More S.D.P. Confusion at Watford

In reply to a question at the end of an address at the Watford Labour Church a short while ago, Mr. Gorle said that he did not consider the industrial development of capitalist society had reached a state that made it ripe for social revolution.

Mr. H. Quelch, writing in “Justice” (3.6.11) says : “It is clear that any difference of method is not a difference as between Evolution and Revolution; the difference lies here, that we believe that the economic development has reached a stage when all the industrial forms are ripe for Socialism : that we are not at the beginning, but at the end of the capitalist era, and that the one thing necessary to realise the social revolution is the conscious organised effort of the working class themselves. Our ‘evolutionary’ brethren, on the other hand, appear to be of the opinion that the end is to be realised in the dim and distant future by the adoption in these days of petty measures of bourgeois social reform.”

Here we have Quelch affimative v. Gorle negative. Where do we stand now ? According to these two officials of the S.D.P., we don’t know. The matter has yet to be debated. But in the meantime Quelch says “yes,” Gorle says “no.” On the other hand, we of the S.P.G.B. point out to the workers in every address our speakers deliver, that the industrial forms of capitalism are ripe for Socialism, and the only matter that stops its realisation is working-class ignorance. This ignorance is fostered by such organisations as the S.D.P.

Quelch, writing in “Justice” (19.2.10) says : “The majority of the S.D.P. do not understand what political action means.”

We are able to fully substantiate that statemnent, but this is not the only point S.D.P.-ers fail to understand. !

Here we had a Mr. Davey, S.D.P., Watford, |while debating with our comrade F. Liegh, taking a little excursion into economics, and explaining to an astounded audience that capital was labour applied to raw material, and still insisting on the correctness of his definition after it had again been challenged.

On another auspicious occasion, Mr. T. Mansfield (now Councillor Mansfield), of the Watford Socialist Society, an organisation affiliated the S.D.P., seeking votes from residents of King’s Ward, and declaring himself to be a “practical Socialist,” and not the revolutionary firebrand he was represented to be. And to prove it he would tell them he had been a member of the old volunteers, and was now a “Territorial” prepared to do and die for his King and his country’s interest.

He also led them to believe that Municipalisation and Nationalisation were Socialism.

When the absurdity of his voluntary military service was raised, the S.D.P. Citizen Army was dragged forward, and the idea of all Socialists joining the Territorials and being possessed of a rifle to use as a weapon against the capitalist’s army, if necessary, was advanced as a splendid one.

Of course, we pointed out clearly what would occur, and we were not kept waiting long before our predictions were proved to be amply justified. Let me just quote the Daily Telegraph of August 1st. for their benefit and the benefit of others :

“Another Hull telegram states that the ammunition was yesterday removed from the local territorial barracks, including those of the Garrison Artillery, Field Artillery, and Infantry regiments, and bolts have been withdrawn from all rifles stored there, rendering them useless.”

Now, you S.D.P. Territorial “Socialists,” just take a lesson from the above quotation, and try to realise that only the capture of political power can give you control of these weapons.

Of course, it is left to the S.P.G.B. to tell the workers what the capitalists keep the armed forces for, and to clear up the confusion disseminated by the S.D.P.—work that the comrades at Watford, as elsewhere, are doing unceasingly.

E. T.

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