The Social Democrats, Liberals, the Kadet party, the Russian SDLP, the Socialist Revolutionary Party, Bolsheviks, Mensheviks, Anarchists and the Constitutional Democratic Party perhaps had little in common with each other in St Petersburg in 1917, but all were absolutely united in opposition to the Tsar and the ruling political class. Russia was suffering from stagnant earnings and high inflation, had committed her armed forces to two disastrous wars in a decade and the concentration of wealth and power in the same tiny minority that also dominated politics had alienated the vast majority of the population.
The Russian Revolution was not a single incident, not 'the Russian Revolution 1917'. Rather it was a process that started at the beginning of the twentieth century and culminated with the deposition of the ruling political class almost two decades later. The Revolution was iterative. Popular pressures and demands rose in a series of waves that were temporarily assuaged and defused or that didn't have the inertial energy to overtop the breakwater, but each time a wave retreated yet another political movement grew, more of the populace became militant and antipathetic to the ruling class, and the inevitable overturning-mass grew in scale until eventually the regime was swept away not in the mighty storm of later Soviet poster art but with a feint shove.
Russia's political class had chance after chance to avert the Revolution; had they implemented land reform, had they ceded power to a truly democratic Duma, had the Grand Dukes who ruled the Court and owned the factories been divested of their obscene wealth, then Russia might still be a constitutional monarchy. But time after time they couldn't bring themselves to effect change that would deprive themselves of wealth and power, and so the iterative Revolution proceeded to its final and inevitable outcome.
Over the next month Britain's beleaguered ruling political elite will face the force of the next wave of popular discontent. On Monday they will fight desperately for Euro-Federalism in the face of the nation's antipathy, and in November they will attempt to push through recommendations from the Committee on Standards in Public Life that hundreds of millions of taxpayers' money be stolen to pay for the failing and moribund State political parties. The bankers' bonus pool of some £8bn will be announced at a time when the poor and elderly are freezing in homes they can longer afford to live in, and the Winter soup-kitchens on London's embankment see long queues. This won't be the wave, but it will see more popular discontent, greater popular engagement with anti-political class movements, a more entrenched popular opposition to a corrupt and sleazy regime, and Britain will take one more step forwards towards fundamental reform.