Andrew N Flood

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Dublin Mayday 2018 - at a hectic time it's a small gathering of the faithful

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The Dublin May Day march last night took place in miserable weather conditions, the parade was led off the Trade Union Repeal the 8th banners - Repeal was one of the march themes and copies of a newspaper aimed at trade unionists called Yes Repeal were also distributed.

Another Dublin May Day theme was working rights for migrants following the farcical new rules that supposedly give asylum seekers a right to work but which in practice few qualify under and which require too much paper work for employers to bother with for a 6 month contract.

Well that makes no sense - on the anti-choice 1916 beermats

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There are many strange things about the anti-choice bigots trying to protect the antiquated status quo of the 8th amendment - a piece of text inserted into the constitution at the moment when the power of that old clerical Ireland was about to crumble.

Disgusting smear attempt by anti-choice FB page

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Perhaps out of frustration with their failure on last night's Late Late Show (Apr 27th), the anti-choice No campaigns have stooped to a disgusting new low today.  We've observed that they have been engaged in setting up apparently innocuous Facebook news pages and we presumed it was in connection with the referendum.  Today they changed the cover image of one of these pages to make it look like a Yes campaign page and then posted this disgusting post.

Housing is a Human Right march attracts thousands

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Saturday 7th April saw 3000 people take to the streets of Dublin for the Housing is a Human Right march. Some 10,000 people are in emergency accommodation, 3700 of them children.  Meanwhile landlords & property speculators pocket a massive portion of the wages of those who are working either via rent or if post 2000 'homeowners' through massive morgage payments.

Repealing the 8th - what the opinion polls are telling us

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The Sunday Times with Behaviour & Attitudes have run two very useful polls that give a strong sense of how the campaign to Repeal the 8th Referendum is going.  The overall story the poll results tell is bad for the Vote No campaign and promising for the Vote Yes campaign.  If the referendum had been held at the time of the March poll then Repeal would have been carried by 64% to 36%, almost 2:1.  The polling data also shows No has a soft vote that is very much larger proportion than the equivalent soft Yes vote.  This means if anything between now and referendum day the polls are likely to drift towards repeal.   

None of this is a reason for complacency, what the No side lacks in terms of numbers and support they make up for in terms of funding.  Before the campaign had even started they were spending hundreds of thousands on online advertising, billboards, leaflets and free buses to what had to be their disappointingly small March 10th national march.  Together for Yes may have far more support and more people out canvassing but will it have enough to defeat all that paid advertising? 

As this is a long read we are also making an audio version available

Cambridge Analytica style tactics are already being used by anti-choice groups in Ireland

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We've seen a number of Irish journalists wondering if Cambridge Analytica style tactics could be part of repeal referendum. In fact they already are and have been for over a year - we are going to demonstrate this in what follows.

Save8Rally - 6 Points that Prove that 9k and Not 100k Marched

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Saturday March 10th saw an anti-choice march pass through Dublin, part of their campaign to try to maintain the status quo where pregnant people and doctors can be jailed for 14 years for taking abortion pills in this country while others are denied control of their own maternity care. Polls show that few people support this position and its ‘let women die’ implications so the anti-choice campaign is trying to create the fiction of mass support in the hope that people will be more inclined to vote No.

Aware of this, WSM decided to put together a team to go out and document the march for ourselves including physically counting everyone who marched and using other techniques that give a good estimate of the numbers marching. Below we will bring you through the results of each of these counts and estimates but the headline item is that when the organisers claimed 100k had marched this was a blatant lie that we will show is even physically impossible.  We counted 8930 marchers. All of the other methods we used also limited the maximum size of the march to less than 15,000.

Turkey invades Afrin in another attempt to snuff out Rojava revolution

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The Turkish invasion of revolutionary Rojava has now entered its 17th day.  NATO’s 2nd largest army has failed to achieve any significant breakthrough against the defenders of Afrin despite deploying some of the most advanced tanks, helicopters, artillery and jet bombers.  On our graphic the small map at top centre shows Turkey in orange, the tiny blue area under Turkey is the canton of Afrin, the target of this invasion and one of the 3 original cantons of the Rojava revolution.  These cantons are where the experiment in direct democracy, gender equality, and sustainability began in 2012 in the most impossible conditions of the Syrian civil war and the ISIS invasion of two of the cantons.

Finally a Referendum to Repeal the 8th - Organising Made this Happen

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The announcement that there will be a referendum to Repeal the hated 8th amendment is the product of decades of active campaigning.  Pro-choice campaigners built for repeal ever since the referendum was passed in 1983. If at first this seemed like a distant demand now repeal looks by far the most likely outcome in May.  The story of how this happened illustrates how change comes in general.  That is not through elections but through people getting organised to demand that change, regardless of which politicians happen to be running the show in any particular year. 

A critical history of WSM from a 2010 internal meeting

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This audio history of the WSM was presented at a meeting in Cork in 2010 as part of a day of critical internal discussions. As it was originally recorded for internal use it's been edited so it is just the presenter and then his responses to questions and discussion points. For more on the history of the Workers Solidarity Movement see https://www.wsm.ie/wsm-history

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