Local Election Campaign 2017

June 2022 Forums World Socialist Movement Local Election Campaign 2017

Viewing 15 posts - 91 through 105 (of 172 total)
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  • #126209
    steve colborn
    Participant

    By the by, whether you believe it or not, Eileen, nor Vincent nor anyone else knew of the SCP until after the fact, so you can all drop the McCarthyite witch hunt, it does you a disservice and no credit.

    #126210
    Bijou Drains
    Participant
    steve colborn wrote:
    Immplicated in what, pray tell? "Socialist joins non-political group of local people to oppose a Labour Council, to concerned with themselves and their self-image, to care about the community"!That, in a nutshell, is what this is/was about. For your further information, it was April of "this" year, not 2016, so it had not "been long planned", with or without telling anyone!In point of fact, I was one of those who would have resigned, supposing we had made a clean sweep of all seats, thus reducing the Councils bill for councillors expenses by 10, those being the number that would have stood down.Furthermore, if Seaham Community Party had any political leaning, I would not have given my support. Their one interest is Seaham and whats best for us all. It was/is a chance to democratise a Council, insofar as anything can be democratic in this Capitalist shit hole of a world.After being tipped off about posts on the Forum, regarding myself, I thought I would peruse them myself! What I have read are comments that do no service to those that have made them.No one on this forum has the right to question my Socialist credentials, no one. Nor from the Party at large. I am as much a Socialist now, as I was 36 years ago when I first joined The Party. I still put the case for Socialism at every possible oppurtunity, wheresoever I find myself.I am still the same Socialist who has written thousands of letters to the press, talked for hundreds of hours on local radio phone in programmes and assisted in delivering 10's of thousands of leaflets/manifestos over the years, as well as contesting elections on our behalf a couple of dozen times at least.If I had been involved with the initial setting up of the SCP (Seaham Community Party), I would have urged that they name change to the Seaham Community Action Group, but the action had already been taken on the name.I am not trying to say that all in the SCP are buddiong Socialists, they aren't but what they are, are ordinary folk, prepared to put their heads above the parapets and challenge the totally undemocratic Labour stranglehold on Seaham.If any of the above offends anyone, or if they cannot understand why I have done, what I have done, then know this, no one is more offended than myself, when I read the pathetic insults thrown my way!I have been on the "sharp end" of some insulting crap on here/spopen/spintcom in the past, but the recent comments take the biscuit.I am not a traitor, (how dare you call me that) to the case for Socialism. There is nothing contradictory in being a member of The Socialist Party and being involved in what is nothing more or less than a "local action group".If I had, (heaven forfend) joined Labour or SLP, even the Greens, the case would have been defenceless. As it is, I haven't and it is!!!At tomorrows EC meeting, I expect I will be charged with"action detrimental"! if I am, that will smell about as bad as the "revolutionary dog shite" Timothy Kilgallon enthuses over.Show the EC this post! Bring the charge, I will answer it but I have no intention of walking away from something I have given my entire adult life to (many times to the detriment of my own family), quietly.Yours Still Fraternally,Steve Colborn.

    So what your saying is Steve, that you didn't consider that the Seaham Community Party (Registered as a Political Party in 2016) was actually a political party,That raises the question as to why they call themselves a "Party" not a group? Perhaps it's because everyone else, with the exception of you, view them as a Political Party?As a group of "ordinary Folk" a "local Action Group", I wonder why they are sending congratulations to other Political Parties, a quote from the SCP facebook site"We would also like to say an enormous “CONGRATULATIONS” to our neighbouring Independent Parties who had magnificent success today by winning majority seats; well done The North East Party, Haswell Community Party, Spennymoor Independent Party and Derwentside Independents. "So supporting the North East party, but I suppose they're another group of "ordinary folk" and the popular conception that they are a nascent North East Regionalist Party is a huge mistake.I think it is absolutely astiounding that you should stand for POLITICAL OFFICE for a registered POLITICAL PARTY and not think that that this may be something which brings you into conflict with the Party. You might find the following an intersting read, it appears you have forgotten them:7. – That as all political parties are but the expression of class interests, and as the interest of the working class is diametrically opposed to the interests of all sections of the master class, the party seeking working class emancipation must be hostile to every other party8. –  The Socialist Party of Great Britain, therefore, enters the field of political action determined to wage war against all other political parties, whether alleged labour or avowedly capitalist.I contacted you by email, as acting branch secretary of the NERB, prior to the recent Local Election, to ask if you were interested in standing iin those local elections as a Party candidate. Odd that you didn't reply to this email, perhaps you could have mentinoed the fact that you were standing for Political Office for another Registered Political Party? Perhaps it was an oversight?Stranger still that you claim that if Seham Community Party had any political leaning you would not have given them any support. I suppose you never got around to reading their manifesto. You might find the following quotes from their very political manifesto:"we will bring in financial control and accountability, to ensure good quality, value for money services""help and support all copmmunity centres in Seaham to provide the right level of investment and efficient management of these facilities and those at the town hall"(sounds like a pay cut for somebody!!!)and what about the following very neat summary of the case for reformism:"It is fine to have a long term goal of changing society, for the betterment of everyone but it was/is (as I considered it) and probably most people do as well, an aim for the future. The ethos of the SCP is something that can be achieved, now!"Hints of the Possibilist agenda there, teh minimalist programme has gone down so far that all we can worry about is dog shite politics

    #126211
    steve colborn
    Participant

    Actually Tim, I did not decide to stand for the SCP until the end of March, beginning of April 2017. As opposed to Adam's view I never even new of the existence of the SCP until the beginning of March 2017. By the 25th of April, I had more important thingson my mind, a second MI and another 3 days in hospital. Kind of focuses ones mind!Anyway, forget about self justification, I'll repeat my statement, I am in the SCP for myself and the other folk of Seaham. I couldn't give a tinkers cuss about any other parties, IE Haswell, North East party etc etc. I couldn't care less what congrats were sent to whom, or when! We are a collection of individual residents and as such, I do not answer to them, nor them to me. As long as when we are in the Couincil Meetings, our total focus is on Seagham and its residents, that does me fine.As for hints of the possibilist agenda, never even crossed my mind. What you deem as a "pay cut", would only apply to councillors, their allowances and their perks.I was informed by a couple of the Party members already in situ, that the only way to stand as a collection of individuals to oppose Labour was to stand as a Party! I couldn't give a flying fuck if we had been a "Farty Party", a residents collective or whatever else you, or anyone else cares to imagine, it is a Party in name only, for convenience only!!!Finally Tim and I hesitate to broach the subject but don't you think you should get some professional help for your "Dog Shite Fetish"? just thought I'd mention it. 

    #126212
    ALB
    Keymaster

    Ok, my apologies. It does seem to be April this year. I was confused because the first item on the Seaham Community Party's facebook page is dated 2016.I, too, emailed you, in February (the 5th to be precise) asking if you were prepared to stand again for the Party  in the Durham County Council elections as you had done on many previous occasions (with my help in getting your manifestos printed at Head Office and sent to you) but got no reply. I am afraid that I can only conclude that your priority was to get elected as a local councillor but that you felt you had a better chance as a candidate of the Seaham Community Party than as a Socialist Party one. Sad, very sad, after 36 years as a staunch Socialist.As a reminder of the past, here is the part of the manifesto you drafted when you stood for Durham County Council in 2005:

    Quote:
    Durham County Council election, Thursday 5 May 2005To the voters of Deneside Wardfrom THE SOCIALIST PARTYCandidate Steve ColbornWhat matters – profits or people?In Deneside and Seaham as a whole, things have been made very much worse over the past 20 or so years with the closure of three collieries. Collieries that have been closed not because no-one wants coal but because we are told it cannot be produced profitably. No profit – no production! That's the basic economic law of capitalism.For over a century millions of pounds worth of coal has been extracted from these mines. The cost has been high. Hundreds killed and thou­sands injured as a direct result of their employment with thousands more still suffering today as a result of industrial disease. And what has been our reward?Insecurity for ourselves and an insecure future for our children and grandchildren. A lack of amenities that all ought to enjoy after a hun­dred years of sacrifice. They even tell us that, with the closure of the mines, there can be no more swimming pool. Even though a majority of us are in favour of building a new one, the council has decided no.Why? Is it because the councillors and council officials are uncaring people? We are sure most of them genuinely want to help others. So why are they against improving local amenities? They say they haven't got the money. True, but why haven't they got the money? Because the government won't give it to them. But why won't the government give it to them? Because it hasn't got the money either, and can't get it because its job is to run the profit system and under the profit system businesses must not be taxed too much or the economy will slow down. It's 'no profit – no production' again.

    You were of course also our candidate in Easington at the last general election, only two years ago. 

    #126213
    Bijou Drains
    Participant

    SteveThe only person you're kidding is yourself. I hope you enjoy your time trying to make capitalism work better.I look forward to your success in making Seaham Harbour the go to tourist destination and that you feel that by maintaining the monuments glorifying capitalism's wars, that you are "achieving something now". I presume that you will be attending the Seaham Town Council's Paschendale Centenary Last Post at the Cenotaph in Seaham, on 30th July, as proposed by your new political party.

    #126214
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    There was no witch-hunt but attempts to clarify a situation which was all due to your own actions. As soon as it was made clear no other person knew of your go-it-alone endeavour, apologies for any unintended offence was offered. The fact that others initially were thought to be involved was all because of your decision to not inform the branch or the Party of your intentions. Questions were obviously raised but answers were given and were fully and unqualifiedly accepted. Nor did we wait for weeks to pass to have matters cleared up as demonstrated by this very tardy response from yourself.Members of the Socialist Studies group believed they too were still "good" socialists when expelled for breaking Party rules and remained "loyal" to the Party. Unfortunately accepting party rules goes with membership. The respected member Robert Barltrop believed his local community would benefit from his personal contribution. He stood as an independent. I am sure the Party's historians can cite other examples  from our historyNow the Party has to expend its time in the process of expelling you. Another distraction, just as it was when it had to make a decision on your appeals to re-join a few years ago after you resigned. I need not remind you of the most basic principle of Marx and of the Party. "Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims."You may judge that after many decades of local socialist activity and letters to the local press that every voter was aware of your personal politics but you stood in a political contest on behalf of an organisation which is not a socialist one nor presented to the electorate a socialist case for your election. Again, i say this because of your lack of transparency. Perhaps you did address public meetings and issued an election leaflet to your ward that has not made known to your fellow members of the SPGB. But it seems even your new colleagues have difficulty in understanding your political stance, describing you as a "national socialist" I can also ask, what would the situation have been iff you had not been elected. Would anybody have known if you had stood? Would you have shared the news of your defeat as a SCP member?The simple fact is that there was very little open-ness shown by yourself to your supposed comrades of the SPGB. If you had resigned and stood as you claim as a spokes-person for your community, there would have been a healthy and fruitful debate and discussion of the situation. I, for one, may well have been one of your advocates. After all, i had already raised the issue of activity in parish councils on this forum before knowing of your participation in such.But now, i find myself one of your accusers of betraying the trust we place in all of our fellow members. 

    #126215
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    As a post script to the above comment, the question that will be asked by many is not that whether you are a socialist because not many of us will consider you a turncoat but the issue will be if you are fit person for membership by your underhand conduct. You may well try and defend yourself when charges are inevitable brought against you but there is little defence to be had in knowingly flouting Party rules and keeping your actions secret from your branch, your comrades, not to mention your own family and friends. 

    #126216
    ALB
    Keymaster
    alanjjohnstone wrote:
    The respected member Robert Barltrop believed his local community would benefit from his personal contribution. He stood as an independent.

    Barltrop was a member of Radwinter Parish Council, near Saffron Walden in Essex, but this was in the 1960s during one of his periods outside the Party. His situation could be considered even more anomalous as he was then moving in anarchist circles but I suppose that raises one of the issues at stake here — are parish councils part of the machinery of government or more residents' committees? In any event, some are more politicised than others with the main capitalist political parties standing for them.

    #126217
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    ALB wrote:
    are parish councils part of the machinery of government or more residents' committees?

    The position of Steve Colborn is not quite as clear cut as some members would have us believe.  OK, he joined and was elected as a member of another organisation, but is the Seaham Community Party "political" in the sense we in the Socialist Party understand that description?  More to the point; have his actions been "detrimental" to the interests of the Party?  At this stage I'm much more concerned about those members, and there have been a few, particularly on Facebook, who have openly expressed their preference, even support in one or two cases, for one of the main, and avowedly, capitalist parties.

    #126218
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster
    Quote:
    The position of Steve Colborn is not quite as clear cut as some members would have us believe.

    I'm very surprised by this remark coming from you, Gnome.Our rulebook is quite explicit. (We even excluded members and branches from participating in this general election because they did not follow agreed accepted procedures correctly)."A member shall not belong to any other political organisation or write or speak for any other political party except in opposition, or otherwise assist any other political party. [Is the SCP not organised politically] Candidates elected to a Political office shall be pledged to act on the instructions of their Branches locally, [has SC considered this obligation of a member, now that he is an elected public official]Any Branch proposing to contest elections, National, European or Local, shall first obtain permission from the Executive Committee." [although referring to a branch, i am sure it is also interpreted to mean individual members]Would your response have been the same if a member had stood as a candidate for the Independent Working Class Association without informing the party? As i said in my earlier post, there could have been a fertile exchange on the merits or otherwise of engaging in community politics as i endeavoured to initiate on this forum. http://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/forum/general-discussion/parish-councilsBut members were deprived of the opportunity in this particular instance by the unilateral actions of SC that demonstrated a lack of respect for his fellow members.  I see no defence that deserves special consideration. I think it gives credence to those members who opposed approving his re-membership being sceptical of pledges of good behaviour in the future could be relied upon.   

    #126219
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    alanjjohnstone wrote:
    There was no witch-hunt but attempts to clarify a situation which was all due to your own actions. Now the Party has to expend its time in the process of expelling you. Another distraction, just as it was when it had to make a decision on your appeals to re-join a few years ago after you resigned.  

    What nonsense is this. You seem incapabale of leaving the past in the past. Stop using myths to support your arguments, it is unbecoming.Alan I suggest you zip it until this matter has been dealt with in a fair manner, when all facts have been established.We hope to have many newcomers to the forum soon and we have an election to fightMove on ffs

    #126220
    robbo203
    Participant
    gnome wrote:
    ALB wrote:
    are parish councils part of the machinery of government or more residents' committees?

    The position of Steve Colborn is not quite as clear cut as some members would have us believe.  OK, he joined and was elected as a member of another organisation, but is the Seaham Community Party "political" in the sense we in the Socialist Party understand that description?  More to the point; have his actions been "detrimental" to the interests of the Party?  At this stage I'm much more concerned about those members, and there have been a few, particularly on Facebook, who have openly expressed their preference, even support in one or two cases, for one of the main, and avowedly, capitalist parties.

     Yes I would agree with this.  The situation is not black or white.  It is possible that the SCP is not a poltical party in the full blooded sense of the term and that this entity was only forced to use the term "party" becaue of certain legal requirements.  However, the SCP has expressed certain sentiments of a clear political nature in relation to Rembrance Day etc which i consider thoroughly objectionable as a sociaist.  Has Steve clearly disassociated himself from these sentiments? Regarding some members expressing a preference for Corbyn – again I think we have to be clear about what this actually signifies. It is possible to argue that a Corbyn goverment represents a slightly more positive development than a May government without this in any way suggesting an endorsement of the former or a recommendation that one should vote for Corbyn,  I would never do that and as socialists we are all surely well aware that a vote for Corbyn simply translates into ensuring in the long run a  retun of some future Tory government a few years down the line after a Corbyn gvovernment has failed as it will inevitably do, in the see-saw world of capitalist politics. However, i would be slightly concerned if Britsh workers did vote for still more of the same – i.e. the Tories – without even the pretence of a slight shift in thinking.  Such conservatism in both senses of the word, would be truly depressing.  There is a further point ( though I am not too sure that the evidence entirely backs it up)  that the SPGB as an organisation tends to fare somewhat better under labour governments than under tory governments. Its highest ever membership figure occured under the Attlee govenrment did it not? If the correlation holds I wonder why this would be the case. 

    #126221
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    alanjjohnstone wrote:
    Would your response have been the same if a member had stood as a candidate for the Independent Working Class Association without informing the party? I think it gives credence to those members who opposed approving his re-membership being sceptical of pledges of good behaviour in the future could be relied upon. 

    More nonsense. Again, your implication is clear and you are in danger of dragging in other members.  May I suggest leaving historical events –  that are debatable any way – in the past and concentrate on the issue at hand. You are not helping the situation and you are certainly not goody goody two shoes Again, Move on ffs

    #126223
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    I have said my piece, Vin. A response was required since it was SC himself who belatedly came on the forum to justify his position. I will now zip my mouth. I will await the outcome of NERB and the EC deliberations upon the matter. 

    #126222
    Young Master Smeet
    Participant
    gnome wrote:
    The position of Steve Colborn is not quite as clear cut as some members would have us believe.  OK, he joined and was elected as a member of another organisation, but is the Seaham Community Party "political" in the sense we in the Socialist Party understand that description?  More to the point; have his actions been "detrimental" to the interests of the Party?  At this stage I'm much more concerned about those members, and there have been a few, particularly on Facebook, who have openly expressed their preference, even support in one or two cases, for one of the main, and avowedly, capitalist parties.

    It is pretty clear cut, even if a member even stood as an independent without joining a technical group, it would be an expulsion offence.  Standing for public office without putting the party case is a misuse of the opportuniy the ballot box presents to us, and harms the party.  Peddling the myth of apolitical councillors (usually independents groups are Tories in disguise) is also harmful.  All public office is political in a class divided society.A member expressing an opinon down the pub, or on Facebook is a much lesser matter. 

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