As the campaign gathers speed to oust the existing leadership of the NUS, Sunny Hundal, editor of liberalconspiracy.org is in fear that these calls are an SWP take over of the movement.
Trots under the bed.
He has also insinuated that left unity is the unity of the left and right within the Labour party - a kind of sectarian monopoly of left unity that must incorporate those who believe illegal war was and is justified, through to those cowed by the fear that the press will find out they are lefties so hide behind the latest New Labour/Nouveaux/Newest Labour title.
I'm not entirely sure of Hundal's left claims - he describes himself as "firmly on the left," a rather vague description - I AM sure he is as sectarian as those he has went out to criticise in his newly found hat as a member of the Labour Party.
He has in the past urged non-white voters to back the Tories and at the last election called on people to vote for Nick Clegg's Liberal Democrats.
I am no fan of the SWP - but to label all who are criticising Aaron Porter and the NUS leadership as "Trots" (as he has on his twitter stream) in the way the right wing of the Labour Party bandy the term - and in the way Tories do without a definition of what he is talking about, is misleading - and jumping on a bandwagon that tries to discredit a movement. It seems that any organisation with a left anti-capitalist view outside the Labour Party fits this description (he is also critical of the WRP).
I do agree that the SWP will do their usual silly heavy handed "we are the leaders of this movement" rubbish and get on peoples nerves - and may well be part of the large body of students calling for Porters removal - but the SWP are not respected on the left as perhaps they once were (to say the least) - and are certainly not as strong as they have been in the past due to internecine fighting and resultant splits and bad feeling.
My take? I feel that criticising all who are outside the parenthesis of the Labour Party NUS leadership is not understanding the current student movement - the NUS were irrelevant in the organisation and execution of any of the demos and occupations.
I suggest Hundal reads this superb analysis of where the REAL organisation of student resistance against the cuts is taking place (not in the student union NUS office)
Hundal's article is here
...and this is my comment on his blog.
Sunny – are you not also sick of the tendency for people to brand others they disagree with as ‘Trots’ if they raise their head above the parapet of a party selling itself as a movement (the Labour Party)? I know I am. In fact most of those I know who are outside the Labour Party and are part of the labour movement are NOT trots – either affiliated to other groupings or none. I would also say that is the case of the students who went beyond the SWP etc and used the technology and tactics they have learned over the past few years to organise (flashmobbing/ using twitter/ texting/ blogs etc etc)- and from school occupations across the country last year.
the current youth movement do not trust the mainstream media nor the ready made SWP type fronts to “guide them.” We would be wise to remember that.
That is not to say that the SWP will not try to highjack parts of this movement – but recent splits / walk outs/ wrecking tactics by the SWP in England and Scotland have weakened them beyond all recognition from even during the G8 demos in 2005.
Porter and the NUS are not representative of students- nor have had much bearing on what the movement has achieved. The NUS is really as this blog says, just a coming together of student Unions – and those who involve themselves in those (http://www.betternation.org/2010/12/perhaps-its-time-for-an-actual-national-union-of-those-studying/ ) – and they are usually young people already involved in either mainstream parties or, and not to put to fine a point on it – those interested in DJing in the union etc.
This movement needs spokespeople – not Aaron Porter pretending to lead from his candle lit front. Young people are wise enough -perhaps beyond the wisdom of their parents etc – NOT to want leaders – just spokespeople.