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Higgins Refuses Berties Request

category national | summit mobilisations | news report author Wednesday April 28, 2004 15:56author by Gaz - sure Pat, I'm an anarchist Report this post to the editors

During heated exchanges in the Dail yesterday, Bertie Ahern called on Joe Higgins of the Socialist Party to ask anarchists not to travel to Dublin.

Deputy Higgins refused the request.

What planet is Ahern on if he thinks anarchists will bow down to Higgins' request!

author by Markpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Its just the usual way of Bertie and the Bulldog baiting Joe. They know he has no control over thousands of anarchists.

author by Joepublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Old JH has not been popular in anarchist circles since his 'virtual warrior' remarks on March 1st. So the idea such a request would be take serious is daft. Mind you we still joined the march on Montjoy when he was inside, see http://struggle.ws/wsm/news/2003/bintaxRTSsept23.html

That aside did he bother to defend the right of anarchists to exist (and travel for protests) or like did the rest of the left did he remain silent in the face of this McCarthyist wave of anarchist hunting.

author by Times readerpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:21author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's a very good pic of Joe in the Irish Times

author by Bowsiepublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

According to the Irish Times, Joe Higgins accused the government of putting out "lurid security briefings" and "hyping the threat of violence" in order to discourage people from coming to Ireland to protest.

One of the relevant extracts from the IT is below:

Fans of The Field will remember that the drama revolved around the conflict between a Kerryman and (in the film version) a "Yank". This was also the subplot of fiery exchanges yesterday, as Joe Higgins belatedly reviewed the Taoiseach's St Patrick's Day visit to the White House - it was TDs' first opportunity for questions about the trip - and previewed the US President's reciprocal visit in June.

The row saw a rehash of well-worn opinions about WMD. But it took on a whole new flavour in the context of this weekend's May Day protests, with Mr Higgins seeing the Government's dark hand in "hyping" the threat of violence. When Fine Gael's Jim O'Keeffe promised the law-and-order party's support for all necessary security measures and Mr Ahern responded by assuring him that all Garda leave had been cancelled, it was more than the Socialist Party leader could stand.

Angrier than Bull McCabe, he accused the Government of trying to provoke trouble, to discourage the general public from protest, and to pre-empt opposition to the Bush visit in June.

He was even angrier when the Taoiseach responded by inviting him to call on certain British organisations not to come to Ireland at the weekend, in the tone of voice Mr Ahern once used to suggest that Saddam Hussein could still avert war by doing the right thing.

Somehow restraining his anger, Mr Higgins appealed to protesters not to fall into the trap. "Nobody should lift a finger or throw stones," he said - his own finger wagging at the Taoiseach - because that was just what the Government wanted them to do.




© The Irish Times

author by Anonymouspublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:34author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Why the hell should anarchists not travel to Dublin!!! Its like having asked Munster fans not to have travelled to Landsdowne last Sunday.

Unreal!

author by fat people are hard to kidnappublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's no big deal but I would presume he was under ferocious pressure such is the level of rhetorical bully boy shit that goes on in our elected representives kindergarden !

It is an improvement on his March stance so I say fair play

author by Dailwatchpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Below is the text of the main article in the Irish Times.

Taoiseach challenges Higgins on May Day protests
Marie O'Halloran

The Taoiseach challenged the Socialist Party TD, Mr Joe Higgins, to call on protest groups from the UK not to come to Ireland for the EU accession ceremonies, in a row over the planned huge security operation for the event.

When Mr Ahern said that all Garda leave had been cancelled and the entire force would effectively be in operation over the bank holiday weekend, Mr Higgins accused him of encouraging "lurid security briefings" and hyping the prospect of violence for the ceremonies to mark the accession of 10 eastern European states to the EU.

He claimed that the Government wanted to hype the violence to keep people from coming to Ireland. Mr Ahern said that "what you could do really constructively, Deputy Higgins, is you could call on some of the organisations in the UK not to come here, because you know some of them".

An outraged Mr Higgins demanded to know what organisations he had anything to do with. Mr Ahern said he knew them well and "you should call on them not to come".

When Mr Higgins said the Taoiseach wanted violence, he replied that he did not and he challenged Mr Higgins to say that the "Socialist Party in Ireland does not want troublemakers here".

Mr Higgins stressed that "just like in Gothenburg, nobody should lift a finger or throw stones. They should not be provoked by security people deployed by the Government who are trying to provoke them into violence." Mr Ahern: "Just say that they should not come here. Why don't you tell them not to come here?" Mr Higgins: "Anybody who protests should do so in a disciplined and peaceful manner."

The row erupted when Fine Gael's justice spokesman, Mr Jim O'Keeffe, expressed concern about security outside Dublin given that there would be 5,000 gardaí on duty in the capital. He feared there would be a "skeleton" force in the rest of the State.

author by GizeBingBongpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Sinn Fein have 5 or 6 TDs. Why have they not made as much an impact as Joe Higgins in the Dail?

author by Rereaderpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I just re-read the report from the Sept 22nd 'Free Joe and Clare' Demo outside the Joy. A link was posted above.

In it Andrew Flood states:

"...the leaders of the main bin workers unions SIPTU and MANDATE have already been ruling out."

This was a good point about unions needing to take action against the bin tax jailings but your reference to MANDATE being the bin mans union shows alot about the experience and orientation of the WSM and Anarchists. Anyone who knows anything about trade unions in this country will tell you that MANDATE is a union for shop workers and bar workers NOT bin men. Impact and SIPTU were the unions involved. The fact that a leading member of the WSM can't even accurately report on what unions are involved in the bin depots really shows the fact that the WSM in reality played and still plays a peripheral role in opposing bin tax.


Mr Flood then goes on to state:

" He was followed by a speaker from the SP's sister party in Britain, Dave Nellis who went on for a little too long about socialism and international solidarity."

Have the WSM abandoned socialism and international solidarity without telling us!???

author by Auld Anarchistpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 16:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I'm from here. I'm an anarchist. I am already here. What you gonna do about it , Bertie?

What Ahern etc. were attempting was to do was exploit differences between different elements in the anti-globalisation movement. I think this shows the importance of not getting dragged into slaging matches. It is the old tactic of 'Divide and Conquer' which Bertie has learned from his political masters in London.

I have met Joe Higgins on a number of occasions. I have shown solidarity when he was in prison. I believe it is crucial that everyone sticks together on this occasion.
Make sure that it is the anti-globalisation agenda that is promoted, and not the agenda of the ' Brown Paper Bag' merchants.

author by fpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 17:04author address author phone Report this post to the editors

'Re-reader' you're a troll, don't raise to the bait people

author by fat people are hard to kidnappublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 17:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Troll
by f Wednesday, Apr 28 2004, 4:04pm


'Re-reader' you're a troll, don't raise to the bait people



It would certainly appear so if one typo can be used to knock down one of the hardest working political organisations in Dublin!

Re-reader instead of dotting everyone else's i s and crossing their ts why don't you go out and do something useful !

author by Andrew Floodpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 17:30author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Thanks to rereader for pointing out my error, we got it right in other reports (see http://struggle.ws/wsm/news/2003/ringsendSEPT16.html) for instance.

For the curious IMPACT was the one I intended but my famously poor lack of proofreading resulted in MANDATE popping out and staying. I guess one SLA (six letter acronym) can look like another.

As to being a statement relevant to 'proof of involvement'. I thought at the time the SP's attempt to claim they were the only political group in the campaign was damaging and I still think this. Much, much smarter to portray it as a broad coalition including several groups rather than just the SP and some 'real people'. Something that was true of the city area.

The curious can go to http://struggle.ws/wsm/bins.html and judge for themselves, my dick is bigger than yours is the most boring of trolls

author by Anarcho republicanpublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 19:32author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Maybe the reason SF TDs haven't, in your opinion, made the same impact as Higgins in the Dáil is because they spend less time at the theatrics and more at the substantive politics. Joe holding his hands aloft in handcuffs or heroically lambasting Bertie has little impact on people out there.
When's the last time the SP sent a leaflet to my door in the inner city? Now let me see......
When's the last time they organisaed a locval meeting about housing, healthcare, drugs, old ladies' houses getting burgled on a nightly basis?

No, they're too busy with soundbites and Shakespearian drama to pay any attention to the plebs they claim to represent.

author by Robbiepublication date Wed Apr 28, 2004 20:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The reason the SF TDs haven't made the same impact as Higgins is because they don't have his level of ability. Most of them are total non-entities. On the other hand they have a much stronger party machine to back them up.

Most of the really high calibre SF elected reps are in the North. None of their Southern crew are in the same league as Adams or McGuiness.

As an old SFer told me when O'Caolain first got elected, Caomhin is probably a great man to get a pothole fixed in Cavan but he isn't really national political material.

author by observerpublication date Thu Apr 29, 2004 10:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

told me that Robbie made this little anecdote up!

Sinn Féin are the only consistent left wing party in the place and have led on every issue up to and including the current referendum. As for the shite about them not being "effective performers", that is something that was invented by Fergus Finlay and Pat Magnier to trot out to the media via whores like Stephen Collins.

The five SF TDs make far more of an impact than the ageing imbeciles on the Labour benches, most of whom don't open their mouths. Higgins is good but he is not at the races when it comes to real politics, which is much more than getting on to Oireachtas Report for squabbling with Bertie.

author by SP memberpublication date Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"When's the last time the SP sent a leaflet to my door in the inner city? Now let me see......"

I can't account for YOUR door. But I've been out leafleting just yesterday around my area.

"When's the last time they organisaed a locval meeting about housing, healthcare, drugs, old ladies' houses getting burgled on a nightly basis?"

There are those type of meetings going on all the time called by the Socialist Party.

author by Realpublication date Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"Higgins is good but he is not at the races when it comes to real politics"

What do you mean by 'real politics'? The careerist horsetrading the establishment parties and SF are involved in? Taking money off big buisiness, like SF do? Is this 'real politics'?

I would say that real politics happens out on the street, in the community and in the workplace, on all these fronts, taking account of their resources, the SP (& SWP, WSM, ISN etc) beat SF hands down.

author by Interestedpublication date Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"There are those type of meetings going on all the time called by the Socialist Party."

Please give details of any such meetings held so far this year. I would also be interested to hear of any details of upcoming meetings.

author by West Fingalian jokerpublication date Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Calling for Rangers to protect Castlecurragh (an enclosed housing estate in which half of the Fingal SP membership live) - I kid you not.
See one of the recent local newspapers.

Now would that be the Army Rangers or the team who play in blue preferred by 2 out of every three SP members.

author by Milltown resident - nonepublication date Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

In the past few months in my area the Socialist Party has had meetings in Goatstown, Dundrum, Churchtown, Sandyford, Ballinteer. The issues were mainly bin tax, but also other local issues.

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