Tag Archives: George Orwell

Old Major’s speech

By George Volkov

“Now, comrades, what is the nature of this life of ours?

Let us face it:
our lives are miserable, laborious, and short. We are born, we are given just so much food as will keep the breath in our bodies, and those of us who are capable of it are forced to work to the last atom of our strength; and the very instant that our usefulness has come to an end we are slaughtered with hideous cruelty. No animal in England knows the meaning of happiness or leisure after he is a year old. No animal in England is free. The life of an animal is misery and slavery: that is the plain truth.”

“But is this simply part of the order of nature? Is it because this land
of ours is so poor that it cannot afford a decent life to those who dwell upon it? No, comrades, a thousand times no! The soil of England is fertile, its climate is good, it is capable of affording food in abundance to an enormously greater number of animals than now inhabit it. This single farm of ours would support a dozen horses, twenty cows, hundreds of sheep–and all of them living in a comfort and a dignity that are now almost beyond our imagining. Why then do we continue in this miserable condition? Because nearly the whole of the produce of our labour is stolen from us by human beings. There, comrades, is the answer to all our problems. It is summed up in a single word–Man. Man is the only real enemy we have. Remove Man from the scene, and the root cause of hunger and overwork is abolished for ever.”

“Man is the only creature that consumes without producing. He does not give milk, he does not lay eggs, he is too weak to pull the plough, he cannot run fast enough to catch rabbits. Yet he is lord of all the animals. He sets them to work, he gives back to them the bare minimum that will prevent them from starving, and the rest he keeps for himself. Our labour tills the soil, our dung fertilises it, and yet there is not one of us that owns more than his bare skin. You cows that I see before me, how many thousands of gallons of milk have you given during this last year? And what has happened to that milk which should have been breeding up sturdy calves? Every drop of it has gone down the throats of our enemies.

And you hens, how many eggs have you laid in this last year, and how many of those eggs ever hatched into chickens? The rest have all gone to market to bring in money for Jones and his men. And you, Clover, where are those four foals you bore, who should have been the support and pleasure of your old age? Each was sold at a year old–you will never see one of them again. In return for your four confinements and all your labour in the fields, what have you ever had except your bare rations and a stall?”

“And even the miserable lives we lead are not allowed to reach their
natural span. For myself I do not grumble, for I am one of the lucky ones.
I am twelve years old and have had over four hundred children. Such is the
natural life of a pig. But no animal escapes the cruel knife in the end.
You young porkers who are sitting in front of me, every one of you will scream your lives out at the block within a year. To that horror we all must come–cows, pigs, hens, sheep, everyone. Even the horses and the dogs have no better fate. You, Boxer, the very day that those great muscles of yours lose their power, Jones will sell you to the knacker, who will cut your throat and boil you down for the foxhounds. As for the dogs, when they grow old and toothless, Jones ties a brick round their necks and drowns them in the nearest pond.”

“Is it not crystal clear, then, comrades, that all the evils of this life
of ours spring from the tyranny of human beings? Only get rid of Man, and the produce of our labour would be our own. Almost overnight we could become rich and free. What then must we do? Why, work night and day, body and soul, for the overthrow of the human race! That is my message to you, comrades: Rebellion! I do not know when that Rebellion will come, it might be in a week or in a hundred years, but I know, as surely as I see this straw beneath my feet, that sooner or later justice will be done. Fix your eyes on that, comrades, throughout the short remainder of your lives! And above all, pass on this message of mine to those who come after you, so
that future generations shall carry on the struggle until it is victorious.”

“And remember, comrades, your resolution must never falter. No argument must lead you astray. Never listen when they tell you that Man and the animals have a common interest, that the prosperity of the one is the prosperity of the others. It is all lies. Man serves the interests of no creature except himself. And among us animals let there be perfect unity, perfect comradeship in the struggle. All men are enemies. All animals are comrades.”

Old Major’s Speech
Animal Farm
George Orwell

Proof the workers can run society, with a warning.

By George Volkov (edited by Leon J Williams)

“It was the first time that I had been in a town where the working class was in the saddle. Practically every building of any size had been seized by the workers and was draped with red flags or with the red and black flags of the anarchists, every wall was scrawled with the hammer and sickle and with the initials of revolutionary parties”

“every shop and café had an inscription saying that it had been collectivised and their boxes painted red and black, waiters and shop keepers looked you in the face and treated you as an equal”
George Orwell- homage to Catalonia

I ask you dear reader, does this sound like the big and evil socialism of the soviet union?
No
During the Spanish civil war, the working class had power in the republican areas. Factories were ran by the workers, not the bosses. This did not decrease production, no. The workers didn’t have the bosses on their backs, no, they had an ideology, they produced for the people of the Spanish republic. This in fact, increased production.
Where collectivisation had been implemented industrial productivity almost doubled and agricultural yields being 30-50% higher.
The shops were not ran for profit. Then why did the people run them? For the common good, for the people that did the same for them; for those who made their clothes, their shoes. Anarchists set up exchange shops, where you bartered for commodities.

Thousands of people joined to fight the Fascists and defend democracy! The international brigades attracted people from all over the globe.
Some of the people that fought and reported in the Spanish civil war:
Martha Gellhorn- future wife of Ernst Hemmingway.
Ernst Hemmingway- wrote “for whom the bell tolls”
George Orwell- 1984, animal farm, homage to Catalonia.

Of course, as with all socialist revolutions under the Stalinist 3rd international. It was betrayed by Stalin’s gangsters and agents who were more interested in finding Trotskyists than killing fascists.
Non-Stalinist militias were denied the good, modern weapons and were arrested and killed.

The POUM militia (partido obrero de unificado marxista- workers party of Marxist unification) which Orwell fought with, had its leaders arrested and killed for daring to oppose Stalin. Andres Nin, Trotsky’s former secretary in France, was arrested and shot by Stalin’s secret police.
The capitalist west set up a non-intervention committee, attempting to ignore the rise of fascism, content to let the barbarians kill and overthrow democracy.
Mexico and the USSR sent aid to the republic, whilst Mussolini and Hitler sent aid to Franco and the nationalists.
As I said before, what you saw in the USSR, that horrible police state, with food queues and repression, was not socialism. Stalin and his bureaucratic thugs used the word socialism to retain power, and attempt to fool the masses. Those who saw through the illusion were lost in the tundras of Siberia.
The description at the start of the text is socialism in action, where the power is given to the majority!

The west refused to fight the fascists and and paid for it in 1938, when Hitler began his conquest of Europe, taking the Sars, Rhineland and Czechoslovakia. We can not let this cancer of nationalism and these right wing extremists take power, or we face a bleak future.
Keep up the good fight comrades. The fascist EDL and BNP in the UK, the tea party and Nazis in the US; these racists shall not take power whilst we remain.
¡No Pasaran! They shall not pass!