Wednesday, August 29, 2018

This Month's Quotation: Karl Kautsky (1939)

The Front Page quote from the January 1939 issue of the Socialist Standard
"Whether Votes are a power or not depends upon the type of men who cast them."
Karl Kautsky.
This Month’s Quotation
The quotation on the front page is from Karl Kautsky'sThe Labour Revolution” (Allen & Unwin, 1925, page 30): —
   Whether votes are a power or not depends upon the type of men who cast them. If the voters are shiftless persons who only live by the favour of the rich, or wage-earners whose mentality is such that they regard the capitalists as “ bread-givers," such workers will certainly not capture political power through the vote they cast. So far as they possess the vote at all, they will rather be inclined to sell the political power which it represents to the highest bidder.
  The case is different with workers in a society which they sustain, and which would collapse without them. When the workers form a majority and are conscious of their importance to society, their voting for the Socialist Party signifies that they have recognised their strength and are determined to make use of it.

1 comment:

Imposs1904 said...

Starting in January 1939, and continuing on until December 1941, every issue of the Socialist Standard carried a quotation on its front cover.

More often than not the quoted person was someone famous in their respective field and it's interesting to note the range of individuals selected for inclusion in this exclusive and rarefied company. IYou know I'm joking, right?)

As mentioned above the practice was discontinued in 1942, and my guess it was when wartime paper rationing kicked in and the Editorial Committee for the Standard realised that they no longer had the luxury of being able to have a standalone front cover. It was now the case that every inch of the magazine had to have (socialist) text crammed into it.

A shame, really, because the inclusion of these quotes month-on-month gave a wee window into the SPGB that hitherto was unavailable. This is all the more true for the reader and/or transcriber 75 plus years on.