Thursday, May 24, 2012

Father and Son Campaigners call for No Vote to Treaty at New Ross Meeting

Two generations of a New Ross area family spoke at a public meeting on the upcoming Fiscal/Austerity intergovernmental treaty referendum in New Ross town last Tuesday night. The Chairman of County Wexford Sinn Féin, Oisin O’Connell, was joined on stage for the first time by his father, veteran EU campaigner Emmet O’Connell who published a booklet predicting the eurozone crisis almost forty years ago.

Speaking at the meeting Emmet O’Connell quoted from his 1972 book The Consequences of Monetary Union - and its Effects on Peripheral Regions. He used it to illustrate his opinions, firstly, that this is part of an historical process of subjugating peripheral regions to core ones. Secondly, that a "Yes" vote will have disastrous long term effects for the Irish nation - as evidenced by our previous monetary and political union with Britain.

His son Oisin organised the meeting, saying that in the past few weeks Sinn Féin had organised public meetings across the county in an effort to answer questions and counter arguments that were being put out by the yes camp.

“The government and the other pro-austerity parties and groups who have support this treaty have said that a yes vote offers more certainty than a no vote,” Mr O’Connell said. “The only certainty that a yes vote beings is the certitude of more austerity. This treaty, if ratified, will certainly lead to more money being sucked out of our economy. It will definitely mean more cuts to public services, more and increased taxes on ordinary families, more unemployment, more emigration and more poverty. It will absolutely spell disaster for the Irish nation and the Irish people. It will not even work - our bank bailout debts are unsustainable.”

“People forget that this treaty is only the first of two. There is the silent-partner - the European Stability Mechanism - to follow. Shortly after this referendum the ESM bill will come before the Dail. There is even a chance that the ESM bill will go before the people in a second referendum. We as a nation can vote no to the Fiscal/Austerity treaty; then Ireland ends up in a very powerful position with a trump card - the ESM. The ESM is the fuel pump for the Fiscal/Austerity train - the latter doesn't go anywhere without the former. We have a veto on the ESM, and if they want it ratified I think we really need to be asking for something in return, say for starters: a deal on our footing the €60 Billion bill of German, French, and British bank gambles.”

Local Sinn Féin member and human rights campaigner Ger Barron chaired the meeting. Ferns based Dublin Fire-fighter and Household Tax campaigner Dominic Gaughan also spoke forcefully of the need to vote no on the 31st.

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