Re myself and Tom O' Lincoln was Re: An outburst from a cult apologist

Gary MacLennan g.maclennan at
Sat Dec 30 21:20:44 MST 2000

>Gary wrote:

> >It is all an interiorisation of the master's view of the world I
> >suppose.  I went through something like that when I was expelled from ISO
> >by Tom O'Lincoln.

Phil replied:

>I understand that you may not feel inclined to kiss and make up with Tom
>O'Lincoln.  But don't you think there is a chance that, being a victim of a
>clampdown a few years later, he might have actually learned something and
>changed.  I'd hardly put him in the Barnes category.  My impression is that
>he actually genuinely regrets that early 80s stuff.  Anyway, I hope you two
>find a way to talk. . . coz I do actually think Tom is a reformed character
>these days.  (And I say that as someone who is obviously no big friend of
>his tradition.)

Well, Phil,

The moderator bless him reads everything and I know he has a limited
patience with me dredging   up the ghosts and spectres of yesteryear.

Bhaskar too  says that to bear a grudge is to be a prisoner of the past and
I do try and bear that in mind.  But it was only 20 years ago!

I hold O'Lincoln  to blame because he was not a mad dog like Mick
Armstrong,  and Sandra Bloodbath. Nor was he the kind of personality mutant
like Ian Rintoul that the Cliff machinery churn out.  He was and is a
proper Marxist intellectual and should not have thrown his lot in with the
hard turn to Lenin/Trotsky, ie. Zinovievism. At least he should not have
handed a potential revolutionary grouping over to a group of people that
are culturally, emotionally, and intellectually challenged in the extreme.

Let me relate one anecdote that still rankles with those of us who were
expelled.  John Boyd, who was a worker militant, and an auto-didact praised
Tom O'Linocln for a speech he made shortly before we were to be driven
out.  John was and still is a generous warm hearted man.  Even though we
were locked into a struggle with O'Lincoln he respected and admired him.

When someone reported what John said to O'Lincoln, he dismissed Boyd as a
"sycophant."  John had to ask the meaning of that.  When he was told, I had
to restrain him from going to punch O'Lincoln on the nose.  I still regret
my actions today.  I have no doubt that O'Lincoln remembers none of
this.  Such is the way of the would be Gramscian general, the leader of the

But the masses remember and are reluctant to forget for memory is the
revenge of the wronged.



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