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    Extremism has become normal

    Dump neoliberalism and build the just society optimising liberalism and equality envisaged by Rawls, Dworkin and Declan Costello by David Langwallner   In April 2015 I was asked to present a paper on ‘Towards A Just Society 2017’ to the West Cork Bar Association which, to my considerable surprise, was very well received by an […]

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    Her Majesty’s Hatchetman: the murder of Pat Finucane

    TOMMY LYTTLE AND THE SORDID LINK BETWEEN THE KINCORA BOYS’ HOME SCANDAL AND THE PATRICK FINUCANE ASSASSINATION   By Joseph de Burca On 12 February, 1989, the UDA assassinated Patrick Finucane, a highly regarded Belfast solicitor, at his North Belfast home. Finucane, who was 38-years-old, was shot 14 times by two masked UDA gunmen who […]

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    State land could provide 114,000 dwellings

    Both NAMA (The National Asset Management Agency) and Local Authorities have been criticised for ‘land-hoarding’, ‘sitting’ on sites particularly in Dublin and the Greater Dublin Area (GDA) and not developing land that could be used to address the current housing crisis. Despite the amount of land under their control, Minister Eoghan Murphy has recently asked the […]

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    We Are Totally Facebooked

    We’re enslaved by social media which will manipulate emotions for money By Mark Kernan This year Facebook filed two very interesting patents in the US. One was for emotion recognition technology; which recognises human emotions through facial expressions and can assess what mood we are in at any given time -happy or anxious for example. This […]

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    Taking housing from scandal to right

    The law can help: starting with a referendum by David Langwallner   There are human rights to food, water, healthcare, a minimum standard of living, and housing. Despite western opposition they found their way into the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966). They have wrongly been denied as rights in Ireland since […]

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    Neoliberalism cloaked as modernity

    Ireland should brace for market worship dressed up as equality of opportunity and favouring those who get up early by David Langwallner and Ben Harper   Leo Varadkar consistently asserts that he does not believe in equality of outcome but in equality of opportunity. He sees himself as “right” or “either centre right or a […]

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    Morally Most Wanted

    Fantasy Indictment: Peter Sutherland for moral offences against the economy, the environment and human rights by David Langwallner and Michael Smith   Christopher Hitchens, no stranger to contrarian positions, once wrote a remarkable polemic called ‘The Trial of Henry Kissinger’ impugning Kissinger for being as guilty as any common war criminal of crimes against humanity. […]

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    Build More Social Housing

    Local authorities built only 394 homes in 2017 by Mel Reynolds   MINISTER FOR FINANCE Paschal Donohoe set out the stall for Social Housing in Budget 2018: “I am allocating a total of €1.83bn for housing in 2018. Some 3,800 new social homes will be built next year by local authorities and approved housing bodies…1”. […]

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    From Senna to Joyce

    Exile from hypocrisy, lack of standards, formalism, begrudgery and betrayal by David Langwallner   The legendary Formula 1 driver Ayrton Senna was famous for flamboyant risk taking. His great rival Alain Prost would complain about his dangerous overtaking and bumper-to-bumper manoeuvrings. Senna was, without doubt, the greatest Formula 1 driver of all time both in […]

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    FIRE, after Grenfell

    ”Nothing to see here” approach means Ireland’s Fire Safety Task Force was wrongly comprised, only looked at buildings over 6 storeys and assessed only half of the 226 buildings identified as at risk By Orla Hegarty and Lorcan Sirr   IT WAS PURE LUCK that the March 2015 fire in Millfield Manor in Kildare didn’t […]

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    Vertical Sprawl

    Obfuscating high-rise with high density serves only deregulatory market-driven ideology by Gavin Daly Rule #101 of the neoliberal playbook – when faced with a housing supply crisis, attack the planning system! It has been thus at leasgt since Michael Heseltine, Thatcher’s bouffant environment secretary in the 1980s, launched his famous broadside against the “jobs locked […]

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    (S)height

    Eoghan Murphy’s crude and desperate guidelines on Building Heights risk the aesthetic of our towns and cities By Michael Smith   Density is desirable We should all be able to agree the desirability of densification of the Dublin City area – in accordance with the principles of sustainable development. The advantages of density include being […]

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    LauraKennedyWatch

    Recent publishings in the Irish Times from Laura Kennedy: Freelance writer, doctor in philosophy, columnist @IrishTimes and beauty columnist @IrishTimesMag   I wonder, not for the first time, how it is that many of the changes in my life have been punctuated by sitting on some park bench or other, listening to the faint trilling […]

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    430,689 not 85,799

    We need to face up to what mature countries call housing need by Rory Hearne   There is general acceptance that the housing crisis has reached unacceptable levels. However, the government’s current policies are inadequate to address the crisis because, firstly, they underestimate the scale of the crisis. Secondly, they deny the overall housing policy […]

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    McWilliams regurgitates

    But it’s only his own old articles by Emma Gilleece   The fourth Defendant in the recent rape trial of rugby players in Belfast was Rory Harrison of Manse Road Belfast. He was acquitted of perverting the course of justice by lying to police when he gave a witness statement about his dealings with the […]

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    It was about McCabe not O’Sullivan and Fitzgerald

    Fine Gael learns the wrong lessons from the Charleton Tribunal report by Frank Connolly   The almost hysterical reaction of her former colleagues to the finding by Justice Peter Charleton that Frances Fitzgerald had done nothing to warrant her resignation from the cabinet in November 2017 is little short of mind-boggling. Instead of focusing on […]

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    Dial M for Murder

    HAS SPOOK-TURNED-THRILLER WRITER DAME STELLA RIMMINGTON FORGOTTEN WHAT IS IN MI5’s TOP SECRET FILES? By Joseph de Burca Dame Stella Rimmington has just published another of her bestselling Liz Carlyle spy yarns The Moscow Sleepers in time for the Christmas market. In it, the redoubtable Liz is set against some  very nasty men from Russia. […]

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    EU’re in the Line of Fire

    EU Digital Copyright Directive aims to reward content providers but overreaches on ordinary web users By Laurence O’Bryan   Our world is experiencing a cathartic period of change, thanks to the internet and social media. The President of the United States uses Twitter to rally popular support among his base, including people who believe, as he […]

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      The Boy on the Meat Rack

    A Life Derailed, Part 1 of the Story of Alan Kerr; By Joseph de Burca.                   INTRODUCTION Alan Kerr was sexually abused by three men at Williamson House, a Belfast Corporation Welfare Department care home in Belfast. He was only six years of age when it started.  One […]

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    The Secret Barrister, reviewed by David Langwallner

      The rage of London at the moment is a self-consciously anonymous blog called “The secret barrister” which is an exposé of the profession of a criminal barrister and indeed of the criminal justice system written by a junior counsel specialising in criminal law. This blog aims to provide a fly-on-the-wall view of the criminal […]

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