From New International, Vol.13, No.3, March 1947, p.96.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).
... “those of the bureaucratic collectivists who argued.”
In the great controversy between Max Shachtman and Ted Grant (see The New International, Feb. 1947) as to whom the above clause refers to, I want to be recorded as voting for Comrade Grant
It should be clear to everybody that the word “those” singles out a group of bureaucratic collectivists and indicates that not all of the proponents of the theory of bureaucratic collectivism have the same arguments. The past tense of the word “argue” indicates that the argument occurred in the past.
If Comrade Grant’s sentence is not clear to some people it should certainly be clear to those who followed closely the 1940 controversy. When I read the sentence I unhesitatingly took it for granted that Grant referred to Trotky’s comment on Bruno R. It never occurred to me that he referred to Shachtman.
The fact that Bruno R. is a mysterious person is completely immaterial. By the way, his book, if I am not mistaken, can be obtained at the New York Public Library. The fact that “those” is plural is also immaterial since Grant has the right to assume that Bruno R. had at least one follower.
There is nothing for Max Shachtman to do except to admit having made a mistake – in fact two mistakes: one in his original comment and one in the rebuttal.
And please do not permit him to make the same mistake for a third time.
Last updated: 14.8.2008