Politics »

  • The Mess We’re In and meaningless speculation about a reshuffle

    February 26, 2010 @ 2:50 pm | by Harry McGee

    One of my favourite books of all time is Joe Lee’s 1912 to 1985, A Social and Political history of Ireland.

    In the amazing Perspectives chapter at the end of the book, Lee rails and vents against the dearth of ideas, courage and innovation in Ireland during most of the first six miserable decades of the State. Denmark started off the last century on equal footing to Ireland but innovated, adapted and adjusted while Ireland stagnated and stalled into a decades-long sclerosis.


  • ‘I’ll Wear No Prison Uniform Nor Meekly Serve My Time’

    February 25, 2010 @ 11:40 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    For whatever reason, this story is generating no interest. I have hardly heard it mentioned on radio news and even then it was well down the list of headlines. (more…)

  • George, Deirdre, Willie, now Trevor: Who’s Next?

    February 23, 2010 @ 7:03 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    It’s reminiscent of Pegeen Mike’s wan speech at the end of the Synge’s masterpiece: “I’ve lost him surely, I’ve lost my only playboy of the western world.” Trevor is gone! Hard to believe. (more…)

  • Willie’s ouster: Was it a twick or Tweet?

    February 19, 2010 @ 11:28 am | by Harry McGee

    There will be a lot of commentary about how Dan Boyle’s two blogs on his Twitter site on Wednesday night did for Willie O’Dea. Though new media enthusiasts will always point trimphantly to how some miracle was achieved Facebook or Twitter or whatever, all it is is  a pretty basic form of communication, with its own benefits but also with its own limits.


  • Willie? Won’t he? Resign? Gone at 9pm

    February 18, 2010 @ 10:22 pm | by Harry McGee

    The inevitable happened at 9 o’clock. The Taoiseach issued a statement saying he had accepted Willie’s resignation. It praised him for his contribution, made no reference really to the events that downed him. (more…)

  • Was Willie O’Dea’s behaviour “anything other than innocent”?

    February 17, 2010 @ 2:47 pm | by Harry McGee

    If we take everything that Willie O’Dea has said about what happened later as gospel, his original smear of Maurice Quinlivan was still a disgrace, and its clear suggestion and innuendo that he was connected with a brothel. (more…)

  • Best Political Song [2]

    February 16, 2010 @ 3:55 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    We had a good exchange on this blog on the question: What is the best political song ever? I nominated Marvin Gaye’s Abraham, Martin and John but there were plenty of other suggestions. Read all about it by clicking here.

    YouTube Preview Image (more…)

  • What Powers for Elected Mayor of Dublin?

    February 15, 2010 @ 12:37 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    There’s a lot of interest in this elected mayor of Dublin position but we  haven’t seen the draft legislation yet. It is not clear what powers the job will have. (more…)

  • Deirdre de Búrca, George Lee, Who’s Next?

    February 12, 2010 @ 11:22 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    What are we to make of Deirdre de Búrca’s resignation from the Seanad? That’s two Oireachtas members in one week. What’s going on? Are they just individuals with issues or does it reflect a wider trend? (more…)

  • Politics and Suicide Prevention

    February 11, 2010 @ 8:54 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    It is fair to say that  politicians on all sides admire the work of Fine Gael TD Dan Neville and Fianna Fáil Senator Mary White on suicide and the need to raise awareness about the issue. (more…)

  • Enda Lives to Fight Another Day

    @ 11:08 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Very ‘Oirish’ scene at Leinster House last night. The Fine Gael people were doing a “doorstep” with reporters outside the front gates. Two lads arrive on the scene, clearly coming from the pub (it’s about 12.30 a.m.) The  looks of puzzlement and bemusement on their faces are priceless. (more…)

  • Best Political Film

    February 9, 2010 @ 9:30 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    The issue of nation-building is an important one for any society seeking to overcome major problems such as racial division, economic collapse, class differences, etc., etc. (more…)

  • A Full Blown crisis for Fine Gael

    February 8, 2010 @ 10:09 pm | by Harry McGee

    All day, Fine Gael TDs have publicly expressed disappointment at George Lee’s bolt out of the blue.

    What they should have been expressing is:


  • Short Visits Make Long Friends: The Case of George Lee

    @ 3:33 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    The recruitment of George Lee and his subsequent by-election success were the best things that happened to Fine Gael for years. Now he’s gone: just like that. (more…)

  • Cowen off the cuff but still off the track

    February 5, 2010 @ 10:59 am | by Harry McGee

    Brian Cowen at a Fianna Fail Event last year. Pic Brian O’Brien

    It has been one of few moments that Brian Cowen has been on fire since becoming Taoiseach.

    Last year, he stood up at the Dublin Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner and, without warning, delivered a master class in rhetoric.  First of all let’s pile up the negatives. His lacklustre record as Taoiseach. His general inaccessibility. His mule-like refusal to come out and tell it like it is. His gruesome prose. His secretive instincts. Suspicion of the media.


  • Mattie McGrath and the spirit of 1968

    February 3, 2010 @ 10:50 am | by Harry McGee

    Fianna Fail’s claim as the great catch-all party can in a sense be personified by the two honourable members for Tipperary South.

    I don’t think there is any other constituency where the contrast between party colleagues is more glaring.


  • Artist Puts Comic in the Picture

    February 2, 2010 @ 10:27 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    This particular blogger has devoted much time and energy to the fall-out from the Holocaust “joke” from our own Tommy Tiernan. The responses have been fairly dispiriting by and large and have weakened my faith in human nature – at least in its blogospheric manifestation. (more…)

  • Up in the Polls and Up in the Air

    February 1, 2010 @ 12:05 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    The latest Sunday Business Post poll as well as the last poll in The Irish Times show a modest revival in Fianna Fail’s standing with the public. Clearly they will be hoping to hang in for as long as possible and stave off the general election until they are in a position to win or at least emerge with only minimal damage. (more…)

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