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ups and downs, the continuous course of history has been upward, and I am proud of it. And for one, I do not want to see the taxpayers' dollars used to try to break down that system.
Mr. Hays. Well now, I do not think you are as disturbed about that as you are perhaps about some other political matters, but be that as it may, let me say to you, as to the great free enterprise system, that I believe in it. I am a capitalist. And as I said to you the other day, I do not want anybody running my business.
But you know, when the capitalistic system—and as I say, I am one of them-gets in trouble, as your coal miners and operators did in 1932, they were very happy for the Government to bail them out.
The CHAIRMAN. I voted for the Bituminous Coal Act because I thought it was a good thing.
Mr. Hays. Because you thought that the Government could help out free enterprise. It is all right if it is free enterprise and they are getting a little help, but when the fellow who is doing the work gets help, that is revolution.
The CHAIRMAN. If we are through
Mr. HAYS. I do not know if we are through or not. I do not get many answers, except that I get some speeches about wrapping yourself in Old Glory and how wonderful the Fourth of July is. But these are pretty fundamental things. They were to those people then. And I have heard it said to this committee, “Just muddle along through these depressions.” Of course, if 10 or 12 million people starve to death, I expect they would not want to “muddle.” But if they want to do something about it, that is revolution. Is that what we are saying?
Mr. GOODWIN. There must be a better forum, Mr. Chairman, for colloquies of this sort. I do not know quite where it would be, but I am sure it is not in this committee.
Mr. Hays. Well, I won a debate on this subject over on the floor of the House from a fellow statesman, geographically, that is, from Ohio, and I will debate it any place anyhow, because I lived through it. When you start talking about the coal miners of West Virginia and Ohio, you are talking my language. I know something about it.
The CHAIRMAN. Proceed.
Mr. EARL. Felix S. Cohen, under the heading "Politics and Economics,” has this to say in the same issue of Revolt:
The crucial issue of industrial civilization today is not between laissez-faire individualism on the one hand and collectivism on the other. History is deciding that question. The question for us is what sort of collectivism we want (p. 20).
Modern technology makes collectivism inevitable. But whether our collectivism is to be Fascist, feudal, or Socialist will depend * * * upon the effectiveness with which we translate those political ideals into action (p. 20).
Mr. Cohen reminds his colleagues that political warfare to achieve a new social order is total, not limited, conflict :
You cannot fight on the economic front and stay neutral on the legal or political front. Politics and economics are not two different things, and the failures of the labor movement in this country largely arise from the assumption that they are. Capitalism is as much a legal system as it is an economic system, and the attack on capitalism must be framed in legal or political terms as well as in economic terms (p. 21).
* * * a Socialist attack on the problem of government cannot be restricted to presidential and congressional elections or even to general programs of legislation. We have to widen our battlefront to include all institutions of govern. ment, corporations, trade unions, professional bodies, and even religious bodies,
as well as legislatures and courts. We have to frame the issues of socialism and democracy and fight the battles of socialism and democracy in the stockholders' meetings of industrial corporations, in our medical associations, and our bar associations, and our teachers' associations, in labor unions, in student councils, in consumers' and producers' cooperatives—in every social institution in which we can find a foothold * * * (pp. 22–23).
This is scarcely the outline of an educational project. Rather it is the battle plan of strategic sociology, through which an entire civilization can be shifted from its cultural, economic, political, and moral foundations. Mr. Cohen's language is the jargon of the professional revolutionary, not the scholar. Consider the following:
I don't think that we can capture the New York Telephone Co. or the BMT in a day or a year. But then I don't think we can capture the Federal Government in that time, and if we did gain control of the Federal Government without having any experience * * * in other institutions which govern the country, our control of the Federal machinery might not do us much good (p. 23).
Mr. Cohen explains the advantage of infiltration over the simple use of the ballot in advancing the cause :
Even a single stockholder in a public utility may have a nuisance value that modifies the activity of that corporation in the interest of its employees or its consumers, and may have a voice that reaches the public outside of the corporation in impressive terms. Paul Blanshard has done more for socialism with his two shares of stock in the BMT and the New York Telephone Co. than a hundred men and women who vote the straight socialist ticket on election day and forget about socialism the rest of the year (p. 23). Finally, Mr. Cohn reminds his colleagues that these tactics of penetration are useful however the revolution is finally accomplished—by legal or unconstitutional means:
But the need of fighting politically within corporations and trade associations and professional bodies, as well as labor unions, is just as pressing if we think that fundamental social change can be secured in this country only by unconstitutional measures.
In a revolution, when the ordinary political machinery of government breaks down, it is absolutely essential that the revolutionary force control the remaining centers of social power. In Russia the success of the Bolshevik revolution rested with the guilds or soviets, which weer not created by the Communist Party and which antedated the revolution. A socialist revolution in this country will succeed only if our guilds, chief among them our engineering societies, have within them a coherent socialist voice (p. 23).
The author reveals his respect for the democratic process in these words:
We may not need a majority. We do need at least a few Blanshards in every important corporation and association who have made themselves familiar with the concrete evils which that corporation or association contributes to the putrid mass of capitalism, and who will be able to carry essential industrial activities through a time of crisis (p. 23).
In the December 1932 issue of the same publication, Revolt, appears an article by Amicus Most entitled "Students in the Class Struggle.” Its announced purpose is to give serious though to the part that students can play in the class struggle and their place within a workers' movement. Excerpt follows:
Karl Marx in the Communist Manifesto wrote: “In times when the class struggle nears the decisive hour-a small section of the ruling class cuts itself adrift and joins the revolutionary class,” and “A portion of the bourgeois ideologists, who have raised themselves to the level of comprehending theoretically the historical movements as a whole,” goes over to the proletariat. Students will, therefore, fall into this classification. They are really idealists who are acting against the economic interests of their own class, for the middle class is actually opposed to changing the capitalist system (p. 11).
It, therefore, becomes essential, if the student who has accepted the Socialist philosophy is to become an active factor in making socialism a reality, to completely forget his class interests (p. 11).
The student must be active in strikes, in unemployment organizations, in demonstrations, etc., not as a leader, or by making an occasional speech, but by participation as a rank and file worker. He must be a picket, he must do the clerical work, distribute the leaflets, face the police and thugs, the dangers and the public condemnation just as any other worker does (p. 11).
In the same issue of Revolt, Paul Porter, field secretary, whom we referred to earlier, reports on activities of individual LID chapters:
the true measure of student Socialist strength will be found in the League for Industrial Democracy chapters and Socialist clubs that remain permanently on the campus. Their manifold activities will comprise the main stem of the radical student movement (p. 12).
Mr. Porter announced the convocation of a mass really against war in New York.
Planned as an outgrowth of the conference will be a student delegation to Washington soon after Congress convenes, to serve notice that hundreds of students will reject the role of cannon fodder in another war, to request that the State Department furnish a list of investments for which American youth may some day be called upon to fight, and to demand that money now spent in maintaining the ROTC and the CMTC be used providing relief for the unemployed (p. 12).
Surely a march on Washington constitutes an attempt to influence legislation. And, to quote from page 12:
Delegates are already making preparations to attend the traditional Christmas holiday conferences of the LID, which will be held for the 18th successive year in New York and for the 5th in Chicago. This year's New York theme will be “Socialism in Our Time" and has been divided into three main categories, to with : "How May Power Be Won,” “Building a Power Winning Organization," and “The Morning After the Revolution." The Chicago conference will be along similar lines.
Mr. Hays. Can you tell me what year those two paragraphs were written?
Mr. EARL. They are still from 1932, sir.
It is conceivable that the subjects discussed under those headings were all theoretical, though the titles suggest "action.”
Other projects of LID chapters, described by Porter, include riots and visits to soup kitchens.
Taken from page 13 of the same publication:
On Armistice Day military-minded former Senator Wadsworth * * spoke in Ithaca on behalf of a bigger Army and Navy. Members of the Cornell Liberal Club, the Socialist Party, and student peace groups held a rival meeting after which they marched with banners past the high school in which Wadsworth was speaking. Leonard Lurie, Cornell LID representative, describes their gentle reception : "Several of the Army officers rushed at us and tore down a few posters. The police joined the destruction which was over very shortly. They prodded us along the street with their stick, and Fred Berkowitz remarked, "I wonder how much the police get for hitting people * * *."
Growing in frequency are those trips of economies and sociology classes to case illustrations, such as breadlines and strikes, of this magnificent chaos called capitalism. Recently students from Amherst and Mount Holyoke, under the leadership of Prof. Colston Warne, made the rounds of New York's choicest soup kitchens, and visited Brookwood Labor College and the officers of various radical organizations (p. 13).
And in parentheses, I refer to the Report of Proceedings of the 48th Annual Convention of the A. F. of L., November 19-25, 1928, pages 315–318, on Brookwood Labor College. Also see New York
Times, November 29, 1928, page 12, for report of action at the same AFL session. (See also Appendix IX Investigation of Un-American Activities, Select Committee on Un-American Activities, House of Representatives, in the 78th Congress, for citations for Prof. Colston Warne.)
Under "Blueprints for Action," on page 14 of this issue of Revolt, students are urged to:
Transform your Thomas-for-President Club into a permanent LID chapter, which we hope can be known as a Socialist Club, if you have not already done so. Have each member joint the LID. Many may also wish to join the Socialist Party, which should be encouraged. For an elaborate program of action in the months ahead consult the detailed Blueprints in October's Revolt, or write to Paul Porter at the LID.
Mr. Hays. That is still 1932 ?
Mr. Hays. That dangerous movement of 22 years ago folded up pretty completely, did it not?
Mr. EARL. A message from the national chairman of the Interco legiate Student Council reads:
The presidential campaign is over, but ours has just started.
It is hardly necessary to make suggestions as to what is to be done. Workers' forums, college forums, miners' relief work, LID Lecture Series, renewed and vigorous efforts to sell Revolt-all these projects will aid in the educational work that is so necessary at this time.
We must look ahead 4 years. Local elections are in a sense more important than national elections. To measure the success of the LID, is to measure the growth of socialism in the community you are in (p. 14). (Emphasis added.]
If encouraging students to join the Socialist Party and working to win local elections for Socialist candidates is “educational” activity, it is difficult for me to see why the Republican and Democratic Parties do not qualify for tax-exemption under the same provisions of the statute.
In February 1933, the title of "Revolt" was changed to the "Student Outlook.” The editorial states:
With this issue Revolt becomes the Student Outlook. Students felt it was more important to sell our magazines and convince by its contents than to shout “revolution” and have no one listen. Persons who give us more than a glance will not mistake our colors. Another editorial on page 1 of this issue calls for "student guts":
* * it is questionable whether the student who hasn't guts enough to get out on his college campus and hawk the Student Outlook will overcome his delicate scruples if the time comes to face tear gas and machine guns * * * (inly those who steeled themselves to decide with firmness during school hours will do so at those moments that historians pick out for special mention.
Under the title "Socialism in Our Time," in the same issue of the magazine, Helen Fisher reports on the 17th New York conference of the LID. She writes (on p. 8):
The speeches and questions were those of participants in the building of a power-winning organization, not spectators.
It was a conference of practical revolutionists.
Both Reinhold Niebuhr and Franz Daniel ruled out the possibility of our ever attaining a Socialist commonwealth by purely parliamentary action * * * Both felt that the change would come through the general strike or some weapon similar to it.
In the discussion of the Day After the Revolution, Paul Blanshard stressed the necessity of presenting at least a sketch of the proposed society to those we are trying to get to fight for it. Sociolopia, according to Mr. Blanshard, would
have an international government, some international battleships and airplanes, complete control of munitions, an international language and socialized ownership of industry with control by workers, technicians, and consumers. Lewis Mumford then spoke about the need for disciplining ourselves morally and intel. lectually the day before the revolution.
Mr. Hays. Mr. Earl, would you care to comment there on whether or not, as to all of these quotes you have read—and some of them sound pretty radical, I would be the first to admit-you perhaps think, though, sort of prove the case for the value of free expression; that even though people talked like that in the 1930's, when we had a depression, we solved those problems by peaceful legislation, and that the capitalistic system has become even stronger because of remedial legislation, certainly, then it was in the thirties?
Mr. EARL. I will agree with you, Congressman Hays. But I think I will have to revert again to the theme that this is what I would term "political action,” and I doubt that they should have been in it.
Mr. Hays. In other words, are you advocating now, Mr. Earl, that the Congress take some kind of action to dry up the $15,000 a year that this organization has, so that they cannot express these views!
The CHAIRMAN. You are not recommending anything, as I understand it.
Mr. Earl. I think that what I believe in and advocate is pretty well set forth here, and of course it will be up to the committee to decide. However, I have said before, I have said earlier here, that I think that their tax exempt status was certainly being violated.
The CHAIRMAN. Wayne, it is not correct, that while we won out, so to speak, there was great difficulty encountered? Take the sitdown strikes, particularly in Detroit, but which spread to other parts of the country. Take the Allis-Chalmers strike. And now it has been definitely established, I think, on a factual basis, that both of those disturbances that gave the country genuine alarm were inspired, prompted, by these and similar, comparable influences for the purpose not of helping the United States and our system here but for the purpose of destroying it insofar as they had the power to destroy it.
There were many other instances, over the country, delaying production of essential military equipment, as well as equipment to produce the supplies needed by the military, to the point that we were very greatly handicapped for a period of time, as a result of which we had great losses.
Mr. Hays. Mr. Chairman, I would not want to get into any debate with anybody about relative merits of the various strikes that have occurred in this country.
I come from an area where strikes are not an unknown thing.
I have, as I grew up, witnessed the militia coming in and breaking up strikes, and I have even seen a few strikers shot and seen them hauled away, and all of that. And I want to say to you as objectively as I can that it has always seemed to me that in any strike that I have personally observed, there were probably two sides to the thing. There probably was more merit on one side than there was on the other. This is as I viewed the situation, when the coal miners struck in 1927, and again when they have had strikes since then. And I might tell you now, and you probably know as much about it as I do or more, that the big coal companies do not have strikes much any more, because they have finally adopted the idea that labor unions are