Skip to Content

Left Unity, Broad Church

If you have ideas that aren’t supported, but you want your ideas to win support what do you do? Should you dismiss the ability of people to think and change and set out to deceive people not supportive of your ideas, since this is what most political parties do? Should you play down your ideas in an organisation, in order to win supporters, putting numbers of supporters as more important than your ideas?

Of course big ideas overlap, it would be sectarian to suggest otherwise, but what if those ideas are political and require political organisation for a political purpose? How important is sticking to your ideas, or what might be called principles, then? What if the idea is socialism, which represents a fundamental break with previous society? How important then, is clearly defining supporters from non-supporters?

The project called Left Unity then is going for the broad approach. There is a willingness to accept subscriptions from members not in agreement on political purpose with other members. Agreeing on action first, then (if at all) worrying about ideological agreement (as unfashionable as that is), is not the way to persuade people. Very quickly they will find out that some ideas negate other ideas, such as higher wages negates abolition of the wages system. Some supporters of the organisation will become ideological opponents (or at least non-supporters) when revolutionary change arises.

The greatest American orator for socialism once said ‘It is better to vote for what you want and not get it, than to vote for what you don’t want and get it.’