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9071Re: Discussion and left regroupment

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  • ozleft
    Sep 12, 2004
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      Norm wrote:

      "There is a slight difference. We are not in Iraq. Of course, people
      outside Iraq should adopt the attitude Roy does. But socialists in
      Iraq would not be socialists if
      they did not participate in Iraq's political life, including the

      The point of the Arundhati Roy quote from her brilliant recent
      speech "Public Power in the Age of Empire" was a rather more lateral
      than literal one. That is, and I am sure she would agree, anyone
      serious about opposing capitalism, globalism, neo-liberalism,
      imperialism should support the largest resistance movement that
      exists in any one country and do so more than it should criticise it
      from the sidelines, for being impure, or inadequate in some way or

      As well as being negatively destructive, it is strange that you
      should do this too as you so often do with the Greens, even excitedly
      foreshadowing "sellouts" that have not occurred on the flimsiest of
      evidence. Strange because it contradicts your sometimes statements
      that what the Greens represent today, in the way Shane repeatedly
      outlines, is actually good and important for all progressive
      movements in Australia, including the far left. But then it seems you
      want to be disappointed or something, before the actual need to be so.

      Norm wrote:

      "You are in Australia and part of the Australian Greens, but you seem
      not to have a position on what the Greens are or how it should
      develop. Just take it as it is! That's fine, but you and your
      comrades spend large amounts of effort arguing against the DSP's and
      the Socialist Alliance's strategy to strengthen the socialist forces

      I have a position on what the Greens are. Why would you assume I
      don't? Do I strike you as a silly little girl perhaps? Shane has
      summarised it in a way with which I would completely agree. Actually,
      I would have thought it was obvious and again, DSP statements from
      time to time have summarised what the Greens represent in the
      Australian political and left context, in a way very similar to

      Shane wrote:

      "As for an assessment of how we are strengthening the socialist
      movement - which is a slightly different question. There is no
      socialist MOVEMENT in Australia so its hard to see how any of it can
      be strengthening it."

      So true. It reminds me of how a lot of Western feminists, but more
      particularly left political parties, throughout the 1990s insisted on
      referring to "the women's movement" (of second wave feminism) which
      to all intents and purposes had really ceased to exist for some
      years. That is quite clear today though feminist ideas and activities
      continue of course in a myriad of ways.

      The Greens are an exciting force, they are exciting to be part of
      because they are a left, progressive ongoing and growing force which
      is providing the largest resistance in this country to the Lib-Lab
      agenda; because they incorporate a lot of great grassroots community
      activists; and because they are respected by and attractive to a
      growing number of left and progressive people in this country. As to
      where this is all leading. None of us know, but the possibilities for
      Marxists are exciting. But there are no guarantees or nothing I can
      do now that I am not already doing that will guarantee the outcome I
      would prefer. Also predictions in politics are generally unwise. But
      we live in hope, everlasting hope.

      Incidentally, I remember the DSP in the past used to run in elections
      campaigns with the slogan of "For a Labour Government With Socialist

      How are your election policies today different from the policies you
      put forward in those campaigns? If there is no difference, then what
      makes them "socialist" in particular, in a way say that the Greens
      policies are not socialist?

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