11 Aug 2009

Irish Greens to leave Fianna Fail government

Rumours from Dublin suggest that the budget cuts that FF are pushing, will lead the Greens to ditch the coalition government.

It is hoped that by bringing the government down the Greens will get some credit from Irish voters long sick of suffering under the people often described as the 'porketeriat' because of their love of pork flavoured scratchings pushed their way by property developers.

By the way bet some one got a lot of bacon for the M3 motorway!

So watch this space, I think the Irish Greens have manipulated themselves into a no win situation.

The FF coalition was going to cause embarrassement, all commentators knew this, unfortunately it looks like wipeing out the Irish Green Party for a while to come, I predict no seats in the Dail after the General Election...if it comes either in 2009 or later.

Joseph Healy has produced an excellent article on the Irish Green Party by the way.

Incidentally while Joseph and I are Green Left, it is often forgotten that the whole GPEW has a policy critical of the Irish Greens over Tara......and while the GPEW may not be Irish, greens globally are appalled.

Not that they seem to take much notice

The GPEW passed an emergency motion at its conference calling for the motorway scheme to be stopped. The motion was not even acknowledged by the Irish party.

We were deluged with requests from anti-bloodsports organisations in Ireland to try to influence the new Green ministers to ban hare coursing — a particularly bloody and barbarous activity.

The Irish Greens didn't suddenly become the 'Not the Irish Green Party' it was a process, Joseph notes:

it was also obvious that the conference was tightly controlled, including a strict dress code, and largely stage-managed.

I told people in London I had felt distinctly uncomfortable. It suggested a party seeking “professionalism” at all cost and very thin on ideology.

It was perhaps indicative that international issues were not discussed at all.


Charlie Marks said...

It's a risk that all democratic organisations have - that there will be those seeking personal advancement who will work with those outside of the organisation to subvert its cause for existence.

Look what happened to the Labour party in this country - set up by trade unionists, it used to defend workers' rights in office, now it denies its heritage.

Derek Wall said...

More than this, in a capitalist society, the forcefield within in which we live tends to distort opposition, you have to recognise this and fight it hard.

A process that has to happen in all organisations I think.

There is a huge of array of forces from the media onwards that shapes forces that seek to work for justice into supporting the system.

Radical politics is dismissed as 'unrealistic'

FutureTaoiseach said...

The Constitutional position is that no new General Election can be called without the consent of the President of Ireland, unless the government has a majority. She is of the ruling Fianna Fáil party. consequently, the Greens, if they leave government, may just create a minority Fianna Fáil government, unless Fine Gael agree to enter government with them and Sinn Féin - the latter being anathema to Fine Gael.

James Lawless said...

I live in Ireland and am closely involved in Irish politics (ran in June's local elections) and have never heard your 'porketeriat' phrase used. The voters are so 'long sick' of the government they returned it on three successive occasions in general elections up to and including 2007. The worm has turned now alright, in direct proportion to economic circumstances.

Either way the green ministers are using a perhaps once in a generation opportunity to actually exercise some policy influence. Opposition is easy, particularly at times of turbulence. Staying the course is always a lot harder. Few of the local critics, have proposed workable, if any, alternatives to the measures currently being pursued by the Irish government.

Lastly re 'professionalism' of the Irish greens - Charlie Marks suggests sinister "ambitious types" will subvert the party goals to achieve power - is the reality not a little more subtle - those drawn to an ideology may recognise a reappraisal can be necessary to gain wider support - and thus ultimately advance the core positions. Whilst never a Blairite, I always admired the new labour project - and ultimately their three labour terms have advanced their cause (from either modernist or traditionalist perspectives) a thousand times more than hand wringing from the opposition benches could have achieved.

Neil said...

Meh, the Irish Green Party is managing to achieve things in government. Yeah they are picking up electoral flak for the general situation there but I dont think any sane person can really blame them for the general situation. Yes they are propping up Fianna Fáil but that is on the basis of a mandate from their membership and Fianna Fáil did win the last general election in Ireland. Besides an alternative government would be led by Fine Gael.

Some much sniping, so little positive action to suggest, such an unattractive political outlook. I think I regret voting for you as prinicpal speaker those times.

ps anything concrete to back up those "rumours" of an exit from government of is it just something you heard in a bar?

Charlie Marks said...

James, says:

"Whilst never a Blairite, I always admired the new labour project - and ultimately their three labour terms have advanced their cause (from either modernist or traditionalist perspectives) a thousand times more than hand wringing from the opposition benches could have achieved."

Labour's core positions were to help working people. Twelve years on, a quarter of manufacturing jobs have gone, unemployment is at it's highest since 1995, and workers rights are still the same as under Thatcher...

New Labour was all about helping the richest - it wasn't about a reappraisal of ideas, but abandonment of them.

Anonymous said...

Where did these rumours come from Derek? Ive been asking around and havent been able to find any answers.

F. Castro (homophobe) said...

Labour have done massive damage to the family - that's a socialist success. They have also got many more people dependent on welfare.


Anonymous said...

Derek Wall is talking through his arse.

The Green Party deserves criticism for many reasons and praise for those changes that would not be here without their input in Government, eg - Civil unions, planning reform, energy investment, upcoming climate change legislation (there is a long list)

Did you check your facts on how Tara M3 was already a legal fait accompli before the last election?

Are you seriously suggesting a democratic party that allows more membership input than any other would have a dress code?

Politics as opposed to protest means that you negotiate based on your numbers or you don't participate at all. Personally it is better to participate and achive something than snipe from the sidelines and achieve nothing.

Radical politics requires that the mindset of the populace actually votes for it. Ireland is a conservative country with conservative parties receiving the lion's share of the votes.

If GPEW were able to contest elections under the Irish electoral system they would be holding the balance of power and may decide to support or enter Government on the basis of policy input, relative of course to its electoral strength.

Your erstwhile GPEW colleagues realise this but you prefer the concentrated adoration of the minority that will never input through democracy rather than try and win over the majority through which is a difficult and thankless task.

Yours sincerely,

A Green Party TD

Derek Wall said...

'Politics as opposed to protest means that you negotiate based on your numbers or you don't participate at all. Personally it is better to participate and achive something than snipe from the sidelines and achieve nothing.'

its kind of like a mantra, lets bravely do the wrong thing....however I think the Scottish Green Party approach of supporting the SNP where they are progressive rather full congress has worked somewaht better.

Sorry motorways and Green Parties don't mix....this is a fundi/realo issue.

And a wide variety of commentators suggested the coalition in Ireland with FF would not work, I am not really a fan of coalitions but this has been far far worse in negative effects and has achieved few positive gains.

Still hoping you will get out of bed with the porketeriat...can see from the 'arse' comment you are a real Green TD, thanks for taking the time to comment....

If Greens in other countries were happily building motorways you would be critical of them...

Anonymous said...

You see this is where your heart is in the right place but your facts are not.

No new motorway projects other than those already earmarked have been approved.

And in the case of Tara M3, this was already approved by An Bord Pleanala. So if the Green Party didn't enter Government, no change on this issue, just like it was impossible to change upon entering Government.

However we do have input into how future transport funds are spent after current projects end, even in an economic downturn.

Supporting FF from outside would not have worked as they did not need our votes at the time.

They do now and this could be an option, just like leaving Government could be an option if our additional clout is not taken into consideration in the Programme for Government review.

But why spend so much time criticising Irish Greens? You are welcome to meet up with us any time.

No dress code either ;-)

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