The more that social democracy develops, grows, and becomes stronger, the more the enlightened masses of workers will take their own destinies, the leadership of their movement, and the determination of its direction into their own hands.
Only through the conscious action of the working masses in city and country can it be brought to life, only through the people's highest intellectual maturity and inexhaustible idealism can it be brought safely through all storms and find its way to port.
One day, when the world market is more or less fully developed and can no longer be suddenly enlarged, and if labour productivity continues to advance, then sooner or later the periodic clashes between productive forces and market barriers will begin, and because of their recurrence, these will naturally become increasingly rough and stormy.
People finally understood that the role of the social-democratic party rests on its conscious leadership of the mass struggle against the existing society, a struggle that must reckon with the vital, necessary conditions of capitalist society.
Under the leaden sway of Alexander III's government, the silence of the graveyard prevailed. Russian society, equally discouraged by the collapse of all hopes for peaceful reforms and by the apparent ineffectiveness of the revolutionary movement, was in the grip of a mood of depression and resignation.
Bourgeois class domination is undoubtedly an historical necessity, but, so too, the rising of the working class against it. Capital is an historical necessity, but, so too, its grave digger, the socialist proletariat.
Democracy is indispensable, not because it renders superfluous the conquest of political power by the proletariat, but, on the contrary, because it makes this seizure of power both necessary and possible.
Our scribblings are usually not lyrics but whirrings, without colour or resonance, like the tone of an engine-wheel. I believe that the cause lies in the fact that when people write, they forget for the most part to dig deeply into themselves and to feel the whole import and truth of what they are writing.
The existing legal constitution is nothing but the product of a revolution. Revolution is the act of political creation in the history of classes, while constitutional legislation is the expression of the continual political vegetation of a society.
The very action of the proletariat is a determining factor in history. And although we can no more jump over the stages of historical development than a man can jump over his shadow, nevertheless, we can accelerate or retard that development.
Though foreign loans are indispensable for the emancipation of the rising capitalist states, they are yet the surest ties by which the old capitalist states maintain their influence, exercise financial control, and exert pressure on the customs, foreign and commercial policy of the young capitalist states.
Social democracy seeks and finds the ways, and particular slogans, of the workers' struggle only in the course of the development of this struggle, and gains directions for the way forward through this struggle alone.