Our Companion Parties in the Western Hemisphere
Recent letters from the Workers’ Socialist Party of the U.S.A. give some interesting details of their activities and progress during the past few months.
Slowly bit surely their journal, the Western Socialist, is reaching an ever widening circle of readers. New contacts have been made in Colorado, Missouri, Tennessee, etc., and their journal is finding its way even to such remote places as Dutch Harbour in the Aleutian Islands
Debates and Meetings
The Catholic Worker sent their co-founder, Peter Maurin, from New York City to Boston on November 14th, 1941, to debate with the W.S.P. on “Catholic Communism versus Socialism.” The W.S.P., commenting on the debate, state: “We analysed the Labour Encyclicals of the Pope in which the Catholic Worker claims to base its action. The general idea behind this organisation is to foster co-operative farms, soup kitchens, Catholic trade unions, and plenty of prayer. It is meant to attract the awakening Catholic workers and to emasculate their efforts for social emancipation.” The attendance, and the resulting sales of literature were fair.
On November 23rd they debated successfully with the “Socialist Party of America,” whose representative declared: “There are going to be wages paid in the Socialism I want” . . . “Investment banking and money will be absolutely necessary.” The W.S.P. had no difficulty in dealing effectively with such nostrums. The Boston local, under whose auspices the debate was held, report that literature sales and the collection were excellent.
Harvard University sent three speakers in December 14th to debate with the W.S.P. on “Only Socialism can abolish war.” The U.S.A. had already been a war a week, and despite the general excitement which prevailed, the attendance was satisfactory, and the literature sales were good.
Their outdoor propaganda season was the best record. It was brought to a close of November 9th with an informal debate with the American Action Associates (a Catholic Action—isolationist group). This took place on Boston Common, and although the day was cold and drizzly, our comrades state: “We held an enthusiastic crowd of three hundred for almost three hours.”
The Western Socialist
The latest issue of the Western Socialist has reached us, and although it was published before the American-Japanese clash, it contains a revealing article on the reasons why the clash of these two rival powers was inevitable.
Exceptionally good articles dealing with the status of the negro population of the U.S.A., and the position of the Jews in Capitalist society, are an attractive feature.
There is an outstanding article entitled: “We who are about to Live.” It epitomises the attitude of that section of international youth which is becoming aware that only Socialism can remove the causes of the poverty, wars, and frustration, from which they suffer.
W.S.P. offer a free specimen copy of the Western Socialist. We urge our American readers in particular to take advantage of it, and for their convenience we set out below the address to which to send requests. For the benefit of our readers who are disposed to become subscribers at once, we also set out particulars of subscription rates.
News from Canada
Since the war started, our companion Party, the Socialist Party of Canada, has undergone many vicissitudes. Activities in most of their locals have been curtailed very severely, but contact is maintained with the headquarters in Winnipeg, and the locals undertake the distribution of THE SOCIALIST STANDARD in their respective territories.
Recent information from the General Secretary of the Party, however, reveals that activity is on the increase, notably in Victoria and Winnipeg. In the latter city the local has commenced an economic class which is proving attractive to members and sympathisers.
It is a source of great satisfaction to us in Britain that the S.P. of C. is continuing its support to the W.S.P. of the U.S.A. by means of financial aid, and articles for the Western Socialist.
To our comrades in the Western Hemisphere we extend our fraternal greetings, knowing that they will carry on with the only task worth while—propagation of Socialist ideas.
In a later issue we hope to bring our readers news of our companion parties in Australia and New Zealand.
H. G. Holt, Overseas Secretary.
Please send your requests for a free specimen copy of the Western Socialist to Workers’ Socialist Party of the U.S.A., 12, Hayward Place, Boston, Mass., U.S.A.
Subscriptions, which should be sent to the above address, are as follows :—
18 issues (postage included) . . . . . . 1 dollar
12 issues ditto . . . . . . 75 cents.
4 issues ditto . . . . . . 25 cents.