(This is the first section of Wu Bing's "Democratic Socialism is Capitalism". For the introduction and chapter headings, scroll down on this blog)
1. The real features of democratic socialism
As soon as it begins, Mr Xie Tao’s article clearly places democratic socialism in the position of the “pinnacle of human theory in the 20th Century”. According to him, since the most intense class struggles of the 18th Century, not only is there “competition for the public choice of the most advanced social system”, moreover “the result of the competition is a victory for democratic socialism, even with developed capitalism and developed communism, it is democratic socialism that is changing the world.”
Therefore, democratic socialism is already regarded as different to both socialism and the “third path” of capitalism.
And which countries are those that have had this “victory” of democratic socialism? Mr Tao has listed the United States, England, France, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Austria, Portugal, Holland, Italy, Denmark, Greece, Belgium, Luxembourg and so on. Mr Xie Tao is quite particular in pointing out that of the 15 European countries, 13 are democratic socialist countries, and thus it can be seen that its battle formation is huge, its momentum is developing, and it has an unlimited future. As Mr Xie Tao describes with such excitement, Europe is already in a “surging red tide”, “an economically booming, politically stable and socially harmonious new Europe” has appeared, and he flatters them for having “added some bright colours to the world”.
What actually is this treasure that Mr Xie Tao boasts is so dangerous and which he holds so highly? Let us see how in the political domain of world history, the decision already taken on this is annotated: “Democratic socialism: flaunted socialism, publicly opposed the ideological trend of Marxist reformism. It came about after the First World War. After the Second World War, the English Labour Party and the right wing leading cliques of some other countries’ socialist parties, in order to oppose Marxism and the proletarian revolutionary movement, and in order to make democratic socialism the slogan of their own guiding principles, convened the 1951 Frankfurt Congress of the Socialist International and publicly proposed in the manifesto of their publication “The Goals and Tasks of Democratic Socialism” that they use democratic socialism to oppose scientific socialism, to deny that classes and class struggle exist in capitalism, to oppose the proletarian revolution, and to oppose the destruction of the system of the private ownership of the means of production. They believe that in democratic Europe, Marxism would never again act as the effective strength of the theory of proletarian revolution. “Instruct them in the theory of evolutionary socialism”, “never again be able to take Marx’s famous maxim ‘expropriate the expropriators’ as their goal”. They spread a kind of special “third path” that was different to capitalism and to the “democratic socialism” of communism. They thought they could “strip the political category of revolution of any practical content”, that “as long as there was continuing reform, society could undergo changes.” They spoke highly of the “socialisation” of the functions of capital and the national economy. They proposed a “Second Industrial Revolution”. They declared that under the leadership of governments of Social Democratic parties, public ownership under capitalism was already a socialist system of ownership.” (“Concise Sociological Dictionary”, Shanghai Dictionary Publishing House, 1982, p 2292.) Referring to the Dictionary’s explanation, to sum up, we can clearly see that the essence of so-called democratic socialism is: in politics, to oppose socialism and pass off the so-called “new capitalism” and “the third path” as scientific socialism; in economics, oppose “expropriating the expropriators” and pass off reformist private ownership as socialist public ownership; in theory, oppose the theory of surplus value and historical materialism and pass off opportunism as Marxism; in questions of class struggle, use class reconciliation, cover up the class struggle and oppose violent revolution and the dictatorship of the proletariat. To summarise it in a single sentence: democratic socialism is imperialism in the moribund stage of capitalism; it does not even remotely connect with socialism.
Comparing Mr Xie Tao’s “Preface”, we can clearly see what the “Preface” promotes, and on the whole it is in the field of these several “opposes”. The “Preface” puts forward the so-called “mixed private ownership” of “the pattern of constitutional democratic socialism”, which is just private ownership; the so-called “democratic constitution” which is just the dictatorship of the bourgeoisie; the so-called “socialist market economy” and the “system of welfare protection”, which is the capitalist economic system.