The world about us is falling to pieces. The need for change is widely realised. Technically there is no major problem. The difficulty is a social one. Capitalism is maintained by class power and will only be displaced by the one class that no society can do without? Those who work. If the working people want power they will have to take it. It will not be given to them. The basic strategy for the working class is to obtain political power and capture the State machine. In the UK the most effective way is to contest and win elections. What is socialism? What are we actually striving for? How will this new society to be achieved? These questions is receiving even more attention today because of the pending catastrophes the planet faces. Without a socialist revolution, an apocalypse threatens the whole of mankind. Humanity can be saved from barbarism that menaces it only by a revolutionary working class.
Socialism is rule by the working people and they will decide how socialism is to work. The task of the Socialist Party, therefore, is to help and guide the transfer of power from capitalists to working people by revolution. Marx and Engels made no attempt to proclaim in advance how a socialist society is to be developed. To use the word “socialism” for anything but working people’s power is to misuse the term. Nationalisation is not socialism. Nationalisation is simply state capitalism, with no connection to socialism. Nor is the “Welfare State” socialist. A socialist state (the working people in power) will certainly give high priority to health, education, art, science, and the social well-being of all its members. That is why it exists, that is the purpose of its economy. But “welfare” in a capitalist state, to improve the efficiency of that state as a profit-maker, is not socialism but a form of state capitalism. It can be an improvement on capitalism with no welfare, just as a 40-hour week is an improvement on a 60-hour week. But it is not socialism.
Socialism will eventually replace capitalism worldwide because it is economically superior and would provide a better quality of life for its people. socialism should be far more democratic than the most democratic capitalist state. Socialism provides freedoms for working people that capitalism cannot offer. Socialism provides the well-being capitalism promised but did not deliver.
The “practical” political parties sneer at the Socialist Party as idealistic utopians campaigning for the unattainable without any immediate social value, judging ourselves from the limited horizon. It is our conviction that the socialist revolution will triumph based on an examination of evidence, upon our Marxist analysis of the social forces at work. Socialism is that form of society in which there is no such thing as a propertyless class, but in which the whole community collectively own the means of production—the land, factories, offices, mines, transport and all the means whereby wealth is created and distributed to the community. The basic principles of socialist society are diametrically opposite to those of capitalist society in which we live. Socialism stands for social or community property. Capitalism stands for private property. Socialism is a society without classes. Capitalism is divided into classes—the class owning property and the propertyless working class.
The capitalist class understands the need for political action. It is prepared in order to crush the attempts of Labour seeking to organise its forces. The workers are confronted by the whole economic force of capital in alliance with its political force—the State. Can the Socialist Party, therefore, neglect the political field, which is at present one of capital’s strongest bastion? The Socialist Party says no. We dare not leave the class enemy entrenched in any position from which it can threaten the working class. Revolutionary political action has not failed for the simple reason that it has never been tried or used. There has been plenty of Labour Party electioneering and parliamentary reformism, but that is not revolutionary political action. The time has now arrived for the workers' movement in this country to define clearly its attitude towards political action. Many are opposed to political action for no other reason than that they have not realised all that it means. The Socialist Party believes in the political weapon as the instrument by means of which the workers can capture the State in order to uproot it. We are convinced that socialism is the only hope of the workers. Neither reforms nor palliatives can in any way remove the great economic contradictions inherent in capitalism. The time has now arrived when all revolutionary socialists must either join hands with the Socialist Party or strengthen the hands of the reformists. The Socialist Party appeals for members. In these days of pending global disaster, it is the obligation of every socialist to best assist the movement. No false sense of duty to some party which is not revolutionary should prevent anyone from throwing in his or her lot with the principles Socialist Party. Everything must be subordinated to the class war against capitalism. We, therefore, appeal to those comrades who complain of the shortcomings of their present organisations to come help us to convince our fellow-workers. With an increased membership our work can be extended and intensified. The growth of that work can only go on if new members come in. By taking your place inside our organisation you will become identified with the most fearless and virulent party of socialism in the country. Outside the Socialist Party your efforts are probably being exercised in a wrong direction; inside the Socialist Party, your efforts will be directed to the emancipation of the working class and the liberation of humanity.