Plan C website launched - check it out

60 posts / 0 new
Last post
Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Oct 26 2017 15:53

Serge - maybe a bit premature and harsh. The latest addition to the Plan discussion amongst themselves by Kai seems to draw back a bit from the over enthusiasm expressed by others and prefers to concentrate on other of Plan C's existing (so far unproven) strategies whilst avoiding any kind of split with those members of Plan C who clearly do want to 'engage' more directly with The LP and Momentum. That statement remains pretty confused in my opinion - more concerned with trying to justify a claimed distinctive Plan C politics that fails to convince. I'm aware that some of Plan C's earlier members left some time back for a mixture of reasons so that may happen again as things pan out and divisions continue in practice.

rat's picture
rat
Offline
Joined: 16-10-03
Nov 1 2017 08:40

A recent article on the Plan C website:

Quote:
‘If there is hope, it lies with the Labour Party’

Quote:
The latest contribution to our series on the Labour Party is by Plan C members Camille Barbagallo, Nicholas Beuret, and David Harvie.

https://www.weareplanc.org/blog/if-there-is-hope-it-lies-with-the-labour...

Dannny
Offline
Joined: 17-02-09
Nov 1 2017 10:02
rat wrote:
A recent article on the Plan C website:

Quote:
‘If there is hope, it lies with the Labour Party’

Quote:
The latest contribution to our series on the Labour Party is by Plan C members Camille Barbagallo, Nicholas Beuret, and David Harvie.

https://www.weareplanc.org/blog/if-there-is-hope-it-lies-with-the-labour...

Somewhat misleading headline:

Quote:
There is hope and, we are repeatedly told, that hope is to be found in the Labour Party.

We dissent from this view. We want to suggest that the turn towards a Labour Party campaigning on a social democratic manifesto isn’t a sign of increasing power for anti-capitalist social movements, but something that signals a profound crisis. Not only a weakness of the Left, or of radical social movements, or even of revolutionary groups like Plan C. More than this, it signals a serious crisis of our class. This electoral turn, like most electoral turns, is a sign of crisis of working-class power. Imagine for a moment that we had the power to truly transform the state and its complicity with capital… but then, why would we bother? If we have the power to transform the capitalist state, then we have no need to transform the state: we can simply transform society. The idea that we need the state to mediate our power is a sign of crisis in our capacity to act.

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Nov 1 2017 12:43

Danny is right that the last quoted Plan C post is much better seeming to make at least a similar point to that in my earlier post No 28 and without making any great claims for Plan C's politics being in advance of everyone else, though leaves all of us still struggling to see positive ways forward at present.

Oranj's picture
Oranj
Offline
Joined: 18-03-13
Nov 1 2017 22:05

Plan Corbyn is Plan Bollocks.

Very disappointed in them.

dark_ether's picture
dark_ether
Offline
Joined: 12-09-12
Nov 6 2017 00:39

Be interested to see some more critical content about Corbyn and the potential next Labour government from them, or even a direct response to this open letter:
https://afed.org.uk/the-world-transformed-or-staying-the-same-an-open-le...

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Nov 7 2017 18:14

Yes a useful criticism by the AF and a relevant comparison with the experience of Big Flame. I noticed that Plan C considered it worth interviewing Max Farrar about his experiences with the old Big Flame group in there short lived BAMN journal (although chose not to mention his now support for Hizmet).

ajjohnstone
Offline
Joined: 20-04-08
Nov 7 2017 21:41

Indeed that open letter was well worth the read and put much into perspective

rat's picture
rat
Offline
Joined: 16-10-03
Nov 8 2017 22:01

It is a good article by Bonnie VandeSteeg and Nick Heath and deserves a reply from Plan C.
Any chance of that I wonder?

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Nov 9 2017 13:09

Well this latest contribution from a Plan C member (see https://www.weareplanc.org/blog/corbyn-statecraft-and-radical-politics-a...) seems to take on board at least some of the criticism in the AF Open Letter and seeks to preserve Plan C's independence from the Labour Party/Momentum whirlwind but still allow some 'individual' members to sink much of their efforts in precisely that direction. Whilst wanting to keep independent of parliamentary politics and what it describes as national 'statecraft' it is still open to dabbling in a bit of radical municipalism. Keeping their common identity as part of 'the Left', even if that is only its insignificant experimental fringe, seems more important to them than coming to any definitive collective opposition to both capitalism and it's supportive state apparatus at all levels.

John Muir's picture
John Muir
Offline
Joined: 18-08-11
Nov 16 2017 10:45
Dannny wrote:
rat wrote:
A recent article on the Plan C website:

Quote:
‘If there is hope, it lies with the Labour Party’

Quote:
The latest contribution to our series on the Labour Party is by Plan C members Camille Barbagallo, Nicholas Beuret, and David Harvie.

https://www.weareplanc.org/blog/if-there-is-hope-it-lies-with-the-labour...

Somewhat misleading headline

The title is an almost-quote from George Orwell. In 1984, the hopeless Winston keeps repeating, "If there is hope it lies with the proles".

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Dec 18 2017 10:42

Manchester Plan C have now picked up on the appalling conditions for housing renters and others in the Greater Manchester area that our local community rag in Salford (and Rob Ray here) have been plugging away at for some time now and plan they say to put some initial efforts into forming a Manchester version of the ACORN union that has had some limited successes around renter issues in Sheffield and elsewhere. Their campaign statement still expresses illusions in Left Labour and an illusory ''power of community organising expressed in the recent election'' but I suppose this turn might have some benefits if others get involved. Still have to wonder how much this is genuinely about 'self organisation' of our class rather than self-promotion of Plan C, most of whom still imagine themselves to have some unique role as the instigators, dare I say 'leaders' of some new social movement?

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Jan 16 2018 17:23

Comrades from the 'Angry Workers World' group in London have previously engaged politically with Plan C around their discussions on the concept of a 'Social Strike'. I'd like to think that some at least in Plan C might take note of this critical text from the same source if they are to avoid sinking still further into the the morass of swampy leftism represented by Momentum and the Corbyn lead Labour Party.
https://libcom.org/blog/migration-national-social-democracy-britain-1501...

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Mar 23 2018 12:26

Picking up on earlier comments about Paul Mason and the aspirations to influence the Labour Party and indirectly national and local state policy via either established or unofficially recognised think tanks, I noticed that Plan C member Eleanor Penny has contributed a piece on the recent 'Women's Strike' initiative with some reasonable sounding aspirations (as I referred to them earlier in my post no 14) but wholly within a reformist framework that avoids relating these to the fundamental barriers of capitalism and class struggle and which she originally contributed to 'The Progressive Policy Think Tank' that has these objectives: https://www.ippr.org/about
Just reinforces to my mind much of the other criticism made on here and other related links mentioned earlier.

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Apr 7 2018 10:18

The Mike Harman/QQ extended critical text here:
http://libcom.org/blog/poverty-luxury-communism-05042018
is well worth a link to this discussion of the fault-lines in Plan C's politics and it's drift towards left reformism even if Plan C are reluctant to respond publicly to such.

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Apr 12 2018 16:52

And of course keeping the discussion going even if Plan C members are keeping their eyes closed this critical text hits home on a number of levels:
https://libcom.org/blog/back-future-rebranding-social-democracy-12042018

Red Marriott's picture
Red Marriott
Offline
Joined: 7-05-06
Apr 12 2018 17:32

This thread should really be re-titled as 'The latest new depths to which Plan C have sunk'.

Steven.'s picture
Steven.
Offline
Joined: 27-06-06
Apr 12 2018 22:14

Plan C is sounding an awful lot like they just should have called themselves Plan B*

* This is a Keynesianism joke, not a morning after pill joke

rat's picture
rat
Offline
Joined: 16-10-03
Apr 15 2018 09:19

The 'Shop' section on their website says a lot:

Rojava Mug

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Dec 2 2019 14:28

The latest 2nd Dec Plan C take on the UK General election sails past all of it's earlier mixed points of view in discussion to go full tilt in active support of the Corbyn lead Labour Party.

Battlescarred
Offline
Joined: 27-02-06
Dec 2 2019 17:20

After the election whether Corbyn wins or loses they will have to face reality and the chances of their disintegration will increase as with other leftist outfits.

Dyjbas
Offline
Joined: 15-05-15
Dec 2 2019 18:29

First as tragedy, then as farce... Like Big Flame before them, Plan C now dissolves into the Labour swamp...

R Totale's picture
R Totale
Offline
Joined: 15-02-18
Dec 3 2019 19:59

Tbh, that's really not how I read it at all. They're obviously still walking a bit of a tightrope in terms of keeping different opinions on board, but it's better than some of the excitable stuff they were putting out in about 2017, and there's bits of it that read like they could be from any anarcho/left-com anti-elections tract:

"We challenge the idea that this is a ‘once in a lifetime opportunity’. This idea suggests that there is no power and no change outside of elections. This is the idea of those who only recognise the power of parliament. But we know from history that the truth is closer to the opposite: no change has ever been made in our favour without strike and struggle and social conflict. Power is in the streets, homes, and workplaces...

The answer lies beyond elections; it lies in all of us; it lies in movements. The idea of one hero, one election, one moment is a myth our society sells us; it can paralyse us from taking action. What we desperately need to be doing is reorganising society so that we are able to meet our own needs, so that we control our own social reproduction.

Forget heroes. After the election, we on the left will need to regroup, to meet, and to keep building the institutions outside of state and capital that we need to win."

I mean, it doesn't say "fuck Corbyn, voting is for wankers", but at this stage they were never really going to put something like that out anyway.

Dyjbas
Offline
Joined: 15-05-15
Dec 3 2019 23:33

Once an organisation is claiming that Labour has "socialist policies", openly canvassing, phone banking, and registering voters, it's crossed the Rubicon, no matter how much spin they put on it.

rat's picture
rat
Offline
Joined: 16-10-03
Dec 4 2019 09:12

So Plac C is definitely back to Plan Corbyn ... again.

"...the success or failure of the Corbyn project will be [in] the power of grassroots society to resist the reaction. And that will depend on us controlling the institutions."

What does this bit mean? Grassroots society? Maybe by grassroots, they are referring to any small, but autonomous resistance, protests and strikes. And those small movements need to be brought round to supporting the Labour Party, which will have the effect, of at least partially, demobilising them. And what are the institutions that Plan C refer to? And who is 'us'?
(It's probably in the article but I've missed it.)

R Totale's picture
R Totale
Offline
Joined: 15-02-18
Dec 4 2019 19:56
Dyjbas wrote:
Once an organisation is claiming that Labour has "socialist policies", openly canvassing, phone banking, and registering voters, it's crossed the Rubicon, no matter how much spin they put on it.

I don't understand why people are talking as if this was something new, whatever Rubicon there is to cross was definitely crossed by 2017, as discussed on the first page of this very thread.

rat wrote:
So Plac C is definitely back to Plan Corbyn ... again.

"...the success or failure of the Corbyn project will be [in] the power of grassroots society to resist the reaction. And that will depend on us controlling the institutions."

What does this bit mean? Grassroots society? Maybe by grassroots, they are referring to any small, but autonomous resistance, protests and strikes. And those small movements need to be brought round to supporting the Labour Party, which will have the effect, of at least partially, demobilising them. And what are the institutions that Plan C refer to? And who is 'us'?
(It's probably in the article but I've missed it.)

I raised my eyebrows at that bit about "controlling the institutions" when I first skimread it as well, because at first glance it seemed like opening the door to the worst kind of "I'm advancing the class struggle by getting a well-paid job at the Guardian/BBC/Civil Service/whatever" crap, but on re-reading:
"It means we have to be in control of the means of our own social reproduction: the way we reproduce our everyday lives. We have to be able to feed, care for and house ourselves, and we have to be in a position to take over our workspaces and turn them over to our needs. We need to build renters unions and co-operative housing, we need militant workers unions, we need care creches that do not depend on feminised labour, and mental health support that empowers us and doesn’t leave us at the mercy of a punitive state. We need access to land to grow our own food and brew our own beer, hosting our own events in our own bars and cafes or make the spaces we frequent part of a movement. We need to common the resources we have and obtain the resources we need.

These institutions play a double role: they strengthen our capacity to struggle in the face of continuing assault from the neoliberal state, but they also allow us to step into the roles that the state currently holds when it withdraws during crisis. This is the manner in which we eventually build hegemony. When Capitalism and the state refuse to meet the basic needs of people, but we can and do, then that’s when we’ll be winning."

That bit doesn't sound so bad, although obviously talking the talk and walking the walk are two different things.

Dyjbas
Offline
Joined: 15-05-15
Dec 4 2019 20:51
R Totale wrote:
I don't understand why people are talking as if this was something new, whatever Rubicon there is to cross was definitely crossed by 2017, as discussed on the first page of this very thread.

No disagreement there.

Spikymike
Offline
Joined: 6-01-07
Dec 4 2019 21:37

R Totale, The ''It means... '' bit is a very (deliberately) confused, mixed bag of stuff which assumes we can somehow create practical institutions (and not just means of everyday struggle) at scale, that can compete with those of both the capitalist state and commercial enterprises short of their revolutionary overthrow. It is little more than a reversal to the more comprehensive Social Democratic programme of yesteryear and so no surprise that they are comfortable with and actively support the more left-leaning Corbyn Labour Party. And yes this is just the end product of a road they have travelled for some time. As an aside there is a cross-over with some anarcho-syndicalist elements which still see the possibility of 'building the framework of socialism' within the shell of capitalism. Doesn't mean we shouldn't support systems of mutual aid within struggles now or in the future but these will always be a subsidiary element within class struggle independent of the state and it's supporting political and economic institutions.

Mike Harman
Offline
Joined: 7-02-06
Dec 9 2019 10:07
Plan C wrote:
We have to be able to feed, care for and house ourselves, and we have to be in a position to take over our workspaces and turn them over to our needs. We need to build renters unions and co-operative housing

The question with this is are they talking about doing these things via direct action, or are they relying on Labour's 'New Models of Ownership' stuff to do it - it's not clear and there's been a lot of muddying of the new models of ownership stuff.