Rembrandt's De anatomische les van Dr. Nicolaes Tulp (1631)

“Seymour and Co.: The Fools on the Hill,” by Corey Ansel

The SWP opposition:
Providing a failed
post-mortem analysis

IMAGE: Rembrandt’s De anatomische
les van Dr. Nicolaes Tulp (1631)

Written by Corey Ansel, and originally posted at The Chair Leg of Truth, The (Dis)Loyal Opposition to Modernityand The North-Star. While I am sympathetic to many of the arguments Corey makes here, and believe I understand his reasons for making them, I nevertheless remain somewhat skeptical of what I feel are some erroneous conclusions one might draw from his polemic/critique. These I will post in the next few days.

Hardly anyone on the left can claim to have been untouched by the crisis within the British Socialist Workers Party (SWP).  Initially stemming from rape allegations against leading SWP member Martin Smith (now notoriously known as “Comrade Delta”), the crisis has managed to utterly discredit the organization in the face of the revolutionary left, as well as onlookers seeking ammunition to use against the workers’ movement. A special conference was held on March 10 to discuss the issues of democratic centralism, Leninism and other questions regarding the party question. But it isn’t the circus inside the SWP that is worth the attention of revolutionaries.

Enter Richard Seymour. A long-time activist within the SWP, writer and primary figurehead of the opposition against the internal bureaucracy within the SWP, Seymour has been scapegoated by top bureaucrats such as Alex Callinicos for jumpstarting a blog titled ‘International Socialism’ for those interested in discussing the crisis outside of party channels. It has long been known that the Cliffite tradition has nothing in common with Leninist theory, let alone the democratic centralist method of building a revolutionary party. Although Seymour and many of his co-thinkers resigned from the organization after the conference, aren’t there more pressing questions to be answered? Continue reading