Ireland's political magazine Friday - Jan 30, 2015
More.  Austerity.

More. Austerity.

For 2015. By Constantin Gurdgiev. December data on the Irish economy paint a picture of a major slowdown in growth momentum and once more highlight the troubling nature of our national accounts statistics. With that in mind, and given the spectacular tremors rocking the global economy outside the well-insulated doors of our Department of Finance,

How government has dismantled the equality infrastructure.

How government has dismantled the equality infrastructure.

By Rachel Mullen. The Equality Tribunal has been an important part of the Irish equality infrastructure. The system whereby the former Equality Authority provided support to those taking cases of alleged discrimination and a specialist Equality Tribunal heard and decided these cases had been lauded as best practice by the European Commission. The Equality Authority


Dissent and Democracy.

Dissent and Democracy.

By Tom Hanahoe, Terence Conway and John Monaghan. On September 17 2011, hundreds of Americans gathered in New York’s Wall Street district, the very hub of American and global capitalism.  Calling themselves the Occupy Wall Street movement, they set up a protest encampment, which soon spawned similarly themed protests in over 100 US cities around


Magical public banking

Magical public banking

By Emer O Siochrú Three Irish political parties support publicly-owned banks but the mainstream has yet to be convinced. Ellen Brown who spoke at Kilkenomics in October is on a mission to change that. Brown claims that a state bank can nearly double its spending power if it puts state money in its own bank

14.4% Gender pay gap issue relegated.

14.4% Gender pay gap issue relegated.

By Orla O’ Connor. The National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) has campaigned for a gender budgeting approach to be implemented by Government. This would mean that all budgetary measures were assessed for their impact on men and women. We would have got a very different budget had this been done. A recent ESRI and


In the bath with Sean Quinn, 3.2bn loser

In the bath with Sean Quinn, 3.2bn loser

                Seán Quinn lay back in the gilt bathtub that he had got the Quinn Group to buy for him, and was hiding from Anglo, and reflected on how honest he was.  I am a very honest man, he thought, decent and humble, wrecked by Anglo.  I don’t

Analysing Brendan O’Connor’s Saturday guestlist.

Analysing Brendan O’Connor’s Saturday guestlist.

By Rónán Lynch. BrendanOConnorGuests-1 While Village can do serious analysis of serious talk radio, we can also get down with the celebrity stuff that people crave, openly or in secret. In this issue, we turn our attention to the Irish television talk show, and Brendan O’Connor’s Saturday Night Show in particular. O’Connor occupies a unique


Review of ‘In the Name of Love’ by Una Mullally.

Review of ‘In the Name of Love’ by Una Mullally.

By John Gormley.   A refreshing and open evocation of the evolution of the fractious civil partnership legislation   When excerpts from ‘In the Name of Love’, which was written and compiled by the journalist, Una Mullally, appeared in the Irish Times recently it sparked quite a bit of debate in Green Party circles. A

Crevices of culture.

Crevices of culture.

Review of Rod Stoneman’s Seeing is Believing: The Politics of the Visual. By Richard Callanan. There is nothing to which Rod Stoneman is not willing to turn his attention so a broad canvas had to be created to encompass his writings on everyone from Andrea Mantegna to Banksy. The hoary old statistic about our being


30 years after 1984.

30 years after 1984.

By Tom Hanahoe. The social class hierarchy of Oceania, where George Orwell’s 1984 is set, has three levels – the upper-class Inner Party, the elite ruling minority, who make up 2% of the population; the middle-class Outer Party, who make up 13% of the population; and the lower-class Proles, who make up 85% of the

99% gone, and still going.

99% gone, and still going.

  By Tony Lowes. 99% of the actively growing raised bog in Ireland has gone, with one third of the remaining 1% lost in the last 10 years     “I would like to draw your attention to the outright carnage bestowed on hundreds of acres of our historical raised bog lands in County Westmeath.”


Fuck you, Mattie McGrath.

Fuck you, Mattie McGrath.

In the bath with Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Alan Kelly. Alan Kelly contemplated his navel over the water, Irish Water, in his dirty bath. Thank Jaysus it was only thirty thousand.  Thanks the lord. And the  Garda tallymen. I fully accept the dirty bath, he practised, ministerially.  Errors were made in

In the soup: Gerald Kean.

In the soup: Gerald Kean.

By Frank Connolly. Fresh from his latest, and unfortunate, altercation with the Law Society celebrity solicitor, Gerald Kean, has landed himself in the thick of it again. No doubt motivated by the best of intentions, Kean has joined the trustees of soup kitchen, the Cork ‘Penny Dinners’, where his friend Caitriona Twomey has ruled the


The Irish weekend. Candles and Cake at Avoca.

The Irish weekend. Candles and Cake at Avoca.

By Michael Smith. Avoca: I hate it.  The dead river which has run marinated in copper for a century, the town which spawned the  devil’s tv series, Ballykissangel, and now Avoca – the “store”, the café, the nursery, “the shopping and leisure destination”. In recent months I have discovered the  joys of dedicated walking in

One had a Nanny  and went to Eton.

One had a Nanny and went to Eton.

By Michael Smith. The differences between David Cameron and Nick Clegg (2010). No-one has ever contemplated the relative poshnesses of Ireland’s  Enda Kenny and Brian Cowen.  Both are classless (and  only incidentally unclassy).  Britain is different.  In a society where people wear their class on their shirts or forearms (sleeved or tattooed), they are obsessed


Planetary death by extractivism.

Planetary death by extractivism.

________________________ This Changes Everything Naomi Klein Simon & Schuster 2014 _______________________ Review by John Gibbons. I finished reading Naomi Klein’s ‘This Changes Everything’ just as a major study by the WWF confirmed that, in a mere four decades, more than half of the wild animals on Earth had been wiped out. From the time I

The social ‘protection’ racket.

The social ‘protection’ racket.

By Tom Boland. Protection’ can sometimes be a euphemism for threats. A classic mafia racket is to ask businesses for money in exchange for ‘protection’, which is actually a threat of violence for non-payment. However, the extortion is dressed up as a community service. Recently, social welfare in Ireland has turned into a ‘protection’ racket.


Villager – November 2014

Villager – November 2014

   Roy Keane, Bono, Michael Fitzmaurice, the Le Pens, Morgan Kelly etc  Meaningful surnames So Jared Payne’s an injury doubt for upcoming rugby internationals, while Ireland’s second try-scorer against South Africa is pretty-boy Tommy Bowe. Keane to defend himself Roy in Portmarnock book fracas…zzzzzzzzz. Globalism and tax breaks Bono and the IDA want to change

Parklife.

Parklife.

By Aidan J ffrench. Parks are vital contributors to urban life. But, with notable exceptions (eg Dublin County Council’s acquisitions of demesne landscapes: Marlay, Malahide, Ardgillan etc.), provision and management of parks in Ireland is haphazard, due to inadequate policy, law and resources, and political inertia. In 2006 Minister Roche’s responses to Dáil questions from