Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Details of the capitalist offensive against the working class organizations.

by Sean O'Torrain

A Comrade sent this out to a discussion list I am on. It is about the infiltration of the working class organizations by the capitalist class. It has a lot of very important information. Even though it is very long I recommend everybody read it.  Here are my immediate thoughts on it and the link to the original follows.

A few things jump out at me from a quick reading.

One is the emphasis these ruling class agencies place on and understand the need to shape the consciousness of the working class. As one report from the British Department of Education quoted in this report says: "people must be educated once more to know their place." They also say that the "Vietnam war was lost on the TV screens of the US." That is once again we see that they understand that they are dealing with the consciousness of the working class. That the class struggle is the struggle for the consciousness of the working class.

There are many criticisms made of the revolutionary left. And many of them are valid. I think that a central one is that it does not orient to the working class and see its role as to engage with, to have a dialogue with and  to win the consciousness of the working class. In other words the revolutionary left are ultra left in the main. I think a major advantage of the Seattle campaign of Comrade Sawant was that it was not ultra left. It connected with the consciousness of the working class.

The majority of the revolutionary left veer between sectarianism, opportunism and ultra leftism. The 1% movement did not consciously understand the need to and articulate the need to orient to and win over the consciousness of the working class. This was a weakness which among other things brought this movement to its knees. However its simple sharp slogan, 1%    99%    captured the mood of millions, tapped into the consciousness of the working class and helped take forward the consciousness of the working class. This was a very big step forward. The 1% movement must be congratulated for this. They were superior to the revolutionary left even if they were so unconsciously.

I have tried to place emphasis on the class struggle being the struggle for the consciousness of the working class. This is something the ruling class clearly knows and acts upon. This is why they set up their massive propaganda machines. However this is not something that is understood to anything like the same extent by the majority of the left. The very good election result in Seattle was a struggle for the consciousness of the working class in the area, those organizations who are against electoral activity abstain from the struggle for the consciousness of the working class, abstain from the dialogue with the working class and therefore abstain from the struggle for the consciousness of the working class. The only time this is justifiable and even then this has to be considered very carefully and sectarian and ultra left mistakes avoided is when the working class are in a position to take power through workers councils.

It is also interesting how this report of the ruling class in Britain and the US and Europe shows that these agencies put so much emphasis on infiltrating the mass workers organizations, the Labor Parties and the trade unions in particular. This was much more in line with the thinking of the CWI over the decades. I see that this report mentions that the British and US intelligence put an agent into the Militant. They do not mention putting an agent into any other revolutionary group. When I was working as a full timer for the CWI in Ireland we were sent a document anonymously that showed where the Labor Party were offered 60,000 pounds sterling, about $100,000, if they expelled us and changed the program of Labor Youth from what was our program, that is a  revolutionary program to one that they agreed with.

It is also useful to think about what happened to the Scottish Socialist Party. They began to take off, they had a number of very good members of parliament, they were leading mass campaigns, they opposed the nuclear weapons in Scotland. This report makes clear that the secret organizations of the British and US ruling class would not have been sitting on their hands while this was going on. Especially the promise to remove the nuclear weapons.

There are Comrades on this list, one just in the last day who objected again to those of us who look at the lessons of the past and the workings of the CWI of which we were members. This is a bad mistake. People like myself have over the past period been concentrating on the mistaken internal life of the CWI. We still are very worried about this and how it could damage the work of the SA and its intention to work with others to put forward a slate of 100 or 200 candidates in the coming elections. Also how this mistaken internal life could damage the SA itself as it comes under the further pressures of more new members and more internal discussion and debate.

But there are the other lessons also. Comrade Sawant and the SA will now come under some serious pressure. What are the lessons of the CWI, of the SSP, of the Socialist Party and the United Left Alliance in Ireland etc. I think it would be impossible to say there are no lessons. Look at this report put on here by Steve. See what we are up against. Draw conclusions. Political and organizational. We are up against the most powerful ruling class in the world. Lessons have to be drawn.


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