Thursday 30 August 2012

Leaving It To Leninists

"Leaving it to Leninists is why we keep having wars and keep having cuts."

Thus ended a comment so good that I reproduced it as a post.

The author was referring to the role of the SWP, an astonishing phenomenon in itself. The followers of Tony Cliff, heterodox even within Trotskyism, have filled the void left by the almost unique decision of the CPGB to dissolve itself in response to the collapse of the Soviet Union. Everywhere else, apart from in the Eurocommunist homeland and heartland of Italy, the Communist Party kept going and subsumed into new blocs its own and the USSR's previous ultra-Left critics. Such as, in Britain, the SWP.

Those blocs have not been without electoral success and other influence in several countries. We are constantly subject to their legislative will in the European Parliament, not to say in the Council of Ministers, the present President of which, President Demetris Christofias, is a Communist. His party was the largest in pre-independence Cyprus, one of the numerous standing contradictions of Marxist historiography in the form of the places where Marxist parties do, and do not, gain popular followings. But this old Tankie is doing nothing to halt the EU's austerity and marketisation. No surprise there.

After all, no party could be more neoliberal, or more warmongering, than the one that united old Tankies and old Trots around, unless I am very much mistaken, a globally unique constitutional commitment to Gramscian Eurocommunism, albeit as mediated through the pages of what, even then, was a long-defunct 1980s lifestyle magazine. I refer, of course, to New Labour and the new Clause IV. Or, rather, to the Labour Party, since what is now the hilariously dated 1995 text, copied and pasted out of Marxism Today in all its glossiness, remains at the heart of that party's Constitution to this day.

"Leaving it to Leninists is why we keep having wars and keep having cuts."

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