George Walford: Splits and Trots

The Observer of 27 October included a report on the affairs of the Workers’ Revolutionary Party. (Its members call themselves Trotskyists, but the party might he better termed Redgravist; it seems to be the connection with the actress, rather than with the Russian politician, that wins it publicity). One group within the party wants to establish connections with other left-wing groups, extending a fraternal hand even to the Labour Party, while another, including Gerry Healey, who is reported to have founded the party, would maintain its traditional revolutionary purity, spurning reformist organisations, in the pursuit of “permanent revolution.”

This is, of course, to be expected. Political individualism, the insistence upon mental independence, is characteristic of the eidodynamics, and the Trotskyists, epidynamic, are pretty far towards the eidodynamic extreme. They are not, like the (A-)SPGB, barred from all political alliances, but they cannot accept any without severe internal upheavals.

It is particularly interesting that the group claiming to have supplied most of the party’s funds should have appealed to the courts to obtain recovery. It might be thought strange that Trotskyists should behave in such a conventional, legalistic, eidostatic way, but not when one recalls the principle of s.i. that the major features acquired in progressing along the ideological range are both suppressed and carried forward in the course of further development.

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We have never been able to work up much of an interest in detective stories; life and society offer enough problems without adding these laboured contrivances. (Raymond Chandler’s work is a different matter, not so much, detection as inverted romanticism). Even the occasional bright spot in the Sherlock Holmes stories may not be wholly intentional; did Conan Doyle really mean to demonstrate the value of the negative when he drew attention to the dog that did not bark in the night? Was it with full awareness that he presented this insight: “Oscillation upon the pavement always means une affaire de coeur?” (For the bibliographers among us that is from The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, second edition, published by George Newnes Ltd, London; 1893, p. 59).

from Ideological Commentary 21, November 1985.