This issue of rabble was brought to you by the 260 people who donated to our fund:it campaign. Their faith in this project will help to keep it running for another year.
During which time RTE will continue to inanely forecast green shoots while letting the shower who got us into this mess, their good time buddies and drinking partners go unchallenged.
Just as the folks who supported our fundit gave us hope, rabble set out to give you hope in these challenging times. But it is difficult not to be bitter writing this editorial in another country, chasing the type of paid employment that couldn’t be secured in three years of hunting in Ireland.
It’s hard not to feel like you’ve been thrown away by the place that you call home because those who could change things lacked the courage to fight your corner. Or worse see forced emigration as a stop valve on otherwise staggering rates of unemployment and social dissent. It’s tough not to get angry when your last act of desperation, moving away from everyone you love and know, is met with judgement because you didn’t ‘stay and fight’.
Just as the nonsensical gibbering of our mainstream media won’t create gainful employment, cash donations alone won’t print rabble. Neither will folks telling us how great the project is but offering sweet FA in terms of actual supports. Skinny lattes, ironic jumpers and lomographic cameras didn’t save Detroit. Pop-up art galleries and shabby chic interiors won’t help us create a society copped on enough to not be sold the same dodgy mortgages again. Remember that, the next time you marvel at the independent, vibrant cultural expression of cities like Berlin, Bristol or London. They didn’t emerge because a local ‘entrepreneur’ tried to co-opt DIY culture. They’re there because communities questioned the ‘facts’ and the solutions being offered by those with their sticky fingers in the pies.
The only thing that will keep rabble printing is if you start getting your hands dirty. And that goes just the same for independent spaces such as The Exchange and Seomra Spraoi. These projects are run by a small group of volunteers who give time and energy that can’t be monetized because they believe that what they are doing is bigger then a balance sheet. Turning up and using the venue will help justify its existence but helping out will make it grow.
Building spaces and communities with your neighbours and friends that aren’t about what you get out of it might just create the type of structures that could shout NO next time the banks screw it up. ‘Cos folks this cycle is gonna keep happening if you don’t start taking the power back.
In the time it took you to read this another person left Ireland to find work, purpose, or maybe just some hope. That is truly fucking terrible and a deadly testament of how the old order, the political parties, media, banks, universities and corporations are failing us as much now as they did in 2008. And they will continue to fail us for as long as we buy into their self-serving economic stories of gold guilded futures just one more budget away.