“Sidney and Beatrice Webb represent another variety of Fabianism. They are accustomed to assiduous work, they know the value of facts and figures, and this sets a certain bound to the diffusiveness of their thought. They are no less boring than MacDonald, but they are sometimes more instructive, when they do not go overstep the bounds of Fabian investigations. In the realm of generalizations they stand a little higher than MacDonald. At the Congress of the Labour Party in 1923 Sidney Webb called to mind that the founder of British Socialism was not Karl Marx but Robert Owen, who preached not the class struggle but the time-hallowed doctrine of the brotherhood of all humanity. Until the present day Webb continues to consider John Stuart Mill the classic of political economy, and in accordance with this, teaches that the struggle must be carried on not between capital and labour, but between the overwhelming majority of the nation and the expropriators of rent. This alone is sufficient to characterise the theoretic level of the chief economist of the Labour Party! As is well known, even in Britain the historical process does not go on in accordance with Webb. Trade unions represent an organisation of employed labour against capital. On the basis of the trade unions the Labour Party has grown up and even made Sidney Webb a Minister. He fulfilled his programme only in the sense that he did not carry on a struggle against the expropriators of surplus values. But neither did he carry it on against the expropriators of rent. In 1923 the Webbs published a book entitled the ‘Decay of Capitalist Civilisations’ (1). In its essentials the books represent a partly dilute, partly renovated, paraphrase of the old commentaries of Kautsky on the Erfurt programme. But in addition in the ‘Decay of Capitalist Civilisation’ the political tendency of Fabianism is expressed in all its hopelessness, this time half consciously. That the capitalist system must be transformed, say the Webbs, there in no doubt. (For whom?) But the whole question is, How will it be transformed? “It may by considerate adaptation be made to pass gradually and peacefully into a new form”. For this not much is necessary: good will from both sides” [(1) London: George Allen & Unwin Ltd] [Leon Trotsky, Where is Britain Going?, London, 1926]