Member 1131 of Solidarity – The Left Alternative



At the end of 2016 in the wake of what seemed like something of a move to the left at their national conference I joined the Anti-Austerity Alliance via an online form. This was quickly overturned by the local AAA committee, primarily on the grounds that I had supposedly participated in a political witch-hunt against an AAA member during the anti-water charges/metering campaign in Cobh. See the following blog posts for my response to these untrue allegations:





But jumping forward 6 months – during which time the Anti-Austerity Alliance has undergone a rebranding into Solidarity – The Left Alternative.

At the beginning of this week I viewed what was billed as the first full interview by Paul Murphy following the successful defeat of the Irish state’s clearly politically motivated attempt to have him and 6 others convicted of the “false imprisonment” of Tánaiste Joan Burton during the Jobstown anti water charges protest in 2014.

That interview (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9gTySblCq7g) ended with Paul saying:

“We will try and use this as a launching pad to say that a substantial broad left needs to be built in this country. That everybody who stands for a society based on the interests of the majority as opposed to the 1% at the top should come together. Everybody who stands for a woman’s right to choose. Everybody who stands for those kind of policies based on people power movements from below. Those who believe in turning society effectively upside down, saying the wealth and resources should be in the hands of the majority instead of the minority.

“We need to come together and Solidarity will be launching that call, the idea that we come together on the streets, that we come together in movements and we come together in terms of elections to try to pose the most serious challenge possible to fight for, and to pose the need for, in this country a left government. And that doesn’t mean a left government of parties in coalition with Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, or whatever. It means fighting for a government that actually operates in the interests of the majority.”

The following evening, Tuesday 4 July, Solidarity held a public meeting in Cork with Paul as the headline speaker. The same sentiments outlined in Paul’s interview were expressed by the speakers, and other Solidarity members from the floor, along with calls to join Solidarity as the best way to concretise that sentiment – with membership forms available to be filled out as we left.

Though I might have different ideas to Paul about how we could achieve those goals, and what a government capable of actually achieving them would look like, I quite clearly fall within the category of “everybody who stands for” those general perspectives – and would presumably be welcomed into Solidarity.

I therefore filled out one of the membership forms at the end of the meeting and had it, along with my €10 membership fee, accepted by the Solidarity member staffing the table.

Two days later, as I write this blog post, I remain a member of Solidarity and am looking forward to working with my new comrades as we strive to build a movement that really can turn society upside down by putting the wealth and resources in the hands of the majority instead of the minority – that is a socialist movement that ends capitalism.

The first opportunity for this would have been this coming Saturday when Cork Solidarity is going to be out on the streets taking our anti-capitalist message to working people. However I am already committed to attending the national conference of the Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment as one of the Rebels4Choice representatives. But I am sure I will be hearing from the Cork branch soon about upcoming activities.


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