The Occupy Movement – with its slogan ‘we are the 99 per cent’ – may perhaps not be willing to acknowledge the origin of that idea. But it comes from none other than Ioseb Besarionis Dze Jugashvili, more commonly known as Joseph Stalin. In his lengthy report to the sixteenth congress, in 1930, of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolshevik), he observes:
The share of the kulaks and urban capitalists was in 1927-28—8.1 per cent; in 1928-29—6.5 per cent; in 1929-30—1.8 per cent.
Meanwhile, what was happening to the 99 per cent, or more exactly, the 98.2 per cent?
All this taken together, plus the introduction of the seven-hour day for over 830,000 industrial workers (33.5 per cent), plus the introduction of the five-day week for over a million and a half industrial workers (63.4 per cent), plus the extensive network of rest homes, sanatoria and health resorts for workers, to which more than 1,700,000 workers have gone during the past three years—all this creates conditions of work and life for the working class that enable us to rear a new generation of workers who are healthy and vigorous, who are capable of raising the might of the Soviet country to the proper level and of protecting it with their lives from attacks by its enemies. (Applause.)
It is not surprising that the workers and peasants in our country are living fairly well on the whole, that general mortality has dropped 36 per cent, and infant mortality 42.5 per cent, below the pre-war level, while the annual increase in population in our country is about three million. (Applause.)
As regards the cultural conditions of the workers and peasants, in this sphere too we have some achievements, which, however, cannot under any circumstances satisfy us, as they are still small. Leaving out of account workers’ clubs of all kinds, village reading rooms, libraries and abolition of illiteracy classes, which this year are being attended by 10,500,000 persons, the situation as regards cultural and educational matters is as follows. This year elementary schools are being attended by 11,638,000 pupils; secondary schools—1,945,000; industrial and technical, transport and agricultural schools and classes for training workers of ordinary skill—333,100; secondary technical and equivalent trade schools—238,700; colleges, general and technical—190,400. All this has enabled us to raise literacy in the U.S.S.R. to 62.6 per cent of the population, compared with 33
per cent in pre-war times.
The chief thing now is to pass to universal, compulsory elementary education. I say the “chief” thing, because this would be a decisive step in the cultural revolution. (Works, volume 12, pp. 301, 308-9)
Yes, this is Stalin’s definition of ‘cultural revolution.’