I rarely use Facebook anymore. Got a question. How many parts of Scotland’s left have committed themselves to regional list candidates? I hope nothing’s been set in stone. The divisions are tragic. TUSC and Solidarity need to unite again. Not sure if that’s happened yet. But it has to.
Secondly, the Greens shouldn’t be considered part of Scotland’s left. Too many reasons why they’ve forfeited that right, but their casualness in splitting the left-vote in England is part of it, as is their attempts to smear Jeremy Corbyn and Diane Abbott for their support of the Stop The War Coalition are a couple of big factors.
Thirdly, Solidarity and TUSC have to stand down from first-past-the-post vote in May. I think the former have accepted that. The latter need to too.
Fourthly, Solidarity and TUSC need to do more than agree to a non-aggression pact. Both need to try to stand under the RISE banner, in my ‘humble’ opinion. That may be hard for Solidarity to swallow due to the prominence of the Scottish Socialist Party, and their fellow travellers. That needs negotiation. If Tommy is excluded, then he has every right to stand against as an independent or under some other banner. Same goes for any member of Solidarity/TUSC who is denied the right to participate fully as a RISE candidate despite their willingness to do so.
Fifthly, a deal needs to be struck with Labour’s left. There are problems and opportunities for the left both sides of the border.
Socialists need to think with our hearts and our heads. We need strategy and tactics. We need to get the job done, as principles without hope of winning anything concrete is a waste of our time.
Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters can’t admit they want RISE – or any other party other than Labour – to win seats. Nevertheless, in the privacy of the polling booth, there could be a private revolution. Those whose ear socialists external to Labour can win, with respectful debate, ‘fellow travellers’, those willing to cast their vote for he/she they wish was the Labour candidate, rather the one foisted on Scottish Labour members by Kezia Dugdale against the wishes of party members. Jeremy Corbyn can’t be blamed for Kezia Dugdale’s incompetence.
The Scottish Labour leadership has forfeited their right to any loyalty by their disenfranchising Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters. That makes it both possible and necessary for RISE/TUSC/Solidarity to reach an accomodation with Momentum in Scottish Labour, although any such deal would have to take place informally. Nods and winks. Nothing put down on paper that commits any Labour Party member to cast a vote for anyone standing against the official Labour candidate as that would be, quite legitimately, grounds for expulsion.
Regional list votes can be cast by Scotland’s left. But this will only lead to winning candidates if the left vote is not split half a dozen ways or even more.
There is an incentive for all the left to compromise. Those who refuse to do that will pay a very heavy price indeed. Time for the left in Scotland to do deals, and to reach out to the left in The SNP who may also – in the privacy of the polling booth – vote for a left wing candidate for the regional list.