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Joined up thinking for the Irish Left
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The election cycle has come around yet again it is time to take a look at some of the issues being discussed and more importantly those not discussed and have a quick look at the economy.
The Euro and local council elections take place on Fri May 23rd and nationwide there are 11 MEPs to be elected to represent Ireland Euro elections will also be taking place across Europe for a grand total of 751 seats in the European Parliament. Regrettably the European Commission which is composed of 28 non-elected and appointed commissioners and is besieged by thousands of lobbying firms working for the private sector, is probably reckoned to have more power. Yet despite this Europe matters because at least 70% of our legislation comes from there and practically most of the regulation in a diverse range of areas originates from Europe and some of the more background regulation has its origins with corporate lobbyists with the aim of using heavy regulation to put smaller competitors out of businesses by greatly increasing the relative costs for smaller businesses. The main political parties of Fianna Fail and Fine Gael constantly tell us they are pro business and for jobs and the economy. In fact they are for big business, privatisation, outsourcing of jobs, lower wages, less social safety net and their support of big business and corporations constantly results in the suffocating of small business which are the very areas that lead to most employment.
Rosaleen McDonagh is contesting the Seanad Election in the Dublin University Constituency. She is a well known Traveller activist, feminist and writer.
Given it is just days away from the election and a new government, most likely to be led by Fine Gael, many are probably wondering what exactly is the current state of Ireland and what are the prospects for recovery. In short, things are bad and a recovery is very unlikely. There are also wider and bigger global issues and we are unprepared and should be doing something about it now.The only hope is that we have is that there is a public awakening to try and understand what has happened, where we are and the future we are hurtling towards. Only then, is there any possibility of some kind of social revolution to enable us to have any chance of coping with the challenges and by our actions, hopefully we may even trigger an European wide social transformation. But frankly the prospects of this positive development happening are zilch.
When the global credit boom came to a halt and hit Ireland on that fateful day in Sept 2008, Brian Lenihan, at the behest of the bankers made a fatal mistake with the bank guarantee that ensured no (large) debtor would be left behind. It might have seemed like a good idea at the time, but it would only have worked if the global economy bounced back and it was clear it was not going to unless like many mainstream economists who propagate the dominant capitalist ideology of our time, they assumed it was just going to be another small recession in the usual business cycle. But anyone who had been following events without their ideological blinkers on, would have realized this was going to be of seismic proportions.
The UNITE trade union, the second largest union in the Republic of Ireland has called on all working people to vote for a left wing government in the general election likely to be held in March.
Fri 21 Sep, 21:18
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