Dead Men Left

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Harry's Place: lying, or ignorant, or both?

Ken Macleod's brisk and readable (if incorrect) assesment of risks for the left in the upcoming elections has inspired a determinedly long-winded spiel from David T at Harry's Place. It's the usual run of feeble semi-smears, playground name-calling and bile, but stands out solely for this claim: local and Euro elections there have been increased votes for the new parties of the right, such as UKIP, the BNP and Respect...

The charitable conclusion would be that the Harry's Place crowd have finally wandered off into the happy, deluded realms of the fantasists. Here, very quickly, are the main points from Respect's founding declaration; here are the resolutions passed at its most recent conference. I challenge anyone to claim that either are "right-wing" in any meaningful sense.

From his response to irate comments, it would seem that David T's sole grounds for making this claim is that the Muslim Association of Britain (MAB) have joined Respect.

This is incorrect. It has never been correct. It is not going to become correct.

Leave aside, for the time being, the casual slurs against MAB; the words "Muslim" and "Association" alone seem to be enough to summon Oriental devils for convinced imperialists. Osama Saaed, writing in The Guardian, a reasonably well-circulated newssheet of some sort, made plain that MAB have not joined Respect. MAB would not even call for a Respect vote in all areas of the country, favouring the Greens, Ken Livingstone and even the Lib Dems.

Either Harry's Place have missed the screamingly obvious, or, as they certainly think they are well-informed, they are deliberately repeating an untruth. Neither case would entirely surprise me. It is, however, about time another hoary myth on the pro-war "left" was laid to rest.