Friday, February 26, 2016

The "Progressive" Social Democrats and all the rest

I thought I do one last blog on #ge16 to cover the rest of the candidates on the Limerick City ballot paper.

A "progressive" (aka the regressive-left") is someone who believes in things like the pseudo scientific notion that gender is a social construct, in contradictions like abortion is a human right and in myths such as the gender pay gap. Whereas in fact, gender is determined by biology, abortion is a human wrong and if there is a company in Ireland that is paying women less for working the same hours in the same job with the same qualifications, then they are breaking the law and should be prosecuted.

Declared "progressives" in this election include Sinn Féin, AAA, Social Democrats, Labour and the Green Party, even Fine Gael are calling themselves "progressive".


Sarah Jane Hennelly is the by far the best looking candidate on the ballot paper, but she is more than just a pretty face; she is an articulate and capable woman; I heard speak at the Limerick Spring in 2014 and her performance on TV3's The Peoples Debate was credible. She may surprise everyone by taking a seat. I think she has a chance if she canvassed hard. Unfortunately, she strikes me as a career politician and we already have plenty of those. 

They have an interesting manifesto , obviously I don't agree with all of it and I found it a bit vague in parts such as "End Direct Provision" for refugees, by all means speed up asylum applications but what is the alternative to direct provision? The Social Democrats don't tell us.

They are a newly formed party and seem to be made up of independents and Labour refugees, their leader is Stephen Donnelly:


What got my attention most about this video is Donnelly's apparent lack of knowledge regarding our political system as outlined in our Constitution: "Every election we elect a hundred and sixty six men and women to Dáil Éireann and what I discovered over the last five years is about fourteen of them get to make all the decisions... " he says. The 14 he refers to are the government and they require a majority support in the Dáil to stay in office. He then goes on to talk about changing the system but it is very vague. I'm just a bit shocked that he was so unfamiliar with our Constitution.


What can I say, I don't like the Green Party. Gormely was Minister for Environment when "regeneration" was at its most destructive and he ignored all my correspondence.

I don't know much about James Gaffney except that he was terrible on TV3's The Peoples Debate - he could barely string a sentence together. 

As for global warming, we could certainly do with a bit of it in this country :)


I didn't encounter any posters for Des Hayes.

Hayes was formerly the Renua candidate, but they dropped him after it emerged that he had filed incorrect tax returns.

Hayes claims to be Pro-Life, but he seemed to fudge the issue on TV3's The Peoples Debate because some politicians want to be all things to all people so they can get their vote, so I'm not sure if he is really Pro-Life. The back of his Litir um Thoghchán is vague to say the least:

Hayes also says he'll be a "strong independent voice for Limerick".


Last but not least, Denis Riordan. This will be Riordan's 5th general election. He has not posters or leaflets or a Litir um Thoghchán, he doesn't even have his photo on the ballot paper.

In 2005 Riordan was in the high court seeking to appear on the electoral ballot as 'Independent' instead of "non-party" but he was unsuccessful. He was jailed for a week in 2001 for refusing to withdraw his allegation that three Supreme Court judges were corrupt. He is best known for challenging the results of referendums.

So, that the lot of them covered. I'm off now to cast my vote and in case you're wondering where I got the photo of Riordans place on the ballot paper, my wife had a postal vote as she would be away for the election.

Here's the ballot paper in it's entirety:

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