Politics »

  • Slugfest

    August 27, 2009 @ 10:35 am | by Harry McGee

    The row between the Government and Fine Gael over Nama is good old-fashioned toe-to-toe political pugilism. The subject matter of the debate is complicated (class exercise: explain the difference between senior, and subordinated, debt in one sentence) but the intensity and adversarial nature of it is unmistakable.

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  • There may be trouble ahead

    August 25, 2009 @ 11:28 am | by Harry McGee

    Over the past couple of years, I have done the Overlook Hotel metaphor to death when describing Leinster House during the summer months. (For those who are not film buffs, it’s the hotel to which Jack Nicholson takes his family in Stanley Kubrick’s film on Stephen King’s novel The Shining).

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  • Stark Honesty (for once) in Leinster House

    August 22, 2009 @ 1:58 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Maybe it’s the Dog Days of August but there is an air of considerable fatalism in Leinster House these days. Talking to seasoned politicians this week, two strong messages came forward, both of them surprising to a greater or lesser extent.

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     Gloom and doom at Leinster House (Photograph by Alan Betson)

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  • Nama and Snip

    July 31, 2009 @ 10:32 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    The scale of the Nama (National Asset Management Agency) project is awe-inspiring. We never had it so good as in the Celtic Tiger years but it is clearly a case of, the higher they come, the harder they fall.

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     Nama and Snip? Tiger cubs at Dublin Zoo, with Mum and Dad (Photograph by Brenda Fitzsimons)

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  • Bigger questions

    July 21, 2009 @ 7:38 pm | by Harry McGee

    This half of the Politics blog has been away for the past couple of weeks. The village in the Swiss Bernese Oberland that I stayed in had the connectivity of rural Ireland. That, added to the extortionate rates that O2 charge for data roaming abroad (and I’m sure it is no exception) meant that little news from Ireland came through. (more…)

  • Nasty Nettle of Property Tax

    June 24, 2009 @ 3:20 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    The political scene is overcome with ennui and sluggishness. The warm weather contributes to a mood where everybody wants to be somewhere else, preferably on a beach with a long, cool drink in hand.

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    Wolfe Tone: admirer of the ‘men of no property’

    (Photograph by Cyril Byrne)

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  • Rope a dope?

    June 17, 2009 @ 12:59 pm | by Harry McGee

    I am looking at Brian Cowen on the TV screen in the office, drudging through Taoiseach’s Questions. The Dáil this week has been like a burst balloon  or a wind without sails or an end-of-season clash between two mid-table teams.

    There has been a sense of tiredness – maybe it’s anti-climax – after the elections season and the emotion of the debate on the Ryan report. Nobody has whipped themselves into a froth of fury this week. There have been some more wringing of hands by parties (mainly the Greens) about the future and all the dreadful things that may be in store.

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  • Could Our Political Parties Organise a Booze-Up in a Brewery?

    June 15, 2009 @ 1:23 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Here’s a little saga that may or may not speak volumes about the political set-up in this country. The story begins with a news report by yours truly last week on a report from the Standards in Public Office Commission about the funding of political parties. flag-1.jpg

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  • FG Gives ‘FF’ the Boot

    June 11, 2009 @ 8:32 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    My former colleague in the political press corps, Mark O’Connell used to like quoting “a Leinster House wag” in the course of his reports for a Sunday newspaper.  The wag could be a different person every week and, if one made a remark that O’Connell considered particularly witty, he would bestow the title upon you for the next edition – not by name of course, but you knew it was you when you read it.

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    Matt Kavanagh’s moving photograph from Wednesday’s protest march

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  • Lest We Forget

    June 9, 2009 @ 9:29 pm | by Deaglán de Bréadún

    Before they disappear under the receding wave of time, here are some impressions of the recent elections. In the course of the campaign, some people complained they were boring but the present writer didn’t find that to be the case.

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    In happier times . . . or maybe not: Gerry Adams (left) and Christy Burke
    (Photograph by Matt Kavanagh)

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