[Marxism] Paul Le Blanc responds to Pham Binh's ....

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Feb 2 12:53:22 MST 2012

On 2/2/2012 2:37 PM, glparramatta wrote:

> And Paul Le Blanc responds to Pham Binh's reply to ....
> http://links.org.au/node/2719

Another Leninist organisation to which I belonged was the Fourth 
Internationalist Tendency (1984-92), an admirable and quite 
democratic group, in my view -- see 

 From my studies, the same is basically true of the Bolshevik 
party under Lenin. In the United States, it is also true of the 
Communist Party of the United States up to 1924 or so, the 
Communist League of America, the Workers Party of the United 
States and the Socialist Workers Party from 1938 at least up to 
the 1960s or 1970s. I do not claim that this is an exhaustive list.


I dunno. I was in the SWP in the 60s and 70s and find the 
adjective "democratic" problematic at best. Basically, you had the 
right to say anything you wanted in the 3 months leading up to a 
convention without getting expelled--just as long as it was within 
the parameters of what was deemed acceptable. If you stepped over 
the line, you'd get stigmatized as "anti-party" and isolated 
socially and politically. The basic problem with such groups was 
not Darkness at Noon visitations by Jack Barnes's lieutenants but 
an awful kind of peer pressure that prevented you from speaking 
your mind.

For example, I got up at a city conference in NYC in 1978 and told 
comrades that I was transferring to Kansas City where I hoped to 
get a job in industry as part of the "turn". I urged others to 
follow my example since the opportunities for "colonizing" 
industry were unparalleled. The workers were athirst for our 
revolutionary message. Blah-blah-blah.

Later that day I told some close friends who were about as 
alienated from the party leadership and its idiotic "turn" as I 
was that I was saying things I did not believe. I just wanted to 
fit in. Here I was, a rebel from the age of 13 censoring myself. 
Nobody tortured me into making a fool of myself. I did it all on 
my own.


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