50 Years Ago: Futility of Nationalisation

All of the Labour Party’s nationalisation proposals involve the payment of compensation in the shape of interest-bearing bonds to the former owners. Now, apart from the futility of trying to introduce Socialism piecemeal, industry by industry, what will be the position when the Labour Party has finished nationalising all the essential services? The capitalist class will still be property-owners — their property being government bonds instead of company shares etc. They will still live by owning, and without rendering service . . . The working class will still be engaged in producing wealth for the benefit of the capitalist class. Socialism will not be in existence, and no important working-class problem will have been solved.

(From an editorial “Socialism and the Labour Party” in the Socialist Standard, November 1926.)