Through purgatory

- Yg. 1920, No. 42 -

The socialist economy, it is said, will produce for the needs, not for the market. It will proceed according to schedule and evenly, not chaotically and jerkily. Not just any individual, neither as an entrepreneur nor as a merchant nor as a customer, will have the word in her if he can only scream three houses farther than his neighbor; but the person or persons responsible will give him the floor, not because of his vocal cord performance.

This is revolution, no matter how long, crooked and “evolutionary” the path to it is. And the victorious voters at the church fair in our previous economy therefore don't want to know anything about it; while the only consumers, on whose noses the wild dance has been going on and who are allowed to pay the music and the bill, would be more satisfied with an order and settlement of the mess. Even the seemingly uninvolved subservient forces, which the actors use, the workers, agree - what do I say: agree? - It is they who have always expected from socialism paradise instead of hell, tranquility instead of agitation, dignity instead of disregard (demagogues say: enjoyment instead of effort).

In the united socio - political and economic committees of the Reich Economic Council is a recent application Baltrusch (Employee representative), who demands that "labor and capital should no longer be used to produce goods that are not economically necessary, but for the benefit of exports and the necessary domestic needs".

Donnerwetter, it was said, we have the ominous ones again Wissell-Moellendorff'sche planned economy, which a year ago detested by the businessmen and was not understood by the workers! Have you thought about it, worker? Well, so the story can start, because you are still powerful enough today to enforce yourselves?

But made: the bitter skepticism will report soon. Did you, Baltrusch, know what your resolute "resolution" means?

It also means for the workers, who are not so uninvolved in the transition to the social economy that the action did not need to worry them. They are even very unpleasantly passive involved. When colleague Baltrusch conjugates: I kill, that means for colleague Ixmüller: you will be dismissed.

I remember a gathering of Berlin printers in which I once wrote about the Socialization of the press have lectured. I pointed out the nonsensical overproduction of newspapers that exist in Germany, where every provincial nest must have three or four dirt sheets. I pointed to England and claimed that in Germany we could almost live with 300 dailies instead of 3000. One should deprive the newspaper publishers of their milking cow, on account of which the whole forest leaves out, the advertisement part, and reserved it to special publicly controlled advertisement sheets. Surely, the 3000 newspapers would soon be reduced to one-half, to one-third. The gathering of book printers listened attentively and applauded when hefty swipes fell on the greedy entrepreneur. But when the speaker was finished, there were three or four workers in a row, meaning that they could not join in, no matter how nice the speaker's thought might be, because that would make 50 percent of printers unemployed and leave their job lose their job may have to give up altogether.

That's the catch in the story, dear workers. You must know what a change of economy from unprofitable wild private capitalism to the economic form of consciously controlled, publicly controlled economy means for you: renunciation, difficulties, inconveniences, hardships, perhaps even distress, anxiety and poverty for a not-so-brief transitional period , Every stage of economic development has been not just a climb, but also a trip. Remember the artisans who have been dehydrated by industry and all its craft, or the workers who were blown up by new machines. Of course, when the public sector replaces the haphazard economy, the workers who will be freed will be absorbed again; and the skill of the leaders, the good will of the escorted will make it possible for the process of diversion to be as smooth as possible, as painless as possible, and to be carried out as quickly as possible. But without sacrifice, it will not go away for you workers. When surgery is performed, blood must flow. When factories are shut down and productions are abandoned, workers are initially unemployed, or at least - which is almost as bad - as unemployed. You have to relearn or move. There is nothing to change.

The road to socialism may not have to lead through hell as in Russia, but in any case it goes through purgatory. Did Baltrusch think of this when he submitted his proposal? And did the workers' representatives who voted for him all know what they were doing? After all, do the voters of those workers' representatives know what is waiting for their decision to be carried out (if any! Please, because it is only “material” for the government!)? If it were, then it would be good, then the transition to the public economy could begin.

1920, 42 · Sch.