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philosophy which animates the revolutionist movement, and they are in warm sympathy with it.
Kellog Durland has taken so active a part in the Revolution as to bring him in frequent conflict with the Russian authorities. Yet at the same time he has been able to come into close touch with officialdom and to study the facts from the governmental side.
To him the revolution is inevitable. "Revolution in Russia. during the first quarter of the twentieth century is as inevitable as the bursting of a Pelee or a Vesuvius; as inexorable and pitiless as an earthquake, or the passing of ancient empires."
He gives a striking comparison with the French Revolution: "During the year 1906, according to official figures, more than 36,000 people were killed and wounded in revolutionary conflict; over 22,000 suffered in anti-semitic outbreaks, most of which were promoted by governmental agents; over 16,000 so-called agrarian disorders occurred. * * These figures loom large indeed when it is recalled that in France, during the Terror, only 2,300 heads fell from the guillotine block, and that during the entire French Revolution only about 30,000 lives were sacrificed."
Durland also went into all portions of Russia. He visited revolutionaries and traveled with Cossack officers, has been arrested several times, smuggled in forbidden literature, was cognizant of a plot to blow up the Ministers to the first Duma, traveled as an "illegal," secured the only interview ever granted with Marie Spiradonova, the girl whose horrible tortures by the police roused thousands to rebellion, and all these things he tells in an intensely interesting and dramatic manner.
He tells how the government is guilty not only of inciting to massacre, and of most hideous murders and pillage, but how it encourages professional assassins, and maintains torture chambers that rival those of the inquisition. The description of these tortures applied to young girls and women is sickeningly hideous. He finds that the peasants as well as the industrial workers are everywhere ready for revolt. They know what they want. They are determined to have "land and liberty." They cannot be turned aside from these simple primitive demands and they propose to have these demands sitisfied.
The horrors of the famine country seem almost unbelievable. "From the city of Samara" he tells us, "I made journeys in three directions across the Volga and west, south and east. In all of the starving villages I passed through the same heartrending scenes were repeated food supplies absolutely exhausted; thatch being torn from the roofs to feed to the horses and cattle; families doubling up, i. e., the occupants of one house moving over into a neighbor's in order to use the first house for fuel; relief kitchens so short of relief that only one meal in two days
could be dispensed; during the forty-seven hours between meals the people prostrate on their backs so as to conserve every particle of strength; parents deserting their children because they could not bear to watch them die."
Meanwhile "the very flour dispensed by the government is flagrantly adulterated in order that corrupt officials may glean a few thousand more rubles to spend on their dancing girls and French champagne.'
The third book is of much less importance than either of the other two, although it fills a valuable niche in describing one of the most important phases of the Russian Revolution. There is a brief survey of the history of the "Lettish Social Democratic Workers' Party" with its platform and declaration of proposed reforms. This party grew in strength until it was sufficiently strong to conduct open rebellion. In this it was aided by the peasants, and for a time was successful. Then came the story of the horrible "punitive expeditions" with wholesale massacres and imprisonments and tortures.
No one can read these three books without realizing that we are today in the midst of a revolution infinitely more bloody, affecting far more people, and destined to bulk larger in world history that the famous one in France a century ago.
A. M. SIMONS.
Will Socialism Break Up The Family?
When in the past the reformer has attacked the wrongs and abuses of his day the cry has usually being raised, you are going to break up the family. Therefore the socialist philosopher is by no means surprised to hear the same objection to socialism to-day. As socialism is in the future no one contends that it is breaking up families at present. Yet families are being broken up and there certainly must be a cause. It is possible that the present economic system (or rather want of system) is largely responsible for the domestic infelicity we see on every hand. Surely it cannot be possible that the discomforts and miseries incident to a poor person's existence (I will not use the word life in this connection) are necessary to maintain the family integrity. As men and women are not angels observation teaches us that the reverse is too often true and that these conditions lead to ill temper, the saloon, desertion and divorce. Under socialism the home would be more attractive than the saloon,the wife, relieved of her grievous burdens, would be better company than the bar keeper. The husband no longer a drudge would remind his wife of the good old times before marriage and the baby well cared for would furnish more amusement than a circus. Why under the present system if you raise a man's wages he is very apt to take out a thousand or two more of life insurance and get something useful to add to the comfort of his home. If his day's work is shortened the average man will use his increased leisure to advantage around home. After working ten or twelve hours a day the condition in which a man sits down to supper are such that it is remarkable that there are so few divorces among the workers.
Under socialism the rich libertine would be unable with money to destroy the home of his less fortunate neighbor. Having something useful to do and think about he would be less apt to invade his friend's house and thereby provide a nice mess of divorce scandal for public comsumption. In the good time coming no woman will have to marry a home and incidentally a man, neither will any man have to marry a fortune and incidentally a woman.
In the near future very few women will make the mistake of marrying a rake to reform him and afterward try to correct it in the divorce court. Then young man if you sow a crop of
wild oats you will be very apt to reap a harvest of single blessedness. So mote it be.
How is the home to be maintained? says one, if private property is abolished. My friend the vast majority of us will have more private property under socialism than we have now. Perhaps the brush and comb and a few other things public or semi public to-day will be strictly private then. Young ladies, in that glorious day whose dawn is already brightening the eastern sky when capitalism shall be thrown on the rubbish pile of the ages, Mary Jane will not have to stay at home while Sarah goes out wearing the family hat. Under socialism it is scarcely possible, that there will be any objection to any person or persons enjoying all the crudities and absurdities of the present day except of course living off another's labor if they believe such conditions are necessary to secure domestic felicity. In the foregoing I do not think there is anything visionary or anything that can be successfully disputed, but it is all rock bottom. philosophy. In conclusion if you want a man to walk uprightly, to become a better citizen, husband and father, in the name of H. E. ENGLAND. common sense, get off his back.
Looking Forward and Backward.
There have been few years more fraught with significant events for the working class than the one that has just gone into history. It held within its boundaries the crest of the highest wave of capitalist prosperity ever enjoyed. It saw that wave break into what promises to be one of the most serious crises of the same system. In the battle between capitalists and workers, it was also filled with facts whose deep significance will become more and more apparent as the years pass by. There were no tremendous violent conflicts, such as the Pullman Strike or the great coal strike. The nearest approach to a conflict of this character was the battle of the telegraphers, which developed into one of those long drawn out contests in which the dollar is bound to win over the human being.
The great event of the year was, without a doubt, the outcome of the trial of Haywood, Moyer and Pettibone. The effect which this struggle has had upon the working class and the sense of power for battle, laid the foundation of a determined class action such as has not hitherto existed in this country.
The new year comes in the midst of an industrial crisis. It comes in with a promise of reduced wages and the fierce conditions which always accompany such reductions. It comes in with capitalism triumphant, but trembling on its throne. The speech of Secretary Taft before the Boston merchants showed how great is the fear held by the rulers of present society. In this he told the assembled merchants that unless they were able to reform capitalism, Socialism was inevitable.
This was the same story that Roosevelt told in his message. It is a very common story now-a-days. It is the story that every observer can read in the events around him, and it fills the reader with fear or hope according as his class interests are bound up with the destruction of preservation of the present society.
This year is also a year of Presidential election. This election