February 21, 2009

Massive economic protest underway in Dublin

Per The Irish Times, nearly 120,000 people have gathered in the Dublin city center today to protest the government's response to the slumping Irish economy. The Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) organized the march hoping to create a ten-point plan to economic recovery in the fairest way possible for the working class.

Amid spending cuts and pension levies for public workers, Bloomberg Europe reports that the office of Prime Minister Brian Cowen has said that the actions of the government are "difficult, and in some cases, painful," but are "necessary and fair."

The BBC reports that nearly 326,000 claimed unemployment benefits in January, the highest total since 1967.

One man tried to get more information on the protest via Twitter.

@Cubikmusik (Dublin): @nialler9 crap. Where's the protest? On my way into town now.

Those who were at the protest had myriad reasons to be marching. Some felt the need to stand up against the government.

@johnjlawlor (Dublin): Marchin with tens of thousands of workers in protest against this worthless government and divisive tax.

@dublinjoe (Dublin): is taking part in his first european protest march. it's huge!

But one man wanted to march even though his interests were not being represented.

@dermotbrennan (Ranelagh, County Dublin): In public sector protest march on oconnell street. I'm not even in the public sector...

Others, however, simply wanted to watch.

@barratree (Dublin): Have a prime spot for watching the protest - house 6 in trinity overlooking College Green. fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa.

Despite the collective movement, some were skeptical if the protest would effectively create the necessary changes.

@vonprond (Dublin): is this protest March in Dublin on Saturday a good thing? What will it achieve?

@alanoleary (Dublin): Seriously - when do us working people of Ireland get to protest against the 'working' people protesting tomorrow (who we pay with our taxes)

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