Tendance Coatesy

Left Socialist Blog

Archive for the ‘European Left’ Category

On the ‘People’s Alliance of the Left’….

with 2 comments


A Rotten Bloc.

At the end of the 19th century some people on the British left, and elsewhere in Europe, got swept up in the craze for occultism and spiritualism (Le xixe siècle à travers les âges, Philippe Muray, “It was in the 19th century that social-occultism was formed, this explosive and unheard-of mixture…. of socialism.”) In this land Theosophy was probably the best known strain of thought. Annie Besant (1847 – 1933) was the most significant of the socialist theosophists.

It is hard to summarise such a mixture of ideas. Besant, for example, was an anti-colonialist, a trade unionist and in many respects admirable. But it is this Blog’s conviction that such beliefs involved hearing voices and messages from beyond mundane existence. “The main purpose of establishing the society was to prepare humanity for the future reception of a “torch-bearer of Truth”, an emissary of a hidden spiritual force that, according to theosophists, guides the evolution of mankind.”

The People’s Alliance of the Left also seems to have been formed on the basis of messages that transcend ordinary perception.

Left Unity writes,

In the face of the movement of the Starmer Labour Party leadership to the right, and its continued exclusion of former Leader, Jeremy Corbyn, from the whip, it is increasingly necessary to give voice to a true eco-socialist alternative. Particularly so in the face of the attacks of an extremely right-wing authoritarian Tory government, which the Labour Party is doing little to oppose (so much so that it can welcome into membership a Tory MP who has voted for all those attacks).

Pause, Starmer called for Johnson to resign in one of the vigorous interventions of his leadership.

We welcome any initiative to bring together like-minded radical socialists and progressive social movements.

Pause: “Groups that have so far agreed it are Left Unity, Breakthrough Party, Northern Independence Party, and the Trade Union and Socialist Coalition (TUSC). ”

Left Unity were opposed to Brexit and took part in the campaign by Another Europe is Possible for a Second Referendum.

TUSC backed the Arron Banks funded ‘Trade Unionists Against the EU’.

TUSC is part of the miniature labour movement, including the National Shop Stewards Network, and (nominally) the RMT. It is run by the Socialist Party (fully speaking the Socialist Party in England and Wales, SPEW). Apart from being Brexit ‘ultras’ the SP has an odd bureaucratic version of Trotskysim (with few admirers in the wider Trotskyist movement). It has spent many decades in a futile attempt at ‘party building’. In 2019 it suffered a damaging split, which left it adrift from many of its international allies in the Committee for a Workers’ International.

TUSC electoral results including being beaten by the Monster Raving Looney Party in a local contest last year. Their votes rarely exceed a few dozen.

Left Unity continue:

As a significant contribution to building this left collaboration, Left Unity welcomes and will participate in the initiative by Thelma Walker (former Labour MP for Colne Valley) to create a Peoples Alliance of the Left (PAL).

“In November 2020 Walker resigned from the Labour Party. In May 2021, she stood as an independent candidate endorsed by the Northern Independence Party (NIP) in the 2021 Hartlepool by-election and lost her deposit.”

The statement says,

Separately from PAL, but not as a function of PAL, those parties that stand in elections (Breakthrough, NIP, TUSC, Left Unity) will seek to cooperate over standing in elections – i.e. aim to avoid standing against each other & offer mutual support to each other’s candidates where possible. Candidates will stand as candidates of the constituent party (not PAL itself). This electoral cooperation does not imply electoral support from any organisations involved in the wider PAL coordination discussions who are not electoral parties.

In other words SPEW will continue to build its own “new mass workers’ party”.

The nasty NIPs , like the SP are a “more borders” party. The SP backed Brexit. NIP’s views on Brexit aside, they want “independence” for the North. At its Conference last year LU was to have debated this motion, “Yes to Left Unity No to Northern Separatism – Oliver Charleston. But “ Not Moved – so not carried.”

These groupuscules are largely isolated from the ‘masses’, from protean forms like the Breakthrough Party, to hardened sectarians like SPEW.

The idea that they could play a part in helping ” Secure a socialist government.” is laughable.

Look at the state of this supporter’s comment boxes:

Note: “Skwawkbox understands that at least another six groups will announce their involvement in PAL’s discussions and wider campaigns in the near future.”

But hark!

One torch-bearing voice calls from the beyond…

Written by Andrew Coates

January 21, 2022 at 12:40 pm

The People’s Alliance of the Left: memorandum of understanding has been agreed between @BThroughParty, @FreeNorthNow, @TUSCoalition & @LeftUnityUK.

with 8 comments


The Groupuscules, from the Nips (Weasel Party), hard line pro-Brexit TUSC to ‘left’ pro-European Left Unity, ‘Unite’.

The People’s Alliance of the Left #PAL is delighted to announce that a memorandum of understanding has been agreed between @BThroughParty, @FreeNorthNow, @TUSCoalition & @LeftUnityUK. This Alliance will work together on a future electoral strategy.

From a nasty Nip in the air:

Will the newly formed Socialist Labour Network (Monster Raving Greenstein Party – canal historique) join?

Will ye no come back?

Amidst rumours of Jeremy Corbyn being set to launch a new party, Derek James asks why so many on the left are still in thrall to Corbynism

Weekly Worker today.

many on the left cling to the idea that some kind of revival of these politics of the past is not only possible but is actually desirable. Some examples of this misplaced optimism were on display at what was, in effect, the foundation meeting of the Socialist Labour Network (LAW and LIEN) on January 14. Regular readers will remember that this group has emerged following the liquidation of Labour Against the Witchhunt through its merger with the Labour in Exile Network. The main impetus behind the new group appears to be an attempt to rally the confused and disoriented forces and begin some kind of fightback. But despite the righteous indignation and the opposition to what has happened in the Labour Party since the election of Starmer, the initial meeting of this new grouping shows that it lacks coherence and a unifying strategy. The basic division within the SLN is between those comrades who still orientate towards the Labour Party and those who believe that it is now both possible and necessary to build some new project primarily outside of Labour. While the new group has yet to agree its aims (that will be the first task of the newly elected steering group), both the composition of that committee and the discussion on January 14 shows that this is a fundamental, if as yet implicit, faultline.

No word yet from Chris Williamson, Resist, and George Galloway…

Written by Andrew Coates

January 20, 2022 at 3:51 pm

Posted in Animal Liberation, European Left

Tagged with

Kill the Bill Demos Across the Country.

with one comment


John McDonnell MP.

Protesters have taken to the streets in cities across the UK to rally against the police and crime bill, which is reaching its final stages in parliament.


The police, crime, sentencing and courts bill, sections of which have been condemned by human rights activists as an attack on the right to protest, will be voted on in the House of Lords on Monday.

Hundreds of “kill the bill” protesters rallied in London on Saturday, while demonstrations also took place in cities including Bristol, Cardiff, Coventry, Newcastle, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Sheffield and Plymouth.

(There was no event in Ipswich, the nearest was in Cambridge. Had there been -there was one last year)- the Tendance would have attended)

Written by Andrew Coates

January 16, 2022 at 2:02 pm

Posted in European Left, Human Rights

Tagged with