1990s >> 1990 >> no-1031-july-1990

50 Years Ago: Super-Capitalist Russia

There are others whose inaccurate use of terms is due to indifference rather than ignorance: they change their terms to suit their policy. Thus, during the past few years, as policy has changed the same persons have been able to describe Russia as Socialist and as Capitalist (the Express newspaper is a case in point): others have looked round Europe and have been able to discern democracy in this or that country where earlier and later they could see only dictatorship. Hitler and Mussolini have been much to the fore in this verbal juggling. Both have claimed at times to be upholders of revolution and at others to be guardians of tradition. Both have pretended in some places and at some times that they stand for Socialism and working-class interests against Capitalism and the “pluto-democracies”. Hitler, after years of hostility to Bolshevism, chose last year to discover close affinities between the Nazi and Bolshevist systems. Mussolini, likewise, while building warships for the Russians, declared that Fascism is a bulwark against Bolshevist encroachments on Christian civilisation. On the other hand, he has at times denounced Bolshevism, not for being anti-Capitalist, but for being “State super-Capitalism carried to its most ferocious expression” (The Times. November 2. 1936).

(From an article “Terms and Terminological Inexactitudes“, Socialist Standard, July 1940.)