In the media we hear about a phantom loyalty our elected representatives spew out to the public. They tell us to cast aside our consumerist instincts and restrain from shopping across the boarder. This capitalist call to arms attempts to play on peoples latent nationalistic instincts, a false call for patriotism. Surely our government can perceive the blatant contradiction that the people can see from such a spurious call to wallets. For was it not the gombeen champions of the underhand brown letters which have helped cultivate the current materialistic nature of free state Ireland?
They were responsible for the creation of a true consumerist society where rationale is dominated by what is best for the consumer. No other process of thought was promoted with such zealous as that of a true materialistic society. Nothing was ever enough and a bargain was what we all sought. How ever with this new development of mass consumerist migration to the cheaper watering holes north of the border the government and their bed mates in big business appeal to consumers to restrain their over eager capitalist instincts and patriotically purchase from the less competitive southern markets. Such appeals stagger belief with the sheer contradictions blatantly obvious.
Look no further than the golden boy of the Fianna Fail Celtic tiger generation, Bertie Ahern. The self proclaimed “socialist” is now beating the Republican drum claiming he has always supported a united Ireland. This “Republican Socialist”, a figurehead still in Fianna Fail, exalts his Republican inclinations. But yet his parties appeal to patriotism is only trumpeted when their capitalist policies come tumbling down. Fianna Fail can stand idly by when their own people are brutalised just a few miles over the border and ridicule the great and fallen patriots but pull out the patriot card when developer’s bank balances are at risk.
Why would any worker south of the border listen to such spurious claims for patriotism when the very people who trumpet such contradictions want to cut back on elderly medical cards and are even considering cutting spending by 50% for disabled students in third level education?
How is any man meant to feel patriotism for a consumerist society that hits the vulnerable first? Why should the vulnerable minorities pay for the crimes of speculating capitalists whose greed exceeded their sense? These same speculating capitalists who but a year ago were receiving millions in bonuses while they were leading the nation down the garden path to economic ruin. What are the economic reverberations for them? Will they go hungry? Will they be able to pay for their mortgage? Will they be able to pay for the best consultants? Yes on all counts.
What is most ironic is that these very same bankers will keep their jobs thanks to the government’s economic bailout worth billions. That very money which was extracted from the taxes of the workers, the same workers who will in all likelihood lose their very jobs thanks to the greed of the wealthy. Surely such irresponsible behaviour warrants some form of punishment? But yet it is quiet on the political front. Fianna Fail, Fianna Gael, Labour, PSF all tow the line. How is it that a bank robber can get years of incarceration for stealing a few thousand and yet a banker whose greed brings down an economy can sit smugly while thousands lose their jobs? It is a shining example of how the system protects the establishment. For white collar crime costs more to the economy and does more damage than blue collar crime but yet white collar crime is totally under prosecuted and the sentences are miniscule in comparison to blue collar crime.
There are the same cries for justice against the speculating capitalists around the world. In Germany the fastest growing party is a party by the name of Die Linke (the left). This party wants prison time for the bankers and it is winning widespread support. But yet our Free State parties say nothing.
Would it be that their junkets at the Galway Races wouldn’t be as profitable if they alienated the speculating capitalists? Would it be that the under hand brown envelopes wouldn’t be as thick? And yet with all this blatant hypocrisy on show the government has the nerve to ask the workers to be patriotic. What we all should be asking is where the banker’s patriotism was when they were driving the nation into economic ruin?
The old saying the one in the suite is the one with the loot is appropriate. But what is one to do in such blatant injustice. It is obvious that no justice can be found with the current establishment parties who have fully embraced their class interests. They protect the status quo while any repercussions to the working class are treated with blind indifference.
That is where we, the RSM, must emerge for it is the working class that our allegiance must lay. We must defend the interests of the working class from the exploitation of the bourgeoisie. We must encourage the working class to mobilise through radicalised unions such as the IWU. Through community projects such as the CFAD which is doing sterling work in North Belfast to tackle the drug problem.
Through the housing committees such as the NBCRA which is campaigning for an end to the Sectarian housing problem. It is only through the likes of these Community initiatives of the working class people that real change can ever be realised. So many are satisfied to be handed the crumbs off the Bourgeoisie’s table, but when the speculating capitalists greed runs the economy into the ground there are no more crumbs to be handed. It is now time to radicalise the workers that the mask of respectability falls from the face of capitalism. The empty words of patriotism in the market place must be shot down with the empowerment of the working class.
For too long the working class has waited hand on foot for bourgeoisie interests, now it is time to shed the shackles. For it will not be the speculating capitalists who will go hungry or lose their house, it will be you.
Make no mistake that sympathy will not be forth coming with ever decreasing profit margins. The working class must be empowered to ensure that another generation will not be forced into economic migration to simply feed their families. There is enough on this island for everybody’s need but not for speculating capitalists greed and all the patriotic consumerism in the world won’t change that.
Ian Mc Loughlin