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SOCIALISM

IN THEORY AND PRACTICE



l-ULL^ G^T-TIT^



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THE LIBRARY

OF

THE UNIVERSITY

OF CALIFORNIA

LOS ANGELES






GIFT OF

Mrs, Ben B. Lindsey



LilDrary

Institute of Industrial Relations

University of California

Los Angeles 24 » California



SOCIALISM IN THEORY AND
PRACTICE



THE MACMILLAN COMPANY

NEW YORK • BOSTON • CHICAGO
ATLANTA • SAN FRANCISCO

MACMILLAN & CO., Limited

LONDON • BOMBAY • CALCUTTA
MELBOURNE

THE MACMILLAN CO. OF CANADA, Ltd.

TORONTO



SOCIALISM IN THEORY
AND PRACTICE



BY ;

MORRIS HILLQUIT ]

AUTHOR OF "HISTORY OF SOCIALISM IN THE UNITED STATES" j

1
I



Neto gork

THE MACMILLAN COMPANY

1910

Aii rights reserved



Copyright, 1909,
By THE MACMILLAN COMPANY.



Set up and electrotyped. Published February, 1909. Reprinted
March, June, 1909; January, 1910.



NortDooti i3rf80
S. Cushintc Co. — Biiu iek & Smith Co.
Korwood, Mass., U.S.A.




The socialist movement has grown immensely within
the last decade, and its growth still continues unabated
in all civilized countries of the world. What is the
secret of that growth ; what are the aims and methods
of the movement; and what does it portend for the
future of the human race ? These are questions which
persons of intellect can ignore no longer, and they are
questions which cannot be answered without much
thought and study.

In this book I have endeavored to present to the
public a brief summary of the socialist philosophy in its
bearing on the most important social institutions and
problems of our time, and a condensed account of the
history, methods, and achievements of the socialist
movement of the world.

Socialism is a criticism of modern social conditions,
a theory of social progress, an ideal of social organiza-
tion, and a practical movement of the masses. To be
fully understood it must be studied in all of these phases,
and the fact that this book is probably the first attempt
to accomplish that task, inadequate as that attempt may
be, is sufficient justification for its publication.

Grateful acknowledgment is hereby made for many

valuable suggestions which I have received from Mr.

W. J. Ghent, who has carefully read the proofs, and from

Mr. Rufus W. Weeks, who has read the manuscript.

MORRIS HILLQUIT.
New York, January lo, 1909.

V

lliCvSO



CONTENTS
PART I

THE SOCIALIST PHILOSOPHY AND MOVEMENT



CHAPTER I

PAGE

Introduction 3



CHAPTER n
Socialism and Individualism

The System of Individualism 12

The Individual and Society l8

Individualism in Industry 24

The Individual under Socialism 29

CHAPTER III
Socialism and Ethics

The Essence and Scope of Ethics 36

The Evolution of the Moral Sense 46

Class Ethics 5^

The Ethical Ideal and Socialist Morality .... 58

CHAPTER IV
Socialism and Law

The Law 66

The Feudal System of Law 72

The Modern System of Law . . . . . . - 1^

Social Legislation and Socialist Jurisprudence ... 84

vii



vm



CONTENTS



CHAPTER V
Socialism and the State

FAGB

Nature and Evolution of the State 89

The Transitional State 100

The Socialist State 105

Production and Distribution of Wealth under Socialism . . in

Incentive under Socialism nq

The Political Structure of the Socialist State . . . .131

CHAPTER VI
Socialism and Politics



Politics, Representative Government and Political Parties

Classes and Class Struggles in Modern Society

The Class Struggles in Politics
. The Socialist Party in Politics
.Electoral Tactics of the Socialist Party .

Parliamentary Tactics of the Socialist Party

Political Achievements of Socialism



144

153
161

168

174
181
190



PART II

SOCIALISM AND REFORM



CHAPTER I
Introduction — Socialists and Social Reformers



207



CHAPTER II

The Industrial Reform Movements

Industrial Reform 214

Factory Reform 215

Shorter Workday 218

Child Labor 224

Woman Labor 231

The Trade Union Movement 236

Cooperative Societies of Workingmen 242



CONTENTS IX
CHAPTER III

PAGB

Workingmen's Insurance 254

CHAPTER IV

The Political Reform Movements

Political Reform 269 *

Universal Suffrage 272

Proportional Representation ....... 274

Referendum, Initiative and Right of Recall .... 277

Socialism and Woman Suffrage 281

CHAPTER V

Administrative Reforms

Government Ownership 284

Tax Reforms 288

The Single Tax 291

Abolition of Standing Armies 296

CHAPTER VI

Social Reform

Crime and Vice 303

Intemperance 309

The Housing of the Poor 314

APPENDIX
Historical Sketch of the Socialist Movement

Early History 320

Germany 335

France 337

Russia 340

Austria 345

England 346

Italy 348

Belgium and Holland ....... 349

The Scandinavian Countries ...... 350

United States 351-'

The New International 354

Index 357



PART I

THE SOCIALIST PHILOSOPHY AND MOVEMENT



CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION

The history of our civilization presents one unbroken
chain of social changes. The interval between the primi-
tive tribe of cave-dwellers and modern industrial society
is filled with a variety of intermediate social types.

Each of these types constitutes a separate phase of
civilization. Within the same civilization each type is
superior to the one preceding it, and inferior to the one
succeeding it. Each phase of civilization is evolved from
the preceding phase and gives birth to the succeeding phase.
Each phase of civilization passes through the stages of
formation, bloom, and decay.

The present phase of our civilization forms no excep-
tion to this immutable rule of social development. We
have reached a state vastly superior to all conditions of the
past. Men in modern society on the whole enjoy more
individual freedom and security, more physical comforts
and intellectual and esthetic pleasures than did the sav-
ages and members of societies based on slavery or serf-
dom.

But we have not reached perfection. We never shall
reach perfection. A state of perfection in society would
imply the arrest of all human endeavors and progress, the

3



4 THE SOCIALIST PHILOSOPHY AND MOVEMENT

death of civilization. It is improvement, not perfection,
for v^hich we are striving, and our contemporary social
organization is capable of improvement just as all societies
of the past were.

Our social order of to-day did not spring into existence
suddenly and full-fledged. It developed gradually from
preceding social conditions, and it is still in process of
evolution. It has had its period of formation, and the
socialists contend that it has passed its period of bloom.
It has entered on the stage of decay and must be followed
by a new phase of civilization of a more advanced type.

The all-important factor in modern society is industry.
In former ages industry — that is, production of goods for
exchange — played a rather subordinate part in the lives
of the nations. Agriculture was the basis of the com-
munity.

But recent times, and particularly the last century, have
witnessed a stupendous industrial growth. The modest
workshop of former ages has been superseded by the huge
modern factory; the simple, almost primitive tool of the
old-time mechanic has developed into the gigantic machine
of to-day; and the power of steam and electricity has
increased the productivity of labor a hundred fold. New
objects of use have been invented, new needs have been
created, while the railroads, steamships and other im-
proved means of communication and distribution have
united the entire civilized world into one international
market.

This industrial revolution has brought in its wake a
radical change of social institutions. It has created new
classes of society. The privileged type of former ages,
the landowning and titled nobleman, the courtier and



INTRODUCTION 5

warrior, has been relegated to the background, and in his
place has arisen the captain of industry — the modern
capitalist.

With the ancient aristocracy have also disappeared the
ancient types of the dependent class, the slave and the
serf, and their place has been taken by the modern wage
worker.

In the earlier stages of its career the capitalist class was
revolutionary and useful. It abolished absolute monarch-
ies and introduced modern representative government, it
rooted out old prejudices and beliefs, it tore down the arti-
ficial barriers between nations, it gave to the world the
most marvelous inventions, and ushered in a distinctly
superior system of society.

But these achievements belong largely to the pioneer
days of capitalism, to the period when the modern indus-
tries were in process of formation. To-day our prin-
cipal industries are fully organized. They have largely
been reduced to mere routine and their progress depends
but little on individual initiative.

The typical capitaHst of to-day has long ceased to be
the manager of the industries. He is "engaged" in what-
ever industry the vicissitudes of the stock market and the
tricks of stock jobbery may thrust upon him. It may
happen to be a railway system or a gas plant, a mine or a
steel foundry, a rubber factory or water works, or all of
them in turn. He need not know, and as a rule he does
not know, the intimate workings of the industry he controls.
The actual work of management and operation is done by
hired labor, whether such labor be that of the high-priced
superintendent or that of a common laborer employed
at starvation wages. There is hardly a capitalist to-day



6 THE SOCIALIST PHILOSOPHY AND MOVEMENT

whose existence is necessary to the continuance of any
essential industry. The days of the actual usefulness of
the capitalist class in the social economy of the nation are
rapidly passing. And like so many other classes in history
under similar conditions, the capitalists have become
reactionary, and the regime developed by them has be-
come irrational, unjust and oppressive.

In the merciless war of competition the big capitalist
enterprises are gradually extinguishing the smaller inde-
pendent concerns. Our "national" wealth and principal
industries concentrate in the hands of ever fewer combines.
Trusts and monopolies are becoming the modern form of
industrial organization. A new capitalist type is thus de-
veloped, the type of the trust magnate and multi-million-
aire.

But the large masses of the people share but little in
the benefits of this unprecedented growth of wealth.
While a certain portion of the working class, the trained
or skilled laborers, probably enjoy to-day larger material
comforts than did their ancestors in the past, the increase
of their comforts does not keep pace with the increase of
the general productivity and wealth. The condition of
this favored class of the working population is one of
absolute improvement but of relative deterioration. And
side by side with the more fortunate strata of the working
class there are the large masses of laborers whose conditions
of life have greatly deteriorated, absolutely as well as
relatively. Millions of workingmen maintain themselves
with difficulty above the bare margin of starvation, while
large masses of the population, rendered "superfluous"
by the invention of improved machinery, are driven to
vagabondage and forced into the paths of vice and crime.



INTRODUCTION 7

The boundless luxuries of the few find their logical coun-
terpart in the dire misery of the many.

In the mad capitalist race for profits, morals are useless
and cumbersome ballast. The earlier merchant and
manufacturer had some sense of commercial probity. The
modern trust magnate has none. To him all means are
fair so long as they satisfy his greed. His ideal is to in-
crease his power, to get possession of all the sources of
wealth of his country, to own his fellow-men, body and
soul.

To reach this aim he corrupts legislatures, buys courts
of justice, bribes public officials and pollutes the public
press.

The "interests of industry " — his interests — shape the
entire life of modern nations. They influence our laws,
dominate our politics, direct our public opinion, determine
our internal and external policy, and decide upon war and
peace between nations. The trust magnate is a more
dangerous potentate than any pohtical despot.

And these conditions are not mere accidental abuses;
they are the necessary results of our industrial institutions.
Even the beneficiaries of these institutions are without
power to change them. The capitalists are driven into
the fatal course by the inexorable laws of industrial de-
velopment. We may well foresee a time, if the present
order lasts long enough, when practically all of our most
important industries will have become trusts, when the
entire wealth of the nations and all the powers of govern-
ment will be in the hands of a small number of monopolists,
and when the people will depend upon them absolutely
for their physical, intellectual and moral existence.

Such conditions are not unparalleled in history. The



u



8 THE SOCIALIST PHILOSOPHY AND MOVEMENT

Roman Empire found itself in such a situation in the
fourth and fifth centuries of our era, and Roman civiliza-
tion succumbed. France faced a similar crisis thirteen
hundred years later, but the French nation suppressed the
dangerous order and built a better and more vigorous
society on its ruins.

Will the modern nation share the fate of Rome, or fol-
low the example of France?

The answer to this momentous question is contained in
the question itself.

Rome perished for the lack of a class to save it. The
slaves were beyond the pale of Roman society, and the
proletarians of the capital and the provinces were too
ignorant, demoralized and feeble to combat the greedy and
profligate patricians. The degenerate Roman population
fell an easy prey to the advancing barbarian hordes.

In France, on the other hand, the haughty and parasitic
nobility was confronted by the men of science, industry,
commerce and labor, the vigorous and intelligent "third
estate." The "third estate" saved France, even though
the salvation was accomplished at the cost of a revolution.

Modern society has developed a new "third estate," —
the industrial working class. The working class to-day is
the principal social power operating against the formation
of a capitalist oligarchy. And it is a power to be reckoned
with. The modern workingmen are not the helots of
ancient Greece, nor the proletarians of ancient Rome, nor
the serfs of mediaeval ages. They are more intelligent
and better organized than any dependent class in the past :
their conditions of existence and instinct of self-preserva-
tion naturally array them against the present system of
exploitation of labor, and force them into active resistance



INTRODUCTION 9

against it. As capitalism grows more acute and menac-
ing, the cohorts of labor become more unified, powerful
and aggressive, and more fully able and determined to
carry their struggles to victory.

Only half a century ago the labor movement was barely
in its inception, weak in numbers, inefficient in organiza-
tion and uncertain in its aims. To-day the working-
men are organized in legions of powerful trade unions,
trained and drilled in the everyday battles for the advance-
ment of their conditions of life. In a large number of
countries they have created immense cooperative estab-
lishments successfully competing with the capitalist enter-
prises in the same industries. In all civilized countries of
the world they have developed a socialist movement, so
uniform in its aims and methods, so persistent in its
struggles, so inspiring in its propaganda and so irresistible
in its spread, that with perhaps the single exception of
early Christianity the movement stands unparalleled in the
annals of written history.

The trade unions fight the immediate and particular
battles of the workers in the factories, mills, mines and
shops, and educate their members to a sense of their
economic rights. The cooperative labor enterprises train
their members in the collective operation and democratic
management of industries. The socialist parties emphasize
the general and ultimate interests of the entire working
class, and train their members in political action and
in the administration of the affairs of government and
state.

Marching over different routes, operating with different
methods and conscious or unconscious of the effects of
their own activity, all these forms of the labor movement



10 THE SOCIALIST PHILOSOPHY AND MOVEMENT

make for one inevitable goal : the building up of a new
and regenerated society.

And the workingmen are not alone in this movement. ,
They receive large and ever larger accretions from -all
other classes — from the small business men displaced
by the trust, the professionals reduced to the state of
"intellectual proletarians"; the farmers, exploited less
directly but not less effectively by trustified capital, and
even from the ranks of the capitalist class itself. The
number of men of the "better classes" who embrace the
cause of the people from motives of enlightened self-
interest or from purely ethical motives grows as the evils
of the decaying capitalist system become more apparent.
These " desertions" from the ranks of the dominant classes
into the camp of the subjugated class, are an infallible sign
of the approaching collapse of the rule of the former.

The economic development which has thus furnished
the conditions for a radical transformation of society and
produced the forces to accomplish it, is also building up
the basis of that transformation.

The great modern trust organizes industry on a national
scale; it regulates the production and distribution of
commodities, and brings all workers of the country under
one administration. A trustified industry is in its essence
a nationalized industry. It would be just as easy to-day
for a governmental agency to run such an industry as it is
for the individual trust magnates or their agents.

And it would be much more just. Our highly effective
system of industry is the achievement of many generations,
the heritage of all mankind ; our marvelous tools of pro-
duction and distribution are the fruit of the collective
industry and intellect of the laboring population ; they are



INTRODUCTION 1 1

operated collectively by the whole working class, and they
are indispensable to the life of the entire nation. In equity
and justice the capitalist has no better title to the modern
social tools than the slaveholder had to his chattel slaves.

Socialism advocates the transfer of ownership in the
social tools of production — the land, factories, machinery ^
railroads, mines, etc. — from the individual capitalists
to the people, to be operated for the benefit of all.

This program has been denounced as confiscatory and
revolutionary, but it is no more so than was the abolition
of chattel slavery. It has been ridiculed as Utopian and
fantastic, but it is no more so than the demands of the
eighteenth century capitalist for the abolition of the privi-
leges of birth were to his contemporaries.

Our social progress is a movement towards perfect
democracy. The successive stages of our civilization mark
the disappearance of one class privilege after another.
Why should mankind halt in reverence and awe before the
privilege of wealth? When an heir to millions is born
to-day, he has the same exceptional position in society and
the same power over thousands of his fellow-men that the
newborn duke or marquis had in times past; and the
justice and logic of the situation are the same in both cases.
A true democracy is one in which all babes are born alike,
and all human beings enjoy the same rights and oppor-
timities.



CHAPTER II

SOCIALISM AND INDIVIDUALISM

The System of Individualism

Socialism and individualism are the two main contend-
ing principles underlying all modern social theories and
movements. Both ideas are, comparatively speaking,
new in the history of human thought, and the social
philosophy based on individualism is the older of the two.
Some writers discern the origin of the idea of individualism
in the movement of the Reformation, and its first practical
application in the demand for liberty of the conscience,
i.e., the religious self-determination of the individual.
The idea of religious liberty according to the noted Russian
scholar, Peter Struve, led to the broader conception of the
liberty of the individual, and the latter to the theory of
political self-government of the nations.

"In connection with the idea of the self-determination
of the individual," he observes, "the idea of the self-
government of society originates in the same surround-
ings and under the same conditions and becomes a mov-
ing force. In the study of the events and ideas of the
English revolution of the seventeenth century, nothing is
more striking than the fact that that wonderful period
produced, as with one blow and in quite finished form, the
idea of individual liberty, liberalism, as well as the idea
of political self-government, democracy." *

The theory is no doubt historically true, but it utterly

* "Individualism i Socialism," Polyarnaya Zvesda, No. ii.

12



SOCIALISM AND INDIVIDUALISM 1 3

fails to account for the causes of the phenomenon. The
religious movement of the Reformation was one of the
manifestations of the struggle for individualism, but not its
cause. The Reformation and the nascent idea of indi-
vidualism involved in it were but the symptoms and results
of a deeper and more material process — the birth of the
modern social and industrial system.

The modern philosophy of individualism cam.e into life
as a reaction against the excessive centralization of the
feudal state and church, and as a protest against the un-
checked powers of the crown, nobility and clergy over the
population, and especially over the growing class of in-
dustrials. "Individual Liberty" was the battle cry with
which the young bourgeoisie (the industrial and trading
class) entered the arena of political struggle. That
battle cry meant for it freedom of competition — Industrial
Liberty ; the right to use the powers of the state for the
advancement of manufacture and commerce — Political
Liberty ; the freedom from interference by the church with
the political and industrial management of the people —
Religious Liberty ; and above all it meant the freedom and
sacredness of private property. "What they (the liberal
bourgeois) meant by the freedom of the individual," says
Mr. E. Belfort Bax, "was, first and foremost, the liberty
of private property as such, to be controlled in its operation
by naught else than the will of the individual possessing it.
What was cared for was not so much the liberty of the
individual as the liberty of private property. The liberty
of the individual as such was secondary. It was as the
possessor and controller of property that it was specially
desired to assure his liberty." ^

* " Socialism and Individualism," London, Personal Rights Series, p. lo.



14 THE SOCIALIST PHILOSOPHV AND MOVEMENT

The idea of individual liberty thus conceived animates
all phases of the struggle of the bourgeoisie against feudal
society. It is at the bottom of Rousseau's "Social Con-
tract" and the social philosophy of the Encyclopedists;
it asserts itself in the principle of non-interference pro-
claimed by Adam Smith and the founders of classical
political economy; and it is the true meaning of the ra-
tionalistic criticisms of Voltaire and his followers.

Individual liberty with or without other verbal adorn-
ments was the motto that inspired the battles of the English
middle classes under Cromwell towards the end of the
seventeenth century, and those of the French "third estate"
and the American colonists a century later.

"All men are born and continue free," ^ and "All men
are endowed by their Creator with the ' inalienable right '
of liberty," ^ were the maxims adopted as the foundation
of all political constitutions by the victorious bourgeoisie
of all countries.

The battles fought by the pre-Revolutionary bourgeoisie
in the name of Individual Liberty have given to civiliza-
tion a few great acquisitions. They have to a large extent
emancipated man in the purely individual sphere of his
life, and rendered into his own keeping his beliefs, views
and tastes, his individual mind and soul. The freedom
of press, speech, conscience and person are such acquisi-
tions, and they are of everlasting benefit to mankind.

But the historical watchword had an altogether different



Online LibraryMorris HillquitSocialism in theory and practice → online text (page 1 of 26)