Omake: The Progressive Manifesto
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AN: Written by Libertad of the Alternatehistory forum. 

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A Call for Action to the Revolutionaries of Europe by an American Liberal Unionist, popularly known as the “Liberal Manifesto” or the "Progressive Manifesto", is a political pamphlet; written between 1809-1811 by famed revolutionary hero and former Secretary of the Treasury and then President of the United States, Alexander Hamilton. It was then published in the New York Times serially a year later, in 1812, under the pseudonym, Gracchus, just right after President Andrew Jackson’s inauguration. After years in obscurity, it soon became one of the world’s most influential political documents, influencing numerous prominent thinkers and politicians afterwards. The document further expand on the concepts of "democratic revolution" and "democratic republic" that were discussed by Samuel Kim, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams in their own works. It also presents an analytical presentation of class struggle and exploring the possibility of building a future world without class distinctions, which is not completely described and was vague.

The Progressive Manifesto also summarizes Alexander Hamilton’s theories regarding the nature of humanity and society and presents ideas as to how to properly built a society without the power of kings and aristocrats, which involves a high level of government activity and involvement in providing for public goods that was not common among governments of the time and in most of human history. It also introduced the concept of “Four Freedoms” for the first time; the freedom of speech and expression, freedom of worship, the freedom from want, and the freedom from fear. In the last paragraph of the Manifesto, Hamilton called for “an overthrow of all oppressive social conditions”, which served as a call for liberal and progressive reform or revolution for many of its supporters afterwards.

The Manifesto cemented Hamilton’s status as one of the most influential political and economic thinkers of the last half-millenium.

Excerpts:

A specter is haunting Europe – the specter of liberty, equality and progress. All the powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this specter: King Louis and King George, Pope and the Tsar, along with many others….

….The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles. Freeman and slave, patrician and plebeian, lord and serf, guild-master and journeyman, in a word, oppressor and oppressed, stood in constant opposition to one another, carried on an uninterrupted, always changing battle, a social battle that each time ended, either in a revolutionary reconstitution of society at large, or in the common ruin of the contending classes.

…. The revolution of the people, therefore, has its origins in the moment when the gulf between the state of society and the individual conscience is realized, when the latter finds itself, either through instinct or through analysis, obliged to react against the former.

So, in a few words, my belief is that revolutions come about:

1. as a phenomenon opposed to a given state of affairs which stands in contradiction to individual aspirations and needs;

2. as a phenomenon, whenever that response takes collective shape and clashes with the established order;

3. as organization, whenever the need is felt to create a force capable of imposing the realization of the people’s objectives.

… In consequence, I believe that a democratic revolution should always be founded upon the following ethical principles of responsible liberalism:

1. that the needs of each man be met with no limitations other than those imposed by a country’s capabilities;

2. that each and every man be urged to make the greatest possible effort to meet the needs of society in accordance with his own capabilities.

So, it is my considered opinion:

1. That man is not naturally evil and that crime is the logical outcome of the circumstance of social injustice in which we live.

2. That in supplying man's needs and also providing him with scope for rational and humane education, the causes of crime shall, one day, disappear.

… If the poor during its contest with the wealthy is compelled, by the force of circumstances, to organize itself as a class by means of a revolution, then it makes itself the new ruling class, and, as such, sweeps away by force the old conditions of oppression and then it will, along with these conditions, have swept away the conditions for the existence of class antagonisms and of classes generally, and will thereby have abolished its own supremacy as a class. Over time, bountiful democratic production of wealth shall force class distinctions to disappear, with all production concentrated in the hands of a vast association of the whole nation. This shall be when public power will lose its political character. Political power, properly so called, is merely the organized power of one class for oppressing another.

In place of the old society of kings and nobles and lords, with its classes and class antagonisms, we shall have an association, in which the free development of each is the condition for the free development of all.

… In the most immediate circumstance, the following measures are generally needed to be done to secure our gains.

1. An equal distribution of farming land between farmers and peasants.

2. A progressive or graduated income tax.

3. Confiscation of all property of all rebels and traitors to the revolution and their distribution to all the people.

4. Establishment of a national bank.

5. Establishment of workshops and advanced instruments of production with the support of the constitutional State; the bringing into cultivation of wastelands, and the improvement of the soil generally in accordance with a common plan.

6. Equal liability of all to work. Establishment of industrial and agricultural associations of free producers.

7. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual abolition of all the distinction between town and country by a more equable distribution of the populace over the country.

8. Free education for all children in public schools.

9. A tax on the value of land.

10. Institution of a responsible government via a secret ballot, in order to protect the elector in the exercise of his or her vote. The exercise of the right to vote shall also be extended to women.

… In the coming years, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential freedoms of man and citizen.

The first is freedom of speech, and expression—everywhere in the world.

The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way—everywhere in the world.

The third is freedom from want—which, translated into world terms, means understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy life for its inhabitants—everywhere in the world.

The fourth is freedom from fear—which, translated into world terms, means a reduction of the oppressive and tyrannical actions of governments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against its own citizens and against any neighbor—anywhere in the world….

… Let the liberals and the progressives proudly agitate and express their views and aims. They should openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the overthrow of oppressive social conditions. History shall decide the ways this can be accomplished. Either the ruling classes meet the people at the negotiation table or they shall tremble at seeing the armed masses! The people have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. A world of equality and democracy!

Let democracy win!

Progressive men and women of the world, unite! Onwards to freedom!

Real life sources of the excerpts come from the Communist Manifesto, Franklin D. Roosevelt's Four Freedoms speech, and the CNT's Resolution on Libertarian Communism.

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