Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Revolutionary Communist Party

New Programme and New Constitution of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

(Drafts for Discussion)

The Party and the Masses

All the great changes described above are achievable in one way only–proletarian revolution. And proletarian revolution is impossible without a revolutionary party. In this country that means the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA.

There is and there will be more crisis in this country. There will be outbreaks of struggle–even massive outbreaks. But this, in itself, will never produce revolution. Through all this the bourgeoisie and its many agents, both open and in disguise, will be promoting one false solution after another, all ultimately coming down to one answer–“Keep America Number 1.” It is a vision that is as impossible as it is reactionary, but it will have forces grouped around it and can fool many for a time. The real question is, will there be another banner raised in this situation–the banner of revolution. And it is ultimately only a revolutionary party, guided by the revolutionary science of Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tsetung Thought, that can raise and carry that leading banner all the way through to victory.

Without such a party, the spontaneous, if sometimes very powerful, outbreaks of struggle against the many attacks and misery-producing effects of the capitalist system will eventually ebb, leaving the system that spawned them intact, if battered. Such struggles provide a strong basis for the work of the Party, but the Party’s crucial role lies in raising the consciousness of the masses involved to go over to something different–the struggle to seize power from the capitalist class. If the Party only goes tailing behind such struggles, and simply builds the struggle for reform, it will be like having no party at all–or even worse. Such a party would fall into “the movement is everything, the final aim is nothing”–which is revisionism, the betrayal of revolution. The Revolutionary Communist Party, USA stands completely opposed to this line. It has been tempered and strengthened in struggle against this thinking, even within its own ranks, and will continue to fight it as it inevitably re-emerges.

A party such as this is the deadly enemy of the bourgeoisie, which of course attacks it in order to wipe out the banner of revolution before the masses in their millions can rally to it. For just that same reason–and because without a party the working class ultimately has nothing at all–the advanced, class-conscious workers must step forward to build, support and defend the RCP, USA–and to unite with and join it. Party-building is a key task for the seizure of power. The Party must strengthen its political ties with the masses, carrying out agitation and propaganda, supporting and assisting significant oubreaks of protest and struggle. It must strengthen its ties with the international communist movement of which it is one part. The Party must apply the “mass line,” using the science of revolution to concentrate the essential lessons from the ideas of the masses and the experience of the whole class struggle in this country and worldwide. In this way, both the Party and the masses will become more and more prepared for the goal of revolution.

The Party must constantly bring forward into its ranks those who dedicate their lives to the cause of international proletarian revolution, who seriously take up the weapon of Marxism-Leninism, Mao Tsetung Thought and carry out the Party’s line and tasks among the masses. The members the Party must attract are those whose dedication is not to narrow and personal interests, but to the historic mission of communism. To win victory, the Party must be made up of those who embody the best qualities of the proletariat, who expect sacrifice, jail, even the gas chamber, and not some cushy job.

This will set the best possible conditions for the day revolution is victorious and the position of the Party in society changes and new contradictions, new–even harder and more historic–struggles come to the fore.

The Party will then occupy the strategic positions of leadership in the government, the economy and society as a whole, at the head of the proletariat in power. Then too, the leadership of the Party will be crucial, and so will continuing to revolutionize the Party. The latter question–of revolutionizing the proletarian party–has proven historically to be critical for the proletariat. For there are today many revisionist states whose leadership, capitalist to the bone, goes under the signboard of a “communist party.” In socialist society, the key levers of power will be in the hands of the Party members, who are theoretically and should actually be the most conscious and advanced members of the proletariat. But the real contradictions here, between leaders and led, can be transformed into something else: the relation between exploiters and exploited–party members can be transformed into bourgeois elements and representatives of a new bourgeoisie. If this happens throughout society, and this new bourgeoisie is able to usurp power from the proletariat, then the society will no longer be a socialist one, but capitalist. This is why the main danger of capitalist restoration once socialism is established comes from within the communist party itself–particularly from a section of those in the top leading positions.

There will be only one way to prevent this–mass revolutionary struggle against it. Through this struggle, together with the study of the science of Marxism, the masses will be enabled to distinguish the capitalist road from the socialist road, revolutionaries from counter-revolutionaries, and to better exercise their role as the masters of society. This was the way pioneered by Mao Tsetung in the Cultural Revolution. It means the genuine communists will support and lead the masses who rebel against new overlords. As Mao put it, “It is right to rebel against reactionaries.” Many of those who are in positions of authority and leadership can be revolutionized (or further revolutionized) through this. But there will be those who cannot, and they will have to be overthrown.

The genuine communists will place special emphasis on supporting and leading struggle to narrow the differences between leadership–and those who do “mental work” generally–and the masses. These differences must be attacked “from both sides,” involving the masses in the administration of society, in the affairs of state, etc. as well as in shaping and running education, culture and all other spheres of society and in mastering technical, scientific and other fields, on the one hand; and on the other hand, involving intellectual, technical and administrative personnel, political leaders, etc. in productive labor and scientific experiment as well as in political struggle together with the broad masses.

There will be those who resist this and do so bitterly. While the proletariat wants its own elimination as a class–through the achievement of communist, classless society–there will be some in the Party who do not want to move to the abolition of classes, who do not want to narrow and eventually eliminate such differences, because they are in power and view and treat this as a kind of capital–instead of treating revolutionary leadership as a great responsibility to the international proletariat and its historic mission of communism. At every stage in the revolutionary process, there will be those who want to settle down and feather their nests. But they must not be allowed to do it–again a question of mass struggle to prevent this. And this struggle will bring forward new successors to the revolutionary cause. Communists are, in their essence, innovators and most of all rebels–not “able administrators,” or people whose orientation is to “get down to business.” If society and the Party are not constantly revolutionized through mass struggle, then the only “business” that will get done is the business of capitalist restoration.

The genuine communists will lead the masses in this decisive battle to revolutionize the Party, and in that way strengthen the Party’s vanguard role–as part of the process of revolutionizing all of society and advancing toward the goal of the abolition of all class distinctions and with them the need for the Party itself.