The Picket Dilemma: I’ve decided

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 09: A DHL lorry pass...
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I know the blog seems to be obsessed with Strikes at the moment, but they are a big part of whats going on with me at the moment! Between asking you what you think of crossing pickets to my teachers going on strike its time that I decided what I am going to do about the strike at Boots.

I have talked to a few friends about this and teachers about my predicament and everyone acknowledges the predicament I am in. I have some suggestions, such as calling in sick during the strike to just plain cross the picket.

So I have decided.

As I am a part time worker on a temporary contract, on this occassion I will be crossing the pickets. I need the hours, basically I need the money. I think the full time union members will appreciate these facts and there will not be hassle with me ducking the picket line, if there is one when I am working.

Oh if only life was easy!

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Armstice Day

Scarlet poppy with neighbors
Image by Martin LaBar via Flickr

I am not sure if many people i Ireland are aware of the promises made by people today attending Rembrenance Day and Armstice Day Services make a very poignant promise during the service. Maybe we should all make this promise.

Let us commit ourselves to responsible living and faithful service

Will you strive for all that matters for peace?

We will

Will you work seek to heal the wounds of war?

We will

Will you work for a just future for all humanity?

We will

Merciful God, we offer to you he fears in us that have not yet been cast out by love; may we accept the hope you have placed in the hearts of all people, and the live lives of justice, courage and mercy; through Jesus Christ our risen redeemer.


Something for us all to consider on this day?

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Let Mr Blue Sky In!


Someone filled me in on  a little something at is happening on Staurday here in Cork! See below for the details!

Let Mr. Blue Sky in!

Who do we want? Everyone! No experience necessary.

For what? A flash mob to celebrate the arts in Cork.

A Flash mob? Check out these links

When is it happening? Saturday 14th Nov. at 1.30pm

Where is it happening? Patricks Street, Cork

How long will it last? Around 3.5 minutes

Why? To stand up (and dance a little) for the arts. And to bring fun and bewilderment to Patricks Street punters.

What do you need to do to take part? You need to come to two rehearsals at the newly revamped Savoy Theatre, Patricks Street on Wednesday 11th November, 7.30pm – 9.30pm and Saturday 14th November, 10.30am Then let Mr Blue Sky in at 1.30pm

Sign up for it now RSVP to letmrblueskyin[at]gmail[dot]com

This sounds like a bit of fun and sounds like it will make a point at the same time. Fair play to the Campaign for Arts for it! It will be a marked contrast to the disruption cause by the Union Protest on Friday!

For more on the National Campaign for the Arts, see their website, twitter and facebook. Best of luck to them!

See Also: – Arts Audit Call

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FG Want to Abolish The Seanad

Fine Gael
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Last night the at the Fine Gael Presidential Dinner, Enda Kenny announced the following:

I believe the Seanad should be abolished and the next Fine Gael Government will put this to the people. I have come to the conclusion that a second house of the Oireachtas can no longer be justified. In abolishing Seanad Eireann, I have examined the outcome of similar decisions in countries such as Sweden, Denmark and New Zealand. Our two-house Oireachtas is an odd man out in Europe. Two-thirds of all European Parliaments are unicameral. Those that are not tend to be large or federal.

Well Mr. Kenny I think we disagree on this. In my view the upper house plays a vital role in our legislative process. It is independent (due to how it is elected) but I do think it needs reform.

Its strange in a week that Dan Sullivan points out, on Irish Election,  that if Fianna Fail manage to win the General Election, they could have a minority in the Seanad.

This stinks of populism. I think the Seanad needs root and branch reform (in fact our entire system needs that!) including being open to election by all on a PR list (based on European Election Constituencies, thats my idea anyway)

So do ye think FG is right to call for the abolition of the Seanad?

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Cork Info Night on the Civil Partnership Bill


GLEN (Gay & Lesbian Equality Network) is coming to Cork.


Information Event!

Informing The Debate On Legal Recognition

Cork Gay Project & L.inC are hosting an information session on the Civil Partnership Bill.

Date: Thursday 15th October

Venue: Cork Gay Project, 8 North Mall

Time: 7pm

Contact: Cork Gay Project on 021-4304884 or L.inC on 021-4808600


I’m thinking of heading along. Could be interesting.

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Talk To EU – Cork Event

On the 26th of August Talk To EU comes to Cork City and are holding an event in Jurys Hotel on the Western Road at 8pm. This is an opportunity to ask some questions and learn more about the EU.

From the poster:

The EU is coming to you. It’s a forum where you can learn more
about what we do, and we can learn more about what you think.
It’s open to you, your friends, work colleagues, or a representative body that you are a member of.
Let us know if you can come to the event below, or if you’d like to set up your own meeting at a time and place that suits you.

Should be interesting. I am heading along, any one else? Email EventsATtalktoeuDOTie to reserve a seat or contact them on 087 787 0634 or on twitter.

See the poster here (pdf)

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A Gay Weekend in Ireland

There were two events held over the weekend involving the Gay Population in Ireland. One was a great success, the other a waste of time.

Lets start with the success, Northwest pride held an event in a town called Easkey. The village in Co. Sligo has a population of 250 and it went gay for the day with local people and businesses taking part in the event. Reading the coverage in the Guardian though really brought it home for me about how much rural Ireland has changed, and changed for the better.

What really sent that home was the quotes from a few of the locals such as this one from Michael Gordon who manages the village shop

“Gay people are the same as every body else.” He has lived in Easkey all his life, helped rebuild two churches in the area and knows everyone in the town. “Ireland is a tolerant place now, thank God,” he said. “Rural Ireland has grown up.”

Or this one from a local mother Linda O’Dowd

“I have no idea if any of my kids are gay, but I would totally support them,” she said. “I don’t see anything wrong with it whatsoever.

Fair play to Easkey, but they do prove their point.

Now the second event, the LGBT Noise march in Dublin which saw 5,000 people marching for Gay Marriage. Why bother? I mean we have a civil partnership bill that will be passed, shouldn’t we be focusing on that making sure that it is the best possible, rather then focusing on this pie in the sky aim, that isn’t going to happen anytime soon?

We have to be realists, we have to get on with it. Why scrifice what we can have now, for what we might get in ten years when there is polical will for it? We can still get it in future, but why sacrifice what we have in front of us?

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Luxembourg in Video

Carmel has some videos from Luxembourg up on her blog, so I have robbed them in case you missed them! I of course am in them and the second video as me attempting Irish Dancing while under the influence. It really gives you a taste of what we got up to and why it was so much fun!

Part one: Presenting Our Online Identities Offline

Part Two: Intercultural Night

These videos reminded me of all the fun I had and what I learned! Thanks Carmel!

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Lisbon Has To Be Won On The Doorstops

While lots of the Yes Campaign seems to be based online with facebook fan pages, websites and so on, the campaign will not be won online. While yes it will play a role, it is not the most effective tool availible.

The Yes groups need to be willing and able to get out on the doorsteps and explain to people what this is all about. I can assure you that this is what Sinn Fein and the other No groups will be doing so we need to get out there to assure the voters that Voting Yes to the Lisbon Treaty is the best thing for Ireland.

Last time out, this wasnt done. There was more of a focus on shopping centres and leafletting like that, but that wont cut it this time as primarily footfall is down in most shopping  centres and so we need to talk to people where they will be, at home in the evenings.

This isn’t the easiest option of course and is very labour intensive, but it gets the best results. Media and online stuff are what aids this work, but from the end of this month we need to be out there knocking on doors. It is the only way we can hope for a large Yes vote. I plan on starting canvassing from the end of this month, if all goes to plan of course.

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The Middle Class Do Exist

An Industrial Worker capitalist class critique
Image via Wikipedia

In a recent blog post Stephen Kinsella has the following to say about the Middle Class in Ireland:

When you look closely, you see the middle class just doesn’t exist.

While I would agree in principle that on paper and using accepted definintions the middle class in Ireland is very small, but thats not what matters. It is self perception.

When I read his post, I could see myself agreeing but then realising, hang on, thats not how people will perceieve themselves. As we humans are always likely to rate ourselves higher then what statisticians tell us.

Why do I think that? Well look at any of the cities in Ireland you have your areas that are nice to live in, and those that aren’t. Most people *I* think in Ireland would base their social class by where they live.  Not on by the type of job they have or the amount they earn in comparison to the national average.

Its whats how people perceieve themselves that matter, not the box acedemics put them in.

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