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141
The Question of Method

of kings, do away with feudal property, break the shackles of the guild system, and will then throw itself with so much new life and enthusiasm into the new opportunities it has conquered for itself, that the proletariat will be utterly incapable of creating another and opposing movement. Even if it acts by violence and surprise, even if it tries to organise a "dictatorship" and to "conquer the democracy" by force, its real power cannot be artificially raised above the level where it was before the bourgeois revolution began.

Miguel was clear-sighted when he wrote to Marx in his famous letter of 1850, foreseeing a continuation of the Revolution: "The labour party may succeed against the upper middle-class and what remains of the feudal element, but it will be attacked in the flank by the democracy. We can perhaps give an anti-bourgeois tone to the Revolution for a little while, we can destroy the essential conditions of bourgeois production; but we can't possibly put down the small trades-people and shopkeeping class, the petty bourgeoisie. My motto is to secure all we can get. We ought to prevent the lower and middle class from forming any organisation for as long a time as possible after the first victory, and especially to oppose ourselves in serried ranks to the scheme of calling a constitutional assembly. Partial terrorism, local anarchy, must replace for us what we lack in bulk."

But a lack of bulk is not replaced in this fashion.