Class vote

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How odd for Jim Fairlie to say the SNP must ditch socialism and appeal to middle classes (your report, 24 October).

Noticeably, as Marx pointed out, a considerable section of the middle classes has always embraced a form of socialism.

He called it conservative or bourgeois socialism, which seems to maintain “bourgeois society by redressing social grievances”. Are today’s socialists much different in socio-economic class from the “bourgeois socialists” Marx criticised long ago? He included economists, philanthropists, humanitarians, do-gooders, charity workers and “hole-and-corner reformers of every imaginable kind”.

Moreover, it can’t be assumed that the “working classes” have necessarily embraced various forms of socialism.

Consider, for instance, historical studies like Angels in Marble, revealing the propensity of working classes to vote Conservative. It could well be that over the past 40 years the working classes have become increasingly “bourgeoisified”. Arguably, in today’s political context there is little, if any, strong association between class and voting.

Ellis Thorpe

Old Chapel Walk