The name of our party, the "Party of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat" is a concise and vivid expression for a party for the working class. It does not seek power for itself! Its principal aim and task is to continuously support and raise the level of unity and organization of the entire working class to such heights that the organized workers themselves will truly be their own masters in the brigades, the factories, towns, and indeed the whole country. Clearly, according to the teachings of Marx and Lenin, such a situation will, in fact, signify genuine proletarian socialism. The program of our party presents these ideas in a precise and we hope well-grounded fashion.
It was adopted in 1990 at the 2nd congress of the party. The nine years which have passed since then have completely confirmed the truth of the class political assessment of the changes which were taking place in the USSR and other "socialist" countries at the time. For example, we said that Gorbachev's 'perestroika' was completely analogous to the February, (i.e. bourgeois) revolution in 1917 in Russia. Then (at the beginning of the century) tsarism was overthrown; now (at the end of the century) the regime of the feudal CPSU stumbled and in the end collapsed.
Today, the political prognosis presented in the program has been completely confirmed by life. That is, after the suppression of the GKChP putsch in August 1991 and, soon thereafter, the crushing defeat of the feudal soviets in October 1993, Russia had already come under the complete control of the young, predatory mafia-bourgeoisie. Moreover, this semi-fascist dictatorship came into being camouflaged as a noble democracy. We should stress that, today, although the world is changing at a startling pace, the ideas and attitudes put forward in the program have not gone out of date, on the contrary, they have been strikingly confirmed by history itself.
We are enthusiastic to reply to all questions which might arise in readers as they get to know the program, and also to any questions about the current situation in Russia.
On behalf of the Party Council
Grigorii Isaev & Victor Kotelnikov
"Without a revolutionary theory there can be no revolutionary activity"
The point is that the term in no way reflects the political and class essence of the transition from capitalism to communism; on the contrary, it even conceals and obscures it. It is no accident that under the signboard of socialism, not only the workers own power, but even the most reactionary regime can quietly exist.
To precisely express this crucial essence, another term will serve; "proletarism." This is not the rule of the party (even thrice proletarian), nor the rule of the state (even under proletarian control), nor the rule of the leaders (even wholeheartedly devoted to the proletariat), but the rule of the class itself. Power at the centre and power on the periphery, political and economic power, absolute power shared with no one.
The term "proletarism" follows directly from the logic of history. When the bosses were slave owners the society was "slaveownerism," under the feudal lords it was feudalism, and under the capitalists, capitalism. So why, after the victory of the socialist (i.e. proletarian) revolution, after the seizure of power in the society by the proletariat, should the system not be called proletarian? Indeed, proletarian! This would not leave open the opportunity for the next round of "renewers" of Marxism to swindle the workers with beautiful lies about a "non-class," "whole people," "broadly democratic" power.
This is in the first place.
In the second place, it is important to remember that Lenin himself characterized soviet power as a "state form of the dictatorship of the proletariat" discovered by the revolutionary masses themselves in 1905. For it was then, precisely through the Soviets, that the will and politics of the proletariat were brought to life. And so must it be on all paths of the movement toward communism; this is another of the truths of Marxism which today is fast forgotten. In closing it is essential to clarify, that the dictatorship of the proletariat (i.e. socialism) and Soviet power are absolutely one and the same firm rule of the working class.
The correlation between them is the correlation between form and content. That is, the more completely they answer to one another, the more successful the movement's future; and conversely, even as far as throwing the movement completely into reverse. This has been taking place for a long time in the USSR.
As became clear in just ten years, the proletariat began the period lacking the knowledge of how its proletarian society would have to be constructed and organized. Here, it so completely relied upon and trusted the party that it transferred power to it. From this principal and unique cause sprang catastrophe. Power must never be shared with anyone.
Yes, the Leninist Bolshevik party was an unsurpassed model of dedication to the idea of service to the proletariat. But this it was only up to its coming to power. On becoming the ruling party, it already carried within it the seeds of degeneration. As a part of the opposition to Tsarism, and later in the provisional government, the party could carry out only agitation, propaganda and the dissemination of its ideas; through their own revolutionary activities the masses breathed life only into those ideas which were near and dear to them. And on the other hand, they turned aside and cut off all erroneous and unnecessary ideas, they turned away the most unsupportive and indifferent of the masses. In this way they exercised their class control over the party and its decisions. Then the party did not command, did not rule society or the proletariat, it persuaded and organized them.
But, concentrating boundless power in its hands and escaping the control of the proletariat, the party very quickly transformed into the rulers commanding them. With the state and the entire system of social control answerable to it, with undivided authority over the distribution of goods, the party transformed into a gigantic feeding trough (one might well ask Honekker, Zhivkov, Brezhnev and Ceaucescu whether this feeding trough had a bottom?).
This lead to the inevitable substitution, in the course of ten years, of the first generation Bolsheviks, i.e. the proven cadre with loyalty to the working class, well-tried in the underground struggle and the revolution, by characters of quite another type. These entered the party not to answer the call of ideas, but for gain... Thus, though drawn out in time, unoticed and without fanfare, a very genuine revolution occurred whose depth and consequences were terrible.
At this time the CPSU appeared as the core, the backbone of the ruling class, the administration as a whole. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
For such a party, no magic bullet against degeneration exists. Neither purges, nor controls, nor replacements etc. will suffice. The magic bullet is something quite different; it is the non-ruling situation of the party. Members of the proletarian party must not have any posts, advantages or privileges; this applies from the general secretary to the rank and file. In order to lead the hungry you must be hungry yourself.
There is just one exception. Only in moments of severe trial for the whole of society, may, indeed must the party seize for itself all power and responsibility. Such moments are war and revolution.
The revolution eliminates the old system of control but does not instantly erect a new one. This requires time and new people. Therefore, while the unavoidable new systems of control have not been built, the party is obliged to take upon itself the work of their formation. The proletariat simply has no one else to entrust this to in the period of the smashing of the old and building of the new. But the proletariat must remember that state power has not been given to the party for ever, but only until the stabilization of the situation, only up to the moment when it will itself hold power, capable of controlling all social processes.
The roles of the party and the state in society
are different and even contradictory. To the state are entrusted
the control functions and to the party those of leadership. And
these are absolutely distinct things; control is the coordination
of activity, leadership is the coordination of consciousness. In
life this signifies the following;
The dictatorship of the proletariat is such a system of social relations, such a state, such legal, legislative, spiritual and other foundations of society through which the will of the proletariat (as a class) is strictly fulfilled. This is proletarism, and once having left this road there is no path to communism.
The Administration is a vast command-administrative, bureaucratic apparatus, i.e. an army of countless party and soviet planners and other state functionaries. In occupying their posts, the moral-ethical quality, party spirit means nothing to them; taken as a whole, as the Administration, they are the dominant, the ruling class in society. In accordance with their inner nature, their relations with the proletariat and with the whole of society, the Administration is the class of feudalism, the proponents of serfdom, i.e. more reactionary and backward than the bourgeoisie, the capitalist class.
In considering the classes we must keep in view that during the years of perestroika, one, new, far from proletarian class developed, the young soviet bourgeoisie. Among energetic cooperators and lesees, they ran the shadow economy and grew particularly quickly. They all the more actively announced themselves, all the more decisively came out in the social arena.
Such are the classes of soviet society. The mutual relations of these classes, the battle between them, wholely determined the course of social development in the USSR.
2. The System in the USSR
History knows one answer to the question, what sort of ruling class - that is the social system. From this follows the recognition that the system, the regime in the USSR has, for a long time, been profoundly feudal.
The experience of other "socialist" countries confirms this. From Korea in the East to Cuba in the West it is the same; everywhere building on the same model, everywhere moulding and forming their own national Administration, with parties, leaders and states. Everywhere, by virtue of their feudal essence, the Administration led the society into crisis. The Eastern European countries demonstrate this especially graphically; the wave of bourgeois revolutions passed the "brother countries of socialism" by. This is a step forward of huge importance, for even the powerful and broad break from contemporary feudalism to capitalism is, undoubtedly, a revolutionary step; that is to say, just after the bourgeois the proletarian socialist revolution can follow.
3. The Crisis of Soviet Society
The USSR is enduring a deep general crisis; economic, political and social.The depth of which is so great that the resolution can only be revolutionary; bourgeois or proletarian. Strictly speaking the restoration of capitalism, which is called "perestroika," has been going on already for seven years. It is no accident that it is warmly welcomed by the West. However, perestroika is proceeding at a dramatically, agonizingly slow pace. Why?
Because the rebirth of capitalism is opposed with unbelievable ferocity by the feudal Administration. With the result that the deepening crisis pushes the society ever closer to catastrophe. The pressure is building relentlessly, the denouement may arrive unexpectedly.
The situation is such, because the two other forces are equally unready to throw themselves into motion; the proletariat because it is not organized, the bourgeoisie because it is weak.
But these and other forces find themselves in motion. The bourgeoisie is intensively developing both in quality and quantity; pushing through the Upper Soviet the laws it requires on property, land cooperative, leases ..., attracting a part of the working class as collaborators to its side, completely squeezing the juice out of them for capitalism. Through a quick accommodation with the Mafia, reducing the propertied class to corruption, the bourgeoisie may soon find itself in a genuinely ruling position. In the scenario in which they come directly to power, the proletariat and society will get the dirtiest, most terrible administration in the world.
The second force, the proletariat, finds itself in an even more complicated situation. Lacking in organization at the start, stunned and made fools of by the lying sermons about "class harmony," "people's power," and "common human values," it, like a giant flail, is unable in the conditions to organize itself or to interpret events.
But events may be compared to 1917; specifically, February 1917. Today we have an exact repetition of the social-political life of Russia after the wreck of Tsarism (Feudalism). Today, in the system, there are SRs, SDs, Cadets, Mensheviks, anarchists, monarchists ...; the whole spectrum of bourgeois parties. Functioning as the "Constituent Assembly" we have the anti-worker Upper Soviet.
Only the Bolsheviks are not heard. But not heard does not mean nonexistent. Are the workers soviets, unions, strike committees, the powerful wave of miner's strikes really that far from the waves of proletarian revolution? Is this really not a rebirth of Bolshevism?
Society's way out of the crisis, the revolutionary, socialist way out is impossible without overcoming the crisis in the worker's movement. But this crisis can be overcome only by the founding of a revolutionary, proletarian party; this will signify the transition from the elemental economic battles, now being waged by the workers to the organized battle of the class for political power.
The proletariat, acting as master in its own interest, in this way acts (above all!) in the interest of the whole of society. This is the principle distinction between its dictatorship and the power and dictatorship of the exploiting classes - they are unable and do not wish to comprehend the intelligentsia, the philistines and all the bourgeois democrats taken together. The workers simply have no aims or mission that can be fulfilled in isolation from the interest of society.
III. Proletariat, Party, Society
Success in the struggle is impossible without correct relations between the proletariat and its party and the whole of society.
But in the country there is also a mass of functionaries, directors, chairmen, agronomists; all those who constitute the agricultural administration.In other words the approach to the peasants must be a class approach and nothing else.
2. Relations with the CPSU and other Political Parties
Today, the CPSU constitutes the most reactionary and anti-worker party. With it there must be an uncompromising political and ideological struggle; i.e. we must use all available means of exposing the treachery of the CPSU to the interests of the proletariat and the entire people.
The same class approach must be used with all the new bourgeois parties, for in relations with the proletariat very little distinguishes them from the open enemy of the workers - the feudal CPSU.
"The struggle of the proletariat, the social activity of the proletariat always attracts to its side a part of the intelligentsia. Some, immediately regard the power of the proletariat as a means for achieving their own ends; these are the liberals, flirting with the proletariat.
Others, arrive in the ranks of the proletariat as equals among equals. Later this becomes, "We are the educated among equals, to us falls the responsibility of defining the aims and the choice of paths." From these arise endless opportunists who lead the proletariat for their own ends.
Some chose to serve the proletariat unconditionally. To help the proletariat become conscious of its own aims, to light with the torch of theory the proletariat's path forward in order that it will not be mistaken in its choice of the proletarian path, these are the tasks they set themselves.
With these last the proletariat can march to victory!"
4. National Question
In spite of the drama and complexity of the question, it ought to be considered as a social and class question. This is clearly shown by the example of the Soviet Germans.
Why, not so long ago, when leaving the USSR did they rush directly to the FRG and not to the GDR? Clearly, the language, culture, temperament, habits and ancestral land ...; everything which is emblazoned on the shield of the "national question," all turned out to be hot air! People simply had no intention of abandoning one feudalism in order to find themselves under another, even if it was a native German variety.
And whether we are speaking of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Latvia, Estonia or the Ukraine, the fate of these republics must be decided by the broad popular masses there. And for this there must be such an organized and united, revolutionary proletariat that no exploiters will be able to provoke national differences, national enmity. This lesson has already been given to the world; only thanks to proletarian internationalism was the October Revolution victorious, only thanks to it were the people able to withstand the battle against fascism.
Proletarian internationalism in fact also has the following profound significance. The working class in a republic such as Russia must, as proletarians, strongly support the "right of nations to self-determination, including secession;" and the proletariat of the national republics, equally consciously and decisively, for the socialist, i.e. proletarian unity of all nations and peoples.
5. On Strikes
The strike is not a profession, the strike is the weapon of the proletariat.
The proletariat supports on its shoulders the whole of society with its problems, troubles and interests. Without the labour of the proletariat society could not survive. Therefore, the general strike appears as the most serious argument in discussions with the authorities and the whole of society, when they become deaf to the demands of the workers.
Besides which, life shows that for
organization, i.e the crucial activity, today the proletariat has
no higher form than the strike. Only through the strike is there
a genuine growth in the class consciousness of the workers.
Therefore in place of the anti-worker law "On the Commission
for Compromise, Conciliation and Cooling Down" the PDP
advances its proletarian law on strikes:
Production unit and factory strike committees are elected by and subject to only general meetings of the workers.
IV. Economic Program
In economic relations, any new formation begins from the previous level of development of social production. Thus the proletariat must make the most thorough study of the most advanced structures of its class enemy, the bourgeoisie.
Under socialism, the whole national economy is transformed into one "superfirm." This signifies that exemplary business organization of firms taken separately from the capitalists must serve as the model for the proletariat of economic relations, in order that what was profitable for the capitalist bosses will be even more profitable with the proletariat as boss.
It is important to note that the leaders of firms absolutely do not skimp on the wages of the administration employed by them (intelligentsia.) Engineers and production organizers receive from the capitalists immensely more than the workers. And for this reason they do not lose, they only win; only well paid members of the intelligentsia are ready to create for the capitalists new inventions, decisions and discoveries which provide them with safe superprofits. Thus, the proletariat does not need an army of low-paid "technical-engineering idlers." It needs the most gifted and talented specialists at every level and in every segment of its economy. Let there be not millions, as today, but, in their place, individuals, tens, hundreds of intellectuals who are so well paid that they will want to come and serve the proletariat, even from overseas.
Besides considerations of general nature, the proletariat advances a number of concrete demands. Again we shall dictate that the level of the advanced capitalist countries be reached. In EEC countries there is a 37-39 hour work week with 32 days annual holiday. Obviously, the proletarian power may not guarantee less. For example a working week of 35 hours (7 x 5) with 39 days leave.
We ought not to think that this will, in the end, undermine our economy. For more than half a century already, to inspire us, they have said that, if we worked more, life would be better. It is a lie! Because what is key is not the prolongation, but the productivity of labour, which is completely defined by the organizational, technical and technological side of production. Clearly, our administration must answer for this; both collectively and each administrator individually.
In the program will be included demands on the work of women and minors, on night work and technical safety, on injurious work environments and many others. However, it is triply important to understand that all the economic strivings of the proletariat will only succeed when they hold political power in their hands. The true concept of economic struggle is thus, that it is the natural path to bring the workers to consciousness of the unavoidability of the struggle for power. In truth the miner's strike committees are already completely convinced of this.
V. Political Program
The highest aim of the party is to serve the working class. Only by sharing its situation, continually appealing to its consciousness, extracting from the proletariats life experience its most revolutionary concepts and ideas, and returning to it, clearly formulated, the view of the class itself and of society as a whole can the party secure the development of the proletarian dictatorship into communist self-administration.
Today the proletariat and its party have before them the same aims and tasks as in the year 1917. Then the Bolsheviks led Russia from the February revolution to the revolution of October. Now the same task lies ahead. The restoration of bourgeois relations in society is moving uncontrollably and inevitably forward. However the proletarian revolution, just as the bourgeois, can not happen of its own accord. For this it is necessary to manifest the activity of the majority of society, and, in the first place, the working class. Revolution, like socialism in general, is unthinkable without the highest organization of the proletariat. Thus the first slogan of the party is:
Thus is is essential, everywhere and rapidly to found soviets, unions, committees, strike committees and other working class organizations. It is essential to tie them together, to exchange ideas and experiences from the struggle, to unite them in city, district, regional and higher organizations. Without this there is nothing - from it everything grows! This logic dictates that in the brigade, production unit and factory the working class must become the absolute authority in the land. Thus our second slogan is:
This must replace the deceptive slogan, "All Power to the Soviets," because the workers raise the question, "But who is in the Soviets? And whose interest do they defend?"
The PDP, being the party of the class, must lead workers in every social group and layer of society. Success in the propagation of proletarian ideas is guaranteed by the fact that they are spiritually higher and richer than any bourgeois-democratic ideas.
Particular attention must be paid to the army. We must remember that without the participation of the revolutionary soldiers and sailors the October revolution would not have been victorious.
The Soviet Army is a part of the people and has never spilt the blood of the workers. But today the workers are unarmed and in their first mass actions with political demands (strikes, demonstrations, meetings) the workers will be cruelly suppressed both by the feudal Administration and the democratic bourgeoisie (in this case they are not enemies!). On whose side the army finds itself, is for the proletariat a question of many hardships and sacrifices.
Sharpening the situation, the political processes in society, to the limit, the memory of the path already travelled allows us to see truly the orientation of the movement in the future:
To Russia again falls the roll of taking the first step for the future of all humanity. For her lies ahead the repetition of her own shining example, the October Revolution; while taking account of all the labour, hardship and unequaled heroism of the post-October period. That is to establish, finally, the true proletarian power in society, which, truth be told, has not existed at any time nor in any place. This will be a genuinely popular, just and democratic power. The intelligentsia, not understanding what it signifies, moan about it, and even the workers have little conception of it themselves, but it is the only path to the future, to communism.
"History taught us to struggle for the dictatorship of the proletariat and to achieve it. History also teaches us to extract lessons from defeat. Where the capitalists can not cope with the armed power of the proletariat, they conceal themselves, and trying to sprout again, cling to the smallest privileges. They deceive and make fools of the workers, trying to regain everything they have lost. The proletariat must not hope that such people and forces can save them from the rebirth of capitalism. Only its own vigilance can serve as a guarantee. The proletariat must not put its faith in its own best representatives, for, divided from the class, they begin to act in accordance with their own individual powers. The proletariat must not trust even the party it gave birth to when it holds power; power is such a privilege that only the proletariat itself will not be corrupted and bourgeoisified by it. Only the continuous readiness of the whole class, acting in defence of its rights and privileges, if necessary with arms in hand, only continuous class control over all social processes, only eternal enthusiasm and initiative of the proletarian organizations can provide hegemony for the proletariat This is why, while not withdrawing the appeal for the unity of the proletarians of all countries, we proclaim that the key slogan of our time is:"