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The ICTU march and the 1% Network

category dublin | anti-capitalism | news report author Friday November 19, 2010 12:50author by 1of99 - 1% Networkauthor email 1percentnetwork at gmail dot com Report this post to the editors

We want to make the1% rich pay not the compromise of 'fairer' cuts

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions have called a national demonstration on 27th November in Dublin which will see tens of thousands take to the streets. But many are very unhappy with the ICTU leadership and a march called on the basis of 'fairer' cuts and a return to the disasterous policy of Social Partnership. The 1% Network will be taking part in the demonstration not to support the demands of the ICTU leadership but to outline what we see as the alternative. This is not in the expectation that the ICTU leadership can be convinced but because we want to make the argument to the thousands of workers who will take part that it is up to all of us to organise what is needed, a general strike, despite that leadership.

The 1% network is organising for the day around the slogan 'The 1% have the Wealth - We have to take the Power'

In 2007, the Bank of Ireland’s ‘Wealth of the Nation’ report revealed that 1% of the population owned 34% of the wealth. In October of this year, Cork Institute of Technology lecturer Tom O’Connor analysed what has happened to this wealth since then. His figures showed that the total ‘net worth’ (excluding the value of their principal residences and allowing for any borrowings) of the 33,000 Irish millionaires is still a whopping €121billion.

It is clearly both wrong and immoral that a small number of people should hold onto such vast wealth while the rest of us face savage attacks on our living standards and on our public services. More importantly, this concentration of wealth in a tiny number of hands means that political power is also concentrated in the hands of this elite. If we wish to re-shape society and to build a new society based on equality and real democracy, we need to find a way to take political power away from the wealthy elite.

Clearly those who have such power are not going to give it up easily. But we are many and they are few and we have the ability to organise to defeat them. The way in which they can be defeated is through the organisation of a general strike. They need our labour, by withdrawing it we can show where real power lies.

It’s clear that the ICTU leadership is not going to call the general strike needed for a real fightback to begin. After all they have accepted the government’s cuts agenda, they just want the cuts implemented over a longer period of time. Therefore it is up to each one of us in our workplaces, in our trade unions, in our residents and community associations to begin to build a strong, united campaign and to begin the process of working towards that general strike.

Don’t leave it to someone else. Get involved yourself in whatever small way you can. For more, including advice and ideas on how to get involved visit http://www.onepercentnetwork.org

If you want to join the 1% Network on the march and perhaps help hold banners , leaflet (the text will be similar to the above) etc you can RSVP on our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=111897895543876 which we'll use to send out further details at we work them out

Related Link: http://www.onepercentnetwork.org/
author by 1of99publication date Mon Nov 22, 2010 14:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

We are going to meet up at 11.30 outside the Lord Edward pub, if you want to give a hand distributing leafeles or carry a placard (slogan as on the graphic) meet us there


author by Edward Horganpublication date Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Open Letter to the People of Ireland (also published in Irish Times on Sat 18 Nov)

Expressions of, anger, resignation, disgust, shame and deep depression will achieve nothing in the present crisis. We must take positive action and do something. We do not have a real government at present, so we are in a state of virtual anarchy, and every extra day of such anarchy is causing further damage, that will have to be paid for by our grandchildren. Our sham government is driving the country towards the edge of cliff, so we the people need to stop the country and turn it around. The self-serving Fianna Fáil and Green hypocrites will not resign but will continue to the last possible day to maximise their ministerial and TD paycheques and pensions.

We need a national general strike now to force a general election, before Christmas, and before any deal with the ECB/IMF is agreed. Any deals or national budgets brought in by the present regime will have no mandate from the people of Ireland. This national strike must be all-encompassing, and include public and private sectors, the young, the old, the gardaí and the Defence Forces. Enough is enough, we need to re-establish our republic and take back our country.

We must do this now to restore the honour and self-respect of the Irish people, otherwise we will deserve the shame that has been forced upon us. We must do this peacefully but with firm determination, otherwise many people will be destitute and many will die because of lack of adequate medical care and essential support services. – Yours, etc,
Edward Horgan

author by pat cpublication date Wed Nov 24, 2010 17:47author address author phone Report this post to the editors

No wonder the government felt confident in bringing a four year programme of cuts aimed at those on welfare, low and medium incomes. Look at the crawling letter of surrender from Cody of IMPACT below. Cody boasts about how 11,000 jobs ave been lost! Cody and his ilk must be thrown out!

Lets take our unions back!

Capitulatory Letter by Cody—Chair Public Services Committee ICTU and GenSec IMPACT

date 17 November 2010 18:25
subject Croke Park Agreement

Dear Deputy,

I am writing as general secretary of Ireland’s largest public service trade union to briefly update you on the ongoing implementation of the Croke Park agreement and related reforms, which are essential to help meet the challenges currently facing Ireland.

You may be aware that the Minister for Finance recently met officers of the ICTU Public Services Committee and confirmed that the Government remains committed to the agreement, on the understanding that it will quickly deliver substantial savings and reforms. Leaders of the main opposition parties have also given public support to the agreement on the understanding that it will deliver substantial savings and reforms.

On foot of this, union representatives on the Croke Park national implementation body, including myself, have continued to press management for tangible proposals that either:

• Produce savings
• Avoid future costs
• Bring service improvements and/or
• Deliver quantifiable efficiency improvements.

Departmental action plans for reform, which are required under the agreement, have now been produced across the public service and these include real measures that will deliver savings or maintain services as substantial savings are made though the public service recruitment moratorium and other staff reductions.

I have personally pressed management very hard to ensure that the agreement is implemented quickly, effectively and transparently to deliver the savings necessary to avoid further cuts in public service pay and to ensure that the agreed reforms deliver on the objective of protecting and prioritising services as budgets and staffing levels continue to fall. The staff redeployment measures agreed under Croke Park are particularly significant in this regard.

As well as the pay cuts of 2009 and 2010, big ticket changes that will produce huge savings have so far included:

• Staff reductions of over 11,000 in the last 18 months with more to come
• The newly-announced scheme to reduce health staff numbers by 5,000 through voluntary redundancies
• The abolition of 25 agencies, with more to come
• A halving in the number of VECs
• The introduction of new pension arrangements for new recruits to the public service
• The implementation of other changes put forward in sectoral action plans, which will collectively result in very significant changes.

None of these measures has so far led to significant reductions in service provision.

I would be happy to give you more detailed information on the ongoing implementation of the Croke Park agreement, or to respond to your specific questions on related developments. You can contact me by emailing Bernard Harbor at bharbor@impact.ie.

Yours sincerely
Seamus Cody
General Secretary
IMPACT trade union

author by Darren C - League for the Fifth International (pc)publication date Thu Nov 25, 2010 12:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The people are angry and bewildered. They have bombarded newspapers and phone-ins with their fury over being lied to, the bail out and the coming austerity programme. The coming demonstrations and protests, such as the one this Saturday 27 November, will be big and militant. Workers want an alternative to the cuts, lies and being sold to the banks and bon markets.

The leaders of the Irish Confederation Of Trade Unions must build on that anger or stand aside and let the workers fight back unhindered. The time has come to say “enough is enough”. We are witnessing a class wide assault on workers by the government and its EU/IMF backers. We need a class wide response and that demands a general strike to stop all the cuts.

We now need a General Strike to stop the EU/IMF backed government attacks on workers and to demand the withdrawal of the forthcoming budget in its entirety and repudiate the foreign debt.

Full article: http://www.fifthinternational.org/content/irish-euimf-d...tance

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