[Fsfe-ie] swpat MEP voting guide?

Ciaran O'Riordan coriordan at compsoc.com
Thu Jun 10 01:36:33 CEST 2004

jm at jmason.org (Justin Mason) writes:
> hey all -- is there such a thing yet?

No, I'm working on it at the moment, but I got no response to my last call
for info - so I don't have much to go on (especially for outside of Dublin).

I'm going to send a mail to ILUG within the next hour, so if anyone has any
comments please make them asap - I'll send the mail as me (not as IFSO)
since there's no time for debate.

The quickest possible summary is:
1. The parties that vote completely "our way" are the Greens and Fianna Fail.

2. The MEPs that are vocally on our side are Patricia McKenna, Avril Doyle,
Brian Crowley, Eoin Dubsky, and Ivana Bacik. (and?)

3. The 11 MEPs that voted "our way" last year are:
   -Mary Banotti (FG)
   -Gerard Collins (FF)
   -Brian Crowley (FF)
   -John Walls Cushnahan (FG) (mostly "our way" anyway)
   -Avril Doyle (FG) (is she running?)
   -James Fitzsimons (FF)
   -Liam Hyland (FF)
   -John Joseph McCartin (FG) (mostly "our way" anyway)
   -Patricia McKenna (Green)
   -Sean O'Neachtain (FF)

(plus Nuala Ahern (Green) who is not running)

>   - The Labour Party, sadly, haven't yet come up with a concrete policy on
>     the issue -- but the Dublin candidate, Ivana Bacik, has (verbally)
>     stated her opposition.

DeRossa was their only MEP and he abstained from the vote (later he said he
couldn't vote on the issue because he hadn't understood it.)  So there's
nothing to go on for a party generalisation, but Ivana Bacik (Dublin) is
vocally against swpats.

Labour are part of the EU party "PSE" (Party of European Socialists), most
(60%) of whom voted against us.

Warning: Do not jump to the easy conclusion that we should all avoid Labour.
If we could get some known anti-swpat reps into the PSE, they could talk
sense into others.  Like Avril Doyle (FG) did in the PPE-DE party.

>   - The Greens, however, are actively campaigning against them, their
>     candidates clearly understand and have communicated with voters on the
>     issue in the past, and the cross-Europe party policy is clearly
>     stated.

Yes, the Irish Greens and the EU party they are in "Verts/ALE" have a 100%
solid anti-swpat record.  The polls predict that Patricia McKenna (Dublin)
will just about lose her seat and they predict that Mary White (Nuala
Aherns' replacement) won't get a seat.  So it would be worth helping them.

>   - Eoin Dubsky is an independent candidate, standing on a primarily
>     anti-war platform. He's stated his opposition to software patenting
>     clearly and publically. He's also a total techie -- with RSS feeds and
>     a Redbrick.dcu.ie account! ;)

(and he's released some php scripts under the GPL.)

>   - FG's position is totally unclear, as usual... ;)

FG are in the PPE-DE (European People's Party & European Democrats) -
similar to the PSE, most (70%) of the PPE-DE voted mostly against us.  Like
Labour, it would be great to get to some anti-swpat MEPs into that party.
Avril Doyle would be one example if she's running.

>   - And in the other corner: FF and the PDs as parties are whole-heartedly
>     supporting software patenting; in fact, they're the ones running the
>     EU Council which just pushed through software patenting law despite
>     the democratic mandate from the European Parliament. boo.


 *All 6 of the FF MEPs voted as we asked them to!* (and none abstained)

Mary Harney (PD) steered the Directive into a wall at the first chance she
got, but there are no PDs running for EU election AFAIK, so they can be

Ciarán O'Riordan
Free Software in Ireland: http://ifso.ie

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