Friday, 20 September 2013
CWI socialist party play the man not the ball in economic crisis debate
At last the CWI socialist party have published their reply to those who have made criticisms of its economic position. You can read it here if you wish. Warning there is many straw man arguments in there and is a very long draw out piece. http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/17458/20-09-2013/the-causes-of-capitalist-crisis-reply-to-andrew-kliman The piece mainly attacks Marxist Andrew Kliman a university lecture from the USA and a comrade of mine Bruce Wallace from Scotland. Now I wont be giving a long winded reply to this document as its not my place to do so but I do look forward to the response from the opposition which is more than Andrew Kliman who isn’t even a member of the CWI and Bruce Wallace who you'd be forgiven for thinking were the only two who hold Marx’s views on crisis with capitalism. The piece focus's heavily on Andrew Kliman and linking his political standings to his economic ones. Many straw men make a straw man army in my view and this document has straw men all over the shop sadly. At least we have seen the Law of the tendency of the rate of profit to fall finally get a mention in a socialist party official piece. SO far up to now you would struggle to find any mention of the law that Karl Marx brilliantly describes in 3 chapters of his famous works in capital volume 3. Sadly this is dismissed as nonsense by the CWI and Bruce and Andrew are lambasted for their so called dogmatic stance when it comes to theories of capitalist crisis. So by this we should be calling Karl Marx a dogmatist too right? I am a supporter of Bruce Wallace and Andrew Kliman and defend their right to oppose the economic position of the CWI which I have to be honest I am far from convinced with either. Bruce has made many attempts o raise this debate and has been trying for over a year now only now September 2013 something is published and now it is I do hope and I am sure it will be scrutinised hugely by good Marxists out there like Andrew Kliman and Michael Roberts Mick Brooks etc who certainly know their stuff on economic issues. One of the worst parts of all this is the CWI's tactics of trying to shut down debate up until now when it’s on their terms. Bruce Wallace was uninvited to the CWI School in Belgium this year which is a crying shame and has only lead to further frustrations from Bruce and others who are equally confused by the CWI position. The CWI seem to have tried to link Bruce's support for Andrew Klimans economic position to his political one of supporting a state capitalist position trying to link him to the SWP quite laughable really when you think about it if you've ever read any of Klimans works which I have done. Bruce Wallace and others in the CWI do not share Andrew Klimans views of this and a collapsing capitalism and what the CWI describe as a non dialectical position yet they are all lumped in together and Bruce is made out to be this nutty rag tag who is a supporter of this isolated academic . Guilty by association in other words. Bruce is a fine comrde and has taught me many things from his blog and online.. I do think a lot of the attacks in the piece are false and wrong but I will let others reply to this who are directly involved. I would just like to offer my solidarity to Bruce and others who are in official opposition to theCWI leadership on the causes of the capitalist crisis. It is a long document as I say and you will need a while to read it all through properly but I would urge all who read it to read it with a critical eye and do not just swallow the CWI line unapologetically. There may be parts which may be quite right and others are not but as any Marxist should o we should not just accept what a party who claims to be Marxist as read and a given. An all sided rounded out analysis of the position must be under taken. I am sure this debate will run and run. I lend my support to Bruce Wallace and others and there is more all the time that is questioning the economic analysis of the CWI and are right to do so in my view. I will be sharing and publishing any of the opposition’s pieces if they don’t mind me doing so and offering a platform to understand the debate in its entirety. This is just the start there will be many more exchanges.