Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

By this inexorable process large layers of the capitalist class

are expropriated and compelled to identify themselves with the

proletariat.

If an employer is unable to purchase new machin

ery, if he is unable to produce as cheaply as his competitors,

he is driven into bankruptcy.

Thus the ranks of the capitalist

class are thinned out and the class is made more powerful.

Mills and factories become the property of ever fewer men.

It

is a significant fact that a few men control huge aggregations

of capital.

In the second place, competitors have, to a great ex

tent, consolidated.

They wipe out all differences among them

selves and present a united front in their war upon labor. Competition among capitalists is disappearing, due to the displacement of human skill by machines and the increase in

capitalist power through concentration in the possession of

the means of production and distribution.

Industry is high

ly corporate and at times monopolistic.

This is a day of

trusts and interlocking directorates.

Finally, the Employing Class, the Business Class,

organizes Merchants', Manufacturers', and Employers' Asso

ciations corresponding to the solidarity of the mechanical and industrial concentration. Through these associations

they control governments and courts.

By injunctions of the

judiciary and the use of military power they seek to crush, with brutal force, all efforts of Labor at resistance.1

Or, when the other policy seems more proiitable, they delude and

betray those whom they would rule and exploit. "The Repub

of the

lican party, likewise the Democratic, is a party 1.'Industrial Union Manifesto."

capitalist class," said De Leon; "every man who is posted

knows that; the conduct of its Presidents, Governors, Judges,

Congresses, and Legislatures can leave no doubt upon the

subject..1

These conditions breed the class struggle.

"The

working class and the employing class have nothing in com

,2 mon, declares the W. I. I. U. According to De Leon,

"Whatever the interests may be of a class whose material

welfare towers up, and the interests of the class whose

material welfare and all that thereupon depends, sinks

perpendicularly and in even tempo with the former's rise,

whatever these two sets of interests may be, they

can have nothing in common.

The relations between these

two sets of interests are..... the relations between the

..3 vampire and the victim.

The working class and the em

ploying class have nothing in common, any more than it is

possible, said De Leon, "to divide an apple in such a way

that each shall have the bigger chunk.

It is foolish to

prate about the "mutuality", the "brotherhood", the "iden

tity of interests", of the Capitalist Class and the Working

Class.

Between these two classes a struggle must go on un

til private ownership in the means of production is abolished

1. Daniel De Leon, "What Means This Strike?" 27. 2. Constitution of W. I. I. U., Preamble. 3. Daniel De Leon, "Socialist Reconstruction of Society," 20-21. 4. Ibid, 21.

and working men enjoy the full fruit of their labors.

In this industrial warfare the employers' line of battle and methods of warfure correspond to the solidarity of

industrial concentration, while working men still form their

fighting organizations on lines of long-gone trade divisions.

[ocr errors]

At present, quick and united action on the part of workers is

hampered by the craft form of organization, which requires per

mission from international officers before a legal strike can

be called

The recent steel strike would illustrate their anal

ysis.

A union which hopes to fight the Steel Trust success

fully, the W. I. I. U. would say, must be organized in the

same way that the Steel Trust is.

The Steel Trust authority

is not divided or sub-divided.

It is a unit.

All power over

that mighty industry is centralized in the hands of the Board

of Directors.

Against a united master class the A. F. of L.

pitted a labor union twenty-four times divided; for there are

twenty-four craft unions which clčim jurisdiction over differ

ent groups of Steel Trust employes.

Every trade has a separ

ate independent union.

Labor, also, the W. I. I. U. insists,

must learn to centralize and concentrate its mighty economic

power.

Not only are the various crafts in the same industry

organized separately, but they sign contracts which expire

at different times.

They are not free to support each other

if they would. So craft unionism becomes an "accomplice in capitalist criment and a"scourge to the working class. "I

Consider an illustration which De Leon used in 1905 and see

1. Daniel De Leon, "Socialist Reconstruction of Society," 20.

« НазадПродовжити »