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The Saker
A bird's eye view of the vineyard

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Lockdown Skeptics

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Voltaire Network
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ISN announce John O'Neill to run in General Election

category national | politics / elections | press release author Monday February 05, 2007 12:17author by The National Secretary - Irish Socialist Network Report this post to the editors

John O'Neill will seek election in the Dublin North West Constituency

FINGLAS COMMUNITY WORKER TO STAND FOR DUBLIN NORTH WEST IN GENERAL ELECTION

John O Neill, a local community worker, is standing as a socialist candidate for the Dublin North West constituency in this year’s general election. With a solid performance in the Finglas Ward on his first electoral outing in the 2004 local election (where he finishing on the fifth count with 1300 votes, ahead of the Green Party and Progressive Democrats), John is in position to make a breakthrough on a clear platform of independent working class politics.

John has worked in a lone parent community development project for the last number years. He had worked previously as a printer. An experienced political activist, he played a key role in the success of Proinsias De Rossa and the Workers Party in the Dublin North West constituency during the 1980s. Unlike some of his former colleagues, John has remained committed to a radical democratic vision of socialism. His campaign offers a real socialist alternative to those sick of the betrayal of their communities by the current government and the coalition politics of the Labour Party, Sinn Fein and the Greens, all of whom have indicated their willingness to abandon their politics in return for a few ministerial seats.

John is a member of the Irish Socialist Network, a democratic socialist organisation mainly active in the Finglas/Ballymun area. He has an unrivalled campaigning record, spending a fortnight in Mountjoy Jail for participating in a peaceful Anti-Bin Tax protest in Finglas South in 2003. He is also an active anti-war campaigner, was the main organiser in the Finglas area for the massive anti-war demo that was held in Dublin on February 15th 2003 and is currently involved in the campaign to halt the use of Shannon airport by the US military. He has also been involved in a number of local campaigns in Finglas, including the maintenance of a comprehensive local bus service, the protection of the historical heritage of the area and the development of anti-racist strategies in the community.

John is not a career politician and his reason for participating in the general election is to encourage people to organise themselves in their communities and workplaces so that they can fight to win in the struggle for houses for all, an equitable health service and a decent education for our kids. John is making one simple promise; that he will use his position to encourage and assist that empowerment process. He also hopes to cooperate with other socialist and community candidates throughout the country who share his perspective on the need for a radical alternative to the conservative parties and their subordinates in the coalition oriented centre-left. Preliminary discussions have already been held with a number of such candidates.

PHONE: JOHN O NEILL 087-6367175 OR PAUL MOLONEY 087-6433538

ISSUED BY THE IRISH SOCIALIST NETWORK

Email: irishsocialistnetwork@dublin.ie

Related Link: http://www.irishsocialist.net
author by Micro Managerpublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 12:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

All in the best in the campaign, the more radical voices the better.

But please, either retract the statement that SInn Fein have indicated a willingness to abandon policies in return for ministerial seats, or else back it up with evidence.

Attacks on other left wing parties are pointless, devisive and distracting, and spurious statements accusing other left wing activists of being cynical liars are what give the small parties like yours a bad name, and turn voters off.

Remember who the enemy is. It's not Sinn Fein.

Find a statement from Dessie Ellis saying he'll abandon his policies to get power and I'll vote for you. Be big enough to admit that you got that one wrong and I'll get my family and friends to vote for you as well.

author by Jonahpublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 12:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's especially disappointing because John, and other ISN members, have in the past been very positive about Dessie in particular, whatever their legitimate political differences with Sinn Féin. It's a pity to see the ISN dropping into Trotspeak.

author by historianpublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 13:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

When Finglas republicans were taking on the drug pushers in the 1980s, John and Frankie Ross were condemning them as thugs and vigilantes! Opportunists come in all shapes and hues it seems!

author by ISNerpublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 14:06author address author phone Report this post to the editors

At this stage. is it not pointing out the obvious to say that Sinn Fein is lurching towards the centre, the closer it gets to ministerial seats north and south? When they had ministeries in the north, they implemented (reluctantly or otherwise) neoliberal policies in the health sector. Moreover, they have clearly stated that coalition with right-wing parties like Fianna Fail is not ruled out in the south. Who will call the tune in such an arrangement?

Need more?

author by Patrick Henrypublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 14:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Who will be at the White House this coming St Patrick's day despite the War crimes of Bush?

author by John O'Neill - ISN - Personal capacitypublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 14:45author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I have a lot of respect for dessie Ellis and work with him in on occasion when SF and ISN positions are similar. However, indications are that SF are keeping their options open regarding coalition. I think people should know this. If I am wrong then I will apologise.

On the CPAD, yes I did campaign against the CPAD and I believe now I was wrong as do many members of the WP. Just as many CPAD activists have developed their positions since then, so have I.

author by Former SFpublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 14:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Firstly, fair play to John for coming onto the site and admitting he was wrong about something in the past. It's a level of political maturity that is absent from political discussion in the Irish left.

As for the Shinners, their position is that they have ruled out no-one but would make any decision on coalition after the next general election depending on what has been offered to them. In other words, the ISN are right to say Sinn Féin hasn't ruled out coalition with the right, but I think it's a bit of a stretch to say they're aiming for it.

As for Sinn Féin drifting to the centre, it's a nice soundbite, but if you look at Sinn Féin's actual policies, they're further to the left in the South now than they were in 2002. Their recent pre-budget submission is a good start.

Their position on policing is a whole other story.

author by armilite antopublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 15:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

when will Adams admit the armed struggle was a waste of time and lives. The isn should stay away from working with sf until they admit they were wrong

author by hs - sppublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 15:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

hopefully all leftwingers will support your campaign and you make an impact. Good to see someone standing there.

author by ISNerpublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 17:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

This article sets out the ISN's view on Sinn Fein and their political strategy. I don't think it can be written off as "Trotspeak". If anyone from SF wants to rebut the arguments in it, they're welcome to respond (not saying that in a smart-alec way either):

http://www.irishsocialist.net/publications_crisis_of_ir....html

author by Dubpublication date Mon Feb 05, 2007 18:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

John is a principled left-wing activist in his community and deserves the support of all on the Left. I think ISN are correct to point out differences with Sinn Fein. SF are on the path of 1930s FF. They are abandoning their original principles (which I never agreed with anyway!) and moving more to the right. Their only objective now is to be in Government North and South and will do anything to get that including abandoning people that elected them. John and ISN should not drop any political clarity in face of 'unpopularity' with a few Republicans.

author by A Gpublication date Tue Feb 06, 2007 15:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

A bit of news that seems to have passed unnoticed.
The demolition has recently begun of the homes belonging to the residents of Donnybrewer Road in Derry. These 17 families were evicted at the behest of the anti-union Ryan air by the Sinn Fein & SDLP controlled Derry City Council also with the backing of the DUP.
This is the type of thing we can expect once Stormont gets up and running. Isn't it time the genuine left got it's act together and started highlighting these issues before the elections get underway?

author by SP Member - Socialist Party/CWIpublication date Tue Feb 06, 2007 18:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Clearly SF's membership has 'matured' since the 1980's as well, given the result at the conference last week.

author by Dubpublication date Tue Feb 06, 2007 18:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I'm sure ISN & SP will mention that they are actually socialists unlike the SWP who will not be contesting the upcoming election as SWP but as "People Before Profit" which they have registered as a political party.

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