Tomás Ó Flatharta

Looking at Things from the Left

Archive for the ‘Green Party’ Category

Elections Over – Fianna Fáil Still Toxic, A Government Starting to Slide

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A Fianna Fáil Resurrection in Dublin West

- or A Fine Gael  Gift?

Ed Moloney in his always stimulating Broken Elbow Blog concentrates on the Sinn Féin performance and suggests in passing:

Fianna Fail did what no-one expected and put on a convincing impression of Lazarus. The FF result in the West Dublin by-election, the creditable performance of Sean Gallagher, the ersatz Fianna Failer – despite the late-breaking brown envelope scandal.

I disagreed, and posted a an explanatory reply.  This article expands on the topic.

The Fianna Fáil Dublin West by-election result must be analysed in tandem with the dire Fine Gael result achieved by a very weak candidate, Eithne Loftus. Read the rest of this entry »

Nobody is denying US torpedoed plan to save the Irish State €20bn — Only Gene Kerrigan is asking

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We are paying Gene Kerrigan the compliment of reproducing his entire article in today’s Sunday Independent (June 19 2011).

We covered this ground during the recent general election campaign.

No apologies for the action replay.

We also recommend the following articles from Vanity Fair and the British Guardian – very relevant to Gene’s article.

Let us hope the United Left Alliance TD’s run with this ball

We’re shamed by conspiracy of silence

Nobody is denying US torpedoed plan to save the State €20bn — but no one’s asking either, writes Gene Kerrigan Read the rest of this entry »

United Left Alliance “A Work in Progress” – Steps Towards a New Party

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The Irish election returned five TDs for the United Left Alliance, with 2.8 per cent of the first preference votes. But this victory for the Left is only part of a bigger picture of political change, writes Brendan Young, in an article commissioned by Scottish Left Review. Republished here with kind permission of the author and SLR.

This article is also published on the Irish Left Review Site  :

United Left Alliance A Work In Progress – Steps Towards a New Party

Joe Higgins TD - Socialist Party and the United Left Alliance

Described as a sea change by commentators, the biggest shock of Ireland’s recent general election was the collapse of the vote of Fianna Fáil (FF), the State’s largest party; from 41.5 per cent in 2007 to just 17.4 per cent this time. FF has governed in Ireland for 61 out of the 79 years since it was formed in 1932 and has won 14 out of the 19 general elections. Yet it now has only one TD (member of parliament) in Dublin – down from 13. Its first preference vote in Dublin was only 12.5 per cent, whereas the United Left Alliance, on its first outing, got 7.1 per cent. What stands out is the loss of support for FF among working class voters – confirming what has already been happening in local elections. Read the rest of this entry »

Labour Voters – How Cool Are They About Coalition With the Right?

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John Meehan has put together a statistical analysis of Labour Party lower preferences, where no other Labour candidate is in the contest (these are known as terminal transfers), and candidates from both the left and right are still in the race.

The table is at the end of this article.


Healthy debate is developing on this blog and other Irish sites on the composition of the Labour Party’s electoral base.  The February 2011 General Election broke new ground in many ways, and we can learn a lot from detailed study of the numbers.

An interesting question is : how keen are Labour voters on coalition with the right?  How sympathetic are they to the arguments of left rivals that helping to elect Enda Kenny as taoiseach is a very bad idea? Read the rest of this entry »

The February 25 General Election changed something in Ireland

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The article below  – by John Meehan -

has been  published in the British Magazine Socialist Resistance :


Writing in the North American online magazine Counterpunch Harry Browne zoned in on two key features on the Irish February 25 2011 General Election Result



Same Old at the Top – but Irish Election Makes Room for the Left

Same Old, Same Old at the Top, But – Irish Election Makes Room for the Left

The same old :

A Fine Gael / Labour coalition takes over the government after 14 years of Fianna Fáil rule. Since 1932, Fianna Fáil have been the governing party for 61 out of 79 years.  They have won 19 out of 25 General Elections. On the rare occasions Fine Gael dominated coalitions have come to power the smaller right-wing party never held on longer than one term in office.

That said, the scale of the 2011 Fianna Fáil defeat is without precedent Read the rest of this entry »

Why Does The Irish Labour Party Seek Fine Gael’s Kiss-of-Death?

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In the last days of the 2011 Irish General Election Campaign Labour Party leaders and spinners are warning that the voters might choose a Fine Gael single party government. Their alternative? : Coalition – Fine Gael’s Enda Kenny for Taoiseach, Labour’s Eamon Gilmore the Tánaiste – that’s the message.

SIPTU leader Jack O’Connor, for example, claims “that a coalition government would be far preferable as the country imposes spending cuts as part of its EU and IMF bailout.

“If you look at the lessons of history, they (Fine Gael) haven’t been in government on their own since 1927 when their predecessor Cumann na nGaedheal was in government,”….

“They pursued policy which resulted in economic stagnation for 60 years. And that’s the kind of policy that’s being advocated by both of the centre-right parties at the present time.”

First – is a single-party Fine Gael government possible or likely?

We will know for sure on Saturday February 26 – at the time of writing, if the polls are right, a single party Fine Gael government is possible but unlikely.

A second factor is political – many Fine Gael backers, for example the former party leader Garret FitzGerald, argue that coalition with Labour is a better tactical option for this right-wing party. Read the rest of this entry »

Joan Collins to Offer Radical Alternative – RTE’s Frontline Programme, Monday February 21

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Message from the Joan Collins Site :

“I have agreed to go on panel on Frontline on Monday evening. It’s on after the  9pm news. Also last Friday I had a BBC Panorama crew with me for the afternoon in Drimnagh. They are doing an election special on Ireland, also on Monday evening.”

Joan’s campaign was featured in the Irish Times, Thursday February 17 :

Collins aims to offer radical alternative

Joan Collins Flyer :

500 Words from Joan Collins :

United Left Alliance Prospects? Read the rest of this entry »


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