Laurence Speight

  • Posted in:

    Trumping science

    The new American President is post-science just as he is post-truth. His number one environmental priority is to cancel the Paris Climate Agreement, not uncoincidentally the number one environmental priority for environmentalists.

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Turmoil over de-institutionalisation

    The planned closure of the St Mary of the Angels institution in Beaufort, Co Kerry has brought a disconcerting media focus on the issue of de-institutionalisation of people with intellectual disabilities. The families of residents have made their feelings known on how the closure of that institution is being handled. They have launched a Facebook […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Increasing housing supply won’t reduce prices

    The Construction Industry have said for years that “increasing supply (housing) will reduce prices”. The government have accepted this as fact and current policy is driven by it. The graph below is compiled from Central Statistics Office (CSO ) data for 1975-2015 and includes monthly new home completions and monthly average new house prices in that 40-year period. The information has […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Stacking Up

    Bertie Ahern made a sensible and probably decisive intervention in the controversy surrounding Gerry Adams and the killing of senior prison officer, Brian Stack, which dominated the headlines and political discourse during the first week of December. The resurrection of a story involving the shooting of Stack as he left a boxing match in Dublin’s […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Villager – Dec/Jan 2017

    Barrister Michael Cush has been appearing for Denis O’Brien in some of his exhausting judicial travails. The last two letters of the senior counsel’s name suggest posh, plush, an advocate who cushions, shushingly. The first two letters suggest something altogether less generous…

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    (Ar)Lean times in North

    December 2016 issue. Six months have been a long time in politics for Northern First Minister Arlene Foster, as storm clouds have gathered round her ascetic political persona. In May she consolidated the DUP vote and seat numbers in the Assembly elections. She seemed master of the political scene, just like newly-minted British Conservative leader, […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Gender-isory

    This November marks the second anniversary of my successful gender equality case at the Equality Tribunal against NUI Galway for its failure to appoint me to the post of Senior Lecturer. It was hailed as a landmark case and should have been a call to arms, not just for NUI Galway, but for all third-level […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Don’t call her your mother

    “Don’t Hug Your Mother”. This is the order our father gave to my brother JP and me as we were on our way to visit our mother. It was just over a year after our parents had separated. We were ten and twelve years of age. My father’s demands were the beginning of a process […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    IMF Oomph

    According to a recent IMF study, there are reasons to worry about a new housing-markets-triggered financial blowout. And although IMF data suggest that we are not at panic level regarding house-price inflation its researchers conclude that “there are several reasons to think that the present conjuncture is a time for vigilance”.

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Judging the Guards

    Quis custodiet custodies? Pompous and all as it sounds, in my view, it’s the fundamental question for Ireland. Who watches over those who safeguard our democracy and our rights – our ‘guards’? Our democracy and our society is dysfunctional: those entrusted with the power to discharge positions responsibly are not fit to. If only because […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Trump/Slump

    By all possible measures the US presidential election of 2016 has set a record low in the quality of political discourse. However, with the outcome handing the Republicans a decisive victory in the White House, Senate and House of Representatives contests, the election will have a lasting and systemic impact on the development of economic […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Poverty shapes abortion

    A woman in poverty is damned from two perspectives when it comes to pregnancy. She can’t afford to continue a pregnancy but she can’t afford to stop it either. Constitutional reform; investing in women; trusting women; reversing austerity; treating all mothers equally; addressing poverty, low pay and childcare and all the other social and economic […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    Enda(ngered)

    The election of Donald Trump is just the latest headache for an already precariously balanced Irish government. The election of the man whose words were described as ‘racist and dangerous’ by Enda Kenny just a few months ago does not in itself pose an imminent threat to the Taoiseach’s political survival but it certainly intensifies […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    McKinseygalitarian

    Stephen Donnelly is an accidental politician. There he was sitting in front of his TV minding his own business, watching the news pictures of IMF officials striding the streets of Dublin. He saw the threat. “I’m trained in this stuff – what happens when the IMF arrives in your country, the mistakes that get made, […]

    Read more

  • Posted in:

    In which Denis gets himself sued

    Perhaps the strangest event on the Irish media landscape last month was prompted by Sinn Féin MEP Lynn Boylan’s publication of a report into media ownership in Ireland, commissioned by the European United Left/Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL) grouping in the European Parliament. The report itself – by Belfast solicitors Gavin Booth and Darragh Mackin of […]

    Read more