Towards socialist revolution
The essential feature of a socialist revolution is the winning of state power by the working class and its allies. This can only be achieved when the great majority of the British people are convinced of its necessity and prepared to use their strength and organisation to bring it about. At each stage of the struggle, therefore, the aim of the left must be to win the working class and democratic forces — the majority of the people — to defend the gains already won, and to take the next steps in extending democracy, improving living standards and opening the way to socialism.
Success depends on the left becoming the dominant force in the labour and democratic movement and on the building of a mass Communist Party as part of that left. The working class and its allies, the overwhelming majority of the people, must aim to win the leadership of the nation and thereby decide its future destiny. The broad democratic alliance, developed and strengthened in mass struggles, must be reflected in a parliament which becomes a political expression of those struggles. The activity of the working class parties in parliament will need to be intimately linked with the mass struggle outside, each reacting on the other. In this way, the growth of the broad democratic alliance will result in a parliamentary majority enabling the formation of left, and later socialist, governments.
This strategy is based on our political and social conditions, historical traditions, degree of working class organisation, and the new world setting. Every socialist revolution is unique in specific respects. There are universal principles, such as the transfer of state power, but no universal pattern or model which can be followed. Export of revolution is a myth. Decisive social change can only arise out of the particular circumstances in each country.
Britain’s road to socialism will be our own road. The fact that it will be different from that taken in other countries is due not only to the specific position within Britain, but to the changes in the world brought about after the October Revolution in Russia, in 1917. This, the most significant event in world history, showed in practice that the workers and their allies could gain state power and construct socialism. But the path of the revolution, insurrection and the creation of the Soviets as organs of power, and the subsequent development of a one-party system, were determined by the particular conditions and background of Tsarist autocratic rule, counter-revolution and civil war, and imperialist intervention. Similarly, the methods by which socialism has been established in other countries have been determined by their particular circumstances and by the world situation at the time.
The different conditions and history of Britain, and the changed balance of world forces, make it possible to achieve socialism in Britain by a different road. The working class is the majority of the population. The potential power of the labour movement is enormous. Together with its allies it can isolate the big capitalists and confront them with overwhelming strength. The democratic forces have had long experience of struggle and have won civil liberties and democratic rights which, though under constant attack, give the basis for carrying forward the political struggle. Parliament, itself the product of past battles for democracy, can be, and needs to be, transformed into the democratic instrument of the will of the working class and its allies, who constitute the vast majority of the people. Though there is the possibility of outside intervention against a socialist government, this has been diminished by the change in the world balance of forces.
Through the democratic transformation of society, including the state, in all the stages of the struggle, democracy can be carried to its utmost limits, breaking all bourgeois restrictions on it, and creating the conditions for advance to socialism without armed struggle.
Next stage in the revolutionary process
The achievement of state power by the working class and its allies will not be a single act, but the culmination of a process of struggle. The length of this process will be determined by the outcome of the struggle at various stages. Breaking the grip of the capitalist class on every area of life, political, economic and cultural, and winning the majority of the people for socialist policies, is a complex, difficult and many-sided process which will, as all previous experience shows, take time.
It is impossible to proceed overnight from Labour governments which in effect manage capitalism to a government which introduces socialism. The political conditions for establishing a socialist government do not yet exist: they have to be won. Left governments are part of the process which must show the need for much more fundamental change, while at the same time creating more favourable conditions for such change.
A strategy for socialist revolution has to be able to show the way forward and indicate the stages in that process as well as the ultimate objective.
The next stage is to expand and unify all aspects of the struggle of the working class and its allies, and to raise its aims to the winning of a new type of Labour government, which will begin to carry out a left policy. Bound up with this is the nature of the alternative programme to that of the ruling class, and the development of democracy at the grass roots in fighting for it. The essentially defensive stage of resistance to ruling class attempts to put the burden of the crisis on the people must be developed into the battle for the complete alternative policy, and for the new type of Labour government which will carry it out, supported and pressed forward by the power of the mass movement and a strong Communist Party.
This alternative policy needs to be one which will rally the widest support from those who want to combat the crisis and its effects, even if at this stage they do not see the need to change the system itself. It must be seen as relevant and realistic, but must also make inroads into monopoly power. It must safeguard the national interests of the British people, now under attack from international monopoly capital — an attack facilitated by Britain’s entry to the Common Market. The ability of Britain to survive as a manufacturing country, and its capacity to decide its own destiny, are at stake. The fight to safeguard Britain’s industrial future is central to the future of the working class and the development of revolutionary struggle.
The left has the task of putting Britain on a new course, so that far-reaching changes in society are initiated, the crisis is tackled at the expense of the big capitalists and not the working people, democratic rights are greatly extended, and the quality of life and personal freedoms enhanced. Its programme, therefore, must be democratic and bring social change — in the economy, in the state, in education, in culture and elsewhere. The essentials of such a programme can be summarised as follows.*
a) For a government to exercise effective control over the operation of the economy, the key firms among the top firms which dominate the economy must be nationalised, while at the same time drastic controls must be instituted over the investment, production, and employment policies of those remaining in private hands (which at this stage would still be in the great majority). The decision on specific firms to be nationalised should be agreed by the movement after the widest consultation. The big banks and the major insurance companies must be nationalised if effective control of the economy is to be exercised. The oil industry should be added to the existing nationalised industries. In all cases only limited compensation should be paid to shareholders. All energy resources should be publicly controlled and managed as part of an overall plan. Further large-scale nuclear development should only take place if and when the vital issues of safety and our responsibility for the future of humanity are satisfactorily resolved. There should be an integrated transport system, with the emphasis on providing better and cheaper public transport. Britain should urge and support international action to control the activities of the multinational firms. Increased public control of the economy would require not only the passing of laws in parliament, but the mobilisation of the working people. There would need to be full democratic participation by the workers in decision-making at all levels.
b) A key question would be the balance of payments, which has to be tackled in a new way. The steps outlined above can lead to a transformation of the structure and efficiency of British industry based on increased and carefully-directed investment in the main industries. These steps have to be combined, however, with a ban on the export of capital and the ending of military expenditure overseas. The repeated and fatal attempts to “solve” Britain’s immediate balance of payments problems by resorting to the international financiers and borrowing, which place major restraints on the country’s sovereignty and freedom of decision, should be ended. Major overseas shareholdings of British firms and institutions should be sold off, the proceeds used to reduce indebtedness, and the role of sterling as a reserve currency ended. Selective import controls would have to be imposed. Withdrawal from the Common Market and an end to its economic and political restrictions would enable Britain to determine its economic strategy and develop its trade on a world scale. These measures would enable some of the key economic problems to be tackled, and secure an important degree of planned development of the British economy, as well as a change in its direction.
c) There has to be a change of social priorities so that there is a big extension of social service spending on pensions, benefits, housing, health and education. Military expenditure should be severely curtailed and part of the arms industry converted to peacetime production. A wealth tax should be introduced, corporation taxation increased, taxation on lower income groups reduced or abolished, and interest rates cut. Price controls should be enforced and VAT abolished. The role of the Co-operative movement in distribution and production should be extended. Increased rates of growth resulting from these combined measures, and the consequent reduction in unemployment, would provide big additional resources for social spending. There should be full restoration of collective bargaining and increased wages, together with an agreed national minimum wage.
All these policies would require the closest co-operation between the government and the unions. A government carrying out such a progressive economic policy could be assured that the unions would take this into consideration in forming their wage demands.
The fierce resistance to this policy which would come from the monopolists and bankers at home and abroad would have to be met by mobilising wide popular support for it on the basis of full democratic discussion at every level in society, and by co-operation with progressive governments and movements in other countries. The right of the democratically-elected government to carry out its programme would be firmly maintained. Concentrating the measures of nationalisation on the main monopoly groups would create possibilities for dividing the capitalist class and preventing united capitalist counter-action. The private sector of the economy would be subject to the general economic controls necessary to ensure the carrying out of the government’s programme. There would also be practical measures to help small businesses, shop- keepers and farmers, in the form, for example, of cheap credits, the abolition of VAT, and rent controls.
A central problem facing the left is how to democratise power and extend democracy. This is not just a question of freedom to express opinions and vote in elections, important though these are. Democracy concerns the extension of control by the people over every aspect of political, economic and social life. This can only be fully realised as socialism is built, but a start must be made in the process of fighting to achieve socialism, and this should be a key part of the programme of the left forces.
MPS should have greater control over the executive; there should be provision for their recall; voting should be on the basis of proportional representation; the House of Lords and the Monarchy should be abolished. Local government should be made more democratic, with all council and committee meetings open to the public, and more consultation with electors between elections. New relations between central and local government and local democratic institutions such as community associations, trades councils, local health councils, etc. should be developed, giving them more influence over national decisions and more power in local affairs.
The civil service should have a democratic structure and should be made more immediately accountable to parliament and the people, and its top personnel radically changed. Drastic changes should be made in the Official Secrets Act to stop it being used as a means of suppressing essential information or as a weapon of victimisation.
Democratic changes in the armed forces and the police are vital. Britain under left governments would need efficient and adequately-equipped armed forces to defend it against enemies. But it is essential that the domination of their upper echelons by representatives of the capitalist class should be ended, and that members of the forces should have full trade union and democratic rights. This should also apply to the police force, and the use of both for strike-breaking or other actions against democratic rights should be prohibited. Democratic supervision of the police and armed forces by parliament and local authorities should be strengthened.
Left governments should also take the most vigorous measures to combat racism. All racist legislation such as the 1971 Immigration Act should be repealed, and any regulation of immigration should be on a non-racial basis. The Race Relations Act should be strengthened and implemented. A programme of expanding social services, housing and education, taking account of the particular problems of minority groups, should be instituted to end the present conditions of deprivation in which so many people live. This would remove some of the underlying grievances exploited by the racists.
The parliamentary structure must be transformed so as to provide for an effective voluntary union of the nations of England, Scotland, and Wales. The Scottish and Welsh parliaments should have adequate legislative, economic and financial powers to begin to deal with the basic problems of their countries. The people of England should have similar rights in relation to their affairs. These changes would be important steps in the re-structuring of the governmental system so as to give the people far greater control over their lives.
The trade unions, fully independent and free from government interference or control, would have an important part to play in influencing government policy and supporting it against attacks from the right. A big development of industrial democracy, shifting the balance of power in favour of the workers, would be vital to the carrying out of these policies and in overcoming monopoly resistance. Workers elected directly, and others appointed by the TUC, should comprise a majority of the management boards of the nationalised concerns. The boards’ responsibilities of decision-making on all important matters should be on the basis of mutual agreement with the trade unions. There would be a similar participation and control at all levels. Such steps would make a significant contribution to the extension of workers’ control and industrial democracy within the nationalised industries and firms, and to the democratic planning of the economy. In the remaining private sector, workers’ participation in management should be opposed, since it would be disguised class collaboration. The necessary extension of industrial democracy in the private sector should be achieved by struggle by the unions. They should seek to expand the area subject to collective bargaining and mutual agreement to include all important decision-making, e.g. forward manpower planning, investment and the location of development projects. Mandatory provision of all relevant information to the unions, or ‘opening the books’, is a pre-condition for an effective extension of such collective bargaining. Much greater control over the organisation and policy of educational institutions, hospitals, local government and welfare services must be exercised by those who work within them, as well as by the public through its democratic organisations, This will help to improve both their efficiency and the service they give to the community.
The practical foundation for women’s liberation must be laid by the full implementation of equal pay and equal opportunities; the provision of adequate nurseries and child-care facilities; the extension of public services such as laundries and non-profitmaking restaurants; more out-patient abortion services and more research into, and provision of, contraception, so that women have the right to control their own bodies.
The development of a live artistic culture should be stimulated, and those involved in the arts, sport, leisure, and education should be encouraged and helped to use their abilities, inventiveness and imagination to satisfy the cultural needs of the people. In this way intellectuals would make a major contribution to the creation of a society in which culture would cease to be dominated by commercial considerations, and people’s talents would be developed to the full. This would also involve the provision of the necessary financial and material resources by the government and by local authorities. Science and technology should be democratically controlled and planned, and become less remote from the people, and should no longer be subordinated to the needs of the big monopolies.
Monopoly control of the newspapers and the media should be ended. As a first immediate step, the situation in which one firm or individual can control several daily and Sunday newspapers should be dealt with, and no one firm or person allowed to control more than one daily or Sunday newspaper. Further steps should be urgently taken to break up the monopoly groups, and government-owned printing facilities acquired from them should be placed at the disposal of democratic bodies, such as trade unions, co-operatives and social groups, at reasonable rates. The newsprint and ink firms should be nationalised. All television and broadcasting services, both national and local, should be democratically controlled. All democratic parties should have the right to own and operate their newspapers and presses, and their representatives should be accorded full access to the media. The expression of racist views in the media would be prohibited.
A new foreign policy
Britain should pursue an independent foreign policy, based on the principle of peaceful co-existence, co-operation with socialist states and progressive forces in the capitalist world, and support for the national liberation movements. It should campaign for détente and the fulfilment of the Helsinki Agreements, withdraw from NATO, and work for an agreed dissolution of both NATO and the Warsaw Pact and their replacement by an all-inclusive European Security System, as a step toward world peace and security. Further, Britain should unilaterally renounce nuclear arms, dismantle existing nuclear war bases in Britain, and support a treaty to outlaw the manufacture and possession of nuclear weapons by all nations, with a similar prohibition of germ and chemical warfare. It should work for general and complete disarmament.
Independence should be granted to all remaining British colonies and all British troops abroad should be withdrawn. All foreign military bases in Britain should be wound up. Active support should be given to national liberation struggle, particularly in Southern Africa, where British capitalist interests are aligned with reactionary racialist governments, and to the achieving of a lasting peace in the Middle East on the basis of United Nations resolutions and guarantees of an acceptable homeland for the Palestinians. Britain should repudiate nee-colonialist policies and make a significant contribution in aid to the third world anti-imperialist countries.
It should ensure a democratic solution in Northern Ireland, based on the implementation of a Bill of Rights, the end of all repressive measures, the withdrawal of British troops to barracks, and financial and other measures to begin to tackle the appalling problems of poverty and unemployment. These steps would create conditions in which sectarian strife could be ended and British troops withdrawn completely. The British Government should recognise the right of the majority of the people of Ireland to rule the whole of their country, and should co-operate with their representatives in bringing this about by consent. These policies would lay the basis for a new relationship of co-operation between the peoples of Ireland and Britain.
These are some of the points we put forward as the basis for the left alternative programme. The struggle for them starts now, and is part of the process of bringing about a left government which would put them into effect. The detailed working out and application of the programme by such a government would take into account the economic situation and the balance of forces at home and in the world.
A new kind of Labour government
The programme we have put forward includes proposals which should be pressed on whatever Labour government is in office. But its full implementation could only come about as a result of the election of a new type of Labour government — not a reluctant right-wing government compelled to implement one or two left measures, but one which would be the product of, shaped by, and respOnsible to the broad democratic alliance. This could only come about as a result of further decisive change to the left, in the Labour Party, its national executive committee and parliamentary party, in the strength and size of the Communist Party, and in the relationship of the Communist Party and the Labour Party. It is in the course of this struggle that leaders would emerge who would comprise a government elected on the basis of the left programme, and determined to carry it out.
To guarantee this change, a stronger Communist Party is essential, with Communists in parliament and the local councils, and a big extension of its influence in every sphere of political life. Communist representatives in parliament would be essential to the left fight for a fundamental change in society. This is shown both by British experience and by the important left developments in other West European countries. The leadership and record of service to the working class movement of the Communist Party in struggles outside parliament needs to be reflected inside.
The fundamental characteristic of a government committed to the left programme would be its attitude to the class struggle and the respective classes. Unlike previous Labour governments, it would tackle the economic problems in the interests of the working people and in-the process shift the balance of class forces against the big capitalists and their allies. It would not be a socialist government carrying out a socialist revolution, but one which, in close relationship with the mass struggle outside parliament, would begin to carry out a major democratic transformation of British society.
This could produce a further left shift in the labour movement, widen and politically enrich the broad democratic alliance, and strengthen the left parties. In particular, the influence of the Communist Party, because of its nature and unique role, would be greatly increased, as it gave leadership to the mass movement and won parliamentary representation. Subsequent left governments, therefore, would almost certainly be of a different composition — with the Labour Party shifting further to the left, the Communist Party being increasingly represented in government, other progressive forces perhaps being added, and new forms of Labour-Communist unity being forged. As a consequence the programme of subsequent left governments would also be more far-reaching.
The relationship between governments and the broad alliance
The success of such left governments would depend on the closeness of the relationship with the mass movement, their willingness to respond to its demands and initiatives, their capacity to mobilise the movement, and their ability to move at a pace which would strengthen the broad democratic alliance. Co-operation with, and support from, the trade unions, the Co-operative movement, the political parties of the labour movement and the other existing progressive organisations would be vital. Especially important would be campaigning at local level through the various organisations and movements, above all through the trades councils. New forms of popular organisation and new forms of struggle, giving united expression to the demands of the people, would also undoubtedly develop. They cannot be forecast in detail, but would probably include factory councils, neighbourhood committees and tenants committees, linked to more representative trades councils and helping to organise and mobilise the people and resist the sabotage of the ruling class. It would be of the utmost importance for the left governments and the broad democratic alliance to encourage the development of such new forms of organisation and struggle as an element of the new state power by which the working class and its allies will eventually govern the country.
The governments’ actions would strengthen the position of the working class, widening its alliances and deepening the political understanding of the broad democratic alliance. first, to the extent that they successfully tackled the country’s problems, promoted social justice and extended democracy, they would strengthen the appeal of the left forces. Second, by shifting the balance of forces, left governments would greatly strengthen the position of the working class and its allies. For example, nationalisation and greater democratic control over the economy as a whole would weaken the economic power of the big capitalists, and the measures taken to democratise the media would also help, to undermine their ideological power and influence. Similarly, democratisation of the state structure would begin to break the grip of the ruling class over the various parts of the state apparatus. Third, resistance from the right would demonstrate the vital importance of extra-parliamentary action, especially at times of acute struggle around particular actions of the government or in relation to elections. It would also underline the need for the government to go further: for example, to nationalise more big firms, control currency movements more effectively, speed up reforms of the civil service and the armed forces, etc.
The revolutionary transition
The process described above can produce a profound change in the balance of class forces in the country. For social revolution and the transition to socialism, however, state power is critical. What is needed is the transfer of state power from the old ruling class to the working class and its allies, and the transformation of the state apparatus so that it serves the needs of the working people. On no subject in Britain is there such hypocrisy as that of the state. The modern state is the product of monopoly capitalism. The major civil service and army reforms of the past period were carried through to shape a state machine which would serve the needs of capitalism. The social composition, training and indoctrination of the higher echelons of the state apparatus are governed by this aim. Governments come and go, but the social nature of the existing top state personnel is permanent. On retirement they almost invariably join the boards of big business, and the reverse process also takes place.
Labour governments so far have made no basic changes in the social composition and functioning of this apparatus, and, in fact, have often strengthened the capitalist grip on it. But left governments can and must change the composition and structure of the state machine by democratising it. Even before any such government is elected, this must be fought for. There should be no illusions — this will be the most bitterly contested aspect of the programme of left governments, not least from within the state machine itself.
A left majority in the House of Commons and the establishment of a left government would mark a major change. It would mean that the legislature and the executive would have passed out of the hands of the capitalist class into those of the working class and its allies. At this stage the rest of the state apparatus — the armed forces, police, civil service, etc. - would still be controlled by the class representatives of capitalism. But Parliament’s authority is central to the British political system, and it should be used by the left majority and the left government, with the backing of the mass struggle of the people, to carry through a radical transformation of the state apparatus to correspond to the political change expressed in the electoral verdict of ' the people. This would mean carrying further the steps outlined earlier, including changes in top personnel, in methods of recruitment and training, and in the way the various departments function, as well as the abolition of some departments, the addition of new ones, and more democratic rights for those working in the state apparatus. This process, in which the state machine will become increasingly an arena of class struggle, would bring the mass of state employees into closer relationship with the rest of the working ‘class, thus carrying still further the process of transforming the state. Alongside such democratic changes within state institutions, steps to ensure more control of them by the elected representatives of the people should be introduced.
Meeting capitalist resistance
The ruling class will fight against this process by every possible means. Even before labour governments of the left emerged, and particularly after their establishment, there would be the utmost resistance from the ruling class to prevent their establishment, with violent campaigns in the media, hostile demonstrations, economic sabotage by big business, attempted removal of assets from the country by the multinational firms, and contrived runs on sterling. The aim would be to create an atmosphere of social chaos in which the use of force could also be resorted to. All forms of international pressure, particularly from the us, would be exerted.
In such circumstances, the actual measures taken by the government would depend on the balance of strength between the capitalist forces and those of the broad democratic alliance. The most sustained pressure, mobilising the organised working class and progressive forces, would be needed to keep the government on a correct course and defeat the resistance of the monopolists and their allies. The Communist Party would have a special responsibility in this situation for developing and leading the mass struggle and campaigning on the political issues involved in the factories, localities, working class organisations, colleges and schools. As the struggles developed, the question of adopting further left measures would come to the fore.
Right-wing resistance could take legal forms, such as efforts to change the law to make the election of left governments more difficult or impose limitations on their powers, and attempts to overthrow such governments in general elections. Illegal methods, sabotage and an armed coup could also be resorted to.
The political battle will be conducted by the big capitalists mainly through the Tory Party. We hold the view that the struggle to achieve and build socialism should take place in conditions of political pluralism. That is, all democratic parties, including those opposed to socialism, should be guaranteed political rights and the right legally to contend for power in elections. The expression of racist views, however, would be prohibited by law. The declared position of the labour movement, including the Communist Party, is that it would respect the verdict of the electors, and that a left government would stand down if defeated in an election. The possibility of the Tory Party and its allies being able to inflict such a defeat on the left would be reduced to a minimum by the correct policies of a left government, winning the support of the majority of the people, taking them into its confidence, and extending their democratic rights.
The aim would be to win away from the Tory Party many of those millions of working people who still vote for it, and indeed this is a precondition for the establishment and success of the left government.
The Tory Party’s position would be further weakened by the measures taken against its principal backers, the big monopolists, and by the steps taken to break monopoly control of the press and open up the mass media to the working people. Moreover, it is likely that, as the country moves left, the Tories will increasingly be racked by internal divisions on the question of how to avoid losing their mass basis. But the possibility of the Tories, or a coalition of capitalist parties, defeating the left government in an election, cannot be excluded. In that event, there would be no question of a coup from the left to reverse the electoral verdict, though it should do its utmost to rally the working people to resist attempts by the right-wing government to reverse the economic and political gains they had won.
The real danger of a coup would come from the right. If unable to defeat the left in democratic political struggle, the big capitalists, as history has shown, could well turn to the use of force. This was shown in Chile, and has been further demonstrated by the reaction of the United States and other Western governments to the advances. of the left in Italy and France, and their political and financial support of the right-wing forces. In the event of such a right-wing coup being prepared, the left government should take effective measures to prevent it being launched. If, despite this, the coup was attempted, the government should have no hesitation in using force to defeat it, and mobilising the full strength of the working class and progressive movement to defend democracy.
The critical problem would be the composition and attitude of the armed forces. This faces the left with four tasks. First, democratic reforms in the armed forces are a vital question for today, and not just in the future. Second, at each stage every effort should be made to strengthen the broad alliance and its support for the left government, since this would have a great effect on the decision of the armed forces on whether or not to act. Third, the left needs to win direct political support from among the armed forces themselves. This would be assisted by the democratic reforms already proposed, and by the way in which the strength and activity of the broad democratic alliance affected members of the forces. Finally, the left governments themselves would need to transform the structure and leading personnel of the armed forces as rapidly as the situation allowed.
A coup is neither inevitable nor impossible. Its possibility depends primarily on the relation of political forces. Hence the importance of winning the mass political majority, with the working class as its core, ready and willing to use its strength to support the left government. This also emphasises the need to win all democratic forces around the Labour movement, so isolating the right-wing forces. The more support there is for the left government, the less will be the possibility of creating the political atmosphere of tension and social chaos in which a coup could be launched.
This, then, is the process of transition to socialism in Britain as we see it. It can only come about when the majority of the people are convinced that it is necessary and that they want it and are prepared to overcome all the powerful forces which will strive to maintain capitalism.
As the battles-to extend democracy and challenge the power of the monopolies sharpen, more and more people will come to see the necessity to end capitalism and build a new socialist society. And in those battles they will achieve the clarity, strength of purpose, unity and organisation required to do so.
It will be a process in which the strong points of capitalist power — economic, political and ideological — are successively taken over by the working people. The later stages of the democratic process would, in effect, be the period of revolutionary transition to socialism. This would involve carrying the democratic process to its conclusion — the complete ending of the grip of the monopoly capitalists on society, and the transfer of political and economic power and of the state apparatus into the hands of the overwhelming majority of the population, the working class and its allies.
* Detailed plans on various industries and social questions cannot be included in a programme of this kind. They can also vary from time to time in the light of new developments. The Communist Party produces both short and long term proposals of a more detailed character on many such issues, to supplement the general policy outlined in this programme.