Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Ralph Miliband

Ralph Miliband was about as left wing as it is possible to get without meeting himself coming back the other way! One boiling afternoon during his first summer in London, he went to Highgate cemetery, found Karl Marx's grave and, standing with his fist clenched, swore "my own private oath that I would be faithful to the workers' cause".

A rampant red, he counted amongst his close friends left wing radical activist Tariq Ali and Tony Benn with whom he colluded unsuccessfully to move the Labour Party way to the left.

His books about the unequal relationship between business and politicians, and in particular about the tendency of the Labour party, and parties like it, to over compromise with capitalism have been taught in universities in Britain and far beyond since the 1960s. No wonder our students became so politically radical in the 1960s and 70s.

Outside academia, he also spent countless dogged hours as an activist, trying to establish more genuinely socialist alternatives to the Labour way of doing things. 

He also spawned a pair of dangerous lefty bastards, so when we are busy slagging off "Red Ed", perhaps we should remember the man that made him what he is and perhaps burn them both?

Nominated by : Blue Meanie