I rejoined the SSP in November (after leaving in September after a prolonged period of bullying from inside the Party, and defamation directed at me from both inside and outside the party), because I saw cause for hope in what was going on in places like West Dunbartonshire and Ayrshire regardless of what, in my opinion and many other comrades who helped to detoxify the SSP brand during the independence referendum, was the huge mistake last year of dissolving into something that was hostile and indeed smaller than what the SSP had become (across social media/ the net/ amongst the Yes Scotland voters etc).
I learned a couple of weeks back that my "application" had been rejected, following a motion to EC submitted by EC member, SLP/Rise proponent and PCS representative John Davidson. It took from my online "joining" through to being informed, a total of four months to be informed of my rejection - a historic one in many respects as I don't recall an "application" being discussed at EC ever before. I attach two excerpts from my bank statements - I would hope a cheque can be sent to me and i can assure you the money will go to a cause that is willing to have my activism). NB - attached to original email.
I was very disappointed - not only about not being able to help rebuild the shattered SSP, but also not being able to help rebuild what we had done through Campsie Branch. And also shocked that I was not given a chance to reply to whatever charges that were laid against me.
I don't feel the SSP will now be ready for the local elections next year as it should have been preparing from last year. Instead we have been led towards total embarrassment in this May's elections through our association with the dreadfully managed and highly premature alliance, Rise.
I feel what has let the SSP down in the past year, is a very odd analysis from an out of touch self titled "leadership."
The SSP used to be a truly pluralist party open to public discussion and debate (the Voice, for example, used to carry debate and discussion that went out to the public in the old fashioned way). I think the closing down of debate and discussion will mean the death of the SSP - a death that was put off a few years by those of us who had historical memory of what we had joined and helped to create during the superb period of 2002-2005 and who had hope during the independence referendum of rescuing the party and pulling it back to those roots.
The party has chosen to take a line very different from the one I joined. I am extremely saddened by that.
I feel that what happens post May will shape the left for the future in Scotland. I hope discussion and debate will not be curtailed by those in a hurry to have power and their view imposed on others as "the left," and the rejection of socialists as "enemies of the party."
On a positive note, I feel that some of what Rise has tried to achieve has been noble and good. And I can only hope those with a real Democratic socialism for the 21st century mindset prevail in the SSP, rather than the one that curtails dissent and discussion.
ex -Campsie Branch Organiser
ex-SSP Online Organiser