Mark Wallace helpfully points out in an article in his blog http://www.crashbangwallace.com/2010/11/10/yes-to-av-funded-by-bloodstained-soviet-gold/ that the Yes Campaign is funded by “blood-stained” Soviet gold. Apparently this is a reason to vote No in the upcoming referendum on voting reform.
Yesterday we were giving comfort to fascists; today we are the puppets of International Communism.
Here is the trail that leads from Kruschchev to the leaflets I hand out.
The Soviet Union and the Communist Party of the Soviet Union provided financial support to the Communist Party of Great Britain, one of several communist parties operating in the UK. This would be the “blood-stained soviet gold.” At some point this gold was used to buy two small office blocks in London with a book value of £1.8m.
The Communist Party of Great Britain was dissolved in 1991, after the fall of the Soviet Union. It transformed into Democratic Left, whose main activities appear to be organising a tactical voting campaign. I’ll come back to tactical voting in a moment. In 1999 Democratic Left dissolved to become the New Politics Network, a think tank concerning itself with democratic renewal and popular participation in politics. The New Politics Network merged with Charter 88 in 2007 to form Unlock Democracy. Unlock Democracy provides support to the Yes Campaign, and many Yes campaigners are members of Unlock Democracy
So we have some financial support from the defunct Soviet Union to the defunct Communist Party of Great Britain, which has been transformed into some office blocks the rental of which is used to support grassroots democracy in the UK.
This is an old legacy. It’s not as if Uncle Joe Stalin is standing over me with a gun forcing me to vote Yes.
The history of the organisation in the 1990’s and 2000’s shows how it comes to support the Yes Campaign. An interest in tactical voting, something that the Alternative Vote reduces, grassroots campaigning and democratic renewal.
In a way, Unlock Democracy is the great-grandchild of the Communist Party of Great Britain. I’m also the great-grandchild of a communist. My great-grandfather was a communist and pacifist. When the Great War started he found that he could not abandon his brothers, friends and factory colleagues so he joined the medical corps as a stretcher bearer. He carried a stretcher but not a rifle for four years in the trenches. Whenever our nation stops for the two minute silence it is of him that I think first. I’m proud to be descended from a communist. I certainly don’t feel any stigma about it and neither should any Yes campaigner. He wanted what I want, a better life for his family and democracy in his country.
I’ll finish by asking some questions.
Does the fact that the Yes Campaign is supported by a legacy originally from Soviet Russia move the debate on?
Does it mean that the Yes Campaign are commies to a man?
Does finding out that dead communists gave some money to other dead communists mean that First Past the Post is a better electoral system?
Does this revelation explain why you should vote to retain First Past the Post?
Personally I’m glad we’re associated with communist gold. For a minute I was worried we were just a front for the Lib Dems.