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find these middle class leaders attacking with much bitterness the narrow social ideals current in their own class, protests against the absurdity of Socialists denouncing the very class from which Socialism has sprung as specially hostile to it.' The Fabian Society has
same narrow ideals. Like every other Socialist society, it can only educate the people in Socialism by making them conversant with the conclusions of the most enlightened members of all classes. The Fabian Society, therefore, cannot reasonably use the words " bourgeois” or “middle class " as terms of reproach, more especially as it would thereby condemn a large proportion of its own members.
XII. Fabian Natural Philosophy. The Fabian Society endeavors to rouse social compunction by making the public conscious of the evil condition of society under the present system. This it does by the collection and publication of authentic and impartial statistical tracts, compiled, not from the works of Socialists, but from official sources. The first volume of Karl Marx's “ Das Kapital,” which contains an immense mass of carefully verified facts concerning modern capitalistic civilization, and practically nothing about Socialism, is probably the most successful propagandist work ever published. The Fabian Society, in its endeavors to continue the work of Marx in this direction, has found that the guesses made by Socialists at the condition of the people almost invariably flatter the existing system instead of, as might be suspected, exaggerating its evils. The Fabian Society therefore concludes that in the natural philosophy of Socialism, light is a more important factor than heat.
Fabian Repudiations. The Fabian Society discards such phrases as “the abolition of the wage system,” which can only mislead the public as to the aims of Socialism. Socialism does not involve the abolition of wages, but the establishment of standard allowances for the maintenance of all workers by the community in its own service, as an alternative to wages fixed by the competition of destitute men and women for private employment, as well as to commercial profits, commissions, and all other speculative and competitive forms of remuneration. In short, the Fabian Society, far from desiring to abolish wages, wishes to secure them for everybody.
The Fabian Society resolutely opposes all pretensions to hampe the socialization of industry with equal wages, equal hours of labor, equal official status, or equal authority for everyone. Such conditions are not only impracticable, but incompatible with the equality of subordination to the common interest which is fundamental in modern Socialism.
securing to any person, or any group of persons," the entire product of their labor." It recognizes that wealth is social in its origin and must be social in its distribution, since the evolution of industry has made it impossible to distinguish the particular contribution that each person makes to the common product, or to ascertain its value.
The Fabian Society desires to offer to all projectors and founders of Utopian communities in South America, Africa, and other remote localities, its apologies for its impatience of such adventures. To such projectors, and all patrons of schemes for starting similar settlements and workshops at home, the Society announces emphatically that it does not believe in the establishment of Socialism by private enterprise.
Finally. The Fabian Society does not put Socialism forward as a panacea for the ills of human society, but only for those produced by defective organization of industry and by a radically bad distribution of wealth.
The Eight Hours Day. The Congress declares its adhesion to the resolution regarding the Eight Hours Day passed at the Zurich Congress, and puts forward the following proposals as the immediate steps to be taken towards the introduction of that reform and as the irreducible minimum of the demands of Labor :1. That the hours of labor for all Government and Municipal
employees shall be at most eight per day or forty-eight per
2. That in the mining, railway, and baking industries, and in all
dangerous trades, the working-day shall be limited to eight
hours; 3. That in all other industries the Minister responsible for Labor
shall be bound, on the demand of a Labor organization, to institute an enquiry into the hours of labor in any given
trade, and to issue, subject to formal revision by the Of Legislature, such regulations as may, to his expert advisers,
seem expedient ;
14. That, subject to cases of unforeseen emergency, for which an
indemnity must be obtained from the Minister responsible
for Labor, overtime above the hours specified in the foregoing clauses shall be prohibited.
Child Labor. ConsideringThat the employment of children in industry at too early an age
is not only injurious to their health, but also causes physical deterioration in following generations; that their competition is used to beat down the wages of adult workers ; and that the only possible excuse for the employment of children, namely, the training of them to be efficient workers, no longer exists owing to the breakdown of the apprenticeship system through the development of extreme
specialization in manufacturing processes, This Congress demands- 1. That the minimum age at which children can be employed as
half-timers shall be raised at once to 14 years, and in two
years time to 16. 2. That the minimum age for full-timers shall be similarly fixed
at 16 years, and in two years at 18. 3. That in mines, glass-works, iron-works, and all dangerous
trades, the minimum age of employment shall be 16. 4. That the State shall provide an efficient system of technical
education, free and compulsory, with maintenance, 'for children between the time of their leaving the elementary school and the age at which they can be fully employed as workers.
Factory Legislation. Considering That it is one of the chief duties of the State to secure the
health and safety of the workers, but that this duty cannot : be effectually fulfilled unless it is undertaken in a scientific
manner, The Congress demands1. That every Government shall institute committees of experts
(including machine workers) to study the best means of
preventing accidents from the different kinds of machinery; 2. That every Government shall also establish laboratories for
the investigation of the safest processes of manufacture; 3. That, supported by the opinion of his expert advisers, the
Minister responsible for Labor shall have power to issue departmental regulations in such matters as the fencing of machinery, precautions to be taken in manufacture, etc.,
and also, subject to revision of his orders by the Legisla: ture, to prohibit processes as dangerous;
4. That the white-lead industry and the making of matches
from yellow phosphorus-dangerous occupations for which safe and effectual substitutes are acknowledged to existshall be at once prohibited.
Women's Work. That this Congress approves the principle of equal pay for equal
work; and of equal opportunities for educational and technical training for men and women; and strongly urges, for the benefit of both sexes, the immediate practical application of this principle.
Government Workshops. This Congress, recognizing that even under the present order of society the manufacture by the Government of all the commodities which it requires to perform the functions entrusted to it by the nation can be made the means of setting a fair standard of employment and of putting down sweating, but that at the same time it can be used simply as tax-saving machinery and a weapon of political servitude, urges the electors to press upon their respective Governments to do all their own industrial work themselves, with. out the intervention of a private contractor, on the following conditions :
1. That the working-day shall be limited to eight hours; 2. That the wages paid shall be at least equal to those paid by
the best private employers; 3. That a sufficient pension shall be paid to employees when
incapacitated by age or accident; 4. That a week's holiday per year on full pay shall be secured to
each worker; 5. That no worker shall be hindered by any departmental regu.
lations in the exercise of his ordinary rights as a private
In view of the importance of losing no opportunity of transfer. ring industrial capital from private to public control, and securing to as many wage-workers as possible the comparative independence and permanence of employment enjoyed by public servants, especi. ally in the more democratic countries, this Congress recommends all workers to agitate and vote in favor of: 1. The immediate nationalization of all mines, railways, canals,
telegraphs, telephones, and other national monopolies :
2. The immediate municipalization of the supply of water, gas,
electric light; of docks, markets, tramways, omnibus services, and pawnbroking; lake and river steamboat services;
and of all other local monopolies ; 3. The immediate undertaking by public authorities of : (a) the
manufacture and retailing of tobacco and bread; of the supply of coal, milk, and other universal necessaries; and of the building of dwellings for the workers; (6) the manufacture and retailing of alcoholic drinks.
The Unemployed. The Congress declares : That the existence of a class of unemployed willing but unable
to find work is a necessary result of the present industrial system, in which every improvement in machinery throws fresh masses of men out of work, and the competition of capitalists for the market produces recurring commercial
crises ; That, consequently, unemployment can only be abolished with
the complete abolition of the competitive system, and can only be limited in proportion as order and regulation are
introduced into the present competitive confusion ; That while this process of evolution towards the co-operative
state is proceeding, the following measures are urgently
The Eight Hours Day ;
of all commodities required by them;
supply of all common services and the provision of
healthy dwellings for the workers; The undertaking of useful Public Works in special cases.
War and Foreign Policy. That this Congress desires to call attention to the following facts concerning the great armaments maintained by modern capitalistic States : 1 That these armies act as a standing menace, not to neigh
boring States, but to the working populations of their own countries. A study of the strategical disposition of many of the great railway stations and barracks of the Continent will prove that the most important function of the modern army is to suppress the resistance of Labor to Capital in the war of classes.