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Capitalism and Technology

Socialism and Materialism

 Any person lacking previous knowledge of the subject can hardly fail to be confused by the contradictory pronouncements issued in the name of Socialism regarding the basis of society. A few days ago, for instance, Mr. Robert Young, M.P., speaking at a Brotherhood meeting, pleaded for a “new society based upon Christianity." This represents the prevailing attitude among the “Socialists” (so-called) of the Labour Party. On the other hand, we find supporters of that Party claiming to be atheists or materialists, and professing to derive their “Socialism" from some abstract ideal of “justice” or “brotherhood."

Oil and Slaves

The oil age is coming. Year books, financial journals, the sharks of Throgmorton Street, together with the rest of the interested, "far seeing" exploiters and worshippers of the golden calf, are eagerly discussing the possibilities of oil as a motive force, and how much more profit they can grab by its use.

 It behoves the working class to consider the question also, because it is they who are going to suffer, as usual, from what would be a boon and a blessing to all were the toilers sufficiently enlightened and determined to make it such.

 The "Diesel" engine has already proved itself capable of propelling ocean going steamers, and will doubtless be in general use in the near future. Look at this: "The engine room staff of the 'Selandia' consists of eight men and two boys. No firemen required. No boilers needed. No loading with bunker coal for the voyage."

Book Review: 'Architect or Bee?'

Shape of things to come

'Architect or Bee?' by Mike Cooley, (Langley Technical Services, 1980)

This is a tantalizing, awkward but informative little book. The question that Cooley does not answer is whether and in what way a socialist society could use the new technology—that is, automation, chips, computer aided design, computer-linked robotic production and so on. But he skirts around it and answers a hundred other related questions, so that all may find something useful here.

Editorial: It's Our Planet

The central question — "Why must society live under the threat of nuclear annihilation?” — can be answered only by reference to the way society is presently organised. We live in a society which is dominated by the principle of competition and divided into capitalist class and working class. Just as there is struggle between workers and capitalists there is also struggle between capitalists of one country and capitalists of another. We therefore find antagonistic nation states all competing with each other to secure and expand their national economic interests and political ambitions. To do so. one state must gain at the other's expense. This leads to conflict and, when diplomatic methods have failed, to war. Humanity needs to scrap the artificial division of the world's people into social classes, national states, political units and economic blocs — to scrap the social system which is the cause of war in the modern world.

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