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Thread: The real James Connolly

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    Politics.ie Member Mr Aphorisms's Avatar
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    Default The real James Connolly

    I have taken out the supposed personal attacks on a poster on here, which I apologize for. Hopefully, the poster will now give a proper response to this thread. Go raibh maith agat.

    Not so long ago, former Labour chief whip and Free State politician Tommy Broughan, promulgated in that intellectual titan of papers, The Irish (sic) Sun that he was basically, taking a revolutionary stand against the Labour Party. Not only taking a revolutionary stand, but staying true to the basic philosophy of James Connolly. That philosophy you ask? Social democracy, i.e a little moan and groan. One could think from reading this Free Staters small article, that James Connolly was a good little SIPTU trade unionist, him and Big Jim Larkin. Trying their best to reform Ireland peacefully, you see. Not only that, Connolly was a man ahead of his time and was a widely read and regarded as an Irish hero in the eyes of the workers.

    Now, my good friend on here, oh, let’s call him, Moe, has an admiration for James Connolly. According to one poster on here, Connolly was a benevolent revolutionary, unlike the Provisional Irish Republican Army and their 'murder campaign.' Connolly would, according to this man, have welcomed the queen visits, as James Connolly didn't live in the past, unlike the current 'dissidents', such as éirígí, whose protests against the Windsor visit was the most talked about on here.

    But what was Connolly's 'basic philosophy?' Well, as he once said in a poem: Our demands are most modest; we only want the earth! One could say that was a bit of humor, but Connolly was, in fact, serious.

    On economics, James Connolly was a thorough socialist. Not this 'tax the wealth', 'who are the markets' poppycock we are attacked with by the current crop of Irish socialists. He openly called for the means of production to be controlled by workers. He said that without this, you cannot have socialism. In fact, you will end up with a form of state capitalism:

    Socialism properly implies above all things the co-operative control by the workers of the machinery of production; without this co-operative control the public ownership by the State is not Socialism – it is only State capitalism.
    James Connolly: State Monopoly versus Socialism (1899)

    Connolly attacks middle class reformers in that article, but his 'basic philosophy', it would seem, was to end capitalism altogether, mainly, by eliminating the bourgeoisie's ownership of the means of production. Is Tommy Broughan advocating that the means of production be taken under control of workers in Ireland?

    On the subject of reforming Capitalism altogether to better it - and this is a key point as it is in tatters now, Connolly was even more straight to the point. He said that the time for reform was over, capitalism's innate destructiveness had gone too far. Connolly attacked such reformers of the system as deluded and outdated and attacked any party, such as the Home Rulers for their lack of economic alternatives and the folly of Home Rule. He described them and other capitalist reformers as enemies of worker emancipation.

    Connolly even went as far as to say nationalism liberation was futile, unless you have socialism. But whenever Connolly mentioned capitalism, a rant about the landlords was never too far away He said:

    It must demonstrate to the people of Ireland that our nationalism is not merely a morbid idealising of the past (something Brian Leeson of éirígí consistently says), but is also capable of formulating a distinct and definite answer to the problems of the present and a political and economic creed capable of adjustment to the wants of the future.
    Not a Republic as in the United States, where the power of the purse has established a new tyranny under the forms of freedom; where, one hundred years after the feet of the last British red-coat polluted the streets of Boston, British landlords and financiers impose upon American citizens a servitude compared with which the tax of pre-Revolution days was a mere trifle.

    If you remove the English army tomorrow and hoist the green flag over Dublin Castle, unless you set about the organisation of the Socialist Republic your efforts would be in vain.

    England would still rule you. She would rule you through her capitalists, through her landlords, through her financiers, through the whole array of commercial and individualist institutions she has planted in this country and watered with the tears of our mothers and the blood of our martyrs.
    And this:

    WELL, YOU WON'T GET THE IRISH TO HELP YOU. OUR IRISH-AMERICAN LEADERS TELL US THAT ALL WE IRISH IN THIS COUNTRY OUGHT TO STAND TOGETHER AND USE OUR VOTES TO FREE IRELAND.

    Sure, let us free Ireland!

    Never mind such base, carnal thoughts as concern work and wages, healthy homes, or lives unclouded by poverty.

    Let us free Ireland!

    The rackrenting landlord; is he not also an Irishman, and wherefore should we hate him? Nay, let us not speak harshly of our brother - yea, even when he raises our rent.

    Let us free Ireland!

    The profit-grinding capitalist, who robs us of three-fourths of the fruits of our labor, who sucks the very marrow of our bones when we are young, and then throws us out in the street, like a worn-out tool, when we are grown prematurely old in his service, is he not an Irishman, and mayhap a patriot, and wherefore should we think harshly of him?

    Let us free Ireland!

    'The land that bred and bore us.' And the landlord who makes us pay for permission to live upon it.

    Whoop it up for liberty!

    'Let us free Ireland,' says the patriot who won't touch Socialism.

    Let us all join together and cr-r-rush the br-r-rutal Saxon. Let us all join together, says he, all classes and creeds.

    And, says the town worker, after we have crushed the Saxon and freed Ireland, what will we do?

    Oh, then you can go back to your slums, same as before.

    Whoop it up for liberty!
    Unless mistaken, I do not think Tomo is following Jambo's 'basic philosophy'. Has Tommy Broughan given up on capitalism and is now demanding that the system be thrown out the window, or into the dustbin of history? It would seem him, and his former party are everything Connolly hated, reformers of capitalism, not seriously interested in changing it. Certainly not now anyway.

    What of James Connolly and royal visits? Éirígí, that dissident, vagabond infested, venomous, Celtic Jersey headed party, from their party's website, obviously have deep admiration for James Connolly. They openly praise him and when they had their meeting about why they oppose Monarchy during the queen's visit, they had Connolly on the stand where the speakers gave their opinions.

    I have looked up Broughan's sentiments on the queen's visit and I cannot find anything about him rejecting the visit, however I am open to correction. Now, Johnny and Tommy both were for the Brit visit - in fact, the former was delighted to see articles 2 and 3 removed from the Free Staters Constitution as a nice gift to our unionist friends and neighbors. This from a man who has Connolly as his avatar.

    But what was Connolly's 'basic philosophy' on Monarchy? Many laughed at éirígí and their beheading of the queen. I admit myself, it was a bit too much. A simple view leaflets would have been better, but who am I to judge? In any event, Connolly had his own eccentric day out when the visit of the 'Famine Queen', Queen Victoria happened. Connolly organised a protest - with little support and without the support of Maud Gonne, fearing that no one would turn up or in fear of the DMP - and despite trouble from the DMP, Connolly managed to dump a coffin into the Liffey, whilst screaming 'To Hell with the British empire.' This man spent a night in jail for his troubles. He was also congratulated by Maud Gonne as being 'the only man who had the courage to organize a public meeting and to carry it through in spite of all discouragement - even from friends.'

    Surely James Connolly would not have went and organised a protest against the Duke and Duchess of York? Two people who were just born into their positions, good people I am sure. Perhaps they visited a few African colonies and patted a few of their subjects on the head, which sent the British public into hysteria. Again, Connolly, with no support, protested this visit and was subjected to beatings by the DMP. The Home Rule party, much like FF, FG and Labour during the Troubles, did little and the Home Rulers in their paper said nothing of the beatings, much like the Free Staters and their Dail, did nothing at all to help the people of the North.

    There were a few more protests at Royal Visits but the big one was the visit of King George V. In what was one of the darkest days in Irish history in the 20th Century, thousands, thousands of Shoneens and filthy soon to be Free Staters packed the stress of Dublin from, to quote the Irish Times at the time, 'from Dublin bay to Dublin city center' to get a glimpse of their man of the hour.

    What of Connolly? Oh, he was out on his own again, with a few others, protesting. Countess was subsequently arrested for burning the Union Jack - way to to help win over our unionist friends, eh Johnny? Isn't that the cry from the Free Staters about burning flags? But were it is interesting, is Connolly's view that King George was responsible for the destruction of the British Monarchy in Ireland, even centuries ago. Connolly knew fully that George was not fully running the show at this time and he was little more than a ponyshow for the herds of England. Connolly, ever opinionated and straight forward, made no attempts at trying to understand British imperialism or accept it, and rightly so, given the Brits tantamount to the AIDS virus in terms of their destruction:

    We will not blame him for the crimes of his ancestors if he relinquishes the royal rights of his ancestors; but as long as he claims their rights, by virtue of descent, then, by virtue of descent, he must shoulder the responsibility for their crimes.
    James Connolly: Visit of King George V (1911)

    Unless mistaken, did Tommy organise protests against the Brit Royal visits and condemn the British Monarchy, staying true to Connolly's basic philosophy?

    "Ah, but James Connolly was a popular fellow back then, not like the loony lefties now, who talk of such wild polices, such as taxing the wealth" screams the noble and provo condemning Irish, who sat comfortably in their chairs whilst destruction was brought about in the North against Irish Nationalists and Catholics.

    Well, no, again not quite so. Connolly was a militant trade unionist and he formed the Irish Citizens Army to protect workers during protests. He later on planned to stage his own rebellion, with absolutely zero public support, until the ostensible kidnapping by Óglaigh na hÉireann changed his mind.

    'When are you going to stop eulogizing dead Fenains and start using the ones that are alive?' once asked the gallant and fair minded, gentle James. So annoyed by their lack of action and inaction, the man who himself and his party never had any great electoral support, could not stand back and watch the dire poverty of the people of Dublin and wanted to have his own revolution with a few hundred socialists in his own designated army. He went on to join the Irish Volunteers - another minority - in their rebellion, which, it could be argued, came back to haunt Ireland - if we use provo logic - as Ireland's reputation was destroyed as the unionists condemned us as did the international community after WW1, particularly Woodrow Wilson, who was not pleased with our little rebellion.

    While social conditions are not at all as bad as 1913, the point is simple. Connolly's 'basic philosophy' was the overthrow of the British Empire and capitalism. He said so himself and gives a mandate to the 'dissidents' for his damnation of the British Empire:

    Believing that the British Government has no right in Ireland, never had any right in Ireland, and never can have any right in Ireland, the presence, in any one generation of Irishmen, of even a respectable minority, ready to die to affirm that truth, makes that Government for ever a usurpation and a crime against human progress.

    I personally thank God that I have lived to see the day when thousands of Irish men and boys, and hundreds of Irish women and girls, were ready to affirm that truth, and to attest it with their lives if need be.
    James Connolly: Last Statement (1916)

    Not only that, James Connolly condemned the British people for their apathy and their cheering on of the empire in lands overseas:

    It must be admitted that the English people are at present doing their utmost to justify the low estimate in which their rulers hold them; a people who for centuries have never heard a shot fired in anger upon their shores, yet who encourage their government in its campaign of robbery and murder against an unoffending nation; a people, who, secure in their own homes, permit their rulers to carry devastation and death into the homes of another people, assuredly deserve little respect no matter how loudly they may boast of their liberty-loving spirit.
    James Connolly: The South African War 1 (1899)

    Unless mistaken, is Tommy Brounogh calling for the removal of the British armed forces from the North of Ireland?

    So, Connolly's basic philosophy, seems to have been a vanguardism, which would liberator the working classes of Ireland. Complete and utter contempt for the British empire. Complete and utter contempt for all Monarchies. Complete and utter contempt for the British army in Ireland. Complete and utter contempt for the landlords, the bosses. Complete and utter contempt for capitalism. An Irish Republic, which the workers owned the means of production. An all out egalitarian Ireland.

    When we look at Bobby Sands and other Irish socialist and non-socialist revolutionaries AFTER partition, we see the hatred is quite palpable as well as the defense for the British and the excuses made for their destruction in this country, such as a Fine Gael Blueshirt who wanted everyone to view the Irish Famine as a 'shared experience' between Ireland and Britain. 'Like rape?' quizzed an audience member, probably not aware of the common west brit, revisionist, rat Irishman who has developed a sense of lost identity when the British left us, along with their civilization, democracy spreading ways.

    But Connolly saw the same type of species back in his day. The same men, such as the scalliwag, Redmond, who eulogized men such as Wolfe Tone, but had he been around, would have attacked him and the United Irishmen for their militant actions. Oh how the same can be said for the current crop of West Brit's in Fine Gael and the Free Staters in Fianna Fail, as well as that other virus in Ireland, the Catholic Church:

    Apostles of Freedom are ever idolised when dead, but crucified when living.

    Accustomed, as we are, to accept without question the statements of platform oratory or political journalism as embodying the veriest truths of history, the real meaning and significance of the life and struggles of the high-soured organiser of the United Irish movement of 1798 is too often lost to the people of Ireland today. We think with pride and joy of Wolfe Tone and his struggle for Ireland, but when we think of his enemies, of those who thwarted him at every opportunity, who ceased not to revile him while alive and paused not in their calumnies even when he had passed beyond the grave, we are too apt to forget that the most virulent and unforgiving of those enemies were not the emissaries of the British Crown, but the men from whose lips the cant of patriotism was never absent, the leaders in Church and politics of the people whose emancipation Wolfe Tone had laboured to secure - and met death in the effort to forward. Yet it is a lesson we need to remember, fraught as it is with meaning, in the task before the Irish democracy today.

    in short, Wolfe Tone and his comrades were overwhelmed by the treachery of their own countrymen more than by the force of the foreign enemy. He was crucified in life, now he is idolised in death, and the men who push forward most arrogantly to burn incense at the altar of his fame are drawn from the very class who, were he alive today, would hasten to repudiate him as a dangerous malcontent. False as they are to every one of the great principles to which our hero consecrated his life, they cannot hope to deceive the popular instinct, and their presence at the ’98 commemorations will only bring into greater relief the depth to which they have sunk. Our Home Rule leaders will find that the glory of Wolfe Tone’s memory will serve, not to cover, but to accentuate the darkness of their shame.
    The bold is exactly what Connolly is today. Idolized by Free Staters, but had he been alive in his day, would have crucified him for being everything he hates.


    As is to be expected, the 'living in the past' line will be thrown out by those great patriots on Politics.ie, who will condemn the riots in Dublin soon when the loyalists come down to remove the Tricolor from the Free Staters and their Dail. Oh, they'll condemn the tracksuits of the Irishman, but the gun of the loyalist? We'll wait and see.

    On the subject of living in the past. If I can quote myself:

    The Free State clap trap that dissidents are too antediluvian is all well and good, but it is a poor excuse to expiate for their ideology, by simply saying "that was years ago, we've moved on." Yes, we as a society have moved on. Look around you, we no longer use Constitutions written by slave owners, we no long use economic systems planned by slave owners or expanded on in the 18 century. We no longer believe in Monarchies. We no longer believe in sweat shops. We no longer believe in religion. No, no, we are a different people altogether. Nonidentical to our fellow humans centuries ago.
    'The reason why no one protested was because of the tyranny of the DMP!' Really, such as the threat of violence if flags were not removed and the city coming to a standstill? I seem to remember the police state in the Free State were you were not allowed fly the tricolor, where if you worked in the area where her Majesty visited, you were basically interrogated to make sure you were not a bold paddy, where motorways were closed down, where businesses were told 'tough luck' regarding losing profits for this Royal Visit. Oh yes, no bad police or state today, but bad back then.

    'Socialism has failed. But Connolly was still a good lad', another popular slogan. One I actually saw from a former poster on here who was actually glad Connolly died, fearing the red spectre he would have unleashed in Ireland.

    Oh how the great and the good love to throw this out. While not a socialist, their lack of reality is mind boggling. As has been quoted already, Connolly would have believed that the USSR was a state capitalist society. Also, the great and the good excuse the horrific consequences of capitalism in this country, when we had a serious reduction in population. When some Irish delegates visited Russell during the Great Famine, begging for help, only to be read the Wealth of Nations. When famines in poor African countries, despite all of the government and NGO help, with populations going over 20,000,000 people, have deaths as high as 100,000. But in Ireland, at a time when we had around six million people, 1.2 million people were starved to death. An astronomical figure. But let us not blame capitalism or the British, let us share the experience. Only in communist countries, despite weather problems and other things - as well as government policy - cause famines, it debunks communism. Famine in capitalist countries actually share experiences and promote the joys of capitalism.

    It would seem that Tommy does not follow James' 'basic philosophy'. In fact, quite the contrary, he is a career politician, something which Marx and Engels warned about in having a central controlled government, because it would lead to these things - oh yes, they were anti-state, not pro state. But why argue the facts, when we can post pictures of dead bodies in Cambodia, as is done on here? Another way of summing up Connolly's 'basic philosophy' would be to quote the great man himself and finish with this quote. Does Tommy match up this this philosophy?

    The cause of labour is the cause of Ireland, the cause of Ireland is the cause of labour.

    Somehow, I don't think writing in anti-working class, junk garbage papers such as the Sun is following Connolly's 'basic philosophy'.
    I hate money making men - Alexander Hamilton

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    Politics.ie Member The System Works's Avatar
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    Thank goodness the Irish Citizen Army was so minuscule, and that Connolly was killed before the foundation of the state. Though I doubt Ireland would have ever been conquered by that crowd.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The System Works View Post
    Thank goodness the Irish Citizen Army was so minuscule, and that Connolly was killed before the foundation of the state. Though I doubt Ireland would have ever been conquered by that crowd.
    You're glad that a man who gave his life for Ireland was dead before what he fought for was achieved?
    Racism = fear, low self-esteem and breath-taking ignorance.

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    Politics.ie Member Mr Aphorisms's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The System Works View Post
    Thank goodness the Irish Citizen Army was so minuscule, and that Connolly was killed before the foundation of the state. Though I doubt Ireland would have ever been conquered by that crowd.
    A cretin such as yourself should not even be allowed to write the name of James Connolly. But, by your avatar and idiocy, I am taking you wanted him dead because he was a socialist or left wing. Now, that would mean you hold Thomas Clarke, Joesph Mary Plunkett and James Connolly - 3 signatures of the Proclamation - with contempt and too were glad they died.
    I hate money making men - Alexander Hamilton

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    Politics.ie Member neiphin's Avatar
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    excellent OP thank you
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kev408 View Post
    You're glad that a man who gave his life for Ireland was dead before what he fought for was achieved?
    Let's face it. Many Irish are the same. William Martin Murphy's Indo hasn't gone away (ok, you know)

    James Connolly is now a myth, something like St Patrick. You should read the paeons written to him post Civil War. Jesus walking on the water and captaining the 33AD all Ireland winning team was only on the halfpenny place. Though politically incisive and though, unlike many of his followers, he wrote well, he was an argumentative pain and might have been at home with some Trots on that account.
    On the positive side, he got the last rites from the two great Capuchins, the Capuchins subsequently becoming the Republican religious order of choice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Aphorisms View Post
    A cretin such as yourself should not even be allowed to write the name of James Connolly. But, by your avatar and idiocy, I am taking you wanted him dead because he was a socialist or left wing. Now, that would mean you hold Thomas Clarke, Joesph Mary Plunkett and James Connolly - 3 signatures of the Proclamation - with contempt and too were glad they died.
    To be fair, so were and are many others. Don't let the Kevin Barry ballads fool you. Michael Mallin's neighbours thought he was off his rocker fighting king and country, instead of serving them. Mallin's son became a Jesuit priest and was still alive in Hong Kong a few years back.

    Connolly was lifted on high because he was dead. Dead patriots are useful that way. Ask Gerry if you don't believe me.


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    Politics.ie Member The Owl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The System Works View Post
    Thank goodness the Irish Citizen Army was so minuscule, and that Connolly was killed before the foundation of the state. Though I doubt Ireland would have ever been conquered by that crowd.
    I don't often get violent when I'm angry, but anyone making a statement like that in front of me would need to see a good dentist very quickly. You are not fit to mention the name of Connolly. A brave brilliant man who brought hope to the working classes, my class of people. Idiot!
    Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results: I present, The Irish politcal system: Thank you Einstein

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Owl View Post
    I don't often get violent when I'm angry, but anyone making a statement like that in front of me would need to see a good dentist very quickly. You are not fit to mention the name of Connolly. A brave brilliant man who brought hope to the working classes, my class of people. Idiot!


    Do you not realise that quote you reproduced by that troll was meant to provoke just such a reaction?

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    Politics.ie Member The System Works's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mary_queen_of_the_gael View Post
    Let's face it. Many Irish are the same. William Martin Murphy's Indo hasn't gone away (ok, you know)

    James Connolly is now a myth, something like St Patrick. You should read the paeons written to him post Civil War. Jesus walking on the water and captaining the 33AD all Ireland winning team was only on the halfpenny place. Though politically incisive and though, unlike many of his followers, he wrote well, he was an argumentative pain and might have been at home with some Trots on that account.
    On the positive side, he got the last rites from the two great Capuchins, the Capuchins subsequently becoming the Republican religious order of choice.



    To be fair, so were and are many others. Don't let the Kevin Barry ballads fool you. Michael Mallin's neighbours thought he was off his rocker fighting king and country, instead of serving them. Mallin's son became a Jesuit priest and was still alive in Hong Kong a few years back.

    Connolly was lifted on high because he was dead. Dead patriots are useful that way. Ask Gerry if you don't believe me.

    I never thought we'd agree on something, but here we are. Connolly has been made into something he wasn't after his martyrdom. His influence in an independent Ireland would have been purely negative, as it was before his death anyway. Luckily, the ICA didn't amount to a particularly great force.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The System Works View Post
    Thank goodness the Irish Citizen Army was so minuscule, and that Connolly was killed before the foundation of the state. Though I doubt Ireland would have ever been conquered by that crowd.

    It is possible to critique a man without resorting to puerile nonsense. I take it you did not read the OP and are all around a bit of a knee jerk reactionary buffon.
    The truth of an idea is not a stagnant property inherent in it. Truth happens to an idea. It becomes true, is made true by events.

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