Cadres and organizing

Dave Riley responds in the comments to Marxist groups, organizing, and clowning.

Personally I think the old guard standalone groupuscule form like the ISO, your old outfit, the SWP, etc has reached its use by date. But where Camejo tripped up, I think, is that he failed to note the massive advantage of cadreisation and collective commitment that is fostered in these partyish milieux under Leninist protocols.

Absolutely. It’s often the cadre organizations whose members keep working long after everyone else has gone home or given up. It’s in their collective DNA to do so.

You need very serious activists working together to do politics that returns to the attack again and again. But that’s the rub. How do you sustain that core without falling victim to the circle or bunker spirit? Especially when you are still marginal regardless of all your activity.

Dedication that was once admirable can become inbred and exclusionary, pushing out others, causing friction and fractures. Really, circular firing squads are such a huge waste of resources and time…

Maybe the organization needs to open up. Realize that other besides cadre can and should be members, that they can bring new ideas and perspectives into the group. Indeed, a group that remains insular has little hope of growing and spreading their message.

Would the non-cadre change the group? Absolutely. That’s what the cadre are afraid of, losing control. But if they took the risk, they could end up with a much larger organization and wouldn’t need to be tireless cadre any more because there would be so many more to do the work.