Friday, October 23, 2009

Where oh where can that brave man be?

Where oh where is our James Connolly,
Where oh where can that brave man be,
He has gone to organise the Union,
That working men might yet be free.

This is the opening verse of a well known rebel song about one of Ireland's most famous trade unionists. As one of the leaders of the Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union, Connolly took on the might of greedy Irish employers between 1911 and 1914. Connolly was a man who practised what he preached. He united Catholic and Protestant workers in Belfast and inspired them to stand together in search of improved pay and conditions. He was jailed during the failed 1913 Dublin lockout. He founded the Irish Citizen Army to protect workers from the brutality of police attacks. After the 1916 rising Connolly was executed for his role in, what he saw as, a war against capitalist oppression of the working classes. Whether you agree with Connolly's politics or not there can be no doubt that this man was honest, brave and sincere. Connolly was undoubtedly one of the forefathers of the Irish labour movement. The protection of workers' rights, fair rates of pay and safe working conditions that we enjoy today were fought for by men like James Connolly.

Now lets fast forward a century or so. Brave workers' leaders like James Connolly have been replaced by money-grabbing charlatans such as SIPTU chief "I'm All Right Jack" O'Connor, IMPACT's Peter "Silver Spoon" McLoone, John "Cuban Cigar" Carr of the INTO and, of course, Labour Party leader and King of sanctimony - Eamon Gilmore Girl. These people and their ilk have made lucrative careers off the backs of Ireland's workers. Like the 165 members of the Kildare Street Country Club, our union leaders benefited most from the boom days of the Celtic Tiger (RIP). The sickeningly high salaries that our union leaders are paid has been well documented in recent days. The huge salaries these supposed leaders of the proletariat are earning would have the brave James Connolly spinning in his grave.

It gives me the sick to listen to the likes of "I'm All Right Jack" O'Connor preaching about workers rights and the plight of the low earner when he is raking in almost €125,000 per year. And you can bet your ass that there's a whack of expenses to add to that. As workers all over this country suffer pay cuts and economic hardship, O'Connor doesn't feel the need to show any solidarity.

But O'Connor isn't the only one with his head in the sand. Thousands of public servants are threatening an all out strike this winter because the state needs to reduce their pay. The fact that they have been awarded repeated pay rises over the past 15 years in return for no improvements in productivity is conveniently forgotten. Anyone who is unfortunate enough to have to deal with public or civil servants will know that helpfulness and a focus on customer service is the last thing they care about. If you are unlucky enough to have to go and sign on the dole you will know what I'm talking about. The typical " says no....cough..." attitude of most front line public servants needs to change. The people of Ireland pay their wages so they should treat us like customers not inconveniences. They deserve a pay cut for their complete lack of work ethic alone. How dare they threaten to strike when we have tolerated their ignorance and waste for decades. Anyone who picks up a picket placard this winter needs to ask themselves if they see a problem with paying their union leader (Silver Spoon McLoone) over €150,000 per annum. I urge any prospective striker to ask your comrades in the union what they are doing with your subscriptions. Ask them why they are paid higher salaries than a TD. You should be picketing your union headquarters rather than holding the country to ransom. How on earth can the ordinary men and women of Ireland be expected to sympathise with striking workers who are represented by men who enjoy such massive salaries.

Ireland's experiment with social partnership has led to a situation whereby we pissed billions of euro down the toilet in return for nothing. The civil and public service is as wasteful and inefficient as ever. Pay for performance doesn't exist. Hard work and a focus on customer service is discouraged. And we can thank the likes of Silver Spoon McLoone and I'm Alright Jack O'Connor for this. Together with their mates in the Dáil they conspired to waste the riches this country enjoyed. And now that they have squandered the money they want to amuse themselves by causing strikes. They have nothing to fear if the country grinds to a halt. They don't have to worry about feeding their families or paying the mortgage. The biggest thing bothering the union leaders these days is that the FAS gravy train has been derailed before they got their chance to sit on the board and scam the taxpayer out of yet more money.

The union leaders of this country don't give a damn about the ordinary worker. The supposed "labour movement" in this country is a complete sell out. It has gone from being represented by heros like James Connolly to Charvet shirt wearing gombeen men like I'm Alright Jack O'Connor and Silver Spoon McLoone.

When the unions can get their own houses in order and dismiss their overpaid and out of touch politburos the ordinary people of Ireland might start viewing their claims with a modicum of sympathy. Until then they can rot on the picket lines because they are a shower of hypocritical wasters.

So where oh where can that brave man be? Well I'm not sure where he is. But I can assure you that he isn't in Liberty Hall or the headquarters of any other union in this country. The modern day union leader is more William Martin Murphy than James Connolly!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Sinne Fianna Fooled

So the voting's over
And the evil yes side won
Ireland's people have been hoodwinked
They've approved the vile Lisbon

Our scumbag politicians
Seeking bribes and well paid roles
Can now take our constitution
And use it to wipe their holes

They spent a lot on posters
Used fear and lies as tools
And Ireland you believed them
You poor weak minded fools

The corrupt power-hungry eurocrats
Will now react with glee
Lisbon Treaty 2009
Reichstag fire 1933

They took our first decision
And flushed it like waste sludge
Have we signed Europe's death warrant?
History will be our judge!

By DarkPassenger