In this weeks Wexford People newspaper, Maria Pepper questions whether the threat to Wexford hospital is real or imagined.
Over eight thousand people marched the streets of Wexford town last Saturday to show their contempt and resistence to government moves to downgrade and destroy various sections of Wexfords health service. They went out onto the streets in the belief that it was a pre-emptive strike against any future cuts.
But Ms Pepper believes that the people, only 4000 she claims, went out to face down an imagined threat, as the HSE's hospital committee report has not been published yet.
Strange that Maria Pepper, a prominent Wexford journalist, who should have her finger on the pulse of the county, failed to hear Noel Dempsey tell the people of Wexford that they should be prepared to lose their A&E service, on south east radio last week. Mr Dempsey, who was attending a Fianna Fail meeting in the county, left Rathangan Sinn Féin in no doubt about the intentions of the HSE towards Wexfords hospital.
Does Ms Pepper believe that Noel Dempsey made these comments to court controversy?
Or does she have trouble remembering events, such as the many SF health rallys held in Wexford over the past number of years?
She certainly didnt mention any of them in them in her report.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Currently, three Irish political constituencies are without representation. These are Dublin South, Donegal South West and Waterford.
Recently, Fine Gael lost a Dail motion calling for the poll to be announced to elect Martin Cullen’s replacement, who stood down in March due to ill health.
Fine Gael party leader Enda Kenny said it was disgraceful that the Government was afraid to go before the people in the constituency, claiming it was clinging to power.
“I contend that this Government are guilty of political cowardice in refusing to contest this by-election in the constituency of Waterford,” Mr Kenny said.
The Government defeated the motion by 77 to 72 votes.
This shows how tight things are for the Fianna Fail/ Green coalition. This shows the real reason why they wont call these elections. They're afraid. They're afraid that the Irish people are going to go out and vote for the opposition in all three constituencies.
The Government are under no obligation to hold these by-elections. The Government have the majority in the Dail to vote it down if the opposition move the writ.
This is UNDEMOCRATIC!
For the past four weeks, protests have taken to the streets of Dublin under the Right to Work banner. All over the country, various protest are taking place against this government. The public are crying out for an election.
Fianna Fail dont have to call these three bi elections under a corrupted, perverted understanding of our constitution. They also dont have to call an election until 2012, by which time they are obviously hoping the people of Ireland will have forgotten about they're incompetence in handling the financial crisis, and they're corruption in allowing criminal bankers to go free.
But the people wont forget.
Not this time.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Last Saturday, the 22nd of May was an historic day for Wexford. Over the previous few weeks, serious opposition to the HSE’s planned down grading of Wexford General Hospitals services, and the planned closure of our county’s full time psychiatric unit was growing.
Facebook campaigns to highlight these issues had attracted high levels of support, and had gained attention in the established media.
However, when “Save our A&E” campaigner Seamus O’ Brien announced a plan for a health rally in Wexford town, some were sceptical. Some even opposed it at first, namely Wexford Fianna Fail and Wexford hospitals, doctor Quigley.
As the weeks moved on, oppostion fell away, as the public moved behind the campaign. Even Fianna Fail, who’s government are
carrying out the closure of public services through out the country, got behind the campaign.
Sinn féin’s campaign
Wexford Sinn Féin have been involved in this campaign from the start. For the last decade, Wexford SF councillor, Anthony Kelly, as fought for the upgrading of
Last Saturday, Wexford Sinn Féin turned out in force to send a simple message to our government; Any downgrading of Wexfords health service is unacceptable, and will be heavily resisted.
The government can NOT close these services if we fight them.
RTE cant count
RTE news claimed that only four thousand potestors attended Wexford’s Health Rally. This number is false, and all parties present agreed that the number in attendence was significantly higher than this.
Prehaps the greatest obmission from RTE’s report was the level of abuse delivered to Fianna Fail elected reps, in particular deputy Sean Connick
Junior Minister refuses to support Wexford hospital
During the speeches after the protest march, all political parties were allowed a single speaker. Incredibly, dispite both Wexford Fianna Fail Tds being present, Lisa McDonald was chosen to speak for their party. Or should we say sacrificed to the lions.
It was left to Seamus O’ Brien to deliver the peoples ultimatum to Fianna Fail, when he asked deputy Connick would he be prepared to vote against Fianna Fail if the issue of downgrading Wexford’s health service was put to the Dail.Deputy Connick shook his head to indicate that he would not.
Something is wrong in a democracy when an elected rep favours his paypacket over his people.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Speaking regarding the recent decision by the European Union to
scrutinise Ireland’s budgetary measures before our own parliament, Sinn
Féin Councillor Anthony Kelly has said that Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the
Labour Party sold the Lisbon Treaty as a pig in a poke and have now been
Cllr. Kelly said:
“Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Labour Party sold the Lisbon Treaty to
the electorate on the basis of ‘a vote for Lisbon is a vote for jobs’.
Sinn Féin argued at the time that the Lisbon Treaty would allow greater
EU interference in our affairs. We said that the EU was eyeing up
Ireland’s tax system with a view to harmonising tax systems across the
EU. We were proved right.
“We have now learned that each member state must hand in their draft
budgets in order to get EU approval before they go before parliament.
This is disrespectful of our sovereignty and is an indication that the
EU is becoming more and more obsessed with centralisation and
“I am proud to say that the people of Wexford saw through the rhetoric
of the establishment parties in the run-up to the Lisbon referendum. The
people of Wexford voted against the treaty because they saw through the
empty promises of ‘yes for jobs’ and ‘yes for recovery’.The slogan ‘vote
yes for jobs’ truly rings hollow now. They saw the race to the bottom in
pay and conditions for workers in the treaty, they saw the absence of
democratic accountability in the treaty and they saw the chipping away
at our country’s sovereignty contained in the treaty.
“Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Labour Party should be ashamed of
themselves. They sold this treaty as a pig in a poke and did so through
blatant lies and scare-mongering.”
Friday, May 21, 2010
This is the night before the day.
The eve of peoples protest.
Tomorrow, the people of Wexford will take to the streets to fight for the retention of our health services. We will be fighting for the continuation of services in Wexford hospital. We will be fighting to keep our A&E. We will be fighting to preserve our full time psychiatric services within the county.
As darkness falls on Wexford tonight, there will be meetings, text messages and rapidly dispatched emails. Final preparations are under way. Across the county various political groups, sports clubs, cultural groups and clusters of concerned citizens will be getting ready for what could be the largest march of protestors upon Wexford town since 1798.
I wonder if Fianna Fail are getting ready?
I wonder if their Wexford politicans are dusting down their "save our services" posters, which they used to such great effect at the recent "save the Rosslare to Waterford Rail Line" protest in Bridgetown. While all the time, it was their government that was closing the line. The same as its their government that is trying to kill our health service.
Minister Noel Dempsey was in Wexford the other night. He said that we should be ready for the closure of our A&E service. And he said it in THAT tone. You know the one, why dont you sit down and behave yourself like a good little serf.
Lets face facts. The HSE are no more responsible for the planned downgrading of Wexford general hospital and the closure of Wexfords mental health service, than Iarnoid Eireann are responsible for the closure of the Rosslare to Waterford rail link. Neither can we put all the blame on the Greens or the Independents who prop up this dismal government.
The people to blame, the people responsible for closing our services are the people who lead the current government, Fianna Fail.
So if your planning on coming out tomorrow Sean Connick, leave your bloody Fianna Fail "save our services" cards at home, until you are ready to stand up for the people who elected you and fight this government, and if necessary, resign your position in Dail Eireann.
Friday, May 14, 2010
Irish democracy is on its last legs according to comments made in the Dail yesterday. It has become apparent that elements of the EU believe it is their right to police future Irish budgets. There was me thinking that it was the right of the Irsh people to elect representatives to devide the money they pay into the state coffers amoung our vital services.
Speaking after the European Commission proposed a peer review for national budgets, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Finance Arthur Morgan has hit out at the prospect of an unelected “eurocracy” policing national Budgets.
Deputy Morgan said:
“Today we are being handed down proposals from the European Commission that draft national budgets should be submitted to Brussels for scrutiny and peer review by other member states. The future sovereignty of national budgetary and fiscal decisions hangs in the balance. The basis of democracy itself will be corrupted if the Government do not wholly and vehemently oppose the trajectory of the European Commission to reinforce budgetary surveillance.
“The interests of capital are smothering wider social concerns and these are the very interests who created the crisis. The Commission’s aspiration to monitor national budgets and veto against them if they do not conform to the view of the Commission flies in the face of democracy and further concentrates power within the European institutions; power that should be sovereign.
“The consequences of this proposal being adopted are such that the rigid adherence to the Stability and Growth Pact will outweigh the importance of rights such as health, education and decent employment. As the EU places more emphasis on unfettered allegiance to this Pact, people and public services will suffer, as we are seeing in Greece.
“We cannot let this proposal be adopted. An unelected “eurocracy” cannot make decisions in lieu of people who have at least been directly elected. We have not voted to let the European Commission police our budgets.”
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Former EU Commissioner Peter Sutherland has said Ireland had successfully differentiated its economic situation from that of Greece, having shown a real intent to deal with the deficit.
Speaking on RTÉ's This Week programme to be broadcast tonight, Mr Sutherland said the public finances will have to be continually reviewed over the next three years.
He said the Government will need to introduce even more difficult budget measures over the next three years in light of the Greek debt crisis.
It seems Mr Sutherland believes the government have saved Ireland.
What he failed to mention was the massive dole ques, growing emmigration, and the incredible debt that lies on the head of every man, woman and child in this nation.
He also failed to mention the governments friends, the bankers, who have gotten away with ruining the financial aspirations of the next generation through their own greed and incompetence.
He also failed to mention the governments sucessful plan to deal with the recession includes closing our hospitals.
Minister for Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs Pat Carey said the Government does not plan to bring forward the budget, but will continue to implement spending cuts.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
THE SECOND republican to join the H-Block hunger-strike for political status - a fortnight after Bobby Sands - was twenty-five-year-old Francis Hughes, from Bellaghy in South Derry: a determined, committed and totally fearless IRA Volunteer who organised a spectacularly successful series of military operations before his capture, and was once described by the RUC as their 'most wanted man' in the North.
Eluding for several years the relentless efforts of the British army, UDR and RUC to track him down, Francis operated boldly throughout parts of Tyrone and north and south Antrim, but particularly in his native South Derry, with a combination of brilliant organisation and extreme daring - until his capture after a shoot-out with the SAS - which earned him widespread popular renown, and won general support for the republican cause, as well as giving him an undisputed reputation as a natural-born soldier and leader.
In the H-Blocks, Francis immediately went on the protest for political status and, despite the severe disability of his wounded leg, displayed the same courage and determination that had been his hallmark before his capture.
And, just as always wanting to be in the thick of things and wanting to shoulder responsibility for other political prisoners as he had earlier looked after the morale of fellow Volunteers, Francis was one of those to volunteer for the hunger strike which began on October 27th, 1980. He was not one of the first seven hunger strikers selected but was among the thirty men who joined the hunger strike in its closing stages as Sean McKenna's condition became critical.
That utter selflessness and courage came to its tragic conclusion on Tuesday, May 12th, when Francis died at 5.43 p.m. after fifty-nine days on hunger strike.
Friday, May 7, 2010
SINN FEIN's Michelle Gildernew has retained the Fermanagh/South Tyrone Wesminster seat by four votes.
In the final Northern Ireland constituency to be called after three recounts, unionist unity candidate Rodney Connor came agonisingly close to unseating the incumbent MP.
It is believed Mr Connor had requested a fourth recount, but it was refused by election officials.
However, a legal challenge from unionists in the constituency can not be ruled out.
After the final recount, Ms Gildernew polled 21,304 votes to Mr Connor's 21,300.
After the first count, Mr Connor was ahead before his Sinn Fein counterpart took the lead in the subsequent recount.
Speaking after her victory, Ms Gildernew claimed she received the backing of constituents from both traditions, given her track record as an MP.
"The regressive attempt by the Orange Order to muster the combined forces of unionism against me and against the progressive politics I represent had to be confronted," she said.
"I am delighted that the people of Fermanagh and South Tyrone have voted for the future and voted for equality, for unity, for jobs and for leadership."
The SDLP's Fearghal McKinney polled 3,574 votes, after refusing to stand down to aid Ms Gildernew against an agreed unionist candidate.
In a constituency used to political drama, Ms Gildernew took the seat in 2001 with a slim majority of 53 votes.
(Taken from todays Belfast Telegraph)
Sinn Fein are on the brink of replacing the DUP as the party with the biggest share of the vote in Northern Ireland.
With 17 of the 18 seats declared the DUP had 168,216 votes, a 26.8% share of the poll.
Sinn Fein had 150,638 votes - 24%.
However, the republican party is guaranteed more than 20,000 votes from Fermanagh and South Tyrone - which has gone to a third recount.
The DUP withdrew from this race, allowing Independent Rodney Connor to go head-to-head with Sinn Fein's Michelle Gildernew.
Pending the result of the Fermanagh recount the SDLP have 107,396 votes (17.1%), Alliance Party 42,325 votes (6.7%), Ulster Conservatives and Unionists 102,361 votes (16.3%),
TUV 26,300 votes (4.2%), Greens 3,542 votes (0.6%).
Monday, May 3, 2010
There's an inner thing in every man,
Do you know this thing my friend?
It has withstood the blows of a million years,
And will do so to the end.
It was born when time did not exist,
And it grew up out of life,
It cut down evil's strangling vines,
Like a slashing searing knife.
It lit fires when fires were not,
And burnt the mind of man,
Tempering leandened hearts to steel,
From the time that time began.
It wept by the waters of Babylon,
And when all men were a loss,
It screeched in writhing agony,
And it hung bleeding from the Cross.
It died in Rome by lion and sword,
And in defiant cruel array,
When the deathly word was 'Spartacus'
Along the Appian Way.
It marched with Wat the Tyler's poor,
And frightened lord and king,
And it was emblazoned in their deathly stare,
As e'er a living thing.
It smiled in holy innocence,
Before conquistadors of old,
So meek and tame and unaware,
Of the deathly power of gold.
It burst forth through pitiful Paris streets,
And stormed the old Bastille,
And marched upon the serpent's head,
And crushed it 'neath its heel.
It died in blood on Buffalo Plains,
And starved by moons of rain,
Its heart was buried at Wounded Knee,
But it will come to rise again.
It screamed aloud by Kerry lakes,
As it was knelt upon the ground,
And it died in great defiance,
As they coldly shot it down.
It is found in every light of hope,
It knows no bounds nor space
It has risen in red and black and white,
It is there in every race.
It lies in the hearts of heroes dead,
It screams in tyrants' eyes,
It has reached the peak of mountains high,
It comes searing 'cross the skies.
It lights the dark of this prison cell,
It thunders forth its might,
It is 'the undauntable thought', my friend,
The thought that says 'I'm right!'