Pro-remain SWP members have no problem in identifying the official and mainstream leave campaigns as being led by utterly reactionary, racist, neoliberals who stand for and would like to see some sort of Thatcherite Nirvana.
But when it comes to the official and mainstream remain campaigns they often adopt the approach of “Yeah, but…”. “Yeah, they are led by warmongers, neoliberals and the EU is a bosses club responsible for the drowning of refugees and the hammering of Greece. But what about the environmental and workers’ protections and the freedom of movement?”
This line of argument reflects two things. Firstly, that the EU debate had been totally sewn up by the ruling class and its representatives whether leave or remain. The choice they have presented is to continue belonging in a capitalist club or to set up a capitalist club of one.
Secondly, and more seriously, it represents a lack of confidence in arguing for Lexit in practice (for I have no doubt that pro-remain SWP members accept the theoretical arguments behind Lexit).
Lexit has a minuscule public profile, which in large part can be put down to the trade unions’ support for the EU and the confused and conflicting EU position of the Labour Party.
But does that mean that Lexit should be abandoned in favour of a bigger, more immediate hearing? What ever happened to “patiently explaining” and the ability to “swim against the stream”?
The choice isn’t one between the mailed fist of the official leave campaign or the velvet glove of the remain campaign, but international socialism.
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