Socialists: ‘Down with Capitalism!’ (Except for the Internet)

International May Day 2015 online rally relies on tools the free market helped create.

One socialist coalition is inadvertently relying on capitalism to protest just that.

The World Socialist Web Site and other groups sponsored the International May Day Online rally, which will feature live speeches streaming around the world on May 3, 2015.  The event has many slogans including, “Down with capitalism and imperialism,” and “Unite the working class internationally against war, dictatorship and poverty!”

Ironically, the event is using a tool that flourished because of capitalism: the Internet. Companies and businesspeople played an integral role in developing the means to connect multiple computers, creating the first personal computer and other elements of computing that now make it possible for socialists to attack capitalism online.

“It is difficult to imagine a better example of the free market at work,” technology writer Gerard Docherty wrote in a Mises Institute article June 23, 2011. He added that “the Internet itself, with its vast number of interconnected computers, is one of the most complex entities ever created by human beings, and much of it has grown without any central planning at all.”

The creation of the Internet under capitalism must baffle the sponsors of the International May Day rally. The event website featured a July 3, 2014, statement from the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI) that claimed “the impossibility, under capitalism, of organising [sic] a globally-integrated economy on a rational foundation and thus ensuring the harmonious development of the productive forces.” ICFI is the leader of the world socialist movement and was founded by Leon Trotsky, according to its own World Socialist Web Site.

Seemingly unfamiliar with the Internet’s decidedly non-socialist history, one participant in last year’s rally called the Internet “the proper media for the occasion. It is the new international communication of an internationalist party.”

Another participant from last year’s event commented the event was “not possible without the [I]nternet.”