George Walford: Bottoms and Tops
The Socialist Standard for August 1984 says:
The working class […] run society from top to bottom.
The same journal for October 1984 says, of the proposition that ‘the exploited control their own exploitation’ that it ‘defied logic.’
But if the workers run society from top to bottom then they must control their own exploitation, for exploitation is, the Socialist Party keep telling us, an unavoidable part of running present society.
The Socialist Party maintains two propositions: that the workers operate this society and that operating this society entails exploiting the workers. If these are both valid then it follows that the workers exploit themselves (handing the proceeds to the capitalists).
The socialist provoked by this into declaring that it defies logic begins to realise the difficulties of his position.
from Ideological Commentary 14, October 1984.