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Blog Archives

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Trump Dunes. The bombastic billionaire and his wad arrive in Doonbeg

  By Éibhir Mulqueen.   The news that bouffoned New York billionaire Donald Trump has taken over the troubled Doonbeg Golf Links in West Clare, apparently for a snap-up price…

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So, who’s illiberal here?

“It will never be known what acts of cowardice have been committed for fear of not looking sufficiently progressive” – Charles Péguy             Those with…

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Yes to No Change? Educating educators. By Michael Smith

Self-awareness and analysis of problems and best international solutions needed, at secondary level.   Many schools have lost guidance counsellors, language and special needs teachers and year heads. Support hours…

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John Gibbons interviews climate scientist, Michael Mann

Mann enough ‘His ‘hockeystick graph’ became the defining symbol of man-made climate change – and made him a special target of the fossil-fuel lobby’ ‘If you as a scientist share…

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Education Department obfuscates on Bus Éireann

  Unavailability of accounts and a report, and denial of profit, don’t stack up by  Michael Smith (Feb 2014, Village Magazine)   Student Transport Scheme Ltd, a private company.  wants…

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Context for, and focus on, the Garda

  History, and the current lack of official, political and journalistic incisiveness, suggest reform of the Garda will remain elusive By Frank Connolly Not much has changed since I first…

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How Ireland got the CRC and exclusive private hospitals The long evolution of our impersonal, centrally-organised, eccentrically-run, consultant-deferential, selfish, non-rights-based regimes for poverty and then health

  By Caroline Hurley. Former CRC board members Poor laws come from Poor Laws. The English Poor Laws date from the fourteenth century and, though regularly modified, were not fully…

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The madness of repeating Partnership failure Hogan Working Group’s neat PPNs replicate stagnant social partnership model, locally

By Niall Crowley You would not immediately associate Phil Hogan, Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government, with an interest in participatory democracy. However, last September he did set up…

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Is Newstalk more than Kenny and Yates?

The well-marketed commercial station  fails to cultivate its own youthful talent By Gerard Cunningham ‘ The ‘Move the Dial’ campaign for Newstalk, fronted by Pat Kenny in the weeks before…

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RIP Tony Benn. Here’s an interview he did for Village (2009).

Daring to be a Daniel Cult Status hasn’t gone to Tony Benn’s head By Derek Owens   Nearing his 84th birthday, the man once denounced in The Sun as the…

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Corrupting philanthropy

As Frank Flannery revealed as overpaid consultant to Philanthropy Ireland as well as chair of Forum on Philanthropy read Niall Crowley on the corruption of philanthropy in Ireland (July 2013,…

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Good god, Google. Administration and ‘process’ not innovation drive Irish operation

  Ronan  Lynch   It’s been a bad twelve months for Google. It began with the growing awareness of Google’s tax avoidance, and continued with Google being forced to deny…

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Bye Bye Mr Smug (Flannery and Enda’s backroom – Village 2009)

Frank Flannery and Ciaran Conlon, Enda’s backroom boys The smuggest men in politics That man you see on the box when FG do something popular like incorporate George Lee, the…

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Denis to Dermot (Village imagines)

Dear Mr Desmond, You never go to Davos.  Why’s that then? I’ve been going for more than a decade, cruising in on the old Gulfstream. I love to put myself…

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The unpredictable drip of freedom of Information. Understaffed new Information Commissioner withdraws appeal as Aarhus convention flouted.

By Tony  Lowes   ‘Governments treat the information in their possession as a resource, to be doled out in amounts as they see fit, either copious flows or mean little…

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Hipsterism: essential reminiscence in a world of airbrushed digitalisation

‘When art is made easy, it’s made cheap’ RóisIn Waters   Okay, I admit it – I’m a hipster. I’m the person you see with a polaroid camera slung around…

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Water RescEU European Citizens Initiative can staunch water privatisations

By John Gormley. Debacle is the word most often used to describe the setting up of Irish Water. I always took the view that the need for water charges was…

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Unethical Philomena by Mannix Flynn. Instead of the politics of selling children we got a cosy road trip

“the religiously deferential Philomena denies that she was coerced into signing away her child” At the glitzy Dublin premiere of Philomena there was marked discomfort in the Q & A…

Npbody Cares about corruption

Nobody really cares Department of Environment’s revived post-Mahon planning ‘enquiry’ likely to be box-ticking, again. John Gormley Aug 2013 Village

’In a democracy the voters have a right to make stupid and irresponsible decisions, the right to vote for gombeens and bribetakers who will ignore development plans and rezone every…

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By Kathleen Lynch Economic inequality creates educational inequalities …and class-based cuts to education, an engine for equality, subvert other rights and goods for the most vulnerable

The impact of rising economic inequality on inequality in education is profound, especially over time. Education is essentially a competition for advantage in an unequal society. Those who have most…