irish peel

Reminder on the Great Famine

In 1845, the first year of the potato blight, the Tory government, led by Robert Peel, did import some corn and grain because he saw that “Hey, those Irish people’s main source of food is suffering from failure. We best import some American corn.”. Sure I hate Tories but I am grateful for Peel sending corn, and also the fact that he’s the reason we call Peelers, Peelers. Then, in 1846, a Liberal government came to power. The laissez faire, free market kind, and those fuckers were like “Naahhh, see, they’re fine. No famine” (That only happened due to Peel’s import of food).

Lo and behold, a fucking famine, and you want to know how they reacted to it? Do fuck all, do literally nothing. They stood back and basically said “The free market will sort it out”. Yet all the while, whilst Ireland’s potato crops were failing and people were collapsing dead, unable to even bury their own relatives, the British government continued to export Irish wheat and grain to Britain. Queen Victoria sent £1,000 of her own money or so, maybe it was £2,000, to show her “generosity”. Then the Ottoman sultan wished to donate £10,000 of his own money but the British government told him not to so he sent £2,000 anyway and 5 ship loads of food which arrived after much harassment from the Royal Navy.

The moral of the story is: Free market capitalism doesn’t actually fix shit. Ask the Irish. Government intervention isn’t such a bad thing at times, sure, I distrust government and I wouldn’t trust the British government with a spoon, but yeah, The Magical Market™ is a load of shite.

Erin Go Bragh. Saoirse go Deo.