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When will we break the FF/FG/LAB mould and vote for some real alternatives for real changes in our current ''democracy''.

category national | miscellaneous | opinion/analysis author Sunday May 19, 2013 18:37author by Fionuala Ni Cionnaoith Report this post to the editors

First of all i would like to introduce a misson as to what direct democracy would like to achieve:

What is direct democracy?

Direct democracy is a form of democracy in which the people have the right to:

Select their own candidates to represent them.
Call a referendum on any topic if a sufficient number of people deem it necessary, by gathering a set number of signatures.
Create legislation and put it to a referendum if a sufficient number of people agree with it, by gathering a set number of signatures.
Recall, remove from office, any representative deemed to have acted in breach of their terms of employment.


Implementing direct democracy in Ireland returns the power to the people to call referendums, instigate legislation, and recall representatives who fail to perform.

STOP Bondholder Payments: There is no legal liability for Irish people and their children to pay for private banking debts.
REDUCE Family Home Mortgages: A substantial write down of personal debt to keep people in their homes and stimulate our domestic economy.
ABOLISH All Taxes on Family Homes: “It is morally wrong, unjust and unfair to tax a persons home” – Enda Kenny, 1994.
PROTECT Services & Allowances: Review all cuts made to essential services and people’s vital allowances.
CUT Business Rates: Reduce costs for business to help make them more affordable and competitive thus protecting Irish jobs.
PREVENT State Asset Stripping: Keep water, oil, gas, forestry, fisheries and mineral assets working for the people.

I don't see one thing that i disagree with - Under our current coalition government we are being cooperatively being screwed by both parties.

When will we finally break the LAB/FG/FF/SF mould?? - They are all populist parties full of dubious characters,and don't get me started on our self serving ''independants''..

Joan burton and her job bridge, paying millions to job bridge to rob what could be a paid job from the community,instead of attracting real paid work.

Councils getting paid via PRSI off of peoples working tax, and getting paid through the property tax, which holds no merit at all - are they going to mow my ****ing lawn anytime soon for what i pay on my property?

Its a no purpose tax as far as i'm concerned, as they already get paid by PRSI off of peoples tax.

Now they are getting paid off PRSI and the property tax.Ive seen potholes down the end of my road that still need doing.

Were not getting a fair deal off our government. I think its time to vote direct democracy, for us all to have a real opportunity to affect change in the system, instead of leaving it up to greedy double jobbers, tax evaders, and expense scammers, like we have in the Dail

I like the part where Ben Gilroy of DD says he would like to see a mechanism whereby we can RECALL any politician that has acted in a dishonest self serving manner, i.e. tax evaders, fraudsters, expense scammers,double jobbers,fixing posts for their own etc.

Ben Gilroy seems passionate and genuine about delivering democracy by bringing back article 47 and 48 of the Irish constitution which the last shower of politicians abolished for their own personal gain.

What good are these so called representatives when they pass laws soley to suit themselves and their own personal agendas? Do they represent us when they do things like this?

The coalition at the moment peppered with the most dubious of independents is a rouges gallery at best - time to vote for someone new? Any thoughts on direct democracy and what they can bring to the table?

Your opinions please.

http://directdemocracyireland.ie/ for further reading.

author by brennanpublication date Sun May 19, 2013 18:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I do not have much confidence in mainstream voters,they only vote for mainstream parties,and never give anybody new a chance.

Direct democracy seem like the real deal its a shame.

author by davidpublication date Sun May 19, 2013 18:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

A recall of the current governing group of td's seems reasonable,after all they broke the promises of their contract for all to be seen.

A wait of four years is too long to wait to sack or kick a party out,if i was in my job and i was breaking promises i made in my contract i would be fired on the spot.

It should be no different for them.

author by sameold sameoldpublication date Mon May 20, 2013 03:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Gilroy is a conman. A gombeen just like the current lot.

He dumped his bank loans on the taxpayer too.

author by sameold sameoldpublication date Mon May 20, 2013 04:02author address author phone Report this post to the editors

And It's a bit late to stop bondholder payments.
It's all soverign debt now.

author by davidpublication date Mon May 20, 2013 13:07author address author phone Report this post to the editors


This explains fully the true nature of this politician. His actions are not those representative of the people of ireland,he has lied to them.

author by sameold sameoldpublication date Tue May 21, 2013 03:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

That's a video about Eamonn Gilmore, not Ben Gilroy, but it's worth watching all the same to remind us that politicians always lie before an election so we need to cop on and use other criteria not election promises to choose who we allow our selves to trust.

author by Tpublication date Tue May 21, 2013 15:48author address author phone Report this post to the editors

First off, the points raised above which are stopping bondholder payments, reducing family mortgages, protecting services and preventing asset stripping of state assets are all good things as well as the idea of having recall of representatives and being able to initiate referendums. However like all these things it is worth finding out where the people proposing this are coming from in terms of their ideology and where they might go and just as importantly to discover what sort of backing if any they have.

It turns out that in the April/May 2013 edition of Village magazine (p22) Frank Connolly has written an article about Ben Gilroy and Direct Democracy Ireland (DDI) and unfortunately he seems to have unearthed a few unsettling items and he makes the analogy with Italy that voters seem to be now only becoming aware of what the populist figure Grillo (in Italy) really stands for. In it he says that the people around the DDI founders including Gilroy "have discovered that their populist views include an empathy with UKIP leader Nick Farage, the anti-abortion Christian Solidarity Movement and the extreme right-wing Freeman movement...". He says goes onto to say the campaigner was also prominent in the Cavan demonstrations in support of ex-billionaire Sean Quinn. Connolly asks what the constituents of Meath where Gilroy recently stood in the by-election and got 6.5% of the vote make of the "heady mix of constitutional confusion, economic orthodoxy and flirtation with the extreme right in Europe"

Perhaps this is just mud slinging but perhaps not too. It could well be that people from a broad political spectrum support these policies and we should not get confused or put off just because somebody we don't like politically likes some party or policy that therefore we should automatically not like it.

And in keeping with the analogy to Grillo in Italy, it now appears he is the stalking horse of Wall Street/Big Capital designed to ultimately push their agenda there and while in the initial period he might have said things that resonated, they are now something different. Given the state of Ireland and the reasonable chance that all the big and small political parties are going to be totally discredited if austerity continues, then it is clear big capital need a new horse in the race and it is surely just a matter of time before one appears. Whether DDI could be this or we await the launch of a well funded new party something like the neo-Progressive Democrats remains to be seen. It seems public opinion is being readied as the media have spent the past 5 years dividing the populating by the relentless public/private sector employee wedge.

author by to be frankpublication date Tue May 21, 2013 16:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I understand UKIP are taking the unpopular line of being ''anti immigration'',do you know currently the UK has a serious over-population problem that hasnt been sorted out for decades.

They are building no affordable housing for the surplus generation that has grown up,ie the 80's baby boomers,and 90's baby boomers..

What we are left with is an increase in homelessness,and a huge demand for hostel and sheltered accomadation,while that was traditionally for people with drug/drink addictions,the UK is currenlty seeing people who just simply cannot find a place to get rent presenting at sheltered accomadations/hostels.

Due to the unscrupulous nature of the previous LIB/LAB/CON populist pro immigration governments,we are now seeing an increase in the homeless population of the UK.

This madness has to stop,and Nigel Farage is far from being a Nazi etc,he is a politician concerend about the role of the UK in the EU and uncontrolled immigration.

author by davepublication date Tue May 21, 2013 17:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

So what is your solution,to keep voting the same plonkers that have seen to it that our economy crash,that have offfered ''job solutions'' after such a crash,such as job bridge,and fas that rob what could be a paid job from the community, that are to be quite frank a kick in the face to the unemployed.
No wonder so many people are emigrating,out of this badly run country.Time to vote for change,anybody even a sympathiser of ukip and of freemanism,would be better than the shower of gombeens we have in the dail.
Im just sick to the teeth of the same expense scammers,tax frauds like mick wallace,double jobbers,and jackie healey rae cowboy types.
Its time we outed them on their ear and voted for a coalition of alternatives,and see what change they can bring.
The whole idea of a re call is a fundamental change we need to see IMPLEMENTED ASAP,as four years of bad politics can do a lot to ruin a country and bring it to its knees.
If i was in my job and i broke a contract,i would be practically fired on the spot,and given due notice that i would be out on my ear within 2 weeks.
Time we applied the same rules to them!

author by Tpublication date Tue May 21, 2013 21:12author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Re: So what is your solution.....

As I said above I think the idea of a recall of politicians is a very good one as well as the one about being able to hold a referendum once a certain number of people petition for it.

I think the solution is a difficult one and while you mention some of the particular politicians and refer to tax fraud, I believe the problem is much greater than that. It is a structural problem and the entire system is prisoner to big capital and their various institutes whether that be think tanks writing and dictating policy or their almost complete ownership of the media by the extreme wealthy -e.g. Denis O'Brien with control of Independent News & Media. The media is critical to the whole thing because that is key to the second part of the problem which is that the public are largely uninformed of a multitude of things going on and they are constantly misled and fed propaganda from first thing in the morning to last thing at night every day of their lives and as a result they have a completely distorted worldview of how many things are. Why else would anyone have ever voted for FF? This can be the only valid explanation of why so many people for so long consistently vote for parties that act not in their interests but in the interests of the corporate and other big business backers.

With the current setup especially in terms of the way it simply does not function and where it is "legal" for politicians to give away all our assets, to burden us with private debt of gamblers, speculators, bankers and developers and where no-one has been prosecuted for any of this and all the other issues, it is clear the system of representative democracy clearly does not work in this country and I would assume is probably the case in most others.

But it is not just a case of lets drop that system and switch to direct democracy because it seems that not enough people are willing to get involved. I mean take the last Anti-Property Tax demo on April 15th, given the level of people complaining you would have expected to see a few hundred thousand but instead there was probably a meager 8,000 people there. People seem to treat it all as some kind of service that is provided to them and as you know for direct democracy to work, you need to participate.

Nevertheless taking a practical approach given the non-revolutionary nature of the populace the question does arise who should you vote for. Well on face value DDI would seem to tick some of the boxes but if it turns out that big-capital are using these as stalking horses to further their own agenda then I certainly don't want to be mislead and manipulated.

And this is important because many a dictatorship came in riding on the back of populist issues appearing initially to answer the people's problems or at least promising to, only to turn into something else. And I believe the reason that this consistently works, is because people are always looking for an easy way out -a quick fix. People want a solution to their problems but rarely do they want to do all the hard work at understanding, slogging at it, doing the donkey work and challenging their own roles and behaviour. Much easier to give in to the wishful thinking that somehow things can be solved easily with very little involvement from them. In effect they want a technical quick fix. Thus the problem goes much deeper and requires much greater effort to resolve.

author by RE: Tpublication date Tue May 21, 2013 21:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I don't think DDI are manipulating or misleading the public.Their mission statement and list of goals as to what they would like to achieve is apparent on their website. Whether he is a freeman or not doesnt affect this.

And as for the freeman thing,and of course his sympathies with UKIP,it seems there is a media hunt on ben gilroy of DDI.

Maybe the powers that be are afraid of what Direct Democracy might achieve,re calling of certain political parties with leanings towards the irish media etc,it mightnt go down well at RTE headquaters.

With regards to his fremmanism again,It doesn't change my view of the party and the core goals they would like to achieve such as a re-call of any political party that is acting dishonestly.

Like you say yourself why did the misinformed RTE drip fed public and newspapers run by big business with politcal interests vote for Fianna Fail for so long,nothing to do with the media who are more than likely in cahoots with populist political parties,and have such leanings to them influencing the public and distorting truths,choosing what to put out and what to leave in their dirty rotten closet.

The public have truly been propagandised which is why they still remain determined to vote for the familiar old crooks like LAB/FF/FG.

As we know as well RTE are employed by the state,but are supposed to remain ''partial''..

I think any party even left wing nuts is a better choice right now ,than the mere self serving careerist rats we have in the Dail at present.

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