Tomás Ó Flatharta

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Archive for the ‘Left Wing Opponents of Neoliberalism’ Category

Sir Keir Starmer’s British Labour Party Suspends Diane Abbott – the state’s first Black woman MP following a published letter about racism – Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL) offers a calm and measured response

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Diane Abbott – A statement from Jewish Voice for Labour

Sir Keir Starmer’s British Labour Party has suspended Britain’s first Black woman MP following a letter published in the Observer in response to an article about racism in the British State, as reported by Skwawkbox.

The JVL response is below. Sun 23 Apr 2023

Diane Abbott, 2017. Photo from Wikipedia

The suspension of Diane Abbott is yet a further attack on our freedom to debate very important issues in the Labour party. Her original letter was not antisemitic and the way some critics have rounded on her as if it were is cynical and unhelpful.

As a prominent Black Labour MP she cannot avoid discussing the way Black and Asian people are in the frontline of racist oppression – and the way the Black experience has been downplayed in the Labour Party. This was identified by Martin Forde in his report as a hierarchy of racism. The wording of Diane’s letter was unfortunate in that it appeared to compare forms of racism. Diane has rightly apologised for this.

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Cedar Lounge Blog Response to People Before Profit Pamphlet : “The case for a left government / Getting rid of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael.”

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The Cedar Lounge Blog publishes a very good assessment of a recent People Before Profit Pamphlet. Source : https://cedarlounge.wordpress.com/2023/03/08/left-wing-unity/

Everyone on the Irish Left needs to keep the focus on supporting left wing election candidates who rule out coalition with the right in all circumstances. On this key point, People Before Profit is correct.

Predicting a general election result almost two years from now is unwise. The current Fianna Fáil/Fine Gael/ Green Party FFFGGG coalition can remain in office until February 2025. These three parties will not voluntarily cut and run unless at least one of them is sure they will benefit from a fresh general election. Could the government fall due to external pressures? That’s possible. At the moment one serious crisis follows another. The latest arises from a government decision making it easier for landlords to evict tenants.

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Elected Left for Ukraine Launched

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Left-Wing elected representatives launch global solidarity network with Ukraine

Declaration [English, Deutsch, Polski, Español, Catalá, Ελληνικά, Italiano, Français]

List of signatures here.For more information: representatives@ukraine-solidarity.eu

“Without the mobilisation of the working people of Ukraine in their millions, the country would never have withstood Vladimir Putin’s criminal invasion one year ago. Now they need solidarity from working people everywhere to help win their country’s definitive liberation.”

“Without the mobilisation of the working people of Ukraine in their millions, the country would never have withstood Vladimir Putin’s criminal invasion one year ago. Now they need solidarity from working people everywhere to help win their country’s definitive liberation.”

With these words, Stéfanie Prezioso, deputy for Ensemble a Gauche in the Swiss Parliament, announced the formation of the global network Elected Left for Ukraine.

Prezioso said that the network will build support for Ukraine’s military and civil resistance among left and progressive elected officials from all levels of government.

One of the first signatories is John McDonnell, British MP for the Labour Party, and a founder member of his country’s Ukraine Solidarity Campaign. He is joined by Argentine MP Juan Carlos Giordano (Labour and Left Front) who recently visited Ukraine with material aid for Ukrainian trade unions, and to learn more from feminist and left groups resisting the Russian invasion. They are joined by more than 50 representatives from Germany, Denmark, Ireland, Switzerland, France, Spain, Italy, the UK, Argentina, Brazil and Peru, elected at municipal, regional and national level, and in the European Parliament.

Søren Søndergaard, deputy for the Red-Green Alliance in the Danish parliament, who joined Prezioso in announcing the initiative, explained that the Elected Left for Ukraine network will mobilise political solidarity and material aid to Ukraine’s trade union, feminist, environmental and human rights organisations.

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RUSSIAN PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN THROWS LEFT SUPPORTERS UNDER THE BUS – by Brendan Ogle

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The Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke for several hours to a captive audience in a Moscow palace on February 21, describing LGBT Rights as “Pure Satanism”. Brendan Ogle, a UNITE Trade Union official in Ireland, responds. Source : https://www.facebook.com/camilo.ogle

It had to come to this.

In fact for those watching, those not completely blinded by their understandable hatred of US and NATO imperialism, it came to this a long time ago. But yesterday it happened in horrific awful technicolour. Putin threw left supporters – and there are still far too many of them – under the bus.

A year from his invasion of Ukraine Putin’s war with what he calls ‘the west’ has now openly gone full #FarRight. The language of the toxic fascist inspired racist protests that took place here and elsewhere recently is 100% Putin’s language. He helped to create it. Yesterday in a lengthy monologue in front of a room of nodding donkeys applauding rapturously in case they got a nerve agent in their lunch, he described LGBT rights as ‘pure satanism’, engaged in transphobic hate speech and described paedophilia as the ‘new norm’ in the west.

A year from his invasion of Ukraine Putin’s war with what he calls ‘the west’ has now openly gone full #FarRight. The language of the toxic fascist inspired racist protests that took place here and elsewhere recently is 100% Putin’s language. He helped to create it.

Yesterday in a lengthy monologue in front of a room of nodding donkeys applauding rapturously in case they got a nerve agent in their lunch, he described LGBT rights as ‘pure satanism’, engaged in transphobic hate speech and described paedophilia as the ‘new norm’ in the west.

Sound familiar?

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“We condemn the hatred expressed towards people seeking refuge and seeking asylum” March with Le Chéile, February 18, Parnell Square Dublin, 1.30pm

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John Lyons, am Independent Left Dublin City Councillor representing Artane/Whitehall, is supporting the Le Chéile Ireland for All Solidarity march at Dublin’s Parnell Square on February 18 at 1.30pm. John’ report is below. Irish Left With Ukraine is one of many organisations supporting this anti-racist mobilisation.


Over recent weeks there have been protests in the area targeting people seeking refuge in Ireland. It has been sad to see and it consequences can be traumatic for those directly targeted and can further disadvantage all our efforts to fight for a better Ireland for all as we can only secure housing for all, a better health service, more community, sports & social funding if we are united, not divided.

This country is extremely wealthy but we have a problem: the political class led by Fine Gael & Fianna Fail care only for the better off & wealthy.

They don’t care about our families, our communities.

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Dublin Against the Far-Right – Successful Demonstration – February 6 2023

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Two Anti-Racist Organizations – Le Chéile (Diversity Not Division) and United Against Racism – called a successful anti-racist demonstration in Dublin City Centre at the Spire, O’Connell Street, across the road from the General Post Office (GPO) – site of the Easter 1916 Rising.

By start time of 1.30pm over 200 people turned up – nearly two hours later numbers rose to nearly 1000 people, and the column marched to the Garden of Remembrance in Parnell Square. The mood was determined and cheerful. Several people on passing buses and trams demonstrated open solidarity. The scene is set for a bigger and broader demonstration on Saturday February 18. In recent days far-right demonstrations have spread across Dublin and other parts of Ireland like a plague.

Today’s event showed that mass opposition exists, and activists will positively work on this issue provided all shades of the left work in unity together. The photographs below are a visual record of a positive event.

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“The State’s obligation to provide accommodation for tens of thousands of newcomers from abroad is a logistical dilemma but it is exacerbated by a housing crisis that governments have presided over for the past decade” – Justine McCarthy talks sense about Ireland’s political problems today

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Justine McCarthy’s article appeared in the Irish Times, February 2 2023. She talks a lot of sense.

A member of Streetlink Homeless Support helping homeless people remove some of their belongings from a migrant camp in Ashtown, Dublin. The camp was the target of an alleged attack by a group of Irish men last weekend. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill
Justine McCarthy's face

Justine McCarthy

Any John Wayne movie worth its cast of cowboys has a scene where the baddie sets light to the dynamite taper. As the flame sizzles towards the point of detonation, the audience prays to God and all the saints above in heaven to send someone, quick, to stamp it out before the whole damned town of Tombstone goes up in smoke. That is how it has felt this week watching the lit taper of Irish xenophobia pick up speed in its burn towards cataclysm. Heightening the fear is the absence of any star-billed hero dashing to the rescue.

As gardaí investigate the suspected arson of a 19th century former schoolhouse in Dublin, which had been wrongly identified on social media as a location being prepared to house people from abroad seeking refuge here, the response of Ministers has run the full gamut from tut to tutting. As a group of Irish-born men equipped with a German shepherd, a pit bull terrier and a baseball bat yelled “pack up and get out now” to men who were not born in this country at an encampment in another part of Dublin last weekend, Ireland’s most admired leader, President Higgins, was nearly 3,000 miles away in Africa.

Amid this paralysis of State leadership, two sides have gone to war. On one side are some residents of mainly non-privileged areas who are furious that the Government is trying to look after people fleeing their native lands while many of those born here struggle to pay their bills and to secure homes. Malign keyboard warriors are deliberately stirring this resentment with lies and innuendo for their own bigoted agenda, but there are also many kind-hearted residents who have justifiable reasons for feeling discriminated against. The disproportionate number of communities with inadequate public services that have been chosen to accommodate people from abroad is as provocative as the racist rhetoric.

On the other side are many residents in these communities who are sickened by the hatred being spewed at people coming from abroad to live among them and who, in numerous cases, have suffered unimaginable vicissitudes before arriving here. The prejudice pricks a folk memory of times past when desperate Irish immigrants were as unwelcome as dogs in other countries. Besides, it belies Ireland’s self-image as the compassionate land of the céad míle fáilte.

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Zero Tolerance for intimidation – Anthony McIntyre reports on a Labour Party Public Meeting in Drogheda – Unity in Action Against a Common Far-Right Racist Enemy

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Differences exist on the left-wing spectrum in Ireland – some of them concern fundamental disagreements about political principles. One clear example is opposition to entering any coalition government with right wing ruling class parties in Ireland such as Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael, the Democratic Unionist party or the Alliance party.

Other issues place a duty on parties in the broadly left-wing spectrum to put aside tactical differences, and explore methods of practical co-operation. Building effective practical opposition to the dangerous growth of far-right racism in Ireland is on the agenda today. In this spirit we re-publish an Anthony McIntyre article which reports on a well-attended Irish Labour Party rally in Drogheda which tackled the issues of racism, immigration, and Russia’s fascist and genocidal invasion of Ukraine head-on.

Anthony pulls no punches discussing his political differences with the Labour Party!

John Meehan February 3 2023


link : https://www.thepensivequill.com/2023/02/zero-tolerance-for-intimidation.html

Zero Tolerance For Intimidation

Anthony McIntyre Wednesday, February 1, 2023

It has long struck me that the Irish Labour Party more than any other has abandoned the constituency that returns it in pursuit of office. It promises a left package then delivers the Rabbitte punch to the recipients of the promise so that it may become the prop sustaining governments which view left packages much as a dog does a lamppost.

Whatever the Labour leadership sought to project onto the screen, the filtering process left the electorate feeling that it had just viewed Pensions Before People. Last time out those who had voted the party in such numbers in the previous general election followed through on Eamon Gilmore’s promise, while still with the Workers Party, to destroy the Labour Party. Since then Labour has struggled to make any impact on the Irish political scene.

None of that stopped me from turning up at a Labour Party Town Hall meeting in Drogheda’s D Hotel on Monday evening. I actually left Dublin early to make the event which was attended by around one hundred people. I had never been at any of the party’s gatherings before although any time I have approached its elected representatives or party workers, the response has been nothing less than helpful. Their members also have been to the fore in defusing the moral panic that the far right has been trying to stoke and amplify over a range of issues, most notably refugees.

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Stand Against Racism – Solidarity With Refugees – Dublin, GPO, Monday February 6, 1.30pm – Called by Le Chëile – Diversity Not Division

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Stand Against Racism – Solidarity With Refugees

We call on all our comrades to come out in a show of peaceful and determined solidarity, to stand with our refugee and migrant communities with love and compassion on Monday 6th February at 1.30pm at the Spire to oppose the latest iteration of anti-refugee hate.

Demonstrations have been called claiming to represent communities in Ireland under various slogans such as “Ireland is full” or “Ireland says no”. We know that Ireland is not full. The population is millions less than pre-famine times. There are many thousands of housing units and buildings laying empty across the country. Successive neoliberal governments have failed the Irish people, and particularly its homeless population, for years. In doing so, they have also failed refugees and migrants who have come to our shores. The Direct Provision system is a crime and many migrants are homeless.

It is undeniable that many of those involved in these demonstrations are using the language of the far right, of virulent racism, of hateful xenophobia. Violence is threatened against refugees and migrants simply due to the colour of their skin and their countries of origin. A migrant camp was violently attacked. Direct provision centres are targeted. Social media is awash with hate and vitriol, all based on ignorance and prejudice. Misleading and fact-free slogans and tropes are circulated and accepted as fact when they are simply a tissue of lies. We cannot sit back and hope that this awful period in our history passes. Many of us are working in our communities trying to counteract this misinformed narrative but whilst that slow and painstaking work continues, our refugee and migrant communities are in danger now – and they do not see that work being done in communities. They see crowds gathered outside hotels and refugee centres screaming “get them out”. That is not expressing reasonable concern. That is blatant intimidation. Anger at the government should be directed at the door of the government, where it rightfully belongs, and not at the door of those who have had no part to play in the immiseration of communities across the country.

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Fine Gael Minister Paschal Donohoe TD in trouble – he must go says Councillor John Lyons

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Michael Stone, a businessman and personal friend of Finance and Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe paid for a team to do the postering in two general election campaigns in a row – 2016 & 2020. Stone gave Donohoe an enormous advantage.

John Lyons, a Dublin City Councillor (Independent Left) argues that Donohoe must go.

Paschal Donohoe is in trouble. Not bothering to declare hugely significant donations you receive from a businessman who was heavily involved in the construction industry, whom Fine Gael appoint to the Land Development Agency in 2019, is rotten and revealing of how power operates in Ireland.

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