Vladimir Lenin's

Basic Proposition on Economic and Especially on Banking Policy

Written: April 1918
First Published: Lenin Miscellany XXI, 1933
Online Version: marx.org 1997; marxists.org 1999
Transcribed: Conal Tuohy
HTML Markup: Brian Baggins and David Walters
Copyleft: V. I. Lenin Internet Archive (www.marx.org) 2003. Permission is granted to copy and/or distribute this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

Completion of nationalisation of industry and exchange.
Nationalisation of banks and gradual transition to socialism.
Compulsory organisation of the population in consumer co-operative societies.
{+Commodity exchange}
Accounting and control of production and distribution of goods.
Labour discipline.
{+Tax policy}


Measures for transition to compulsory current accounts or to compulsory keeping of money in the banks.

Compulsory organisation of the population in consumer co-operative societies and measures for transition to this.

Conditions of an agreement with co-operators on gradual transition of their apparatus towards organisation of the whole population in consumer co-operative societies.

Compulsory labour service, begun from the top.

The most ruthless measures to combat chaos, disorder and idleness, and the most vigorous and severe measures for raising the discipline and self-discipline of the workers and peasants, are to be regarded as absolutely essential and urgent.

Conversion of state control into a real control for setting up mobile groups of controllers in all spheres of economic life.

Practical conditions concerning the employment of bourgeois intellectuals and saboteurs who express the desire to work with the Soviet government. Industrial courts for taking account of production, stocks of goods and labour productivity. (lmmediate and categorical.)

Completion of nationalisation of industry.

Gradual transition to organisation of one and all in consumer co-operatives and commodity exchange.

Banking policy.

Labour discipline and so forth.

Tax policy (finance).

1. Completion of the nationalisation of all factories, railways, means of production and exchange.

* Categorical and ruthless struggle agaiust the syndicalist and chaotic attitude to nationalised enterprises. Persistent carrying out of centralisation of economic life on a nationwide scale. Unremitting demand for preliminary plans and estimates, weekly reports and actual increase of labour productivity. Establishment and practical trial of the apparatus for managing the nationalised industries.

* The reason for this demand was that when certain enterprises were nationalised the staffs of these enterprises and certain trade unions had a tendency to regard the enterprise or branch of industry as belonging to the staff of the enterprise or to the trade union. Lenin was very much against such anarcho-syndicalist tendencies. When the question of water transport on the Volga was being discussed by the Council of People's Commissars on March 4, 1918, Lenin condemned the proposal to make the nationalised river craft the property of the trade unions of the various shipping lines and stressed that such aspirations had nothing in common with socialism. "The task of socialism," Lenin said, "is to make all the means of production the property of the whole people, and certainly not to have the ships handed over to the ship workers and the banks handed over to the bank workers."