Joining the Party (Part I)

Having grown up in Syria, certain opportunities were never available to me, most prominently, the ability to do, say, or think anything that might be considered even remotely critical of the government or current social order. Since moving to the US for college, I’ve been enjoying a considerable higher degree of political freedom (higher freedom, not complete freedom), and so I’ve been trying to make the best of it- though considering my school’s location, I’m not sure my seven-man G20 protest march did much to impress the local Amish.

Not a lot impresses these guys...

What I’ve yet to do, however, is join a political party.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t think you need to be a member of a political party to make a difference, but it certainly doesn’t hurt either to have the connections a party can offer either. The problem is- which party should I join? Do I go for the classic CPUSA? Do I try for something socially acceptable like the Green Party? Or should I try a more underground movement like the the Freedom Socialist Party? Socialist Action? PSL? PFP? RCPUSA?

You see the problem here.

Well, that’s what the next few posts are going to center around. I’m going to be taking a look at every major leftist party in the US to determine which I should try to become a member of.

So here’s what I’m looking for:

I. A commitment to abolishing Capitalism- not reforming it. I’m not looking for some party with the end goal of more regulatory laws.

II. A commitment to abolishing government- as before, I’m not looking for a party whose solution to the problems of the world is more power for politicians.

III. A global perspective. The party I join is going to have to be centered around the belief that an injustice anywhere is an injustice everywhere.

IV. Flexibility. Even though the left is splintered into countless Communist, Anarchist, Socialist, Feminist, Other-kinds-of-ist movements, we’re still to few to be picky about who we work with. The party I join must be willing to work with rivals in order to establish justice, truth, and freedom.

With that, let the search commence!

(And as always, if you have any suggestions, I’m open to looking into them…)


3 Responses to “Joining the Party (Part I)”

  1. June 22, 2011 at 10:48 pm

    This is going to make for some great posts…which I may find useful myself, as I’m currently registered under I party I don’t particularly care for. Which is most of them.

  2. June 23, 2011 at 1:45 am

    This is going to be interesting. I decided I was going to join some 3rd party after I finally realized how much of a sham the two party system in this country is, but I still don’t really know which one to pick. Their specific opinions almost don’t really matter, since my personal political beliefs can sway between the various socialist or communist parties on an almost daily basis. It’ll probably be either SPUSA, CPUSA or the Green Party. Stigma is something of an issue. My grandparents just recently got over the fact that I wasn’t somewhere right of Democrat; I don’t know how they would deal with me being a Communist. And the Green Party doesn’t really seem Socialist enough, so I’ll probably end up in SPUSA

  3. 3 Pat Noble
    June 23, 2011 at 10:00 pm

    @ Blacklist- As a member of the Socialist Party USA, I think I can explain why we’re the better choice over the CPUSA or Green Party.

    The CP, while possessing a long history and being the namesake of the communists in America, has several deep flaws to it that make it less like a true communist organization and more like a pro-Democrat organization. Up until Gorbachev came to power in the Soviet Union, the CP operated largely on the orders of the Soviet Communist Party, which was also their main benefactor. The CP eventually broke with the CPSU over glasnost and perestroika. They haven’t participated in Presidential elections since 1984, instead choosing to back the Democratic candidate as the “lesser of two evils.” Sam Webb, the CPUSA’s current chairman, went so far as to say that Obama was a “people’s advocate.”

    The Green Party, while having the ability to rake in decent showings in certain elections, isn’t a real socialist organization. Parts of the their platform fit in with the socialist ideology, but they fall short of calling for the end of capitalism. In short, they don’t tackle the entire problem of capitalism, only pieces of it.

    The Socialist Party USA participates in both electoral action and non-electoral action. We run candidates for President, Congress, state elections, local elections, and so on. Several of our candidates have been elected in non-partisan elections. We are also a multi-tendency organization, which means we have leftists from different ideologies, that all are united behind democratic socialism and a rejection of democratic centralism. Unlike other leftist parties, we do not present ourselves as a vanguard organization. We instead present socialist, alternative solutions to the problems in our society.

    If you have any questions about the SPUSA, feel free to e-mail me at pnoble428@yahoo.com.

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