WE DEMAND DEMOCRACY The Irish Republic is in the grip of an economic crisis created by the few but devastating the many. Decisions made by a handful of inter-connected individuals – the golden circle of Irish politicians, developers and bankers – have resulted in over €50 billion of losses accrued by speculative private enterprises being foisted onto all Irish citizens. The Fianna Fáil/Green government are sacrificing the future of our Republic for the sake of international billionaires, failed property speculators and largely faceless home grown bondholders. Rather than force these individuals to suffer the consequences of their actions, the government prefers to financially cripple the country for a generation – resulting in children losing their right to an education, the sick going without care, the young being forced into emigration, and the elderly being robbed of the retirement they deserve and have worked hard for. For the last two years the government has focused on creating mechanisms such as the National Assets Management Agency (NAMA) and the bank guarantee as a delaying tactic to allow those most culpable to escape paying for their economic sabotage. Bankers such as former Irish Nationwide boss Michael Fingleton, former Anglo boss Sean Fitzpatrick, on the run David Drumm and their developer cohorts feel assured they have managed to hide enough ill gotten assets to ensure they will never feel the poverty their gambles have inflicted on a generation.
The decisions that have allowed this situation to develop were not made in the interests of the citizens of the Republic but against them. They were fundamentally anti-democratic. Rather than challenge them the political class merely seeks a “consensus” on the implemention of cutbacks that will only worsen the economic crisis. We demand the fundamental democratic right of the people to express our view on our economic future in a referendum. The referendum would ask citizens to assert the primacy of “the common good” and “social justice” as enshrined in Article 43.2 of Bunreacht na hÉireann. This assertion would mark a turning point towards the building of a new sustainable economy that will serve the interests of the many rather than the few.
An assertion of the primacy of Article 43.2 must result in; • The revoking of the bank guarantee and a declaration that it was entered into by a government acting in contravention of the constitution. • The use of existing state reserve funds, which still amount to over €40 billion, for a jobs intensive investment programme. • The suspension of Article 43.1.2 in specific circumstances where individuals, heavily indebted to nationalised banks, have transferred assets to associates and family members. These transactions will be rendered null and void. • All the financial activities of the State being made fully transparent.
If you agree with the need for this referendum; sign the petition at www.wedemanddemocracy.ie or return the form on the back of this leaflet to: The Campaign for a Democratic Choice, 48 North Great Georges Street, Dublin 1 or your local campaign organiser Our aim is collect over 50,000 signatures and then present them to the President of Ireland and call for the instigation of a referendum on this issue to be held alongside the one deemed necessary on Children’s Rights The proposed referendum question: I, as a citizen of the Irish Republic, assert the primacy of Article 43.2 Bunreacht na hÉireann/ Irish Constitution over Article 43.1 Bunreacht na hÉireann/Irish Constitution and instruct the Irish state to develop legislation which expresses this as the will of the people.
Article 43 Bunreacht na hÉireann/Irish Constitution 1. 1° The State acknowledges that man, in virtue of his rational being, has the natural right, antecedent to positive law, to the private ownership of external goods. 2° The State accordingly guarantees to pass no law attempting to abolish the right of private ownership or the general right to transfer, bequeath, and inherit property. 2. 1° The State recognises, however, that the exercise of the rights mentioned in the foregoing provisions of this Article ought, in civil society, to be regulated by the principles of social justice. 2° The State, accordingly, may as occasion requires delimit by law the exercise of the said rights with a view to reconciling their exercise with the exigencies of the common good.
The Campaign for a Democratic Choice has been initiated by the Workers’ Party but seeks support from all those who wish to see justice, and work towards the building of a sustainable economy.
There is an alternative Without a democratic mandate the current Fianna Fáil/Green government seeks to make a binding
agreement with the EU on a four year budgetary plan that will cut at least €15 billion from the Irish economy. These policies are not aimed at building a productive economy but merely seek to benefit domestic, as well as foreign speculators, and multi-national corporations.
Proposals for a progressive economy Creation of an equitable taxation system -Increases in taxes on profits and income and decreases in consumption taxes. The closing of all tax loopholes. A third tax rate on all income over €100,000. The ending of tax exile status.
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Immediate implementation of an investment programme aimed at creating jobs for those currently unemployed as well as those finishing education. The programme will utilise the state’s reserve funds, which still amount to over €40 billion, and money currently being handed to speculator bondholders. Establishment of a State Resources Company with responsibility for the exploitation of what the Department of Energy and Natural Resources estimates is over €500 billion worth of oil and gas deposits off the Irish coast. Current deals with energy multinationals will be renegotiated on terms in line with international norms. The bringing together of state assets, including ESB, Bord Gais, Coillte and CIE into a State Holding Company which would raise capital for investment in strategic development. The creation of a National Health Service guaranteeing equal care to all. Creation of a new status of public health care consultant with annual salary capped at €120,000. The establishment of a Corruption Assets Bureau – bringing together public servants from the Gardai, revenue and other agencies to establish the whereabouts of the proceeds of corruption and their seizure in Ireland and abroad.
WE DEMAND DEMOCRACY
The Irish Republic belongs to its Citizens
Irish citizens have the right, as asserted in the constitution, to ensure that the wealth of our Republic is utilised for the “common good” and to promote “social justice”. We demand a national referendum to assert these constitutional rights so bringing the economy under the control of the many rather than a corrupt few. In March 2008 the Icelandic people expressed their will through a referendum which ended attempts by that country’s elite to sell out their nation’s wealth, we must do the same.
If you agree with these statements, read inside about how you can join
The Campaign for a Democratic Choice