Roots of the Workers World Party

The so-called "Global Class War" Trotskyist current of Sam Marcy and Vincent Copeland was mainly centered in the SWP of Buffalo, New York, rooted in the blast furnace industrial proletariat there.

Following World War II, the Fourth International faced a political crisis trying to reconcile Trotsky's statement that if the war's aftermath failed to produce a new wave of socialist revolution, all of Marxism would need to be reconsidered. Trotsky's widow Natalia Sedova based her switch to Shachtman's politics on that premise.

In contrast, the Marcyites declared that socialist revolutions in China and Yugoslavia had fulfilled Trotsky's expectations. For them the role of the Marxist party in capitalist countries was to ally itself (i.e., the conscious sector of its working class) with the victorious workers' states in a straightforward strategic display of class solidarity in a class war that had become global.

To many, the Marcyite pro-Stalinist political orientation seemed to be the U.S. variant of Pabloism; actually, it was the opposite. Michel Pablo's perspective was deeply pessimistic, whereas the Marcyites were fully charged with revolutionary optimism, further fortified by the Cuban revolution as time went on.

This stance in turn meant playing down to insignificance polemics against Stalinism, while seeking leadership of the class through exemplary action. The Marcyites remained uneasily as a faction within the SWP until the USSR's military invasion of Hungary in 1956, which they supported and the SWP denounced. Depending on whose version you believe, the Marcy-Copeland faction either left (Marcy) or was expelled (Cannon), and formed Workers World Party in 1957.

The party newspaper banner debuted with a silhouette of Lenin in one corner and Trotsky in the other, bracing the heading, "Colored and White Unite and Fight for a WORKERS WORLD." The founders never looked back, and from then to the present kept their doctrinaire politics strictly internal. However, they were always fun in their taunts to the SWP.

For example, during the Socialist Regroupment period, the United Socialist ticket headed by [Stalinists] Otto Nathan and Annette T. Rubenstein ran for state offices in New York in 1958, with support of the SWP. WW cadres would question the SWP orators, "Comrades, how is it that you could not get along with those of us who regard the Hungarian uprising as a bourgeois nationalist insurgency, but then you can bloc politically with those who call it a fascist counter-revolution?"

At about that time, the proletarian left wing (New York waterfront, Cleveland industrial, and California lumber) branches of the Communist Party were being expelled, after delivering their anti-Foster/Dennis resolution, "Our Reply to the Conciliators of Revisionism," and Harry Haywood's "For a Revolutionary Position on the Negro Question" [Black Belt self-determination]. When that group established the Provisional Organi