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Thread: Social Partnership not only destroyed the Labour Movement but also the country

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    Politics.ie Member
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    Default Social Partnership not only destroyed the Labour Movement but also the country

    Before i begin this isnt a right-wing rant.
    I would be left leaning and would have voted labour in the past but never again. Im not sure il vote again tbh.

    For those who dont remember or are to young in 1987 the country embarked on a process that imo directly lead to the disastoris position we now find ourselves.

    The original good intentions of "social partnership" lead to the end of any sense of protest as well as the end to any meaningful oppossition. The agreements were used by successive gov. notably the Ahern lead ones to buy of any dissentors.

    FF were always great for not fighting aggressors but instead assimilating them into there agenda. The social partnership agreements were instrumental in this philosophy.

    Il give you one example. Barnardos, Its number one funding source is now the state. Was this always the cases?
    no, but what better way to get rid of the trouble makers then to throw money at them. Once they became hooked then they could be reigned in. A good proof of this was the childrens referendum. No opposition whats so ever.

    This very same mechanism was used to great effect with the unions and i believe the original socialist workers party and democratic left lads, notable De Rosa, Gilmore and Rabbitte spotted this new mechanism early on. The labour movement was on the way out and these old hands then embarked on a process to take over the Labour Party.
    Safe in the knowledge that the unions both private and public were so into the gov. that they could count on easy and successive terms.

    Following 23 years of social partnership the Irish trades unions (ICTU) entered the new decade seriously weakened and with union employee density down to 31% compared to a density highpoint of 62% in the early 1980s preceding the series of seven corporatist social pacts.[2] Union penetration is highly imbalanced with a density approaching 80% in the public sector and around 20% in the larger private sector. Union members are now more likely to be over 45, married with children, Irish-born with third-level qualifications and working in semi-professional occupations, especially in the health, education or public administration sectors, rather than the traditional image of being lower-paid vulnerable, low-skill workers



    But now its all starting to unravel. But its not coming from the core unions, its coming from the likes of the Gardai and the others who still have some self respect and might i had some idea of whats going on.

    Of course social partnership brought alot of good but that imo is all but gone after 2008.

    Im sure this theory isnt new and probably ill thought out so i assume others can add and possibly elaborate more.

  2. #2
    Politics.ie Member Big Brother's Avatar
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    Not ill thought out at all

    Slot on

    I recommend a book called "Advisors or Advocates" by Orlaigh Quinn (publshed by IPA)

    It aint easy reading

    But it thoroughly diagnoses the disease you have very well summed up

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    Politics.ie Member Big Brother's Avatar
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    sorry I meant "spot on"

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    Politics.ie Member greengoose2's Avatar
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    Well then, it's time the TU membership stopped funding their Rolls Royce "betters" by simply leaving the union. There was a time when the union officials had to collect the money from the members and bring it to the branch. Now they have the subs taken directly from their wages and the officials only have to trot out excuses. Useless practice and the losers are?

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    I blame the invention of the wheel. That's where it all went wrong.

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    Politics.ie Member Andrew49's Avatar
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    Were the Irish Labour Party ever other than supplicants - either at the table of the unions or the tables of other, large and small, political parties?

    Labour marks success as 'participation' in Government and not as moving Ireland towards a just, equitable and decent society.
    I watched with glee, while your kings and queens, fought for ten decades for the gods they made.

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    Is this the point where we all pile in with a short description of our impressions of a political party we dont like?

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    Politics.ie Member Andrew49's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NeilW View Post
    Is this the point where we all pile in with a short description of our impressions of a political party we dont like?
    That comes later in the thread when the 'socialism' of Labour is compared to the 'socialism of [insert political party here]
    I watched with glee, while your kings and queens, fought for ten decades for the gods they made.

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    Politics.ie Member Thac0man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKELLY View Post
    Im sure this theory isnt new and probably ill thought out so i assume others can add and possibly elaborate more.
    Your OP is well laid out and accurate. Unions have become institutionalised and part of the national administration, something that Bertie Ahern achieved. Anything outside of the administration is no longer its concern.

    The ICTU now functions as an overseer of agreements between the exchequer and its remaining membership, it has voluntarily reduced its mandate to simply that. It has abandoned its traditional role along with its traditional membership. So now the ICTU's role is to engage in what are internal tustles with the government for what it sees as its share of exchequer income. Its telling that in this time of deep crises the unemployed and private sector worker rarely get a look in on any ICTU initiative, and are only called on to come out and support those who enjoy renumeration they can only dream of. But these calls were so transparent and trite that they have even stopped making them.

    Despite hardships ordinary workers in Ireland are experiencing, the ICTU's continued quest to spend hundreds of millions on new buildings for itself (with civic centre and theatre) instead of helping cater to the needs of the hard up, is illustrative of what the ICTU are now and who they give a fig about. Should this glittering folly ever be built, any real socialist in this country would be doing the nation and his or her ideal a favour if they put a match to it.

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    Politics.ie Member Windowshopper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greengoose2 View Post
    Well then, it's time the TU membership stopped funding their Rolls Royce "betters" by simply leaving the union. There was a time when the union officials had to collect the money from the members and bring it to the branch. Now they have the subs taken directly from their wages and the officials only have to trot out excuses. Useless practice and the losers are?
    . . . or the members could sit up and vote out the union officials.

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