Left Tribune, Vol. 2, No. 4
Organisation: Labour Youth
Publication: Left Tribune
Issue:Volume 2, Number 4
Winter 2006
View: View Document
Discuss:Comments on this document
Subjects: Shell to Sea

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Commentary From The Cedar Lounge Revolution

5th April 2021

Many thanks to the person who forwarded this to the Archive.

This document joins other Labour Youth publications in the Archive. The content is broad ranging – and framed by the then near-imminent general election in the Republic. Hence the front cover graphic outlining Labour Youth’s priorities for government, including ‘US Military out of Shannon’, ‘Abolish All College Fees’, ‘Free GP Care for All’ and the slogan, Why a vote for Labour is a vote for labour values.

Insider there is an election focus on various election candidates. There’s a report from the Labour Youth Conference. There are pieces on ‘ending the Cuban Blockade’ and ‘Stopping Violence Against Women’. There’s also an article on John McDonnell’s standing for the BLP leadership and about ‘Reclaiming British Labour’.

Perhaps the most indicative piece is on the Labour Youth Conference and their 10 Point Plan for Government.

The mandates established at Conference set the tone for another active, campaigning year in the organisation. Featured among the national issues discussed were the bin tax, child poverty, same sex marriage, Shell to Sea, and the pro-choice campaign, while international affairs included motions on Cuba, Belarus, and the upcoming leadership election in the British Labour Party. Crucially, Youth Conference also unanimously affirmed its support for non-violent direct action as a legitimate tactic in these campaigns and oth­ers that the organisation has been involved in over the past year.


With the general election looming however, party issues and electoral strategy proved a particularly topical issue among delegates. Internal party democracy was a common theme, with much debate centring on how best to ensure that Labour Youth policy is transferred to the policies of the main party, and that our priorities are included in the Labour Party manifesto for the upcoming general election. The “Seize the Power” initia­tive was encapsulated in the motion pro­posed by last year’s National Youth Executive, which outlined ten key areas for the incoming officers and activists around the country to campaign on for inclusion in both the mani­festo and in any possible programme for gov­ernment. These priorities were drawn from all aspects of Labour Youth policy, and includ­ed U.S. military landing in Shannon, the aboli­tion of all college fees, and the introduction of legislation guaranteeing the right of workers to union recognition in the workplace.


The current pre-election pact with Fine Gael also came under fire from delegates during the course of the Conference. The large­scale opposition that exists in LY for the arrangement was shown clearly with the resounding approval received by Dublin South West Labour Youth’s motion on elec­tion literature. The motion called explicitly for members not to participate in the distribu­tion of material that called for a transfer to the Fine Gael party, and clearly reaffirmed Labour Youth’s preferred independent elec­toral strategy as outlined in last year’s policy document “Towards an Alternative Politics”.

Also outlined were the 10 points.

Conference called on Labour in Government to:

  1. Remove the US Military from Shannon

  2. Stop Privatisation of our Public Services

  3. Introduce Free GP Care for all

  4. Introduce same sex marriage and adop­tion rights regardless of sexual orientation

  5. Legislate for the X Case and hold referendum for safe, free & legal abortion in Ireland

  6. Introduce legislation to give workers the right to union recognition

  7. Abolish all full and part time college fees

  8. Remove religious ownership and control from educational institutions

  9. End public funding for private schools

  10. Increase social housing and repeal Part 2 of the Planning & Development Act 2002

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  • By: pettyburgess Mon, 05 Apr 2021 11:37:04

    This is one of the funnier documents in the Archive to scan for recognisable names. It’s from a weird, shameless, moment when Labour Youth was relaunched and tried to give itself a left wing image, competing with the then thriving further left groups on university campuses. Particularly UCD.

    The contributors and LY leaders mentioned in many cases disappeared from politics, as you would expect from a youth wing. Others are minor Labour politicians of no obvious radical coloration. Others are SocDems, also with no obvious left wing commitments. Another went on to be an independent councillor. The most prominent of all, just elected LY President at the time of this issue, was a certain Patrick Nulty.

    One detail that dates the publication immediately is Rebecca Moynihan’s article on the sex industry. No publication aimed at left or liberal students would dream of taking her position today.

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  • By: roddy Mon, 05 Apr 2021 12:43:52

    Had forgotten about Nulty and looked him up.Saw he was “gender equality officer ” for Labour youth and led a TCD campaign “against sexual harassment of female students”.Sometimes those who shout loudest about issues can be less than sincere!

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  • By: irishelectionliterature Mon, 05 Apr 2021 20:55:33

    Was looking at the piece on candidates for the 2007 General Election and of the Constituencies covered none are Labour TD’s, indeed I think only Joanna Tuffy is a Councillor. Quite a few also left the party.

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  • By: Sam Wed, 07 Apr 2021 14:05:55

    No need to accept comment. Title reads 2000 when it should be 2006.

    All the best

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  • By: WorldbyStorm Thu, 08 Apr 2021 15:15:19

    In reply to Sam.

    You’re spot on, apologies, one of those weeks!

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