We restless and unhappy members of the Socialist Workers' Party are so often cautioned to re-focus our energies on 'the real world'. So it happens to be a problem that in 'the real world', because of a failure of both principle and strategy, we are rapidly becoming toxic for many whom we have built up working relationships with. The latest example: Essex socialist students being isolated and shunned.
I simply ask members this. If you are experiencing this sort of problem directly, what do you think can be done to repair the damage? And do you see any sign of it being done? Has anyone in the leadership offered you any productive advice on what to do? Other than, get your head down and hopefully it will all blow over? If not, how can this be? Isn't it because they, who pride themselves on defending a decisive, 'interventionist' form of leadership, are actually in a bunker composed of their own self-serving rationalisations right now? Isn't it because they have no idea what to tell you, because they refuse to concede that there is a real problem? Isn't it because they are in a state of profound denial about the crisis that befalls us? And what are you going to do about that?
My advice is, for what it's worth, is to pass motions in your branches calling for an emergency conference to address this crisis. That is the first and most important step. Since the matter falls to you to resolve, the least that you can ask for is the means to resolve it.
- Richard Seymour