What sort of century was the 20th century?

  The 20th century was the century in which imperialism came into existence on the one hand, and the construction of socialism was undertaken on the other.
  Imperialism, formed at the beginning of the 20th century, caused World War I for the purpose of re-division of the world. Imperialist countries fought with each other in pursuit of natural resources and foreign market for the export of products as well as capital. In the middle of the World War the socialist revolution broke out in the Russian Empire which was the weakest ring in the chain of imperialist countries. Against the military forces of imperialist countries the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) proceeded with the construction of socialism through the introduction of planned economy and the nationalization of the means of production. The world economic crisis since 1929 led each country to the serious stagnation of domestic economy and brought the Fascism into power.
  The USSR, developing its domestic economy immune to the impact of the crisis, together with democratic forces all over the world, won the struggle against the Fascism, and brought World WarU to an end. After World WarU the socialist states in Eastern Europe and Asia came into existence and formed a socialist world system. In parallel with the increasing confrontation between socialism and imperialism the emancipation of colonial countries was promoted. The establishment of social security system, the improvement in labor conditions and the advancement in gender equality were also realized. Especially the victory gained by the Anti-Vietnam War movement exemplified that the solidarity of worldwide democratic forces for peace & democracy, national liberation or socialism has driven imperialism into a tight corner.
  The socialist world system, however, collapsed at the beginning of the 1990s.
  What was the chief cause of the collapse? The basic cause lay in its undemocratic political system and the totally controlled economic system.
  In the political system in the USSR bureaucracy led by the Political Bureau of Communist Party had decided everything. Government as well as parliament had only confirmed the decisions of bureaucracy, while workers and citizens had no voice in fact in the decision making. Inside the Communist Party objections were eliminated in administrative and systematic way, proposals without substantial arguments were decided formally with unanimity, and thus the right to argue against the proposals made by Party leaders, on which the inner-party democracy have to be founded, was not guaranteed. Such an undemocratic political system was justified with the excuse for being besieged by imperialist countries.
  Moreover, under this undemocratic political system the workers in nationalized enterprises were deprived of their autonomy and creativity.
  The whole production in enterprises under the totally controlled economic system was organized and commanded by the state bureaucracy. Under such a system quality of goods or productivity of labor was indifferent to the pay and treatment of workers. As a result workers lost their zeal for creative autonomous production.
  The System of exploitation as well as the capitalist private ownership of the means of production had been abolished indeed in the socialist countries including the USSR. But, under such a system in these countries, workers could not make decision at their own will. Although the collapsed socialist countries negated capitalist system, they could not realize the actually societal ownership of the means of production. This defect led the countries to the collapse of the socialist world system in the keen military and economic competition with capitalist countries.
  Despite the dissolution of the USSR and the collapse of the socialist world system, we cannot negate the fruitful results of the undertaking to build socialism in these countries.
  We can recognize the fruitful results in the following facts: first, in the fact that socialism brought a remarkable improvement of lives to the people in socialist countries which had been underdeveloped; secondly, in the fact that the enrichment of social security system in socialist countries had an enormous impact on the social security in capitalist countries, and that, as a result, the worldwide standard in social welfare, medical treatment and education largely improved; thirdly, in the fact that national liberation movement, labor movement and movement for peace & democracy, in cooperation with the socialist world system, have made good progress all over the world.

World Situation Today: Contradictions of Global Capitalism

  The collapse of the socialist world system stimulated such crude use of military forces by imperialist countries as the Gulf War in 1991 or the war against Yugoslavia in 1999. In these wars imperialist countries led by USA have bombed unilaterally under the slogan “Against invasion and human rights violation". Such a use of military forces against sovereign states could not have been made if the USSR had still existed. It was a joint action of imperialist countries to protect the vital interests of multinational capitals.
  In the background of such a joint action lies the globalization of capitalism.
  The globalization means the operations of multinational capitals to export capital freely across borders and organize the entire world as a market. It is creating a system in which multinational capitals can make great profits through mass production and mass consumption and also gain much greater profits by way of speculative financial operations. Under the condition of the absence of the socialist world system multinational capitals wish to topple opposing governments or states in order to invest freely and safeguard their properties.
  Neoliberalism is the ideology and policy system of global capitalism.
  It is the neoliberalism that is victimizing people in developing countries and workers all over the world for the sake of greater profits for multinational capitals.
  The freedom to invest capital abroad blocks up the way for the autonomous economic development of developing countries. With the erosion of the social security system stimulated by neoliberalism, governments can give priority to the budgets for military use or industrial infrastructure. This enables monopoly capitals to advance into welfare business. However, it dissolves the legal system for protecting workers' rights and offers them instead the freedom of unemployment.
  These neoliberal reforms guarantee the free operation of multinational capitals as well as their maximum profits.
  Through intense competition and conflict among USA, EU and Japan under the neoliberal globalization of capitalism, multinational capitals are trying to intensify their dominance over the world market by way of mega-fusion like that of Daimler-Benz and Chrysler.
  The development of global capitalism is already faced with its limits.
  The Asian Monetary Crisis in 1997 showed that the speculative operations of multinational financial capitals can destroy national economies. As a result some governments in Asia have begun to advocate a restriction on speculative operations. The pursuit of high returns through speculation, which is completely irrelevant to productive activities, is faced with its limits.
  Global capitalism has reached its limits also in the ecological aspect. Faced with the growing criticism against environmental destruction under the system of mass production and consumption in advanced capitalist countries, global capitalism is now destroying natural environment intensively in developing countries. And the use of military forces by imperialist countries has deteriorated global ecological system, as exemplified by the depleted uranium shell. Global capitalism has offered multinational capitals high profits, raised the unemployment rate, dismantled social security system and thus remarkably widened the gap between the rich and the poor. Unemployment and job shortage deprive the youth of their future perspectives and drive them to desperate attitudes. We can therefore conclude that global capitalism has reached its limits in economic, ecological as well as social aspects.

Direction of Change: Democratic Socialism

  If the global capitalism were left as it is today, the 21st century would be a catastrophic century for human being.
  Our goal is to realize democratic socialism.
  What is democratic socialism ?
  First, it means a thoroughgoing democracy. Under the global capitalism political democracy has been degraded down merely to formal institutions and become the means by which multinational capitals and state bureaucrats enforce their will upon the society as a whole. We must therefore deepen and extend democracy as an organ of decision making by workers and people themselves in all of its aspects, i.e. in the fields of legislation, jurisdiction and administration. Through this process of democratization the basic human rights must be fully guaranteed to all people regardless of their nationality, ethnicity or gender.
  Secondly, democratic socialism should be regarded as a realization of societal ownership of the means of production in its authentic sense.
  In the collapsed socialist countries socialism was identified with a state ownership of the means of production. Though there was no exploitation in these countries, workers could not make decisions by themselves. In the coming democratic socialist society, workers as a collective producer should own the means of production and become responsible for the management of firms. The core of the societal ownership lies in the realization of decisions to be made by workers themselves, though forms of the societal ownership can be variable (e.g.; cooperatives, state-owned firms and other kind of public firms etc.). Under the thoroughgoing societal ownership of this kind, price and volume of commodities will be determined not by central planning, but by market mechanism. Nevertheless, market mechanism will not function in all the spheres of social life. Education, social security, medical care and so forth should be entrusted to the responsibility of government. And the restrictions to financial market as well as labor market must be tightened up.
  Lastly, the realization of democratic socialism will need a long and enduring process of worldwide change. In order to realize democratic socialism we need the restrictions to the activities of multinational capitals through legislation by a democratic majority in parliament, the restrictions enforced by labor movement on capitals, and the democratic reform of municipalities carried out by the people in regional communities. The coming democratic socialist society can not be built only through the formation of a democratic majority in the parliament. Even under the capitalist society we must prepare the preconditions for socialism by way of the tightened restrictions to the global capitalism, the extention of cooperatives, and the democratic reform in communities and workplaces.
  Such processes can not be realized within a single nation, but achieved as a worldwide process of change.
  To impose restrictions on the global capitalism is a common task of workers and people all over the world. Moreover, it is a precondition indispensable for socialism to advance disarmament forward and realize the world peace. We must eradicate wars from the world, protect our natural environment and impose restrictions on multinational capitals.
  The very society to be realized in the 21st century is a democratic socialist society that means “an association, in which free development of each person is the condition for free development of all the persons" as Marx and Engels wrote.
  The people resisting the capitalist globalization driven by multinational capitals, the people struggling to develop workers' rights and oppose dismissals, the people accusing of all sorts of infringement on human rights, and the people trying to protect natural environment; if these democratic forces are united to fight, we can realize democratic socialism.

Tasks of Changing the Japanese Society

  Japanese imperialism is now urging reforms in its political, economic and military systems in order to win in the global competition with USA and EU.
  The amount of foreign direct investment (FDI) of Japan has increased remarkably and stands at the top level of the world. To guarantee the safety of flow and stock of its FDI, Japanese imperialism is trying to reinforce its military system which enables it to dispatch forces abroad at its own disposal. The Japanese government, which had to share the costs of the Gulf War without having any say on it, has tried to dispatch the Self Defense Forces (SDFs) abroad. This can be exemplified by the Act of Peace Keeping Operation (PKO) enacted in 1992, the actual dispatch of the SDFs to Cambodia, as well as the Act of War-Mobilization enacted in 1999.
  The dissolution of the Japanese Socialist Party and the General Council of Trade Unions of Japan (Sohyo), both of which belonged to the supporting forces of postwar democratization in Japan, formed a basic condition for dispatching the SDFs abroad.
  A set of the Acts enacted in 1999, i.e. the Act of Wiretapping, the Act of National Flag and Anthem, and the Act of Citizen Code, were aimed at providing the legal foundation to mobilize citizens for war. Thus the Japanese government aims to revise the 9th article of the Constitution and in so doing fully legalize the militarism.
  The Japanese government and monopoly capitals are also depriving workers of their fundamental rights and radically deteriorating their working conditions. The process of industrial streamlining and rationalization like the privatization of Japanese National Railways, the revision of the system of labor law and the high rate of unemployment are putting more and more pressure on the working conditions.
  Monopoly capitals in Japan are trying to win in the global competition by way of mega-fusion like that of Sakura and Sumitomo Bank, which goes beyond the chain of companies (Keiretsu). Needless to say, the mega-fusion of this kind is tightly linked up with a large scale rationalization of management.
  Such neoliberal policy of Japanese government and monopoly capitals will bring us a catastrophic 21st century in Japan and in the world as well.
  We will take up the following tasks in Japan to build a democratic socialist society.
  First of all, we will fight against the Japanese militarism. In solidarity with people in other Asian countries we must struggle to prevent Japanese invasion. The Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, which functions also as a basis of Japanese invasion, has to be terminated. We must keep the 9th article of the Constitution intact, prevent Japanese nuclear armament, and dismantle all the military bases from Okinawa and other areas in Japan.
  The postwar compensation should be realized also for the purpose of preventing the Japanese re-invasion. The Japanese government and monopoly capitals are trying hard to reinterpret Japanese history falsely. Against this false reinterpretation we must force the government and monopoly capitals to make the post warcompensation in solidarity with the persons damaged from Japanse invasion.
  An Asian region with peace, equality and reciprocity is to be created through the dissolution of Japanese militarism and the disarmament throughout Asia.
  Secondly, we will fight to protect and extend the rights of workers. We must oppose all the dismissals, prevent the extension of unstable employment and improve the working conditions, e.g., by way of reduction of working hours. Community-based trade unions are to be organized.
  Thirdly, we will oppose the destruction of social security system or rather demand its development and expansion. The gap between the rich and the poor must be reduced. A society in which all the persons can live with equality and safety is to be built. We must oppose the increase of Consumption Tax, strengthen the taxation upon monopoly capitals, and secure the financial source of social security by reducing the budgets for military use and large scale constructions.
  Fourthly, it is necessary to organize cooperatives in order to actively create new employment. Cooperatives, in which workers are owners of the means of production at the same time, should be regarded as an important part of preconditions of democratic socialism in the future.
  Fifthly, we will reject all forms of discrimination against women, people in Buraku (discriminated minority group in Japan), handicapped persons and foreigners living in Japan. A society in which all the persons should have equal rights is to be created.
  Sixthly, we will be against all forms of environmental destruction including nuclear power plants and secure the conditions of human survival. In cooperation with food producers we must develop consumers' movements to secure reliable food.
  Seventhly, the present situation surrounding younger generation should be improved. They are losing future perspective of their lives owing to dissolution of communities and high rate of unemployment. We will reject any educational reforms planned by government and monopoly capitals, of which aim is to educate only elites and abandon the majority of other children. And we want to build up peaceful, democratic communities making linkages between mothers, fathers, children and other neighbors.
  Eighthly, movements of art and culture should be developed to reinvigorate workers' and people's democratic sensibility distorted by the global capitalism.
  Lastly, in order to achieve the goals mentioned above, a democratic majority in the national parliament as well as local parliaments has to be formed.
Through joint actions with the people striving for democratic reforms in Japan, and in solidarity with the people of Asia and the world, we can go forwards to democratic socialism.
  We are a political union striving for democratic socialism. We are an organization independent of any other existing political organizations. Our organizational principle is thoroughgoing democracy. We shall learn Marxist theories and thoughts, analyze the contemporary situation of the world and Japan, and enrich our vision of democratic socialism. In solidarity with democratic forces in Asia and the world, and by way of democratic changes from workplaces and communities, we shall realize democratic socialist society in the 21st century.

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