V. I.   Lenin





The National State, the Imperialist State and the Alliance of States, by K. Kautsky, Nuremberg, 1915 (50 pfennigs) (80 pp.).

In § 1—“Some Remarks on Democracy and the National State”—K. Kautsky finds fault with the Right-winger (Winnig) and a Left-winger of Halle (from the Halle Volksblatt), who say that the principle of “the right of every nation to national self-determination” (p. 5 in the declaration of August 4) is out-of-date. Kautsky favours the Centrist position on this issue, and chews over all the old stuff about the link between democracy and the national state.

In this context, he opposes “primitive democracy” and “direct national legislation” (8); moreover he ! || includes in “primitive democracy” “its most active variety, the mass strike” (8).

We are not for the status quo, he says, (14) but for a different way of breaking out of the national framework....

“The proletariat cannot emancipate itself by some of its sections, engaged in definite occupations or living in definite regions, benefiting from exploitation and oppression. That signifies rather a weakening of its position” (16)....

[And not a word of conclusion from this!! The sophist!]

On p. 17 a swindling distortion of the position of the Lefts. Like the Rights, they too (he says) agree that imperialism is inevitable, but demand that it be countered by “the immediate realisation” (17) of socialism....

|| petty swindler!! “This looks very radical, but is only (!!!) capable of driving everyone who does not believe in the immediate practical implementation of socialism into the camp of imperialism.”

This is followed by the most banal prattle about society being an organism and not a mechanism, and similar childish nonsense (with hints about the strong “national sentiments” (18) among the workers) and the conclusion that the inevitability of imperialism ||| does not imply that it is foolish to fight it “within this [capitalist] mode of production” (21). ||| N.B.

“The petty bourgeois and small peasants, and even many capitalists and intellectuals”, are against imperialism and favour other means of the extension of capital (apart from colonies) (21)....



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