Social Democracy Versus Communism

Social Democracy Versus Communism

Social Democracy Versus Communism

Social Democracy Versus Communism

Excerpt

What is it that divides the Social Democrats from the Communists? Like the Socialists, they are a working class party. The emancipation of the workers is their common aim.

There was a time when both had a common theoretical basis. But later a gulf developed between them, which cannot be bridged, however much we may desire and consider this necessary. This gulf arises neither from a misunderstanding nor from a mere difference of opinion.

To realize how absolutely irreconcilable are Communism and Socialism, we must first look into the history of the origin of Socialism. It springs from two roots, one ethical and the other economic. The first emanates from the natural instinct of man, the second from the nature of capitalist society and the position of the workers as a class.

The demand "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity" advanced by the men of the French Revolution antedates all written history. It reflects the desire of all oppressed, exploited and their friends ever since there have been oppression and exploitation. But this demand merely poses a problem. It does not indicate the road to its solution. What this road should be has been variously conceived, depending upon varied social conditions and the classes who have sought to find it. Only under the capitalist mode of production has the solution of this problem, through the establishment of a democratic social economy of the workers, become possible and necessary. Only through economic research, not through ethical indignation, can . . .

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