Thursday, 24 April 2014

Diarmuid O'Flynn for MEP - Campaign launch speech April 23rd 2014

INTRODUCTION

I'm Diarmuid O'Flynn from Ballyhea
Entering the race for MEP

For over three years we have marched without pause
Peeling the onion in Ireland's cause

Peeling the onion? Yes, the EU skin
Seven layers of institutional admin

THE COMMISSION, initiators of legislation
28-member Cabinet with the power to crush nations

And they've used it. Unelected though they may be
Theirs is the power to force austerity

On Ireland, Greece, Portugal, Italy, Spain
While they, in their towers, are immune from the pain.

THE EUROPEAN COUNCIL, a gathering of Heads of State
The guiding lights, the good and the great

Who have steered this ship onto the reef
Ran us aground, marooned, no relief

A SECOND COUNCIL, as though one isn't enough
Councils of Ministers, each with their own brief

THE COURT OF AUDITORS checks the EU's budget amounts
Not since 1993 have they signed off the accounts

THE COURT OF JUSTICE has three layers of its own
Layer inside layer, how this monster has grown

Then there's the EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK
Bean-counting number-crunchers of the highest rank.

Finally, the PARLIAMENT, that for which I now stand
Sits in Brussels and Strasbourg, the people's brass band.

And here's the rub

Only one of those layers is directly elected
All of those others are largely selected
Yet the Parliament, that democratic institution
Cannot initiate legislation

It needs to change
We need to rearrange
The entire edifice
And get back to the coal-face

Too many layers
Too many players
Too much bureaucracy
Too little democracy

Banks, bailouts, bonds, budgets, unelected bureaucrats
Bullying and blackmailing us into assuming a debt
That is not ours
Was never ours
Will never justly BE ours

Is this the Europe we want?
Is this the Europe we joined?
Is this the Europe we want to take into the future?

No, no and no again.

ASLEEP AT THE WHEEL

Seven layers of administration
Three layers of legislation
Three European Presidents
Three layers of justice
Two centres of Parliament
Two European Councils

All with
One thing in common

All are asleep at the wheel.

AND WHILE THEY WERE SLEEPING...

85 people
Have the same aggregate wealth
As half the world's population
That's 3.5 billion people

How did that happen?

The world's wealthiest individuals
And the world's wealthiest global corporations
Pay little or no tax.

How did that happen?

Banks are bailed out
Private investor losses paid out
Those costs and losses
Of our new copper-bosses
All covered by us, the people.

How did THAT happen?

The most vulnerable people
In the most vulnerable nations
Are subsidising the healthiest
And wealthiest

How the hell did all this happen?

It happened while they in the various EU layers were sleeping

It happened while WE who helped put them there were sleeping

Deregulation
Privatisation
Globalisation

Our legislators
Facilitated all this
Our legislators
Legislated all this

Some with eyes wide shut
Some with eyes wide open

A WORDY TALE

Pythagoras' theorem: 24 words
Lord's Prayer: 66 words
Archimedes' Principle: 67 words
10 Commandments: 179 words
Gettysburg address: 286 words
Proclamation of the Irish Republic: 475 words US Declaration of Independence: 1,300 words
EU regulation No. 1591/87 laying down quality standards for cabbages, Brussels sprouts, ribbed celery, spinach and plums: 5,091

While the seven layers of the EU onion
Distracted themselves
And asphyxiated business
With layer after layer
Of petty regulations

Others were using their
Power and money
To affect and effect
Major legislation
And thus
Were the floodgates opened
Thus did a tsunami of greed
Engulf the world

Surfing that wave
Are the 85
Swamped by that wave
The 3.5 billion
And more

CLOSING THE GATES

It's not too late
To slam shut that gate

We've still got time
To set the world back in rhyme

All those attacks on us?
Well let's lay a tax on them

The Financial Transaction Tax - the FTT
A small fee
On the most toxic transactions
Taking back a slice from the greedy faction

The tax-avoiding global corporations?
Close those loopholes with global taxation

Close cooperation
Among the world's super/supra-nations

For the benefit of all
That's all
That's needed

The selfish interests of the powerful few
Now supersedes
The needs
Of the people.

Thus the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership - you've not heard of this?
The TTIP, twixt the EU/USA
Partnership yes, of power and money
The greedy grabbing ever more of the honey

A corporate charter, with a court of their own
Where profit is law
And people are fodder
Fed to the gods
The euro and dollar

And all of this has happened
Under the blind watch
Of a succession of EU administrations

The elected, the selected
They have led us to this
Sleep-walked and sleep-talked us
To the edge of the abyss

DESPAIR, SUICIDE - by-products of Austerity

A black cloud
Hovers over our nation
The black dog
Takes up his station
On the shoulders of so many
And they die
By their own hand,
They die.

Sorrow and despair
Utter despair
Ideas and impressions
Clouded depressions
Inane position
Devoid of ambition
Emergency Exit

So many taking that emergency exit
Not because they want to die
But because they can no longer live
Long before that final fateful act
Life has been sucked from them

EMIGRATION

We thought it was history
Consigned to the past
But it's back
With a bang
Not felt since the Great Hunger
Younger and younger
Degrees in their fists
Despair in their hearts
They leave
Families fractured
Communities sundered
A nation fragmented
Again

And why?
This despair
This destruction
This death
At our doors
This mass departure
From our shores
Why?

The mistakes of others
The greed of others
Private losses
Imposed by unelected corporate bosses
On sovereign peoples
Right across Europe
With the collusion of our politicians

The WRONG people blamed
The WRONG cause diagnosed
The WRONG cure prescribed
Leading to one conclusion
We have been electing the WRONG people

The Irish people
Didn't collapse Lehman's
Didn't design the euro
Didn't pour hundreds of billions into Greece/Italy/Spain/Portugal/Ireland

'It's a fiscal problem!' cried the Commission and ECB chorus;
'Austerity the cure!'

It was a financial problem of course
Banks at the core

BAILOUT FOR WHO?

Ireland did NOT get any bailout
Shout that out from the roof-tops
With your voice-tops

IRELAND DID NOT GET A BAILOUT!

The IMF moves into a country in trouble
Lays down its conditions
Asset fire-sales
Privatisation
Deprivation
With cuts in services
But always, always
Bondholders burned
Creditors taking a share of the burden

Until Ireland

The IMF were joined by
The Commission
The ECB
The unholy trinity
THE TROIKA

One aim they had
One aim alone
Bail out the banks
No bond left behind
No loss imposed on those who
Blindly
Greedily
Voraciously
Had fed the Irish property boom
Had fed ON the Irish property boom
But now
As the whole thing went BOOM and burst
They would still profit
Down to the last cent on the last ‘coupon’

Why?
Because the ECB decided so
Because the Commission decided so
Because Merkel and Sarkozy decided so

And because our own government
Cowed and coward
Paralysed by fear
Bowed to the pressure

The abuse of political muscle by the Commission
The abuse of financial muscle by the ECB

And who would cover all those losses?
Why, the people, the already-suffering Irish people

Bailout? Oh bailout alright
But not of the people
And you can sing this in verse
From the highest steeple
Europe didn’t bail out Ireland
It was the exact reverse.

STANDING FOR ELECTION

And so I am here
Standing and running
Simultaneously
(Which is kind of a contradiction!)

The parties of record are on the trail
Fleets of jeeps
Custom-painted
Bottomless budgets
Subsidised by us all
Ads, posters, billboards galore
Strategies, vote management
They know the score.

And the promises, the promises, the promises
In Cork and Kerry, in Carlow and Kilkenny
They’ll promise the earth but ‘twill be no surprise
If all you get is mud in your eyes

As so often before

“Isn't that what you tend to do during an election?”
Pat Rabbitte telling it like it is
Shameless admission
But after the fact
After the false promises of the last election
Landed him with a fat Ministry
Landed us with all this misery

If you're happy
With the status quo
If you're happy
With how Europe has brought us this low

If you're happy
With our current MEPs
If you're happy
With how they’ve watched us brought to our knees

No fiery speech in the Parliament
No public challenge
Save from two – Joe Higgins and Paul Murphy
Joe’s replacement

No defying the native whip
Loyalty to party
Above all else
While paying lip
Service to the people

Again, bar one – Nessa Childers
She paid for her conviction, didn’t she?

I want this job
I want to do full-time
For the next five years
What I've been doing part-time
For the last three years

But this time
With a mandate
A mandate from you, the people.

My first, my last, my only loyalty
Is to you, the people.
ALL the people
Left, right, centre
Party, non-party
Regardless of race, religion, colour or creed
We are all people

We are all in this together
We must all work together.

I make three promises
I will work
I will work
I will work

And so
Come May 23rd
I ask for your vote.

 Campaign Website click here

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