Richard McAleavey

Cunning Hired Knaves

‘We did this’: Collective Guilt & the Tuam Mass Grave

“We all partied”: Fianna Fáil Finance Minister Brian Lenihan’s infamous phrase, in the early years of the financial crisis, encapsulated the drive, on the part of Ireland’s political and media establishment, to broaden collective responsibility for social and economic calamity as far as possible. The objective in mind was the socialisation of private banking debt,…

A Brief Reflection on the Hard Left

In Ireland, the story of the Euro elections has been of the collapse of the centre-left Labour Party. But Richard McAleavey’s questioning of the use of the term ‘hard left’ is relevant to coverage of radical politics across the continent.Why use the term ‘hard-left’ to describe candidates to the left of the Labour Party? What…

Sovereignty Regained? Ireland Exits the EU-IMF Bailout

Beneath the sur­face, des­per­a­tion and des­pond­ency abound in parts that fairy stor­ies simply can­not reach. The bailout will soon be over. No longer will Ireland have to be subjected to the interference of external powers in its affairs. No more humiliating conditionalities imposed by mild-mannered Troika functionaries with a stern economic vision. Instead, thanks to the credit…

Robert Webb is a Prick


Last week when I was writing about Russell Brand’s article in the New Statesman, I didn’t want to subject it to too close a reading because there are some things that are written with intentional precision and deserve to be read with precision, and there are other things that are more disorganised and impressionistic, and…

The Reactionary ‘Freeman-on-the-land’ and a Political Fracture


The Irish Times reports over 100 ‘Freeman’-style arguments used in the Irish courts this year, citing the Law Society Gazette [for the traditional legal response see here and here]. Last Tuesday, Francis Cullen (36) was sentenced to another three months in Mountjoy Prison for refusing to recognise the court’s jurisdiction. He claimed, according to the…

An Ungovernable Italy: Interview with Bifo


Amador Fernández-Savater: What is the context in which the Italian elections have taken place? Bifo: The political disintegration of Europe. Europe was born as a project of peace and social solidarity, taking up the legacy of the socialist and internationalist culture that opposed fascism. In the 90s, finance capital’s major centres of power decided to destroy…

Interview with leader of the Greek Syriza Party: ‘The Euro is a Powder Keg that is Going to Explode!’


Euro or no euro. That was the grand dilemma in which Greece, and in par­tic­u­lar, the Syr­iza move­ment that you lead, was framed. How do you ana­lyse the period of crisis that Europe is cur­rently under­go­ing, and which seems to put in ques­tion much more than the sac­rosanct sta­bil­ity of the euro?

I believe the European model has to be rebuilt from below. We can’t be sat­is­fied with what today is called Europe. The cur­rent crisis is not a European crisis but a global one. Europe today does not have the mech­an­isms to con­front it or con­trol the world­wide fin­an­cial attack against its peoples. Hence why Europe became a con­tin­ent where the attack of the global fin­an­cial sys­tem was fero­cious. We have no defences.

The Irish Referendum: Fear Prevails


The result of the referendum on the Fiscal Treaty that took place yesterday in Ireland was a Yes in favour of the constitutional change that allows the neoliberal measures contained in the Treaty to implemented. There was a very low level of participation: around 50% of the electorate, and it can therefore be said that…