Tag Archives: kautsky

How we can gain support

By Jim Hargreaves

If we are to build a kautskyian mass party, we would obviously need members and the support of the proletariat. So, how do we obtain this? Agitation: agitate inside your union for a rank and file workers union, rather than the bureaucratic, class collaborationist organisation that the majority of unions are today; agitate in your workplace for strikes; agitate on the streets by handing out leaflets and papers; agitate online by making your own site or on Facebook.

By doing this, it will:
A) increase class consciousness
B) lead to others joining you in your agitation
C) increase the numbers of the party, therefore giving it more power, thus giving it more influence in unions, which will give it more influence among the working class as a whole.

With each strike the proletariat will grow in confidence, leading to more strikes and demonstrations, which will boost its confidence even more! We need to agitate for independent working class organisations, not just ones set up by one of the many ‘communist’ parties; we need to agitate for committees to be formed- people’s councils; we need to agitate for the workers running their own factories, and their own lives without the bourgeois state moralistically regulating what we can and can’t do. We need to agitate for freedom and for the democratic dictatorship of the proletariat.

What needs to be formed is something similar to the soviets which were formed in Russia- democratic, independent working class organisation which are suitable of superseding the bourgeois state apparatus.

Our demands are simple: we want those who work to receive the full fruits of their labour; we want to do away with bosses, policemen, soldiers and bureaucrats; we want to run our own lives. We can only do this by overthrowing the bourgeois state and replacing it with the democratic dictatorship of the proletariat.

The role of the party

By Reece Lawton

The idea of the vanguard party invokes hatred towards Lenin among many of the libertarian leftists. A small group of intellectuals to take over in a coup d’├ętat and guide the masses to socialism via a one party dictatorship! Does this sound like Marxism, or the self emancipation of the working class? The answer is no, no, and a hundred times no! I ask you to find one example of Lenin using this term. Lenin, no matter what the anarchists and council communists like to say, was not a blanquist.

Lenin’s idea of a party was one which was based of the German ‘social democratic party’;I say based, as it had to be adapted to the conditions of tsarist Russia. Despite the accusations of Kautsky in his late work ‘social democracy vs communism’, the October revolution was planned by the ‘All Russian congress of soviets’ and ratified by the 2nd ‘All Russian congress of soviets’. These soviets were ran by workers, and the men that overthrew the bourgeois state of Kerensky were, mainly, red guards, the most militant of workers.

The party Lenin had in mind was a party of the most class conscious workers and revolutionaries to educate the proletariat so they achieve class consciousness, that is to say realise the exploitation inherent in capitalism and see that the bourgeoisie are about as much use to society as a parasite is to the human body.

A class conscious proletariat will undoubtedly rise up and ‘lose their chains’, organising this new society via democratic organs under the control of the workers (soviets). But, to quote Marx, the working class cannot simply lay hold of the ready-made state machinery, and wield it for its own purposes.

Lenin outlined what was required so the dictatorship of the proletariat, which is a dictatorship in the sense that the proletariat is the ruiling class, rather than the small, exploitative minority of bourgeois that are the ruiling class in capitalism.

i) Free and democratic elections with right of recall of all officials.

ii) No official to receive a higher wage than a skilled worker.

iii) No standing army but the armed people.

iv) Gradually, all the tasks of running society to be done by everybody in turn (when everybody is a bureaucrat nobody is a bureaucrat).

So the party will not substitute itself in the place of the proletariat, the state will be controlled democratically by the workers. The party will radicalise the workers by making them class conscious and by organising the proletariat along revolutionary lines.

I detest the ‘marxist-leninists’ who cry out for a vanguard party to ‘lead the workers’. What a reactionary view! This implies that the proletariat cannot lead itself, and implies total lack of democracy. The proletariat shall elect it’s delegates and representatives, and will certainly not have a vanguard party enforced upon it!

Essentially, the party is the all-important spark to light the fire of proletarian revolution, a midwife to class consciousness. It will represent the most radical sections of the proletariat, as it will be made up of them.

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The death of capitalism

I wonder if we will ever realise that no matter who we vote for, we’ll still be ruled by the rich. I don’t think anyone runs for prime minister for anything but their interests, or that of the bourgeoisie.

Our prime ministers will always either be labour or conservative, usually serving no more than two terms before the other party gets in.

Either way we’re fucked and capital continues to serve the bourgeoisie even more now, because of the decline of the welfare state.

These next few years will define the future of our nation, and our future.
I’m hoping socialism will prevail, but doubtful. The flame in the lamp of capitalism is dying out, and the workers are in control of letting it burn out or giving it more fuel.

But like all lamps, it will die out- it is inevitable, unsustainable; exploitation can not continue indefinitely, as the exploited will rise up against the exploiters.

But when this will happen is anyone’s guess. Socialists around the world declared that the end was nigh for capitalism in 1918, but we all know that turned into a bureaucratic, state capitalist regime.
All we socialists can do is follow the kautskyist slogan:
Educate, agitate, organise.