AWL conference 2004

Reply to Bruce on the June elections

Submitted by martin on 31 January, 2004 - 7:48

In June we should say something like: keep out the BNP and the Tories. Vote socialist or Labour. Fight Blair - build the LRC.
1. If we had concluded, as the Socialist Party has, that the Labour Party is finally, totally, completely and irreversibly dead in working-class politics, then of course we would abstain where we could not stand independent working-class candidates. We would also call on the unions to disaffiliate, and dismiss the current moves for an LRC as a pointless dead end. We do not.

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Motion on AWL branch-building

Submitted by martin on 4 November, 2003 - 4:29

1) We need to turn the AWL more towards face-to-face political activity.
2) Events like the European Social Forum and the Iraq war protests show the development of a new milieu of radicalised young people.

3) The limited revival of trade unionism is important, not so much because it will let anyone quickly recruit large numbers of established trade unionists to revolutionary Marxist activism, as for the possibilities it gives of expanding our trade union work and for convincing radicals that an orientation to the working class and the labour movement makes sense.

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Class, union, party

Submitted by martin on 3 November, 2003 - 9:43

1. The Labour Party is still what Lenin called it in 1920, a bourgeois workers' party. In the last decade, there has been an enormous shift within this contradictory phenomenon towards its bourgeois pole.
2. New Labour differs from Old Labour in these respects.

The trade union share of the vote at Party conference and of direct and indirect representation on the National Executive has been substantially cut.

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Amendments on the Labour Party

Submitted by Janine on 24 October, 2003 - 7:34

Amendments on the Labour Party to various conference documents, from Bruce R.

Add new 3(a):

"There has been a considerable erosion in traditional working class support for Labour, particularly amongst young people. Symptoms include the increase in electoral abstention, particularly in inner-city areas, and the growth of the BNP."


Rewrite para. 18 to read:

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Motion on hijab and French law from Mark S

Submitted by martin on 28 January, 2003 - 9:47

Motion for the AWL AGM 2004

Proposed by Mark Sandell

1. The hijab, veil and burkha are public expressions of the ownership of women by men, fathers, husbands, brothers, laid down in muslim teaching, socialists should oppose it.
2. We do not support state bans on adults self abuse but to confuse that with the case of schools is wrong.

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Vogon spaceships and the dinner party Plan

Submitted by martin on 19 January, 2003 - 1:39

Response to 'an Independent workers focus' document

By Gerry B


When I saw this document I sighed. Here we go again Another MT document, full of good things but no way of prioritising them, a document you feel harsh for criticising because it means well.
And can you stand up at conference and call for a vote against it? What is the point? It won't make any difference either way.


Submitted by Janine on Thu, 23/01/2003 - 17:24

I found this passage of Martin's report quite alarming:

>>Rob Hoveman, John Rees and Weyman Bennett replied that the SWP had to persuade its members to be active in the Alliance. SWP members were put off when they saw other Alliance members pleased at getting motions through their local Alliances against SWP opposition, or by Alliance discussions that were "inward-looking".

Firstly, it is hard to believe that the SWP can not convince its own members of its political orientation. Does this suggest that the leadership is not that convinced of it themselves? Or that their real perspective for the SA is a hat to wear in elections, and so their members know that they don't really have to get involved outside of voting time? Either way, it is hardly the description of the organised, disciplined party the SWP keeps telling its recruits that we need.

Secondly, if losing a resolution every now and then is that unbearable, how on earth do they think the rest of us feel!? Try losing nearly all of them!! If we are going to have a democratic culture on the left, people are going to have to start accepting that sometimes you lose the vote. It is an incredible arrogance on the part of the SWP to expect everyone else in the Alliance to go along with them determining nearly every policy and then go off in a sulk on the rare occasions they lose.


e-mail: JBooth9192 at

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