Sunday, 14 June 2009

The rocks of opposing class interests

by Don Franks, Workers Party of New Zealand from UNITY Journal May 2009 In his article Responding to the crisis: Broad left unity to mobilise masses of people, Vaughan Gunson writes: Over the last decade Socialist Worker-New Zealand, a small Marxist organisation, has moved towards the realisa­tion that we need to be building alongside other activists a broad left party which has the breadth and reach to give leadership to masses of people. And that we need to begin now, not later. Socialist Worker-New Zealand may have come to this realization over the last decade, but I don’t think they have arrived at a new political discovery. There have been many socialist attempts to build – or infiltrate – broad left parties. In New Zealand the Alliance is a recent example. At least two Marxist groups were early participants in the Alliance, the Permanent Revolution Group and the Workers Communist League. Both groups were rebuffed. The PRG, more open about their politics, were tossed out very early. WCL comrades were more used to working in united front organizations and at that stage were particularly prone to compromise their politics in the process. So remnants of the WCL hung around unhappily inside the Alliance for a while, marginalized from any positions of power as the party steadily formalized into a standard issue parliamentary machine. It was clear from the start that there was to be no accommodation of anticapitalism in the Alliance venture. The endgame saw the Alliance indelibly disgraced by its association with support for US invasion of Afghanistan.

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