Autor: Emil

~ 25/12/11

This post is a reply to someone. You can read the original discussion here.

-Originally posted at Revleft on 11th August 2011-

A short post about a qualitative difference between Labour parties and “normal” social-democratic parties.

[Quoting the user “Tim Finnegan”]

In the case of a “Labour Party”, that’s to be expected. A “Labour Party” is traditionally the political wing of a national trade union movement

This is actually only true in a limited way. That is, the “Labour setup” of social-democracy (the political wing of the trade union movement) is a specific anglo-saxon (that is, the UK and its former colonies) phenomena. I haven’t seen it in that form on “continental” Europe, where social-democracy traditionally has had much looser ties to the trade unions (and consequently have much less of a class character).

Labour in the UK on the other hand still has a close TUC link and for that reason maintains a (contradictionary) class character. That is, at least during election times the working class is specifically addressed as a class. This is not the case in “continental” European social-democratic parties, or at least not to the same extent.

This is something not widely understood for some reason, so I thought I’d write it out for once. I believe this has strategical implications in how communists should relate to the Labour parties, which is different from how we should relate (if at all) to the social-democratic parties. But that is of course a long running debate.

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