Capitalist crisis

Anarchist articles, audio and video on the bank and property crash and the resultant crisis in capitalism in Ireland and internationally

The failure of the ECB IMF deal and what they are up to

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If we accept that this deal was never meant to provide justice to the people of Ireland, then we have to judge its success or failure on other grounds, the ones it was designed to fulfill.  From that perspective the willingness of the rulers of the French, Germans, British and others to drive countries like Ireland and Greece and Portugal, each of us less than 2% of the Eurozone economy, into ruination is understandable, albeit unforgiveable. Just as there is no honour amongst theives, so there is no solidarity amongst capitalists.

ICTU can't be trusted to organise a general strike

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Tens of thousands will take part in today's ICTU demonstration in Dublin but the demonstration is seen by ICTU’s leaders as yet another one-off protest, another ‘letting-off-steam’ exercise, a trek around town from A to B to listen to speeches from the same people that have misled us to this position and then go home and get ready to vote for Labour in the forthcoming election.  Far from ‘standing idly by’ they are actively working to demobilise opposition to the government.   Against this we need to use today's protest as the starting point for the conversation about what we’re going to replace the current rotten mess with and as the first block in building for the general strike that we need to bring that about.

Why Ireland should default on the loan sharks now

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The so called rescue loan being negotiated by the ECB is really a jacking up of the interest rate Ireland is paying on its debt from the ECB base rate of 1% to a more profitable rate of 5% or more. If we submit to this deflationary programme of structural adjustment being pushed by the IMF our shrinking economy will never generate enough to pay off these debts. The only way out is to push for a default.

A radical analysis of the IMF/ECB four year plan and call to action

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Today the government announced the details of the four year plan required as part of the ECB / IMF ‘bailout’ of the banks. There will be five billion worth of new taxes and 10 billion worth of cuts under this so called ‘National Recovery’ which in reality will take 10% out of GDP. As we show below almost all these costs are being dumped on workers, particularly low paid workers, the very sector that gained little or nothing during the boom years. the richest 1% are left with most of their legal tax dodges in particular the ability to avoid paying tax at all if they spend 6 months on holidays out of the country.

IMF arrival does not transform yesterday's enemies into today's friends

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Even the Irish Times has now editorialized against the IMF intervention but, like most of the emerging mainstream concerns, the Times is not concerned about the cuts in jobs, wages and welfare that the IMF will be used to impose. No, their concern is for the loss of 'sovereignty' as IMF intervention results in a rise in populist cross-class nationalism, a tide which ironically the ruling party, which is bringing in the IMF to make the cuts it would like to, will be best placed to ride.

Understanding the jargon behind the banking crisis - What are they talking About?

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Financial ‘experts’ and economists seem to speak a different language to the rest of us. They rely on us not understanding what they’re on about. They know that if the gamble which constitutes the supposedly all-powerful ‘markets’ is revealed to us we will see just how crazy a system capitalism actually is.

But the truth is revolutionary and it is important that we look behind their jargon. Here we explain just a few of the most commonly heard terms. [In Italian]

Housing & the property bubble in Ireland - Bubbles, Booms and Busts

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Based on Monopoly houses by Doun Donnell on flickrThe years from 1995 to 2007 saw record levels of housing construction in Ireland. Construction output went up, land and house prices mushroomed and it seemed as if there was a never-ending bandwagon on which everyone was going to get rich by simply waiting for their pile of bricks to increase in value.

First published in The Irish Anarchist Review 2

A whole new lexicon of terms and vocabulary entered the everyday parlance – terms such as ‘starter home’, ‘property ladder’, ‘first time buyer’; Newspeak phrases such as ‘affordable housing’ were bandied about. Houses and housing estates were advertised for sale by estate agents and property developers with colourful banner headlines and slogans such as ‘live the dream’, ‘live the lifestyle’ – it was almost explicitly stated that even the dreary Irish weather could be by-passed by buying an apartment or house in the latest development. It seemed as if the dream would go on forever. But in mid 2007, disaster struck. With the onset of the world- wide recession, Ireland’s very own property bubble burst with a huge bang and left only destruction behind it. The dream turned to a nightmare for many people and the vocabulary was now dominated by terms such as ‘negative equity’, ‘ghost estates’ and ‘price collapse’.

The crisis in capitalism and the anarchist response

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Starting at our Spring 2009 national conference the WSM has debated and voted on a number of documents on the capitalist crisis and the resistance to it. This text is the agreed collective position of the WSM and looks at the causes of the crisis, how it impacts workers in Ireland, what resistance there has been and what hope there is for the future.   Most recently this text was updated at the May 2013 Feb WSM national conference.

Capitalist crisis and union resistance in Ireland

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Reading a SSN leafelt at the GPOLate 2008 saw the Irish capitalist class wage a major ideological struggle against the Irish working class. They called for workers to bear the brunt of the capitalist crisis. Print media, TV and radio carried segment after segment where well-paid commentators argued that workers, in particular public sector workers, were earning too much, had overly generous pensions and that the public had unrealistic expectations of public services.

Trade Unionists betrayed by leadership

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On Tuesday 24th November 2009, 250,000 public sector workers took strike action in opposition to the government policy of public service pay cuts. This was a potentially massive show of defiance and the first time in more than 20 years that the trade union movement had flexed its collective muscle.

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