Political Party Control. Control by the communist party is guaranteed by the central government, which administers the entire economy and the fiscal policies of the state. In a planned economy, education becomes simply another agency of government and national life, so that all schools practices must be co-ordinated with activities planned for other phases of the country's existence. Freedom is allowed only when no directives exist to the contrary.
Each schools is guided by a council consisting of parents, teachers, Communist party members and others connected with school life. ....
The Communist party not only establishes policy but also determines who may be elected to office. Education therefore has the task of preparing future leaders.... In all schools the party exerts its influence in t eh the organization of pupils in various types of political youth leagues, with Pioneer groups for ages between 10 and 15 and the Komsomol, or Young Communist league for youth over 14. Members of these groups are chosen for their loyalty to party principles and their actual or potential capacity for leadership. ....
In sum, administrative polices... may originate in local areas, but to become effective they must be approved at the top." Britannica 19 , 1184
SOCIALISM, a broad term that generally denotes a system of public ownership and management of the means of production
and distribution of goods as contrasted to capitalism (q.v.), that emphasizes private ownership and management. There are many
varieties of socialism and the term has had a long and a complicated history. The presentation of the subject in this article follows historical lines and is based on the following outline:
I. Early Socialists and Their Predecessors
2. The Saint-Simon and Fourier Doctrines
4. First Anticapitalist Writers
5. Christian Socialism
6. French Socialism
II. Karl Marx and His Influence
1. The Communist Manifesto
2. The First International
3. Social Democracy
5. Socialism in the U.S.
III. Later National Developments
3. The Second International
5. Guild Socialism
6. The War Issue
IV. Russian Socialism
1. Socialist Revolutionaries
2. Social Democrats
3. Bolsheviks and Mensheviks
V. Modern Trends
1. Western Europe
2. North America
3. Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa
4. The Far East
~• Contemporary Socialism
6. Interpretation of Socialism
I. EARLY SOCIALISTS AND THEIR PREDECESSORS
1. Origins—The words socialist and socialism came into use in Great Britain and France soon after 1825, and were first applied
to the doctrines of certain writers who were seeking a complete transformation of the economic and moral basis of society by the substitution of social for individual control and of social for individualistic forces in the organization of life and work. Socialist seems to have been used first in Great Britain (Co-operative Magazine, 1826) to describe the followers of Robert Owen, and the word socialiste in France... In Great Britain the followers of Owen officially adopted the name Socialists in 1841. The word socialism as the antithesis to individualism was popularized by P. Leroux and J. Reynaud... and by 1840 had come to be used freely in Europe to describe the schools of Saint-Simon, Charles Fourier, Owen and others who attacked the existing system of commercial competition and put forward proposals for a new way of life based on collective control.
Later, these early schools of socialism were categorized by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels as “utopian socialism,” in contrast with the “scientific socialism,” based on the materialist conception of history, of which they were the pioneers....
Among those who took part in the [French] Revolution the name socialis is given to Jacques Pierre Brissot ... and above all to Francois Noel Babeuf (1760-97).... They proclaimed the equal natural right of all men to the enjoyment of the goods provided by nature, the universal obligation to labour, the universa1 right to education, and the necessity of abolishing both riches and poverty in the interests of human happiness.
Babeuf sought to establish his system by revolution carried through under a revolutionary dictatorship.
Britannica, Vol. 20, p. 746
COLLECTIVISM as a political theory first emerged
in the 18th century as a reaction to individualism (q.v). Whereas
individualistic social theories and systems emphasize the priority of the
individual and his rights, collectivistic theories and systems emphasize the
priority of the community and its rights. Society is conceived in
individualistic political theories as having no reality
in itse1f and no interests or aims apart from those of the,individuals composing it. In collectivistic theories individuals are conceived
as having no real being apart from society. Whereas individualism fund typical expression in political theory in the writings of the
english philosopher Locke, collectivism found early expression in Rousseau’s Social Contract (1762) and in the writings of the German philosopher Hegel....
Hegel describes the national state as the
actualization of the ethical Idea, “the absolute power on earth” and “the march
God in the world.” The state includes but transcends the purposes of individuals and is a living entity with a will, purpose and
interests of its own. In the philosophy of Karl Marx, which was derived in part from the philosophy of Hegel, it is explicitly stated
that “It is not men’s consciousness which determines their being, but their social being which determines their consciousness” (A
Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy, preface). In collectivistic theories and systems the individual acquires significance only by virtue of his membership in some social entity such as a nation, a class or a race.
In an economic context the word collectivism is
used to describe any theory or system which favours governmental ownership of
means of economic production, distribution and exchange. But it is sometimes used to describe any system which favours extensive governmental regulation of the economy In this context collectivism represents a reaction to economic individualism (laissez-faire capitalism)....
In reaction to individualistic political and
economic theories and items, collectivism finds expression in the contemporary
four principal types of social systems ranging from liberal democratic to despotic totalitarian social democracy socialism communism and fascism. The least collectivistic is social democracy, which aims at reducing the inequities produced by the capitalistic system and the abuses of unrestrained. competition, not by abolishing the private ownership of the means of production but by extending governmental regulation over the economy, by seeking to redistribute the wealth of’ society by tax legislation and by instituting various schemes of social welfare and insurance.
Advocates of social democracy often speak. of a “planned economy” and the “welfare state.” Social democracy was anticipated in the United States... and found practical expression in the so-called New and Fair Deals. ..but in Europe social. democracy is practically the equivalent of socialism.
There are many varieties of sOcialism but all
advocate some measure of governmental ownership an’d operation of the means
of economic production. Some socialists favour only the nationalization of “key industries” while others advocate more extensive
ownership not only of the means of production but of the means of distribution as well....
Socialists propose to achieve their objectives by
peaceful, democratic means (by persuasion and legislation) and generally favour
the perpetuation of liberal democratic political institutions such as civil’ liberties, representative parliaments and the rule of ‘law.
Socialist measures have .been adopted in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, Australia, New Zealand and Great
Britain, among others.
Communism aims at,, achieving a world-wide
socialist society through revolution and the “dictatorship of the proletariat.”
rejects, in practice, if not always’ in words, the principles of liberal democracy and finds theoretical support for its tactics in the dialectical materialism of Karl Marx as modified by the interpretation of the Russian Lenin. Expounding a brand of socialism which he described as “scientific,” Marx argued that the victory of socialism over capitalism was preordained by the “laws” of’ history and of economics and that such a victory would be the inevitable result of a cataclysmic revolution to be, undertaken. by the proleta’riat or industrial working class.. The “liquidation” of the capitalists and the transformation’ of society into a “classless society” was to be accomplished through a “dictatorship of the proletariat.”
Lenin held that this “dictatorship of the
proletariat” could be nothing other than the dictatorship of the Communist
Whereas in communism the individual’s interests are identified with those of the proletariat ... in fascism ‘the individual
must subordinate his own interests to those of the nation or “race” as those interests are interpreted by a single party claiming to speak for them.
Fascism’ first appeared in Italy in 1922. under the dictatorship of Benito Mussolini and appeared. in Germany in more ruthless form in 1933 under the dictatorship of Adolf Hitler. A fascist dictatorship was instituted in Argentina in 1943 under the leadership of Juan Perón.
Both communist and fascist systems are characterized by
Britannica, Vol. 6, p. 55
Totalitarian DEMOCRACY.—During the 19th and early 20th centuries the idea of democracy was associated primarily with
liberal constitutionalism. That is what Pres. Woodrow Wilson had in mind when he stated that “making the world safe for democracy” was the object of United States participation in World War I.
One of the principal consequences of that war, however,
was the establishment of the communist regime in Russia. Although the U.S.S.R. did not aspire to be a liberal state, it laid
great emphasis on what it claimed was its popular and democratic
character, a claim which was held to be spurious by upholders of
traditional types of democracy. The satellite governments it set
up after World War II were officially designated “people’s democracies,” and it was in this rigorously restricted form that “democ-
racy” became familiar at mid-2oth century to much of the human race....
This tradition found its most effective expression in the works
of Karl Marx. A German profoundly influenced by the French
revolutionary tradition, he developed a social and economic theory which soon gained wide currency. Marxism, as presented in Das Kapital and other major writings, is a much elaborated development of the earlier socialist position. Starting from the assumption that all men have a right to enjoy the fruits of their own labour, it tries to demonstrate, by abstruse and largely fallacious
economic arguments, that capitalism rests on the expropriation of the surplus values created by and properly belonging to labour.
Private ownership of the instruments of production is therefore intrinsically incompatible with economic justice.221/222
Marx believed that economic relationships are the decisive factor
in ‘human life. Politics, law and religion are but superstructures
erected on the basis of economic power in the interests of the propertied classes. ... As long as this economic inequality continues, democracy is impossible. The historic function of the proletariat is to overthrow the bourgeois state and, by liquidating the capitalist class, to lay the foundations of a truly just and classless society. This is the great unfinished
business of the democratic revolution.
conceived now in economic rather than in legal terms, is the essence of democracy, and he pays little attention to the political
means used for the attainment of that end. He believes that the
proletariat, at the time of the proletarian revolution, will be vastly more
numerous than the capitalists....
Because of Marx’s silence on most of the basic questions of
political theory, his followers were free to adopt a wide variety of
political positions. In western Europe most Marxists gradually
adjusted themselves to the prevailing standards of constitutional government and pursued the ends of economic democracy by
parliamentary means. Socialist parties were able, under conditions of universal suffrage, to send many representatives to parliament in various western European countries and to press successfully toward the adoption of socialist reforms. Since this was hard to reconcile with Marx’s theory of inevitable revolution, orthodox Marxists long resisted the idea of collaborating fully in the parliamentary process. ...
In Russia the development of Marxist political theory took a radically different turn. ... Stressing the revolutionary side of Marxist theory, he [Lenin] reinterpreted it in such a way as to emphasize the role of minorities as the true agents of revolutionary action. He developed the idea of the dictatorship of the proletariat, a phrase rarely used by Marx himself....
The result was the creation of a new type of political regime, one best described as totalitarian democracy.
Britannica, Vol. 7, p.221-222
In the Christian religion God has been revealed
as truth and as spirit. Since spirit alone can comphend spirit, it is only
becaue man is spiirt that he can receive this revelation. In receiving it, he
knows God; i.e., he knows absolute truth. In religion this truth is veiled in
imagery, but in philosophy the veil is torn aside. The task of philosophy is
thus to know the infinite and to see all things in God. Hegel's system is
spiritual monism... it accords with the Christian faith....not with Islam.
Hegel accepts from Aristotle the conception of
God as pure thought thinking itself and from his predecessors in modern phi-
:he central importance of mind’s knowledge of itself as mind....
The identity is reached, however, only through an experience of difference. Truth is the absence of error, but it is known to be true only because error has been experienced and truth has triumphed. God, in Hegel’s view, is infinite only because he has assumed the limitations of finitude and triumphed over them. Adam and Eve were innocent in the garden of Eden, but their fall was necessary if man was to attain moral goodness.
Only if the universal particularizes itself can it come to know itself as universal. Spirit knows itself as spirit only by contrast with nature. Spirit must always give itself forms through which it can work; it must objectify itself in a creed or in an institution if it is not to wither away. The letter killeth, yet the letter is spirit’s indispensable expression and self-manifestation....
The system is monistic too in having a single theme. What makes the universe intelligible is to see it as the eternal cyclical proccess whereby absolute spirit comes to knowledge of itself as spirit (1) through its’own thinking; (2) through nature; (3) through finite spirits and their self-expression in history and their self-discovery, in art, in religion and in philosophy, as one with absolute spirit itself....
The Phenomenology of Mind.—This, perhaps the most brilliant and the most difficult of Hegel’s books, describes how the human mind has risen from mere consciousness, through self-consciousness, reason, spirit and religion, to absolute knowledge....
So far we have seen consciousness on one hand and
the real world on the other. The stage of Geist reveals the
no longer as critical and antagonistic but as the indwelling spirit of a community, as no longer isolated from its surroundings but the union of the single and real consciousness with the vital feeling that animates the community.
This is the lowest stage of concrete consciousness—life, and not knowledge; the spirit inspires, but does not reflect. It is the age of unconscious morality, when the individual’s life is lost in the society of which he is an organic member. But increasing culture presents new ideals, and the mind, absorbing the ethical spirit of its. environment, gradually emancipates itself from conventions and superstitions.
This emancipation prepares the way for the rule of conscience, for the moral view of the world as subject of a moral law. From the moral world the next step is religion: the moral law gives place to God.
But the idea of Godhead, too, as it first appears, is imperfect, and has to pass through the forms of nature worship and of art before it reaches a full utterance in Christianity. Religion in this shape is the nearest step to the stage of absolute knowledge; and this absolute knowledge—”the spirit knowing itself as spirit”— is not something which leaves these other forms behind but the full comprehension ‘of them as the organic constituents of its empire; “they are the memory and the sepulchre of its history and at the same time the actuality, truth and certainty of its throne.” ...
The Hegelian System and Dialectic._The compendium of Hegel’s system, the Encyclopaedia of the Philosophical Sciences, is in three parts: “Logic,” “Nature” and “Mind” (or “Spirit”). The relation between these is dialectical and the method of exposition within each of them is dialectical again. The notion of dialectic Hegel took both from the Greek philosophers and from Kant; it means, originally, “discussion.”
In a discussion between two people who are both seeking the truth of the topic which is being discussed, diametrically opposed points of view may be advanced in the first instance. Each party; however, may gradually come to understand the other’s position, and ultimately both of them may come to agree to reject their own partial views and to accept a new and broader view which does justice to the substance of what each of them had begun by maintaining; the original opposition has been reconciled in a higher synthesis.
Hegel believed that thinking always proceeded
according to this pattern: it begins by laying down a positive thesis
which is at
once negatived by its antithesis; then further thought produces the synthesis. But this in turn generates an antithesis and the same process continues once more, but not indefinitely, for it is circular. Ultimately thinking reaches a synthesis which is identical with its starting point, except that all that was implicit there has now been made explicit.
What is it that drives thinking on in this way? Hegel answers: the power of the negative. Any process of development has two inseparable aspects: (1) the positive aspect of growth, the emergence of something new; and (2) the negative aspect of rejection, the discarding of the old. ... 301
The dialectical process advances through categories of increasing complexity and culminates with t he absolute idea, or with the spirit as object to itself....
It is clear that the theory of the evolution of species fits in admirably with Hegel's conception of nature, but he rejected it because it had no justification in the science of his day. ....302
Hegel's system is avowedly an attempt to unify opposites-- spirit and nature, universal and particular, ideal and real -- and to be a synthesis in which all the partial and contradictory philosophies of his predecessors are alike contained and transcended, It is thus both idealism and realism at once.... 303
Britannica, Vol. 7, p. 301-303
We are free to serve or not to serve, but we don't have to pay for services contrary to our our conscience.