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  • Sweeteners for Healy-Rae and Lowry

    March 19, 2012 @ 8:54 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Despite a certain curiosity about the content of the awful-sounding Tallafornia on TV3, I resolutely stuck with the National Broadcaster and its in-depth coverage of the deals Bertie Ahern made with Independents Jackie Healy-Rae and Michael Lowry five years ago.

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  • Courage and the Northern Troubles

    May 16, 2011 @ 11:28 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    It is reported that some people who displayed “courage” in denouncing the IRA during the recent Troubles were miffed because they weren’t invited to any of the events surrounding the current British royal visit.

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  • 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…)

  • Country and Western Alliance 2009?

    November 5, 2009 @ 8:55 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    A certain wag who worked on this newspaper some years back used to have great fun at the expense of aspirants for jobs and promotions that appeared “on the board”. His favourite witticism was to tell one or other of the hopefuls: “Your name is being linked to the job – people are saying ‘Joe Bloggs hasn’t a chance of getting that one’.” Oh the cruelty of it! But it was very funny and the victim usually laughed as well.

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     Tá Máire réidh! (more…)

  • A Last Word on Lisbon

    October 5, 2009 @ 9:56 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    There was a stark contrast between Dublin Castle last Saturday and the same place in June 2008, when the No side won the first Lisbon referendum. This time the place was like a morgue. Last time, photographers literally almost came to blows trying to take pictures of Gerry Adams and his colleagues in Sinn Féin.

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    Give us an aul’ smile, Brian (Photo by Alan Betson)

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  • No Laughing Matter

    May 2, 2009 @ 10:52 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Worst political movie ever made? That was my initial and perhaps somewhat harsh judgment as I left the cinema after watching In the Loop which was so widely-praised I just had to go and see it. The main character is meant to be based on Alastair Campbell, legendary spin-doctor for Tony Blair.

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     Alastair Campbell: film version of his diaries would have been better (Photograph by
    Alan Betson)

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  • The Mark of Cain

    April 29, 2009 @ 11:46 am | by Harry McGee

    The ESRI’s first forecast pointing to any contraction in the Irish economy was made only at the end of June last year.

    This morning’s reports on the institute’s spring quarterly economic commentary (see story here) makes for ghastly reading. A 9.2 per cent shrinkage this year. A 14 per cent contraction over the next three years. Unemployment to reach almost 17 per cent next year. That’s what it was like at the worst period in the 1980s. It’s even gloomier than that, says the ESRI. The landscape it paints is that of an arid dustbowl somewhere in California in the 1930s. (more…)

  • Fine Gael Rallies its Troops

    April 4, 2009 @ 10:55 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    The Fine Gael ardfheis started off quietly enough last night. The high-point of the evening when leader Enda Kenny and Deputy Lucinda Creighton publicly embraced to show that their recent spat at the parliamentary party was now water under the bridge.

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    Lucinda and Enda kiss and make up (Photograph by Frank Miller)

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  • The Time is Out of Joint

    February 21, 2009 @ 11:33 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    One imagines the Cabinet watched the TV footage of today’s trade union protest in Dublin with a sinking feeling in the pit of their stomachs. Bad enough to have the economy gone pearshaped and the banking system ensnarled by unpaid debts and wide-boy behaviour but now the proletariat is in revolt.  (more…)

  • Tony Gregory and radical change

    January 3, 2009 @ 2:04 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    One has a feeling of great personal sadness at the death of Tony Gregory. He was in the proud tradition of spiky, outspoken loners in Irish politics such as Noel Browne and Jack McQuillan who embodied the true meaning of that contemporary phrase, “The Power of One”. (more…)

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