Apr 16 2013

FEMINISM AND THE CRISIS IN THE BRITISH SOCIALIST WORKERS PARTY

Below we are posting a statement about the crisis in the SWP from the Freedom Socialist Party  of the USA. The immediate cause of the current crisis is the SWP CC’s attempt to prevent the accusation of rape, directed against a CC member, from becoming a wider issue. This despite the issue being used by  the Right to attack the whole of the Left. Furthermore, the use of their trade union affiliations by SWP CC defendants makes it even more vital that Socialists make their position over this issue quite clear.

The SWP CC has been completely unsuccessful in trying to bury the issue behind its own bureaucratic centralist walls. It  has emerged in several trade unions, including the election contest  for UNITE’s General Secretary. It has also been widely discussed by the International Left, including dissident statements from the SWP’s own international.

Susan Dorazio, who is from the USA, and currently lives in Glasgow, has submitted this statement for our blog. This  follows from two  earlier contributions, which examined other aspects of the current crisis in the SWP:-

http://republicancommunist.org/blog/2013/03/25/red-baiting-and-slurs/ and 

http://republicancommunist.org/blog/2013/03/25/the-crisis-in-the-swp-the-failure-of-the-central-committees-recruit-recruit-recruit-tactics/

The analysis and recommendations in this new posting have not been endorsed by the RCN, but the E & L Editorial Board recognises that the statement from the Freedom Socialist Party is a very useful contribution to the wider debate.

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Mar 25 2013

THE CRISIS IN THE SWP:- The failure of the Central Committee’s ‘recruit, recruit, recruit’ tactics

This article  examines one aspect of the current crisis enveloping the SWP. The SWP has not had a  programme, so it has no real strategy for achieving the socialism it claims to support. Instead, the SWP leadership concentrates on the tactics it thinks will bring it new members. In the SWP leadership’s thinking, socialism will come about through an arithmetical increase in SWP members. Allan Armstrong, himself a former member of the SWP and its predecessor organisation, the International Socialists between 1972-82, looks into the history of the SWP’s lack of programme and strategy, and some of the results of its concentration on recruitment tactics.

thThe SWP is currently undergoing a severe, and possibly a terminal crisis. The immediate causes of this crisis lie in the expulsion of four members for planning to meet to form a faction before the 2013 Party Conference; and the allegations of sexual assault directed against Central Committee (CC) member, ‘Comrade Delta’. As elsewhere in Britain, Scottish SWP members are divided between CC loyalists and dissidents.

Just before this crisis exploded into the public arena, the SWP published a contribution to the Scottish independence referendum debate – Scotland – Yes to independence, No to nationalism. This pamphlet has been written the SWP’s Scottish organiser, Keir McKechnie. SWP organisers are appointed by the CC. So, there can be little doubt, where Keir’s allegiances lie in the current dispute in the SWP.

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