Archive for September, 2010

WP Address to Dublin Anti-Cuts Rally

September 29, 2010

This is taken from the WP website here

“Speaking at the ICTU rally outside Dáil Éireann today, Malachy Steenson (Workers’ Party Dublin PRO) stated that he welcomed today’s action and particularly welcomed the fact that it was part of an EU wide day of action.

“Capitalism” stated Malachy Steenson “is a worldwide phenomenon; the crisis in capitalism is a worldwide phenomenon, and the brutal attack by capitalism on workers and their families to pay for this crisis is, likewise, a worldwide phenomenon. Therefore the response must be international. That is why the initiative by ETUC is important and on the next occasion such an event occurs then we in Ireland should aim to emulate Spain and organise an all-out and effective one day strike”.

“We know that in Ireland there were certain factors that have made the crisis worse here that in many other countries. The property bubble, the tax evasion, the non-existent banking regulation all turned an international crisis into a national catastrophe. The incompetents who sleep-walked us into this situation are still in power, and those waiting in the wings to get their hands on the Mercs and Perks have given no indication that they have an original or radical proposal between them”.

“What we have seen however is that the greed and avarice of the capitalist class has not abated. Not only do the bankers and property speculators want us to bail the country out of the they got us into but now they want to get their greedy paws on the only valuable assets left in the Irish state coffers – the publicly owned commercial companies. Already Fianna Fail and the Greens have set the ball rolling on this process and Colm McCarthy, of Bord Snip Nua fame, has been given the job of facilitating this process”.

“On behalf of the Workers Party I want to declare that we will oppose tooth and nail the handover of public companies to the failed private sector. We are in the present dire situation because the private sector has failed. Publicly owned, semi-state commercial companies are being successful. These companies” concluded Malachy “belong to the Irish people and if they are allowed to develop and flourish these companies can be the basis for economic regeneration and long-term sustainable development.”

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Fight the Cuts on Wednesday

September 27, 2010

The above poster is taken from this month’s Union Post.

ICTU Campaign against cuts launched

September 10, 2010

MAJOR NEW PAMPHLET – “CUTS MYTHS DEBUNKED”

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions launched its campaign to prevent the UK government’s planned cuts in public spending which will devastate the private and public sectors in Northern Ireland. The first of a series of pamphlets, leaflets and reports outlining the threat of these unnecessary cuts and the need for an alternative strategy was launched this morning in Belfast.

The Northern Ireland Committee of the ICTU are publishing 30,000 copies of a major new publication entitled “Cuts Myths Debunked.” This will be distributed by the 36 trade unions affiliated to the ICTU, as well as by Trades Councils, community organisations and by street stalls.

“Cuts Myths Debunked” can be downloaded from the new ICTU campaigning website: http://www.ictupeoplejobsandservices.org

The comprehensively researched and easily readable report tackles the various myths about the necessity to tackle the deficit in the lifetime of this parliament. The report clearly argues that:

Government debt (70%) is not at record levels – it was 250% when they built the NHS
The debt is manageable – the UK has 12 years to pay off its debts, longer than most advanced states, including the US
UK’s debt is lower than the Eurozone, Germany, Japan and the US
Public spending is lower than comparable EU states
State economy is not same as household budgets
UK Public sector not big compared with OECD states
Health costs are half those of the US
Huge growth in inequalities since 1980.
Top 10% have 100 times the spending power of bottom 10%
Public sector is not too big, private sector is too small
Private sector wages are low, not public sector too high
Public spending maintains demand
There are real alternatives to cuts.
Fairer taxes, all collected, not evaded or avoided
Green New Deal and other investments

The 20-page booklet is the first of a series of publications the trade unions are putting out over the next few weeks, ahead of the ETUC Day of Action across the EU on September 29th and the Belfast rally we are also organising on October 23rd (three days after the Comprehensive Spending Review).

Speaking at the Launch, ICTU Assistant General Secretary Peter Bunting said: ““The strategy being pursued by the UK government will certainly make things worse. They will wreak havoc across Northern Ireland. The private sector is especially vulnerable. Our analysis shows that cuts in government expenditure – both day-to-day and capital investment in roads and schools – will result in thousands of lost jobs from private firms which provide goods and services to Stormont and local councils.

“It is also clear that, even after all the years of planned pain, once these services and jobs are removed, they will never come back. This strategy is about the permanent removal of essential jobs and services. It is about the dismantling of the welfare state, the NHS and other quality services and assets. It is about shifting the burden of the economic crisis from the wealthiest onto all workers and the poorest in our society.

“In this light, Congress views with concern, the infighting within various sectors, as to who deserves cuts and who is undeserving. This illustrates our analysis that such a strategy will lead to the complete breakdown of social cohesion and solidarity.

“We really are all in this together, and if we stand together, we can turn this immoral strategy on its head.

ENDS

This event is part of a major campaign which is committed to building mass public support for an alternative to the unnecessary cuts being planned by the UK government.

Specifically, the NIC-ICTU is preparing for rallies on:

· Belfast & L’Derry, Wednesday 29th September (part of the ETUC’s day of action across the EU)
· Belfast, Saturday 23rd October (part of a series of UK events, three days after the UK government’s Comprehensive Spending Review announcement on 20th October)

Peter Bunting added: “An alternative strategy to the current economic difficulties is essential and the Northern Ireland Committee of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions is presently engaged in consultations across all sectors of our society and economy and NIC-ICTU will be announcing details of it’s alternatives to these unnecessary cuts shortly.”

Just be quiet, Willie.

September 7, 2010

I’d be more inclined to take McCrea here seriously if it weren’t for this.

Informed Sources Suggest They Are Talking Rubbish

September 2, 2010

Interesting quote about the accuracy of speculation surrounding events in Korea, in a report by a BBC journalist presumably annoyed at having to repeat such rubbish ad nauseum to keep his masters (and their masters) happy.

But Brian Myers, a North Korea propaganda expert based at South Korea’s Dongseo University, urges caution, given that much of the speculation about the goings on inside North Korea is based on sources outside the country, often North Korean defectors.
“The chances of your average North Korean defector knowing that are the same odds as an English teacher in a bar in Itaewon [in central Seoul] knowing what Obama said to his cabinet last week,” he said.