by Staughton Lynd, Noel Ignatin, and Ken Lawrence
In their November-December, 1974 issue, the editors of RADICAL AMERICA published an Editorial Statement entitled "Racism and Busing in Boston." Following the publication of the statement, the editors solicited comments and criticisms from a number of individuals around the country. In the issue of May-June 1975, they published a selection from these comments. Among the letters published was one from Staughton Lynd, the first in this pamphlet.
Noel Ignatin responded to Lynd's letter with one of his own, to which Lynd replied in turn. At this point, Ken Lawrence joined in the discussion .calling forth still another letter from Lynd, which Ignatin answered.
That is the exchange of letters which makes up this pamphlet, with one addition. In the same issue of RADICAL AMERICA which published Lynd's first letter - May-June 1975 - there was also published a comment by Ken Lawrence. That letter, while not a direct part of the ensuing exchange, did touch on some relevant matters. For that reason, we are reprinting it as the last entry in this pamphlet.
To the editor:
The Editorial Statement on "Racism and Busing in Boston" was most helpful and informative. One ambiguity or gap remained, I thought. Nothing was said about a concrete perspective for winning the white working class to a program of joint white-and-black action for better education. I am certain it is true that "no rhetorical calls for black - white unity will erase" the fact that "the immediate effect of the busing crises has been to increase tension between black and white workers" (page 32). But it would be still more rhetorical and abstract to attack white workers in the name of class unity.
In particular, the editorial fails to take a stand between two alternatives. 1. Should white workers be asked to give up privileges which result from institutionalized racism? 2. Should a demand be made for a higher level of education, housing, and employment, which would benefit blacks more than whites so as to make both equal, but would benefit whites as well?
I strongly favor the second alternative. This might mean saying, for example: "The average cost per pupil in predominantly-white schools is X. The average cost per pupil in predominantly-black schools is Y. (you give figures on page 11). X is higher than Y. Our demand is that in every school of the city the average expenditure per pupil should be no lower than Z. Z is higher than both X and Y. To bring X and Y up to Z, Y will have to be increased more than X. That is only fair. But all school children will benefit."
Unless one is prepared to write off the workers of a community like South Boston, I believe this is the only approach which is both moral, and has any chance of success. The editorial states: "Most white working -class people are against busing white children to black schools because in a racist society black schools are poorer schools" (page 2).
"Tenants in the worst white housing projects have used violence to keep blacks out, because they believe that the presence of blacks or Puerto Ricans will cause housing to be neglected even further... These poor whites are making last-ditch efforts to defend their relative advantages over blacks and to prevent the spread of ghetto-like housing conditions in their neighborhoods" (pages 6-7).
These statements correspond to my own experience in inner-city neighborhoods changing from white to black. Furthermore, I think these statements are true in the sense that schools do deteriorate and housing and neighborhood conditions do change for the worse, in our society, when neighborhoods undergo "transition." Needless to say, this is the fault of school administrators who cut services, banks which "red line," ghettoization which compels blacks moving into such a neighborhood to overcrowd housing facilities, and the rest. But to deal with white working people one has to begin by acknowledging the accuracy of their empirical perception of what happens in changing neighborhoods. Only then can one go on to say: "It doesn't have to be that way. And the way you are trying to meet the problem offers no solution for anyone."
Is the approach of improving education for everyone, but improving it more for blacks, a practical approach? Only if a school program includes a tax program. It is generally the radical and even liberal approach that school integration requires treating inner city and suburbs as one administrative unity. Otherwise, school integration is impossible in inner cities where few whites still live. (This may seem inapposite in Boston where blacks are only 18 per cent of the population. It is the situation in more typical cities like Chicago and Detroit. In Milliken v. Bradley, decided in July 1974, the United States Supreme Court rejected the approach of treating inner city and suburbs as one administrative unit, Douglas, Brennan, White and Marshall dissenting.) The same approach is required to taxation. It may be that Boston has always had, and has even more today, an inadequate tax base. The industries along Route 128 should be taxed to improve the schools in Boston because these industries use the labor force educated in the Boston schools. This can be done by increasing the property tax assessment. Industries are characteristically underassessed. In Gary, Indiana, for instance, the amount by which United States Steel is underassessed just about equals the deficit of the Gary school system.
I am not close enough to the situation to judge how such a tax program might relate to the busing controversy; I am clear, though, that only such a tax program holding the promise of better education for every Boston school child offers a way toward the unity of white and black workers in the long run.
To the Editors:
Staughton Lynd's letter in the May-June number is a perfect illustration of the hazards which plague any attempt to build an inter-racial popular movement without directly challenging the white-skin privileges which are the chief obstacle to such a movement. (For those who may not remember, Lynd suggests that "a demand be made for a higher level of education. . . which would benefit blacks more than whites so as to make both equal, but would benefit whites as well." He states that "this is the only approach which is both moral, and has any chance of success." In my opinion, the approach itself can be considered apart from the tax program accompanying it, which admittedly is based on slight familiarity with the Boston scene.)
The first fault with Lynd's approach is that it assumes a situation in which those to whom it is addressed (presumably the revolutionary white intellectuals making up the bulk of the Radical America readership) can simply spin programs without taking into account forces already present on the scene. As the editorial on busing makes clear, the present situation in Boston is a result, in part, of ten years of activity by black people around the issue of education. This activity has assumed a certain direction and given rise to certain goals, tactics and forms of organization. The self-directed activity of the black community is the most significant anti-capitalist force on the Boston scene, and can hardly be ignored by white radicals - yet ignoring it is exactly what Lynd's approach does.
The second fault is even more serious than the first, and reveals an uncritical acceptance on Lynd's part of certain commonplaces which, on careful consideration, prove false.
What, exactly, in a big city life is meant by the term "improved education?" It does not mean an increased ability to read and appreciate Shakespeare or the Greek tragedians for their own sake; for the masses of workers and working class youth, improved education means expanded access to a certain style of life, represented, above all, by a job. That is why black people have generally expressed their demands regarding education in terms of equality with whites: they want the same access to the job market that the whites have, and they want the schools they attend to serve this ambition, not prevent its realization.
For their part, whites enjoy a social status superior to that of non-whites. While by no means all white youth succeed in entering the skilled trades and professions, nearly all of those who do enter are white. It does not matter at all that the average graduate of a white public school is sub-literate: his school plays its part in guaranteeing him an edge over black folks in the job market, and that is all he expects from it. That is why the demand for quality education is rarely heard in white communities except in response to black demands for equality in education. That is also why, to those people who identify themselves principally as "white," a reform such as Lynd proposes (to bring both "X" and "Y" schools up to the "Z" level) would not be an improvement but a deterioration, since it would reduce the advantages they currently hold over non-whites.
In the struggle for "the unity of white and black workers in the long run," gimmicky programs purporting to offer something for everyone are no substitute for the direct confrontation with the reactionary aspects of white workers' consciousness.
To the editors:
[In answer to Noel Ignatin:]
My point about Boston, and about racism in America, is that radicals should propose solutions which benefit white working people as well as black.
Increasing corporate taxes so as to be able to provide better education for white children as well as black is an example of the approach I favor. Here are some others:
1. Changes in industrial seniority systems which make it possible for blacks, Latins, and women to move from departments where they are "locked in" into better-paying, more healthy jobs in other departments, should be accompanied by a provision for rate retention by white workers displaced. Then none suffers monetarily.
2. When a demand is made that so-and-so many jobs or such-and-such a percentage of jobs should be filled by blacks, Latins, or women, the demand should be made with some attention to what will happen to the white workers displaced. One way to do this is by "red-circling" the jobs presently held by incumbents, so that the incumbents retain the jobs for so long as they are in the workplace, but all new openings are filled by members of the hithertoexcluded groups.
The political reasons for this approach are obvious. If our intention is to build a long-term movement of working people — black and white, male and female — then that movement must seek to benefit all those whom it hopes to recruit. The only possible objections I can imagine to that truism are: it is impractical ("gimicky"); or, it is sinful.
It is impractical to seek to benefit both black and white working people if one assumes that there is a fixed quantity of benefits. Were that the case, then any benefit obtained by one exploited group could only be at the expense of another. The concept of a fixed quantity of benefits is ancient. Malthus and Ricardo advanced it as an explanation of the impossibility of raising wages.
I cannot help wondering whether Noel adheres to this concept. If so, I think he is mistaken. Every group of working people who make a demand on management say in effect: We want more of the pie, we are asking you to take a lower rate of profit. I understand myself to be advocating a similar approach toward social benefits such as good schools.
I understand Noel to be saying that the only thing which matters to white working people about their childrens' education is that it should be better than the education of black children, so that the white children, not the black, will get jobs in the end.
Perhaps other readers of RADICAL AMERICA- can help Noel and myself resolve the question as to what it is that white working people want from schools. I believe him to be mistaken. I think that white workers, like other human beings, have feelings as to whether their children are physically beaten, degraded and humiliated by arbitrary authority, short-changed by city administrations which have "written off the schools in working-class neighborhoods black and white. I think white children as well as black experience life as a succession of situations — family, church, school, Army, factory — in which there is always someone in authority whom you did not choose to tell you to sit still, be quiet, do what you are told.
Noel, apparently, would have us believe that all this does not matter to white parents and white children so long as black children have it worse.
There remains the possibility that what Noel really feels is that white people should be made to suffer for their sins. To this I have two responses: 1. I honestly do not believe that white workers should be held primarily responsible for the oppression of black workers. 2. While guilt-tripping was a fairly effective, if short lived, approach to the middle-class youth who made up the "movement" of the late 1960s, I think it strikes out as a perspective for building an inter-racial socialist movement of ordinary Americans.
To the editors:
Staughton Lynd used to argue that moral imperatives DO exist, that there are social realities — slavery, for example — which simply cannot be justified. However strained his arguments, he succeeded in rallying most leftwing intellectuals to his side when Eugene Genovese tried to insist, against Lynd's "moralizing", that Marxian morality is soulless and relative.
Staughton did not demolish Genovese's arguments; he never developed the political tools to accomplish that. But he and others did generally succeed in discrediting Genovese's approach, which previously had held much greater sway in left circles.
Why did this happen? I think it is because most of the young people who grew up in the civil rights, anti-war, and New Left movements learned from experience that to a large extent people can and do intervene in the world of politics and bring about dramatic changes. They do not need to sit around and wait for some elusive "objective conditions". Instead, they can act in a way which creates a more favorable political environment for struggle. (It is not an accident that these lessons — for Staughton and almost everyone else — were most dramatically illustrated by the black liberation struggle.)
Because most activists of the sixties were relatively unfamiliar with left theory, and often were hostile to it, Genovese was unable to cow them by invoking Marx's ghost. Since then, many have read Marx, and have discovered that his writings don't support the position advanced by Genovese.
Peculiar indeed, then, as well as very sad, is the situation now, where Staughton appears to be advancing the very ideas which he once found so distasteful. Where we were once challenged to bring people into the freedom movement because it was just, now we are told to organize white workers on the basis of nickel-dime programs, because more visionary ones are impractical.
When Staughton writes that, "radicals should propose solutions (to racism) which benefit white working people as well as black", he is admitting that HE doesn't think the struggle against racism itself benefits whites - and therefore he finds it necessary to offer whites some additional payment, privilege, of guarantee in order to win them over.
I would like to ask Staughton: What should Marx have offered white British and U.S. workers to enlist them in the struggle against slavery in the United States? Wage rate retention? Guarantees against layoffs? After all, Marx's "guilt tripping" only offered them unemployment and suffering — and their own freedom!
Noel isn't saying that white workers like having their children physically beaten, degraded and humiliated, short-changed, etc. But he is saying that they were not sufficiently concerned about these marks of oppression to initiate a massive and visible struggle against them. (Moreover, Staughton should ponder the implications of raising this. White groups who organize for "quality education" against black demands for equality in education don't seem to think that this is an issue among their potential constituents, unless and until their children are sent to desegregated schools.)
On the other hand, masses of black people DID launch a struggle for equality in the schools, and thereby made the schools into the present battleground. Any radical program which fails to acknowledge this fact, and to call for full support for that demand WITHOUT QUALIFIERS, counterfeit — isn't a "solution" to racism at all. (Does Staughton really think that black people are fighting to have their children beaten, degraded, humiliated, and short-changed equally with whites? That they need someone to tell them that they haven't demanded enough? That if they demand more, white workers, who have hitherto, quite sensibly, withheld their support, would suddenly flock to their banner?)
It is Staughton, not Noel, who appears to believe that white workers are so backward that they cannot be won to the struggle for equality and justice (i.e. to their CLASS interest) unless we sweeten the pot with a petty bribe.
Contrary to Staughton's accusation, Noel never held white workers "primarily responsible" for the oppression of black workers. But Noel probably believes, with Lenin, that white workers are "partners of their own bourgeoisie" relative to black workers. The task is to dissolve the partnership.
October 11, 1975
To the editors of RADICAL AMERICA:
Before responding to the substance of Ken Lawrence's letter, I want to say something about its tone.
It was the way of the Old Left to excommunicate longtime coworkers because of differences. Thus a difference which could not be immediately overcome led to a split in the movement. In the New Left we asked people to demonstrate in practice the superiority of that which they advocated. Thus, had the difference between Ken and myself arisen in a New Left context, each of us would have been asked to go to work locally and produce a living model of that which we believed to be right. If I read him correctly to say that a and-white movement can be built around the grievances of black people alone, then in the New Left his task would have been to go forth and show the rest of us that it could be done. Instead he postures, and pronounces, in a manner I believe destructive even if he were correct. Ken's tone of voice is the sectarian tone which has made the movement so burdensome in recent years.
Now as to the merits:
Begin with rate retention, which Ken thinks Karl Marx would have scorned to advocate. I have just returned from a visit to a steel mill community where I talked with white and black steelworkers about the recently-adopted Consent Decree in the steel industry. The white steelworkers have advocated the opening up of jobs to black steelworkers for thirty years. The black steelworkers are militants. Both agreed that in the absence of rate retention for the white worker displaced by the black as the result of the Consent Decree, the effect of the Consent Decree was to drive an unnecessary and artificial wedge between white and black steel workers, and to make the task of building an inter-racial movement more difficult. For persons in that situation rate retention is not a contemptible issue.
Since the beginning of this correspondence, what I have urged is that radicals in Boston and in similar situations elsewhere seek the equivalent of rate retention for white parents and their children.
If what busing means in the experience of white parents and children at the host school is that the quality of education goes down, they will oppose busing. If what busing means in the experience of white parents and children at the host school is that the quality of education went up, there would be a fighting chance of winning their support to busing despite their racial prejudices and fears.
Therefore I say that the Left black and white has the responsibility to ADD to a demand for busing demands which would result in the improvement of the quality of education for all children affected.
It should not be forgotten in the heat of controversy that busing is a preeminantly liberal demand. I understood the original RADICAL AMERICA article to argue that, despite this, busing should be supported because the black community, at least in Boston, is solidly behind it. I agree. But I do not think this requires mechanically and passively supporting the demand in the form in which it has been put forward.
When SNCC demanded the vote, I felt that the Left black and white had a responsibility to add to that demand an economic perspective. Otherwise, I feared, black people would win the vote but use it to support the traditional parties. It is my impression that this is what has happened in the South.
So in the present situation, I think it is the responsibility of the Left black and white to support busing in a critical manner directed to the building of the unity of black and white working people. Instead I find much of the mobilization in support of busing in Boston indifferent as to the effect of the agitation on white workers.
Ken seems to think that I used to believe the movement could be built on moral affirmations, and have deserted that position for an opportunistic catering to short-run material needs. What I hope I advocated then, and what I certainly advocate now, is a uniting of moral and material appeals so that a Left program day by day confirms itself in people's lives. I think our own experience in the anti- war movement underlines the correctness of this approach. So long as students felt themselves to be threatened by the draft, it was possible to build a movement on the twin foundations of idealism (the attempt to empathize with the experience of those suffering in Vietnam) and selfinterest (the fear that one might oneself be drafted). When Nixon ceased to draft people for the war, the anti-war movement ceased to be a mass movement and became a movement of that much smaller number of persons willing to be active of the basis of idealism alone.
This experience is also the experience of the workingclass movement historically, in my opinion. What does it mean to build around the idea that 'An Injury To One Is An Injury To All'? It means an appeal to the idea that what is happening to my brother today, may happen to me tomorrow, that neither of us is strong enough alone to win, and that only by uniting today around his needs can I be sure of protection myself when my turn comes.
Thus, in the building of the CIO, many white workers were won over to joint black and white struggle by the experience that only in this united manner could they win. And that experience, proving that black-and-white-together could protect self-interest, spilled over into social relationships. In Gary, Indiana, for instance, black and white steelworkers took their families to the park together on weekends. But they would not have done so had they not first discovered that by coming together on the shop floor each could move forward.
Where is the equivalent of this in the Boston busing struggle? Where is the attempt to say to whites in South Boston: Look, don't you see that only by supporting this struggle can your own children have a better time in school and a better chance in what lies ahead of them?
I suggest we don't say if because, in the form in which the busing demand has thus far been made, it isn't true.
Historically, I think Noel and Ken would both agree, racism has developed among working-class whites, not because whites are hostile to "blackness" and somehow innately prejudiced (as scholars such as Degler and Jordan appear to suggest), but rather, because the enslavement of blacks became profitable to the governing class, and racial distinctions between white and black workers were a method useful in reinforcing that program and preserving slavery. In other words, Step 1 was the drop in the price of tobacco from 3 d. to ½ d. a pound in the Chesapeake area in the 1660's, which made planters frantic to cheapen their labor costs. Step 2 was the wholesale importation of blacks and the passage of laws forbidding intermarriage, punishing blacks more severely than whites for the same offenses, and otherwise creating the legal status of slavery. Step 3 was the development of racist sentiments.
Now we must, I believe, run that film backward. That is, to transform the racist sentiments of white workers one must, first, undo racism as a legal institution. This has been the liberal program since Brown v. Board of Education. Busing is one part of it. It deserves support as far as it goes. But it doesn't go far enough. In addition there is needed an element which will play the part in motivating white workers to END racism, that the fall in the price of tobacco played for white planters in CREATING it.
* * *
I have now, in three letters, expressed this position as best I could. It is time for me to heed my own advice, to fall silent and go do what I am talking about. I hope Noel, Ken, and for that matter the editors of RADICAL AMERICA, will do likewise. It would be a shame if RADICAL AMERICA, too, became a place where comrades could talk to each other only by screaming.
To the editors:
A few things in Staughton Lynd's third letter merit a response.
One of these is his citing a group of black and white steelworkers as a support for his own position, "that radicals in Boston and in similar situations elsewhere seek the equivalent of rate retention for white parents and their children".
If a group "of black workers, looking back over the history of 'class solidarity' by white labor, and concerned about the current hostility of their white 'class brothers', decides to make a special appeal to white self-interest in order to win some allies, that is a decision which all white revolutionaries are bound to respect.
But it is one thing for black fighters to make that choice and quite another for whites to urge it on them. In my previous letter, I criticized Lynd for assuming, "a situation in which . . .revolutionary white intellectuals. . .can simply spin programs without taking into account forces already present on the scene", which I specified as "the self-directed activity of the black community".
Granting the accuracy of his report on the steel community (Gary, Ind.), the difference between the two cases should be clear.
Another thing. Professor Lynd commits an elementary oversight in his explanation for the origins of racism in colonial Virginia. If cheap labor was the aim in the linear way he postulates, why didn't the planters enslave the European rather than the African immigrants, or for that matter, why not both? Was there something inherent in black labor power making it cheaper man white? A curious idea, that.
As Ted Allen points out in ".. .They Would Have Destroyed Me!" Slavery and the Origins of Racism, RADICAL AMERICA, May- June, 1975, the truth was a bit more complex than Lynd suggests. The planters' decision to introduce RACIAL slavery was motivated at least as much by their CLASS INTEREST in maintaining control over white and black labor (by granting a privileged status to whites) as it was by their immediate economic self-interest in cheap labor.
Lynd's insistence that, "there is needed an element which will play the part in motivating white workers to END racism, that the fall in the price of tobacco played for white planters in CREATING it", is merely the other side of his misreading the history of the actions of the planters. Such a statement implies either or both of two things:
(1) the ending of racism is not in the interests of white workers; (he says as much in regards to busing in Boston)
(2) white workers cannot be won to a correct perception of their interests.
Does Staughton Lynd believe that the following demands, AS THEY ARE FORMULATED WITHOUT ANY ADDITIONS, were and are in the interests of the U.S. working class white and black, and that the workers can be won to them:
— the abolition of slavery?
— the ending of jim crow?
— the overturning of white-first hiring and white-last firing?
— the wiping out of every advantage held by whites relative to non-whites in housing, education, health and all other social services?
My answer to the above questions is yes. Of course I recognize that it will not be easy to win white workers to the fight for black equality, that many different approaches will have to be tried. But we should reject from the outset any approach involving a capitulation to white worker's sense of their distinctive interests as whites, which is the main form of bourgeois consciousness and the main obstacle to the development of proletarian class consciousness among them.
There are several other items in Lynd's third letter to which I take exception, and which space limitations prevent me from doing more than listing:
(1) his summary of the Southern freedom movement, that "black people would win the vote but use it to support the traditional parties".
(2) his discussion of the anti-war movement. Was the fact that it shrunk after the termination of the draft an indication of a weakness to be struggled against or an inevitable reality to be adjusted to?
(3) his translation of An Injury To One Is An Injury To All. To me it means the opposite of what Lynd says, something like John Brown's admonition to his children, "Remember them that are in bonds as bound with them".
(4) his citing of the CIO, and in particular the Gary steel as a POSITIVE example. Isn't the extreme racial polarization in that area in some way the product of a policy which sought to base labor solidarity on the premise that "black-and-white-together could protect self interest"?
To the editors:
I found your editorial statement, "Racism and Busing in Boston" by Jim Green and Allen Hunter, very helpful, for the following reasons:
(1) The background information showed historically how the Boston bourgeoisie built racism into the public schools. This is an essential point for people who want to understand the importance of racism to the ruling class as a tool to keep the working class divided and weak.
(2) More importantly, however, the statement showed the specific ways in which the imposition of racism and racist privileges by the ruling class resulted in today's reality. By putting white working-class racism in context, it is easy to see the ways in which workers of the oppressor nation (whites) are, in Lenin's words, 'partners of their own bourgeoisie" relative to workers of the oppressed nation (blacks). (And this in turn serves to refute those on the left who claim that racism is simply a set of "bad ideas". Marxism insists that ideas become material realities, and that they do so precisely when they are taken up by masses of people.)
(3) By showing that the busing decision was a partial victory in a long struggle waged by Boston's black masses, the editorial is an excellent rebuttal to those who dismiss busing as a capitalist plot, a view which has gained some currency in the past year.
(4) Inadvertently, I think, Green and Hunter showed me that the reason why the fascists have to make their counterattack in a place like Boston is probably because, for the time being at least, they have been routed in areas of heavy black majority, (I am speaking here only of the struggle in the schools, not in politics generally.) By analyzing the material weakness, as well as the strength, of the school struggle, it is possible to make a good guess why Boston, not Alabama or Mississippi, was the target this time.
Despite the strength of the analysis, however, I don't think it follows so readily that "the only hope" for working class unity is located in the struggle against segregation, though that is necessarily the present battleground. It is important to realize that the Boston struggle of the past year has been essentially defensive in nature — a true emergency, in which the most hesitant ally is better than none at all. It would be wrong to view this as a strategy for liberation, even if it is true that the racists have suffered a major defeat.
When the theater of struggle is broadened beyond Boston, and is deepened to include every aspect of life, it may then be that the black masses will opt for independence, and who will we (whites) be to say they are wrong? In fact, we must even now fight for their right to do so. I have no doubt that a liberated black nation in North America will add powerful momentum to the most noble aspirations of white workers as well, providing a living example that there is a light of freedom at the end of the tunnel, and that it need not be so far away.
* * * * *
As much as I detest critics who review what an author didn't write, rather than reviewing the contents of the work, I have to admit that I was left dangling at the end of my reading of the editorial. By failing to put forward a program of action, it yields to those critics who attack this line by accusing its (white) proponents of simply cheering from the sidelines while the black masses conduct their struggle.
When called upon to do so, white leftists must and should mobilze and march shoulder to shoulder with black and brown people, to build the mass movement against racism or any manifestation of reaction. But that is not enough. We must also join the fight against racism in other concrete ways, in the very places where the infection is most virulent. The statement draws a blank here.
So I was especially pleased to read Osawatomie where the Weather Underground told how they penetrated the secret councils of the enemy and exposed the class reality of organized racism to the light of day (and in the process de-mystified and weakened it). This, of course, is only one of many possible programs of action, but it suggests many others for which white radicals are uniquely suited.
The point is that while there can be no revolutionary movement without revolutionary theory, the corollary is also true. Revolutionary practice is the preferred fertilizer for the next stage of our movement's development. "Racism and Busing in Boston" is proof that the analytical tools have been mastered. It is now time to draw the conclusions and act on them.