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Debate and Discussion

This is your chance to join the debate and discussion about the policies and views of the Movement for a Socialist Future, as well as current economic, political and social events.

Keep your comments coming in and we'll post them on the site. The discussion is moderated so it may take a day or so before your views are posted. E-mail your contribution to or complete the form below.

Money to New Labour

Should the unions continue to finance New Labour?

Your choice
  • hand over the money
  • campaign for ending all financial support and disaffialiation from New Labour

Your comments:

name or nom de plume


I believe that the only funding for any political
party should come from the state. In my view this could commence the breaking of the link between business, the capitalist system and the state and for once make the politicians accountable to the people that they are elected to serve. CK

I think they should be a campaign for ending all financial support and disaffiliation from New Labour because this party does not represent the interests of the working class.
SInce New Labour came to power the increase between the rich and the poor has trebled They hypocritically talk about ending child poverty here and abroad and then set about dismantling what is left of the welfare state. New Labours international policy is clearly seen in Browns trip to Africa and the subsequent talk of eradicating disease and hunger across the continent this is a thinly veiled disguise for recolonisation.

I would also add that they have taken us into a war with Iraq with the full support of the trades unions, which do nothing to stop the eradication of the pauperising and destruction of the working class at home and go onto encourage and applaud the destruction of Iraq In fact I suggest that the working class should break away from the corrupt and degenerate present trades union movement. We are in the position we are in today due to the cowardice and corruption of these leaders and the short-sightedness of the working class.

I suggest what is needed is for the working class to wake up and realise that it is up to them to fight to change things there is no point in continually blaming leaders who have a proven track record in betrayal and furthering there own interests above those of their members. A start would be to form new unions with representatives that truly represent its interests. LW

I think they should campaign for ending all financial support and disaffiliation from New Labour because of the attacks that 'new labour' is carrying out against workers. Also the scapegoating of refugees and asylum seekers is disgusting. The TUC should struggle for workers rights even if this means breaking with labour. McN

Phil replies:

Thank you for your post. I agree with almost everything that you have said here, but not quite everything.

I agree that Lenin was soft on West European social democracy in his 'Left-Wing Communism: an Infantile Disorder', a case which I think the Dutch council communist Gorter made well in his open letter to Lenin (which I read in the Workers Dreadnought at the newspaper library at Colindale, north London). I also think Sylvia Pankhurst made some good points in the Workers Dreadnought about why British communists should not join the Labour Party.

It was always the position of the great Scottish revolutionary John Maclean that the formation of the British Labour Party had been a process that was dominated by the pro-capitalist ideas of the Fabian Society. The Fabian Society, of course, had been set up in 1884 with the specific aim of opposing the influence of Marxism on the British working class. I think Maclean was right. Both Maclean and Sylvia Pankhurst were right to argue that communists should uphold the political independence of the working class by building separate communist organization and by *not* joining the Labour Party.

Where I disagree with you is that I do not think it is a matter of principle for a communist organization not to participate in bourgeois elections. Here I agree with Lenin. It is true that the bourgeoisie set the terms of debate in elections and therefore it is generally a bad tactic to stand in elections. However, I do think it is a tactical question. In my opinion, if a communist organization has the resources and, crucially, has a well-researched perspective in its propaganda for how the working class can go from where it is now to a stronger position - a more revolutionary class conscious position which brings it closer to bringing down the capitalist state - then an election can present an important opportunity to get ideas across.

From your United States perspective, I wonder if you could post something about the positions that the great American communists have taken towards the Democratic Party? From my experience, the communist movement in Britain (and me) is not well-versed in such important matters of American communist history, so your views and info on this would be appreciated.

Neil reiterates:

Of, course workers should not throw their hard earned monies down the "Labourite' (UK) or Democratic Party (US ) political sewers. These parties represent the more slick wings of capital . Their rule is really 'bi-partisan' working in tandem with the Tories (UK)- or Republicans (US). Here in the USA , this is done by the AFL unions with workers dues monies and 'political action funds'.
Probably similar to the TUC in the UK.

I think Lenin was proved wrong on this "critical supports for Labour " in his vitriol against the left -communists back in 1920 in his 'Left wing communism ' diatribe v ia the historical track record. How does a party that Lenin correctly said has "gone over to the bourgeoisie" supporting
WW1 slaughter, (after Aug. 4th , 1914) become worthy of any workers support, or especially socialists support in 1920?

Is is not (past) time to critically reexamine what has become like biblical or talmudic dogma of so many marxists even up to this day?

I'm sure in the UK, you have people tell you even now that even you are wrong to not "give Labour 'critical supports' and you need to 'go back and study Lenin in LWC- an Infantile Disorder" probably for the hundreth time!

Is it not past time for marxists (materialists - and dialecticians ) to be a bit more scientific and critical , given the sorry track record for workers interetsts using these tactics??

Ditto for analysis of running candidates in capitalist election circuses at all. How does this raise 'class consciousness"?

Neil says:

Has not the TUC already been incorporated into the political state ? Of course , it has helped both labour and tory regimes carry out policy (of the bourgeoisie) for many decades.

This goes for collaboration in home and foreign policy of the ( now reduced) empire. New Labour has just been more blatant in doing this now. In the UK , since WW2 , the army has been called out on British strikers 17 times and 13 or 14 on these times , this has happened under Labour regimes.

Looks like the Tory-Labour 'democracy' of UK is similar to the Republicans-Democrats rule in the USA, but for decades the big lies were that Labour was 'socialistic', here in the US, the Democrats apologists said (and still do lyingly state) that the Democrats are 'friends of labour' , the Party of the working people". Should not socialists be able to dispense with these illsusions, not foster them?

EC writes:

I think they should campaign for ending all financial support and disaffiliation from New Labour because the day of labour representing the working man is long gone, the socialist principles have been swept away in a tidal wave of ppi pfi ppp, big multinationals are keeping a strangle hold on the low paid, with blessings from new labour, from a totally disgusted, ex labour voter.










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