On 8 March, the “Initiative for Democratic Socialism” (IDS) had its founding congress and officially transformed itself into a political party. In the invitation to the congress we have written that in the last twenty years all political parties in Slovenia have been representatives of one and the same fraction, the fraction of capital. We have emphasized that it is high time Slovenia gets a proper socialist party that openly and consciously represents a socialist alternative to both, the crisis in Slovenia as well as the crisis in European Union.
Both, the date as well as the place of the congress were not chosen by coincidence. International Women’s Day that socialist have been celebrating for more than one hundred years, is a type of tradition that IDS wants to honour and develop further on. This is especially important nowadays when we are experiencing an erosion of all kinds of rights that were once perceived as self-evident. Capitalism always was and always will be chauvinistic, therefore socialism must be feminist. Our decision to hold the founding congress in the center devoted to the memory of fighters in the Spanish civil war, was no coincidence either. We believe that internationalism expressed at that time, when more than 30.000 volunteers from more than 50 countries (among them 1600 Yugoslavs) defended the Spanish republic, is a tradition we must be proud of and further develop.
The congress was very well attended and at the moment our party already has more than 300 members. On the congress we have confirmed our party program which focuses on both the situation in Slovenia as well as situation in Europe and offers concrete conclusions that would be possible here and now and would get us a few steps closer to Socialism. The party statute was also confirmed and here again we have expressed our commitment to the principles of direct democracy. The party actually doesn’t have a president, instead it has a coordinator that is a legal representative as well as in charge of other coordinators (for international relations, for program, regional expansion etc.). However the real political power is in the council which is directly elected on the congress and has the greatest power and authority in the times between the congresses. Council consists of 31 members that are elected directly on the congress and of 26 members that are delegates of local branches of the party. The idea behind such structure is that power is as dispersed as possible and that every member of the party has a real opportunity to participate in the process of party development.
It is worth noting that we also received a lot of international support, which was expressed by: Austrian Communist Party, Italian Communist Party, Communist Refoundation Party (Italy), Spanish United Left, German Die LINKE, Greek SYRIZA, French Front de Gauche and Finnish Left Alliance.
We have concluded our congress with collective singing of the International. Our immediate tasks are now regional expansion, consolidation of party infrastructure, candidacy for European elections and continuation of our international work. The candidacy for European elections will be done together with two other parties – Democratic Workers Party and Party of Sustainable Development, which form the coalition “United Left”. A couple of weeks ago this coalition had its own founding congress which was attended and supported by Alexis Tsipras and got a substantial media coverage.
Website: Initiative for Democratic Socialism