What you want to say – 7th October 2015 October 7, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
As always, following on Dr. X’s suggestion, it’s all yours, “announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose”, feel free.
If you’ve time to spare ….. October 6, 2015Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
If you’ve time to spare …..
The Magill Archive
Any particular stories or issues that you liked or found interesting?
Hugh Geraghty Memorial Lecture – Irish Labour History Society & Clé Club – 21st Oct 2015 October 6, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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Cois Life Bar, Liberty Hall
‘Went On To Organise’
Centenary of the Murder of Joe Hill
Presented by – Francis Devine
Fear a Tí – Tom Geraghty
Francy Devine is a labour historian and has published widely on the subject, extending into workers’ song and culture.
He has also published two collections of poetry. As a singer, he has appeared in England, Scotland, Sweden and Brittany.
The Songs of Joe Hill performed by
Jimmy Jordan, Eric Fleming, Seán O hAracháin, Fergus Russell, Fergus Whelan, and Francy Devine.
Songs and tunes welcome from the floor
Lecture from 7.30pm – 8.30pm Doors open at 7.00pm
Clé Club continues until 11pm
Subscription €5 – no pre booking
Tel Sally 087 2387015
Clé Club – 3rd Wed of the Month
The woes of a junior Minister… October 6, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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From Archon of the Southern Star – again many thanks to the person who forwarded it:
HERE’S some advice for Mr Dara Murphy, the embattled Fine Gael Mini-Minister for something or other.
It’s this: Dear Mr Mini-Minister, please ignore the swarm of nitpickers currently annoying you on account of your borrowing two Garda drivers, plus car, to take you to Dublin after your state vehicle broke down in Fermoy.
We humbly acknowledge (and we wish others would do the same) that you are an outstanding legislator whose qualities are too rarely appreciated by the body politic. You were perfectly entitled to obtain on loan a police car, plus drivers. Why? Because you belong to a superior category of men, namely the Great Race of Borrowers, and because this group is totally different to the miserable class of gits, known as the Lenders, of which we (the common people) are members.
Lenders are characterised by meanness, suspicion, mistrust, grudging resentment, spite, and painful craving of the success and advantages of people like your good self. So said Charles Lamb, who invented the concept that society is divided into Borrowers and Lenders in his essay ‘The Two Races of Men’.
Indeed, to invite policemen involved in important activities at the dead of night to drop everything and take you straight to Dublin was an expression of the special powers that Nature conferred on you – a sort of Corkonian version of the Divine Right of Kings. And there’s nothing wrong with that so long as we, the Lenders, know our place in the scheme of things and don’t demand similar favours.
According to Lamb, the Borrower is discernible by a certain instinctive sovereignty… a careless (in the sense of effortless) deportment … rosy gills and contempt for money – yours, and mine especially! Putting it another way, Borrowers are a race apart, and on that basis we utterly condemn the accusation levelled at you of having wasted Garda time.
How uplifting, then, when we compare the generosity of the Boys in Blue to the endless bad-mouthing you’ve been getting from sections of the Lender class: those repulsive begrudgers (particularly among the reptilian meeja) that belittle the achievements of illustrious Borrowers with coarse descriptions, such as ‘having the neck of a jockey’s bo*!%x” etc, etc!
The metaphorical representation relating to a jockey, we hasten to add, does not in any form or fashion include you, Mr Mini-Minister, and to imply that you and a jockey might have something in common, however remote, would be wrong, and contrary to natural justice.
Indeed, the sum of money that you and the missus (oops, sorry, secretary) saved in expenses by securing the free ride to Dublin, courtesy of the Boys in Blue, was a not inconsiderable €300 (the cost of a taxi from Fermoy – a mode of transport which, we understand, you declined).
Your foresight was admirable. You left Cork in the early hours of Sunday morning, ensuring you had plenty of time to catch a flight for a meeting in Brussels on the following day.
Your careful forethought displayed great presence of mind in the sense that you were able to anticipate any vicissitude that might be lying-in-wait, such as your government car giving up the ghost or, for that matter, a hypothetical encounter with a giant crab; Gawd forbid!
What’s more, in no way do we entertain the vile rumour doing the rounds up in Knocka –a dreadful place although part of your constituency – that you chose to drive to Dublin (504km round trip) for the mileage expenses when you could have flown from Cork to Paris or Amsterdam and taken a 70-min high-speed train into the centre of Brussels!
As to the criticism that you diverted the fuzz from their duties and left rural communities to the mercy of marauding bands of thieves, well, that’s neither here nor there. According to reports, it was a quiet night!
In other words, Mr Mini-Minister, you did nothing wrong and we commend you for your wisdom. Oh, and also for endorsing Charles Lamb’s whimsical classification of mankind!
Blueshirts will be mightily pleased at the €25million worth of contracts that our Taoiseach secured for Irish companies during his official visit to Saudi Arabia last year. On the same occasion Mr Kenny expressed his satisfaction at Saudi Arabia’s election to the United Nation’s Human Rights Council.
But now, in the wake of last week’s announcement that the UN has appointed the Saudi envoy, Faisal Bin Hassan Trad, to head (oops, should that be ‘behead’?) an influential human rights panel, Mr Kenny will be leppin’ with joy.
You see Mr Trad will have the power to select applicants from around the world for more than seventy positions in countries where the UN has a mandate to deal with human rights violations. And in light of that bestowed honour, we hope Mr Kenny will compliment him with the type of emotional arousement that he demonstrated when showering praise on Crown Prince Salman, the Saudi bossman, for ‘leadership in terms of moderation.’
And, we sincerely expect Mr Kenny not to remind Mr Trad of the advert posted recently on the website of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Ministry of the Civil Service. Crown Prince Salman (now King Salman) seeks eight extra executioners to carry out public beheadings and the occasional amputation. Considering that by June 15th of this year, Saudi executions reached one hundred –more than ISIS is credited with- head chopping is clearly a growth industry in Mr Kenny’s favourite Kingdom.
Nor should Mr Kenny mention the case of blogger Raif Badawi. Having written about free speech in Saudi Arabia, he was sentenced to a thousand lashes – fifty lashes a week after Friday prayers – and ten years in prison.
Or the case of twenty one year old Ali Mohammed al-Nimr, who is waiting beheading and for his headless body ‘to be mounted on a crucifix for public viewing’! His crime was that of participating in anti-government protests when seventeen years old!
We certainly do not want our leader to embarrass Mr Trad by reminding him that Saudi Arabia funds Sunni terrorist groups worldwide and that senior members of the House of Saud are known as the bankers, recruiters and weapons-providers of al-Qaeda, since rebranded as ISIS. Or that Saudi Wahhabi ideology is responsible for the most gruesome atrocities committed against Sunni, Shia and Christian civilians!
And under no circumstances should Mr Kenny complain to Mr Trad about the torture and jailing of doctors from the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland who tended to the injuries suffered by the protesters after Saudi Arabia sent troops to repress a democracy movement in Bahrain!
Indeed, we are lucky to have a Blueshirt Taoiseach who always knows the right thing to do, such as flying the national flag at half-mast when the monster, King Abdullah, croaked in January! Well done!
Does anyone actually care when the election is called? October 6, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
That’s the thought that struck me reading this latest masterpiece of ambiguity from one E. Kenny. Who does it genuinely make a difference to? Well, the parties and those foot soldiers of theirs, obviously. But it’s going to happen sooner or later, so that’s baked in from the start. it’s going to be hard work, sure, but some would say get it over soon as possible. The media? They’re delighted by the stream of non-stories on the issue. The polity itself? Given the pre-eminence of Fine Gael the outcome isn’t exactly difficult to work out -at least in so far as who will return as the largest party (short of some serious dislocation between polls and actual vote). And the economy will shamble on much as before one way or another. One thing though, how right-wing an administration will the next one be? This one was unquestionably of the right, and with support from Independents or RENUA or and/or RENUA what of the next one? The implications of that are interesting too.
Starting up a new party… it’s difficult. October 6, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
Reading IEL’s illuminating overview of the electoral landscape in recent weeks one thing that struck me was that the reality of starting a political party – the sheer difficulty, often appears to be underestimated by many – particularly in the media.
Simply put the volume of work that it necessitates is considerable, exhaustive even. That parties should be established in the run-up to an election is puzzling when candidate selection and the demands to be elected or re-elected grow exponentially.
I had the peculiar misfortune to be in at the ground floor when Democratic Left was established and I remember only too well just how problematic an enterprise that was. Granted there were six sitting TDs – some of the infrastructure of the WP too. But in that former supposed strength lay some of the seeds of its future problems because as time progressed the party didn’t move beyond those TDs and in the latter was a different problem – the party wasn’t the WP, it was nowhere near as disciplined, even if it some of those came into it from the WP. In a way it became the worst of both worlds – increasingly looser as an entity but, counterintuitively, centralising around TDs. One could argue that if anything it fell in around them to the detriment of many things, policy and ideology, party development and so on. Or perhaps that was baked in from the beginning.
There was, as it happens, some enthusiasm for DL – difficult though that is to recall at this remove. I remember going to meetings where suddenly there were a lot of people, many of who – in fairness – stuck it out as far as the election and went canvassing. But what was telling, to me, was how they dropped away subsequently. Not all, but most. And it seems to me that there’s a lesson in there. Those who joined from outside weren’t, due to the fact the election was relatively close to the establishment of the party, committed to the grinding slog of electoral politics – most of them had little enough experience of same, if any.
Who can blame them? Canvassing is difficult. The only times I really enjoyed it was years later doing it for Tony Gregory. But in the 1980s and later for the short period I was with with DL I had some ideological conviction to push me out and get knocking on doors. If you don’t have that then there’s feck all to get you up off the sofa on a wet November or March evening. And do it all again the next evening. And the next. And the next and so on for two, three, four, six or whatever weeks. And that’s just the immediate election period. With Tony there were leaflet drops Sunday mornings for years before an election.
And that’s just one aspect – important as it is – of party life and activity. Add to that a presence in communities across a period of time, and not just a presence but a track record of activism and work, a sense that the person going for election isn’t a new arrival but is someone who is invested with and for those who they call for votes. That’s even more difficult, turning up at meetings without the legitimation of an elected position as a councillor or whatever. And yet it has to be done, and those who are serious about it are doing it now.
Take as an example the marriage equality referendum. There there was a genuinely significant example of considerable on the ground activism. But… and this is key. It was for a single campaign and time limited. Some of those involved will, of course, be evident in political parties, some will join having been enthused, but many – most – will not. And that is because the demands are fundamentally different – consider as well how strong the emphasis was on voting, understandably so.
The media in particular appear to have been blinded to this by the advent of social media – and more on this later in the week. Social media has its place, but it cannot and does not replace that grind mentioned above. This is a lesson that parties of the left have learned and relearned over the years. Some might call it the old Sinn Féin/OSF model, and the thing is that it works. Eventually effort on the ground leads to council seats. Eventually those council seats lead to Dáil seats. Not in every instance, but for the most part. The flourishing of the SP or PBP or SF has been built on work on the ground, and continues to be. If that work isn’t there then while seats may on occasion be gained, they will also tend to be lost and in greater numbers than they can be replaced.
Short summation of the above – there’s no quick fix. Parties that depend on that are potentially going to find themselves facing problems both immediately and further down the line. Politics, it’s difficult.
A Cork North Central Poll October 5, 2015Posted by irishelectionliterature in Irish Politics.
The Indo had details of a poll taken in Cork North Central recently supposedly commissioned by the AAA.
The sample was low but however ..
The poll indicated that Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin are likely to hold seats, with Labour struggling.
Fianna Fáil (24.1pc) and Sinn Féin (23.1pc) are in positions to take seats on the first count.
Fine Gael (14.1pc) is also likely to easily hold its sole Cork North Central seat, given its one-candidate strategy. Labour’s support was at just 8.8pc.
That contrasts to 17.8pc for the Socialist Party/AAA, 5.8pc for the Workers Party and 4.3pc for former Fianna Fáil TD Noel O’Flynn, who has confirmed that he is running.
Councillor Mick Barry (SP/AAA), a key figure in the anti-water charges protest campaign, is now a serious contender for the fourth seat.
If the figures are in any way accurate it’s very good news for The Left with Mick Barry and Ted Tynan doing well in the poll.
Cork Volunteers’ Pipe Band Part V October 5, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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In the number four edition of the Cork Volunteer’s Pipe Band on December 2014, Jim Lane promised viewers that” if anything further comes to hand of importance, he will request the relevant websites to make available space put it up online”. With this Supplementary Edition, published in October 2015, we fulfill that comment.
This is a series of five articles on the centenary year 1914-2014 of the Cork Volunteer’s Pipe Band that was founded by Tomas MacCurtain . With the help of some old band members, we tried our best to bring together what information and photos we could fined.
Just to echo these words from IRMHP, it has been an honour for the Irish Republican & Marxist History Project, to publish this unique piece of Cork’s Republican History by Socialist Republican Jim Lane.
Link here to the Cork Volunteer’s Pipe Band part 1 to 4 by Rebel Corks Fighting Story – https://rebelcorksfightingstory.wordpress.com/cork-volunteer-pipe-band/
Trinity Centre for Contemporary Irish History Research Seminar September – December 2015 October 5, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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Flat taxes, stealing political clothes and just how can anyone seriously argue that the ‘high spending State’ is the focus of mainstream politics here? October 5, 2015Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
It’s already been mentioned on here about Renau’s flat tax proposals. They’re arguing for a 23 per cent flat tax. This would, as the SBP reports, see the scrapping of:
…the universal social charge (USC), income tax on workers’ wages, employees’ PRSI, and inheritance tax.
Oops again for RENUA, the SBP in the same edition leads with the news that Fine Gael and Labour intend to make the ‘slashing of USC at all levels’ the ‘centrepiece’ of a €750million tax package. Once again RENUA’s big ideas are swiped by the larger party.
Whether this does the Coalition any good is open to question? The SBP suggests that ‘extensive research among voters has demonstrated a huge public appetite for cuts’. Perhaps so. We shall see. Whether this translates into political support for the Coalition parties is quite another matter.
And in relation to RENUA is there really any sufficient appetite – or any appetite at all – for flat taxes elsewhere on the political spectrum? Fine Gael itself is reported as being antagonistic to the idea – with Noonan arguing that it would leave ‘holes’ in revenue that couldn’t be filled.
Entertainingly the SBP notes ‘It is another sign of the intense political competition to attract the “squeezed middle” who are tired of paying high tax bills’.
Most of all, the Hibernia Forum calls for honest and fact-driven debate about our society and economic situation and a balancing of the public discussion in favour of those who do not believe that a high-spending State is the solution to all our problems.
Are they entirely serious? This state, this polity and ‘high-spending’ is the problem? Particularly in relation to the above.