Opinion

The opinion of a WSM member. This piece has not been reviewed by any WSM editing body

It’s a Yes - a central contribution to the Repeal story that can be built on

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The publication of the co-directors history of the Together for Yes (T4Y) campaign is an important step in building an accessible collective history of the final stage of the long struggle to repeal the hated 8th amendment to the Irish constitution. It along with the forthcoming Together for Yes review of the referendum campaign should probably be read by everyone who worked for Repeal, if for no other reason than to get a better understanding of the ‘big picture’ of what we were involved in.

Feminists in Ireland release letter in solidarity with "our friends in Rojava"

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The following letter has been signed by feminists living in Ireland, including WSM members

A Letter to our friends in Rojava

As feminists living across the island of Ireland, we wish to express our heartfelt solidarity with our courageous sisters and comrades in Rojava as their project for women’s freedom is under attack. Please know that as the fascist Turkish state attempts to isolate, dispossess and brutalise the communities of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria, they will only serve to strengthen our collective resistance and resolve.

Transport needs and Climate Breakdown as 25,000 march through Dublin

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As part of the global climate strike about 25 thousand students marched through the center of Dublin city. This was one of many demonstrations that took place around Ireland, even the small dormitory towns around Dublin like Maynooth had their own demonstrations. So the actual numbers protesting in Ireland was probably in the region of 40,000.  In this piece Andrew looks at how collective action can halt Climate Breakdown using the example of the need for transport to illustrate why individual consumer choices cannot fix things.

XR strategy is based on bad science

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If you happened to be using bad science to impose a strategy that turned out to be inefficient, and if as a result of this inefficiency billions of people died... who would be the most violent person in the room? This is the question Roger Hallam (a founder of XR) and George Monbiot (a Guardian journalist and prominent supporter of XR) would do well to ponder as the collapse of the earth's biosphere and the system fueling that collapse are claiming more lives every day.

Both of these men have been arguing in favor of non-violent civil disobedience as the only acceptable tactic to avert catastrophic climate change. This stance is usually justified by referencing a study entitled “Why Civil Resistance Works” authored by Erica Chenoweth.

Review: ‘Worshipping Power: an anarchist view of early state formation’ written by Peter Gelderloos.

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This book unapologetically does away with many tired myths about the origin of states, their alleged utility and the so-called social contract. For far too long these myths have led many to accept authoritarian institutions as necessary for the coexistence of human beings in large scale societies, allowing a tiny minority to enslave exploit and murder in plain sight, under the protection of a legitimizing discourse. But that shit is going away.

Protesting racism in Rooskey

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Rooskey - when I heard the name, it triggered some flicker of recollection. A memory was stirred. As it turned out, it is not far from where my mother's family come from. I had a cousin who grew up in a nearby Longford village, I had actually cycled through this place. So it vaguely came back to me, and I remembered the bridge spanning the Shannon, as that great river flows onto Lough Ree and down towards Athlone. My mother's people grew up around that Lough. I’ve spent summers listening to the wind whistling through the telephone wires. Today I was on my way to an anti-racist protest.

Ode to ARC - a video love story

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To mark International Women's Day 2019 we are releasing this video that celebrates the grassroots womens organising responsible for victory in the 2018 abortion referendum.  We'd heard the text at the ARC Christmas party and immediately felt it would make a fantastic video, hopefully you will agree.  The authors introduction is below, we've also recorded a background interview with her about the campaign which gets further into the grassroots organising themes expressed in the video, see link at end.

The author Mary writes "On International Womens Day two years ago we gathered on O'Connell  Bridge and in towns all around Ireland as part of Strike 4 Repeal, demanding that the government call a referendum on the 8th amendment. On International Womens Day last year, we marched under the banner of Votes for Repeal. We had a proposed referendum date, the structure of a campaign, energy, commitment and determination. But the result was far from certain. On International Womens Day this year, Ireland is free of the 8th amendment. Barriers to access remain and the work of ensuring free, safe, legal and local abortion care for everyone who wants and needs it continues. But we are in a place we did not think we would be a few short years ago. We have moved out from under the shadow of the 8th. We got here through collective action, hard compromises, exhaustion, friendship, compassion, determination and grit.

Brexit & a border poll - an anarchist view on the possibilities and consequences

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“Every exclusively political revolution that is in defence of national independence or for internal change... [and] that does not aim at the immediate and real political and economic emancipation of people, will be a false revolution. Its objectives will be unattainable and its consequences reactionary.” Michael Bakunin.

With less the two months until the Brexit deadline, the North of Ireland remains on edge as the British PM announces plans to deploy police reinforcements to six counties echoing past images for many of aggressive border checkpoints and control stoking up conflict.
In the the midst of this Brexit spectacle the real war continues to ravage the streets, housing estates and workplaces across the North in the form of a brutal austerity agenda of class warfare in cuts to public services and social welfare under the Stormont Fresh Start Agreement resulting in misery and deprivation for the many while the wealthy few have never had it so good on a local and global level. According to a recent report released by Oxfam in January this year ‘Billionaire fortunes increased by 12 percent last year – or $2.5 billion a day - while the 3.8 billion people who make up the poorest half of humanity saw their wealth decline by 11 percent’ (1)

In defiance of government spin nurses cry Enough is enough

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The West’s awake, so too the other provinces, as defiant nurses and midwives take to the picket lines. Buoyed by massive public support, members of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) took part in their first strike in 20 years.

Generally feeling undervalued and suffering the effects of prolonged understaffing and hospital overcrowding these workers counter-intuitively withdrew their labour in the first of a series of 24-hour work stoppages.

Known for their dedication and immense sense of good will which has for decades covered up the cracks in a health service that itself seems to be in ill-health, this female dominated profession has once again risen up to say “Enough is enough!”

The Next Global Crash? On China and the 21st Century Crisis

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Today, China is the driving engine of global economic growth. A major crisis of the Chinese economy will almost certainly drag the global economy into the next recession in the 2020s. This may turn out to be far more damaging than the Great Recession of 2008.

Minqi Li is a political economist at the University of Utah and an advocate of China’s Maoist New Left [1]. His most recent book, ‘China and the 21st Century Crisis’, outlines capitalism’s next looming crisis. Regardless of the proximate cause, this coming crisis will be economic, political, and ecological. It will also be global.

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