[Marxism] Re: John O'brien's comments ...

Tom O'Lincoln suarsos at alphalink.com.au
Sat Apr 17 21:03:47 MDT 2004

I've left it to ex-members to critique the SWP. But right here it may be
worth my making a minor comment. In 1972 or 1973 George Novack toured
Australia, and made great play of a claim that the US SWP had been the
first left group in the States to embrace Gay Liberation. I was aware in
a general way of the points John O'Brien makes. Other left groups in the
US, including the International Socialists to which I belonged in
Berkeley, had been noticeably quicker to take up Gay Liberation than the
SWP -- in fact I seem to recall that Gay activists had picketed an SWP
convention in 1969 or 1970.

This experience didn't improve my opinion of  George Novack. One thing
to make errors, a worse thing not to admit them.-- but even worse to
opportunistically claim the reverse. I have often wondered since if I
should have challenged him. At the time it seemed unnecessary -- the
main thing was that the SWP was now championing Gay Liberation and I
thought it would be sectarian to score points off its past. I'm still
not sure.

BTW, regarding that problem where the text in some e-mails extends way
off to the right. I find it easy enough to hit "reply" and then read the
text that appears in the new e-mail.  Alternately (and this also works
if you're reading something on the archives) highlight the whole message
and then paste it into an empty word document. Both methods will make
the text "wrap".

More information about the Marxism mailing list