Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/947/25382

From The Socialist newspaper, 3 May 2017

Packed court laughs down cutter Joan Burton's comparison to Marxist James Connolly

Pro-cuts former Irish Labour leader Joan Burton, photo by William Murphy (Creative Commons)

Pro-cuts former Irish Labour leader Joan Burton, photo by William Murphy (Creative Commons)   (Click to enlarge)

Neil Cafferky

Day four of the Jobstown protesters' trial began on 2 May in Dublin. Prosecution witness and austerity politician Joan Burton, the former tánaiste (deputy prime minister), took to the stand for a third day, following a torrid two days of cross-examination by the defence.

The prosecution's case hinges on the idea that Joan Burton was in such fear from peaceful protesters that she was forced to take refuge in her ministerial car - and was thereby unlawfully detained, justifying a charge of "false imprisonment."

This poignant scene largely fell apart under defence questioning.

A devastating video taken inside the car shows her assistant referring to protesters as "the fucking dregs." Other scenes show Burton smiling and laughing. The defence produced pictures of her peacefully reading a newspaper.

When it was put to her these were not the actions of someone who appeared to be in danger, Burton replied that the newspaper article was about the insurrectionary Michael Collins.

Collins was military commander of the IRA during the 1919-21 Irish War of Independence. As well as organising guerrilla attacks on the British Army and Royal Irish Constabulary, he ordered targeted assassinations of undercover Special Branch officers.

Burton claims to have wondered: "What would Michael Collins think of this?"

In one particularly surreal exchange, she claimed to stand in the tradition of Marxist revolutionary James Connolly. This outlandish assertion drew gales of laughter from the packed courtroom.

James Connolly was the founder of Ireland's Labour Party, and cofounder of the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union along with James Larkin. He led the socialist wing of the pro-independence forces in the 1916 Easter Rising. The bosses' suppression of the uprising resulted in wide-scale loss of life.

So it appears Joan Burton is happy to claim the mantle of people who used armed insurrection and guerrilla warfare as tactics. However, working class people engaging in a loud, determined - but peaceful - sit-down protest for two-and-a-half hours... that is beyond the pale!

The record of Labour's 2011-16 period in coalition government with Fine Gael, Ireland's biggest right-wing party, was put under the microscope by defence barrister Kerida Naidoo.

Naidoo repeatedly asked Burton if she was aware of the anger generated by the policies of her coalition government in Tallaght, the town near Dublin which includes Jobstown.

Burton claimed only a small number of people were angry about austerity in Tallaght.

Here in Britain, the solidarity campaign with Jobstown continues to grow. The London region of transport union RMT has agreed to back the campaign and donated £250. The region pledged to submit a motion to the RMT's ruling council of executives in order to secure the official backing of the union.


Protesting in solidarity with Jobstown defendants in Ireland, photo by Neil Cafferky

Protesting in solidarity with Jobstown defendants in Ireland, photo by Neil Cafferky   (Click to enlarge)

Socialist Party members showed solidarity with Jobstown Not Guilty on the May Day march in London. For around-the-world reports of International Workers' Day see socialistworld.net

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 3 May 2017:


What we think

Race against time for May as Corbyn sets out anti-austerity case


Socialist Party news and analysis

Jeremy Corbyn's workers' charter

Corbyn pledges a million homes and landlord regulation

McDonnell promises reversal of Tories' tax cuts for the super-rich

Corbyn pledges end to uni fees and school cuts

Corbyn government would lift NHS pay cap

Support for socialist programme in Labour Liverpool rally


Social care in crisis

Beyond the crisis point: saving social care


International socialist news and analysis

Packed court laughs down cutter Joan Burton's comparison to Marxist James Connolly

Trump's policies hit a wall


Socialist Students

NUS leadership: Blairites supported by establishment


Workplace news and analysis

Unison health conference: fury over leadership's feet dragging

Union leadership and Labour right challenged at shop workers' conference

McDonald's forced to back down on zero-hours

PCS elections - vote Democracy Alliance

Transport union protests against driver-only operation outside parliament


Socialist readers' comments and reviews

Rare opportunity to see Russian revolution lifted off the page


Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

Mersey metro-mayor TV debate

'Socialist Steve' takes on the robots

TUSC's south Wales challenge to pro-cuts parties


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Buy your ticket now for the political event of the year: Socialism 2017

Housing association workers' and tenants' alternative awards ceremony

Sheffield mental health campaigner: "austerity kills"


 

Home   |   The Socialist 3 May 2017   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Ireland:

triangleInternational news in brief

triangleYorkshire meeting in solidarity with the #JobstownNotGuilty campaign

triangleJobstown Not Guilty trial round-up

triangleEast London Socialist Party: Support the right to protest in Ireland

triangleJobstown trial begins

Marxist:

triangleIzquierda Revolucionaria central committee meeting

triangleCWI and Izquierda Revolucionaria - towards unification

triangleNo, Trumpism is nothing like Leninism

triangleTense, lively prologue to events which changed the world

Union:

triangleHuman rights workers strike in support of sacked union members

triangleArgos: aggressive bosses met by determined strike

Dublin:

triangleIreland: Bury the water charges

Coalition government:

triangleUniversal basic income - what do socialists say?

Austerity:

triangleManchester bombing: unite against terror, war and racism

International

International

24/5/17

CWI

International news in brief

24/5/17

US

Trump regime faces deepening crisis

17/5/17

Israel

Palestinian prisoners on mass hunger strike protest

17/5/17

Brazil

Brazil: General strike against Temer regime

10/5/17

Jobstown

Jobstown Not Guilty trial round-up

10/5/17

Sport

US: women ice hockey players' strike threat wins living wage

10/5/17

France

France: Macron won't solve economic & social crises

3/5/17

Ireland

Packed court laughs down cutter Joan Burton's comparison

3/5/17

Trump

Trump's policies hit a wall

26/4/17

France

Mélenchon result shows potential for building a mass left force

26/4/17

Ireland

Jobstown trial begins

19/4/17

Turkey

Turkey: constitutional referendum result a pyrrhic victory for Erdogan

19/4/17

Trump

Trump escalates geopolitical tensions on Korean peninsula

19/4/17

Ireland

Protest is not a crime: back Jobstown Not Guilty

19/4/17

France

Melenchon result shows potential for building a mass left force

triangleMore International articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle24 May Obituary: Rhodri Morgan 1939-2017, architect of the 'Welsh Labour'...

triangle23 May Manchester bombing: Unite against terror, war and racism

triangle22 May Capitalism condemned

triangle19 May Aggressive bosses met by determined strike

triangle17 May Increased majority for Democracy Alliance

triangle17 May Corbyn's manifesto: An important step in the right direction

triangle17 May Book launch: From Militant to the Socialist Party

More ...

triangle25 May London Socialist Party: Tories Out - Corbyn can win with a socialist, anti-austerity programme

triangle25 May Swansea Socialist Party: The general election - will socialist policies win?

triangle25 May Huddersfield Socialist Party: A socialist health policy

triangle25 May Bristol South Socialist Party: What does the Russian revolution mean today?

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice