They direct their attacks not against the bourgeois conditions of production, but against the instruments of production themselves; they destroy imported wares that compete with their labour, they smash to pieces machinery, they set factories ablaze, they seek to restore by force the vanished status of the workman of the Middle Ages.
The various interests and conditions of life within the ranks of the proletariat are more and more equalised, in proportion as machinery obliterates all distinctions of labour, and nearly everywhere reduces wages to the same low level.
Further, as we have already seen, entire sections of the ruling classes are, by the advance of industry, precipitated into the proletariat, or are at least threatened in their conditions of existence.
The "dangerous class," the social scum, that passively rotting mass thrown off by the lowest layers of old society, may, here and there, be swept into the movement by a proletarian revolution; its conditions of life, however, prepare it far more for the part of a bribed tool of reactionary intrigue.
In the conditions of the proletariat, those of old society at large are already virtually swamped.
All the preceding classes that got the upper hand, sought to fortify their already acquired status by subjecting society at large to their conditions of appropriation.
But in order to oppress a class, certain conditions must be assured to it under which it can, at least, continue its slavish existence.
The essential condition for the existence, and for the sway of the bourgeois class, is the formation and augmentation of capital; the condition for capital is wage-labour.
Thus such conditions are called affections, not qualities.
Such conditions are therefore termed, not qualities, but affections.
By a disposition, on the other hand, we mean a condition that is easily changed and quickly gives place to its opposite.
Under the new conditions of perfect comfort and security, that restless energy, that with us is strength, would become weakness.
As I walked I was watching for every impression that could possibly help to explain the condition of ruinous splendour in which I found the world--for ruinous it was.
If we know that the enemy is open to attack, but are unaware that our own men are not in a condition to attack, we have gone only halfway towards victory.
If we know that the enemy is open to attack, and also know that our men are in a condition to attack, but are unaware that the nature of the ground makes fighting impracticable, we have still gone only halfway towards victory.