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COMMUNISM.

—"La Question Sociale," by Emile Chevalet; that many ideas of transcendent importance have been launched into the world, only to lie dormant under the pressure of reaction for long years before being revived and realized; and that it is quite true that economic privilege must disappear as a result of the abolition of political tyranny,—a fact which the Individualistic Anarchists have always relied on against the "Communistic Anarchists," whose claim has steadily been that to abolish the State is not enough, and that a separate campaign against economic privilege is necessary. In this last sentence of Herr Most's article he gives away his whole case.

 

 

SHOULD LABOR BE PAID OR NOT?

[Liberty, April 28, 1888.]

In No. 121 of Liberty, criticising an attempt of Kropotkine to identify Communism and Individualism, I charged him, with ignoring " the real question whether Communism will permit the individual to labor independently, own tools, sell his labor or his products, and buy the labor or products of others." In Herr Most's eyes this is so outrageous that, in reprinting it, he puts the words "the labor of others in large black type. Most being a Communist, he must, to be consistent, object to the purchase and sale of anything whatever; but why he should particularly object to the purchase and sale of labor is more than I can understand. Really, in the last analysis, labor is the only thing that has any title to be bought or sold. Is there any just basis of price except cost? And is there anything that costs except labor or suffering (another name for labor)? Labor should be paid! Horrible, isn't it? Why, I thought that the fact that it is not paid was the whole grievance. "Unpaid labor" has been the chief complaint of all Socialists, and that labor should get its reward has been their chief contention. Suppose I had said to Kropotkine that the real question is whether Communism will permit individuals to exchange their labor or products on their own terms. Would Herr Most have been so shocked? Would he have printed that in black type? Yet in another form I said precisely that.

If the men who oppose wages—that is, the purchase and sale of labor—were capable of analyzing their thought and feelings,

they would see that what really excites their anger is not