[Marxism] XXX XXXX on the crisis in RESPECT
lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Nov 22 17:19:54 MST 2007
Einde O'Callaghan wrote:
> Obviously I share a political tradition with the British SWP and was a
> member - almost two decades ago - but on the exact details of the
> dispkutes I'm in no better position to comment than you are.
I am not interested in the "dispute". I am trying to deal with a broader
question, namely the complaints about being manipulated, controlled,
etc. I myself experienced the same kinds of complaints in the American
SWP for my entire tenure. People in the mass movement *hated* us, except
those who were in our orbit. In other words, the kind of people that the
British SWP just lined up for their RESPECT. No matter how you or
Richard slice it, there is something really *fucked* about "Leninists"
being totally unreachable by those who are not in their party. When I
was in Texas, La Raza Unida Party was constantly embroiled over SWP
"interventions". If La Raza Unida was really your party, why would you
be making decisions not on the basis of discussions *within* the Chicano
party but at SWP headquarters.
It is of course different when you are in a "united front" type
coalition like the antiwar movement or the abortions right movement. You
go there and speak in the name of the SWP. As I pointed out, the
British's SWP downfall was in treating RESPECT as a "united front". If
RESPECT was about bringing democracy to Britain, who the hell would want
to put up with a presence like the SWP that was obviously not going to
pay any attention to the arguments of people outside its ranks.
> On the other hand you dismissed the testimony of Richard S. as hearsay,
> whereas I understand that he actually witnessed some of the goings-on he
> has documented - this would be first-hand evidence rather than hearsay.
What I see with my own eyes is direct evidence. What other people say is
hearsay. In case you hadn't noticed, I don't go around repeating George
Galloway's atrocity stories either. I am just not interested in that
sort of thing.
> I find it quite easy to work with people who aren't "in our crew" -
> indeed that's what I (and we) have been doing for years now here in
> Germany, with some modest success. I don't think your abstract advice
> would be of any particular value for my work.
Hey, I already told you that the Cliffites were definitely having
"modest success". More power to you. That is better than no success at
all. If you ever figure out that there are higher aspirations for
revolutionaries, get in touch. I can recommend some useful articles,
starting with Lenin.
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