Dictatorship of the proletariat for the abolition of wage labour

from our "Theses of Programmatical Orientation" (Theses No.44 to 50)


The real communist movement, as a conscious being, as party, has been distinguished in its long historical struggle from all the forces and ideologies of counter-revolution by affirming, each time more clearly, the indissociable unity between the dictatorship of the proletariat and the abolition of wage labour. The destruction of the relations of capitalist production is necessarily a despotic activity (the despotism of human needs against the law of value) by the organised and centralised force of the proletariat imposing its class domination: the worldwide proletarian state. This state is neither free nor popular, because it does not unite different classes or strata of people. It is exclusively the proletariat organised as party and is not constructed in the interests of freedom, but on the basis of the need to repress all the forces of reaction by revolutionary terror. The various currents who, in the name of anti-authoritarianism, deny the need for any state or claim to make the state of transition "free", "popular", "democratic", or in which non-proletarian forces would participate, are not only contributing to sowing confusion amongst proletarians but are objectively serving the counter-revolution.


The proletarian state has nothing to do with the existing bourgeois state or with a "workers'" government. The objective of the proletariat's struggle is not to "take the political power of the state and put it to its service", as the bourgeois state (whoever may be leading it) will continue unstoppably to reproduce Capital. Any attempt to use the bourgeois state in the service of the proletariat is a reactionary utopia and is one of the best methods of the counter-revolution for diverting the devastating effects of a workers' insurrection against the bourgeois state and against the tyranny of value valorising itself. The struggle of the proletariat has, on the contrary, the objective of the destruction, the demolition from top to bottom of the bourgeois state and of its socio-economic power. The bourgeois state will never whither away. It is necessary to suppress and demolish it by means of violence, at the same time as suppressing the mercantile and democratic dictatorship from which it emerged and which it reproduces. On the contrary, the only state which will whither away is that of the proletariat (the "semi-state") which, in the course of its development, consolidation and extension, abolishes itself in the very process of liquidating Capital.


The proletarian revolution has therefore nothing to do with taking over the leadership of the state with the aim of bringing about "social reforms". By contrast, from its starting point to its final objective, it is a social revolution, coming from the social need to completely destroy the total power of bourgeois society (military, economic, ideological, political...) and has communist society as its objective. The revolution emerges from the separation of real human beings from their collective being (Gemeinwesen) and its objective is the constitution of Man's true Gemeinwesen: the human being. It is obvious that this social revolution, in the sense that it requires the overthrow of the existing power and contains the need for destruction and dissolution, includes political struggle. However, when its organised social activity begins and its own objective and content arise, communism rejects its political envelope.

For this reason, proletarian revolution cannot be reduced to an economic question of management of production, of workers' control, etc. In order to realise the organised activity of society up to the achievement of communism, proletarian revolution needs to violently destroy all the institutions and apparatuses of the counter-revolution which assure and maintain the dictatorship of value against human needs.


The politicist deviation according to which the proletariat is supposed to take over capitalist society's state in order to reform society and the economist deviation according to which the problem is reduced to taking over, controlling and running production and distribution are almost always combined into one and the same "theory". They constitute fundamentally counter-revolutionary ideologies which have, in crucial moments, served as ultimate barriers for the maintenance of capitalist society. This is why the proletariat must confront them, suppress them and bury them.


Obviously, before and during the whole phase of insurrection, the proletariat will take over the means of production (factories, communication centres, mines, fields...). All this activity will have to have the internationally generalised triumph of the insurrection as its central objective, firmly rejecting any illusions of managing society without the destruction of the organised counter-revolution. To this end, it is indispensable to achieve centralisation as well as the most developed organisation of the proletariat into party as possible. Only the Communist Party, solidly welded to its historic programme, can develop a centralised and centralising action which can prevent localist dispersion, self-managementist illusions, democratic federalism and exchange between independent units of production (a source of private labour opposed to social labour and therefore of mercantile reorganisation). Only the Communist Party and its centralising action can give a single direction to all proletarians and guarantee a maximum concentration of forces for the social, economic and political crushing of the counter-revolution.


Armed insurrection constitutes a qualitative leap in the struggle but this leap is not irreversible. Armed insurrection does not destroy the bourgeois state. This will only really be destroyed by the liquidation of all the bases which underpin it and this is not possible in one country or even a group of countries. This is why, in the proletarian bastions where the insurrection has triumphed, the proletariat will have to use the power it possesses over that part of world capitalist society to expropriate and attack Capital on every terrain (politico-military, propagandist, economic, etc.), directly taking every possible means in hand to orientate production and distribution in accordance with its needs and interests (that is the needs and interests of humanity). This implies the destruction of commodity society and wage labour. However, all these measures must be strictly subordinated to a central objective: extending the revolution on a worldwide level. Every illusion concerning the possibility of constructing a "workers' state" (or several of them!) in the midst of the worldwide commodity-producing economy must be rejected as must, even more so, the illusion of constructing socialism in one country or group of countries. This is why it is indispensable that the centralisation and the effective leadership of the communist movement should be unique and global and that every regionalist and nationalist interest (always bourgeois) should be firmly combated, each part being subordinated to the general interests of the movement. Only the compact and organic centralisation of the world proletariat, constituted as party and fortified programmatically, numerically, organisationally and militarily in insurrectional battles, will be able to confront all attempts at capitalist restoration.


The proletarian revolution has nothing in common with the political "revolutions" of the bourgeoisie - neither in its objectives nor in its intermediate phases, except when it comes to the use of arms and to the overthrow of the existing power.

Internationalist Communist Group (ICG)

Read "Communism" - Central review in english of the ICG