The Western Socialist
Vol. 26 - No. 207
No. 3, 1959
"The Saskatchewan legislature voted 28 to 13 to give second reading, approval in principle, to a bill levying a one per cent payment on the gross production of Saskatchewan oil wells," according to the Daily Colonist, 21/3/59. "Liberals and Social Creditors voted against the bill, which would enact payment for oil under road allowances."
Mineral Resources Minister J. H. Brockelbank told the chamber the levy is not unfair. "It will not cause undue hardship to the oil industry or reduce the activity of companies in the province," he added.
He can say that again. In fact he could say that Saskatchewan's CCF government has never caused undue hardship to the capitalist class at any time. Nor is there much chance that it ever will.
The CCF support of those who own everything and their opposition to those who own nothing but labor-power is willingly extended far beyond the borders of Saskatchewan and Canada.
In the Oct. 15, 1958 issue of "The Commonwealth" is the text of a tribute issued to the press by Premier T. C. Douglas "Socialist" premier of Saskatchewan on the death of Pope Pious XII. In his message Mr. Douglas said in part: "For nearly 20 years His Holiness has led the Roman Catholic Church in times of great peril and stress. He has been a great moral force for good in the world, a champion of the underdog and an incessant advocate of peace... Humanity has lost a good friend."
It may seem strange how poorly humanity gets along with so many good friends in its midst (there are many others in addition to the Pope). It's almost enough to drive a person to rejecting the so-called friends and doing some serious thinking on the solving of social evils. It has been proven many times in the past that the CCF does try to be all things to all people.
For instance, in the Regina Manifesto it is stated that the CCF is "a federation of farmer, labor and socialist organizations." A Socialist federation made up of non-Socialist organizations? What a strange way for a political party that calls itself Socialist to act. However, not only does it call itself Socialist, but the capitalist class co-operates by calling it Socialist too.
Instead of steering the workers toward Socialism as a solution to their increasing problems, the CCF is outdoing the avowed professionals in keeping the workers in the dark. There's nothing like offering a camouflaged substitute under the name of the real thing to confuse and confound.
At the 1958 convention of the British Columbia CCF the "old guard" members proposed an amendment to a resolution which proposed reaffirmation of the manifesto and particularly that part of it which states: "The CCF will not rest content until capitalism has been eradicated and the full program of socialist planning has been instituted." The amendment was defeated, but to the uninitiated it would appear that the "old guard" had found a whole sentence in the manifesto that was Socialist. They couldn't be farther from the truth.
To speak of "Socialist planning" implies some other kind of planning, e.g., capitalist planning. Such a phenomenon has never shown itself upon the social scene. The idea of "the full program of socialist planning" suggests the false notion that a partial program could exist first. This is almost like saying that some industries would be commonly owned and others privately; that part of the wealth of society would be produced for use and the rest for sale; that people would be able to go to the stores and take home furniture, bacon and beer free of charge, but be compelled to exchange the money commodity for anything else they desired.
We know that the anarchy in capitalism is something awful to behold but it's nothing compared to what would obtain in a part capitalist and part Socialist setup, if such a contradiction were possible.
Of course the "old guard" was not speaking of Socialism at all but dear old state capitalism where a small section of society would still live off the labors of the rest by drawing interest on government guaranteed bonds.
One of the latest proposals by Canada's first socialist government (whatever that may mean) is the building of a new highway to the Beaverlodge radium mines in the north-western corner of the province. With all other factors remaining constant, this should have the effect of cheapening the cost of transporting supplies in and radium ore out to the hungry H bomb markets of the world and help the federal government to substantiate interest rates for the bondholding owners of Eldorado Mining Co.
How interest, which comes from the surplus values that are wrung out of the hides of the workers can be equated with Socialism should keep even the double-talkers of Canada's most noted reform party busy twisting word meanings around for awhile.
J. G. JENKINS