Saturday, 8 June 2013
The Weekly worker
Over the last few weeks I have I must admit been reading the weekly worker. Shoot me down burn me at the stake I admit it. Yet there is nothing to admit. The weekly worker is an interesting look at the week’s events in the labour movement and doesn’t hang back in telling things as they are. They openly accept criticism which the Socialist party a and the SWP do not outside their ranks. I do accept a lot of what the CPGB weekly worker say and they are right in many ways including the need for amass Marxist revolutionary party. That is in a way our end goal. But yet I’ve not joined them and I am still a committed member of the CWI and socialist party and the Trotskyist tradition. The weekly worker whilst providing a somewhat gossipy section in their paper do offer some very good theory and technical sections which I feel the CWI could do better on which I’ve previously explained yet my main gripe and hang up and the reason why I did not go further and go and join the CPGB is their day to day activity. Whilst theory is important and I hold it up as a very important piece of Marxist understanding it is not everything. The day to day struggles being among workers and workers struggles are the nitty gritty which I get the impression the CPGB tends to shy away from. Are they for example on the picket lines with the PCS ? Are they attending TUSC steering committee meetings despite their misgivings? Are they active within their unions and helping to build the fight back? Sadly I do not see this. I do have my disagreements and reservations with the Socialist party on a number of issues but yet we are and I still think the best party to put into practice the ides of Marx and Lenin and Trotsky to not only understand the current situation is one thing to put into practice what needs to be done is far harder. I do not imagine there are any better class fighters out there than the SP. Our party is made up of majority working class people with the best militants in our ranks I do believe. We may not always be right and no one is but I’ve come to the conclusion that the socialist party are the best party to stick with for now who have the best rounded out Marxist programme for the period ahead. The weekly worker is always worth a read and is best engaged with I feel rather than writing off as another sect and saying they have nothing to contribute how about engaging with them putting a letter in their letters section for example ? Gets some debate going perhaps? I feel the socialist party tends to regard other smaller left groups as “the sects” and dismisses them and ok some may be not worth bothering with but yet others may be and to clarify our position may help us establish our position in the movement better in some ways. Or in other ways may not but I don’t think good well meaning Marxist thinkers such as those with the weekly worker can be dismissed so easily I think some of what they say is correct other parts not so much. There is a sense of arrogance with our party sometimes which needs to be tackled as we don’t know it all and new and fresh thinkers should be welcomed and taken up. Yet all this I am still as 100% a member of the CWI and continuing my leaning as a Marxist as ever. Marx taught us to think critically so I am sometimes I have criticisms of our own party I feel I should be free to raise these in order to clarify my own understanding and to benefit others too. A democratic party is a healthy party the socialist party must fight to be the most democratic party of all. If a member has concerns on democracy they should be able and feel to raise these issues. Remember everything is a process reading other parties materials and works is not a bad thing sometimes comrades may be wishing to clarify their ideas and challenge themselves and others. We should look to work with these free thinking comrades not write them off but look to encourage them to read and read our own material and provide more when it isn’t there. For example I wish to read more Peter Taaffe yet it is not available in an accessible format for me so I’m lead to go by hear say and quotes unfortunately. Marx was never afraid to say how he felt and I think all comrades should be encouraged to speak out if they have any concerns for the party to look to bridge that gap in thinking. Marxism is a constant science and is not dogmatic in any way it must constantly be examined critically and updated to fit the day to day demands. Do read the weekly worker if you can but also read it with a critical eye as I have done whilst being a open forum to many it can also lead you astray be aware of this but also not dismiss things out of hand without asking questions and challenging anything you pick up and read . Lastly keep reading and keep challenging yourselves and others. Marxism is a tool to aid workers lets make the most of it.