Special Features

Joe Higgins: My take on the election

So how does an election candidate feel after a gruelling campaign followed by a twenty one hour count that goes on until the cold light of dawn brightens into the full light of day?
Like a garment that has been churned overlong in an industrial washing machine, with periodic bouts of intense spin drying, and after a final rinse and spin, comes to a shuddering halt in a drained and shrunken condition. And that is when one has emerged successfully!

Read More »

Child abuse – Irelands’ gulags

By Joe Higgins

Mary Raftery’s documentary, States of Fear, which gave rise to the Child Abuse Commission was first broadcast just over ten years ago, on Tuesday night, 27th April 1999. It was a shocking story, powerfully told but what happened the next morning in the Dail cast an interesting light on the ‘states of consciousness’ of the main political parties about the seriousness of what it had unearthed.

Read More »

Labour – No Alternative

AGAINST THE background of the developing crisis in the Irish economy, the Labour Party continues to posture as a party that fights in the interests of working people. At its recent national Conference, Party Leader Eamon Gilmore  several times referred to "crony capitalism" which had brought the country to the "edge of disaster". He demanded an economy "where economic activity is primarily to serve the needs of people and where people are no longer slaves of the market".

The Labour Party now feels comfortable in naming capitalism and the market as responsible for the crisis because this is commonly referred to in the Irish and international media. However just as in that same media establishment, there is no question of the Labour Party identifying socialism as the solution to this crisis. In fact the Labour Party supports the same capitalist market but merely wants it a bit more regulated.

Read More »

Working people need new leadership

Joe Higgins: from Daily Mail, March 25, 2009

A ferocious campaign is now in full swing denouncing the proposal for a one day national strike on Monday next by workers whose incomes are being savaged, thanks to the disastrous economic crash brought about by the rampant greed of speculative and crony capitalism.

‘Strike plan is economic suicide’, thunders the Irish Examiner while the Irish Times brands it ‘national sabotage.’ Going one better Sunday Times journalist, Frank Fitzgibbon, speaking on RTE said the proposed strike was not national sabotage but was in fact ‘economic terrorism.’

Read More »

Not just a few bad bankers – Capitalism to blame

By Joe Higgins

FOR SHEER brass neck you have to hand it to the members of the Fianna Fail/Green Party government.

There was Minister for Transport Noel Dempsey, at the recent Fianna Fail Ard Fheis laying into the bankers. They used the Irish economy “as their own personal piggy bank” he declared. They were “money manipulators (who) endangered the economic survival of our people”. In short, they were guilty of “economic treason” doing more damage than anyone “except perhaps Cromwell”.

Read More »

Joe Higgins Column: Real Solidarity is United Struggle

IN THE past we typically used the word solidarity to describe working people coming to each other’s assistance against the background of a strike or a community struggle. It was often used also in the context of appeals for funds to assist poverty stricken people hit by terrible natural disasters in the Third World.

In the last five months since the onset of the catastrophic financial and general economic crisis we have heard the word solidarity repeated a lot. But in the strangest way and in the most unlikely quarters.

Read More »