Skip to Content

Workplace Deaths

Editorial: Futilities & Tragedies

 Each year that passes brings out with greater clearness the contrast between the professions of the League of Nations and its accomplishments. Organised for the avowed purpose of solving international tangles by arbitration, and thus doing away with the recourse to force, every dispute it has set out to settle has demonstrated its utter ineptitude.

 The latest manifestation of the League must be food for infinite laughter to all who have a sense of humour. The League holds numerous and heated meetings; its delegates sit day and sometimes till late at night; first-class diplomats from all nations represented make hurried trips in aeroplanes to its meetings; frenzied notes are sent out to Japan and China to cease fighting and arbitrate. And the result?—Japan goes marching on to protect the £200 millions her capitalists have invested in Manchuria.

Press Clippings


The following quotations and comments appeared in the “Manchester Guardian” of Oct. 25th last in a review of "Portraits of the Seventies”—a new book by the Right Hon. G. W. E. Russell.

How It Will Come About

 At Socialist meetings one may very often hear the interjection: “You have said a great deal about Socialism and what a good thing it will be, but tell us how it will come about."

 Maybe the request is a reasonable one, but oh! if those who prefer it were only as reasonable. However, they are not: they seem always to expect to receive a curt, cut-and-dried answer.

Before the Socialist has had time to answer the first question the second arrives : "How long will it be before Socialism is here?"

 Now, before we can commence to discuss these questions it is of the utmost importance that we understand what Socialism really means. To-day, under capitalism, we are allowed to live (!) under hellish and murderous conditions. Let me deal with that system—the system wherein men, women, and children starve in the midst of plenty.
 

Profits before life

 “The profits will not allow it.”

 Rarely has the plain, tragic truth been so bluntly stated by a capitalist as on April 28th in the Westminster Coroner’s Court.

 The Coroner was holding an inquiry into the “accident” that took place upon a building in course of erection in High Holborn.

 Two and a half tons of iron was being hoisted by a crane “made to take three tons.” “ Everything was brand new ”

 Henry James Matthews, a lad of 18, acting as a crane signalman, was killed as the result of the chain of the crane breaking.

 After the poor lad’s brother had given evidence, the Coroner called a member of the firm that made the chain.

 After great difficulty the Coroner got the makers to give evidence. The secretary of the company that supplied it offered the Coroner some certificates, but said that he knew nothing about the chain itself.

Syndicate content