First of all I must say that I am very surprised that the very important text in IR 156 from January 2016 still have not prompted responses from comrades. These documents are significant signposts for the future of the ICC yet have neither been applauded nor criticised - just ignored
I would like to applaud the approach of self criticism in preparing the balance sheets contained in the latest IR . In particular, the identification of an underestimation the capacity of c to maintain itself, globalisation and the restructuring of the working class, some limited recognition of the weakness of Luxemburg markets theory and responses to elongated period of decline in wc struggles since wave of period 60s to 80s.
I would criticise the text in IR however as a balance sheet thatlacks incisiveness and is too keen to self congratulate itself. In saying that I do recognise the major contributions that the ICC has made on issues such as decadence, the historic course, the working class movement and more generally on the body of work and the range of issues raised for discussion in the workers movement. There a has been a growing tendency nevertheless to prepare overlong texts on organisational and behavioural issues, and self analysis that just tend to disguise weaknesses, obscure issues and self justify. Frankly im left with the impression that the concern demonstrated is for icc militants not todays wc movement as a whole
I would like to put forward some obvious questions that the texts avoid:
1 Why the ICC has all these periodic internal confrontations?
2 Why no critical analysis if the ICCs approach to internal discussion? Yes im happy to reject the extreme criticisms of Stalinism but it is still the case that internal discussion has been criticised from many quarters. Has the ICCs approach, this determination to reach a conclusion and the determination to make swingeing criticisms of others contributed to these breakups?
3 Has orientation of international organisation in distinction to federal approach been successful? The approach was identified uncritically in the texts but given that the org has given up on being a pole of international regroupment and appears to be withdrawing from intervention in favour of a fractions role of analysing past events. Why shouldn’t this approach be questioned through a serious discussion? If the new period changes the focus of militant activity should it not also change the organisational structure?
4 Why have obvious points of political disagreements over the past 40 years not been addressed in the balance sheets? ie left as natural party of opposition, 80s as years of truth, parasitism, Decomposition and the idea that we are in the final phase of cap, an increasingly problematic understanding of the historic course, economic analysis and problems with luxemburgs analysis of role of extra cap markets.
5 Why is there such a inability to provide clarity in the explanations of certain issues? The ICC does not appear to be able to produce definitive statements on what it thinks on proletarian morality, proletarian culture and centrism and the new role as a fraction appears now to join that list (its certainly not clear to me from the text).
6 Why has there not been a real attempt to draw a balance sheet of the period of the past 8 years of crisis in the ICC? This has been the explanation for withdrawing from public interventions and reducing publications so, was it crisis and has it been resolved or was it actually just the start of this new practice? Is it continuing or is it over.
7 How have these issues/weaknesses affected ICC political analysis in the recent period? I am particularly interested to hear how early, major criticisms of CWO and IFICC relating to their alleged adoption of academicism and rejection of intervention and lack of understanding of historic course, can be squared with the ICC’s new approach. The ICC has adopted what it was criticising these organisations for yet has not either revised criticisms nor apologised.