[Marxism] Unity and Socialism | Independent Socialist Network

Michael Fisher michaelfisherx at gmail.com
Thu May 2 18:00:47 MDT 2013

Matt Wrack was a full-timer for The Socialist Party in the mid-1990s when I
knew him a little. Later he was in Respect where he worked alongside the
British SWP and George Galloway (and others).

The obstacles to unity are many and complex. But among them I think there
is a generational factor at work.

Some of the Trotskyist groups (in the the UK at least) are led by figures
who have been around (often in full-time roles) since the 1960s and 1970s.
The culture of these groups was and remains deeply sectarian and cultish.
They believed they alone had access to ultimate Marxist truth and all
others were heretics. We all know the pattern: the High Priests of
Trotskyism would pronounce, the party faithful would obey.

Those who disobeyed would be cast out - condemned to the eternal political
wilderness ('There is no life outside the Fourth International!' as one of
the cult leaders once said).

To admit fault would concede ground to the heretics and would undermine the
authority of the Leader and Leadership.

An encouraging feature of the recent crisis in the British SWP has been a
revolt of (mainly younger) members against this pattern. Some younger
activists are no longer willing to buy into the cult of the all-powerful
and always-correct Central Committee with its 'star' ideologues and
aspirant little Lenins.

That is a very welcome development. I hope it is repeated elsewhere.

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