Will Austerity Make Sinn Fein Dominant Irish Party

I was listening to this lecture over the weekend from the London School of Economics website

How the clash between John Maynard Keynes and Friedrich Hayek continues to define the difference between left and right today
Recorded on: 13 February 2012
Speaker(s): Nicholas Wapshott

www2.lse.ac.uk/newsAndMedia/vide … px?id=1351

Basically, Keynes was part of the British Governments team send to the Versailles Conference. He argued that reparations should be very low or Nil to allow the German Economy to recover. However many governments (mainly the French according to the lecturer in link above) wanted to teach Germany a lesson, to prevent this kind of misbehaviour in the future.

Reparations were set at a level that Keyes felt would ruin Europe. He resigned in frustration and wrote “** the consequences of peace**”, where he predicted that the kind of austerity imposed on the German people to meet the reparations would lead to extreme parties coming to power which would lead to further war…

I have been thinking for some time that the kind of polices being pursued by EU today, where serious devastation is being caused to the people of Ireland (and other Peripheral European Countries) would lead to more extreme parties coming to power.

In Ireland we saw a massive shift in the last election away from FF but I think the jump from FF directly to SF would be too much for a lot of people in one go. However as/when these same people realise that FG and Labour aren’t going to offer anything substantially different, will they move to SF ? with the new opinion poll by the Sunday Times showing SF at 25%, will austerity make SF the dominant Irish Party ?

If this is mirrored throughout the Peripheral European countries, with more extreme parties coming to power, what does the future hold for EU ?

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It might be a bit presumptive to say that the jump to SF is directly from FF, since the election Labour has dropped about 10% and I would imagine much of this support is the boost that SF have received with a slight rise from the FF vote.

They will certainly benefit from FF’s implosion and involvement in the crash. But some will never support them for economic reasons, and some will never support them for historical reasons.

I predict that they will hover around 20% for the forseeable future, mostly at the expense of FF/Lab. Should SF (and indeed FG) play their cards right, they could emerge as the right/left split in Irish politics (and even keep some civil war baggage going for the nostalgic voter!).

This would be the same SF implementing austerity in the North right?

It would also be the same SF that will take on the might of the ECB and the EU just like it took on the might of the British political and military establishments and won*.

*Well, they got the IRA to give up, destroyed the SDLP and stole their clothes , got all the top jobs and now implement austerity on behalf of her maj - and really, that’s a win, isn’t it?

I seriously doubt that Sinn Féin would go from getting 10% of the vote in the last election to 25% in less than a year.

Fuck Sinn Fein. I have not heard one workable, sane or nationally advantageous policy from them during this entire crisis. Fuck them. Just because they are nominal lefties doesn’t give them a monoploy on compassion, and I am fucking sick of them acting like they are the only ones who care whilst doing nothing but score political points and grandstand. I call them out for knowing they are saying things that are not possible and for giving false hope to their constituents. FF were just corrupt incompetent arseholes. SF know they are talking shit - or should - but do it anyway. Fuck them from a great height and then fuck them again.

Absolutely, there is a horrible cynicism in the way they are raising the hopes of the more hard-pressed (and least educated section) members of society with their waffle in the full knowledge (surely they can’t believe it themselves?) that none of it is even remotely possible. Power hungry bunch of fascists of the worst kind, ultra nationalist nut jobs and very very dangerous if they ever get in. We’ll all be dancing at the crossroads as Gaeilge at the point of an armalite.

I don’t think Sinn Féin are *that *extreme. They are outside the official consensus and groupthink, and that is why they can be called extreme.
I think the trap they face is becoming a larger party that has numbers to make up a coalition. Once that happens and they join government, it will be interesting to see what happens to all the rhetoric.

That’s just a foolish comment.

Very interesting and important thread. It’s becoming more and more evident that the so-called “Western World” is not learning, or forgot, very valuable lessons from history. What troubles me the most is the disconnect and disfranchisement that most people feel towards their current governments, and the policies implemented. Yes, you could have localised outbursts of anger and frustration, but they are largely reactionary and inconsequential in the big scheme of things. But when desperation sinks in, people will start listening, and voting for extremist nut cases (remember Hitler…).

The predicament in which we are today, and I’m not just talking about Ireland, is so far being widely ignored by “the Establishments” and the “middle classes”. Social contracts are broken. Denialism and wishful thinking are taking it’s place.
Sinn Fein in its current incarnation, is not the biggest of my worries, but what will appear after them…

I think national politics, like geo-politics, are going to change in the next 10 years beyond what many of us would give credence to.

This is laughable. “Fascists of the worst kind” - as opposed to what - Fascists of the best kind?
“Ultra Nationalists nut jobs” ?
It says more about you and where you’re coming from.

SF are definitely on the up and I can see them in government two or three elections hence. The key question for pinners is - “what will it do for house prices”? I think I’ll ask an EA at the next open viewing I attend. :wink:

Are Sinn Fein not Socialist Nationalists then, just like the, er, Nazi party were?

Yawn. who cares.
I could say that James Connolly was a socialist and James Connolly was a nationalist. But he was not a Nazi.
Or I could say that Sinn Fein are not all that radical really just pretending to be.

In that they claim to be something that they are not.

Having attended a party in the midlands in the 90’s at which a lot of English folk were also in attendance (rave in a tent in the middle of nowhere) I pointed out to some folk present that the anti-English and pro-IRA slogans painted inside the tent were a bit out of place and hardly in keeping with the occasion. Imagine my surprise when my door was kicked in the following morning and I was dragged out of bed and given a few thumps and told to be gone from the area by the end of the week or I would be shot.

The welfare dependent, both career and genuine, are SF’s core support and the most likely to believe the anti-austerity rhetoric yet there is no avoiding cuts to welfare under the Troika program and absolutely no chance of maintaining the current rates in the absense of that funding source.

Oh wait, there’s all that oil under the sea, and how about a wealth tax?

Actually, it would matter quite a lot to me, and I’m sure quite a number of other people living in Ireland.

James Connolly - Yawn. Relevant how? He’s dead now. This is 2012.

cough what about Labour and their promises?

I invoke Godwin’s law on you :stuck_out_tongue:

When I said “where you’re coming from” I meant you are almost certainly the type of person who see the British rule in Ireland as essentially benevolent, peace keeping type operation, keeping two sides of the same coin apart, helping us develop blah blah. i.e. impossible to present yourself as honest assessor of any of Sinn Fein’s economics idea (such as they are)

Given the levels of British security collusion at the time (Finucane etc) there should have been more slogans really. It was pretty crass comment on your part.