Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

October League (M-L)

Statement by the Organizing Committee: First Draft of Party Program Prepared

First Published: The Call, Vol. 6, No. 4, January 31, 1977.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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Statement from the Standing Committee of the O.C.–

After many months of work, the first drafts of the program and constitution of the new party are ready for study and discussion by all the organizations participating in the Organizing Committee for a Marxist-Leninist Party (OC). The completion of these drafts is an important event because it means that we are on the verge of the actual formation of our new party.

The draft program will be the immediate focus of discussion and struggle within the OC. Members of the OC organizations will carefully study and criticize the first draft to insure that it correctly expresses the final aims, basic views, and immediate political tasks of our party.

The program we adopt at our first party congress will be a militant document which, will rally and unite the most resolute, advanced, and fighting elements of the working class and guide the struggle for socialism. It will provide a basis for uniting Marxist-Leninists into a single, unified party, putting an end to the period of small circles and primitiveness.

It has taken us more time to complete our first program draft then we had originally anticipated. However, the few months extra time was utilized to build firmer unity and deepen our understanding of the Marxist-Leninist line.

Combining the science of Marxism-Leninism with analyses of concrete conditions in the U.S. and the world, the program is written to meet the needs of the working-class movement during this period of history. It is concise and scientific, yet written in a popular style that can be taken to the masses of working and oppressed people. In many respects, it differs in form from the programs of the earlier parties in other countries, written under different conditions.

The conditions in this country today, particularly the character of the present struggle against modern revisionism, have necessitated a more extensive and detailed program than the programs of many earlier parties. Many years ago, the modern revisionists of the CPUSA abandoned the struggle for the revolutionary overthrow of capitalist system and the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, leaving the working class without communist leadership. The revolutionary struggle in the U.S. cannot succeed without the exposure and defeat of modern revisionism. Our program targets the revisionists and draws a line of demarcation on each of the important questions facing our movement It attacks the CPUSA as a direct agent of imperialism and social-imperialism within the workers’ movement. Our program exposes the CP’s racist betrayal of the right of self-determination for the oppressed nations and its substitution of electoral struggle and “peaceful transition” for the revolutionary struggles of the working class and its allies for socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat.

Through the course of the struggle against modern revisionism, several trends have emerged in our movement, all calling themselves Marxist-Leninist. Our draft program draws clear lines of demarcation and distinguishes our future party from the opportunist trends in the Marxist-Leninist movement on every burning question.

In writing the first draft of our program, we have learned from the negative example of the program of the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP). While our program targets and thoroughly exposes the revisionists on every question, the RCP program belittles the fight against revisionism.

Our program states that one of our aims is to “turn the trade unions into revolutionary class struggle organizations which fight for socialism under communist leadership.” The RCP’s program hands the trade unions over to the trade union bureaucrats.

While the RCP’s chauvinist program does not raise the right of self-determination of oppressed nations as a main demand in the fight against national oppression, and generally reflects a white-chauvinist stand, our program makes the upholding of that right one of the main objectives of our party on the national question. The program also staunchly defends the liberation struggles of the oppressed nations and nationalities. The RCP program is not a fighting document, but rather an unscientific, opportunist program to confuse and mislead the people.

The finalizing of the first draft of the program is a great step forward for the work of the OC. But achieving unity on program alone, although essential, is not sufficient unless that unity is raised to a higher organizational form. The constitution of our party will define the organizational structure, membership requirements, and duties and rights of party members, and generally govern the internal life of our party.

The first draft of the constitution requires that party members accept the program and constitution of the party, work actively in an organizational unit of the party, observe party discipline, carry out party decisions, and financially support the party.

Our party will be a Bolshevik-type organization, based on the organizational principle of democratic centralism to ensure iron discipline, unity of will and action along with the fullest discussion and struggle within the party. Its members will build the closest ties with the masses, practice bold criticism and self-criticism, be aboveboard, struggle for unity, and engage in relentless struggle against opportunism and revisionism in the ranks of our party.

As opposed to the revisionist traitors of the CPUSA, who in their constitution make advocating the violent overthrow of the government grounds for expulsion, the first draft of our constitution requires that party members accept the principal of the complete overthrow of the bourgeoisie through armed struggle, the replacement of the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie by the dictatorship of the proletariat, and the victory of socialism over capitalism.

Last July, the OC took the lead in putting forward clear principles of unity, enabling Marxist-Leninists to come together to struggle for political unity and the organization of the party. The writing of the first program draft and the struggle to reach agreement on a final draft is raising our ideological level and greatly deepening the unity within the ranks of the OC.

We are currently making plans for a Second Unity Conference. The main purpose of this conference will be to achieve political unity over the line of the draft program among the OC organizations. The conference will also provide an opportunity for new organizations that agree with our principles of unity to unite with us. Shortly after the unity conference, the draft program will be printed publicly for open discussion and debate during the period leading up to the founding congress of the party itself.

The time for the actual formation of our party is near! With a revolutionary program to guide our work and a united, disciplined organizational form, our party will be founded on the firmest and strongest basis.