The chief political difference between you and me and between the DSA and some others on the left with whom I identify (Solidarity, ISO, and the Socialist Party) is the nature of the Democratic Party. This is a question both of one’s theory as well as of one’s attitude toward the Democratic Party. It is a theoretical question, but also a question of whether or not one takes an active role in creating an independent alternative to the Democratic Party as part of the process of building an independent party of working people.Duhalde tries to deflect some of the criticism of his group by emphasizing that there is diversity of views within the DSA on whether to support the Democrats in certain contexts. But even if we grant that, the more general political (or, if you like, "theoretical") problems that LaBotz points out remain. The DSA does not (at least, not that I've noticed--feel free to point out a counter-example) offer trenchant analyses of the basic function of the Democratic Party in US capitalism. In being so closely tethered to the Democrats the DSA fails to create sufficient space for working people to debate genuine alternatives, and thereby retards the political self-development and confidence of the 99%.
I and other like me believe that the Democratic Party is a capitalist party. We argue that capitalists provide much of the financing, leadership, program, and a significant portion of the higher level cadres of the Democratic Party. I have not found in the DSA position papers any serious analysis of the Democratic Party and its role in American politics, nothing comparable, for example, to ISO member Lance Selfa’s The Democratic Party: A Critical Analysis and nothing comparable to the papers on the Democrats and elections found on the Solidarity website.
Since we believe that the Democratic Party belongs to another class, we believe that it is impossible for the working class to wage a fight to control the Democratic Party or to use it successfully for its own class objectives. More important, we believe that working class, labor union, and social movement participation in the Democratic Party inhibits the political self-development of working people and the movements, making it impossible for them to figure out who their leaders are and what their program should be. We therefore reject participation in the Democratic Party and refuse to work in its campaigns.
Tuesday, January 3, 2012
See here. LaBotz hits the nail on the head by making the following points:
Posted by t at 12:42 PM