1920s >> 1921 >> no-200-april-1921

Sanity

It often happens after an argument, or an attempt at an argument, with a fellow member of the working class who was sturdily supporting the master class in all their works and ways, that you are told “You’re mad.” The other fellow walks away wondering why you are not under restraint, leaving you firmly convinced that there are more lunatics outside the mental hospitals than inside. The other fellow, who is the average working man, thinks that to live in rotten houses, surrounded by ex-orange boxes disguised as furniture, to eat as food strange chemical compounds that are produced in factories by men and women to whom the turning of rubbish into food is a fine art, to have every morning and evening both before and after a long day’s work a sort of Graeco-Roman, catch-as-catch-can, rough and tumble struggle to board an electrified monstrosity known as a workman’s car is Sanity. He is also convinced that when out of work, to have to walk about hungry, surrounded by plenty of everything, to watch trams and buses with plenty of room in them go by while he is wearily “padding the hoof,” is Sanity. He is also dead certain that to live in abject poverty surrounded by a super abundance of everything, to stint and scrape from the cradle to the grave while all around there is colossal waste, to build mansions and hovels and themselves live in the hovels, is Sanity.
The Socialist is insane when he points out that in society to-day there are two classes, the working class, who do all the work and live in poverty and misery, and the capitalist class, who do no work, and live in luxury and debauchery. He is insane when he points out that the workers, being in the great majority, can alter this ridiculous state of affairs when they desire to do so, and that the only thing that stops them desiring Socialism is their ignorance of the Socialist position.
As the condition of the working class under capitalism must inevitably and inexorably get worse, and as Socialism is the only remedy, if Socialism is insanity, sooner or later the majority of the working class have got to go MAD.
Fred Bailey