Don't get me wrong, I'm on the left myself (I call it 'reformist anarchism' to accommodate my rejection of leadership and my woolly liberalism). However, I've been pondering the failure of left-wing parties to capitalise on the utter fucking shambles of The Conservative Party, which is both enacting horrendous policy and falling apart over the referendum on remaining in the EU. I can only conclude that leftist are idiots.
They might not be as stupid as those who vote Conservative without being millionaires, but that is another post. Besides, being a Cultural Marxist, my job is to cause more schisms among those with whom I sympathise.
Let's start with the easiest one...
THEY FALL FOR IT EVERY TIME
Yes, I get annoyed when people don't share my posts on Facebook, so this is personal. But today I have seen an extended rant on a parody article (Corbyn is a vegetarian, just like Hitler) and another rant at The Guardian for printing an article about the Royal Family (who kill babies, apparently, just by existing).
In both cases, the ranter reposted the articles in question, thereby spreading the thing that they supposedly hate around the net. Brilliant work. Not only exposing the ranter as either gullible or incoherent, the reposting ensures that the source of their rage gets more hits.
Here's a tip: when I read something I don't like, I write a post about it, so people will read my version and not the thing I don't like.
Yes, that picture of Nicola Sturgeon counts here, too. And anything at all that discusses antisemitism in The Labour Party.
THEY THINK ALONG PARTY LINES
Obviously, I think that joining a party in the first place is evidence of stupidity: imagine having to pay to go to meetings and be bored to tears. And I am sure right-wingers do this too, but...
Anyone notice that all their friends who belong to the SWP are pro-Brexit? That's because the party said. Why hasn't anyone called out the presence of Patrick Harvey nearly every time The Greens are mentioned (they have a co-convenor and a supposedly democratic structure, but it's the attractive Moby lookalike who goes front and centre)? Is the reason for the proliferation of leftist parties in Scotland just the result of too many people wanting their policies chewed up and half-digested for them?
I know it is defeatist to reject the party system, and that joining up is a good way to be part of the fun. But I'd rather join an activist group, if I had to join anything. That way, I could have all sorts of opinions without causing a schism in the gang.
THEY LIKE PETITIONS
Okay, I read this somewhere. Petitions don't work, except on a local scale. I have been told that if a certain number of people sign a petition, then the parliament has to discuss it.
If that's true, note discuss. It won't actually change the composition of parliament, which means that if it protests a government policy, they'll go through the motions without offering a motion.
But petitions, like giving money to charity, are an act of bad faith. They confer authority on the state that is petitioned. Republicans believe that respecting the monarchy undermines freedom of thought. Petitions encourage belief that existing power structures have the right to make decisions.
Of course, they do. I just don't like to encourage that power. A petition is an alternative to activism: sign here, and you don't have to do those things that have achieved change in the past, like march or protest in person.
THEY ARE LAZY
One day, I am going to write that piece about why the SWP's obsession with Islamophobia is an example of how they have internalised neoliberalism (basically, class analysis has been eroded to such an extent that even discussing it is gauche. It's unfair to pick on the SWP again, here, since they are an example of the trend, not the cause).
In the meantime, I am putting this here to check. I am being provocative. Joyce MacMillan said that I'd have that on my tombstone (hang on, was that a veiled threat?). I am actually quite pleased that there is not a single socialist party standing in the Scottish Parliamentary elections (diversity, and the possibility that Tommy Sheridan won't get back into parliament). Petitions probably raise awareness.
And I am totally lazy. All I do is write articles like this. I never condescend to actually do anything helpful. I am going to make some resolutions though...