Australasian Spartacist No. 200

Summer 2007/08


Beware SEP: Scab “Socialists”

The dubious Socialist Equality Party (SEP), affiliated to the International Committee of the Fourth International, stood in the federal elections, claiming to draw a class line “in opposition to the entire political establishment—Liberal, Labor and Greens.” However, while putting forward formal slogans on the right of unions to organise, the SEP’s program rests on the anti-proletarian line that “the trade unions have been transformed...[in]to instruments for the outright disciplining and suppression of the working class” (, 16 October).

This is an apologia for strikebreaking and wilfully conflates trade unions—the basic defence organisations of the working class—with their misleaders. Thus, following the recent United Auto Workers (UAW) strike in the U.S., the SEP’s co-thinkers there advised workers that “should the UAW come to their [workers] plant, to vote to keep it out.” This line dovetails with the interests of bosses from the U.S. to Australia who spend billions every year to keep unions out of the workplace. We warn that the SEP are political bandits who for years acted as paid press agents of various bloody Middle Eastern regimes, and whose services included fingering Iraqi Communists in Britain to the Iraqi embassy of the brutal Ba’athist regime of Saddam Hussein. (See “On Baghdad, and Bagmen” Australasian Spartacist No. 138, September/October 1990.)