March 2007

No Pasaran; Ireland and the Spanish Civil War

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Part of the Labour party organised, Connolly Festival.

Preliminary Observations (on the Distribution of Wealth)

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"Preliminary Observations" is the introduction to his first, and possibly most important book, the lengthily entitled "An Inquiry into the Principles of the Distribution of Wealth most conducive to human happiness; applied to The Newly Proposed System of Voluntary Equality of Wealth" of 1824. It is this work of which the anarchist historian Max Nettlau remarks: "[this] book, however, discloses his own evolution; having started with a demand for the full product of labour as well as the regulation of distribution, he ended up with his own conversion to communism, that is, unlimited distribution". This preface piece shows signs of being originally written before his own conversion to communist distribution with supplemental additions after that change. In it Thompson lays out his approach of applying the critical method of utilitarianism - the re-examination of all social institutions with an atheist skepticism of all received truths, judging outcomes on the basis of "the greatest happiness for the greatest number" - to the theories of Political Economy.

Practical Directions: Explanation of Leading Terms

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The extract is from the opening of Thompson's last book before his untimely death, "Practical Directions for the Speedy and Economical Establishment of Communities, on the Principles of Mutual Co-operation, United Possessions and Equality" of 1830. In the main was a practical "build your own community" manual and the bulk of it was taken up with practical matters. However the necessity of squeezing in a summary of the political and economic bases of the projected community, means that this "Explanation of Leading Terms" at the beginning of the work remains the most abbreviated version of his analysis available

Iranian exile on hunger strike in Dublin

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A member of the Iranian Kurdish opposition is on hunger strike in a Dublin hostel to protest at being refused asylum in Ireland. On March 21st members of the Workers Solidarity Movement joined Kurdish exiles, Socialist Party TD Joe Higgins, Green TD Ciaran Cuffe, Sinn Fein TD Aengus O'Snodaigh and others at a protest outside the Dail organised by Residents Against Racism.

DCTU 'Mayday' events in Dublin (actually April 29)

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Announcement from the Dublin Council of Trade Unions of their Mayday events which will actually be held on Sunday 29th April starting at 1pm.

Why Occupy Corrib House? - End the Gas Giveaway!

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This morning myself and a number of my comrades from the WSM along with members of Eirigi occupied the roof and reception of Corrib House to draw attention to the state giveaway of Irelands natural resources. Outlined here is my understanding of why we need to act to regain control of our resources.

Okupacja siedziby Shella w Dublinie

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Kwatera główna Shell Oil Company w Dublinie była dziś okupowana przez aktywistów, którzy sprzeciwili się w ten sposób przekazaniu korporacji irlandzkich zasobów naturalnych za bezcen. Protestujący krytycznie postrzegają działalność rządu, który z jednej strony oddaje olbrzymiej firmie zasoby warte wiele milionów euro, a z drugiej mamy do czynienia z faktem niedofinansowania ochrony zdrowia i oświaty.

Early Irish communist - William Thompson - audio

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William Thompson was one of the of the first people to critically engage with political economy and attempt to turn it around to defend the improvement of the condition of the working class and rural poor. He was from a Anglo- Irish landowning family from West Cork and was to become a leading figure in the early Co-operative movement. In this talk from the 2007 Dublin anarchist bookfair Paul Bowman talks about the importance of Thompson and the relevance of his ideas today

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