Chapter 8: The Communist Party


The historic mission of the working class and the Communist Party is to lead Canada from capitalism to socialism and ultimately communism. In order to achieve that lofty goal, the working class and the Party must also struggle to prevent the outbreak of world war, and to protect the natural environment from devastation.

The Communist Party strives to be the leading political party of the working class, of all who labour by hand and brain. It arises out of the working class and is an organized political detachment of that class. The Party has no interests separate and apart from those of the working class as a whole.

The world outlook of the Communist Party is based on Marxism-Leninism, which embodies the theory of scientific socialism first developed by Karl Marx, Frederick Engels and V.I. Lenin. Marxism-Leninism is not a dogma; it is a living, developing theory, tool of analysis and guide to action. It incorporates the concentrated experience of all the struggles of the working class, both in Canada and around the world. Since the Communist Manifesto was written in 1848, Marxism-Leninism has emerged as the theory and practice of socialism.

Workers wage a daily economic struggle in the workplace for better wages and working conditions. However, socialist theory and practice do not arise spontaneously out of the workplace. The Communist Party, through its work, fuses scientific socialism with the class struggle and by so doing spreads political and socialist consciousness among the workers – an awareness of their historic mission as a class.

The Communist Party works actively to make the world outlook of Marxism-Leninism the property of the working class and defends Marxist-Leninist principles against attempts to negate or distort them. The science of Marxism-Leninism, and the party which embodies it, are essential for the achievement of working class political power, its consolidation and the building of socialism.

Communists strive to play an active and initiating role in the daily struggles of the people in defence of their living standards and their material, social and cultural needs.

The Party seeks to win leadership of the majority of the working class by advancing its policies in the daily struggles for the immediate needs of the working people and by pointing out the lessons to be learned from these struggles. It engages in public work on all issues of the day, and fights for the unity of the working class.

The Communist Party seeks constantly to widen its public influence and to win to its ranks the most advanced sections of the working class, farmers, intellectuals, students, women, and youth. The Communist Party engages in both electoral and extra-parliamentary arenas of struggle.

The Party conducts a struggle for working class ideology and against capitalist ideology and its defense by social reformism. It combats opportunism from both the right and the left, as well as dogmatism, sectarianism, chauvinism, bourgeois nationalism, anarchism, and adventurism. It cooperates with the organizations of the working class in common struggle for the people’s needs. In democratic discussions, it strives to convince those who follow social-reformist leaders of the truth of scientific socialism.

The Communist Party seeks to unite within a single party all who fight for socialism on a Marxist-Leninist basis.

The Communist Party takes a stand on all matters affecting the people of Canada. It defends the people of Canada, and the rights of all nations within Canada. It defends the basic interests of the working class and the working people as a whole, which are those of the vast majority of Canadians. It defends the sovereignty of Canada. It defends the rights of women and fights for full gender equality.

The Party strives to build relations within its ranks based on our communist principles and ethics. It fights against any manifestation of sexism, racism, homophobia, transphobia or other forms of discrimination and intolerance which may arise within the Party. It defends and promotes inner-party democracy at all times, and protects the constitutional rights of all its members.

The Communist Party is dedicated to democratic advance and defends the democratic and legal rights of the people against reactionary attacks, and seeks to extend these rights. The Communist Party is not a party of coups, putsches or conspiracies. It opposes acts of individual terrorism and those who would replace persistent and constant work for the revolutionary education and organization of the masses with empty pseudo-revolutionary phrases and irresponsible calls for action without regard to the actual situation.

The Communist Party carries forward and builds upon the traditions of those who have fought for democratic liberties and Canadian independence. It embodies the dreams and aspirations of the heroes of countless Canadian labour struggles.

The Communist Party works for the political advancement of the Canadian workers, fishers and farmers and the middle sections of the population. In the course of a consistent struggle for democracy, the majority of the Canadian people, by their own united actions and political will, and led by the working class, are capable of achieving major advances. The Communist Party works for cooperation with all labour and democratic forces to bring about a new majority to fight for fundamental change and social advance through the achievement of a people’s government, opening up prospects for further revolutionary transformation and the victory of socialism.

Communists strive to strengthen the unity in action of all of the labour, progressive and democratic forces. The Communist Party seeks cooperation with other organizations in the labour and democratic movements and promotes the development of broad coalitions, alliances and united front formations that defend and advance the interests of the working class and the social, economic and democratic rights of the Canadian people. Building alliances increases the material strength of the working people and illustrates that the particular oppression a group of workers feel is part of a broader pattern of capitalist oppression that affects all working people. It illustrates the relationship of those classes and groups to one another and to the state. It helps working people to respond to other cases of capitalist oppression. It teaches working people to learn how to work with other classes and groups. In other words, it helps to create the basis for working class leadership of society as a whole.

At the same time, the CPC maintains its ideological, political and organizational independence. It explains its program openly among the people, putting forward the necessity and timeliness of socialist transformation.

The Communist Party opposes “big nation” chauvinism as well as narrow nationalism in politics, economics, and cultural and social thought. It fights for the firm unity of peoples in Canada on the basis of full equality and respect for national rights. It works for the closest friendship and cooperation among Canadians of all national and ethnic origins and fights for their right to nurture their culture, language and traditions.

In common with Canada’s early radical-democrats and pioneers of labour, Communists are internationalists, and hold that the fundamental interests of working people throughout the world are one. The struggle to advance the interests of the working class and people of Canada, and to defend its sovereignty, is inseparable from working class internationalism – the solidarity of the working class of all countries in cooperation against imperialist rule and for a world at peace.

Respect for the equality of all peoples and the sovereignty of all nations, great and small, is a guiding principle of working class internationalism.

Canadian workers have the duty of fighting against Canadian imperialist exploitation of the peoples of Latin America, Asia and Africa. In the Americas there is a special need for solidarity among the working people of Canada, the U.S.A., socialist Cuba and all of Latin America and the Caribbean, in the joint struggle against U.S. imperialism and for national and social liberation.

Communists stand for the emancipation of all humanity from capitalist exploitation, colonial plunder, imperialist war, poverty and ignorance. The Communist Party works to convince the Canadian working class of the necessity for solidarity with the working people of all countries who are attempting to break free from the domination of imperialism and are striving to build socialism.

In line with its Marxist-Leninist world outlook, the Communist Party studies and learns from the experiences of the working class movements of other lands while taking into account the specific conditions and traditions of Canada and its people. It develops close relations with other Communist and Workers’ parties and national liberation movements on the basis of solidarity, independence, full equality, and non-interference. It works for the political and ideological unity of the world Communist movement.

The Party’s organizational principle of democratic centralism combines the participation of all its members in democratic discussion and decisions on policy and the election of all leading committees, with central collective leadership in action and with decisions binding on all members. It relies on criticism and self-criticism and the public acknowledgement of error in order to learn from its mistakes and to improve its work.

The course of Canada’s development leads on a complicated but inexorable path towards the replacement of capitalism by socialism. In fighting for this fundamental change, the Communists in fact express the ideals of vast numbers of Canadians who aspire to a new, humane social order free from exploitation and oppression.

The Communist Party cherishes and promotes the highest moral quality of the working class – devotion to the liberating socialist cause, the cause of human freedom and happiness. It seeks to cultivate this humanist ethic among the working people.

For all the above reasons, the Communist Party is the most advanced section of the working class, and strives to become its vanguard.

Since the founding of the Communist Party of Canada in 1921, Canadian Communists have held high the banner of peace, internationalism, Canadian independence, democracy and socialism. They have always stood with the struggles of the workers and farmers for a better life, often providing leadership for those struggles.

This is the Communist program for Canada.

The Communist Party welcomes into membership all who agree with this program and are prepared to make it their own and strive for its achievement.

Join the Communist Party!

Workers and oppressed peoples of all countries, unite!