‘I Was Blocked By The Constitution’




From top: Acting Environment Minister Alan Kelly and from his speech at the Custom House this morning

This morning.

At a homeless and housing forum in Custom House in Dublin this morning.

Acting Environment Minister Alan Kelly tells those present that his efforts to find a solution to the housing problem were blocked by Article 43 the Constitution. to wit:

Article 43:

The State acknowledges that man, in virtue of his rational being, has the natural right, antecedent to positive law, to the private ownership of external goods.

The State accordingly guarantees to pass no law attempting to abolish the right of private ownership or the general right to transfer, bequeath, and inherit property.

The State recognises, however, that the exercise of the rights mentioned in the foregoing provisions of this Article ought, in civil society, to be regulated by the principles of social justice.


More as we get it.



last night, outside the GPO on O’Connell Street.

Darragh Doyle tweetz:

Dublin tonight. 2 queues outside the GPO. One for a play. The other for food and help for the homeless.

Top pics: Elaine Loughlin and Mark Coughlan

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40 thoughts on “‘I Was Blocked By The Constitution’

  1. Eoin

    Look at him there. High on power. Alan is going to find himself increasingly alone as he continues to fight the will of the people on just about everything. He is worse than a disaster. I would not want to swap places with him.

  2. newsjustin

    Why are people doubting that private property rights (which are vital to an economy) are a stumbling block to some measures suggested to tackling the shortage or expense of housing?

    They are. That’s not to say there arenter other potential solutions. Building actual social housing being one.

    1. Barry the Hatchet

      Well arguably the Constitution is a stumbling block to the measures he suggests, but not one which cannot be overcome. It says it right there in Article 43, “to be regulated by the principles of social justice.” Why not introduce the policies and then vigorously defend any Supreme Court challenge? It’s not clear what the Supreme Court will decide. And if the Court rejects the principles of social justice espoused by the Government then why not hold a Referendum to see what the people want? Kelly is just using this as a convenient excuse.

  3. Polaroid Fluid

    what’s that Siobhán O’ Donoghue tweet about, anecdote? where did it happen? just a little thing she thought up in between housework chores? Do you just re-publish any auld brainfart from nobodies because you can?

  4. DubLoony

    Vacant site levy to tackle land hoarding does not seem to be blocked by the constitutional provisions “to be regulated by the principles of social justice.”

    1. Declan

      If you read the constitution literally then women can’t be president.

      Ditto in the states the gun nuts cite the second amendment but they always leave out the part about well regulated militias

      1. Rob_G

        “If you read the constitution literally then women can’t be president.”

        – I don’t believe this; which part?

        1. Declan

          Article 12.3.1 and article 12.4.1 mentions he and no she!!!!

          I’m grasping at straws but stranger stuff has happened. Apparently you need to read it in conjunction with some act which says he can mean he or she. Without the act though it’s a Supreme Court battle and we have US style constitutionalist applying the constitution as Dev would of liked it

  5. jungleman

    Such rubbish. I really don’t understand why people rent a private property and then feel they are entitled to stay there for as long as they want. There is no problem with the constitution in this respect. The problem is the lack of social housing available due to successive mistakes on the part of Irish governments, in failing to build social housing and in selling what they had built at drop-down prices, and further in allowing people to continue to occupy social housing long after they needed it. Add in the lack of private residential construction and you have a perfect storm.

    Nothing to do with the constitution, just negligence from the likes of Alan Kelly.

    1. DubLoony

      There’s a whole heap of reasons but there is one we must look closely at.

      People don’t want social housing near them.

      We have a desperate need for this type of housing, we haven’t event started to discuss where its going to go or what form it will take. But am pretty sure that as soon as some greenfield site or old derelict lot is identified, denizens of leafy suburbia will be up in arms why it can’t possibly go near them.

  6. Smith

    A lot of guards lack people skills, empathy, are completely ignorant and seem resentful towards members of the public.

    1. Pete

      As a former Garda, I can only agree. There is an absolute culture of ‘Us and them’, which I found was initially nurtured in Templemore during my initial training. This attitude is reinforced on deployment to your first station, where you quickly discover that there is one law for Gardaí and a whole other law for the general public. Be it in how Section 49 offences are dealt with if is a member of the ‘force’ versus general members of the public to the good old tradition of signing each other’s RF100’s (Declaration of vehicle being off the road for road fund licence purposes). Thankfully that facility is no longer available due to legislation changes but the Section 49 abuse is undoubtedly ongoing. (Section 49 Drink driving legislation). I recall how you daren’t arrest a Garda if he/she was stopped whilst driving under the influence of alcohol, instead you would have him get into the passenger seat of his vehicle and you would drive him home, while your colleague followed behind in the patrol car. To arrest a colleague for Drink Driving would have you black-listed for the rest of your career. Sadly I doubt this culture has changed much.

      1. Smith

        Thanks for commenting. I think more current guards and former guards need to speak out about this culture. I am speaking from personal experience, and from what I have witnessed in the media.

        I have been on the wrong side of the law once or twice, and have met decent and humane gardai but have sometimes been treated with absolute derision and contempt.

        I wonder why this culture exists, but I can understand how difficult it is to challenge it. I don’t understand why some members of the force show disinterest, a disregard for members of the public, and sometimes contempt. I also question what kind of training they receive that equips guards to deal with complex situations and people from different backgrounds.

        1. Kieran NYC

          Guards also get contempt back from the public on a regular basis so I presume one feeds the other and visa versa.

      2. Clampers Outside!

        Hear, hear!

        I can’t tell you the amount of times I have approached a garda for info only to be greeted with a grunt and a face that says ‘what the fupp do you want’ that wouldn’t look out of place on a guy about to knock the crap out of you.

        They need serious training on dealing with the public.
        There are Garda who are good with people, but there are far too many gruff feckers that would be lucky to get a job as a bouncer.

      1. Smith

        True, but not everyone holds such positions of power. It’s very hard to trust the Gardai when its members act discriminately and unjustly.

  7. bisted

    …when Alan gets dumped at the 20 May election he can always take up a position as Constitutional Crusader for people threatened by dispossession through compulsory purchase orders

  8. dan

    Kelly is actually hiding behind the constitution, not blocked by it.
    He’s failed, failed miserably. The problem with housing is simple, lack of supply. This will continue for a long time as the number required get higher every year.

    By the way, I’ll rent my property to whoever I want to and won’t be dictated to by this idiot. If I don’t like the look of you, you won’t be getting a lease.

    1. DubLoony

      Annnnd there we have it.
      why we need social housing. Labour invested over €3 billion for social housing but should have gone further in removing absolutely every obstacle from getting in the way. Local authorities are getting off lightly by way of criticism.

      1. ollie

        Come on dubloony, Labour announced 3 billion, sure I’m announcing 10 billion and 1 million jobs on the way, soon. Very soon.

    2. pedeyw

      Yep. The more housing available, the less greedy and discriminatory landlords get to be about prospective tenants.

      1. ollie

        The greed lies with FG. Landlords have to pay punitive taxes, that’s one reason why rents have increased.

  9. G

    the SJW’s Don and Moyest have not commented on this cause the homeless and hungry are native and don’t warrant defending ….

  10. realPolithicks

    Irish politicians hide behind “the constitution” and “legal advice” every time an issue arises that they don’t want to deal with.

Comments are closed.

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