Joe Higgins – OECD Implies Newly Employed Should Be Pauperised

Creation of Reserve Army of Very Cheap Labour the Aim The paper Activation Policies in Ireland presented by the OECD to today ‘s ESRI Conference in Dublin strongly implies that benefits should be cut for the unemployed. The thrust of the paper tends to put the blame for high unemployment on the unemployed rather than on the economic crisis that generates joblessness.  

Creation of Reserve Army of Very Cheap Labour the Aim

The paper Activation Policies in Ireland presented by the OECD to today ‘s ESRI Conference in Dublin strongly implies that benefits should be cut for the unemployed. The thrust of the paper tends to put the blame for high unemployment on the unemployed rather than on the economic crisis that generates joblessness.

 

The OECD document states: ‘In general labour market outcomes reflect characteristics of the labour market [eg. the level of the dole], and not only the scale of the demand shock,banking crisis, exports etc.

“Further the OECD use the following example: “Example 2: In early 1990s Finland and Japan both suffered a dramatic asset price bust and banking crisis, but unemployment rose to 17% in Finland and to 4% in Japan:Finland has generous benefits – unemployment at 17% generated little social hardship Japan provides no benefit coverage of long-term unemployment”.

In Ireland far from being ‘generous’ as frequently stated in sections of the media, the dole provides for mere survival in a country which boasts prices among the highest in the world. Cuts in unemployment benefits would pauperise the tens of thousands of newly unemployed.

The aim of those calling for cuts in unemployment payments is very clear – the creation of a reserve army of labour living in such straitened circumstances that it is forced to work for exploitation wages. This is more than the creation of an exploiters’ charter.

Hammering the living standards of both workers and the unemployed is, in fact, the recipe of the economic and political stablishments for allowing market capitalism to crawl out of the chasm where it now is as a result of its own workings. This is the meaning of the policies of the Fianna Fail/Green Party Government with the active participation of most of the media.

The government is greatly mistaken if it believes that hundreds of thousands of unemployed will not fight back against the injustice of swingeing cuts in unemployment payments added to the shock of unemployment.

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SR Technics – Workers should occupy and demand re nationalisation

Statement from Joe Higgins
As venture capitalists seal their plan to smash 1,150 jobs at SR Technics by selling off the Landing Gear and Auxiliary Power Unit, the Irish Government and trade union leadership are in a state of pathetic paralysis. They simply stand by and allow the dictatorship of the market to lay waste to an invaluable industry and source of jobs. SR Technics workers should immediately occupy the plant at Dublin Airport, prevent the sale of machinery and demand renationalisation of what was a publicly owned enterprise until Fianna Fail and the Progressive Democrats privatised it.

Workers, united, will never be defeated


Waterford Crystal Workers on ICTU Demo, 21/02/09

by Kevin McLoughlin

WATERFORD CRYSTAL: Specially hired security individually delivered letters saying that from the following Monday there was no need to report for work, as the world-renowned Waterford Crystal factory would be closed!

Shocked but bitterly angry that the receiver had decided to end production, workers at Waterford Crystal made their way to the Visitors Centre. There, more hired security blocked their way, apparently some claiming to have baseball bats. If they thought such intimidation would crush the workers’ anger, they were sorely mistaken. Hundreds of workers brushed the heavies aside. So began the occupation at the Waterford Crystal on Friday 30 January.