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The toiler. (Cleveland, Ohio) 1919-1922, October 23, 1920, Image 7

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Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn88078683/1920-10-23/ed-1/seq-7/

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SATURDAY, OCT. 23rd, 1920
Some workers imagine they own their jobs.
They speak of their jobs as if they were married
to them.
The worker has only got the loan of his jon,
and the loan terminates as soon as the boss (the
real owner) decides that it is not profitable to
keep the worker on it any more.
For the worker to speak about "my job" ho
would have to own the enterprise in which he
works. As. long as the real boss can sack him he
certainly cannot speak of owning it.
Ever since the early communism was abolish
ed mankind has been divided into two classes, the
owners and the loaners.
The owners first owned their slaves, same as
they possessed other animals. The owners did the
supervising, the slaves had all the "jobs." When
this system disappeared, a new one came into
vogue, known as feudalism, under which the serfs
had the loanership. The serfs had all the "jobs"
going and the Barons enjoyed everything that
the serfs produced.
To-day we have a system known as capital
ism. Like the serf had the loan of the land, the
wage worker has the loan of a job, on condition
that he "makes good" which means that he pro
duces a surplus over and above his own requir
ements, which goes to the owner. The job does no
more belong to the worker than the hind belonged
to the serf, or the spoils under slavery belonged
to the vanquished.
Property has played an enormous role in hu
manity's history. To possess it has always mear t
- to enjoy; to suffer from want of it has meant
a slave's existence. So that up through history
those who had no property have been at the mercy
of the owners, either as chattel slaves, or as serfs
or as wage slaves.
But to-day we have reached the point of a
new departure.
As of old, communism was broken up because
it was no longer to the best interest of society
to maintain the establishment institutions, so to
day communism is being forced on us again be
cause we produce collectively, hocause we all have
to co-operate to gain desired ends, and because no
worker to-day can place his hands on a commodity
and say: I made this entirely myself.
The wage worker is in the illogical position
at present of neither to be able to say: This is
my job, or, this is my product.
Socialism, or a socialistic system under which
we socially enjoy what we collectively produce,
will furnish for the worker ownership of his job
and the enjoyment of what he helps to produce.
The Glasgow Worker.
Lightning Rods
The lighting rods of the labor movement are
those new-style labor skates who pose as "radicals"
and "socialists". Their function is to gain the
confidence of the rank and file with glib phrases
so that they can catch the discontent constantly
arising and run it into the ground.
The comrade fakirs just now are making a
specialty of the co-operative movement. They are
going to show the workers how to do away with
capitalism by going into business themselves.
They talk of co-operative banks which are going
to finance workers on strike, stores which will
feed and clothe them, and so on and so on until
the worker with radical sympathies, but no un
derstanding of capitalist society, almost sees wage
slavery co-operated out of business.
Just stop and think for a minute. The rail
roads, steel mills, mines, lumber woods, great
factories, packing houses in fact all the natural
resources of the country and the machinery of
production are in the hands of the capitalist class.
As long as they control them they are going to
control society. Before the workers can be free
they have got to take these things away from the
The co-operative movement is not to be dis
paraged. In so far as it is possible for it to be
developed with the meagre resources of the work
era, it provides an excellent traning school in
voluntary organization and management for those
workers who take part. But whenever you hear
anyone holding it up as the means whereby the
workers are going to be emancipated, or even
going to have their conditions materially improved
under capitalism, you can be certain that he is
a crook who knows better or an ignoramus who
knows next to nothing.
There are no substitute for revolutionary

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