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 The PDs - A Post Mortem

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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Sun Nov 09, 2008 11:50 pm

I think splitting it geographically would create a savage division in a cabinet and would increase pressure on the politicians concerned even more. The politician himself would be savaged if he was from the area concerned, because he could never do enough. If he was from outside he would be portrayed as not caring enough because it wasn`t his own area.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:03 am

anmajornarthainig wrote:
I think splitting it geographically would create a savage division in a cabinet and would increase pressure on the politicians concerned even more. The politician himself would be savaged if he was from the area concerned, because he could never do enough. If he was from outside he would be portrayed as not caring enough because it wasn`t his own area.
Fair points - it's hard to argue it as it's fantastical but wouldn't the politicians evolve to become real hard bastards who'd eventually crack it ?

Do you think Harney has had any impact on the Health System or is it a mess and a closed shop run by unions ?
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:08 am

Auditor #9 wrote:
anmajornarthainig wrote:
I think splitting it geographically would create a savage division in a cabinet and would increase pressure on the politicians concerned even more. The politician himself would be savaged if he was from the area concerned, because he could never do enough. If he was from outside he would be portrayed as not caring enough because it wasn`t his own area.
Fair points - it's hard to argue it as it's fantastical but wouldn't the politicians evolve to become real hard bastards who'd eventually crack it ?

Do you think Harney has had any impact on the Health System or is it a mess and a closed shop run by unions ?

I don`t know if Harney has had any impact on Health one way or the other and I don`t know about the unions being to blame (in my mind there is also a huge difference between a union trying to protect the rights of people at the bottom of the employment ladder and one that`s geared towards ensuring huge wealth for those near the top.) It`s too soon to tell, we`re too close to it and we don`t have anywhere near the full facts. It`ll be a job for a medical historian.

I`d say people who work in the health service would have an idea though and if any of them are on here I`d be interested in their opinions.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 2:27 am

Joe Higgins is giving the PD's a tour-de-force of a lashing about their legacy on Vincent Browne.

Go ye boy ye Joe..

.......and he just gave Vodkacar a left cut when he tried to interrupt.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 2:38 am

Siucra - did I miss it all. I was only giving out about JH today for writing for the Mail. Why, why, why?
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:40 am

cactus flower wrote:
Siucra - did I miss it all. I was only giving out about JH today for writing for the Mail. Why, why, why?

He writes for the mail to deprive the capitalist pigdogs of some of their illgotten gains from exploiting the oppressed working man ...........redistribution of wealth, like, ......I think .........
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:44 am

SeathrúnCeitinn wrote:
cactus flower wrote:
Siucra - did I miss it all. I was only giving out about JH today for writing for the Mail. Why, why, why?

He writes for the mail to deprive the capitalist pigdogs of some of their illgotten gains from exploiting the oppressed working man ...........redistribution of wealth, like, ......I think .........

He's engaging in the perfectly acceptable exchange of his labour for capital from the Daily Mail and General Trust. As long as he is paid at a rate which the market can support, there should be no slights made about the right honourable Joe Higgins. Inside every socialist is a lovely capitalist waiting to jump out.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:45 am

I believe it is usually just about the time that the Smoked Salmon is served.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:47 am

johnfás wrote:
I believe it is usually just about the time that the Smoked Salmon is served.

You've got that right, johnfás.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 1:45 pm

There's no such thing as a lovely capitalist. A pure capitalist loves money. Money isn't lovely or un-lovely. It's just money.

At one time where those who had access to salmon, it wasn't a big deal to consume the fish. A cache is only attached to salmon by those with excess wealth who give it special significance due to giving it an originally over-inflated price. The high price then perversely attracts more wealthy and their hopeful minions to overconsume the now deigned delicacy to near extenction, which in turn makes the now deigned delicacy even more craved for.

The same goes for oysters. At one time, it was just a staple of a small group of costal dwellers througout the world.

The true capitalist knows that if he/she tells everyone that something is special via its high price, then the wealthy and their minions are only too happy to pay over the odds for something that was previously common place and readily available to the local population. Even at the higher prices, the wealthy and their minions then begin to over consume the item in order to show their financial superiority to those who can't or won't pay the now justifiably high prices due to depletion of the resource.

Only a true capitalist could use something like a salmon as a weapon against their opponents whilst believing in their superiority by having placed the same self salmon on a resource pedestal. Bizarre world altogether.
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PostSubject: Joe Higgins at the Irish Mail   Tue Nov 11, 2008 2:50 pm

rockyracoon wrote:
There's no such thing as a lovely capitalist. A pure capitalist loves money. Money isn't lovely or un-lovely. It's just money.

At one time where those who had access to salmon, it wasn't a big deal to consume the fish. A cache is only attached to salmon by those with excess wealth who give it special significance due to giving it an originally over-inflated price. The high price then perversely attracts more wealthy and their hopeful minions to overconsume the now deigned delicacy to near extenction, which in turn makes the now deigned delicacy even more craved for.

The same goes for oysters. At one time, it was just a staple of a small group of costal dwellers througout the world.

The true capitalist knows that if he/she tells everyone that something is special via its high price, then the wealthy and their minions are only too happy to pay over the odds for something that was previously common place and readily available to the local population. Even at the higher prices, the wealthy and their minions then begin to over consume the item in order to show their financial superiority to those who can't or won't pay the now justifiably high prices due to depletion of the resource.

Only a true capitalist could use something like a salmon as a weapon against their opponents whilst believing in their superiority by having placed the same self salmon on a resource pedestal. Bizarre world altogether.

I appreciate that post rockyracoon. Maybe its no coincidence, the person I've come across who would most closely fit the description "class traitor" was a supposed revolutionary with a strong penchant for smoked salmon served on bone china. His political betrayal went along with the dietary one. It is a phenomenon that I suppose has been found across the world at the heads of trade unions and left political parties for the last 100 years. Its at the same time a symptom and a cause of abandoning principles. If we just blame capitalists on using the "smoked salmon weapon", would we not view ourselves as basically passive and not able to resist?

I've no reason to believe this applies to Joe Higgins, who I understood always took only a basic wage from the Dail salary and passed the rest to his Party. I don't agree with Aragon on the journalism end of things: the Mail has no good wishes for Ireland or for Joe Higgins constituency. If his writing there is encouraging people to pick it up, that imo is not a good thing. To some extent he was turned into a court jester in the Dail: perhaps that is why he lost his seat?
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:28 pm

cactus flower wrote:
rockyracoon wrote:
There's no such thing as a lovely capitalist. A pure capitalist loves money. Money isn't lovely or un-lovely. It's just money.

At one time where those who had access to salmon, it wasn't a big deal to consume the fish. A cache is only attached to salmon by those with excess wealth who give it special significance due to giving it an originally over-inflated price. The high price then perversely attracts more wealthy and their hopeful minions to overconsume the now deigned delicacy to near extenction, which in turn makes the now deigned delicacy even more craved for.

The same goes for oysters. At one time, it was just a staple of a small group of costal dwellers througout the world.

The true capitalist knows that if he/she tells everyone that something is special via its high price, then the wealthy and their minions are only too happy to pay over the odds for something that was previously common place and readily available to the local population. Even at the higher prices, the wealthy and their minions then begin to over consume the item in order to show their financial superiority to those who can't or won't pay the now justifiably high prices due to depletion of the resource.

Only a true capitalist could use something like a salmon as a weapon against their opponents whilst believing in their superiority by having placed the same self salmon on a resource pedestal. Bizarre world altogether.

I appreciate that post rockyracoon. Maybe its no coincidence, the person I've come across who would most closely fit the description "class traitor" was a supposed revolutionary with a strong penchant for smoked salmon served on bone china. His political betrayal went along with the dietary one. It is a phenomenon that I suppose has been found across the world at the heads of trade unions and left political parties for the last 100 years. Its at the same time a symptom and a cause of abandoning principles. If we just blame capitalists on using the "smoked salmon weapon", would we not view ourselves as basically passive and not able to resist?

I've no reason to believe this applies to Joe Higgins, who I understood always took only a basic wage from the Dail salary and passed the rest to his Party. I don't agree with Aragon on the journalism end of things: the Mail has no good wishes for Ireland or for Joe Higgins constituency. If his writing there is encouraging people to pick it up, that imo is not a good thing. To some extent he was turned into a court jester in the Dail: perhaps that is why he lost his seat?

I don't thnk Joe Higgins was ever a court jester - much though some people have tried to caricature him that way. He can't be responsible for the ignorant attitude that other people bring to bear on him and he certainly never did or said a thing to make himself a court jester. People feared his articulacy and did their damndest to ridicule and denigrate it. That's not his fault. Decent politicians like JH have always been caricatured like this. Don't fall for it, I say!

The Mail has no more or less good wishes towards the mass of people than any other newspaper publishing in Ireland at the moment and Joe Higgins may be infinitely more effective writing there than he ever would be in the smug pages of the Irish Times. I hate most of the sentiments expressed in The Daily Mail but our so-called liberal Irish Times, eg, is very slyly serving the exact same agenda with a blush of liberalism to disguise its true orientation. The dominant narrative is identical whichever newspaper you read - none of them - without exception - ever truly challenge the ruling elites. The diffferences between them lie in the niche reader markets that they try to sell to advertisers. There is in all reality nothing more worthwhile to it than that. Sure there are columnists here and there who bring up the rear but any one of them who consistently challenges the status quo is dropped in short order. What is admirable about the Mail in this instance is that JH's column is a significant departure from what is going on elsewhere. The IT has dropped many excellent journalists who were critical of the war and of the whole neo-con agenda while regularly giving pride of place to the likes of Krauthammer - a guy whose opinions are worse than most if not all of anything you would read in the Mail. It ain't striaghtforward.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:58 pm

cactus flower wrote:
I appreciate that post rockyracoon. Maybe its no coincidence, the person I've come across who would most closely fit the description "class traitor" was a supposed revolutionary with a strong penchant for smoked salmon served on bone china. His political betrayal went along with the dietary one. It is a phenomenon that I suppose has been found across the world at the heads of trade unions and left political parties for the last 100 years. Its at the same time a symptom and a cause of abandoning principles. If we just blame capitalists on using the "smoked salmon weapon", would we not view ourselves as basically passive and not able to resist?

I've no reason to believe this applies to Joe Higgins, who I understood always took only a basic wage from the Dail salary and passed the rest to his Party. I don't agree with Aragon on the journalism end of things: the Mail has no good wishes for Ireland or for Joe Higgins constituency. If his writing there is encouraging people to pick it up, that imo is not a good thing. To some extent he was turned into a court jester in the Dail: perhaps that is why he lost his seat?

The racoon world is in flux or in a "state-o-chassis". affraid Personally, I'm not too thrilled about the whole class sterotyping thing. Many a man or woman, who espouses socialism or otherwise, can eat salmon on bone china if they want to. Afterall, its only a fish which at one time was plentiful and not too hard to come by in season. Only its cache and depleted stocks now makes it a delicacy. On the other hand, I know of a few very wealthy individuals who lead very frugal lifestyles. The class thingy, to my mind, is only propogandistic tripe used by various interest groups to cloud the important issues.

I'm taking a deconstructuralist approach to economics and social policy these days. I'm not quite sure if one can tear down society or economics to its bare bones and then try to reconstruct a model upon which to live one's life. I'm not sure a coherent model won't be too static in dealing with an ever changing world for example. For the time being, I'm taking an Anglo-Saxon legalistic approach based upon common law. You create a law/rule for a specific or general problem but you adapt the law to changing cirsumstances as required. If the enivronment in which as statute or rule has existed and worked changes so much that interpretation of the rule no longer makes senses, you construct a new rule.

However, as I endeavour to understand various systems, some things become apparent. The biggest one to mind is that capitalism is nothing more than a philosophy constructed upon commerce principles. It is not a purely scientific pursuit as some would like to portray it; the free hand of the market and all that malarky. It has a set priori rules based on ownership, transfer of ownership and often trying to make transfer rules as clear as possible which have been constructed by people at varous times to satisfy their pursuits. Quite often though, those who've accumulated excess wealth under the existing rules try to skew the tranferring mechanisms in order to maintain their wealth and pass the advantages on to their offspring. Hence you had the tension between the landed aristocracy and the new industrialists. The industrialists, who could accumulate more wealth than the landed aristrocracy, eventually triumphed by using their capital to control political power.

Having said that and while I understand that capitalism is nothing more than a human construct based upon some pretty simple supply and demand equations, I don't think that all the constructs of capitalism are bad or lead to social penury. There does seem to be an innate need for the human to build or construct something in their lives. We need to expand. If I have a small farm, for example, I would like to expand my production. It gives me purpose. I'd like to leave something better behind me than when I found it. Marxism certainly didn't address this individual need. In fact, the entire dialetical materialism theory just seemed like a load of bunk to me.

Enough of my ramblings. As for Joe, I can only go by what I read in the papers. He does seem genuine in his beliefs - eg not socialising with other TDs because they might taint his outlook? He need a crust to live and a journo piece is as good as any other means of getting grub on the table. SF TDs and their northern counterparts only take the national average wage and pass the rest onto the party. Yet, they have been attacked for doing so; especially if they have outside sources of income. Go figure.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 4:21 pm

I don't have a ready made analysis or theory of everything, but like yourself rocky am trying to think things through. Capitalism is a reality, and it in some ways dominates our lives, irrespective of what we think it is. Dialectical materialism, in so far as it deals with the movement, and contradiction, evolution and leaps in way the material world changes, is a useful basis for analysis but I'm not expert. It seems to me that philosophy is not keeping up with our knowledge in physics, astronomy and the earth sciences. I think that classes do exist and that the relationships and conflicts between them are an important part of history.
I agree with you that a centrally planned command economy would not allow the impulses and "bottom up" energy and creativity of people to work properly. At the same time, I think that capitalism has reached a stage in which it is destructive overall of the environmental resources on which we depend, and is causing a massively destructive economic recession. What would be better is the difficult question.

Past experience may have made me overdemanding or over suspicious. I'll suspend my cynicism and accept Joe Higgins as having a clean slate.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 4:50 pm

Just another disjointed observation. Growth is the key ingredient after ownership of assets that the capitalist philosophy requires in order to survive in its present form. As you point out, CF, there is a growing tension between economic growth and explosive population growth, and the burden being put upon the environment to service these growths. Capitalism has a very poor historical record regarding resource depletion. Although supply and demand equations tell us that a depleted commodity should become so expensive that an alternative is found, the capitalistic economy tries to change the supply and demand parameters in order to suck the last ounce of profit from the commodity enterprise in order to satisfy existing shareholder demands for growth. Often this results in a fall off in investment for alternatives just when they are required to be brought on line. Oil is the most obvious example. We've know since the 60's or 70's that sweet crude oil was a diminishing commodity but have only made half hearted attempts to find sustainable alternatives to replace it. While information on which to make decisions has become ever more important, the information (oil stocks in this case) has become a closely gaurded secret by many oil producing countries. Huge amounts of capital have been directed at finding new oil sources or means to extract more from existing sources than have been invested in alternatives. Only recently have big oil companies such as BP begun to realign their investment strategies in light of information that is 30-40 years old.

It seems like the dreaded govt in the US will have to lead the way in alternative energy invesment as the so-called free hand of the market has failed to address the problem in any meaninful manner. Of course, govt intervention is an anathema to the capitalist purist, but what is society supposed to do?

So I really wonder if capitalism has been at work during the last couple of generations as many would have us believe. The purists will say that socialism has been to the forefront and must be eradicated in order to make sure that supply and demand equations are allowed to work in isolation. Social consequences can be dealt with by ownership rules and a robust policing infrastructure.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Tue Nov 11, 2008 10:35 pm

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So I really wonder if capitalism has been at work during the last couple of generations as many would have us believe. The purists will say that socialism has been to the forefront and must be eradicated in order to make sure that supply and demand equations are allowed to work in isolation. Social consequences can be dealt with by ownership rules and a robust policing infrastructure.

By purists, do you mean Chicago School or the Austrians? "A robust policing infrastructure" - soldiers with tazers?

Ayn Rand eh: who ever would have thought that youngdan and cookiemonster are singing off the same hymn sheet.

Capitalism has been working all right for the last thirty years and has pushed back public owership of resources pretty well everywhere until there were a few signs of change in Latin America.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Wed Nov 12, 2008 2:04 pm

Gosh! Retrospective dreams.

Over-the-top disgracer mess. Gas promise over-stretched. Predecessors gather vomit. Soviet regrets dopes charm.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Wed Nov 12, 2008 3:17 pm

Mine's not the reason to ask why,

I only need to divide and multiply.

There's no future. There's no past.

My truth alone, unquestioned, will ever last.

How dare you querey! how dare you wonder!

That's a capital sin - the ultimate blunder.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Mar 02, 2009 2:20 am

Its the last day of existence of the PDs. Not with a bang, or even a whimper, apparently.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Mar 02, 2009 2:23 am

There wasn't even a whimper. I didn't see a mention of them in any of the papers today (though I haven't had a proper look at the Trib yet). Did it make a single news bulletin today?
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Mar 02, 2009 2:26 am

Mentioned in passing in the Week in Politics. Brian Cowen was asked if he would keep Mary in the Cabinet. I blanked out for the answer, which I guess was Yes.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Mar 02, 2009 2:27 am

I heard that bit just now. I didn't hear the answer either.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Mar 02, 2009 2:29 am

Have the Greens seamlessly taken over the book-end role of the PDs in relation to the Government ?
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Mar 02, 2009 12:10 pm

The PDs are finally, thankfully, officially dead. And even though this political bacillus is gone, Harney remains in Cabinet doing damage daily to the health service. I was hoping to celebrate the demise of the party I blame most for the recessionary excess to which Ireland is now subject. However, Harney's continuing malignant influence in government prevents me from doing so. On what basis is she there? Why her and not Jackie Healy-Rae? After all, they have an identical political legitimacy.

THe Sunday Tribune rightly named Harney as one of the people who brought us the domestic element to the recession Ireland is now experiencing. She , more than almost any other politician I can think of, represents the incestuous crony capitalism that enables well-connected chancers use the influence they have with politicians to arrange the taxes they want to pay, the regulatary structure they wish to operate in and the laws to which they wish to adhere. The PDs, more than anybody at their founding could ever have imagined, became the party of the Golden Circle. Maybe not in size, donations or votes but in spirit. Because no party in the history of the state put itself so totally at the service of private capital as the PDs did. No party lionised two-bit spivs as the PDs did. No party characterises the failure of the "Anglo-Saxon" model as much as the PDs do.

They are dead as a party but the bacillus lives on. It is just slightly more difficult to recognise it, now that its natural habitat has been removed.
The last action, the removal of Harney, must shortly follow. When that is achieved, we should never forget her, if only to serve as a reminder of the extent to which a political system can be derailed and taken over.

May we never see their like again.
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PostSubject: Re: The PDs - A Post Mortem   Mon Mar 02, 2009 12:52 pm

Slim Buddha wrote:
The Sunday Tribune rightly named Harney as one of the people who brought us the domestic element to the recession Ireland is now experiencing. She , more than almost any other politician I can think of, represents the incestuous crony capitalism that enables well-connected chancers use the influence they have with politicians
Good point.
I always said it showed a particular snobbishness in the Irish media that scorn was heaped upon Fianna Fail for meeting common-as-muck builders in a tent at a race meeting, while a blind eye was turned to Harney & McDowell meeting doctors and lawyers in the Four Seasons or Enda Kenny playing golf with "captains of industry" (aka more builders/developers) in London.
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