Climate & the Irish Constitution

It can be easily argued and supported that Article 45.2 of the constitution has not been adhered to by the government, between the time of:

  • the financial crisis – and the policies which resulted in disempowerment, the rent hikes and disillusionment of the millennial generation, homelessness, the abolition of unions from FDI corporations (though there are positives to this), the further disproportionate and opportunistic acquisition of concentrated wealth during covid lockdown, and the inconsistency of government policy with future conditions to the safety of the people – i.e. climate change, etc.

The primary argument for immediate change/reform in government policy is simply that the people of Ireland have not been and are not being provided with the necessary guidance and space to be empowered to uphold their rights in accordance with Article 45.2 of the Irish constitution & that any interpretation of the constitution that is used in an attempt to steer the immediate duty of the government away from that argument will be met with the opposition of the people, whether by request, demand, an amendment of the constitution, legal action or upon the necessity of force should all else fail.

Not only has the government failed to uphold the constitution – e.g. by “especially” facilitating and/or allowing for “the concentration of the ownership or control of essential commodities in a few individuals”, as stated in part iii – it has failed to do so by ignoring provision of the necessary measures to give the people the opportunity/ability/skill/strength to make “reasonable provision for their domestic needs”(Art.45.2.i) now and into the future – as it indisputably recognised the need for by signing the Paris agreement, as well as the preceding Kyoto Protocol, failing also government policy.

As a nation of long Catholic tradition, let us remind the government of the common sense that can be quoted from Jesus’ “teach a man to fish” parable. The state’s role in the schooling and, indeed, the economic systems have led not to the “common good”(Art.45.2.ii) of training and preparation of Ireland’s youths, and their elders’ potential to guide them, to be sufficiently fit to influence the global forces which threaten provision of their domestic needs. Rather, it has divided the Irish people so as to achieve quite the opposite, i.e. that “through their occupations”(Art.45.2.i) they “find the means” to trading future reasonable provision for their domestic needs for the short term gains of the few “to the common detriment”(Art.45.2.iii).

Should the government find themselves innocent of failing to uphold the constitution, perhaps due to lack of knowledge, they are unfit to lead a 21st Century nation. Should they be found guilty, they are both unfit and in breach of the law, thereby deeming them criminal and subject to the court of law. In the case of innocence, they may, by the skin of their teeth, by the tips of the hair on their backs, be forgiven if they rapidly make every obvious effort required to reverse their failure.

Such rapid effort would include, but not be limited to:

  • Bringing both significantly greater transparency and accessibility of their dealings to the public, such as honest explanations of their decisions that are comprehensible to an irritable electorate

  • Reforming the education and training sector to prioritise the skills of collaboration, practical learning, innovation

Should the government find its efforts for rapid reform opposed, whether by the public, the business sector or any state body, the relevant arguments against reform would have to be overseen and publicly available so that the state, a panel of randomly selected public intellectuals, or a citizens assembly could judge whether those arguments are qualified in the context of the need to empower the public so that they may both address the challenges of the century domestically and globally.

Examples of arguments against reform could be that they threaten profits/jobs or that they give power to a people whom – although unfairly misguided by the schooling and education systems – have not proven themselves as competent, moral or educated enough to make big decisions that will determine the future of Ireland.

Well, these arguments are nonsense. If anything, the blind power has already been given by allowing all the freedom to consume till the ends of the earth. It’s time to remind the nation of love and how this force demands of the government that our people be sufficiently empowered in the sense that they work for the common good and face the threats of a misguided 8 Billion people to alter the biosphere.

It should also be pointed out that the people too have failed to uphold the constitution by not competently participating in the prevention and response to chaos. We are all to blame for failure in maintaining a balance with order, and we all will learn together how to proceed. Thus we ironically are not to blame, as we have all inherited a culture and history of bewilderment; this collective experiment known as civilisation.

We know enough now to see how far chaos can go, how many people can take their own lives, how people can hold onto life for years without truly living, how distrustful so many of us can be, and how easily we can turn away from our deeper loving nature. We know that the accumulation of wealth and advancement of technology, although proven very useful if used with brains and soul, does not ultimately bring us meaning or happiness.

See Article 45.2 below. Has the constitution been fulfilled?:

Article 45.

“2 The State shall, in particular, direct its policy

towards securing:–

i That the citizens (all of whom, men and women equally, have the right to an

adequate means of livelihood) may through their occupations find the means

of making reasonable provision for their domestic needs.

ii That the ownership and control of the material resources of the community may be so distributed amongst private individuals and the various classes as best to subserve the common good.

iii That, especially, the operation of free competition shall not be allowed so to develop as to result in the concentration of the ownership or control of essential commodities in a few individuals to the common detriment.

iv That in what pertains to the control of credit the constant and predominant aim shall be the welfare of the people as a whole.

v That there may be established on the land in economic security as many families as in the circumstances shall be practicable.”

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