jump to navigation

Workers’ Party Election Manifesto April 23, 2015

Posted by Garibaldy in The Workers' Party.
add a comment

The Workers’ Party, which is running 5 candidates, launched its manifesto today, which can be found here.

From the Manifesto

‘The most damaging cuts here have been engineered by the five Executive parties. Along with the business community, they have campaigned for a reduction in Corporation Tax: something which even the Tories did not propose.

To offset the cost of lowering Corporation Tax for big business, Sinn Fein, the DUP, SDLP, Alliance Party and Ulster Unionists, are taking 20,000 jobs out of the public sector and are significantly reducing public spending on education, public transport, the community and voluntary sector and the arts. They will make up the shortfall by selling off public assets like the Belfast Harbour Estate.

These are not Tory Cuts; they are the price the people of Northern Ireland are paying for lowering Corporation Tax’.

The WP election broadcast is here, starting at about 1 minute in.

Women’s View, Number 3, 1980, Sinn Féin – The Workers’ Party March 2, 2015

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish Left Online Document Archive, Sinn Féin The Workers Party, The Workers' Party.
1 comment so far


To download the above please click on the following link. WOVIEWWPDOC

Please click here to go the Left Archive.

It’s appropriate with International Women’s Day on Sunday that we post this very welcome addition to the Archive which was donated by Áine Mannion, one of a number of documents that will be posted up over the next year, and for which many thanks.

Women’s View was a magazine produced by Sinn Féin – The Workers’ Party in the early 1980s. Designed in a news magazine format, effectively A4 in size while not full colour it did use large photographs throughout and therefore is of a piece with other publications from SFWP/WP during this period.

There’s a very broad range of articles in the magazine and it is notable for a lack of focus on the party – although as it notes on the inside page it is:

Published quarterly by the National Women’s Committee of Sinn Féin The Worker’s Party.

It also contains an article on the SFWP campaign for Divorce.

The contents includes pieces on Chilean Refugees in Ireland, Family Planning Services – A World Survey, Women and Sexuality: A feminist analysis of the Midnight Court, Women in Trade Unions and Positive Action, a report from the UN International Women’s Conference, a ‘Thumbs down for Belfast Women’s Aid’ and ‘Galway’s Big Mistake’. Contributors include Maura McInerney, Mairin de Burca, Patricia Redlich and Hilary Rock. There are book and television reviews, regular columns and news from abroad and Ireland.

Congratulations are given to Inez McCormack, who it notes ‘is the first woman to be lectd to the Executive of the ICTU’ and as it notes ‘roll on the day when the election of women to such positions will cease to be a two-day wonder’. It also notes that men were now allowed to join the previously ‘all-female Irish Women Workers’ Union’.

It notes that ‘there are no equal rights for Northern Ireland’ in relation to abortion; that in a survey of Family Planning clinics only in Ireland and Bolivia were they illegal and it notes that ‘awareness is growing that among the hazards of work for women is the persistent problem of sexual harassment’. The column ‘A Woman’s Work’ by Maire Leydon offers an insight into working conditions in West Germany for women in ‘traditional female employmetns such as small, light goods factor(ies)’ and notes:

Work began at 6 am and continued until 2 pm with a 20 minute break in the eight hours! Frequently threw as compulsory overtime and this ended at 5 pm; Because of the exploitative nature of the owners, there was no extra pay for such work. The security of immigrant workers’ employment is always precarious and the owners often intimidated the workers through this means.

Other pieces reference how Ireland had ‘declined to ratify the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women’ adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1979.

Left Archive: Leaflet “Make the Banks Accountable”, The Workers’ Party, c. 1991/2 October 9, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish Left Online Document Archive, The Workers' Party.

WP A5 leaflet Banks c.1990 side 1

WP A5 leaflet Banks c.1990 side 2

Many thanks to the person who donated this to the Archive.

PDF available here: WP MAKE THE BANKS

Left Archive: FOCUS from the Workers’ Party, 1991 March 24, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish Left Online Document Archive, The Workers' Party.


To download the above file please click on the following link: WP FOCUS 91

This document, Focus, the Internal Bulletin of the Workers’ Party, dates from 1991 and is of particular interest because it predates the split in that party by a relatively short period. Focus replaced the previous party bulletin “News & Views”.

It is also of interest because this edition covers the then recent local elections where the Workers’ Party took 7 new council seats. These included new seats on Meath and Waterford County Councils, Jimmy Homan taking a third seat for the party on Cork Corporation and a further three on Dublin City Council. Overall the party took 24 seats.

However as the document notes in its introductory piece on the elections, ‘the party made a number of gains, but a number of disappointments tended to sour the election outcome. In particular the losing of seats in Dublin City and Galway. Despite the good opinion polls and impressive canvass returns, the party did not take additional seats in Dublin City, although Jim Allen came very clseo on his first outing Rathmines, Niall Behan standing in Howth, with marian White standing in Blackrock were similarly close to taking seats.

It also notes:

In Waterford City the party share of the vote was 22%, the highest of any party in the City, which ensure the that party held its three seats.

And it concludes that:

The local elections confirmed that the WP is here to stay and continues to gather support and grow. Growth for the party can only come through hard work and diligent cultivation of the people.

Other pieces of interest in the document include one’s on the ‘new party logo’, an article on the ‘vicious journalistic attack’ by the BBC Northern Ireland Spotlight programme on the Workers’ Party and included is the text of the party’s response to programme, articles on WP Youth, Northern Ireland Conference and the platform of the Left Unity group in the European Parliament.

There’s also an advertisement for a ‘new General Secretary’ of the party to replace Sean Garland.

Left Archive: Making Sense – Issue 1, Workers’ Party, Summer 1988 February 10, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish Left Online Document Archive, The Workers' Party.


To download the above please click on the following link:MS WP ISS SUMMER 1988

This is the first edition of Making Sense, cultural and current affairs journal of the Workers’ Party during the latter part of the 1980s and on into the very early 1990s. The editorial under the title ‘The murderers – my country’ sets the tone of the journal. It argues that:

Future studies of Irish nationalism with any claim to authority will draw heavily on the exposition of nationalist sentiment by Desmond O’Hare in Green Street Court in April. The delivery was crude but every word rang true. It got to the heart of the matter, and laid bare the anglophobia, the land hunger, and – above all – the hatred of Protestants which lie at the heart of militant Catholic nationalism. It also gave clear expression to the obsession with violence and death which has long since subsumed any progressive or positive dimension to nationalism in Ireland.

And continues:

There can no longer be any doubt as to the real intent of the various gangs who murder and maim in the name of Ireland. The aim is not to ‘bomb a million Protestants into a United Ireland’ but to terrorise them out of Northern Ireland. There should no longer be any room for ambivalence on this score.

It draws a comparison between:

Enniskillen [which] was an act of sheer terror on a par with the neo-fascist bombing of Bologna in Augst 1980 – not even the cowardly perpetrators – could condone it. The SF/IRA ‘apology’ was almost as sickening as the act it sought to disown. But the Provisionals cannot disown murder; they are in the business of murder and it is the business they obviously intend to continue.

And it suggests that:

In this they will be encouraged by the invitation to talks with the SDLP, and by the possibility of an invitation to ta ‘constitutional conference’ a la Charles Haughey. There are those who argue that any effort to secure peace is justified. So it is, but the Provisionals have asserted that peace will only come about following a British withdrawal. (This, of course, is typical Provisional double-talk. British withdrawal in the present climate would lead to a sectarian bloodbath).

The contents gives some insight into the dynamics of the party during that period. There is an interview with newly elected President of the WP, Proinsias de Rossa. Paul Bew discusses the Anglo-Irish Agreement, signed three years before. Rosheen Callendar argues that social insurance pensions for the self-employed ‘are right in principle, but wrong in practice’. Mary McMahon looks at West Belfast. Barry McDermott examines the British Tory party and there is also an article by Victor Kiselev ‘a senior research associated of the Institute of Economcis of the World Socialist System’ on the ‘evolution of the theory of socialism and its application’. Add to this book reviews and a piece on Irish cinema.

New LookLeft: In Shops Now Across the Country March 13, 2013

Posted by Garibaldy in The Left, The Workers' Party.
1 comment so far

LL Cover14

Ireland’s leading magazine for progressive news, views and solutions – available in Easons stores and over 600 newsagents across the country – 48 pages for just €2/£1.50

In the latest issue of LookLeft, highlights include:


1913 Its importance then and now – historian BRIAN HANLEY discusses the events of 1913 and what they tell us about modern Ireland

Lockout Timeline – the events leading up to the Lockout and what happened

Lockout Events – calendar of some of the major events planned to commemorate the Lockout


No Left turn for Northern Ireland – PAUL DILLON speaks to some Northern Left activists on the problems facing progressive politics

Again across the oceans – DARA MCHUGH examines who are the victims and who profits from emigration from the Republic

Owen Jones Interview – KEVIN SQUIRES talks to the author of Chavs about the future of the Left

Securing the future of your home – Rising rents, less secure tenure and an unaccountable system is the future for Northern Irish public housing tenants, reports JUSTIN O’HAGAN

Working Class: No one called that round here – CONOR MCCABE on why the Republic’s working class is right to be apathetic towards the demise of an uncaring State

Meath raises the Red Flag – Seamus McDonagh of the Workers’ Party gives progressive voters a voice in the Meath East By-election


The LookLeft Debate: Unions and the Household Tax – The Workers’ Party’s James Coughlan and Socialist Party’s Mick O’Brien discuss

Austerity (Class War) is working – Eoghan O’Neill
Sideshows and circuses – the flags dispute – Brian McDermott
Women are paying for the recession – Stephanie Lord
Suicide Prevention – Donal O’Driscoll
The military adventures contiune – Padraig Mannion

Irish Left Review, An introduction to the three volumes of Karl Marx’s Capital, Rising Expectations (and Rising Hell)

Inflammable Material – Sam McGrath on the career of Stiff Little Fingers
The Derry Sound – Kryton Son meets Barry Healy
Bow down before Luther Blissett – the unusual tale of the former Derry City player told by Kevin Brannigan

For more information visit
www.lookleftonline.org or email: lookleftonline@gmail.com

LookLeft Forum: Erik Olin Wright Video March 6, 2013

Posted by Garibaldy in Socialism, The Workers' Party.

The video of this forum and the discussion afterwards is available now at the LookLeft website for your delectation, as pointed out by Daramcq here.

LookLeft: It Can Change Your Mind March 4, 2013

Posted by Garibaldy in The Left, The Workers' Party.

New video from the people at LookLeft.

LookLeft Forum 7th November 2012, Liberty Hall at 6pm November 5, 2012

Posted by Garibaldy in The Workers' Party.

Left Archive: General Secretary’s Report: Ard Fheis/Annual Delegate Conference 1988, Workers’ Party October 15, 2012

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Irish Left Online Document Archive, The Workers' Party.
1 comment so far

To download the above file please click on the following link: WP GEN SEC 1988

This document is an useful addition to the range of materials available in the Archive from the Workers’ Party. Dating from the late 1980s and a time of profound change for the party it provides an insight into some of the issues that were of particular importance during that time for the party and the emphasis that was placed upon them.

The Introduction notes:

For many years now we have emphasised the crucial task of developing class consciousness and of the need to expand our activities and build the Party. That we have met with some success in this task is heartening but nevertheless we cannot afford to slacken our efforts. The reactionary right wing forces that dominate our society will not give up their power easily.
It is only a united working class led by a class conscious disciplined Party which will achieve our objectives. We have demonstrated to a growing number of the working class the validity and indeed the absolute necessity for the working class to have its own Party. Through our work among the people, in the Local Councils and in the Dáil the Party has consistently demonstrated to these workers the nature of the society in which we live and what is required to change this society. To achieve our objective we need a mass party, history as we know is created and made by the mass of the people, not by some mighty hero or leader. We long ago recognised that without the people on our side we would achieve nothing.

The document notes how the addition of two extra TDs to supplement the two already in the Dáil ‘[has] been of great assistance in enabling the Party to cover a far wider range of matters than was possible with two TDs’ and it notes the ‘exceptional level of commitment and dedication shown by our TDs’. But it also points to the limitations of the parliament as a focus of activity: ‘The Party in the Dáil still works under a considerable disadvantage compared to the other parties. We are the only party in opposition which does not have at least seven TDs, the minimum number required to qualify for recognition as a group, which in turn qualifies a party for time for private members motions, private members bills and priority questions. Despite the number of private members bills and motions listed above we never actually got time to discuss any of them’.

It also notes that the work done in the Dáil was not recognised by members of the public and of the party due to the lack of coverage of the proceedings there.

There are additional sections to the Report on Local Government, Party Finance, and from individual Party Committees. Mention is made of Party member Emmanuel Wilson who was shot dead by the Provisional IRA. Interestingly under the Education section it notes that ‘the growth in party membership in the past year due to the recruitment campaign places a particular response on branches to ensure that there is a continuing process of political education and discussion at branch meetings’.

As a snapshot in the development of the party prior to significant electoral gains the following year it is of considerable use.

%d bloggers like this: