Labour News Bulletin, Vol. 1, No. 5
Date:July 1971
Organisation:Labour
Publication:Labour News Bulletin
Issue:Volume 1, Number 5
Contributor:John Feeney
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Commentary From The Cedar Lounge Revolution

22nd September 2008

The Labour News Bulletin ‘A Head Office Monthly for Party Members’ provides an insight into Irish Labour Party thinking during the early years of the Troubles. Most notable is the strong emphasis on relations with the then newly formed SDLP. Interesting too is the emphasis, somewhat different from later, as in the leading article which argues that ‘the political crisis in the North worsened steadily over the last month… Reach[ing] a high point [with] the threats of Taylor and Bradford to unleash all out war.’

Beyond that there is much to consider. Not least a certain tinge of internationalism and a fairly strong strain of Euro-scepticism, before the fact - as it were. Serendipitous quote?

It is more than a little unrealistic to expect the four applicants [countries] each with their own special characteristics and needs to accept the present [European] Community framework virtually intoto despite the fact they have had no say in its development. As German Social Democrat Minister Frau Focke said in response to Conor Cruise O’Brien’s speech in Brussels the time has come for people inside the EEC to start examining some of their beliefs, demands and proposals more in the light of the situation of the applicants than they have done heretofore.

And go to Is This A Record? On page 4 to read the thoughts of Stakhanovite funds collector (Miss) Ann Peppard who….

…claims she had little time for the armchair socialist. “If one has fine lungs and a good memory and can trot out some of Connolly’s teachings at the appropriate time one is embraced by a section of the party as being a true socialist”.

Those were the days.

Which reminds me, what ever did happen to CC O’B?

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  • By: dilettante Mon, 22 Sep 2008 21:51:13

    Very interesting.
    And a more honest assessment of the whole EU process than todays Labour Party.

    “strongly reaffirmed their conviction that the integration process begun with the EEC must be continued to its ultimate completion in the United States of Europe”

    Never figured CCOB to be much of a soveiregtnist though.

    Essential reading for Labour Party members of today I would have thought.

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  • By: Dunne and Crescendo Tue, 23 Sep 2008 17:00:12

    This week’s offering; A newspaper from the largest party of the Irish left; at a time when it was calling for the socialist transformation of society; in the midst of what was developing in the North into a crisis of proportions not seen since 1921.
    Result: one comment (before this!)
    But put up a leaflet from BICO and watch the CLR regulars let rip! What does it say about us?

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  • By: ejh Tue, 23 Sep 2008 17:17:48

    Ah, the number of comments on a posting rarely have any relation to its intrinsic value.

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  • By: WorldbyStorm Tue, 23 Sep 2008 18:45:58

    The thought struck me Dunne and Crescendo. I don’t think what it tells us is good.

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  • By: Starkadder Tue, 23 Sep 2008 20:58:46

    The article expressing opposition to the Forcible Entry Bill is an
    interesting example of the Labour party taking
    a pro-Civil Liberties position. Also, the comments on the
    Labour party across Ireland and in Europe give the
    publication an international dimension.

    This was from the “Seventies Will Be Socialist” period,
    wasn’t it?

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  • By: Dunne and Crescendo Tue, 23 Sep 2008 21:21:42

    I’m not being po-faced; you know I enjoy the Peking Lodge of the Orange Order stuff as well as everyone else!
    Theres no exact science to what gets a response though is there?

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  • By: WorldbyStorm Wed, 24 Sep 2008 07:34:16

    No, it’s a funny one that. Stuff that takes ten minutes to write can make a bigger impression than stuff agonised over weeks. But on the political front the more esoteric the better generally.

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  • By: Starkadder Thu, 18 Dec 2008 21:29:57

    The Irish Times and Politics.ie are reporting that Conor Cruise O’Brien has died:

    http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/breaking/2008/1218/breaking92.htm

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  • By: WorldbyStorm Thu, 18 Dec 2008 21:37:06

    Born in 1917. Wow… some life. A strangely proscriptive personality though.

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  • By: Starkadder Thu, 18 Dec 2008 21:38:31

    He was a very controversial figure, and I didn’t really agree with most
    of his political positions. I do regard “Writers and Politics” as a excellent
    publication though.

    I

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  • By: NollaigO Wed, 24 Dec 2008 19:20:23

    An excellent obituary on CCO’B by Niall Meehan:

    http://www.counterpunch.org/meehan12222008.html

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