resolution on communist recomposition

Recently there have been discussions in an around The Commune about how communists should work together. At our recent conference we passed this motion on principles of communist recomposition.

“Recomposition” is a term used within The Commune to denote an organisational regroupment of existing communists in which we would participate.  Various conceptions have been suggested.  However, we should agree a few basic principles which will guide us as an
organisation: Continue reading “resolution on communist recomposition”

the commune’s december aggregate meeting

report by Mark Ellingsen

The Commune held its quarterly national aggregate on 12th December. The first item on the rather packed agenda was a discussion on the organisational principles of the network (see the paper here). The meeting re-affirmed the pluralist nature of the group. It was agreed that members should encourage diversity by embracing different ‘schools of thought’ that were compatible with our platform. The Commune had members who were influenced by various Marxisms and non-Marxist thought, so it would be wrong to characterise the Commune as belonging to a specific tradition. Meaningful pluralism has been rare in the history of the communist movement which has too often been ridden by factionalism and fragmentation. Members are communists who recognise that communism is a movement from below and not a bureaucratic imposition on workers self-organisation. However, it was recognised that there was a need to clarify what communism meant as a specific form of society and that more theoretical analysis of this was required. Continue reading “the commune’s december aggregate meeting”

communist pluralism: diversity not diffusion

A discussion article by Chris Kane ahead of The Commune aggregate meeting this Saturday

we should avoid being pigeon-holed

One of the terms which has been closely identified with The Commune has been ‘communist pluralism’. There is a twofold aspect to this concept I believe: on the one hand is the fragmentation of the international communist movement over many years since the defeat of the First World Revolution 1916-1921 and transformation of the Russian Revolution into its opposite. The second has been the immensely retrogressive culture which has arisen on the left over this long period, concepts of ‘democratic centralism’ becoming little more than cover for Jesuit Marxism with hierarchical structures and rigidity. Continue reading “communist pluralism: diversity not diffusion”

rank and file versus bureaucracy in the unions?

Barry (Sheffield) poses questions on the nature of trade unionism as part of the preparations for the discussion at our 12th December aggregate meeting.

This look at the platform followed some recent criticism that the platform did not have a communist understanding of the nature of trade unions. For these critics the platform suggested that a communist rank and file could win the fight against the bueaucracy in the unions and take them over or control them, to turn them into revolutionary organisations. Continue reading “rank and file versus bureaucracy in the unions?”

from workers’ self-inquiry to communist re-composition

In the following some general thoughts and a concrete proposal for The Commune’s 12th December aggregate meeting, relating to the article on ‘communist re-composition’ in the current issue. The main point is:

The crisis of workers’ representation is an expression of an accelerated re-structuring within the process of exploitation. New political initiatives have to be developed in relation to these changes and to the already existent embryonic forms of proletarian day-to-day organisation within social cooperation/production. The process of analysing these changes is a common effort of ‘communists/workers’ and in itself a process of organisation: detailed interviews, collective conversations, assemblies and publications. The current task of a class-related revolutionary left would be to re-organise itself in a process of workers’ inquiry: what are the concrete attacks of re-structuring? What (new) forms of conflicts are emerging on the shop-floor, in the estates? What are the lines of possible generalisation based on daily experience and direct power, but going beyond professional or sectorial boundaries? Continue reading “from workers’ self-inquiry to communist re-composition”

theses on the 2010 general election and its aftermath – for discussion

Dave Spencer sets out some points for discussion at our December 12th aggregate meeting. In the spirit of openness we want to publish as much material from our internal debates as possible.

1. No matter who wins the 2010 General Election, the working class will be under attack to pay for the economic crisis. There will be more unemployment and more cuts in public services – possibly on an unprecedented scale since World War 2.

2. Over 12 years of New Labour government, “the Left” and the Trade Unions have failed to organise an effective working class opposition. This has to be a failure of historic proportions and needs some analysing. Continue reading “theses on the 2010 general election and its aftermath – for discussion”

some thoughts on our newspaper ‘the commune’

Ahead of a discussion of publications at our 12th December aggregate meeting, David Broder looks at the role of a printed paper and critiques the issues of The Commune produced thus far.

While the Socialist Workers’ Party has recently suffered two of its pre-conference internal bulletins being ‘leaked’ on the web, we as a network have our internal discussions out in the open for all to see. We have nothing to hide: we do not think some leadership clique should have their discussions in private then reveal the predetermined line to the public. Anyone interested in The Commune should feel able to participate in deciding on its organisational and political development, and this is no less the case when it comes to our publications. Continue reading “some thoughts on our newspaper ‘the commune’”