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Paul Larkin

Chroniclers are privileged to enter where they list, to come and go through keyholes, to ride upon the wind, to overcome in their soarings up and down, all obstacles of distance, time and place.
Charles Dickens - Barnaby Rudge, Chapter The Ninth

Fintan embraces the Chucks - almost

Fintan O’Toole’s mea culpa for not standing in the forthcoming elections which can be seen here –
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2011/0129/1224288524065.html
is extremely interesting about one particular thing that it does say (about Sinn Féin) and one thing that, in common with the whole of the left in Ireland, it fails to consider.

Firstly, O’Toole’s article is interesting for any journalist or blogger because he gives the reasons why no such commentator can afford to ally themselves to a political party. It is no secret that my political predilection would tend towards Sinn Féin and the republican socialist position. However, the thought of standing for political office for any such constituency fills me with dread because, at a stroke, I would lose all my independence as a respected critic and journalist. Worse, this loss of credibility would be retrospective, so that any film or article I ever created would become tainted with a hint of bias. Fintan was right to say no.

There's more good stuff - tucked away in Fintan's article is another even more interesting little gem,which readers may miss if they blink. This represents one of the most significant shifts in his political position since he began his new phase as a campaigning journalist. For, in correctly arguing for a negotiated default of Ireland's bank debt he points out that the only groups actively arguing for this are “Sinn Fein and United Left”.

Now hold on a minute says I when reading the above. Here is Fintan O'Toole mentioning Sinn Féin without the journalistic equivalent of holding his nose or puking into his tofu and mung bean soup. Of course, there is a reason for this. The logical trajectory of his Cant Pay Wont Pay argument is for a movement of left wing unity – a popular front, which encompasses Sinn Féin and all other radical elements in society (unfortunately this would seem to exclude a large chunk of the Labour Party).

In other words Fintan O’Toole has finally broken with his Sticky (Official Republican/Workers Party) past and has joined with the great unwashed. Well done Fintan. At a stroke you have shown up Eamonn Gilmore's rejection of an alliance with Sinn Féin for the hypocrisy it is. Gilmore and the leadership of the Labour Party is quite clearly seeking to put a right wing government in power, which will expect working class people to bear the burden of a huge debt mountain created by the rich. So much for the “radical” Kim Il Sung Korean Communism past of Gilmore and those who now control the Labour Party in this country. We must look to the likes of Alex White for our heroes in Labour.

So far so good. Just one word of caution. Neither Fintan O'Toole, nor Sinn Féin has correctly identified the fact that we need to make common cause with radical groups in other countries for this anti debt campaign to work. We cannot have an "island of sovereign socialism” in a piranha tank of capitalism. Capitalism is global. And the good guys and girls must be the same. With a smile on our faces - Venceremos
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Title: Fintan embraces the Chucks - almost
Date posted: 31 Jan '11 - 14:05
Filed under: General
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