THE DISAPPEARANCE OF THE CAPITALIST
No practical question in the future of Socialism will excite more vehement controversy than that of "compensation." What Socialism wants and is determined to get is now largely possessed by what is loosely called the capitalist class. Like the ownership of land this control of the machinery of production is thought to give the possessors an almost unlimited power over the lives and destinies of those who are without property. It is this dependence and insecurity that accounts largely for the increasing hostility to the "wage-system." No analogy is so frequent as that of the slave relation under this system.
The remedy which Socialism brings is to get the land and all the vast mechanism embodied in transportation, mill, factory and mine away from its present holders. The people are themselves to own and use these wealth-producers in the common interest.
We shall see more clearly what the I. W. W. propose and also what they are likely to do, so far as they get power, if we dwell a moment on the more general attitude of socialism toward compensation.
If it is to take over "land and the means of production," it is fair to press the question: how is this to be done? There are plenty of socialists of conservative temper who reply that experience from a dozen countries furnishes all the answer we require. We have already