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Against Global Capitalism
For World Freedom
by Robert Edwards  
(European Socialist Action No 33) 

Parliament invented me”, Oswald Mosley used to say. The seeds of his political convictions were sown in his early days in the Labour Party when he first grasped the opportunity to speak up for the unemployed and the working man and woman. He continued on that theme throughout his life, up to his death. He never waivered.

As a Member of Parliament, he was a formidable debater and was recognised, very early on, as Prime Minister material. There was no one more suited to the cut and thrust of parliamentary party-political debate and its biting invective than he.

It is not surprising that Mosley would adopt the phrase ‘European Socialism’ after the Second World War*. He was a socialist from the beginning, having used the phrase ‘socialistic imperialism’ when first standing for Parliament at the age of 22 as a Conservative Unionist candidate ... and then winning the seat in Harrow.

It is my belief that Mosley’s fascist phase (1932 - 1940) should be viewed simply as a pragmatic device to use fascist methods of state action for the purpose of pursuing his socialist aims, that is, curing the problem of unemployment that so blighted Britain’s social landscape in the 1920s and 1930s. In other words, it was a convenient fast-track vehicle for a higher purpose. As it turned out, fascism became entirely discredited after a second European war ... along with the fact that the loss of Empire made its economic arguments completely redundant. Fascism is now dead and buried.

The problem with fascism, he said, was it being far too nationalistic and that it tended to “ride roughshod over civil liberties”. Socialism, on the other hand, is a view of life that says co-operation is better than competition and that working together is better than working against each other. This is carried further onto a global level with the argument that competition within the international trading system means someone always wins at the expense of another nation in a never-ending struggle to export more than the others in order to keep on top. This always ends in disaster as we see today.

The answer is to create your own self-sufficient economic area in which you can organise, keeping control of wages and prices, completely free of world markets and free of international finance. That area is Europe and the system is to be based on the true socialism of a workers’ control of industry ... complete industrial democracy, in other words. The people should own the means of production, distribution and exchange. Is that not what Mosley campaigned for throughout his life, freeing the British worker, and later the European worker, from the parasites of international finance? Did he not say the people should have control over their own money supply?

Did he not say that within Europe a Nation, banks would serve the European people and only the European people? Their role would be completely positive and altruistic, in service to a European Socialist state, and not as an unregulated casino-style scam creating mayhem and misery for millions.

Service to the state would have its own rewards. It is that sense of service to the state that is so lacking today and only a socialist conscience, based on fundamental socialist principles, can inspire and imbue with that spirit of service. Left wing? Maybe, if you can only think in terms of an out-dated conflict. Such problems of ideological conflict were dealt with by the old Mosley formula of synthesis, anyway. So that you end up with a newer, inspiring creed taking socialistic ideas onto a higher level. That which is old, worn-out and irrelevant is left behind.

The necessity for a manufacturing industrial base is made even more evident today with the stronger performance of Germany in terms of economic growth. We always said Germany would lead the way because it always maintained that most dynamic of economic requirements ... a strong manufacturing base in the form a thriving car industry. For what is true wealth if it is not in the production of goods? Our lack of such a base is now Britain’s greatest weakness but it need not be so in a unified Europe harnessing all our resources in full co-operation throughout the continent.

Within the self-sufficient, self-regulating economic area of Europe a Nation we would need to grow our own produce to feed ourselves but, equally, we should create a strong and powerful home market for what can be the greatest opportunity to improve the standard of living for all the citizens of a European Socialist state. “As science increases the means to produce” was one of Mosley’s recurring themes and this is the key to building a higher civilisation for the European people. An advanced industrial society (side by side with a strong agrarian culture) needs markets for its goods and in order to be truly free of international competition we would need to develop the home market as sole consumers of these goods. This is where free market economics (Free Trade) is finally given the boot and at last we would have control over our own affairs instead of the buffeting created by the vagaries of the international trading system, always desperate to export under the constant threat of undercutting from low-wage economies. “Export or die” will become the desperate cry of a bygone age.

I should make it very clear that European Socialism can only work within a European system and that this is very different to the old international Socialism for several reasons. A ‘rational’ world economy was the goal of Marxists and, in particular, the disciples of Leon Trotsky. Both Marxism and capitalism are internationalist. The concept of an international proletariat is, in fact, a common interest factor in this idea of a world economy to which both Marxism and capitalism join hands in promoting.

You will say, how can this be because we all know that capitalism is the enemy of communism and vice versa? What was called economic nationalism, a system based on trade tariffs and protectionism, was the ‘capitalism’ that communists attacked. They would rather attack their own workers than surrender any idea of this mythical international proletariat, beloved of both the Marxists and the financiers of global big business.

On Free Trade (the global trading system we still have today), Karl Marx had this to say, “National differences and antagonisms between peoples are daily more and more vanishing, owing to the development of the bourgeoisie, to freedom of commerce, to the world market, to uniformity in the mode of production and in the conditions of life corresponding thereto. The supremacy of the proletariat will cause them to vanish faster.

The internationalising or globalising of production therefore serves the agendas of what were once perceived to be opposing ideologies, communism and capitalism. In 1902, Robert Blatchford, editor of The Clarion, published a book entitled Britain For The British. No, it was not a right-wing reactionary, racist diatribe ... it was, in fact, a defence of socialism in a way that differed completely to the communism of the prevailing international working men’s movements.

Explaining the title of his book, Blatchford wrote, “At present Britain does not belong to the British: it belongs to a few of the British who employ the bulk of the population as servants or as workers. It is because Britain does not belong to the British that a few are very rich and the many are very poor.

It is because Britain does not belong to the British that we find amongst the owning class a state of useless luxury and pernicious idleness, and among the working classes a state of drudging toil, of wearing poverty and anxious care.

This state of affairs is contrary to Christianity, is contrary to justice and contrary to reason. It is bad for the rich, it is bad for the poor; it is against the best interests of the British nation and humanity. The remedy for this evil state of things the only remedy yet suggested is Socialism. And Socialism is broadly expressed in the title and motto of this book: BRITAIN FOR THE BRITISH.

This sentiment ran counter to communism in one very important respect. It was a defence of the British worker in exactly the same way that European Socialism is in defence of the European worker.

Blatchford would have been considered a right-wing reactionary by Marxists for defending the British worker for the simple reason he did not include all the ‘workers’ in the world ... the international proletariat.

Further, according to Marx, “The protectionist system today is conservative, whereas the Free Trade system has a destructive effect. It destroys the former nationalities and renders the contrasts between workers and middle class more acute. In a word, the Free Trade system is precipitating the social revolution. And only in this revolutionary sense do I vote for Free Trade.

This has led us to an understanding of why contemporary neo-conservatives in American politics started off as Trotskyites in their student days. The founder of the neo-con movement, Irving Kristol, was formerly a student member of The Young Peoples Socialist League, part of the Fourth International. He was later a mentor to Henry Kissinger and an entire generation of ex-Trotskyites with a new global agenda in the form of the New World Order ... the basis of an American foreign policy bent on permanent war in place of permanent revolution.

As European Socialists we stand opposed to everything globalist because we oppose the destruction of cultural, social and religious identities that would be the inevitable result of a ‘rational’ world economy. The issue of immigration and border controls is one for which ex-Trotskyite neo-cons have engaged in, upholding a global capitalist agenda ... identical to that of communism insofar that a one-world system of production will transform millions into mere economic units as wage slaves bereft of any separate identity.

European Socialists says reject all this in favour of continental systems that will be large enough and strong enough to be independent of Free Trade and capable of planning your own economy on essentially democratic lines. It is not enough that we build Europe a Nation for this purpose but that we initiate similar revolutionary change throughout the world, identifying areas composed of their own unique cultural and social aspects, so that we have a true balance of interests in mutual respect. The goal is of a world that no longer competes but co-operates and the preservation of all the peoples of the world, their heritage and their unique ways of life. European Socialism leads to freedom from globalist slavery, both capitalist and communist.