Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Kansas City Revolutionary Workers Collective

Summation of Teachers Strike (Excerpts)

First Published: Resistencia, Vol. 8, No. 9, October 1977
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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League for Proletarian Revolution (M-L) Introduction: Below we are reprinting in part the summation made by the Kansas City Revolutionary Workers Collective (KCRWC) of their participation in the Kansas City teachers strike. Since it was not possible to print the full text, which includes other parts of the sum up as well as the propaganda produced during the strike, we recommend comrades to write to the KCRWC at:

Boxholder Box 6056, Kansas City, MO. 64110 for more information or materials on the issue. we also refer comrades to our response to KCRWC’s criticism which appears on page 8 under the title ”the building of cores”.

All comrades and friends are welcome to continue sending their contributions to the communist forum to:

Box 513 Triboro Sst. N.Y., N.Y. 10035

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Another of our tasks in this period of party building is to fuse the science of Marxism with the spontaneous worker’s movement. This is done primarily through our propaganda and agitational work. We are still in the process of developing a guiding line on prop/agit work. Having a guiding line on this question is crucial to our practical work. Without this line, we were not capable of developing systematic and adequate propaganda and agitation on those points that we were clear enough on theoretically to put forward. Our literature was limited to leaflets. We were able to provide some advanced with some readings in Marxism, but again this was not systematic.

In our literature, discussions with workers and teachers, and talks in mass meetings, we tried to get across basically four points. The first of these was to clarify for workers why they should support the strike, and to point out to teachers what was the correct position for them to take during the strike Secondly, we pointed out to teachers and workers why the teachers’ right to strike should be defended According to Missouri law, public employees, especially teachers, are forbidden to strike. The bourgeoisie and all its mouthpieces attempted to sway public opinion on the basis of this law. We saw the need to counter their propaganda. Thirdly, we tried to expose the social props involved as enemies of the working class. This was necessary in the KCFT, as well as in the United Concerned Parents. Since most of our work was in the parent group, we directed most of our exposures at the social props in the UCP, and at Black community “leaders”. As said in a previous summation, the direction of the main blow in our present strategy is at those whose role is that of social support of the bourgeoisie. Those props who are most dangerous at present are the trade union bureaucrats in the working class movement, and those “leaders” in the national and other peoples movements with mass appeal, such as Jesse Jackson. We also pointed out that workers must understand the historical and political role of social props and their relationships to imperialism. When workers understand this, they won’t be susceptible to the newer, more militant props that will always come forward. In all of our leaflets and discussions we attempted to put forward the correct line on social props. The third leaflet, however, was to particularly go into exposure of the props because they had become particularly treacherous at the time of its appearance. In summing up this leaflet, we felt that it failed to adequately carry out this exposure. The leaflet focuses on the incorrect tactics and maneuvers of the props, and this should always be brought out. However, the advanced and intermediate workers must understand social props from the standpoint of Marxism-Leninism. This leaflet was an economist deviation because of its failure to do this. The fourth point we felt important to put forward was how the class struggle between the proletariat and bourgeoisie was manifested in the strike. This showed what forces were on the side of the proletariat and should be united. This was particularly important since the black social props were using various divisive tactics.

Our work in exposing social props continues to leave much to be desired. This was especially true in our exposure of the KCFT leadership. The union president is one of the “sincere” type social props, and is strongly supported by the more active membership. We were ineffective in driving a wedge between him and the rank-and-file. Again, this comes from not having a developed line on how to carry out exposures. Also, we did not strongly defend our line against the red-baiting that frequently occurred during the strike. This passivity in the face of redbaiting reflects a lack of thorough Bolshevization of our collective, and a manifestation of petty-bourgeoisie Philistinism that we must continue to struggle against.


Through our participation in the spontaneous struggle of the masses we win the advanced workers to communism. We must pay particular attention to the theoretical and practical training. It is with this stratum of workers that fusion between the communist and spontaneous movements initially takes place.

Historically in our mass work we have downplayed the role of the advanced. This was because of the basically economist line that guided our work. During the course of the strike struggle we sought to remedy our deficiencies on the question of the advanced, and established and organizational form with the purpose of consolidating them. The key to doing effective work among the advanced is having a clear guiding line on how to win them over and train them. In the absence of a guiding line spontaneity will reign. Our collective is still in the process of establishing a basic line on this question. We are doing this through our own study and experiences as well as that of other comrades. As a result of not having a clear guiding line, our work with the advanced suffered from some spontaneous, incorrect decisions.

We felt that the best method of consolidating the advanced in this struggle would be to establish a core around the question of quality education. It would include advanced from among workers, parents, and teachers. We moved to initiate this core. However, our core was established before we had thoroughly studied the question of cores theoretically. Consequently, there were many errors in its formation and composition. One important error was that we did not carefully select the people who would participate on the basis of the Leninist line on the advanced. Also we included some comrades that we were working with in other areas but who had not been active in the strike. Finally, and most important, we did not have a clear line on the purpose and nature of the core/its functions and responsibilities. All of these errors resulted from cur bowing to spontaneity on the question of conducting political work, and not seeing the need to develop a guiding line on this question as we do on all other questions of theory. We have not completed our study of method in winning and training the advanced but we do have some initial ideas. We were particularly interested in the article “The Building of Cores” in the January issue of Resistance, organ of the LPR-ML. We would like to put forward here some of our agreements and disagreements with aspects of that article.

LPR-ML puts forward that cores are communist forms of organization whose members are both party and non-party. They state further that cores, although not part of the communist organization or party, work under its leadership. This is correct for cores, factory groups, propaganda circles, etc. We also agree that they are made up of party cadre, advanced and intermediate workers, and individual Marxist-Leninists. And we unite that the membership into the these groups be selective and based on unity with the line and practice of the organization, and that these groups are illegal. LPR-ML goes on to state that:

A core is established with the purpose of providing communist leadership in a particular area, give communist leadership to established mass organizations, or to establish and lead such organizations. The core, acting under the leadership of our organization, is responsible for bringing the line of the organization to that particular struggle, mass organization, etc. Resistance, Vol. 8, No. 1, pg.

We have differences here. We feel that the comrades liquidate the role of the primary organizations of the party (factory nuclei, fractions, etc.). The question is whose responsibility is it to bring the line of the organization into the mass movements, trade unions and mass organizations. LPR-ML would entrust this task to a core, which, although under the leadership of the organization, is made up of advanced and intermediate who may not yet be communists, or are only beginning to study and be trained in Marxism-Leninism. The responsibility of giving communist leadership and bringing the line of the organization into the struggles can only be the organization’s responsibility, through its primary organizations. Cores, propaganda circles, and the like, all facilitate our work in giving leadership and putting forward the line. But we must never delegate the responsibility for our line to anyone other than ourselves. We see the purpose of a core as being primarily to “win the advanced to communism”. This means that we utilize these forms of organization to conscientiously train the advanced and intermediate in the theory and tactics of Marxism-Leninism.

As regards the functions of the core, LPR-ML states:

In providing communist leadership and direction to these struggles, mass organizations, etc., the core is responsible for the preparation and distribution of communist propaganda and agitation in its particular area of work. The particulars under what name the propaganda is put out, how and who is to distribute it, etc., have to be determined by each core according to the place, time and conditions under which it is operating.) Besides producing the propaganda, the core is also responsible for oral propaganda and must carry out political education and training within the mass organization and the participants of the particular struggle in which it is involved. Resistance, Vol. 8, No. 1, pg.

Again, LPR-ML put the tasks of the nucleus on the shoulders of the core, and liquidates the role of the nucleus. We are not sure what, according to the comrades, is the role of the factory nucleus. We think that the core’s members can facilitate our preparation and distribution of communist propaganda and agitation, and also to some degree assist the party cadre in giving political education and training to others. But again, the responsibility belongs to the organization. Also, we feel that propaganda which represents the line of the organization should come out under the name of the organization. This helps to establish the leading role of the organization (party).

The level of unity in a core cannot be as high as the level of unity in an organization. Workers who are new to communism cannot be expected to function as a party cadre. Consequently, cores cannot be expected to carry out the work of the party organizations. We think that by not making distinctions between the roles of party and non-party organization, LPR-ML, in effect, liquidates the leading role of the party. This is a right error and could lead to negative consequences in practice. The Chinese comrades state:

The primary organizations of the party are the structures through which the Party’s line, orientation, policies and the various fighting tasks assigned by the party are implemented; they constitute the core through which the Party exercises its leadership of the primary units and other revolutionary mass organizations; they are the bastions of the revolution guiding the party members and the revolutionary masses In their struggle against the class enemy. Only by developing and strengthening the primary organizations of the Party can the Party’s leadership be strengthened on all fronts, and can the Party retain its nature as the vanguard of the proletariat. Basic Understanding of the CPC, p. 126.


This summation is to provide comrades with some of our development of line and practice. Although both are still on a low level we are making advances. We encourage comrades to help us move forward by offering criticisms of our summations. Through our struggle on theoretical, political, and organizational questions, we can move forward towards the necessary unity for building a genuine Marxist-Leninist party In the U.S.