The Social Monster
By Johann Most
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parties to keep the contract. Nevertheless, it is seldom broken-- for the very same reason as above: self-interest.
Then there are hundreds and hundreds of combinations, which now work with great success and perfectly harmoniously without any other kind of compulsion than the individual moral feeling, singing-societies, turner-associations, sporting-clubs, societies for political, literary, scientific, or artistic purposes, etc; and here it should not be overlooked that, whenever the government has interfered with the working of such associations, its interference has always proved a hindrance, never an aid.
But when so much has been achieved by the free contract in a society like the present, in a world full of egotists, where are the limits for what it can do in a social order such as the one we intend to establish, in 'a social order founded upon communism, in which the institution of private property is left out and thereby heat and water taken from every germ of egotism? At all events, in a society, all of whose members are free, and equal in the true sense of the words, there is no other means than free contracts, by which to form combinations or build up relations of any kind. Compulsion by laws of any kind or in any form is absolutely excluded by the very orders of liberty and equality.
We have sometimes heard the argument preferred that in the economical sphere in which freedom rules, at least to a certain extent, as the government never directly interferes with the business of production and exchange, this very freedom has led to the direct results.
The argument is, however, of a somewhat peculiar description; it has a wooden leg which we propose to cut off.
When namely,iIn the present society, the free movements of the economical world have brought us face to face with social questions of the greatest magnitude and most pressing urgency; the true cause "of this perilous situation is not the application of the principle of freedom, but, the institution of property, behind which the government itself stands guard.
It is this institution, which has made the poor slaves of the rich, and it is the power of the state which keeps them in bondage.
Nowhere in the problem is the economical freedom involved, but everywhere the institution of private property, which must be abolished, and the power of the state, which must be broken.