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Waltham Forest: Education for theory and practice
Waltham Forest Socialist Party reading group meets on Wednesday evenings. As a new member of the reading group, I have already found that the reading and discussion has been useful, not only for developing my theoretical understanding, but also for the practice of spreading revolutionary ideas.
For instance, our most recent discussion was on the Branch Organisers' Pack - a short guide to the structure of the party, its aims and organisation and the goals that each comrade should set for themselves. Having participated in stalls and paper sales in the past, this document clarified things that I have learnt through these experiences as well as giving me new advice for future campaigns.
It served as a useful reminder, particularly for the newer members such as myself, of the importance of each member taking on a role in their branch while ensuring that we aim to meet possible new Socialist Party members on every activity.
The two previous groups covered The Transitional Programme by Trotsky and The Communist Manifesto by Marx and Engels.
The discussions highlighted the ways in which both of these texts are relevant for the Socialist Party and its international sister organisations today.
For example, we discussed how the transitional method has been used in the campaign for a $15 an hour minimum wage in the US, led by co-thinkers of the Socialist Party there, Socialist Alternative.
Before our branch meeting on 21 July, two members of the Leeds Socialist Party decided to sell the Socialist outside Leeds City bus station and city centre train station. We sold seven papers.
At the bus station two security guards politely asked us to move on. Soon we got into a discussion on their work and how much they get paid (only just covering their bills every month, with little money for anything else).
A taxi driver who was a member of the union Unite bought a copy while he was waiting in queuing traffic. One worker said: "I work 40 hours a week and have holes in my shoes" as she wearily walked to the bus.
The Socialist, and those who sell it, give people the confidence that we can fight back against such cruel living conditions. People often left after our conversations with a smile replacing a grimace as they rushed to or from work.
Socialist Party Summer Camp 2014
August Bank Holiday weekend
Starts Friday 22 August 3pm to Monday 25 August 1pm
Sessions include the Middle East, Trotsky's Transitional Programme and the real history of the Great War.
Single working (£50), Single unwaged (£30), Family of 4 waged (£100), Children (£12.50), Day tickets (£15)
Facebook: Socialist Party Summer Camp 2014
In The Socialist 31 July 2014:
Socialist Party feature
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Socialist Party workplace news