The Cardiff Radical Socialist Forum got off to a promising start yesterday as a range of activists from Cardiff and Newport discussed the many initiatives to create a left of Labour party over the past fifteen years.
During a difficult period for the left, and in the face of Labour’s rightward trajectory, projects from the Socialist Labour Party to Respect have come to the fore, achieved modest successes, but universally come to grief. The forum discussed the characteristics of the different parties and the thorny problem of how to relate to Labour, which, despite its neo-liberal agenda, remains a party 92% funded by the trade unions. Are the circumstances right for calling for a new workers party, is there still a need for the much-maligned Leninist vanguard party, or is is the idea of the party itself outmoded?
PR have views on all these questions which will be apparent to everyone who reads this website. However, the forum is designed not simply to be PR’s mouthpiece but a genuinely inclusive discussion group aimed at exploring differences and paving the way towards greater left unity. In a modest way the first meeting achieved that aim, and participants were enthusiastic for further discussions. The next meeting will be on July 2nd, looking at how socialists should contribute to mass campaigns involving wider forces. If you are a socialist looking to broaden your understanding of the big issues facing us, in a constructive and non-sectarian atmosphere, come along.