Jack Conrad, Towards a Socialist Alliance Party (2001)
Some comrades in the Socialist Alliance say we should settle for a loose conglomeration of leftwing groups and local campaigns. Others wand a ‘relatively durable’ united front. For these comrades the word ‘party’, when it comes to the Socialist Alliance, is anathema. It is as if they were anarchists.
Of course such comrades already have their own ‘party’. Jack Conrad argues, however, that there is no party. They are groups or, worse, sects. Members who disagree with the prescribed ‘line’ are expected to gag themselves in public. Either that or face expulsion.
Such organisations might have had some justification as long as they kept alive the embers of the revolutionary tradition. No longer. The Socialist Alliance must become a party and seek to arm itself with the most advanced theory.
In reality, we are already a party in many senses. We have a common elected leadership, common election candidates and common finances. The Socialist Alliance is also officially registered as a party. What matters is not the name, but creating a genuine party ethos. Drawing on an extensive study of history, this booklet presents the ways and means of arriving at that end.