From Fourth International, Vol.I No.2, June 1940, p.34.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.
Our appeal in the May issue of Fourth International for new subscriptions, which must be obtained in order to secure second class mailing rights, was met by all the branches with an enthusiastic drive that has poured subs into our office.
From coast to coast comrades have written in telling us about their plans to answer the challenge of the deserters who stole the New International. At forums, street meetings, house to house campaigns, and socials, a special campaign for subscriptions is being conducted. Additional newsstands are being contacted in order to widen the distribution of the magazine.
Many of the branches are concentrating on contacts for subscriptions, as this is an especially fruitful field.
Complete lists of expired subscriptions have been sent to all literature agents and a good proportion of the subscriptions which have come in since our drive was launched were obtained by following up these lists.
During the first two weeks of the drive a total of 181 subscriptions were sent in. This remarkable response demonstrates in workers’ language what our branches think of Fourth International. The number of subs according to branches follows:
New York City is in the lead with 35 subs. Arthur Wood, the new literature agent has shown that New York City can really produce and that there are big possibilities for increasing the circulation of the magazine. He reports all the literature agents have swung into action with remarkable enthusiasm.
Boston is second with 17 subscriptions. Good work! Johnny T., the literature agent, is certainly placing Boston on the record, not only for Fourth International but also for the Socialist Appeal.
Chicago is third with 16 subscriptions. Almost neck and neck with Boston. Sam R. is organizing the drive for the party press in Chicago.
St. Paul came within one subscription of tying Chicago. Ethel C. sent 15 subscriptions. Very fine work!
Minneapolis was nosed out by St. Paul by a narrow margin. C. Johnson sent 14 subscriptions. With the fine record of Minneapolis in the past, the other branches may expect real competition for the next report.
Los Angeles during the first week was a total blank. Then 12 subscriptions came in one batch. "We are starting a vigorous campaign for Fourth International subscriptions," writes Rose M. "Hope to send you more soon."
San Francisco sent 8 subscriptions. The literature agent here is Clair H. A special hand to the comrades there for their payment on the back bill. San Francisco is making a determined effort to clear up its account. An example for the other branches!
Toledo sent in 5 subscriptions. This is a fine showing, since the comrades there are largely unemployed and workers whose pay envelopes are constantly affected by plant shut-downs.
St. Louis comes in for special mention, too, with 6 subscriptions.
Among the smaller branches which are faced with special problems that make their work unusually difficult, and which nevertheless have got off to a fine start in sending subscriptions we list: San Diego, Quakertown, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh, and Lynn.
Phil. T. of Illinois sent us the following letter enclosing a $2 money order:
“I do not know if my subscription has run out. However, I am enclosing $2 for a renewal to help along. What the opposition has done about the old magazine, to my mind, is a dirty trick. They sent me one issue – and this renewal is my answer.”
And from Sacred Heart, Minnesota, we received the following reaction to the appearance of Fourth International:
“The formation of the ’third camp’ was not entirely a surprise to us. But it certainly was beyond us to believe that these turncoats would stoop to common, ordinary, cheap thievery such as they did with the New International. Now that this conceited clique has written itself out of our party, these left demagogues can keep busy digging their own graves.”
$3.00 was enclosed for a combination subscription to Fourth International and the Socialist Appeal.
Bundle orders remained about the same during the month. St. Paul, however, in addition to their fine showing in securing subscriptions, doubled their bundle order from 20 to 40 a month. A real live-wire branch!
Reading, Penn., also increased its bundle order.
Again we emphasize the need for prompt payment of bundle orders. Unless bundles are paid for immediately upon their receipt the financial burden is increased enormously. Every literature agent should make it a special point of revolutionary duty to see that these payments are sent in without the least delay. In view of the extraordinarily fine response in the sub drive we are not going to list any of the branches which are in the delinquent list. But watch out for next month!
A special problem is the payment of back bundle orders. Some branches have even allowed their bills to accumulate until they have reached a discouraging total. But with extra effort, especially if it is combined with prompt payment of the current bundle orders, these back balances can be liquidated. All branches faced with this problem should communicate to the manager their plan for liquidating these debts.
Our foreign mailings are becoming increasingly difficult. Censorship, vicious war laws, grave penalties for even being on the mailing list of our magazine makes the problem of getting Fourth International into the foreign countries especially difficult. We are asking you for help. Each month we must send out Fourth International in hundreds of bundles which require a minimum of 25¢ a bundle for mailing. Unless we receive extra contributions for this special problem we will be unable to get Fourth International to our comrades and sympathizers in the belligerent countries. The importance of getting our magazine there is obvious. Please help immediately by sending in as many quarters as possible.
And keep that drive steamed up for subscriptions!
Last updated on 20.9.2007