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Andrew Price


No Backsliding

(August 1981)

From Militant, No. 565, 14 August 1981, p. 8.
Transcribed by Iain Dalton.
Marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

Dear Comrade,

John Goleman’s letter concerning the heckling of Neil Kinnock at this year’s South Wales gala (issue 563) completely misses the point made by Merion Evans (560).

The election of the deputy leader of the Labour Party offers Party members a clear choice between the policies of diluted Thatcherism represented by Healey, and the socialist policies endorsed by successive conferences, represented by Tony Benn.

To his shame Kinnock has refused to support Benn. I can understand right-wing Labour MPs supporting Healey (everyone should have a chance of one death wish), but for the life of me I cannot understand why a so-called ‘left’ MP should take the position Kinnock does.

That is the real issue behind Merion’s original letter, which Comrade Goleman avoids in his letter.

As Comrade Goleman seems interested in evoking the memory of previous speakers at South Wales miners galas, may I quote from Nye Bevan who regularly spoke at the gala and was never heckled. Bevan’s advice to Richard Crossman in 1955 is most relevant to Kinnock and other ‘left’ MPs today who choose to backslide on the deputy leadership issue:

“In moments of crisis when the knives are out, equivocation is tantamount to treachery.”


Yours fraternally
Andrew Price
Cardiff SE CLP

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