In order to make clearer the role of Solidarity. What is the role of Solidarity and of the Alliance for Workers’ Liberty, the organisation that produces the paper?
It is twofold. To convince new people of the ideas of socialism and to help those people to become life-long socialists. It is more than that, but that is central.
And the world desperately needs new socialists. This is the world whose most powerful man is a right-wing, moral crusading, certifiable idiot.
In this world super-exploitation rules, and children in Lesotho and India are forced to break up stones or lay bricks so that their families will eat.
Here it sometimes seems, although it is not yet quite true, that all bonds of human solidarity have flown away. A man can have his head bashed in for a few pounds and because he goes to bed with other men.
Socialism — the democratic organisation of society by the producers, the working class, a society free of all exploitation and oppression — has never been as necessary as it is now.
But the past weighs heavy on the present: so many small defeats for us and so many victories for the bourgeois. This has combined to marginalise socialism in the world today.
The left is to blame for a lot of that marginalisation. By adapting to the bourgeois world and, as we show in the article on pages 15 and 16 of this paper, by adopting the dirty methods and tricks of the Stalinist movement, the left has failed to create and renew the democratic, humane philosophy that socialism is. More than anything it has turned its back on the central task of the socialist project: politically organising the workers.
But political life is also opening up and becoming more hopeful. More people are seeking explanations and change: over the last 10 years, little by little, a new generation of “anti-capitalists” has emerged. From among these people will come many new socialists.
Solidarity wants to help make connections between the anti-capitalist impulse and fully rounded socialist ideas. We also want to renew socialism, cleanse it of the Stalinism with which it has become infected. We want to rediscover the authentic ideas of the democratic Marxist tradition of the past: of Marx, Engels, Lenin, Luxemburg, Trotsky and a thousand others who lived and died fighting to rid the world of tyranny.
To help us do these things we will increase our agitation against the Britain created by Blair and Co; we will try to spell out how and why we see the world-wide workers’ movement as central to the fight to change the world; on page 9 of the paper each week we will introduce basic socialist ideas and history to comrades new to those ideas; we want to encourage more debate on the left (on page 8); we offer ideas for practical campaigning work on page 14.
If you like the new-look Solidarity, would like to take some copies to sell, or want to find out more about the Alliance for Workers’ Liberty, contact us on 020 7207 3997.