For the first time in modern Irish history, the Irish electorate has been free to devote all its attention to Ireland and the many problems we have here – and many of those are hangovers from British rule or products of the post-colonial mess England left in its passing. Our efforts to pacify Britain and convince it we’re more than animals – our inferiority complex – have created a quasi-collaborationist middle, professional, and political class which has failed Ireland, which has failed the 1916 Republic and its promise of ‘the right of the people of Ireland to the ownership of Ireland.’
Scotland and Ireland have much in common. They are countries of about the same size and population with a long history of English domination. When England wobbles, Scotland and Ireland quake. In both Scotland and Ireland, regardless of their social and cultural proximity to England, there is an acute awareness of the badness of Brexit. Both instinctively understand that it threatens the fabric of their society, and both are aware of the extent to which England is working to draw them in to the misery of its awful situation.
Europe requires “stable government,” and what we have learned from Greece, Portugal, and Spain is that to the European Union stable government is synonymous with right-wing neoliberal government and policies which advance the progress of the free market.
Despite almost ten years of the Irish left shouting about Capitalism in Crisis and the Paul Mason in the Guardian spouting garbage about the end of capitalism, it looks like the beast has earned its stripes again.
Given the long absence of either a strong or a united political left in the country Sinn Féin are likely to be the winners of the Labour Party’s meltdown, but many still feel baulkish about lending their support to a party that remains so associated with violence in the North.
If people aren’t feeling the improving effects of an economic recovery it simply isn’t right to speak of a recovery. It’s just a lie. There is no recovery for the people. There is however a recovery for the bank accounts of those who have profited from the misery of so many.
Let’s go ahead and make a prediction for 26 February. Fine Gael, spouting their obnoxious rubbish about ‘recovery,’ will make it back to government with either the class traitors Labour or some hodgepodge of rightist power-hungry independents, or a mixture of the two.