Socialist Labour Party

Steve Wallis S.Wallis at mmu.ac.uk
Mon Nov 20 07:47:13 MST 1995


I agree with Ryan Daum that Louis' "advice" that Militant Labour
dissolves itself into the Socialist Labour Party is a recipe for
disaster.

However much you may personally abhor factions, you cannot simply wish
them away.  If the left is not organised, then that is not going to
stop the right from being organised.  Undoubtedly, reformists of
various hues will join a broad socialist party such as the SLP, and
try to ensure that it does not challenge the capitalist system.  It is
up to the left to ensure that the SLP does not go the same way as the
Labour Party - and to be effective, it is necessary to be organised.

It is largely because we were organised when we were in the Labour
Party that we were so much of a threat that the right-wing leadership
had to resort to expulsions.  If Arthur Scargill or any other SLP
leader tries to use undemocratic measures such as banning factions,
then such measures must be vigorously opposed.

Louis seems to have been through a bad experience with whatever
organisations he has been involved with in the past, so I can
understand his views on the matter.  However, we are not all the same
- the following is certainly not true of Militant Labour or other
sections of the Committee for a Workers' International (CWI):

> Unless the Fourth Internationalist parties have gone through an 
> unbelievable evolution since the days I was around Trotskyism--nearly 2 
> decades ago--the rules are that no party member would argue or vote 
> against a party line between conventions.

We are not against the idea of fusions in general - but fusions must
be on a principled basis or they will lead to internal problems and
splits in the future.  It is not necessary to agree on every dot and
comma, but there must be considerable agreement on methods and
perspectives.  It was on such a basis that about 100 former Mandelites
(Fourth International) in France (mainly the JCR) joined the CWI.

Steve.

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   /----------+ Centre for Policy Modelling,         Email: S.Wallis at mmu.ac.uk
   \/\  Steve | Manchester Metropolitan University,    Tel: (+44) 161 247 3884
\    / Wallis | Aytoun Building, Aytoun St.,           Fax: (+44) 161 247 6802
 \/\/---------+ Manchester M1 3GH, UK.        http://www.fmb.mmu.ac.uk/~stevew


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