Blogs

Raytheon & Shannon - good v bad direct actions?

For several years the presence of the US war company Raytheon's plant in Derry has been a focus for anti-war protests in that city including direct actions. Raytheon makes the Patriot, Tomahawk, Cruise and Sidewinder missiles, the small Derry plant didn't manufacture the weapons but rather was part of the process of producing the software that made them function.  Rather oddly this was sometimes used to defend the company, as if the assembly line worker attaching fins to a rocket was somehow more responsible for the children it killed when dropped on a house that the software programmer who wrote the code that guided it to its destination.

Youth Defence on Facebook

Last week a friend on Facebook was complaining that she was getting Youth Defence ads.  Youth Defence are a virulently anti-choice organisation in Ireland, probably comparable to the likes of Operation Rescue in North America.  Anyway I was curious and asked her to do a screen capture if it re-appeared which it did.  I then realised this was a parallel campaign to the one they were running in the newspapers and that it all related to the ABC case in the European courts so I wrote up the article below for the WSM site to put it into context.

The anti-capitalist blocs to the Dail

Anti capitalist bloc in DublinFollowing Gardai attacks on people protesting the bank bailouts on two seperate occasions we had a discussion in my WSM branch about mobilising for a protest that had been called by the SWP / Right to Work for the following week.  There was a bit of debate about being seeing to support what was yet another SWP front group (an ongoing discussion) but in the end we decided to try and mobilise the Dublin WSM for the following protest.  This involved the activation (and to an extent the invention) of a Dublin version of our national Interim Decisions Committee, basically delegates from each of the branches to make the decisions that needed to be made before the next scheduled branch meetings were to take place.

Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell is useless without further action

Last Thursday, the House of Representatives voted 234-194 to allow the repeal of the controversial Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy.

The vote mirrored an earlier closed-door agreement of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Crises, social movements and revolutionary transformations

Interface: a journal for and about social movements

CON-DEM-nation

Well, I’ve not blogged for a month. Time flies! Suffice to say, this was a combination of personal life (moving home, thanks to our old parasitical landlord selling the place), work (much more busy now, thanks to cuts), not sure of having anything particularly interesting to say (what’s new there?) and getting this month’s “Property is Theft!” update sorted out.

Speaking & pushing - last Tuesday at the anti-capitalist bloc

Anti capatilsit bloc on Dawson street, DublinIn a couple of hours I'm heading in to the second anti-capitalist bloc march on the Dail. Last week the police tried to prevent us marching but after a couple of minutes we managed to push past them.  The text here is my notes in case I needed to give a speech at the form up point.  On the night I ended up using segments of this at the form up point at the Wolfe Tone statue and another portion after we had pushed through police lines outside Anglo Irish Bank.

Proudhon and elections

Two postings this time, on the theme of elections. As is well known, Proudhon both argued against standing candidates and for abstaining in elections (during the Second Empire) and, in 1848, he stood for Parliament twice, with success in a by-election. The postings cover both these periods with this blog also discussing Proudhon, Marx and the Paris Commune (again!).

Who are the Irish ruling class? TASC reveal Golden circle

TASC have released a detailed report called 'Mapping the Golden Circle' that reveals the "network of 39 individuals [who] held powerful positions in 33 of 40 top public organisations and private Irish businesses." Their analysis shows that within this 11 of these people were "very well connected" and that the most tightly interwoven institutions were all banks. This are the gang who now order us to 'share the pain' yet in 2005-7 they awarded themselves 40% pay increases while most workers were getting one quarter of this.

Scuffles at the Dail, sectarianism and unity - what is the Right to Work?

The Golden circle at protestLast night I was on the 'Right to Work' march that went to the Dail where some scuffles broke out as some of the crowd broke away to try and push through the gates. I'm not going to discuss that much, far too much in the media already about what amounted to very little. The main topic of this blog is the Right to Work Campaign itself and the question of how we should approach these sort of party controlled fronts. it is generated in part by the failure of WSM to come up with a collective approach and as a result being caught somewhat on the hop by last nights events.

  


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