Debs Speaks To Workingmen

Eugene V. Debs was the Socialist Party’s candidate for President in 1904.  On September 1 of that year, Debs delivered a speech,”The Socialist Party and the Working Class”, at the Socialist Party convention held in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Debs-  Presidential Campaign - 1904 - Poster

Below are several quotes from the speech that caught my attention. As always, I think that much of what Eugene V. Debs said and wrote over 100 years ago has very relevant application to our current labor and political issues and situations in the United States.

“The very moment a workingman begins to do his own thinking he understands the paramount issue, parts company with the capitalist politician and falls in line with his own class on the political battlefield.”

“The struggle for political supremacy is not between political parties merely, as appears upon the surface, but at bottom it is a life and death struggle between two hostile economic classes, the one the capitalist, and the other the working class.”

“The Republican and Democratic parties, or, to be more exact, the Republican-Democratic party, represent the capitalist class in the class struggle. They are the political wings of the capitalist system and such differences as arise between them relate to spoils and not to principles.”

“First, all workingmen and women owe it to themselves, their class and their country to take an active and intelligent interest in political affairs.”

” … the Democratic party … is near enough like its Republican ally to pass for a twin brother.”


You can read “The Socialist Party and The Working Class” in its entirety here.

Explore posts in the same categories: Economics, Labor, Politics, Social-Economic Justice, Uncategorized, Unions

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