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Socialist Democracy Bulletin - January 2015
Contents

Stormont House deal: Twin hammers to smash the workers
There is no disguising the calamity facing workers in the North. Benefits for the poor and sick are to be slashed. Thousands 
of public sector jobs are to go and the services themselves cut back. Public resources are to be auctioned off. (read more)

Sectarianism and austerity: Twin pillars of reaction
As 2014 drew to a close hosannas rang out from governments in Ireland, Britain, the US and Europe. The Stormont house agreement
had been signed off at the last minute and the Irish peace process was yet again striding forward into the future. (read more)

Unions, workers and resistance
Socialists see history as unending class struggle. Even in times of capitalist victory and working class retreat that struggle continues.
However as the workers retreat the forms of resistance become weaker - at one stage the main critique of Thatcherism in Britain came
 from the established church.  (read more)

Close Irish Water Now!
We need to close Irish Water now. Government strategy has boiled down to saving the company with the simple reasoning that if it 
survives privatisation is inevitable. Behind the government stands the Troika, absolutely committed to the privatisation of all public 
services and the transformation of basic life needs to commodities. (read more)

A silent retreat
The Right2water demonstration in Dublin on 10th December had two central elements.  It reaffirmed the mobilization of a significant 
section of the Irish population against water charges, against unending austerity and against pervasive corruption.  At the same time 
it marked a significant setback for the movement. (read more)

Water doublespeak: When unity means division
The idea that we should respect differences is an example of diplomacy between groups that puts their interests before
the mass of the population.  The call from the mass of people at the December demonstration was clear cut – they want 
Irish Water closed down.   (read more)

Jack O’Connor, Irish Water and the Troika 
How do we explain Jack O’Connor’s apparent equivocation on the water charges? O’Connor only recently advised the people of Ireland 
to pay the charges because failure to do so would lead to the even worse option of increased taxation. Following the exponential growth 
of the anti water charges protest movement he reappeared saying he now supported the Right2water campaign—although this “support” 
still involved payment. (read more)

Turning water into a commodity
When Donegal Fine Gael senator Martin Conway justified the establishment of Irish Water as a commercial company he explained 
that we had to pay for water because it "didn't fall from the skies." When the laughter died down he underlined his  stupidity by explaining 
that he meant purified water.  (read more)

Socialist Education:  What is Islamism?
If  your view of the world is formed by mainstream media you would likely have the impression that society is under assault from Islamism 
and that there is some great ensuing struggle (the “War on Terror” or the “Clash of Civilisations”) between its tyrannical world-view  and the 
democratic values embodied  by what is referred to as the West.  (read more)

Irish state reduces women to vessels
The repression of women by the Irish state has been exposed yet again by the case of a clinically dead woman being kept alive in order to 
continue a pregnancy.  The responsibility of the state for this woman’s situation was summed up in the claim by doctors that they were 
unable to accede to her family’s request that life support be switched off for “constitutional reasons”.  (read more)

Greek elections
It is evident that many Greek workers will vote for the left party SYRIZA in the coming elections, with the possibility of that party forming a 
government.  The workers want to use the elections to demonstrate their hatred of the unending austerity under the Troika programme and 
SYRZIA, with over 1/3rd of the vote, seem best placed to demonstrate that hatred. (read more)
Next edition - March 2015

 

Reports on two public meetings on Stormont budget - 21/01/15

Why not a Scottish Workers Republic? - January 2015

Poetic reflection on the Charlie Hebdo massacre - 13/01/15

Belgium: Towards a major trial of strength - 17/12/14

Obituary: Bob Purdie 1940-2014 - 04/01/15

Scottish referendum: A triumph for the Left? - 03/01/15

Close Irish Water Now! - 10/12/14

US: Michael Brown’s murderer walks free. No Surprise! - 04/12/14

Will water charges be the end of Jack? - 04/12/14

A Trojan horse of reaction - 01/12/14

Peoples Democracy Member 1969 (part three) - 21/11/14

 

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