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 Room for an Irish Tory Party?

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PostSubject: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:29 am

Something that struck me about Libertas, and about its various supporters both on and off-line, is just how similar they are to the British Tory party - socially conservative, eurosceptical, free-market oriented, often anti-immigration.

Cookiemonster is very much a Tory, as is FutureTaoiseach, Bobert, and many of the other posters who supported Libertas during the campaign - they're not exactly the same in outlook by any means, but well within the parameters of Conservatism (see here, for example).

Is there a permanent place for a Tory party in Ireland, and, if so, where has it come from - the increase in affluence, the social disaggregation of the new suburbs? Any takers?
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:39 am

I'm economically conservative, believe in free trade, want more de-regulation and privatisation and want private property respected. In economic terms I'd vote Conservative if I was British.

However I'm quite liberal on immigration, gay rights, drugs and on other social issues so if I was British would vote for the Liberal Democrats.

I think I'm in between those so I couldn't describe myself as a Tory.

I don't think there's a place for a Tory Party since FF and FG simply co-opt these views into a marquee of others. They absorb other political impulses and Labour are the only ones(heretofore) to resist that and maintain a separate identity and appeal.

The Centre Party, Clann na Poblachta, Talmhan, Progressive Democrats, Socialist Party, Communist Party, Democratic Left and Sinn Féin all failed to gain traction in the Irish electorate and have been rebuffed by the Civil War parties. Libertas might win a good haul of seats this and the next election, but I wonder about their mileage after that. FF and FG with Labour on the side will compose the Irish bodypolitic indefinitely imo.

10% is as much as Libertas can hope for imo.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:45 am

I think 10% is realistically over optimistic. The PDs in their absolute hayday (1987) received just below 12%. I simply do not see where Libertas would gain their votes in order to get anywhere near that level.

First they do not have the grass roots dimension in place, this will take years to build.

Secondly, they are reliant on taking votes from other parties in order to gain electoral success. The level of success that they would achieve in this regard, is in my opinion, very limited. Sinn Féin are possibly the party which has seen the most dramatic rise in fortunes in recent years, this was done mainly through bringing new voters into the system. The demographic which Libertas would appeal to already has a large turnout ratio and consequently, as I said, they are going to find it very difficult to make inroads.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:48 am

Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
I'm economically conservative, believe in free trade, want more de-regulation and privatisation and want private property respected. In economic terms I'd vote Conservative if I was British.

However I'm quite liberal on immigration, gay rights, drugs and on other social issues so if I was British would vote for the Liberal Democrats.

I think I'm in between those so I couldn't describe myself as a Tory.

I don't think there's a place for a Tory Party since FF and FG simply co-opt these views into a marquee of others. They absorb other political impulses and Labour are the only ones(heretofore) to resist that and maintain a separate identity and appeal.

The Centre Party, Clann na Poblachta, Talmhan, Progressive Democrats, Socialist Party, Communist Party, Democratic Left and Sinn Féin all failed to gain traction in the Irish electorate and have been rebuffed by the Civil War parties. Libertas might win a good haul of seats this and the next election, but I wonder about their mileage after that. FF and FG with Labour on the side will compose the Irish bodypolitic indefinitely imo.

10% is as much as Libertas can hope for imo.

Hmm. I would agree with you there - I'm not sure their 'vote' can actually be absorbed by FF or FG, at least without a good bit of re-positioning on the part of those parties, but they're not more than niche.

I would agree, also, that you are someone who would fit with ease into the 'free-market' aspect of Toryism but not the social aspects. However, there would be plenty of people equally pro 'free market' but with markedly less liberal views on immigration, gay rights, and other social issues - take a quick dip in the waters of p.ie, and look for those who are supportive of the Libertas position and you'll see what I mean.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:02 am

ibis wrote:


Hmm. I would agree with you there - I'm not sure their 'vote' can actually be absorbed by FF or FG, at least without a good bit of re-positioning on the part of those parties, but they're not more than niche.

Perhaps, but Fianna Fáil are like a big sponge sometimes. They suck the republicanism out of SF, the economic policies out of the PDs, the social democratism of Labour and the environmentalism of the Greens. They seem to be able to suck all these disparate and contradictory views into themselves and still maintain 40-odd percent of the vote and lead at least 1 in every 2 governments. Fine Gael does something similar but less successfully and leads all the governments in between FF. Libertas would be co-opted in just the same way. FF can unleash their in-house Eurosceptics to fudge and tarnish Libertas' USP in this regard while keeping Brian Crowley and the like out there to maintain the Europhile vote. In this regard I see the life force sucked out of Libertas in 2-3 elections and they'll be yet another failed marginal party.

Quote :
I would agree, also, that you are someone who would fit with ease into the 'free-market' aspect of Toryism but not the social aspects. However, there would be plenty of people equally pro 'free market' but with markedly less liberal views on immigration, gay rights, and other social issues - take a quick dip in the waters of p.ie, and look for those who are supportive of the Libertas position and you'll see what I mean.

Indeed. There is a reservoir of exceptionally conservative opinion out there and Cóir/Youth Defence's strong showing in the Lisbon campaign reminded me. I also get the "Alive!" viewspaper sent to my house and very conservative views are articulated there. I just think that this reservoir will simply be sucked up sponge-like by FF/FG, thereby choking off Libertas' growth.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:11 am

ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics. 
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:13 am

cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics. 

cookiemonster, there are times I think you're my long-lost twin brother.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:21 am

Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics. 

cookiemonster, there are times I think you're my long-lost twin brother.
If you're shocking handsome I think we may need DNA tests. It's actually an interesting discussion, the nights spent hold up in the Libertas secret bunker and the endless communications with people involved in the campaign we discussed issues like who we were and what we believe, aside from the unifying belief that the Lisbon treaty was a bad deal and unanimous agreement on why (see leaflet! Very Happy ) there were people involved from every point on the spectrum and combinations of each on all of the issues outlined above. It was fantastic to work closley with people who, on other issues, I wouldn't normally agree with and discuss those issues openly and frankly without one point of view being pushed. I don't think I'll be running as the Libertas candidate in Kildare North, and I don't think that Libertas stealing FF votes in the next GE will be an issue, but were Libertas to become an Irish Political Party it would be a facinating one to be in, but I'm not sure such an organisation would work on a local level for the same reason. 
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:25 am

cookiemonster wrote:
Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics. 

cookiemonster, there are times I think you're my long-lost twin brother.
If you're shocking handsome I think we may need DNA tests. 

Indeed. I am going to go to bed now and ponder these matters further. I envisage yet more deep and meaningfuls tomorrow! Oíche mhaith cách agus codladh sámh! Like a Star @ heaven Sleep Like a Star @ heaven
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:41 am

cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics.

Um, nevertheless, you're really quite Tory. You'd be what's classified as a "One-Nation" Tory, which is the socially liberal (and mostly pro-EU) end. I have a lot of Tory relatives in the UK, and what I know of your politics would fit right in. Obviously, that's me pigeon-holing you on the basis of my interpretation of what you say on these various forums, so it's only as accurate as the next quick glimps through a keyhole...
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 3:10 am

ibis wrote:
cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics.

Um, nevertheless, you're really quite Tory. You'd be what's classified as a "One-Nation" Tory, which is the socially liberal (and mostly pro-EU) end. I have a lot of Tory relatives in the UK, and what I know of your politics would fit right in. Obviously, that's me pigeon-holing you on the basis of my interpretation of what you say on these various forums, so it's only as accurate as the next quick glimps through a keyhole...
I suggest you keep peeking through that key hole so.   
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 3:16 am

cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics.

Um, nevertheless, you're really quite Tory. You'd be what's classified as a "One-Nation" Tory, which is the socially liberal (and mostly pro-EU) end. I have a lot of Tory relatives in the UK, and what I know of your politics would fit right in. Obviously, that's me pigeon-holing you on the basis of my interpretation of what you say on these various forums, so it's only as accurate as the next quick glimps through a keyhole...
I suggest you keep peeking through that key hole so.

Well, no offence was intended! You do come across to me as a particular, and entirely respectable, type of Tory.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 9:32 pm

ibis wrote:
cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
cookiemonster wrote:
ibis wrote:
Cookiemonster is very much a Tory.
No, he's really not. I'm far from socially conservative, I'm far from anti-immigration and I'm not a eurosceptic (or at least I wasn't but it's growing now, sadly). The only thing I would have in common with the Tory Archetype would be my economics.

Um, nevertheless, you're really quite Tory. You'd be what's classified as a "One-Nation" Tory, which is the socially liberal (and mostly pro-EU) end. I have a lot of Tory relatives in the UK, and what I know of your politics would fit right in. Obviously, that's me pigeon-holing you on the basis of my interpretation of what you say on these various forums, so it's only as accurate as the next quick glimps through a keyhole...
I suggest you keep peeking through that key hole so.

Well, no offence was intended! You do come across to me as a particular, and entirely respectable, type of Tory.
I'm not offended, I just think you are wrong. I've got one thing in common and that would be more in line with Thatcherism than any other Tory creed. 
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 9:52 pm

Thatcherism!!* bounce No
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Thu Jul 10, 2008 11:00 pm

Squire wrote:
Thatcherism!!* bounce No
Free markets and all that jazz. 
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:49 am

All the labels bar "Conservative" have been adopted by Irish parties. So, there is only one label left and one party without a label, namely Fine Gael.

I suspect that if it weren't for the abominable record of the British Conservative party vis-a-vis Ireland then FG could adopt "Conservative" as a tag-line in the same way as FF use "Republican" as a tag-line. It would not have been appropriate long ago as FG were part of the movement for an independent Ireland. However, nowadays FG have a strong and up and coming contingent who are big on law and order and could be seen as "conservative", e.g. Brian Hayes and Leo Varadker.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 12:14 pm

Zhou_Enlai wrote:
All the labels bar "Conservative" have been adopted by Irish parties. So, there is only one label left and one party without a label, namely Fine Gael.

I suspect that if it weren't for the abominable record of the British Conservative party vis-a-vis Ireland then FG could adopt "Conservative" as a tag-line in the same way as FF use "Republican" as a tag-line. It would not have been appropriate long ago as FG were part of the movement for an independent Ireland. However, nowadays FG have a strong and up and coming contingent who are big on law and order and could be seen as "conservative", e.g. Brian Hayes and Leo Varadker.

The Tories are an economically right wing royalist party that represents big business and big land.

In Ireland we had rural tories (with small ts) who are called Fine Gael and urban tories who were called PDs. As the PDs are now dead in the water, and we have a small urban affluent business class mainly based in Dublin, there is definitely some oxygen out there for a small party, or ginger group, of the right. The enthusiasm of a cluster of P.ie posters, and the talk of new leaders and new parties in the last months even before the emergence of Libertas demonstrates that. Smallness in a PR system is not such a disadvantage. FF also have a strong right/business agenda and in order to keep their working class vote on stream they need some cover - someone to blame their right wing economics on. The PDs played that role very well for years and still do in Health. One only has to look at the performance of FF nominees in the EU to see that there is not a bit of difference in terms of free market neo liberalism between the PDs and FF in practice.

Whether or not the two political sponges that are FF and FG can either accommodate or outflank Libertas ( if it goes any further ) remains to be seen. Where I would differ from the views of other posters is that I think the severity of the economic situation in the coming years will shake a lot of existing relationships at their foundations.

If Libertas is to be judged on its Leader's politics, he is a right wing RC patriot with a 'no holds barred' neo liberal free market agenda. I would say closer to the BNP than the Tories. The BNP got a significant slice of the vote in the last GLC elections. Libertas would outflank FG to the right.

Also, I think if Ireland had a Tory party we would have to have a King or Queen king queen , and that doesn't bear thinking about. What a Face
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 12:36 pm

Isn't Tory derived from an Irish word?

I have to say that I don't take Libertas seriously. Their leader is an overseas business man and the rest of the core group are paid servants. Any talk on p.ie of Libertas forming a real party is just playground chitter chatter imho.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 12:45 pm

Zhou_Enlai wrote:
Isn't Tory derived from an Irish word?

I have to say that I don't take Libertas seriously. Their leader is an overseas business man and the rest of the core group are paid servants. Any talk on p.ie of Libertas forming a real party is just playground chitter chatter imho.

One thing I left out about Mr. Ganley is his slightly butterfly-like propensity - his career has consisted of some fairly random and spectacular hops from place to place and business to business - hence the "if it goes any further" - clearly, it may not.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 1:48 pm

Perhaps Cookiemonster could tell us whether there are any further Libertas meetings scheduled or if everything has gone quiet since the referendum result. I can't see see Libertas putting much more cash into this until it looks like a new referendum is about to be announced.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 1:58 pm

Zhou_Enlai wrote:
Isn't Tory derived from an Irish word?

It is indeed.

Zhou_Enlai wrote:
I have to say that I don't take Libertas seriously. Their leader is an overseas business man and the rest of the core group are paid servants. Any talk on p.ie of Libertas forming a real party is just playground chitter chatter imho.

There are various reasons why I wouldn't necessarily consider Libertas the nucleus of an Irish Tory party. If Lisbon goes to referendum again next year I should be interested to see whether Libertas contest the referendum again.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 4:45 pm

ibis wrote:
Is there a permanent place for a Tory party in Ireland, and, if so, where has it come from - the increase in affluence, the social disaggregation of the new suburbs? Any takers?

The imminent demise of the PDs would indicate No.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 4:51 pm

Quote :
Libertas, the group which campaigned against the treaty, won’t be leaving the pitch. The group’s leader, Declan Ganley, has already indicated that he intends to fight the European elections across the EU next year. Expect a second campaign to be longer, dirtier and more divisive.

from SBP article here.

And there's more here from the Sunday Times a few weeks ago.

Anyone think that Ireland is small fry for Libertas? I don't really see them doing anything meaningful in this country, though it will be interesting to see if they retain their base here.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 5:17 pm

By my reckoning, 33 out of the 166 seats in the Dail belong to members with a left of centre political perspective (I know I'm generalising here because I am not including anyone from FF or FG). I'm not a lefty but one thing that we definitely don't need is another conservative right of centre party.

Ireland already has an overwhelmingly conservative electorate. I don't think there is a place for a Tory style party in Ireland. Where would the votes come from? Presumably such a party would be deemed a rehash of PD ideals with a shiny new eurosceptic outlook. A party like that would bomb in Ireland.
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PostSubject: Re: Room for an Irish Tory Party?   Fri Jul 11, 2008 6:00 pm

Lestat wrote:
ibis wrote:
Is there a permanent place for a Tory party in Ireland, and, if so, where has it come from - the increase in affluence, the social disaggregation of the new suburbs? Any takers?

The imminent demise of the PDs would indicate No.

Hmm. The PDs were never an Irish Tory party, though.

Quote :
Ireland already has an overwhelmingly conservative electorate. I don't
think there is a place for a Tory style party in Ireland. Where would
the votes come from? Presumably such a party would be deemed a rehash
of PD ideals with a shiny new eurosceptic outlook. A party like that
would bomb in Ireland.

The PDs were socially progressive, while the Irish electorate is by and large socially conservative.
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