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The focus on science by the WSWS stems from our insistence that the working class, if it is to advance, must be armed with a thorough understanding of the world. This is a point Marxists have always stressed. The development of society as a whole is based on the development of the productive forces, which in turn drive and are spurred on by developments in science.

This is not, however, simply a matter of, for example, an autoworker knowing the mechanics, electrical engineering, material science and thermodynamics that make a car possible. There is a need to turn toward a scientific approach not just to natural phenomena, but to understanding the just as complex historical and social processes that govern our lives – the objective laws of capitalist development.

As Trotsky noted 94 years ago in Radio, Science, Technique and Society, “Technique and science have their own logic – the logic of the cognition of nature and the mastering of it in the interests of man. But technique and science develop not in a vacuum but in human society, which consists of classes. The ruling class, the possessing class, controls technique and through it controls nature.

Our writing on science fights to make these objective processes more conscious, to imbue the growing opposition of millions of workers and youth with the knowledge and understanding that the progress of science—and the progress of humanity as a whole—depends on the resurgence of a new revolutionary movement of the working class. The socialist movement unites under its banner both the pursuit of scientific truth in all its forms and the struggle to establish an internationally coordinated, scientifically directed system of economic planning based on equality and the satisfaction of human need: socialism.

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The progress of science and reason has always depended upon the progress of society and social relations. Capitalism is a social system in which all human activity, including science, is subordinated to private profit. Technology has been used, not to feed the world’s population, but to develop ever more destructive weapons of war.

The Trump administration has threatened funding to all US agencies that have contributed to the advancement of scientific understanding, while increasing the military budget by $54 billion.

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This pamphlet, which was republished during the centenary year of the Russian Revolution, contains Leon Trotsky's inagural address to the First All-Union Congress of the Society of Friends of Radio given on March 1, 1926. Speaking from the Polytechnical Museum to a radio audience across the country, Trotsky discussed the relationship between developing a high level of technical expertise amongst the Soviet population and the creation of a socialist state.

purchase Radio, Science, Technique and Society at mehring books

This small book compactly outlines the economic, historical and philosophical teachings of marxism. It originally formed part of a larger volume, “Anti_Dühring”, written by Engels, Marx’s closest collaborator, as a reply to an attack on their views by a German professor.

purchase Socialism: Utopian and Scientific at mehring books
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