The USA far left

Adam Levenstein cleon42 at
Wed Nov 13 13:38:59 MST 2002

--- Alex LoCascio <alexlocascio at> wrote:
> Plain and simple, there exists a minority but nonetheless hugely
> influental current within Solidarity, emerging from the Draper wing,
> for whom trade union work, and only trade union work, is the
> all-encompassing focus for any socialist organization.

I won't deny this, but I think we're beginning to move beyond it. I
myself am not in a union, being a professional geek. I'm a political
activist. Most comrades in Atlanta are of the same ilk, and there's
been no pressure to change our focus.

I think what Solidarity is realizing, though maybe not saying as much
as we should, is that it's going to take a variety of different work to
accomplish what we want. It's going to take trade union work, but it's
going to also take political activism, educational work, student work,
etc. You can't--and this is the failure of the SWP and other
sects--rely on just *one* focus if you want to build a broad movement.

> The success or failure of the Solidarity regroupment project (and
> frankly, I'm of the opinion that it's time to cut one's losses,
> though I'd welcome evidence to the contrary) ultimately hinges upon
> it's ability to have a rational discussion of these failures, rather
> than just assuming that anyone lobbing these critiques just wants to
> shit on the lifelong work of some people (Solidarity's record on
> welcoming internal dissent, rather than engaging in high-school like
> pariah politics and ostracism, is not very good).

I think regroupment is a success, but it's a long-term project. There's
no way to just say "hey! wanna regroup!" and have everyone jump on
board. You have to take it as it comes.

Alex, I don't think I disagree with you. I think any disagreement we
may have comes out of our viewpoint of Solidarity's potential. I think,
given the nature of the organization, we have room to do great things.
In Atlanta, we *are* doing great things. In the few short months since
three of us got together and formed a "twig," we've become a major
force on the Left here.

I think your criticisms are perfectly legit, but it's something that is
capable of being repaired. I don't think Solidarity's work in Labor
Notes and TDU is something to be dismissed, but you're absolutely
right, it's not something that can be the *basis* of all Solidarity


Adam Levenstein                          cleon42 at
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