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 Vigorously Foster the Three Essential Aspects of The Party's Style of Work

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Source: Peking Review, No. 39, September 27, 1968
Transcribed for www.wengewang.org

    GUIDED by the latest series of brilliant instructions from our great leader Chairman Mao, China's great proletarian cultural revolution has made the whole country red. Acting as the main force and strongly backed by the People's Liberation Army, the working class has stepped on to the stage in all parts of the superstructure. The revolutionary mass movement is advancing with ever swifter strides towards all-round victory.
   Our style of work is an extremely important question in consolidating and developing our victory.
   The three essential aspects of our Party's style of work which Chairman Mao himself has fostered, that is, "a style of work which essentially entails integrating theory with practice, forging close links with the masses and practising self-criticism," have proved their revolutionary might during the great proletarian cultural revolution and effectively ensured the smooth implementation of Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line. The tremendous victories of the great proletarian cultural revolution are a great victory for Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line and also for the three essential aspects of the Party's style of work.
   Today, under working-class leadership, armymcn and civilians in their hundreds of millions are engaged in the struggle to fulfil the great historical tasks of struggle-criticism-transformation. Criticism and transformation of the ideology and style of work of the bourgeoisie are important guarantees for carrying out struggle-criticism-transformation smoothly and are also important aspects of struggle-criticism-transformation, which must not be overlooked. In the course of the deepening development of struggle-criticism-transformation, the struggle between the proletarian world outlook, ideology and style of work, on the one hand, and those of the bourgeoisie, on the other, will inevitably go deeper and become more acute. The handful of class enemies will continue to make use of the bourgeois style of work in waging their last-ditch struggles.
   In accepting re-education by the workers, peasants and soldiers, intellectuals must take as their weapon the three essential aspects of the style of work which express the class nature of the working class, and make conscientious efforts to wipe out the poison they received us regards ideology and style of work from the bourgeois educational line. The young Red Guard fighters and revolutionary youth should also inherit the Party s fine tradition and use the three essential aspects of the Party's style of work to educate, temper and arm themselves in order to mature in the healthy way which Chair man Mao expects of successors to the proletarian revolutionary cause.
   Therefore, lo vigorously foster the three essential aspects of the Party's style of work — to overcome, by integrating theory with practice, that style of work in which words and deeds contradict each other; to overcome, by forging close links with the masses, the tendencies of divorcing oneself from the masses, particularly the mountain-stronghold mentality; and to overcome, by practising self-criticism, the style of work of covering up one's errors — has become an important task for us. This is not only of great practical significance in winning all-round victory in the great proletarian cultural revolution; it is also of far-reaching strategic significance in preventing a capitalist restoration and consolidating the dictatorship of the proletariat.
   Chairman Mao teaches us: "Close integration of theory and practice is a hallmark distinguishing our Party from all other political parties."
   Mao Tsc-tung's thought is the greatest revolutionary theory of our era. Chairman Mao's latest series of instructions are the beacon light guiding the people of the entire nation from victory to victory. In integrating theory with practice, the most essential thing is to carry out each and every one of Chairman Mao's latest instructions and to follow closely Chairman Mao's great strategic plan step by step, without logging behind.
   Two entirely different styles of work are reflected in whether one follows closely or not. Contradiction between one's words and one's deeds, saying one thing but doing another and speaking and acting in one way in public but actually aiming at something quite different — all this is the bourgeois style of work. Making identical what one studies and what one applies, applying what one studies, making one's words conform with one's deeds, and no empty talk — this is the style of work of the working class which we advocate.
   First of all, there must be conscientious efforts to study Chairman Mao's instructions and the orders from the proletarian headquarters. We must study for the purpose of revolutionary practice. We should not only study quickly, but do our utmost to study better and understand more deeply. To keep up with the changing situation, we should undertake constant and repealed study; we must not just study for a time and then think the job done. If we study not for the purpose of guiding revolutionary practice but for some other purposes, we cannot have a correct understanding or a real grasp and in our actions we will depart from the course charted by Chairman Mao.
   Bourgeois ideology always stubbornly manifests itself to counter Chairman Mao's instructions and the orders from the proletarian headquarters. In order to follow Chairman Mao's great strategic plan closely, it is essential to wage ideological struggle and resolutely get rid of everything that runs counter to it. It is of no avail if we do not dare to touch our very souls, but just pay lip-service. Only when we translate "following closely in words" into 'following closely by actions," will we really be integrating theory with practice.
   In carrying out Chairman Mao's instructions, leadership at all levels must go into action promptly and resolutely as soon as they learn of such instructions they must create a vigorous and vital atmosphere. Then they must make earnest efforts to ensure that the instructions are implemented. In the light of concrete conditions, they must do a great deal of down-to-earth ideological and organizational work. This is still more important and much harder work. As Chairman Mao teaches us: "To make the policy of the Party the policy of the masses requires effort, long and persistent effort, unrelenting and strenuous, patient and painstaking effort.   Without such effort, we shall achieve nothing.”
   Our great teacher Chairman Mao has always been tireless in teaching us to integrate theory with practice. When we study Mao Tse-tung's thought, we must never forget this very, very important teaching of Chairman Mao's. As a result of the old educational system, many intellectuals share a common failing, that is, their study is divorced from application, they talk a lot but do little, they apply Marxism-Leninism to others but liberalism to themselves. It is quite possible that they may even degenerate into double-dealers who pretend to comply but act in opposition, say one thing and mean another. We must make serious efforts to help the intellectuals and young Red Guard fighters to foster the revolutionary style of study advocated by Chairman Mao himself and to grasp the principle of the creative study and application of Chairman Mao's works put forward by Vice-Chairman Lin Piao, and guide them in striving hard to apply what they study.
   Vice-Chairman Lin Piao points out: "The attitude to Mao Tse-tung's thought is a question of great importance." Whether theory is integrated with practice or divorced from it is a question of one's basic altitude towards Chairman Mao and Mao Tse-tung's thought. Every fighter loyal to Chairman Mao, to Mao Tse-tung's thought and to Chairman Mao's proletarian revolutionary line should develop the style of closely integrating theory with practice and consciously wage a resolute struggle against the habit of empty talk and the style of double-dealing, where words and actions do not match.
   Chairman Mao teaches us: "Another hallmark distinguishing our Party from all other political parties is that we have very close ties with the broadest masses of the people."
   The class nature of the working class determines that it links itself up with the widest masses of the people, brings all positive factors into play and makes all possible efforts to turn passive factors into active ones. This is because "The proletariat must emancipate not only itself but all mankind. Without emancipating all mankind the proletariat cannot achieve its own final emancipation." Tendencies to become divorced from the masses, such as the mountain-stronghold mentality, sectarianism, subjectivism and routinism, are against the Party spirit and the mass point of view of the proletariat. Like fire and water, they do not mix.
   To achieve all-round victory in the great proletarian cultural revolution, it is necessary to unite, under the leadership of the working class, the broad masses of people — mainly the peasant masses, the urban petty bourgeoisie and those intellectuals who can be remoulded— and concentrate the blows against the handful of enemy agents, renegades, diehard capitalist roaders and unreformed landlords, rich peasants, counter-revolutionaries, bad elements and Rightists.
   It is a policy of the proletariat to unite over 95 per cent of the masses and over 95 per cent of the cadres. This is also a question to which we must call attention at the present stage of the great proletarian cultural revolution.
   Vice-Chairman Lin Piao says: "The whole Party and the people of the whole country should be united, with Chairman Mao as the centre, with Mao Tse-tung's thought as the centre." In forging close links with the masses, the fundamental thing is to educate the masses with Mao Tse-tung's thought, to bring Chairman Mao's latest instructions to the masses and put them into practice, to unite the broadest masses around the proletarian headquarters headed by Chairman Mao and with Vice-Chairman Lin Piao as its deputy leader and strive to carry out Chairman Mao's great strategic plan. To act otherwise would be contrary to the fundamental interests of the masses of the people and would therefore mean, in essence, divorcing oneself from the masses.
   The masses have a potentially inexhaustible enthusiasm for socialism. At the time of the high tide of struggle-criticism-transformation, it is particularly imperative to foster the habit of making investigations and study and doing a good job in discovering and upholding advanced units. The leadership at all levels should persist in the working method of "from the masses, to the masses," which Chairman Mao always advocates. It is imperative to discover in time the best ideas, methods and experience of the masses and boldly support them, help the masses to sum them up carefully and enthusiastically recommend them. It is impossible to educate the masses effectively and lead them forward in accordance with Chairman Mao's great strategic plan, if we do not discover and uphold advanced units and energetically bring positive factors into full play.
   When some young Red Guard fighters or revolutionary people make mistakes or have shortcomings, we should not become disgusted with them. We should adhere to principle and criticize them from a clear-cut stand, but in doing so we must speak out of wholehearted eagerness to educate and protect the masses. We should always affirm the achievements of the masses, cherish their revolutionary initiative and have confidence that the vast majority of the masses want' to follow Chairman Mao in making revolution and that the majority or the vast majority of the intellectuals can integrate themselves with the workers, peasants and soldiers. It is our responsibility to make a big effort to do patient and meticulous ideological-political work with them so as to help raise their political consciousness, help them see their shortcomings and mistakes, actively assist them in overcoming and correcting those shortcomings and mistakes, and unite with them so that we advance together.
   Different opinions often exist among the people. These are contradictions based on an identity of basic interests. A true proletarian revolutionary fighter should proceed in any matter from the interests of the people and not from the selfish interests of an individual or a small group. Not only must he unite with those who agree with him; he must also be good at uniting with those who disagree with him and even with those who formerly opposed him and have since been proved wrong in practice. To take bad persons for good ones when they agree with you and to reject all those who disagree with you is a mountain-stronghold mentality trend and should be resolutely opposed.
   Chairman Mao teaches us: "Conscientious practice of self-criticism is still another hallmark distinguishing our Party from all other political parties."
   The great proletarian cultural revolution aims at overthrowing the handful of capitalist roaders in the Party and all other class enemies, and at the same time at remoulding the world outlook of people. Self-criticism is the only correct method for revolutionary people to remould themselves. Only when one always takes oneself as a target of the revolution and constantly makes self-criticism can one follow Chairman Mao's great strategic plan closely and step by step, and be the motive force of the revolution at all times.
   A revolutionary has the bounden duty to do good things for the people. If he achieves some successes, these should be attributed to our great leader Chairman Mao, to the Party Central Committee headed by Chairman Mao, to the Military Commission of the Party Central Committee, to the Cultural Revolution Group Under the Party Central Committee and to the people. If he does something wrong, he should make a self-criticism and resolutely correct his error. This is an expression of one's loyalty to the great leader Chairman Mao and of his sense of responsibility to the people. Once the errors are corrected, bad things turn into good things and he who makes mistakes becomes correct.
   Vice-Chairman Lin Piao says: "In making revolution, we must also revolutionize ourselves. Without revolutionizing ourselves, we cannot succeed in making this revolution." Why did some comrades who made contributions to the people in the initial and middle stages of the great proletarian cultural revolution lag behind later or even commit mistakes? One of the important reasons is that they failed to make a correct appraisal of themselves in accordance with the dialectical analytical method of one dividing into two, lacked the spirit of self-criticism and relaxed their efforts to revolutionize themselves. What a profound lesson this is!
   As struggle-criticism-transformation goes deeper day by day, the struggle between the public interest of the proletariat and the self-interest of the bourgeoisie becomes more acute, just as when two armies close in for hand-to-hand fighting. This requires that we further enhance our consciousness in self-criticism. Every revolutionary comrade who is determined to carry the great proletarian cultural revolution through to the end should take Chairman Mao's instructions and the orders from the proletarian headquarters as the highest guiding principle for all his actions, and constantly examine them in the light of these instructions and orders. Everything that is in conformity with Chairman Mao's great strategic plan should be carried forward energetically. To depart from Chairman Mao's great strategic plan means making the biggest mistake and showing the biggest selfishness and the deepest disloyalty to Chairman Mao. If one acts thus, then one must make a conscientious self-criticism, not a perfunctory one, and resolutely wipe out one's error.
   It is impossible for any exploiting class to make self-criticism, because truth is not on its side, it does not have the masses and would collapse once it made a self-criticism. One of the pernicious influences which the bourgeois educational system exerts on intellectuals is to make them think that they are always right, to make them look down on everyone else and to cover up their errors. Some people are infected with this bad style of work. When they have once done something right, then they think they are always correct, rest on their laurels and make no progress. These comrades should act in line with Chairman Mao's teaching that “We should remould ourselves by means of the weapon of self-criticism and by more intensive study so as to meet the requirements of the Party and the revolution."
   Our great leader Chairman Mao recently pointed out: "Our country has 700 million people, and the working class is the leading class, it is essential to bring into full play the leading role of the working class in the great cultural revolution and in all fields of work. On its part, the working class should always raise its political consciousness in the course of struggle."
   Self-criticism, which embodies a thoroughgoing revolutionary spirit, is characteristic of the working class. In order to advance human society to the ideal stage of communism, the working class sets itself one heroic task after another in transforming the objective world and, at the same time, constantly remoulds its own subjective world in the course of the struggle. Can there be proletarian revolutionaries who refuse to make self-criticism in the course of great revolutionary struggles? No, there have never been such proletarian revolutionaries. All revolutionary comrades including the young Red Guard fighters should learn modestly from the working class and always remain militant materialists imbued with the spirit of self-criticism and courage in correcting shortcomings and mistakes.
   Chairman Mao teaches us: "Opposition and struggle between ideas of different kinds constantly occur within the Party; this is a reflection within the Party of contradictions between classes and between the new and the old in society."
   There has been a struggle between two styles of work throughout the course of our Party's history. The great historic Party rectification campaign of 1942, which Chairman Mao himself led, overcame the various non-proletarian styles of work which then existed within the Party, united and educated the whole Party and the entire people, and ensured the victories of the War of Resistance Against Japan and the War of Liberation.
   During the period of socialism, the struggle between the proletarian and bourgeois styles of work is an important aspect of the struggle between the two classes, the two roads and the two lines. As far back as the Second Plenary Session of the Party's Seventh Central Committee, our great leader Chairman Mao called on the whole Party to maintain and develop the Party's fine style of work so as to defeat the bourgeoisie. Since the founding of the People's Republic (if China, Chairman Mao has summed up the historical experience of the dictatorship of the proletariat and has greatly enriched and developed, both in theory and in practice, the Party's fine style of work and has thus ensured that our country advance in the direction of socialism and communism.
   China's Khrushchov, the top capitalist roader within the Party, for a long time pushed the counterrevolutionary revisionist line, opposed the three essential aspects of the Party's style of work that Chairman Mao fosters, and peddled the decadent feudal and bourgeois style of work handed down from Confucius to Chiang Kai-shek, in a vain attempt to corrupt our class. Party and state so as to achieve his vicious aim of restoring capitalism.
   Now the counter-revolutionary revisionist line represented by China's Khrushchov has been smashed to smithereens. But, as Lenin pointed out: "When the old society perishes, its corpse cannot be nailed up in a coffin and lowered into the grave. It disintegrates in our midst; the corpse rots and infects us." The bad style of work characterized by contradiction between words and deeds, the mountain-stronghold mentality and covering up one's mistakes is precisely the stench emanating from the political corpse of the bourgeoisie represented by China's Khrushchov. We will launch sustained and thoroughgoing revolutionary mass criticism and repudiation so as to hurl these evil things on to the garbage dump of history.
   The Chinese People's Liberation Army which Chairman Mao himself created and is leading, and which is under the direct command of Vice-Chairman Lin Piao, has been a model in carrying out the three essential aspects of the Party's style of work during the last few decades. Our efforts to develop the Party's style of work must be strengthened in the army in order to meet the demands of the new situation in the great proletarian cultural revolution and to bring into full play its mighty power as the pillar of the dictatorship of the proletariat. Every veteran fighter in our army should make a conscious effort to develop and spread the three essential aspects of the style of work of the Party. Every new fighter should strive to learn and carry forward this style of work so that it will be handed down from generation to generation and always shines resplendent. All of the army's commanders and fighters should hold aloft the great red banner of Mao Tse-tung's thought, be models in linking theory with practice, in keeping in close contact with the masses and in making self-criticism. Under the strong leadership of the proletarian headquarters headed by Chairman Mao and with Vice-Chairman Lin Piao as its deputy leader, they should advance courageously along with the people throughout the country in carrying out Chairman Mao's great strategic plan and winning all-round victory in the great proletarian cultural revolution.

("Jiefangjun Bao" editorial, September 23, 1968.)


  
  
  

 
 
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