delegates are accompanied by advisors. Total attendance is usually over
600, with over 60 nations represented.
At the Annual Conference, the ILO
enacts proposals which are in effect
skeleton drafts of legislation which it
hopes will be enacted by member
countries. These may be passed in the
form of a re-solution, a leeoiiimeiida-
tion or a convention. A convention —
a>icl [lay close attention to this — is a
draft of a proposed international law
"inch, when ratified by member nations, stands as a treat} among them.
By this means the ILO seeks to introduce standardized basic laws into
countries all over the world.
VVhen the United States joined the
»LO in 1934, it was with the reservation that our country would not be
'"mid by such convention procedure,
DUt would consider anv 11.() proposals as recommendations only. In 1911,
however, when our Congress, by joint
[^solution, approved the Philadelphia
Y'claration, we entered the ILO on
™e same basis as other member nations— so that today, if we ratify an
'•<) convention, it stands as an international treaty and we- are bound by
'he ii.o has a Governing Body,
'"'"posed of representatives of gov-
''""ueiits, workers and employers,
J'lieh serves, vein might say. as its
r°ard of Directors. I was elected one
'J, the ten emplover members of the
**oyerning body. '
, 't has a permanent office in Geneva
"'•'<l'-el bv a Director-General, and a
itult of about S00 pe-rsons. This is
Qa?Wn as tne International Labor
, "JCe. It sends missions of technical
' S|stanee to countries all over the
'"'d, supposedly to help increase
productivity, but f suspect largely to
propagandize on behalf of socialism.
It conducts research and makes investigations, the purposes and results of
which are not too clear, and releases
publications, the purpose of which is
only too clear — namely, that of propagandizing all over the world on behalf of the fLO and the socialistic
measures which it champions and
There' is something unique about
the Geneva ILO staff and personnel —
they are all tax-exempt. Although they
constantly recommend measures that
will add to the taxes of everybody
else, they themselves pay no income
taxes to any country.
A MEANS OF PROMOTING
In its earlier years the ILO devoted
itself to matters directly concerned
with labor. It enacted conventions, for
example, on living quarters of seamen
in the international marine service,
the employment of women in underground mines, the employment of
children in factories, safety provisions,
and so forth, and proposed a series of
constructive practices which everybody in our country would agree
should apply to employment conditions the world over.
But then the ideology of state
socialism came into acendancy in
Europe and spread to other parts of
the world. The ILO fell complete!)
under the domination of a Socialist
government-labor coalition. It decided that anything in industry, government, or social systems that in any
way affected the- working man was a
subject for consideration by the ILO.
This was how the state socialists
moved in on the organization, and
used it as a means of promoting
The employer delegates to the ILO
have consistently and eloquently objected to the proposed drafts of international Socialist laws fostered by the
II.O; but thev have' been hopelessly
in the minority, and out-voted on
practically all issues.
Now — 1 have told you that the ILO
is a breeding ground of socialist ideas.
So now 1 think I had better get down
to eases and give vim a few specific
First of all, suppose I review the
basic principles of socialism as I understand them from my II.O experience.
In the United States we believe, as
was said in our Declaration of Independence, that men are born with certain inalienable rights, and that government derives its powers from the
consent of the governed.
The principle of socialism is exactly
the opposite. The premise of socialism
is that all rights belong to government
— and government then parcels them
out to the people in line with its own
divine judgment. 1 have sometimes
said that the main purpose of the ILO
is that of trying to substitute government for God.
The underlying theme of ILO proposals is always government regulation, government domination, government control, government direction,
government supervision, and of
course, in the long run, government
ownership of industry, government
price control, and government dictation as to jobs and wages. There is no
U. S. Delegates (left to right! J. Ernest Wilkins, Asst. Secretory for Internotionol Labor Affairs; Warren E. Burger, Assr.
Attorney General, Civil Div. Department of Justice; Employer Delegate William L. McGroth, President, Williamson Heater
Company, during the 1954 Annual Conference of the ILO in Geneva. (Man ot extreme right unidentified in photo.I
ls Fobum News, March, 1956