[Marxism] New Scottish Socialist Formation

www.leninology. blogspot.com leninology at hotmail.com
Wed Aug 30 04:17:03 MDT 2006

Darren Williams wrote:

> the impression I get
> is that this whole sorry affair has more to do with Tommy Sheridan's ego
> than anything else.

That won't wash.  Sheridan's ego did not cause EC members to ignore NC votes or change locks or leak against him to the press.

> Furthermore, the 11 SSP members who
> gave evidence did not do so willingly, but were obliged to; it was Sheridan
> who put them in that position. There is also a nasty, anti-feminist and even
> misogynistic character to some of his recent statements.

They were not obliged to lie, however, and according to the verdict they did.  Even if some of them told the truth, evidently a number did not since their claims were often contradictory (except for the curiously concerted memory of the infamous meeting, which the magistrate commented on at the close of the trial).

> Where is your evidence for saying that the SSP has lost the support of unions
> and the working class

The SSP's votes have gone right down following the shameful ousting of Sheridan, so that is one good indication.  The Lib Dems were the principal beneficiaries of any antiwar vote.

> And how is this due to policies adopted by the post-Sheridan
> leadership since 2004?

It is more likely to be the case that the main bloc on the EC was always in favour of pursuing a parliamentarist strategy and that its decision to oust Tommy, then leak against him in the press had to do with parliamentary respectability.

> And how will the support of unions, workers and muslims
> be maximised by the left if there are two socialist parties instead of one?

There are several socialist parties across the UK - it is a question of how much of the SSP remains, and how significant its social weight is.

> 'The SSP was not sufficiently like Respect'. It is noteworthy that the SWP
> has enthusiastically supported Sheridan's actions, presumably hoping that
> they can control the new party, with Sheridan as the figurehead, as Galloway
> is in Respect. For its faults, at least the SSP has  been a broad, open and
> democratic party of the socialist left in Scotland - not the exclusive preserve
> of any one 'revolutionary' faction.

Until the UL decided to block inner party democracy, thereby ensuring that it could not be broadly based and usurping avenues for change.  Incidentally, Respect has had its fair share of success, and could be said to encompass broader forces than the SSP, so it isn't such a terrible model.

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