Th. Rothstein 1908

The Socialist Annual

Source: Justice, 18 January 1908, p. 9;
Transcribed: Ted Crawford,
HTML Markup: Brian Reid
Public Domain: Marxists Internet Archive (2007). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.

Dear Comrade,—The suggestion of comrade J. Williams re giving the authorities, for the figures which appear in the “Socialist Annual” is one which was made to me more than once last year. I quite appreciate the importance of the suggested feature, and I would certainly have introduced it this time if I could have seen my way to do it in a satisfactory fashion. The difficulty lies in the fact that a number of the facts and statistics quoted in the “Annual” have not been bodily transferred from Blue-Books and other similar publications, as the comrades think, but have been specially compiled for the purpose. Take, for instance, the small on “Royal Paupers.” If I were to give my references for the amount of outdoor relief, which each so called monarch gets—references to various pages of the “Statesman's Year-Book,” the “Gotha Almanack” and so forth—I would have to take twice as much space as the table now occupies, and the sight would be ugly in the extreme. Likewise the tables relating to the House of Lords, to the National Debt, etc. Again, a number of figures have been taken from foreign sources. What is the good of my giving references for the figures on the international trade union movement, or on the “Red International” to various foreign publications or to various numbers of the “Vorwaerts” and the “Neue Zeit”? It may seem incredible, but is nevertheless a fact, that some of the tables in the “Annual,” innocent as they look, are the result of watching carefully various publications throughout the year in order to get an interesting fact now here, now there. Many of these collected facts may not have found their way, into this or other particular issues of the “Annual”, but they will appear in due time, in dribblets or in mass, as the occasion may require. It is evident that to give references for facts of this kind would be quite impossible.

Nevertheless comrade Williams will notice that some references have already been given this year to the tables now introduced for the first time. I will try to do more in the same direction next year. I am afraid, however, for the reasons stated above, that an all-round reference system such as is suggested will for a long time remain an ideal, rather to be striven after, than realised.—Yours fraternally,