1930s >> 1939 >> no-421-september-1939

What is the true Position?

The workers of all capitalist countries are faced with the SAME problems.

A worker, be he British, French, German, Italian or any other, is without the means of existence unless he can sell the only thing he possesses (i.e., his power to labour) to die capitalist class. All workers are alike in this respect. They possess no means and, to live, they must work to produce a profit for a capitalist.

The worker gets a wage which is, on an average, just sufficient to enable him to live and reproduce his kind (i.e., future wage-earners). This again applies equally to workers of all lands and colours. Often he is overworked, ill-clothed, badly housed. He finds it hard to make ends meet, so that at death, after a life of toil, he is just as he was at birth, i.e., without property.

The capitalist, however, is far from being in that position. To whatever race or nation he belongs he owns the machines and instruments which produce the means of life. Furthermore, he insists that whenever the wheels of production turn he gets a handsome profit. “No profit. No production!” that is the watchword of the capitalist. If his workers are of the same race and religion as himself, the rule still holds: if profits are not forthcoming from production he will close the doors of the factory and his’ workers are left workless in the street.

The enemy, then, of the worker of any country, is not the worker of another. His enemy is the system of society—capitalism—which keeps him in poverty, overworks him and throws him on the scrap-heap when profits are not being produced.

Sooner or later, the workers will realise this. Capitalism itself will make them realise it, because capitalism can give them no solution to their problems. Then, the workers will be class-conscious, they will realise that all workers of all lands must join together against the common enemy, capitalism. They will scorn the attempts of the capitalists to stir up hatred between workers of different nations. Instead of slaughtering each other in the interests of the capitalist classes, they will unite to establish, in their own interests, a system of society which will bring security to every worker—Socialism.

Clifford Allen