Red Action: A Return To Winning Ways

Följande text är ett utdrag från ett föredrag som Red Action höll i formen av den nu nedlagda organisationen London Socialist Alliance och är bland det bästa som producerats kring ny strategi och taktik för ‘den nya vänstern’ och dess krock med de högerextrema framgångarna.

Thus far, in all other countries in Europe when ‘new right’ has met ‘old left’ it has proved no contest. If the LSA is to break with this pattern of defeat, it will need to need to break with, what up to now, is the accepted custom and practice of many of its sponsors. Decommissioning dogma, will include resisting the temptation to strike impeccable poses which serve no other purpose but to ‘distinguish’ the proposers from one another, and more importantly from the working class. There is an ocean of difference between moralism and morality: between feeling good and doing good.

‘Unconditional immigration’ by all means, as long as it is understood that there must be a bridge between the macro and the micro in its presentation. Also if the LSA truly wants to represent the working class, it must seek to cross bridges with them, rather than as has been the norm for the left hitherto, instead of them. Many people point with satisfaction to the recent Haringey result as proof of ‘life in the left’. Saving a deposit is ‘perfectly respectable for a party of the far-left’ we are told. A mindset yet to come to terms with the LSA, to all intents and purposes, these days actually being the Left. Here now, with all the attendant responsibility, is where the buck stops.

Over the last century, socialism has lost the economic argument with capitalism, the ideological argument with liberalism, and is now faced with the possibility of losing the tactical argument with fascism. Realistically, the only hope of ever returning to winning ways, is by first having the courage to acknowledge ‘a lucid registration of historical defeat’. Meaning that if working class hegemony remains the unchanging goal, then tactics and strategies require some serious revision. 

To return to winning way means, also winning the battle of position with both Labour and the BNP. Winning the battle of position means lining up comfortably along side the working class, not as is currently the case, feeling obliged ‘on principle’ to line up against it. Tactically, it means avoiding scenarios where your limitations are exposed. For instance it is time the left learnt, that no matter how it is introduced, race plays to the rights agenda: it excites them. 
For the simple reason, no matter how apparently unfavourable the circumstances, battle is joined on their terms. 

More fundamentally winning the battle of position means stubbornly rejecting the solutions proffered by both middle class liberalism and nationalism alike, and constructing, from scratch if necessary, a progressive working class alternative to both. How is this to be done? To begin, with each situation must be looked at from the long and short term interests of the working class itself. Which is to say by first assessing objective conditions and only then envisaging what the working class as the ruling class might consider an ideal. A method of operation made possible only by, as Marx did, ‘entirely trusting to the intellectual abilities of that class’ itself.

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