Ideas arise from actual life. They are not innate in man. Their basic determinant is in the material conditions by which man gets his living. Thus all epochs of society have had their own system of ideas, their own ideology. A famous passage from Marx’s Preface to his “A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy” has already been quoted.
Once generated however, ideas have a powerful influence on events. Capitalism has generated within itself a socialised process of production. It has laid the actual, material foundations for the socialist transformation of society.
That socialist transformation of society will not come about of itself. It will come about by stages through the actions of men. Those actions will be guided by scientific theory.
Already it has been seen that the creation and advocacy of revolutionary theory plays the principal and decisive role in those times of which Lenin said, “Without revolutionary theory there can be no revolutionary movement”. This conclusion arises from observation of the facts. Hence scientific theoretical guidance of the Australian struggle for independence and socialism is of decisive importance.
All facts, natural and social, show that absolutely everything is in the process of movement, of coming into being and passing out of being and that this movement proceeds by the resolution of contradiction within the very essence of things. Facts are primary, nature is primary, spirit, thought secondary.
If facts are observed free from preconceived ideas they show this motion, and motion in a particular way, namely by the resolution of contradiction. This is what is called materialist dialectics. There is no arbitrary preconceived idea called materialist dialectics which has an existence independent of the facts. On the contrary, the facts are the foundation. Without the facts there could be no ideas.
Universal observation, observation of all facts, shows that everything is embraced by materialist dialectics. They embrace everything because they are no more and no less than general laws of motion which are inherent in the facts. This universality enables us to know for certain that hitherto uninvestigated facts develop, move in accordance with those laws. The question is to discern those laws in the facts to be investigated. It is sometimes put as “seeking truth from facts”. If the truth is sought from the facts then there will necessarily emerge the specific features of their movement in keeping with the general laws of materialist dialectics. Positive and negative is a generalisation of all phenomena. For example, electricity has a particular positive and particular negative. In capitalist society there is a capitalist class and working class. In neither case can one exist without the other. In ordinary human relations joy and sorrow are a unity and division. This process is simply universal.
To seek the truth in society one must investigate the facts. The facts of society in Australia show a working class and a capitalist class. They exist in an independent Australia which is yet dependent. They show a particular form of struggle in fact. The task is to discern the operation of the laws of materialist dialectics in those facts.
If they are correctly discerned, identified and propagated they show the direction of movement of the facts, of struggle. They show the contradictions and the process of resolving them. They show what man must do to help in their resolution.
While the laws of materialist dialectics are universal, are a world outlook from which nothing escapes nor can escape, their universality is derived from observation of countless particular facts.
Thus examination of facts in Australia is a component in the universal conclusions. At the same time, the universal laws work out in a particular way in Australian social conditions.
Within the generality of materialist dialectics Australia has a particular revolutionary theory which must be discerned and elucidated.
For Australia to have a scientific revolutionary theory the facts of Australian history, the facts of contemporary Australia in the world environment, must all be investigated. If the truth is sought from those facts then Australian revolutionary theory will accurately reflect the movement of those facts. Australians will know the facts which with certainty unfold in accordance with that theory. Hence the future will be illuminated by a reliable guide. Revolutionary ideas are a component of those facts and interact with their material, tangible base.
In the overall picture, in the overall investigation of the facts, it has been seen that there is a working class and a monopoly capitalist class, a dependence and an independence, sections of people in addition to workers who strive for independence and within Australian capitalism quite a powerful base for ultimate socialism.
What then is the conclusion compelled by the facts? The conclusion is socialist revolution through the stage of anti-imperialist revolution. The facts further show that there is a specific barrier to that, namely a particular state apparatus. What is the conclusion compelled by that fact? The conclusion is that the state apparatus must be destroyed and out of the destruction a new, a people’s state apparatus constructed. Investigation of the facts shows that the present state apparatus is manipulated, even largely owned by U.S. multinationals and that they are threatened by Soviet social-imperialism. What conclusion must be drawn from these facts? The conclusion must be drawn that U.S. imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism are enemies of Australian independence. If the truth from the facts in the world external to Australia is sought, it shows that U.S. imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism contend and struggle with each other for world domination and that Australia is embraced within their contention and struggle. Again the conclusion must be drawn that U.S. imperialism and Soviet social-imperialism are enemies of Australian independence. To turn back to the internal Australian situation, if the truth is sought from the facts, it shows that the main and largest single force for independence is the working class but that there are other forces.
It is possible to go through all facts and discern the direction of their movement. In all cases the starting point is the facts. It is not ideas first and then the facts but to what ideas, to what correct ideas, do the facts give rise. If the facts are examined and accurately reflected in man’s mind they will inevitably give rise to correct ideas, in this case to correct revolutionary theory. That theory is a guide to action because it guides the unfolding facts and enables man’s dynamic will to be given full play.
Because the facts are sometimes not fully investigated, not accurately reflected, errors are made. These errors are only corrected as the truth emerges and is sought. Sometimes not sufficient facts have accumulated and more or less complete conclusions cannot be drawn.
Thus we can discern in a general way the particular course of revolutionary struggle in Australia, still we cannot forecast its exact development yet.
The task of seeking the facts of Australian reality, and the truth that emerges from it, falls particularly on scientific socialists, Communists. Materialist dialectics is the world outlook of Communism. It derives from an examination of all facts.
It is not the exclusive possession of Communists. Nor is it anything mysterious that cannot be understood. It is and must be the possession particularly of the most advanced class, the workers and all other progressive forces. Armed with it they are transformed into a material force much greater than if they are without it.
If the facts about electricity are known one can avoid death and make use of it. If they are not known one cannot avoid death or injury and cannot make use of it. If the facts are known one is free to use the electricity within the bounds of one’s knowledge. It is exactly similar with society. If one does not know society then one can do no better than to grope blindly with its forces, be thrown into confusion, be tossed around like a cork in the ocean. If one knows society and the social laws, one is free within certain limits to change society. This is sometimes put that freedom is the recognition (knowledge) of necessity (facts).
Armed with this knowledge Australian Communists have concluded that Australian society obeys the social law of continuing revolution by stages. Socialism is the next historical epoch and it will be reached through the stage of anti-imperialist revolution. The immediate task is anti-imperialist independence revolution.
The mass propagation of the theory of that revolution and the propagation of materialist dialectics generally are vital components in the whole process.
Chairman Mao Tsetung summed up the whole approach with consummate wisdom in “Where Do Correct Ideas Come From”:
Where do correct ideas come from? Do they drop from the skies? No. Are they innate in the mind? No. They come from social practice, and from it alone; they come from three kinds of social practice, the struggle for production, the class struggle and scientific experiment. It is man’s social being that determines his thinking. Once the correct ideas characteristic of the advanced class are grasped by the masses, these ideas turn into a material force which changes society and changes the world. In their social practice, men engage in various kinds of struggle and gain rich experience, both from their successes and from their failures.
Countless phenomena of the objective world are reflected in a man’s brain through his five sense organs – the organs of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. At first, knowledge is perceptual. The leap to conceptual knowledge, i.e. to ideas, occurs when sufficient perceptual knowledge is accumulated. This is one process in cognition. It is the first stage in the whole process of cognition, from existence to ideas. Whether or not one’s consciousness or ideas (including theories, policies, plans or measures) do correctly reflect the laws of the objective external world is not yet proved at this stage, in which it is not yet possible to ascertain whether they are correct or not. Then comes the second stage in the process of cognition, the stage of leading from consciousness back to matter, from ideas back to existence, in which the knowledge gained in the first stage is applied in social practice to ascertain whether the theories, policies, plans or measures meet with the anticipated success. Generally speaking, those that succeed are correct and those that fail are incorrect, and this is especially true of man’s struggle with nature. In social struggle, the forces representing the advanced class sometimes suffer defeat not because their ideas are incorrect but because, in the balance of forces engaged in struggle, they are not as powerful for the time being as the forces of reaction; they are therefore temporarily defeated, but they are bound to triumph sooner or later. Man’s knowledge makes another leap through the test of practice. This leap is more important than the previous one. For it is this leap alone that can prove the correctness or incorrectness of the first leap in cognition, i.e. of the ideas, theories, policies, plans or measures formulated in the course of reflecting the objective external world. There is no other way of testing truth. Furthermore, the one and only purpose of the proletariat in knowing the world is to change it. Often, correct knowledge can be arrived at only after many repetitions of the process leading from matter to consciousness and then back to matter, that is, leading from practice to knowledge and then back to practice. Such is the Marxist theory of knowledge, the dialectical materialist theory of knowledge. Among our comrades there are many who do not yet understand this theory of knowledge, the dialectical materialist theory of knowledge. When asked the source of their ideas, opinions, policies, methods, plans and conclusions, eloquent speeches and long articles, they consider the question strange and cannot answer it. Nor do they comprehend that matter can be transformed into consciousness and consciousness into matter, although such leaps are phenomena of everyday life. It is therefore necessary to educate our comrades in the dialectical materialist theory of knowledge, so that they can orientate their thinking correctly, become good at investigation and study and at summing up experience, overcome difficulties, commit fewer mistakes, do their work better, and struggle hard so as to build China into a great and powerful socialist country and help the broad masses of the oppressed and exploited throughout the world in fulfilment of our great internationalist duty.
The Communist Party has arisen from the very social process. It is a product of the social process. It could only arise at a given stage in the process, namely in the period of capitalism where the working class had arisen and where enough facts of historical and scientific development had accumulated to enable the truth to be sought from those facts so that the general laws of development were discerned, identified and described. This was accomplished by Marx and Engels. Their Communist Manifesto published in 1848 was the first all-round systematic exposition of the facts of social development and where they were leading.
Marx and Engels could not have arisen in times of feudalism because the social process had not yet reached the stage where there was sufficient development. Man did not yet have the necessary field to survey nor the means to do it.
After capitalism had developed in England political economists arose to examine it. In Germany, the philosophers examined the history of philosophy and its contemporary position. In France there arose Utopian (imaginary) socialism which arbitrarily removed the worst features of capitalist society and set up arbitrary ideas of socialism. Marx and Engels drew upon English political economy, German classical philosophy and French socialism to evolve a scientific world outlook and scientific socialism. These three components were themselves products of society at a certain level. No one of these components in itself could guide the struggle to change society because no one of them was true, scientific, accurate, reflected the facts accurately. At best they reflected part of the truth. But Marx and Engels’ exposition did seek the truth from all the facts and revealed with scientific accuracy the laws of motion. Their Communist Manifesto armed the proletariat (industrial working class) with scientific guidance. It showed that all preceding epochs of society other than primitive Communism had been characterised by class struggle and had been transcended by social revolution, that capitalism would have the same fate and in its specific case the proletariat would overthrow it.
Precisely this occurred in Paris in 1871, in Russia in 1917, in China in 1949 and in various other countries at various times. In actual practice the theory of Marx and Engels was proved to be true. Time and additional summing up have enriched the ideas of Marx and Engels. Chief amongst its defenders and developers are Lenin, Stalin and Mao Tsetung.
The working class was impelled by its position to find scientific theory. Marx and Engels provided it. Their theory was enriched in working class struggle.
The Communist Party is the concentrated essence of the will of the proletariat to end capitalism. It is the custodian and user of scientific socialism. It concentrates the real destiny of the working class.
The Communist Party has been described as the vanguard of the working class, the organised detachment of the working class, as the highest form of class organisation of the working class, as the embodiment of unity of will of the working class, as the instrument of the dictatorship of the proletariat.
It leads the working class. In Australia its historic mission is to lead the working class at the head of other working and patriotic people in the struggle for independence and socialism.
Naturally Communism in Australia has its own specific history.
It arose in 1920 while the echoes of the great October socialist revolution in Russia in 1917 were still ringing around the world. It strove to give revolutionary scientific guidance to the working class. It had successes and failures. It was limited in its capacity to seek truth from facts.
In the 1960s large sections of its leadership deserted the struggle altogether. They became revisionist; that is, instead of upholding the revolutionary essence of Communism to which the facts give rise they denied that revolutionary essence and even denied the facts. Historical weaknesses in the Communist Party asserted themselves. Revisionists stripped from Communism its revolutionary heart, soul and “adapted” it to capitalism.
But those who deserted retained the name “Communism” or proclaimed themselves Marxist-Leninist.
Science, facts, however are ruthless. They pay little attention to names or to labels people put on themselves.
When the truth is sought from the facts then it transpires that of the three parties in Australia which claim to be Marxist-Leninist, namely the Communist Party of Australia, the Socialist Party of Australia and the Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist) only one, the Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist) genuinely strives to be a Marxist-Leninist Party. The other two are revisionist. That is, they eschew the revolutionary essence of Communism, eschew the armed overthrow of the state apparatus and the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat and strive to “adapt” Communism to capitalism. In the words of Lenin they ”omit, obliterate and distort the revolutionary side of its doctrine, its revolutionary soul.”
The Socialist Party of Australia specifically serves in Australia the Soviet social-imperialists. It was created by them, carries out their orders. Its purpose is to further the global interests of Soviet social-imperialism as those global interests affect Australia. The Socialist Party of Australia propagates the cause of the Soviet Union, presents it as socialist, as champion of independence, as bringing aid and assistance, contrary to the reality that the Soviet Union is a ruthless imperialism, expansionist to the last degree and internally a brutal fascist regime. All imperialist powers must make ideological preparation amongst the people of the victim country. The Socialist Party of Australia serves that function in Australia for Soviet social-imperialism. It goes further and makes material provision. It does that by manipulation of trade unions, other organisations and in the case of the Labor Party by careful cultivation of leading figures in it. Thus, for example, the newspaper of the “Socialist” Party of Australia published an exchange of correspondence between it and Mr. Whitlam, then Labor Prime Minister. In his letter Mr. Whitlam viewed favourably the foreign policy of the Soviet social-imperialists. This certainly lent aid and comfort to this great enemy of the people of Australia and of the people of the rest of the world. The claim of this party to be other than a Soviet imperialist agency can be dismissed. It has nothing in common with Communism nor with the world outlook of Communism, Marxism-Leninism.
Side by side with this “Socialist” Party is the Communist Party of Australia. It takes up also a revisionist stand in which, under cover of an independent line, (“independent” in this context means independent of the Soviet Union) it abolishes from Communism the central features of Marxism-Leninism. Thus it advocates parliamentarism, trade unionism, repudiates the struggle for state power by the workers and their allies. Like the “Socialist” Party of Australia it obliterates, omits, distorts the revolutionary essence, soul from Communism. Moreover to conceal this and to try to do additional damage to the cause of socialism it takes up the causes of drug-taking, sexual and other diversions of capitalism.
The Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist) strives to uphold the revolutionary essence of Marxism-Leninism and the additional contribution made to it by Mao Tsetung. This Party sets out to make a scientific examination of Australia and its place in the world. Its social analysis seeks the facts of Australia’s history, Australia’s position in the world, the development and movement of those facts. It concludes that the direction of struggle is for anti-imperialist independence and socialism. It propagates the scientific truth of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought and its integration with Australia’s actual conditions.
People are sometimes dismayed and puzzled by what they regard as frequent splitting of the Communist Parties. Division, splitting, is a fact of life. Unity is composed of division. One divides into two. The three Parties in Australia that claim to be Communist, socialist, are products of that process. No doubt, it were to be wished that there were one single homogenous Communist Party which strictly adhered to the principles of scientific socialism. But it is wishful thinking; it is not in accordance with the facts.
A Marxist-Leninist Communist Party is a critical force in the struggle for scientific socialism; in the case of Australia, that involves the preliminary stage of consummating independence. It is a critical force in working out the theory of the Australian revolution and in participating in and leading that revolution. Hence its whole existence has no meaning other than entire service to Australian workers, working and patriotic people, to the struggle to overthrow the forces that hinder Australian independence and socialism. The struggle is a life-and-death struggle. It is a struggle that arises from the very nature of the social system in Australia. It goes on irrespective of the wishes of anyone. The very social process gives rise to scientific direction. The Communist Party sets out to master that scientific direction. The more effectively it does this the more effective the struggle. Just as scientific socialist ideas guided the successful struggle for revolution in Russia in 1917, in China guided the successful struggle for liberation that culminated in liberation in 1949, so a Communist Party in a given country, and in this case Australia, strives to give scientific guidance to the struggle for independence and socialism.
It can be seen that an effective Communist Party with accurate revolutionary theory is a vital component in the whole struggle which puts at stake the very life of the present social system. Moreover the forces opposed to independence and socialism are quite conscious that a tremendous threat to their whole position is constituted by the Communist Party and its scientific revolutionary theory. They are conscious of the fact that a genuine Communist Party crystallises the strivings of the people against the local and multinational monopoly capitalists. Readily this can be seen in the constant and strident abuse of Communists, the filling up of the term Communist with criminal content and branding all and any opponent as “Communist”.
It must be constantly borne in mind that the fate of a social system is involved, that the positions of power and privilege of the local and multinational monopoly capitalists are at stake, and vitally, critically important in that, the fate of the coercive state apparatus which stands on guard against any challenge to the society that has been described. And as has also been described, this all arises from class struggle between on the one hand, workers (around whom are working and other patriotic people) and on the other hand, local and multinational monopoly capitalists.
This class struggle is extremely acute. Indeed the struggle for Australia’s complete independence is in the final analysis class struggle. It is the form which class struggle in Australia takes.
The Communist Party exists in this real environment. Within the Communist Party the class struggle is reflected. It is not some organisation that is “pure” and above all conflict. Its membership is composed of workers and people who have identified their position with the workers. All of them live under capitalism and are subject to the influence and pressure of capitalism.
The constant pressure against the Communist Party as an organisation, and against its members, by coercive measures, by propaganda, by the environment, by parliamentarism, by the “trade union movement”, by the Labor Party, by a whole host of factors, unavoidably affects it. Those from classes other than the workers are subject to the ruling class’s constant efforts to win back its sons who have deserted it. And the workers are wooed to win them to capitalism. Threats and praise, the carrot and the stick, all play their part. Within the Communist Party there is constant struggle against all this and to ensure that the Party accurately reflects the reality of Australian society, accurately sums up the direction of struggle and acts accordingly.
The Party is affected by the struggle external to it. It has come into existence as a product of society and it is subject to the pressures of the social environment.
It champions complete rupture from the ideas of the old society. This is a tremendous task, a tremendous operation. Yet it is surrounded by those ideas. Thus there is a continual and acute struggle for that complete rupture from those old ideas. Party members continually strive to remould themselves to serve the people selflessly. The Party strives continually to rectify itself to maintain its fighting purity. The workers employed in the largely socialised process of production constitute a basis for socialist ideas; the depredations by the local and multinational monopoly capitalists feed ideas of independence. Ideas have their origin in factors external to the Party. The all-pervading ideas of the local and multinational monopoly capitalists press in on the Party.
The local and multinational monopoly capitalists, the imperialists and those who have thrown in their lot with them work hard to destroy what they see as the greatest threat to them – the ideas of scientific socialism, of independence, and the Communist Party as an organisation which crystallises, personifies those ideas and strives to translate them into people’s action.
Within the working class, certain sections are highly paid. As a section, they tend to become conservative, to become content with capitalism. In that way they are a reservoir within the working class for the maintenance of capitalism. In a general sense, trade union officials occupy privileged positions. They are another reservoir of conservatism in the working class. In preceding pages a good deal of attention is given to the ideology of the Labor Party and the “trade union movement”. These generate within the working class capitalist ideas, combat scientific socialist ideas, and combat Communist organisation in order to prevent struggle. In short, there is a whole coercive state apparatus and powerful ideological, political and organisational pressure against scientific socialist and independence ideas and the Communist Party. As part of this there is a deliberate conscious tactic of combating Communist ideas, Communism, independence, socialism, in the very name of those things. There are historically many cases where people have been sent in to Communist Parties to disrupt them. Moreover the open and secret police never cease trying to infiltrate the Communist Parties with agents, provocateurs. They concentrate their telephone-tapping, surveillance, provocation, frame-up, against the Communists. This is still another aspect of the struggle against Communism.
Outright propaganda and coercion against Communism is not in itself enough. If it were, then Communism had been destroyed a million times. It is far better, if it can be done, to take the fortress from within and to co-ordinate that with coercion, anti-Communist propaganda, etc. But the difficulty for the would-be destroyers is that Communism is true and the struggle for it is pushed on by the very mechanism of capitalism.
It wells up everywhere. So in Australia the struggle for independence and socialism has in recent times taken on a higher quality than ever before in Australia’s history. How to hold it back really centres on destruction, undermining of scientific revolutionary theory and its wielder, the Communist Party. The Communist Party has been well described as the mind, the heart, the conscience of our era.
The local and multinational monopoly capitalists never cease their coercion against Communists and other progressive people. Just as important, they never cease their efforts to “adapt” Communism to capitalism, to win over Communists to capitalism, to subvert the Communist Party.
Within the Communist Party there is acute struggle against this whole process. Representatives of scientific socialist, proletarian ideas champion those ideas, representatives of non-scientific and socialist ideas combat proletarian ideas. This is class struggle within the Communist Party.
The Communist Party, like everything else, develops by the resolution of contradictions within itself. The basis of this is the contradictions in society external to the Communist Party but reflected in it. The class struggle within the Communist Party expresses itself positively in the continuing striving for scientific socialist theory and practice, the searching of truth from facts, against the negative, the continual pressure towards adaptation of the Party to capitalism. That attempted adaptation takes many forms and is never-ceasing. Both trends have their origin in capitalist society, in Australia in the present level of independence and dependence, the striving by local and multi-national monopoly capitalists to keep it that way and increase dependence, and on the other hand, the striving by workers, working and other patriotic people to defend and extend independence into complete anti-imperialist independence and to continue that revolution into socialism. The whole process was very well put by Mao Tsetung when he said: “Opposition and struggle between ideas of different kinds constantly occur within the Party; this is a reflection within the Party of contradictions between classes and between the new and the old in society. If there were no contradictions in the Party and no ideological struggles to resolve them, the Party’s life would come to an end.” (On Contradiction)
Ordinarily a perfectly natural process of criticism and self-criticism of negative ideas in the struggle to overcome them resolves the contradictions and a more or less correct adherence to facts and the laws inherent in them emerges. But the contradictions can assume an antagonistic form when the pressure to capitalist ideas is so great that it comes into antagonistic, all-round conflict with scientific socialist, proletarian ideas. In those circumstances, the matter is resolved by the adherents and champions of capitalist ideas simply splitting away from Communism. In periods of crisis of capitalism, in periods of great pressure by the capitalists, this is prone to occur. The history of the development of Communism has witnessed several such episodes.
Thus on the outbreak of the imperialist war of 1914-1918, the group around the German socialist Kautsky split away from Communism and supported the imperialist war whereas those around Lenin adhered to the scientific principles of Communism and continued to pursue socialist revolution. Kautsky’s splitting away actually strengthened Communism. It freed the Communist movement from the drag, the impurity, that Kautsky and his ideas meant. It was a large struggle. It resulted in defeat for bourgeois ideas. Kautsky reflected, within the Communist movement, ideas of capitalism, imperialism: Lenin, ideas of the proletariat, scientific socialism. In the history of the Communist Party of China, several such splits occurred, the last of which was the “gang of four’s” splitting away. In the history of the Communist Party of Australia, there has been in the main striving for correct Communist ideas. Individuals and groups have from time to time split away. The decisive factor has been the struggle for the development of more or less correct scientific revolutionary ideas. The most significant of such contradictions was the split in the period 1956-1964 in which there emerged what was the basis for the three Parties mentioned above. Revisionists split away in 1961-2-3. They deserted the cardinal principles of Communism. They “adapted” Communism to capitalism. Then they split amongst themselves. Thus there emerged two revisionist parties – the Communist Party of Australia and the Socialist Party of Australia. They have in common the repudiation of the dictatorship of the proletariat, repudiation of the need for preparation to overcome the force of the local and multinational monopoly capitalists by revolutionary force. They serve capitalism.
The Socialist Party of Australia arose from a disagreement among the revisionists about the attitude that should be taken to the Soviet Union. The Socialist Party of Australia, as explained above, was simply the creation of the Soviet social-imperialists. In the name of Communism, it promoted in Australia the imperialist interests of the Soviet Union which in turn also masquerades in the name of Communism. On the other hand, the Communist Party of Australia, while adhering to revisionism, criticised the Soviet Union and took the view that Australian revisionism would be more effective by dissociating itself publicly from the Soviet Union. No one can stop people from using the name Communism. Use of the name does not constitute the fact. Practice tests the fact. Genuine Communists used the name Marxist-Leninist to distinguish themselves from revisionists. This is why the name Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist) emerged.
Revisionism, in the name of Communism, serves the monopoly capitalists by stripping Communism of all that imperils capitalism. It is the expression, in the words of Communism, of capitalist, imperialist ideas.
Sometimes it is said that the Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist) is a Peking Party, follows the Chinese Party line. This is used sometimes in an attempt to be disparaging and sometimes people misunderstand the position. What the Communist Party of China and the Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist) have in common is a striving to adhere to the general truths of Communism, scientific socialism, Marxism-Leninism. Communists have always said that the universal laws of Communism must be used so that they are integrated, used to elucidate, the problems of the different countries. Though Australia and China are both embraced by those universal laws, particular working out of those laws, integration of those laws, differs. Hence the search in Australia is for the truth from the facts of Australian history and society, facts very different from those of China. Of course Australian Communists attach great importance to socialism in China. It shows in practice, in life, how the new social system abolishes economic crisis with its unemployment, inflation, misery, exploitation. It demonstrates the accuracy and truth of scientific socialism. Nonetheless revolution cannot be imported nor exported. Only the Australian workers, working and patriotic people can make the Australian revolution.
The whole development of Australian society impels, compels, the development and strengthening of Communism. The working class is the leading class and the main force in Australia’s struggle for independence and socialism. Its leadership lies in Communism. The Communists have infinite confidence in the working class and the people. Communists recognise that levels of consciousness vary. From a Communist standpoint some are backward in understanding (scarcely surprising when one considers the continual all-embracing capitalist indoctrination which includes both open and subtle anti-Communism); others are advanced and still others in between. However, Communism takes its stand on truth. And truth shows it is not simply a question of what this or that particular worker or oppressed person thinks but what the working class and oppressed people are compelled, impelled by social circumstances, to do. Events are compelling, impelling them quite rapidly in the historical sense to take the path to socialism through anti-imperialist independence.
Thus we have seen previously that in Australia people have been impelled to struggle on various issues. Struggles against war in Vietnam, uranium, freeways, for defence and improvement in living standards, do not arise because someone gets a brilliant idea. They arise from actual life. So too do ideas to guide them. The level of struggle gets higher. It increasingly reaches out to understand that at the root of the whole problem that gives rise to struggle is lack of Australia’s complete independence, the existence of capitalist relations of production. The struggle increasingly raises these questions. The trend (not necessarily the immediate action) is towards anti-imperialist revolutionary independence and socialism.
The whole point about revisionism and the revisionist Parties, Communist Party of Australia and Socialist Party of Australia, is the striving in the name of Communism to arrest that trend. In that way, they serve the local and multinational monopoly capitalists within the ranks of the workers, working and other patriotic people.
Moreover the awakening of the Australian people towards independence and socialism, the participation of the people in struggle is a process that proceeds unevenly. There is no sudden all-round awakening to what we regard as the truths of Communism. Workers, working and other patriotic people awake fundamentally through their own experience. Thus experience of repression, of economic crisis, of war, leads to a new awakening, ever-extending awakening and action. Precisely that is occurring today, because all-round crisis conditions are more embracing, more pervasive, the trend to war is more serious.
The fundamental origin of awakening lies in the actual social process. Communism interprets it and works in the leadership of the people to change it. Recognition of the facts is critical.
Failure to recognise and analyse the facts correctly is political subjectivism, the substitution of ideas, wishes for facts. Facts are inexorable. It is very dangerous to ignore them, to skip over them, to fail to analyse them. If, for example, one wishes for a peaceful life or is frightened, then one will deny the facts that drive to revolution. In doing so one is thereby adapting to capitalism. Again, if one arbitrarily tries to impose ideas of revolution without recognition of the facts, without respect for facts, then one is certain of isolation and if done in the name of Communism, in that way doubly serves the local and multinational monopoly capitalists.
Hence it is necessary to keep in mind always that search for the truth from the facts, and action that the truth reveals, are the constant preoccupation of Communists. This is the very heart of Communism.