Sunday 7 October 2007


From RESPECT in the UK to Die LINKE in Germany and the PSUV in Venezuela

Tuesday 7.30pm, October 9, 2007
UNITE House, 300 Queen Street, Auckland

Facebook Event page here

Labour Parties the world over have betrayed the working class and implemented the policies of neo liberalism and imperialist war. IN many countries, New Left Parties have emerged out of the anti war and social justice movements. Socialist Worker in Auckland is joined by Christoph Hoffmeier, a militant from the Left Party (Die Linke) in Germany, which got 54 radical MPs and 10% of the national vote in the last German elections, forcing the neo liberal SPD and the Christian Democrats into coalition.
For millions of workers and students betrayed by the Social Democrats and their Green allies, the Left Party now represents "Resistance inside parliament and outside on the streets".

Peter Hughes was an activist in the militant Rail, Maritime and Transport union in London for the last seven years, and was a member of George Galloway's RESPECT Coalition. Pete talks on the opportunities and problems that RESPECT now faces, as Gordon Brown ponders taking Britain into a new election.

Daph Lawless is editor of the UNITY journal, and discusses the hope that Hugo Chavez and the United Socialist Party of Venezuela are bringing to the New Left. For those of us fighting for a Socialism of the 21st Century, the near 6 million members who have registered for the PSUV puts the reality of mass, revolutionary socialist parties back on the agenda. Daph will also talk on why Socialist Worker in Aotearoa has initiated a debate within its International sister parties on the need for socialist groups to connect with the PSUV

1 comment:

Dave Brown said...

Connect with the PSUV, but why and how?

The reason that the PSUV has nearly 6 million prospective members, is that it is a populist party of the Bolivarian regime. It is a cross-class party, strictly speaking a popular front party, in which the vast worker majority will be disciplined by the bourgeois minority to prevent a real socialist revolution from taking place.

But today workers are understandably enthusiastic about the PSUV as the party of the government that has brought about important changes in their lives.

But its class character right now has been defined by Chavez who insists that other parties must liquidate and that the unions should also give up their autonomy, and that there can be no factions.

To 'connect' with this party even in its formation period, without characterising it correctly as a popular front, and specifying what tactics will be necessary to turn it into a workers or a socialist party is potentially an act of treachery against the working class.

Why? Because to talk of 'dual power' when the most advanced struggles such as Santarios de Macarey have been sold out by the regime, and to talk of the PSUV as 'potentially' if not already a workers party, when it is the party of the regime and its bureaucracy, is to sow illusions in bourgeois democracy.

The occupations have not created a basis for dual power. Nor will the Chavist reformed constitution change the bourgeois character of the state in defending private property. The party of the state, the PSUV will remain a bourgeois popular front unless the workers break from it.

While Unityblog makes much of the arguments of Stalin Perez that the CCURA will join the PSUV to defeat the bureaucrats, the arguments of Oswaldo Chirino, main leader of CCURA are much more pertinent. You can read his critique of the PSUV ban on factions and Chavez proposed reforms of the constitution here:

However, while Perez wants the UNT to join the PSUV in a way that can only disarm workers, Chirino's call for a Peoples Assembly independently of the PSUV is not the answer either.

When around 5 million workers want to join the PSUV it is necessary to enter the pre-congress debate armed with the strategy and tactics of revolutionaries. The tactics must be to break workers out of a popular front party to form a mass workers party.

This process can only happen if the workers in the CCURA insist on forming factions and advancing the political struggle for occupations under genuine workers control, expropriations of imperialist and bourgeois property, land reform etc, which will bring the PSUV up against the limits of the bourgeois program.

The strategy is for socialism in the 21st century, but has to be in the form of a workers and peasants government, not a Bolivarian government that continues to try to please to masters, imperialism and the bourgeoise on one side and the workers on the other.

Dave Brown