Forming a new party on the left - how to do it not whether to do it

150 posts / 0 new
Last post
Sean in Ottawa

Another person who could spark a new party is not even in a party that I know of -- Wab Kinew.

And if provoked he is a guy who just could go into politics.

There are others I am sure.

That said, how the Liberals do will make a difference-- if they deliver on some critical promises they will earn loyalty from a good many people.

lagatta

swallow, Judy attended the founding meeting of Québec solidaire. So did some other people who had been involved in the NPI, and at least one former Bloc MP. And obviously, trade unionists and people from social movements.

Unionist

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I am not just dissapointed and the issue is not minor. I really cannot respect your minimizing what this means to me.

I never meant to minimize what this means to you. I was merely expressing my own viewpoint about creating new parties.

Quote:
The class statements from Mulcair and are the same for me as if for example he came out with anti union statments. Would you just deal or be in search of a new party.

I've watched NDP governments bust negotiated collective agreements and legislate away the right to strike for decades (Manitoba, BC, Saskatchewan, Ontario...). When I see them do disgusting anti-worker things, I condemn them. I organize them. I never thought of creating a new party, though. Just as I never thought of switching unions when my own union did something horrendous.

Could you remind me whether you were condemning the NDP's appeal to the "middle class" prior to the election? I'm not saying you didn't, I just don't recall your vehemence on that score.

Quote:
I have been an NDP supporter solid -- loyal -- unlike you for over 30 years.

I don't understand. Does that mean you never condemned the NDP for its strike-breaking and opposition to free collective bargaining, pro-Israel and pro-NATO policies, pro-invasion of Afghanistan (prior to 2006), opposition to Québec self-determination (before 2006) ... because you were "solid" and "loyal"?

Quote:
Frankly you owe me an apology on that point-- this is not some trivial dissapointment.

I never meant to trivialize your sense of having your support and loyalty betrayed. I apologize for anything I said that may have left that impression.

 

Sean in Ottawa

Unionist wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I am not just dissapointed and the issue is not minor. I really cannot respect your minimizing what this means to me.

I never meant to minimize what this means to you. I was merely expressing my own viewpoint about creating new parties.

Quote:
The class statements from Mulcair and are the same for me as if for example he came out with anti union statments. Would you just deal or be in search of a new party.

I've watched NDP governments bust negotiated collective agreements and legislate away the right to strike for decades (Manitoba, BC, Saskatchewan, Ontario...). When I see them do disgusting anti-worker things, I condemn them. I organize them. I never thought of creating a new party, though. Just as I never thought of switching unions when my own union did something horrendous.

Could you remind me whether you were condemning the NDP's appeal to the "middle class" prior to the election? I'm not saying you didn't, I just don't recall your vehemence on that score.

Quote:
I have been an NDP supporter solid -- loyal -- unlike you for over 30 years.

I don't understand. Does that mean you never condemned the NDP for its strike-breaking and opposition to free collective bargaining, pro-Israel and pro-NATO policies, pro-invasion of Afghanistan (prior to 2006), opposition to Québec self-determination (before 2006) ... because you were "solid" and "loyal"?

Quote:
Frankly you owe me an apology on that point-- this is not some trivial dissapointment.

I never meant to trivialize your sense of having your support and loyalty betrayed. I apologize for anything I said that may have left that impression.

 

Indeed I did many times. I did on all those other things except Quebec self determination which I could have but did not really think about much from an NDP point of view for quite a few years. There were also periods I did not think much about the NDP position on Israel becuase at times I was not aware of the policy. My position on Israel hardened in later years and I started paying more attention but the NDP position was often mushy rather than clear. I think the solidarity with the middle class struck me in a way nothing else has and we have had arguments here about it for a year -- ask Stockholm when we had differences it was often on this. This was so much so that when I voted NDP in this election, I did so not feeling proud but voting to keep the party alive for a fight on this from within. I was growing more unhappy with the party in many ways -- all recorded here. But in the end it was the vote for the Middle class tax cut in December without one NDP MP standing up to oppose the idea that made me break from the party. Up until then I just considered that I was in the party but opposed to Mulcair. At that moment when no NDP MP stood to say no to a tax gift to well off people that even with the top 1% paying will cost all citizens and tax payers a billion dollars annually in future taxes or lost services -- with nothing to go to those who really need it -- that I decided that was it.

Yes, I have been angry with the NDP many times. Perhaps I voted at times even perhaps out of a sort of class consciousness. No matter how much I hated some policies I felt I was disagreeing with my party. When the NDP rose to vote for the ways and means motion and did not criticize in that final act the gross unfairness of the policy I realized I was not looking at my party. I also realized that there was little opposition in the party to it becoming a middle class lobby group. I can stomach with great dissapointment a loss of seats and even with a dose of anger but the surrender of principles I have seen this last year, coupled with a lousy and manipulative so-called consultation process, I was done.

This did not come easily and yes, you may argue that it should have come before but it did come. You will see I remained an NDP against Mulcair after the election and dropped the NDP only after I learned of that vote which was the final straw.

My conversion to a new party comes out of the fact that I do not consider the Liberals an option, I believe in voting so staying home is not an option either. I could consider the Greens and I won't rule that out if they present a good platform and do not speak fawningly of the middle class. I regret my vote. I wish I had handed it to the Green candidate in my riding who actually deserved my vote more while the Greens also has pharmacare, childcare and other good policies in their platform. But What I want is not in the Green party so I proposed a new party. This is foundational not trivial and class struggle is in many respects how I see the world.

I hope this explains it. You are free to search up my ocmments. In fact the middle class stuff has been my greatest criticism over the past year. I have also written to the NDP several times about it upon reading it on their website.

Sean in Ottawa

BTW-- The wording of the message on middle class from the NDP early this year I objected to said that the "NDP would put middle class families first"

I was disgusted and observed that this means ahead of desperate low-income families.  I had quite a few arguments here in early 2015 about this.

By the election it changed to Mulcair saying he was there for the middle class on a statement you had to click past to go into the site. I raised it then as well and the NDP were then in first place.

 

eastnoireast

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Another person who could spark a new party is not even in a party that I know of -- Wab Kinew.

And if provoked he is a guy who just could go into politics.

There are others I am sure.

That said, how the Liberals do will make a difference-- if they deliver on some critical promises they will earn loyalty from a good many people.

 

exactly.  there is lots of good talented people but they will (wisely) go where the action is, where there is momentum, were they can get things done.  

*edit -  or lose their souls.

in a post-fptp world, building a new party(s) might make some sense, but now...  pressuring/supporting the current players/movements is where there is momentum.  things are in flux now, =opportunity.

which isn't exactly your thread title, but what the hell do we do now, politically? is a question we're asking ourselves, so here we are.

 

Sean in Ottawa

On August 18th I said this here about the NDP site:

"Not attached to a specific program-- but this focus on middle class nonetheless. "Middle-class families in Canada are working harder than ever, but falling further behind..." If Middle class families are falling further behind -- what about lower income people? Is the NDP accepting that they can be excluded in the opening message to its "issues" page?

 

eastnoireast

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

On August 18th I said this here about the NDP site:

"Not attached to a specific program-- but this focus on middle class nonetheless. "Middle-class families in Canada are working harder than ever, but falling further behind..." If Middle class families are falling further behind -- what about lower income people? Is the NDP accepting that they can be excluded in the opening message to its "issues" page?

 

 

yeah, and the family thing pisses me off as well.  middle class families.  today's working families.  ordinary families.  preferably with an irish setter and 2.5 kids.

Stockholm

There have actually been other attempts by "NDP renegades" to form new parties to the left of the NDP. After the Waffle was expelled in the early 70s the Waffle remnants including Jim Laxer formed with great fanfare something called Movement for an Independent Socialist Canada...unfortunate acronym of MISC. it ran a handful of candidates in the 1974 election each of whom got about 1% of the vote and then it quickly sank without a trace.

More recently a bunch of dissidents from the Ontario NDP including Jim Laxer's son Michael Laxer were pissed off with Andrea Horwath and formed something called the Socialist Party of Ontario...again lots of fanfare but in the end they ran a Grand total of half a dozen candidates in the 2011 ontario election, all of whom got Rhinoceros Party levels of support and then it too seems to have sunk without a trace.

It's actually very difficult to form a new party in Canada. Elections Canada has very tough requirements and the amount of bureaucratic hurdles you need to clear are vast. Good luck, you'll need it.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

deleted

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

eastnoireast wrote:

in a post-fptp world, building a new party(s) might make some sense, but now...  pressuring/supporting the current players/movements is where there is momentum.  things are in flux now, =opportunity.

which isn't exactly your thread title, but what the hell do we do now, politically? is a question we're asking ourselves, so here we are.

 

My sentiments exactly. When all substantial viewpoints are represented in Parliament, I expect to see some factions splitting. But until such representation is guaranteed, factionalism is counter-productive.

Pour your energies into the right kind of electoral reform in the meantime.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Left Turn wrote:

I'm supportive in principle of the idea of creating a new left party, but when we get to the reality of how to actually go about bcreating one, things get a lot more grey and complicated.

If the Liberals implement PR, then there's a chance that we could create a new left party. If the Liberals implement an Alternate Ballot, or leave the FPTP system as is, the chances are a lot more slim.

It's also the case that how we go about creting a new party will affect who will join it.

Things such as who puts the call out for a new party, and what that callout looks like.

Many potential supporters of a new party will determine their involvement based on which organizations and prominent personalities are calling for it. And many will want evidence from the get go of solid participation from one or more of either First Nations,Québecois, women, and POC.

Many potential supporters will want a new party to have a critical mass of support in different regions of the country before it becomes too defined. Defining policies without achieving critical mass first will lead many to write off the new party as 'exclusionary' to some degree.

Also, many potential supporters of a new party have determined that the [url=https://leapmanifesto.org/en/the-leap-manifesto/]Leap Manifesto[/url] is the way forwards, and therefore a new party would wisely want to include the Leap manifesto in some capacity.

Anyone care to address my contribution to this thread?

Let me put it another way: There is a sizable constituency that is open to a new party on the left. However, 99.9% of those people will write off any attempt to form a new party if it A)doesn't address their concerns; and b)doesn't meet the conditions they think are necessary for the thing to be successful and not become just another left micro-sect.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:
For a new party on the left to supplant the NDP and become a electoral force it will need a public display of confidence in the new vehicle by some of its left wing caucus and at the riding level the volunteers who got them elected.

I'm open to incorporating disgruntled NDP MPs into a new left party (if there are any), but I don't see it as a necessary precondition.

Most important is that the mebership of a new left party be empowered to decide upon the party's constitution, leader and policies, free from coercion on the part of those who are early to the party.

Stockholm

Seriously, if wanted a new party that was significantly to the left of today's NDP (which I don't), why would I waste my time on the Herculean and likely doomed task of trying to star a new party from scratch?

Why not instead stage a hostile takeover of the Green Party. Right now the Green Party is a party in name only. It has a tiny number of members compared to the NDP and once you get past Elizabeth May, it's basically a collection of misfits and nobodies. Surely, if there really are so many thousands and thousands and thousands of social activists yearning for a true socialist party in Canada , it ought to be like taking candy from a baby to simple overwhelm the Green Party and ram through a socialist program and maybe even depose May replace her with some firebrand socialist. Seriously, the Green Party is such a little Potemkin Village, a relatively small number of left wing agitators could seize control easily and kick May to the curb....and then you would possess some semblance of a party I fracture to mound as you wish!

Go for it!

Sean in Ottawa

Stockholm wrote:
Seriously, if wanted a new party that was significantly to the left of today's NDP (which I don't), why would I waste my time on the Herculean and likely doomed task of trying to star a new party from scratch? Why not instead stage a hostile takeover of the Green Party. Right now the Green Party is a party in name only. It has a tiny number of members compared to the NDP and once you get past Elizabeth May, it's basically a collection of misfits and nobodies. Surely, if there really are so many thousands and thousands and thousands of social activists yearning for a true socialist party in Canada , it ought to be like taking candy from a baby to simple overwhelm the Green Party and ram through a socialist program and maybe even depose May replace her with some firebrand socialist. Seriously, the Green Party is such a little Potemkin Village, a relatively small number of left wing agitators could seize control easily and kick May to the curb....and then you would possess some semblance of a party I fracture to mound as you wish! Go for it!

Not sure as easy as that but something to think about -- even with May as leader the party could be made to be progressive as its platform showed. May certainly was to the left of Mulcair and the Greens did not engage in divisive classist politics in the way the NDP did -- although they have their moments.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

 Greens did not engage in divisive classist politics in the way the NDP did -

Sorry if I'm going off topic, but I can't believe you said that.

Sean in Ottawa

Lard Tunderin Jeezus wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

 Greens did not engage in divisive classist politics in the way the NDP did -

Sorry if I'm going off topic, but I can't believe you said that.

Well by all means give me a link. I did not see it.

Stockholm

This never ending pedantic argument about whether the NDP should ever talk about the middle class is quite amusing. I talk to alot of people and one thing i've noticed is that i have NEVER heard anyone who is actually statistically "lower class" (ie: the bottom 30% of income earners) complain that they feel excluded or outraged when the NDP talks about wanting to help the "middle class". First of all, a lot of people with pretty low incomes either think of themselves as middle class, or aspire to be middle class or most likely just see the term "middle class" as a synonym for "the average Canadian" or "ordinary Canadians". The only people I EVER encounter who seem bothered by ther NDP appealing to the middle class are people with degrees in politcal science and/or social work who took some introductory course on "the Marxian perspective" and have this weird version of "political correctness" where its a "no-no" to talk about middle class people...ironically the people who are horrified by the use of the term middle class are almost invariably quite upper middle class themselves if you look at their incomes...so go figure

lagatta

I don't know whom you have supposedly been talking to, but that simply isn't true.

"Lower class"? - of course nobody is going to call themselves that. How about "working class"? That can be a source of pride.

Sean in Ottawa

Stockholm wrote:

This never ending pedantic argument about whether the NDP should ever talk about the middle class is quite amusing. I talk to alot of people and one thing i've noticed is that i have NEVER heard anyone who is actually statistically "lower class" (ie: the bottom 30% of income earners) complain that they feel excluded or outraged when the NDP talks about wanting to help the "middle class". First of all, a lot of people with pretty low incomes either think of themselves as middle class, or aspire to be middle class or most likely just see the term "middle class" as a synonym for "the average Canadian" or "ordinary Canadians". The only people I EVER encounter who seem bothered by ther NDP appealing to the middle class are people with degrees in politcal science and/or social work who took some introductory course on "the Marxian perspective" and have this weird version of "political correctness" where its a "no-no" to talk about middle class people...ironically the people who are horrified by the use of the term middle class are almost invariably quite upper middle class themselves if you look at their incomes...so go figure

Not true Stockholm (except in your bubble) but nice try attempting to dismiss my concerns.

Stockholm

lagatta wrote:

I don't know whom you have supposedly been talking to, but that simply isn't true.

"Lower class"? - of course nobody is going to call themselves that. How about "working class"? That can be a source of pride.

Actually in the real world (in other words outside of the babble fish bowl)... People do not find the terms "middle class" and "working class" to be mutually exclusive. In fact a lot of people find those terms synonymous and interchangeable.

Btw: every time I hear Bernie Sanders speak, he talks about the need to stand up for the disappearing middle class...how come I'm not hearing people condemn him for that? Or are American politicians held to a different standard.

lagatta

I don't live in the babble fishbowl; I live in north-central Montréal and have been involved in social movements, labour struggles and community groups for over 40 years. Bernie Sanders was saying something quite different, if you look at the sentence you've quoted.

Sean in Ottawa

Stockholm wrote:
lagatta wrote:

I don't know whom you have supposedly been talking to, but that simply isn't true.

"Lower class"? - of course nobody is going to call themselves that. How about "working class"? That can be a source of pride.

Actually in the real world (in other words outside of the babble fish bowl)... People do not find the terms "middle class" and "working class" to be mutually exclusive. In fact a lot of people find those terms synonymous and interchangeable. Btw: every time I hear Bernie Sanders speak, he talks about the need to stand up for the disappearing middle class...how come I'm not hearing people condemn him for that? Or are American politicians held to a different standard.

Do you think that there are people who feel they do not have enough income to consider themselves "middle class"? Yes or no.

lagatta

Was that to me, or to Stockholm? I don't define class solely in terms of income.

We also need some updating of our terms. Perhaps the "precariat" encompasses too many different layers and experiences, but there are a lot of people nowadays who have what might be called a "middle-class" education, and even some with "upper-working-class" skills training who find themselves without a steady income, without the capacity to plan ahead in terms of shelter, education and many other things that "solid" people could do.

As far as Bernie Sanders, he was speaking out at the loss of what bourgeois economists and sociologists would probably call "middle-class jobs", even if they are referring to jobs in key industrial sectors, with steady work and good wages (usually won through labour struggles). Leaving a growing gap between the very rich and those in precarious circumstances. I don't really care whether he uses the term "middle class", as he is describing a real, and worrying, phenomenon.

iyraste1313

¨We also need some updating of our terms.¨

If we are looking for those sectors with any potential to transform the fascist system in Canada, it better be in terms of allegiance to corporate control.

Surely no one would consider a middle manager of Royal Bank having any potential, nor any worker, any worker!  engaged in the tar sands, the armaments industry, the infotainment industry ad nauseum...

The development of a movement based decentralist anti globalist party must reorient its analysis to which sectors may benefit from the collapse of the corporatist system.

Number one of course would be the peoples and communities suffering from the destruction of their ecosystem, the loss of their tourist industry and local econmy based on productions from the earth.....

A movement Party must come to the support and protection of such communities as priority...and if! if, they are to choose to enter the 100% corrupt electoral political system,it would be in such regions....and of course you may say for what purpose?

Certainly not to gain support in a corporate dominated parliamentary system! But as a legitimized representative of the region to go directly to the international community and its natural allies to pressure the fascist government in place.

 

lagatta

Canada is a bourgeois state, and the Harper government showed a worrying degree of authoritarian rule, but it is not fascist. Please don't throw terms around like that.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

lagatta wrote:

Canada is a bourgeois state, and the Harper government showed a worrying degree of authoritarian rule, but it is not fascist. Please don't throw terms around like that.

The fact that we now have the head of the police force, that violated so many peaceful protestors rights, as a MP is a very telling tale about our government. Given his appointment as point person on pot, one of central planks that got the Liberal's a majority, and the arms sales to the Saudi's and the bombing of Iraq and Syria and likely support of TPP and other corporate rights agreements its hard to know what to call our government that went from Harper's to Trudeau's imperialism. Fascist is closer than bourgeois but neither IMO are quite the right word.

You are right that on a day to day basis we do not see the face of a fascist government. However when the worlds overlords come to town for a meeting the mask gets dropped.

Quote:

The Toronto G20 Summit of June 26-27, 2010, hosted by Stephen Harper, was an incredibly expensive undertaking that resulted in massive human rights violations against members of the public at the hands of the police. Despite this, politicians refuse to call a full public inquiry and hold police—as well as themselves—to account … something to think about on the 4th anniversary of the Toronto G20, and as we approach this year’s Canada Day celebrations.

http://cdnpoli.tumblr.com/post/89764060652/toronto-g20-4-years-later-18-...

NDPP

"Fascism should more appropriately be called corporatism because it is the merger of state and corporate power." - Mussolini

 

Sean in Ottawa

lagatta wrote:

Was that to me, or to Stockholm? I don't define class solely in terms of income.

We also need some updating of our terms. Perhaps the "precariat" encompasses too many different layers and experiences, but there are a lot of people nowadays who have what might be called a "middle-class" education, and even some with "upper-working-class" skills training who find themselves without a steady income, without the capacity to plan ahead in terms of shelter, education and many other things that "solid" people could do.

As far as Bernie Sanders, he was speaking out at the loss of what bourgeois economists and sociologists would probably call "middle-class jobs", even if they are referring to jobs in key industrial sectors, with steady work and good wages (usually won through labour struggles). Leaving a growing gap between the very rich and those in precarious circumstances. I don't really care whether he uses the term "middle class", as he is describing a real, and worrying, phenomenon.

was to Stockholm

Stockholm

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Do you think that there are people who feel they do not have enough income to consider themselves "middle class"? Yes or no.

There probably are - though I'm often struck by how I have met people who make $20k a year and insist they are middle class...and people with household in comes of $100k who insist they are "poor" or "working class".

Still, this pedantic argument about whether its permissable to refer to what the middle class needs is entirely carried out by people who are themselves upper middle class!

I was reading article recently contrasting the people who attend rallies for Bernie Sanders vs those who attend rallies for Donald Trump - it was noted that "only the rich can afford to think about socialism...the poor only have blind anger"  

lagatta

Actually, capitalist states have been riding roughshod over the rights of workers, racialized people and women since their inception. Remember the Ludlow Massacre, a little over 100 years ago? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ludlow_Massacre There were many such assaults on workers' movements in 1919 (the Great Red Scare), including the massacres of La Semana tragica in Buenos Aires, led by anarchists and communists. This massacre also incorporated a full-fledged Pogrom against Jewish immigrants there. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tragic_Week_%28Argentina%29 We don't even have to go into the treatment of Indigenous people throughout the Americas, or those of African descent.

The Mussolini quote is a notorious mistranslation from the Italian. "Corporativismo" meant something like reviving the ancient guilds system, with workers and owners hand-in-hand, rather than adversaries, "the community as an organic body". Fascism was big on such myths harking back to an idealized past. Naturalmente, the Regime supported corporate rule in the capitalist sense, but so did "What's good for General Motors is good for the USA". https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporativismo https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporatism (the Italian gives a far more detailed explanation).

In French, in the 1960s and 70s, we often heard the expression "État fort" (strong state) to refer to bourgeois states that incorporated elements of fascist rule. This was term not usually used to describe post-Stalinist states in the Eastern Bloc, back then. Yes, we have to update our analysis.

lagatta

Actually, artsy types like me who make 20k in a good year are "middle-class" in many ways, especially education and culture. The membership of Québec solidaire has a higher educational level on average than those of the PLQ, PQ or CAQ, but a lower average income.

Sean in Ottawa

Stockholm wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Do you think that there are people who feel they do not have enough income to consider themselves "middle class"? Yes or no.

There probably are - though I'm often struck by how I have met people who make $20k a year and insist they are middle class...and people with household in comes of $100k who insist they are "poor" or "working class".

Still, this pedantic argument about whether its permissable to refer to what the middle class needs is entirely carried out by people who are themselves upper middle class!

I was reading article recently contrasting the people who attend rallies for Bernie Sanders vs those who attend rallies for Donald Trump - it was noted that "only the rich can afford to think about socialism...the poor only have blind anger"  

Do you imagine you are talking about me here?

I guess if you are what the NDP is, then I can be well to have nothing to do with the NDP.

Your attitude to a rejection of exclusionary language ought to be more shocking from an NDP partisan than it is.

Your ignorance of what I have been saying -- even as you seem to be responding to it -- is insulting.

You constructed a straw man here -- the objection was not to a reference to the middle class need like one might identify any other group's needs but rather the establishment of the middle class as the stated purpose.

And you are quite right -- the so-called middle class can have a political party that defines itself as just for them -- no problem. I want nothing to do with such a party

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

And you are quite right -- the so-called middle class can have a political party that defines itself as just for them -- no problem. I want nothing to do with such a party

In Canada we used to have two parties that defined themselves in those terms now we have three.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

The new NDP mantra is, "What we desire for ourselves, we wish for the middle class." 

Stockholm

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I guess if you are what the NDP is, then I can be well to have nothing to do with the NDP.

Your attitude to a rejection of exclusionary language ought to be more shocking from an NDP partisan than it is.

Don't let the door hit you on your way out....speaking of exclusionary language - if a political started using rhetoric that only spoke of 'the workers" etc... would that not also be exclusionary since vast numbers of canadians do not identify with 19th century Marxist terminology about "workers"... in fact many people think "workers" only refers to people who do manual labour 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Stockholm wrote:

Don't let the door hit you on your way out....

With attitudes like that the NDP is sure to become a big tent party. Everyone is welcome in your version of the NDP as long as they don't try to spout any left wing nonsense. After all the goal is power not societal change. The idea of putting the NDP in power with people like you having influence is down right scary.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYMD_W_r3Fg

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

lagatta wrote:

The Mussolini quote is a notorious mistranslation from the Italian. "Corporativismo" meant something like reviving the ancient guilds system, with workers and owners hand-in-hand, rather than adversaries, "the community as an organic body".

This attitude reminds me of one of Canada"s very own rat unions.

https://www.clac.ca/

eastnoireast

 

great thread drift.  glad we moved on from the f-word debate though, had me worried for a while. 

re:  pandering to the muddle class, or any sector, there's no need for it, it's a choice.  why be exclusionary?  for some form of divide and conquer, is why.

people, constituents, canadians.  those words work pretty good.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

This thread title kind of reminds me of all the bad choices of my youth.

"Dude, I'm not asking whether I should build a fireworks powered go-kart, I'm asking whether I should use Roman candles or bottle rockets".

What's the objection to discussion of the need for this, other than the possibility of objection?

iyraste1313

¨but it is not fascist. Please don't throw terms around like that....¨

I deal with the Court system continually, I watch the so called charade of the corrupt parliamentary system...I deal with the cops and bureaucrats on a continual basis...I watch th media especially the CBC with their damn lies or trivia while the system collapses and burns all around us...I watch our government in its alliances with the most revolting of fascist and nazi forces which effects me personally in my international work....I call it as I see it.......if you wish to challenge my statement, do it with facts...not statements of outrage please...I am prepared to debate anyone on this question!
And as Canada falls into depression and police repression, people outraged by my remarks will be forced to eat their words.

This is a vital question regards this topic...how to organize within a fascist state...... 

Sean in Ottawa

Stockholm wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I guess if you are what the NDP is, then I can be well to have nothing to do with the NDP.

Your attitude to a rejection of exclusionary language ought to be more shocking from an NDP partisan than it is.

Don't let the door hit you on your way out....speaking of exclusionary language - if a political started using rhetoric that only spoke of 'the workers" etc... would that not also be exclusionary since vast numbers of canadians do not identify with 19th century Marxist terminology about "workers"... in fact many people think "workers" only refers to people who do manual labour 

No worries Stockholm. I have heard a few NDP advocates like you over the last few months. And yes you are right -- the NDP can be a middle class party and I can leave. That is exactly what I am doing. Of course the point is after this exchange, I presume that you can stop suggesting I am a traitor and should not be advocating for a new party right? Since we agreed that the last 30 years of support means nothing now and that the party does not represent me then I have every right to try to create something that does or at least call for that to be created. I have every right to say that the NDP is not a party I will vote for and if I need any reminder of why I can just think of you.

The NDP was once a party of principle and promise. I once was quite happy to support it. But yes that is past and that is fine. And this is not anger -- just a realization that this party -- people like you-- do not share values with me. We have a different outlook on politics and very different priorities. And there is no interest in the NDP in the things that really matter to me. Now we have that out of the way. I will continue what I want and intend to do.

lagatta

iyraste, there was no "statement of outrage" in what I wrote (not that the latter is necessarily a bad thing) simply some historical references indicating that wholesale repression against subaltern groups preceded fascism by many, many years and has been a feature of bourgeois states throughout their existence. I'm a longterm activist in a tenants' association and know close hand how the courts and the police treat the non-moneyed, protestors etc.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Stockholm wrote:
This never ending pedantic argument about whether the NDP should ever talk about the middle class is quite amusing. I talk to alot of people and one thing i've noticed is that i have NEVER heard anyone who is actually statistically "lower class" (ie: the bottom 30% of income earners) complain that they feel excluded or outraged when the NDP talks about wanting to help the "middle class". First of all, a lot of people with pretty low incomes either think of themselves as middle class, or aspire to be middle class or most likely just see the term "middle class" as a synonym for "the average Canadian" or "ordinary Canadians". The only people I EVER encounter who seem bothered by ther NDP appealing to the middle class are people with degrees in politcal science and/or social work who took some introductory course on "the Marxian perspective" and have this weird version of "political correctness" where its a "no-no" to talk about middle class people...ironically the people who are horrified by the use of the term middle class are almost invariably quite upper middle class themselves if you look at their incomes...so go figure

I consider myself a Marxist, and I use the term "Middle Class" in the Marxist sense, in which it's synonymous with the "Petite-Bourgeoisie" -- namely those small business owners who own means of production and exploit their own labour to produce products which they then sell for money. I'm categorically opposed to using the term "middle class" to refer to any other group in society. As far as I'm concerned, middle income folks only belong to a different social class from low income folks if they have a different relationship to the means of production.

lagatta

Yes, it is more accurate to refer to "social layers" or "strata" within classes. Couches sociales in French. It doesn't mean that all members of a given class share the same living conditions, or the same consciousness, though there are many other reasons for how consciousness develops. For example, during the great labour struggles here in Québec in the 1970s, we spoke of the working class with pride - and were certainly referring to groups far beyond plant floor workers in heavy industry. The middle-class stuff got a foothold here with a certain erosion of militancy, and an offensive from the right.

Sean in Ottawa

And if we want to go there then it is only fair to question how a political party chooses to identify with any particular class -- especially one that is culturally defined rather than scientific. And we need to identify why a policy would target a class rather than an income group -- what are the merits of using this approach.

 

For myself, I do not decide what the NDP does. It is freee to be the party of the Middle class as its definition -- that just means that I personally will want nothing to do with it and I personally will question its social justice committment if it sees itself in this way.

I do not choose what the NDP does but ultimately I decide if it is a match for my values and I have had to conclude that it isn't.

Stockholm's comment (don't let the door hit your ass) is fine. If I gave a shit about the NDP now I might be concerned that he is making the party smaller with that attitude but really if the party does not mind where Mulcair is taking it -- some small-time person like Stockholm representing the party in such a stupid way is the least of their problems.

However, it is very clear that we need a party that does represent other than middle class.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..some food for thought

New left wing alliance on the RISE

RISE (Respect, Independence, Socialism and Environmentalism) will be standing in all eight regional lists in Scotland. The list in the South of Scotland is headed by Sarah Collins, a trade union activist from Ayrshire and co-founder of Better Than Zero, which campaigns to tackle insecure and low-paid work.

quote:

“Our candidates reflect the ‘new politics’ in Scotland.

“This means that we don’t simply want you to vote for us. We want you to join us on the streets, in the workplaces, and in our communities to reclaim our land, our jobs, our transport, and our dignity from people like the Duke of Buccleuch, Donald Trump, Brian Souter, Mike Ashley and all other exploitative bosses and land owners in the area.”

quote:

RISE’s candidates are standing on what they call a ‘charter of political ethics’, which commits candidates to only taking the wage of an average skilled worker and to a maximum of two terms in parliament if elected. Around 300 activists from around Scotland attended the RISE Democracy Conference on December 5, where a range of policies were agreed, including building 100,000 green council houses, ensuring that all carers receive the ‘living wage’ and forcing landlords to sell land to communities who want to buy it.

iyraste1313

New left wing alliance on the RISE

thanks for this! The fundamental question.......how to overcome the corporate media dumbing down of the people to vote against their interests? And in a corrupt political system based on the power of money under oligrch control?

Being on the front lines is definitely part of the solution!

Sean in Ottawa

iyraste1313 wrote:

New left wing alliance on the RISE

thanks for this! The fundamental question.......how to overcome the corporate media dumbing down of the people to vote against their interests? And in a corrupt political system based on the power of money under oligrch control?

Being on the front lines is definitely part of the solution!

For one you need more thoughtful use of social media. Social media is less controlled. It is also mostly fluff but it does not have to be. Those who have a serious message have to learn how to use social media and learn how to make their engagements fit into it. It is also more interactive than previous forms of mass communication and this opught to be a huge bonue. But it has to be done with some skill like anything else.

Pages