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Direct action

The Quick Change Artist

At the moment Winston Churchill is very much in the public eye on account of his latest change of front. He was once a Conservative, then he became a Liberal, and lately he appears to have returned to the Conservative ranks again. But in one thing he is at least consistent, he has always supported Capitalism and has not pretended to do anything else.

There is another man, once very much in the public eye, but now a setting star. This other man is Tom Mann. He has also changed his front many times, but he also has at least been consistent in one thing— consistent in advancing the personal interests of one Tom Mann.

Action: An Analysis

Socialists are often accused by Direct Actionists and others of that ilk of being content with "talk, talk, everlasting talk." They say we are continually uttering all sorts of dire threats against the capitalist class, but that we stop at that. When it conies to action, according to them, we are non-starters.

Now what action can the workers take ?

They can with advantage take no action other than talking—with tongue and pen and print—and organising, and using the vote, until such time as they have obtained control of the political machinery, for without that control they are helpless.

There are what are known as "constitutional action" and "direct action," The meaning of the first is obviously action in accord with the Constitution.

Editorial: The Scottish Workers' Congress: Curious Stuff from Glasgow

  An organisation calling itself the "Scottish Workers' Congress" called a preliminary meeting at Central Halls, Glasgow, on May 21st. What took place at the meeting we do not know at the time of going to press, but, judging from the explanatory leaflet issued beforehand, it is a curious re-hash of reformism, Scottish nationalism and anti-political activity. The 10-point programme contains some of the stock demands of the reformist parties, such as a minimum wage of 3s. an hour, a 30-hour week, double income-tax allowances on all incomes under £600 a year, immediate provision of sufficient decent houses "by prefabrication and other means in Scotland" (our italics), “democratic workers' control of Scottish industry," and “equal pay for the job for both men and women."

The Time For Action: A Letter to a Young Socialist

 You say that you like our theory but you cannot understand our seeming indifference to action. You are mystified that a party with so firm a grasp of principles should appear to have no capacity—or no stomach—for applying them in the practical way that appeals to the workers. You say that we leave all the active struggle to other parties with only half our insight into the social problem. You ask, “What is the good of all the S.P.G.B.’s lucid explanations of the failure of capitalism if they do not lead somewhere? Is it not time something was done, something drastic and exciting, right in the line of march towards Socialism?” You end with a warning: "If the S.P.G.B. will not, then someone else must.”

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