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25309Re: the left in the Labor Party

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  • Ed Lewis
    Jan 16, 2006
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      Norm Dixon wrote:

      >>Bob Gould's eclectic handful of, it seems mostly unorganised,
      ``leftists'' in the ALP -- even including UnionsNSW's John Robertson
      for gawd's sake -- has done little to convince me that we should cease
      to our important efforts to build a left alternative to the capitalist
      ALP via the Socialist Alliance, and continue to win activists to
      revolutionary socialism via the DSP.>>

      Norm's intended audience in this post seems to be DSP/Socialist
      Alliance members, and I can understand why he needs to convince them
      to keep working on the Socialist Alliance strategy.

      The DSP has convinced plenty of other people that there's not much
      point in trying to persist with the Socialist Alliance: two layers of
      independent leaders of the Socialist Alliance have been put through
      the DSP mincer and tossed away, and most of the organised affiliates
      have given up on it, except for the DSP and perhaps Workers Liberty.

      Most of the Socialist Alliance branches don't meet, and the
      organisation is probably half the size, at best, that it was when it
      started.

      The Socialist Alliance is looking increasingly like a dead duck. Why
      on earth would anyone leave the Labor Party or the Greens to join it,
      as Norm advocates?

      If you want to talk seriously about strategy, Norm, united action is
      the key, as it has always been.

      For example, when Kim Beasley calls for the troops to come home from
      Iraq, how about saying, yes that's a great idea, how about we get
      together with some Greens and Labor Party members, pacifist Christians
      and whoever else will come on board and organise some activity in
      support of it? How about a carefully worded statement of 200 or so
      prominent people in support of Beasley's call for withdrawal
      (carefully worded, of course, to avoid supporting the unacceptable
      aspects of his statement), including a call to some form of action?

      We know Beasley also says he wants to send the troops somewhere else,
      but he'll have difficulty doing that if we can bring the them out of
      Iraq. In any case, we can criticise that aspect of his statement as a
      secondary tactic. Meanwhile, let's not let him get away with empty
      rhetoric, if that's what he's up to, make him deliver on his rhetoric.

      This is not a novel idea, Norm. The Socialist Workers League, the
      first organisation I joined in the socialist movement took that
      approach as a matter of course, and did it with some success.
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