‘The payments were cut by one-third in 2014 from €150 to €100 for primary school children aged four to 11, and from €250 to €200 for secondary school students aged 12 to 17. This was a cold, deliberate choice to increase poverty among the children we know to be most vulnerable.’ Photograph: Getty Images Fintan O’Toole: Poorest will be hardest hit by lone-parent cut

‘Back to School allowance for clothes and shoes were cut by one-third in 2014 from €150 to €100 for primary school children aged four to 11’

‘To have Tomi Reichental (above)  in the mosque this Friday during Ramadan will not only send out a strong message of peace and dialogue to people of all faiths, but at the same time highlight the essential fundamental principles of Islam.’ Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times Call on Irish Muslims to reach out to people of other faiths this Ramadan

Holocaust survivor to be guest at Muslim meal in west Dublin this week

‘Traditional sources are still far more trusted than newer home-grown digital sources. Some 59 per cent of Irish people put most trust in either the online or printed version of newspapers, or in radio and TV broadcasters, online and off, whereas just 7 per cent trust social media and blogs.’ Photograph: Getty Images Declining trust in journalism mirrors declining trust in politics and politicians

‘This is a dangerous place for a democracy to be and there are good reasons for us to try to understand how it is we got here so that we can take alleviating action if necessary’

‘Nothing is good about sleeping in a tent, or spending any time whatsoever in a tent.’ Glastonbury 2014. Photograph: Ian Gavan/Getty Images Una Mullally: Forget summer festival Fomo and look at the negatives

‘I’m staring at November on the calendar, when I might get to the Airwaves festival in Reykjavik (I hope the doctors aren’t reading this)’

German chancellor Angela Merkel. ‘Holding the euro zone together will require Merkel to do something she has rarely done: make a far-reaching decision at odds with German public opinion.’ Photograph: Axel Schmidt/Getty Images Derek Scally: If Greece fails and the euro fails, then Angela Merkel fails

German chancellor knows today’s talks with Greek PM are about the political will to find a face-saving solution for everyone

 Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis: ‘Regrettably, my presentation was met with deafening silence. Excepting Michael Noonan’s apt remark, all other interventions ignored our proposals.’ Above, Varoufakis and     Noonan at the start of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) Board of Governors, ahead of the Eurogroup Meeting of Finance ministers in Luxembourg on Thursday. Photograph: EPA/JULIEN WARNAND Yanis Varoufakis: A pressing question for Ireland before Monday’s meeting on Greece

‘Perhaps the most telling remark by any finance minister in that eurogroup meeting came from Michael Noonan’

‘In recent years vulture speculators have been easily able to wipe out what a rebellion against British imperialism could not.’ Above,  John Crowe from Artane at  a protest outside Clerys on O’Connell Street, Dublin in support of workers who lost their jobs. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins Diarmaid Ferriter: Best little country? Not for Clerys workers and art treasures

Two controversies bring into sharp and depressing focus the issues of vulture capitalism and the debasement of our national heritage

‘The Donald (as he is dispiritingly known to other holders of that excellent name) let nobody down when he appeared at the Trump Tower on Tuesday.’ Above, Trump gestures after speaking and taking questions at a rally in Manchester, New Hampshire, on Wednesday. Photograph: Dominick Reuter/Reuters Donald Clarke: Why Trump is answer to Democrats’ prayers

Absurd, eccentric, right-wing carnival huckster has no chance of becoming president

‘On a high  turnout Turkish voters  endorsed a political alternative by bringing a new Kurdish-based party into parliament on a multicultural programme, thereby depriving Erdogan’s party of its governing majority.’ Above, officials count votes after the close of voting in Diyarbakir, Turkey.  Photograph: EPA/SEDAT SUNA Nationalist forces in Greece and Turkey could thrive if Greek deal fails

‘If Greece were to face economic collapse, and exit from the euro zone or even from the EU after the failure of these talks, the impact on Turkey would be large’

‘The difficult task the consul general and his colleagues do in these days is done on behalf of all of us.’ Above, Philip Grant, consul general of Ireland to the Western United States (right) speaks to the media with Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates following a wreath-laying ceremony at the scene of the fourth-storey apartment building balcony collapse in Berkeley, California this week. Photograph: REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage Noel Whelan: We can be proud of Irish Consul’s efforts in dark days in Berkeley

‘The Twitter feed is but one small element of the public effort in which the Consul General Philip Grant and his colleagues engaged’

Pope Francis writes, “Access to safe drinkable water is a basic and universal human right, since it is essential to human survival and, as such, is a condition for the exercise of other human rights.” Photograph: REUTERS/Max Rossi Pope’s message on climate change marks a radical departure for Vatican

‘Francis accepts the consensus of the scientists that human activity is the main cause of our present ecological problems’

‘We are concerned that, in its current form, residues remain of the paternalist “substituted decision-making” model of the old system.’ Photograph: Getty Images Warning over ‘assisted decision-making’ plans in new Bill

‘We have the rare opportunity to provide an advanced legal framework for securing the rights of citizens in need of decision-making support and safeguards’

The Battle of Waterloo was fought 200 years ago, on June 18th, 1815. Above, Napoleon’s retreat from the Battle of Waterloo. Image: After a painting by Steuben. Photograph by Hulton Archive/Getty Images Wellington won Battle of Waterloo 200 years ago – but Irish rejected his legacy

Ronan McGreevy: ‘Wellington won the Battle of Waterloo, but, in the long term, the Irish came to reject the world that he represented’

‘The US Supreme Court will decide before the end of this month whether gays and lesbians have a constitutional right to marry. If the court says yes, all state laws against equal marriage will fall. The outcome would represent another major step towards the vindication of LGBTI rights generally (and, as a trivial aside, would allow us to congratulate American friends on their judiciary having caught up with the plain people of Ireland). Supporters of same-sex marriages  outside the US Supreme Court on April 28th, 2015. Photograph:  MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images Eamonn McCann: Gay rights and wrongs – from the US to Uganda

‘Hatred of homosexuals in Uganda, as in much of the rest of Africa, has little to do with local tradition, a lot to do with the influence of western Christian evangelicals’

‘There is rightly much pride in the life-saving work of the LÉ Eithne and its crew.’ Above, migrants wait to  disembark from the Irish Naval ship  LÉ Eithne at the Catania harbour,  on June 16th, 2015. Photograph: AP Photo/Carmelo Imbesi Mediterranean crisis reflects escalating migration worldwide

‘In just three days, more people land on the tiny islands in eastern Greece than claimed asylum in Ireland in all of 2014’

Wreaths laid at the Library Gardens apartment complex in Berkeley, California, where Irish students died on Tuesday.  Photograph: AP Photo/Jeff Chiu Berkeley: Irish student community united in grief and shock

Laura Harmon: ‘There can’t have been a parent in Ireland, or around the world, who didn’t want to hear their son or daughter’s voice on learning of the deaths of students in Berkeley’

‘As a bereaved parent, my thoughts were first for these young people’s mums and dads, brothers and sisters as they start their tough journey through the intense grief and loss. Our thoughts are still with them.’ Above, one of  many messages and bouquets of flowers left near the scene of the fourth-floor balcony collapse  in Berkeley, California. EPA/PETER DASILVA Berkeley: How can friends and family support the bereaved?

‘In time everyone finds their own way to cope, draws their own road map’

  Clerys workers Emily McDermott  and her daughter Nathania, at the demonstration in support of Clerys workers, outside the store in O’Connell Street, Dublin. Photograph: Eric Luke / The Irish Times Kathy Sheridan: The closure of Clerys – when the shutters come down

‘Companies are ridiculously easy to set up, yet are granted all the enormous, attendant privileges of limited liability’

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