This is a cross-post from Howie’s Corner
Things are getting more fraught by the minute in the disintegrating sect that is the Socialist Workers Party. The faction fighting that is taking place all over the country between their remaining members is seeing a clear route of the remaining so called opposition. Our friendly sectarians at the Weekly Worker gleefully tell us that:
It is now abundantly clear that the December 13-15 conference of the Socialist Workers Party will see a repeat of the rigging process that occurred in the two earlier conferences held this year. The central committee is intent on winning the vote by whatever means – including through the exclusion of opposition delegates wherever possible.
Meanwhile some are beginning to wake up to see the reality of the monster that they have created between themselves over the years. Dave Renton on Lives Running compares the SWP to the old Stalinists of the Communist Party:
Like the Stalinists, we have a cadre of senior union activists, secure in NEC positions or on facility time. We behave as if, like the old CPGB, we increasingly see the future of ourselves in the unions as depending on the goodwill of union Broad Lefts rather than on our support in the rank and file.
We find social media as bad and as incomprehensible as once the Stalinists were terrified by the deep Americanism of superhero comics and amplified guitar music.
Another thing we share with the old CPGB is the attempt to hide embarrassing facts from the membership, and keep the party in line through the threat of disciplinary action. At Marxism, Alex Callinicos formulated a series of ad hoc political justifications for administrative measures – accusing Rob Owen of wanting to turn the party into a movement, Dan Swain of giving up on the vanguard, Ian Birchall of not having read Ian’s own books, etc. There were so many political errors he invented, as he accused his opponents of being ridiculous, so many barely-concealed threats of expulsion.
Those of us who have been around the block a while know full well that even more than 20 years after the fall of the Soviet Union, the primary argument by which Socialism is made to appear ridiculous is this: you can’t build a better society without it falling into tyranny and violence, the decay of the Russian Revolution proves it.
Most outside observers could have told them much the same (and more) a very long time ago.
However the most bizarre development of all is the apparent call in the forthcoming pre-conference Internal Bulletin 3, which supposedly contains an article calling for the reinstatement/readmission of Martin Smith to the SWP.
If true (after all that has happened, the allegations of rape, not just by “delta” but other members too plus the harassment, the threat of lynch mobs and the rest, those that even think of remaining in the SWP cannot be thought of as being more than purveyors of political villainy.
The end game is now in plain view.