A Vote For Labour is a Vote for FF

The Sunday Independent’s story that senior Labour figures are hinting at working with Fianna Fail after the next election. It cements the idea that many people already have of Labour.

I agree fully with Scandelcentral of course who say:

However Labour is very suited to Fianna Fail. They stand for nothing. Together we would form a fine coalition. It would only plunges us into economic desolation. We wouldn’t see economic growth for decades, if we are lucky, as Labour halts Fianna Fail cutbacks while forcing them to increase spending widening our continued deficits. Apocalypse is the only word which rightly comes to mind

Of course this reminds me of the goings on after the UK elections on whether to do a deal with Labour if Gordon Brown was still there. Labour here will only work with FF without Cowen.

Labour won’t gain many transfers or 1st preferences from this ploy! It just proves that they will work with anyone to get into power. It smells of desperation to me!

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UK Politics Just Got More Interesting

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown captured d...
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People often wonder why I show interest in UK Politics. I find it really interesting and absorbing. The following letter from two fromer Ministers really sums up why I find it more interesting!

Dear Colleague,

As we move towards a General Election it remains the case that the Parliamentary Labour Party is deeply divided over the question of the leadership. Many colleagues have expressed their frustration at the way in which this question is affecting our political performance. We have therefore come to the conclusion that the only way to resolve this issue would be to allow every member to express their view in a secret ballot.

This could be done quickly and with minimum disruption to the work of MPs and the Government. Whatever the outcome the whole of the party could then go forward, knowing that this matter had been sorted out once and for all.

Strong supporters of the Prime Minister should have no difficulty in backing this approach. There is a risk otherwise that the persistent background briefing and grumbling could continue up to and possibly through the election campaign, affecting our ability to concentrate all of our energies on getting our real message across.

Equally those who want change, should they lose such a vote, would be expected by the majority of the PLP to devote all of their efforts to winning the election. The implications of such a vote would be clear – everyone would be bound to support the result.

This is a clear opportunity to finally lay this matter to rest. The continued speculation and uncertainty is allowing our opponents to portray us as dispirited and disunited. It is damaging our ability to set out our strong case to the electorate. It is giving our political opponents an easy target.

In what will inevitably be a difficult and demanding election campaign, we must have a determined and united parliamentary party. It is our job to lead the fight against our political opponents. We can only do that if we resolve these distractions. We hope that you will support this proposal.

Yours fraternally,

Geoff Hoon and Patricia Hewitt

Text of letter from Sky News

With an election coming up in May, this has serious ramifications for the Labour Party. Will Gordon Brown stay or go? Will the ballot go ahead??? Its all very interesting! I will be watching it closely!

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[Think 09] Could the Elections finish Cowen?

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Originally posted on the thinkaboutit.eu blog

Ethan’s post about the fact that the European Election could be another nail in the coffin for Gordon Brown, got me thinking could it be the same in Ireland to the Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Brian Cowen . In fact an article in on the Irish Independent’s website wonders the same thing.

In the last election in 2004 Fianna Fail lost two MEP’s and 80 Councillors, this time out they could loose two MEPs a similar amount of councillors PLUS a seat in Dáil Eireann (Lower house of Parliament). Also up for grabs is  another seat in the Dáil formerly held by an Independent. June 5th is being dupped a “Super Friday” here in Ireland due to the Local, European and Bye-Elections all being held at the same time and could become a “Super Headache” for Brian Cowen.

The latest poll by Predict 09 for Ireland forecast that Fianna Fail will loose two of its MEP’s. The gainers from this will be Labour and Sinn Fein which will retain a seat due to Fianna Fail loosing it. (NOTE: Ireland is going from 13 seats to 12)

Since the last election of course things have gone badly wrong and this is Cowen’s first electoral test since becoming Taoiseach last year. Loosing seats is not something he wants to happen, but I think most in Fianna Fail are resigned to it.

Some of the Fianna Fail MEP’s have no mention of Fianna Fail on their campaign cars. Brian Crowley, MEP for Ireland South, is one such MEP. His Mercedes has no mention of Fianna Fail and you have to look very closely at his posters to see a mention of Fianna Fail. Does he see the writing on the wall?

June 6th and 7th will give lots of interesting results!

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Olympic Boycotts

So whos not going to the opening Ceremony.

German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel has said she will not attend the opening ceremony and British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has confirmed he will not attend the opening ceremony but will attend the closing ceremony.

George Bush is still going but at this point all the Presidential candidates (including McCain, has asked him to not attend.

Meanwhile the European Parliament voted on a resolution today calling on “Calls on the EU Presidency-in-Office to strive to find a common EU position with regard to the attendance of the Heads of Government and of State and the EU High Representative at the Olympic Games opening ceremony,”

There has been similar calls in Ireland for Biffo not to attend.

I am glad there are no calls for atheletes to boycott the Games like at the American-led boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow and the Soviet-led boycott of the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. These only affect the atheletes and do not impact anyway on the host nation. The olympics only cone once every four years, so they can sometimes be the highlight of an atheletes career.

Maybe the approach should be like the 15 countries, at the 1980 Moscow Olympics, who disagreed with the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan that they marched under the Olympic flag, and not their national flag, and the Olympic Hymn was used instead of a national anthem. Or like New Zealand did at the same olympics and use the flag of their NOC (New Zealand Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association)

This could be the way for NOC’s to overcome the moral/ethical dilemma faced by them. Of course everything should be done to sepperate Sport from Politics but the Olympics is one of those events which seams to meld the two as countries put so much time and effort into hosting the games and bidding for the games.

I have therefore decided to join Merkel and Brown and not watch the opening ceremony of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games.

There thats my ethical issue over and done with

Provisional Texts of Texts Adopted at the European Parliament, Thursday 10th April (Word Doc)