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Archive for the ‘IMPERIALISM’ Category

Lenin: Imperialism,
The Highest Stage of Capitalism! (14)

 

CONCENTRATION OF PRODUCTION AND MONOPOLIES! P5:
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Individual enterprises
are becoming larger and larger.

An ever-increasing number of
enterprises in one,

or in several different industries,
join together in giant enterprises,

backed up and directed by half
a dozen big Berlin banks.

In relation to the German mining industry,

the truth of the teachings of
Karl Marx on concentration is definitely proved;

true, this applies to a country
where industry is protected
by tariffs and freight rates.

The German mining industry is
ripe for expropriation.

Such is the conclusion which
a bourgeois economist who,

by way of exception,
is conscientious, had to arrive at.

It must be noted that he seems to
place Germany in a special category because
her industries are protected by higher tariffs.

But this is a circumstance
which only accelerates concentration

and the formation of
monopolist manufacturers’ associations,

cartels, syndicates, etc.

It is extremely important to note that
in free-trade Britain,

concentration also leads to monopoly,
although somewhat later
and perhaps in another form.

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Lenin: Imperialism,
The Highest Stage of Capitalism! (13)

 

CONCENTRATION OF PRODUCTION AND MONOPOLIES! P4:
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Fourthly, it strengthens the position
of the combined enterprises relative
to the “pure" enterprises,

strengthens them in the competitive struggle
in periods of serious depression,

when the fall in prices of raw materials
does not keep pace with the fall
in prices of manufactured goods.

The German bourgeois economist,

Heymann, who has written
a book especially on “mixed",

that is, combined,
enterprises in the German iron industry,

says: Pure enterprises perish,

they are crushed between the high price
of raw material and the low price
of the finished product.

Thus we get the following picture:

There remain, on the one hand,
the big coal companies,

producing millions of tons yearly,
strongly organised in their coal syndicate,

and on the other, the big steel plants,
closely allied to the coal mines,

having their own steel syndicate.

These giant enterprises,
producing 400,000 tons of steel per annum,

with a tremendous output of ore and coal
and producing finished steel goods,

employing 10,000 workers quartered
in company houses,

and sometimes owning their own railways and ports,

are the typical representatives of
the German iron and steel industry.

And concentration goes on further and further.

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Lenin: Imperialism,
The Highest Stage of Capitalism! (12)

 

CONCENTRATION OF PRODUCTION AND MONOPOLIES! P3:
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American statistics speak of
3,000 giant enterprises
in 250 branches of industry,

as if there were only a dozen enterprises
of the largest scale for each branch of industry.

But this is not the case.

Not in every branch of industry are
there large-scale enterprises; and moreover,

a very important feature of capitalism in
its highest stage of development is
so-called combination of production,

that is to say, the grouping in
a single enterprise of different branches of industry,

which either represent the consecutive stages
in the processing of raw materials

(for example,
the smelting of iron ore into pig-iron,

the conversion of pig-iron into steel,
and then, perhaps, the manufacture of steel goods)

or are auxiliary to one another

(for example, the utilisation of scrap,
or of by-products,
the manufacture of packing materials, etc.).

Combination, writes Hilferding,

levels out the fluctuations of trade
and therefore assures to the combined enterprises
a more stable rate of profit.

Secondly, combination has the effect
of eliminating trade.

Thirdly, it has the effect
of rendering possible technical improvements,

and, consequently,

the acquisition of superprofits over
and above those obtained by the “pure"

(i.e,, non-combined) enterprises.

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Lenin: The State and Revolution! (3)

 

The State and Revolution 1917! P3:
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First of all we examine the
theory of Marx and Engels of the state,

and dwell in particular detail
on those aspects of this theory which are ignored

or have been distorted by the opportunists.

Then we deal specially with the one
who is chiefly responsible for these distortions,

Karl Kautsky, the best-known leader
of the Second International (1889-1914),

which has met with such miserable
bankruptcy in the present war.

Lastly, we sum up the main results
of the experience of the Russian revolutions
of 1905 and particularly of 1917.

Apparently, the latter is now
(early August 1917) completing
the first stage of its development;

but this revolution as a whole
can only be understood as a link

in a chain of socialist proletarian
revolutions being caused by the imperialist war.

The question of the relation
of the socialist proletarian revolution
to the state,

therefore, is acquiring
not only practical political importance,

but also the significance
of a most urgent problem of the day,

the problem of explaining
to the masses what they will have

to do before long
to free themselves from capitalist tyranny.

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Lenin: Imperialism,
The Highest Stage of Capitalism! (11)

 

CONCENTRATION OF PRODUCTION AND MONOPOLIES! P2:
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In another advanced country of modern capitalism,
the United States of America,

the growth of the concentration
of production is still greater.

Here statistics single out industry
in the narrow sense of the word

and classify enterprises according
to the value of their annual output.

In 1904 large-scale enterprises
with an output valued at one million dollars and over,

numbered 1,900 (out of 216,180, i.e., 0.9 per cent).

These employed 1,400,000 workers
(out of 5,500,000, i.e., 25.6 per cent)

and the value of their output amounted
to $5,600,000,000
(out of $14,800,000,000, i.e., 38 per cent).

Five years later, in 1909,
the corresponding figures were:

3,060 enterprises (out of 268,491, i.e., 1.1 per cent)
employing 2,000,000 workers
(out of 6,600,000, i.e., 30.5 per cent)

with an output valued at $9,000,000,000
(out of $20,700,000,000, i.e., 43.8 per cent).

Almost half the total production
of all the enterprises of the country

was carried on by one-hundredth part
of these enterprises!

These 3,000 giant enterprises embrace
258 branches of industry.

From this it can be seen that at a certain stage
of its development concentration itself,

as it were, leads straight to monopoly,
for a score or so of giant enterprises
can easily arrive at an agreement,

and on the other hand,
the hindrance to competition,

the tendency towards monopoly,
arises from the huge size of the enterprises.

This transformation of competition into monopoly
is one of the most important if not the most

important phenomena of modern capitalist economy,

and we must deal with it in greater detail.

But first we must clear up
one possible misunderstanding.

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Communism, Lenin: The State and Revolution! (2)

 

The State and Revolution 1917! P2:
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The elements of opportunism
that accumulated over the decades

of comparatively peaceful development
have given rise to the trend
of social-chauvinism which dominated

the official socialist parties throughout the world.

This trend;
socialism in words and chauvinism in deeds

(Plekhanov, Potresov, Breshkovskaya,
Rubanovich, and, in a slightly veiled form,
Tsereteli, Chernov and Co. in Russia;

Scheidemann. Legien, David
and others in Germany; Renaudel, Guesde

and Vandervelde in France and Belgium;
Hyndman and the Fabians in England, etc., etc.)

is conspicuous for the base,
servile adaptation of the “leaders of socialism"

to the interests not only
of “their" national bourgeoisie,

but of “their" state,

for the majority of the so-called
Great Powers have long been exploiting

and enslaving a whole number
of small and weak nations.

And the imperialist war is a war
for the division and redivision of this kind of booty.

The struggle to free the working people
from the influence of the bourgeoisie in general,

and of the imperialist bourgeoisie
in particular,

is impossible without a struggle
against opportunist prejudices
concerning the “state".

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Lenin: The State and Revolution! (1)

 

The State and Revolution 1917! P1:
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Preface to the First Edition

The question of the state
is now acquiring particular importance both
in theory and in practical politics.

The imperialist war has immensely accelerated
and intensified the process of transformation
of monopoly capitalism into state-monopoly capitalism.

The monstrous oppression of
the working people by the state,

which is merging more and more with
the all-powerful capitalist associations,

is becoming increasingly monstrous.

The advanced countries…
we mean their hinterland…

are becoming military
convict prisons for the workers.

The unprecedented horrors and miseries
of the protracted war are making

the people’s position unbearable
and increasing their anger.

The world proletarian revolution
is clearly maturing.

The question of its relation
to the state is acquiring practical importance.

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