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A smack on the head is just what you get: Cóir, Youth Defence and the Catholic Right September 22, 2009

Posted by smiffy in Lisbon Treaty.
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Whatever your views on the Lisbon Treaty, pro or anti, I think everyone on here who is both honest and sane would agree that its ratification won’t bring about the introduction of abortion in Ireland.  This post is about neither the Treaty itself nor abortion.
With that in mind, I’d suggest that this week’s ‘Lisbon Treaty Sheer Brass Neck’ award should go to Niamh Uí Bhriain of Cóir.  Responding to Bishop Noel Treanor’s statement that there is no religious reason for a Catholic to oppose the Treaty, she said
“Bishop Treanor’s intervention was quite extraordinary,” she said. “He threw himself into political campaigning because of his support for the treaty.
“But, worst of all, he felt free to misrepresent and attack No campaigners. I would remind the Bishop that the days of belting Irish citizens with the crozier are thankfully long gone,” she said.
The irony of Cóir accusing others of misrepresentation, and of Uí Bhriain seemingly celebrating the declining influence of the Catholic Church is funny enough, but not enough to clinch the prize.  Instead, she gets it from the crozier remark.  Those of us who know Niamh Uí Bhriain as Niamh Nic Mhathúna, founder of Youth Defence, and who remember the tactics of her and her buddies in the early 1990s might be allowed a raised eyebrow at her new-found aversion to belting people with sticks.
More seriously, those commentators and letter-writers who consider the Bishop’s statement (and today’s from the Conference of Bishops) to represent a refutation of Cóir, or who find it odd that fundamentalist Catholics would position themselves in opposition to the Church hierarchy completely fail to understand the nature of Cóir (or, more correctly, the Cóir-Youth Defence-Family and Life collective of organisations, operating out of Life House on Capel Street) and what has happened to the Catholic right in Ireland over the last 15 years.  In fact, the emergence of Cóir in the second referendum (and in the absence of Libertas) as arguably the most visible organisation campaigning against the Treaty, and possibly the most influential group on the Catholic right is one of the most intriguing developments in Irish politics in recent years.
It should come as no surprise that Cóir and the Bishops find themselves on opposing sides, as its earlier incarnation, Youth Defence, was established as a direct rival to the mainstream, respectable Catholic organisations – the likes of SPUC, Pro-Life Campaign, Family Solidarity – which dominated the ‘liberal agenda’ battles of the 1980s.  The founding myth of Youth Defence is that they originated a group of young people, worried about babies in the weeks after the ‘X’ case first came to light, who spontaneously came togehter and went onto Michael Cleary’s (thank you, historical irony) radio show seeking support.  The story’s here (http://www.youthdefence.ie/am_cms_media/pc19920224irishcatholicswf.swf) on the Youth Defence website, which is actually pretty good.
The truth is somewhat different.  The founding members were closely associated with – in some cases the children of – individuals like Una Bean “Wife-Swapping-Sodomites” Mhic Mathuna, and Mena Bean Uí Chribín (of Santry Woods Post Office cum Marian Shrine).  These people had been involved in the abortion and divorce campaigns in the 1980s, but by the early 1990s were considered so extreme by the more respectable Catholic right (William Binchy, John O’Reilly, Des Hanafin et al) that they were seen as a liability in an Ireland which had elected Mary Robinson.  While the crazies certainly attracted the support of individual clergy, the Catholic hierarchy shared the reservations of their lay-colleagues, and tended to give them a wide berth.  In return, the Youth Defence crew never showed any great deference to the bishops, or any particular respect to the right-wing great and good.
While they were still a relatively marginal force in the 1992 abortion referendum, they grew in significance over the next decade.  Unlike the Pro-Life Campaign, they remained extremely active between referenda, including a direct, distasteful involvement in the C case, and violent action occupation of IFPA and Marie Stopes clinics.  They grew in influence in the 1995 divorce referendum as in the form of the No Divorce Campaign (responsible for the infamous ‘Hello Divorce, Bye Bye Daddy’ posters) they made a significant impact on public opinion in the course of the campaign, arguably overtaking the Anti-Divorce Campaign in influence.  The 2002 abortion referendum represented a significant turning point, as unlike in 1992, they stood in direct opposition to the Pro-Life Campaign, which advocated a Yes vote.  While, of course, Youth Defence can’t claim credit for the defeat of that referendum, they were certainly a major factor in getting an anti-choice No vote out, without which the amendment would most likely have passed.
None of this is going to come as news to anyone on here.  However, what I find so fascinating about Cóir is that at a time when the popular influence of the Catholic Church is ebbing, and the mainstream lay-Catholic pressure groups are becoming more and more marginal, this far-right fundamentalist organisation has managed to maintain its position as a significant political player in the State.  Interestingly, despite its consistent street presence, and ability to push its message so vociferously during referendum campaigns, its electoral ambitions remain modest. Apart from the odd misjudged adventure such as Justin Barrett’s European campaign, or its links with Libertas over the summer, it’s never shown much ambition to engage in parliamentary politics.  This may be due to a reluctance to open its finances to the kind of increased attention such a move would involve, but one wonders what the prospects of a Cóir Dáil candidate would be if they put their minds to it.
To the best of my knowledge (and I’d love to be corrected on this), the growth of Youth Defence has never been the subject of a sustained work of political analysis.  Emily O’Reilly’s ‘Masterminds of the Right’, while slim, was a good account of the role of the Catholic right in the 1970s and 1980s.  However, it was published in 1992, just before the emergence of Youth Defence, and the political context has changed immeasurably since then. As, like most of the readership of this site, I work my way through ‘The Lost Revolution’, it strikes me that there’s a very important untold story – perhaps a book – in the development of the wider Youth Defence movement, and what it means for the future Catholic political activism in Ireland.

Whatever your views on the Lisbon Treaty, pro or anti, I think everyone on here who is both honest and sane would agree that its ratification won’t bring about the introduction of abortion in Ireland.  This post is about neither the Treaty itself nor abortion.

With that in mind, I’d suggest that this week’s ‘Lisbon Treaty Sheer Brass Neck’ award should go to Niamh Uí Bhriain of Cóir.  Responding to Bishop Noel Treanor’s statement that there is no religious reason for a Catholic to oppose the Treaty, she said

“Bishop Treanor’s intervention was quite extraordinary,” she said. “He threw himself into political campaigning because of his support for the treaty.

“But, worst of all, he felt free to misrepresent and attack No campaigners. I would remind the Bishop that the days of belting Irish citizens with the crozier are thankfully long gone,” she said.

The irony of Cóir accusing others of misrepresentation, and of Uí Bhriain seemingly celebrating the declining influence of the Catholic Church is funny enough, but not enough to clinch the prize.  Instead, she gets it from the crozier remark.  Those of us who know Niamh Uí Bhriain as Niamh Nic Mhathúna, founder of Youth Defence, and who remember the tactics of her and her buddies in the early 1990s might be allowed a raised eyebrow at her new-found aversion to belting people with sticks.

More seriously, those commentators and letter-writers who consider the Bishop’s statement (and today’s from the Conference of Bishops) to represent a refutation of Cóir, or who find it odd that fundamentalist Catholics would position themselves in opposition to the Church hierarchy completely fail to understand the nature of Cóir (or, more correctly, the Cóir-Youth Defence-Family and Life collective of organisations, operating out of Life House on Capel Street) and what has happened to the Catholic right in Ireland over the last 15 years.  In fact, the emergence of Cóir in the second referendum (and in the absence of Libertas) as arguably the most visible organisation campaigning against the Treaty, and possibly the most influential group on the Catholic right is one of the most intriguing developments in Irish politics in recent years.

It should come as no surprise that Cóir and the Bishops find themselves on opposing sides, as its earlier incarnation, Youth Defence, was established as a direct rival to the mainstream, respectable Catholic organisations – the likes of SPUC, Pro-Life Campaign, Family Solidarity – which dominated the ‘liberal agenda’ battles of the 1980s.  The founding myth of Youth Defence is that they originated a group of young people, worried about babies in the weeks after the ‘X’ case first came to light, who spontaneously came togehter and went onto Michael Cleary’s (thank you, historical irony) radio show seeking support.  The story’s here on the Youth Defence website, which is actually pretty good.

The truth is somewhat different.  The founding members were closely associated with – in some cases the children of – individuals like Una Bean “Wife-Swapping-Sodomites” Mhic Mathuna, and Mena Bean Uí Chribín (of Santry Woods Post Office cum Marian Shrine).  These people had been involved in the abortion and divorce campaigns in the 1980s, but by the early 1990s were considered so extreme by the more respectable Catholic right (William Binchy, John O’Reilly, Des Hanafin et al) that they were seen as a liability in an Ireland which had elected Mary Robinson.  While the crazies certainly attracted the support of individual clergy, the Catholic hierarchy shared the reservations of their lay-colleagues, and tended to give them a wide berth.  In return, the Youth Defence crew never showed any great deference to the bishops, or any particular respect to the right-wing great and good.

While they were still a relatively marginal force in the 1992 abortion referendum, they grew in significance over the next decade.  Unlike the Pro-Life Campaign, they remained extremely active between referenda, including a direct, distasteful involvement in the C case, and violent action occupation of IFPA and Marie Stopes clinics.  They grew in influence in the 1995 divorce referendum as in the form of the No Divorce Campaign (responsible for the infamous ‘Hello Divorce, Bye Bye Daddy’ posters) they made a significant impact on public opinion in the course of the campaign, arguably overtaking the Anti-Divorce Campaign in influence.  The 2002 abortion referendum represented a significant turning point, as unlike in 1992, they stood in direct opposition to the Pro-Life Campaign, which advocated a Yes vote.  While, of course, Youth Defence can’t claim credit for the defeat of that referendum, they were certainly a major factor in getting an anti-choice No vote out, without which the amendment would most likely have passed.

None of this is going to come as news to anyone on here.  However, what I find so fascinating about Cóir is that at a time when the popular influence of the Catholic Church is ebbing, and the mainstream lay-Catholic pressure groups are becoming more and more marginal, this far-right fundamentalist organisation has managed to maintain its position as a significant political player in the State.  Interestingly, despite its consistent street presence, and ability to push its message so vociferously during referendum campaigns, its electoral ambitions remain modest. Apart from the odd misjudged adventure such as Justin Barrett’s European campaign, or its links with Libertas over the summer, it’s never shown much ambition to engage in parliamentary politics.  This may be due to a reluctance to open its finances to the kind of increased attention such a move would involve, but one wonders what the prospects of a Cóir Dáil candidate would be if they put their minds to it.

To the best of my knowledge (and I’d love to be corrected on this), the growth of Youth Defence has never been the subject of a sustained work of political analysis.  Emily O’Reilly’s ‘Masterminds of the Right’, while slim, was a good account of the role of the Catholic right in the 1970s and 1980s.  However, it was published in 1992, just before the emergence of Youth Defence, and the political context has changed immeasurably since then. As, like most of the readership of this site, I work my way through ‘The Lost Revolution’, it strikes me that there’s a very important untold story – perhaps a book – in the development of the wider Youth Defence movement, and what it means for the future of Catholic political activism in Ireland.

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Comments»

1. Garibaldy - September 22, 2009

Very interesting piece Smiffy. I guess that this is inevitable in an Ireland where the power of the church has been reduced, that some people will seek to organise themselves in defence of their interpretation of traditional values. I suppose there were similar things in France, and possibly even Mel Gibson’s house. Well worth a proper analysis, especially for the left.

This put me in mind as well of part of a WP press release I got today

“In June 2008 the media, looking De Valera-like into its own heart, decided that Declan Ganley and Libertas was the leader of the No campaign. Now that Ganley is no longer centre stage they have reverted to their 2002 Nice tactic of deliberately promoting the ultra-Catholic Cóir to a leadership position on the No campaign”.
“There is a deliberate attempt to downplay the role of the combined left organisations who in 2008 delivered a massive No vote throughout the working class constituencies of the country.’

Be interested to hear what people think about this idea too.

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2. Acidhouse - September 22, 2009

On this issue I’m with the OIRA approach with Niamh’s relative Larry White.

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EamonnCork - September 23, 2009

That’s a shitty comment about Larry White. Are we going to have a few more rib-ticklers about people killed in the feuds of the seventies?

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Ramzi Nohra - September 24, 2009

agreed – not in keeping with spirit of this blog, I would humbly suggest.

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3. smiffy - September 22, 2009

Naughty, Acidhouse. Although, as an aside, another factor to throw into the mix is the reported overlap between Youth Defence and elements of RSF (I don’t know much about it, other than rumours).

Garibaldy, I’m not sure how strong that argument is, although there’s at least an element of truth in it. It’s certainly the case that the media gave Libertas a disproportionate focus last year. However, I don’t know that it can simply be put down to a deliberate attempt to minimise left wing opposition. In some cases, I think the novelty of a No campaign which smelled middle-class and respectable also played a role.

While it would be gratifying to think that the significant popular opposition to the Treaty (if not a majority, close enough to it) was predominantly left-wing in sentiment, again I don’t know how true it is. It’s an important element, certainly, but the Catholic right element – specifically, but not exclusively, about abortion – cannot be discounted as just a media invention.

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4. Garibaldy - September 22, 2009

I never bothered to look at the figures, but the impression I had last time was that the opposition of the farmers’ body until a few days before the referendum meant that there was enough votes there to turn a large no minority into a majority. The figures might tell a different story however. I think that that farming opposition has been absent this time. Whatever the truth of my impression, I’d agree that the left wing element of the no vote shouldn’t be over-exaggerated, and that the Catholic right was important too.

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5. Nick - September 22, 2009

As someone not from Ireland, can I just ask what exactly was the deal with the 2002 abortion referendum and why different catholic organisations might be on different sides?

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6. Dr. X - September 22, 2009

Una Bhean Mathúna, eh?

My cousins went to the same gaelscoil as her kids. . . when the time came to organise their first confession, the school got in the local PP who was all Vatican 2, peace and love. . . the Matriarch of the Catholic Right stands up at the parents’ meeting to announce this and says ‘they [i.e. the kids doing their first confession] should be made to shiver’.

An eye should be firmly kept on this shower; not only are they evil, they’re a potential menace as well.

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7. smiffy - September 22, 2009

Ahhh, there’s a question and a half. I’ll give it a shot, but it’ll be very rough.

Article 40.3.3 of the Irish Constitution states that the state will protect the right to life of ‘the unborn’ with due regard to the right to life of the mother. In 1992, in a case related to the rape of a teenage girl and her right to an abortion, the Supreme Court found that Article 40.3.3 allows for abortions in cases where a woman’s life is threatened, including the risk of suicide.

The government tried to reverse this in late 1992 in a referendum to remove suicide as grounds for an abortion. This referendum failed, as it was opposed by both pro-choice and all the main anti-abortion groups. In 2002, the referendum was rerun, but this time the specific legislation regulating abortion in the event of the risk to a woman’s life was published, and the risk of suicide excluded. Pro-choice groups argued for a No vote but anti-abortion groups were split. The mainstream Pro-Life Campaign supported the proposal, seeing it as the best way to ensure that abortion wasn’t introduced on foot of the suicide risk (the Catholic Church also supported the amendment). The ultra-right anti-abortionists – Youth Defence – opposed the referendum, as they said it didn’t go far enough to defend ‘the unborn’ (and because they hate women and want them to die).

I think that’s roughly it.

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8. smiffy - September 22, 2009

@Dr. X: Like mother, like daughter.

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9. Nick - September 23, 2009

OK so I think I kind of get it, the ‘mainstream’ catholic groups supported the satus quo whilst the ‘extreme’ groups voted no because they didn’t think any kind of risk to a womans life made abortion excusable. Is that right? What a shower of fuckwits.

Cheers for the info Smiffy.

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WorldbyStorm - September 23, 2009

There’s an element of that, but I think as well there’s also just – as with the belt of the croziers comment – a sort of militancy as a badge of honour approach… ‘we’re right and everyone else, even those we nominally agree with aren’t as right as we are’… in any sense. Others may have different ways of putting it.

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10. Eamonn Dublin - September 23, 2009

Ah shucks, now I have to agree with a stickies press release. I agree that the influence of YD/coir is being well overstated. Remember, in the recent euro polls, Libertas candidate in Dublin was backed to the hilt by coir/yd and failed while the left candidate(s) who oppose Lisbon did a lot better. Libertas’s entire canvass team in Dublin was the coir crew.
Now back to my usual position. There is one obvious link between RSF and YD and now that link is a member of the WP. Perhaps Ghandi can fill us in on his RSF/YD/WP background.

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11. Baku26 - September 23, 2009

Please let’s stick to the point rather than a discourse on Ghandi’s background, whatever that might be.

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12. Eamonn Dublin - September 23, 2009

We are. A comment was made linking RSF and YD. I already know of such a link. Is there any more?

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13. Garibaldy - September 23, 2009

I’m loathe to contribute something that might knock this thread further off course. But that link has been denied already on this website. Just to make that clear.

We are in the middle of one of the most important campaigns facing the people not just of the Republic, nor of Ireland as a whole, but also
the 500m or so citizens of the EU. I think we can leave aside an issue about one individual that has already been debated extensively to concentrate on the bigger picture.

I have no idea if there are members of RSF who are also members of YD. It wouldn’t be a massive shock. But it wouldn’t be a massive shock if it drew members from every party from PSF on rightwards (although I imagine given that Labour is increasing a socially liberal party rather than a social democratic one it is unlikely it draws any from them). It would be a shock to find any members of the harder left parties involved, but you never know. As far as I know none of these political parties is affiliated to Youth Defence or Cóir, so I wouldn’t seek to hold them responsible for the actions of individual members. So I think we should concentrate on what we do know, and can prove – the positions and actions of YD and Cóir as YD, Cóir or any front groups.

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14. Godot - September 23, 2009

Prominent members of YD also wrote for Gerry McGeoughs ‘The Hibernian’ magazine.

There’s wealth of information on the activities of groups emerging from ‘The Lifehouse’ since 1992. The aim is to find a balance between Emily O’Reillys’ great individuals’ orientated account and Tom Inglis’ sociological approach analysing a lay catholic social movement, but a book is on the way.

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15. Wednesday - September 23, 2009

Great piece Smiffy.

IIRC the key reason for YD’s opposition to the 2002 amendment was that it referred to “the unborn in the womb”. This meant that the prohibition on termination would only kick in after implantation, not from the moment of conception. So they said it wasn’t sufficiently pro-life. Of course if the text they preferred had been adopted it could mean the criminalisation of several forms of birth control and the morning after pill which at times may have abortifacient effect.

I think the point needs to be made, and Smiffy alluded to it in discussing their origins, that ultimately this isn’t really about the lives of fertilised eggs and foetuses so much as it is about the fetishation of the “traditional” patriarchal nuclear family structure. It’s no accident that the same people turn up (albeit under a slightly different guise) whenever there’s a proposal in the offing that would challenge that structure. Hence their opposition to recognition of gay relationships (as the “Mother and Child Campaign”) and to the anticipated children’s referendum (as “Parents for Children”, would you believe). Abortion may be the issue on which they have the greatest profile, but it’s really only one facet of a much wider and even more sinister agenda.

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WorldbyStorm - September 23, 2009

Adding to that it’s interesting how multi-layered that side of the political fence is getting from YD on the streets to others in think tanks, at least one political representative that I can think of, etc. Granted the latter two tend to put clear water between them and YD, but seeing Coir rear its head in this way in a sort of politicised way is fascinating (and as smiffy notes crucially so far we have no evidence of them wanting to mobilise in electoral politics). It’s absolutely true that they are only one element in the Lisbon campaign and their presence in no way reflects on the principled positions others take, but what strikes me is that they speak for at least some sort of constituency however marginally that may be at the moment. Which I guess fits into the wider agenda you mention.

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16. Ghandi - September 23, 2009

Eamonn Dublin at number 10 comes out with his predictable response and as Garibaldy correctly points out at 13, this issue has been dealt with ad nauseaum here and elsewhere, so I don’t propose giving it any more oxygen.

In the real world Eamonn Dublin WP are out on the ground in our own campaign trying to defeat Lisbon 2 and are not concerned about the other campaigns on the NO side. At the end of the day a NO vote is a NO vote unlike teh governemnt I will not be spending taxpayers money asking people why they voted NO.

This campaign can be won and that is where our concenteration lies at the moment.

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17. Phil - September 23, 2009

“None of this is going to come as news to anyone on here. ”

I think you’re forgetting the overseas readership, smiffy. Grimly fascinating stuff. What does ‘Cóir’ translate as, btw?

“the infamous ‘Hello Divorce, Bye Bye Daddy’ posters”

Oh Lord. The Christian Democrats tried something similar in Italy – although in that instance the appeal to the baser instincts was launched fairly cynically by some quite sophisticated politicians, rather than by self-professed outsiders who really believed it (think Milosevic rather than Seselj). They got trounced – the vote in favour of keeping divorce illegal was rather lower than the combined vote of the DC and the MSI the previous year.

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18. pangur bán - September 23, 2009

Cóir “justice, equity, proper share, due, proper equipment”

From Foclóir Póca, an Gúm p.312.

Those seeking a broader and possibly more entertaining range of translations should consult the late Fr. Dineen’s dictionary

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19. Bartholomew - September 23, 2009

Pangur bán, you beat me to it! I was just thinking about it (for the first time), and Cóir is actually a clever name. As you say, the primary meaning is ‘right’, ‘just’, ‘correct’. Another meaning is ‘system’, ‘installation’, ‘method’. ‘Cóir leighis’ = medical treatment, ‘cóir bidhe’ = ‘food supply’. So they may well have in mind a meaning which combines ‘justice’ with something like ‘organisation’.

Dr.X mentioned the Mathunas’ mother. The father used to play the flute in a pub near the gaelscoil he refers to, and after closing time when the session had ended, he would get everyone to sing ‘Mo ghile mear’, the Irish version of the White Cockade. Maybe that’s why they don’t do elections – their ultimate goal is a Stuart restoration. Mad people.

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pangur bán - September 23, 2009

Dineen’s dictionary is a huge tome, correctly described by Myles na Gopaleen as one of the funniest books in print.

I would refer ye all to p.227 of the 1970 edition for the ex cathedra definition of cóir.

Its too long to quote as it runs to nearly a page, but suffice to say it begions with:
‘good, fit, right, permissible, true, honest, civil,’

hmmmmm

the entry ends over the page with :

‘much talk and gesticulations’

hmmmmm again

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Starkadder - September 23, 2009

I seem to remember one member of YD writing in to the Irish
Catholic claiming the Casement Diaries were forgeries.

I think Wednesday is right-these people are obsessed with
keeping the traditional Victorian family intact, and
hence they’re going to be having a fit over the
children’s rights bill as well.

On the subject of anti-Lisbon groups, anyone
seen the “Sovereign Independent”? Weird publication.

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WorldbyStorm - September 23, 2009

I haven’t, but I’d like to…

pb… interesting definitions. As you say… hmmmmm :)

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20. Eamonn Dublin - September 24, 2009

Youth Defences first office in Thomas Street was over a pub which was owned by “republicans” of the RSF mould , one of whom was ex-saor eire. They were also linked with Richard Greene.
On another group, posters have appeared calling for No to Lisbon, No to Turkey by a group called Ireland 1st. Anybody know anything about this group?

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21. smiffy - September 24, 2009

Eamonn, yes, that was the Piper House, and for me personally represents the irony of the Niamh Uí Bhriain ‘belting’ comment. At protest outside the pub organised by Trinity DL in Autumn 1992 (but at which WSM and others were present) in direct response to a Youth Defence picket of Prionsias de Rossa’s private home (he wasn’t there, not that that worried them) a bunch of very ugly-looking headbangers came out and started hitting people with planks of wood.

As it happens, if it wasn’t for that specific incident – and by a very circuitous route – I wouldn’t be posting here now.

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22. Acidhouse - September 24, 2009

Interesting lesson there in the 1992 incident for those that might have thought it was possible in earlier periods to successfully promote progressive politics in Ireland without at least the threat of an armed wing…

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23. Run like fuck - September 24, 2009

As I remember it wasn’t members of a party with such links (or recent links anyway) that did their best on that day. Don’t be dreaming that the Sticks were going to ride to the rescue.

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24. Ghandi - September 24, 2009

Sovereign Indepenent link

http://www.sovereignindependent.org/

Still trying to work out what this is about, some content seems OK, interesting list of contributors including Maura Harrington.

Have a look at the uTube video.

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25. Eamonn Dublin - September 24, 2009

There are good pictures of the ruck outside the Piper house. I will try to locate them.

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26. nn - September 25, 2009

The Piper’s Lounge was the bar all right, owned at the time apparenly by one Willie Ryan.

The only person I recall getting a proper bash on the head was a photographer with the Mirror/Star(?), little did they know that the paper had sent someone along to accompany him, with an extra camera, and the wits to use it. Unsurprisingly the red-top took exception to the bludgeoning of its employee, and published the photo two or three times in the space of a week. Someone may also have been hit with a thick book, resembling a bible. Or that may just be evidence of infirm recollection.

YD were keen on intimidation, that’s true, but it only occasionally materialized into blows. Given the frequency of encounters and the atmosphere at the time, the potential for confrontation was high. In the case of the Piper’s it was believed that the various snooker cues etc employed were on the premises due to an outstanding local issue, relating to some of the establishment’s patrons and their testing relations with another political force in the area.

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27. EamonnCork - September 27, 2009

The News Which Might Drive Coir Mad Award 2009.
Former MEP Sean O’Neachtain was handing out pro-Lisbon material outside Spiddal church today. Then he nipped in to do one of the readings at Mass.
Beat that Niamh.

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28. Brid (my real name) not a hide behind - July 11, 2010

To dr. X, what a load of crap about Una Mhic Mhathuna, anyone who knows her knows that she doesn’t give two shites about kids confessions. Your so-called cousin is a liar

If the worst thing Seamus Mac Mathuna can do is to sing a song at a traditional session, then you’ve really lost the plot. This is typical ‘reds under the bed’ hysteria

To Acidhouse, what a violent fucking asshole you are. How would you like to have a relative murdered.

The fact is that you have nothing on the Mac Mathunas (and I know them personally), unlike your cronies who have raped and pillaged this country leaving thousands destitute. That includes Church and State. (Why Niamh would be jealous of O’Neachtain reading in the church shows how little you know her and says more about EamonnCork than it does about her).

If the catholic church was the ‘in-thing’ in the morning, all you halfwits would be back in there. You’re so predictable, its laughable.

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29. Sharrow - August 8, 2012

Reblogged this on Insane Mutterings and commented:
Who was Míne Bean Uí Chribín? RTE reported her death Yesterday, http://www.rte.ie/news/2012/0807/mine-bean-ui-chribin.html

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30. freeman - August 13, 2012

Dear Brid, you are a deluded twit, http://www.independent.ie/national-news/religious-activist-tried-to-help-house-of-horrors-mother-1611637.html

The Catholic church will never be the ‘in-thing’ again, have fun being consigned to the history books

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31. Youth Defence — The Forbidden Love-Child of Left and Right. » Bock The Robber - November 19, 2012

[...] Cedar Lounge [...]

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32. A few good pieces on Youth Defence « The Cedar Lounge Revolution - November 30, 2012

[...] and finally an old one from this Parish [...]

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