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Diarmuid O'Flynn
Diarmuid O'Flynn
Independent
Party 6


Incumbent : No

Main message to voters:

We're in the middle of a global war between the haves & have-nots; Parliaments are major battlegrounds in that war, corporate lobbyists capturing legislators to ease the way for their profit-driven ambitions. In that war, the vote is the most powerful weapon of all. On May 24th, use it; use it well.

Election history:

First run at politics was the EParl elections of 2014; did well in the 1st count, lasted til the 10th of 12 counts but lost out, due mainly to massive surplus transfer from Brian Crowley to FF running-mate. If I had managed to overhaul Mr Hartley again and got in among the FG three, who knows???

Priorities:

  1. Other You can believe the overwhelming scientific evidence on climate change, or believe the few deniers. I'm one of the former. Declare an emergency, now.
  2. Other Too many politicians, captured by corporate lobbyists, prioritise private interests. They overlap, but public reps should prioritise public interests.
  3. Other There is far too much discrimination in the world, against women most of all but also colour/religion/origin-based. Enough. We are one race, all equal

Candidate positions on the election issues:

EU

Ireland should remain in the EU

Some people believe that Ireland should leave the EU, particularly in the wake of Brexit, as the UK is our most important trading partner. Others argue that EU membership continues to be beneficial for Ireland, both economically, socially, and in terms of our political influence.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"We should remain sceptical, a healthy approach when it comes to life generally and politics especially; question, challenge. Work with others to redirect the EU away from its current course to full Union, with its own budget, Finance/Foreign Affairs/Defence Ministers. If we fail, look at our options"

European integration has gone too far

Some people argue that the EU interferes too much in the affairs of member states, and powers should be returned to the national level. Others argue that further integration is necessary to tackle shared challenges like climate change and internet privacy rights and for economic stability.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"It was working fine pre-Lisbon but now the EU project has taken on a major new twist. We joined a community and I don't think it was ever the intention of the Irish people that we would become mere States in a full United States of Europe, because in effect that's what this will be. Reverse Lisbon."

Ireland should cooperate with other EU member states on defence

Ireland has recently joined the PESCO framework, which seeks to increase defence cooperation in the EU. It commits members to work together on military planning and to increase defence spending. It does not create an EU army, but some oppose it because they see it as a step in that direction.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"We are already members of the United Nations, the biggest mutual defence pact in history. The last expansion of the EU saw several former USSR States join the EU, and many of those have a (legitimate) chip on their shoulder against Russia. I fear where that tension is leading. We don't need this."

If an EU member state is overwhelmed with asylum applications, other member states (including Ireland) should share the burden

There is an unequal distribution of asylum seekers across EU member states. In 2015 the EU introduced a one-off relocation scheme, moving asylum-seekers from Greece and Italy to other member states (including Ireland). Some have argued that a permanent relocation scheme should be introduced.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"Ireland has the greatest % (17.5) of its native-born population living abroad - WE are a migrant nation, our own long history of oppression/depression/starvation, and have good reason to be grateful for sanctuary abroad. Even in hard times we built a reputation for generosity/hospitality; open arms!"

Ireland should defend its low corporation tax in the face of pressure for EU harmonisation

Ireland's low corporate tax makes it an attractive location for multinationals, which are a major employer in Ireland. It has also led to accusations of Ireland being a ‘tax haven’. The European Commission has proposed harmonising corporate tax rules to create a level playing field across the EU.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"I'm maybe on my own here but Ireland is a major player in the global corporate tax avoidance scam which is depriving economies (including our own, by the way - we have our tax-avoiders using shelters in other tax-haven jurisdictions) of badly-needed funding. That has to end, and CCCTB is a start."

Brexit

In the wake of Brexit, a referendum should be held on Irish unity

The Good Friday Agreement allows for a unification referendum (‘border poll’) in Northern Ireland and the Republic, if there is evidence that it is desired by a majority. Some have argued that, in light of Brexit, this should now be put on the agenda. Others believe that it would be divisive.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"Such a referendum should be held sooner rather than later but I'm not sure that it should be done immediately in the wake of Brexit, when so much will still be up in the air and feelings are still raw. Let it settle, let's see what the outcome is, and then decide accordingly."

Ireland should refuse to install checks on the border with Northern Ireland in the event of a no-deal Brexit

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, Ireland would have different customs and regulatory requirements to Northern Ireland. The EU may require that Ireland establish border checks with Northern Ireland to ensure the integrity of the EU’s single market.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"Agree 100%, no need to elaborate. And if the EU wants to challenge us on it, then so be it - let's check out this 'solidarity'."

Tax and Spending

Wealthy people should have to pay more tax than they do now

Some believe that there should be greater redistribution of wealth from rich to poor, achieved through taxes on income or wealth. Others believe that taxes are high enough already, and increases could be bad for the economy.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"Ending the tax-avoidance schemes would be a good start. I believe though that it should be income-based as opposed to property-based. If someone has worked hard and well enough to build a comfortable nest, they should not be punished for that. We should try Universal Basic Income, a leveler."

Increases in public spending should be prioritised over tax cuts

During the recession, new taxes were introduced (e.g. USC) and spending was cut on public services. Some argue that the government should now cut taxes to put money back into people’s pockets. Others argue that the priority should be to increase public spending in areas such as housing and health.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"But, intelligent public spending, as opposed to what we've seen from two Fine Gael-led governments since 2010, and in recent years especially."

Environment and transport

Increases to carbon tax should be opposed

Carbon tax is a tax on fossil fuels such as oil, petrol, diesel, and gas. Currently, Ireland has a carbon tax of €20 per tonne of CO2. The Climate Change Advisory Council recommends that this is gradually increased to €80 per tonne in order to reduce emissions and tackle climate change.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"The Carbon Tax, like so many taxes introduced by this and the previous government, are regressive, disproportionately hit people already struggling to make ends meet. Hit the major polluting industries, hit aviation and shipping. A more sensible idea though would be to cut usage; retrofit homes etc."

The government should prioritise spending on public transport and cycle lanes over roads

Some argue that we need to reduce our dependence on cars, and invest in sustainable transport instead. Others argue that failing to invest in our road network will damage the economy. The current capital investment plan includes more spending on roads than on public transport and cycleways.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"We need the M20, to finish off the motorway network and finally join our 2nd- and 3rd-sized cities; that would also cut down on pollution in that area, no more sitting in traffic. But along with that, buses/trains/waterways/cycle-lanes - that's not just the future, that's the now. Do it."

Social issues

More should be done to provide accommodation for Travellers, even if there is local opposition

The Department of the Environment provides funding to local authorities for Traveller accommodation (e.g. halting sites and group housing schemes), but many local authorities have been reluctant to build these sites due to local opposition, and much of the money allocated for this remains unspent.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"Society as a whole, which includes us all, has failed the Travelling community, failed miserably. On life expectancy, suicide, health, education, employment, they are way behind. We have a duty to them, but, Travellers also have a duty to us, and to themselves. This can be resolved, but by us all."

There should be mandatory sentencing for violent crimes

A mandatory sentence is one which must be imposed regardless of the individual circumstances of the case. Currently, murder carries a mandatory life sentence in Ireland, and some drug trafficking and firearm offenses have mandatory sentences. For other crimes, judges have discretion on sentencing.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"And no jail-time for non-violent crimes - it costs society to keep someone incarcerated, and costs dearly, so if someone is no threat (pedophilia and such crimes, I would argue, are violent crime), why lock them away? "

The liberalisation of abortion in Ireland has gone too far

The legislation introduced after the 2018 referendum allows for terminations for any reason up to 12 weeks in a pregnancy. Terminations are only permitted after this date (and before the foetus becomes viable) if there is a serious risk to the health of the pregnant woman.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"This isn't an EU competence and has no place here; this is a question for Ireland as a country, and Ireland alone, and MEPs have no say on it. But I won't hide from it. I believe we should have legislated for the many hard cases, but abortion-on-demand is what we've got. I am strongly against that."

A lot more religious-run schools should become multi-denominational

96% of primary schools in Ireland are religious-run. There is an ongoing ‘divestment’ process, designed to change some schools with a religious patron (such as the Catholic Church) to become multi-denominational schools. Some schools and religious leaders oppose the plan.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"By all means teach children about religions, all religions, but education at every level should be non-denominational, specific religions educating separately."

International

Ireland should boycott Israeli goods produced in the occupied territories

The ‘Occupied Territories’ bill will make it an offence to import goods from an occupied territory. Supporters say this will show solidarity with Palestinians living under Israeli occupation. Critics say it discriminates unfairly against Israel, and threatens important economic links with the US.
Agree
Neither agree nor disagree
Disagree
No opinion
Comment:
"Again, this is a 100 percenter. I believe Israel has every right to protect itself, and it has been under attack for decades, but what it's doing in the occupied territories is criminal."