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Failed by The Eighties


I was luck enough to drive through Clondalkin, Ballyfermot and Lucan yesterday. Lucky because it served to remind me that no matter how hard FF and the media soldiers try to deny it, Haughey and his clan on the Dublin councils sold families up the swanny. Im not going to patronise commuunities with their own social fabric and stories by pretending to know the whole area from a window of a car but even a cursory glance shows that whatever the people of these areas have achieved it was done without any help from CJ Haughey.

When the developers got their hands on West Dublin up went the endless acres of houses, nominal services were put into the areas. Small central villages were supposed to support huge numbers of people. The developers cared not one wit, nor the councillors who operated so cosily with them. Many may tire of hearing Joe Higgins (and Ciaran Cuffe alluded to it in an inteview for us here) over recent days lament how it was CJ and his FF proxies on the councils that sold his constituents up the swanny but forget it we shouldnt. Some of these communities have been handily removed from the eye of your average commuter. The Chapelizod bypass, Naas Road, N4 and M50 all take traffic away from these areas, gently suppressing them out of sight and out of mind.

That drive reminded me that throughout the reign of the developer and their friends, a reign not yet over, the lives of families were cast aside. The needs of a community replaced by inaction and greed on the political prioity list. We trust these people to deliver the basic needs of a community and instead they construct areas which provide barriers to social progress. These parts of Dublin and their corresponding areas around Ireland have bred scenes of desperate inequality and poverty (true often accompanied by crime, agression and anti-social behaviour alongwith it). Erected endless barriers to success for those who live there. Of course progress has been made in all of these areas. Local groups and community activists have invested time and energy to helping improve things on the ground. My sole point is that all that improvement came in spite of the actions of the politican/developer class not because of it. And who was it that was king of the hill?

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  1. Blogger Seamus Ryan | 1:16 a.m. |  

    When I read about the how certain developers operated in Dublin during the 1980's I can't help but wonder whether this was replicated in other parts of the country?

  2. Blogger Cian | 1:30 a.m. |  

    Living in tralee, i am struck by how many similar spaces have been created in my own town and farther afield.

    it is possible that the manner in which they came to be is different but it is undeniable that they are just as damaging. Getting lips to loosen and allowing the truth to be told and admitted is something this state is not committed to doing.

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