Editorial Notes

Field Organizers of the Opposition

(August 1931)

Written: August 1931.
First Published: The Militant, Vol. IV No. 17, 1 August 1931, p. 4.
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Among the signs of consolidation of the Communist League and the development of its activities, the appearance of voluntary organizers In the field is not the least significant. The emergence of capable and self-sacrificing forces who carry the message into new fields is an unfailing mark of vitality in our movement. For several weeks comrades Clarke and Stamm have been doing pioneer work as field organizers in the Cleveland territory and we have every reason for the confidence that the firm basis is being laid for the establishment of a functioning branch of the League.

For us such an achievement will have a great importance. Every new oppositionist counts, and is worth effort to gain; the formation of a new branch is an achievement which our entire organization can justly celebrate. Our numbers are few but solid. They are strong in ideas and by them will prevail. Every accession of new forces educated in the Marxist doctrines of our movement and inspired with its unconquerable spirit, hastens on the day. Those who make it possible by patient work of propaganda and organization in the field will be highly regarded by every Oppositionist.

The field work of the comrades in Cleveland, of great value in itself, has an even greater significance as an example. By deliberately picking out the field of operations in agreement with the National Committee, travelling without railroad fare and maintaining themselves in the field on their own resources, with only nominal assistance from the organization, they are showing how a movement which has no money can have organizers, if it has the men. We shall see more of this in the near future, It we are not greatly mistaken. The young revolutionists, trained in the school of the Opposition will be fired with the ambition to work for the movement and will do it at all cost. The path of the pioneer organizers at Cleveland will be followed by tens and scores as our movement grows, takes root and becomes the movement of the workers’ vanguard, as it inevitably will.

In this way the bona-fide type of professional revolutionist will grow up, receive his training and prove his worth in the hard school of experience and come to leadership of the party and the class. In the best days of the I.W.W. and to a lesser extent in the Socialist party, the movement was recruited and kept alive in no small degree by the “voluntary organizers” who took it upon themselves – without definite pay or guarantees – to carry the propaganda to the masses. Today’s movement, on higher ground and on a firmer foundation, will measure its growth in no small degree by the number of such organizers it enlists.

Professional revolutionists we must have, for the leadership of the revolutionary movement is a full-time occupation. But by that term we do not think of the satisfied official who weighs every service to the movement and exacts pay in a sort of business relationship. We think rather of the militant who devotes his activities entirely to the movement and takes his chances. Every step toward the creation of such a cadre represents progress.

Last updated on: 13.1.2013