1920s >> 1927 >> no-277-september-1927

The Communist Mixture

 Mr. Saklatvala, the only Communist M.P., recently added to the humour of life by calling a public gathering of prominent members of the Labour and Conservative parties and idle society dames to witness the mumbo-jumbo ceremonies connected with the initiation of his children into the Parsee faith. This drew down on him the indignant censure of the Communist Party, on the ground that Saklatvala’s action was contrary to Communist principles, and set a bad example to other party members.

 This, however, is not the only case of its kind affecting members of the Communist Party. Francis Meynell, a prominent Roman Catholic, was Editor of the “Communist.” Larkin still boasts of his faithful service to the Mother Church, and it is not long since Miss Isabel Kingsley was advertising in the “Workers’ Weekly” asking fellow Communist members who were “idealists” and rejected the Materialist Conception of History to join her in forming a group inside the Communist Party.

 A Leaflet just issued by the C.P.G.B., with the title “Has Communist Expulsion Helped,” deals with the relations of that party with its fellow reformists in the Labour Party. It is interesting to learn from this that “It is false for anybody to accuse the Communist Party of favouring a revolutionary coup d’état by a minority of the working class; we are, and have always been, in favour of utilising existing Governmental machinery to the limit of its possibilities.” As has been shown by copious quotations from official Communist publications, the Communists certainly have advocated precisely this thing. But if their present statement is correct, in what way do they now differ from the I.L.P. and the Labour Party?

 In the past the C.P.G.B. have, at least in this country, claimed to stand for the working class. It appears they are now preparing to drop this. “We do not say that the Labour movement should have no message for the middle class. We do not say that it should refuse to fight for the demands of certain sections of the middle class, but what we do say is that it should put the demands of the middle class alongside those of the workers, fighting for them both, and not water down the workers’ demands to appeal to the middle class prejudices.”

 Will the Communists now explain what is the middle class, and how the aims of non-workers can be reconciled with the abolition of private ownership and all forms of property income?

Edgar Hardcastle

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