Sunday Independent claims anarchists are 'infiltrating' bin tax campaign

 

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Sunday Independent claims anarchists are 'infiltrating' bin tax campaign

The mouthpiece of millionaire Tony O'Reilly, the Sunday Independent, got terribly excited when it 'discovered' there were anarchists involved in the bin tax campaign. Or, as it oddly put it, anarchists of the Workers Solidarity Movement had "infiltrated the campaign in significant numbers". The Sindo was also outraged that anarchists have also been active in anti-war protests at Shannon and in Reclaim the Streets, in particular the infamous Gardai riot on Dame St on May 6th 2001.

This is just another in a long line of articles that show that the media believe working class people are too thick to organise the likes of the bin tax blockade on their own. Instead it must be all due to some sort of outside influence, the Socialist Party being the first target and now anarchists and soon no doubt Martians. As such it could be simply dismissed as yet more Dublin 4 ravings from people on high salaries who simply don't get it.

We'd like to go beyond this. We'd like to put our hands up and say 'yep we are involved in this campaign and have been from the start of it three years back'. At various points our members have been on the steering committees of 3 of the 4 Dublin campaigns and one of our Cork members was jailed back in May 2001 for his role in the campaign there. Oh, and as well as taking direct action at Shannon and being involved in RTS, we have also helped bring the Women on Waves ship to Ireland, rioted against the IMF in Prague, trespassed at the rich man's golf club at the Old Head of Kinsale and taken part in 100 other actions that would hopefully have Tony O'Reilly choking over his coffee. One of the bin tax protesters on the Late Late put it well when he shouted that Minister Martin Cullen 'didn't understand where we were coming from because you live in another place, you'se are from mars'. The media campaign against the bin tax campaigns show that, they too are from that other place. That place is closer then Mars, lets call it Dalkey, Foxrock or any other place where they fork out a million euro for a four bedroom house. This country is ruled by a very small percentage of the population who are very rich and very powerful. They own or control the places where we work, drink and shop. They own or control the TV stations we watch, the radio we listen to and the newspapers we read. They own the houses we need to live in and the ground that more houses can be built on. They own the banks we have to borrow money from to buy a house or the homes we rent from them. The courts and the Gardai exist to serve them and to keep us down which is why there has been no shortage of cops to intimidate peaceful protests and no shortage of jail space to lock up protesters. It might take years for a Tribunal to investigate the most outrageous cases of tax evasion by the rich, without anyone going to jail, it only takes hours to jail a bin tax protester.

So when Tony O'Reilly's mouthpiece accuses us of fighting back we say, 'damn right we are'. In 2002 he was the richest man in Ireland with a personal wealth of 1,300 million pounds. So when he accuses us of realising that what is at stake is more then the bin tax we own up as well. What is at stake is a world where two billion people live on less then a dollar a day while he and his mates whoop it up.

Wouldn't it be great if the Sindo's 'far left scare' backfired. If rather than scaring the tens of thousands involved in the anti bin tax campaign it meant they said 'maybe we should check out this crowd that are giving O'Reilly sleepless nights. Maybe its time to wake up, have a look around and get organised.'

First published in Anarchist News 29, Autumn 2003

  


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