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Lesser spotted anniversaries July 28, 2013

Posted by Oireachtas Retort in Uncategorized.
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Today marks 80 years since Eoin O’Duffy became leader of the Army Comrades Association. Addressing matters sartorial on his elevation, the General announced

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This new Blueshirt constitution.

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Patriotic realism is probably not something we associate with the 1930s.

And the pledge

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We are almost lead to believe it never went away with some most of hyperbole around the Seanad, abortion and the “ruthless” despotism of  “dictatorial” Enda.  Still, only opposition Parties have a past these days.

Much appraisal of the Blueshirt legacy has sought to present them as a bit harmless. Local response away from the worst excesses of the continent. Indeed we could argue much of the agenda was redundant and well catered for in the Free State and long after, in one way or another, but as pointed out by Brian Hanley on – the excellent – Near FM History Show, the popular image of photos like below hold far too much potential in hindsight and are set to outlive any revision.

Though contemporary efforts hold their own weight

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But it is interesting to look back on the seductive echoes from one crisis to another.

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In 2013 we have, so far, avoided the organised far-right politics gaining legs elsewhere. Certainly in it’s more familiar clothes but business as usual is hardly looking much better, terrifying in a lot of ways and the crisis isn’t going anywhere soon. European elections next year should be a useful barometer and there is much happening at national level across the continent.

Across the Irish Sea there was an interesting conference  last month. Many seasoned watchers put the British Far Right at a bit of a watershed and wonder if UKIP is the vehicle. It’s quite amazing when you see the weekly horror stories that still so many are convinced the Tories aren’t going far enough.

At home. Despite everything, I would still be sceptical of the chances for Ganley and whatever circus he cobbles together next year.

Jonathan Sperber Podcast on Karl Marx July 28, 2013

Posted by Garibaldy in Books, History, Marxism.
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Interesting podcast on the Guardian about Karl Marx with the historian Jonathan Sperber, author of the recent Karl Marx: A Nineteenth-Century Life. See here for a Guardian article by Sperber on Marx and here for a review essay of Sperber’s book by Marc Mulholland at the Dublin Review of Books.

For those of us into EBM… July 27, 2013

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Culture.
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…good news here and here. Not too sure that the last VNV Nation album was much cop, though it had some moments, and Covenant’s last one with a new line up was excellent in parts, but good to hear that both have new material out at the end of the Summer. Looked at Covenant here years back.

By the way, aren’t VNV Nation one of the least known groups with an Irish connection ever?

Where are the Voyager space craft now? July 27, 2013

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Astronomy, Culture, Science.
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<I want a proper diagram updated in real time! Does anyone know of one?

This Weekend I’ll Mostly Be Listening to… Songs about being ill July 27, 2013

Posted by irishelectionliterature in This Weekend I'll Mostly Be Listening to....
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My plan for a big piece on a particular artist I like took a bit of a nosedive on Wednesday afternoon as I found myself suddenly getting a dose. A doctors visit… some antibiotics, stomach settling stuff, toast, flat 7up and black tea later I’m not feeling too bad…… although I do have the prospect of having to paint my sons bedroom looming over me. So the big planned opus went awry and what better than when sick to listen to songs about being sick!
(Thanks to Doctorfive and others for various suggestions)



and naturally finishing on….

26th July July 26, 2013

Posted by Garibaldy in Commemoration.
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26th July Movement Flag

Inside the panopticon July 26, 2013

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Culture, Economy, The Left.
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Back during the Boston bombing earlier in the year it was genuinely weird watching the BBC News channel that morning to see an interview with a man who was within the 20 block lockdown area who had had a bullet go through the window of his house and hit a calendar on the wall, something he was able to show us by moving his computer camera around (albeit it was upside down). As the interview ended he looked pretty shook, and why wouldn’t he be with a armed and self-evidently dangerous suspect on the loose and massive numbers of armed police there.

But it’s not just crime, as noted here, the recent meteorite that exploded over Russia was caught on video multiple times, and in excellent quality too, due to the sheer number of video cameras fitted to cars there.

Farhad Manjoo talked in Slate – subsequent to the situation in Boston – about extending video surveillance across the US, in a way which is not unknown in the UK (he suggests there are half a million security cameras in London – half a million, can that be right?). Don’t know about that, I’m never entirely happy with an over proliferation of state tech, Margaret Atwood is to blame for my leeriness in that regard, but this isn’t just state tech. but the sheer pervasiveness of video technology is now breathtaking. It’s everywhere from your pocket to the street to… well… it’s everywhere.

But Manjoo also had a later piece which I think is well worth considering noting that it is all but useless (unless you live in the Boston metropolitan area) to follow rolling news. That you’re actually less well informed than if you just catch up here or there or at the end of the day.

In a way the more information there is the less one appears to be informed in any meaningful way, and then there’s the question as to what use is made of the news. If it’s simply a passive knowledge then it appears to be almost useless. Unless it is used as a means of engaging and being activist what is the purpose of the exercise?

But add to the above the reality of a world where PRISM is an integral part of the societal and security mix, where literally all online activity – and a considerable amount of information about offline activity can be extrapolated from it – and one can see that brought into an whole where ones individual knowledge is cosmetically greater but the framework within which one can operate is in some respects highly constrained and also monitored to a remarkable degree.

Gé Bruit asked on foot of the PRISM issue what the response of leftists should be in light of the revelations. I’d echo that but I’d also wonder if the profusion of new technology is actually having a dampening effect upon activism. Could it be that as the sense of ‘understanding’ seemingly increases what is actually occurring is a greater receptivity to tropes, particularly those of the orthodoxy? Now granted there’s some evidence to suggest that those tropes only have a limited power. It was very notable how during the run-up to the CP2 negotiations that public opinion was vastly more sceptical of government lines than might have been expected and also how the public appeared more sympathetic to PS workers.

And yet, what actual power did that entail? In terms of political outcomes the only one that is visible is an increase in support for the mildly dissident FF and the somewhat more dissident SF. That’s no small thing, particularly the latter, but again it suggests certain limitations on political activity and engagement. Still, perhaps that’s the best that can be expected.

Strange societies we live in now.

Answers to CLR Political Quiz 40 July 26, 2013

Posted by WorldbyStorm in CLR Political Quiz, Irish Politics.
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Apologies to IEL and anyone looking for the answers. On holiday and I don’t have email at the moment due to not having password to email for external access.

Here are last week’s answers… I somehow put two number 8’s in!

1: FF 53%; 5% SF

2: SF left 6 FF 14

3: He appointed some people who were not TDs.

4: 31st Dáil

5: Seamus Costello

6: The Powells

7: 25%

8: David Trimble

8: Darcy Lonergan GP Cavan-Monaghan 21
Loretta Clarke Indo May – 75

9: Marita Ann

10: Greek renegotiation

The CLR Political Quiz …… Number 41 July 26, 2013

Posted by irishelectionliterature in CLR Political Quiz.
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1. Who was Sinn Feins only poll topper in the 1991 Local Elections?
2. Which Fine Gael Dynasty is former TD, Senator and MEP Avril Doyle from?
3. Róisín Shortalls father served on Dublin City Council for which party?
4. In the 2011 General Election of those female TDs that contested did more hold their seats or lose their seats?
5. Who was co-opted to replace Finian McGrath on Dublin City Council when the Dual Mandate was abolished?
6. How many CAPTA candidates were recently selected to run in the Dublin West area in next years local elections?
7. Who ran for the CPI in Cork North Central in the 1989 General Election?
8. Who said “Ireland is where strange tales begin and happy endings are possible.” ?
9. Which Labour Councillor Joined Fianna Fail during the week?
10. Who is this?
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I’m afraid I don’t have the answers to last weeks quiz!

This Week At Irish Election Literature July 26, 2013

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Election Literature Blog.
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Starting off this week with ‘Donnycarney’ A lovely booklet with a History of the area, some poetry and local issues issued by the Donnycarney Branch of the Labour Party. I suspect its from the mid 70′s

‘Let Clann Continue To Play Its Part!’ -Clann Na Poblachta 1965 General Election

From the November 1982 General Election a flyer from then Labour Party leader Dick Spring running in Kerry North

Including quote from Ghandi a 2011 leaflet from Fidelma Healy Eames

From Fine Gael 1969 “Wouldn’t you like a better Social Welfare system?”

and finally a bizarre set of anagrams from a 2011 leaflet from Fianna Fail Senator Jim Walsh.

jwalshanagram

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