Why do Social Democrats do what they do?

March 23, 2010

Dear Comrade, A Letter in response to an American CPUSA friend from a Canadian comrade, By: Andrew Taylor, Winnipeg, Mar. 23, 2010

Dear Comrade,

I wanted to give a wider perspective on my own reasons for now speaking publicly and openly about the Left in the USA: Its not only my own history as a US landed immigrant with American family that prompts or permits me to keep asking serious questions of your party leadership. Earlier you brought up the point that Canadian communists are "telling Americans how to bring socialism to America"! I urge you for the sake of the international Movement to try to see my concerns about the current US Administration and US Communist party not as some sneaky attempt to encroach upon your organization's national turf, but as normal and realistic concerns many communists and people of good will around the world keenly feel today - given the statements of the CPUSA in the last seven years.

May we do a reversal of roles comrade ? Humour me: what if Canada were the imperial centre and had 800 foreign military bases encircling the world, and moreover was leading the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? What if Canada was the leading partner with Israel in a climate of Israeli war-mongering about a new war with Iran? And if that (wildly improbable) scenario actually obtained today in global power dynamics, what would be your communist duty in good conscience if the Canadian party at the heart of global imperialism were taking a number of rightward steps that seemed to you at least troubling and dubious? (For instance,if there had been no official Communist Party participation in the Mar 20th Anti-War March?)

Would you inquire politely in the Canadian CP press with your serious questions? I hope so! And I have done this in the Article Comment Columns of your party Press numerous times asking your Chair,Sam Webb to elucidate his points, but he has never once answered my concerns. Would you perhaps submit defenses of Leninist perspectives to the Canadian party theoretical magazine? I have done so, but my published Articles were deleted without notice after a number of months of online publication by Joel Wendland the editor of Political Affairs. Would you write the editor of the Canadian Theoretical journal politely requesting an explanation ? I wrote Joel Wendland (twice) and received no answer. A CPUSA writer for People's World also asked on my behalf. He also received no answer.

What would you do if your neighboring fraternal party responded in this indifferent and passive-aggressive way to genuine international communist concerns while the world economic and military crises built and Imperialism gravely escalated the War in Afghanistan? My respectful suggestion is that an internationalist organization which is re-vamping its image and is using slogans about openness to partners and breaking with repressive, old-style ossified words and practices should itself engage in openness to partners and break with an old-style, top-down political culture of induced compliance.

If this kind of behaviour is representative of the new 21st century socialism advocated by the CPUSA Leadership-- international comrades naturally feel more suspicious of what in the world is going on.

I am speaking openly as a communist to a communist in good will. What would you do with your deepest misgivings and concerns if our roles were reversed? Would you be silent on order to live an easy life and not make waves? I think and hope you would try to break through the silence because of your serious commitments. If i am perceived as a fly in the ointment so be it. But there are much more serious issues than how I as an individual am perceived. And Joel Wendland and Sam Webb and your whole leadership has a responsibility to be seen as being transparent and honest before the International Movement to which it yet belongs, and before the Broad Leftas well.

Yours in the Struggle,

Andy Taylor
Winnipeg, Mar. 23, 2010

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