A party invitation to John Faulkner
You and I have a lot in common, John. We are both socialists. I am of course assuming the ‘S’ word is still used in some circles in the ALP, comrade, even in the New South Wales left.
Like the New South Wales left and like you, John, I too am shocked by the revelations at the Independent Commission Against Corruption about the Labor Party in that State and the conduct of Left member Ian Macdonald.
We have a common dislike of what is happening to the Labor Party, its loss of idealism and energy, its failure to attract the young and committed, its failure to have socialists queueing up to join.
But unlike you I don’t think reforming the faction system is the solution. That is a band-aid for a cancer at the heart of the Labor Party – neoliberalism.
And John, you have been a minister in Labor governments since 1992, implementing neoliberalism in its various forms since then for capital.
Indeed it was Labor under Hawke in 1983 who implemented neoliberalism in all its gory glory in Australia. Howard and Rudd and Gillard are continuations of that groundbreaking work by Hawke and Keating, as Abbott will be.
Remember the Hawke Government’s Accord, something you supported? It destroyed rank and file organisation in the unions, and as a consequence in the ALP. It shifted wealth to the rich to try to counteract falling profit rates, a tendency built into the way capitalism is organised.
You, John, have been an integral part of this neoliberalisation of Australian society for decades. So maybe dear Brutus the fault lies not within your stars but within yourself.
The ALP is irreformable, isn’t it John? Even if you got your reforms through its essence as a CAPITALIST workers’ party would remain. Same shit, different wrapping.
In fact John, your reforms would probably make the party less connected than ever, if that is possible, to workers and more and more just another capitalist party.
Now I know you probably don’t keep up with developments on the far left but something interesting has been going on there. There is a process of regroupment going on. Socialist Alternative has put out a discussion paper on a new kind of left unity and is talking with the Revolutionary Socialist Party about merging, and with Socialist Alliance about that possibility.
In a nutshell this is about the unity of revolutionaries in Australia. I know you are not a revolutionary, John, but after a lifetime of propping up one of the popinjay parties of profit, maybe it is time for a damascene conversion.
In fact John, I’ll let you in on a little secret. My invitation isn’t really aimed at you.
It is aimed at those people who already know the ALP is a crock of shit; those people who want to change the world; who know that capitalism isn’t working and want a real, fighting alternative that challenges the bankruptcy of Labor and all it stands for, so clearly being spelt out for us at ICAC.
So to all those who, unlike John Faulkner, do reject neoliberalism, do want justice and equity, do want real action on climate change, and who do think that capitalism can’t provide a decent future, or even just have doubts about that, maybe it is time to have a look at Socialist Alternative.
Come along to one of our meetings. Read our website. Check out the unity section of the Socialist Alternative website, and the debates and discussion about revolutionary unity on facebook and elsewhere.
Unlike John Faulkner, don’t waste your time on the Labor Party, a moribund organisation of high level time servers and careerists bowing down at the altar of profit.
Instead check out Socialist Alternative and consider becoming part of a growing movement of revolutionaries in Australia to help build the fightbacks needed today and ultimately to challenge the dictatorship of capital.