Replies on Australian Socialist Alliance

Alan Bradley abradley1 at
Tue Dec 17 20:18:13 MST 2002

> From: "Tom O'Lincoln"
> 2% in the Australian preferential system is derisory, and to pretend
> otherwise is self-delusion.

I  suspect that this figure fairly accurately indicates the strength of the
socialist movement at the moment. The trick is to increase it.

Obviously, election campaigns are only part of the process involved in doing
this, and a rather minor part at that. On the other hand, there isn't
actually anything wrong with "mass" propaganda campaigns, and we might
actually want to run some that aren't directly related to elections at some

More importantly, we can't strengthen the socialist movement while we are
fragmented into a lot of tiny little grouplets. We can't necessarily even do
it if we work together! Our support will _inevitably_ remain at derisory
levels for as long as we are divided. It may _possibly_ increase if we can
unite. That is the calculation we have to make.

> an artificial construct, carried by the DSP and the ISO. This is not a
> healthy situation and, as we are now seeing, perhaps not sustainable.

This is a serious matter. How can we help the SA develop real roots? How can
we help it cease to be an "artificial construct"? Simply abandoning it won't
help. Nor can we just walk away and wait for something "real" to
spontaneously emerge, if only because what "spontaneously" emerges will
treat us like stupid sectarians who failed to do our duty, or else as a
bunch of opportunists jumping on the bandwagon in a raid for members.

The existing left groups _must_ be at the forefront of trying to move
working class organisation forward. If they aren't, they don't deserve to
exist. The SA is not the whole answer to our problems, but it is a step
forward, and hopefully a place from which we can take another step forward
in the future.

It may fail. Big deal. But if we don't try we will simply prove ourselves to
be entirely worthless.

Alan Bradley
abradley1 at

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