Socialism Makes the Big Time

The media can no longer ignore the issue of socialism. If nothing else is accomplished by Kshama Sawant’s victory, that in and of itself is an important step forward. Like all capitalist enterprises, the media must compete with each other, and they do that from time to time by putting something on that might be of interest. So despite their class loyalties, some of the media is breaking ranks and covering Sawant’s victory and what lies behind it — the fact that people simply aren’t scared off by the word “socialism” anymore.

The other side is, of course, that they will try to lure Sawant into their web; lull her to sleep with kind words and friendliness. But anyway, here is some interesting mainstream news coverage of Sawant’s victory. And she certainly shows herself as extremely articulate. This video is well worth watching. If nothing else, it will cheer you up.

About oaklandsocialist

This is the web site of the Oakland/East Bay Socialist Group. We are a small group of workers, youth and retirees in the Oakland/East Bay area and are affiliated with the Workers International Network (WIN). WIN is just that - an international network that doesn't pretend to be more than it is. We believe that socialists must participate in the struggles of workers around the world, and that an essential part of that struggle is discussing and learning from our experiences. Contact us at Oaklandsocialist@gmail.com.
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5 Responses to Socialism Makes the Big Time

  1. Terry Pearce says:

    What you should maybe ask yourself why is it the CWI that have made this big break through and not the myriad of other left/anarchist/ ex trots,etc. It could of course be coincidence (sic) or more likely because of the CWI orientation to the working class and armed with a perspective for the future.On the left lists of old trots and sectarians they spend most of their life slagging off the CWI and lo and behold its the CWI that have re established socialism in the belly of the beast. I am proud to be member of the SP in the UK, co thinkers of Socialist Alternative in the US. Maybe there should now be a serious discussion on the left with the CWI and an end to ultra left sniping.

    • Of course the CWI and its US associate, Socialist Alternative, should be proud of this accomplishment. And this web site has done all that it can to advertise it. We have made it perfectly clear that we consider this an important step forward for the workers’ movement and for socialism. Nor do we “spend most of (our) life slagging off the CWI” as the author of the above note knows perfectly well. We understand that Socialist Alternative is now calling for 200 left independent candidates for next year’s mid-term elections. It is not a criticism of Socialist Alternative to point out that they do not have the wherewithal to accomplish this themselves. What is needed is for socialists to come together to discuss how this victory was accomplished and how to work together – yes, genuinely together – to run these 200 candidates. This cannot be done by any one group running the show; it can only be done by a genuine joint effort.

      Centered here in Oakland, as we are, we invite Kshama Sawant to speak here in this area and we will do everything in our (small) powers to make such an event successful.

      We look forward to Terry Pearce’s reply to these points.

      We should add: Differences exist within the workers’ movement and amongst socialists. These will have to come out, and if this is done in a comradely fashion – where there is a genuine attempt to clarify the differences and figure out the way forward – then this will be entirely positive. We hope that Terry and his comrades agree with this.

  2. Terry Pearce says:

    Socialist Alternative fully appreciate that they do not have the resources to run 200 candidates themselves, that is why they are willing to work with others as they did in Seattle.In the UK the Socialist Party are part of a left coalition Trade unionist and Socialist Coalition which is an electoral platform, involving the SP, SA, SWP and trade unionists as well as anti cuts activists, etc We are currently appealing for anti cuts activists to come forward as candidates for next years local elections to run as TUSC candidates..We draw inspiration from the Kshama victory and hope ti have similar success in the UK. However if we are to build for socialism we must be clear that we stand on a programme of no to ALL cuts, no to austerity and that we seek to build a workers party. Socialist Alternative is associated with the CWI which is beginning to have success in not only the US but also South Africa, we are part of a growing international movement. We differ from some other groups on the left in that we have ALWAYS orientated to the working class, even in the bad times when our movement was facing set backs around the world. .

    I am sure our US comrades would welcome the chance to speak in Oaklands and meet up with other socialists. Some groups on the left seem to be more interested in finding differences with the CWI rather than building unity around real struggles. I welcome the support some comrades in WIN have given to Kshama and the comrades. .

  3. Ed Bober says:

    It is a good interview.

    I love the tone of surprise when the reporter says “now an actual avowed socialist” has won an election!

    Congratulations to the CWI. A significant message I get from this is that Kshama had 300 volunteers on the ground. I have always considered that a grass root base in the community is a vital ingredient for electoral success. We won’t win seats if we just have candidates without a movement to back them up. So we have to start by building that base.

    I will be interested to learn how the movement will now work to use this position (1) to raise socialist ideas more widely and (2) to support Kshama who will come under a lot of pressure to compromise and who will be watched for any mistakes so that the media can discredit her.

    This is a significant step forward for the American working class and it will give encouragement to anti-cuts campaigners all over the world. Well done. Keep us posted.

    Ed

    Norfolk Coalition Against the Cuts UK

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