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Thread: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

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    Default Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    Over the summer Sinn Féin held a series of meetings across the country to engage with their party membership and get their input into strategic planning for the next ten years. I attended one of these meetings. The format was roughly as follows, a tightly policed discussion document was distributed to those attending (and taken off them afterwards) an elected rep from outside the constituency chaired the meeting. The progress of the last ten years was discussed and then it moved on to where SF want to be in ten years time at which stage the meeting was opened up to the floor to hear all kinds of complaints, ideas and suggestions.

    One interesting thing which came up is that the ground is clearly being softened for TDs to take more than the average industrial wage. (there are already workers with SF getting paid more than that). There were some interesting points made about member participation in decision making and policy formation and how SF remains very much a top down party with virtually no input from ordinary members. A big deal was made about the need to increase membership numbers and increase political education of party members - what form this will take will be interesting but I cannot imagine it being anything more rigorous than a nationalist history lesson with unclear references to a "fair economy". A point I made about the need for member education to heavily focus on the basics of socialist and marxist political economy was met with blank faces and a question asking what "political economy is". Not exactly inspiring stuff. The consensus in the room was that this sounded very boring and things would be better served with a day trip to Stormont and a tour of South Armagh. A point I made about making it a requirement that cumann meetings actually discuss and debate politics did get some traction however from those who were also fed up with meetings being about delivering whatever new leaflet that has been sent down.

    To make a general point it is also very disappointing how supposedly left wing parties do not even propose addressing the fundamental issues. They don't even attempt to analyze them. The "costed solutions" such as Sinn Féin's alternative budget, they offer are mere tinkering of figures within ideologically set boundaries.

    Anyway, a rather rambling post but interesting to some perhaps. Where do you actually see SF in ten years, and where would you like to see them, and how should they get there?
    The United Irishman. Updated 5/2/14

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    An interesting insight. That's quite amazing what you say about the lack of talk and analysis on fundamental issues.

    It doesn't seem like any party has any idea's on how to challenge the ideal of the growth economy. They seem to be happy, as you say, to tinker with figures, with zero acknowledgement on its complete unsustainability.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    SFs moment in the ROI came and went in the last GE, now they're going to have been playing the same system as the other parties in the ROI for so long that they'll be fundamentally not much different than the others. When you've cut your political teeth at Council level you begin to see that politics ain't all about grand ideas but more about bread and butter issue cooperation with the rest of of your political peers and satisfying the daily needs of the public.

    There's little point in voting for SF on any basis other than that they might be the least worst of a bad lot for a few years.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    Quote Originally Posted by Shaadi View Post
    SFs moment in the ROI came and went in the last GE, now they're going to have been playing the same system as the other parties in the ROI for so long that they'll be fundamentally not much different than the others. When you've cut your political teeth at Council level you begin to see that politics ain't all about grand ideas but more about bread and butter issue cooperation with the rest of of your political peers and satisfying the daily needs of the public.

    There's little point in voting for SF on any basis other than that they might be the least worst of a bad lot for a few years.
    I remember Ming saying the same, that it's at council level where you realise if you don't play ball, you won't get things done and life will be made very difficult for you as a public rep.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    Quote Originally Posted by Fraxinus View Post
    I remember Ming saying the same, that it's at council level where you realise if you don't play ball, you won't get things done and life will be made very difficult for you as a public rep.
    Imagine what it's like at EU Parliament level where you have to square off into mega blocks to work the system and where the big decisions are effectively out of your hands. Play the game or get squeezed out.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    Quote Originally Posted by Shaadi View Post
    SFs moment in the ROI came and went in the last GE, now they're going to have been playing the same system as the other parties in the ROI for so long that they'll be fundamentally not much different than the others. When you've cut your political teeth at Council level you begin to see that politics ain't all about grand ideas but more about bread and butter issue cooperation with the rest of of your political peers and satisfying the daily needs of the public.

    There's little point in voting for SF on any basis other than that they might be the least worst of a bad lot for a few years.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fraxinus View Post
    I remember Ming saying the same, that it's at council level where you realise if you don't play ball, you won't get things done and life will be made very difficult for you as a public rep.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shaadi View Post
    Imagine what it's like at EU Parliament level where you have to square off into mega blocks to work the system and where the big decisions are effectively out of your hands. Play the game or get squeezed out.
    Sounds like the system is working just as intended, forcing people to stay within ideologically set boundaries. There's a reason things never change in politics.
    The United Irishman. Updated 5/2/14

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    Quote Originally Posted by Saoirse go Deo View Post
    Sounds like the system is working just as intended, forcing people to stay within ideologically set boundaries. There's a reason things never change in politics.
    Very true. And wasn't necessarily playing ball with other councillors Ming meant, he was mainly on about the council itself. According to him most reps will go with the flow and be guided by the council. Then when they get to national level, and have been so used to not thinking for themselves at local level, they give unquestioned control over to the civil servants in their departments.

    A good source working high up in the civil service told me that at the start of the previous Dáil or at least the very early days, when there more new TDs elected since the firtst Dáil, they had to go through an induction process, how the Dáil works, how to put forward a bill, voting, etc etc,....not too many were bothered with the nitty gritty, instead most wanted to know how to claim expenses. Sad.

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    Default Sinn Féin: The largest All-Ireland Bourgeois Party

    I think this thread and discussion is worth bumping.

    Sinn Féin have enjoyed very respectable electoral success, increasing their vote share across the board. However they have also shed any lingering progressive politics and established themselves solidly as Irelands only All-Ireland bourgeois party.

    Their policies, as I mentioned in the OP, have nothing transformative about them, they are solidly between the lines. Most damning however is their complete about turn over the EU.

    In a very short time they have gone from Irelands largest EU sceptic party to its most enthusiastic champion. They have endeavored, and largely succeeded among their supporters, in wedding the cause of Irish unity with that of pro EU membership. Their entire strategy for the foreseeable future will be to champion EU membership and its benefits as the main benefit of Irish unity. This is quite damaging for progressive politics in Ireland as they have abandoned any pretense of anti-imperialism. They are channelling the anti British imperialist struggle in a direction which serves another imperialist power.

    This radical shift and change in the playing field of Irish Republicanism has gone largely uncommented but its implications will be felt for many years to come.

    This about face regarding the EU marks Sinn Féin's total acquiescence to and reconciliation with capital.

    Given the above, and returning to the question posed in the OP, I believe that the next ten years will see great electoral success for SF as they are accepted by the middle classes in the South and enjoy the success that any well organised youthful bourgeois middle of the road party can expect.
    The United Irishman. Updated 5/2/14

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin: The largest All-Ireland Bourgeois Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Saoirse go Deo View Post
    I think this thread and discussion is worth bumping.

    Sinn Féin have enjoyed very respectable electoral success, increasing their vote share across the board. However they have also shed any lingering progressive politics and established themselves solidly as Irelands only All-Ireland bourgeois party.

    Their policies, as I mentioned in the OP, have nothing transformative about them, they are solidly between the lines. Most damning however is their complete about turn over the EU.

    In a very short time they have gone from Irelands largest EU sceptic party to its most enthusiastic champion. They have endeavored, and largely succeeded among their supporters, in wedding the cause of Irish unity with that of pro EU membership. Their entire strategy for the foreseeable future will be to champion EU membership and its benefits as the main benefit of Irish unity. This is quite damaging for progressive politics in Ireland as they have abandoned any pretense of anti-imperialism. They are channelling the anti British imperialist struggle in a direction which serves another imperialist power.

    This radical shift and change in the playing field of Irish Republicanism has gone largely uncommented but its implications will be felt for many years to come.

    This about face regarding the EU marks Sinn Féin's total acquiescence to and reconciliation with capital.

    Given the above, and returning to the question posed in the OP, I believe that the next ten years will see great electoral success for SF as they are accepted by the middle classes in the South and enjoy the success that any well organised youthful bourgeois middle of the road party can expect.
    If they are accepted by the middle classes they will be sharing vote with FF and FG.

    Was there much discussion inside SF before this policy change ?
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin's 'Ten Year Plan'

    I have never been an SF party member, but have voted SF (and may do so again).

    I am interested also in what internal debate, if any, there was before the significant policy change from being Eurosceptic to being - like all the major political parties in the 26 Counties - strongly pro-EU.
    "If you go far enough to either extreme of the political spectrum, Communist or fascist, you'll find hard-eyed men with guns who believe that anybody who doesn't think as they do should be incarcerated or exterminated. " - Jim Garrison, Former DA, New Orleans.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin: The largest All-Ireland Bourgeois Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Saoirse go Deo View Post
    I think this thread and discussion is worth bumping.

    Sinn Féin have enjoyed very respectable electoral success, increasing their vote share across the board. However they have also shed any lingering progressive politics and established themselves solidly as Irelands only All-Ireland bourgeois party.

    Their policies, as I mentioned in the previous email OP, have nothing transformative about them, they are solidly between the lines. Most damning however is their complete about turn over the EU.

    In a very short time they have gone from Irelands largest EU sceptic party to its most enthusiastic champion. They have endeavored, and largely succeeded among their supporters, in wedding the cause of Irish unity with that of pro EU membership. Their entire strategy for the foreseeable future will be to champion EU membership and its benefits as the main benefit of Irish unity. This is quite damaging for progressive politics in Ireland as they have abandoned any pretense of anti-imperialism. They are channelling the anti British imperialist struggle in a direction which serves another imperialist power.

    This radical shift and change in the playing field of Irish Republicanism has gone largely uncommented but its implications will be felt for many years to come.

    This about face regarding the EU marks Sinn Féin's total acquiescence to and reconciliation with capital.

    Given the above, and returning to the question posed in the OP, I believe that the next ten years will see great electoral success for SF as they are accepted by the middle classes in the South and enjoy the success that any well organised youthful bourgeois middle of the road party can expect.
    There are more than a few strands to where they've ended up.

    The change to being pro-EU serves a purpose and may have been an organic thing as the party became less about the PIRA and more about graduates and government.

    As SF started getting MEPs elected North and South and as they became an Establishment party in the North they had a reason to become engaged with the EU, having to deliver EU blessings to many special interest groups from farmers and industry to community schemes.

    In the North the Nationalist community were 90%+ against Brexit with only a bare few % for it. An Establishment party has to bend to the electorate's will or face becoming unsuccessful at the ballot box. Staying in the EU is about the only thing that has been able to push the supposedly nationalist community into support for a UI.

    You talk about them having enjoyed respectable success in elections, but they actually fell well short of their potential because they weren't "respectable" enough for the Southern electorate when they stuck by Slab and also because the mainstream electorate weren't too willing to trust them on the economy.

    The electorate are the ones who change parties before they let them have real power and becoming insiders finishes off the job.

    We're at a stage in societal evolution where the people are so deeply into supporting the economic status-quo that they are almost completely risk averse.

    Also, there's a fair bit of difficulty with different factions in a few constituency having nasty public falling outs with each other. The party seems to be hampered by this in that it looks bad and hinders the electoral chances of particular candidates in a few constituencies.
    Last edited by Shaadi; 29-07-2017 at 02:46 AM.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin: The largest All-Ireland Bourgeois Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Saoirse go Deo View Post
    I think this thread and discussion is worth bumping.

    Sinn Féin have enjoyed very respectable electoral success, increasing their vote share across the board. However they have also shed any lingering progressive politics and established themselves solidly as Irelands only All-Ireland bourgeois party.

    Their policies, as I mentioned in the OP, have nothing transformative about them, they are solidly between the lines. Most damning however is their complete about turn over the EU.

    In a very short time they have gone from Irelands largest EU sceptic party to its most enthusiastic champion. They have endeavored, and largely succeeded among their supporters, in wedding the cause of Irish unity with that of pro EU membership. Their entire strategy for the foreseeable future will be to champion EU membership and its benefits as the main benefit of Irish unity. This is quite damaging for progressive politics in Ireland as they have abandoned any pretense of anti-imperialism. They are channelling the anti British imperialist struggle in a direction which serves another imperialist power.

    This radical shift and change in the playing field of Irish Republicanism has gone largely uncommented but its implications will be felt for many years to come.

    This about face regarding the EU marks Sinn Féin's total acquiescence to and reconciliation with capital.

    Given the above, and returning to the question posed in the OP, I believe that the next ten years will see great electoral success for SF as they are accepted by the middle classes in the South and enjoy the success that any well organised youthful bourgeois middle of the road party can expect.
    It would be much more clever to abrogate EU treaties one at a time than to actually leave the EU. You could leave it without leaving it and they can never kick us out.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin: The largest All-Ireland Bourgeois Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Saoirse go Deo View Post
    I think this thread and discussion is worth bumping.

    Sinn Féin have enjoyed very respectable electoral success, increasing their vote share across the board. However they have also shed any lingering progressive politics and established themselves solidly as Irelands only All-Ireland bourgeois party.

    Their policies, as I mentioned in the OP, have nothing transformative about them, they are solidly between the lines. Most damning however is their complete about turn over the EU.

    In a very short time they have gone from Irelands largest EU sceptic party to its most enthusiastic champion. They have endeavored, and largely succeeded among their supporters, in wedding the cause of Irish unity with that of pro EU membership. Their entire strategy for the foreseeable future will be to champion EU membership and its benefits as the main benefit of Irish unity. This is quite damaging for progressive politics in Ireland as they have abandoned any pretense of anti-imperialism. They are channelling the anti British imperialist struggle in a direction which serves another imperialist power.

    This radical shift and change in the playing field of Irish Republicanism has gone largely uncommented but its implications will be felt for many years to come.

    This about face regarding the EU marks Sinn Féin's total acquiescence to and reconciliation with capital.

    Given the above, and returning to the question posed in the OP, I believe that the next ten years will see great electoral success for SF as they are accepted by the middle classes in the South and enjoy the success that any well organised youthful bourgeois middle of the road party can expect.
    Certainly worth the bump. And look how much has changed since the time of your OP, the things that have happened that no-one could have planned for.
    Does Gerry Adams declaration of intent to call an all Ireland referendum in @ 5 years time allay any of your concerns?
    Happiness is an inside job.

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin: The largest All-Ireland Bourgeois Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Trow View Post
    Certainly worth the bump. And look how much has changed since the time of your OP, the things that have happened that no-one could have planned for.
    Does Gerry Adams declaration of intent to call an all Ireland referendum in @ 5 years time allay any of your concerns?
    Not really... I have no faith in SF to deliver any substantive transformative change for working people. Even if a referendum were called (doubtful) and it was successful (again, doubtful) I can't see a major difference in the lives of ordinary workers and citizens.

    It's worth noting that one of their main ideas is the lowering of corporation tax.
    The United Irishman. Updated 5/2/14

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    Default Re: Sinn Féin: The largest All-Ireland Bourgeois Party

    Quote Originally Posted by Saoirse go Deo View Post
    Not really... I have no faith in SF to deliver any substantive transformative change for working people. Even if a referendum were called (doubtful) and it was successful (again, doubtful) I can't see a major difference in the lives of ordinary workers and citizens.

    It's worth noting that one of their main ideas is the lowering of corporation tax.
    I think much may yet change as Brexit evolves to whatever conclusion and that in turn may have the scribes back editing at Sinn Feins 10 year plan.
    Happiness is an inside job.

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