 

"The whole economic forces of the country are divided, 
politically, into two opposing camps; although a bill may 
be modified in its scope through the activities of various 
interests once a measure is put to a division, there can be 
only a straight vote — yes or no. Before the entry of labor 
into the arena of polities, the two great representative par- 
ties were the landowners and certain financiers, in opposi- 
tion to the industrial employers. 

"In Australia the rapid rise of the Labor Party has 
compelled these (in relation to each other) antagonistic 
forces to unite against the small producers and wage- 

"With the advance of capitalism, the petty bourgeoisie 
is being inevitably crushed out of existence. 

"This process, while every year rendering labor's spouse, 
the middle class, still more withered and decrepit, increases 
overwhelmingly the numbers of the proletariat, and, by the 
establishment of larger industries, provides for their more 
effective union, both politically and industrially. 

"Only as this change is effected can the wage-workers 
tighten their hold on the government, and whether they 
remain in political alliance with the small traders, or 
maintain an attitude of no compromise, their progress must 
be equally limited ; but it is obviously much more to the 
immediate interests of the proletariat to secure what 
amelioration it can by means of such an alliance than to 
allow the big capitalists to have complete control of the 
political machine. It is, therefore, necessary that every 


worker, no matter how extreme his views, should do his 
utmost inside the Labor Party to force the hands of the 
middle class. ..." 


Labor's Program 

The program of the Labor Party has already been declared 
by Mr. Fisher at Bundaberg. To that program — which sets 
forth in clear and unambiguous terms the policy of labor, includ- 
ing its attitude towards trusts and combines, amendment of 
the constitution, initiative and referendum, tariff, industrial and 
social legislation, labor stands pledged for the next Parliament. 
If returned with a majority, we shall, without other delay than 
that imposed by urgent measures necessary for the protection 
of the Commonwealth during the war, give effect to that policy. 

There follows at this point a statement of the Labor 
Party's position on war already printed in Mr. Walling 's 
volume. The Socialists and the War. 

The manifesto then continues : 

Thus far we have dealt with the direct consequences of war. 
But the effects of modern war are not confined within the narrow 
limits of days gone by. The world to-day is so interdependent; 
its ner\'ous system of finance, commerce, and industry so co- 
related and so exquisitely sensitive that war between any two 
great nations threatens the whole industrial life of the modern 
world with instant paralysis. It was this great danger with 
which we were threatened in Australia. 

It needs no words to show the consequences of unemployment 
on so huge a scale as must surely follow upon the heels of 
modern war. These would be in their extent far more serious 
than the direct consequences of war itself. Yet they could in 
no way be averted unless there were at the hands of the authori- 
ties the means whereby credit — the basis of modern industrial 
and commercial activity — could be so reinforced as to enable it, 
despite this tremendous shock, to stand firm. 

The conference at which representatives of the Opposition sat 


with those of the Government and the states has made such 
arrangements, and it was enabled to do so because the Common- 
wealth Bank and the Australian Note Issue had created the very- 
instruments by which credit could be supported and the wheels 
of industry kept moving even in this great crisis. 

Thanks then to the Australian Note Issue, enough money is 
to be loaned to the states by the Commonwealth to enable them 
to maintain their public works policy and thus prevent a huge 
army of unemployed being thrown upon the streets. Similarly 
with private employment. Had it not been for the Common- 
wealth Bank and the Note Issue, the private banks would have 
been compelled in sheer defense to restrict credit; overdrafts 
would have had to be reduced; enterprises affected by the war 
would have shrunk almost to nothing. Money would have been 
very dear; unemploj'ment and ti'ade crises would have come 
upon us like a flood, submerging everything. Instead of which, 
money is very cheap ; emploj^ment is encouraged ; traders should 
not be called i;pon to reduce overdrafts or harassed by dread of 
complete ruin. The wheels of mdustiy move and trade becomes 

The Commonwealth Bank and the Australian Note Issue, with- 
out which at this juncture we should be faced with a general 
collapse of industry, trade, and finance, are due to the Labor 
Party alone. By their fruits shall ye know them. 

"Words cannot express the difference between things as they 
are now and as they would have been if the Labor Party had 
not taken these steps to defend Australia from invasion and 
from the consequences of war. 

The Issue for the Electors 

Here, then, fellow-electors, is the position. War has come 
upon us, but thanks to the Labor Party has not found us unpre- 
pared. It would be idle to pretend that we can hope to escape 
some of the consequences of war; but two things are clear, viz., 
" That owing to the Labor Party's policy, Australia is able not 
only to meet the situation calmly itself, but also to relieve the 
Empire of the burden of defending these shores and the adjacent 
waters and to actively support her at the seat of war. 

The electors have to choose a new Parliament. That means 
they have to decide upon whom they shall rely to govern the 


country during this great crisis. Upon whom will their choice 

The choice lies between two parties — the Labor Party, who 
foresaw and provided against war and all its disastrous conse- 
quences; and the present government, who denounced every one 
of those measures without which to-day Australia would be an 
object of derision to the outside world, a burden to the mother 
country, and a humiliation to herself. 

We forbear to criticise the policy of the present government 
since its accession to office. But in defense matters it has done 
nothing, and has left undone very much that ought to have been 
done. True to its invariable policy, it has talked but it has 
not acted. 

This is the hour when men of action should be at the helm. 
And the men who created the defense forces of Australia, who are 
familiar with the every detail of their organization, are on the 
face of it the men who may be relied on to make the best possible 
use of them. 

Fellow-electors : Here is the position. We leave it with all 
confidence for you to determine. 

Andrew Fisher. 
David Watkins, 


Federal Parliament House, Melbourne. 

10. election campaign of 1914 — legislative achievements 
of labor party * 

*'A brief summary of the principal measures which the 
Labor Party has placed on the Commonwealth statute book 
will not be amiss at this juncture. It is a fine record, and 
one which would have been increased in many important 
directions were it not for the unfortunate technical limita- 
tions of the constitution, which, as interpreted by the 
High Court, prevented the National Legislature turning 
its attention upon subjects that properly should come 
within its scope. 

* The Brisbane Worker, August 20, 1914. 


"Further, the monument of legislative activity and con- 
structive statesmanship piled up in the past is a pledge 
of what the party is prepared to do when again the oppor- 
tunity is given it in the future. ' ' 

1908 {First Fisher Ministry) 

Australian industries were encouraged by the Manufacturers 
Encouragement Act, 1908, providing for the payment of bounties 
on the manufacture of iron, steel, wire-netting, and wire within 
the Commonwealth on certain terms, including a jDrovision mak- 
ing the payment of fair and reasonable wages a condition prece- 
dent to payment of the bounty. 

1910 {Second Fisher Ministry — Three Tears' Term) 

Land Tax, for the purpose of splitting up large estates and 
helping the smaller man. 

Postal Rates Act, introducing the system of penny postage, 
now so widely appreciated. 

Australian Notes Act, providing a commonwealth note issue 
and financially strengthening the Government. 

Naval Loan Repeal Act, repealing the ridiculous Loan Act 
of the previous Fusion Ministry which was passed for the purpose 
of bon'owing £3,500,000 from Cohen in order to construct a 
navy. Labor paid for the navy out of revenue, established a 
sound principle, and saved interest charges. 

Defense Act, providing for a citizen soldiery, small arms 
factories, military clothing factories, etc. The benefits of this 
measure are specially appreciated now. 

1911 Session 

Establishment of Commonwealth Bank, i.e., the bank of the 
nation. Commercial tranquillity and trade confidence in the 
present crisis is very largely due to the existence of this nation- 
backed institution. . . . 

1912 Session 

Maternity Allowance Act, so helpful to the mothers of 


The comprehensive Navigation Bill finally passed. It is 
the largest measure yet passed by the Federal Parliament. 

Interstate Commission Act. The commission is now in full 
swing, and doing good preliminary work in bringing to light 
strange commercial customs. 

Commonwealth Workmen's Compensation Act. 

Amendment of Invalid and Old-Age Pensions Act, liberal- 
izing the principal act in a number of ways, chief of which was 
the abolishing of any deduction on accovmt of the value of a 
home of a pensioner who resides in his own home. 

Amending Immigration Act in the direction of better protect- 
ing, by means of medical inspection, the Commonwealth from 
undesirable immigrants. 

Repeal of Sugar Excise and Bounty Act in the interests 
of the sugar industry. 

Extending the benefits for a further period of two years of 
the Manufactures Encouragement Act op 1908. Also extend- 
ing for five years the assistance of the Bounties Act of 1907 on 
the following goods: Flax and hemp, jute, linseed, rice (un- 
cleaned), tobacco leaf, and fruits, dried or candied, and exported; 
and for a period of two years from 1st January, 1914, the boun- 
ties granted on combed wool and tops exported. 

11. the future of the labor party 

(Editorial in The New Statesman, September 12, 1914) 

The question now is whether, the Liberal Party having disap- 
peared, labor can provide the qualities necessary for successful 
progress along the lines already begun. This is doubtful; and 
one's doubt is increased by reading the recent policy speech of 
Mr. Fisher, the labor leader. Summarized, his proposals are: 

1. The establishment of a commonwealth line of steamers. 

2. Increased protection. 

3. Initiative and referendum. 

4. Australian navy constructed locally and financed out of 

5. Uniform railway gauge. 

6. Dominions reciprocity. 

7. Improvement of arbitration court procedure. 

8. Vague remedies for increased cost of living. 


9. Pensions for widows and orphans. 

10. Payment of cadets for work on holidays. 

11. Superannuation scheme for public service. 

12. Grants for investigation and treatment of consumption, 
cancer, and syphilis. 

13. Commonwealth insurance department. 

14. Vague measure to cope with trusts and monopolies. 
Such a program shows an appreciation of the point of view 

of the average elector which amounts to genius, but it is a curious 
production for a Socialist Party in the twentieth century. Ob- 
serve how social and industrial problems are overlooked. It is 
true that the rejection of the referenda, by which labor sought 
extended powers, impairs the scope of the labor platform, but 
a " stand-pat " attitude on industrial questions is not desirable. 
The fact is that labor is not tackling the problems which previous 
Liberal-Labor legislation has raised. This legislation cannot be 
regarded as a complete solution of social difficulties. Its virtue 
is that by disclosing nearer and more subtle problems it brings 
us closer to the real issues which have to be faced before a solu- 
tion is arrived at. . . . 

It is to be feared that we have reached a stage in which the 
Labor Party regards it as more imjDortant that it should hold 
the reins of power than that it should trouble itself with a host 
of problems of great complexity. The man of advanced views 
can afford now to pass the Labor Party and look to what wUl 
supersede it with a more virile and up-to-date set of ideas. At a 
time when the utility of political machinery is being challenged 
no class of people is less likely than the Australian worker to 
be content with a " stand-pat " party. It was not as a party 
of prudence but as a propagandist idealist body that the Labor 
Party achieved success, and if it abandons this side of its efforts 
it is not likely to remain useful or trusted. The Australian loves 
change and recognizes no vested interest in the existing order. 
Any definite and intelligent attempt at social readjustment would 
secure support. 



Until quite recently Australia depended mostly upon primary 
products for the income and profits of its owners, the capitalist 
class. Now, however, the development of the factory system is 
taking place with increasing rapidity; and according to some 
figures just compiled by the government statistician of New South 
Wales — the oldest and leading state of the Commonwealth — the 
number of factories and employees are increasing out of all pro- 
portion to the inci'ease of population. The land monopolist in 
the country has, in addition to the old system of rack-renting, 
established a system of share-farming, under which he takes in 
good seasons anything from one-third of the farmer's crop up- 
wards. This system of peonage is having its effect in forcing men 
off the land into the towns and cities, to swell the number 
of factory employees and the army of unemployed in each 

According to the N. S. W. statistician's figures, wages in the 
factories have risen nine per cent, which works out at about 
£5 per head, but the cost of living has gone up more than twenty 
per cent, so that the workers have suffered a serious reduction. 
The rents workers have to pay astonish those who come from 
older lands, and have risen so rapidly during the last two years 
that the overcrowding in the slums has become a scandal and 

Meanwhile, governments — both Liberal and Labor — are scour- 
ing the globe for more people. Lying advertisements are widely 
circulated in Europe to induce innocent people to come to this 
country, who, when they arrive, are sadly disillusioned by finding 
the class struggle more bitterly waged than they thought could 
be possible. 

To attract population, the various state governments advertise 
widely certain advantages which labor is alleged to possess. One 
of these is the industrial legislation of the country, which is said 
to be the most up to date and most favorable to the workers 
of any legislation in the world. Part of this claim is founded 
upon our system of arbitration, which was specially designed 
to do away with strikes and industrial unrest. 


In each of the six states of the Commonwealth arbitration 
courts and wages boards exist for the settlement of industrial 
disputes, and if such a dispute spreads from one state to another 
there is a federal arbitration court to which the parties to the 
dispute may be summoned. 

Originally industrial arbitration was advocated and popularized 
by the Political Labor Party, and it took several years before it 
could be passed into law. The employing class were very sus- 
picious of it, but once it became law they saw how it benefited 
them, and they are now quite enthusiastic in its support. So- 
cialists warned the woi'kers from the first that arbitration courts 
and wages boards would fail to affect the class struggle in a way 
that would be beneficial to them. The majority still fail to see 
this, but there are more strikes than ever, which justifies our 
contention and proves that our warning was timely. 

Wages boards are presided over by a chairman, who is gen- 
erally either a lawyer or a member of the employing class ap- 
pointed by the state government. Before this chairman, who 
often has no practical knowledge, an equal number of working- 
class and capitalist representatives argue the dispute and produce 
evidence. When the cost of living goes up, the board usually 
recognizes the fact, and makes an award in favor of increased 
wages. This is done after much forensic fightmg and expenditure 
of unionist money, and the result in most cases could have been 
arrived at by the workers themselves with solidarity and proper 

When an award has been made strikes and lockouts become 
illegal, and many workers have been fined for striking. When 
fines are inflicted upon the workers they are recoverable by 
the state by means of the garnishee. The workers are not im- 
prisoned for non-payment of fines, but when they recommence 
work their wages are confiscated to pay the fines and costs. The 
garnishee was invented by the New South Wales Labor Govern- 
ment, and was quickly adopted by the Liberal governments of 
other states. 

Besides providing for the garnishee, the Industrial Arbitration 
Act makes it a penal offense to advocate a strike or to assist 
those on strike with monetary or other material support. The 
authorities may take drastic steps to break a strike. They may 
enter a unionist meeting hall and seize the union's books and 
papers, and in the last great coal strike the government seized 


trainloads of eoal wliieh the miners bad taken from a mine they 
had rented. 

But with all its drastic features, industrial arbitration is a 
failure, and the Labor politicians are directing the workers to 
make an attack on trusts and combines as the cause of rising 
prices and industrial unrest. They have failed to make wages 
boards raise wages as the cost of living rose, so are aiming to 
bring the cost of living down by an attack on prices. (Our 

In this sham fight against the trusts the Federal Labor Party 
leads the way. . . . During its term of office the Federal Labor 
Party administered the class state on lines laid down by previous 
capitalist governments, and even went further in some directions 
than any other capitalist government would dare to go. The 
result was that last year it was hurled from office by a small 
majority. It had lost the big majority of three years previously, 
and a good deal of the confidence of its own supporters. 

There are many causes that contributed to the downfall of 
the Labor Party, but one or two main ones need only be men- 
tioned here. As soon as they found themselves in power mem- 
bers of the party commenced to win the confidence of the small 
emploj'ers and traders, a class which is notoriously ignorant, 
loyal, and grasping. 

Perhaps the pledging of the conscript forces to assist in 
foreign aggi'ession did more to disillusion many than anything 
else. The party as a whole had been led to believe that the 
conscripts were only to be used for home defense and the 
maintenance of a white Australia, yet the leaders had pledged 
their support to the imperial expansionists. 

When the labor leaders returned from the coronation celebra- 
tions there was a marked change in them. The aristocrats had 
done their work, and probably the armament firms had not been 
without their influence. Orders were placed for battleships and 
an era of military and naval activity entered upon. 

Recent strike in England, New Zealand, and South Africa, 
where all available forces were used to defeat the workers, have 
tended to decrease the belief in conscription, and at the Federal 
Labor Conference, and also in the Federal Senate, attempts have 
been made to so amend the act that the conscripts could not be 
used for strike-breaking purposes. 

The objective of the Labor Party has, since its inception, 


undergone a gradual but definite modification. It appears now 
to be aiming at state capitalism. Money is being freely bor- 
rowed from European financiers with which to start state enter- 
prises, the profits from which are to be spent to pay interest on 
loans and to build a navy and an army to defend the financiers' 
interests. A sham fight against trusts and combines is main- 

An attack in the courts upon the coal combine was prosecuted 
even to the Privy Council in England, where it was, of course, 
defeated by the very interests on trial. 

Most of the trades-unions of Australia have hitherto been affili- 
ated with the Political Labor League which selects the parlia- 
mentary candidates and frames the platform. The league has 
been practically captured by the small capitalists and employers, 
whose leaders are inveterate boodlers and men on the make. Sev- 
eral have signified their political successes by building palatial 
mansions in fashionable quarters and by aping the manners, 
customs, and style of the ordinary capitalist snobocracy. This 
is having a marked effect on many unionists, some of whom are 
rushing into anarchist and other anti-iDoIitical organizations in 
opposition to the P. L. L. A significant disposition on the joart 
of a more moderate section in the unions has been a recent 
attempt at the formation of a trade-union political party, which 
should exclude employers and small capitalists from parliamen- 
tary representation. Another fact, significant of the declining 
faith in the old P. L. L. leadei's, has been the opposition to the 
levy struck by unions to found a daily paper. 

The Australasian Socialist Party is opposed to eveiy form of 
militarism, and refuses to draw the color line. Its organ, The 
International Socialist, has fought both the capitalist and laboi'ite 
press on these matters, and a good deal of educational work 
has been done in union circles by its articles and consistent 

A false impression has been created abroad by the capitalist 
press, which constantly refers to the Labor Party as a Socialist 
Party. The Labor Party is not a Socialist Party. It is really 
a Liberal Party, and stands for much the same as the Liberal 
Party of Great Britain does. It stands for a big na^^ and for 
land taxation, just as Liberals like Lloyd-George and "Winston 
Churchill do. It stands for a loan policy and a huge charge 
for interest, just as both the old parties in Britain do. It fathered 


and adheres to conscription just as firmly as the National Service 
League does in Britain, and in this respect is more conservative 
than British Liberals are. It rejects the class struggle and claims 
to represent all classes, but never neglects to side with the em- 
ployers in industrial conflicts. Its objective is really state erpital- 
ism. There is not a member of the Socialist Party in any 
Parliament in the Commonwealth. Socialists who have contested 
elections as Socialists have always been defeated. . . . 

(See also " Militarism," " Compulsory Arbitration," " Immigra- 
tion," and " The Race Question.") 



(From The New Statesman, 1914) 

"In New Zealand, until recently, Liberal-Labor ideals 
were dominant, and there was lio effective independent 
labor force, such as existed in Australia. In 1912, under 
the guidance of an able American Socialist, Mr. W. T. 
Mills, the United Labor Party was formed, consisting of 
the affiliated trades-councils and Labor Party branches 
and unions, a close combination in effect of trade-union 
and 'reformist' Socialists, with an organization and a policy 
resembling that of our own Labor Party. But outside this 
stood, on the one hand, the syndicalistic Federation of 
Labor, covering a large section of the trade-unions, and, 
on the other, the Social Democratic Party, with an ex- 
treme anti-reformist policy, and friendly to the Federation 
of Labor. Last July, however, a conference was held, at 
which the Federation of Labor and the S. D. P. split the 
United Labor Party in twain, and carried with them the 
majority of its supporters, including Mr. Mills himself. 
The new party, with its double organization, the Federa- 
tion of Labor, pursuing a militant policj'^ on the industrial 
side, and the S, D. P. as its equally militant political com- 
plement, may be a powerful force in the future, though 
it is too early yet to pass any judgment on it. But, in any 
case, it is an interesting example of reversion from the 
British to the German model. ' ' 




(From articles in The New Statesman [1913] by Edward 
Tregear, for many years chief of the Labor Department of New 
Zealand and now president of the new party.) 

"It is fortunate for the purposes of this article that the 
world-wide attention given to New Zealand's 'progressive 
legislation' on social and economic subjects prevents the 
necessity of a prologue of a semi-historical character. 
There is no need to refer more than briefly to a period of 
more than four or five years ago. At that time the political 
position was, roughly, as follows: a Liberal Ministry, the 
successor (in an unbroken line) of the 'Liberal and Labor' 
Ministry of 20 years ago, occupied the seats of power. An 
Opposition Party, formed originally under the auspices of 
the squatter or large landholder class, had made a stubborn 
but unavailing fight against the Liberal ascendency 
through all those years, but latterly with growing hope be- 
cause its supporters saw that with the continued prosperity 
of the country they had gained many Liberal friends who, 
though still voting against the freeholder class for appear- 
ance' sake, were in their hearts eager for the distinction 
of being among the landed gentry and the 'squires' of the 
rural districts. The fate of these two political parties 
should have depended entirely on the way in which the 
workers (always the huge majority in a 'one man, one 
vote' community) threw their support elect orally, but 
practically the workers' vote was disregarded. Dissensions 
among themselves neutralized the weight of their influence, 
and it was usual among election agents to treat the labor 
vote as a negligible quantity. The worker voted, as in 
England, not for his mate but for his master. 

"The causes of dissension among the workers were, as 
elsewhere, many and intricate to dissect. Among these 


were ignorance of economics, distrust of one another's mo- 
tives, unforgiving remembrance of harsh words hastily 
spoken, haziness of schemes for improvement, different 
strata of wages and of craft-skill, and want of sympathy 
wrought by diversity of occupation. Added to these were 
local causes of misunderstanding, dissatisfaction with 
awards of the Arbitration Court, disagreement on the very 
principle of industrial arbitration, railings at the support 
or non-support of striking unions, personal irritation 
against particular ministers and officials, etc., etc. At last 
the unrest took actual form and materialized. The 
Miners' Federation took the wider name of the Federation 
of Labor, and invited other unions to join what was gen- 
erally considered to be a syndicalist organization frankly 
avowing that it stood for 'the Industrial Revolution.' On 
the other hand, the formation of the 'One Great Union' 
was met by the institution of 'The United Labor Party,' 
composed of the old craft-unions federated into trade- 
groups — such as building trades, transportation trades, 
etc. — with a central executive. The Federation of Labor 
gathered into its bosom the coal-miners, gold-miners, 
shearers, wharf-laborers, and many unions of unskilled 
labor, altogether about 10,000 strong. The old trade- 
councils with such unions of skilled trades as engineers, 
carpenters, plumbers, tailors, shop-assistants, etc., joined 
the United Labor Party, numbering about 30,000 souls. 
At first there was little but friendly rivalry between these 
two labor organizations, but they broke out into open war 
over the strike at the Waihi Gold Mine in the North 

"Just previous to this time, however, a general election 
had been held. The workers had slowly but surely become 
disaffected towards the continuous Liberal Ministry. The 
famous old 'Liberal and Labor Party' of 1890 that had 


swept the Tories into obscurity had gradually forgotten 
its origin, and its control had fallen with advancing years 
into the hands of wealthy and powerful commercial men. 
Labor considered that its interests were neglected and those 
of its antagonists fostered. Moreover, a new generation 
had arisen which knew nothing of the old grinding pressure 
of the Tory heel. So, partly from sheer love of change, 
partly in payment for neglect of their interests, thousands 
of worker votes were cast against the Liberal Government, 
with the effect that the Tories, who now called themselves 
— with tongue in cheek — the 'Reform Party,' by a chance 
found themselves with a number of members in the House 
of Representatives nearly equal to that of the Liberals. 
It was but by a chance, for less than 36 per cent of the 
votes actually cast at the polls were for Tory candidates, 
and so narrow was the margin of majority votes in some 
of the electorates that a paltry 300 votes, if distributed, 
would have secured the Liberals 12 more seats, thus giving 
them a clear working majority once more. The support 
of three Labor members kept the Liberals from utter defeat 
and in power (under the Hon. T. Mackenzie, now High Com- 
missioner for New Zealand in London) for a few months, 
but the 'ratting' of four members elected as Liberals 
completed the party's downfall, and allowed the pseudo 
'Reform' Government to take charge for the present of 
our political affairs. The Tories are in power, and prac- 
tically on the labor vote ! 

"While attention had been generally centered for some 
time on political matters, the Waihi strike had assumed 
a formidable aspect, on account not of the spreading of 
the trouble, but of its feverish excitement. For 17 weeks 
Waihi was the scene of picketings, union processions, hoot- 
ings, boycotts, and, without doubt, open intimidation of 
those persons opposed to the methods of the Federation of 


Labor. The trouble had arisen through the Waihi Miners' 
Union — some 1,300 strong — which had canceled its regis- 
tration under the Arbitration Act, attempting to retain in 
its membership a small body of mining engine-drivers that 
wished to break away and register under the act. So the 
miners sent an ultimatum to the manager of the mine, 
saying, in effect, that if these men were retained they 
would 'down tools.' It will be seen later on that this de- 
cision was based on a more important point of interest to 
all unionists than the mere announcement of such an arbi- 
trary demand seemed at first to warrant. At all events, 
the United Labor Party thought that it was simply a deter- 
mined attempt to injure a union which was trjdng to 
register under the Arbitration Act. As support of the 
principle of industrial arbitration was one of the tenets of 
the United Labor Party, that party not only refused 
financial aid to the strikers, but one of its branches, on 
being applied to by an Australian trade-council for advice, 
declined to advise Australians to subscribe to the strike 
funds. This caused intense bitterness, and the Labor Party 
was assailed in excited terms for its 'dog-in-the-manger' 
policy, and its want of fraternal sympathy when help was 

"The management of the Waihi mine had during the 
17 weeks of turmoil obtained some 'free labor' to work 
the mine ; it was very poor stuff, a few miners and a large 
assortment of 'toughs' and the riff-raff of a mining town. 
These, on attempting to open and work the mine, were 
provided with a daily escort of abusive men and screaming 
women. At last the Government moved in earnest to abate 
the scandal and supplied the police protection that should 
have been furnished weeks before. The strike leaders, to 
the number of about 40, were sent to jail in Auckland, 
not for what they had done, but because they would not 


find security that in future they would keep the peace. 
When these men were removed, the galled strike-breakers, 
under police protection, turned on their tormentors, and 
the disorder broke into open anarchy. The Miners' Union 
hall v/as stormed, one of its defenders killed by a policeman 
who had been fired at, the strikers were ordered out of 
"Waihi, hunted into the scrub on the hills, their families 
given 24 hours' notice to leave the place. All this was 
done by the strike-breakers, not by the police; so at last 
'order was restored.' . . . 

''The immense importance of these events was at once 
recognized by industrial unions and trade-unions all over 
the country. The United Labor Party sniffed danger on 
the wind and began to reconsider its position towards the 
Federation. The peril lay in a direction which may not 
be perceived at once outside New Zealand, so I will explain. 
The Arbitration Act had never been made compulsory; 
only those unions which decided to register were accepted ; 
and, afterwards, if a union was dissatisfied it could apply 
for cancellation and again have its freedom. Here, how- 
ever, were two powerful unions — Waihi and Huntly — 
which had renounced the act, endangered by the registra- 
tion of two small unions, for only registered unions were 
acknowledged by industrial law as existent. An agree- 
ment drawn up between the small union and its employers 
(the union probably fostered and 'owned' by the employ- 
ers) could fix prices, hours, etc., for all persons working 
at that occupation in the whole industrial district, so that 
the large majority of unionists were practically at the 
mercy of a few of their own recalcitrant members. To 
howl 'scab!' or 'blackleg!' at the small union is futile, 
and the liberty conceded when the Arbitration Act was 
established has melted into thin air. The command to 
unions now practically is : ' Arbitrate or die ! ' 


"A conference of trade-unions was called by the Federa- 
tion of Labor in January last. About a hundred delegates, 
representing 30,000 men, attended. Among these were 
representatives of unions belonging to the Federation and 
the United Labor Party, and of unions unaffiliated to either. 
After the Conference opened, the executives of the United 
Labor Party and of the Socialist Party were invited to 
send delegates; four delegates (of whom I was one) from 
these bodies attended. . . . The Conference resolved that, 
although no pledge binding on any union was to be made, 
each delegate should use his most strenuous efforts to 
induce his union to agree (1) to stop abuse and forget all 
cause of former offense, so that for six months there should 
be truce and alliance; (2) to send delegates to a congress 
in July, at which the present constitutions of the United 
Labor Party, the Federation of Labor, and the Socialist 
Party should be merged and one constitution to which all 
should agree — if possible — should be adopted. In order to 
have a common line of pre-discussion among unions, a 
unity committee was set up which drafted the sketch of a 
possible organization, its industrial side to be called the 
United Federation of Labor, its political side to be named 
the Social Democratic Party. The Conference dissolved, 
but the Unity Committee entered on a campaign to capture 
all unions before the session of the Congress in July. 

"The response was enthusiastic, and the efforts of the 
movers are meeting with hearty response. Organizers were 
out in all directions, speaking in public halls and at street 
corners, passing from town to town, distributing literature 
and forming committees. Trade-councils, craft-unions, 
federations of trades, affiliated and unaffiliated unions 
joined and sent in funds for propaganda work. Our ob- 
jective was plainly enough stated, as follows : ' The social- 
ization of the collectively used means of production, dis- 


tribution, and exchange.' The Tory Government of this 
Dominion recognizes fully and openly two things: first, 
that it has nothing to fear just now from the Liberal Party ; 
next, that it has much to fear from the Labor Party if 
the rift hitherto dividing our forces can be closed. One 
of the ministers lately said as much in a public speech — 
viz., that the only safety of the 'Reform Party was to keep 
the workers divided.' . . . 

' * On July 1 the Congress assembled. It consisted of 380 
delegates, representing over 50,000 persons; the largest 
labor congress ever held in Australia. The sittings occu- 
pied ten days, and resulted in the formation of ' The United 
Federation of Labor' and of 'The Social Democratic 
Party.' . . . 

' ' The principal issue of the deliberations was the forma- 
tion of two bodies, one exclusively industrial and the other 
entirely political, yet so interwoven and interdependent 
that they possess common interests and give mutual sup- 
port. The industrial body, the United Federation of 
Labor, consists of local trade-unions arranged in ten de- 
partments. One of these is. called the Building Trades 
Department. To this carpenters, masons, bricklayers, 
painters, etc., belong. Another is the Transportation 
Trades Department, including seamen, drivers, railway 
servants, tramway men, etc. In similar manner the whole 
industrial world is arranged and systematized. Each of 
these departments elects one member of the central ex- 
ecutive, but the president and chief officials are elected 
annually by direct vote of the whole Federation. The 
purpose of the Federation is boldly and unflinchingly 
stated. It is to 'bring about a co-operative commonwealth 
based upon industrial democracy.' "... 



(Adopted June, 1913) 

Socialization of the means of production, distribution, and 

Universal woman suffrage (instead of the present limited 

Proportional representation. 

The initiative and referendum. 

The recall of elected persons. 

The right to work. 

A legal minimum wage. 

A legal six-hour day. 

Voluntary (instead of compulsory) submission of the unions 
to the arbitration courts. 

Representation of the workingmen on the administrative bodies 
of all governmental industries. 

The building of commercial ships by the state. 

State insurance against death, accidents, sickness, and fires. 

Old-age pensions of £32 for all women of 50 and all men of 
00 who have lived 15 years in the country. 

Substitution for compulsory military service of voluntary 
organizations with democratic administration, which cannot be 
used in labor disputes. 


By Edward Tregear 

"The next general election in New Zealand, taking place 
at the end of this year [1914], promises scenes of un- 
precedented excitement. The cause of this political tur- 
moil is the determined effort of the wealthy Tory Party to 
keep in power and rule the democracy with what the 
victors call 'firmness' and the victims call 'a rod of iron.' 
Much of the rancor felt against the government arises from 

* The New Statesman, August, 8, 1914. 


the belief that its members have no right to the seats of 
power, having only gained that position by the 'ratting' 
of men who were elected to oppose them; also that the 
votes cast at the last general election for the Tories were 
scarcely one-third of the total votes polled. Not only this, 
but the autocratic suppression of the Wellington Wliarf 
strike by armed force and by vindictive sentences on the 
advocates of the strike caused intense feeling in the towns, 
while the general failure of the Tories to keep when in 
power the pledges they made before election strengthens 
the bitter opposition to their continuance of rule. They 
promised to reduce taxation ; the taxation per capita has 
greatly increased. They pledged themselves to curtail ap- 
plications to the British money market for loans ; they have 
borrowed more heavily than any of their predecessors. 
They engaged to give labor a 'square deal'; and the coun- 
try worker was 'sooled' on to the workers in the cities. 
By harsh use of their small majority in the House they 
have taken the control of the Civil Service from a Parlia- 
ment triennially elected, and handed it over for seven years 
to commissioners appointed by themselves. They have 
given the freehold tenure to men who acquired leases of 
land on the distinct understanding that the land was public 
property, and could not be parted with except on lease. 
They have partially destroyed the good understanding 
formerly existing with the British Admiralty by advocat- 
ing a separate navy consisting of a little cruiser with 
which to guard the Pacific, but nevertheless the scheme is 
pregnant with a promise of smothering taxation in the 
future in order to keep up in 'the race of armaments.' 
They have destroyed the second ballot in favor of the old 
rotten system of 'the first past the post' at elections, in the 
hope that the Liberals and the Labor men may split votes, 
and so let the Tory in. These are not a tenth part of the 


complaints which are brought against the existing govern- 
ment as the record of its short time of office. 

"Against these indictments must be considered the prob- 
able support of the rural districts to a party which has 
shown itself inimical at every point to the citizens of towns. 
Many of the farmers are now aware of the deception prac- 
ticed on them to induce the celebrated ' cowboy raid ' at the 
time of the strike last December, and know that they were 
deluded into helping the shipping ring to maintain high 
freights and low wages. Nevertheless, the farmers not only 
shipped their butter in time to receive the highest prices 
in the London market, but they also received a subsidy of 
£100,000 in 'wages' as special police called in to load their 
own goods on to the ocean liners. This extra donation 
from the pockets of the general taxpayer naturally put the 
recipients into good humor towards their Tory benefactors. 
Then there is also 'the country quota' — of which, perhaps, 
English people are unaware. It gives an advantage of 28 
per cent to a rural over an urban constituency. Thus 
3,000 men in the country have a representative, against 
over 4,000 in a town — Heaven knows why ; perhaps because 
in days when the country was sparsely settled and com- 
munication difficult the dwellers in the wilds needed an 
advantage that at present is unfair. It tells strongly in 
the composition of Parliament, and gives the farmer, whose 
isolation always tends towards reaction, a preference for 
Tory methods and undue weight in carrying them 
out. ..." 


Will the speaker explain the following, and state whether or 
not he will work and vote for their adoption if returned to 
Parliament : 


(1) The initiative and referendum on proper petition; 

(2) The right of recall of all elective officers; 

(3) Proportional representation, to apply to the whole 
dominion ; 

(4) Abolition of the country quota; 

(5) The repeal of the penal clauses of Massey's " Industrial 
Disputes Investigation Act," and the abolition of fines and im- 
prisonment for refusal to work or for giving support to those 
on strike; 

(6) The right of the workers to organize their own unions 
independent of employers, and to federate their own unions into 
a national federation of their own, just as the employers them- 
selves are already organized, and thus making bogus unions of 
labor impossible; 

(7) National provision of employment for all able-bodied un- 
employed, under standard conditions prevailing; 

(8) The restoration of the legal industrial rights taken from 
the workers by Massey's " Police Offenses Amendment Act, 1913," 
and so placing the New Zealand working-man on the same legal 
footing as is guaranteed to British workers ; 

(9) If you intend supporting any of these measures in the 
future, what have you done for any of them in the past? 


(From The Maoriland Worker, November 4, 1914) 
**The Social Democrats in "Wellington, convinced that 
in all political matters the workers must not be deprived 
by any committee of leaders of the right to select both con- 
stituencies and candidates, and therefore unable to act in 
conjunction with the newly formed Labor Representation 
Committee, have nevertheless considerably strengthened 
their own position by giving solid proof of their desire to 
avert any clash with other bodies claiming to represent 
labor. The withdrawal of the Social Democratic candidates 
in Wellington East and Wellington Central now leaves the 
field in those electorates, as well as in Wellington South 
and Wellington Suburbs, to the candidates of the L. R. C. 


The Social Democrats will fight the strongest of labor's 
enemies in the north. Although we have disagreed with 
the L, R. C.'s methods, we would urge every worker in the 
constituencies affected to rally to the support of the L. R. C. 
candidates. We want to see the Massey Government de- 
feated; we want to see every possible representative of 
labor returned to the new Parliament. All our differences 
may be discussed and thrashed out when the election is 
over. In the face of the common foe, our duty is working- 
class solidarity." 


(From The Maoriland Worker, December 16, 1914 
''Even if the Massey Party [the Tory or Governmental 
Party] should succeed in retaining office, it will not be by 
the wish of the people but in defiance of the majority of 
the people. The returns (exclusive of absentees and ex- 
peditionaries [sent to the war] ) give the following results: 

Labor 51.088 

Liberals 204,294 

Tories 226,795 

Anti-Tory majority 28,587 

"So that by a majority of nearly 30,000 the people of 
New Zealand have recorded their condemnation of Tory 
rule. Had the elections been decided under a true system 
of proportional representation there would have been no 
possibility of the Massey Party retaining office and the 
power to do further harm. 

"The North Island gave the Tories a majority, the figures: 
being : Tories, 134,409 ; Liberals, 110,697 ; Labor, 28,129. 
"The South Island was overwhelming in its defeat of the 


Tories, who received 92,386 votes as against 93,607 cast for 
the Liberals, and 22,959 for the Social Democratic and 
Labor candidates. 

"There were nine official candidates contesting seats 
under the auspices of the Social Democratic Party, and 
these polled an aggregate of 21,457, equal to 2,384 votes 
per candidate. 

"Two candidates were put forward under the joint aus- 
pices of the Social Democratic Party and the Dunedin 
Trades and Labor Council, and they polled a total of 7,677 

"In "Wellington the Labor Representation Committee 
had three candidates, who polled a combined Liberal and 
Labor vote of 10,167. 

' ' Other Labor candidates . . . indorsed by purely local 
Labor bodies polled 10,609 votes. 

' ' Four others who ran as ' Labor ' candidates without any 
organization behind them polled an aggregate of 1,178 

"An analysis of the Social Democratic and Labor voting 
gives the following results : 

Social Democratic Party 21,457 

Social Democratic Party and Dunedin Trades and 

Labor Council 7,677 

Welling-ton Labor Representation Committee (La- 
bor and Liberal vote) 10,167 

Other Labor candidates 10,609 

Independent Labor candidates 1,178 

Social Democratic and Labor total 51,088 

(See also "The General Strike.") 



Only about one-fourth of the population of the recently 
formed Commonwealth of South Africa is European, 
4,700,000 out of its 6,000,000 population being colored. As 
the colored, and especially the full-blooded Negroes, are 
barred by law from becoming miners or engineers, and are 
excluded by custom from most other skilled occupations, 
the labor movement has been almost exclusively among the 
white and the skilled. 


Soon after the formation of the new state from the 
Transvaal, the Orange Free State, Natal, and the Cape 
Colony, the Labor Party was founded. At the elections of 
1910 it elected 4 of the 121 members of Parliament (a num- 
ber later raised to 5) and secured a strong representation 
in the municipal governments of Johannesburg and 

Following the great railway and general strike of 1913, 
the party made some far more remarkable gains, portend- 
ing a strong Labor Party influence in the next Parliament. 
In a by-election in the Cape Colony, the Labor candidate 
secured 1,298 votes against a total vote of 811 for his 
two opponents. In the elections for the Provincial Council 
of the Cape Colony, Abdul Abdurahman, the Labor Party 



candidate, was elected by a large majority and the Labor 
vote increased throughout the colony. 

But the greatest victory was in the Transvaal, where 
the strike had centered. Here the Provincial Government 
fell completely into the hands of the Labor Party, a result 
all the more remarkable as little over half of the Council 
were voted upon at this election. 

The House is composed of 45 members, and there were 
25 to elect, of which number the Labor Party captured 23 
seats and the Conservatives 2. The popular vote was: 
Labor, 26,108 ; Conservative, 12,305 ; Nationalist, 3,029, and 
about 1,500 scattering. The figures show that some of the 
most prominent politicians and military officers who stood 
for election to the House suffered the most crushing defeat. 
In several instances laboring men were voted out of jail 
and into the legislature with large majorities. 

The dispatch in The Daily Citizen (London) attributed 
this sweeping victory to the following causes : 

The interference of the Randlords, the dragooning of the 
masses by Botha and Smuts, the terrible Peace Preserva- 
tion Bill, the desire to oust white labor and to substitute 
cheap, servile, and inefficient labor, and, last but far from 
least, the deportations. 

All of these factors were dealt with above in connection 
with the general strike of 1913 — which was as much a po- 
litical as an economic crisis. 

(See also Immigration and the Kace Question and 
Government Ownership.) 




The Socialist Party in China, as in Japan, is illegal. It 
is, therefore, impossible to give any accurate idea of its 
strength or recent development. Moreover, since the prac- 
tical abolition of constitutional government by Yuan Shi 
Kai, the Parliament has ceased to be a parliament in fact, 
and it is therefore impossible even to estimate the Social- 
ist vote. 

Nevertheless, during the brief existence of a constitu- 
tional Parliament, there were two movements in China that 
interest us : one, a definitely Socialistic Party, the other the 
movement headed by Sun Yat Sen, representing ideals and 
a program similar to those of the labor parties recognized 
as Socialistic by the International Socialist Congresses and 
the Reformist wings of the Socialist Parties in many 

We therefore give an authoritative account of these 
movements, especially because of the future importance of 




By Kannibelle in Japan, October 9, 1913 
(Published in The New York Call, June 28, 1914) 

[Dr. Sun, the first President of China, is regarded by 
himself and many others as a Socialist. His position is 
similar in many points to that of the Australian Labor 
Party or the Russian Labor group.] 

"A political revolution is a necessary initial step toward 
an economic and industrial revolution. ... In constitu- 
tional countries the revolution will be attained through 
education and evolution; these are bloodless revolu- 
tions. . . . 

"The trouble in China is economic. It is between the 
landless, starving millions and the landed interests, who, 
for fear of the ire of the people, have thrown themselves 
into the arms of the foreign capitalists. But after the 
establishment of a constitution and the overthrow of Yuan 
Shi Kai, the newest revolution, however, needs no 
blood. . . . 

"Some people have construed this secondary revolution 
as the inauguration of Socialism. . . . 

"Socialism in China is known as Shay kivei choo yee, 
which in English means 'the theory of humanitarianism. ' 
This policy, which defied the usurped authority of Yuan 
Shi Kai, is the policy of the southern patriots, who aim 
at equality, universal love, and peace. This policy de- 
mands mutual aid, the abolition of the old 'class' system, 
and pledges itself to guarantee the abolition of poverty 
as well as extreme wealth. . . . 

' ' Therefore, Socialism is the only method of serving our 
politico-economic problems. . . . 

"I know that industrialism is necessary in China; the 

CHINA 359 

march of civilization is too insistent to be stayed, and it 
must come to China. We must develop our resources, and 
the development of them provides food for serious thought. 
I want to avoid what seems to be the natural corollary of 
advanced modern capitalism — the unfair treatment of the 
toiler. And when I look around me for a solution I find 
none has yet been found by foreign countries. 

"In our virgin country there is opportunity to begin 
rightly, and I am convinced that we should strive in every 
way so to meet the advance of industrialism that the worst 
features of it should be prevented from ever taking root. 
Therefore, I advocate Socialism. And what do I mean by 
that? I shall work in the future, as I have been working 
in the past, for the introduction of a system whereby the 
creators of wealth, the labor, will be able to receive its fair 
share of the production, and this must be based upon a 
common ground of justice and fraternity. By this system 
production would be enhanced and increased to the 
maximum, with a minimum of poverty and labor slavery. 
All men would have their proportion of the products of 
the wealth now awaiting development at their hands ; they 
would reap the full fruit of their toil, secure favorable 
conditions of labor, and obtain opportunity in leisure to 
think of other things than the daily grind in the mill or 
the mine. They would be able to cultivate the mind, have 
adequate recreation, and procure the blessings which 
should be in all men's lives, but which, on the showing 
of other nations, are largely denied the workers and the 
poorer masses. 

"A chance would be given to all in the race for a liveli- 
hood in life, and the fullest measure of liberty should be 
provided. This is what I will fight to establish in China. 

"When I urge Socialism, or a Socialistic system of gov- 
ernment, I urge a system which will create for the people 


of China a direct interest in the vital affairs of their whole 
country ; consequently it will create a more virile and 
worthy patriotism. I want to see the great multitudes of 
my country participate in the results of the productiveness 
of the country that is their own, and this is what I mean 
by nationalism. 

"I also want to see* that the state derives the fullest 
value trom the sources of revenue which should be under 
its immediate control. I advocate state ownership of rail- 
ways, tramways, electric light power, gas-works, canals, 
and forests. I want to see royalties coming to the state 
from mines and revenues from the land. . . . 

"The revenue derived from all these avenues will con- 
stitute a sum greatly in excess of what will be needed for 
state administration, and the balance may be used in the 
necessary work of education and the more charitable and 
desirable objects, such as the old-age pension, the care of 
the lame and the blind. . . . 

"The Kuo Mang Tang, the Nationalist Party in China, 
is in charge of these various political principles ; its success 
or failure depends upon its members. It is powerful 
throughout the entire country, especially in the east and 
in the south. Its influence is extensive and is rich in 
resources. Numerous publications, banks, and other great 
industrial associations are supporting this party. Almost 
all the merchants who consider themselves enlightened are 
its members. 

"From America it derives its greatest moral and mental 
weapons. From America the student class brings liberal 
and enlightened economic and political ideas, while from 
his curio shop or from his laundry the Chinese Nationalist 
forwards his voluntary contribution for the enhancement 
of this 'theory of humanitarianism.' 

"Thirteen out of 22 provincial governors are its mem- 

CHINA 361 

bers. Thirteen or more local legislatures are therefore 
under its control. . . . Out of a total of 880 members in 
the new Parliament, 446 are Nationalists, while the po- 
litical unionists, the Yuan Shi Kai partisans, number 120 ; 
the rest are Republicans, under Li Yuan Hung; the Dem- 
ocrats, under Kang Liang, and the Independents. The 
Yuan Shi Kai regime at first tried to unite his faction 
with the rest of the factions in opposition to the Nation- 
alist Party. Those he could not persuade he bought over, 
while he succeeded in exterminating many members of the 
Nationalist Party in the Parliament until he attained the 
necessary majority to perpetuate himself in power. 

"These are the facts regarding the rebellion of the 
South and the East. No, there will never be true peace 
and tranquillity in China until the country's politico- 
economic problems are solved 'by and through selective 
judgment of the people of China. ' 

''My country is awakening and is awakening fast for 
one which has been in a stupor for many centuries. She 
will soon take her place and demand respect among the 
greatest nations of the world. Yuan Shi Kai may retard 
her progress, but he cannot thwart her steady advance 
indefinitely. ' ' 


By Kiang Kang Hu 

(In The Masses, October, 1914) 

' ' The forcible dissolution of the Socialist Party of China 
a year ago by order of the military dictator. Yuan Shi Kai, 
attracted little attention in the American press. It was a 
party that had grown up so swiftly that even the Socialists 
of America hardly knew of its existence, let alone of its 
power and influence. 


"Yet it was so large and powerful as to arouse the fear 
of the despot, Yuan Shi Kai, and to call for the most 
bloody methods of suppression. The mere facts will aston- 
ish anyone not acquainted with the nature of the Chinese 
people, as revealed by recent history. 

"In 1911 the first Socialist group was formed, and the 
first Socialist paper started. In three months, under the 
impetus of the First Revolution, the movement spread all 
over China, . , . Several Socialists had been elected to the 
Parliament of the newly established republic at Peking, 
and Socialist measures had been introduced.* There were 
in existence more than 50 Socialist newspapers. Socialist 
free public schools had been established, a Socialist trade- 
union organized, a woman's auxiliary started, and immense 
quantities of leaflets and pamphlets distributed. Most curi- 
ously Chinese of all, Socialist theatrical organizations were 
touring the country from end to end with Socialist plays. 

"In view of these facts, which only one who has seen 
the tremendous development of revolutionary ideas in 
China recently can well believe, it is not strange that the 
bloody hand of Yuan Shi Kai should have fallen on the 
Socialist movement. That the despot took the movement 
seriously is shown by the decree of dissolution which he 
issued August 8, 1913 : 

" The Socialist Party of China is using the cloak of a political 
party in order to conceal its evil designs. These demagogues 
would coerce the Government and flatter the people for their own 
evil ends. They are a danger to peace and law and order. They 
advocate violence and assassination. Therefore they have in- 
curred the displeasure not only of the Government but of the 

* Chang Chi, President of the first Senate, was a Socialist, educated 
in Paris and a friend of JaurSs. Ma Sn, Sun Yat Sun's secretary, editor 
of the daily China Republican the principal revolutionary newspaper 
( in English ), and many others were Socialists. 

CHINA 363 

people as well. Many letters have been received from officers 
of Tien Tsin, Peking, and elsewhere, warning us against Socialist 
plots and conspiracies. Many foreign anarchists have joined 
them in order to disturb the international peace. The Socialist 
Party of China is not like the Socialists of other countries, who 
merely study Socialism. If we do not put an end to their activi- 
ties a great outburst will follow. 

" Therefore we have issued this decree calling upon the pro- 
vincial governments and generals to dissolve the Socialist Party 
of China wlierever found, and to arrest the leaders. 

" Thus law and order can be preserved. 

" Yuan Shi Kai, 
" President of the Republic. 

*'The decree was carried out. Everywhere the branches 
of the Socialist Party were forcibly broken up by troops, 
their treasuries confiscated, and their leaders arrested and 
executed. Not only that, but the homes and places of busi- 
ness of those known to be members of the Socialist Party 
were looted or confiscated. 

''The national headquarters of the party alone escaped, 
being located in English Town, Shanghai, iiut the whole 
fabric of the organization was effectually, for the time 
being, destroyed. 

"In order to make it clear how such an organization as 
this could come to exist in China, it .s necessary to under- 
stand two things. One is that in China the propaganda of 
such doctrines as Republicanism and Revolutionism come 
with all the tremendous blasting power of the New. The 
Chinese have not been inoculated against these ideas. The 
Chinese mind in the first years of this century was virgin 

' ' The other thing to understand is that the sentiment of 
Communism is very strong in China, having lasted from 
primitive times in the form of various customs and institu- 
tions. And industrially China is still in the handicraft 


stage of production : Capitalism has not yet brought in the 
philosophy of individualism as it has in the Western world. 
So the idea of the common ownership of the means of pro- 
duction is no strange and curious conception to the people 
of China. They do not have to overcome a century of 
capitalist education before they can believe in Socialism. 

"In the last decade there had been scattered here and 
there in small groups throughout the Empire a few people 
who studied and advocated Humanitarianism, Communism, 
and Socialism. These groups, however, had no connection 
with each other, and their ideas were, for the most part, 
vague and misty. But they furnished, in a few cases, an 
impetus for the starting of radical newspapers. These 
newspapers had as their purpose the introduction of new 
ideas into the country. 

"Chief among the methods of introducing new ideas was 
the translation of Western authors. There were thus pub- 
lished in Chinese portions of the writings of Balzac and 
Victor Hugo, of Byron and Shelley, of Dickens and Mark 
Twain, of Goethe and Heine, and, later on, of Kropotkin, 
Marx, Engels, and Bebel. 

"The revolutionary ideas of these poets and writers 
served to educate the readers of these newspapers, and 
incidentally their editors. I, Kiang Kang Hu, was an 
editor of one of these papers, being at the same time in- 
structor in the University of Peking. Coming in contact 
with the doctrine of Socialism in this way, I became inter- 
ested, and finally converted. Especially did I admire and 
value the master-work of August Bebel, Woman Under 
Socialism. So profoundly did it influence me that I began 
an agitation for the establishment of schools for women — 
a thing which had been undreamed of before in China. 
The agitation was successful, and many schools were set up. 
"Full of this idea, I went in June, 1911, on a lecturing 

CHINA 365 

tour through the Che Kiang province, speaking on Woman 
and the Socialist Movement. This speech was issued in 
pamphlet form and had a tremendous circulation. Then 
the storm of official displeasure broke over me. The 
viceroy of the province ordered my arrest. My newspaper 
and pamphlet were confiscated, and with due solemnity 
publicly burned. I, disguised as a porter, escaped to Eng- 
lish Town, Shanghai, where I was safe from arrest. This 
was the first instance on record of the prosecution of a So- 
cialist in China. 

''It was also the beginning of the Socialist movement. 
On July 10, 1911, I organized a Socialist club in Shanghai, 
and on the same day the Socialist Star, the first Socialist 
paper in China, made its appearance. 

"This Socialist Club of Shanghai was originally organ- 
ized more to study Socialism than to propagate it. About 
50 men and women were members of the group, and ear- 
nestly they studied the Socialist classics. 

"But meanwhile, the First Revolution had started in 
the South, at Hankow. On November 3, 1911, Shanghai 
fell into the hands of the revolutionists. Then the club 
changed its name to the Socialist Party of China, and 
organizers were sent out into the southern provinces, where 
many new branches were organized. The Socialist Star 
became a daily, and had a wide circulation. The party 
membership increased with enormous rapidity. The Shi 
Hui Tong, or Socialist Party, was the first political party 
as such in China. On November 5, 1911, it met in its first 
annual convention at Shanghai and adopted a platform. 

"These Socialists, though not clear Marxists, having so 
recently been drawn into the movement, were nevertheless 
enthusiastically in earnest in their desire to establish a 
Socialist republic. They declared in their preamble for 
the common ownership of the land and the means of pro- 


duction, and then adopted the following eight planks as a 
working platform: 

" 1. The establishment of a Republican form of govern- 
ment. . . . 

" 2. The wiping out of all racial differences. . . . 

" 3. The abolition of all the remaining forms of feudal slavery 
and the establishment of the principle of equality before the 
law. . . . 

"4. The abolition of all hereditary estates. (China has a vast 
agricultural population, which suffers under absentee landlord- 
ism. . . . The agrarian question is one of the greatest problems 
in China to-day.) 

" 5. A free and universal school system, on co-educational 
lines, together with free text-books and the feeding of school 
childi'en. (The great bulk of the people of China cannot read 
and write. There are as yet no public schools.) . . . 

" 6. The abolition of all titles and estates. . . . 

" 7. The abolition of the army and navy. 

''This platform was used by the 30 Socialists elected to 
the first Parliament at Peking as their working program. 
They introduced into Parliament a measure for equal, 
direct, and secret suffrage ; a measure for the establish- 
ment of public schools; a measure for the abolition of all 
personal taxes. A measure to create an inheritance tax; 
a measure to abolish capital punishment ; a measure to 
reduce the standing army ; a measure to abolish girl 
slavery. None of these measures came up for a final vote, 
for before that time the Parliament had been dissolved by 
the soldiers of Yuan Shi Kai. 

' * The party had by this time over four hundred branches 
in China, each with its official teachers and readers — for a 
great part of the membership could not read. Agitators and 
organizers, most of them working without pay, were sent out 
broadcast. The party owned its own printing plant, and 
published three official papers, the Daily Socialist Star, the 

CHINA 367 

Weekly Socialist Bulletin, and the Monthly Official Bul- 
letin. Among the pamphlets and leaflets which were 
printed at this plant and sent out in great quantities, one 
of the most popular was 'The Communist Manifesto.' In 
addition, many branches printed their own local papers, 
and at one time there were over 50 of these in existence. 
Then, too, there were between 10 and 15 privately owned 
papers which supported the Socialist Party. The extreme 
left of the Young China Association leaned strongly toward 
the party, and the columns of many Young China papers 
were open to the Socialists. 

''The most important of the free public schools estab- 
lished by the party was situated at Nanking. This school 
had an attendance of over eight hundred. Free public 
kindergartens were also established by the party. 

'*A very curious part of the party organization was the 
Socialist Opera and Orchestra Company. In China, actors 
and musicians are very low caste. After the First Revolu- 
tion, many of these joined the party, and the party organ- 
ized them into several theatrical companies, which toured 
the country, playing symbolical Socialist plays, and prov- 
ing themselves an invaluable adjunct to the party propa- 

''The woman's organization had for its main work the 
furthering of the agitation for woman's suffrage. This 
organization had at one time close to one thousand members, 
and in addition many women belonged directly to the party 
itself. Schools for women were started by the party, and 
had a large attendance. 

"In addition, the party collected funds for the sufferers 
in the famine districts, and in other places where there 
was need. 

"Meanwhile, an anarchist movement had grown up in 
China. Some of the anarchists joined the Socialist Party 


and sought to foist their views upon it. These two hostile 
schools of thought came to open battle at the second annual 
convention of the party. Finding themselves in a hope- 
lessly small minority, the anarchists split off and formed 
the 'Pure Socialist Party.' . . . 

''The 'Pure Socialist Party' and other anarchist groups 
did much to discredit the Socialist Party of China. People 
confused one with the other, and when the reaction set in, 
the Government craftily used this confusion to further its 

"Already during the second year of its existence, the 
Socialist Party was meeting with bitter opposition, . . . 
not only from the Government, but also from the Repub- 
licans and the Constitutional Monarchists. Nevertheless, 
the party continued to grow. 

"But Yuan Shi Kai was now extending his power and 
strengthening his army, with the intention of making his 
despotism secure. One by one the Republicans were skill- 
fully worked out of place and power. Finally Song Chi 
Ying, one of the leaders of the Young China Association, 
who had raised a voice of suspicion against Yuan Shi Kai, 
was assassinated, and though there was no direct proof, it 
was believed by all that the assassin had been paid to do 
his work by Yuan Shi Kai. The despot in the meantime 
had borrowed great sums of money from the foreign banks, 
without consulting Parliament, as the constitution pro- 
vided, and was using this money to strengthen his posi- 

"All during the months of March and April, 1913, the 
Socialist Party held gigantic mass meetings all over the 
country, at which they exposed the duplicity of the Pro- 
visional President, Yuan Shi Kai. Manifestos were issued 
calling upon him to resign. Yuan Shi Kai now surrounded 
the House of Parliament with troops, gave 'presents' to 

CHINA 369 

many of the representatives, and was almost unanimously- 
elected President of China, 

"In July, 1913, the southern provinces, tardily awaken- 
ing to the danger of the situation, rose against Yuan Shi 
Kai. It was too late. The Second Revolution, after two 
months of sanguinary fighting in Shanghai, Nanking, and 
elsewhere, was drowned in blood. 

"Parliament was dissolved and new elections ordered. 
All pretense of political freedom disappeared. The Young 
China Association was outlawed. The decree against the 
Socialist Party was issued. Everywhere the heads of So- 
cialists and Republicans rolled in the dust. 

"The Socialist Party of China, as a party, has ceased to 
exist. Most of the leaders of the organization, those who 
have not paid with their heads for their loyalty to the 
working-class, have gone to foreign countries, where they 
are busy collecting money and laying plans for a new 
revolution. And in China itself the work is being carried 
on in secret by methods which cannot, at this time, be dis- 
cussed. Suffice it to say that several brave comrades have 
already lost their lives in the hazardous work. 

"But there will be a Third Revolution, and the Socialist 
Party will again take its place in the Red International." 





The International Socialist Congress at Zurich, in 1893, 
resolved, by a vote of 16 national parties against 2 (Spain 
and France), that all labor unions "which recognized the 
necessity of working-class organization and political ac- 
tion" should be admitted to the International Congresses. 
As a consequence, from this date (1893) the International 
movement has been based as much upon those labor unions 
which recognize the importance of independent political 
action along labor-union lines as upon the Socialist parties 
themselves. Moreover, the relative importance of this 
Labor Party, or political labor-union, tendency has in- 
creased from year to year. 

The International Socialist Congresses no longer claim 
to consist exclusively of Socialists. In 1907 and 1910, at 
Stuttgart and Copenhagen, the British Labor Party, which 
declares itself a non-Socialist political organization repre- 
senting the labor unions in politics, was admitted to the 
Congress and given five out of the ten votes allotted to 
British political organizations (the Independent Labor 
Party being given two votes, the Social Democratic 
Federation two votes, and the Fabian Society one 

But this is not all. Besides this indirect representation, 
the British labor unions were given a direct representation 
of 10 votes, thus receiving 15 out of the 20 votes allotted to 
Great Britain. Moreover, the Fabian Society and the Inde- 



pendent Labor Party are minority branches of the British 
Labor Party, At the Congress of Stuttgart a vote was 
refused to the Australian Socialist Party because it 
was not a member of the non-Socialist Labor Party 
of that country, — although the latter organization had 
not even asked for admission to the International 

In every country, with the exception of the United States 
and the British colonies, the relation between the Socialist 
parties (or the Labor parties, where there are any such) 
and the labor unions are most intimate. In some countries 
the Socialist parties seem in some measure to dominate the 
unions; in others the unions appear in some measure to 
dominate the political organization. 


All the Socialist parties of the world, with the exception 
of the French, and including even a minority of that party, 
were able to come to an agreement at the International 
Congress at Stuttgart as to their relation to the labor 
unions. This agreement was as follows : 

To enfranchise the proletariat completely from the bonds of 
intellectual, political, and economic serfdom, the political and 
economic struggle are alike necessary\ If the activity of the 
Socialist Party is exercised more especially in the domain of the 
political struggle of the proletariat, that of the unions displays 
itself in the domain of the economic struggle of the workers. 
The unions and the party have equally an important part to 
perform in the struggle for proletarian emancipation. Each of 
the two organizations has its distinct domain, defined by its nature 
and within whose borders it should enjoy independent control of 
its lines of action. But there is an ever-widening domain in the 
proletarian struggle of the classes in which they can only reap 
advantages by concerted action and by co-operation between the 
party and trade-unions. 


As a consequence, the proletarian struggle will be carried on 
more successfully and with more important results if the relations 
between the unions and the party are strengthened without in- 
fringing upon the necessary unity of the trade-unions. 

The Congi-ess declares that it is to the interest of the working- 
class in every country that close and permanent relations should 
be established between the unions and the party. 

It is the duty of the party and of the trade-unions to render 
moral support the one to the other, and to make use only of 
those means which may help forward the emancipation of the 
proletariat. When divergent opinions arise between the two 
organizations as to the suitableness of certain tactics, they should 
arrive at an agi'eement by discussion. 

The unions will not fully perform their duty in the struggle 
for the emancipation of the workers unless a thoroughly Socialist 
spirit inspires their policy. It is the duty of the party to help 
the unions in their work of raising the workers and of ameliorat- 
ing their social conditions. In its parliamentary action the party 
must vigorously support the demands of the unions. (Our 
italics. ) 


The resolution of the International Congress at Stuttgart 
(above quoted) was passed on the supposition that the 
labor unions could not work directly for Socialism, but 
only through the Socialist parties, which are presented as 
the political expression of labor unionism. The French 
Socialists give an even more important function to the 
labor unions ; they are to work directly for Socialism on 
the economic field, and their work is to be recognized by 
the Socialist parties as being quite as important as the 
work done by these parties on the political field. The 
French proposed to the Stuttgart Congress — in accord 
with this view — the resolution they had just passed at 
their national Congress at Nancy. Though this resolution 
did not receive the support of any of the other nations, it 


has since been steadily reaffirmed by the French. We 
therefore quote its chief passages: 

The Congress is convinced that the working-class will achieve 
its full emancipation only by the combined power of political 
action and labor-union action, extending even to the general 
strike, and by the conquest of the entire political power, to the 
end of the general expropriation of capitalism; 

It is convinced that this twofold action will be efficacious in 
proportion as the political organization and the economic organ- 
ization possess full autonomy, unionism having the same aim as 
Socialism : 

It believes that this fundamental agreement of political action 
and economic action of the working-class will necessarily assure, 
without confusion, or subordination, or defiance, a free co- 
operation between the two organizations. (Our italics.) 


The French Party Congress of 1912 again discussed the 
question of its relation to the labor unions at length, and 
ended by the reaffirmation of the position taken at Nancy, 
as above given. A summary of the 1912 discussion is of 
importance as showing the friendly attitude of the So- 
cialists towards ' ' Syndicalism ' ' in the country of its birth, 
and demonstrating that France furnishes no exception to 
the rule that Socialist parties and labor unions are every- 
where most intimately connected and interdependent. 

A general discussion was held concerning the attitude 
which the Socialist Party should adopt towards the Gen- 
eral Confederation of Labor. One faction, led by Ghes- 
quiere and Compere-Morel, attacked the labor-union con- 
federation, opposing its anti-militarist ideas, and declared 
that the majority of the Confederation were anarchists at 
heart in emphasizing sabotage, general strike, and violence 
in the economic war. 


Jaures took a middle ground in the matter, and, while 
deprecating violence, declared that violence was the sign 
of a weak organization and that the way to avoid it was 
to strengthen the organization. He emphasized the fact 
that the working-class movement must be carried on in 
the economic field as well as in the political. Landier and 
Dormoy defended the labor-union confederation, declared 
in favor of their anti-militaristic views, and asserted that 
the unions then comprised (1911) 365,000 members, an 
increase of 45,000. 

The following resolution was introduced by Compere- 
Morel, having been previously adopted by the Federation 
of Gard: 

Whereas, it is the duty of the Socialists to combat anything 
which tends to divide the proletariat against itself, notably in 
opposing its co-operative or its labor-union organization and 
action to its political or Socialist organization; 

Whereas, he is not a militant who can take seriously as a 
means of emancipation, sabotage, direct action, violence against 
scabs, etc., all of them methods which, by furnishing the cap- 
italist government with the pretext for worse repressions, can 
only check the progress and development of the unions and of 
the party; 

Whereas, the more the Socialists advocate labor-union action 
(the sole means of defense in a capitalist society), the more they 
owe it to their party and to themselves to rid themselves of those 
anarchists who, under cover and shelter of certain functions, 
with which they have not been invested by the unionists, never 
cease in their efforts to blacken and slander Socialism in its 
struggle for political power, to turn away the workers, and to 
leave them thus disarmed at the mercy of a capitalism, mistress 
both of capital and of the state; 

Whereas, the Socialists of France would be veritable traitors, 
if they ceased a single instant in their work of making the pi'o- 
letariat understand that the labor-union or co-operative action, 
which is taking place within the limits of the capitalist system 
or of the master class, cannot suffice in itself; that it is essen- 


tially defensive or reformatory, and that only political action, 
exercised by means of the ballot, or applied through insxirrection, 
is essentially revolutionary and capable of putting an end to the 

The Congress reaffirms the resolution of the Congress of Stutt- 
gart of 1907 relative to the relations between the Socialist Party 
and the labor unions which, passed by an overwhelming ma- 
jority, has become law in the international working-class 
movement. (Our italics.) 

After a stormy debate, in which Jaures and Vaillant 
spoke against the above resolution, it was referred back to 
the committee on resolutions. 

Dubreuilh reported in the name of the committee, and 
proposed for vote the following motion: 

The Congress recognizes that, in their intervention in the 
Chamber, Comrades Ghesquiere and Compere-Morel had no other 
purpose than to serve the interests of the working-class, and that 
it regards it as extremely useful that the attention of the workers 
was called to the perils of a propaganda of anti-parliamentarism 
and of systematic violence. 

It reaffirms the decisions taken on the subject of labor-union 
action and political action of the working-class at the National 
Congresses of Limoges, of Nancy, and of Toulouse, and at the 
International Congress of Stuttgart, and it invites all workers 
to draw therefrom inspiration for the necessary work of recon- 

This motion was then adopted almost unanimously. 


As it is impossible to understand the Socialist attitude 
towards the labor unions in the United States without a 
conception of the so-called Syndicalist movement or tend- 
ency, we print from the Socialist Campaign Book of 1912 
a definition of Syndicalism by John Spargo. 


1. Syndicalism 

John Spargo, in Syndicalism, Industrial Unionism, and 
Socialism, defines Syndicalism as follows : 

Syndicalism is a form of labor unionism which aims at the 
abolition of the capitalist system based upon the exploitation 
of the workers, and its replacement by a new social order free 
from class denomination and exploitation. Its distinctive prin- 
ciple as a practical movement is that these ends are to be 
attained by the direct action of the unions, without parlia- 
mentary action or the intervention of the state. The distinctive 
feature of its ideal is that in the new social order the political 
state will not exist, the only form of government being the admin- 
istration of industry directly by the workers themselves. 

The resolution on labor organizations adopted by the 
Socialist Convention of 1912 was in part as follows : 

Political organization and economic organization are alike 
necessary in the struggle for working-class emancipation. The 
most harmonious relations ought to exist between the two great 
forces of the working-class movement — the Socialist Party and 
the labor unions. . . . 

The Socialist Party therefore reaffirms the position it has 
always taken with regard to the movement of organized labor. 

1. That the party has neither the right nor the desire to inter- 
fere in any controversies ivhich may exist loiHiin the labor-union 
movement oxer questions of form of organization or technical 
methods of action in the industrial struggle, but trusts to the 
labor organizations themselves to solve these questions. 

2. That the Socialists call the attention of their brothers in 
the labor unions to the vital importance of the task of organizing 
the unorganized, especially the immigrants and the unskilled 
laborers, who stand in greatest need of organized protection and 
who will constitute a great menace to the progress and welfare 
of organized labor, if they remain neglected. The Socialist Party 
will ever be ready to co-operate with the labor unions in the 
task of organizing the unorganized workers, and urges all labor 
organizations, who have not already done so, to throw their doors 
wide open to the workers of their respective trades and industries, 


abolishing all onerous conditions of membership and artificial 
restrictions. In the face of the tremendous powers of the Amer- 
ican capitalists and their close industrial and political union the 
workers of this country can win their battles only by a strong 
class-consciousness and closely united organizations on the eco- 
nomic field, a powerful and militant party on the political field, 
and by joint attack of both on the common enemj^ 

3. That it is the duty of the party to give moral and material 
support to the labor organizations in all their defensive or ag- 
gressive struggles against capitalist oppression and exploitation, 
for the protection and extension of the rights of the wage- 
workers and the betterment of their material and social condition. 

4. That it is the duty of the members of the Socialist Party 
who are eligible to membership in the unions to join and he active 
in their respective labor organizations. (Our italics.) 

The point of view of the industrial unionist as opposed 
to the syndicalist is shown below in an extract from Eu- 
gene V. Debs, the strong advocate of political action. 

In The International Socialist Review, February, 1910, 
Debs says: 

I cannot close without appealing for both the industrial and 
political solidarity of the workers. 

I thoroughly believe in economic as well as political organiza- 
tion, in the industrial union, and in the Socialist Party. 

I am an industrial unionist because I am a Socialist, and a 
Socialist because I am an industrial unionist. 

I believe in making every effort within our power to promote 
industrial unionism among the workers and to have them all 
united in one economic organization. To accomplish this I would 
encourage industrial independent organization, especially among 
the millions w'ho have not yet been organized at all, and I would 
also encourage the " boring from within " for all that can be 
accomplished by the industi'ial unionists in the craft miions. 

I would have the Socialist Party recognize the historic necessity 
and inevitability of industrial imionism, and the industrial union 
reciprocally recognize the Socialist Party, and so declare in the 
respective preambles to their constitutions. 

The Socialist Party cannot he neutral on the union question. 
It is compelled to declare itself by the logic of evolution, and 


as a revolutionai-y party it cannot commit itself to the principles 
of reactionary unionism. Not only must the Socialist Party 
declare itself in favor of economic unionism, but the kind of 
unionism which alone can complement the revolutionary action 
of the workers on the political field. 

I am opposed under all circumstances to any party alliances 
or affiliations with reactionary trade-unions and to compromising 
tactics of every kind and form, excepting alone in event of some 
extreme emergency. 


While the industrial union is advocated by the majority 
of Socialists, the party has rejected, by convention and 
referendum, the weapons of ''sabotage," which form part 
of the tactics of Syndicalism. Before printing the resolu- 
tion on this subject, we quote from the Socialist Cam- 
paign Book the origin of the word "sabotage" and a 
criticism of the practice from the Socialist viewpoint. 

John Spargo, in Syndicalism, Industrial Unionism, and 
Socialism, published by B. W. Huebsch, says: 

The word " sabotage " was first used, I believe, in 1897 in a 
report of the Congress of the Confederation Generate de Travail, 
which met that year at Toulouse. Among the reports considered 
by the Congress was one dealing with the use of the boycott and 
the policy which had been adopted by the British unions of 
workers engaged in the trades connected with the ocean transport 
services, popularly known as Ca 'Canny. This report was written 
by Emile Pouget and Paul Delassale, both well-known anarchists. 
They wanted to find a French equivalent for the Scotch col- 
loquialism, Ca 'Canny, as the purpose of their report to the 
Congress was to elaborate the British policy known by that 
name and recommend it to the French unions. They "coined" 
the word sabotage. Never before had it been used. 

In France, especially in the rural districts, it has long been 
the custom to liken the slow and clumsy worker to one wearing 
wooden shoes, called "sabots." The phrase, travailler a coups 
de sabots, to work as one wearing wooden shoes, has long been 
used with reference to the slow and clumsy worker, the " old 


soldier," as they say in England. It is so used, I think, by 
Balzac. The idea is obvious; the peasant with heavy wooden 
shoes walks clumsily and slowly in comparison with those who 
wear shoes of leather. So the word " sabotage " — literally, 
" wooden shoeage " — was coined by Pouget and by him and 
Delassale used in their report to the Toulouse Congress of the 
Confederation Generale de Travail as a good translation of the 
British term Ca 'Canny. 

The Party Convention of 1912 adopted by a large ma- 
jority the following constitutional clause against sabotage 
(usually referred to in party discussion as Article II, 
Section 6) : 

Any member of the party who opposes political action or advo- 
cates crime, sabotage, or other methods of violence as a weapon 
of the working-class to aid in its emancipation shall be expelled 
from membership in the party. Political action shall be construed 
to mean participation in elections for public office and practical 
legislative and administrative work along the lines of the Social- 
ist Party platform. 

A considerable opposition was developed against this 
clause when the constitution was put to a referendum. 
Although passed, a substitute of entirely contrary import 
was also passed, but this latter action was declared void 
by the party authorities. 

The following declarations on the subject of sabotage 
and direct action, by William D. Haywood, in a speech at 
Cooper Union, New York, provoked wide criticism, and led 
to his recall (by referendum) from the National Executive 
Committee of the Socialist Party.* 

7 believe in direct action. If I wanted something done and 
could do it myself I wouldn't delegate that job to anybody. (Ap- 
plause.) That's the reason I believe in direct action. You are 
certain of it, and it isn't nearly so expensive. . . . 

* International Socialist Review, February, 1913. 


So you understand that we know the class struggle in the 
west. And realizmg, having contended with all the bitter thmg-s 
that we have been called upon to drink to the dregs, do you 
blame me when I say that I despise the law (tremendous ap- 
plause and shouts of " No! ") and I am not a law-abiding citizen? 
(Applause.) And more than that, no Socialist can be a law- 
abiding citizen. (Applause.) When we come together and are 
of a common mind, and the purpose of our minds is to over- 
throw the capitalist system, we become conspirators then against 
the United States Government. And certainly it is our purpose 
to abolish this government (applause) and establish in its place 
an industrial democracy. (Applause.) Now we haven't any hesi- 
tation in saying that that is our aim and purpose. Am I cor- 
rect? (Tremendous applause.) Am I absolutely correct when 
I state this as being the position of the Socialist Party not only 
of New York, but of the United States and of every nation of 
the world? . . . 

I am not going to take time to-night to describe to you the 
conditions in France, though I would like to do so, because I 
again want to justify direct action and sabotage. You have 
plenty of it over there. (Applause.) I don't know of anything 
that can be applied that will bring as much satisfaction to you, 
as much anguish to the boss as a little sabotage in the right 
place at the proper time. Find out what it means. It won't hurt 
you, and it will cripple the boss. 

Eugene V. Debs, although a firm advocate of industrial 
unionism and a former member of the I. W. W., represents 
the majority of the party in his opposition to sabotage 
and violence. We give portions of his article entitled 
"Sound Socialist Tactics," in the International Socialist 
Review for February, 1910, and also of a letter written by 
Debs to William English Walling, on the occasion of Hay- 
wood's recall from the National Executive Committee, re- 
ferred to above. In the Review he wrote : 

There has recently been some rather spirited discussion about 
a paragraph which appears in the pamphlet on " Industrial So- 


cialism," by TVilliam D. Haywood and Frank Bohn. The para- 
graph follows : 

" When the worker, either through experience or study of 
Socialism, comes to know this truth, he acts accordingly. He 
retains absolutely no respect for the property ' rights ' of the 
profit-takers. He will use any weapon which tuill win his fight. 
He knows that the present laws of property ai'e made by and 
for the capitalists. Therefore he does not hesitate to break 

The sentences which I have italicized provoked the controversy. 

"\Ye have here a matter of tactics upon which a number of 
comrades of ability and prominence have sharply disagreed. For 
my own part I believe the paragraph to be entirely sound. 

Certainly all Socialists, knowing how and to what end capitalist 
property " rights " are established, must hold such " rights " in 
contempt. In the Manifesto, Marx says: "The communist (So- 
cialist) revolution is the most radical rupture with traditional 
property relations; no wonder that its development involves the 
most radical ruptm-e with traditional ideas." 

As a revolutionist I can have no respect for capitalist property 
laws, nor the least scruple about violating them. I hold all such 
laws to have been enacted through chicanery, fraud, and cor- 
ruption, with the sole end in view of dispossessing, robbing, and 
enslaving the working-class. But this does not imply that I 
propose making an individual lawbreaker of myself and butting 
my head against the stone wall of existing property laws. That 
might be called force, but it would not be that. It would be 
mere weakness and folly. 

If I had the force to overthrow these despotic laics I would 
use it without an instant's hesitation or delay, but I haven't got 
it, and so I am law-abiding under protest — not from scruple — 
and bide my time. 

Here let me say that for the same reason I am^ opposed to 
sabotage and to " direct action." I have not a bit of use for 
the " propaganda of the deed." These are the tactics of anarchist 
individualists and not of Socialist coUectivists. They were devel- 
oped by and belong exclusively to our anarchist friends and 
accord perfectly with their philosophy. These and similar meas- 
ures are reactionary, not revolutionary, and they invariably have 
a demoralizing effect upon the following of those who practice 
them. If I believed in the doctrine of violence and destniction 


as party policy; if I regarded the class struggle as guerrilla war- 
fare, I would join the anarchists and practice as well as preach 
such tactics. 

It is not because these tactics involve the use of force that 
I am opposed to them, but because they do not. The physical 
forcist is the victim of his own boomerang. The blow he strikes 
reacts upon himself and his followers. The force that implies 
power is utterly lacking, and it can never be developed by such 

The foolish and misguided, zealots and fanatics, are quick 
to applaud and eager to employ such tactics, and the result is 
usually hurtful to themselves and to the cause they seek to 

There have been times in the past, and there are countries 
to-day where the frenzied deed of a glorious fanatic like old John 
Brown seems to have been inspired by Jehovah himself, but I 
am now dealing with the twentieth century and with the United 

There may be, too, acute situations arise and grave emergencies 
occur, with perhaps life at stake, when recourse to violence 
might be justified, but a gTcat body of organized workers, such 
as the Socialist movement, cannot predicate its tactical pro- 
cedure upon such exceptional instances. 

But my chief objection to all these measures is that they do 
violence to the class psychology of the workers and cannot be 
successfully inculcated as mass doctrine. The very nature of 
these tactics adapts them to guerrilla warfare, to the bomb planter, 
the midnight assassin ; and such warfare, in this country at least, 
plays directly into the hands of the enemy. 

Such tactics appeal to stealth and suspicion, and cannot make 
for solidarity. The very teaching of sneaking and surreptitious 
practices has a demoralizing effect and a tendency to place those 
who engage in them in the category of " Black Hand " agents, 
dynamiters, safe-blowers, hold-up men, burglars, thieves, and 

if sabotage and direct action, as I interpret them, were incor- 
porated in the tactics of the Socialist Party, it would at once 
be the signal for all the agents provocateurs and police spies in 
the country to join the party and get busy. Every solitary one 
of them would be a rabid " direct actionist," and every one would 
safely make his " get-away " and secure his reward, a la McPart- 


land, when anything was " pulled off " by their dupes, leaving 
them with their necks in the nooses. 

With the sanctioning of sabotage and similar practices the 
Socialist Party would stand responsible for the deed of every 
spy or madman, the seeds of strife would be subtly sown in the 
ranks, mutual suspicion would be aroused, and the party would 
soon be torn into warring factions to the despair of the betrayed 
workers and the delight of their triumphant masters. 

If sabotage or any other artifice of direct action could be 
successfully employed, it would be wholly unnecessary, as better 
results could be accomplished Avithout it. To the extent that the 
working-class has power based upon class-consciousness, force 
is unnecessary ; to the extent that power is lacking, force can 
only result in harm. 

I am opposed to any tactics which involve stealth, secrecy, 
intrigue, and necessitate acts of individual violence for their 

The work of the Socialist movement must all be done out in 
the broad open light of day. Nothing can be done by stealth that 
can be of any advantage to it in this country. . , . 

Its tactics alone have prevented the growth of the Industrial 
Workers of the World. Its principles of industrial unionism are 
sound, but its tactics are not. Sabotage repels the American 
worker. He is ready for the industrial union, but he is opposed 
to the " propaganda of the deed," and as long as the I. W. W. 
adheres to its present tactics and ignores political action, or 
treats it with contempt by advising the workers to " strike at the 
ballot-box with an ax," they will regard it as an anarchist organ- 
ization, and it will never be more than a small fraction of the 
labor movement. 

The sound education of the workers and their thorough organ- 
ization, both economic and political, on the basis of the class 
struggle, must precede their emancipation. Without such educa- 
tion and organization they can make no substantial progress, and 
they will be robbed of the fruits of any temporary victory they 
may achieve, as they have been through all the centuries of the 

For one, I hope to see the Socialist Party place itself squarely 
on record at the coming national convention against sabotage 
and every other form of violence and destructiveness suggested 
by what is known as "direct action." 


It occurs to me that the Socialist Party ought to have a stand- 
ing committee on tactics. The art or science of proletarian party 
tactics might well enlist the serious consideration of our clearest 
thinkers and most practical propagandists. 

To return for a moment to the paragraph above quoted from 
the pamphlet of Haywood and Bohn. I agree with them that 
in their fight against capitalism the workers have a right to 
use any weapon that will help them to win. It should not be 
necessary to say that this does not mean the blackjack, the dirk, 
the lead-pipe, or the sawed-off shotgun. The use of these weapons 
does not help the workers to win, but to lose, and it would be 
ridiculous to assume that they were in the minds of the authors 
when they penned that paragraph. 

The sentence as it reads is sound. It speaks for itself and 
requires no apology. The workers will use any weapon which 
will help them win their fight. 

The most powerful and the all-suflficient weapons are the mdus- 
trial union and the Socialist Party, and they are not going to 
commit suicide by discarding these and resorting to the slung- 
shot, the dagger, and the dynamite bomb. (Our italics.) 

Letter to William English Walling, March 5, 1913: 

I regretted to see Haywood's recall, but it was inevitable. He 
brought it on himself. I should not have put Section 6 in the 
constitution, but it is there, and put there by the party, and Hay- 
wood deliberately violated it. Is this not the fact? 

The question of what sabotage means has nothing to do with 
the matter. Its advocates have shown that it means anything, 
everything, or nothing at all. If I had been in HajT\'ood's place, 
and had felt bound to advocate sabotage as he did, I would have 
withdrawn from the party to do it. If I had deliberately violated 
the constitution I would have expected to be called to account 
for it. Else why a constitution at all? 

I am not now judging Haywood, I am answering your question. 
I am free to confess, however, judging from some of the reports 
I have seen, that Haywood has been talking a good deal more 
like an anarchist than a Socialist. 

The I. W. W. for which Hajnvood stands and speaks is an 
anarchist organization in all except in name, and this is the 
cause of all the trouble. Anarchism and Socialism have never 


mixed and never will. The I. W. W. has treated the Socialist 
Party most indecently, to put it very mildly. When it gets into 
trouble it frantically appeals to the Socialist Party for aid, which 
has always been freely rendered, and after it is all over the 
L W. W. kicks the Socialist Party in the face. That is the 
case put in plain words, and the Socialist Party has had enough 
of that sort of business, and I don't blame them a bit. There are 
I. W. W. anarchists who are in the Socialist Party for no other 
purpose than to disrupt it, and the Socialist Party is right in 
taking a decided stand against them. . . , (Our italics.) 

(Signed) E. V. Debs. 
March 5, 1913. 

Debs, however, stated his opposition to Article II, Sec- 
tion 6, in "A Plea for Solidarity," published in the Inter- 
national Socialist Review for March, 1914. 

I want to say that, in my opinion, section six of article two 
ought to be stricken from the Socialist Party's constitution. I 
have not changed my opinion in regard to sabotage, but I am 
opposed to restricting free speech under any pretense whatso- 
ever, and quite as decidedly opposed to our party seeking favor 
in bourgeois eyes by protesting that it does not countenance vio- 
lence and is not a criminal organization. 

I believe our party attitude toward sabotage is right, and this 
attitude is reflected in its propaganda and need not be enforced 
by constitutional penalties of expulsion. If there is anything 
in sabotage we should know it, and free discussion will bring it 
out; if there is nothing in it we need not fear it, and even if it 
is lawless and hurtful we are not called upon to penalize it any 
more than we are theft or any other crime. 

(See also "The General Strike," "Compulsory Arbi^ 
tration," "Labor Legislation.") 


A FULL selection of documents illustrating the Socialist 
attitude on the use of the general strike as a means of pre- 
venting war will be found in The Socialists and the War. 

The general strike as a means of political struggle in 
extreme cases has not only been a subject of continued 
Socialist controversy, it has been put into actual practice 
in a number of instances in the past decade. All the 
more important of the earlier general strikes are mentioned 
in the course of the discussion at the German Congress of 
1913, which we summarize at considerable length, but 
several of these strikes fall in the period under discussion 
in the present volume, 1912-1915 : the general strikes in 
Belgium, Italy, Russia, and New Zealand, each of which 
we describe from authoritative sources — with the exception 
of the Russian strike of 1914, to which we give a short 
reference only, since it is described at length in the above- 
mentioned volume. 


On the question of the general strike, the International 
Congress at London (1896) voted a resolution of which the 
following are the essential points : 

The Congress is of the opinion that strikes and boycotts are 
necessary means for realizing the ends of the working-class, but 
it does not believe in the present possibility of an international 
general strike; what is necessary is the labor-union organization 



of the masses, since the extension of strikes to entire industries 
and entire counti-ies depends on the extension of organization. 

To make an international labor-union action possible, a central 
labor-union committee must be created in each country. 

From this resolution there were soon to arise the Inter- 
national Labor Union "Secretariat" and Congresses, thus 
constituted by agreement with the International Socialist 
movement, the center of which is now in the Labor Union 
Secretariat at Berlin. 


The following note by Longuet on the general strike dis- 
cussion at the International Congress of Amsterdam (1904) 
is quoted from the Encyclopedie Socialiste: 

The motion presented by Roland Hoist in the name of the com- 
mittee of the Congress showed that the International had changed 
its attitude in this question since the discussion at London in 
1896. It rejected the so-called conception of the general strike, 
but it also declared : " The increase of the power of the working- 
class organization, the strengthening of their unity, while develop- 
ing their class organizations, at the same time create the condi- 
tions necessary for the success of the mass strike, the day when 
the latter may be found neeessai-y or useful." 

To this resolution, a German delegate. Dr. Friedberg, single- 
handed, opposed the anti-parliamentarian conception. The reso- 
lution of the committee was also criticised by Aristide Briand 
(prime minister of France), on the gi-ound that it was too mod- 
erate. Mr. Briand brought into the discussion the hypothesis of 
the possible suppression of universal suffrage, and asked, in the 
case of such suppression, what weapon the Congress would offer 
to the parliamentarian to take its place. 


At Stuttgart (1907) Kautsky, presenting the position of 
the majority of the Congress, made the following criticism 


of the French advocacy of the general strike as a weapon 
of the labor-union movement (see previous Chapter) : 

The resolution of the French comrades is unacceptable to us. 
First, because it presents a general strike as a means of acquir- 
ing power in the labor-union struggle, while the vjrerman com- 
rades regard it as only a fundamental weapon ir the political 
struggle. . . . The general strike must not be i^ yarded as a 
means of economic struggle. 



Statement of Emile Vanderveld". 


(from The Metropolitan Magazirai.) 

"The division of parties should correspond with vivid 
accuracy to the division of classes. On the one side . . . 
stands a Conservative Party with strongly Clerical tend- 
encies. Over against it is arrayed the Socialist or Labor 
Party, championing the whole mass of the working-people. 
Between them is a Liberal Party, which is numerically 
weak and would wield but little influence if the system 
of plural voting — one vote for the poor man, three for 
the rich — did not artificially swell its representation in 

''At the close of the year 1911 it looked as if this Liberal 
Party was going to have its day. The Clericals had then 
a clear majority of only six votes in the Chamber of Repre- 
sentatives. They had tried to carry through an educa- 
tional bill, commonly known as the Convent Law, whose 
purpose was to give to the parochial schools, controlled by 
the clergj'-, the same support from the national treasury 
as is given to the public common schools. Public opinion 
was aroused. The Liberals and the Socialists, declaring a 
truce on all other questions which divided them, joined 
forces against the common enemy. 


"Together with opposition to the Convent Law, they 
put in the fo;,refront of their campaign platform a demand 
for the abolition of plural voting and a revision of the 
constitution to provide for universal suffrage, pure and 
simple. ^ 

' ' They coiikpelled the Government to dissolve Parliament. 
It seemed that, after 30 years of power, the Conservative 
Party was about to fall before a coalition majority of 
Liberals and ^jocialists. . . . 

"But one imr.iortant point had been overlooked — the con- 
servative elenumts which formed the 'right wing' of the 
Liberal Party 

' ' From th^' moment when the Brussels financiers, the 
great industrial capitalists of Liege and Charleroi, the rich 
merchants of Antwerp, and the textile manufacturers of 
Ghent faced the prospect, if not actually of Socialists in 
the Ministry, ... at any rate of an administration which 
could not stand without the votes of the Socialists in Par- 
liament, and which, in order to keep their support, would 
have to carry out such reforms as the abolition of plural 
voting and the establishment of a progressive income tax — 
from that moment they deserted their own party and voted 
in mass for the government candidates. 

"Instead of destroying the Clerical majority, the elec- 
tion of June 2, 1912, actually strengthened it. The new 
Chamber of Representatives contained 101 Catholic Con- 
servatives, with a combined opposition of only 85 members 
— 44 Liberals and Radicals, 2 Christian Democrats, and 39 
Socialists. ' ' 



(June 30, 1912) 
a. From the Speech of Vandervelde 

We had gone to the battle in a flush of joyous hope. We 
hoped, and a number of our adversaries feared, the annihilation 
of the clerical majority. But we had not sufficiently taken into 
account fraud, corruption, intimidation, exploitation of ignorance, 
or fanaticism. Above all, we had not taken into account suffi- 
ciently the class egoism of a part of the middle class. The 
clerical majority has not been destroyed. It has, on the con- 
trary, been sensibly reinforced. But ... it has not been re- 
inforced at our expense. If the day of the 2d of June has been 
less a clerical victory than a clerico-conservative victory, it has 
not been a Socialist defeat. We have gained seats. . . . 

It is not Socialism, directly, which has experienced a defeat: 
it is the Liberal Party, abandoned by a part of its followers, at 
the moment when, with keen foresight, it was making an effort 
and because it was making this effort, to defend public education 
and to put itself in line with democracy. 

The defeat of the Liberal Party has been, at the same time, 
a defeat for democracy, and a defeat, at least apparently, for 
universal suffrage. 

All our organizations, all our federations declare themselves in 
principle for a general strike. 


(Congress of March, 1913) 
a. Report of Anseele 

The committee has asked me to propose to you the proclama- 
tion of the strike for the 14th of April, according to the spirit 
of the Congress of June 30 (1912). Several propositions have 
been submitted to the committee: 

(1) No strike. The partisans of that opinion said: The strike 
is useless and dangerous. Since the commission conceded by Mr. 
de Broquerrille will inevitably have to enlarge its scope, let us 
hesitate to turn against us public sentiment and thus injure our 


To these arguments we answered that, from the parliamentary 
point of view, we have obtained nothing more than at the time 
of the proclamation of the principle of the strike on the 30th 
of June. 

If really there is progress in public opinion, it is the threat 
of the strike, it is the action of the working-class which has 
directed public opinion in favor of the revision. If you draw 
back, public opinion will also subside and become indifferent. 
The commission, if we remain inactive, will follow out the ideas 
of M. de Brocqueville. Some papers have said : Certainly, the 
commission will enlarge its sphere of study. But others, much 
more numerous, hold to the contrary. We have no official an- 
nouncement from the Government. 

We conceive the movement in this way: a strike for uni- 
versal suffrage. We certainly know that it will not be able to 
give us universal suffrage during its duration, and that this 
movement will have to be followed by energetic and persevering 
action, perhaps by other strikes. No; the question is not of a 
strike of exhaustion. It was conceived before the 30th of June. 
We will not exhaust all our union cash for a political strike; 
this is what we have repeated from the beginning. We must 
keep our resources for the struggle against the bosses. When will 
the strike finish? No one knows. Facts will decide it and 
decisions will have to be taken according to circiunstances. Fu- 
ture events will decide our future tactics. Will it be a revolu- 
tionary strike? No. It will be calm and peaceful. The con- 
clusion of the plan of action that I am going to give shows it 
clearly. We want the strike to keep the character that the Con- 
gress of June 30 gave it. 

And if, in some regions, the movement assumed another form, 
the great committee would resign. Is that clear? The strike 
must end as we want it to begin. If in the space of 24 hours 
hundreds of thousands of workers quit the shops and factories, 
it will be necessary that the proletarian army return to work, on 
a signal, with the same unity, with the same impulse, with the 
same spirit of discipline. 

Why this general strike ? For a quadruple object : to obtain 
universal suffrage, to keep unity among the Belgian Socialist 
j)roletariat, to maintain the confidence of the working-class in 


themselves, to keep unduUed the weapon of the general strike for 
future struggles. 

You must be partisans of the general strike for still another 
reason. We are reproached because our unions occupy them- 
selves with politics. What has polities brought to us? On the 
14th of April there will be no more Flemish and Walloon; but 
only one nation; no more distinction between trades and cor- 
porations; the spirit of race and corporations will give place to 
the spirit of class, which is the pledge for the regeneration of our 

b. Speech of Vandervelde on the Strike 

Citizens, Huysmans spoke in the name of a minority that 
seems vanquished in advance. I agree completely with him. 

I could argue against Destree and Anseele now only by fur- 
nishing arguments to the enemy, and this I will not do. To try 
to go against the current which is in favor of the strike would 
be absolutely vain. It would be just as sensible to try to swim 
against the current of the rapids of the Congo or Niagara. The 
fact that we favored the tactics of conciliation was not a matter 
of sentiment but of reason. But those tactics could have suc- 
ceeded only if we, the militants, had been unanimous in proposing 
them to the proletarians. And still it would have been hard 
to make them triumph, for we should have struck against the 
tenacious and violent will-power of the working-class in imposing 
on themselves weeks of suffering. 

What has made, in fact, the general strike inevitable is not 
the will of Anseele and Destree; but the bad will, the attitude 
of the Government and of those behind it. The clerical papers 
have had for you nothing but sarcasms and mockeries; they have 
amused us by semi-promises; they have had nothing but words 
of hatred and pride. It is said : " Who sows the wmd, harvests 
the tempest." Well, the tempest is there; so much the worse 
for them! And now I have only one more word to say. The 
six months I have just lived through will count among the hardest 
and most painful of my political life. I have done, during six 
months, all that was humanly and superhumanly possible to 
avoid the general strike, for the working-class and for the 


I ask you one thing with Huysmans, de Brouckere, Leken, 
Bertrand, Wauters, Denis, and others : we are going to be beaten ; 
but we ask that, after having beaten us, you give us room among 
you, so that we can fight together against the common enemy! 

c. Resolution Adopted 

Whereas, the extraordinary Congi'ess of the 30th of June, 
1912, decided to emj^loy the weapon of the general strike in ease 
all other means to bring about the revision of the constitution 
will have failed, and this state of things seems to have been 
reached, the national committee, in its sitting of the 12th of 
February, fixed the 14th of April for the date of the general 
strike ; 

Whereas, upon the suggestion of the mayors of the principal 
cities of the kingdom, in order to allow a supreme effort of con- 
ciliation, the committee in its sitting of the Gth of Max'ch, with- 
drew the preceding decision; 

Whereas, it was evident from the declarations of the leader 
of the Government that, in spite of this decision, and in spite 
of the authorization of the mayors to give to the representatives 
of the Labor Party the contrary hope, the Government has refused 
to study the problem of revision ; 

Whereas, under those conditions, we found ourselves in the 
same situation as before the 6th of March; 

Whereas, it is necessary to notice the immense progress that 
the cause of revision has lately made in public opinion so that 
M. de Brocqueville himself is obliged to confess that some 
members of the extreme Conservatives are no longer hostile to 
revision ; 

Whereas, this progress is due to the indefatigable action of 
the Labor Party, and will continue only if that action continues 
itself with discipline and firmness; 

Whereas, at the present time, no other mode of action, except 
the general strike, is proposed, and that the decisions of June 30, 
1912. and February 12, 1913, have to be maintained ; the Congress 
of the Labor Party 

Resolves, that it Avould have willingly ratified the decision of 
the national commission if the Government had made the step 
toward compromise which it had allowed the mayors to hope 


But with this refusal to study the question of the electoral 
problem in its entirety, a refusal imposed on the Government 
by a minority in revolt against the national sentiment, it is 
necessary to affirm by energetic action the loyalty of the Labor 
Party to universal suffrage; in consequence of which it has de- 
cided to begin the general strike upon the 14th of April. 

It declares solemnly that this legal manifestation, made in order 
to show respect to the will of the nation, must remain legal 
and peaceful and disown in advance any attempt to give it any 
other character. It decides finally that it will be the task of an 
extraordinary congress of the Labor Party to decide when the 
strike shall end. 


(Congress of April 24, 1913) 
a. Speech of Vandervelde 

On the 23d of March last, I disagreed with the working-class 
about the advisability of the strike. But I do not hesitate to-day 
to say to the workers : " It is you who were right in having 
confidence; it is you who have managed so that the strike was 
peaceful, formidable, irresistible. For the strike has been irre- 
sistible. Did you expect universal suffrage from it immediately, 
immediate revision? Anseele, Destree, on the 23d of March, 
declared to the contrary ; the only thing sought after was that 
the whole question of the electoral problem should be studied. 
This examination of the electoral problem, did you obtain that? 
Some people doubt it : one of them wrote to me : " One doubts. 
Are not those only vague promises? Will the commission be 
established ? " It will be in a few days. We will sit in it on the 
basis of the proportional representation of the three great parties, 
and there we will proceed according to the mandate prescribed by 
the plan of action of Masson. 

Let us now summarize the parliamentary point of view. The 
right and left of the Congress pulled the ropes in two opposite 
directions. On one side the power of gold, of the army, and 
of the priests; in a word, the whole reaction, all the "reasons 
of state," a government which will not yield for fear of having 
to capitulate. On the other side, public opinion, the working- 
class on strike, with its irresistible power. Both sides pulled 
hard, and it is ours which has vanquished. What does it matter 


if onr adversaries affirm that they have gained the victory? 
They pretend that M. de Bi'ocqueville had already proposed what 
later was accepted. But not in terms clear enough to be under- 
stood by the workingmen. 

What is true is that M. de Brocqueville thought what he had 
not yet said, what he would have liked to say, but what he could 
not say freely and clearly. . . . 

But the political results, what we have gained in public opinion, 
is much more important. They imagined, on the 2d of June, that 
we were crushed. But the working-class arose as a single man 
and used the virgin weapon of the general strike. And even 
before the strike was called, through the necessary preparation 
for that strike, we had already brought it about that the revision 
which was exacted by the Socialists and admitted by the Liberals, 
is to-day accepted by the Independents, and by a notable number 
of the Catholic Party, those who had to do with the Christian- 
Democrats. And we would be very difficult to please if we were 
not satisfied with such a result. 

But above all we have obtained results from the Socialistic 
point of view, that should swell our hearts with pride. Before 
the 2d of June we were strong, and at the polls we saw the pro- 
gressive accession of the proletariat to the Labor Party. But since 
the 2d of June, since our unceasing work for the organization 
of the general strike, don't you feel, comrades, as if you had 
grown morally, as if the working-class could walk more erect 
than ever? M. Woeste said : " I do not believe in the general 
strike. Either it will be peaceful and insignificant, or it will 
be formidable and not peaceful." 

Well! The events have given the lie to these words. The 
strike has been peaceful ; we have had less lawsuits in our indus- 
trial regions than generally, and the gendarmes who had been 
prepared for a massacre of the people have had nothing to do. 
And do not say that the strike, although peaceful, was not 
formidable. You can go and ask the shipowners of Antwerp 
about that. 


a. The Special Correspondent of Vorwaerts (Berlin) 

"When on the first day of the strike, at a given signal, 
an army of 300,000 left the factories, shops, pits, quarries, 


glass-works, etc., it was branded as an undeniable fiasco. 
This fiasco grew in the measure in which the strikers in- 
creased to 400,000, perhaps to 450,000. The iron skeletons 
of the cranes in the port of Antwerp were inactive, fac- 
tories had to be closed because the raw material was used 
up. Coal and iron, the heart and brain of industry, re- 
mained a dead mass. The general strike had crippled 
industry from Verviers to Tournai. But the Clerical press 
— especially the Brussels Tiventietli Century — wrote every 
day that the masses of the workers were not taken in by 
the 'bluff' of the general strike. What did it matter that 
in answer to the ' bluff ' two-thirds of the industrial workers 
of Belgium had responded? 

"And further: Was it really a 'general' strike? Surely 
not, said the clergy. For we had fresh bread every morn- 
ing, trolleys and railroads were running, warehouses were 
open, and work was done in the bureaus of the Ministry. 
Right. But what was the object of the workers? Did 
they wish to spoil the breakfast of the people, or prevent 
the ladies of the bourgeoisie from buying gloves and veils, 
or to drive M. von Brocqueville [the Premier] to despair 
by forcing him to be idle? The strike was directed, — as 
all the world knows — not against the public, not against 
the employers, but exclusively against the Government. It 
was not meant to induce the cobbler of X Street and the 
baker of the avenue to stop work, but to call out only 
the workers of large industries. Did they strike ? At the 
time we brought forward the figures of the strikers in the 
coal region and the metal industry, where all the large 
and the largest works — for instance, Coekerill — had to shut 
down. And, further: textile-workers, stone masons, glass- 
blowers — from the celebrated works of Val St. Lamberg — 
joined the strike. It was a veritable triumph. At last 
the still lingering diamond-cutters of Antwerp stopped 


work. But more than this : the strike in its course induced 
hundreds and thousands of workers of smaller industries 
to join, and extended to branches which even the optimists 
of the strike movement had not hoped to influence. Es- 
pecially Brussels showed unexpected results in this direc- 
tion, and the strike in the capital was a complete success — 
in spite of all the silly lies of the clergy. In Brussels not 
only the factories of the suburbs struck, but also a number 
of smaller shops, the workers of which, carried away by 
the force of the strike, did not wish to remain inactive 
in the struggle for the rights of all. Furriers, coach- 
builders, ladies' tailors, bronze-workers, printers, mechan- 
ics, etc., etc., all trades were represented, some were 
out in full. And the town workers? Only a part could 
prove its solidarity, but we know that only a very lit- 
tle urging would have been necessary to augment the 

"The official statistics show the following figures. Six 
hundred eighty-two thousand industrial workers took part 
in the strike. From this number we have to deduct the 
100,000 women, who, not having suffrage, cannot partici- 
pate in an agitation for the abolition of the plural vote. 
The figures given by the employers' statistics were 
400,000 strikers. This result scarcely indicates a fiasco. 
If, on the other hand, we use as a basis the figures of the 
Twentieth Century, which gives 773,260 industrial workers, 
we have to deduct 175,753 women workers, of which number 
65,438 work at home, there remain 598,260 industrial 
workers, of which number 36,000 again work at home. 
This result again takes us back to the original statistics, 
which declare that at least two-thirds of the industrial 
workers of Belgium participated in the general strike. 
Whether this fact shows a success or fiasco, it will be easy 
for a non-clerical individual to decide. Let us add that, 


according to some employers' statistics, 71 per cent of the 
industrial workers took part in the strike." 

b. The New Statesman {Article signed C. M. L.) 

"What have been the effects of the general strike for 
adult suffrage? Certainly they have been far more im- 
portant than could be gathered from the meager reports 
which have dribbled into our public press. The first ques- 
tion naturally is, what was the political result — how far, 
that is, did the strike achieve its avowed object of forcing 
adult suffrage? The world in general has been given to 
believe that it completely failed. In Belgium the Con- 
servatives protest that the Government did not give way 
an inch, and that the position after the strike remained 
precisely as it was before. Now it is true that the Gov- 
ernment refused, at the end, as at the beginning, to deal 
with the reform of the parliamentary franchise. But the 
two refusals were very different. The prime minister 
commenced (as was only to be expected) by flatly refusing 
to consider the question under the threat of a strike, 
though, of course, 'the franchise laws were not immuta- 
ble. ' After the strike he said : ' We will make no promise to 
deal with the question; but the commission which we are 
appointing to consider the local government franchise will 
not be debarred from taking into consideration also the 
parliamentary franchise.' We, in England, at least, are 
not so unfamiliar with the forms under which a statesman 
is allowed to save his face that we cannot appreciate the 
difference between these two utterances. 

"But there is another aspect of the matter, apart from 
its purely political side. A great movement in a nation's 
life is never in reality an isolated event, to be judged 


solely by its success or non-success in attaining its imme- 
diate object. Its indirect effects are often of equal, or 
even greater, importance. Looked at from this stand- 
point, the Belgian general strike is worthy of the closest 
study. Let us see, then, how it has affected the trade- 
unions in particular and the working-class in general. 

"Now trade-unionism in Belgium, as in other Continental 
countries, is not the more or less homogeneous thing that 
we know in England. There is a ceaseless and a bitter 
opposition between the Socialists and the Catholics. The 
Socialist unions are militant political organizations; the 
Catholics are purely professional associations, leaving poli- 
tics and Parliament severely alone, concerning themselves 
only with the 'economic' interests of the wage-earners. 
Between these two armies, the one pursuing 'la lutte des 
classes,' the other proclaiming 'V entente des classes,' there 
is war to the death. The Christian unions opposed the 
general strike. Before it began they boasted that they 
would prevent it — or break it. When it was over, they 
claimed that it had been a pit which their enemies had 
digged for themselves, that great numbers of Socialist 
workmen had deserted in disgust to the Catholic unions. 
But, as a matter of fact, there is very little evidence of 
this. The Socialist unions may have lost a few hundreds, 
or a few thousands, of members here and there. But what 
they have lost in one place they have gained in another. 
And where members have fallen out, they have not gone 
over to the Catholics; they have simply been the victims, 
for the moment, of intimidation or revenge on the part of 
the employers. The undoubted increase which the Cath- 
olics have made seems rather to have been due to the 
general 'boom' in trade-unionism, and to some extent also 
to the stimulus to organization given by the abhorred 
strike itself! 


"As a whole, then, the trade-union movement has 
gained as a result of the strike — slightly in numbers, 
enormously in solidarity and morale. It is, however, from 
the broadest democratic point of view that the results of 
the general strike have been most notable. It was a pro- 
found moral lesson to the working-class. It not only 
showed them their powers, it filled them with confidence 
and pride in themselves, in their own capacity and per- 

' ' When the general strike actually took place, friends and 
enemies alike were astonished. Out of a total working 
population of a million, despite the fact that the Socialist 
unions could claim less than 150,000 members, and despite 
the open hostility of the 50,000 or 60,000 Christian trade- 
unionists, something like 450,000 stopped work. The strike 
was no less remarkable in its orderliness than in its extent. 
During the ten days that it lasted there were actually fewer 
'police-court cases' than in normal periods! Small wonder 
that many, who had felt doubtful at first, exchanged con- 
gratulation for apprehension, and that the Socialist leaders 
were proud of their mobilization of such an army, and of 
its behavior in the field. And small wonder that, when 
the strike was declared off, they believed — as they con- 
tinue to believe — that something very big had been 
achieved. If, as some of the prophets think, another dem- 
onstration may be necessary before the prize is won, they 
will have gained no little experience and confidence for 
its organization. ' ' 



The German Congress of 1913 discussed the general 
strike in a very fundamental way. We give a full epitome 


of this discussion — the most weighty that has ever taken 
place around this issue. 


According to a resolution passed by the Party Convention at 
Jena (1905) and indorsed at Mannheim (1906), the widest use 
of the general strike may, under given conditions, be considered 
one of the most effective weapons of the working-class, not only 
in the defense of rights it already possesses, but in the struggle 
for new popular rights and privileges. 

The right of general, direct, equal, and secret suffrage, the 
right to participate in the election of all representative bodies of 
our government, is an indispensable asset in the struggle for free- 
dom of the modern proletariat. The three-class suffrage system 
[in Prussia] not only deprives the poorer classes of a funda- 
mental right, it hinders them in their struggle for a better exist- 
ence and places the bitterest enemies of organized labor, the 
foes of all social growth, the land-owning feudal class, at the 
head of our government. 

Therefore the Party Congress of Jena (1913) calls on the 
enslaved masses to take np the fight, to carry it through with 
the energy and enthusiasm of men and women who know that 
this struggle cannot be won without great sacrifices. 

While the Party Congress condemns the promiscuous, anar- 
chistic use of the general strike, as an unfailing weapon in 
working-class struggles, it is, on the other hand, of the opinion that 
the proletariat must use every means, must use its whole strength, 
to secure political freedom. A political general strike can be 
carried out with a fair certainty of success only if all parts of 
the working-class movement are wholly united, if it is fought 
by a mass of workers filled with the enthusiasm of Socialist ideals, 
by an army of men and women ready to saerifiee everything to 
the success of the fight. 

Therefore, the Party Congress declares that it be the duty of 
every comrade to be tireless in his work for the growth and 
perfection of [both] the political and industrial organizations of 
our class. 



Rosa Luxemburg and others moved to substitute for 
paragraphs 2 and 4 in the above, the following : 

The growing bitterness of the industrial and political class 
struggle in Germany calls for growing strength and increasing 
power of the proletariat to resist the secret blows of the ruling 
class, to carry on the struggle for the betterment of its economic 
conditions, to wrest from the hands of the Government greater 
political rights. The political struggle steadily forces the pro- 
letariat to strain every effort, for it represents the fight for gen- 
eral, equal, and direct suffrage to all representative bodies of our 
government. The right to the ballot is a fundamental necessity 
in the struggle of the proletariat for industrial and social liberty. 

The existing condition, which renders the laboring-class politic- 
ally powerless, especially in Prussia, where the three-class suffrage 
law obtains, hinders it in its struggle for a better existence and 
places the bitterest enemies of organized labor, the foes of all 
social growth, at the head of the Government, not only in 
Prussia, but in the whole nation. 

This shameful suffrage law can be overthrown only by a storm 
of protest, by a great mass action such as was considered by 
the Prussian Party Convention of 1910. 


The Prussian state elections have taken place. They have 
resulted in a great gain of votes. According to the calculations 
of our opponents, we must have polled at least a milhon votes, 
and in spite of this huge gain, we have won only one additional 
seat by our own strength. Through agreements with the Pro- 
gressive People's Party, we have gained three additional seats in 
the second balloting. None of us expected anything better, and 
still the result is shameful. It seems as if the Prussian election 
laws must lash every last man into a fury of indignation; that 
a party which has polled a million votes should be returned to 
the Landtag with just exactly seven men. 


A few thousand men, farmers and officials, can be marched to 
the ballot box, and can elect a reactionary into office; it takes 
far more than a hundred thousand men, men who take part in 
the elections in spite of the greatest difficulties, men who risk 
their jobs when they cast their vote, ... to return one Socialist 
to the Landtag. 

The shame of it cries to heaven ! And still the people do not 
protest. During our discussions on the election, while we were 
arguing about our attitude toward the military and the tax bills, 
. . . when everyone was talking about . . . our lack of success, 
a feeling of dissatisfaction naturally arose . . . and then . . . 
someone said, " General strike." 

Comrades, when this word fell among us a peculiar debate 
arose. . . . All . . . agreed that the time was not ripe for the 
attempt. Comrades, the executive committee knew it before this 
discussion was taken up, and because we knew it we did not 
say it, because we believed that even if we knew it, our enemies 
need not know what we cannot do. We felt it rather unwise to 
tell our opponents : " I have another weapon, and if I use it you 
will be done for! But you needn't be afraid. At present I 
cannot use it." We have heard the argument that the whole 
discussion has grown out of the feeling of the masses. I deny 
that! The speeches we hear and the articles we read did not 
in the most cases reflect the spirit of the masses. On the other 
hand, I do not go to the extreme to which some of you go when 
you declare that the whole general strike agitation is the product 
of a few intellectuals. . . . But he who knows the masses — and 
most of us live among them — he knows that the class-conscious 
worker is too familiar with the labor market, knows too well 
of what clay the so-called organized laborers, the yellows and 
the Christians and the unorganized, are fashioned. And there- 
fore they say, though they say it with clenched fists : " The time 
has not yet come." 

Comrades! I will tell you plainly how we of the executive 
committee regard this question. We are in accord with the reso- 
lutions adopted at Jena and at Mannheim. Among other things, 
we resolved there : " When the executive committee believes that 
the time for a general strike has come, it shall immediately call 
upon the General Commission of Labor Unions, and shall take 
all steps which seem necessary to carry out the strike success- 
fully." You may be sure that the executive committee is deter- 


mined to respect the motions of jDast conventions, and that it will 
act accordingly. 

During the debate on the general strike we heard repeated 
reference to Russia, to Belgium, to Sweden. These comparisons 
are lame. We are well informed concerning the strikes in Sweden 
and Belgium. We know and appreciate the wonderful prepara- 
tory work which was done, especially by our Belgian comrades. 
. . . But, comrades, we forget . . . one important circumstance. 
. . . Our Belgian and Swedish comrades knew that . . . they 
could go into the fight with the certainty that over there, across 
the border, they have a big brother, who will gladly help if matters 
come to a crisis. Comrades, we have no big brother over the 
border. . . . These comparisons cannot stand. Then a word as 
to Russia. I will not deny that we have in Germany, and espe- 
cially in Prussia, conditions which forcibly remind one of Rus- 
sian methods, but . . . after all, let us compare the lot of the 
Russian workingman with that of the German. What rights has 
the former? He has the right to the knout, the right to Siberia. 
He is moved, therefore, by very different motives in his protest 
against tyranny. . . . 

What is to be the aim and end of this strike [that is now pro- 
posed] ? The winning of manhood suffrage in Prussia. What 
do you mean by that? We want the right to send representa- 
tives to Parliament that they may work there in our interests. 
And in order to arouse the enthusiasm of the masses for the 
general strike we proceed to ridicule parliamentary activity. We 
cry, " Parliamentarism is Cretinism." You ask, can we gain any- 
thing for the proletariat by parliamentary activity! But you 
ask the working-class to enter into a mass strike to gain the right 
to elect representatives to a parliament in which they can accom- 
plish nothing, a parliament whose work you describe as Cretinism ! 
I cannot understand such logic. . . . 

We will have the general strike when it becomes inevita- 
ble, but until then, let us remember Bebel's words : " The general 
strike is the ' ultima ratio ' of the Social Democracy." Let us 
bide our time. 

. . . The problem before us must be definitely separated from 
the question of a spontaneous general strike, one that grows, with 
elemental force, out of the industrial life of a people that, widen- 
ing and spreading, leads to sharp conflicts and finally to a general 


settlement. We must not forget that, notwithstanding our great 
strength, we are after all a minority of the working-class, though 
a large one. Our party is democratic in its principles. No one 
would contend that the majority should determine the views of 
the minority. It would be just as undemocratic to force the ma- 
jority, through a mass strike of the minority, to make Socialist 
politics. There is only one way to prepare for the final struggle 
— education, organization. To my mind a special propaganda for 
the general strike is wrong. Teach the masses the meaning of 
our movement, make them class-conscious; that is the work we 
must do. Everything else will take care of itself. . . . 

As the situation grows more and more critical, the need of 
perfect discipline grows daily gi'eater. On several occasions we 
have passed through dangerous periods, times when it seemed 
as if the brutal tyranny of the rulers of our country, and espe- 
cially of our Prussian powers, could no longer be borne. We 
were strong enough to pass through these crises without blood- 
shed, but it was thanks to the Social Democratic movement, to 
the self-sacrificing discipline of its members. I wish to remind 
you of this, those of you who believe that "a general strike is not 
possible without bloodshed. Our comrades in Belgium have 
proved that great strikes can be managed without riots, without 
loss of life. There was no confusion, no lawlessness. The most 
admii-able feature of the strike was its wonderful order, its rigid 
discipline. He is pursuing a dangerous course who tries to pre- 
pare the way for a general strike by breaking up the discipline 
of labor organizations, by robbing the masses of their confidence 
in their leaders, by glorifying the unorganized as the saviours 
of their class. Where we have discipline and order, where all 
hearts work in harmony, where leaders and their followers are 
bound to each other by mutual, unswerving confidence, there, and 
only there, can we fight and win the final battle. 


I was one of the first members of the German Socialist Party 
to declare that it may become advisable, perhaps inevitable, that 
we adopt the general strike. I still hold this opinion, and I will 
vote in favor of the resolution presented by the executive board. 
Further, in view of present conditions in Germany, I am not 
prepared to go. The industrial outlook warns us against adopK 


ing the romantic ideals of those who believe in the present possi- 
bility of a general strike. . . . 

How do you propose to carry out your general strike in Ger- 
many? "Will you go into it blindfolded, without considering the 
possible results? We, too, know how to begin! But I should 
like to know how it will end! Perhaps Comrade Rosa Luxem- 
burg can offer suggestions. In Belgium, 370,000 to 450,000 work- 
ers took part in the well-prepared strike. If we wish to do as 
well, relatively, we must be able to draw out at least two and a 
half to three million workers. Will you tell me (to Rosa Luxem- 
burg) whether you think this is possible? Can you arrange such 
a strike without violent uprisings; can you keep it up without 
a great slump after the first enthusiastic days are over? For 
in such a strike the first loss in numbers spells failure. Let us 
be guided by i^ast experience. Different countries vary widely 
in their attitude toward the general strike, according to tradi- 
tions and the strength of the party organization. Liebknecht, 
in an article in the Neue Welt, of Berlin, mentions Sweden, 
saying that we might have learned there how to carry on a 
strike. (Denial from Liebknecht.) It was so reported in the 
Vorwaerts. The Swedish strike of 1909. though not political in 
character, was a mass strike of the Swedish workers. What was 
the result? I will not speak of the illusions that were cherished. 
... In 1907 and 1908 the Swedish Labor Union Federation 
numbered about 180,000 members. . . . Then came the great 
strike in 1909, and to-day the Swedish Labor Federation has 
dwindled so that it counts 80,000 to 90,000 members. ... The 
experience of others should teach us caution. . . . We must 
consider the conditions peculiar to our own country. We must 
reckon with the strong organization of the manufacturing class, 
with the opposition of other organizations which stand against 
the unions that are with us in the struggle. And then, I repeat, 
when will you stop your general strike? When universal suf- 
frage has been gi-anted? You might just as well say that you 
will stop when the red flag flies over Berlin. . . . 


When I heard the speech of Comrade Scheidemann yesterday, 
a feeling of sadness crept over me, as I recalled last Sunday's 
opening of our Convention, and the greetings that were brought 


to us by our foreign guests, from Holland, from Belgium, and 
from Switzerland. One after the other they repeated, " To us 
nothing is so important in your Convention as the debate on the 
general strike; for us in Holland, in Belgium, in Switzerland 
the question has become a burning one. But we feel, though in 
our countries the general strike is no longer theoretical, but a 
practical question in party tactics, that we must go to the German 
Social Democracy, to the leaders of the International movement, 
for a deep, thoroughgoing, serious discussion of the underlying 
pi-inciples of this pi-oblem." Then came Scheidemann's speech 
on the mass strike. I fear our foreign guests will hardly feel 
repaid if they expected from our party leaders an unbiased and 
broad-minded treatment of this very important subject. If they 
hoped to get from our executive committee a wide outlook over 
the political and mdustrial situation in Germany, and within 
the German Party, in connection with this subject; if they ex- 
pected to hear definite proposals for future activity, or a clear-cut 
statement of party tactics and party work, I fear they have 
not been repaid. For Scheidemann's speech was anything but 
a logical and serious consideration of the problem. It sounded 
but two notes. He cried with Faust's Famulus Wagner, " See 
how wonderfully we have progressed on every hand." He calls 
to arms against the grumblers, against the dissatisfied critics in 
the party itself. ... I believe that the first requisite for a real 
political leader . . . is a sensitive ear for all that lives and 
moves in the soul of the masses. . . . 

The great mass of our organized members, the rank and file, 
is thirsting for a new spirit in our party life, . . . that a more 
vigorous, a more virile tone be used in our struggle, [and] are 
sick of the all-holy methods of only-parliamentarism. . . . The 
executive board itself was forced to admit in its official report 
and in Scheidemann's speech a number of disquieting facts. TVe 
hear that our membership does not show the desired increase, 
that our newspapers report, in some cases, a standstill; in some 
eases, even a loss in the number of readers. Scheidemann tells 
us that every sensible man would expect the masses to rise in 
revolt against conditions in Pi'ussia, against the Prussian suffrage 
law. against the shameful result of the last Prussian election, . . . 

He was forced to admit that our agitation against the military 
bill was a deplorable failure. These are facts, facts that would 
speak to every serious party leader of the need of a thorough 


analysis of conditions, facts that call for decisive measures, which 
demand that we search for the roots of the existing evil and 
remedy it by adequate and fundamental changes. And yet the 
executive passes lightly over them. Standstill in organization? 
Loss of readers? Why, it's the crisis! Shall we look placidly 
on while each industrial crisis overthrows what we have pains- 
takingly built up in the years of prosperity? 

The Prussian people did not revolt after the shameful result 
of the elections, as it seemed to Scheidemann they should. But 
our executive has nothing to say. ... It might be a little more 
to the point to ask if our tactics were not to blame, ... to ask 
what can be done to avoid such occurrences"? 

Then comes the unbelievable failure of our great movement 
against the military bill, this most outrageous piece of imperial- 
istic audacity we have ever experienced. Again, our board finds 
a plausible explanation. . . . Our executive board should have 
been the first to sound the alarm, to place the question before 
the whole party. If we have accomplished so little, must we not 
seek new ways and means to imbue the masses with the thought 
and ideals of the Socialist movement? Instead, we are pacified 
with weak explanations and comforting assurances. 


The labor unions have been criticised because they have not 
yet spoken on the question of the general strike. It has been 
called characteristic of their whole attitude. But the whole 
question is not a labor-union question. I am not speaking here 
as a union man, but as a comrade. The labor-union movement 
has no reason for taking part in this discussion. Because a few 
comrades who are always dissatisfied with the growth of the 
party and the activity of its leading committees are pleased to 
discover a new method by which they hope to influence our 
tactics along really revolutionary Imes, we are all expected to 
rush pell-mell after them to take part in the discussion. . . . 
To carry on such debates constantly brings not a growth but a 
demoralization of the movement, and the union leaders have not 
the slightest interest in the pursuance of such activities. I believe 
that the unions stand aloof with a feeling of strength. Because 
they know their might, because the leaders know their responsi- 
bility, they do not join in this game of generalities that can 


produce no practical results. Comrade Luxemburg admits that, 
at the pi'esent time, the general strike is unfeasible. . . . 

To investigate fairly the possibilities of a mass sti'ike and its 
defects, we must look to those countries where it has already 
received a practical application. We must profit by their experi- 
ences. The first general strike of importance took place in 
Holland. A number of experienced men have debated its effects 
in the columns of the Frankfurter Volkstimme. Ankersmith, of 
Amsterdam, expressly states that the strike was followed by 
increased persecution of the proletariat. The strike was called 
as a protest against the attempted encroachments upon the rights 
of the railroad and state employees to organize. The strike was 
a failure, and as a result the new labor laws of 1906 contained 
a number of reactionai'y clauses directed against workmen, among 
others one which prohibited picketing. 

We had a great general strike movement in Sweden. Swedish 
labor unions, which were forced into the struggle by the united 
manufacturers, at that time were a splendidly organized body. 
It was a heroic struggle, but possible only because, hand in hand 
with the workers of that small country, went the solidarity of 
the workers of other nations, above all, that of the German 
Social Democracy. Without the millions collected from foreign 
sources t4ie strike would have collapsed long before, would have 
become a catastrophe for the Swedish woi'kers. What would 
Germany do in a similar situation? To whom should we look 
for support? Germany leads all other countries of the workers' 
International in practical solidarity. Except from Austria and 
Scandinavia, we could expect little support beyond, perhaps, the 
famous telegram from France which expressed heartfelt sym- 
pathy and contributed 20 francs. 

In Sweden, the mass strike resulted in the loss of about one- 
half of the labor-union membership. For years to come effective 
labor struggles in Sweden are practically out of the question ; 
the best workers in the Swedish movement have been forced to 
emigrate. If we will profit by these experiences we will be 
extremely careful in considering the general strike as a factor in 
our struggle. 

In Belgium, the strike was comparatively successful. It was 
not forced over the hands of the leaders, however, but was well 
organized and thoroughly prepared. It was, above all, a splendid, 
disciplined movement, one that reflects the highest honor upon 


the Belgian proletariat. The comrades who stood in the advanced 
guard of the Belgian uprising believe that much has been gained. 
But we have secured the views of a dozen of the most prominent 
labor leaders of Belgium, and their opinions differ radically from 
those expressed by the party officials. Comrade Schneider, of the 
German Factory Workers' Union, who was in Belgium at the 
time of the strike, expresses a still more unfavorable opinion. 
The union officers report that the number of those blacklisted 
after the strike is so great that for years to come the whole 
energy of the unions will be used up in assisting them. This 
means that the labor movement in Belgium has suffered a relapse 
from which it will require many years to recover. . . . 

Comrade Luxemburg agitates for Syndicalism, for continuous 
tumults and excitement, for a wild strike here and another there. 
Such things are impossible in Germany. Our unions have taken 
care of that. What has been the effiect of Syndicalist activity 
in Italy? The national industrial organizations are disrupted; 
the workers are powerless. In France, where they preach general 
strike and use it wherever possible, these strikes have become 
harmless to the employers. These uprisings have no practical 
value. They usually result ua more stringent laws against the 
laboring population. . . . 


It is unfair to make those who call for a general strike appear 
as though they were only idle talkers. The Avhole situation, as 
it lies before us since the last Prussian election, calls louder than 
words for a thorough discussion of the means we have at our 
command. Not the whim of an intellectual has precipitated this 
turmoil; it was the inevitable result of the present crisis that 
caused this call for the general strike. I agree with you that 
this discussion was aroused at an inopportune moment. But it 
arose because it had to come, because it was a necessity. Its 
coming at this unfortunate time ... is not sufficient reason for 
ridiculing the problem that has grown out of the heart of the 
proletarian movement ; is no excuse for discrediting it as has been, 
and is being systematically done. I must reproach the Comrades 
Seheidemann and Bauer for doing this. I know very well that 
some of those who are called general strike fanatics have gone 
too far. I do not, by any means, agree with all that has been 


said and written. . . . This attempt, upon the part of the Com- 
rades Scheidemann, Bauer, and others, to discredit the supporters 
of a general strike, should cause us to study the executive com- 
mittee resolution closely, to interpret it with a measure of dis- 
trust. The resolution purports to be a renewed declaration in 
favor of the general strike. There is no need of such a declara- 
tion. We have given it at Jena and at Mannheim. But the 
resolution contains something that makes it thoroughly unpalata- 
ble, the reference, I mean, to a complete harmony of all parts 
of the working-class movement. Such harmony is well-nigh im- 
possible. If that were a necessary condition there would never 
have been a general strike. The phraseolog-y of the resolution 
tends clearly to weaken, not to encourage. Nor do I understand 
why this resolution should demand so insistently that the gi-eat 
mass be " filled with the enthusiasm of Socialist ideals," that it 
be "ready to sacrifiee everything for the success of the fight." 
This is peculiar where we are discussing a struggle for a right 
which is not purely proletarian, but merely democratic in its 
principles, a struggle in which we are sure to have a certain 
measure of assistance from non-proletarian sources. These pas- 
sages in the resolution presented by the executive board show 
plainly enough the desire to handcuff the general strike discussion, 
not only for the present, but for all time. . . . 

You who declare, on the one hand, that you desire a general 
strike, and say, on the other hand, that you want deeds, not 
words, what do you mean? I insist that Comrade Scheidemann, 
and with him the others who purport to be upholders of the 
general strike, are in favor of it only in words. Deep down in 
their hearts they, too, are opponents. Their arguments are argu- 
ments against the idea of a general strike. If the objections 
advanced by Scheidemann and Bauer were sound, if the objec- 
tions made by Bernstein . . . were valid, then the general strike 
is rank nonsense, and we need no resolution. . . . 

Bauer makes a mistake when he says : " Why do we speak of 
these things? We will call the general strike when the moment 
for it has come." No, in order to call a strike in this sense, 
if we wish to avoid a wild, uncontrolled uprising, the idea must 
first be understood by the people. They must know its whole 
meaning, realize its whole responsibility. The thought must be- 
come alive in the masses, and it can become alive only in the 
living flow of popular discussion. Whether or not to-day is the 


time to begin has nothing to do with the question. Schiedemann's 
comparison with a weapon we are not ready to use does not hold 
water. No one has said the general strike shall be used to-day. 
. . . But even in times of great hardship we may, we must 
prepare new weapons for the future. And these new weapons 
in the struggle for political freedom must be sharper than those 
we have used before. • . . 


The Belgian labor unions have not, on the whole, suffered any 
material loss of members through the general strike. Reports 
submitted three months before and three months after the strike 
prove this conclusively. When we speak of losses in some places 
we must also consider the gains that others have made. One 
hundred minus 10 equals 90, but 90 plus 10 is again 100. 

It is incorrect to maintain that the labor unions of Belgium 
had to use the greater part of their financial resources to assist 
the victims of the general strike. The books of the relief fund 
for the support of the black-listed strikers were closed more than 
two months ago. We have proved to the clerical press that the 
general strike has neither endangered nor crippled the financial 
condition of the labor-union movement. In Brussels alone, Le 
Peuple, through a single appeal, collected more than 100,000 
francs in voluntary contributions for the wagon-makers who have 
been locked out for three months, and who for six weeks supported 
their members from their own fund. You see the Belgian unions 
are by no means weakened; on the contrary, they are preparing 
for new struggles. 

The conflicts of the loeked-out wagon-workers and of the hat- 
makers of Brussels, as well as those of the metal-workers of Ant- 
werp (2,000 of whose members are unemployed because the indus- 
try is suffering heavily through the crisis), are of a purely eco- 
nomic nature. The former both began before the general strike. 
Nor can we regard the metal-workers as its victims, since they 
joined the strike after an understanding with their employers. 

This correction is not to be construed as an interference on 
the part of the Belgian delegates in German affairs. Every nation 
must determine its own tactics. But the delegation here repre- 
sented considered it their duty to oppose the spread of legendary 
stories concerning the Belgian general strike. 



[The minority resolution declares that] "A mass strike cannot 
be called at the command of party or union leaders; it cannot be 
artificial in its conception." I believe we all agree that a general 
strike cannot be artificially produced. . . . But the sentence I 
have quoted expresses a tinge of ridicule, in fact it directly op- 
posed the resolution of Jena and Mannheim. What do we read 
there? "When the executive committee believes that the time is 
ripe for a general strike it shall act hand in hand with the 
General Commission of Labor Unions to take such steps as seem 
necessary to the success of this measure." Surely that means 
that the executive bodies of the party and labor-union movements 
shall be empowei-ed to enforce decisive measures. 

But here in the minority resolution we read : " Not at the com- 
mand of party or union leaders." Comrades, I will tell you 
wherein, in my opinion, lies the fundamental difference between 
the resolution of the executive committee and that of Comrade 
Luxemburg. The former speaks in favor of an eventual general 
strike, carried out by a well-disciplined, well-trained, class- 
conscious proletariat that will act when the signal is given. The 
latter can be interpreted in only one way — as a defense of wild 
strikes; in other words, a defense of that which we commonly 
call " Syndicalism." (Ledebour : " Perversion ! ") But, comrades, 
if that is not the significance of this resolution, why do you not 
simply indorse the decisions of Jena and Mannheim, that these 
committees be empowered to act at the right moment? No, it is 
impossible for those of us who desire to follow our proved tactics, 
. . . Avho are ready when the time shall come to support a gen- 
eral strike, ... to support this resolution. 

There have been objections to the fourth paragraph of the 
executive committee resolution which repudiates the methods of 
those who propagate uprisings, wild strikes, foolish, ill-considered 
strikes that must break our own backs. This clause was absolutely 
necessary. Again the resolution states: "A political general 
strike can be carried out with a fair certainty of success only 
where all parts of the working-class movement are wholly united." 
" What do you mean by ' wholly united ' ? " we have been asked. 
The point is simply this— that a majority in each of the com- 
mittees in question must vote favorably before any decisive action 
can be undertaken. The "wholly," therefore, must not be mis- 


understood to read that the " nay " of a single man may make 
action impossible. 


If we needed proof for our contention that a discussion of the 
general strike need not be a waste of time . . . the general strike 
debate to which we listened to-day furnished it m a most con- 
vincing form. For the arguments used by some of our authori- 
tative comrades proved, more plainly than words, how necessary 
it is to implant the desire for revolutionary activity more deeply 
into the masses, that we may stand prepared for battle when the 
fateful hour comes. 

We do not, by any means, see in the political mass strike a 
remedy for all ills, an irresistible force which will thi'ow open 
the great doors of the future with one mighty blow. We do not 
wish to drive a German worker lightly into a grave conflict. We, 
too, are seriously concerned for the welfare of the organizations 
built up by decades of laborious and deserving effort for the 
protection and the assistance of the working-class. Nor do we 
favor senseless uprisings and Syndicalistic attempts. On the 
contrary, we are unalterably opposed to senseless revolutionary 
romanticism. But hi spite of this we consider it just as wrong, 
just as senseless, just as harmful to the party, to believe that 
the revolutionizing of the public spirit can be left for all times 
in the hands of our leaders, that the executive committee of the 
party and the General Commission of Labor Unions would, infal- 
libly, when the situation is ripe, take the necessaiy steps to pre- 
pare " suitable measures." . , . 

However well our labor unions may be fitted to carry out every- 
day labor struggles, they may not yet understand how to arouse 
that stubborn, unyielding spmt of battle that alone will enable 
us to bear up luider the severe conflict that stands before us. 
Popular discussion of the general strike has this advantage, that 
it destroys romantic revolutionaiy as well as revisionistie illusions 
and shoAVS to the masses the whole bitterness, the greatness of 
the struggle. Surely a few resolutions are not enough. Unceas- 
ing intensive agitation and education must arouse the masses to 
great sacrifices, without which no class in the whole history of 
human progress has ever won its emancipation. . . . 

Many comrades look upon the general strike as a means of 


defense against encroachments upon our right to organize, and 
upon our political rights, but regard it as a poor weapon for 
aggressive warfare. . . . What if they attempt, by artistic rear- 
rangement of the election districts, to oust the Socialists where 
they are most firmly seated? Will you then use the general 
strike which you deemed so dangerous for an attack upon Prussian 
reaction? . . . 

It was gratifying that, among others, Comrade Frank objected 
not only to the blanketing of the general-strike discussion, but 
also to the " conservative phraseology " that Comrade Bauer felt 
called upon to use in opposition to the so-called revolutionary 
phraseology of others. He declared the general strike must be- 
come a familiar weapon in the hands of the workers, if we desire 
them to be ready to sacrifice, not for a small increase in wages, 
but for the interest of our class. . . . 

(The general-strike debate was closed at a late hour by the 
adoption of the resolution of the executive committee by a vote 
of 335 agamst 142. . . . ) 


By Oda Olberg 

"This general strike differed in principle in no way 
from the earlier general strikes which have been pro- 
claimed as protests against police outrages since 1904. The 
difference lay only in the scope of movement: it was 
deeper, more inclusive, and more threatening, . . . 

"... The bloodshed of the 7th of June in Ancona gave 
rise to three different movements which had scarcely any 
other relation with one another than their common cause. 
The executive committee of the Socialist Party and the Fed- 
eration of Labor proclaimed a general strike in the whole 
country immediately upon the news of the bloodshed [at An- 
cona] . Independent of this protest movement, and from 24 
to 28 hours earlier, a movement broke out in Romagna which 
was led by a committee of Republicans and anarchists of 

* From an article in Die Neue Zeit, July 31, 1914. 


Ancona. This movement was completely spontaneous, . . . 
and was cut off from all relation with the movement of 
the country at large by the disabling of telegraph and 
telephone and the cessation of railway service during the 
whole of the duration of the strike. After the mass move- 
ment in Romagna had overflowed into the neighboring 
provinces on the 8th of June, and on the midnight of the 
8th was declared in the whole country, the union of railway 
workers proclaimed a general strike on the night of the 
10th of June, without accomplishing anything further than 
the crippling and obstruction of the railway traffic in 
various towns of the country. This movement, which as 
a demonstration of power was a total failure, was con- 
ducted by the railway workers' union. . . . 

"The readiness of the great mass of workers of Italy to 
strike . . . is a generally known and a noteworthy fact. 
When it comes to a protest against brutalities of the police, 
the Italian proletariat has always been ready for action. 
But the Federation of Labor, the party executive, and the 
[Socialist] group in Parliament have frequently not been 
ready. Nevertheless, strikes had become the rule, so 
that the Federation of Labor, which now, as before, is in 
Reformist hands, regarded it as the lesser evil to support 
the movement, which it could not check, rather than to be 
carried along with it. 

''The party executive, since the Congress of Reggio 
Emilia (July, 1912), has been in the hands of the revolu- 
tionaries, who have never condemned the general strike, 
although there are various opinions in their ranks upon its 
value and applicability. We see the principal cause for the 
effective conduct of the [last] general strike in the quick 
and energetic action of the party executive and the Fed- 
eration, which gave the order for the general strike scarcely 
30 hours after the bloodshed, just as in the year 1904, when 


the movement attained similar depth and power. . . . Be- 
sides, the masses had for some time been filled with the 
thought of a general strike, were inwardly prepared for it. 
and their elite was not held back through all kinds of 
considerations and prudence, as in the reformistic era, 
considerations which arose from the anxiety not to de- 
stroy a political situation favorable for the masses. 

"We will not deny that the widespread unemployment 
. . . also favored the strike. . . , 

"Now as to the result of the general strike. Before one 
can judge this question, one must be clear as to the pur- 
pose of the general strike. The general strike was a pro- 
test against a deed of violence, which the Italian pro- 
letariat could in no way justify or accept. Accordingly, 
it wanted to show the bourgeoisie that while it might allow 
its police and carabiniers to fire upon the people without 
legal warning, that the masses, through their cessation of 
labor, can obstruct the whole operation of bourgeois life 
and injure bourgeois interests. Naturally the working- 
class, hy this line of action, cuts into its own flesh. If the 
general strike interferes with the profit and convenience of 
the bourgeoisie, it often deprives the proletariat of daily 
necessaries. Certainly there is a tremendous eloquence in 
the sudden stopping of production, and of public services. 
There is never a clearer understanding of what the pro- 
letariat creates than on the day when it folds its arms. 
But it cannot be doubted that the proletariat itself makes 
the greatest economic sacrifice in a general strike. Besides 
the dead and wounded, the imprisoned are solely on the 
side of the workers. Regarded as a calculation, the gain 
in the general strike is never on the side of the proletariat. 
To the victims against whose death the protest is made 
are always added other victims. . . . The general strike is 
no compensation for a wrong that has been suffered, and is 


not intended as such. It is an expression of power in 
opposition to another expression of power. It does not 
bring immediate fruits, is no rational expression of 
strength, if one regards a short period only. It gives 
the proletariat the feeling of its own power and. responsi- 
bility, and shows the bourgeoisie the limit of theirs. Be- 
sides, it permits experience to be gained for the final, 
decisive struggle with which the capitalistic society may 
turn into a Socialistic society. From this point of view 
we can no more regard its victims as serving no purpose 
than the bourgeoisie regard the accidents at its military 
maneuvers as being useless. . . . 

"A word on the excesses. On the whole there were few 
acts of violence : a few attacks on persons, and damage to 
property of little importance for a movement which shook 
the greater part of the country. For two or three days 
the total reckoning of acts of violence which were given 
in the bourgeois press is short and unimportant. It must 
be recalled that in this strike the bourgeois resistance was 
for the first time organized and proceeded with incredible 
violence under the protection of the police. When these 
bourgeois rowdies could find an isolated worker, they drove 
the secret police against him, who arrested him with blows 
and kicks. . . . 

"If one wishes to learn a strategical lesson from the 
conduct of the general strike, it is this : that for a complete 
development of power, the possession of the telegraph and 
telephone service is indispensable. This is a weighty prob- 
lem of the general strike, because it is here the question 
of the maintenance of a service and not its discontinuance. 
This time, too, the Government cut the strikers off from all 
telegraph and telephone service. The party executive was 
fully twenty-four hours without any news. The lack of news 
from one town to another prevented simultaneous action, 


and did not allow the masses to become aware of the great- 
ness of the movement. Besides, orders given by the organ- 
ization through signals are exceptionally important for 
Italy, where the general strike movement will doubtless be 
repeated. To-day party comrades do not dare to oppose 
any stupid vandalism, because they fear to be taken for 
police in civil clothes. Indeed several shots were fired at 
Comrade Peraccina, professor of pathology in the Uni- 
versity of Florence, when he tried to mediate in a struggle 
at a barricade. The man later wrote to Peraccina that he 
had taken him for a secret policeman. Finally the councils 
of labor . . . had to undertake the issuing of a bulletin. 
In Rome there were no newspapers for three days. . . . 

"On the whole, one can say that this general strike con- 
firmed the experience gained in the previous ones: as it 
embraced a great part of the masses and interrupted labor 
in the whole country, it was a fearful expression of power 
and a stirring means of protest. Naturally one may regard 
it as an error to stir up the fear of the proletariat among 
the bourgeoisie, and to show one's power, because this 
necessarily has the effect of arousing the bourgeoisie to 
defense. . . . 

"As to the railroad strike we can be very brief. The 
movement failed, and failed under conditions which al- 
lowed it to be seen beforehand that it could not result 
otherwise. It was proclaimed, after the rest of the 
working-class had already been twenty-four hours on 
strike, and under the expressed supposition that this gen- 
eral strike would go beyond the bounds of a mere demon- 
stration of protest. We do not hesitate to say its proclama- 
tion was an error due to a false judgment of the situation. 
Besides the railroad workers, whose very strong organiza- 
tion is under a Syndicalist leadership, have hitherto 
gained no great name for themselves in the field of sym- 


pathetic strikes. If they struck, it was always for profit 
to their own profession. 

''The movement in Romagna puts the person who must 
write about it under the painful necessity of finding his 
way among a mass of unconnected and contradictory re- 
ports, among which it is difficult to separate the true from 
the false. We shall merely indicate the essential char- 
acteristics of the movement. . . . This district is primarily 
an agricultural district. ... Its population . . . was per- 
suaded, on the 8th of June, from Ancona, to proclaim the 
republic everywhere, [on the supposition that] this had 
already happened in all the rest of Italy. The news was 
not doubted and no resistance was offered. They even 
placed the red flag in place of the flag of the monarchy. 
In the little places the carabiniers were disarmed or shut 
up in the barracks, local governments were constituted, 
the means of existence were distributed, reforms in local 
taxation laid out, etc. Because all this, on account of its 
lack of success, was afterwards turned into a farce, it is 
not worth while to dwell upon it. What is worthy of ob- 
servation is only the great susceptibility of the masses to 
illusions, and their wonderful moderation which kept them 
from all acts of violence against persons and all useless 
destruction. That the telegraph and telephone were made 
unserviceable and the railroads blocked lay in the nature 
of the case and cannot be called vandalism. The June 
days showed that the population of Romagna and the 
Marches is enthusiastically ready to raise the Republican 
flag . . . without accompanying the change by orgies of 
revenge and without expecting enrichment from it. The 
absence of any act of revenge is all the more remarkable, 
as there exists in many places the greatest bitterness be- 
tween workers and landlords, as the result of the obstinate 
economic struggles of recent years. [The strike in these 


districts sometimes involved several hundred thousand agri- 
cultural laborers.] 

"The June days further prove that the ruling class in 
Romagna and the Marches made their peace with what they 
supposed to be the new government without any effort at 
defense. The monarchy appeared to the bourgeoisie of 
those places as really not worth lifting a hand for. If it 
has become anti-Eepublican now that the hour of reaction 
has struck, that undoubtedly shows its lack of character, 
but not its monarchical sentiment. 

' ' Of the June days it may truly be said that they showed 
the true marks of a political revolution, because in this 
period political power passed from one class of the popula- 
tion to another. The Republican committee gave orders 
and the bourgeoisie obeyed: delivered up cereals, handed 
over their automobiles, even offered money which was re- 
fused. The affair turned into a farce, not because it passed 
without bloodshed, but because the presupposition that a 
revolution had been accomplished in all the rest of the 
country proved false. That the masses, without meeting 
resistance, hauled down the royal colors in a hundred 
places, and replaced them with the red flag, is a much 
more significant fact to the monarchy [precisely] because 
it was accomplished without bloodshed, and because there 
was no resistance from the ruling classes. 

*'Our party had nothing to do with the movement in 
Romagna, though it could not refuse to give its sympathy 
to the child-like revolutionary idealism manifested there, 
nor refuse its support to those persecuted on account of 
this movement. It was a republican movement in a popula- 
tion which had thought republican for generations. No 
Socialist fighters and no Socialist goal. For us [it was] 
a trial of strength which did not take into account the 
powers of resistance of present society, and which was 


aimed at a goal which was not worth a serious effort. We 
can rejoice because of the revolutionary spirit which came 
to life, but cannot be proud of it as a fruit of our party- 
activity : the lesson of these days is rather a serious warn- 
ing for our party. It shows valuable material which our 
party has not yet won and cultivated. ' ' 


(From the New York Volkszeitung) 

*'At the beginning of the movement, the workers, incited 
by the bloodshed at the Putiloff works, in which 50 were 
injured and 4 killed, entered upon a three-day protest 
strike at the call of the active organizations. But the 
masses were so bitterly provoked by the actions of the 
police and Cossacks that the decision of the executive coun- 
cils of the leading parties to end the strike on the evening 
of July 20 — which, however, was kept from the general 
mass as a result of the confiscation of the two Social Dem- 
cratic papers — secured no hearing. Until this time the 
streets of St. Petersburg were thronged with peacefully 
demonstrating workers who, when President Poincare 
passed by, cried, 'Long live the Republic! Amnesty! 
Down with autocracy ! Long live liberty ! ' Then, inflamed 
to the greatest fury by the attacks of the police and Cos- 
sacks, the strikers erected barricades on July 21 in various 
public places. For the first time since its founding, the 
Russian capital saw huge barricades spring up, behind 
which the workmen, armed with stones, sought shelter 
from the assaulting Cossacks. 

"The fiercest conflicts occurred on the nights and days 
of July 22 and 23. Several thousand workmen took part 
in these fights. From most of the barricades — consisting 
for the most part of telephone and telegraph poles, over- 


turned carts, and stone piles — red flags were seen fluttering. 
Women and children helped with the building of the bar- 
ricades. Broken up by the police, the masses of men reas- 
sembled at different points in order to take up the fight 
anew. The police and military volleyed fiercely upon the 
crowds until, after a time, it became impossible to count 
the dead and wounded. 

"During the week, according to the report of the factory 
inspection committee, over two hundred thousand work-, 
men took part in the strike in St. Petersburg alone (which 
falls somewhat short of the true number). . . . Even a 
portion of the street railway men and of the shop em- 
ployees of several railroads ceased work. Only the presence 
of numerous troops and gendarmes prevented the most im- 
portant roads from taking part in the strike. The extent 
and strength of the movement may be shown further by 
the fact that the marine barracks were watched by armed 
soldiers to prevent the sailors housed in them from going 
over to the strikers. ' ' 


By Prof. J. E. Le Rossignol 
(From American Economic Review, 1914) 

"The trouble began in "Wellington with a minor dispute 
concerning traveling pay between the Union Steamship 
Company and about a dozen members of the Shipwrights' 
Union, a branch of the Wellington Waterside Workers' 
Union, which itself was affiliated with the United Federa- 
tion of Labor and had canceled its registration under the 
Arbitration Act. The Shipwrights' Union went on strike 
on October 18. The Waterside Workers decided to call a 
special 'stop-work' meeting on the wharf at eight o'clock 
on the morning of October 22 to consider the grievances of 


the shipwrights. The 'stop-work' meeting was held, as an- 
nounced, and lasted about two hours, "When the men went 
back to work some of them found other union men working 
on their jobs, whereupon the executive of the union de- 
manded that the late-comers be reinstated forthwith. The 
shipping companies refused to do this, and the strike was 
called. The control of the strike was then placed in the 
hands of the executive of the United Federation of Labor, 
as provided in the constitution. 

"In support of their refusal to obey the dictates of the 
union, the employers took the ground that the agreement 
under which the men had been working had been broken 
and was therefore void. . . . The employers claimed also 
that as the union was not registered under the Arbitration 
Act the agreement had no binding force. They objected, 
also, to dealing with the Federation, as that organization 
was in principle opposed to agreements, and as some of the 
leaders, notably the secretary, Mr. P. Hickey, had often 
used strong language in condemning them. 

"By the end of October there were over 5,000 watersiders 
on strike in the various ports, while disorders were increas- 
ing and disturbance to trade was becoming daily more seri- 
ous ; but at the same time large bodies of special constables 
were encamped on the outskirts of several towns, waiting 
until they had sufficient force to take possession of the 
wharves. At Wellington, on November 5, a thousand spe- 
cial police rode down to the railway wharf from their camp 
at Mount Cook to protect a shipment of race horses, and 
on the way sustained a fierce attack from a mob of strikers 
and their sympathizers throwing stones, bricks, and other 
missiles. The police charged the mob several times, and 
the affray was very serious, resulting in about thirty casual- 
ties. On the next day the police once more surrounded the 


wharves ; there was no further resistance, and regular work 
was be^n by a new union registered under the Arbitra- 
tion Act, assisted by some of the seamen. The new union 
began with 47 members, but before the end of the strike 
more than 2,000 were enrolled, chiefly farmers. 

"The course of events was very similar at Auckland, 
where, on November 8, a force of over 1,000 police occupied 
the waterfront. As a protest against the use of the special 
police, the Federation ordered a general strike in Auckland, 
and on Monday, November 10, the strike leaders claimed 
that 14 unions, involving 7,500 workers, were idle. Later 
the seamen also went on strike, bringing the total up to 
8,000 or more. 

''In opposition to the stand of the employers, the work- 
ers, while admitting a minor breach of agreement, claimed 
that this did not involve the abrogation of the agreement. 
They refused to have anything to do with the Arbitration 
Court and demanded unconditional reinstatement. They 
called the affair a lockout, rather than a strike, and desig- 
nated the employers' actions as 'sheer pin-pricking.' They 
claimed that the employers had no right to compel them 
to register, as the act itself did not do so but was merely 
a permissive statute. Mass meetings were held; violent 
speeches were made by some of the labor leaders; there 
was some violence and much intimidation ; and for some 
days the wharves were in the hands of the strikers and 
practically all the shipping was tied up. 

"The attitude of the Government was very firm, and it 
was determined to maintain order at any cost. On October 
25 the commissioner of police issued a call for volunteers 
to enroll as special constables. The call received immediate 
response from clerks, civil servants, and other young men 
of the cities, but especially from the country people; and 


presently hundreds of mounted farmers were riding toward 
Wellington to enroll as special constables and to break the 
strike by acting as volunteer wharf laborers. The farmers 
were threatened with serious losses because of the stoppage 
of transportation at the beginning of summer, and were 
determined to protect themselves to the best of their ability, 
following the example of the 'Free Labor Brigade' of 
Sweden, which did so much to break the general strike of 
1909. . . . 

"Only the drivers came out in Wellington. The strike 
was at no time very serious in Dunedin, where the regular 
police were able to keep order. The port of Lyttelton was 
closed until November 18, when work was resumed with 
the members of a new union under the protection of a large 
force of special constables. The strike was more general 
on the West Coast, where the mines and sawmills were 
closed for many weeks and industry was at a standstill. 

' ' The following estimate of the number of unionists and 
strikers was given by the Wellington Evening Post on 
November 20, and is probably fairly accurate: 

Number of Strikers 

Seamen 2,000 

Miners 4,000 

Watersiders 5,000 

Other unions 5,000 

Total 16,000 

"From these figures it is evident that the strikers con- 
stituted a small minority of all union workers. There are 
about 71,600 union laborers among the 300,000 wage- 
earners, male and female, in New Zealand ; of these, 60,600 
have accepted the act. Because of the large bodies of 
special constables at all important points, there was little 


violence after the early outbreaks, and merely a 'strike of 
folded arms, ' which practically failed within a week of the 
general call. Presently it was found that the strike funds 
were running low, and some unions were ordered back to 
work that they might contribute to the support of the rest. 
On November 23 the general strike was called off at Auck- 
land, leaving only the transportation section still out. 

''The seamen's strike was officially declared off on De- 
cember 19, and on the same day it was decided to call off 
the strike for all other workers, except the miners, as from 
Saturday, December 20. The seamen were to renew their 
agreement for a period of three years, the Auckland branch 
to remain registered and the Wellington and Dvmedin 
branches to register under the Arbitration Act, The water- 
siders at all the ports immediately flocked back to the 
wharves, asking to be enrolled in the new unions, all of 
which were registered. Work at the Huntly mine was 
resumed on January 6, 1914, with a new union of over one 
hundred members, under the protection of the police, and on 
January 10 the old unionists voted to join the new union. 
A few days later the workers in the state mine agreed to 
go back under the act, as also did the miners at Blackball, 
and the great strike was ended. ' ' 



The Socialist parties of the Continent of Europe and of 
America are practically unanimous against all forms of 
compulsory arbitration of labor disputes. But the Labor 
parties of Australia and New Zealand have been largely 
instrumental in introducing the system prevailing in those 
countries, and there has been a very great disagreement 
on the subject also among British labor-unionists. We 
therefore give a resume of the last discussion of this sub- 
ject by the British Labor Party, as well as a typical 
resume, from a Socialist source, of the situation in New 
Zealand, where the system was first introduced. 


Mr. H. Skinner (Typographical Association) moved the 
following : 

That, in the opinion of this Conference, rates of wages, the 
regulation of hours, and other conditions embodied in agreements 
of a local, district, or national character, voluntarily entered into 
between trade-unions as representing the workers and the repre- 
sentatives of employers in a given industry, should be legally 
enforceable on all persons employing labor in that industry; and 
the executive committee is hereby instructed to take action ac- 
cordingly. . . . 

Mr. Skinner declared that some such measure was neces- 
sary to compel the recalcitrant employer to enforce an 



agreement; that the trade-unions were able to enforce a 
disciplinary influence on their membership, but that the 
employers could not exercise the same influence on their 
members. The details of the law, he believed, could safely 
be left to the Labor parliamentary group. He denied that 
the proposal was in the nature of compulsory arbitration. 

Mrs. Webb [Fabian Society] ventured to ask the Con- 
ference not to pass the resolution because it contained two 
dangerous principles. In the first place, if an agreement 
was imposed upon the employers, it must be imposed upon 
the workmen too. If it was enforced in this way, it was 
enforced as a maximum as well as a minimum. The whole 
principle of factory legislation and of wages boards was 
that the regulation enforced was a minimum and not a 
maximum, and it was competent for any employer to give 
more than was laid down by the regulation, and it was 
also competent for any workman to strike for more than 
was laid down. Therefore the weapon of the strike was 
kept intact as well as having the advantage of legal enact- 
ment. The resolution did not follow that principle. It 
concerned private agreements between employers and em- 
ployed. As the state had not been called in, it could only 
be enforced as a civil liability by an action for damages. 
The workers would then find themselves in the position of 
the New Zealand workers who were being imprisoned for 
refusing to obey the court. The only way of dealing with 
the question of wages in a quite safe manner so that the 
weapon of the strike could be kept intact and be always 
ready for use, was to proceed by the wages boards by 
which a minimum and not a maximum was laid down. She 
suggested that the resolution should be rejected. 

Mr. J. R. Clynes, M. P. [Gas- workers] declared that the 
two objections he had to the proposal were that it was too 
premature and that it would give to non-unionists condi- 


tions which the unionists had fought and paid for. The 
resolution had nothing to do with the right to strike or 
compulsory arbitration. He did not believe that one 
needed to fear that the industrial council wished to abolish 
the strike or interfere with industrial freedom of the 

The resolution was withdrawn, as many expressed a de- 
sire to give further and closer consideration to the prin- 
ciples involved. 


By Robert H. Hutchinson 
(From The New Review, January, 1910) 
"Under what favorable conditions the system of arbitra- 
tration was inaugurated in New Zealand must be borne in 
mind at the outset. Prior to its inception the country had 
been under the thumb of the large farmer, a condition 
which continued until a coalescence of the small farmers 
and the laboring men of the towns effected, in 1890, the 
overthrow of the Conservatives and the entrance of a Lib- 
eral Party into Parliament. Now, although a protective 
tariff stood behind the manufacturer, the worker and 
farmer controlled the Government, and together they re- 
garded the manufacturer and commercial man as their 
antagonist. The country was limited, its exports in the 
way of manufactures practically nothing, and its popula- 
tion small and homogeneous. There was no 'rabble' of 
unemployed, labor was scarce, of a high order, and valuable, 
and the tariff wall enabled the manufacturer to shift any 
additional expense resulting from legislative pressure on 
to the consumer. Add to this the fact that beginning in 
the later '90 's a wave of commercial prosperity swept the 


country, and it must be granted that New Zealand's posi- 
tion was somewhat ideal for the institution of a court of 
arbitration. On the whole, the idea was acceptable. Farm- 
ers looked to it as one instrument among others to curb 
the arrogance of the manufacturers; workers saw in it a 
means of improving their lot; and even the employers 
welcomed it as a medium for settling disputes and were 
glad to grant concessions to their employees for the benefits 
which would accrue from industrial peace. 

"It would be futile to delay in criticising the sundry 
benefits and drawbacks which have resulted from the arbi- 
tration law in New Zealand. Undoubtedly it has benefited 
the progressive employer by eliminating the cutthroat com- 
petitors who reap their profits through sweating and child 
labor. Great educative benefits also have resulted from 
the necessary publicity accompanying an award, and the 
popular criticism to which the court was continuously ex- 
posed. The worker, of course, has profited greatly. It 
has meant for him not only increase of [money] wages 
and improved conditions under which to work, but addi- 
tional leisure and independence as well. But, on the other 
hand, employers have complained that labor has decreased 
in its efficiency, and other critics fear that though it has 
helped to unite and solidify labor in general, it has taken 
the steel out of the men and left them without initiative. 
Meanwhile the public complains that prices have gone up 
and the investor declares his capital in danger. 

"The attitude of the workers has of recent years rad- 
ically changed. Whereas ten years ago the voices foretell- 
ing the failure of the court were very few indeed and ill 
received, the opinion is growing prevalent that they were 
the voices of true and not false prophets. In fact, to 
support the Arbitration Court among some labor circles 


to-day is tantamount to declaring oneself a reactionary. 
Men and women among the workers feel that the court 
is owned and controlled by the capitalist class ; that though 
their labor representative is a factor of it, yet he is coun- 
terbalanced by the employers' representative, and the 
judge, being also a member of the Supreme Court, belongs 
by his training and social aflSliations to the other class, 
and is unavoidably biased. Whereas a few years ago con- 
trary opinion was directed against the personnel and prac- 
tice of the court, it is to-day resolving itself into a belief 
that the basic principle of arbitration is at fault. Further- 
more, the court must act within laws enacted by a cap- 
italist-controlled Parliament, and to plead before it under 
such circumstances is a hopeless predicament. Public 
opinion behind the court forbids it, in fact, to act in any 
other but according to the most conventional conceptions 
of justice. During the last few years the tendency of the 
court has been to regard the workers as a discontented 
class revolting against a perfectly satisfactory order of 
things, and upon whom the court must pass sentence. The 
reputation for industrial well-being which New Zealand 
enjoys makes it additionally difficult. One hears it said, 
'the workers here are better off than in any other country 
in the world ; they have no right to complain. ' 

*'It is impossible for the judges to act impartially; they 
are too much restricted on every side, the pressure of the 
capitalist class too great. . . . 

"The court is no longer the focussing point of public 
interest in industrial matters. It is no longer the axle 
.around which turn the wheels of business life. Differences 
between employers and workers are settled to an ever 
increasing extent outside the court, and, moreover, force is 
again being called into play. Workers are resorting to 
the strike. Employers, however, cling to the system and 


use it in a previously unnecessary way. When a union 
failing of its purpose before the court, cancels its registra- 
tion and declares a strike, the employers rush in a squad 
of men, pay them good wages for the time being, form 
them into an arbitration union upon a program dictated 
by themselves [the employers], and, before the strikers 
know it, they must either join the new union at the em- 
ployers' pleasure or go without work. This procedure 
has been a feature of almost every recent strike and was 
notoriously so during the late crisis. . . . 

"Such is the practical outcome; other inevitable results 
are no less in evidence. Though wages have risen since 
the inception of the act, prices have gone up in much 
greater proportion, and the wage-earner finds himself in 
no better position to-day than twenty years ago. In other 
respects New Zealand has progressed along substantially 
the same path as have other countries. Wealth has be- 
come more and more concentrated into the hands of the 
few, poverty is slowly but surely on the increase, and class 
distinctions are becoming each day more pronounced. 
With the tendency of business towards monopoly and the 
inevitable rise in the cost of living, labor is awakening, 
uniting, and demanding its just share of what it produces. 
The effect of these twenty years of arbitration and good 
times has been merely to lull the worker into a comfortable 
and self-satisfied condition until he felt himself quite as 
good as his employer. He had but to step up to the 
Arbitration Court and his demands materialized. He had 
leisure, comfort, and good pay. But to-day he feels that 
all these years he has been fooled and cheated and the 
court seems a very grim joke indeed." 

(See also "New Zealand" and "The General Strike.") 



Editorials in The Socialist (Melbourne), signed by Mordeeai 

[Both in New South Wales and in "Western Australia — 
as in other instances — officials put in office by the Labor 
Party had fined labor unionists for striking.] 

"These workers are brought before the court just in 
the same way as the person who commits any common 
offense, and for what? They withhold the labor which 
they have to sell. It seems that we are drifting back to 
conditions of slavery. When the worker may be fined or 
jailed for exercising what should be his right under cap- 
italism — to say when and for whom he will work — he is a 
slave indeed. The official who summoned these men to 
appear at court was elected to look after working-class 
interests. That is how he does it. We compliment him 
(and his party) on the success of his efforts to fool the 
workers. In passing, it is interesting to note that the 
leader of the Federal Labor Party is of the same mind as 
his state brothers. Speaking in the House of Representa- 
tives on Thursday, April 16, Mr. Fisher said : ' If I could, 
I would prevent strikes absolutely. ' So would we, by abol- 
ishing the social system which makes them necessary. At 
present the strike is the only way for the workers effectu- 
ally to express their discontent. Anyone who would pre- 
vent them doing that is assisting the other class to keep 
the working-class in the bondage of wage-slavery." 

(See also "Australia.") 



All the Socialist and Labor parties and other labor 
union organizations have concentrated a large part of their 
activity, undoubtedly the larger part, in the effort to secure 
labor legislation. We make no attempt to measure the suc- 
cess of this effort, as this would require a volume in itself. 
Moreover, it is difficult to say in what proportion the legis- 
lation already secured is to be attributed to the enlightened 
selfishness of governments actually in power, and to what 
extent it is to be attributed to their fear of the economic 
or political power of the labor unions and Socialist parties. 

It is perfectly practicable, however, to give the Socialist 
program of labor legislation, as well as the British varia- 
tion of this program. 


The International Congress, held at Copenhagen in 1910, 
adopted a resolution on labor legislation, declaring that : 

The increasing exploitation of the workers consequent upon the 
development of capitalist production has brought about conditions 
which render imperative legislation for the protection of the life 
and health of the worker. 

In no country do the laws even approximate that which is abso- 
lutely necessary in the interests of the workers, and which could 
be granted without detriment to existing industry; [and reiterat- 
ing] the following minimum demands regarding legislation for 



the protection of workers (without distinction of sex) made by 
the Paris Congress of 1889: 

1. A maximum working day of eight hours. 

2. Prohibition of boy and girl labor under 14 years. 

3. Prohibition of night work, except where the nature of the 
work demands of public welfare make it inevitable. 

4. Uninterrupted rest of at least 36 hours in each week for all 

5. Complete suppression of the track system. 

6. Absolute right of combination. 

7. Effective and thorough inspection of working conditions, 
agricultural as well as industrial, with the co-operation of persons 
elected by the workers. 

The Congress recalled the action of the Amsterdam Con- 
gress (1904) in demanding that adequate public measures 
be taken ''for the support and care of the sick, those dis- 
abled by accident, the old, the invalids, women with child 
and mothers in childbed, widows, orphans, and the unem- 
ployed; the administration of such measures to be under 
the control of the workers, and the same treatment to be 
given to foreigners as to those belonging to the country," 
and called ''upon the workers of all nations, whether occu- 
pied in industry, in commerce, in agriculture, or in any 
other branch, to break down the opposition of the govern- 
ing classes and, by unceasing agitation and strong and per- 
fect organization, both political and industrial, to win for 
themselves real and effective protection." 


(Conference of 1913) 

Mr. W, C. Anderson [I. L. P.] moved the following: 

That this Conference urges the Parliamentary Labor Party to 
press upon the Government the resolutions carried at the many 


War Against Poverty Conferences demanding legislation next ses- 
sion to secure to every person a national minimum of civilized 
life by measures providing for a legal minimum wage in agricul- 
ture and all industries, the reduction of the hours of labor to 48 
hours per week, complete provision against sickness, the guar- 
antee of a national minimum of child nurture, the prevention of 
unemployment, the building of healthy homes for all, and the 
abolition of the Poor Law. 

Mr. Anderson of the Independent Labor Party and W. 
S. Sanders of the Fabian Society urged a union of all 
forces to bring about this reform. The resolution was 

(Conference of 1914) 
Dr. Marion Phillips (Women's Labor League) moved 
the following: 

That this Conference calls upon the Government to make com- 
pulsory the Education (Provision of Meals) Act, and to extend 
it so that necessitous children may be fed during holidays and to 
make it obligatory that feeding should be carried out by direct 
management and not by contractors. 

She said the greater part of the resolution had been car- 
ried at previous conferences. The only new point was that 
they wished to make it obligatory for feeding to be carried 
out by direct management and not by private contractors 
making a profit out of the business. 

The resolution was seconded and agreed to. 

(See also party programs of Germany and the United 


The question of unemployment plays a very exceptional 
and central role from the point of view of all Socialist 
parties. The chief reason for this is that if there were not 
always present in industry an army of unemployed, strikes 
would be far more effective. Not only would this make 
possible such a high degree of organization of labor as to 
facilitate the general strike, but it would also put the labor 
unions in a position to wage a much more effective political 


(From American Party Report) 
The resolution and discussion on the problems of unem- 
ployment and co-operation and on the Socialist program 
for labor legislation we take from the report of the Con- 
gress, made by the American delegates to the American 

The following is the resolution on the question of unem- 
ployment : 

The Congress declares that unemployment is inseparable from 
the capitalist mode of production and will disappear only when 
capitalism disappears. So long as capitalist production forms 
the basis of society, palliative measures alone are possible. 

This Congress demands the institution by public authorities, 
under the administration of working-class organizations, of gen- 
eral compulsory insurance against unemployment, the expenses 
of which shall be borne by the owners of the means of production. 



The representatives of the workers most urgently demand from 
the public authorities : 

(1) Exact statistical registx'ation of the unemployed. 

(2) The execution on a sufficient scale of important public 
works where the unemployed shall be paid the trade-union rate 
of wages. 

(3) In periods of industrial crisis extraordinary subsidies to 
trade-union unemploj'ed funds. 

(4) No payment to an unemployed worker to cause the loss of 
political rights. 

(5) Establishment of and subsidies to labor exchanges in which 
all the liberties and interest of the workers are respected by co- 
operation with trade-union employment bureaus. 

(6) Social laws for the regulation and reduction of hours of 

(7) Pending the realization by legislation of general and com- 
pulsory insurance, the public authorities should encourage unem- 
ploj^ment benefit funds of trade-unions by financial subsidies, 
these subsidies leaving complete autonomy to the trade-union. 


a. Edmondo Peluso, in L'Himianite 

The Congress of the German Socialist Party in 1913 
was of the unanimous opinion that unemployment is a 
consequence of the capitalist system of exploitation and 
can be eradicated only by the abolition of the present 
society. But palliatives can be employed and the duty of 
the Socialist Party is to see that this is done. Comrade 
Timm, Socialist representative in the Bavarian Diet, in his 
report on the unemployment insurance law, said in part : 

The first thing to do is to prevent the capitalists in such critical 
time from lowering existing salaries. The second step is for the 
Government, through an insurance law, to help the unemployed. 

The German syndicates, in 1912, gave nearly nine million 
marks for the unemployed out of their funds. 

The landowners are opposed to such a law, and demand that 
the unemployed be sent to the farms, where hands are scarce. 


In Denmark, such an insurance law exists, and the state and 
the communes have to pay 10,000,000 marks yearly for this 

In England, about 2,500,000 workers are compulsorily insured. 

In Germany, we must compel the bourgeoisie, through the 
union of our forces, to grant us this reform law. 

The motion of Timm was then adopted unanimously, 
b. The Timm Resolution 

The constant and periodically gi-owing problem of unem- 
ployment is an inseparable feature, an inevitable result of capital- 
ist production. It will disappear only with the introduction of 
a socially organized system of production. 

But we must strive, even under present conditions, at least 
to alleviate the suffering caused by unemployment through social 

We demand, therefore, that all public bodies of the nation, 
states, or cities insist upon immediate completion of unfinished 
public undertakings and plan for the systematic provision of 
opportunity for work at the prevailing rate of wages. 

We call upon organizations to arrange mass demonstrations 
which shall emphasize and support the measures proposed by 
their representatives in the legislative bodies. 

Public legal unemployment insurance for all workers and 
employees can be established only by national legislation. 

Until such time as the national regulation of unemployment 
insurance has been secured, we demand municipal support through 
payments to the labor-union unemialoyment insurance funds. 

For this purpose the individual states must be called upon 
to grant regular endowments. 

The enforcement of public unemployment insurance legisla- 
tion is possible only when it is demanded by active and energetic 
agitation through our political and industrial organizations. We 
call upon all workers, therefore, to join these organizations. 


The report on unemployment to the proposed Interna- 
tional Congress, which was to have been held at Vienna in 


1914, was intrusted by the International Bureau to Vail- 
lant, and was unanimously indorsed by the French Con- 
gress. It was practically certain of adoption by the Con- 
gress at Vienna, had the latter been held. A summary was 
given in The Daily Herald (London). 

Vaillant declared that capitalism will have recourse to 
the aid of the state in order to provide that reserve army 
of labor which it requires and must have. It will promote 
emigration or immigration, or try to stop both according 
as the reserve army of labor rises or falls. 

He then reviewed the manner in which the various Euro- 
pean countries were encouraging and suppressing immi- 
gration and emigration, and analyzed the crises which had 
taken place during the last twenty years. 

He then proposed the following resolution, w^hich was 
to be submitted to the Vienna Congress : 

The Congress — Considering that if unemployment can only dis- 
appear with the method of capitalist production for which it is 
a necessary condition of existence and development, there are 
laws, reforms, and means which even now can prevent or mitigate 
in some measure misery and suffering and their aggravation in 
times of depression and crisis; 

Considering that the evil of unemployment presses not only on 
those out of work, but unceasingly threatens all members of the 
working-class and makes the whole of working-class life a long 
torture of insecurity and dread ; that, therefore, the first and most 
necessary measures against unemployment and its evils are those 
which best protect the workers, guarantee their security, and in- 
crease the power of organization, the resistance and struggle of 
the working-class [demands] : 

1. The extension of the right of trade-union combination ; 

2. Limitation of the duration and intensity of labor — the eight- 
hour day and the "English week" (Saturday half-holiday); 
physiological and hygienic limitation of the intensity and rapidity 
of labor; 

3. Failing a trade-union rate of wages, a minimum wage ac- 
cording to the cost of living; 


4. The Australian system of a minimum wage and wages 
boards for housework and low-paid callings; 

5. Prohibition of all production of commodities by labor in 
prisons and benevolent establishments; educational work to be 
substituted in them for productive work ; 

6. Systematic co-ordination and execution of public works in 
accordance with the economic situation, the state of the markets, 
and the intensity of unemployment ; 

7. Institution of a national organization of the service of 
" placement," under the control of the state and the trade-unions; 

8. Social insurance against all the risks of working-class life 
and labor — unemployment, accidents, sickness, invalidity, infirm- 
ity, old age, etc. — without workmen's contributions, and managed, 
quite independently, by the unions of those insured ; 

Insurance guaranteeing to all those insured reparation for 
risks undergone, compensation to be at least equal to the proved 
loss of working capacity or wages ; 

Establishment of all institutions and measures useful for the 
prevention of risks; 

Graduated tax upon capital and incomes of the wealthy 
classes, the provision, by an annual credit in the budget, of neces- 
sary and sufficient sums for the complete working and develop- 
ment of social insurance; the capital funds fi'om the em- 
ployers' contributions furnishing useful complementary sums; 

9. Permanent and periodical inquiry into unemployment by 
trade-unions with the co-operation, if possible, of the technical 
services of the communes and the state. 


In the chapter on the Socialist parties and the labor 
unions we have pointed out that the Socialist parties often 
regard themselves merely as the political expression of the 
organizations of the largest class of producers, the wage- 
earners. But all producers are at the same time consum- 
ers, and all Socialist parties have given a constantly in- 
creasing share of their attention to the problems of the 
consumer. Frequently, in recent years, it has even ap- 
peared in some of the countries of continental Europe that 
the Socialist parties have been giving more attention to 
the high cost of living than to strikes, labor legislation, 
and other matters which concern the wage-earners as 

But this is a comparatively new development ; as a con- 
sequence, the Socialist position is not altogether defined; 
for example, the International has not decided whether 
any effort shall be made to fix prices by law. Our quota- 
tions, therefore, while not indicating any final conclusions, 
cover the more important part of the period (the years 
since 1910) during which this topic has been the center of 
discussion. It is hardly necessary to add that prices have 
never risen so rapidly as in recent years, and that in all 
countries they have gone up far more rapidly than wages — 
with the exception of a few favorably situated occupations. 
Hence the growing importance of the agitation, which led 
to widespread rioting in many of the continental nations — 
including France, Italy, Germany, and Austro-Hungary. 





(From the Official Report of the Conference) 
Mr. 0. Connellan [Leeds Trades Council] moved the 
following : 

That this Conference is of opinion that the time is opportune 
for steps to be taken to inquire into the possibility of the estab- 
lishment of state-regulated prices for domestic commodities, as 
a national correlative to the minimum wage. 

He said they did not hope the Labor Party would be 
able to secure in the immediate future or for some time 
the state regulation of prices of food, but the fact remained 
that the supply of food, being in the hands of a few rich 
merchants, they had the power to fix their own prices. He 
felt that it was a matter the Labor Party ought to take up. 

The resolution was formally seconded. 

Mr. D. J. Davies [Vehicle Workers] moved the follow- 
ing amendment: 

Delete " as a national correlative to the minimum wage " and 
insert " and other commodities which are compulsory purchas- 
able by the workers in the course of their occupation." 

He said the matter he wished included was a very im- 
portant one for the members of his society. Oil fuel was 
under two companies, and at the commencement of 1913 
those companies raised the price of petrol to such an extent 
that it cost the union thousands of pounds to fight the 
employers on behalf of the taxi-cab drivers of London. . . . 

Mr. J. Ramsay MacDonald, M. P., said that when they 
started laying down the policy of a minimum wage those 
who had taken the trouble to think the matter out in detail 
saw they would have to go farther. Australia had had to 
go farther. The prices of certain commodities in Australia 


were now fixed by the state. They were bound to go from 
one stage to another. There was no termination in this 
method of progress. He thought the cab-drivers had not 
raised a small point at all. The question of oil fuel, its 
monopoly, its control, its management, and its cost, was 
going to be one of the biggest economic problems that the 
industrial world would have to face. He therefore hoped 
the amendment would be accepted. 

The amendment was put and declared carried; and the 
resolution as amended was then agreed to. 


(From Le Peuple of Brussels) 
The report to the French Congress (on the "High Cost 
of Living") was introduced by the well-known Marxist 
and agricultural economist, Compere-Morel. In his report, 
general as well as specific causes were ascribed as reasons 
for the increased cost of living. Thus while militarism, 
taxation, emigration, and fluctuations in the price of gold 
undoubtedly play some part in this increase, nevertheless 
the root-evil must be sought in the capitalistic system 
itself. The consumer is helpless against trusts and com- 
binations, and the Socialistic organization alone can relieve 
the body politic from the ruinous opposition of the interests 
of the producers and consumers. 

Vaillant gave importance to the secondary causes, such 
as the tariff on consumption goods. He favored a policy 
of commercial treaties with Germany, which the German 
and Austrian Socialists had formulated. Adolph Braun 
proposed labor-union control of wages and their regulation 
in correspondence with the prices of necessary com- 

Guesde declared that no one had denied that the in- 


creased cost of living was a general and universal condi- 
tion. He concluded : 

It prevails in protectionist as well as in free-trade countries; 
in those localities where there are trusts, as well as in those where 
there are none; in countries where union methods have been 
developed (Belgium, England, Germany, etc.), as well as in coun- 
tries where they have not; it is found where there is no govern- 
ment, as well as in those countries where government has secured 
a foothold. From this it follows that the increase of prices is 
of an inherently capitalistic origin. Such being the ease, how 
can we offer co-operation, government ownership, and free trade 
as the sole remedies ? . . . 

We must show the proletariat that it must employ every 
means — even the labor unions — if it is ever to prepare itself for 
its emancipation, but we must impress upon it just as firmly 
that the solution of this, as well as of other social problems, 
is connected inseparably with the overthrow of the capitalistic 
system. Carthage must be destroyed! Down with capitalism! 

The following resolution was adopted : 

In view of the fact that the cost of living has risen to such 
an extent that it is becoming impossible to live like human beings, 
since the increase of wages, which follows rather than precedes 
the crisis in the rise of prices, is often slower than the increased 
cost of living; 

In view of the fact that this phenomenon, far from being 
peculiar to our nation, arises in every capitalistic country, protec- 
tionist or free trade, of the Old or New World, and occupies the 
minds of all proletarians of every country. And since the high 
cost of living is an evil of essentially capitalistic origin and 
cannot disappear save with capitalism itself ; 

Therefore, the Congress appeals to the workingmen and women 
of all countries, who suffer from the increased cost of living, to 
ally themselves with the Socialist Party and with the labor unions, 
thus strengthening the army of the proletariat that is consciously 
and effectively striving against the high cost of living. 

The Congress invites them at the same time to make use of 
their political and economic powers : 

(1) Replacing indirect taxes upon consumption by direct taxes 


upon capital, accompanied by legislative measures checking the 
shifting of such taxes. 

(2) Lessening the burden of public expenditure. 

(3) Encouraging and developing the agricultural output. 

(4) Placing a lower rate on the transportation of materials 
of primary importance for the development of the land and on 
the shipping of agricultural products. 

(5) Regulating the prices of articles of principal importance 
(bread, meat, rent, etc.). 

(6) Tariff duties, which, while not being exaggerated in the 
interest of protection, would take into account the legitimate 
interests of those developing the land. 

(7) The development of co-operation, by which the consumer 
and producer can do away with the robbery that has been prac- 
ticed on both by the middleman. 

(8) Stopping the exodus from the country by applying labor 
legislation to the agricultural workers, by aiding the peasant pro- 
ducers through tax reforms, and by increasing the production of 
commodities through the medium of great public agricultural 

(9) Limitation of armaments and abolition of war. 

(10) Realizing the maximum of social reforms and labor legis- 
lation, so as to keep humanity from illness, crime, delinquency, 
insanity, alcoholism, and destitution. 


While the International Socialist Congress proposed for 
Vienna on August 23, 1914, was never held, on account of 
the war, the report on the "High Cost of Living," which 
was to have been submitted to the Congress by Mr. Sidney- 
Webb, has been obtained. 

Mr. Webb, after analyzing the situation in various coun- 
tries, significantly concluded that "it is melancholy reflec- 
tion that, except in so far as the growing collectivism has 
been able to protect and supplement the workmen's 
standard of life, at least a majority of the families in the 


world find themselves amid enormously augmented wealth, 
getting, in one or other item, actually less adequate food, 
clothing, housing, leisure, or recreation than was the case 
20 years ago." He recommended, on heJialf of the British 
Section, the adoption of the following resolution: 

1. That the rise in prices, which has extended to nearh' all 
commodities in every civilized country, and has continued already 
for 18 years, has practically nowhere been accompanied by an 
equivalent rise of money wages, and has consequently resulted, 
notwithstanding all the struggles of trade-union organizations, 
in a degradation in the standard of life of great masses of the 

2. That the fundamental cause of such a general rise of prices 
is to be sought in the gi'owing command over the means and 
processes of production, and over the markets and methods of 
distribution, which the capitalists of the world are obtaining, by 
means of their monopolies, combinations, and price-agreements; 
by which, on the one hand, prices are raised to the consumer, 
and on the other hand — owing to the increased power which 
these same monopolies, combinations, and price-agreements give, 
in face of the proletarian competition for employment — the wages 
of labor are continually being driven down towards bare sub- 
sistence rates. 

3. That this evil outcome of capitalist exploitation and the 
competitive wage-system accordingly demands the urgent consid- 
eration of every legislature; in order that, pending any complete 
grappling with the evil (which can only be accomplished by the 
transformation of society on a Socialist basis), palliative measures 
for the protection of the proletariat may everywhere be adopted. 

4. Among the palliative measures to be commended as having, 
at any rate, a partial success, the Congress notes: 

(a) The action of many municipalities in Germany, Hungary, 
Italy, and elsewhere in keeping down prices by opening municipal 
shops and bakeries, and supplying meat, fish, bread, etc., as well 
as medicines for the sick, at cost price. 

(6) The development — unfortunately far too slow — of the 
municipal provision of dwelling houses to be let at the cost of 
construction and maintenance only. 

(c) The growth in nearly all countries of the democratic co- 


operative societies which bring an increasing part of the pro- 
visioning of the people under working-class control. 

(d) The formulation of the demand by trade-unions that there 
should be recognized a minimum standard of wages below which 
they must never be allowed to fall, based on the ascertained cost 
of maintenance. 

(e) The concessions — as yet tardy and insufficient — by public 
authorities of increases of wages to their employees, professedly 
in proportion to the increased cost of living. 

And the working-class throughout the world should press such 
measures forward. 

5. That in view of the increasing spread of the fixing of mini- 
mum rates of wages by law, by public authorities, or by collective 
agreements, and the consequent stereotyping for long periods of 
existing money rates of wages, it is desirable that all such wage 
scales should be accompanied by provisions for the rates of wages 
to rise automatically with the general level of prices of commodi- 
ties, which should be officially ascertained and promulgated year 
by year. (Our italics.) 

The last proposal would mark an extremely important, 
if not a revolutionary, innovation in Socialist and labor- 
union policy. 


The Socialist interest in agriculture is twofold: (1) the 
high cost of living is attributed chiefly to the high prices 
of agricultural products; and (2) the large class of agri- 
cultural laborers, and small agriculturists practically in 
the condition of agricultural laborers, must be won over 
to Socialism if there is to be a Socialist majority and a 
Socialist government. 

The first phase of this question we have considered in 
the previous chapter. The importance of the second part 
of the problem has been recognized by all Socialist parties 
for many years, though in the early stages of the present 
Socialist movement very little attention was given to it. 
It will be noticed that the International movement had 
assumed no definite attitude to the agrarian question in 
1896. But since that time the problem of gaining the 
agricultural vote for Socialism has been carefully consid- 
ered not only in France, America, and Great Britain, but 
also in a number of the smaller countries, such as Belgium, 
Denmark, and Roumania, and in nearly all cases consider- 
able success has already been achieved — though only a 
small beginning of what it is hoped to accomplish. 

The agricultural problem, as a whole, has never been dis- 
cussed at the International Socialist Congresses, and as a 
conseciuence the position of the various countries differs 
radically. But there is far less difference as to the 
high cost of living, and this latter problem has led all the 



Socialist parties to certain common conclusions as to agri- 
culture (as the previous chapter has shown). 

It will also be seen that there is a great deal in common 
between the program of the Socialists of France and of 
America, the two great countries (together with Eussia) 
where agriculture is most important. 


The Congress of the International held at London in 
1896 adopted the following resolution on the agrarian 
question : 

The ever-increasing evils of the capitalist exploitation of agri- 
culture will not completely disappear, except in a society in 
which the soil, as well as the other means of production, belong 
to the collectivity. 

The modes of holding land and its distribution among the 
various categories of the agricultural population in different 
countries, present a diversity too great to allow of the adoption 
of a general formula, imposing on all labor parties the same 
means for realizing their common ideal, and applicable to all 
classes which are interested in their realization. 

But every labor party has one essential and fundamental task: 
the organization of the rural proletariat against those who exploit 
it. Consequently the Congress declares that it must be left to 
the different nationalities to determine the means of action best 
adapted to the situation of each country. 



By Compere-Morel 

(From Le Socialiste, February 18 to 25, 1912) 

The French Party has perhaps given more attention to 

the agricultural problem than any other large Socialist 

Party. Its chief expert and authority on the subject is 


Compere-Morel. The following propositions presented by 
him to the Party Congress in 1912, though not finally acted 
upon, indicate the past progress of the party, its present 
agricultural problems, and the line of their probable 
solution : 

Whereas, the agricultural wage-earners, deprived of their tools 
of production, are converted into proletarians to the same extent 
as are the wage-earners of mines, railroads, and factories, and are 
paid sub-human starvation wages; 

Whereas, the tenant-farmers who till the soil which they do 
not own are scarcely less exploited by the great landowners than 
are the agi'icultural laborers; 

Whereas, small proprietors working their land without the help 
of day laborers are exploited by the money-lenders, and fall more 
and more into absolute dependence upon middlemen, to whom 
they become increasingly tributary, and the small farmers are 
condemned to submit to their terms, whether it be a question of 
manure, seeds, agricultural machinery, or of agricultural prod- 
ucts. In the meanwhile, they face the prospect of their real 
estate shrinking in value in competition with the large es- 
tates; . , . 

Whereas, the whole world of rural labor, tenant-farmer and 
small landed proprietor, has every reason to desire to have that 
transfoi-mation realized which is the aim of International So- 
cialism ; 

Therefore, the party should increase its propaganda in the 
country by organizing agricultural workers and, with their help, 
should hasten the political expropriation of the capitalist class, 
the indispensable prelude to its economic expropriation. 

To this end, while reaffirming that the solution of the social 
problem lies wholly and exclusively in the collective ownership 
of all means of production, exchange, and distribution, the party 
should decide upon a series of immediate demands, calculated to 
prepare the French peasantry for the new order. 

This series of immediate demands is as follows: 

1, Development of the unions of agricultural laborers. 

2, Extension of all labor laws to agriculture and a minimum 
wage for daj^-laborers, as well as those hired by the year, to be 
fixed by the agricultural unions and municipal councils. 


3. Establishment of a normal eight-hour day. During the busy 
seasons, overtime allowed with special pay. Weekly rest to agri- 
cultural wage-earners. 

4. Application of the laws of hygiene to the quarters of farm 
hands, to realize the maximum of favorable conditions. 

5. Prohibition of child labor under 13 years of age, and the 
farmwork for children and youths before 7 a.m. and after 7 p.ii. 

6. Appointment of agricultural arbitrators, with right of ap- 
peal reserved to the representatives of both parties. 

7. Revision of ground leases for tenant-farming by arbitration 
committees, which, when the rent exceeded the normal ground 
rent, should reduce the rent charge to the normal price; and the 
institution of a rental varying according to the crops, inclem- 
encies of the season, and prices. Indemnity to tenant-farmers 
when leaving, for the increased value given to the property during 
the lease. 

8. The establishment for the farmer of a fund to include farm- 
ing implements, manure, and heads of cattle which are indis- 
pensable to the exercise of the vocation. 

9. Abolition of taxes of labor imposed by the proprietor upon 
the tenant-farmers and the abolition of landlord-tenants. 

10. Development of agricultural unions, benefit, and co-opera- 
tive societies, for the purpose, first, of purchasing fertilizer, seed, 
etc., then for the sale of agi-icultural products, and, lastly, for 
their production, the administration of which will permit the 
small landowners to accustom themselves to superior methods of 
management and the use of new agi'icultural instruments. 

11. Purchase by the communes, with the aid of the state, of 
agricultural machines, or the hiring of these machines, placed 
without charge at the service of the small cultivators. 

12. Abolition of inheritance taxes under 5,000 francs. 

13. Abolition of all indirect taxes and transformation of direct 
taxes into a progressive tax on incomes above 3,000 francs; ad 
interim, the abolition of the ground tax, the proprietors cultivat- 
ing their own lands. 

14. Lowering of the transport rates for fertilizer machines 
and agi'icultural products. 

15. Prohibition of the communes from alienating their com- 
munal lands. 

16. Revision of the registry of lands and revision of lands sub- 
divided by the communes. 


17. Immediate consideration of some plan of public works 
having for its end the betterment of the soil and the development 
of agricultural production. 

18. Freedom to hunt and fish, limited only by the necessities of 
conservation; prohibition of private preserves. 

19. Free courses in agronomy, together with plots of land for 

Therefore, be it resolved that the Lyons Congress vote this 
program of immediate reform, and declare to the farmers that 
we wish to restore the possessions of those that have been dis- 
possessed and to respect the little farms of others which they 
have been cultivating themselves; that we nevertheless predict 
that they will voluntarily come to the collective form of property 
through the methods of co-oi^eration, because they will have 
recognized all its advantages with their own eyes; that we believe 
that our recruits will be many, and that the reign of the agrarians, 
that reserve army of reaction and social conservatism, will be 
near its end. 



(From Vorwaerts) 
The agrarian program demands the nationalization of 
the estates of the nobility, of the church, and of all unculti- 
vated land. The right of eminent domain is extended. 
The use of socialized land is to be given to agricultural 
laborers and persons in a similar situation, the necessary 
capital for cultivation to be furnished when necessary by 
the community. Where co-operative cultivation is profita- 
ble it is to be encouraged by the community. Further- 
more, the state is to support agriculture by furnishing 
capital for cultivation, to help in the improvement of the 
land, etc. The organization and support of agricultural 
schools are demanded. The state is to undertake and super- 
intend the building of private dwellings and is to struggle 
against land speculation by itself building dwellings for 


laborers. Where the right of using socially owned land 
is given over to private persons, a tax is to be fixed cor- 
responding to the value of the land. Besides the tax 
against landowners, there is to be a taxing of the incre- 
ment in land value. 


By A. M. Simons 

Present-day American agriculture has grown directly 
out of conditions, most of which originated in the years 
directly after the Civil War. At this time the most ex- 
tensive effort ever tried in any country was made to main- 
tain a race of small farmers. In the 20 years following 
1860, 65,000,000 acres of land were distributed by the na- 
tional government in small farms. A much larger amount 
was given to the railroads during this same period, and 
a large portion of this was also distributed to small farmers. 

In the South the great plantations were divided up 
by the destruction of the system of chattel slavery into 
hundreds of thousands more small farms. 

In the intense competition for production of agricul- 
tural products that followed, the income of the farmer, like 
that of the wage-worker, was reduced to the point which 
would sustain life and permit a continuance of the race of 
farmers. The remainder went to the transportation, 
storage, and marketing companies that control the farmers' 
product in its later stages. (Our italics throughout 

By 1890 there were no more farms to be distributed, 
save in isolated localities or after the expenditure of large 
sums for drainage or irrigation. These were not numerous 

* From Socialist Party Campaign Book of 1913. 


enough or in sufficiently active connection with agriculture 
as a whole to act as an outlet for the farmers who were 
being crowded from the land in the older localities. 

The 20 years since 1890 have seen the transformation 
of those conditions that have served to distinguish agri- 
culture from factory industry. It has seen the element of 
chance largely eliminated. Agricultural invention, im- 
proved machinery, and better breeding of plants and ani- 
mals have not only greatly increased the product, but have 
brought conditions of production to a point where they 
much more closely approximate those existing in the mill, 
mine, and factory. 

The disappearance of free land has shown itself most 
strikingly in the tremendous increase in the cost of this 
fundamental instrument of production in agriculture. 

In the 200 years in which the continent was conquered, 
prairie sod turned, forests cleared, millions of farm homes 
and other buildings erected, and during which, in fact, 
more labor was applied to land than at any previous time 
in the history of the world, the total value of all land 
reached only a little over thirteen billion dollars. In the 
last 10 years, when less new land was brought under culti- 
vation than at any period in the last half-century, the 
value added to the land was over fifteen billion dollars. 

This great increase in farm values has been most 
marked in a few special sections and is only a part of a 
movement that shows how agriculture is concentrating in 
certain localities. 

In the states touched by a circle with a 500-mile radius 
and Chicago as its center, there is already located 57.7 
per cent of the value of all farm property, 60.7 per cent 
of the value of all farm land, 51.3 per cent of the value 
of all live stock, and 68 per cent of the value of all cereals 
is produced. It was just in this territory that the value 


of this land increased most rapidly, over 60 per cent of 
the total increase in the last 10 years, being in the states 
touched by such a circle. 

Even more important is the fact that in this territory 
the number of farms decreased by over 30,000 in the last 
10 years. Here where industry is most profitable; here 
where land is increasing most rapidly in value ; here where 
the product is greatest; here the children of the farmers 
are being driven from the farms and the number of oppor- 
tunities for new openings in agriculture are growing con- 
stantly less. In the five states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, 
Missouri, and Iowa, which form the heart of this territory, 
the most important agricidtural section of the United 
States, the popidation in rural localities absolutely de- 
clined, and this decline in farms was in those operated by 
owners. There are 10,000 less farms operated by owners 
in Iowa than there were in 1900 ; 8,000 less in Indiana, and 
13,000 less in Illinois. 

In 1880, 69 per cent of the farms of Illinois were op- 
erated by owners and 31 per cent by tenants; in 1910, 41 
per cent were operated by tenants and but 59 per cent of 
the farmers owned the land upon which they worked. 

In the counties in which the value of land and product 
is greatest, this percentage runs much higher. 

This increase in tenantry in proportion to the value 
of the product and to the perfection of agriculture is even 
more strikingly seen in the only other section of the country 
that can rival this one in importance. 

In the cotton section, wherever we find a high pro- 
duction of cotton we find a high ratio of tenantry. In 
Texas, 55 per cent of the farms are now operated by ten- 
ants ; in Mississippi and Georgia, 66 per cent ; South Caro- 
lina, 63 per cent ; in Louisiana and Oklahoma, 55 per cent, 
and everywhere this percentage is swiftly increasing. 


When the countries in which the production of cotton 
is greatest are studied, this percentage rises to a far higher 
point. In the six leading cotton counties of Georgia, the 
percentage of the land tilled by tenants varies from 73 
per cent to 85 per cent ; in the six leading cotton counties of 
South Carolina, between 66 and 80 per cent of the farms 
are rented. Mississippi furnishes a most striking example 
of this kind of evolution. Its alluvial bottoms are the 
greatest cotton-producing country in the world. There are 
eight counties here where the average value of the land in 
farms is more than $25 per acre. In this section, which 
represents the very apex of cotton cultivation, 89 per cent 
of the farms were operated by tenants in 1900 and 92 per 
cent in 1910. 

But in both the North and the South a new force is 
coming in to hasten every one of the tendencies that have 
been noted. In every industry, so long as the principal 
operation had to be performed by either man or animal 
power, any high development of concentrated ownership 
and of capitalist exploitation was impossible. In farming 
the great task has been the turning of the soil, and hitherto 
this has been done by animal power. Now the farm tractor 
has come, driven hy kerosene oj gasoline or steam, to do 
this work, and is 'bringing the same revolution there thai 
the application of the explosive engine has brought in trans- 
portation. Although these tractors are of very recent in- 
troduction, yet they are already accomplishing a revolu- 
tion. Their great expense places them far beyond the reach 
of the renter or even the small farm owner, even if the 
latter were able to use them economically on his small acres. 
These machines will be operated by mechanics — not by 
farmers, when necessary ; and for mechanics the entire 
labor supply, trained in mines and mills and factories, will 
be available. 


In cotton production a similar mechanical revolution is 
taking place. Here the great task is that of picking, and 
already mechanical cotton pickers are being introduced 
that do the work of from 16 to 20 men. 

In market-gardening a similar transformation is taking 
place. Here glass-covered farms with heat and water and 
light, controlled artificially, are so expensive as to be as 
completely beyond the reach of those who work in them as 
the great factories in which thousands of wage-workers 

To sum up, the disappearance of free land and the 
swift rise in farm values is placing the land out of the 
reach of the small farmer. The race of tenants is increas- 
ing. The farm tractor, the cotton-picker, the mechanical 
milker, the great inventions now in use in the production 
of vegetables near cities, all these are tending to create a 
condition in which the worker on the farm will be as com- 
pletely separated from the instrument with which he works 
as is the worker in the factory. 

It is not the Socialist or the working-class who are 
taking the small farm from its owner; it is the great 
forces of capitalism which are fostered, maintained, and 
supported in every way by the political parties of the 
capitalist class. The Socialist Party does not come forward 
to assist in this process of reducing the farmer to the con- 
dition of tenant and wage-worker. The Socialist Party 
comes, on the contrary, to point to a way out; to point to 
the possihility of release for the farmer now heing driven 
from his land. 

Since this article was prepared for the 1912 campaign 
book the United States Department of Agriculture has 
published a bulletin (No. 41, Bureau of Plant Industry) 
which confirms in a most remarkable manner the conclu- 
sions drawn above. 


The investigators of the department selected three 
typical areas, one each in Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa. In 
these typical districts, says the report, " of the 700 farms 
studied, 57 per cent were operated by owners and 43 per 
cent by tenants. ' ' 

The average capital invested per farm was $17,535 in 
Indiana, $51,091 in Illinois, and $23,193 in Iowa. The 
general average for all the farms in the three districts was 
$30,606, a far greater sum than the average investment in 
manufacturing or trading. 

On these farms the owners who worked their own 
farms made a little less than factory wages. The report 
says: " Deducting 5 per cent interest on the average capital 
leaves an average labor income of $408 for the 273 farm 
owners. . . . The assertion that farmers are making large 
profits is erroneous. They are living on the earnings of 
their investment and not on the real profits of the farm. 
. . . One farmer out of every 22 received a labor income 
of over $2,000 a year. One farmer out of every 3 paid for 
the privilege of working his farm, that is, after deducting 
5 per cent interest on his investment he failed to make a 
plus labor income." 

It will be noticed that of the entire number 9 men 
with less than $5,000 capital received $74 for their year's 
work. Only 2 farmers out of 46 with less than $10,000 
invested made over $400. Out of the entire 273 only 12 
men received over $2,000 labor income. Each of these had 
more than $20,000 invested. The chance of a farm owner 
making a labor income of $1,000 with less than $15,000 
invested is less than 1 in 20. This, it must be remembered, 
is in the most favorable agricultural region in the United 

But the tenant without capital is equally helpless. To 


quote: " Almost without exception the tenant's income is 
in direct proportion to the sum he has invested. ' ' 

These are all the phenomena that have preceded and 
forced concentration in ownership in other lines of in- 
dustry. That this concentration is taking place is noted: 
' ' According to the last census the farms in the North Cen- 
tral States are growing fewer in number and larger in 
area. ... Of all the farms operated by owners there were 
20 of just 40 acres in area, the average labor income of 
which was $70. None made a labor income of $1,000. 
There were 26 men on 80-acre farms and only one of them 
made a labor income of $1,000. Of the 25 men on 160-acre 
farms, 1 in 5 made $1,000 or more." In other words, the 
farm of less than 160 acres is helow the point of profitable 
operation. The table giving area and income shows a con- 
tinuous and unbroken increase of labor income as the 
acreage of the farm increases, and the reporters comment 
on this as follows: "Thus the decrease in the number of 
farms in the North Central States is no cause for alarm. 
It is rather a sign that land is being utilized more efficiently 
and that the same products are being produced at less 

This is a complete confirmation of the Socialist theory 
of concentration, but scarcely carries comfort to the small 
farm owner who is being forced into the ranks of tenants 
and hired laborers. 

What Socialism will do for the Farmer 

The Socialist Party proposes to do all in its power to 
alleviate the condition of the farmer who now works with 
his own hands on his little bit of land ; but it is not blind 
to the fact that all the Socialists or anyone else could do 
would not protect him in that ownership against the power- 


ful forces that are taking his farm from him. So the party 
comes forward with the proposal that producers of wealth 
on the farm shall join with those of the factory to obtain 
the ownership of the things necessary to their lives. 

Just as the Socialist Party proposes to restore the 
ownership of the factory and mill, the mines and the 
railroads to those who work in them and who create wealth 
through their use, so it proposes to restore the lands and 
the machinery to the men who produce the crops of this 
country ; but this cannot be individual ownership in either 
case ; so the Socialist Party Relieves the time has now come 
for the beginning of socially operated farms; these farms 
would he sufficiently large to use the most improved ma- 
chinery; they would ie officered and directed hy the socially 
trained graduates of our agricultural educational institu- 
tions and their wealth would all go to those who produced 
it and worked upon the farm. 

Pending the time when such farms can be established, 
the following program adopted at our National Convention 
pledges the party to the enactment of a series of measures 
especially designed to afford relief to the great class of 
workers on the farm. 

Proposed Farmers' Program 

1. The Socialist Party demands that the means of transporta- 
tion and storage and the plants used in the manufacture of farm 
products and farm machinery shall be socially owned and demo- 
cratically managed. 

2. To prevent the holding of land out of use and to eliminate 
tenantry, we demand that all farm land not cultivated by owners 
shall be taxed at its full rental value, and that actual use and 
occupancy shall be the only title to land. 

3. We demand the retention by the national, state, or local 
governuig bodies of all land owned by them, and the continuous 
acquirement of other land by reclamation, purchase, eondemna- 


tion, taxation, or otherwise; such land to be organized as rapidly 
as possible into socially operated farms for the conduct of col- 
lective agricultural enterprises. 

4. Such farms should constitute educational and experimental 
centers for crop culture, the use of fertilizers and farm ma- 
chinery, and distributmg points for improved seeds and better 
breeds of animals. 

5. The formation of co-operative associations for agricultural 
purposes should be encouraged. 

6. Insurance against diseases of animals and plants, insect 
pests, and natural calamities should be provided by national, 
state, or local governments. 

7. We call attention to the fact that the elimination of farm 
tenantry and the development of socially owned and operated 
agriculture will open new opportunities to the agricultural wage- 
worker and free him from the tyranny of the private employer. 


In addition to the above program, the Convention of 
1912 made the following demands : 

1. The erection by the state at convenient points of elevators 
and warehouses for the storage of grain, potatoes, and other 
farm products; and connected with these provisions for municipal 
markets wherever the people of the community desire. We call 
attention to the fact that constitutional amendments providing 
for these measures were killed by the old parties in the last 

2. Establishment by the state of one or more plants for the 
manufacture of farm machinery and binder twine. 

3. State or county loans or mortgages and warehouse receipts, 
the interest charges to cover the cost only. 

4. State insurance against destruction of animals and crops. 


The Socialist Party of the State of Oklahoma adopted 
the following program in 1912 : 


Article 27. Renters' and Farmers' Program. — The Socialist 
Party stands for every measure that will add to the material, 
intellectual, and moral welfare of the working-class, and as the 
working-class of Oklahoma is largely made up of agricultural 
workers, we submit the following as the Renters' and Farmers' 
Program of the Socialist Party of Oklahoma : 

Section 1. The retention and constant enlargement of the 
public domain — 

By retaining school and other public lands; 

By purchase of arid and overflow lands and the state reclama- 
tion of all such lands now held by the state or that may be 
acquired by the state ; 

By the purchase of all lands sold for the non-payment of taxes ; 

By the purchase of segregated and unallotted Indian lands ; 

By the retention of leased lands after the expiration of leases 
and the payment of the improvements thereon at an appraised 

Section 2. Separation of the department of agi'iculture from 
the political government by means of — 

Election of all members and officers of the board of agricul- 
ture by the direct vote of the actual farmers — subject to the right 
of recall; 

Introduction of the merit system among the employees. 

Section 3. Erection by the state of grain elevators and ware- 
houses for the storage of farm products; these elevators and 
warehouses to be managed by the board of agriculture. 

Section 4. Organization by the board of agriculture for free 
agricultural education and the establishment of model farms. 

Section 5. Encouragement by the board of agriculture of co- 
operative societies of farmers — 

For the purchasing of land; 

For the buying of seed and fertilizer; 

For the purchase and common use of implements and ma- 
chinery ; 

For the preparing and sale of produce. 

Section 6. Organization by the state providing for loans on 
mortgages and warehouse certificates, the interest charges to cover 
cost only. 

Section 7. State insurance against diseases of animals, diseases 
of plants, insect pests, hail, flood, storm, and fire. 

Section 8. Exemption from taxation of dwellings, tools, farm 


animals, implements, and improvements to the amount of one 
thousand dollars. 

Section 9. A graduated tax on the value of rented land and 
land held for speculation. 

Section 10. Absentee landlords to assess their own lands, the 
state reserving the right to purchase such lands at their assessed 
value, plus 10 per cent. 

Section 11. Land now in possession of the state or hereafter 
acquired thi'ough purchase, reclamation of tax sales, to be rented 
to landless farmers under the supervision of the board of agri- 
culture at the prevailing rate of share rent or its equivalent. The 
payment of such rent to cease as soon as the total amount of 
rent paid is equal to the value of the land, the tenant thereby- 
acquiring for himself and his children the right of occupancy. 
The title to all such lands remaining with the Commonwealth. 

See also " Roumania "; and note absence of agrarian 
measures in German program under ' ' Germany. ' ' 


It is obvious that the agricultural problem is very 
largely the same as the land problem. But this fact has 
not as a rule been fully recognized by the Socialists — 
outside of Great Britain. This is due to the natural fact 
that the land problem, aside from its purely agricultural 
aspects, is more important in that country than elsewhere. 
Land rent, especially urban land rent, absorbs a very con- 
siderable proportion of the total income of Great Britain, 
doubtless a larger proportion than in any other of the great 

The only country, therefore, in which the problem of the 
nationalization of the land or of land rent has been in the 
forefront of Socialist discussion is Great Britain. There 
have been innumerable scientific discussions of the question 
among the Socialists of Germany and other countries, but 
it is only in Great Britain where it has assumed the first 
political importance — and it is therefore only in Great 
Britain that the Socialist parties have taken a definite 
attitude towards the problem — although we may assume 
that the Socialists of other countries will proceed largely 
along parallel lines. 


(From Official Report of the Conference) 

Mr. "W. C. Anderson [I. L. P.] moved the following: 

That this Conference, whilst expressing its satisfaction at the 



increasing interest now being taken in the land question by re- 
formers and politicians, warns the working-class against favoring 
any proposals which would strengthen the position of the great 
territorial owners, or perpetuate the private ownership of the 
land, whether by the creation of a class of peasant proprietors 
or otherwise, and declares that only such proposals for temporary 
and immediate reform as tend towards bringing the land and 
its values into the ownership of the community are worthy of 
support. Further, as a practical means of nationalizing the land 
the Conference recommends the Parliamentary Party to prepare 
and introduce a bill enacting that a levy shall be assessed on all 
landed estates, urban and rural, for the setting up of a land 
redemption fund to enable the nation to reacquire its lost rights 
of ownership in the land within a reasonable period, and on terms 
which shall fairly recognize all existing interests. 

He said the whole problem was coming before the coun- 
try in a prominent way. The resolution suggested that 
the land should be the property of the people ; that there 
should be a tax on both urban and rural land, and by that 
means a redemption fund could be set up which would 
enable the country within a reasonable time to secure con- 
trol and possession of the land with a reasonable regard for 
existing interests. 

The resolution was formally seconded and agreed to. 

PARTY, 1914 

The Congress passed a vigorous resolution in favor of 
the nationalization of land, as follows : 

That this Conference, whilst expressing its satisfaction at the 
increasing interest now being taken in the land question by 
reformers and politicians, warns the working-class against favor- 
ing any proposals which would strengthen the position of the 
great territorial owners, or perpetuate the private ownership of 
the land, whether by the creation of a class of peasant proprietors 
or otherwise, and declares that only such proposals for temporary 


and immediate reform as tend towards bringing the land and its 
values into the ownership of the community are worthy of sup- 
port. Further, as a practical means of nationalizing the land, 
the Conference recommends the Parliamentary Party to prepare 
and introduce a bill enacting that a levy shall be assessed on all 
landed estates, urban and rural, for the setting up of a land 
redemption fund to enable the nation to reacquire its lost rights 
of ownership in the land within a reasonable period, on terms 
which shall fairly recognize all existing interests. 

That this Conference, believing the land question cannot be 
solved by denunciation of landowners and vague reference to the 
taxation of land values, calls upon the N. A. C. to organize a 
land nationalization campaign and to formulate a scheme for 
the socialization of the land — to urge upon the Labor Party in 
Parliament and on municipal and other public bodies the neces- 
sity for the adoption of such a scheme, and for a public inquiry, 
by royal commission or otherwise, to demand public production 
of titles to land in order to bring to public knowledge the basis 
on which the present system of land tenure is possible. 


(Resolution adopted by 1914 Conference, including discussion) 

The British Socialist Party at this Conference advocated, 
by an overwhelming majority, the solution of the land 
question through a system of free transportation, the so- 
cialization of land, co-operative production, the destruction 
of the slums, and the placing of their inhabitants into the 

The resolution submitted by H. M. Hyndman, on behalf 
of the executive committee, read as follows : 

This Conference of the British Socialist Party being convinced 
that the land proposals of the Liberal Government are useless, 
harmful, and reactionary; that taxation of so-called land values, 
however justifiable from the point of view of readjustment of 
middle-class burdens, solves no problem of production or distri- 
bution for the mass of the people; that leasehold enfranchise- 
ment is similarly futile; that the refusal of both political factions 


to face the reorganization of agriculture and rural production 
generally, as well as land ownership in country and in town, is 
a grave danger to the nation ; and that no scheme of land reform 
can be even moderately beneficial which fails to deal in the first 
instance with the question of transport on a national scale, re- 
solves: (1) That a national system of free transport by rail and 
motor road should be set on foot forthwith; (2) that the right 
of the nation to resume possession of its own land should at once 
be declared and acted upon; (3) that co-operative production on 
the land and in factories under the control of the community and 
local councils be commenced at an early date, beginning with the 
organization of unemployed labor; the goods so produced being 
communally distributed among the producers and not thrown 
upon the competitive market for commodities; (4) that the de- 
struction of the slums in our great cities be commenced immedi- 
ately, the families and children so displaced being provided with 
healthy homes in the country and taught agriculture in addition 
to their ordinary trades. 

"Mr. Hyndman said that it was very important to discuss 
the land question now on account of the proposals before 
the country, not one of which would benefit the working- 
class in any way. He thought it very desirable that the 
Conference should pass a resolution in favor of something 
which would really benefit the worker, although he might 
not get it at once. Agriculture was the most important 
and valuable of all industries, and its decay in Great 
Britain was injurious to the whole people. Even to-day it 
was the largest and most important single industry. The 
dependence of the country for five-sixths of its food upon 
foreign sources of supply was a permanent national danger. 
Under present conditions cost of transport dominated agri- 
cultural production, and the railways of Great Britain con- 
stituted by their harmful policy a great system of protection 
in favor of the foreigner. Canada, the United States, India, 
the Argentine, and Australia were all within the 35-mile 
radius of London as reckoned by freight. He had put that 


fact before a royal commission twenty-two years ago, but 
from that time to this no proper attention had ever been 
paid to it. The differential rates in favor of foreign produce 
carried by British railways still further intensified the effect 
of cheap water carriage against home cultivation. The im- 
portant matter of free transport by national railways or 
specially built motor roads could only be settled by the 
nation through its delegates elected under proportional 
representation. Free transport was one of the most im- 
portant questions of the moment, and it was impossible to 
hope the agricultural question could be settled until free 
transport was obtained. The people who said that free 
transport could not be obtained under present conditions 
forgot there were a good many things free — sewage and 
education were examples. 

"The ownership or leasing of land by small holders im- 
posed of necessity excessive and unremunerated toil upon 
the cultivators, and an endless gray monotony of existence. 
Small holdings were advocated by the Liberal Party, and 
peasant proprietorship by the Tory Party ; both proposals 
were injurious and reactionary. The antagonism between 
town and country would be increased by the creation of 
a class of small cultivators or small proprietors, for their 
interest would be to obtain a high price against the city 
workers, and the increase of private property would foster 
reaction. Agricultural land of itself was of small value; 
manure, machinery, glass houses, and other appliances for 
tillage were more valuable than the land itself, and culti- 
vators who did not possess these to a sufficient extent were 
at a hopeless disadvantage. The taxation of land in town 
and country would be mere burden-shifting in the interests 
of the capitalists, and no wage-earner would thereby have 
his wages increased a farthing. Elevators for storage 
should be established nationally and communally. Healthy, 


comfortable homes for the whole people could not be pro- 
vided under capitalist conditions. The entire land system 
must be considered from the point of view of bringing about 
co-operation of production and distribution between coun- 
try and town. Collective organization and ownership under 
capitalism, the competitive wage-earning system remaining 
unchanged, could be nothing better than state slavery for 
the workers. 

"L, E. Quelch [Reading], in seconding the resolution, 
said it was especially the business of Socialists to get at 
grips with the land proposals of the Liberal Party. He 
knew the conditions of life in the villages, and said that at 
the present time — largely owing to the fact that in the 
towns and cities they were losing their influence through 
the work of the Socialists and the labor movement gen- 
erally — the Liberals were advocating these, to them, drastic 
reforms in the endeavor to get back their political influence 
in the agricultural districts. Now was the time for the 
B. S. P. to bring its counter proposals in opposition to those 
of the Liberal Party. 

' ' Without further discussion the resolution was then car- 
ried by an overwhelming majority." 


The Socialists' position on the trust question is derived 
from their attitude towards the evolution of industry gen- 
erally. Marx predicted the coming of a monopolistic period 
in industry and welcomed it. In all countries the Socialists 
have approved the tendency of all industry to be organized 
on a larger and larger scale, as they look forward to the 
day when all the more important industries of each nation 
shall be operated as single units by governments under the 
control of the people. 


With regard to trusts, the International Congress of 
Paris (1900) declared that "these coalitions of the ex- 
ploiters of industry and commerce are inevitable, constitut- 
ing a high form of production, ' ' but, on the other hand, that 
they have a tendency in the long run "to raise prices 
everywhere and always in the interest of the combined 
capitalists as well as to check the lowering of prices which 
would [otherwise] result from the improvement of pro- 
duction. ' ' They tend, furthermore, the Congress declared, 
to "increase the oppression of the workers by opposing 
their unions." The Congress did not recommend, how- 
ever, opposition to trust formations, regarding the organ- 
ization of trusts as a logical result of the system of produc- 
tion, which should be tolerated, under suitable conditions 
and restrictions, until the working-class becomes strong 



enough, through political and industrial organization, to 
effect their expropriation. 


In 1904 the International Congress of Amsterdam passed 
the following resolution unanimously : 

The trusts have their complete development, even in competi- 
tion, in the world of production. 

They grow gradually into gigantic associations, organized na- 
tionally, or even internationally, and reduce many industries to a 
complete monopoly. 

The trusts are an inevitable consequence of competition, and 
they represent a system of production based on low wages. 

In these conditions the associations of capitalists of all coun- 
tries and of all industries form powers composed on the basis 
of their common interest. Also the conflict between the capitalist 
class and the working-class becomes more and more accentuated. 
Production is regulated, diminishing waste, and assuring the ef- 
ficiency of labor, but all the benefit is for the capitalists, while 
the exploitation of the workers is intensified. 

Considering these facts, and in view of the experiences which 
show the futility of legislation against trusts. 

The Congress of Amsterdam, affirming the conclusions of the 
Congi-ess of Paris, declares : 

1. That the Socialist Party of all countries should abstain 
from any attempt whatever to prevent the formation of trusts, or 
to restrain their development. 

2. The efforts of the Socialist Party should be in the direction 
of the sociaUzation of production, having for its object the gen- 
eral well-being and the elimination of profits. 

The method of establishing the socialization, and the order in 
which it will be effected will be determined by our power of action 
and by the nature of the industries tii;stified. 

In opposition to these organizations, which menace the economic 
organization of the workers by the consolidation of the capitalist 
forces, the workers of the whole world must oppose a force oi'gan- 
ized nationally and internationally, as the single arm against cap- 
italist oppression and the only means of bringing to an end the 
regime of capitalist society by establishing Socialism. 


The Socialists unanimously favor government ownership 
in every case where they feel that the government is con- 
trolled by the people; where the government is not so 
controlled, they are usually opposed to government owner- 
ship, A large number of governments are difficult to 
classify, and in such instances the Socialist position is de- 
cided according to circumstances — especially in regard to 
the policy to be adopted by the government after the pro- 
posed nationalization has taken place. And in no case is 
government ownership, no matter on how large a scale, 
regarded as Socialism, unless the Socialists are in control 
of the government, so as to be able to direct the policies 
of the governmental industries along Socialist lines. 

There can be no question that the German Party has 
given more attention to this problem than has any other 
Socialist group. The principles laid down in the Reichstag 
in 1913 are therefore of first importance. 

Under the more democratic government of Great Britain, 
the policy to be followed in nationalized industries has nat- 
urally received less attention. There the whole effort has 
been made to secure nationalization, without making any 
conditions — under the assumption that the government is 
already sufficiently democratic to insure at least considera- 
ble benefits to the people. 

The government of the United States is probably to be 
regarded as being, on the whole, at least as democratic as 
that of Great Britain. But the greater centralization of 



capital in this country, in the hands of the trusts, has led 
American Socialists to a somewhat more critical attitude 
towards government ownership. It is for that reason that 
the proposed nationalization of the banking system has 
not yet been fully acted on by the American Party. 


(From speech of Hoeh in the Reichstag, 1913) 

We would be in favor of a government monopoly if the income 
derived therefrom were used to cut down the taxes on foodstuffs 
and necessary articles of consumption, or for social purposes. 
I have, in the following sentences, outlined my idea of a state 
monopoly: (Our italics.) 

(1) The nation shall secure possession of the existing industries 
by confiscation {Enteignung), wherever it is impossible to pur- 
chase them at their actual cost price. 

(2) The management of the potash works, as well as the sale 
of its products, shall be conducted by the nation under the direct 
supervision of an advisory commission. This commission shall 
consist of members elected by the Bundesrat, the Reichstag, and 
representatives of the employees and managing officials of the 
potash works, elected by secret and equal ballot. 

(3) The employees and staff of the potash works shall have 
entire freedom to organize. All laws concerning workingmen's 
protection and compensation shall be appbcable to workers em- 
ployed in the state monopoly, especially those laws introduced in 
the Trade and Commercial Law. The workday shall not increase 
over eight hours, and in places where the work is dangerous to 
the health of the worker it shall be reduced to less than eight 

In every plant the employees, together with the management, 
shall elect by an equal, secret, and direct ballot an employees* 
commission (Arheiterausschuss), which shall determine the wages, 
salaries, and general conditions of work for the plant. This com- 
mission shall likewise settle all differences and shall have the right 
to appeal to the general commission against the decisions or orders 
of the management concerning working conditions. 

(4) Wages and salaries shall be determined by the management 


and the workingmen's commission upon the basis of a minimum 
wage. The minimum wage must receive the indorsement of the 

(5) The selling price of the product shall be fixed separately 
for home and for export sale, by law, after due consideration of 
the home agricultural industry. 

(6) The profits of the potash works shall be used to reduce 
taxes on foodstuffs and necessary articles of consumption or for 
social purposes. 

If the state ownership of the potash works is carried out ac- 
cording to these fundamental principles, I am convinced that we 
shall have accomplished somethuig in the interests of the laboring 
class. (Great applause from the Social Democrats.) 


(From official Report of Conference) 

"Mr. Herbert Smith [Miners] moved: 

" That it be an instruction to the Labor members in the House 
of Commons to seize every opportunity to press forward in that 
House the bill to nationalize the coal mines and minerals of the 
United Kmgdom, and provide for the national distribution and 
sale of coal. 

"He said that he thought the matter had been talked 
about long enough. The bill had already been prepared and 
was under the consideration of the Labor Party. ' ' 

"The resolution was put and agreed to. 

"Mr, J. N. Mercer [York Labor Party] formally moved 
the following: 

" That this Conference declares that in the interests of the 
workers, the railways, land, canals, and waterways, now monop- 
olized by a few persons, should become the property of the 
nation, with a view of them being utilized and worked for the 
benefit of the people; and that the executive committee be in- 
structed to take such parliamentary action that may be necessary 
to secure this end. 

"The resolution was formally seconded and agreed to." 



In 1913 the National Committee elected a sub-committee 
to investigate the banking, bank credit, currency, and mone- 
tary systems of the United States. This committee, con- 
sisting of Karl Sandberg, Arthur Le Sueuer, and Lucien 
Sanial, the latter of whom did not participate in the report, 
made their report in May, 1914. After a detailed analysis 
of the monetary system, they arrived at the conclusion that 
this system had been created by laws passed by Congress 
which "have put into the hands of a few individuals, who 
probably do not number one in one hundred thousand," a 
power that gradually "has come to control the entire na- 
tion"; that this power has been the means by which the 
present capitalist system has been perfected ; that without 
the destruction of this economic power the overthrow of 
the capitalist system is impossible. 

A bill was proposed in the report, as follows : 

Title. — To provide for a national banking and money system, 
for its maintenance and operation ; for the creation of a national 
board of banking and money, defining the powers and duties 
of said board; prohibiting the loanmg of money and the ex- 
tension of credit for hire by private persons, or by any firm, 
co-partnerships, corporation, or by combinations of persons, firms, 
co-partnerships, or combinations of kind whatsoever. 

Scope and Purpose.— Section 1. The general scope and pur- 
pose of this act is to establish a governmental monopoly of the 
loanmg of money and the extension of credit for hire, and to 
provide a way to commercialize the credit of all classes of 
business and commerce, and to prevent the overcapitalization of 
private business, industries, and commercial enterprises of all 

The party has not yet acted on the recommendations of 
this committee. 


The Socialists of Europe are either in favor of immediate 
free trade or of a rapid lowering of the tariffs. The Aus- 
tralian Labor Party, however, takes the opposite position. 
(See Australia.) The American Socialist Party also leans 
towards free trade or low tariffs; but ex-Congressman 
Berger and other leaders are opposed to any sudden tariff 
changes. The American position, on the whole, has been 
that the tariff question is a secondary issue which con- 
cerns capital more than it does labor. 

The Socialists of Germany strongly favor free trade, to 
be brought about gradually by trade treaties with all other 
countries. However, there has been a very small minority 
in Germany defending the protective policy, and there are 
signs that in that country and elsewhere this minority may 
be considerably strengthened by the present war. 

The present position of the European Socialists is illus- 
trated by the resolution of the Italian Party Congress of 
1914; that of the American Party by the discussion at the 
Congress of 1912. 


The Fourteenth National Congress of the Italian Socialist Party 
(1914) considering that the protective tariff is a means by which 
certain capitalistic gi'oups exercise a most odious exploitation at 



the expense of the great mass of consumers; that it is one of 
the strongest factors in the high cost of living and diminishes 
proportionally the effective value of money, in fact of the render- 
ing useless the advantage of the increase in wages obtained by 
the workers by virtue of their organization ; 

Considering that, if it maintains some industries in artificial 
life, it prevents others from starting and developing, which use 
as raw material the products of the protected industries and would 
have a luxuriant development and successfully attack the inter- 
national market if they could first get their raw material cheaper; 
and while it is beyond question a hurt to the workers in so far 
as they are consumers, brings them no advantages (on the con- 
trary, it does harm to many) even as sellers of labor; 

Considering finally that the artificial life given to certain indus- 
tries renders competition still fiercer between nations, and more 
frequent the danger of conflicts between them, and impels them 
to seek by colonial enterprises markets for their products on 
terms of monopoly; and thereby offers an incentive to the con- 
tinual increase of armaments and to squanderings that con- 
stitute a new burden for the workers ; 

Decides, on the eve of the renewal of the treaties of commerce 
to use all the power of the party to ventilate the secret prac- 
tices of the groups of protected capitalists and to obtain the 
abolition, even if only gradually, of the protective tariff, and 
gives a mandate to the executive committee of the party to 
organize such an agitation and — since the question also interests 
many other nations — to solicit for this purpose the intervention 
of the International Socialist Bureau. 


The discussion regarding paragraph 3 of the political de- 
mands of the party platform shows the Socialist attitude in 
1912 as to the tariff. (See Part I.) As will be noticed, free 
trade is definitely favored, but there is disinclination to 
make an issue of the tariff, on the ground that it has little 
importance for the working-class as such. It will be noticed 
that the tariff plank was finally struck out. 


Section 3 of the political demands was read as follows : 

3. The gradual reduction of all tariff duties, particularly 
those on the necessities of life. The Government to guarantee 
the re-employment of wage-earners who may he disemployed by 
reason of changes in tariff schedules. 

At the Party Convention of 1912, Delegate Barnes of 
Pennsylvania opposed the clause which guaranteed employ- 
ment of those displaced, on the ground that reduction in the 
tariff would not throw anyone out of a job for more than 
a week. It would simply reduce the projQts of American 
firms. He declares that one could buy a Douglas shoe, an 
American sewing machine, or a McCormick reaper cheaper 
abroad than at home. Delegate Berger then spoke as 
follows : 

Delegate Berger [Wisconsin] : I have always held that the 
tariff issue is not a working-man's issue. 

Delegate Barnes : That is what I think. 

Delegate Berger: I have always told them that there is always 
free trade in labor. While our manufacturers are protected by 
300 per cent in some instances, there is always free trade in 
labor. However, we are facing a condition and not a theory. 
We have to take a stand. In all the countries that I know of 
where we have a Socialist Party, the Socialist Party as such 
takes the stand for free trade more or less. That is the Inter- 
national view. However, if we do it in this country we face the 
following situation : Entire cities, entire communities have been 
built up by the high tariff. If there should be a sudden reduc- 
tion many thousands would be thrown out of employment, and 
we meet this situation by this paragi-aph. I am not saying that 
the Socialist Party should make free trade or high tariff an 
issue. We have a thousand better issues. We are simply ex- 
plaining our stand on this question, and it seems to me that this 
clause is all right. 

Delegate Hillquit: How are they to be re-employed? 

Delegate Berger: The Government to give them emplojrment. 


The Government can do it. This does not mean that we should 
go out and preach free trade or that we should take a stand 
for high tariff. It simply explains our position on the tariff. 
But for my part I shall never make an issue of the tariff. I do 
hope that you will accept this as read. 

The motion to strike out clause 3 was adopted by a vote of 
117 ayes and 94 nos. (Our italics.) 


The present Socialist movement is about 50 years old. 
During the first half of this period comparatively little 
attention was given to problems of taxation. It was con- 
sidered that all taxes were expended almost exclusively for 
capitalistic purposes, and were paid also by capitalists, as 
the wages of the working-people were kept at the same low 
level in any case. If taxes raised the cost of living, it was 
only necessary for the capitalist slightly to increase wages ; 
if the indirect taxation of the workingman consumer was 
small, then less wages were paid. 

But there has been a growing tendency, as we have 
pointed out in dealing with the high cost of living, to regard 
the workingman as a consumer as well as a producer, and 
at the same time the Socialist parties have begun to appeal 
to other elements of the masses besides manual wage- 
earners. However, the Socialists of the continent of Eu- 
rope did not make a problem of practical politics out of 
the taxation question because of their position on the voting 
of budgets. Until the beginning of the present war, with 
the single exception of Germany, all the parties of con- 
tinental Europe refused to vote in favor of the govern- 
mental budget as a whole, on the ground that many of the 
purposes for which the governmental money was expended 
were anti-Socialistic, for example (and chiefly), the army 
and navy. Besides voting against governmental expendi- 
tures, the Socialists thus voted — at the same time — against 
all forms of taxation. 



The one exception was Germany, and this exception oc- 
curred only in 1913. Undoubtedly the voting of addi- 
tional taxation for military purposes by the Socialists in 
that year was caused by preparations for the present war 
then taking place in Germany and other countries. Even 
on this occasion, the Socialists did not vote for the budget 
as a whole, and it is still denied by a large portion of the 
party that Socialist principles allow such a vote. Never- 
theless, the majority now undoubtedly feels that govern- 
mental budgets may be supported in the future. And 
there can be no doubt that the Socialists of certain other 
countries are prepared to follow the Germans' example, 
largely on the ground of the financial support given by 
the Socialists of all countries to their governments since 
the beginning of the present war. 

The discussion and action of the German Party Congress 
of 1913 was then the first practical decision reached by So- 
cialists on the taxation question. Moreover, the conclusions 
reached as to general taxation policy (aside from the 
budget question) were in accord with the previous Socialist 
position in Germany and in the other countries. 

The discussion of the military and of the taxation ques- 
tions at the Congress of the German Party in 1913 was 
really one discussion. The military problem is handled in 
the volume, Socialists and the War. In order to make 
clear, however, the position of the Congress as to taxation, 
it is necessary to show the relation of this question to the 
military problem. For this purpose we quote the article 
by Herman Wendel, Socialist member of the Reichstag, in 
The New Review (September, 1913). 



By Herman Wenclel (Member of the Reichstag) 
"If the fight of the Social Democratic Party against the 
strengthening of the army was a battle in which from the 
very beginning it was impossible to hope for victory, it 
was otherwise with the struggle over the bill providing 
the necessary funds. The ruling class, nobility and bour- 
geoisie, has hitherto, by means of indirect taxation, saddled 
upon the propertyless masses the cost of its expensive naval 
and military policy. Indirect taxation was Bismarck's 
ideal ("because the individual does not suspect that he is 
paying taxes"), and by indirect taxes and assessments all 
the expenses of the military, naval, and colonial policies 
have been met in the glorious era of Wilhelm II. Thereby 
all the food articles and the absolute necessities of the 
great mass have been gradually raised in price to the ex- 
treme limits of the endurable. The burden of the German 
people through indirect taxation amounts to-day to 25 
marks (six dollars) per person. That is to say, a working- 
class family of four persons (father, mother, two children), 
having an income of 1,000 marks, pays out 100 marks, or 
10 per cent of its income, in indirect taxes ! The last great 
plundering of the people through indirect taxes was accom- 
plished in 1907. As is well known, the Social Democratic 
representation in the Reichstag [had] decreased in the 
elections of 1907 from 81 to 43. The reactionary parties 
thought to make use of this opportunity, and they put 
through a 'financial reform' with new taxes amounting to 
500,000,000 marks (about $125,000,000), which were ob- 
tained almost exclusively by indirect taxes upon brandy, 
beer, tobacco, matches, etc. The Social Democratic Party 
has always opposed vigorously all attempts at new indirect 
taxation and has several times sought, though without sue- 


cess against the bourgeois majority, to carry through its 
taxation program providing for direct and progressive in- 
come, property and inheritance taxes throughout the Em- 
pire. Thus far the direct taxes have been reserved for 
the federal states, where they are under the jurisdiction of 
reactionary Parliaments — witness Prussia ! — and hence can 
be assessed according to the will and desire of the possess- 
ing classes. The bourgeois parties, chiefly the representa- 
tives of the great landowners and of mobile capital, have 
feared, as the devil fears holy water, to hand over by an 
imperial income and property tax 'the pocketbook of the 
possessors' to the Reichstag, elected by universal and equal 

' ' If the great landowners and the owners of mobile cap- 
ital had had their way, the immense cost of the monstrous 
military increase would now also have been saddled by 
means of indirect taxes upon the propertyless masses of 
the people. But . . . the wind had changed. The people, 
embittered by the taxation robbery of 1907, had cast four 
and a quarter million of Socialist votes in the Reichstag 
elections of 1912, and in the Parliament were seated 110 
Socialists who could not be utterly ignored. . . . 

"Nothing would have pleased the reactionary parties 
better than if the Social Democratic Party— dogmatically 
applying the principle: 'Not a man nor a penny for this 
system' — had stood passively aside and left entirely to 
the majority of the Reichstag the framing of the finance 
bill. The Conservatives and Clericals even sought to im- 
pose upon the Government the condition that the military 
bill and the finance bill should be passed by one and the 
same majority. That would have meant the entire elimina- 
tion of the Social Democratic Party, for under no circum- 
stances could it have voted for the increase of the army. 
But after the army increase was no longer to be avoided, 


it could well take part in the framing of the finance law 
in a manner according with its principles and also with 
the contents of the joint manifesto issued March 1, 1913, 
by Social Democratic representatives in the German 
Reichstag and by the Socialist representatives in the 
French Chamber of Deputies, namely : That the delegations 
on both sides of the Rhine were determined, in case the 
resistance against the military bills in the two countries 
should be unsuccessful, to see to it that the new burdens 
should fall upon the rich. 

"Therefore a motion was [made] by the Social Demo- 
cratic representation during the discussion of the military 
tax in plenary session. It read: 

The tax upon incomes shall amount, with an income of from 
5,000 marks to 10,000 marks, to 1 per cent of the income ; of the 
next partial or complete 

10,000 marks 3 per cent of the income 

50,000 " 6 " " " " 

100,000 " 9 " " " " " 

500,000 " 12 " " " " " 

1,000,000 " 15 " " " " " 

' ' This motion was naturally lost, but in the form in which 
the military assessment was finally passed it reached deeply 
enough into the money bags of the rich. The tax upon 
property begins at a property of 10,000 marks only when 
there is at the same time an income of at least 5,000 marks, 
otherwise not until 50,000 marks, and it rises from 0.15 
per cent to 1.5 per cent for properties of more than 
5,000,000 marks. For incomes the tax begins with 1 per 
cent for 5,000 marks, and rises to 8 per cent for incomes 
of 500,000 marks. Even comparatively small incomes of 
between 5,000 and 10,000 marks, which were drawn upon 


for the defense fund, had an educational purpose, for 
these are the incomes of all those elements of society, such 
as school principals, judges, and retired officers in the army 
and navy societies, who are the loudest shouters for mili- 
tary increases, who had never before been called upon to 
open their pocketbooks. But the main portion of the 
military assessment falls upon properties of between 
100,000 and 1,000,000 marks. The 255 taxpayers in 
Prussia, each of whom is assessed upon more than 10,000,000 
marks, must together pay 81,000,000 marks. The richest 
armament manufacturer in Germany, the husband of 
Bertha Krupp, will have to pay a round 6,000,000 for his 
share alone. That will surely have a cooling effect upon 
the overflowing military enthusiasm of these circles of 

"The Conservatives offered violent resistance to these 
property taxes, but the votes of the Social Democratic 
Party were necessary in order to pass the law. It would 
have been remiss in its duty to the working-class had it 
allowed this opportunity to pass without imposing upon 
the rich a portion of the burdens entailed by a policy pur- 
sued solely in the interests of the rich. 

"But the Social Democratic representatives, after ma- 
ture reflection, also voted in favor of the military assess- 
ment, although it would have passed even had they voted 
against it. This affirmative vote arose from the circum- 
stance that the military assessment represents the first 
step toward a taxing system corresponding in principle 
to the demands of the Social Democracy. . . . 

"As before, we hold to the principles 'Not a man and 
not a penny for this system!' But in this case, after the 
man had been granted by the capitalist majority, it was 
solely a case of having the penny paid by the capitalist 


class alone. That is in nowise contradictory of Socialist 
principles. . . . 

"If the question is put whether the capitalist class shall 
enjoy its surplus value untaxed and the working-class be 
bled by means of indirect taxes, or whether the capitalist 
class shall pay heavy taxes from their stolen surplus value 
and the working-class be protected from an increase in 
the price of necessities, there can, for a Socialist, be no 
doubt as to the answer. ' ' 



The discussion of general principles of taxation in the 
Congress was led by Wurm, who submitted the following 
report and resolution, which were adopted: 

It is not a mere accident that we have had, up to this time, 
no deeper inquiry into the tax question. For our past needs 
Lasalle's Arbeiterprogram [1867] has been suificient. For hith- 
erto there has been no opposition of interests between the repre- 
sentatives of mobile, i.e., trade or industrial capital, and fixed, 
or immobile capital, i.e., land, upon the question of taxation. 
Mobile and immobile capital were united in their desire to throw 
the burden of taxation upon the laboring class, by taxing the 
necessities of life. In the state legislatures (Landtagen) the 
struggle between movable and fixed capital is [now] increasing 
in bitterness from day to day. The growing capitalist class is 
vehemently opposing the burdens which the landowning group 
is trying to heap upon it. The parties which represent the 
small capitalist and the middle class, — the Progressives, a part 
of the National Liberals, and a part of the Center, — were forced 
to vote in favor of direct taxes on capital in the state legis- 

The class that is in power forces its weaker opponents to 
bear the burden of public expenditures, whether the landowning 
class oppressed the capitaHst class, or whether the two together 


oppress the worker. It must of necessity follow that when the 
working-class becomes a strong political factor, the hour will 
come when it will hold the balance of power in the struggle 
between mobile and immobile capital. . . . 

Taxation is a vital part of the exploitation of an oppressed 
working-class by its political and industrial oppressors. 

. . . The amount used by the capitalist class for its subsistence 
is the consumption fund, while that part of the surplus value 
over and above this amount goes into the production fund of 
capitalist society. . . . 

National undertakings and modern corporations prove the use- 
lessness of the capitalist as an individual even in present-day 
capitalist industry. The fund necessary for the development of 
production, on the other hand, must be kept up even in a So- 
cialist state, because production, invention, and distribution must 
be developed to the utmost possible efficiency in order to make 
human labor so profitable that each individual may be assured 
of an opportunity to develop his personality and capabilities to 
their fullest extent. Even to-day the capitalist is by no means 
the absolute master of the profits which his factory produces. If 
he should use the whole profit for his personal consumption his 
competitors would soon put him out of business. If, therefore, 
the whole surplus value were to be confiscated by taxation, the 
working-class, too, would suffer. 

A new form of taxation is the formation of state monopolies, 
in which the state determines the price, in other words, levies a 
sort of hidden tax. Fortunately we succeeded in preventing a 
state monopoly of petroleum. (Applause.) . . . 

In my resolution we read as follows: . . ."Every direct tax 
[law], even if levied on the surplus value [profits, etc.] exclu- 
sively, shall be opposed, if its purpose is not in harmony with the 
interests of the working-class, except in cases where this opposi- 
tion to the direct taxes . . . would not hinder the adoption of 
the law in question, and [at the same time] would mean ... 
taxes even more unfavorable to the working-class [i.e., indirect 
taxes]." In other words, opposition is to be the rule; the excep- 
tion, a vote in favor under specified conditions. When, there- 
fore, the military [appropriation] bill has been accepted, we 
must vote in favor of that [military] tax bill which will not 
force the worker to bear the tax burden. ..." Not one cent in 


taxes to the capitalist state," you say. The bourgeoisie is daily 
more [and more] imperialistic. Every new military bill is sure 
to be accepted. What shall we do when the military bill has 
become a law ! . . . Shall we say : " Now, good Father State, 
and good Ruling Parties, please, we should like to pay, besides ! " 
. . . The military bill has passed. The only question remain- 
ing [is] : " Shall we prevent the piling up of new burdens upon 
the shoulders of the laboring class, or shall we not? "... 


OF 1913 

The Congress demands, in accordance with Article X 
of the Party Program : 

Graduated income and property taxes to cover all public ex- 
penditures, in so far as these can be covered by taxation. . . . 
Inheritance taxes, graduated according to the size and value of 
the estates and the degrees of relationship. The repeal of all 
indirect taxes, tariffs, and other measures that sacrifice the 
interests of the people at large to those of a small minority. 

The Congress demands further: 

The expenses of the states (Bundesstaaten) shall be covered 
by additions to the direct national taxes. 

To cover municipal expenditures we demand, in accordance 
with the decision of our Congress of Bremen : State endowments 
for public health, public education, public charity, and the build- 
ing of roadways. 

Additions to the state income, property, and inheritance taxes. 
Wherever such state taxes do not exist, municipalities shall have 
the right to levy special income, property, and inheritance taxes. 

Taxation of the unearned increment of land. 

The Congress further declares: 

In voting on national, state, or municipal tax measures, not 
only the character of the tax, but its purpose as well, shall deter- 
mine the vote of the Socialist representatives. 


In aecoi'dance with the resokition of Niirnberg, 1908, our 
representatives shall oppose all budgets presented by a capitalist 
government, at its final reading, provided the opposition of our 
comrades does not signify the adoption of a budget even more 
dangerous to the interests of the working-class. In the same 
manner, every direct tax, even if levied only on the surplus value, 
shall be opposed, if its purpose is not in harmony with the 
interests of the working-class, except in eases where this opposi- 
tion of the direct taxes by our comrades would not hinder the 
adoption of the law in question, and would mean, at the same 
time, taxes even more unfavorable to the working-class. 

In accordance with our progi'am, our comrades in the legis- 
lative bodies have always striven to repeal existing indirect 
taxes, the burden of which is borne by the working-class, in 
favor of direct taxes, without considering the purpose for which 
these taxes have been levied. In the same way they must strive 
to prevent the levying of new, indirect taxes upon the working- 
class. If this can be done only by voting in favor of direct 
taxes, they shall so proceed, because in that ease the purpose of 
the direct taxes will be to prevent adoption of indirect taxes. 

The Congress supports the declaration of the parliamentary 
group given in connection with the vote on the military appro- 
priation bill, and expressly approves of the vote of the Socialist 
representatives in favor of both property taxes. 

(See also "The United States.") 


That any genuinely international movement would be 
opposed to the restriction of immigration may be taken 
for granted, especially if the restriction were along racial 
lines. The decision of the International Congress at Stutt- 
gart was, accordingly, unanimous, although it will be seen 
that it was not satisfactory to all the American delegates. 

But wherever a racial difference furnishes a good pre- 
text, as in the United States and the British colonies, the 
labor unions are overwhelmingly in favor of restricting 
the competition of labor along racial lines by anti-immigra- 
tion laws. As most Socialist parties follow the labor unions, 
it cannot be a matter of surprise that the Australian Labor 
Party has taken the same position and that the American 
Socialist Party is much divided on the question. 

Even when the alien race is already in the country, the 
labor unions often continue to support the policy of dis- 
crimination. This is seen especially in South Africa. 


After a long and animated debate, the Stuttgart Con- 
gress adopted a resolution submitted to it by the commis- 
sion on emigration and immigration. It declared that im- 
migration and emigration were phenomena inseparable 
from the substance of capitalism, and that the restriction 
of freedom of migration and the exclusion of foreign na- 
tions and races were fruitless methods of solving the 



problem. It recognized that it was the duty of organized 
workingmen, however, to protect themselves against the 
lowering of their standard of living which frequently re- 
sulted from the mass importation of unorganized working- 
men, and recommended the following measures: 

I. — For the countries of immigration. 

1. Prohibition of the export and import of such workingmen 
as have entered into a contract which deprives them of the lib- 
erty to dispose of their labor power and wages. 

2. Legislation shortening the workday, fixing a minimum wage, 
regulatmg the sweating system and house industry, and provid- 
ing for sti'iet supervision of sanitary and dwelling conditions. 

3. Abolition of all restrictions which exclude definite nationali- 
ties or races from the right of sojourn in the country and from 
the political and economic rights of natives, or make the acquisi- 
tion of these rights more difficult for them. It also demands 
the greatest latitude in the laws of naturalization. 

4. For the trade-unions of all countries the following princi- 
ples shall have universal application in connection with it : 

a. Unrestricted admission of immigrant workingmen to the 
trade-unions of all countries. 

h. Facilitating the admission of members by means of fixing 
reasonable admission fees. 

c. Free transfer from the organizations of one country to 
those of the other upon discharge of the membership obligations 
towards the former organization. 

d. The making of international trade-union agreements for 
the purpose of regulating these questions in a definite and proper 
manner, and rendering possible the realization of these principles 
on an international scope. 

5. Support of the trade-unions of those countries from which 
the immigration is chiefly recruited. 

II. — For the countries of emigration. 

1. Active pro^Daganda for trade-unionism. 

2. Enlightenment of the workingmen and the public at large 
on the true conditions of labor in the countries of immigration. 

3. Concerted action on the part of the trade-unions of all 
countries in all matters of labor immigration and emigration. 

In view of the fact that emigration of workingmen is often 


artificially stimulated by railway and steamship companies, land 
speculators, and other swindling concerns through false and lying 
promises to workingmen, the Congi'ess demands: 

Control of the steamship agencies and emigration bureaus, and 
legal and administrative measures against them in order to pre- 
vent the abuse of emigration in the interest of such capitalist 

III. — Regulation of the system of transportation, especially 
on ships. Employment of inspectors with discretionary power 
who would be selected by the organized workingmen of the 
countries of emigration and immigration. Protection for the 
newly arrived immigrants in order that they may not become 
the victims of capitalist exploiters. 

In view of the fact that the transport of emigrants can be 
regulated only on an international basis, the Congress directs 
the International Socialist Bureau to prepare suggestions for 
the regulation of this question, which shall deal with the con- 
ditions, arrangements, and supplies of the ships, the air space 
to be allowed for each passenger as a minimum, and shall lay 
special stress that the individual emigrants contract for their 
passage directly with the transportation companies and without 
intervention of middlemen. These suggestions shall be communi- 
cated to the various Socialist parties for the purpose of legis- 
lative application and adaptation, as well as for purposes of 


No discussion of the Socialist position would be complete 
without showing the attitude of the International and of 
the American Socialist to that world-question which is the 
only one which at present seems at all likely to bring 
America into war. 

The International Socialist Congress at Stuttgart in 
1907, which was the first to take this matter up, declared 
in a most definite way against exclusion along racial lines, 
as being in conflict with th£ principles of proletarian 


The American Party Congress at Chicago, held three 
years later (1910), showed that this party was unwilling 
to accept the Stuttgart resolution. The American Party 
Congress of 1912 showed a similar situation. 

In view of the somewhat strained relations existing 
between the United States and Japan, which many think 
may be the prelude to war, the timeliness and importance of 
this discussion is self-evident. 

The majority of the committee (of which Untermann was 
chairman) appointed to report on this matter to the Amer- 
ican Socialist Congress of 1910, argued as follows: 

Sometimes the party, in acting for the immediate interests of 
the working-class, must come into apparent conflict with its ulti- 
mate ideals. This is unavoidable; we work toward our ultimate 
ideals through and despite these immediate contradictions. The 
Socialist Party, in its present activities, cannot outrun the gen- 
eral development of the working-class, but must keep step with 
it. . . . 

We therefore indorse every demand made and position taken 
by the International Congress on this question, except those pas- 
sages which refer to specific restrictions or to the exclusion of 
definite races or nations. We do not believe that such measures 
are necessarily " fruitless and reactionary," as stated by the In- 
ternational Congress, but on the contrary are convinced that any 
measures which do not conform to the immediate interests of the 
working-class of the United States are fruitless and reactionai-y. 

We advocate the unconditional exclusion of Chinese, Japanese, 
Coreans, and Hindoos, not as races per se, not as peoples with 
definite physiological characteristics,— but for the evident reason 
that these peoples occupy definite portions of the earth which 
are so far behind the general modern development of industry, 
psychologically as well as economically, that they constitute a 
drawback, an* obstacle and menace to the progi-ess of the most 
aggressive, militant, and intelligent elements of our working- 
class population. 

We recognize, with ]\Iai-x, that the progress of working-class 
emancipation does not proceed uniformly and by identical meth- 
ods in all countries, but that the working-class of each nation 


will have first to settle with its own ruling class before absolute 
international working-class solidarity can be realized. (Our 

Against this it was argued by the other side that as long 
as the working-people are divided among hostile nations, 
often engaged in making war against another, they will 
never he able to accumulate the force needed to overthrow 
the ruling class in any nation. 

The committee report favoring exclusion was brought 
before the Convention by Untermann. He said: 

As far as Asia is concerned, Asia has immense opportunities 
for developing an outlet. They need not come over here. Japan 
has Manchuria and Korea. China has vast districts which it 
can conquer. Let the Chinese capitalists develop Chinese so- 
ciety, just as the American capitalists have developed American 
society. Let them find room for their unemployed over there 
and employ them there and develop their own society. Let the 
Socialists of those countries organize their co-operative com- 
monwealth themselves first, and then, when they have that organ- 
ization, when they have their strong Socialist and labor organiza- 
tions, then let them talk to us about international solidarity. 
(Our italics.) 

Untermann declared that the backward environment in 
China has developed in the Chinaman certain qualities that 
make him less easily assimilable than even the lowest 
European immigrant. 

Victor Berger, also a member of the committee, dwelt 
upon the fundamental differences between the whites and 
the other races. He said: 

We are all of the same type; of the same sort of thinking; 
we may fight occasionally, but after all our mode of thinking is 
very much the same. But, comrades, it is entirely different with 
these other races. They have their own history of about ffty 
thousand years. That cannot be undone in a generation or in 
two generations, or in three generations. 

The committee's resolution was defeated and a substitute 


proposed by Morris Hillquit was adopted. At the Indian- 
apolis Convention (1912) the committee on immigration 
again reported and was again continued until the next 


The majority of the committee at Indianapolis (Unter- 
mann, Stitt, Wilson, Hunter, and Wanhope) reiterated 
their former position. The majority report was, in part, 
as follows : 

In the course of the discussion [in 1910] Morris Hillquit intro- 
duced a substitute for both reports. This substitute evaded the 
question for or against the existing exclusion laws, merely de- 
manding that the mass imiDortation of contract laborers from all 
countries should be combated by the Socialist Party. 

After a debate lasting nearly two days, the Congress adopted 
Hillquit's substitute by a vote of 55 against 50. 

This close vote induced the Congress to recommit the question 
for further study to a new committee on immigration, with 
instructions to report to the National Convention of 1912. 

In this new committee the same alignment immediately took 
place. After a fruitless effort of the chairman to get unanimous 
action, the majority decided to act by itself and let the minority 
do the same. . . . 

Race feeling is not so much a result of social as of biological 
evolution. It does not change essentially with changes of eco- 
nomic systems. It is deeper than any class feeling and will 
outlast the capitalist system. It persists even after race preju- 
dice has been outgrown. It exists, not because the capitalists 
nurse it for economic reasons, but the capitalists rather have an 
opportunity to nurse it for economic reasons because it exists 
as a product of biology. It is bound to play a role in the 
economics of the future society. // it should not assert itself in 
open warfare under a Socialist form of society, it will neverthe- 
less lead to a rivalry of races for expansion over the globe as 
a result of the play of natural and sexual selection. We must 
temper this race feeling by education, but we can never hope 
to extinguish it altogether. Class-consciousness must be learned, 


hut race-consciousness is inborn and cannot be wholly unlearned. 
A few individuals may indulge in the luxury of ignoring race 
and posing as utterly raceless humanitarians, but whole races 

Continued study and the developments on the Pacific coast 
during the last two years convinced the majority of this com- 
mittee more than ever that the existing exclusion laws against 
Asiatic laborers should be enforced, and be amended in such way 
that they can be more effectively enforced. The details of the 
necessary amendments should be worked out by our representa- 
tives, or by our future representatives in Congress, and submitted 
for ratification to the committee on immigration, which should 
be made permanent for this purpose. 

It does not matter whether Asiatic immigration is voluntary 
or stimulated by capitalists. There is no room for doubt that 
the capitalists welcome this immigration, and that its effect upon 
the economic and political class organizations of the American 
workers is destructive. 

Where races struggle for the means of life, racial animosities 
cannot be avoided. Where working-people struggle for jobs, self- 
preservation enforces its decrees. Economic and political con- 
siderations lead to racial fights and to legislation restricting the 
invasion of the white man's domain by other races. 

The Socialist Party cannot avoid this issue. The exclusion 
of definite races, not on account of race, but for economic and 
political reasons, has been forced upon the old party statesmen 
in spite of the bitter opposition of the great capitalists. 

Every addition of incompatible race elements to the present 
societies of nations or races strengthens the hands of the great 
capitalists against the rising host of class-conscious workers. But 
the race feeling is so strong that even the majority of old party 
statesmen have not dared to ignore it. 

From the point of view of the class-conscious workers it is 
irrational in the extreme to permit the capitalists to protect their 
profits by high tariffs, against the competition of foreign capital, 
and at the same time connive at their attempts to extend free 
trade in the one commodity which the laborer should protect 
more than any other, his labor power. 

It is still more irrational to excuse this self-destructive policy 
by the slogan of international working-class solidarity, for this 


sentimental solidarity works wholly into the hands of the cap- 
italist class and injures the revolutionary movement of the most 
advanced workers of this nation, out of ill-considered worship 
of an Asiatic working-class which is as yet steeped in the ideas 
of a primitive state of undeveloped capitalism. . . . 

The international solidarity of the working-class can be most 
effectively demonstrated, not by mass immigration into each 
others' countries, but by the international co-operation of strong 
labor unions and of the national sections of the International 
Socialist Party. . . . 

The common sense Socialist policy under these circumstances 
is to build up strong national labor unions and strong national 
Socialist parties in the different countries and Avork toward more 
perfect solidarity by an international co-operation of these labor 
unions and parties. To this end the Socialist Party of America 
should consider, above all, the interests of those native and foreign 
working-class citizens whose economic and political class organ- 
izations are destined to be the dominant elements in the social 
revolution of this country. 

In the United States this means necessarily the enforcement 
of the existing exclusion laws against Asiatic laborers, and the 
amendment of these laws in such a way that the working-class of 
America shall fortify its strategic position in the struggle against 
the capitalist class. 

International solidarity between the icorking-people of Asia, 
Europe, and America will be the outcome of international evolu- 
tion, not of sentimental formulas. So long as the minds of the 
workers of nations and races are separated by long distances of 
industrial evolution, the desired solidarity cannot be completely 
realized, and while it is in process of realization, the demands 
of immediate self-preservation are more imperative than dreams 
of ideal solidarity. (Our italics.) 

The minority of the committee, Laukki, Spargo, and 
Meyer London, proposed the reaffirmation of the Interna- 
tional resolution of the Stuttgart Congress of 1907. By 
continuing the committee the Congress showed it was satis- 
fied with the committee's personnel, four being for racial 
exclusion and three against it. Leo Laukki, of the Finnish 


Socialist Federation, a minority member of the committee, 
reported as follows: 

Our party must remember, before the policy presented by the 
majority report can be warranted, that both it and the unions 
have done practically nothing in regard to the Asiatic laborers 
in the other way. They have not even tried to organize the 
Asiatic laborers, any more than they have tried to organize the 
other foreign workers of the United States, and still they have 
courage to claim that the Asiatics cannot be organized. At least 
before our party in this question can refute its basic principles 
and declare itself in favor of a policy which is mainly sought 
for only by the blind clamors of disappearmg craft workers 
and small traders of the Pacifie coast, it must try the other 
way; it must try to reach the Asiatics as well as all other na- 
tionalities in the United States by its ideas and organization. 

Therefore the only recommendation that can be made to this 
Convention in regard to the Asiatic laborer is: 

That the Socialist Party place an organizer among these Asi- 
atic workers who can speak their languages and in every other 
way try to help the Asiatics to become acquainted with the 
Socialist ideas and movement and to form a national Asiatic 
Socialist organization along the same lines that the other nation- 
alities are organized. 

That the Socialist Party declare itself in opposition to the 
discrimination against Asiatic workers, politically or otherwise, 
and demand for them the same civil and political rights which 
it demands for other races and nationalities in the United 

What becomes of the fact that Asiatics as well as other foreign 
and native workers, especially women and children, are exploited 
by the American capitalists as so-called cheap labor, to replace 
the higher paid craft-workers and so throwing them out into 
the ranks of the industrial proletariat? It cannot be hindered 
in the least by any reactionary policy of the dying semi- 
bourgeoisie and craftsmen. But this cheap-paid industrial pro- 
letariat can be hindered from selling its labor-power too cheap; 
it can and it will be induced to raise its standard of wages, to 
better its working and living conditions by the general policy 


of our partj^, of which the most effective in this regard will be 
the demand : 

For a general eight-hour working day. 

For a minimum wage-scale. 

It will be self-evident that when the length of the day and 
the compensation for the work are stipulated by general laws, 
backed and enforced by the workers themselves, there will be 
no possibility nor reason for any capitalist to employ cheap 
labor. The effects of the cheap labor will disappear only in this 



(From The American Socialist) 
In answer to numerous inquiries, The American So- 
cialist republished the resolutions adopted by the Unity 
Convention, 1901, on the negro question. The party since 
that Convention has taken no position on this question. 
The resolutions follow: 

"Whereas, the negroes of the United States, because of their 
long training in slavery and but recent emancipation therefrom, 
occupy a peculiar position in the working-class and in society at 
large ; 

"Whereas, the capitalist class seeks to preserve this peculiar 
condition and to foster and increase color prejudice and race 
hatred between the white worker and the black, so as to make 
then- social and economic interests to appear to be separate and 
antagonistic, in order that the workers of both races may thereby 
be more easily and completely exploited; 

" Resolved, that we declare to the negro worker the identity of 
his interests and struggles with the interests and struggles of the 
workers of all lands without regard to race or color or sectional 
lines; that the causes that have made him the victun of social 
and political inequality are the effects of the long exploitation 
of his labor power; that all social and I'aee prejudices spring 
from the ancient economic causes which still endure, to the 
misei-v of the whole human family; that the only line of division 


which exists in fact is that between the producers and the owners 
of the world — between capitalism and labor. And be it further 

" Resolved, that we, the American Socialist Party, invite the 
negro to membership and fellowship with us in the world move- 
ment for economic emancipation by which equal liberty and op- 
portunity shall be secured to every man and fraternity become 
the order of the world. 

Several of the state organizations of the Socialist Party 
in the south have taken a determined position on the negro 
question. The Oklahoma organization, for instance, has 
always fought for the full enfranchisement of the negro 
as well as the white race. Other state organizations have 
taken no steps of this character. 


(From The Brisbane Worker) 
A White Australia 

"The Australian Labor Party, when they held the balance 
of power, demanded, as the price of their support, a White 
Australia. A White Australia is now the law of the land. 
(See Immigration Restriction Act, 1901.) 

Aholition of Black Slavery 

''The Australian Labor Party, when they held the bal- 
ance of power, demanded that the system of black slavery 
then existing in Queensland should be abolished and the 
Kanakas sent back to their islands in the Pacific. The 
Kanakas were sent back. (See Pacific Island Laborers Act 
of 1901-6.) 

White Grown Sugar 

"The Australian Labor Party insisted that sugar cane 
could be grown and sugar produced in Australia by white 


labor — that the question was one of wages and not of cli- 
mate. Time has proved this to be positively true. In the 
sugar season of 1902-3, 67,107 tons of cane sugar were pro- 
duced by colored labor and 31,688 tons by white labor. In 
1912-13, 6,693 tons were produced by colored labor and 
122,571 tons by white labor — the proportion of sugar pro- 
duced by colored labor declining from 68 per cent of the 
total for 1902-3 to 5 per cent of the total for 1912-13. 
(See Commonwealth Year Book, 1913, page 340.) " 


(From article by " Jarrah " in The New Review) 
[The recent formation of this union marks the appear- 
ance of a new economic force, frequently at variance with 
the older unions and their political representatives.] 

"The A. W. U. seems to see the necessity of one big 
union. Throughout Australia the farm workers were paid 
very poor wages, in some instances only $3.60 per week, 
with keep. Very often the places the men slept in were 
worse than unhealthy. They slept in the end of the stable, 
among the wagons, sometimes in a stripper, or in an un- 
sanitary hut without a floor. On the average, their condi- 
tion was pitiable. . . . About four years ago they formed 
the Rural Workers' Union, which accomplished very little. 
Then about eighteen months ago the powerful A. W. U. 
came along and persuaded the Rural Workers to amalga- 
mate. . . . Then the scale of wages for rural workers was 
drawn up and published. It practically doubled the old 
rates. Bank managers, auctioneers, machinery agents, and 
others who exploit the farmers urged them not to pay the 
new scale. But the A. W. U. formed camps for the men, 
where finally most of the farmers had to go if they wished 
to engage harvest hands. It is confidently asserted that 


the Waterside Workers will join forces with the A. W. U., 
and if so the United Laborers' Union will not be long in 
following it. 

''It will thus be seen that the A. W. U. has solved the 
problem of 'the organization of the unskilled.' In Aus- 
tralia any manual worker can join the A. W. U. Carters, 
laborers, carriers, sheep-drovers, wharfmen, sailors, and 
in fact anyone can be a member. Very often men 
join it in preference to joining the union for their own 
calling. ' ' 

This organization does not admit all unskilled workers, 
however. Its constitution provides that "no Chinese, 
Japanese, Kanakas, or Afghans, or colored aliens other 
than Maories, American negroes, and issue of mixed par- 
entage born in Australia shall be admitted to member- 


From a statement signed by the leaders of the South 
African Labor Party and trade-unions and published all 
over the world in the News Letter of the International 
Trade-Union Federation : 

Some years ago the natives and other colored inhabitants sent 
a deputation to London requesting, among other things, that the 
colored workers be granted the same franchise rights as the 
■white workers; the South African Labor Party, however, advised 
its English colleagues to oppose the gi'anting of the franchise to 
the colored workers. 

The trade-unions are also opposing, tooth and nail, the en- 
croachment of the colored workers upon skilled trades. Most 
unions stipulate that only white men may become members, and 
demand that all skilled trades be closed to colored labor, at the 
same time boycotting those firms employing colored men as 
skilled workers, even though they be paid the same wage as the 
white artisans. 


In spite of this, however, it seems that the colored work- 
ers have in recent years forced their way more and more 
into all trades and have begun to strive for the same wages 
and conditions as the white men. They possess a political 
party and certain journals, which are doing their utmost 
to place them on a level with the white men, in education 
as in every other direction. 

This happy development is less attributable to any efforts on 
the part of the white men than to the ruthlessness of the em- 
ployers and the authorities. In certain industries, force of 
circumstances have brought the workers of the various races 
closer together, especially in Cape Colony, while in the north, 
where the competition is more perceptible, the antipathy of the 
white man to the colored man is still insuperable. 

Up to the time of the fourth annual conference of the Labor 
Party, held recently, the propaganda on behalf of the Labor 
Party was conducted among the white men only, but the delegates 
from Cape Colony, where the colored men have also the vote, 
demanded that the latter be admitted to the party, since their 
support could be depended upon in the case of elections. . . . 

It should here be remarked that all progeny arising out of 
intercourse between the white men and the colored inhabitants 
are regarded as " colored." . . . The Kaffir question is in itself 
a great question ; there are hundreds of thousands of Kaffirs 
in South Africa working under the most atrocious conditions, 
who are treated as neither colored nor white men, but as a race 
apart from all others. 

What is to be done about the Kaffir question, aside from 
keeping them down and preventing them from becoming 
skilled workers, the statement does not say. 


The Socialists' opposition to war and the chief causes 
of war, such as militarism and imperialism, has been treated 
in a companion volume, written at the suggestion of the 
Intercollegiate Socialist Society {The Socialists and the 
War). However, militarism is not only an interna- 
tional but also a domestic problem ; it absorbs a large part 
of governmental expenditures and it introduces anti-demo- 
cratic features in government. We accordingly illustrate 
the Socialist attitude to the domestic aspect of militarism in 
the following chapter. 

All the countries of Europe have given a large part of 
their attention to agitation against militarism, Germany 
as much, if not more, than any other. But in Germany, 
Austria, and Russia the party has been unable to adopt 
any definite program of domestic agitation or to enter 
into free discussion because of the restriction of liberty 
of speech of this subject. The German Party press, for 
example, has contained as much criticism of militarism 
as the party papers of other countries, but the German 
Party has not been able to adopt a program of radical 
resistance. Besides the press agitation, the chief Socialist 
action in that country has been the attack on the govern- 
mental military measures which takes place in every ses- 
sion of the Reichstag. (See The Socialists and the War.) 

The French Socialists were able to go further; they 
openly advocated an international strike and insurrection, 



as the resolution of the Congress of 1912 shows. We there- 
fore reproduce documents showing their position. 



The National Congress of the Socialist Party notes with pleas- 
ure the demonstrations the French proletariat, in response to 
the appeal of the International against the war. 

It sees in these demonstrations the prelnde to an effort at 
organization which alone will enable the labor class of our country 
to fulfill its entire duty. 

Never has the need to combat all the menaces of conflict been 
more imperative. Never will a more monstrous, a more anti- 
national, and a more anti-human war break over Europe. 

Should the great European nations be drawn into it, it would 
not be because of anxiety for their independence, nor for 
vital reasons, but because of the most foolish aberration and 
most artificial combinations. 

Neither the workers nor the Democrats of France will permit 
our country to be thrown into the most horrible conflict because 
of secret treaties of which the democracy knows not a single 

To save civilization from the most cruel disaster, the human 
race from the most terrible afifliction, reason from the most dire 
humiliation, the French proletariat will fight to the end against 
any attempt at war. 

To prevent it they will use all legal means. In Parliament 
they w'ill call for the secret treaties, they will insist on unlimited 
arbitration; they will denounce the exclusive and narrow views 
of diplomacy. In the country they will increase their meetings, 
their mass demonstrations, in order to awaken citizens from their 
torpor and to protect them from lies. 

And if, in spite of their efforts, impudent minorities let the 
conflict loose, if France is dragged into war by combinations 
of secret diplomacy, the workers and the Socialists of France 
will have the right to discuss quite openly, fully conscious of 
their responsibility, a recourse to revolutionary measures, the 


general strike and insurrection, so as to prevent or hinder the 
conflict and wrest the power from the ruling classes who will 
have unchained the war. 

The Congress is convinced that the best guarantee for peace 
is that all rulers should know that they cannot without peril 
for themselves provoke the disasters of a general conflict. 

It hopes that a common effort of propaganda and action on 
the part of the proletariat of every country may prevent the 
bursting out of the general war by which the world is threatened 

It requests the delegates at the Congress of Basle to work in 
accord with the International, and by unanimous resolution to 
intensify everywhere the propaganda and action against war. 



[Jaures spoke on the Socialist motion to adjourn the 
discussion of the loan (November 27, 1913).] 

Jaures opened by saying that the proposed military loan 
would have varying results according as it was being used 
merely to liquidate a ruinous past or to permit the con- 
tinuance of the aggravation of mistakes which had placed 
France in the most serious financial position since 1871. 
He continued : 

This position is due, above all, to the three-years' law [the 
statute of 1913 raising the term of service from two to three 
years], and the financial burden which it imposes is aggravated 
by a terrible economic burden. The lessening of the use of the 
product of our national labor and an increasing importation of 
the product of foreign [labor] is the direct consequence of this 
economic burden. 

The three-years' law would also have the effect of impoverish- 
ing the crops of industrial workers by diminishing the number 
of pupils in the higher schools and fostering foreign competition 
against us. 

Jaures then came to the loan itself: 


And now what are the fiscal burdens which the proposed 
scheme adds to the economic burden of the law? They are of 
two kinds: first, the burden of a loan. I estimate this only at 
900 millions, because in the plan of the minister of finance there 
are only 900 millions intended to meet extraordinary expenses; 
the rest is intended to hide for the time a part of the deficit. 

To the burden of this loan there is to be added the regular 
annual burden of a deficit amounting to at least 800 millions. 

New expenditures must be expected for public works, for the 
public schools which can only be protected by being improved, 
and for increase in the pay of the officers. The deficit is there- 
fore in reality more than a billion. 

Without doubt France has supei'b resources, but the question is 
whether its growth is more rapid or slower than that of other 
countries. It is certain that it is slower. The three-years' law 
is going to arrest this development still further. LTp to the 
present it has been a great misfortune to have postponed the 
long-promised fiscal reform ; to-day, whether you exact this billion 
from the impoverished masses or whether you are going to ask 
for it in fiscal reform, either way the Government is going to 
make a mess of it. 

It is true we pledged ourselves to a progressive tax on income 
and capital, taxes which would demand sacrifices from the rich. 
But why did we make this pledge? To relieve the burdens on 
the poor, to lower licenses, to lighten the land tax which crushes 
the small farmer, to reduce the tax on food which oppresses the 
daily life of the people, to endow more generously the great 
avenues of justice and of social solidarity, to establish insur- 
ance against all the workers' risks, to build sanitai-y homes i:i 
place of the wretched lodgings to which the workers are con- 

That is why we demanded these heavy taxes on wealth and 
capital, and to-morrow, when you vote this new tax, if you do 
not find a means of keeping down illegitimate expenditures, they 
will still further increase the. burden which already weighs down 
the working-class. 

This crisis is so grave that the Government is trying to hide it 
from itself. There lies the reason why M. Barthou said a few 
days ago: "Who then would dare take the responsibility of 
proposing to this country 800 millions of new taxes f " . . . 

M. de Mun and his friends say that if the budget shows a 


deficit, the cause should not be sought in our national expendi- 
tures, but in our foolish demagogic prodigality. 

What are the figures of the social expenditures? . . . The cost 
of the application of all the laws of pensions or relief does not 
exceed 200 millions in a budget of 5 billions. Including imme- 
diate expenditures, it can be said that the military expenditures 
reach 2 billion 300 million, an increase of more than a billion 
since 1909. . . . 

The present time is favorable to opening the paths of the 
future and to making way for the reduction of armaments by 
international arbitration. The Balkan crisis has left eveiywhere 
only reaction and disillusionment. The fatigue created by the 
flood of war and militarism is general. . . . 

All nations have in their mouths the bitter taste of their recent 
experiences. Not a single government but has come out of it 
weakened, and even the Balkan people have not been able to 
carry to a finish their war of independence; from a war of 
conquest it became a war of extermination. 

We have seen new antagonisms springing up in the Mediter- 
ranean. It seems that Bulgaria is escaping to Russia. Ger- 
many, reconstructing her military mission at Constantinople, has 
heaved upon her eastern frontier the rumbling of the Slavic 
world. Austria has separated Servia from the Adriatic but has 
drawn upon herself the resentment of a part of the Balkan 
people. Italy is in the shoals of Tripoli, which is of no use to 
her except as a vantage-point from which to attack others, and, 
meanwhile, her politics oblige her to save her royal government 
by the secret help of the votes of the Vatican. 

England, sulking against the Young Turks, at first abandoned 
them, but she felt arising the anger of millions of Musselmen 
in Egypt and India. When the governments question them- 
selves, when they ask what have been the happy consequences 
of all these intrigues, of all these vanities so dazzling and so 
soon extinguished, they will see that will all emerge from these 
events weakened. One thing alone has been strengthened: the 
war budget and the general misery from this universal deception. 
(Applause extreme left.) 

Yes, the hour has come. The great and profound forces of 
peace have been working under this disorder; the nations had 
a desire for peace so strong that it has served as ballast to the 
disabled governments. It remains for a government rising in 


the name of the tradition of the French revolution to make of 
this desire one of the forces in the history of to-day, in the history 
of to-morrow. 

Jaures went on to say that in the sustained effort to keep 
peace during the crisis, three races had been in agreement : 
Germany, England, France, and he recalled the saying of 
Mirabeau: "The day when Prussia, England, and France 
agree to live in peace, on that day tvill he consummated the 
most heneficient revolution that mankind has accom- 
plished." He continued: 

This phrase was said on the eve of a vast social upheaval : 
take warning; the masses are suffering and are becoming exas- 
perated under the overwhelming burden which is crushing them; 
the English proletarians are on the eve of general strikes so 
vast that they wUl result in profound disorder; in France the 
"world of the workers is a prey to a secret strain; everywhere 
the workers weighed down by the tithe of capital, by the tithe 
of a monstrous militarism, are stirring; if you do not take the 
road pointed out by our motion, beware lest you see sinister 
disorders arise. 


The following resolution on armaments was passed by 
the Italian Congress of 1914: 

The Congress affirms that the antagonism between Socialism 
and militarism is a corollary to the antagonism that exists 
between the proletariat and capitalistic bourgeoisie; 

That militarism, apart from being a system of coercion of the 
proletariat and of defense of the capitalistic regime, answers 
the views of capitalism, which in this period of social evolution 
either seeks new colonies to exploit, or seeks to invest in easy 
and lucrative loans to the state, according to the well-known 
paralellism between the increase in military expenses and the 
increase of public debts; 

That the proletariat, especially in the countries that have least 
capital, like Italy, has a vital interest in opposing militarism, 


both for itself and for the capitalistic expenditures that it 
causes, whether they find expression in the form of taxes that 
increase the cost of living, or whether they are expressed in the 
form of diminishing the capital applied to productive invest- 
ments, industry, and commerce, and so cause economic crises, 
lack of employment for laborers, and emigration; and 

While it proposes in domestic affairs to intensify the propa- 
ganda and the education of the masses, and especially of the 
young, in respect to the foregoing principles, steadfastly oppos- 
ing the common interests of the internationalism of labor to the 
system of national provocation of the patriotic bourgeoisie; 

And wh-le it again commits to the parliamentary Socialist 
group the duty of continuing the most strenuous opposition to 
military credits, and endeavors to aid them by the active and 
direct action of the organized proletariat; 

Decides to submit to the International Congress at Vienna 
a special request for the reorganization of the International 
Socialist Bureau for the purpose of giving that bureau the 
specific functions of: 

a. Undertaking a special propaganda among the great inter- 
national labor-union federations to win them all to the inter- 
national idea, — peace and anti-militarism, — and to drill them 
for all practical measures that may render wars impossible; and 

h. Giving eifeet to a speedy system of mutual information 
through the international press, whether bourgeois or Socialist, 
for the sake of setting forth clearly the simultaneous and con- 
temporaneous character of the international proletarian, anti- 
militarist movement in the various countries, in order to elim- 
inate every apprehension lest the movement should weaken any 
one state in favor of any other, and to give the world a vivid 
idea of the active, imposing, decisive union of the organized 
proletariat against war and against militarism. 


We reproduce below, as indications of the American So- 
cialist attitude, the party resolutions against military edu- 
cation of children. 


Whereas, The capitalist class is making determined and per- 
sistent efforts to use the public schools for the military training 
of children and for the inculcation of the military spirit; there- 
fore, be it 

Resolved, That we are opposed to all efforts to introduce mili- 
tary training into the public schools, and that we recommend 
the introduction into our public school system of a thorough 
and progressive course in physical culture, and 

Resolved, That we request the national executive committee 
to suggest plans and programs along this line and furnish these 
to the party membership, together with such advice in the matter 
as may be helpful to the party membership in introducing such 
a system into our public schools. 

On motion the resolution was adopted as read. 


(LONDON), JANUARY 27, 1914 

"All other important measures have been submitted to 
a referendum, but by the consent of both political parties, 
the Defense Act was passed into law without consulting 
the people. . . . 

"When compulsory training was first established very- 
little protest in an organized form was offered. Hardly a 
member of Parliament criticised it, and practically all the 
opposition came from Quakers and the Socialists. 

" What is the position to-day? Eighteen months ago 
three Adelaide men formed the Freedom League. To-day 
it has a membership of 45,000 ! At almost every sitting of 
the House the act and its administration are criticised. 

"Take the prosecutions as the final test of popularity. 
In less than two years over 18,000 lads have been prose- 
cuted and over 1,000 have been imprisoned in jails and 
barracks rather than submit to military tyranny. 

"Labor now knows that in the Defense Act there is a 


clause which gives the power to the authorities to call out 
the citizen forces to shoot down strikers, and practically 
every union in the country is up in arms against it. 

"Above all, labor is realizing that this act is not a Citizen 
Army Act at all. In fact, labor men are coming to see that 
militarism and citizenship are incompatible, and that as 
soon as a citizen becomes a soldier under this conscript 
system he loses his civil rights when they clash with mili- 
tarism. At the 1908 Labor Conference the delegates de- 
cided in favor of a Citizen Defense Force freed from mili- 
tarism and conscription. What many in the labor move- 
ment see to-day is that they have not got what they de- 
manded, and instead they have been used as the tools of 
the National Service League in its propaganda of an Em- 
pire conscription." 


' ' The famous ' Defense Act ' was first devised by the Lib- 
erals, then amended and passed by the Laborites. Its 
administration has been entirely in the hands of the labor 
ministers, so the Labor Party has a right to whatever glory 
there may be found in it. All boys between the ages of 
14 and 21 are required to report for military training. 
During part of their time of service they are gathered into 
camps for regular drill; during the remainder they are 
expected to give to the noble art of war the time which 
would normally be devoted to recreation. In order to 
make this system possible, the government of the Common- 
wealth voted $60,000,000 to be expended within three years. 
Of course an elaborate staff of officers is necessary, and 
drill halls, barracks, camp-grounds, etc., must be main- 
tained throughout the Commonwealth. 


"The leaders of the Labor Party point to this system 
as the ideal sort to be maintained by a nation under the 
control of the working-class. English and French Social- 
ists are constantly advocating a proletarian army for de- 
fense against attack by a foreign power. Such an army 
the Australian Government leaders claim to have estab- 
lished. Mr. Fisher, head of the Labor Government, re- 
ferred to it recently as a 'wonderful system for the de- 
fense of this country. ' 

"And yet workingmen and women of Australia do not 
seem to take kindly to this ' wonderful system ' inaugurated 
by their own government. Immediately after the 'Defense 
Act' went into effect the papers were filled with tales of 
boys who refused to report for service and of parents who 
refused to allow their sons to do so. Groups of mothers 
went to the magistrates and made public protests. Labor 
unions and Socialist locals passed resolutions calling upon 
members of the working-class to refuse to submit. And, 
most powerful appeal of all, the boys themselves sent out 
addresses calling upon others of their own age not to sub- 
mit. Some of these were evidently inspired by Socialist 
parents, but there were others which represented the 
spontaneous rebellion of boyhood against the slavery of 
military service. 

"Any military organization which asks the support of 
the workers must be democratically organized and abso- 
lutely committed to the policy of fighting only against a 
foreign aggressor. Under no circumstances must its use 
be permitted in case of internal difficulties. Such use would 
make it immediately the agent of a class. 

"It is true that the Labor Party majority amended the 
original act to provide for the mobilization of the army 


only for defense ; it is also true that the Labor Government 
recently refused to send troops to aid in putting down 
the tramway strikers at Brisbane. But the parliamentary 
discussion which followed this latter incident makes it 
clear that much is to be feared for the future. The whole 
matter is clearly set forth editorially in The Inier7iaUonal 

"Mr, Deakin, leader of the Liberal opposition, declared 
that troops should be used to suppress insurrection, 'and 
if ever there was insurrection in Australia, it was in Bris- 
bane.' As the editorial writer takes occasion to remark, 
this declaration shows clearly that whenever the Liberals 
come into power, which they surely will do sooner or later, 
the 'wonderful' proletarian army will be turned against 
proletarian strikers. 

"And Mr. Fisher's reply was even more alarming. He 
said : ' I go so far as to say that a conflict between the 
troops and the people of Australia at the present time 
would mean the end of our first-class defense system. It 
would absolutely defeat and destroy the wonderful system 
for the defense of this country which is being successfully 
inaugurated at this time. I am not saying that circum- 
stances could not arise when it would be necessary to send 
troops to the assistance of a state government, but I men- 
tion what, in my opinion, would have been the effect if 
we had acceded to the request of the Queensland Govern- 
ment.' There you have it. The reason troops were not 
sent was that sending them at this particular time would 
open the eyes of the people as to the nature of the 'won- 
derful system,' and it is quite possible that circumstances 
may arise under which 'it would be necessary to send 
troops' against Australians on strike. So the proletarian 
army is not exclusively for purposes of defense against a 
foreign aggressor. 


"No wonder Australians object to being made soldiers 
of, even by a Labor Government." 

(LONDON), DECEMBER 13, 1913 

"How far does the British public realize the true posi- 
tion of the great experiment in modified conscription 
which this still young democracy on the fringe of the 
Empire is now making? The experiment is now nearly 
four years old, and its real character is only just beginning 
to be understood by the hundreds of thousands of families 
whose lives it touches in a most intimate fashion. Only 
this year has the at first small but now growing opposition 
to the system of compulsory training obtained much public 
recognition. Only this year, too, on the other hand, has 
the magnitude of the beneficent change in the manners and 
physique of adolescent young Australia in the cities, as the 
outcome of a compulsory senior cadets system, been realized 
and seriously estimated by careful observers in many walks 
of life. Only this year, again, have certain leading min- 
isters definitely ranged themselves alongside the Australian 
Freedom League, which has been busy placarding this city 
with protests against existing Defense Acts. . . . 

' ' At the outset one thing must be made very clear. Aus- 
tralia is not going back, in any circumstances, to a system 
of voluntary service plus a small paid army and a large 
paid na\'y. The choice made in 1909, when the Cook De- 
fense Act was passed, initiating the compulsory training 
in the use of arms of all lads between 14 and 18 and their 
subsequent drafting into a National Militia for a term of 
years, was a final choice. There will be modifications and 
adjustments in directions to be indicated, but no aban- 
donment of the principle of compulsion as applied by 
Colonel Legge and Lord Kitchener in 1909-10. Another 


preliminary issue is the question of responsibility for com- 
pulsory training legislation. For good or ill, both parties 
have that legislation indelibly recorded to their accounts. 
Liberals passed the chief measures : Laborites administered 
and expanded them. Liberals like Mr. Deakin, Sir Thos. 
Ewing, and the present prime minister (Mr. Joseph Cook), 
pioneered statutory enactments; but it was Laborites like 
Mr. William M. Hughes, M. P., ex-attorney-general, and 
Mr. 'Chris' Watson, ex-prime minister and counselor-in- 
chief to the Federal Labor Party, who pioneered ideas and 
won over the entire Labor movement to the 'Nation in 
Arms ' conception of Commonwealth defense. Only this 
week the Labor leader of the opposition in the House of 
Kepresentatives (Mr. Andrew Fisher, M. P., who was 
prime minister from April, 1910, to June, 1913), in reply 
to a question by Mr. Conroy, M. P., reaffirmed, amid great 
cheering on all sides of the House, his profound belief 
that in giving compulsory training to her boys in senior 
cadet corps Australia was doing the right thing in the 
present state of the world. Had labor hesitated or turned 
tail when the huge military expenditure commitments faced 
the Fisher Ministry in 1910-13, the entire system would 
have collapsed. To-day, although compulsory training costs 
over £3,600,000 a year, and is steadily mounting upwards, 
the leaders of Australian trade-unionism are, if anything, 
firmer in their allegiance to the system than the Liberal 
parents of compulsory cadets. The essential truth is that 
the men who count in both parties are so obsessed with the 
Yellow Peril, and so acutely conscious of the diabolical 
horrors of a war of extermination, such as a war with 
Japan would be, for the four and a half millions of Aus- 
tralians, that they dare risk any turn in the tide amongst 
their own people so long as within the next five or six 
years they can train, officer, and equip an army of a few 


hundred thousand white soldiers. They talk a great deal 
about serving the Empire and setting an example to the 
men of the old country— but deep down in their hearts is 
the conviction that it is the safety not of the Empire, 
but of Australia's standards of civilization, race purity, 
wages, industrial idealism, and democratic freedom that 
concerns them. No Liberal or Labor leader ever argues 
privately that there is the faintest analogy between British 
and Australian conditions. 'Britain must do as she pleases. 
We have had to do this thing in order that we get even 
a hundred to one chance of holding Australia when the 
shock comes.' That expresses the typical attitude." 
(See also Appendix: ''Preparedness.")