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What you want to say – 31st December 2014 December 31, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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As always, following on Dr. X’s suggestion, it’s all yours, “announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose”, feel free.

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1. Tomboktu - December 31, 2014

2015 is the centenary of the Armenian Genocide. I need to learn more.

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/01/05/century-silence

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Starkadder - December 31, 2014

I remember the Irish Press did a piece on the
Armenian Genocide in the 1980s. Mind you, I also
found a book in the local library from the same period,
bearing the imprimatur of the Turkish government, saying the
AG was a “complete fabrication”.

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Mark P - December 31, 2014

Are you sure that wasn’t published by the BICO lads rather than the Turkish government?

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irishelectionliterature - December 31, 2014

Robert Fisks “The Great War for Civilisation” has a good deal on the Armenian Genocide

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ar scáth a chéile - January 1, 2015

And 50 years since the start of the mass killings of communists in Indonesia

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2. Gerryboy - December 31, 2014

Happy New Year. Felicitations Nouvelle Annee. Athbhliain faoi mhaise dibh go leir. And may all our worst predictions not come true.
Smile; it may never happen.

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3. Joe - December 31, 2014

Daryl Murphy has had a brilliant season for Ipswich so far. Seems to be on the scoresheet for every game.

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4. Gewerkschaftler - December 31, 2014

Happy New Year to all at CLR – still the best Irish online political community for us mulish types.

I hope 2015 is the year when the ‘austerity’ edifice cracks across Europe.

To that end my priority for January 2015 is to do whatever I can to help a Syriza led government get elected in Greece. At the very least this will create headaches for the ruling and owning circles.

Greece and Ireland are at the bottom even of the representative democracy spectrum. They are the only members of the EU, as far as I am aware, that don’t allow (economic) exiles to vote from abroad. Imagine what might happen if they did 🙂 !

So this initiative is aimed at helping low-paid Greek migrant workers, students and activists to return to vote and campaign.

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Joe - December 31, 2014

And a happy new year to you Gewerker. And fair play to you for including that link to fly the Greeks home to vote. Keep up the good work on here in 2015 – always good to read your stuff.

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

+1 Joe, and Happy New Year to you both. Gewerkshaftler thanks as always to your tireless work on showing how even in the bleakest contexts in Europe there’s still reasons for some hope.

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5. Joe - December 31, 2014

Paddy Barnes. I want to say “fair play to ye lad”.

http://thescore.thejournal.ie/paddy-barnes-mbe-1858215-Dec2014/

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Mark P - December 31, 2014

Really? I’ve always liked Barnes. But I’m certainly not going to congratulate someone for accepting an award named after the British Empire.

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Joe - December 31, 2014

Yes really. Absolutely. Definitely.
“I am a proud Irish sportsman, a proud sportsman from Belfast, and I take great pride in representing everyone in Ireland, north and south, in whatever way I can. If my achievements in boxing can inspire others and people can be united through sport, then my efforts will have been worthwhile.”
Paddy Barnes accepts the MBE. Wayne McCullough carries the tricolour at the Olympics. Both of them continue to be respected and revered by their neighbours in their respective parts of Belfast. Showing that the working class in Belfast isn’t inevitably doomed to be stuck in endless nationality conflict.
Yes we have no bananas.

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Mark P - December 31, 2014

That’s a thoroughly parochial attitude, Joe. The British Empire isn’t some Belfast based grant funded sector hands across the peace wall community scheme. It was one of humanity’s greatest crimes.

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Joe - December 31, 2014

The parish is the best place to start the revolution, Mark. Happy New Year.

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fergal - December 31, 2014

Joe- out of interest is the tricolour on the same level as a flag of empire?? Irish nationalism- abortive attempt at invading Canada and several failed attempts at achieving unity by use of violence
British nationalism= control of a third of the planet through violence back in the day!
Of course, hundreds of thousands of Irish helped to run this ole empire.

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Joe - December 31, 2014

Ah Fergal. We haven’t the time. My point about Wayne and Paddy is that Wayne is from a working class, loyalist area and he carried the tricolour and Paddy is from a working class, nationalist area and he accepted the MBE. And all the symbolism around both their actions. And because their neighbours value them as boxers and local heroes, they’ll still love them even though they mightn’t be fond of the tricolour or the MBE, respectively.

The north, Belfast particularly, has been nice and quiet recently. And the parties came to an agreement on Christmas Eve. Here’s to a peaceful 2015 and over time, here’s to working class people joining together to celebrate local sporting heroes and maybe joint campaigns against the coming social welfare cuts. That kind of thing.

Let’s sort out the parish and we can leave the Empire and the flags to the historians and the fetishists.

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CL - January 1, 2015

“On its colonies the sun never sets,
but the blood never dries”
-Ernest Jones.

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Jack Jameson - January 1, 2015

‘Me? I thought, OBE me? Up yours, I thought’ An invitation to the palace to accept a New Year honour… you must be joking. Benjamin Zephaniah won’t be going. Here he explains why

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2003/nov/27/poetry.monarchy

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CL - January 2, 2015

“France’s star economist Thomas Piketty has declined the country’s highest award, the Legion d’Honneur, local media said on Thursday.”
“I refuse this nomination because I don’t think it’s up to a government to say who is honourable,” Mr Piketty told AFP news agency. “They would do better to focus on reviving growth in France and Europe. ”
http://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/europe/economist-piketty-declines-france-s-legion-d-honneur-1.2052213

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workers republicu - January 2, 2015

Thanks for that link Jack,well done Benjamin! I’m not questioning Paddy Barnes motives in accepting the Imperial award. But fair play to Benjamin for rejecting it,and the many otherwho did likewiseand John Lennon who returned it after the British military
started repressing people in
the 6 Co.s I wouldn’t be the greatest fan of John Hume or Seamus Heaney but
Imsure they were offered MBEs and they
righylu
Iw
I
I wouldn’t be the greatest fan of Jo

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workers republicu - January 2, 2015

continued
They refused them. The Empire was built on blood!

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6. sonofstan - December 31, 2014
Mark P - December 31, 2014

The naive might imagine that the words “Kathy Sheridan is on holiday” could only indicate a decrease in smug, vacuous, pro-establishment stupidity, but the Irish Times always endeavours to educate.

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fergal - December 31, 2014

I’m at a loss too- but the elite and their lackies are rattled, aren’t they? Years ago before sky tv and the lark, we used to listen to European club matches on the radio. Invariably, the (English) commentator at some stage would announce that the (continental European) clubs don’t like’ it up them’! We used to get a great laugh out of this. Since the start of the IW campaign I can’t help thinking of the rich and powerful here just not liking ‘it up them’

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

+1 Sos Mark P and fergal.

“All of the this feeds into the crisis being faced by party politics in Ireland and the drift seen this year towards nationalism (Sinn Féin), flat-earth socialism (Clare Daly, Paul Murphy), anti-party independents (Ming Flanagan), and other manifestations of people’s frustration.”

😦

So what’s his alternative, vote for FF/FG/LP?

“One of the key drivers of Ireland’s recent and spectacular economic crash was the support the electorate gave to unwise and opportunistic politics. It would be nice to think we’ve learned from our mistake.”

But wasn’t it FF/FG and LP who individually and/or collectively promoted low-taxation as an article of economic faith? Who offered the ultimate in ‘free lunch’ politics? And still do through neo-liberalism?

As for ‘rancour in political debate’… none of the above i.e. FF/FG/LP can pretend they’ve not contributed to same.

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que - December 31, 2014

Well done Keena for that.

How blind are these boyos. It is true that Europe is going to go into decline and wealth and power shift to the east and south but to suggest that we should stick with the responsible parties who have sought to exploit globalization at every turn even when it’s disadvantageous to their electorates is beyond me. Their rule is as long as someone can make a quick buck from it then it’s welcome.

Well Keena reality check the responsible types don’t care provided it’s shareholder approved and citizens arent shareholders.

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sonofstan - December 31, 2014

The lesson would appear to be that globalisation has torn away the veil that allowed the middle-classes to imagine they were agents instead of patients and they now find themselves in the position that the working classes have always been in. But instead of adopting the tactics that at least, over a century and a half, won some limited space – collective bargaining and resistance – they should instead opt for negotiated surrender on terms that will save the appearance of bourgeois freedom at the price of more general immiseration, because as long as we are differentially screwed the things that really matter to the IT reader – private education, private health care, literary fiction set in bookish households in which all struggles are private and to do with character, and rugby – will survive.

I bet there’s people like Colm Keena in Greece now worried about Syriza, not because of what they might do, or fail to do, but because of how it will look to the rest of the world.

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

And that’s it entirely, this sense of how it looks rather than how it actually is – SoS.

que, spot on.

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que - December 31, 2014

Course the kicker is what happens if parties that can change things get into power.

It’s going to be fascinating to see if they end up deciding that in the end the affects of globalization mean that prosperity of the e.g Greek working class is not going to be reconcilable with the aspirations of e.g 2 billion Chinese and Indians looking to move up the value chain. The latter 2 produce 12 million graduates a year and are low wage economies.

It’s indeed fair to argue that it’s not necessarily going to be the case that the welfare of both is irreconcilable but it’s not I think the case that they will be certainly compatible. For example Africa is going to have an economy of 2.6 trillion usd by 2020 on some estimates perhaps bigged up estimates but the dynamics at moving out of Europe and how that is challenged is going to likely pose some very difficult choices for parties of change.

That’s not to say don’t vote for parties of change. We should but things are still going to be very challenging. If we don’t then the whole place will continue down the tubes to feudal inequality but we all know that anyhow even if Keena doesn’t

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Michael Carley - December 31, 2014

The phrase ‘threat of a good example’ is seeing its hour come round again.

Interesting that Greeks are being warned not to vote Syriza, but are not being warned off Golden Dawn.

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eamonncork - December 31, 2014

Happy New Year SoS, and remember ‘The Essence of the All is the Godhead of the True.’

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

And also to all of you, que, Michael, EC, SOS and fergal.

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Michael Carley - December 31, 2014

And to yourself, primus inter pares in making this a great site.

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7. Joe - December 31, 2014

“private education, private health care, literary fiction set in bookish households in which all struggles are private and to do with character, and rugby”.

Brilliant SoS. I will keep that.

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que - December 31, 2014

Agreed that’s lovely put about the bookish households.

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eamonncork - December 31, 2014

Agreed here too. So good I’ll undoubtedly be dropping into conversation during 2015 and pretending it’s mine.

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

It’s true, that’s why it’s so powerful.

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eamonncork - January 1, 2015

It’s100% true but a lot of its power derives from SoS’s customary elegance of expression. One of the great things about the CLR is how well so many of the contributors write. People take the time to try and make a decent argument in contrast to the ‘So is your mother’ tone of a lot of the stuff on the likes of Politics.ie

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8. Starkadder - December 31, 2014
WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

I read that, interesting piece, isn’t it? I’d often wondered about the flag.

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9. Tawdy - December 31, 2014

Just want to wish the very best to all in the coming year of 2015.
May it bring chaos to those who deserve it, and may it bring bread and roses to those who deserve it.

Veceramous!

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

And likewise to you Tawdy!

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10. doctorfive - December 31, 2014

Happy new year all. Haven’t forgotten ye over here. Just, with all the water, am writing a fair bit about Maltese billionaires these last few months so keeping the writing on my own site and potential trouble away from cedarlounge. Hope you are all enjoying the break.

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

And to you doctorfive.

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11. ivorthorne - December 31, 2014

Happy New Year Cedarlounge!

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WorldbyStorm - December 31, 2014

And to you ivorthorne!

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12. workers republicu - December 31, 2014

Athbhliain fe mhaise dibh go leir. Le gach dea-ghui. Ar agaigh linn i 2015

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13. Alibaba - December 31, 2014

At the risk of joining mutual admiration ranks, I have to say CLR is a first-rate site. Its measured frankness is refreshing and keeps me coming back. Cheers for 2015 and beyond.

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14. Jolly Red Giant - January 1, 2015

I seen that Ogle has come out branding those calling for a boycott of water charges as ‘divisive’

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

Very cynical stuff, appeals to “unity” behind whatever the most conservative elements want.

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Alibaba - January 1, 2015

Jolly Red Giant: Really? Where have you ‘seen’ the reference to ‘divisive’? Maybe give us the full quote.

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

Statement by Ogle and Gibbons up on R2W website. It doesn’t appear to be a R2W statement as it’s signed by those two. Why it’s on the website if it isn’t an official R2W statement is another question.

“If we are to elect people who enact the laws we, the people, need in the next election we to continue to unite on what we agree on and not sow division and discord over tactical approaches as some are currently endeavouring to do.”

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Mark Keane - January 1, 2015

Quite right Mark, you should block them in their cars for a couple of hours, then go on to Vincent Browne with your tail between your legs. It’s what Lenin would have done.

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

Is there something wrong with taking part in a sit down protest or defending protestors against a rabidly hostile media now? And your deeply stupid non sequitur has exactly what to do with this discussion anyway?

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Alibaba - January 1, 2015

Mark P: Thanks for that reference to the statement by Brendan Ogle and David Gibney. I don’t see the word ‘divisive’ in the quote above. Nor is it clear to me who is deemed to “sow division and discord over tactical approaches” in the statement. But this much I do know about Ogle’s views as mentioned in an interview for publication:

‘Ogle says that the question of non-payment is a tactical issue. “I have no intention of paying this water charge, ever. And whatever the costs of that, I will front up to. There are thousands of people in that position. It’s a legitimate tactic.

Groups are completely at liberty to call for non-payment but I don’t see the advantage of Right2Water calling for it. When we meet people who pay, not because they want to but because of fear or because they feel they have no choice, we need to say that the campaign is for them as well.’

Source: Look Left, Vol 2, Issue 20, page 13.

And as the article author says: ‘Ogle believes that the broad approach of the Right2Water campaign, which encompasses parties who are calling on mass non-payment of water charges and others who are not, is a strength rather than a weakness’.

I don’t think this a cynical point of view: it’s a considered one. The task of those who support mass non-payment, like myself, is to convince people ourselves. The fact that campaign organisers have created a space for us to do so is a super plus.

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WorldbyStorm - January 1, 2015

I think your analysis is correct Alibaba, it’s difficult to see Ogle as saying quite what is being said he said.

I’d also agree with your last point. R2W is working because it is broad, it’s able to pull almost as wide a spectrum of people as it can into the campaign who can then be persuaded of the virtues of non-payment while still being identifiably of the left.

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que - January 1, 2015

yes AliBaba but presumably the broad coalition approach is not entirely reconcilable with the desires of some to have R2W be a vehicle perfectly aligned with the tactics of one segment of that coalition.

“we, the people, need in the next election we to continue to unite on what we agree on and not sow division and discord over tactical approaches as some are currently endeavouring to do.”

Plus ca changes plus ca remains the same eh.

2015 will be very similar the past perhaps.

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

Read the statement by Ogle and Gibbons closely. Who precisely do you think they are talking about when they talk about those who “sow division and discord over tactical approaches”? What is the main tactical division in the water movement? I’m willing to listen to your alternative suggestions, but I think what they are referring to is bleeding obvious given the actual disagreements and divisions involved.

Right2Water does not call for non payment and does not seek to organise non payment or resistance. It calls demonstrations, because there is no tactical agreement beyond that between the more radical elements involved and the less radical ones (ie Sinn Fein and the union bureaucrats). That’s fine as far as it goes. But there is a difference between sticking to the lowest common denominator themselves and actually trying to cut across the necessary campaigning work on the ground, which is about organising non payment and resistance. If they won’t help, they should at least stay out of the way. The statement by Gibbons and Ogle strays towards that line with its only slightly cryptic use of an appeal to “unity” and objection to “division” over “tactical approaches”. The movement already is divided over tactics – although only really on the steering committee, as non payment is taken for granted by most activists on the ground.

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Paul Byrne - January 1, 2015

I was sent a link to this by a friend of mine. There are divisions over tactics, that is true, but among activists on the ground there is almost universal agreement that the Socialist Party/AAA are, to put it bluntly, a pain in the hole. I gather by the comments already made that Mark P. and Jolly Red Giant (*sigh*) are members?

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

Yes, yes, we are undoubtedly all terrible pains in the hole and scourges of decency, eaters of babies, terrorisers of tanaistes, bollockses to union bureaucrats, and whatever you are having yourself. Let’s consider that agreed and move on to discussing those “divisions” you admit exist.

There are some in the movement who understand that non payment is the central question, the issue that will most likely determine success or failure. There are others who are too conservative for that, and they are disproportionately represented at R2W’s unelected top table. That’s not actually a problem as long as R2W doesn’t try to obstruct the organisation of non payment. If it decides to do that, it ceases to be useful and becomes an obstacle.

To date, Ogle and co have understood that and, while they haven’t called for non payment and have made it clear that they have no intention of organising non payment, they haven’t tried to obstruct We Won’t Pay, Says No, the many local non payment groups, etc who are trying to carry out that work. Any more than they’ve tried to obstruct Sinn Fein’s “vote for us and we will abolish it” campaigning. The completely unnecessary comments about tactical divisions and unity, which can only be aimed at non payment campaigners given the actually existing tactical divisions, are an unwelcome departure. Unity based on diversity of tactics is one approach, unity behind whatever the least radical will accept is quite another.

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que - January 1, 2015

cynical indeed

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workers republicu - January 1, 2015

I think the trouble with Brennan Ogle is his ego. I praised his very inclusive statement,that he made at the big demo outside Leinster House in December and quoted it at meetings. We need a broad unity,a broad front.(I’m not quoting him now,these are my words); some people will be more militant than others,some will march,others will go further and not pay (twice! we already pay), others will prevent the installation of meters,as happened already in many areas,the water fairies will cause the meters to vanish by magic. Criticizing people for
taking a more militant stand,in this
issue,in my opinion, is divisive.
The strength of this movement, is it’s
grass-roots. When the party politicians
couldn’t agree on how to continue the
‘property’ tax,the grassroots activists continued on their own. The brave women who stopped the installation of meters in “one small estate in Cork “(Phil Hogan) they were ‘ordinary’ mamies ,not party-political,our campaign is based on people like that all over the State. We won’t be deterred by accusations of being ‘divisive’.

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WorldbyStorm - January 1, 2015

The thing is he didn’t say that, indeed all he has said is in perfect alignment with R2W’s role. There’s no contradiction. People on the ground are perfectly free to be more or less militant. I’d also think that its function of organising marches and protests is working very well in providing big event demonstrations of collective repuduation of the charges.

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

WbS, what is your interpretation of:

” If we are to elect people who enact the laws we, the people, need in the next election we to continue to unite on what we agree on and not sow division and discord over tactical approaches as some are currently endeavouring to do. We need to grow and develop the unity that has rocked the establishment and the media – not splinter in 100 different directions as Irish people have (to their great cost) many times before thereby allowing an elitist minority to reap and sow at great cost to the common good.”

Why is this in Ogle and Gibbon’s statement? It isn’t there by accident, What actual divisions are they talking about? What actual forces are they talking about? Who are “endeavouring” to “sow division and discord over tactical approaches”?

You know how JRG, Workers Republic and I read that paragraph. Some here seem to object to that reading. But nobody has offered an alternative reading (indeed I’ve already attracted irrelevant moaning from two drive by commenters). What’s yours?

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WorldbyStorm - January 2, 2015

My presumption is – and I’ve heard something about this about noises in the background – that he is talking about those who are calling for R2W to expand its original remit. I think he’s perfectly within his right to do so given that when established R2W had an approach that was signed up to by a wide range of forces with different views.

I’ve also hear that those noises off emanate from various quarters, some seeking to position the campaign in even ‘safer’ non contentious territory so I wouldn’t be so quick off the mark to damn his comments asking for R2W to remain true to its original intent as necessarily being about your chosen political vehicle or being cynical or whatever.

Actually Alibaba and I have offered precisely an alternative reading from the off.

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Mark P - January 2, 2015

So your assumption is that they are bad mouthing those that want R2W to organise non payment rather than those who are content to leave R2W as an umbrella for organising marches and want to get on with organising non payment themselves? And you think that’s somehow more appropriate?

Personally I think that there is almost no chance of R2W organising non payment, because the most conservative elements (Sinn Fein, union bureaucrats) would walk out. And for the same reason, R2W cant adopt any form of democratic structure, because the activists on the ground would vote for non payment were they to get the chance to decide policy. So it will remain as a free floating steering committee, and non payment activists and groups will have to organise themselves. I don’t think that them doing so is sowing division and discord. I also don’t think that it’s remotely fair to refer to those who would like to see R2W adopt democratic structures or push non payment as sowing division or discord, for all that I think that hope represents a triumph of optimism over realism given the unspoken threat that the right of the campaign would split. And it certainly isn’t appropriate for Ogle and Gibbons to use the R2W website to make that kind of partisan intervention.

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WorldbyStorm - January 2, 2015

I don’t know if it’s ‘bad-mouthing’ or a ‘partisan intervention’ given the already clearly stated approach of R2W – when something is established with a clear function and it’s working well it’s entirely reasonable not to attempt to push it in a different direction. R2W encompasses many different points of view, sure, but as noted above that’s a strength, not a flaw, because it brings people with it who otherwise wouldn’t be involved who of necessity are going to have to face up to the logic of involvement.

If the non-democratic structures or its neutrality on non payment are a problem why weren’t they so when people aligned in the first place?

As for non-payment AAA, et al have a clear field there. I’d have thought that was a significant advantage.

I’m pretty sure if R2W was seeking to impose a different view on other parallel campaigns who put non-payment at their heart there’d be complaints and rightly so.

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Mark P - January 2, 2015

It’s certainly bad mouthing to describe people as “sowing division and discord”! And it’s certainly a partisan intervention for two officials of the campaign to use the website to, ahem, vigorously criticise others in the campaign that they disagree with. That’s irrespective of whether we happen to agree with their point of view or not. And irrespective of whether they are having a go at the people I think or the people you think.

As for whether there would be “complaints”, well yes I agree entirely. This has been widely read as an attempt to paint the coordination of non payment groups and activists as divisive, both by people who favour non payment and who don’t, and it has resulted in complaints about the two lads overstepping their role and the role of R2W. There is an argument in favour of R2W’s “tactical agnosticism”, but that argument only holds water as long as it actually is a hands off tactical neutrality and as long as no attempt is made to use R2W to push the views and tactics of the conservative elements on the wider campaign.

By the way, while it may be to the advantage of the AAA to have a clear field in terms of non payment, we would rather forego the benefits that brings and actually win. Which means that we want and need other forces to fight to win, ie organising non payment and resistance on the ground.

And on R2W democracy – when R2W was established, centrally to hold a demonstration, there was little in the way of an organised movement to hold it to account. Now there are dozens and dozens of local groups and thousands of activists and they have no way of holding the R2W committee to account or of changing it. As long as that committee sees its role as facilitating others and organising demonstrations, that’s not in practical terms all that important. But if that committee starts pushing particular tactics, pushing against other tactics, or trying to act as a strategic or political leadership then it would quickly become very important. Democracy does matter and in the water movement the activists on the ground tend to be considerably harder line than the free floating committee. As the conservatives will walk if the campaign becomes more radical, I don’t think functioning democratic structure will be allowed, so it is important that the committee or the officials don’t try to impose tactics on anybody.

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WorldbyStorm - January 2, 2015

The point is you are the one assuming its directed against those who hold similar views to yourself though you yourself accept that there might be other forces (and union reps and SF are far from synonymous) who would take other positions – which logically could equally be divisive. I also think that because it’s a broad statement it’s not quite the awful intrusion that you seem to think it is. Some might think they’re uniquely well placed to try to calm matters or put the fundamentals of the campaign front and centre.

I’m at a loss to see how is it ‘pushing the views and tactics of the ‘conservative’ elements’ on the wider campaign to seek to keep R2W ‘tactically agnostic’? Surely it is overstepping the role of R2W to be calling for it to turn into something else? If people want greater coordination of non payment groups no problem, but to be honest this smacks of people wanting to use the R2W as the vehicle for that when that’s not what it was agreed as from the off.

If there was a deficit from the off it still seems odd to complain about that only after it begins to build profile and have a certain amount of weight. And it’s worth noting that it isn’t a party, it isn’t an alliance as such, it is as it’s webpage notes simply a “public campaign”.

Truth is R2W reminds me of ULA, a fix of sorts that was accepted initially by all because there wasn’t much else in place to do it. Now that R2W has taken on a life of sorts of its own that’s clearly changed.

As long as that committee sees its role as facilitating others and organising demonstrations, that’s not in practical terms all that important. But if that committee starts pushing particular tactics, pushing against other tactics, or trying to act as a strategic or political leadership then it would quickly become very important.

That simply has not happened and the statement from Ogle is not representative of that happening. Ogle is clearly talking about R2W, nothing else and that’s entirely his right. Indeed if anyone is attempting to ‘impose’ tactics it would appear to be those closer to your view who seem implicitly to think that R2W should become ‘more radical’ or take a ‘considerably harder line’ or whatever.

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Mark Keane - January 1, 2015

The opinion piece by Ogle and Gibney isn’t saying that militant action was divisive – it’s saying that pushing for R2W to be a militant campaign and nothing else is divisive.

I think even Paul Murphy gets it (finally) that militancy without strategy is counterproductive. I don’t think we’ll be seeing him blocking any cars in the future, judging by his embarrassed, sheepish defense of same on national TV. Cringeful stuff.

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

The people without a strategy are the conservative elements who are opposed to organising non payment. The closest they have to a strategy can be summed up as march, repeat until demoralisation, hope the next right wing coalition abolishes it. That’s not so much a strategy as it is wishful thinking elevated to a principle.

As for Paul taking part in a sit down protest organised by his constituents and then very ably defending those constituents against the slanders of the establishment media in the face of hysterical yelling, if only more elected reps had the courage and the principle to do likewise this might be a better country. And I’ve no doubt that not only would he do it again, he will be doing it again repeatedly as the fight against the water tax continues.

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Paul Byrne - January 1, 2015

Yep. Thought so. Like that fucking idiot Michael O’Brien holding counter meetings out in Coolock. And we gave him an earful for that as well. To his face, that is, not keyboard warrioring with false names like yourselves. “jolly red giant”. bunch of children.

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Mark P - January 1, 2015

I love you too Paul.

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sonofstan - January 1, 2015

It’s being suggested on the always reliable P.ie that Ogle intends to run for the Dail as a PBPA candidate (in Louth?)

That should bring all sides together in a renewed spirit of comradely cooperation.

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15. ar scáth a chéile - January 1, 2015

Beannachtaí na Athbliana daoibh go léir. Comhghairdeachas leat, a WBS, as bliain amháin eile ar an bhfód. Gach rath ar phobal CLR, ó na left liberals go lucht na réablóide, i 2015 – agus, ár ndóigh, ar SYRIZA

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16. WorldbyStorm - January 1, 2015

A chairde, one of the most important aspects of the site for me is to know there are so many us who – whatever our fairly minor differences – actually share essentially the same end goal.

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17. CMK - January 1, 2015

Happy New Year to all at CLR. 2015 looks like it’ll be a busy one here!

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18. Kieran Glennon - January 1, 2015

Happy new year to everyone here. Thanks for encouraging us all to keep being cranky, angry and kicking back. And here’s to a thoroughly depressing 2015 for Them.

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WorldbyStorm - January 1, 2015

And to you both Kieran and CMK.

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19. Starkadder - January 1, 2015

RTE’s new drama about Charles Haughey airs this week:
any thoughts ?

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shea - January 2, 2015

still going with the idea that haughey attempted to import arms with out authority, jack lynch the good myth will die hard.

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shea - January 5, 2015

did anyone watch this, sort of feels like the joe taylor tribunal segment on the vincent browne radio show, same mimic accents with a few sam smyth anecdotes about those times vibe thrown in. antagonists mostly unseen but everywhere. Geraldine Kennedy, irritating.

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20. roddy - January 1, 2015

I see Blueshirt Flanagan now calls those opposed to him (p resumably SF among others) C—-s !

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WorldbyStorm - January 1, 2015

It may just be me but it always seems that FG in power becomes a bit unhinged. I remember comments by Ministers and those close to them during their last time in office that seemed similarly ill judged, and a certain P Donegan comes to mind too from even earlier.

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enlil - January 2, 2015

never, never, vote FG. but one thing is sure: there are an extreme amount of money w—-s (female) about. they adhere incessantly to whatever/whoever holds short-term power.
don’t forget, females put people in ovens, ww2.

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eamonncork - January 2, 2015

There’s no need really for that kind of puerile misogyny now, is there?

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Mark P - January 2, 2015

Jesus.

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WorldbyStorm - January 2, 2015

+1 Mark P. It’s incomprehensible gibberish.

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Eamonncork - January 2, 2015

I had taken a vow not to cut the socks off other posters in 2015 but I do think there are certain sentiments which need to be challenged for fear that anyone who doesn’t know the site might feel the CLR was nodding them through.

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WorldbyStorm - January 2, 2015

Absolutely. And please do cut off that sort of stuff as soon as you see it. I hadn’t caught it until a few minutes ago.

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Mark P - January 2, 2015

I always wonder if this kind of commenter ever actually reads anything on the site before posting? At least the arseholes who arrive every couple of months to tell us that the left needs to be “brave about immigration” or whatever take the time to pin some slight camouflage on their racism, but this is lad just cuts straight to the “whores”.

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CMK - January 2, 2015

“How is it that we do not see any of these [Emergency Powers] Acts directed against the Jews, who crucified Our Saviour nineteen hundred years ago, and who are crucifying us every day in the week? How is it that we do not see them directed against the Masonic Order? How is it that the I.R.A. is considered an illegal organisation while the Masonic Order is not considered an illegal organisation? […] There is one thing that Germany did, and that was to rout the Jews out of their country. Until we rout the Jews out of this country it does not matter a hair’s breadth what orders you make. Where the bees are there is the honey, and where the Jews are there is the money. ”
—Oliver Flanagan, Dáil Éireann, 9 July 1943.

They only decent response to anything Flanagan says. Indeed, he seems to be doing an ‘Anti-Deutsch’ by being an apologist for Israel because his oul fella was calling harsh measures against Jews while Treblika and Sobibor were working a full capacity.

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WorldbyStorm - January 2, 2015

Hahah, I always forget that he’s his father’s son. Brilliant response CMK.

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Brian Hanley - January 2, 2015

Actually don’t agree here lads. Charlie Flanagan’s politics are objectionable in themselves and can be judged on their own merits or the lack of them. He is not responsible for his father’s speeches during the Second World War and I can’t see how it is relevant, (except perhaps in an argument about how while European conservatism was once comfortable with anti-Semitism it is now much more likely to be pro-Zionist). But that wasn’t the point you were making CMK, which seemed to be- anytime Flanagan says anything, remind him of his da’s praise for Hitler.
The fact is that Oliver J Flanagan was employing racism to object to government repression of republicans (as you can see from the above quote). It was one of several occasions during the war period when he asked why Irish patriots were being jailed while Jews and Freemasons were allegedly allowed free rein. He wasn’t a member of Fine Gael at the time (if anything he was a proxy Ailtirí na hAiséirghe TD) and he became something of an ‘anti-Deutsch” himself in the 60s when he described German farmers in Ireland as ‘Nazis’ and demanded that the government stop them buying up land.
Charlie Flanagan was insulting Sinn Féin on twitter- his father was one of the few Fine Gael TDs to vote against the Offences Against the State Act in 1972. Charlie Flanagan supports Gay marriage and if I recall correctly, supported divorce in 1995. His father was famously religiously conservative and opposed divorce in 1986.
I despise both men’s overall politics- but there not the same politics.

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CMK - January 2, 2015

Points taken.

Maybe Flanagan Snr had a point re some of the Germany farmers in the 60’s:

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-30571335

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WorldbyStorm - January 2, 2015

Yes, likewise. Fair points indeed. Flanagan Jr. isn’t responsible for his fathers comments.

Still think Flanagan’s responses though (Flanagan Jr. that is) are representative of an odd attitude in FG of saying stuff which is utterly counterproductive and kind of gauche, for want of a better word. It’s as if they can’t quite reconcile themselves to tempering or moderating their language.

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Brian Hanley - January 2, 2015

I think it comes from their view that the state owes its existence to them- back to Cumann na nGeadheal and the Civil War.

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21. roddy - January 1, 2015

Delegates at their conference once attacked female Nicky Kelly protestors physically and called them f—–g whores.

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22. C B - January 2, 2015

Very disappointed to see that UPC are removing UTV from their service in favour of UTV Ireland rather than accommodating both. For people in the south with a close interest in northern politics it’s very annoying.

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23. roddy - January 2, 2015

If you’re relying on UTV to report impartially on Northern politics, think of their poppy wearing presenters and one Mike Nesbitt and you might realise you were not getting the full story this past few decades.

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C B - January 2, 2015

If you’re looking for coverage of northern politics on broadcast tv, the alternative to UTV and BBCNI (for all their faults) is RTÉ and Tommy Gorman.

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shea - January 2, 2015

Go for saorview and an android box with xbmc. Paying for very little extra tv with ntl.

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24. roddy - January 2, 2015

Despite their differences on some issues , Charlie Flanagan would never have been a TD only for the fact that his father was one.He was selected and elected only because he was his “oul boy’s son and therefore is fair game.

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25. Liberius - January 4, 2015

Former Prime Minister George Papandreou launched his new party on Saturday, as current Deputy Prime Minister and PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos insisted that his party would play a pivotal role in political developments after the January 25 elections.

Papandreou said the his party would be called the Movement of Democratic Socialists. If the former PASOK leader’s new grouping is able to gain more than 3 percent in the polls in three weeks’ time, he might gain enough seats in Parliament to have a say in the formation of the next government. Crucially, the new party could also have an impact on how PASOK performs.

Interesting development that, could easily see the corpse of PASOK buried come the 25th; not that Papandreou’s vehicle would be much of an improvement. I wonder if the sinking DIMAR will sling their spuds onto Papandreou’s barbecue?

http://ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_03/01/2015_545924

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Gewerkschaftler - January 5, 2015

Schäuble (German finance minister and hard-line Austerian) leaked a ‘Greeks will be kicked out of the Eurozone if they make bad election choices ™’ move to Der Spiegel but was promptly contradicted by other members of the German government & Holland.

Surprising they haven’t got their attack plans sorted out yet!?

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26. Mark P - January 4, 2015

Apparently there were big rows about candidate selection at SYRIZA’s extraordinary conference this weekend. As is understand it (third hand!), Tsipras and the other central leaders proposed a slate including recently ex-DIMAR and ex-PASOK elements and wanted 50 of the 409 or so slots left blank, to be filled at the leadership’s discretion. This got a very negative reaction from many delegates, not just those from the left platform but also many who would usually expected to support the leadership.

The outcome isn’t yet clear to me.

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Gewerkschaftler - January 5, 2015

First the election, then the split.

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27. Gewerkschaftler - January 5, 2015

For all you Fa(r)cebookers and Twitterers here’s a couple of Greek solidarity links:

Tweeter

Forcebuch

Post, like or whatever one does 🙂

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28. Mark P - January 5, 2015

There’s an early anti-equal marriage flyer doing the rounds on twitter. Headline: Should Children Be Exposed To The Sounds Of Sodomy?

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Alibaba - January 5, 2015

That’s a setback. Wait till they start twitting about adoption and gay people and so on. My daughter told me recently that social media was awash with items promoting gay marriage. That said, I am confident that many more will come before the referendum. This even includes my daughter who previously was disinclined to even register to vote. She since registered, although we did mention the possibility of a clattering if she didn’t. But she did wish to acknowledge individual human rights, and face the reality of discrimination and oppression of gay people. I am hopeful that many non-gay voters will do so too.

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Joe - January 5, 2015

Yes I’ve always found that the threat of a clattering is a great way to encourage acknowledgement of individual human rights! Only joking, Ali.

A couple of quotes from some bloke that goes by the moniker “Pope Francis”:

1.”If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?” — Interview aboard the Papal Plane after World Youth Day in Brazil.

2. “A person once asked me, in a provocative manner, if I approved of homosexuality. I replied with another question: “Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?” We must always consider the person. — Interview with Jesuit Catholic journals around the world.

Such quotes might be useful to wrongfoot any “Christians/Catholics” who try to push a homophobic agenda during the referendum.

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Michael Carley - January 5, 2015

You are likely to find that these `Catholics’ think the Pope isn’t one.

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Joe - January 5, 2015

Indeed. 🙂

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Gabby - January 6, 2015

Just one point about those papal quotes:- he urges acceptance of the person while not endorsing the sexual behaviour.

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Joe - January 6, 2015

I’ve read the quotes a few times Gabby. He doesn’t mention “sexual behaviour” one way or another – so he doesn’t endorse nor does he condemn any “sexual behaviour”. He does say “Who am I to judge?”

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Gabby - January 7, 2015

I don’t dispute that, Joe; but extempore utterances by Francis on a plane journey or in a magazine interview have to be seen against a background of formal papal documents. There is a tradition about pastoral acceptance of sinners while condemning sin. That’s why I don’t think Francis is ‘going back’ on traditional doctrines about homosexual practices. The recent 8-page leaflet on marriage issued by Irish bishops (which I’ve only read about in the newspapers) reflects the papal line, and seems like a warmer-up to next May’s referendum. In the western media Francis is portrayed as having a nice personality; while Benedict 16th is portrayed as Mr. Nasty. Papal personalities and practices may change, but doctrines seldom. Social activists can forget that, influenced by a media feelgood diet.

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29. Joe - January 5, 2015

“literary fiction set in bookish households in which all struggles are private and to do with character”

I was reading The Slap by some Australian bloke over the Christmas. It was hard work. I gave up half way through. Now I’m reading Netherland by Joseph O’Neill and really enjoying it. Just noticed that the cover says one Barack Obama described it as “a brilliant book”.
I was at that film Unbroken over the weekend. As a movie, not great I thought. Also watched Flight with Denzel Washington on the telly over the Christmas. Enjoyed that more.

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30. Jolly Red Giant - January 5, 2015

The campaign against Maria Cahill by SF members continued unabated – a longstanding SF member posting on p.ie has just referred to her as a ‘narcissistic rat bag’

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31. CL - January 6, 2015

Eddie Hobbs Reboots Detroit.
“The investment firm set up by consumer advocate Eddie Hobbs has recorded an immediate €1.2m gain from its investment in one of the least fashionable addresses in the US — Detroit.”
http://www.irishexaminer.com/business/acquisition-of-distressed-properties-in-detroit-nets-hobbs-firm-12m-261525.html

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CL - January 6, 2015

“Nice to see that there are one or two Irish vulture funds engaged in a bit of bottom feeding as well as the US variety.” says The Independent!.
http://www.independent.ie/business/irish/detroits-loss-is-hobbss-gain-30080088.html

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32. Michael Carley - January 6, 2015
33. CMK - January 7, 2015

Well done to Brian Hanley on Vincent Browne. Put that clown, Brown, in his place.

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CL - January 7, 2015

A good debate. Dysfunction in provision of public services can be seen as purely managerial only if we ignore the underlying ideology that determines policy. When we have gobdaws such as Dan O’Brien believing that there is no such thing as neoliberalism, then ‘there-is-no-alternative’ becomes the conventional stupidity.

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Gewerkschaftler - January 7, 2015

Link? Please.

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CL - January 7, 2015

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