Daniel DeLeon

The Daily People
July 3, 1907

T he representatives of the mailed fist of the world who have been rioting at the Hague in windy phrases about peace did not seem satisfied with playing a comedy: they had to go so far as to libel their ancestry.

They placed the demand for the arbitration of international disputes upon the ground of “modern civilization.” In other words, their ancestry were not civilized; not being civilized, they knew nothing about arbitration”which is just so much nonsense.

No less a worthy than Edward I of England bowed reverently (hand on sword hilt) before “arbitration"; “arbitration” was more than once exalted in the rough-and-tumble days of the German robber barons; it was at the shrine of “arbitration” that the turbulent feudal lords of France quite often meekly prayed (in war panoply) before they were curbed by Louis the XII. And now that the hitherto sealed book of Japanese history is being unsealed, and is becoming popular, “arbitration” is found to have been no unknown humbug to the samurai and their leige lords. “Arbitration” may take its place on the long list of things cited as evidence of there being nothing new under the sun.

But why the comedy, why the libel? It is a safe conclusion that where false pretense has been resorted to in the upholding of noble principle, then the nobility of the purpose is mere affectation. The nobility of the language in favor of peace was declamation, a comedy necessary to conceal facts; the libel of ancestry was also necessary for stage effect.

It remains an undeniable socialist principle that external peace cannot be stable where internal war is the social principle. Capitalist society is built upon internal war”war between capitalist and capitalist, war between capitalists on the one hand and the working class on the other.

It remains an undeniable socialist principle that the affinity between capitalists of several countries spreads over the capitalist world the state of war that prevails in each separate country among its own capitalists.

As capitalists are in one another’s hair at home, they are at one another’s throats internationally.

There being, at home, the organized physical force, established by themselves, to keep them from physically disemboweling one another, their conflicts preserve their original character of a purely economic battle”a battle, however, that often costs life through ruin; a battle, moreover, that off and on breaks out into actual civil war. There being no such international force to keep the capitalist conflict exclusively upon the economic field, and no such international physical force organization being, in the very nature of things, possible, the consequence is inevitable”inevitable war.

No amount of comedy, no amount of libeling their ancestry, can change the sociologic fact. “Arbitration” on the lips of the capitalist class is a humbug handed down from generation to generation, from ruling class to ruling class.

The day when arbitration will not be a humbug, that day it will no longer be needed.

That day will see the international flag of socialism waving over the ruins of capitalism, and binding humanity with the bonds of cooperation.