Class, Irish farmers and the movement of movements

One of our ideas with running the Rethinking Revolution discussion series is to try and return to old core concepts for the left in fairly fresh and non dogmatic ways.  It probably comes in part from a view that a lot of the 'movement of movements' left are tending to throw the baby out with the bathwater on some of these concepts in focusing on quite narrow, orthodox interpretations of these issues.  The audio with this blog 'How do we know who will Struggle?' was the first of the meetings where we tried to return to the importance of class through a somewhat indirect route.


As 2007 turned into 2008 and the themes of the economic commentariat shifted from the question of whether a recession was avoidable to whether a depression was avoidable, a new theme emerged - the possibility of "decoupling".

Thoughts on Revolution in our lifetime, the crisis and demoralisation

The audio this blog is about was a presentation I gave last week on 'Will we see a revolution in our lifetime' to the Rethinking Revolution discussion at Seomra Spraoi in Dublin.  I go into some of the thoughts behind what I said on the night and the idea of the discussion sessions in general. This was the second of these meetings, the idea of which was inspired by the interest shown in the Better Questions discussion series which I've previously blogged about here.  This one was set up as a debate between Alan MacSimoin and myself, he is the other speaker on the recording.

Images from the eirigi occupation of Anglo Irish Bank

I got notification early on Saturday that some comrades from the left republican group eirigi had just occupied the Anglo Irish Bank offices so I hoped on my bike with my trusty camera to go down and get a few photos which I include with this post as a slide show.  Anglo Irish Bank (not to be confused with Allied Irish Bank) was the super dodgy property developer bank whose collapse was a key feature of the crash in Ireland and which is going to cost workers in Ireland some 30 billion as we pay for the speculation of a couple of hundred of the superwealthy.  That figure is based on the fact that 50% of Anglo's loans were to 147 or so accounts!

Shell planning 5km tunnel under Erris for experimental pipeline

Shell's latest plan to impose its experimental gas pipeline in Kilcommon, Erris is to tunnel a 5km tunnel five metros under the seabed of Scruwaddacon Bay. This would however still leave many houses inside the blast radius in the event of a pipeline explosion that either ruptured this tunnel or along the 4km that would still be near the surface at landfall or between the bay and the refinery at Bellanaboy.

Women jailed for not making credit union payments, prison governor resigns

Kathleen McMahon the governor of Mountjoy Prison's Dóchas Centre has resigned after 10 years in the job saying that the prison was chronically overcrowded. 137 women are crammed into a space designed for 85 many for 'low risk' crimes including failure to meet loan repayments to credit unions for which she says "they never should have been jailed." A number of Shell to Sea campaigners have also been jailed in Mountjoy over the last few months including four for trivial Public Order offences that were later struck out at their trial and where it was judged they had been subject to wrongful detention.

Proudhon on Property

The latest extracts from “Property is Theft!” are now available. As well as the remaining parts of the introduction, extracts of two texts from the start and end of Proudhon’s political life are included. These are 1841’s Letter to M.

Transport, volcano's, CO2 and the planned economy

Ash cloud from Iceland volcano spreads across IrelandLast weekend I went to Birmingham, England for the national conference of the British anarkismo affiliate Liberty & Solidarity. I started to write this blog on then train back from a National Shell to Sea meeting in Galway this Sunday. During the week I updated three of my blogs about my North American speaking tour. This is the week when Ireland is cut off from the world as the ash cloud from the Eyjafjallajoekull volcano drifts overhead, grounding all flights.  Which got me thinking about transport and climate change.

US forces kill journalists, ambulance crew, shoot children in Iraq

Al Jazerra have released this video that shows US Apache helicopters use a mini gun against a group of journalists & civilians in Iraq. When a van arrives to evacuate the injured that is also shot up, killing the driver. When US troops arrive on the scene the pilots laugh when they run over a body and then when they are told that the injured include two children laugh again saying 'you shouldn't bring your children to a war.' Except of course those they have killed were not in a war, they were walking down a street before being gunned down from the sky without cause or warning.

O'Reilly owned Providence Resources drills for oil off Dalkey

Providence Resources the energy exploration company owned by the multi millionare O'Reilly family has announced that it is to start drilling for oil only 10km to sea from the city of Dublin.  If it does hit oil then like all the other energy exploration companies it will not have to pay one cent in royalities thanks to the Great Oil & Gas Giveaway deal created by Minister Ray Burke (subsequently jailed for corruption) and Bertie Ahern among others.  The O'Reilly family also own a huge percentage of the Irish media, the same media that has failed to cover this Great Oil & Gas Giveaway and that in the case of the Sunday Independant in particular has actively attacked the few journalists like Fintan O'Toole that have dared to speak out.


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