[This issue of Peking Review is from massline.org. Massline.org has kindly given us permission to to place these documents on the MIA. We made only some formatting changes to make them congruent with our style sheets.]

Beat Back the Right Deviationist Attempt to Reverse
Correct Verdicts, Promote Industrial Production

[This Renmin Ribao editorial of March 28, 1976, is reprinted from Peking Review, #14, April 2, 1976, pp. 4-5. The person referred to as “the unrepentant capitalist-roader in the Party” is of course Deng Xiaoping (Teng Hsiao-ping).]

INITIATED and led by our great leader Chairman Mao, the struggle to beat back the Right deviationist attempt to reverse correct verdicts has become a powerful motive force promoting industrial production, communications and transport, capital construction, trade and financial work. The working class, taking its stance as the main force in the revolution, has in the past few months actively plunged into this great struggle. They have conscientiously studied Chairman Mao’s important instructions and the theory of the dictatorship of the proletariat and, with the righteous indignation of the proletariat, have risen to criticize that unrepentant capitalist-roader in the Party, thus further heightening their consciousness of class struggle and the two-line struggle and of continuing the revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat. The broad masses of workers and staff members have paid still greater attention to state affairs, and taken an active part in the struggle-criticism-transformation in the superstructure. They warmly support open-door schooling and scientific research and educated youth settling in the countryside. New things and new phenomena conducive to the restriction of bourgeois right such as worker participation in management and cadre participation in productive labour have emerged everywhere. All-time high records in production have been set in many enterprises, and creations and inventions have kept appearing. The excellent situation on the industrial, communications, financial and trade fronts proves that it is entirely groundless to worry that the counter-attack against the Right deviationist attempt might affect production.

Chairman Mao has given many important instructions in the struggle to beat back the Right deviationist attempt to reverse correct verdicts. These instructions, which defend and develop Marxism, are of tremendous and far-reaching significance in guiding us to carry out the socialist revolution and construction. Chairman Mao has pointed out: “With the socialist revolution they themselves come under fire. At the time of the co-operative transformation of agriculture there were people in the Party who opposed it, and when it comes to criticizing bourgeois right, they resent it. You are making the socialist revolution, and yet don’t know where the bourgeoisie is. It is right in the Communist Party—those in power taking the capitalist road. The capitalist-roaders are still on the capitalist road.” The worker comrades should earnestly study this important instruction of Chairman Mao’s and a series of his other important instructions. The proletariat is the leading class in the revolution. The contradiction between the proletariat and the bourgeoisie is the principal contradiction that runs through the entire historical period of socialism. It is particularly important for the leading class in the revolution to be clear about where the bourgeoisie is to be found, to be clear about the nature of the contradiction between the proletariat and the capitalist-roaders and the method to handle it, to analyse the political and ideological origins and the economic base that give rise to capitalist-roaders in the Party, and to sum up the experience gained in the struggle against them. Only by conscientiously studying Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tsetung Thought, deepening the understanding of the historical mission of the working class, and deepening the understanding of the law governing class struggle in socialist society, is it possible to raise the level of struggle, constantly triumph over revisionism and consolidate the dictatorship of the proletariat.

On the basis of studying Chairman Mao’s important instructions, it is necessary to penetratingly expose and criticize the revisionist line of the capitalist-roader in the Party who has refused to mend his ways. While centring our criticism on “taking the three directives as the key link,” we should criticize the theory of the dying out of class struggle and the theory of productive forces which form the theoretical basis of that revisionist line, and criticize eclectic sophistry. In the light of the actual conditions on the industrial front, some enterprises are criticizing the revisionist wares of that capitalist-roader such as: opposition to maintaining independence and keeping the initiative in our own hands and relying on our own efforts and advocating servility to things foreign and the doctrine of trailing behind at a snail’s pace; opposition to bringing into play the initiative of both the central and local authorities while re-imposing the practice of “direct and exclusive control of enterprises by the ministry concerned”; opposing the policy of “walking on two legs” and laying one-sided stress on things big and foreign; and opposing the “Charter of the Anshan Iron and Steel Company” and advocating the rules and regulations of the Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Combine of the Soviet Union. Through the criticism, people have come to see more clearly the reactionary nature of that unrepentant capitalist-roader in the Party in opposing Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line and betraying Marxism. Some other enterprises have summed up the progress they have made in management by carrying out Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line since the start of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution and refuted that capitalist-roader’s absurdities aimed at negating the Great Cultural Revolution. We should sum up the experience gained in this respect and deepen the mass revolutionary criticism so that the cadres and masses will further heighten their consciousness of adhering to the Party’s basic line and implementing the principles and policies formulated by Chairman Mao for the building of socialism. The mass theoretical contingent on the industrial front, which greatly expanded in the movement to criticize Lin Piao and Confucius, should play a still greater role as the vanguard and backbone force in the struggle to criticize the revisionist line.

The unrepentant capitalist-roader in the Party placed the national economy on the position of key link, as if he was the only person who cared about production and was most dedicated to the realization of the four modernizations (of agriculture, industry, national defence, science and technology). This is a sheer fraud. Our difference with him on this question is not whether production should be pushed forward and the four modernizations realized, but what line should be carried out and what road should be followed to achieve these purposes. Chairman Mao pointed out recently: “This person does not grasp class struggle; he has never referred to this key link. Still his theme of ‘white, cat, black cat,’ making no distinction between imperialism and Marxism.” This tells us that both production and modernization will go astray if we abandon the key link of class struggle, and if we reject the correct, Marxist line and the socialist road. If we follow his revisionist line, we can never develop production but will only sabotage it; we can never achieve socialist modernization but will only degenerate into capitalism! The history of the past two decades and more, especially since the start of the Great Cultural Revolution, proves that Chairman Mao’s proletarian revolutionary line is the only correct line for building our country into a powerful socialist state. We must follow Chairman Mao’s revolutionary line, push the national economy further forward and carry the continued revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat through to the end.

To beat back the Right deviationist attempt to reverse correct verdicts and to consolidate and develop the gains of the Great Cultural Revolution is in the basic interest of the working class and represents its strong demand. This struggle is bound to greatly enhance the socialist enthusiasm of the workers and staff members. Leading bodies at various levels on the industrial, communications, financial and trade fronts must take this into full account. It is necessary to strengthen the Party’s centralized leadership. It is necessary to “wholeheartedly rely on the working class,” have full faith in the masses and rely on them and, through mass revolutionary criticism, take further steps to solve the problems which exist in the relations of production and in the superstructure so as to bring into full play the revolutionary enthusiasm of the workers and staff members and develop the productive forces. In criticizing the reactionary theory of the productive forces, it is necessary to grasp class struggle as the key link in a more effective way, adhere to the principle of grasping revolution, promoting production, use revolution to command production and push it forward. The masses of workers and staff members should go all out, aim high and achieve greater, faster, better and more-economical results in fulfilling the state plans. They should carry forward the revolutionary spirit of building our country independently and with the initiative in our own hands, through self-reliance, hard struggle, diligence and thrift, conscientiously implement the “Charter of the Anshan Iron and Steel Company,” and advance further the mass movement In industry, learn from Taching. They should, in particular, do a good job in the production of iron and steel, coal and electric power, in the production of goods for agriculture and light industrial goods, and in railway transportation. It is essential to strengthen unity and the sense of organization and discipline within the working class and firmly keep to the general orientation of the struggle. It is essential to heighten revolutionary vigilance and guard against sabotage activities by the class enemies, against attempts to incite the masses to fight against one another and attempts to sabotage revolution by disrupting production.

This is the first year of the Fifth Five-Year Plan for developing the national economy. The industrial, communications, financial and trade fronts are undertaking a glorious and arduous task. It is the common determination of the broad masses of workers “to act in direct opposition to the Right deviationist attempt to reverse correct verdicts and dare to shoulder the heavy task of boosting production.” Under the leadership of the Party Central Committee headed by Chairman Mao and the Party committees at various levels, let us make a greater contribution to safeguarding and developing the victories of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, speeding up socialist construction and consolidating the dictatorship of the proletariat!

(“Renmin Ribao” editorial, March 28)

Peking Review Index   |  Chinese Communism  |  Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung