1920s >> 1924 >> no-244-december-1924




(1) Your remarks on municipal action have already been dealt with in the answer given in the October issue of the Socialist Socialist. Until you can bring some arguments against our reply your unsupported assertions are worthless expressions of opinions.

(2) To say “the Socialist Party of Great Britain accepts the structure of the working classes (sic) existent industrial machinery in the shape of Trades Unions” (a very verbose phrase which simply means “the S.P.G.B. accepts Trades Unions”) shows a considerable confusion of thought. Practically all who work for a wage have to “accept” Trades Unions where they exist in any strength, whether a member of the S.L.P. or any other Party. It is significant to note that almost every S.L.P.-er that became prominent in the eyes of the public did so by their activities in the Trades Union not by any action in industrial unionism or politics. This confusion of thought is further emphasised by your two statements (a) “the S.L.P. endorses industrial unionism” ; (b ) “the S.L.P. is a political party just as much as is the S.P.G.B.”

As industrial unionism denies political action for the working class your remark proves the S.L.P. to be an anti- political party. The whole question of “industrial unionism versus Socialism” has been debated and dealt with in various back numbers of the “S.S.” which we recommend to your notice.

Another error in your letter is in passing over lightly the matter of “imposing personalities.” Had you read our exposure of the S.L.P. in our manifesto and in various articles in the “S.S.” from August, 1906 onwards, you would have seen that “leaders” with a sheep-like following existed in the S.L.P. since its inception. This was one of the factors that prevented those in England who were fighting the old S.D.F. policy from taking part in the formation of the S.L.P.

(3) It can only be supposed that if you have read the answer to your query on the oath, you have not paid the slightest attention to its contents. You make no attempt to show how the working class can gain control of political power if they baulk at an oath. In fact all your present assertions were met in that reply.—Ed. Com.

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It is significant that while questioning the definition of Mind given in the article entitled “A Brief Sketch of the Materialist Conception of History,” you fail to give any alternative explanation.

Your statement that “the brain itself is ONLY an idea,” given without the slightest attempt to supply any evidence or reason to support it, is sheer nonsense.

Another unsupported assertion, namely, “We know ONLY modes of our own consciousness” is self-contradictory. Who or what are the “we” that know?

When you can give any evidence for your entirely baseless assertions, it may be worth while to examine such evidence.—Ed. Com.

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REPLY TO J. JACOBS (Edmonton, Alberta).

Your references to the political antics of the Communists in Canada are noted. Their posing as Labour candidates with a long reform programme of a capitalist nature is very similar to the gymnastics of Communists here. Communists in Canada, once so strenuous for the One Big Union and now shouting back to the American Federation of Labour simply show that they are out to capture the jobs in unions as well as in Labour Parties.

When the working class understands the class struggle it will realise the futility of Communist “Moscow” tactics and the anti-revolutionary character of these so-called Communist opportunists.—Ed. Com.

(Socialist Standard, December 1924)

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