Is organised labour even that much, a "junior partner", in the Democratic Party?
Well, truthfully today it is probably more like in third place behind the environmentalists. Still, I would argue that there have been solid gains by the left. Social Security, Medicaid, Obamacare, unemployment insurance, various programs under the Department of Health and Human Services (DHS), the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Department of Labor, and even the Department of Commerce, particularly within the Economic Development Administration. (Full disclosure: my past includes portions of my salary being paid for by HUD and DHS anti-poverty grant programs).
Well, yes, ML does generally reject such "electoral coalitions" because they have a tendency not to work
Right, whereas Communist revolutions have brought nothing but joyous and gleeful results for all of mankind (/ sarcasm).
On Gandhi - without a Britain too weak to maintain a large Empire and the growing threat of revolutionary national liberation movements (see Bhagat Singh), he would never achieved what petty gains he did
1) John F. Kennedy used to like to talk about the journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.
2) That Britain was "too weak to maintain a large empire" merely helps to explain how Gandhi succeeded. That he won the competion against "revolutionary national liberation movements" sounds like sour grapes to me.
3) At least they were gains. Not like the famines that followed Stalin's mis-management of the economy, or Mao's "Great Leep Forward" which by almost all accounts was a disastrous step backward. I know, certain Maoist-Stalinist sources have so brainwashed a distinct minority that such a tiny minority now refuses to believe what the rest of us have come to accept as historical fact.
it continued to be mercilessly exploited by Western corporations, a form of neo-imperialism which is just as bad as classical forms of imperialism, it's just that the paperwork looks different.
See point number 3) above.