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Programmes for government June 11, 2020

Posted by Tomboktu in Irish Politics, The political discourse.
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As the three teams of negotiators inch their way towards either finalising a programme for government or failing to do that, it is reported that the draft is long and detailed. I’d wager that format reflects the Green’s determination that their second time in ‘senior hurling’ won’t be the same as their first. That has prompted me to I have taken to wonder about the history of programmes for government in Ireland.

First, have they always been part of government formation or just when more than one party is involved? And how far back in the state’s history do they go? For example, the wiki page for the inter-party government in 1948-1951 has no mention of a programme for government.

Second, once a government is formed and the ministers appointed, how faithful are the ministers and their parties’ TDs to the programme? When they deviate, why? If my memory is correct, in 2007 when the FF-GP-PD government was formed, the looming crisis in the financial system was not known by the parties. It would have been ludicrous for them to have sticked to their original plans when the crisis did force its way to the surface. But were there commitments in that government’s programme that did not depend on funding, and were they implemented or did they get squeezed out for other reasons? And for other programmes, when and why do commitments get dropped?

Are their studies of what has happened programmes for government over the decades? How systematic have government’s been in implementing them, or even trying to implement them? How many commitments in them get implemented, and of those how many are implemented in ways that were not expected by some or all of those who negotiated the programme?

Seanad vocational panels – some calculations February 27, 2020

Posted by Tomboktu in Bits and Pieces, Irish Politics.

[Note: Updated 28 Feb to correct an error in the Sinn Féin figures. Thanks to Roscommon21 on Twitter for spotting it.]

Nominations for the vocational panels in the Seanad general election close on Monday. The voters are the combined sets of: members of the city and county councils, members of the outgoing Seanad, and members of the Dáil.

My calculation is that the electorate will be 1,161 voters. It could possibly a few under that, but I expect that all council seats that became vacant with the Dáil election will be filled and that there will be no other vacant seats in any of the councils. There are eight vacancies in the Seanad following the Dáil election.

The 1,161 voters consist of the following:

  • 949 councillors
  • 160 TDs
  • 52 senators.


The Drama on One: Haughey/Gregory January 27, 2019

Posted by Tomboktu in Irish Politics.
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This might inteest some CLRers. RTÉ Radio One’s drama tonight (8.00 pm) is Haughey/Gregory by Colin Murphy.

Playwright Colin Murphy writes for Culture about the genesis of his acclaimed play Haughey/Gregory, which he has adapted for this weekend’s Drama On One presentation on RTÉ Radio 1.

Everybody keeps saying how we are living through an extraordinary time – international instability, turmoil in our nearest neighbour, renewed tension in the Anglo-Irish relationship, fears of a hard border, and a huge need for housing and other basic services.

But look at 1982. The Cold War had reintensified under Ronald Reagan. The UK was bitterly divided between a Conservative Party in the grip of Thatcher and a Labour party in the hands of the hard left. The Irish border was at its hardest, with the hunger strikes of the previous year still resounding through Southern politics. Militant republican factions of various hues were murderously active in the South as well as the North. Anglo-Irish relations were at their nadir, as the British press turned on Ireland for refusing to support Britain in the Falklands War. And in Dublin, there was a housing crisis – with thousands of families living in flats that didn’t even have a private bathroom.

Into this mire of social deprivation and febrile politics stepped a young teacher from Dublin’s inner city, Tony Gregory. He eschewed the traditional party routes into national politics, being elected instead as an Independent supported by a local coalition of community workers and left-wing activists.
Tony Gregory

The day before the election of February 1982, Gregory was an unknown local councillor. Two weeks later, he would be a national figure – a hero in his constituency and a bete-noire of the establishment. His name is still resonant in Irish politics, and still helps get local independents elected. I have written a series of plays about Irish politics and political history from 1916 (Inside the GPO) and the Gallipoli campaign (Jack Duggan’s War) to the banking crisis (Guaranteed! and Bailed Out!) and marriage equality (A Day in May). Each of those plays took moments of major political and historical significance in Irish history and attempted to excavate how they happened and how they were experienced by those involved.

I work in Dublin’s North Inner City and live nearby, and so when a local friend, Des Gunning, suggested the Gregory Deal of 1982 could be a fruitful subject for a play, I was intrigued. The Gregory Deal may not have been of such overt significance as these other moments in Irish history – but when I started to dig into it, I found that it contained, in compressed form, the urgent questions of politics everywhere at every time: how much should we compromise our principles to get things done? What matters more – helping people on the ground, now, or reforming politics for future benefit? Is politics about the achievement of ideals or the balancing of interests? Does it matter who we ally with if our aims are right? Or most simply, in the classic question of statecraft: does the end justify the means?

This Week At Irish Election Literature January 6, 2017

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
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Starting off with some brochures from Anglo Irish Bank

An “I Stand With Ibrahim -Free Ibrahim Halawa Now!” postcard from Amnesty International

The Christmas 2016 Newsletter from Senator Frances Black

And finally From the Irish Republican Marxist History Project a Short film clip and photo of Marxist and Saor Éire activist Máirín Keegan at a Frank Keane Defence Committee picket

Political Shopping January 2, 2017

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.

I am currently Reading about Rural Electrification and learnt that when the electricity came Fianna Fail people got Phillips Radios and Fine Gael people got Bush Radios . …. I gather too that FF ate Bolands biscuits…and FG people ate Jacobs. There’s supposedly a Lyons/Barrys Tea divide also. Any other products or brands (Newspapers aside) that were associated with one party or the other. Or indeed similar from further afield?

This Week At Irish Election Literature December 30, 2016

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
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A Letter with an accompanying article from Gerry Adams to a Sinn Fein 2014 Local Elections Candidate

Then some of the most popular posts from the year
From the 1987 General Election, A leaflet for The Workers Party candidate for Cork South Central Kathleen Lynch

A 12 page leaflet from William DJ Gorman who ran in Dublin Central and Dublin Bay South

A Leaflet from Fergal O’Connell who ran as an Independent in Dublin Fingal.

A Leaflet from ‘Christians Concerned For Dun Laoghaire’ regarding the General Election and candidates positions on Abortion and other issues

A guide to canvassing produced by Fine Gael for the 2016 General Election.

This Week At Irish Election Literature December 23, 2016

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
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First off Happy Christmas and Prosperous New Year to you all and thanks to the continued support in sending material on.

From 1969 “Crisis” Bulletin No. 1 from The Dublin Housing Action Committee giving details of Homelessness, unscrupulous Landlords, Squatters and other issues relating to housing at the time.

Two #Repealthe8th Stickers From @Eight_stories

and “Why Do People Avail Of Abortion In Our World Today” Pro Life Leaflet From Dave Logan which is fairly biblical in nature.

Submissions to the Citizens Assembly December 23, 2016

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
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There are 38 pages of them , some submissions have the same text but there are a lot of different voices there from both sides. If you’ve time many are worth a read.

Tinkering December 20, 2016

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.

Watching the growing crisis over homelessness and related issues such as rising rents and the cost of housing ……..you can be like the Government and do little or nothing but pitter patter around the edge of the problem. Yes put a moratorium on rent increases, allow a 4% rise , allow NAMA do what it likes …. Yet it doesn’t seem to occur to them to have a massive public building programme, introduce a vacant site levy, ask NAMA for properties, land that would be suitable and so on and so on. Solutions that any child could give them,, solutions that alas are against the dogma of our two major parties. “The Market …The Market… The Market”
I was discussing Apollo House today and the lack of Government reaction to the housing/homelessness crisis, to some it was celebs acting irresponsibly , “would they take them into their own mansions?”, “wait til Bono jumps on the bandwagon!” and so on. Yet it has taken “Celebrities” and activists (some are both) to get some people talking about homelessness. To show that our Capital (and I’m sure other places) have many empty buildings that could be used to house people.
I’ve touched on it here before of how there is a class in society that has never had long periods unemployed, periods living hand to mouth, have had to move their families back in with their parents, that knows nobody living in a hotel and because all of this doesn’t really appreciate the crisis we are in. Doesn’t realise the damage Austerity has done to communities across the Country.
For a party so full of it’s own History and Heritage, Fianna Fail, who gave us massive public housing schemes in the 30’s and 40’s appear to have turned their back on public housing and continue to prop up the Government.
My wife was correcting 5th year exam papers this evening, as she marked she told me “this girl lives in a hotel” , minutes later “this boy lives in a hotel”…… I wondered how the fuck anyone could study for their leaving cert as part of a family living in a fucking hotel room. What chance do those pupils have compared to those that live in a house. That have a room to study in, a kitchen table to do homework on. It really is a disgrace.

This Week At Irish Election Literature December 16, 2016

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
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“Watch Out! RTE “News”? Censorship breeds ignorance” leaflet from the Repeal Section 31 Campaign.

A 2014 leaflet from GLEN giving details of the role played by The Labour Party in “The Remarkable Journey towards Equality and Civil Marriage for Lesbian and Gay People in Ireland.” ..what struck me about it wasn’t just the content but the size of the Labour Parliamentary Party pictured in the leaflet.

“Bertie The Local Man” 1989 Leaflet From Bertie Ahern

From March 2014 a leaflet from Sinn Fein outlining their support for a directly elected Mayor for Dublin

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