April 13, 2005
NO SHELTER FROM THE STORM (via Tom Morin):
Socialist Scholars' Split Cancels Confab (JEREMY SMERD, April 13, 2005, NY Sun)
For 23 years, the Socialist Scholars Conference was a big tent under which leftist activists and academics took shelter in an increasingly conservative America. Last June, however, seven of the group's 16 board members resigned, "in protest of the lack of democratic and participatory governance procedures."
As a result of the split, the group's annual conference has been canceled, at least for this year. Meanwhile, the seven who quit the board quickly formed a new organization, the 2005 Left Forum, which has scheduled its debut conference for this weekend at the CUNY Graduate Center in Midtown Manhattan.
The new group grew in large part out of a desire by dissidents to broaden the socialist conference's scope to include more activists. Though it preceded the November presidential election, observers said the split also reflects internal tension simmering within the broadly defined but fractured "left," which has not been able to respond en masse to the rightward shift in American politics in recent years. Specifically, the resignations were a referendum, those who handed them in said, on the Socialist Scholars Conference's ability to reflect the ideals of inclusion and consensus building that they had sought to foster in the world at large.
"We did not want to be part of an organization where we felt people were violating their own principles," a board member who resigned, Stanley Aronowitz, said.
It took him 23 yewars to figure out Socialists aren't interested in democracy? Posted by Orrin Judd at April 13, 2005 12:00 AM