SWP Pre-conference Bulletins 2012

May 2024 Forums Events and announcements SWP Pre-conference Bulletins 2012

Viewing 14 posts - 61 through 74 (of 74 total)
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  • #91278
    imposs1904
    Participant

    I understand that's where their headquarters are now. No idea when they moved there from East London.I believe the Conference took place in Hammersmith.

    #91279
    imposs1904
    Participant

    The mass resignations have started:http://internationalsocialismuk.blogspot.com/2013/03/fao-central-committee-of-socialist.htmlThe list includes Richard Seymour and China Mielville. It's definitely turned out to be the biggest split in the IS/SWP since the ISO in the mid-70s.I think it's fair to say that the SWP are now no longer the biggest group on the left. Step forward SP(EW). The spotlight is yours.

    #91280
    jondwhite
    Participant

    Laurie Penny has written the followinghttp://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/mar/12/swp-rape-implosion-why-i-care

    #91281

    History will be kind to him, for he intends to write it…http://www.leninology.com/2013/03/the-crisis-in-swp-part-i.html

    #91282
    ALB
    Keymaster
    jondwhite wrote:
    Laurie Penny has written the followinghttp://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/mar/12/swp-rape-implosion-why-i-care

    I wonder why she calls them "Marxist-Leninist". It wouldn't be how they would describe themselves and she must know that this generally refers to Maoist groups. Anyway "Marxist-Leninist" is an oxymoron. She should just have said "Leninist".

    #91283
    jondwhite
    Participant

    Some mentioned this on u75. Pretty sure she doesn't know/understand that the only groups to call themselves "Marxist-Leninist" are those that defend Stalin, Mao etc. and not Trotsky.

    #91284
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    jondwhite wrote:
    Some mentioned this on u75. Pretty sure she doesn't know/understand that the only groups to call themselves "Marxist-Leninist" are those that defend Stalin, Mao etc. and not Trotsky.

    Why don't you put her right?  

    #91285
    ALB
    Keymaster
    gnome wrote:
    jondwhite wrote:
    Some mentioned this on u75. Pretty sure she doesn't know/understand that the only groups to call themselves "Marxist-Leninist" are those that defend Stalin, Mao etc. and not Trotsky.

    Why don't you put her right?  

    Scroll down here to see the comment at 4.13pm and the reply from a character in Futurama.

    #91286
    jondwhite
    Participant

    I think it will take more understanding before Laurie understands why the SWP is not "Marxist-Leninist" (even on "Marxist-Leninist's" own terms) let alone why the SWP is not "Marxist" at all. The commenter is running before Laurie can walk. Funny thing is Weekly Worker reject the Marxist-Leninist label for their own group.

    #91287
    jondwhite
    Participant

    Sorry to resurrect this, but the weekend SWP conference has produced a number of further SWP resignations including Tony Cliff's biographer Ian Birchall. Some reports have stated a comment made at the conference that "sometimes women and children lie" was applauded. This, if true, is a supposedly justified response to specific serious allegations.http://averypublicsociologist.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/swp-comrade-x-resigns.html

    #91288
    imposs1904
    Participant

    I tried to look for this thread last night but I couldn't find it, so cheers for resurrecting the thread.I don't have a direct link for this but I thought I'd cut and paste this resignation letter/email from an SWP member in Britstol that someone posted on Urban 75 earlier today. I just thought it was especially interesting because it once again confirmed what we've always known; of their being two classes of member in the SWP and all the other vanguardist organisations:"Dear Charlie,I am writing tonight to resign from the Socialist Workers Party. I am a revolutionary socialist who has viewed all the events since 2010 with alarm. It is not just the defence of rape by the upper echelons of the party, but also the very fact that their is an upper echelon in the SWP. As a blue collar worker without a university education I have always struggled to be accepted in the intellectualised atmosphere of the party. I do not think that anyone who joins should have to smash through a political/intellectual glass ceiling, but we do. In so many ways the SWP mirrors the society we aim to bring down. There is class and privilege in the party, that much was obvious to me from early on, I fought to smash it down, but like any other structure the hierarchy clings to power, at a national or local level.Time and again I approached the party to complain of poor comradeship, zero support and poor organisation in Bristol, at least four times I was fobbed off the rest ignored. Once at a meeting in my own home I and the Secretary of UAF in Bristol, were silenced in our criticism of comrades, as it was felt that important funds from the NUT would be held back. To our knowledge those funds never materialised. Our local campaigns were jeopardized for the sake of national money, to prop up National UAF. For all these years as a good comrade I kept my mouth shut, or had it shut for me.I can be brutal with language, I recognise Boss-like behaviour when I see it and I see it in the Party. You are the bosses, people like me, who trail around doing what we are instructed, are the workers; who are then smashed for showing a flicker of initiative. Worst of all are the unelected, self appointed, middle managers who have a position due to their seniority, a woeful parody of the bosses and managers we are trying to remove. I have a simple rule; anything that we resist at work, we should resist in our own organisation.This in turn brings me to the immediate events around Martin Smith. This whole series of events has been spread over three years, not one and we have long been aware of the allegations facing Martin Smith. Again as a trade union rep with experience of discipline and how workers are treated, abused and oppressed, it was stunning to see the same behaviour occurring in the SWP and from comrades who have also been long serving Trade Unionists. It goes with the territory to stand up for the oppressed, not to be the oppressor. I was shocked to hear how the Disputes Committee had harassed the woman comrade who had been abused, any half competent trade union official would have stopped a meeting like that and any half decent revolutionary would never conduct a meeting like that.I was proud to vote against the CC at the January 2013 conference and have paid the price in Bristol ever since. I believe in a revolutionary socialist party, your SWP is not it. You have had successes, yet as the Tories move further to the right and Labour clings to their coat tails and the Lib Dems face wipe-out the SWP is dragged further and further into the resulting vacuum. We need to resist all temptation, on the one hand to oppress other humans and on the other, to be drawn into the movement in the way you are doing through Unite the Resistance, amongst other campaigns. As revolutionaries we should always be firmly rooted in our place on the left and never over stretch into the movement. There are limits.I trust you can see that my reasons for resignation are not purely based on the exploits of Martin Smith. I feel too many concessions are made to movementism and there is a lack of understanding of how we operate in United Fronts. Too many comrades can talk the talk, yet when they walk the walk it is to the beat of the Labour Party drum.I have stayed in the SWP hoping that I could be a part of changing our structures from within. The democracy commission was a carve up and so too have been all the conferences and structures since. A former comrade in Bristol always used to tell me “Jaz, there are talkers and do-ers”, Charlie, I must report the talkers have won. The party is taking on the appearance of a retirement home where old bigoted ideals will be savoured as you talk over what would have been if those “upstart students and no good women hadn’t come along and spoilt it all”.I too hoped the latest conference would make a serious attempt to acknowledge and rectify the mistakes you and the CC made. I hoped you would have the guts to apologise sincerely to the women at the heart of your crisis and that we could all move forward in unity. That is not possible with a CC based on intransigence. That means I have to leave.I will end by quoting a comrade from Bristol who has tonight also resigned; “I remain a Revolutionary Socialist committed to liberation from oppression, but can not work within this organisation. I offer my solidarity to all my comrades.”Justin “Jaz” Thomas"

    #91289
    imposs1904
    Participant

    Jonathan Neale's resigned.Viv Smith's resigned.David Renton's resigned.Pete Gilliard's resigned.And, as previously mentioned, Ian Birchall's resigned.These were all prominent longstanding members of the SWP. Strange to watch it all unravel.

    #91290
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I wonder if the  'the upper echelons of the party'  would allow him back in, after such an attack upon the party's democratic credentials? I suppose if they refused his readmission, it would merely prove his point      

    #91291
    jondwhite
    Participant

    New Statesman have a long article herehttp://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2014/05/comrades-war-decline-and-fall-socialist-workers-party

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