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 The Germ of a National Strike?

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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 2:06 pm

Auditor #9 wrote:
The handy thing with this version of democracy tonys is that if enough people want it then the rules of the game can be changed. I believe this is long overdue and will be pushed for as time wears on and schools and universities keep churning out people who want to know why more people aren't participating in the democratic processes that are going on. Why indeed that models of business have mechanisms which work more democratically than democratic political institutions.

Do you deny that there is massive potential to abuse an electorate by buying elections? Don't forget : Radix Malorum Est Cupiditas and people are too easily wooed by the shiny stuff.

I do so deny on the basis that I think that very notion is based on the supposition that the gap in intelligence and avarice between the believer and the rest of the electorate is much wider than is actually the case.


Healthy growth and Death go back to back. For this society like any other to grow and change there will have to be the Death of the old and a welcoming in of the new. Whether I like it or not is not the point - change will come like a force of nature.

It'd be interesting to hear what drawbacks you'd see in a more participatory, inclusive form of democracy emerging here.
I see the age old turkeys voting for Christmas difficulty in having too many votes on too many issues and therefore the lack of radical action when a government thinks such action is needed.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 3:00 pm

Very interesting posts Auditor#9.

I'm not relying on the polls tonys but also on the pace of events. At the time of the last election people thought they are voting for which captain to keep a hand on a tiller, not a crew who could repel pirates at the same time as baling out a hole below the water line.

The lack of a recall system is a massive defect in the system and one that should be dealt with immediately. If that takes people banging dustbin lids, walking off the job or sitting down in the streets then so be it.

I would go with a reputable poll asking people if they want a General Election.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 3:08 pm

It isn't quite as simple as a poll asking people do they want a General Election. Granted we are in unprecedented times at the moment but lets move this away from the present situation to more generalised assumptions. In most parliamentary democracies the margin between the Government and the opposition is not great and likewise between the electorate. On that basis it is likely that between 40 and 45 per cent of the population will always want a general election. On the basis of a poll, which is like an election merely a snapshot on any given day, all you need is a swing of 10% which can occur based on any minor marginal issue and you would be calling for a General Election.

As I said, we are living in unprecedented times so generalisations do become very stretched. However, the general idea of an opinion poll forcing an election, does not make for well ordered Government, based on my reasoning above.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 3:11 pm

johnfás wrote:
It isn't quite as simple as a poll asking people do they want a General Election. Granted we are in unprecedented times at the moment but lets move this away from the present situation to more generalised assumptions. In most parliamentary democracies the margin between the Government and the opposition is not great and likewise between the electorate. On that basis it is likely that between 40 and 45 per cent of the population will always want a general election. On the basis of a poll, which is like an election merely a snapshot on any given day, all you need is a swing of 10% which can occur based on any minor marginal issue and you would be calling for a General Election.

As I said, we are living in unprecedented times so generalisations do become very stretched. However, the general idea of an opinion poll forcing an election, does not make for well ordered Government, based on my reasoning above.

Well, it will have to be sitting in the streets then: but that is not always a good thing. The angry middle classes can inadvertantly bring about cures worse than the disease.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 3:40 pm

cactus flower wrote:
johnfás wrote:
It isn't quite as simple as a poll asking people do they want a General Election. Granted we are in unprecedented times at the moment but lets move this away from the present situation to more generalised assumptions. In most parliamentary democracies the margin between the Government and the opposition is not great and likewise between the electorate. On that basis it is likely that between 40 and 45 per cent of the population will always want a general election. On the basis of a poll, which is like an election merely a snapshot on any given day, all you need is a swing of 10% which can occur based on any minor marginal issue and you would be calling for a General Election.

As I said, we are living in unprecedented times so generalisations do become very stretched. However, the general idea of an opinion poll forcing an election, does not make for well ordered Government, based on my reasoning above.

Well, it will have to be sitting in the streets then: but that is not always a good thing. The angry middle classes can inadvertantly bring about cures worse than the disease.
It doesn't have to be sitting on the streets, but do by all means if that's the way you want to go. There's always the option of staying with the democratic decision of May '07 and allowing the Dail to operate as intended by the democratically accepted constitution, it's a small thing I know, but I think it deserves respect all the same.

I wonder what would happen or what would you want to happen if 2 or 300,000 took to the streets demanding that all foreign nationals including people from other EU countries by returned home as they were taking jobs from the “Irish”? Should the Government call an election if they aren’t prepared to give in the demands of the protestors or do you think only “nice” “well meaning“ and “agreeable” people do street protest?

If you are not attached to democracy as practiced here you must tell us what “street protests” should be allowed to overrule democracy and what should not.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 3:43 pm

cactus flower wrote:
johnfás wrote:
It isn't quite as simple as a poll asking people do they want a General Election. Granted we are in unprecedented times at the moment but lets move this away from the present situation to more generalised assumptions. In most parliamentary democracies the margin between the Government and the opposition is not great and likewise between the electorate. On that basis it is likely that between 40 and 45 per cent of the population will always want a general election. On the basis of a poll, which is like an election merely a snapshot on any given day, all you need is a swing of 10% which can occur based on any minor marginal issue and you would be calling for a General Election.

As I said, we are living in unprecedented times so generalisations do become very stretched. However, the general idea of an opinion poll forcing an election, does not make for well ordered Government, based on my reasoning above.

Well, it will have to be sitting in the streets then: but that is not always a good thing. The angry middle classes can inadvertantly bring about cures worse than the disease.

btw johnfás, I don't think it is anything like correct to say that 40%+ of the population generally want a General Election. Can you produce any evidence of that? People by and large value stability, when there is no urgent need to make a change.

Todays BN has this call from the HBOs Risk Assessor for Gordon Brown to take responsibility for his failure and resign - its worth reading and has a lot of parallels with Ireland:

http://www.breakingnews.ie/World/mhsnsnaumhgb/
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 3:43 pm

cactus flower wrote:
johnfás wrote:
It isn't quite as simple as a poll asking people do they want a General Election. Granted we are in unprecedented times at the moment but lets move this away from the present situation to more generalised assumptions. In most parliamentary democracies the margin between the Government and the opposition is not great and likewise between the electorate. On that basis it is likely that between 40 and 45 per cent of the population will always want a general election. On the basis of a poll, which is like an election merely a snapshot on any given day, all you need is a swing of 10% which can occur based on any minor marginal issue and you would be calling for a General Election.

As I said, we are living in unprecedented times so generalisations do become very stretched. However, the general idea of an opinion poll forcing an election, does not make for well ordered Government, based on my reasoning above.

Well, it will have to be sitting in the streets then: but that is not always a good thing. The angry middle classes can inadvertantly bring about cures worse than the disease.

btw johnfás, I don't think it is anything like correct to say that 40%+ of the population generally want a General Election. Can you produce any evidence of that? People by and large value stability, when there is no urgent need to make a change.

Todays BN has this call from the HBOs Risk Assessor for Gordon Brown to take responsibility for his failure and resign - its worth reading and has a lot of parallels with Ireland:

http://www.breakingnews.ie/World/mhsnsnaumhgb/
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 6:05 pm

I agree with cactus flower. Even the most partisan of political operators wouldn't want repeated elections just because they lost the last one - unlike their endless enthusiasm for referenda replays. The current situation is different however. We are witnessing a crisis in confidence in the capacity of the Government to govern. While I am not suggesting a few bad opinion polls should force an election I am asserting the right of the people to withdraw their consent to be governed. I think it is now clear that this Government has lost the confidence of even those who voted for it in 2007. In that context a resort to strikes and/or demostrations is more than justified if the Government refuses to see they have run out of mandate. Nothing could be more democratic than the people taking a more direct role in how they are ruled.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 7:04 pm

coc wrote:
I agree with cactus flower. Even the most partisan of political operators wouldn't want repeated elections just because they lost the last one - unlike their endless enthusiasm for referenda replays. The current situation is different however. We are witnessing a crisis in confidence in the capacity of the Government to govern. While I am not suggesting a few bad opinion polls should force an election I am asserting the right of the people to withdraw their consent to be governed. I think it is now clear that this Government has lost the confidence of even those who voted for it in 2007. In that context a resort to strikes and/or demostrations is more than justified if the Government refuses to see they have run out of mandate. Nothing could be more democratic than the people taking a more direct role in how they are ruled.
A handy petitition of 180,000 signatures in favour of pulling the government out of it. Something that would be only resorted to in extreme cases.

I was thinking of a mechanism whereby a particular government could be installed for the rest of the term - perhaps a national government via a list system. It seems to need big reform anyhow.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 7:31 pm

Quote :
Is it too late to wipe the slate clean? The majority of voters (62 per cent) would welcome a new government. However, almost three in ten (28 per cent) would not like to see a change, despite most of them not being satisfied with the Government’s performance.

The Irish Times poll said 62% wanted a new government. Is that enough? I wouldn't think so. 70% is more like it. I think it was much higher in Iceland when the government fell.

How much more would it take? Finding out that one of the Brians had an Anglo loan?
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 8:04 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Quote :
Is it too late to wipe the slate clean? The majority of voters (62 per cent) would welcome a new government. However, almost three in ten (28 per cent) would not like to see a change, despite most of them not being satisfied with the Government’s performance.

The Irish Times poll said 62% wanted a new government. Is that enough? I wouldn't think so. 70% is more like it. I think it was much higher in Iceland when the government fell.

How much more would it take? Finding out that one of the Brians had an Anglo loan?
If it was 100% it still wouldn't matter, it's a poll, nothing more, it doesn't count, ONLY elections count.

What is this fixation you have with Anglo loans? neither the bank guarantee nor nationalising the bank makes any difference to the repayment of a loan, neither act has any effect whatsoever on a loan, nil, nada, nothing.

I'm every quickly coming to the conclustion that there a many here who are not democrats at all, but who are only interested in seeing whatever end they happen to want coming about and who seem to believe that it’s OK because God & the fairies are their side. The worrying thing is that every bunch of dangerous lunatics the world has ever seen, started in exactly the same way.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 9:17 pm

tonys, its making religion of it to say a Government should not call a General Election if 100% of the voters want one.

Just when should they call one?

Things are moving too fast just now for five year terms to make sense.

Brian Cowen's belief that there will be a handy upturn in two years time followed by electoral victory is frankly pathetic.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 9:43 pm

cactus flower wrote:
tonys, its making religion of it to say a Government should not call a General Election if 100% of the voters want one.

Just when should they call one?

Things are moving too fast just now for five year terms to make sense.

Brian Cowen's belief that there will be a handy upturn in two years time followed by electoral victory is frankly pathetic.
100% of opinion taken in an opinion poll of 1000 does not represent either 100% of the electorate or even what way the 1000 polled would vote in an election. What part of that is difficult to understand?

I don't believe Cowen has mentioned the next election one way or the other, you just think that's the way he's thinking, but you really must allow for the possibility that you might be wrong and not condemn anyone as pathetic just on the basis of your own illusions.
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PostSubject: Re: The Germ of a National Strike?   Sun Feb 15, 2009 10:27 pm

Quote :

I don't believe Cowen has mentioned the next election one way or the other, you just think that's the way he's thinking, but you really must allow for the possibility that you might be wrong and not condemn anyone as pathetic just on the basis of your own illusions.

I'm not the only one who thinks they have heard him say it.

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2008/0917/1221599424419.html

http://www.politics.ie/economy/39692-cowens-5-years-correct-states-finances-politically-unfeasible.html

If we're wrong, what is the alternative explanation for the lack of urgency/inertia?
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