* The way in which some workers respond to the liquidators' unprincipled preaching may also be judged from the following resolution published in Novaya Rabochaya Gazeta No. 21.
"We find this decision [to divide collections equally between the three newspapers] to be necessary and the only just one; first, because all three newspapers are, as workers' newspapers, equally subjected to penalties and persecution and, secondly, the overwhelming majority of workers, both here and in other parts of the country, have not yet gained a full understanding of the specifics of the various party trends and cannot with full knowledge attach themselves to any one of them, but are equally in sympathy with all of them."
The liquidators' newspaper has never made an attempt to explain to its readers, has never given them an opportunity of finding out whether a Narodnik newspaper may be considered a working-class newspaper, and whether it should be confused with a Marxist or even with a liquidators' newspaper. Novaya Rabochaya Gazeta prefers to stick to the "elemental", to plod along behind those who do not understand, as long as it can be "a nuisance" to the Marxists.
Severnaya Pravda, on the contrary, showed that equal division is an incorrect method and one that does not correspond to the aims and purposes of Marxism.
Every class-conscious worker, we repeat, must study this question with care and quite independently.
When a politically conscious worker has thought this over he will see that it is the old liberal argument about disrupting "unanimity against reaction" by the separation of the democrats from the liberals. It is a bourgeois argument and is profoundly erroneous.
The non-party masses "who cannot", as G. R. asserts, "get at the root of things", learn splendidly from examples. One who is still ignorant and not politically conscious, who cannot think or is too lazy to think and "get at the root of things" will wave his hand and say "I also protest, give them all an equal share". But one who begins to think and "get at the root of things", will also go to listen to a discussion on platforms, to the defence of the views of each trend, and, by listening to those who are more politically conscious, will himself gradually learn, and his indifference and his broad sympathy for all will change to a definite, thoughtful attitude to the newspapers.
The liquidators have forgotten all these elementary truths that "every worker should know and remember". They have proved by their plan to "divide equally" that they are correctly regarded as the vehicle of the non-party spirit, as renegades from Marxism and advocates of the "bourgeois influence over the proletariat" (see the unanimous decision of the Marxists, January 1910).
The Marxist organisation unites politically conscious workers by its common programme, common tactics, common decisions on the attitude to reaction, capitalists, bourgeois democrats (Narodniks), etc. All these common decisions -- among others, the decisions of 1908, 1912 and 1913 on the absurdity and harmfulness of reformism -- are upheld and are persistently implemented by the Marxists.
Discussions (talks, debates, disputes) about parties and about-common tactics are essential; without them the masses are disunited; without them common decisions are impossible and, therefore, unity of action is also impossible. Without them the Marxist organisation of those workers "who can get at the root of things" would disintegrate and the influence of the bourgeoisie on the unenlightened would thereby be facilitated.
In advocating collections in accordance with political trends, collections accompanied by a discussion on
platforms, the best St. Petersburg workers are struggling for Marxism against the champions of a non-party spirit.
We are confident that the workers will always and everywhere bend all their efforts to uphold only the Marxist system of collections and discussions, which educate the masses.