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  • Economic crisis could threaten democracy

    December 31, 2008 @ 11:10 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    No one needs reminding that as we face into the New Year there is massive economic uncertainty. Layoffs are already widespread but by the springtime we could be looking at a minor tsunami in that respect, at least that’s the implication behind some of the commentaries. (more…)

  • Conor Cruise: we shall not see his like again

    December 19, 2008 @ 11:21 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Conor Cruise O’Brien had a very fine mind. He wrote like an angel. He was courageous and uncompromising in argument. He was right about some things and wrong about others but his passing last night means a light has gone out all over the island.
    Conor Cruise O’Brien (1917-2008)


  • Last Word on the PDs

    November 12, 2008 @ 12:07 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Before they are washed away by the receding tide of political history, a few points need to be made about the Progressive Democrats. Joe Higgins described them as an “utterly malign influence” on Vincent Browne’s late-night TV3 programme but that’s too dismissive – they were not all bad, or all good. (more…)

  • Living city or living hell?

    September 11, 2008 @ 6:10 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Judging from my colleague Frank  McDonald’s article in yesterday’s Irish Times,  Temple Bar in Dublin is a living hell for local residents, at least at night. Many readers will identify with McDonald’s cri de coeur, whether they live in the city centre as he does or in what used to be quiet suburbia. (more…)

  • Free fees controversy a gift to the Opposition

    August 18, 2008 @ 10:41 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    In the course of  a  lengthy interview with myself about his political career, conducted back in the 1980s, the late Charles Haughey asked me to switch off my tape recorder as he was about to impart some information on an off-the-record basis.  We had been discussing his deceased colleague Donogh O’Malley, who as Minister for Education brought in free secondary schooling in the late 1960s. (more…)

  • Seamus Brennan

    July 9, 2008 @ 2:38 pm | by Harry McGee

    Seamus Brennan came up with one of the best summations for Bertie Ahern, when Ahern was Fianna Fail chief whip at a time the party was riven by splits and sulphorous enmities.

    “As chief whip, Bertie Ahern learned to come down the white line and take both sides of the street with him. I don’t know how he got away with it.” (more…)

  • Lady Bracknell and the Lisbon Treaty

    July 8, 2008 @ 9:17 am | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    My late and much-missed Irish Times colleague Dick Walsh wrote a very useful and interesting book about Fianna Fail, entitled The Party. His father had been a founder-member and throughout his life Dick was fascinated by the Soldiers of Destiny. Over the years they developed characteristics that Dick found distasteful, yet they kept on getting elected again and again and again. As he points out in his book, the very people who had opposed the establishment of the Free State by force of arms went on to take over its institutions and remould them in their own image. FF has now been in power for 23 out of the past 30 years and their bottoms have only occasionally warmed the opposition benches over the past three-quarters of a century. (more…)

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