KIM JONG IL
On Thoroughly Establishing the System of Party Leadership
Speech at a Consultative Meeting of Senior Officials of the Organizational Leadership Department and the Propaganda and Agitation Department of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea
April 28, 1979
April 28, 1979
Today I should like to speak to you about the need to thoroughly establish the system of Party leadership.
The establishment of the system of Party leadership is the fundamental principle of building a working-class party and the key to achieving success in the revolution and construction. It is only when this system is fully established that the Party can carry out its mission as the General Staff of the revolution and organize the broad masses to wage the revolutionary struggle and do the work of construction effectively.
The huge revolutionary tasks facing us at present urgently demand that the system of Party leadership is established to the letter. We must speed up the revolution and construction programme in the northern half of the Republic so as to build socialism and communism. We must also drive US imperialism out of the southern half to attain the cause of the country's reunification, the greatest desire of our nation, at the earliest date. If we are to succeed in these historic tasks we must fully establish the system of Party leadership.
The experience of the international communist movement shows that the thorough establishment of the system of Party leadership is very important. The historic experience of this movement tells us that as the revolution and construction are developed, the system of Party leadership must be established more thoroughly.
In the past our Party has always paid close attention to the establishment of the system of Party leadership, and achieved remarkable success in this work. Thanks to the Party's strenuous efforts, its leadership is fully guaranteed in all fields and units of the revolution and construction, and a revolutionary discipline prevails throughout the whole Party so that it acts in a body. Now all Party members and other working people entrust their destiny entirely to the Party and are firm in their determination to accomplish the revolution, following the leadership of the Party. However, this is no more than an initial success. We must still continue in the future to work energetically at establishing the system of Party leadership.
Establishing the system of Party leadership means setting up throughout the Party an iron discipline as well as a revolutionary habit of implementing Party decisions and instructions to the letter and without reservation. It means encouraging Party members to have a better appreciation of the Party organization and to strengthen their Party life. By these means the Party's leadership over the revolution and construction can be firmly guaranteed.
All Party organizations must work harder to establish the system of Party leadership thoroughly in order to ensure Party leadership over the revolutionary struggle and construction programme.
First of all, cadres and Party members must acquire the revolutionary habit of accepting the Party's decisions and instructions without demur and of carrying them through to the end.
The Party's decisions and instructions represent the organizational will of our Party and are guidelines to which all cadres and Party members must adhere. These decisions and instructions stipulate the specific ways and means to carry out the revolutionary struggle and construction programme successfully.
The Party's leadership is realized through the efforts that are made to implement its decisions and instructions. It is an aim in establishing the system of Party leadership to ensure that these are carried out to the letter. It would be absurd to speak of the Party's leadership apart from the efforts to implement its decisions and instructions. Without those efforts success in the revolution and construction would be inconceivable.
Now some officials do not implement the Party's decisions and instructions promptly. They dillydally over their implementation, complaining about bad conditions, and simply convey them to their subordinates without any methodology. Acting from self-centredness and expediency, some other officials do not organize the work of implementing them with a due sense of responsibility and then shift the blame for their failure in their work onto their superiors or subordinates. Then there are some Party officials who, on the pretext of doing inner-Party work, neglect to carry out the Party's decisions and instructions with regard to administrative and economic affairs and feel no remorse even if they are not implemented as they should be. Failing to accept them without reservation and paying no attention to or neglecting their implementation is not an approach to work that a revolutionary should adopt. People who behave like this are not fit to be Party members. Unconditional acceptance and implementation of Party decisions and instructions is the primary revolutionary duty of cadres and Party members. Their revolutionary activities are immediately a struggle to carry them out. Without this struggle, their revolutionary activities are inconceivable and they cannot claim to be discharging their revolutionary duty.
Loyalty to the Party must be expressed not in words but in the practical struggle to implement the Party's decisions and instructions. Only those who carry them out unconditionally are true communist revolutionaries of the Juche type loyal to the Party.
Party organizations must root out any negative practices which become apparent among cadres and Party members, such as irresponsibility, attitudes unworthy of masters, formalism, expediency and self-centredness, so that they will carry out the Party's decisions and instructions unconditionally and without the least delay.
To this end, Party organizations and cadres must organize their work carefully.
Only then can they induce the Party members and working people to display their revolutionary zeal and creativity and put the Party's decisions and instructions into effect.
When they receive the decisions and instructions, Party organizations must adopt correct measures for their implementation through collective discussion, organize detailed assignments, regularly review the results of their performance and reassign what is yet to be done so that these tasks are completed.
In order to implement the Party's decisions and instructions without reservation, cadres and Party members must be encouraged to display a high degree of the revolutionary spirit of self-reliance and fortitude.
The struggle to implement the decisions and instructions is an undertaking to transform nature and society as required by the Juche idea. In this process a number of difficult and complicated problems may arise.
Cadres and Party members must bring the revolutionary spirit of self-reliance and fortitude into full play, and thus secure what is in short supply, produce what is lacking and surmount all kinds of difficulties by their own efforts, so that the decisions and instructions are fully implemented.
Establishing a revolutionary discipline within the Party is a matter of priority in setting up the system of Party leadership.
Only by doing this can we strengthen the Party's unity and cohesion in ideology and purpose and push ahead forcefully with the revolutionary struggle and construction programme by increasing its leading role. If each Party member behaves as he pleases instead of the whole Party acting under one baton, the Party will become a sort of club and, in the long run, the revolution and construction will be doomed to failure.
Party organizations must establish an iron discipline under which the whole Party acts in a body, thus making it militant, powerful and revolutionary.
First of all, cadres and Party members must entrust themselves entirely to the Party. They must maintain an unshakable conviction that their personal fate is inseparable from that of the Party.
This is the only way for them to act in conformity with the Party's intention without hesitation in any adversity and establish a revolutionary discipline throughout the whole Party.
If cadres and Party members are to entrust everything to the Party and have such a firm faith that they know nothing but the Party, they must be educated to have a correct understanding of the Party.
As you know, our Party is the General Staff of the revolution and provides the organization and inspiration for all the victories of our people. Without the Party we cannot conceive of the victory of our revolution and of the freedom and happiness of our people. If Party members have a correct understanding of the historical mission and role of the Party, they will support it wholeheartedly, entrust everything to it and observe its discipline willingly. Party organizations must provide cadres and Party members with a correct understanding of our Party so that they will support it and follow it sincerely.
In addition, cadres and Party members must be educated to discard illusions about individual officials. If one harbours an illusion about an individual person, one will idolize him, and this will create factions in the Party. In the long run, this will do serious, irretrievable harm to the Party and the revolution. Party organizations must ensure that no cadres and Party members follow individual officials blindly or give them prominence without principle.
If a revolutionary discipline is to be established in the Party, we must build up a strict system of concentrating important matters of principle arising in Party work on the Party organization and of dealing with them as decided upon.
If this is not done we cannot control Party work as a whole, map out correct operational plans and give proper Party leadership to all fields and units.
Some Party officials still do not report to the Party organization those problems which they should report and, when they do so, they make a false report, seeking self-aggrandizement. Party officials must have a good understanding of important matters of principle arising in Party work, and report them to the Party organization accurately and without delay.
At the same time, Party organizations and officials must establish a revolutionary discipline so that they deal with any problem in accordance with the conclusion of the Party Central Committee.
Dealing with important matters of principle which arise in Party work in conformity with the conclusion of the Party Central Committee is a duty that all Party organizations must abide by and also a centralized discipline. If Party organizations and officials do not deal with these problems in this way but treat them haphazardly as they please, they will create confusion and indiscipline in the Party. Then they will not be able to carry out the work of the Party properly in the way that it intends.
All Party organizations and officials must deal with important matters of principle arising in Party work in accordance with the conclusion of the Party Central Committee. Once a conclusion on any problem has been reached they must deal with the problem exactly in line with that conclusion and without any argument at all. They must do only one thing, if the Party tells them to do so, even though they want to do ten things.
We must establish a revolutionary discipline throughout the Party so that all cadres and Party members will breathe the same air, say the same things and take the same steps.
To have a better appreciation of the Party organization and to take part in Party life faithfully is the sacred duty of all Party members; it is an important task for the thorough establishment of the system of Party leadership.
It is only when cadres and Party members have a better appreciation of the Party organization and lead a sound Party life that they can think and act as the Party intends and move as one under its monolithic leadership. They must have a better appreciation of the Party organization and faithfully take part in Party organizational life.
First of all, they must have a better appreciation of the Party organization.
Cadres and Party members must respect and value the Party organization, and must rely on it entirely in their work and in their daily lives.
The Party gives its members the most valuable political integrity. It is the protector of their political integrity which takes care of them and leads them at all times to exalt it for ever. Away from the Party organization a Party member cannot exist even for a moment nor can he discharge the duty stipulated by the Party Rules and play his part as a revolutionary.
But some Party members still place their personal interests above those of the Party organization; they do not open their hearts to it and frankly report those problems which arise in their work and daily lives. Those people who do not speak their minds to the Party but rather behave diplomatically towards it, cannot share a common fate with it, nor are they fit for Party membership.
A Party member must work hard in the interests of the Party organization and report to it every problem which arises in his family as well as in his work and his own life.
Party organizations must educate cadres and Party members to have a correct appreciation of the Party organization by giving them a clear understanding of it and of what they should do in order to enhance it.
All cadres and Party members must be encouraged to participate in Party life willingly.
Party members are revolutionary fighters who have joined the Party of their own accord with a determination to dedicate themselves to the Party, the leader and the revolution. They must take part in Party life willingly, not under the coercion of someone else or under the control of the organization.
All Party members must put Party life on a regular basis and make it their habit. They must implement sincerely the decisions and assignments of the Party organization and make constructive proposals by taking an active part in the discussion of the problems.
In order to strengthen Party life, we must guide and control the Party life of the members. For the strengthening of Party life it is quite insufficient to depend entirely on the consciousness of the individual members. The guidance and supervision of the Party organization is required.
Giving assignments to Party members at regular intervals is an essential requirement for strengthening their Party life.
In this way they can fulfil their duty as political figures and play a vanguard role in all respects. Party organizations must give all Party members appropriate assignments in keeping with their level of preparedness and specific characters and help them to carry out these assignments without fail. This will ensure they will always be actively involved.
Party organizations must ensure that Party members closely link their Party life with the performance of their revolutionary tasks.
Encouraging Party members to lead a sound Party life is not an end in itself; it aims at getting them to fulfil their revolutionary tasks with credit. There can be no pure Party life in isolation from revolutionary tasks.
Party organizations should give substantial help to all Party members so that they accomplish their revolutionary tasks with a sense of responsibility.
It is necessary to exercise strict control over the Party life of the membership, in addition to organizing and guiding it properly.
If this control is neglected, they will become arrogant and eventually degenerate ideologically and turn into renegades of the revolution who are unconcerned about the Party.
At present Party organizations are not exercising proper control over the Party life of the members. As a result, some of them do not take an active part in it and do not accept readily the opinions and advice offered by the Party organization. Some senior officials behave as they please, regarding themselves as special beings.
All Party organizations must exercise stricter control over the Party life of the members. Then the members will all lead their Party life honestly. In particular, control over the Party life of cadres must be intensified. There are higher and lower positions in work but no superiors or inferiors in Party life. Every Party member, whether he be in a higher or lower position, must act in accordance with the same standards of Party life. Party organizations must not tolerate dual standards of discipline; they must exercise stricter control over the Party life of cadres, so that the cadres will take part in Party life faithfully, not in the capacity of superiors but as rank-and-file members.
In order to strengthen Party life, the Party-life review should be made efficiently and in good time.
Only then can Party members stimulate their Party spirit and add lustre to their political integrity and fulfil their revolutionary tasks successfully.
Party organizations must ensure that cadres and Party members analyse and sum up all problems arising in their work and daily life on a high political and ideological level.
In order to ensure the Party's leadership over the revolution and construction by firmly establishing its leadership system, the militant role and functions of Party organizations must be radically increased.
If this is not done, it will become impossible to implement the Party's decisions and instructions, to establish a revolutionary discipline whereby the whole Party acts as one. Nor will it be possible to encourage cadres and Party members to have a better appreciation of the Party organization and intensify Party life. In short, unless the militant role and functions of Party organizations are increased, a correct system of Party leadership cannot be set up. We must establish a thorough system of Party leadership by further enhancing their militant role and functions.
In this regard it is most important to strengthen the collective leadership of the Party committee.
The Party committee is a collective leadership body which organizes and executes every activity at a given unit, and collective leadership is basic to its activities. Strengthening collective leadership of the Party committee is the way to eliminate the subjective views and arbitrariness of individual persons and to ensure correct Party leadership over the revolution and construction.
Holding frequent collective discussions is the basic condition for the Party committee to exercise collective leadership and an important guarantee for success in its work. A senior Party official alone cannot clearly understand all the work of a given unit nor can he take suitable measures to carry out Party policy. If Party committees are to have a clear understanding of all the work at their respective units and make good progress in it, collective discussions must be held frequently.
For collective discussion to be intensified, democracy must be given full play.
If democracy is not displayed and the subjective views and arbitrariness of individual senior officials pass unchallenged at a Party meeting, it is impossible to find correct solutions to problems and achieve success in work. For senior Party officials to throw their weight around runs counter to the organizational principle of our Party. A senior Party official can by no means represent the Party committee. Chief secretaries of provincial, city and county Party committees cannot represent their respective Party committees nor can factory Party secretaries represent their Party committees. A Party secretary is tantamount to a chairman presiding over a Party meeting; he is a person who executes the decisions of the Party committee like other members of the committee. The Party committee must encourage all its members to freely advance creative ideas for carrying out the Party's policy. In particular, it must accept all the creative ideas offered by the members who work on production sites, so that the will of the masses can be incorporated into the decisions it makes on all the problems it discusses.
In addition to holding frequent collective discussions, committee members must increase their sense of responsibility and role. The Party committee's collective leadership will not be ensured and problems will not be solved satisfactorily merely because the members gather at one place. In order to strengthen its collective leadership, correct solutions to problems must be found through collective discussion, and at the same time, the committee members must increase their sense of responsibility and role so as to execute the decisions reached through discussion by the committee unconditionally and without delay.
Party committees must keep their members busy with clear-cut assignments in keeping with the individual member's position, qualifications and character. After giving members assignments the committees should always supervise their performance and help them to discharge them efficiently with a sense of responsibility. In this way every committee member will be able to play a part in implementing the decisions which his committee has taken.
The Party committees must also improve their standard of guidance in administrative and economic affairs.
When told to give effective guidance to administrative and economic work, some Party officials put aside those in charge of this work and take upon themselves the administrative functions. When told to stop this practice, they tail after the administrative and economic workers like the best man. Taking over the administrative functions and tailing after those people who are to perform these functions have nothing to do with Party guidance to administrative and economic work. If Party officials take upon themselves administrative affairs, this will paralyse the sense of responsibility and initiative on the part of administrative and economic workers, and prevent them from working independently. This will make it impossible to carry out either administrative and economic affairs or Party work properly. If Party officials follow administrative and economic workers around, they cannot implement the Party's policy properly and the latter will mishandle problems because of their subjective views and arbitrariness.
All Party organizations and officials must quickly eliminate their tendency of taking upon themselves administrative functions and of following around those who are responsible for administrative and economic affairs. They must guide these affairs in a Party way, a political way. They must support and urge administrative and economic workers in a political way so that they will work in keeping with the Party's intention. They must also give these workers positive advice to grasp the main link in the whole chain correctly and to concentrate their forces on it. They must always supervise and encourage them so that they will thoroughly implement the Party's policy.
The ranks of the cadres must be built up and their art of leadership improved.
The cadres play the key role in determining whether or not the Party leads the revolution and construction steadily through the correct establishment of its leadership system. We must build up the ranks of the cadres and greatly enhance their role if we are to establish the Party's leadership system firmly.
First of all, cadres must be selected from among those who are fully prepared politically and ideologically.
The first criterion of cadres is loyalty to the Party, the leader and the revolution. This is the most essential quality bf a communist revolutionary.
Cadres must strive to implement the great leader's teachings and the Party's decisions and instructions unconditionally and to the letter. They must be prepared to place complete trust in the leader and the Party and follow them in the face of any adversity. They must be willing to lay down their lives for the leader and the Party and remain faithful to them for ever from generation to generation. Those who do not support the leader and the Party sincerely and who do not put their whole heart and soul into the fulfilment of the leader's teachings and the Party's policy are not qualified for cadres. However good their class origins and family backgrounds, those who are not loyal to the leader and the Party cannot become cadres.
All Party organizations must reinforce the ranks of cadres with faithful people, who hold the leader and the Party in high esteem, who would defend and protect them politically and ideologically and with their lives without the slightest vacillation in any circumstance and go through fire and water to put the leader's teachings and the Party's policy into effect.
At the same time, the ranks of cadres must be formed from competent people. Enthusiasm alone is not enough to implement the leader's instructions and the Party's policy. The time has already passed when we worked only with enthusiasm. Even if they want to be loyal to the leader and the Party, they will not be able to work as the Party intends if they are incompetent. In order to be boundlessly faithful to the leader and the Party, one must have skilful organizing ability, revolutionary ability and a wide range of knowledge. Furthermore, our Party work is now developing and the revolution and construction are rapidly advancing. This reality demands larger numbers of capable cadres than ever before. All Party organizations must appoint cadres from among competent people who are able to thoroughly implement the leader's instructions and the Party's policy in any difficult and complex situation, as required by the developing Party and revolution.
Reinforcing the ranks of cadres with old, middle-aged and young people is an important principle of our Party's personnel administration.
Old cadres are rich in experience and know how to deal with things, whereas young cadres are energetic and vigorous, sensitive to the new and enterprising. It is only when the ranks of cadres are formed from a proper combination of old, middle-aged and young people that we will be able to continue to develop our Party into an experienced and seasoned party, into a revolutionary party which fights, full of spirit and ardour, free from senility and stagnation.
At the same time as we are building up their ranks, we should help the cadres improve their art of leadership.
Only when cadres acquire the correct art of leadership, can they organize and mobilize the broad masses in forcefully propelling the revolutionary struggle and construction work and establish the system of Party leadership properly.
In order to acquire the correct art of leadership, cadres must strive to learn from the revolutionary art of leadership created by the great leader. In the course of a half-century long revolutionary struggle, the leader created the original communist theory of leadership based on the Juche idea and has brought the revolutionary art of leadership to perfection. This revolutionary art of leadership encompasses all problems which arise in guiding the masses.
All cadres should work hard to learn from the revolutionary art of leadership created by the great leader and thus effect a radical improvement in their guidance of the masses.
In order to fully embody the leader's art of leadership, cadres must possess a popular work style as well as a revolutionary work method. Only when they acquire this work style can they strengthen the bonds between the Party and the masses and succeed in the revolutionary tasks by giving full play to their revolutionary enthusiasm and creative wisdom.
In the past our Party has made strenuous efforts to encourage cadres to acquire a popular work style. In recent years, in particular, it has invested a lot of effort in inducing them to learn from the leader's work method. As a result, their inveterate bureaucratism, expediency and other manifestations of an outdated work style have been overcome to a large extent and a popular work style is being established. However, there are still many shortcomings in the cadres' work style which must be rectified as soon as possible. Some officials do not give ear to the voices of the masses, deal with problems on an ad hoc basis and work in a hit-or-miss manner without any methodology. There are others who take an overbearing attitude, act arbitrarily, and take their subordinates to task without due consideration. Cadres must work hard to rid themselves of an obsolete work style and acquire a popular work style. They must pay heed to the voices of the masses, learn from them, always act modestly, and exercise prudence in dealing with problems.
If they are to possess the correct art of leadership, cadres must improve their qualifications.
At present, many cadres are failing to plan their work properly and develop it in an enterprising manner and on a large scale. This is mainly because their political and practical qualifications are not up to the mark. Some officials are unable to distinguish correctly between what is right and wrong in line with Party policy if something arises in the course of their work. They are unable to direct a meeting properly and do not know how to talk with people. Such being the case, they cannot work as the Party intends. All cadres must radically improve their political, theoretical and practical qualifications by establishing a revolutionary habit of study.
The work of establishing the system of Party leadership is of vital importance for ensuring the Party's leadership over the revolution and construction; it is a responsible undertaking which all Party organizations and officials must oversee constantly. This work cannot be accomplished in a couple of days. Success in this work can only be achieved through great efforts on the part of all Party organizations and officials.
All Party organizations must persist in the work of establishing the system of Party leadership, and thus strengthen and develop our Party into a vigorous, militant and revolutionary party and into an invincible party of the Juche type.