Well, Saturday I got myself down to Brixton to do our paper sale. It was cold and grey, and as I got off the bus, I say that either side of the tube station door were Workers Power and Socialist Workers' Party. A little further along were the bunch of trotskyist fakers formerly known as Militant. All that were missing were the Revolutionary Communist Party of Britain (Marxist-Leninist) and the International Communist Current - who have both been known to put in appearances there, and we'd have had the set.
Being adverse to Judean People's Front style situations (it's OK at Socialist events were the crowd are committed, but on a high street it just looks silly) we skiddadled. It's hard enough to get the message of socialism across without having to field jokes about sectarianism or even being asked why we don't all work together.
Anyway, it did set me thinking. The SWP won't be contesting Vauxhall with their Respect Coalition, they've closed down their old front the Socialist Alliance, so we should be the only Socialist Party contesting Vauxhall.
Good news? Well, sort of. It occurred to me that these people on the high street, waving their fake petitions, selling their papers demanding to stop the thing and save the pittance, might, just might, ask people to vote for us. They might vote for us. The problem is - we don't want their votes.
We're not about aving council housing, wresting reforms from capitalism, reaching out to 'new layers', raising the minimum wages to £11.20, nationalising the top 403 companies, or anything of that sort. We do not want a mass movement led by glorious leaders in unelected cabals directing full time cadres.
We make no promises. All we ask is that you join a democratic movement filled with conscious workers who understand and want common and democratic ownership of their wn world,a nd are repared to go and get it. So far as we're concerned, it's the quality not the quantity of the votes that count. Votes gained by leftist confusions of socialism, we can do without.