Round-up from the left

Submitted by AWL on 16 October, 2008 - 5:51 Author: Sacha Ismail

Rent-an-SWPer... at a price

Crestfallen though the SWP is these days, it still seems to be trying to pull something pretty outrageous in Stoke.

According to a Socialist Party comrade posting on the Socialist Unity website (, the Unite Against Fascism campaign which the SWP leads is demanding that the local anti-racist group NORSCARF provide it with £1,800 for “costs” incurred during the run up to the recent anti-BNP demo in Stoke. One of these costs is apparently the involvement of SWP full-timer Bunny La Roche. Having thoroughly pissed off pretty much everyone on the Stoke activist scene, Bunny has certainly merited the payment!

Perhaps the SWP will now try to charge Notts and Derbyshire anti-fascist activists for “services” rendered in attempting to scupper their recent demonstration against the BNP’s Red, White and Blue festival.

What does S stand for?

“While the pieces are in flux,” said George Galloway in the Guardian on 9 October, “why don’t we reorder this world?”

This is an aspiration which Galloway shares with Solidarity. His version is rather more modest than ours: not class struggle against this system, with the goal of replacing capitalism with working-class socialism but instead: “What’s so wrong with the taxpayer having a seat in the boardroom?”

Galloway’s article on the financial crisis on the Respect website was in a similar vein. Faced with “the mother of all recessions” (cf Saddam Hussein’s promise of “the mother of all battles”; one of his oh-so-clever echoes of the Iraqi dictator), he writes, “many people in the City are saying, ‘too little, too late’... It was essential that the government propped up the banks’ capital base... we had to have a guarantee of bank debts... the government now needs to force the banks to pay the public back in return.” Galloway advocates “pump priming” the economy in order to “truly modernise this country.”

Another nail in the coffin of the idea that the S in RESPECT really stands for socialism.

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