Number 6

The Left Unity project in South Australia celebrates its first anniversary this month. Over the last year it has been successful in bringing together progressive groups and individuals in Adelaide to campaign around shared goals and strive for increased co-operation and collaboration. Left Unity is a network comprising of groups including Socialist Alliance, Communist Party of Australia, Organise (Anarchist Collective), the Adelaide Anti-Capitalist Forum and the Eco-socialist Convergence, as well as current and ex-members of the Greens and non-aligned individuals.

It's been really great for me to see some really robust and interesting debate come up in Alliance Voices in the lead up to the Socialist Alliance national conference in January. Good work comrades!

Amend the section headed “Economic crisis already here - with worse to come” to read as follows:

I have read the discussion on the general direction and nature of Socialist Alliance with interest. While I have not had time to study all the contributions and or to make a detailed response, some general thoughts will serve as a background to this proposal

Comrade Adam Baker makes some serious charges about the organization. I think I understand his concerns and think they relate to issues which need to be taken and responded to seriously even if Adam is not correct in his analysis or prescriptions.

The report on Australian politics to be given to the SA National Conference will be based on the written draft. It is submitted to Alliance Voices to give comrades a chance to read it beforehand. As at previous conferences, delegates will not be asked to vote on this report, only the political perspectives resolutions.

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Below is a report by Susan Price given to the January 13, 2012 national executive on the draft Towards a Socialist Australia document. It is reprinted here for comrades' information.

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For several years, we have been intending to publish a book about Socialism, but this has proven to be beyond the capacity of comrades who volunteered to take on this project (such as Dick Nichols), but were already overburdened with important work on behalf of the Socialist Alliance.

Under the subhead, “Economic Crisis Already Here - with worse to come” add the sentence in bold.

The time of a new election is coming quickly. And what choice do we have? Do we really have a choice? I do not see it.

The two major parties have just minor differences at the edges: that is all. They are not interested in a real change that is needed — the real change that will make our lives just, sustainable and fulfilling.

There are many factors which determine whether a revolutionary organisation will grow and build cadre. In my mind, the biggest one is whether the party's ideas and theories about how the working class should go about exercising our collective power to challenge and ultimately overthrow the domination of capital have been concretely tested in practice.

Not only are we talking about taking back our government — taking back a democracy and making it a democracy — but we're here because we're talking about taking back our humanity. Taking back our humanity, right now here. That's why we're here.
We have a crisis here. But in a crisis there are challenges and opportunities. We're here because we are taking up the challenge and the opportunity…

Let's transform it into what our dear, beloved brother Dr King called “the beloved community”. Let's transform it so people matter more than things.

Previously I tried to outline a conundrum of our existence. I called it “atlargeness” because our activity is ruled by branch life, and those members who may not be branch engaged are not being organised so well by the party.

I cannot claim to have any solutions but I’d nonetheless like to raise some ideas that could be considered to format our thinking on the subject.

Branch burden

The richness of the discussion in Alliance Voices about our work over this last hectic year, and the many thoughtful contributions to the draft resolutions going to conference, should give members some confidence about the projected political perspectives for 2012.

We can be reasonably sure that the political upheaval throughout Middle East and Europe last year will continue to have an impact this year. In addition, the shock waves from the global recession are and will increasingly be felt in this country.

Disclaimer — signed articles represent the views of their authors, not necessarily the views of the Socialist Alliance unless otherwise stated. Responsibility for all electoral comment is taken by P. Benedek, 22 Mountain Street, Ultimo, NSW 2007. Alliance Voices submission protocols.