It’s the stuff you don’t expect that… March 10, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish Politics.
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…screws up a government. It’s true, though, isn’t it? The Reform Alliance, much trailed in the media had little enough effect on the Coalition. The Seanad abolition referendum, even factoring in how little people care about that institution one way or another, likewise. The LPT. Tricky at the beginning, but by the end easily enough dealt with. Water? An open question. Austerity itself, whittling away support but FG is unlikely to drop lower than it’s 2007 election rating of 27% for which they will probably be grateful (the LP? Ah, that’s a different issue).
But look at this, who would have thunk that a close examination of Rehab, under a chief exec whose political home was once FF, would lead to this?
Must be others this evening wondering how long they can hold on.
Here’s an interesting thesis… March 10, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish History, Irish Politics, The Left.
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…Reactions in the West of Ireland to political change in Northern Ireland, 1968-1982. (MA: NUI Galway, 2013) by Gerard Madden. A genuinely innovative perspective on the conflict which is well worth reading in full – and a good healthy Bibliography too! Thanks to the person who sent the link and thanks to Gerard too.
Irish Left Archive: New Document Collections Feature March 10, 2014Posted by AonRud in Irish Left Online Document Archive.
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We’ve recently added a new Collections section to the Irish Left Archive website, with each collection bringing together a group of thematically linked documents with an overview. We hope to expand this over time to highlight more events, places, times or themes that link the documents in the archive, outside the individual commentaries.
You can see it here: Irish Left Archive – Document Collections.
There are three added so far – these may be familiar to readers here, as they bring together documents that were originally added to the CLR as a group, but were separated by the format of the new website. (These combine the documents related to the 1984/5 British Miners’ Strike, the National Association for Irish Justice’s First Annual Conference, and articles from Gerry Foley on the 1975 Official Sinn Féin/IRSP split).
There are a couple more to follow, but we’d also welcome contributions from anyone who would like to provide an overview of a set a documents from the archive. For example, there’s scope there for collections related to the women’s movement, groups of related organisations, particular time periods, and so on – any suggestions are very welcome.
As always, contributions of documents to the archive are also welcome, and now that the new site has had a few months to settle in and see some use, if there’s any feedback, suggestions (or glaring errors you’ve spotted), you can contact us via the site or email@example.com.
They pretend to ask us, we pretend to vote… March 10, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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…is the thought that comes to mind reading this.
Left Archive: Culture and Revolution in Ireland, Eoin Ó Murchú, Official Sinn Féin, 1971 March 10, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish Left Online Document Archive, Official Sinn Féin.
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To download the above file please click on the following link:
This document issued in 1971 by Official Sinn Féin and written by Eoin Ó Murchú, engages with the issue of Culture and Revolution in Ireland. In the course of 24 pages it examines ‘What is Culture’, discusses ‘Native Irish Culture’, considers ‘Imperialism and Culture’ and ‘Socialism and Culture’ and then ‘Language and Culture’ and proposes a ‘Manifesto of the Cultural Revolution in Ireland’.
It is too long a document to give more than a brief overview but the Introduction will serve to offer some insight into its overall approach.
As noted in the Reamhra:
Culture is av dry wide term that embraces many meanings. Some associate culture with the individuals who talk about art and drama, the arty-set; others associate it with literature, art, music, etc., which people have produced; for us, revolutionaries, it has a wider and yet more specific, meaning – a meaning which places culture in its political context. Culture is the response of a people to the environment they live in. As such, the culture of a people includes every aspect of their lives – the way they work, eat, cohabit, play – and it is not confided to the artistic means which different civilisations have developed. What we as revolutionaries are concerned about in in this question of culture and art is the way people’s ideas and attitudes are formed, about the development of revolutionary consciousness.
Ó Murchú quotes Mao Tse Tung’s definition:
‘A given culture is the ideological reflection of the politics and economics of a given society’.
Ó Murchú argues that:
We will always find in our efforts to win the people over to support of our political and economic programme that what is clear to us is often vague and confusing to them. The culture of our present society is not one that encourages revolution, for the dominant economic and political ideas are those of the dominant class in Irish society, and that class obviously is opposed to the social revolution to which we are committed. The whole aim of the cultural apparatus of the state is to condition the people, through its educational system, the mass media of radio and newspapers, and through the general promotion of mythology and superstition.
Quoting Pearse he continues…
Pearse described the educational system that the English imperial government foisted on the Irish people as the ‘murder machine’. ‘The system has aimed at the substation for men and women of mere Things…but these Things have no allegiance. Like other Things they are for sale’.
He notes the ‘immediacy of the cultural question [which] can be seen from the fact of the economic and social existence of the Gaeltacht is so tenuous at the moment.
And he concludes:
…this paper does not pretend to be definitive on this matter of culture. It is not holy writ or dogma and the production of the lecture as a pamphlet is an attempt to widen the scope of our internal education programme.
If the subject is properly discussed and criticised we ail be able to make a programme of policy, perhaps on the lines indicated in the final section, which is called ‘The Manifesto of the Cultural Revolution in Ireland’.
Briefly in relation to the Manifesto, it is notable that he argues that:
Socialism needs artists and intellectuals who will [present the socialist view of humanity and of world progress]… and because only socialism in the modern, because only socialism is responsive to humanity, because only socialism can enrich humanity socialists therefore have the right to demand of artists and intellectuals that they champion the cause of the people in their writings and in their art. If they do not then the socialist movement will expose them for the defenders of imperialism that they must be.
He also suggests that:
The revival of Irish is an integral part of any cultural revolution in Ireland. This does not mean that every person will bee forced by some miraculous compulsion to speak Irish. What it means is that it just be the conscious policy of Irish revolutionaries to call for those measures that will assist the revival of the language: More time and programmes in Irish on television on radio, the bias of a revival programme must be towards the Gaeltacht, for the Culture of the Gaeltacht is a living and vital thing while that of the Galltacht in Irish is either an imitation of Imperialist culture or a weaker version of a pure original.
We must demand of all mass media, in the North as importantly as in the South, that else mass media be used to develop the living culture of working people. The Orangemen think that the Six County state is theirs, but there is as much time devoted to Orange culture on Northern television as there is to any other aspect of Irish culture.
Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week March 9, 2014Posted by Garibaldy in Sunday Independent Stupid Statement of the Week.
This week’s winner is the editorial, and its militarism.
Outside of the obvious contempt of Mr Putin for a militarily effete group of Western democracies whose leaders seek popularity rather than power, the Russian tactics have consisted of an eerily similar attempt to secure a territorial fait accompli via a mix of manufactured hysteria, nationalist chauvinism and diplomatic braggadocio.
Perhaps someone should point out which country is the world’s hyperpower spending as much on its military as the next 9 countries put together. Or perhaps someone from the Sindo should ask the civilian causulties of Iraq and Afghanistan about the militarily effete western democracies. Or perhaps whoever wrote this should just grow up.
Public Lecture: “The “Singing Flame” Rekindled: The Destruction of the Public Records Office 30 June 1922″ – Galway, 10th March March 9, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
“The “Singing Flame” Rekindled: The Destruction of the Public Records Office 30 June 1922″
In the opening engagement of the Irish civil war on the 30th June 1922, the irreplaceable archive held in the Public Records Office inside Dublin’s Four Courts was destroyed by fire and explosion.
Immediately the opposing Free State forces and anti-treaty IRA blamed each other for the Public Records Office’s destruction. In recent years some leading historians have claimed that the anti-treaty IRA deliberately destroyed the archive as act of vandalism before surrendering to the Free State Army. The evidence for this interpretation, as Dr John M. Regan explains in his lecture, is far from conclusive.
Regan revisits an iconic event of modern Irish history to open a discussion about the different ways history is written. Interpretations of the destruction of the Public Records Office, Regan argues, demonstrate how some historians reinterpreted the past in response to the recent ‘Troubles’ in Northern Ireland.
The reinterpretation Regan describes rewrites the past not as it happened, or the way we were taught it happened, but instead recasts history in a more desirable form better suited to our needs in the present. This approach to the past has sometimes been inaccurately called ‘Revisionist History’, but like other professional historians Regan’s call the approached ‘Invented History’, where its aim is to amend, redefine, and ‘improve’ the publics’ memory. Invented history, Regan says, has been a preoccupation of some Irish historians over recent decades, but he questions whether or not society is best served by it.
Dr John M. Regan is lecturer in Irish, British, and Public History at the University of Dundee, Scotland. His latest book Myth and the Irish State was published by Irish Academic Press in December.
SV from the CPOI – March edition March 9, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in European Politics, Irish Politics, The Left, Uncategorized.
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Table of contents:
Vulture capitalists eye Irish homes [NL]
James Reilly’s plenary indulgence [TMK]
The Victorious General
Give us bread and roses too
Social media: Whose interests do they serve? [EON]
Lions led by donkeys [NOM]
Is Monsanto poisoning us? [TMS]
They haven’t gone away, you know! [FK]
United States and European Union launch their destabilisation strategy [EMC]
Did Mandela really change South Africa? [TOM]
Venezuela: A difficult year without Hugo Chávez [SE]
Creating a shared future: Winning the Shankill? [TR]
Letter: Creating a shared future
From the lead article:
Vulture capitalists eye Irish homes
A number of mortgage books have already been sold to unregulated private equity companies or hedge funds, mostly American; but in the proposed sales of the IBRC residential book (13,000 former INBS mortgages) we are looking at the largest sale ever of mortgages to unregulated vulture capitalists . . . What does this mean for mortgage-holders?
Unusual comparisons… March 8, 2014Posted by WorldbyStorm in European Politics, Irish Politics.
The arrival of two leading Ukrainian politicians in Dublin to plead with European Union leaders for meaningful action to prevent a Russian takeover of their country put the simultaneous debate about Ireland’s legacy bank debt into perspective. Whatever the outcome of the Government’s effort to secure a more favourable deal on the debt, our problems look like small potatoes compared with those facing Ukraine.