[Marxism] Sinn Fein's mild social democracy

Philip Ferguson philip.ferguson at canterbury.ac.nz
Thu Mar 9 14:31:45 MST 2006

The taming of Sinn Fein
by Sara Burke and Vincent Browne
THE VILLAGE Thursday, February 23, 2006
Having espoused Marxism and nationalisations, Sinn Féin is now just a vaguely left-of-centre social democratic party. If Bertie Ahern needs to 'discover' a policy convergence between Fianna Fáil and Sinn Féin after the next election, he will have little difficulty
Thirty five years ago Sinn Féin (or Provisional Sinn Féin) was espousing Marxist ideas: public control of the means of production and exchange; the nationalisation of the banks and all key industries. They were also against foreigners owning land here and against the European Economic Community (EEC), as it was then. Fifteen years later, Sinn Féin was continuing to indulge in Marxist rhetoric, talking about the "robbery" of the working class, the abolition of capitalism and a democratic system of common or public ownership of key industries and institutions. 
But by 1993 all that had toned down considerably. Capitalism was not to be abolished, there was no talk to publicly control of key industries, the banks were not to be nationalised, although there was to be a State bank. "decentralised socialism" was the buzz word. 
Now EU membership is celebrated. The Financial Services Centre is extolled, lots about encouraging enterprise and the only radical note: increasing corporation profits tax from 12.5 per cent to 17 per cent. 
In the trajectory from the "long war" to the everlasting peace, Sinn Féin has also moved from radical socialism to mildly left-of-centre social democracy, hardly different from the SDLP, for example. . . 

Full at: http://www.villagemagazine.ie/article.asp?sid=1&sud=40&aid=1291

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