Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Poland and the World Crisis of Revisionism

First Published: The Workers’ Advocate Vol. 12, No. 4, April 5, 1982.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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Today the revisionist system in Poland is falling apart at the seams. The Polish economy is a total mess. Production has fallen dramatically, prices have risen sky-high, everything is in short supply, and no one knows when there will be an improvement. The political system is not only reactionary and oppressive, but it has fallen apart too. The ruling party is utterly discredited in everyone's eyes, and the generals make the law. The worthless official trade unions, instruments of revisionist oppression, have been abandoned by everyone, while the new "Solidarity" trade union is led by corrupt elements who want to sell Poland to the U.S.-led Western imperialists.

The capitalist press in the U.S. is ecstatic. Every day they tell the masses that, see, socialism doesn't work. At the same time, the capitalist press also nervously chews its nails: will Poland default and bankrupt the Western banks that have put their usurers' claws into Poland with their loans of billions of dollars? The Western bankers zealously urge on the Polish generals to tighten up the screws on the Polish workers and pay back the debts, with interest.

But what type of "socialism" is it that lives by the leave of the Western bankers? What is going on in Poland is a crisis all right, but it is not a crisis of socialism, but of revisionism. In Albania, which follows the Marxist-Leninist teachings, socialism is flourishing. There is no crisis, but steady progress instead. So the question arises: what caused the fiasco in Poland?

What happened is that Poland left the path of socialism in the mid-1950's and embarked on revisionist-style capitalism. Yes, Poland did embark on the road to socialism after the Nazis were defeated in World War II. In those tumultuous postwar years, in the face of the incredible devastation of Poland caused by the Nazi occupation -- including the mass murder by the bestial Nazis of millions of class conscious workers, Jews, intellectuals and Poles in general -- the Polish people wiped off the blood and began to triumphantly march forward, overcoming every hurdle in their way.

The turning point came when Khrushchov seized power in the Soviet Union and liquidated the legacy of Lenin and Stalin. The Khrushchovite revisionists seized power in Poland as well. Khrushchov and Brezhnev and the current Polish leaders have made no bones about the fact that they changed course. From the mid-50's on they shouted to the whole world that they were throwing out "Stalinism" and introducing a new, moderate socialism that would please everyone, capitalist and worker alike, a socialism free from the class struggle and the dictatorship of the proletariat. In fact, Khrushchov and his successors and imitators restored capitalism in their countries.

Hence what has happened since the mid- 1950's has been a test of revisionism, a test of what happens when one turns one's back on the scientific teachings of Lenin and Stalin. And the answer has been unmistakable. Up to the mid-1950's, the Soviet Union, Poland and other then-socialist countries marched forward despite tremendous obstacles. But later, after the revisionist takeover, under far more favorable economic conditions, these countries went into crisis. Revisionism could not stand the test of life.

Today the Polish revisionists are collapsing. And not just them, but all the revisionists, are worrying over how they are going to pay off their debts to the Western banks. They are scurrying around hat in hand trying to find "hard currency" to pay off their debts. The Soviet Union itself faces inflation, industrial stagnation, agricultural fiasco, alcoholism, and all the vices of capitalism. China too faces unemployment, inflation and stagnation. The Yugoslav revisionists -- who were the first to renounce socialism as early as the late 1940's -- have gone to the extent of publicly embracing Reaganomics. In a recent visit to Washington, Zvone Dragan, the vice-president of the Yugoslav Federal Executive Council, described himself as a "qualified supply-sider." He described how Yugoslavia was "pursuing a restrictive credit policy to restrain domestic demand, which was too high..." and boasted how the workers' wages were cut so that exports to satisfy the Western bankers could be increased. Dragan freely admitted what this meant: "Last year there was a drop of 4.7% in real terms in salaries and wages. In the past two years the decline has been 12%. We have 800,000 unemployed, about 12% of the work force." (New York Times, February 23, 1982, p. 30)

How disgusting. The revisionists are nothing but disguised capitalists. There is not a shred of socialism in the Soviet Union, or its satellites, or in China or Yugoslavia. Today, the only genuine socialist country in the world is Albania.

And what is the situation in Albania? Despite decades of being blockaded by the U.S. imperialists and the Soviet revisionists, despite starting from the most backward economy in Europe, Albania flourishes and marches forward. In Albania, which adheres to the Leninist-Stalinist laws of socialism, there is no crisis. Instead, the Albanian people are day by day growing more cultured, more militant, more prosperous.

The example of Poland, therefore, teaches us a valuable lesson: revisionism is doomed to failure. It is Marxism-Leninism, the teachings of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin, that lights the way forward out of the capitalist hell. It is the class struggle, the dictatorship of the proletariat, and the Leninist-Stalinist teachings that are all-powerful -- abandonment of them leads to the fiasco of capitalist- revisionist Poland.

Poland shows the crisis of revisionism. But all around the world the working class marches irresistibly forward. It is throwing aside the revisionist renegades like so many old rags. It will do this in Poland too. Just as the Polish workers broke the revisionist trade unions with a single powerful blow, so too they will establish their own revolutionary party, throw aside the sellout Lech Walesas, and make a new socialist revolution. On May Day, it is a time to denounce the revisionist class traitors and uphold the path of true socialism, the path of Marxism-Leninism.