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View Full Version : Leaning left may bring a real future for Labour



ang
14-04-2010, 01:16 AM
An interesting article by Vincent Browne in todays IT on the Labour Party:-


Radical change might be possible if Labour was open to an alternative strategy of joining leftist groups and individuals,

Aside from Fianna FŠil, Labour has been in office longer than any other political party since the foundation of the State. In the last 37 years, Labour has been in office for almost 16 years, and I donít think even Labour members themselves would claim that Ireland was a significantly more equal society than it was before any of the stints Labour had in government during that time.

Isnít there something curious about the fact that, after a period in office, Labour never examined how effective it had been in promoting the Labour agenda and, in so far as that agenda was not significantly advanced, why that was so?


There is another plausible strategy now: that Labour looks to its left and seeks alliances with left-wing parties, movements, non-governmental organisations, community groups and citizens.

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2010/0414/1224268296409.html

Has the Labour Party lost it's way? Should their priority be to form a stronger more electable left wing group, rather than just jumping onboard with the main parties ? Surely it is their role to seek a fairer more just society for all by trying to encapsulate a left wing political movement that is lacking in Ireland.

Digout
14-04-2010, 01:20 AM
SF called on Labour to form an alliance of the left. Poor old Eamon is an old stickie, so he wont want to deal with SF cos of the history between the two....

C. Flower
14-04-2010, 01:41 AM
I spent a lot of time asking that question last year. Labour need to be asked to break with Fine Gael and lead a left Government. But personally, I don't think they would deliver.
Joan Burton wouldn't speak out against the Croke Park agreement tonight on the VB show and she is a right winger economically.

Xray
14-04-2010, 01:52 AM
SF called on Labour to form an alliance of the left. Poor old Eamon is an old stickie, so he wont want to deal with SF cos of the history between the two....

I am not so sure about that, he seems to be all about the real politics. If they can jump into bed with a bigger FF and FG a smaller SF is nothing to them.

SF share power with the DUP so a few stickies is easy.

What about the real difficult question, what about the left wing of FF with the others?

Fraxinus
14-04-2010, 02:23 AM
When did Brown become all leftist? I thought he was on about running for FG at one stage, or did I imagine that?

C. Flower
14-04-2010, 10:05 AM
When did Brown become all leftist? I thought he was on about running for FG at one stage, or did I imagine that?

He's also been quite FF friendly at times.

Sensitive to the way the wind blows, perhaps.

There are a few things, like St Ita's, that have got his goat.

BrendanGalway
14-04-2010, 11:37 AM
I cant for the life of me understand why Labour and the Left in general arent doing better in the current circumstances. Labour have been hanging around FG for too long methinks. Why dont they move to set themselves apart from the rest? They should be on the Road and in the Media everyday banging on about the Policies as well as the people that got us into this mess.
They should do everything they can do differenciate themselves from FF/FG. Build a theme around Labour, the party that voted against the Bank Guarantee, against Nama. Make it publicly known that if there were a General Election tomorrow, Anglo would be handed over to its Bondholders, The bank recaps would cease, A Complete, Comprehensive Public inquiry would be carried out into this entire mess.

Why are they sitting so far behind FG in the Polls? All FG promise is the same processes as FF, just done differently. There is Huge potential for a party that wants to set themselves apart. "Billions for Education, not Anglo" "Billions for A&E wards not Nama". Make your theme about Equality for Society, a government working for the ordinary citizen not someone who can afford a Ä5000 dinner engagement.

"Left Leaning" : is that not the least a Labour party should be doing anyways? Are there just too many Centerists in the group now? They let themselves down badly in the run up to the last election, competing with the others in some sort of Stamp Duty Auction. Have they finally embraced Free-market capitalism and keep calling themselves Labour simply coz its a recognized brand name?

C. Flower
14-04-2010, 11:50 AM
I'm all for pushing Labour in that direction, as there still may be some life in there somewhere, but for the most part, Joan Burton seems entirely comfortable with the prospect of being in Government with Fine Gael.

http://circumlimina.wordpress.com/2010/04/05/meet-the-new-boss/

Dublin dilletantte picked up an interview with Joan Burton on "This Week in Ireland".



(http://thisweekinireland.com/this-week-in-ireland-episode-12-anglo-irish-more-bodies-buried-then-ivan-the-terrible/)This Week in Ireland (http://thisweekinireland.com/this-week-in-ireland-episode-12-anglo-irish-more-bodies-buried-then-ivan-the-terrible/)has a rather eye-opening interview with Labour spreadsheet-botherer Joan Burton, concerning NAMA and her masterplan for the economy (should Richard Bruton fall down a pothole, or the president have an attack of dyslexia.)
Those who consider Labour a redeemable or, heaven help us, progressive force should really give it a listen. Essentially, Joan’s programme amounts to:

*Tailoring education to the needs of multinationals
*Retaining Ireland’s barely-there corporate tax rate
*Combining the above with propitiously lower labour costs (these were “out of line” during the boom, dar le Joan.)
*Introducing innovative new thinking to the welfare system (anyone who’s ever been on the dole knows that when politicians start talking about innovation, you begin to eye the copper jar.)

So there you have the bold reform agenda of the left-most component of the next government. An economy entirely dependent upon FDI, crafted in the image of multinational corporations, with regulation reserved for wage levels and welfare.
See you all back here in 2020?


(http://thisweekinireland.com/this-week-in-ireland-episode-12-anglo-irish-more-bodies-buried-then-ivan-the-terrible/)

MediaBite
14-04-2010, 12:07 PM
Reading that lot Cactus, it makes me think something I thought I was incapable of thinking. And that is that I might vote for Fianna Fail, not because I like them but to try help get the message across to FG and Labour that unless they do something bloody DIFFERENT they will not be getting our votes. If we want all that stuff, we have no need to vote for anybody else.

Xray
14-04-2010, 12:54 PM
I cant for the life of me understand why Labour and the Left in general arent doing better in the current circumstances. Labour have been hanging around FG for too long methinks. Why dont they move to set themselves apart from the rest? They should be on the Road and in the Media everyday banging on about the Policies as well as the people that got us into this mess.
They should do everything they can do differenciate themselves from FF/FG. Build a theme around Labour, the party that voted against the Bank Guarantee, against Nama. Make it publicly known that if there were a General Election tomorrow, Anglo would be handed over to its Bondholders, The bank recaps would cease, A Complete, Comprehensive Public inquiry would be carried out into this entire mess.

Why are they sitting so far behind FG in the Polls? All FG promise is the same processes as FF, just done differently. There is Huge potential for a party that wants to set themselves apart. "Billions for Education, not Anglo" "Billions for A&E wards not Nama". Make your theme about Equality for Society, a government working for the ordinary citizen not someone who can afford a Ä5000 dinner engagement.

"Left Leaning" : is that not the least a Labour party should be doing anyways? Are there just too many Centerists in the group now? They let themselves down badly in the run up to the last election, competing with the others in some sort of Stamp Duty Auction. Have they finally embraced Free-market capitalism and keep calling themselves Labour simply coz its a recognized brand name?


The truth is that FF is the largest working class party in the state and always has been. Labour is pretty thin on the ground in council housing estates. They don't tick the boxes for people when they get behind the curtain to vote. That is the truth. Where FF has been challenged on the left in some of these areas it is people like SF and Socialists etc that have connected with people.

Labour are playing for what they imagine the middle ground is, I am not sure they really get it. The sad thing is that FF by and large don't get it anymore either so the door is open there for a major break through. Many FF TDs are so disconnected they don't even know what to pretend to believe in any more. Labour are pretending not to believe in the things that would probably get them elected.

ang
14-04-2010, 01:04 PM
Eamon always gets tops in polls for favourite leaders. The Labour party are just not organised enough on the ground. They do seem very reluctant/unable to form some sort of notable presence throughout the country. This sitting back and just waiting to go into partnership is a very lazy policy. I just really can't understand why they don't push for a better presence, surely the aim of getting power is to have your policies and ideals implemented and to bring about change in society. Personally I think our whole political structure needs torn down and rebuilt.

C. Flower
14-04-2010, 01:10 PM
Reading that lot Cactus, it makes me think something I thought I was incapable of thinking. And that is that I might vote for Fianna Fail, not because I like them but to try help get the message across to FG and Labour that unless they do something bloody DIFFERENT they will not be getting our votes. If we want all that stuff, we have no need to vote for anybody else.

That's the problem - the alternatives are not so hot. But we are being dismembered by FF at the moment.

Xray
14-04-2010, 01:29 PM
Eamon always gets tops in polls for favourite leaders. The Labour party are just not organised enough on the ground. They do seem very reluctant/unable to form some sort of notable presence throughout the country. This sitting back and just waiting to go into partnership is a very lazy policy. I just really can't understand why they don't push for a better presence, surely the aim of getting power is to have your policies and ideals implemented and to bring about change in society. Personally I think our whole political structure needs torn down and rebuilt.

I decided to vote Labour in the locals, when I got in the booth there was FF,FG and indo on the ballot. I voted for some loony indo.

RosaLuxembourg
14-04-2010, 02:54 PM
I decided to vote Labour in the locals, when I got in the booth there was FF,FG and indo on the ballot. I voted for some loony indo.

Accept for a small period when the Worker's Party managed to eclipse them briefly Fianna Fail have always managed to get a majiority of working class votes in Dublin. I would find it very hard to vote for Labour because they are so often very anti-Republican and far to cosy with Fine Gael. They also seem much more a party of the middle class liberals than one "of the people". I think Labour would have to make some serious changes in its approach in order to win over disaffected working class FF voters.

RosaLuxembourg
14-04-2010, 03:12 PM
The truth is that FF is the largest working class party in the state and always has been. Labour is pretty thin on the ground in council housing estates. They don't tick the boxes for people when they get behind the curtain to vote. That is the truth. Where FF has been challenged on the left in some of these areas it is people like SF and Socialists etc that have connected with people.



Labour is basically the Party of the Trade Union bureaucrats and the liberal middle classes...And in Ireland most people are conservative with a small "c" though we are pretty hedonistic when we get going and most of the working class here isnt unionized and the unions themselves are particularly ineffective and corrupt. If you wanted to be mean you could call them "Blueshirts with a social conscience".