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The Dáil Reform Will Not Be Radical

category national | politics / elections | opinion/analysis author Saturday March 19, 2016 15:26author by Paddy Hackett Report this post to the editors

The Dáil is a Bourgeois Parliament

There is a good chance that FF will bring about a new general election in the not too distant future. This is because it is confident that there is a progressive electoral shift towards it. It is also in a buoyant mood because of its inchoate election recovery. It more than likely has the resources to fight another election. Both FF and FG expressly indicated that they would not form “a grand coalition”. The GE16 result means, in a sense, that the electorate don't want such a coalition. On the other hand SF, through Gerry Adams, indicated before the GE16 that it is prepared to form a coalition with SF. This means that the electorate may want a coalition with FF, SF and others.

In the Irish Republic FF is seeking Dáil reform as a means of rendering it more difficult to blame it should it go into government to implement unpopular policies. It can then claim that the opposition, because of this reform, had joint influence over unpopular policies. The “radical” left sitting in the Dáil, conspicuously failed to expose this tactical ploy dressed up as a liberal proposal. The depth of reform advocated by FF and FG will prove shallow. There is no way this parliament will be invested with a radical character by FF, FG and SF. The failure to reform the Senate at the same time is an indication as to how narrow Dáil Reform shall be. There is no way that Dáil reform will entail yearly general elections and other such changes.

There is a good chance that FF will bring about a new general election in the not too distant future. This is because it is confident that there is a progressive electoral shift towards it. It is also in a buoyant mood because of its inchoate election recovery. It more than likely has the resources to fight another election. Both FF and FG expressly indicated that they would not form “a grand coalition”. The GE16 result means, in a sense, that the electorate don't want such a coalition. On the other hand SF, through Gerry Adams, indicated before the GE16 that it is prepared to form a coalition with SF. This means that the electorate may want a coalition with FF, SF and others.

Many of the independents and small parties probably lack sufficient resources for repetition of this political exercise. This may mean that they may loose seats that the FF party can pick up. Even if it fails to win sufficient seats to form a comfortable majority Fianna Fail may still fare well enough to form the leading party in a future government. Other things being equal it may too have learned from the mistakes of the FG-Labour coalition.

SF's parliamentary demagogic onslaught at the Dáil opening was just mere noise. Bombast over the homeless and other issues does not solve such problems. It was merely a tactical ploy to look good and concerned. Sinn Féin is merely exploiting suffering, as it has been doing in the six counties, to venally promote itself. Again there has been no attempt made by the parliamentary “radical” left to expose the cynical nature of this SF tactic. If anything it cooperates with it.

The nomination by the AAA-PBP alliance of Boyd Barrett as taoiseach was a way of suggesting that its politics is essentially no different than those of the major bourgeois actors sitting in the Dáil. The fact that SF and PBP mutually abstained from voting against each other's nominees for the office of Taoiseach is evidence of their close political relationship. It is a further manifestation of PBP’s grossly opportunist nature. Even the structure and political character of its alliance system is farcical: It is an alliance of two alliances (AAA and PBP alliance) with only one of these alliances (PBP) in alliance with another alliance (the Right2Change). If this is not convoluted farce nothing is. It is an mind defying arrangement that can only but justifiably cause confusion among the working class.

The abstention by the PBP in the Dáil division over the nomination of Gerry Adams as Taoiseach exposes the opportunism of PBP. If it is not a fake radical left alliance it would have voted against nominating the leader of a capitalist party, SF, for Taoiseach.

The Dáil forms an integral part of the bourgeois state. Consequently it cannot serve the class interests of the working class. Power cannot be concentrated in the hands of the working class through the medium of the Dáil. The fake parliamentary radical left by participating in parliament in the way that it has is amounts to a fortification of illusions in this bourgeois institution. The AAA and the PBP alliances are merely fig leaves for the SP and the SWP. These parties are so opportunist that they cannot relate to the working class under their own names but must hide behind these soi distant “alliances.” Essentially the SP and the SWP are respectively, at most, Social Democratic parties. They will end, at most, playing the same role as the present minuscule Irish Labour Party.

Instead the working class must struggle towards the establishment of revolutionary workers’ councils as its institutions of power.

Related Link: http://Paddy-Hackett.blogspot.com
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