Century of Endeavour
Chapter 5 Part 1: The period 1941-1945
(c) Roy Johnston 2002(comments to email@example.com)
This chapter falls naturally into two parts: the war years, and the immediate post-war years with the present writer active in the TCD student left. The introductory section below overviews both parts.
IntroductionWhen the war came, JJ moved back to Drogheda, to a 30-acre farm, with a substantial ex-Ascendancy house. I boarded initially at Avoca School, then from 1942 at St Columba's College near Rathfarnham. We endured the privations of the emergency from the relative comfort of JJ's professorial salary. At school in St Columba's we had access to newspapers and radio, and we followed the war avidly, trying to understand the politics. A group of us took up Marxism, under the influence of the war, with fellow-pupil Paul O'Higgins as focus. We had support from a teacher EL Mallalieu, who subsequently became a Labour MP in England; we stored our Marxist library in his rooms.
What follows here, where it relates to JJ, is an overview of the domains where he was active during the decade, and in most of these I have collected a significant amount of background material, referenced in footnotes and their associated hypertext hotlinks. By far the most significant part of JJ's 1940s contribution was made via his membership of the Seanad, until his defeat in the 1948 election. JJ also served on the Post-war Agriculture Commission, somewhat critically.
JJ continued to be active in the Statistical and Social Inquiry Society (SSISI)(1) and in this context the Barrington Lectures(2) continued to be of significance. His Barrington and SSISI material, supplemented by field work in the late 40s when travel became again feasible, took shape as a book Irish Agriculture in Transition(3). In this book JJ elaborated his vision of a highly productive, mechanised and labour-intensive agricultural system, based on managed large-farm units, co-operatively owned, making use of practical examples from real-world sites demonstrating the principles he was advocating. The failure of Irish agriculture to develop systematically along these lines post-war is one of the great lost opportunities. He continued to make the case for productive agriculture via the Seanad(4), where he held on to his seat for most of the decade.
The foregoing I count as one of the missed opportunities for constructive father-son interaction, in the field of politics and economic organisation. JJ's vision had been, since the 30s, at least partially realised by RM Burke, whose estate near Tuam Co Galway he had transformed into a working co-operative or collective farm, avoiding division by the Land Commission into uneconomic 30-acre units. I visited it in or about 1947, in the context of the development of our TCD 'student left' group, the Promethean Society, seeking role-models on the home ground, rather than in Eastern Europe, and I go into this further in Part 2. At this time however I was not aware of JJ's vision of productive estates converted to co-operative organisation, and I failed to make the connection, though JJ himself had been invited as a Barrington Lecturer to Tuam in October 1947, largely on the initiative of Burke(5) .
During the 40s JJ tried as best he could to keep in touch with TCD Board politics(6). In this arena he was however sidelined in the McConnell 'revolution'; the 'new wave' which he had been associated with as a Junior Fellow matured after he became a Senior Fellow in December 1943, and thus became identified with the 'gerontocrats'. He did however participate in the politics which developed between Government and the Universities over the question of the investment of the Marshall Plan money into agricultural research. In this area he played a leading role, along with Frank Mitchell, positioning the College to participate in the project, with the Kells Ingram Farm.
He had significant published academic output, and became a member of the Royal Irish Academy in 1943 at the invitation of Eoin MacNeill(7). His Academy citation, on the basis of which he was elected, looks as if it was prepared in a hurry, and does not reference much of his real academic work. This was the time when de Valera was in process of setting up the Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies, and he had had little support in this from the Academy 'old guard'. Eoin MacNeill becoming President however constituted an indication that the Irish State was becoming recognised as being 'here to stay'. Eoin MacNeill had earlier been associated with a move to set up an alternative National Academy; this process had been initiated but abandoned under the pressures of the Civil War period. So it seems appropriate to suggest that JJ's election to the Academy might have been part of an Eoin MacNeill recruitment of scholars known to be favourable to Irish independent statehood, and in this context JJ had indeed proved himself, in service on a series of Free State government commissions, and latterly in the Seanad.
The Albert Kahn contact(8) remained tenuously in existence, despite the war. JJ remained active in the organisation of resistance to the worst effects of Partition, via the Irish Association(9), of which he became President in 1946. In this context to tried, usually without much success, to ensure that Northern organisations participated on an all-Ireland basis, in the post-emergency / post-war reconstruction process.
This ends an introductory overview section. I build the structure of this two-part chapter for JJ initially around his Seanad speeches, with his College role in the Board, and his role as President of the Irish Association, taking over after 1948. For my own part, the focus is on the development of Marxist political thinking under the influence of the war, and its transition from school to college environment.
RJ at SchoolThe decade began just about when the war became 'real'. There was a rallying of the remote Johnston cousin-hood, from the ends of the earth, in support of the defence of Britain. This is recorded in the 'family' thread(10). JJ moved to a farm near Drogheda for the duration, requiring the present writer to attend boarding-school, initially at Avoca School in Blackrock, where I had been since 1935.
In school we set up a war map on the classroom wall. People discovered books about the first world war, and brought them in. The general feeling in the school, being Protestant, was pro-British. There was a boy scout troop, somewhat on sufferance; the head master Cyril Parker disliked the scouts, as he felt they were too militaristic. He had also served in the previous war, and had become a total pacifist. But to return to the scouts: Erskine Barton Childers and I were in the same class, and were good friends; we weekended in each others houses occasionally. His father, who subsequently became President, was a TD in support of de Valera's Government at the time. (In the printed edition I had him on record as a Minister; in fact he became a Junior Minister in 1944 and a Minister in 1948; I am indebted to Antoin Daltun for pointing this out. RJ 29/01/07). Erskine and I were in the scouts. The scout routine involved learning the National Anthem, and the norm at this time, in the Protestant school scout-troop environment, was God Save the King. Erskine objected to this, and I backed him up. We got our way. This was my first political act.
The war dominated my dawning political consciousness however from then on, and I identified with the British. I was conscious of Irish neutrality but aware of a general sympathy with the British, and a genuine fear of German invasion, grounded on the realities of the worst period in 1940-41. In the spring of 1941 I was still at Avoca, though as a boarder, JJ having moved to a farm near Drogheda; he felt safer in a rural environment in the threatening situation. I remember the physical training instructor, one Sergeant O'Neill of the Free State Army, regaling us with what the military view of the situation was at that time, to the effect that a German landing in the south was imminent.
JJ evidently was of the same view, because for the summer term of 1941 he took me out of Avoca, and sent me as a day-boy to Drogheda Grammar School, along with my cousin Ian Nesbitt, who had been sent down from Belfast. If the Germans had landed, at least the family would have been in the one place, with access to food.
We went camping with the Drogheda scouts in June 1941, and when in camp we got the news of the German invasion of the USSR. This immediately changed the scene as regards danger of invasion, and I was sent back in September 1941 to board at Avoca, where we followed the war on the classroom map.
St Columba's CollegeI did the entrance scholarship exam for St Columba's College, and went there in September 1942. The school was, and still is, situated in the foothills of the Dublin Mountains. It had been founded in 1841 by a group of progressive landlords, Adare and others, to enable the landed and church elite to communicate with their Irish tenantry in their own language, and thereby to develop some social and religious cohesion, along with a supportive educated artisan class, thus undermining the alien influence of Rome(11). The core idea here was the attempt to transform parasitic landlordism into a bourgeois-national elite capable of leadership in the positive sense; the language was to be the bond, with the Roman Church marginalised.
The teaching of Irish was competent; one Brooks was the teacher. Vestiges of the founder's vision remained in the form of a service in Irish in the Chapel on St Patrick's Day. The most positive remaining aspect however of the founders' vision however was the emphasis on access to technical education, and to the farm. There was woodwork, metalwork, including a blacksmiths forge, a printing works, and in my time, an electrical and electronic workshop. There were good science laboratories, the science teacher being one George Lodge, a veteran republican, who had driven the car during a famous episode involving a rescue of de Valera from prison in England during the war of independence. He had graduated from the College of Science, and served his time as an industrial chemist during the first world war.
I recollect following day by day the battle of Stalingrad on the copy of the Irish Times which was accessible in the junior common-room. We cheered on the Russians. The 'radio club' (as the electronic workshop was known) was a bit exclusive; juniors like me were not allowed in. I managed however to get into building radios at home during the vacations. My sister when in college had been friendly with one Cyril Dugdale, in the medical school; he became an excellent dentist. Like most dentists, he liked working intelligently with his hands, and he had been a hard-core radio buff in the 30s; he has made radios for us. These had fallen into disuse, but I stripped them, and used the bits and pieces to build my own; I learned how to solder. In or about 1943 I made my first successful radio set, and I got it to work on the short wavebands, so I could listen to the news of the war from all over the world, by-passing the Irish censorship. This fed into our understanding of global politics at school.
I remember coming back to school in September 1944 and getting to talk to Paul O'Higgins, Dick Stringer and Paddy Bond, who it seems had already become the makings of a sort of Marxist underground group. The topic was the civil war then going on in Greece, which I had initially found incomprehensible from the news reports. They filled me in on what was going on: it was Churchill using the British Army to prevent the Greeks having a social revolution and installing a post-war government friendly to the USSR. From then on, the jig-saw puzzle of world events began to fit together into the Marxist world-picture.
Paul O'Higgins was unusual in St Columba's College, in that his parents had rejected the Catholic Church, and Paul was consciously an unbeliever. He went to the College Chapel, and fulfilled the necessary rituals, with the exception of bowing his head at the name of Jesus during the creed, which was then the norm; perhaps it still is, I don't know. This engendered a degree of respect in many, and I seem to remember one or two others following suit.
Apart from myself our Marxist group consisted of Paul O'Higgins (background as above); Paddy Bond (landed gentry from Farragh, between Longford and Edgeworthstown; Oliver Bond of 1798 fame was ancestrally related; he went to Cambridge University and remained active in Britain with the Communist Party and the Connolly Association until his death in ~1990), Dick Stringer (went to Liverpool University and eventually became Dublin County Architect), George Fairbrother (studied law in TCD, supported the Promethean group in TCD, then became a solicitor in Cavan). George joined the group as a result of the performance of Stringer and myself in a school debate in which we promoted Marxist ideas.
There was a friendly teacher, one EL Mallalieu, subsequently a Labour MP for Colne Valley in England, winning a seat in the 1945 election. We kept our library of Marxist books in his room, with his blessing. We bought them in surreptitious visits down to Dublin, to New Books, 'Johnny Nolan's Bookshop', which was the residual contact point for the Irish Communist Party, then disbanded due to the war and the politics of neutrality.
We recruited a few more; Adrian Somerfield (who ended up teaching science as George Lodge's successor), Fred Marshall (who made a career in music in London), one Mercier who went to college in Scotland; we lost track of him. Adrian edited trenchantly a 'wall-newspaper' called the 'Beresford Free Press' which developed a sort of muck-raking left-wing journalism. Fred played the organ in the Chapel and on VE day improvised around the anthem of the USSR.
Somerfield and I moved in on the Radio Club, its earlier denizens having lost interest. We attempted to develop a transmitter, with a view to conveying the liberating message of the Left to the Dublin masses. We managed to transmit from the radio club workshop to the senior common-room. We developed a portable test rig, which we brought up the mountain, to try to get a feel for range measurement, but this turned out to be out of range; we only had a few watts.
One of the earlier radio buffs, I should say, was the younger brother of a subsequent Stormont potentate. We learned from him the essential principles of Orange patronage: there was a weekly issue of toilet paper ('bumf') in the school latrine, it was somewhat scarce under war conditions. He used to get there early, stock up with it in his pocket, and issue it to his friends, thus illustrating the essentials of bourgeois politics!
At this point it is appropriate to use George Lodge as a hook on which to hang a comment on the science tradition in Ireland. He got his training in the College of Science, which was outside the Irish university system. It had been founded by the British when they discovered that the Germans had been investing in education in science and technology for industry, and this constituted a competitive threat. It was a producer of the industrial chemists who had fuelled the British war machine during the World War 1, George Lodge among them. Prior to 1906, with the foundation of the National University of Ireland, this was the main channel for Catholics to get a scientific education, access to Trinity College and the 'godless colleges' in Cork, Galway and Belfast being banned or discouraged by the Catholic Hierarchy. Cardinal Cullen's ban on the 'godless colleges' had discouraged generations of the rising Catholic bourgeoisie from accessing scientific technology; some like Robert Kane went abroad. The result was that the culture of science tended to be a Protestant preserve.
This was reflected in the curricula of second-level schools. When JD Bernal's mother visited Clongowes, seeking to evaluate science opportunities for young Desmond, she decided in favour of boarding him in England. There was good science in St Columba's, set up by Joly, but the religious barrier would have intruded, the Bernals being Catholic. Thus Bernal(12) was lost to Ireland.
We celebrated the ending of the war in Europe in May of 1945. We got to see films which had been banned under the neutrality censorship. I happened to be down in town on the day of the TCD flag-burning, and I observed it from a distance, not fully understanding its political implications. I was with the Carmodys(10) (my sister and brother-in-law) in Ballinaclough near Nenagh when the Hiroshima bomb was dropped; having a feel for physics I immediately grasped its implications. Later in September, back in school, it was a topic of conversation, and we tried to come to grips with the politics of the new post-war situation.
JJ in the SeanadContinuing his campaign in the Seanad for agricultural organisation based on well-managed and capitalised large-scale units, JJ along with Senator Counihan introduced on January 29 1941 a motion in support of special arrangements for agricultural credit, with a Debt Adjustment Commission, on the New Zealand model. The situation was that there were many small farmers without capital and the only source of capital was bank credit. Having raised the issues, he withdrew the motion, after mentioning in passing that those who had resisted the wheat policies of the 30s now had pasture in good enough heart to enable wheat to be grown, while the 30s wheat growers had in effect mined their land, leaving it now exhausted, without adequate manuring.
In March 1941 JJ made repeated efforts, on various issues, to get the Government to do a beef export deal with Britain, based on upgraded agricultural productivity, in return for access to key imports. For a while in 1941 it looked as if things were going JJ's way, with the foot and mouth disease, and a British ban on import of live cattle, introducing an additional supporting factor. What JJ wanted was (a) local abattoirs, dealing with local farmers, to have the right to get into the export market, thus keeping up the prices, (b) buyers from the 'Emergency Purchasing Committee' to be discouraged from spreading foot and mouth disease with their muddy boots on direct farm visits, and (c) Dublin buyers, similarly, to deal wholesale with the local abattoirs, rather than dealing directly with farmers.
In May 1941 the Fianna Fail government made its first attempt to get rid of Proportional Representation, and a Government Senator adduced arguments suggesting that PR was at the root of the current state of European politics. JJ took strong exception to this, defending PR as a 'valuable feature of the Constitution...which in particular appeals to the minority...PR modified by the existence of a two-party tradition works reasonably well...has not prevented...a single-party government.'
Referring to Northern Ireland JJ reminded the Senate that PR '..was part of the original Constitution and that it was generally regarded as a retrograde step when it was abolished...at the time (its abolition) was denounced as a flagrant violation of the rights of the minority.' He harked back to the First Home Rule Bill, which was defeated in the Commons, and in the ensuing election more voters voted for Home Rule candidates but owing to the English system a Unionist majority was returned. So if there had been PR in Britain in 1886 '...the whole history of Anglo-Irish relations would probably have been altered, and altered for the better.'
Later on the milk supply question JJ drew attention to the factor of about 5 between what the farmer got and what the consumer paid for a pint of milk, and to the under-consumption of milk in Dublin, which had public health implications. He called for a rationalised municipal distribution system, and for a deal to be done with producer co-ops remote from Dublin for milk pasteurised at source. He wanted the quality farm-based producer-distributors near Dublin to get some recognition, and for the sub-standard back-yard urban cow-keepers to be phased out, being a source of disease, both in cattle and humans.
The debate went on to the economics of winter milk supply. JJ wanted there to be free trade in milk; anyone who undertook 12-month continuity of supply to be able to contract in to the Dublin system, not just an existing vested interest of suppliers in a designated Dublin production area. JJ's amendment was withdrawn on the assurance from Minister Ryan that he was considering the municipalisation of Dublin milk distribution.
In the following July on the Finance Bill JJ accused the Minister of erring unduly on the side of rigid financial virtue, given the needs of the emergency situation; government borrowing from the banks in the UK was much greater. He reminded the Minister that the Banking Commission had advocated setting up a Research Department in support of public policy development. JJ warned the Minister about trying to increase taxation in a situation of declining real incomes, and drew his attention to the abnormal profit-making which had gone on in some favoured sectors, particularly the millers. He re-iterated his call for improved credit facilities for farmers, and warned the Minister against attempting to increase taxation on agricultural business. The credit of the State depends '...on the productive capacity of the citizens..'.
JJ then read what amounted to a Keynsian lecture on the role of the State in a deficit financing situation, based on current British experience, where State borrowing had increased but inflation had been contained.
In January 1942 there was a debate on the Minimum Price for Wheat in which JJ again attacked the policy of the Government over the previous 10 years, and indicated how it had now left us on the verge of actual starvation, quite unnecessarily. The crisis was due to a combination of land exhaustion due to unnecessary growing of wheat in the 30s, and land subdivision in favour of 'landless men' who lacked the capital to develop the production of their smallholdings, and for whom the growing of wheat was quite unsuitable(13).
In February 1942 in a debate on Wages of Agricultural Workers JJ gave a preview of a paper which was to be delivered a couple of days later, to the Statistical and Social Inquiry Society, on the 'Capitalisation of Irish Agriculture'(14). The gross output of Irish agriculture was about £60M and the net output some £53M. The capital invested in Irish agriculture he estimated at £466M and he proposed to remunerate this with a return of £23M (ie a modest 5%) leaving £30M to remunerate labour, to be divided among the 600K people then said to be engaged in agriculture. This figure was of course inflated by the Land Commission subdivision into 30-acre lots. This gave an average income per head of £50, which was substantially less than the weekly minimum wage of £1.50 which was on the table.
Analysing this somewhat absurd conclusion JJ concluded that '...the great bulk of the persons occupied in Irish agriculture are sitting around on the small farms of 30 acres or less are really superfluous to the work to be done on them... (earning) less than £50 per person per year... (while) in the few cases which I have personally investigated...large well-equipped and adequately capitalised farms, I arrived at the conclusion that the net output per person occupied in such farms reached as high as £215 per person per year, and in other cases well over £100 per person per year.'
He went on: '...whereas we have nearly 400,000 ... holdings there are only some 50,000 farmers who employ any wage-paid agricultural labour at all... the output per person is, on average, much higher on the larger farms...'.
On March 19 1942 on the Central Fund Bill (this was an opportunity for airing general economic ideas for taking care of the emergency, which by this time had become quite acute) JJ argued that a controlled degree of inflationary finance should be allowed. Britain had acquired 5% of the real income of the nation by simply issuing new money (ie borrowing from the banking system) with quite easily manageable inflationary effects.
He then came around to how compulsory tillage was working, in the non-tillage areas where it was imposed. Land was being let on conacre to contractors who mined it. He drew attention to this as a disastrous procedure, and counter-posed the current English procedure, which was based on a plough-up subsidy. He predicted a declining yield per acre, and a need to increase the acreage.
He then went into agricultural productivity per person. One person in Ireland on the land was producing food enough for 10 persons. The comparable figure in Britain was 15. He reiterated his call for increasing the employment of labour on the larger and better-equipped farms.
On fuel he urged that the State should deal with voluntary co-operative organisations of local labour, as well as importing mobile labour from a distance. On food he urged increase uptake of potatoes to offset the shortage of bread, and relocation of people from the towns back to the country, to be nearer to the sources of food. Communal feeding in the towns would enable potatoes and vegetables to be cooked with fuel economy.
In April 1942 on Family Allowances for Agricultural Workers JJ analysed the relationship between wages and family income requirements, and made the case that just as in a business they make systematic provision for depreciation and maintenance of plant and equipment, so society should make social provision for the replacement of its members. He leaned heavily on a book by Dr Eleanor Rathbone, which made the family allowances case in Britain.
As regards financing the scheme, he offered various options, one being a fund to which employers and workers would contribute out of a projected wage increase (a foreshadowing of contemporary PRSI), another being for the State to take over and legalise the existing black market in white flour and tea, thus turning the racketeers' super-profits to the social advantage. The amendment providing family allowances for farm workers was carried on May 6.
Returning on June 2 1942 to the vexed question of the Minimum Price for Wheat, JJ attempted to link it to a post-emergency policy for a relationship between grass and tillage, pointing out the the best grass farmers were often the best tillage farmers. The policy should also relate to agricultural credit, and to dairy farming, and calf rearing, and fat cattle production. It should allow for collaboration with our British neighbours.
He pointed out that there would be absolutely no reason to continue the wheat growing policy after the war, as the granaries of the US and Canada were overflowing, with ample stocks for the whole of Europe during post-war recovery. There was no reason why we could not get this at world prices.
He urged that if there was to be a fixed price for wheat there should be a related fixed price for oats. He blamed the bad relationship between cereal and livestock prices on British policy which had penalised Irish production of fat cattle for export, and blamed the Government for not making a public issue of this, as a serious national grievance. As a consequence of this policy, stall feeding had been abandoned and as a result there was a shortage of manure. What we want is a price for fat cattle that is at least 5 times the price of oats; this is the Northern Ireland situation under UK market conditions.
He went on to criticise the 100% extraction of wheat flour, which had introduced into the human diet indigestible material better suited to feeding to pigs and poultry.
In the debate on the Finance Bill in June JJ reiterated his arguments for coming to an agreement with Britain over the enhanced supply of food, and expanded on his earlier suggestion that the Government take over the black market in white flour; people in Donegal were prepared to pay a guinea a stone for flour bought for 3 shillings in Derry. Why not mill 10% of the wheat into white flour, put an excise of £100 per ton, and make it available at a guinea a stone to those with the money to pay for it? Why should the State allow the black marketeers to levy a private taxation?
On June 18 1942 the Price of Bacon Pigs was debated; JJ was able to encapsulate the essentials of emergency agricultural policy across a broad spectrum. The British would rather lose the war than accept food from Eire. The Government should do a deal with the British to get parity with Northern Ireland prices.
He then went into pig production models: there was the 'pig as byproduct' model and the 'pig specialist' model. The second was dominated by the 'hog-corn ratio' and could currently be done in the US profitably, with cereals in glut, and shipping space to Britain at a premium. No way could we compete with the US for the supply of bacon in this mode. We could however post-war, and it would be necessary to maintain a pig population to enable this. The 'pig as by-product' fulfils this role, and the natural feed is skim milk and potatoes.
The trouble was that skim occurs in the summer and the potatoes occur in the winter. It is however feasible to bring them together by the expedient of (a) encouraging winter milk production, with autumn calving, and stall-feeding with silage and roots and (b) making storable 'potato silage' in the spring with the residuum of the crop, before it begins to sprout, cooking it and storing it under sterile conditions.
He concluded by again attacking the 100% extraction wheaten flour, of which the 15% bran was in fact best for pigs, and quite indigestible by humans. In the best polemical tradition he concluded: '...the Minister in his career as a successful politician had doubtless had occasion to hand out chicken feed to his followers, and I might say to him in this particular matter that he is handing out not only chicken-feed but pig-feed and expecting humans to digest it...'.
On September 23 1942 on the Central Bank Bill JJ contributed a highly technical speech(15), which probably went over the heads of the Senators, but perhaps contributed to the bank of expertise available to the Department of Finance. JJ began by reminding the Government that he had advocated the setting up of a Central Bank nearly a decade ago, and he quoted from Page 100 of his 'Nemesis of Economic Nationalism: '..it is amazing to me that the State has not yet done anything to create a national short-term money market. The first step in that direction is to turn the Currency Commission into a Central Bank.... to give leadership to the ordinary banks in the practice of a national credit policy...'.
He went on to regret the 30s as a lost opportunity for adopting a liberal monetary policy and borrowing millions for the purpose of national reconstruction and readjustment '...from the general public ...though a mechanism which in those times would have been anti-inflationary'. The criticisms of the Banking Commission which had sat from 1934 to 38 had largely been ignored. The Central Bank Bill '...positively oozed monetary orthodoxy of a late Victorian kind..' as if the Government was trying to atone for its 30s economic heresies with 'a swan-song of monetary orthodoxy'.
JJ then homed in on the all-Ireland nature of the banking system, and the constraints this put on the relationship with sterling. The sterling reserves held by the banking system were so big that we could have considerable economic departure from parity without noticing it in financial terms. He went in some depth into the question of the jurisdiction of a 26-county central bank on a 32-county banking system. He concluded that '..the real cash basis of the Irish commercial banks is the plaything of the trade balance between our country and Britain, and is consequently completely outside the control of the Central Bank'.
He concluded with some remarks on the legal debarring of the right of the central bank to lend to the Government, which he criticised as a very negative means of preventing inflation. The bank would do little for the emergency situation, and was perhaps relevant to the post-war situation, in a way which it was difficult to foresee. He called for the Board of the bank to be constituted in such a way as to command the respect of the whole community 'even from the Labour Party'.
The foregoing long speech by JJ came immediately after the Minister Sean T O Ceallaigh had introduced the Bill for the Second Reading. The key issue was the central management of the sterling reserves as backing for the currency.
In the Committee Stage of this Bill in October 1942 JJ tried to raise again the question of agricultural credit, in the context of who should be on the Board of the Central Bank. Later in the final stages JJ came in briefly to remind the Minister of the need to build industry on the fruits of agricultural exports, as the USA and Denmark had done, and to be selective in what industries were built. Industry should be dibbled in rather than sown broadcast, and where the latter had been done, the weaker seedlings should be thinned. Post-war the same problem would exist all over Eastern Europe: how to make the transition from a primarily subsistence agricultural country to a system of commercial agriculture feeding healthy industry.
In November 1942 in the Censorship of Publications debate JJ intervened to suggest that much of the Bible, Shakespeare and Greek, Latin and Gaelic classics should be censored if the practice of the censors were to be applied consistently.
In January 1943 in the School Attendance Bill debate JJ moved an amendment, seconded by James Douglas, to defend the rights of Protestant parents for access to all relevant schools in Ireland, including the North. He further defended the rights of parents to send children to school in England, on the grounds that '..some people only find their Gaelic soul when they are thoroughly immersed in the atmosphere of the English public-school system. Some of the most enthusiastic Gaels I know received their education in their formative years in English public schools...'. After placing on record the foregoing arguments he withdrew the amendment.
In the above argument I suspect that JJ had in mind Claude Chevasse, whom he had met in Oxford, and who had inaugurated a branch of the Gaelic League there, which JJ had joined.
This debate was taken up again some days later, and JJ instanced his own family experience, with access to Oxford and Edinburgh seen as a positive educational experience; he also urged the utility of having people from abroad educated here, on an exchange basis.
In the ensuing debate Professor Magennis (UCD) opposed the amendment strongly, identifying it as a demand of an ascendancy group for privilege. The debate had been opened up in the direction of this type of opposition by the intervention of Sir John Keane, from whose support JJ attempted unsuccessfully to decouple himself.
In his concluding speech JJ ended by deploring '...the fact that he had succeeded so little.' He had not been suggesting that there should be any escape from compulsory education; he had been urging a different machinery of enforcement. Nor was he advocating that a privileged section of the community be exempted. He withdrew the amendment.
The February 17 1943 debate on Artificial Fertilisers and Exports was another occasion in which JJ was able to rub the noses of the Government in the disastrous effects of the Economic War on national survival potential in the Emergency. The Minister was not present, reflecting perhaps his being somewhat tired of JJ's criticism. He reminded the House that the current shortage of artificial manures was not new; it had been originated as a self-inflicted wound in the 30s, under the doctrinaire self-sufficiency policy. He then re-iterated his argument about the role of stall-feeding of cattle as a source of farm-yard manure, and came up with figures from Rothamstead showing that the nitrogen content of FYM from cattle stall-fed for beef was higher than that from dairy cows.
The results of applications of basic slag only became realised over a 5-6 year period, and imports of this had dropped to zero during the economic war; we were reaping the fruits of this in the Emergency. He went on to argue that it would be in the British interest that they arrange to let us have some artificial manures now, in order for us not to have to increase further tillage and reduce grass, reducing their access to beef.
He urged also that the sugar produced from our sugar-beet harvest, of which he had in the end came round to showing some grudging approval, having grown some himself, should be officially shared with consumers in the North (a process which was going on unofficially via the smuggling process), and that flax should be grown to supply Northern industry, with these being used as arguments in discussions with the British Government.
Then on March 18 1943, on the Central Fund Bill, JJ used the opportunity constructively; I would like to be able to scan in the whole of this speech, but the yellowing emergency-quality paper makes it difficult.
He began with an account of his conversion to the cult of sugar-beet: the key factor had been the award of a stone of sugar for every ton of beet produced. He had fallen for this, and persuaded his neighbours in Drogheda to do likewise, on the grounds that it opened up the possibility of conserving the fruit harvest from their gardens in the form of jam.
I have fond memories of being a part of this production process, during the school vacation.
He had put down a half an acre of beet and got the sugar, and indeed the pulp for animal-feed. He went on to do the sums: half an acre on 400,000 farms would give us an export surplus which could be traded with the British for fertiliser.
He then went on to re-iterate his arguments in favour of the productive efficiency of larger farms employing labour, quoting extensively from an article which he had written recently in the Irish Press, in which he argued for investment in agriculture of £100M over the coming decade, leading the the employment of one extra farm worker on each of the 50,000 farms currently employing paid labour.
He concluded by deploring the fact that the graduates of the agricultural colleges rarely actually went into farming, and urged that the then projected Agricultural Credit Corporation should take over the land of defaulting debtors, and make it available to a Development Corporation, which should let out the land '...on lease, with covenants ensuring the use of proper methods of husbandry, to persons of adequate agricultural knowledge and possessed of enough working capital, preferably persons who had graduated from one or other agricultural colleges...'. The latter is a quotation from his Irish Press article.
On May 13 1943 JJ supported a motion on increase of agricultural production, with a view to making available food in post-war Europe. He stressed the need to keep in existence an exportable in-calf heifer population to help build up the European breeding stock. As a lead-in to the discussion he harked back to the Ottawa agreement of 1932, which combined with the Harvey-Smoot Bill in the US, set the stage for the rise of Fascism in Europe, by their general disruption of international trade.
As a consequence of both the war and the epoch of pre-war protectionism, agricultural surpluses in Ireland in most areas had disappeared, except for cattle. To illustrate the European scene he read extracts from the Central European Observer (April 30 1943) '...the French people have already eaten all their turnips, they have finished off their crows and sparrows. In the north they eat acorns and tree bark. In Greece they chew at bushes. Shadows roam the streets of Athens. They used to be scientists and workers, artists and students. They are not conscripted for work because they have not enough strength to lift a spade. The dogs have disappeared -- they have all been devoured..'.
He then addressed the problem of agricultural prices in Britain, and how under present conditions these would actually discourage the build-up of the Irish livestock population, by encouraging the export of milch cows to the UK. He came around to the need to subsidise the production of butter for the home market, in order to compete with the demand for the export of milch cows to Britain, and keep open the option of exporting heifers to post-war Europe as breeding stock, rather than to Britain for beef.
On May 19 1943 on the Finance Bill JJ referred to the coming election, and empathised with the Minister, on the principle that politicians usually get punished by the electorate for their virtues. He supported Senator Douglas's call for greater dependence on individual and group efforts and less on the State, with a view to '...averting State omni-competence and an ever-increasing and ever more costly Civil Service.'
He went on to remark on the fact that despite the increase in tillage, there had been no overall increase in agricultural production, due to the restrictions on importing feedstuffs. He urged a consistent set of floor prices: we had the previous year had the collapse of the price of oats, and now that of potatoes. He contrasted Northern Ireland where there was a subsidy of £10 for every acre of potatoes, and £3 per acre for wheat or oats planted. With a well-structured set of consumer subsidies the cost of living in Britain had been kept down to 20% of the 1939 level, whereas ours was up 60%. He expressed concern about the additional inflationary effect of the increasing external assets, a consequence of the fact that we were exporting more than we imported. On balance however he felt himself able to congratulate the Minister on a sincere and honest Budget.
On July 14 1943 in the Central Fund debate JJ made his last speech before the election, impromptu, in response some Fianna Fail backbench rumblings, which stimulated him to re-iterate his arguments about the need to re-negotiate the 1938 agreement in favour of getting the right price for fat cattle. The consequences of the British differential price policy had influenced all aspects of agriculture, including tillage. The result was that we were exporting agricultural labour to Britain rather than produce, and exporting female cattle stock for breeding in Britain. The case should be made that it is in Britain's interest to do a deal.
Thus ended JJ's first term in the Seanad. He had, perhaps, made a name for himself as a persistent critic, and as an advocate of a point of view which was running against the tide. He had not acted primarily for TCD but for what he saw as the interests of the nation, with agriculture as its primary source of wealth, and intensive farming of large units, whether capitalist or co-operative, as the road to productivity per worker and per acre.
When de Valera called his mid-war election in 1943 my father was living in 'The Glen', a house near Drogheda which he had bought at the start of the war; there was a 20-acre farm attached, which he farmed, employing a man and keeping the books, as he had done over a decade earlier. This decoupled him somewhat from College politics, and he was not in such a good position to canvass and organise his support-group as he had been in 1938, though he had managed to add about 20 people to it. As a result he lost the seat, to TC Kingsmill Moore(16).
Although he had in his nominating group more people than he had had in 1938, mostly clergy, whose support he had perhaps picked up through his son-in-law Rev Dermot Carmody, and there were no notable defections from his 1938 panel, he still lost his seat. I suspect his acceptance of 'front-bench status' might have told against him. While De Valera, in offering him front-bench status, apparently appreciated his critical feedback, the apparent approval of de Valera would perhaps have counted against him with the TCD graduate electorate.
Post-Emergency Agricultural PolicyJJ's input to the Seanad during his second spell, from 1944, was somewhat marginalised by the fact that during the latter part of 1943, and most of 1944 and 1945, his main attention was on the Post-Emergency Agricultural Policy Committee, which produced a series of Reports(17). After losing his seat in the 1943 General Election he was recruited to participate in this Committee, along with TA Smiddy (who chaired), RC Barton, C Boyle, Professor JP Drew, Henry Kennedy (Chief Executive of the IAOS), J Mahony and EJ Sheehy. Both Professor Drew and JJ had served on the earlier Committee from 1922 to 1924.
The key input by JJ to this work is touched upon in the third section on Production of Store and Fat Cattle; it is quite short, and states the problem of British policy on fat-cattle subsidy, with its 3-month residence requirement, generating an artificially high demand for 'forward stores', but takes it as a necessary constraint. JJ's arguments about the need to negotiate this politically, to get parity with Northern Ireland, and build up stall-feeding with consequential tillage-enhancement, was not however taken on board. It was simply recommended that stores be de-horned for ease of transport. The idea of developing a trade in veal, on the continental pattern, was entertained.
The fourth and final section on Feeding of Cattle however homes in sharply on the key issue: winter feed supplies. No breeding programme will be any use unless the animals are fed adequately; and estimated extra 150 gallons of milk annually per cow was feasible with proper feeding alone. A radical change in grassland management was called for, with production of silage, supplemented by hay, roots, straw and green forage crops. This section contained what JJ had been campaigning for during the previous decade.
JJ Returns to the Seanad in 1944When JJ returned to the Seanad in the 1944 election, he replaced Dr Rowlette, and served with TC Kingsmill Moore and Professor Fearon. At the same time for UCD Tierney was replaced by MJ Ryan.
In October and November 1944 JJ spoke on the Transport (no 2) Bill which involved the take-over of the Great Southern Railway (GSR) and the Dublin trams and buses to form Coras Iompair Eireann (CIE). JJ supported it, but not without critical comment on the way in which leakages had occurred in the spring of 1943 such as to enable speculators in the know to acquire GSR shares at rock-bottom price and make a killing. He introduced amendments which attempted to provide some compensation for GSR shareholders who had sold out at rock-bottom prices in 1943 to speculative buyers who had access to inside information regarding Government intentions.
He had no success, and in his concluding speech, which he made after the Bill was passed, he warned against a tendency under capitalism for a sort of economic cannibalism to emerge, in which new capital indulges at the expense of old: '...interests connected with the development of road transport have battened on the vitals of the capitalist interests connected with the railway company....now that the vitals of the of the old railway company have been attenuated almost into non-existence and we have.... nationalisation of transport.... I foresee the danger that the cannibal instincts of certain interests, instead of being directed against the helpless shareholders, will be directed against the helpless taxpayer. There will be a tendency to try to further the interests of certain highly organised concerns at the expense of the State and the community in general...'. In the course of the debate a called for some control over road hauliers by means of a licencing system.
Then on November 23 1944 we had the Land Bill which related to the work of the Land Commission in the redistribution of land, in the form of large farms or estates compulsorily purchased from owners who were usually identified with the ex-Ascendancy class. JJ had consistently made the case that large farms of this nature should be kept integral and worked productively, thereby employing more labour than could be supported on sub-divided subsistence units. In this debate he approached the question from the angle of elementary justice: "...is there any justice in confiscating the property of people in this generation because the property of certain other people ...300 years ago was confiscated...? It surely is not going to be seriously argued that the people whose social position it is sought to raise by such a policy are in that low social position because...their ancestors backed the wrong king in the 17th century."
He went on to claim equal citizenship rights under the Treaty for all, whether "...people who were disparagingly called the old ascendancy class..." or not, and quoted Thomas Davis's verse "what matter that at different shrines we pray unto one God, what matter that at different time our fathers won this sod..". He then brought in the question of agricultural credit, and how it would be undermined by the threat of confiscatory pricing of land, and likened the process to the selective taxation imposed by Henry VII, under the name of 'benevolences'. The worst victims of the process were hitherto successful commercial intensive farmers, employing labour, who found their credit with the bank undermined by the perception that they had a Sword of Damocles hanging over them, in the form of the Land Commission.
He concluded by estimating that the capital required to make Irish agriculture productive was in the region of £100M over the next 10 years, but this would not get invested if the foundations of agricultural credit was undermined by rendering insecure the title to land of successful commercial farmers.
On December 6 1944 it seems that there was a debate which the Minister prevented from being reported in the press. JJ kept among his papers an Irish Times poster for Tuesday December 6 which I think must have been 1944, judging by the relationship between day and date. The poster, of the type used by news-stands, reads 'Senator Johnston on Irish Re-union'. It seems from the subsequent Seanad record that there was an altercation between JJ, Sir John Keane and Frank Aiken (see below). There is unfinished business here.
On February 22 1945 we had the Tuberculosis (Establishment of Sanitoria) Bill, which was a precursor of the later efforts of Dr Noel Browne. While being supportive of this Bill JJ held out for better housing, clothing and nutrition as being important preventive measures against the spread of tuberculosis.
From his then current work on the Post-Emergency Agriculture Committee JJ was well aware of the potential for the expansion of the national income by proper use of national resources.
Later on the same day, on the resumption of the Censorship of Parliamentary Debates motion debate JJ registered a protest about the December 6 suppression of press reporting. He distinguished himself from Sir John Keane, who had it seems declared himself a supporter of Cromwell, by declaring that he regarded Cromwell as 'the most successful leader of a Fascist Revolution in his own or any other European country'. He then went on to identify the Minister with the Cromwellian Orangemen of South Armagh, whose attitude a friend of his had encountered when canvassing in the 1918 election for Sinn Fein.
JJ here identified the historical process which has perverted progressive republican democratic reform movements into throwing up autocratic leaderships such as Cromwell, Napoleon, Hitler and Stalin. He was perhaps hinting implicitly at a similar process behind the rise of de Valera.
Coming now into 1945, on March 7 JJ welcomed the Electricity Supply Bill, with some degree of caution. It provided for the extension of the services of the Electricity Supply Board to rural areas, at some cost to the taxpayer. The Bill had been introduced by Sean Lemass, hitherto regarded by JJ as unsympathetic to agriculture, and JJ took the opportunity of reminding him of his past record, building the industrial house from the roof downwards, without taking care first of the agricultural foundations. He was therefore initially inclined to view Lemass's incursion into investing in agriculture with some suspicion.
He regarded the Bill as an isolated contribution to the problem of agricultural development; this however had many and complex aspects. The priorities for investment, as seen by the Committee of which he was a member, were the restoration of the deficiencies of lime and phosphates, technical education, and the provision of buildings. The provision of electrical supply would then follow as a development requirement.
The relatively high cost of rural electrification arose as a consequence of the culture of the isolated farmhouse. He urged however that where new housing was provided, for example farm labourers' cottages, that they be clustered, and near to existing villages. This would reduce the cost of supplying electricity(18).
He concluded by remarking that the need to import copper and equipment would stimulate the need to expand agricultural exports.
From April 19 up to May 9 1945 the Mental Treatment Bill was debated. JJ began by drawing attention to the need for statistical analysis of the occurrence of mental illness in the population, before deciding whether it should be a local or central funding matter. He mentioned the possible impact of the low marriage rate in rural areas, and the possible correlation with high intelligence. He came up with the idea that there was a spiritual dimension, and urged that theological students receive training in psychology, with a view to their role as chaplains in mental hospitals. This led him to what he identified as a flaw in the Bill, the exclusion of hospital chaplains from superannuation rights.
The Minister came out with figures to suggest that the numbers of Protestant inmates was trivial, with the result the Protestant chaplaincies were somewhat nominal, and not deserving of pension rights. To which JJ replied '...I would like to assure the House that in proportion to our numbers we Protestants are just as mad as you are..'. The Minister had produced figures '...carefully chosen to suggest that there was hardly any insanity at all among certain sects of Protestants..'. and he went on to claim that he knew of at least one place where there were 40 Church of Ireland inmates. He conceded that the amount of salary and pension should have some relation to the workload. In the end his amendment was lost.
In the final stage of the Bill JJ made some comments on the Church and State question, and registered a protest about the question of Catholic access to Trinity College. This issue had arisen because in the third reading of the Bill JJ had picked up a perception that the question of Church and State, insofar as it concerned chaplaincies in mental hospitals, was regarded as not appropriate for the likes of him to be discussing. So in the final reading he 'trailed the coat' by mentioning the 'Catholics in TCD' issue. The Minister tried to block him, but the Chair allowed him to continue.
He then went on the put on record how when an undergraduate he had come across the writings of Thomas Davis, and urged that '...the conception of citizenship and nationality which Thomas Davis advocated in his day is one which we would do well to remember now...' and he managed to close, after being ruled out of order finally, with Davis's verse 'And oh! it were a gallant deed / To show before mankind / How every race and every creed / Might be by love combined..'.
On July 19 1945 the Agricultural College Bill dealt with the gift to the State of Johnstown Castle, and JJ attempted to open up a general debate on agricultural education, but was ruled out of order. He managed to put on record the extraordinarily low level of participation in agricultural colleges by farmers' sons.
I suspect that JJ would have homed in on the question of control of such colleges by religious orders, if he had got the chance. Incidentally Johnstown Castle, near Wexford, subsequently became the Soil Science focus of the Department of Agriculture and then later of the Agricultural Institute; this process was the launch-pad for the career of Dr Tom Walsh who headed the Institute.
The July 25 1945 debate on the Appropriation Bill was memorable: the war was over, and JJ was having fun; his main work had been in the Post-Emergency Agriculture Committee and during this period he was inclined to treat the Seanad with levity. He began with some basic Irish which he had picked up from the radio lessons of Aindrias O Muineachain, and then when pulled up by the Chair, got down to the guts of the matter: the recent war and Partition. He hung his argument, somewhat tenuously, on the new Minister for Finance'e earlier role as Minister for Foreign Affairs, in which he had managed successfully to steer a course which amounted to moral neutrality in a conflict which the Pope had since declared to have been with Satan. He had high hopes of someone as skilled being in charge of Finance.
He then expounded the 'blessings' of Partition, which not only had kept us out of the war, but had kept the Seanad free from '...at least a dozen or a score unpleasant Ulstermen like myself in this House... the atmosphere ...instead of being the pleasant little family party that it is would approximate more ...to that of a frontier district in Belfast...'. He went on to remind the House that Partition derived from '...the successful appeal to force made by the Ulster Protestants in the years from 1912 to 1914... (which)... produced the Sinn Fein movement...' and indeed the Minister and many others who came into public life.
Despite heckling from Senators who accused him of 'reading his speech', he went on to put on record that the British seaplane base on Lough Erne, flying out over Donegal, had helped win the war, and that no anti-aircraft guns had defended our neutrality in that situation.
Having made his point about the collusive nature of our neutrality in the war, he then switched to the question of the sterling balances, which had accumulated over the previous 5 years, due to our inability to import enough to match our exports. He expressed support for this, as representing Government policy of supporting the British war effort in effect with a long-term loan. He urged that we should now say to Britain 'we were glad to do that much for you in your time of need..'.
This triggered another round of heckling; Quirke again accused him again of reading his speech; the Chair however insisted he was consulting his notes, and Kingsmill Moore confirmed this. JJ went on to the effect that we had nothing to be ashamed of in our war record; we had in fact helped Britain to win it. We were now well placed to engage in post-emergency reconstruction; the farmers had money in their pockets, and would be better placed to be a market for any industrial development, which would be on a sounder foundation than in the 30s. He urged that the relatively high level of agricultural wages should continue, giving a better balance between rural and urban incomes.
Later in the debate, the Minister accused JJ of being the 'spiritual father' of the students who had burned the national flag on the roof of Trinity College on VE day. In the 5th stage of the debate, against further heckling, JJ managed to put on record his absolute dissociation from the flag-burning incident, which he said '..was an act of either very disloyal citizenship or of a person or persons who were enemies of this State.'
He went on to state that the Provost had apologised and that the Taoiseach had accepted the apology, and this was then confirmed to the Seanad by the Minister present, Frank Aiken. JJ's final remark was to the effect that de Valera had been a student in TCD and he could then claim to be the spiritual father of de Valera.
In the course of this wide-ranging debate the Minister, Frank Aiken, attacked James Douglas for being 'pro-Blueshirt'. On the whole, the debate was somewhat heated, even rancorous.
James Douglas, the Quaker businessman, had been close to JJ ever since together they had lobbied the Convention in 1917. The 'Blueshirt' jibe from the Fianna Fail benches confirms the need for a revaluation of that movement. JJ had also been close to Dermot MacManus, identified by Maurice Manning as part of the Blueshirt intellectual support system. JJ had consistently supported commercial farming against land-division into subsistence units. Contemporary historical analysis tends to treat the Blueshirt movement as primarily grassroots support for this principle by existing commercial farmers(19), and to decouple it from the European 'shirt' movements.
The ending of the 'emergency' is a natural break-point for this 1940s chapter. In the second part I deal with my own transition from school to College, with the development of the student Left; I then continue with JJ in the Seanad, in College politics and in outreach, and return finally to our somewhat sterile attempts to develop a Marxist left nationally.
Notes and References1. JJ continued on the Council of the SSISI and in 1950 became its President. For an overview of JJ's contribution to the Society see Appendix 6.
2. I have found reports of JJ's 1946 Tuam lecture from the local papers, and his 1947 Athlone lecture from the Irish Times via the Seanad record, where he referenced it. See the 1940s Barrington module of the hypertext. It has subsequently emerged that the then US Ambassador had even then got both my father and myself labelled as Marxist. At this time I had no idea of my father's earlier interests, or their significance, and I had him mentally labelled as a bourgeois economist of the Establishment. It is only many years later that I realised how much non-Establishment he was, and how close his thinking was to the creative strand of Irish Marxism, as embodied in Connolly; in fact he had commended Connolly's writings to Garnier, the Albert Kahn Foundation secretary, in the early 1920s.
3. 'Irish Agriculture in Transition', Hodges Figgis (Dublin) and Basil Blackwell (Oxford), 1951; I have made available significant extracts from this in the hypertext.
5. I am indebted to Maurice Laheen the Tuam local historian, and to John Cunningham, who wrote a chapter on Bobby Burke's life and times for John A Claffey's Glimpses of Tuam since the Famine (Tuam 1997; ISBN_0_9530250_0_4), for additional background to my brief encounter.
7. JJ's 1940s academic output is reviewed in the hypertext, his main interest increasingly being the economic writings of Berkeley. He became a member of the Royal Irish Academy in 1942. His overall academic output is reviewed in Appendix 5.
8. The Albert Kahn contact remained at the personal level through Charles Garnier, but by this time its significance had declined.
9. The Irish Association records, in the Northern Ireland Public Record Office, for the period of JJ's Presidency from 1946 to 1954 are extremely sparse, though quite detailed in other respects; it almost looks as if a conscious effort had been made to expunge them, by some hard-core Unionist agent who had never forgiven him for his Civil War in Ulster. I have however done what I could in the hypertext which is overviewed in Appendix 9. He did develop a good relationship with Irene Calvert and Sir Graham Larmour.
11. An abstract of a document, written by Adare in 1841, outlining this founders' vision for St Columba's College, turned up in a file of JJ's papers relating to the present writer. It is accessible also via the 1940s family stream in the hypertext. Standish O'Grady later took up this vision, belatedly. Aspects of it are echoed faintly in the thinking of AE, Horace Plunkett, Constance Markiewicz, Claude Chevasse, and, later in an attenuated and reoriented form in my own generation, of Paddy Bond and Neill Goold. For more detail about the Promethean Society and its origins in St Columba's College, see the 1940s political module of the hypertext.
12. I have expanded on this in my contribution to JD Bernal: a Life in Science and Politics, edited by Brenda Swann and Francis Aprahamian (Verso, London, 1999), and also treated it in the hypertext in the 'science and society' thread, overviewed in Appendix 11.
13. I have reproduced this January 15 1942 speech by JJ in full in the hypertext, as it summarises well JJ's views on the handling of the emergency by Fianna Fail.
14. I have abstracted this paper in the 1940s SSISI module; the reference is JSSISI xvi, 44, 1941-2.
15. JJ had recently published his Bishop Berkeley and Kindred Monetary Thinkers, Hermathena LIX p30, 1942. In this paper JJ '..detect(ed) in Berkeley's monetary philosophy certain elements which occur(red) also in Aristotle, and in the writings of the French economist Boisguilbert..' and went on to link these with the economic ideas of Aristotle and Adam Smith, relating them to the then current ideas as expressed by Keynes in the General Theory. This paper is full of quotable bits, like '..the practical navigator would pay little attention to a science of navigation based on the long-run tendency of the sea to present a flat surface...'. I have abstracted the paper in the supporting hypertext.
16. JJ's election address is available, and I reproduce extracts from it in Appendix 8, as it summarises his then political position.
17. There were three Reports, bound as a single volume, I think subsequently, perhaps by JJ himself. The Stationary Office reference numbers are 6624, 6895 and 7175. I have abstracted these in the hypertext.
18. This argument relates to JJ's support for the Orpen model of rural development, as outlined in Irish Agriculture in Transition, and in his 'rural civilisation' SSISI paper (JSSISI xviii, 1, 1947-8).
19. There are references to Dermot MacManus in Maurice Manning's The Blueshirts, Gill & Macmillan (1971, 1987), and in Mike Cronin's Blueshirts and Irish Politics, Four Courts Press (1997). I have expanded on this in the 1930s political module of the background hypertext.
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Copyright Dr Roy Johnston 1999