Thursday, 12 August 2010
The Left and National Liberation
After the recent censorship preventing me from posting on the Socialist Unity website I will happily put forward my arguments for independence and a Workers Republic here.
Firstly the comments on the Socialist Unity website were appalling. These so-called socialists of the Brit left comment about dividing the working class in Britain because we support the right to Self-Determination and National Liberation. However I would be inclined to agree with SRSM in which it is stated on their website:
That there is "no British nation and therefore no British working-class. Any unity between the national components of these islands has been forced from the top down, and does not represent unity in the internationalist sense. Until the achievement of National Independence, without which there can be neither Republic nor Socialism, the chief work of the SRSM shall be to engage in the struggle for National Self-Determination."
The conditions and our national culture are different in Scotland although we share a love of fish and chips with our English working class comrades but little else.
I am sure comrades in the Scottish Socialist Party doubt the existence of a viable British working class? However that does not stop comments being post on the SU site like:
"It could have been different- the current that became the SSP could have used the relative strength of the socialist left in Scotland to help build an internally democratic british wide socialist party. They choose instead to jump on the SNP bandwagon and abandon socialist politics and principles"
The above comment is nonsense the strength of the SSP was through winning votes from the SNP and Greens which they subsequently lost by 2007. And still today the SNP is a target of much criticism from the SSP. However this is a failure of the SSP to recognise the need for all pro-independence parties to show a united front under one banner going even beyond the Scottish Independence Convention in this critical stage of Scottish history. Also wrong about the above comments to claim the SSP have abandoned socialist politics and principles. Take a look at their website and see the number of working class campaigns they are involved with. Independence and Republicanism has been relegated to near the bottom of the page. But the SSP fail to realise as a seemingly pro-independence party that independence and republicanism should be their main feature on their website.
Other comments on the SU site complained about the SNP being pro-capitalist or anti-working class. Yet these Brit socialists ignore the fact that the SNP is selling a fair and social democratic programme to voters in Scotland. Further more the liberation for the Scottish working class is dependant on complete independence from the neo liberal imperialist British state as a first step to a Republic and the chance to struggle towards a Workers Republic in Scotland.
A more sensible contribution was:
"An independent Scotland would give the Scottish people the sovereign right to determine what type of economic policies would be their preference through their democratic will. It certainly wont be anything as right wing neo-liberal as the preference in England."
The above is true and the Scottish people would vote in the New Scotland for parties who deliver a social democratic or socialist programme. It would not be a Workers Republic or genuine National Liberation but it would allow a start to get rid of the English Brit Imperialist yolk. The SRSM correctly mention genuine National Liberation on their website:
"We believe the struggles for National Liberation and Socialism to be inseparable, that is that one is not possible without the other. The question of National Liberation is not merely about the ending of British political rule in Scotland but about the ending of all economic, political and cultural Imperialism in Scotland. The National Liberation struggle will not be won until the workers of Scotland exercise complete control over the material resources, economy and political administration of Scotland."
"This brings to the fore competing class issues in Scottish society. The interests of the Capitalist class are tied to and subservient to the interests of Imperialism. They will always seek to preserve their own position and therefore constantly undermine the struggle for genuine National Liberation."
"The National Liberation struggle has to be fought by those whose interests are not tied to Imperialism. That is it has to come from the majority of the Scottish people – the working class. It is about the complete transfer of the wealth and resources of Scotland into the hands of those who use these resources to create the wealth. It is, in short, the building of a Socialist society; a Scottish Workers’ Republic, and it must be the working class that leads the struggle for National Liberation. Such a demand meets Scotland’s aspirations as a nation with the workers aspirations as a class."
And the struggle at present is in it's early stages. Scots of all classes need to be involved in the struggle for Democracy something that is very infantile under the present Devolution set up. We need to take all classes with us on the road to independence. However after independence the important struggle takes place for a Republic which could be by being offered a referendum on the issue. I am confident the Scottish people will prefer a republic when they get a real taste of freedom. That sort of freedom I have felt when visiting the Irish Free State or Dublin. Yet Eire and it's people are very much under the thumb of the European Community.
The struggle of our class should be tied to the struggle for National Liberation. But first we must support the SNP while building the Independence Movement. Already changes are taking place in Scotland. Since Devolution and the 2007 victory result for the SNP to form the minority Government, the self confidence of many Scots has grown. Marches for independence have been previously held in the capital Edinburgh.
A new march is planned by March for your future a group dedicated to raising awareness and support for the independence of Scotland, in April 2011 they will be marching through the streets of Edinburgh to do just this.
Their website writes
"The aim of March for your future is to promote and progress the independence of Scotland through complete devolution from the United Kingdom. With the end goal of complete independence for the nation of Scotland."
There exists some interesting times from now until the 2011 May Scottish elections. In the meantime a unified pro-independence movement will be required to organise and plan for the future. How soon we get independence will be determined by the Scottish people. The direction will be shown by the SNP and Independence Movement.