November 2, 2015

How to dilute negative results to protect an industry

A recently published study implies that wind turbines as close as 0.25 mile and up to an outdoor average noise level of 46 dB(A) do not disturb sleep. In fact the actual noise levels were only estimated and averaged only 35.6 dB(A), which is a level that indeed would be unlikely to disturb sleep indoors. Furthermore, the range of distance from wind turbines extended to 11.22 kilometers. The result is that the data from households closer to noisier wind turbines are obviously diluted by the greater amount of data from farther away. Finally, averaging sleep experience over time serves to mask, rather than discover, any experience of particularly disturbing nights.

When the full paper is available, it will be interesting to see if the authors acknowledge these limitations: that their sample size from noisier and closer sites was insufficient to reach any conclusions, that noise levels were outdoors only and estimated rather than measured, and that sleep disturbance was assessed as 30-day averages, ignoring actual nightly experience.

Sleep. 2015 Oct 22.
Effects of Wind Turbine Noise on Self-Reported and Objective Measures of Sleep.
Michaud DS, Feder K, Keith SE, Voicescu SA, Marro L, Than J, Guay M, Denning A, Murray BJ, Weiss SK, Villeneuve PJ, van den Berg F, Bower T.

November 1, 2015

Eibhlín Nic Niocaill — obituary by Pádraig Pearse

From An Claidheamh Soluis agus Fáinne an Lae, 21 August 1909:

There are times when journalists and public men experience a trial more cruel than others can easily imagine. It is when they are called upon in the course of their duty to write or speak in public of things that touch the innermost fibres of their own hearts, things that to them are intimate and sacred, entwined, it may be, with their dearest friendships and affections, awakening to vibrations old chords of joy or sorrow. The present is such an occasion for the writer of these paragraphs, and this must be his excuse if he does not pay to Eibhlín Nic Niocaill such tribute as readers of An Claidheamh Soluis will expect. It is not in human nature to write a glib newspaper article on a dead friend. One dare not utter all that is in one’s heart and in the effort of self-restraint one is apt to pen only cold and formal things. Therefore we will discharge as briefly as may be the duty that falls upon us.

First we would voice the sorrow of our organisation for the death of one of its most brilliant and heroic members. We have often spoken in the name of the Gaelic League, but never have we felt ourselves peculiarly at one with it as thus making ourselves the mouthpiece of its tribute to Eibhlín Nic Niocaill. We knew her well, and she was the most nobly planned of all the women we have known. The newspapers have truly spoken of her as the most distinguished student of her time. Gaelic Leaguers will remember her as an incomparably strenuous worker during her brief but crowded career of active service. But it is neither as a student or as a League worker that her friends will think of her. Her grand dower of intellect, her gracious gift of charm and sympathy, her capacity for affairs, were known to all, but those who knew her best know that all of these were the least of her endowments. What will stand out clear and radiant in their mental picture of her is the loftiness of her soul, the inner sanctity of her life.

The close of that life had been worthy of it. If she had been asked to choose the manner of her death she would surely have chosen it thus. She died to save another, and that as a young Irish-speaking girl. Greater love than this no man hath than he give his life for his friend. To Eibhlín Nic Niocaill high heroism was native. Her life was consecrated to the service of high things. And without seeking reward she found rich reward in the enthusiastic love of hundreds. She gave much love and received much love. Not many have been carried with such passion of grief and affection as that which thrilled in the keenings of the Kerry women as the curraghs forming her funeral procession moved across the sound:

“Mo ghroidhn tú, a Eibhlín,
“Mo ghroidhn do mháthair,
“Mo ghroidhn go bráth í!”
they said. In Dublin her comrades’, and fellow-students’, grief was not articulate, but no one who witnessed it could doubt its poignancy. Our second duty is to offer respectfully the sympathy of her and our co-workers to her father and mother and brothers. The memory of her life and death will be the greatest treasure in the years that are to come. And for them the treasure will be none the less though many thousands of her people claim a share in it also.

I bhfochair an Uain go raibh a hanam ar feadh na sforaíochta!

—P.H. Pearse

October 16, 2015


Fornocht a chonac thú,
a áille na háille,
is dhallas mo shúil
ar eagla go stánfainn.

Chualas do cheol,
a bhinne na binne,
is dhúnas mo chluas
ar eagla go gclisfinn.

Bhlaiseas do bhéal
a mhilse na milse,
is chruas mo chroí
ar eagla mo mhillte.

Dhallas mo shúil,
is mo chluas do dhúnas;
Chruas mo chroí,
is mo mhian do mhúchas.

Thugas mo chúl
ar an aisling do chumas,
is ar an ród seo romham
m’aghaidh a thugas.

Thugas mo ghnúis
ar an ród seo romham,
ar an ngníomh a chím,
is ar an mbás a gheobhad.


Naked I saw thee,
O beauty of beauty.
And I blinded my eyes
For fear I should fail.

I heard thy music,
O melody of melody,
And I closed my ears
For fear I should falter.

I tasted thy mouth,
Sweetness of sweetness,
And I hardened my heart
For fear of my slaying.

I blinded my eyes.
And I closed my ears,
I hardened my heart
And I smothered my desire.

I turned my back
On the vision I had shaped
And to this road before me
I turned my face.

I have turned my face
To this road before me,
To the deed that I see
And the death I shall die.

—Pádraig Pearse

October 12, 2015

Letter from Trey Gowdy to Elijah Cummings, Oct. 8, 2015

Excerpts. Complete PDF available at:

… When we began this investigation, Sidney Blumenthal was not on our potential interview list. Secretary Clinton’s exclusive use of private email, housed on her own private server, was not a topic of our inquiry. Yet when we learned nearly half of Secretary Clinton’s entire email correspondence regarding Benghazi and Libya before the attacks was with Sidney Blumenthal, that became a fact we could not ignore. When we learned Secretary Clinton exclusively used private email to correspond for her official duties and that the State Department did not even have access to these records until this Committee asked for them, that became a fact we could not ignore. …

Blumenthal was neither a State Department employee nor an employee of the federal government nor an expert on Libya, by his own admission. The fact that former Secretary Clinton relied so heavily on an individual for the Libyan intervention, her quintessential foreign policy initiative, whom the White House explicitly prohibited from working at the State Department is mind boggling. … Blumenthal was not merely acting as a steward of information to Secretary Clinton but was acting as her de facto political advisor. …

In a six day span in February 2011, Blumenthal sent Clinton detailed reports titled “Latest Libya intel,” “Libya intel,” “No fly zone over Libya,” “Intel on Gaddafi’s reinforcements,” “Libya WMD,” “Qaddafi’s Scuds and strategy for holding on,” “Option on WMD,” “Phone #s that may work,” and “Q location, new defections, beginnings of interim govt.” These daily emails, filled with unvetted intelligence, continued for nearly six weeks. Secretary Clinton often responded to Blumenthal, and almost always forwarded them to her top policy advisor, Jake Sullivan, in some cases cautioning him not to “share until we can talk.” Much of the information in Blumenthal’s emails came from Tyler Drumheller, a controversial former CIA operative, and Cody Shearer, another old Clinton friend. Interestingly, Secretary Clinton even took the further step to hide from Sullivan the fact that some of this information came from Shearer. It is unclear why she did this, and it is not at all clear what intelligence tradecraft was undertaken to ensure the reliability of this information, or whether the State Department’s very own intelligence bureau, funded by taxpayers for that very purpose, was even aware of these matters.

Dozens of emails between Clinton and Blumenthal show an individual who tried to heavily influence the Secretary of State to intervene in Libya. Blumenthal pushed hard for a no-fly zone in Libya before the idea was being discussed internally by senior U.S. government officials. Clinton told Blumenthal that she was pushing the option with the “[U.N.] Security Council,” and to “[s]tay tuned!” Shortly thereafter, the U.S. pushed a no-fly zone through the U.N. Security Council.

The emails also show Blumenthal firmly as a political body who pulled no punches towards the White House or others in government with whom he disagreed. In one email he discussed “National Security Adviser Tom Donilon’s babbling rhetoric about ‘narratives’ on a phone briefing of reporters” that “inspired derision among serious foreign policy analysts here and abroad.” In another email he described “[Obama] and his political cronies in the WH and in Chicago are, to say the least, unenthusiastic about regime change in Libya or anywhere else in the ME. Why is that? Hmmm. Obama’s lukewarm and self contradicting statements have produced what is at least for the moment, operational paralysis.”

Once Blumenthal got his way and a no-fly zone was established, he pushed for a more aggressive posture by the U.S. in the conflict, including arming the rebels. To support his rationale to Secretary Clinton, he used sagging polling numbers. …

Beyond the pure politics that were occurring at this time, perhaps more disturbing is that at the same time Blumenthal was pushing Secretary Clinton to war in Libya, he was privately pushing a business interest of his own in Libya that stood to profit from contracts with the new Libyan government — a government that would exist only after a successful U.S. intervention in Libya that deposed Qaddafi. This business venture was one he shared with Tyler Drumheller and Cody Shearer, the authors of the information sent to Secretary Clinton. It is therefore unsurprising that somebody who knew so little about Libya would suddenly become so interested in Libya and push an old friend in a powerful place to action — for personal profit. …

“You should be aware that there is a good chance at the contact meeting in Turkey the TNC [National Transitional Council of Libya] ambassador to the UAE, a man you have not yet met, whose name is Dr. Neydah, may tell you the TNC has reached an agreement with a US company. The company is a new one, Osprey, headed by former General David Grange, former head of Delta Force. Osprey will provide field medical help, military training, organize supplies, and logistics to the TNC. They are trainers and organizers, not fighters. Grange can train their forces and he has drawn up a plan for taking Tripoli similar to the plan he helped develop that was used by the first wave of Special Forces in the capture of Baghdad. This is a private contract. It does not involve NATO. It puts Americans in a central role without being direct battle combatants. The TNC wants to demonstrate that they are pro-US. They see this as a significant way to do that. They are enthusiastic about this arrangement. … As I understand it, they are still working out funding, which is related to the overall TNC funding problems. Grange is very low key, wishes to avoid publicity and work quietly, unlike other publicity hungry finns. Grange is under the radar. Tyler, Cody and I acted as honest brokers, putting this arrangement together through a series of connections, linking the Libyans to Osprey and keeping it moving. The strategic imperative: Expecting Gaddafi to fall on his own or through a deus ex machina devolves the entire equation to wishful thinking. The TNC has been unable to train and organize its forces. The NATO air campaign cannot take ground. The TNC, whose leaders have been given to flights of fancy that Qaddafi will fall tomorrow or the day after, have come to the conclusion that they must organize their forces and that they must score a military victory of their own over Qaddafi that is not dependent solely on NATO in order to give them legitimacy. …

In addition to Sidney Blumenthal’s business interests, Secretary Clinton also apparently received classified information from Blumenthal — information she should have known was classified at the time she received it. In one email, Blumenthal writes “Tyler spoke to a colleague currently at CIA, who told him the agency had been dependent for intelligence from [redacted due to sources and methods].” This information, the name of a human source, is some of the most protected information in our intelligence community, the release of which could jeopardize not only national security but also human lives. Armed with that information, Secretary Clinton forwarded the email to a colleague — debunking her claim that she never sent any classified information from her private email address. …

September 27, 2015

Irish nationalists deported to Britain in 1916: Their trades

Source: Sinn Féin Rebellion Handbook: Easter, 1916. Compiled by the Weekly Irish Times, Dublin: 1917. Pages 69–86.

“The following are the names of the persons who were deported, so far as they have been published by the military. These lists were all officially issued to the Press for publication by the military authorities on the dates mentioned:—”

200 to Knutsford on 1st May. Weaver, carman, typist, body maker, shop assts., upholsterers, boot cutter, labourers, tailors, goods checker, chauffeurs, library asst., bakers, porters, van driver, motor driver, law clerk, grocers, carpenters, farmers, clerks, compositors, farrier, vanmen, office boy, grocer’s assts., wax bleacher, vice-maker, actors, boilermaker, bookbinder, cabinet makers, wood worker, paper ruler, insurance agent, carters, plumbers, painters, student, electricians, attendant, firemen, caretaker, joiner, range fitter, brushmaker, gardener, chemist’s asst., locksmith, fitters, hole borer, riveter, provision acct., canvasser, coach-builders, drapers, mattress maker, shunter, slater, singer’s agent, cash desk, school teacher, groom, printers, engineers, electrical fitter, apprentices, artist, checker, cooper, poulterer, librarian, insurance inspector, waiter, school attendant, packer, hairdresser, driller, barman, night watchman, draper’s asst., belt-maker, shirt cutter, law clerk.

289 to Stafford on 1st May. [trades not listed]

308 to Knutsford on 3rd May. Commission agent’s clerk, cabinet-makers, fitters, teacher, labourers, lamplighter, machinists, general merchant, cotton merchant, carpenters, coopers, Corporation labourers, despatch clerk, engineer’s fitter, inspector G.P.O. telephones, compositors, bakers, warehouse clerk, plumbers, engine driver, clerks, boot salesman, wine porters, brass moulder, machine minder, tailors, range setter, boot-makers, silk-weavers, shop asst., civil service clerks, mechanic, chauffeur, brass polisher, chemist, shopman, draper’s assts., insurance agents, bricklayers, carter, medical student, porters, farm labourer, gardeners, van drivers, plumber, gas fitter, plumber’s asst., grocers, electric worker, grocer’s assts., coachmaker, vanman, firemen, saddler, house painters, machinist, tool maker, turner, painters, motor mechanics, plate polisher, checkers, old age pensioner, printers, cycle mechanic, waiters, butchers, printer’s asst., students, messengers, flour packer, private means, bank clerk, harness maker, draper, plasterers, hairdressers, seamen, upholsterer, bookseller’s clerk, fitter’s apprentices, Corporation clerk, brass finisher, blacksmiths, clerk at Guinness’s Brewery, grocer’s porters, travellers, attendant, bricklayers, watchmaker, theatre manager, Linotype operator, druggist, cinematograph operator, glazier, clerk to ship-broker, tramway clerk, blacksmith’s improver, foremen, decorative artist, slater, law clerk, coachbuilder, commercial clerk, railway clerks, tea packer, groom, coal agent, warehouse clerk, carrier, drilling machinist, ex-policeman, apprentice coachbuilder, ship’s fireman, book-keeper, farmers, pattern case maker, postman, cabinet maker’s apprentice, butcher’s asst., skilled labourer, body-maker, furniture salesman, basket maker, bookbinder, apprentice to brass moulder.

376 to Wakefield on 6th May.
Ballsbridge Party. Dairyman, carters, painter’s apprentice, printer, plasterer, cabman, storekeeper, labourers, house painter, grocer’s assts., market gardener, confectioner, bookkeepers, tailors, porters, law clerks, mess man, electricians, hair dressers, gardeners, dentist’s apprentice, coach builder, vanman, clerks, case makers, motor drivers, nagsman, barmen, railway porters, blacksmiths, winchman, plumbers, dentists, Gas Company clerk, ship plater, boatmen, retired railway official, driver, dray man, turf dealer, cycle salesman, tailors, coal labourer, joiners, motor fitter, mechanic, moulder, rivetter, wine porter, shop asst., stationers, insurance clerk, farmer, cabinet-makers, legal searcher, laboratory asst., chauffeur, independent, waiter, pig minder, billposter, plumber’s asst., fitter’s asst., factory hand, wood cutter, house agent, newsman, storekeeper, bookbinder’s edge gilder, reporter, G.P.O. civil service, munitions, commercial traveller, messengers, gas stoker, railway guard, pawnbroker’s asst., general labourer, car owner, printer’s clerk, engine driver, coach painter, jeweller, bootmakers, warehouseman, horse shoer, handyman, property master, draper’s asst., carpenters, groundsman, bakers, baker and confectioner, student, brass fitter, smith’s helper, painters, architect, dockyard labourer, coat maker, wheelwright, tram co., teacher, Corporation employee, van drivers, provision asst., junior clerk, draper’s porter, caretakers, book maker and window dresser, SS clerk, lawyer, yardman, upholsterer, workman, canvasser, assistant, carrier, general worker, seaman, bullockman, tram conductor, filer, machinist, concreter, stone-cutter, marble polisher, coal merchant, Corporation labourer.
List from Kilmainham. [trades not listed]
List from Arbour Hill. Fishmonger, sheet metal worker, tailor, asst. dentist, carpenters, fitter and turner, motor mechanics, driver, Asst. Supt. Tel. at G.P.O., chauffeurs, painters, farmers, labourers, porter, shop assts., travellers, bakers, shopkeeper, blacksmith, painter, coach builder, vanmen, bootmaker, messengers, clerk, plumber’s asst., warehouseman, grocer’s asst.

203 to Stafford on 8th May.
197 to Wandsworth on 9th May.
54 to Wandsworth on 13th May.

58 to Stafford on 13th May. Painter, labourers, groom, postman, farmer and builder, apprentice, farmers, carpenters, stonemason, draper, builder, chemist.

273 to Wakefield on 13th May. ’Bus driver, draper’s assts., apprentices, labourers, coal porter, farmers, science teacher, motor driver, clerk, motor mechanics, carpenters, shopkeepers, teachers, blacksmiths, Monotype operator, baker and grocer, trader, electricians, surveyor, C.D.B. clerks, bakers, shop assts., engine fitter, banker, Gaelic teachers, grocer, ironmonger, cabinet maker, farmer’s sons, bricklayers, National school teacher, barman, students, butchers, garage owner, porters, van drivers, bookkeeper, reporter, Commission agent, bootmaker, engineer fitter’s apprentice, engine drivers, shoemaker, painters, ledger clerk, merchants, tailors, harness-maker, Company agent, printer, grocer’s assts., railway clerk, tobacconist’s asst., builder’s foreman, law clerk, stationmaster, stone-cutter, postmen, grocer’s porter, cardriver, builder, contractor, maize oil extractor, mason, farm manager, draper, accountants, motor engineer, boot dealers, undertaker, gas inspector, chauffeur mechanic, compositor, rate collector, apprentice fitter, weaver, gardeners, cooper, chemist’s asst., railway employee, sculptor, egg packer, journalist, brewer’s secretary, mercantile clerks, P.O. clerk, machinist, engineers, mill foreman, poplin weavers, chauffeur, jeweller, carrier, forester, vanman, seed merchant, A.S.C., school teacher, carrier employee, hairdresser, tinsmith.

197 to Glasgow and Perth on 20th May.

40 to Woking on 20th May. Farmers, horse-shoer, plasterer, Lino operator, agricultural overseer, cycle agent, shopkeeper, engine driver, labourers, carpenters, electrician, grocer asst., valet, clerks, spinner, coachbuilders.

59 to Lewes on 20th May. Labourers, clerks, sewing machine agent, publican, farmers, butcher, surveyor, postman, carpenters, dock labourer, plumber, foundry labourer, poultry merchants, shop assts., waiter at O’Neill’s Hotel, merchant, machine man, teachers, draper’s asst., bootmaker, asst. agent.

100 to Wakefield on 2nd June.
49 to Wandsworth on 2nd June.
50 to Knutsford on 2nd June.

41 to Knutsford on 7th June. House painter, organ builder, gardener, plasterer, farmers, Labour Exchange clerk, house furnisher, farmers, clerks, medical practitioner, grocer’s asst., barrister, messenger, whitesmith, artist, cooper, insurance agent, confectioner, school teacher, butler, shop asst., labourers, commercial traveller, master tailor, clerk to Trade Union Secretary, machinist, farmer’s sons, boot and shoe-maker, priest’s boy, carpenter.

25 to Knutsford on June 16th. Blacksmith, farmer, shipbuilder, compositor, cardriver, bootmaker, foreman, farmer’s son, carter, farmers, blacksmith, shopkeeper.

[total: 2,519]

September 16, 2015

Dispatches from the General Post Office, Easter Friday, 1916

Army of the Irish Republic
(Dublin Command),
Headquarters, April 28, 1916.

To Soldiers,

This is the fifth day of the establishment of the Irish Republic, and the flag of our country still floats from the most important buildings in Dublin, and is gallantly protected by the officers and Irish soldiers in arms throughout the country. Not a day passes without seeing fresh postings of Irish soldiers eager to do battle for the old cause. Despite tha utmost vigilance of the enemy we have been able to get in information telling us how the manhood of Ireland, inspired by our splendid action, are gathering to offer up their lives if necessary in the same holy cause. We are here hemmed in because the enemy feels that in this building is to be found the heart and inspiration of our great movement.

Let us remind you what you have done. For the first time in 700 years the flag of a free Ireland floats triumphantly in Dublin City.

The British Army, whose exploits we are for ever having dinned into our ears, which boasts of having stormed the Dardanelles and the German lines on the Marne, behind their artillery and machine guns are afraid to advance to the attack or storm any positions held by our forces. The slaughter they suffered in the first few days has totally unnerved them, and they dare not attempt again an infantry attack on our positions.

Our Commandants around us are holding their own.

Commandant Daly’s splendid exploit in capturing Linen Hall Barracks we all know. You must know also that the whole population, both clergy and laity, of this district are united in his praises. Commandant MacDonagh is established in an impregnable position reaching from the walls of Dublin Castle to Redmond’s Hill, and from Bishop street to Stephen’s Green.

(In Stephen’s Green, Commandant [Mallin] holds the College of Surgeons, one side of the square, a portion of the other side, and dominates the whole Green and all its entrances and exits.)

Commandant De Valera stretches in a position from the Gas Works to Westland row, holding Boland’s Bakery, Boland’s Mills, Dublin South-Eastern Railway Works, and dominating Merrion square.

Commandant Kent [Ceannt] holds the South Dublin Union and Guinness’s Buildings to Marrowbone lane, and controls James’s street and district.

On two occasions the enemy effected a lodgment and were driven out with great loss.

The men of North County Dublin are in the field, have occupied all the Police Barracks in the district, destroyed all the telegram system on the Great Northern Railway up to Dundalk. and are operating against the trains of the Midland and Great Western.

Dundalk has sent 200 men to march upon Dublin, and in the other parts of the North our forces are active and growing.

In Galway Captain [Mellows], fresh after his escape from an Irish prison, is in the field with his men. Wexford and Wicklow are strong, and Cork and Kerry are equally acquitting themselves creditably. (We have every confidence that our Allies in Germany anu kinsmen in America are straining every nerve to hasten matters on our behalf.)

As you know, I was wounded twice yesterday and am unable to move about, but have got my bed moved into the firing line, and, with the assistance of your officers, will be just as useful to you as ever.

Courage, boys, we are winning, and in the hour of our victory let us not forget the splendid women who have everywhere stood by us and cheered us on. Never had man or woman a grander cause, never was a cause more grandly served.

James Connolly,
Dublin Division.


Headquarters, Army of the Irish Republic, General Post Office, Dublin.

28th April, 1916, 9.30 a.m.

The Forces of the Irish Republic, which was proclaimed in Dublin, on Easter Monday, 24th April, have been in possession of the central part of the capital, since 12 noon on that day. Up to yesterday afternoon Headquarters was in touch with all the main outlying positions, and, despite furious, and almost continuous assaults by the British Forces all those positions were then still being held, and the Commandants in charge, were confident of their ability to hold them for a long time.

During the course of yesterday afternoon, and evening, the enemy succeeded in cutting our communications with our other positions in the city, and Headquarters is to-day isolated.

The enemy has burnt down whole blocks of houses, apparently with the object of giving themselves a clear field for the play of artillery and field guns against us. We have been bombarded during the evening and night by shrapnel and machine gun fire, but without material damage to our position, which is of great strength.

We are busy completing arrangements for the final defence of Headquarters, and are determined to hold it while the buildings last.

I desire now, lest I may not have an opportunity later, to pay homage to the gallantry of the soldiers of Irish Freedom who have during the past four days been writing with fire and steel the most glorious chapter in the later history of Ireland. Justice can never be done to their heroism, to their discipline, to their gay and unconquerable spirit in the midst of peril and death.

Let me, who have led them into this, speak in my own, and in my fellow-commanders’ names, and in the name of Ireland present and to come, their praise, and ask those who come after them to remember them.

For four days they have fought and toiled, almost without cessation, almost without sleep, and in the intervals of fighting they have sung songs of the freedom of Ireland. INo man has complained, no man has asked ‘why?’ Each individual has spent himself, happy to pour out his strength for Ireland and for freedom. If they do not win this fight, they will at least have deserved to win it. But win it they will, although they may win it in death. Already they have won a great thing. They have redeemed Dublin from many shames, and made her name splendid among the names of cities.

If I were to mention names of individuals, my list would be a long one.

I will name only that of Commandant General James Connolly, Commanding the Dublin Division. He lies wounded, but is still the guiding brain of cur resistance.

If we accomplish no more than we have accomplished, I am satisfied. I am satisfied that we have saved Ireland’s honour. I am satisfied that we should have accomplished more, that we should have accomplished the task of enthroning, as well as proclaiming, the Irish Republic as a Sovereign State, had our arrangements for a simultaneous rising of the whole country, with a combined plan as sound as the Dublin plan has been proved to be, been allowed to go through on Easter Sunday. Of the fatal countermanding order which prevented those plans from being carried out, I shall not speak further. Both Eoin MacNeill and we have acted in the best interests of Ireland.

For my part, as to anything I have done in this, I am not afraid to face either the judgment of God, or the judgment of posterity.

P. H. Pearse,
Commandant General,
Commanding-in-Chief, the Army of the Irish Republic and President of the Provisional Government.


Source: Sinn Féin Rebellion Handbook: Easter, 1916. Compiled by the Weekly Irish Times, Dublin: 1917.

On Friday evening, the GPO had to be abandoned. On Saturday, the provisional government of the Irish Republic offered their surrender. Fighting continued into Sunday until all the rebel outposts received the order and agreed to it. A total of 112 republicans were tried and sentenced to death. Executions ended after 14 leaders were killed in Dublin. (Thomas Kent was also executed in Cork, and later Roger Casement in London.) More than 3,000 were arrested and almost all of them transported to prison camps in Britain.

September 8, 2015

Bernie Sanders and the left

William Kaufman writes:

[A]t this moment of gathering darkness for our species and planet, in this pivotal presidential campaign season, who is making greater strides toward triggering the mass enlightenment that is the key to empowering the oppressed: Sanders or his left critics? ...

To dismiss these crucial inroads into mass consciousness as mere diversion, to deride his proposals as milquetoast Keynesian stopgap, betrays the old far-left allergy to the complexity and cacophony of the large stage of life, a debilitating preference for the safety and certitude of the tiny left echo chamber. ...

[I]t is only through the vehicle of his presidential campaign as a Democrat that these kinds of progressive issues and solutions can flood the airwaves and touch the tens of millions of desperate but ill-informed Americans who most need to think and hear about them — in most cases, for the first time. This is the unique and irreplaceable value of the Sanders candidacy: it is strewing seeds of mass consciousness around issues of class and inequality and the environment in a way that no other person or party could accomplish right now. Radicals need to ask themselves: How is that a bad thing? ...

So this is the audience the left must address: not the doughty, battle-ready proletariat of far-left daydreams, but the massively depoliticized and demoralized casualties of the culture industry and neoliberal piracy. ... Blind to these tactical exigencies, Sanders’s far-left detractors merely reinforce the political isolation that they seem to brandish as a badge of virtue; in reality it is a symptom of political debility, a fatal estrangement from the tactical challenges and possibilities of the moment.