Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Irish Minister Roche says Libertas campaign based on "spin, deception and hypocrisy"

You may have seen the post of this weekend about Raymond O'Malley, the former representative of Irish farmers who has "put his reputation on the line" for Declan Ganley and Libertas.

It seems that O'Malley, like Declan Ganley, is not only a hypocrite; he is also now campaigning against the interests of the farmers he used to represent.
The below is just released by the Irish Minister of European Affairs, Dick Roche, whose Wicklow constituency is within the Leinster European constituency that O'Malley is contesting for the far right Libertas party.

Libertas Election Campaign will be built on spin, deception and hypocrisy - says Roche.

“It is becoming increasingly obvious that the Libertas campaign in the upcoming European elections will be based on spin, deception and hypocrisy”. Minister for European Affairs Dick Roche told a Fianna Fail meeting in Baltinglass last night.

“In recent days, we have seen the campaign launch by two of the announced Libertas candidates. Both campaign launches were long on rhetoric and short on policy detail. Both were used to recycle the same untruthful lines peddled by Libertas in last year’s referendum”.

Declan Ganley and Raymond O’Malley both spoke about openness, transparency and democracy. Neither are prepared to practice what they preach. Libertas has still to provide responses to questions raised by the standards in Public Office Commission regarding the funding of its campaign in last years referendum.

In both campaign launches, Libertas has pedalled the same old myths regarding democracy and the European Union. Both campaign launches repeated the jaded old lie that decisions in Europe are made by nameless bureaucrats. Decisions in the European Union are made by the Council of Ministers and the European Parliament. Both have democratic mandates.

Under the terms of the Lisbon Treaty, democracy in the European Union will be further extended, by giving new powers in European law making to National Parliaments.

The launch of the campaign of the Libertas candidate for the East constituency brings a new element into the picture – rank hypocrisy. The candidate, Mr. O’Malley who spent years lobbying in Brussels, is now complaining about the role of lobbyists. Organisations such as Trade Unions, Farming Associations and Social Interest Groups play a legitimate role in policy making. In his previous existence, Mr. O’Malley would have defended the rights of the IFA to be heard in Brussels, now he questions the legitimacy of the very process in which he was engaged.

The most extraordinary hypocrisy, however, on O’Malley’s part is his lame defence of Declan Ganley’s savage attack on the common agriculture policy as a “weapon of mass destruction”. The common agriculture policy has pumped billions of euro into farming in this country and into Ireland’s rural economy. Ganley has made it clear that he wishes to fundamentally destroy that policy and it is bizarre that Raymond O’Malley now indicates a willingness to join him in that destruction.

If Libertas wants to be taken seriously in the forthcoming European election campaign, its time its representatives started to practice what it preaches.

O’Malley and Ganley could make a good start by injecting a degree of truthfulness into their campaign, by agreeing to be bound by the same rules as will apply to every other party and organisation contesting the election and by answering fundamental questions in relation to Libertas funding and the level of support it received in last years referendum campaign from euro-sceptics based outside Ireland and from the US defence contractor with whom Ganley has been operating.

24th March 2009.

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