The Marxists are furious (again) at Pauline Hanson for being pro union.
Marxists being mad at Pauline Hanson is nothing new. In the nineties when the fiery redhead from Ipswich came on the scene Marxist groups in Australia almost immediately began physically attacking her meetings. From the party launch that was attacked by members of the International Socialist Organisation to the Melbourne meetings mobbed by gangs of thugs organised by Stephen Jolly of Militant and Sue Bolton of the Democratic Socialist Party. Every time there was violence at a One Nation event there was a Marxist group behind it.
It’s a tradition that has been carried on by their ideological descendants with Socialist Alternative activists like Carl Jackson and Priya De recently organising attempted violent mob disruptions of a One Nation AGM and Pauline Hanson’s Senate launch.
The various members of Australia’s Marxist groups have it as a point of pride that whenever there has been anti-One Nation violence they were there. Older activists well into their grey hairs like Jerome Small and Tess Lee Ack have written long and gloating articles about how their violent thuggery in the 90s (although condemned by centre-leftists at the time) turned out to be an effective way of strangling Hanson’s attempts to set up a nationwide party organisation.
I can imagine young gender-queer, stick armed, sickly neophytes gathering around the bald dome and pendulous belly of Socialist Alternative “Industrial Organiser” Jerome Small as he smiles to himself and recounts the glory days of his youth when they attacked ordinary Australians who wanted to stop immigration with rocks, eggs and fists and left some of them twitching and bleeding in the gutter.
So what do you do as a Marxist when Pauline Hanson votes in favour of a policy you want?
You condemn her for doing it of course.
While it’s fun to think our red friends might have a moment of doubt when Hanson votes against a union busting bill, the truth is that anyone unable to handle at least a little cognitive dissidence wouldn’t have been able to stay a Trotskyist for long.
And so the result is Kath Larkin’s article in the Socialist Alternative newspaper Red Flag.
You might remember Miss Larkin from her stunning performance on ABC’s QandA program where she managed with a simple, short, retarded-looking period of gurning to make herself look like the biggest idiot to grace the national broadcaster since the previous week.
It’s considerably more unlikely that you’d remember Miss Larkin from her attempt to be elected to parliament under the banner of the Socialist Alternative electoral front “Victorian Socialists” where she gained a grand total of 4.23 per cent in the seat of Cooper. Marxists are typically not great at getting the votes of ordinary people, regardless of how much they like to pose as their saviors.
It’s even more unlikely that you’d remember Miss Larkin as once of the voices of Extinction Rebellion, as one of the spokespersons for the IMARC riots or as a Socialist Alternative student politician.
But you should pay attention to her just this once, because this article by her attacking Pauline Hanson for supporting the unions that Kath (as a Trotskyist) believes will eventually take power and implement a totalitarian state is freaking hilarious.
Kath begins her article with abuse. Hanson is a “dangerous, racist bigot. She is no friend of workers or our unions”. Which is of course why she just voted against a union busting bill.
Kath then blames the unions for accepting the vote (as if the CFMEU should have sent some of their burlier members to tackle the elderly senator on her way to the chamber): “That Australia’s unions have relied on this bigot and her allies to save us from an existential threat speaks volumes about just how bankrupt the strategy guiding our movement is”.
You see according to Kath, Hanson voting against the government’s “ensuring integrity” bill is a clever trick to fool unionists into supporting her instead of Marxists like Kath. This fiendish plan has long been a part of the “far right’s playbook” in their attempts to distract the proletariat from the goal of worldwide Marxist revolution.
What really sticks in the craw of extremists like Kath is the fact that the ACTU openly thanked Hanson for defeating the bill on national television. The Trotskyists see themselves as the “true” voice of the working class and the fact that the peak union body is publicly praising a woman they consider the equivalent of a secular Satan is really, really annoying for them.
Kath concludes her piece calling for a return to the days of the illegal national general strike that freed jailed communist unionist Clarrie O’Shea; but even she has to admit that the era of Marxist led union militancy in Australia is over. In the late sixties there were dozens of unions either influenced or outright controlled by members of the Stalinist CPA or the Maoist CPA-ML. Large chunks of the union membership saw outright Communists as being “one of us” and were willing to fight for them. This was at least partially due to the fact that the Communist parties of the 40s, 50s and 60s recruited not just from the universities but from factory floors, warehouses, workshops and dockyards.
Those days are long gone. While Kath did manage to get herself elected “Women’s officer” for the Rail Tram and Bus Union after leaving Uni she was recruited on campus just like 90% of her organisation. Since the 70s, with the rise of Trotskyist groups (who typically recruit almost entirely on Unis) and the decline of Maoist and Stalinist derived organisations communists in Australia now almost exclusively start their activist careers in tertiary education.
Socialist Alternative academics Tom Bramble and John Minns even published an analysis of the organisers of the Melbourne S11 riots of September 2000 (still the largest left wing riot this century) and found that out of a group of around forty only five had ever worked in any job which could be considered ‘blue collar’ (and none were still employed there). Only four had even had parents from a blue-collar background. Even more telling over half of the organisers interviewed were uni student or student union officials. And this was 20 years ago. In the time since I suspect that the core of left wing extremist activists in Australia has only grown more homogeneous in class background.
I get a feeling the reason why Marxists are reacting like a vampire to a crucifix (or for that matter, like a Marxist to a crucifix) when they hear the ACTU praising Pauline Hanson is because deep down, they’re a little scared.
You see back in the sixties a lot of working class Australians really did see Communist activists as being “one of us”. These days a lot of those same people, their children and their grandchildren are more likely to see themselves in Pauline Hanson than in Kath Larkin.
And the anxiety that causes some of the worst people in Australia is delicious to see. The Marxists are nervous, which should make all true Australians happy.