Category Archives: Elections

Willie Gallagher on 40th anniversary of IRSP

This is actually two years old, but I only just came across it.  It is a talk given by Willie Gallagher to the 2014 Irish Republican Socialist Party ard fheis in October 2014.

 

wullie gComrades,

the difficulty I had when first asked to give this presentation was ‘how do I condense 40yrs of our history into a 10 to 15 minute presentation. A definitive and detailed account would take many months, if not years, of research as well as interviewing scores of past activists. The following account is my no means definitive and of course is subject to criticism given the fact that it is laced with my own personal opinion and interpretation.

Even though this year is the 40th anniversary of our birth the Irish Republican Socialist Party can trace its roots back to James Connolly and the Irish Citizens Army.

After the border campaign in the 1950s, serious debate took place within the Republican Movement about how exactly it could become more relevant to the everyday needs of the people in an Ireland vastly different from the times of Connolly and the ICA.

The Republican Movement after the unsuccessful border campaign was not ideologically united and consisted of Read the rest of this entry

Workers and the way forward: a socialist-republican perspective

In order to get real action, the workers will need to act for themselves not rely on ICTU leadership

by Philip Ferguson

It seems a long time now since trade union members in the south of Ireland voted to reject Croke Park 11, a deal promoted by leaders of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions in partnership with the Fine Gael/Labour coalition government in Dublin.  The current coalition, like the Fianna Fail/Green coalition that preceded it, has sought to make southern Irish workers pay for the financial crisis of Irish banks and the meltdown of the so-called ‘Celtic Tiger’ economy.

For several decades the bulk of the union leadership has pushed tripartite deals with the bosses and the state, a ‘partnership’ model which has been held up by union leaderships as far afield as New Zealand as worth emulating.  But these tripartite deals did not deliver to workers even during the ‘good times’ of the ‘boom’ periods in the 1990s and early 2000s.  Now the boom has turned to bust the partnership model has simply locked unions into accepting responsibility for the financial crisis and agreeing to the austerity measures demanded by the Troika.

Rhetoric v resistance

The leadership of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions has engaged in some token rhetoric about ‘sharing the  burden’ of the crisis and they have marched workers up and down the hill and then sent them home a couple of times.  But, in general, they have acted as faithful lieutenants of the state and capital, serving more to Read the rest of this entry

Stormont Assembly elections and People Before Profit

Gerry Carroll won a massive victory in West Belfast

Gerry Carroll won a massive victory in West Belfast

The piece below is taken from a facebook commentary here.

Well done to People Before Profit capturing seats in West Belfast and Foyle. I don’t think anyone can doubt the sincerity of Eamonn McCann and Gerry Carroll and their solid record on a range of issues including, in Eamonn’s case, the rights of prisoners, such as around the Marian Price case.

Gerry Carroll’s result, topping the poll in what has long been the Provos’ strongest area, is especially impressive.

And what a shot across the bows of New Sinn Fein this is. So much for the invincibility of their hold on West Belfast. And so much for the invincibility of the Adams strategy.

It’s also good because it shows there is a significant space to the left of the NSF constitutional nationalists. NSF may be able to take over part of the old Stoop Down Low Party vote – namely, by becoming the new stoop-down-low party! – but they are now hemorrhaging support from the old republican base.

Having said this, People Before Profit, if they are serious about fundamental social change, need to start calling for British troops out, the shutting of the MI5 base in the north, and start Read the rest of this entry

On the elections in the south. . .

I’ve written an article on how the southern elections will confirm the new political cycle in Ireland.  it appears on the NZ-based Redline blog:  see here.