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Editors: Michael Holmes and Knut Roder

The financial crisis that erupted on both sides of the Atlantic in 2007–8 initially seemed to offer new political and economic opportunities to the left. As financial institutions collapsed, traditional left-wing issues were apparently back on the agenda. There was the prospect of a return to a more regulated economy, there was widespread state intervention to try to salvage failing banks, and it led to increased scrutiny of the wages and bonuses at the upper end of the scale. However, instead of being a trigger for a resurgence of the left, and despite a surge of support for new parties like SYRIZA and Podemos, in many European countries left-wing parties have suffered electoral defeat. At the same time, the crisis has led to austerity programmes being implemented across Europe, causing further erosion of the welfare state and pushing many into poverty. This timely book examines this crucial period for the left in Europe from a number of perspectives and addresses key questions including: How did political parties from the left respond to the crisis both programmatically and politically? What does the crisis mean for the relationship between the left and European integration? What does the crisis mean for socialism as an economic, political and social project? This collection focuses on a comparison between ten EU member states, and considers a range of different party families of the left, from social democracy through green left to radical left.

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The end of neoliberalism?

The election of Donald Trump to the US presidency was heralded in some circles as a working-class rejection of neoliberalism, in favour of a more authoritarian populism. This chapter evaluates the Trump presidency in the comparative light of what came before him, looking at the extent to which it continues, accentuates, or challenges neoliberal orthodoxy and the political-economic power of the business class. The chapter looks at President Trump’s cabinet appointments, to evaluate the extent to which his Executive branch represents a new political bloc, and at the effects of the administration’s tax, trade, environmental, natural resource, health, education, and electoral policies. The chapter argues that, with the exception of trade policy, Trump, whatever his motivations and despite elites’ condemnation of his vulgarity, is a product and continuation of the politics that precede him.

in Neoliberal lives
Irish republican media activism since the Good Friday Agreement

Newspapers, magazines and pamphlets have always been central, almost sacred, forms of communication within Irish republican political culture. While social media is becoming the primary ideological battleground in many democracies, Irish republicanism steadfastly expresses itself in the traditional forms of activist journalism.

Shinners, Dissos and Dissenters is a long-term analysis of the development of Irish republican activist media since 1998 and the tumultuous years following the end of the Troubles. It is the first in-depth analysis of the newspapers, magazines and online spaces in which the differing strands of Irish republicanism developed and were articulated during a period where schism and dissent defined a return to violence.

Based on an analysis of Irish republican media outlets as well as interviews with the key activists that produced them, this book provides a compelling long-term snapshot of a political ideology in transition. It reveals how Irish Republicanism was moulded by the twin forces of the Northern Ireland Peace Process and the violent internal ideological schism that threatened a return to the ‘bad old days’ of the Troubles.

This book is vital for those studying Irish politics and those interestedin activism as it provides new insights into the role that modern activist media forms have played in the ideological development of a 200-year-old political tradition.

grounds that IRA Army Orders prohibited members of Communist organisations from becoming members.1 Goulding implied that if Johnston were expelled then he would also resign and defended Johnston as ‘the best thing that had happened to the republican movement’.2 The 1964 Ard Fheis, held in the Bricklayers Hall on 5 and 6 December, approved a paper on Economic Resistance written by Roy Johnston. Seamus Costello’s cumann in Bray called for a re-examination of electoral policy but this was defeated. There was another motion that proposed expelling any member of the movement

in The IRA 1956–69

hundred delegates present, reflecting the loss of cumainn in places like Kerry. Cathal Mac Liam and Dalton Kelly attended as representatives of the Wolfe Tone Society and reported on the ‘strong diversion of opinion on the question of attending Leinster House’.25 Motions on electoral policy included one that sought to limit discussion of the issue to every three years. Another proposed that participation in parliament be decided on a tactical basis by the Ard Comhairle. The Ard Comhairle itself proposed a compromise motion that sought to balance the desire of the

in The IRA 1956–69
The Shinners

contested debate on electoralism, did signify the gradual development of electoral policy dating back to Jimmy Drumm’s speech, co-written by Morrison and Adams, at the Bodenstown commemoration in 1977.70 This electoral policy was not without precedent; Sinn Féin had contested elections in previous periods, including the 1960s. The period 1970–1981 was, in this respect, an aberration. That the party went from floating the idea that ‘we find that a successful war of liberation cannot be fought exclusively on the backs of the oppressed in the six counties’, to being central

in Shinners, Dissos and Dissenters

indicative of their continued strength following the modernisers’ failure to pass changes to electoral policy in 1965. It also indicated, however, that some modernisers like Costello were supportive of the military plan. Although the report makes it clear that Johnston was a member of the IRA Executive and a GHQ officer, ‘since early in 1965’, he is described by Gardaí as a member of the Irish Workers Party: ‘The appointment of Johnston was a complete departure from former IRA policy to have any association with Communist or left-wing groups.’ In the appendix containing

in The IRA 1956–69
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The Labour Party, the trade unions and the choices of direction for the democratic left

revolutionary politics was smaller than in Germany or in France, where at the 1919 Socialist Congress those voting against the proposed electoral policy amounted to 28 per cent. While there were divisions on the left, the far left for the most part remained strong in only a few areas such as South Wales and Clydeside, and the Communist Party of Great Britain did not divide Labour in a similar way to the experiences of Germany, France and other continental European countries. Also, Britain did not have the ‘confessional unions’ of Germany, Belgium and elsewhere, nor unions of

in Labour, British radicalism and the First World War

tariff reform, Ewen Green argued that many Unionists felt they needed to adopt a ‘positive’ electoral policy which could secure their long-term future by stopping the country from dividing along class lines. Chamberlain’s supporters fervently promoted tariff reform, even though it divided the Unionist ranks, as they believed that it was the only major policy that could surmount the party’s apparent crisis and enable it to consolidate its appeal amongst the working classes.6 Whereas Green focused chiefly on policy-making, this chapter explores the cultural reasons

in Conservatism for the democratic age
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which hold the state together. One such mechanism, ensuring real dialogue and cooperation between society and the authorities in the fight against terror must be to create national parties. In the interests of strengthening the political system of the country I consider it necessary to introduce a proportional system of elections to the State Duma.53 This post-Beslan speech by Putin is the clearest example yet of the securitisation of electoral policy, though it is securitisation more by assertion than by carefully crafted argument. Putin makes a connection between

in Securitising Russia