Dr. Dao Duy Quat
Deputy Head of the Central Cultural and Ideological Board
Member of the Central Theoretical Council
Since the 6th Congress of the Communist Party of Viet Nam, the Congress which initiated our national comprehensive renovation, our Party has asserted “Renovation does not mean giving up the goal of socialism which our Party and people have chosen; renovation has nothing to do with transformation, renovation is to find suitable steps, forms and measures for successful building up of socialism. To firmly hold to the socialist orientation constitutes the fundamental principle guiding the cause of renovation. It reflects the consistency in pursuing the goal of combination of national independence with socialism. It is a definite affirmation of our path to socialism, passing over the capitalist development or any other ways round.”
After 7 years of renovation, the mid-term Party Plenum (7th tenure) asserted important achievements regarding political, socio-economic, security, defence and external relation fields. The Plenum also warned of four threats in the coming time, one of which was the deviation from the socialist orientation.
The awareness of the threat of derailment from the socialist orientation stems from the process of implementation of the multi-sectoral market economy. Fact shows that such an economy will create a strong driving force, bringing into full play the aggregate strength of all economic sectors, stimulating the creativeness of each individual. However, it also hides in itself the threat of deviation from the socialist orientation if our Party and State have insufficient capability in directing and managing it.
Objectively the hostile forces are pushing up the evolution strategy to incorporate our regime into the orbit of capitalism.
It is not simple at all to identify the manifestations of the threat of deviation from the socialist orientation. The complicated characters of this identification spring from the complex features of the transitional period. The transitional period to socialism in our country is a long process with lots of phases and transitional levels. In our country, the transitional period is substantially the gradual realization of the peculiarities of socialism our people are building. This means the gradual materialization of six peculiarities which have been defined in the Platform for national building in the transitional period to socialism as follows: the working class become masters of society; there has a highly developed economy based on a modern production force and public ownership of essential production materials; there is an advance culture imbued with national identities; people are freed from oppression, exploitation and injustice, working according to their ability and benefiting on the basis of their labour, having a free, happy and prosperous life with favourable conditions for comprehensive development of each individual; the ethnic groups are equal, living in solidarity and assisting each other for mutual advancement; there have friendship and cooperation ties with all countries in the world. Only when we put an end to the transitional period can we realize comprehensively the features of these peculiarities. In the transitional period, especially when we have fundamentally ended the first stage, some fields, especially socio-economic ones still bear their transitional characters.
It is necessary to understand that transitional characters bear in part characters of socialism. As such, it is required to fully grasp the complex transitional characters so that we can avoid laying the blame on any development in progress on the ground of the settlement of the deviation from the socialist orientation, thus curbing the process of renovation and development. On the other hand, we should not lack vigilance and responsibility in guiding the fight against manifestations of the deviation from the socialist orientation. Though bearing the transitional characters and the intertwined complexity, in the process of development of this period, the features of socialism will inevitably further increase after each phase and each level of the transitional period. It means that the characters of six peculiarities should be materialized more obviously after each phase and level.
To fully grasp the fundamental peculiarities of socialism our people are striving for, to grasp the transitional characters and the intertwined complexity of this historical period help us identify the manifestations of the derailment from the socialist orientation in some major aspects as follows:
Regarding the political field: first and foremost, this is the increase with regard to the incompetence in the leadership of the Communist Party and the ineffectiveness of the socialist law-governed State. Lenin warned of this threat by pointing out that the Bolshevik steered but the car did not follow his driving. The deviation from the political aspect also finds expressions in the wrongful manifestations in policies and guidelines of the Party, in the tendency of violation of the mastership right of the people (including both representative democracy and direct democracy at grassroots level).
The derailment from the socialist orientation in the socio-economic field is displayed typically in the increase of the incompetence of State-owned enterprises, of collective economy, of the situation of further lagging behind economically compared with other countries in the region and the world, the augmentation of social chasm and the gap between the poor and the rich, together with the expansion of exploitation, oppression, and injustice.
With regard to the cultural field, the derailment from the socialist orientation is reflected in the increased retrograde process of political ideology, morals and way of life, the erosion of our country’s sustainable values including patriotism, self-reliance, community solidarity, yearning for study and progress, industriousness, occupational consciousness, compassion and so on.
To firmly hold to the socialist orientation requires each and every cadre and Party member to remain consistent with the Party’s ideological foundation of Marxism-Leninism and President Ho Chi Minh Thoughts, to hold firm to our goal of striving for the combination of national independence and socialism, to fully grasp and decidedly realize the guidelines put forth in the 9th Party Congress, that is to capitalize on the aggregate strength of all the people, further enhance the renovation cause, the process of industrialization and modernization, build up and firmly defend the socialist fatherland for the purpose of strong nation, prosperous people, equitable, democratic and civilized society.
To firmly hold to the socialist orientation requires each cadre and Party member to fully grasp six peculiarities of socialism our people are striving for, and to lead, guide and organize the process of successfully turning them into reality.
To firmly hold to the socialist orientation also requires each cadre and Party member to fully grasp and decidedly implement seven fundamental lines put forth in the Platform for national building in the transitional period to socialism as follows:
First, to build a socialist State of the people, by the people and for the people, to form a foundation of the working class, the peasants and the intelligentsia under the leadership of the Communist Party, to fully implement the democratic rights of the people, to firmly ensure social order and security, to strictly deal with all actions which are to the detriment of the interests of our fatherland and our people.
Second, to develop the production force, to industrialize the country in the direction of modernity which closely connects with the development of a comprehensive agriculture constitute the focal task with a view to gradually building the material infrastructure of socialism, further increasing productivity and improving people’s livelihood.
Third, in accordance with the development of the production force, to step by step establish the socialist production relation from low to high levels together with the diversity of forms of ownership. To develop the socialist-oriented multi-sectoral market economy under State management. State and collective economic sectors increasingly assert their significant role in the national economy. To implement various forms of distribution, with distribution according to results of labour and economic effectiveness as the main part.
Fourth, to carry put the socialist revolution in the cultural and ideological field, ensuring the outlook of Marxism–Leninism and President Ho Chi Minh Thoughts the leading role in social spiritual life. To inherit and bring into play the fine cultural traditions of all ethnic groups in our country, to acquire the world cultural essence, to build a democratic and civilized society in service of legitimate interests and people’s dignity with increasingly improved intellectual, moral, physical, and aesthetic standards. To fight cultural ideology which is not progressive and goes against the good traditions of our nation and noble values of mankind, and against the path to socialism.
Fifth, to carry out the policy on national great solidarity, strengthen and expand the Unified Fatherland Front, gather forces to strive for the cause of strong nation, prosperous people. To implement the external policy of friendship cooperation with all countries in the world, to remain loyal to the internationalism of the working class, unite with other socialist countries and all forces striving for peace, national independence, democracy and social progress in the world.
Sixth, to build socialism and to defend the socialist fatherland constitute the two strategic tasks of the Vietnamese revolution. With regard to the prioritised task of national building, our people always remain alert to consolidate national defence, protect political security, social order and security, and protect the Fatherland and other revolutionary achievements.
Seventh, to build our Party which should be pure and strong in terms of political aspect, ideological field and organization on a par with its assigned tasks, to ensure that our Party fulfils its responsibility in directing the socialist revolutionary cause in our country.
Socialism is a noble ideal. It reflects the strong desire of the whole nation. To firmly hold to the socialist orientation becomes the honourable responsibility of each and every member of the glorious Communist Party of Viet Nam.