Volume 15

This is not a comprehensive critique of the Tendency's documents, which would take a lot more time and thought. Just a couple of preliminary comments.

The 21st Century Socialism Tendency announced its launch with two documents. The ‘Formation of the 21st Century Socialism Tendency’ document comprehensively addressed a number of core organisational problems and addressed deficits in party democracy, while the ‘Vision for a 21st Century Socialist Alliance’ document began to articulate a vision as to what kind of a socialist organisation is required today.

The document of the Twenty-First Century Socialism Tendency provides a bleak portrayal of the Socialist Alliance as a party gripped by severe crisis, seen as resulting from systematic organisational and political transgressions and failures on the part of a core group within the national leadership. Summarising the arguments which the document presents in support of this view is no easy task, since the accusations, while vehement, are almost always diffuse and unspecific. The following, however, covers most of the allegations that are made.

I have decided to join the 21st century socialism tendency because I agree with the general thrust of the grouping which is to look at ways of modifying the way we organise to make the Socialist Alliance more democratic and better suited to revolutionary /class struggle activism and party building in todays political terrain.

I have been planning to write something along the lines of what you are about to read for some time and the launch of the 21st century socialism tendency has spurred me to finally do it. I have just read Patrick Harrison’s excellent contribution ‘Our reports’ (Alliance Voices 15, number 1) and was struck by the opening quote from our 11th national conference:

Socialist Alliance was founded as an alliance of socialist parties in 2001. Central to the new alliance was the thesis that a new militant left-wing break in the trade union movement was emerging a political break from the class-collaborationist unionism of the ALP. The leadership of Australia’s largest socialist party, the “Democratic Socialist Party” (DSP), predicted that the handful of small breaks that had already taken place presaged a new wave of breaks.

This is the first in what will be a series of documents seeking to articulate a new political and organisational vision for Socialist Alliance. We invite comrades who wish to directly contribute to this process to join the tendency.

It is with enthusiasm that I read point 5 of State of the Alliance, in the Building Socialist Alliance report from the 11th national conference.

The Socialist Alliance National Executive adopted the following resolution at its meeting on April 29, regarding the launch of the 21st Century Socialism Tendency.