Talk:Socialist Alliance (England)

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Far left?[edit]

According to Wikipedia far left "describes persons or groups who believe in radical or extreme socialist or communist ideologies. The far-left usually believes in achieving radical social and political change. Unlike the moderate left-wing, the far-left typically rejects achieving social or political change through democratic means, and believes in overthrowing the existing order by violence."

It is therefore obvious that the Socialist Alliance cannot be described as 'far left': if they rejected democratic means and favoured violence, they would not participate in elections. pir 06:36, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)

The SA is widely and correctly considered to be "far left". Old Labour (and many elements of new labour/ the lib dems) could be described as having been "left wing" (with a few more extreme elements). The SA is certainly far more radical than old labour.
If wikipedia is to call the SA "left wing" then articles on the BNP, National front, etc. must correspondingly been amended to simply "right wing". These groups are around the same distance from the "centre" divide (if that), albeit in the opposite direction, to the the Socialist Alliance. They take part in the democratic process and do not believe in overthrowing the existing order by violence, and therefore, by your definition abviously cannot be described as "far"-anything.
The communist party of britain is part of the SA. If an openly communist party cannot be called "far left" then please tell what can!
If the wikipedia definition of "far left" suggests that only revolutionary terrorists/violent insurgents can be described as such, then that definition needs to be changed. Wikipedia usage should reflect general usage.
Moreover, the SWP's "catchphrase" has long been "One solution - revolution!" - are you suggesting that this does not belie their intention of achieving "radical social and political change"?!
Hence, I shall return the description to "far left". 06:48, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I agree with that interpretation. This seems like the leftist parallel of France's right-wing Front National. On both the far-right and far-left there are some groups who participate in elections. Perhaps someone who is really far-right or far-left to the point of not participating in the political system (like the far-right "militia" movements in the US) should be described as e.g. "radical far-right", and groups like the Socialist Alliance and National Front should be just plain "far-left" or "far-right"? In either case, far-right and far-left need updating. --Delirium 07:03, Feb 10, 2004 (UTC)
In the case of violent militia groups/terrorists, all that need be said is that they are 1) Violent groups, and 2)far-left/right. The ideology to which they subscribe does not necessarily imply violence to obtain power. If the SWP gain power by democratic mandate it would do no different that if it obtained power by a violent uprising.
I think the term "radical" can confuse the issue, since most people would consider the election-participating far-left as being radical; the violent far-left being even more radical! I'm not sure about exactly what the solution is for delineating orders of magnitude within the "far" spectra, without compromising NPOV, so I would suggest the best solution for the time being is simply to "far-left/right" and add a qualifying "militia" or "terrorist" (etc.) adjective if the group in question is of a militia/terrorist/etc. nature.

  • first of all left-wing does not exclude far-left (i.e. the SA could be both)
  • I agree with Delirium that the problem lies with the definition of far left and far right, and they should be changed. So I take back my concern about the description of the SA as "far left" (but only if far left is changed).
  • far left/right only describes a political group's position in relation to other political groups -- it makes no statement about the means (e.g. violence) which a group is prepared to use
  • "Radical" does not equate or relate to violence (mainstream politicians commonly call for "radical reform"). I would definately reject the word "terrorist" in this context because it is highly emotionally charged and now commonly used for propaganda purposes, therefore not NPOV in this context. How about "militant" or "armed" group etc.? pir 08:01, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Far-left is probably appropriate for the SA, although socialist would be better, being more specific. Essentially, I agree with pir about nomenclature. Incidentally, the CPB is not a member, the CPGB(PCC) is, but the participation of revolutionary socialist groups does not mean that the organisation as a whole is revolutionary (it definitely isn't). For instance, the Militant Tendency was a far-left group operating in the Labour Party (and the original CPGB tried to affiliate), but that did not mean that the LP was ever a far-left organisation. So if it is to be far-left, the article on far-left needs to include reformist socialist groups such as this one. Warofdreams 17:56, 11 Feb 2004 (UTC)
With a revised article on far-left, I feel that this adjective accurately describes the SA. I'm still not happy with the SA being introduced as far-left here for the simple reason that it is almost always used in a slightly derogatory way, with connotations of dangerous extremism (i.e. not entirely NPOV). Therefore it would be better to state that they are to the left of the Labour Party. I agree with Warofdreams that socialist would be best - except there's little use in telling people that the Socialist Alliance is socialist.... pir 00:45, 12 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Expanding this Entry[edit]

I added subcategories to encourage expansion. These headings are only suggestions. A few tables of election returns could be inserted. SA website is now defunct and for sale, but I haven't deleted the link. Added link to 2001 election platform which is a 1.6 MB PDF file on the SADP website. If this violates protocol, then we should just make a note following the SADP. DJ Silverfish 18:38, 8 Mar 2005 (UTC)

  • I've removed some headings as I felt they are currently too many - but please feel free to reinstate them if you are planning to expand the section significantly. I've deleted the defunct weblink as there is no prospect of it returning. I don't see any problem with the PDF link provided it has the current warning note. Warofdreams 11:01, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Adding a graphic[edit]

I added a photo from the back of the 2001 election manifesto. It may be too large for the page. Here is a smaller logo: [[Image:SAlogo.jpg|]]. These should be in the public domain now. DJ Silverfish 23:05, 15 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Election Results[edit]

I've added the following tables to the discussion page, but the layout is not quite what it should be. I can find some, but not all of the relevant information. This could be updated and added to the main page later, if sources can be found. DJ Silverfish 19:58, 13 Mar 2005 (UTC)

General election # of candidates # of elected candidates Total popular vote % of popular vote
2001 98 0 57,553 0.2%
1997 xx 0 X x.x%
1992 xx 0 X x.x%

Source: - gives the result by constituency.

Local Elections[edit]

I deleted the table here due to formatting problems.

May 1 2003 local election

  • Preston, Town Centre Result
    • SA 546
    • Labour 440
    • Conservative 228
    • Lib Dem 220


By-election Results[edit]

Description of External Links[edit]

The external link to the website of the Socialist Alliance [2005] previously contained a clause indicating that the Socialist Alliance [2005] was "(previously the Socialist Alliance Democracy Platform)". As a study of its website will verify, the Socialist Alliance [2005] makes no claim to have been previously called the Socialist Alliance Democracy Platform. I have therefore deleted this clause of the description of the external link. Conversely, the external link to the website of the Democratic Socialist Alliance previously contained a clause indicating that the Democratic Socialist Alliance was "(previously part of the Socialist Alliance Democracy Platform)". Read together, these two external link descriptions were illogical. If one organisation had been "part" of the SADP, then how could another have been the successor to its whole? In fact, as a study of the Home Page of the website of the Democratic Socialist Alliance will verify, the DSA states that it was "formerly named the Socialist Alliance Democracy Platform". I have therefore deleted "part of" from the description of the external link.

Election box metadata[edit]

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By-Election Date Candidate Rank Vote % of popular vote
Tottenham 2000 Weyman Bennett 4th 885 5.4%
Preston 2000 Terry Cartwright 4th 1,210 5.7%
Ipswich 2001 Peter Leech 8th 152 0.6%
Ogmore 2002 Jeffery Hurford 7th 205 1.1%
Brent East 2003 Brian Butterworth 5th 361 1.73%