Yesterday I was following links about the BBC's reporting of Gaza when I came across some intersting posts on a blog called Lenin's Tomb, which I decided to add to "Blogs I'm Following" on Blogger. I only realised today that it the vehicle of an SWP member, Richard Seymour and that it is apparently one of the best known political blogs in the UK. Today he posted reviews from the Independent on Sunday and the Times of his May 2008 book "The Liberal Defense on Murder".
Anna Chen is a former press officer of the Socialist Alliance and Stop the War Coalition who wrote about the malign influence of the SWP in A Bad Case of the Trots.
The transcript I mentioned in my previous entry seems to have dissapeared from Harry's Place but it is currently available on the Socialist Unity website.
A humorous article called Who are the SWP? has just been posted on the void. Is there any truth to it? I leave that to you to decide, but remember, truth is stranger than fiction.
"Off you go - fuck off, fuck off the lot of you". So said George Galloway to the SWP three days ago at an emergency meeting of the Tower Hamlets Respect Committe, according to this transcript recorded by Maggie Falshaw, and posted on the web at Harry's Place.
I know this New Statesman article was published over four years ago but I only just saw it and it clearly belongs on this page - Mark Thomas has had enough of the SWP.
The SWP is a fringe organisation within UK politics but within the fringe it has considerable influence, resulting mainly from the high level involvement of SWP members in other organisations. Some of these organisations are widely seen within the activist community as little more than front groups. That and the single minded determination of their members to sell you a copy of "Socialist Worker" are the main reasons they are often referred to as the Socialist Wankers Party. In 2001 SchNEWS put together a pamphlet called Monopolise Resistance? which is definitely worth a read. That is enough of an intro - for a brief history of the SWP check out this Wikipedia entry.
So now for my first proper entry on this page. In A dead parrot - not quite, non-aligned Respect member Sean Thompson expresses his fear that the project is being killed by SWP control-freakery. Here is how he concludes his article:
Sitting in the conference I was only too aware that the twin accusations made of Respect that it is merely George's fan club and that it is merely the electoral front of the SWP are increasingly difficult to refute. Sadly, nothing that happened at the conference gave me any confidence that the SWP leadership has the will or wit to make the changes that only it can make to give Respect a real fighting chance of becoming a genuinely bottom-up, democratic organisation of and for ordinary working people.
www.zenatode.org.uk Ian Gregory 2010