Workers Party President Michael Finnegan
The President of the Workers’ Party, Michael Finnegan, has said that the 60% Yes vote in the referendum on the EU Fiscal Treaty will prove to be a pyrrhic victory for the government and the establishment as wider events in Europe are already overtaking the decision.
Mr. Finnegan said that the Yes vote had been achieved only through a cynical campaign of threat and avoidance of the real issues.
“Sadly”, said Mr Finnegan, “this vote will be used to justify and bolster permanent austerity and loss of financial and political sovereignty. However, it exposes the class nature of the treaty – an issue which was clearly identified in the voter turnout. The working class vote was solidly against the treaty but the previous experiences of many working class people when their votes had been disregarded and their decisions set aside has led to disengagement with the political process and, accordingly, reduced the NO vote.
“The Yes campaign was built on a platform of money, fear and outright distortion. The huge financial resources available to the Yes campaign, the fact that the electorate was not persuaded but threatened with dire consequences of a failure to vote for the Treaty, together with a persistent misrepresentation of the content of the treaty and what it means for the people of Ireland and Europe has undermined the democratic wishes of working people. It has also underlined the true class character of the EU and the political parties which support austerity”, said Mr. Finnegan.
“While we now face a further vicious onslaught against workers at the hands of the ruling class, the Workers’ Party take some comfort from a strong NO vote and the opportunity to demonstrate that the crisis is systemic, that capitalism is inherently unstable and unsustainable and that the only alternative for workers is to dismantle the present economic system and construct a socialist future.”
Use your vote – Reject Austerity – Vote NO
An uncast vote is not a protest, it is a surrender.
Today is polling day in the referendum on the EU Fiscal Treaty.
Ireland is the only country which is having a referendum on the Treaty and that is only happening because our Constitution gives us that right. The Fiscal Treaty alters our constitution in a number of important ways and gives away some of those sovereign rights in the area of national control of our budget. The Workers’ Party is calling for a NO vote to the proposal to amend the constitution to adopt the Fiscal Treaty. Throughout Europe the situation with regard to the financial crisis is changing by the day but we are being asked to set in stone in our constitution a straitjacket clause that will give permanent control of our budget to the European Union. People throughout Europe are rejecting austerity and forcing their governments to change tack, abandon austerity and invest in jobs for their peoples. Why should we tie our hands now?
A vote for the Fiscal Treaty is a vote for permanent austerity, loss of financial and political sovereignty and severely limits the country’s ability to adapt to changing financial circumstances.
Many people will not vote at all today because they feel excluded from the decision making process that affects their lives. Many will not vote because they see it as a way of protesting. It is not. An uncast vote is not a protest, it is a surrender because it gives your right to a say to somebody else. Some people will vote Yes because they have been frightened by the government’s claims that we would be isolated in Europe, that we would be thrown out of the Eurozone and left without access to further funding. This is completely untrue. It is simply a tactic to terrify people into supporting the Treaty. Remember the lies about jobs and growth that the government and establishment parties made during the Lisbon Treaty? Where are those jobs now? Where is the investment? Don’t be fooled.
Only a NO vote can guarantee that Ireland retains the ability to respond to the changing winds of economic circumstances. A NO vote is a vote against Austerity, against further erosion of our economic and national sovereignty and against the capitalist elites who are trying to further punish ordinary working people for mistakes that they played neither hand, act, nor part in. Vote NO to secure your own future, Vote NO to reject Austerity, Vote NO for your children’s future. But whatever you do please Vote today. It is one of the few rights you have left. Use it.
The following parties and organisations have expressed their support for the campaign in Ireland for a NO vote in the referendum on EU Fiscal Treaty which takes place today, Thursday 31st May.
Communist Party in Denmark
Communist Party of Finland
Communist Party of Slovakia
Communist Party of the Peoples of Spain
Communist Party of Spain
Communist Party Sweden (KP)
Communist Party of Sweden
Danish Communist Party
Hungarian Communist Workers’ Party
New Communist Party of the Netherlands
Palestinian People’s Party
Party of Bulgarian Communists
Party of Italian Communists
Pôle de Renaissance communiste en France
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Communist Party of Poland
Portuguese Communist Party
Socialist Party of Latvia
Socialist People’s Front of Lithuania
Communist Party of Luxembourg
Communist Party of Malta
Union des Révolutionnaires-Communistes de France
German Communist Party
Communist Party of Greece
Workers’ Party of Belgium
Communist Party of Turkey
Labour Party of Turkey
Swiss Party of Labour
The President of the Workers’ Party has said that today’s warning from Finance Minister Michael Noonan that rejection of the EU Fiscal Treaty will cause uncertainty is a hollow threat and an insult to the Irish people who have endured more than four years of continuing uncertainty and worry.
Mr. Finnegan said that the Fiscal Treaty will do nothing to end uncertainty about the economy because it does not purport to fix the economy, merely hand control over it to the unelected European Central Bank, Court of Justice and Commission.
“The only certainty that adopting the EU Fiscal treaty will create”, said Mr. Finnegan, “is the certainty of austerity continuing over a very long period of time and the ceding of fiscal and political sovereignty on a permanent basis. It is an insult for Minister Noonan to talk of uncertainty when the economy has been sent reeling from one crisis to another since 2008. Eighteen months ago Mr. Noonan and his colleagues told us that we could end uncertainty by electing a Fine Gael / Labour coalition but the uncertainty continues and the austerity has been ramped up. Working people want no more of that type of certainty”.
The Workers’ Party President added that “the Fiscal Treaty was not designed to solve Ireland’s financial woes, or those of the other Eurozone states, but rather to solve Germany’s problems and give Angela Merkel and her successors overarching control of the economies of other member states”.
“The Fiscal Treaty”, concluded Mr. Finnegan, “does not even guarantee access to ESM loans. As the Referendum Commission has clearly pointed out, passing this Treaty merely confers a formal right to apply for ESM funding. As anyone who is a bank customer knows, there is a major difference between the ability to apply for a loan and a guarantee that one can draw down such a loan”.