A brief report from the North London locals' co-operation with the London branch of the Anarchist Federation around the Socialist Worker Party's glorified Marxism 2010 event.
NLSF continued its practice of co-operation with London AF by sharing a stall with anarchist literature outside the SWP's Marxism event - a annual excerise in Leninist brainwashing of usually young people and students who show a genuine interest in fighting for socialism.
NLSF and AF sold books and raised some money, with SF's Stuff Your Boss doing particularly well as a freebie. An anarchist who spoke to us on the stall criticised us london anarchists for not actually attending those meetings specically on anarchism where the SWP trashed it in the eyes of youngsters new to political activity. One objection to this criticism was the fact that you have to pay for a Marxism ticket to attend meetings in the first place, but the feeling soon turned to accept the comrade's criticism as having some point. How can we defend our opinions in the eyes of the young if we are not there to do so? Maybe for next year's event, subs can be dipped into to pay for a ticket or two.
To round off the day, an introduction to anarchism was held in a not-so-nearby pub, with a speaker from Brighton SF and London AF. Unfortunately, the room was overwhelmingly packed with people already in SF and AF, and among those new to anarchism, a small group of youngsters quickly left the room. Questions from a couple of members of another communist group (i forget which) quickly bogged the whole thing down in a largely irrelevant theorectical debate. My personal recommendations for future introductory talks would be a shorter walk to the meeting place, and better advertisement, as well as a focus on the more practical aspects of anarchism, rather than too much history and theory.
All in all it was an interesting day with lessons learned, and certainly not an event to be ignored in the future. Every year people new to political activity will come, and we must be there to show the true revolutionary working-class alternative to the Leninist crap peddled by the SWP.