Communist Party of Ireland
At its regular meeting held on 31 March the National Executive Committee of the Communist Party of Ireland discussed the continuing crisis of the system and its growing effect on the economic and social well-being of working people, north and south. This crisis is the central question facing all our people, north and south. A just outcome for working people can only be found in their united action throughout the country fighting for an alternative socialist way forward.
The party calls for maximum opposition and a resounding No vote in the forthcoming referendum on the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in the Economic and Monetary Union. The CPI demands that the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) Treaty also be put to the people in a referendum, as the two are inseparable. Both are central to the imposition of permanent austerity on working people in Ireland and all working people throughout the euro zone and the EU as a whole. This mechanism creates a permanent bail-out fund for capital that working people will be forced to pay into generation after generation as capital gambles away the future of the planet.
The CPI calls on the ICTU to stop prevaricating, to campaign for a No vote, and to come out clearly and give leadership to Irish workers in regard to these treaties and explain their potential effect on working people.
These treaties are designed to make austerity a permanent and unchangeable fact in the internal political, economic and social policies of the member-states. Together with with other EU treaties, they are for narrowing the options available to the people and putting the people’s aspirations into a straitjacket of capitalist development as the only way forward.
Irish communists believe that the maximum unity of our people is necessary and that the building of an all-people’s coalition to oppose both these treaties, the odious debt and the austerity pact, led by working people, is the only way forward.
The growing inequality, the spread of poverty and the attack on workers’ wages, terms and conditions are proof, if more proof is needed, that the policies of both the Irish and the British government are purely in the interests of monopoly corporations and the big finance monopolies. The Moriarty Report and the most recent Mahon Report into corruptions exposed the multiple interconnections between all the establishment political parties and big business.
The Irish Government’s recent decision regarding the €3.06 billion promissory note owed to the now-defunct Anglo-Irish Bank, now named Irish Bank Resolution Corporation (IBRC), is a mere pretence that it is attempting to relieve the debt burden on our people and to give the appearance of standing up to the EU-ECB-IMF. This is nothing more than a cynical ruse to fool the gullible. It is for extending the payment period or spreading the debt over a longer period, but that load will still be firmly shackled to the backs of working people.
The Irish governments strategy is to continue with its austerity pack and make the people pay, to continue to make the people pay for this odious debt by extending the the repayments period and selling our people and country to transnational capital as reservoir of cheap labour with few rights.
The parties in the Northern Executive are similarly bereft of any ideas for creating jobs other than to also sell it as a destination for cheap mobile labour. The labour movement needs to step up the demand for the transfer of full fiscal powers (with subvention from the British exchequer guaranteed at an agreed level for and agreed period) to the Northern Executive, which would provide the bases to secure greater control over economic and social policy that can strengthen and build an all-Ireland integrated industrial base a strategy to bring jobs to the near half million unemployed across the whole country.
The recent use of “supergrass” trials and its collapse, raises once again the role of the Special Branch, and its repressive nature and role, as well as the continued use of strip search is a return to old methods of policing and control. The lessons from decades of repression is simple it does not work and is an undermines of democracy.
The internal troika of Fine Gael, the Labour Party and Fianna Fáil are willing collaborators in the permanent transfer of wealth from our people a process similar is under way in the other peripheral countries of the EU to the centre, turning those countries into permanent chattels, protectorates of European finance houses. The debt crisis is now spreading to countries in the core of the EU
The Communist Party of Ireland welcomes the campaigns and massive protests again the household charge. It is clear that resistance is growing, and this is reflected in the fact that the overwhelming majority have not yet succumbed to the threats and blackmail of the political establishment and its mass media to register for paying the household charge. Working people need to be vigilant in the coming period, as the establishment will attempt to divide the people in order to impose its solutions to its crisis upon the people. The success of this campaign will be secured only if it maintains it breadth and its broad appeal over the coming period.
The focus of community resistance to the septic tank charge and the turfcutters’ campaigns show clearly that rural radicalism is still a potent force and that campaigns that have a clear focus and clear demands can mobilise the people and produce small but important advances. There are lessons to be learnt by the trade union movement, which needs to build unity between the workers and communities to prevent the wholesale selling off of public companies.
The party expresses its solidarity with the hundreds of thousands of workers now languishing on the dole, with little prospect of finding work. It also expresses its solidarity with the workers in the Games Shop chain, now in occupation for their rights to be respected, and to the thousands of bank workers now facing massive redundancies and a very unsure future and the workers at the Belfast Telegraph newspaper whose jobs are under threat. New struggles will emerge and workers need to be mobilised to defend the health services in North as the British government renews its campaign to dismantle the NHS.
There can be no solution that favours working people within this moribund and decaying system. The time has come for much more radical solutions outside the system if we are to stop the waste of human talent stagnating on the dole queues and the haemorrhaging of tens of thousands of people through mass emigration, growing poverty and inequality.