I read the piece in The Record today on "The New Left Alliance," Rise. I have nothing against either of the candidates interviewed-in fact I have huge respect for Colin Turbett- nor have I anything against the policies laid out.
However, I won't be ticking the Rise list on the ballot sheet in May. This is for a number of reasons, not least how this project was launched upon the membership of the SSP. The Machiavellian tooing and froing of Frances Curran and Colin Fox, and how they manipulated new members, has isolated, insulted and denigrated many comrades, many of them who have been working towards a left mass party for years, some irreparably lost to national politics. I won't support it because of how some have been treated and I won't support it because both the self selected and labelled, "Team Rise" and SSP have corrupt structures, that have played on new and young inexperienced comrades in order to basically create something that in any public sphere would be jumped upon and lambasted by democratic socialists. The SSP structures so well re-designed AFTER the Sheridan fiasco have been shut down by a small group of people who were not involved with the United Left Platform formed to save the party. And Colin Fox, as he so often says, is, despite the SSP constitution not allowing a "leader" nor allowing a Spokesperson to have his or her place for more than two terms, is the longest surviving leader of a Scottish political party nearly 11 years, to be exact. The excuse was that the party had reduced numbers and no one else came forward to take over. Perhaps Colin might announce in May he is standing aside and allow a real election to take place. Going by the fact the NC illegally (according to the present constitution of the party) adopted a new constitution on the word of a select few that the old one was unworkable (nonsense) and Colin's love of the limelight, I doubt it. But perhaps he will surprise me and others after his defeat in Edinburgh as a Rise List candidate.
It's what comes AFTER May that matters.
I have really thought long and hard about my political loyalties. I've thought about jumping ship. My loyalties aren't with the SNP enough to join, there are too many right wing folk in there, despite the many comrades there I have met over the years, too many dodgy "beliefs"; I could not be in the same party as some of the capitalist Greens, though again, many in there I would happily call comrade; but I AM in the same party as Colin Fox, Frances Curran and others that I trust as much as I would trust a hungry Python.
As for the Cat Boyd vehicle, there is no way am I going to be in an organisation with folk who will brand you misogynist, a scab or whatever discussion crushing "ism" they have rolling off their keyboard or tongue to shut you up (and although Boyd has been attacked for stupid reasons on social media by some, I found out via an email to the SSP National Secretary, that she is not immune to making the old personality attacks when she is not happy with someone's stance or objections to her or her teams machinations) So, although good folk are in the "alliance" and the SSP; using one of Tony Benn's questions about democracy- "can I vote you out?" I can't vote Colin out, nor Shafi (the registered leader, selected by a small group of people- not the whole membership), Curran or Boyd. Neither can any of the membership of the SSP or Rise. The new young and inexperienced membership have either lapped up the nonsense that Rise has no leaders, or they are all exclaiming how beautiful the emperors new Robe is (as are more experienced folk who should know better- and probably do, but are so desperate for left representation, they let it lie or go along with the pretence). The acceptance of this deformed democracy is really concerning- especially from parties that are supposed to be about democratic socialism.
Well, 'the King is in the altogether.'
So I am staying well clear of both, nationally, until post #SE2016.
No doubt some in the SSP (who have wanted to purge the party of those who can't go along with Colin's farce) and those who are Unquestionable "Risers," will have an ism or a mental health adjective for me in due course. It's what many of us have become awfully, dreadfully, disgustingly used to throughout 2015.