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35981Re: Gould's double act

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  • lfom5608
    Nov 20, 2006
      Hi Dave,

      Thanks for your reply. Let me try to get your argument.

      > Primarily because its raison d'etre is one of regrouping the left.Of
      > course, the key question is what left? I think it is the case -- at
      > least perhaps for the time being -- that the far left groups aren't
      > very interested in such a project.The door is always open to them to
      > reactivate in the SA milieu -- but at present they have turned
      > I think there is a misconception shared by a few that that question
      > contains the SA -- that it's a business of bringing these outfits
      > together or there is no 'unity" worth the value.

      OK. So the prospective audience for the Socialist Alliance is not the
      socialist groups. Presumably it's individuals. Fine.

      > I think that the SA so far has made some significant but still modest
      > advances in promoting that regroupment perspective as it has drawn
      > many people into a working partnership with one another -- such that
      > its presence across the movements is much larger than any one of the
      > small left outfits or even, in some cases, these outfits combined.

      The Alliance has had some success in recruiting individuals and
      getting them active. That is, it is acheiving its objective of unity
      of socialist individuals.

      > The SA's primary challenge is to enlarge and broaden that audience
      > by seeking ways to engage with and inspire it.

      So SA will grow by recruiting more individual members.

      > [QUOTE]14. Socialist Alliance re-affirms its core objective of
      > promoting left unity and regroupment. However, we recognise that the
      > Socialist Alliance will have to go through a more extended period of
      > united campaigning and political convergence with the broader forces
      > generated by a new upturn of resistance before it can develop the
      > social base and harness the leadership resources needed to take a
      > significant step towards creating a new mass socialist party.

      So, SA is basically in a holding pattern of recruiting individuals
      until something else (outside the control of the SA) happens. Is this
      approach working?


      > And you refer to the Socialist Party in that context. Well,
      > the SP has been talking about forming a real workers party for some
      > time but I don't see it happening, do you? And that's primarily
      > because the Alliance occupies the space that the SP's own unity
      > project would hope to fill. And I guess, the same applies to any
      > hope that the ISO may have of replicating RESPECT here in Australia.
      > The reality is that either within or outside the SA -- the present
      > audience for left unity is primarily relating nationwide to the
      > Alliance and for the moment at least, the SA owns the copyright.

      So, these alternative formations for left alliances are unable to be
      built because the Socialist Alliance takes the (currently small) space.

      Couldn't these (verbal) attempts at unity by other left groups be the
      "significant step[s] towards creating a new mass socialist party" that
      SA is waiting for?

      Fair enough you have said that these groups are not really interested
      in unity - their statements are presumably purely for propaganda
      value. In that case, what events would create the basis for the
      "significant step towards creating a new mass socialist party"?

      > Outside the polemics and
      > the rhetoric and such-- the only test that will matter in the final
      > instance will be whether the Socialist Alliance achieves what it sets
      > out to do..

      Well of course, but that doesn't really say anything does it? Nor is
      it really the approach the left takes to issues outside itself. We
      didn't sit back and say, 'well in the end the only test of whether the
      US invasion of Iraq will be good for Iraqi people will be whether they
      achieve what they set out to do'. We made an analysis and drew a
      conclusion and then made an argument. The political and organisational
      forms of the left should be the same.

      The problem with simply saying that we should 'try it and see' is that
      it makes reflection very difficult. At what point do we say something
      is not working?

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