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Pressing reset: Time for the insurrection?

At a recent private meeting in Belfast grim-faced civil servants and politicians outlined policy options following Brexit. The picture was of a low wage economy and the collapse of public services. Shortly afterwards British Secretary of State Brokenshire announced a pre-Brexit budget: a Health Budget that would lead to the collapse of many services and an Education budget that was a recipe for redundancies and school closures.

On the political front the formation of the new executive has been postponed indefinitely. The British will not honour past pledges and it appears that the Stormont experiment is over. Even if it were to return its only contribution to the budget would be to add a further dose of sectarianism and corruption. Its divided response to Brexit would add nothing.

Parallel developments in the south see public sector unions gearing up for restoration of pay and pensions and the end of two-tier wage structures through a new Lansdowne Road partnership deal. 

They avert their eyes from their own betrayal of the struggle by ASTI teachers, from the savage privatisation contract being offered to Bus Eireann workers and, above all, the statements from all sides that the "fiscal space" allowed by the Troika will not allow workers pay to return to previous rates, a situation that will be underlined by the hammerblow of Brexit in the South.

The Irish recovery is leading to a low wage economy, made much worse by a speculative housing bubble feeding fears of mass homelessness.

The institutions of the Dail are also failing. Two groups of gangsters, both responsible for bankrupting the country, hold each other up in a minority government. Endless corruption in the Dail is mirrored by the corruption of the police and judiciary intent on criminalising protest as shown by the Jobstown show trails. Despite scandal the government press ahead with the handover of a maternity hospital to religious institutions tainted with the past brutalisation of women and young people and the deaths of hundreds of infants. Behind the mask of modernity lies the grinning skull of the alliance of church and state.

Yet the real problem is the weakness of the opposition. The unions and self proclaimed "left" parties cling to partnership with capital. The socialists cling to the unions. Resistance is reduced to pantomime in parliament and on the streets.

Itís time to press reset. In a recent poll a majority of younger workers said that they would join an uprising against the Dublin government. The sentiment is entirely right. The methods must be rank and file mobilization, the flying picket, secondary action and occupation.

The politics? A revolutionary party of the working class, using class action to supplant Stormont and Dail and construct an all-Ireland constituent assembly, mobilising to establish the workers republic. From day one international solidarity with workers in struggle across Europe around the call
 

 


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