Tomás Ó Flatharta

Looking at Things from the Left

Archive for the ‘Labour Party’ Category

Baseline Benefits are under attack: ULA statement | United Left Alliance

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Rabbitte Runs From Big Bankers

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A Rabbite Poacher Turned Gamekeeper Runs For Cover

NAMA Wine Lake

There was a frisson of hope and defiance yesterday afternoon when RTE produced the report below on its website.


Was the Government or at least the Labour Party component, without which the Coalition will fall, changing tack in its dealings with the ECB, would unilateral action be on the table after all unless there was some movement on the part of the ECB, has the Government received tacit approval for a plan which it was sure it could deliver?

Sadly for those who waited up until 11pm last night to see The Week In Politics and the full interview and its context – available on RTE’s player here from 24:40 –  it seems that nothing has changed. The Labour Minister for Communications Energy and Natural Resources, Pat Rabbitte said that the €3.1bn payment that fell due in 2012 had not been paid. And he indeed did say that the payment…

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Childers Says Vote No to Burton’s Social Welfare Cuts Bill

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Labour Leinster Member of the European Parliament, Nessa Childers, said today on RTE Radio’s Morning Ireland she favoured voting NO to the Budget Social Welfare Bill. How many, if any, of Childers’ colleagues in the Labour Parliamentary Party will follow her advice?

The Cedar Lounge Revolution

You can read it here (also PFPM put the text in comments earlier, for which many thanks).

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Blue News for Fine Gael – 85% Want X Case Legislation

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The latest credible Sunday Business Post Opinion Poll shows the Fine Gael-Labour Coalition would lose office if a General Election was held soon. In addition 85% of people polled favour abortion legislation on the X Case Supreme Court Judgment. As usual Adrian Kavanagh has published an excellent analysis – Paddy Healy and this writer have submitted comments.

Irish Politics Forum

Adrian Kavanagh, 1st December 2012 

Tomorrow’s Sunday Business Post-Red C poll offers grim reading for Fine Gael, with the party support levels down six percentage points on the previous such poll.  This poll puts national support levels for the main political parties and groupings, and relative to the most recent Sunday Business Post-Red C poll on 28th October 2012, as follows: Fine Gael 28% (down 6%), Labour 14% (up 1%), Fianna Fail 20% (up 1%), Sinn Fein 17% (NC), Green Party 3% (up 1%), Independents, United Left Alliance and Others 18% (up 3%). My constituency-level analysis of these poll figures estimates that party seat levels, should such national support trends be replicated in an actual general election, would be as follows: Fine Gael 53, Labour 21, Fianna Fail 36, Sinn Fein 25, Green Party 1, United Left Alliance 4, Independents and Others 19. 

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Written by tomasoflatharta

Dec 3, 2012 at 12:28 am

Global Coverage of Savita Halappanavar’s Avoidable Death in an Irish Galway Hospital

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“As the news of Halappanavar’s death was reported via newspaper front pages on Tonight With Vincent Browne on TV3, and across Twitter on Tuesday night, reactions almost uniform in their sadness, anger and outrage turned to organising demonstrations both in memory of Halappanavar and against the delay in legislating on the ‘X Case’, which international readers can learn about here. By Wednesday evening, protests had already taken place in Ireland, and Halappanavar’s death and the surrounding issues were being covered internationally.”


Dignified Protest in Clonmel at Labour Party Hypocrisy – Honouring James Connolly and Jim Larkin

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We publish below a Report from Séamus Healy TD on Protests marking the 100th anniversary of  the all-Ireland Labour party founded by James Connolly and Jim Larkin.

See also an Irish Times account of the same event,

Dignified Protest in Clonmel at Labour Party Hypocrisy

A dignified and successful protest organised by the Workers and Unemployed Action Group was held outside the Town Hall Clonmel on Sunday last , May 27 2012.

The event was organised to protest against the savage austerity being imposed on the Irish people by the Labour Party in Government and to expose the claim that the Labour Party of today has anything in common with the all-Ireland Labour party founded by James Connolly and Jim Larkin in Clonmel 100 years ago.

As is now usual the Labour Party was in hiding, they had run away again, cancelling the ceremony and sneaking into the Town Hall ‘earlier’ for a private unveiling. Three weeks ago Eamonn Gilmore and the Labour Leadership ran away, pulling out of the Clonmel Commemoration and giving the pathetic excuse of the Referendum. Read the rest of this entry »

X Case on the Political Agenda

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“Anyway, enormous thanks are owed to the TDs who put this together. The fact that they forced a debate on the issue is a major achievement.” –
Stephanie Lord.
That is the key factor for activists. The Dáil debate was supported by Action on X, which mobilised support outside Leinster House and brought the issue to public attention. We can rely only on ourselves, the politics of mass mobilisation – and work harmoniously with the TD’s who introduced the bill – more power to them all.

Plus Plus Plus to Ming Flanagan – as pointed out by EamonnCork on the Cedar Lounge discussion “By the way Ming Flanagan’s vote in favour of the bill perhaps gives the lie to people on here who persistently characterise him as some kind of rural conservative in disguise” –

The Cedar Lounge Revolution

It almost seems petty to consider who voted and who didn’t on the Abortion Bill this week. But, it’s an exercise with some utility.

First up, consider that ten of the Technical Group, and four of the ULA (out of five), voted for the Bill. Nine of SF’s 14 voted (though Pearse Doherty was at the funeral of his father). Patrick Nulty, who appears to be becoming a one man tribune of a strand of Labour thinking that has now all but vanished also voted for it. I can’t divine any great rural/urban divide in SF, or pro-choice/anti-abortion divide either. TDs who might seem to fit in either camps voted for the Bill.

Of the Technical Group, Stephen Donnelly voted for the Bill, and that great social liberal, Shane Ross? And what of Thomas Pringle? Finian McGrath was missing in action too, as was Tom Fleming – perhaps less unexpectedly.

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Abortion Legislation Proposed in Ireland – Historic Days

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Clare Daly, Joan Collins, Mick Wallace, Action on X, CONGRATULATIONS.

Labour Party pro choice campaigners, many of whom campaigned with courage on this issue since the infamous 1992 X Case, need to reflect on the price they are paying for coalition with Fine Gael.

The Cedar Lounge Revolution

Here’s a thought on foot of today and tomorrow’s events. The list of those voting will be most interesting, as will the names of those who don’t turn up in the Chamber. It will also be useful to match that against votes subsequent to any attempt to introduce legislation on foot of the report released later this year.

Of course the Labour Party has headed off some of the implications of the above by not allowing a free vote, though will any members of the LP break ranks. As interesting will be others from other parties.

RTÉ reports the following:

Speaking after a silent pro-life protest at the Dáil, Caroline Simons of the Pro-life movement said tonight’s private members bill is not about medical treatment for women but about providing for abortion throughout pregnancy.
She said doctors have practiced with no diffculty for the last 20 years since the ‘X-case’…

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Written by tomasoflatharta

Apr 19, 2012 at 11:18 am

ULA Public Meeting : NO To Austerity, Build a Radical Alternative – Tuesday April 24 @8.00pm, Teachers Club, 36 Parnell Square

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United Left Alliance

Dublin Central Branch

Public Meeting

NO To Austerity, Build a Radical Alternative

Tuesday April 24 @8.00pm, Teachers Club, 36 Parnell Square

Speakers : Joe Higgins TD, Joan Collins TD,

Sheila Judge (DEIS campaigner)

Boycott the Household Tax

The Campaign to boycott payment of the Household Tax has won magnificent support. The anger expressed at meetings and protest shows people are prepared to face the government down.

The United Left Alliance (ULA) fully supports the Campaign. Our members, councillors and TDs support the boycott of the tax and stand with those resisting the charge.

Labour & Fine Gael Bail Out Bankers

Labour and Fine Gael promised to stand up to the EU-IMF. Labour even threatened to ‘burn the bondholders’. Now they have made a conscious decision to bailout bankers and speculators and every dirty trick in the book will be used to threaten people to force them to pay this unjust tax.

VOTE NO to Austerity Treaty on May 31

Austerity is being imposed to pay off the gambling debts of the banks. The government wants to enshrine these policies in the Constitution by signing up to a European Treaty that will restrict the ability of states to fund public investment to create jobs. The passing of this treaty will lead to ever more cuts in health and education and more misery for the majority of people. It must be opposed.

Wealth Tax Will Fund New Jobs

The ULA is opposed to all forms of austerity:

making ordinary people pay for a crisis that was not of their making. Ireland is not broke and austerity is not inevitable. The richest 5% have a combined wealth of €219 billion. A wealth tax on these resources and a refusal to pay bank debts could generate billions for a programme of job creation.

Build A Radical Political Alternative

The growing opposition to austerity must be linked. The ULA believes it is time to build a radical political alternative. The ULA stands for the creation of a new party for working people that stands for democratic public ownership of the resources of the economy that can guarantee a decent standard of living for all. It does not believe that there is a just or sustainable solution to the current crises based on the capitalist market and bowing to the power of speculators.

We believe there needs to be a wide debate, involving all those groups and individuals opposed to austerity, about the best way to build a new organisation to represent working people, the unemployed and the marginalised.

Come to the Public Meeting, join the debate and get involved in the fightback.

The ULA, formed in November 2010, is an Alliance of People Before Profit , the Socialist Party and the Tipperary Workers and Unemployed Action Group. It has five TDs, an MEP, and councillors throughout the country. It is now building branches in all areas to provide active opposition to the austerity policies of the government.

For more information contact Donal at 087 7552559 or Colm at 087 2947100

United Left Alliance at

ULA Galway: Counter Conference 13th -14th April

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Challenging the Sell-out of Labour

Building a real political and economic alternative


NUI Galway 13th – 14th April


2012 marks the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Irish Labour Party. To mark the occasion and to challenge them on their absolute betrayal of the working class, the Galway branch of the ULA is hosting a Counter-Conference to coincide with the National Conference of the Labour Conference. The Counter-Conference will be held in NUI Galway on Friday 13th and Saturday 14th April. Speakers will include opposition TDs, trade union leaders, campaigners, academics and former Labour members.  ULA members and supporters, and indeed the general public, are invited to attend and to participate.

It is fitting for working people to commemorate the anniversary of the founding of the Labour Party. The organisation that Larkin and Connolly established in 1912 has been corrupted beyond recognition. The leadership of the Labour Party has turned its back on working people, on women, on the elderly and on the unemployed.

The Counter-Conference will provide a space for political activists, former Labour members and supporters, trade unionists, working people, campaigners and all those affected by unemployment and austerity to gather together to build a new movement for ordinary people.

Further details available from:

085 8461013

Written by tomasoflatharta

Apr 4, 2012 at 2:21 pm