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    Fine Male

    Fiona McLoughlin Healy persists, where Catherine Noone left off in drawing specific attention to sexist bullying – in Kildare County Council and the Kildare and Wicklow Educational Training Board By Frank Connolly It must be have been less than reassuring for Fine Gael Senator, Catherine Noone, to know that her complaints of bullying by a […]

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    Rugby’s dirty secret

    Come clean, John McClean. John McClean had the power to make or break a schoolboy’s dreams of playing rugby for his country. As a coach in Terenure College for almost 30 years, and then head of the sport at UCD, his role in recruiting future generations of players gave him status and influence. He is […]

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    Wicklow Manager bouncing Bray demolition

    Village last month reported that Wicklow County Council has agreed to sell a prime town-centre site in Bray to developer Paddy McKillen’s Navybrook Ltd for just €2.6m. The deal is contingent on Navybrook delivering a commercial development by the end of 2019.  It is also a controversial sale that has raised questions about value for […]

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    Closure through Disclosure

    It is not a question of whether there was a Garda smear campaign against Sergeant Maurice McCabe. Rather, it is a matter of who planned and orchestrated it. For the first time since his prolonged agony began in 2008, McCabe was given the opportunity to speak publicly of his mistreatment by Garda management and some […]

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    It’s Time For Leaving Cert Reform

    It’s that time of year again. The CAO applications deadline has just passed and the mock exams are about to begin for almost 60,000 sixth year students. It’s also the season for commentary on the Leaving Certificate from employers, those in the media and staff in further and higher education institutions. The main criticism centres […]

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    Nama, the drama

    Nama was inevitably going to be controversial. Set up to acquire loans from the Irish banks that had recklessly provided the finance for an almighty property boom and needing to be rescued when the inevitable happened, Nama was the vehicle created to work through getting some of the money back. In 2009 the property market […]

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    NIhillism

    It is forty three years since the now notorious Glenanne Gang murdered three members of the Miami Showband in July 1975. Two of the band survived -Stephen Travers and Des Lee. The Gang was made up of serving RUC and UDR personnel, plus members of the UVF. The leader on the night, the infamous Robin ‘the […]

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    Eschatology, or the study of the end of times

    Eschatology, or the study of the end of times, is at least as old as the written word. The concept spans many of the world’s major religions, usually referring to some future day of judgement or reckoning. Beyond the realms of theology, eschatology as a concept is currently undergoing something of a renaissance, especially after […]

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    €140m to clean up one of Ireland’s 450 contaminated sites

    Silvermines, which the government spent €11m remediating in the 1990s, was back in the news in May 2017 as three cows were found dead of lead poisoning. A new inter-agency group involving the HSE, Department of Agriculture, Tipperary County Council, Environment Protection Agency, Teagasc, Irish Water, The Food Safety Authority and the Department of the […]

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    Lessons from Nuremberg

    I have for the last month been based in Eastern Europe, lecturing and contributing to the Anglo American University in Prague. The University has been very nice to me in light of the bedraggled and somewhat shaken image I must initially have presented. Prague, though it has its deficiencies as a city, is conveniently located […]

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    Oprah No

    Before she declined febrile suggestions that she run the US presidency on the grounds that she does not “have the DNA for it” Oprah Winfrey, the nation’s mother was attracting a great deal of serious political and media attention. Ireland has tried its hand at Dana, Gay Byrne and Sean Gallagher and may see some […]

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    Council to get €2.6m for site once valued at €28m

    Yet another controversy over its land disposals has hit Wicklow County Council following a decision by Councillors to hand over a valuable town-centre site in Bray to developer, Paddy McKillen junior. On Monday 15 January, Councillors voted to dispose of the 0.9 hectare Florentine site in Bray to Navybrook Ltd for €2.6m. The site has […]

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    Looking-down syndrome

    They think the right to life begins at conception and ends at birth. I grew up in a feminist household where that telling put-down of our American anti-abortion brigade was part of the lexicon. (It was also a Catholic household, but when it came to reproductive rights, as most things, feminism trumped religion). It’s a […]

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    U2’s First Recording Session Reviewed For The First Time

    U2 released ‘Songs of Experience’ before Christmas as a companion piece to 2014’s Songs of Innocence. Thematically, ‘Songs of Innocence’ was inspired by the band’s memories of their youth in Dublin in the 1970s with Bono describing it as “the most personal album we’ve written”. ‘Songs of Innocence’ touched upon these memories as perceived four […]

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    History Rarely Repeats, But Often Rhymes

    For over a decade now, Dublin-based five-piece The Spook of the Thirteenth Lock have been fusing the folklore and musical traditions of their home city with sounds and processes from further afield, with elements of drone and post-rock sitting alongside the foundations of folk and trad across their previous pair of full-length records. In addressing […]

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    Dáil and its legal reforms are pro-lawyer

    The circumstances of the demise of former Minister for Justice, Alan  Shatter, diverted attention from the risk of the thwarting of his reforms of the legal profession. Infamously many ministers, and their – often informal – advisers, are lawyers. Indicative of the problem is that at the last reading of the proposed reform bill, it […]

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    Dr Pat and Harassment at the Museum

    ‘Gogglebox’ added a new face to its ever-deepening stable of television viewers last October. Pat Wallace, alongside wife Siobhan, joined TV3’s Irish rendering of BBC’s extremely popular vicarious Big Brother-style television inversion. Before then Dr Pat Wallace was notable mostly for his heroic record on the controversial Wood Quay archaeological dig from 1974 when speaking […]

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    Gonzagrievance

    Revelations of sex abuse in all-male private schools in past decades have been powerfully conveyed across the Irish media. That barbarism should not, however, deflect attention from other enduring problems. I believe grave damage is still being done to the development of boys in ostensibly civilised institutions. Moreover, unequal educational provision maintains widening inequalities, underpinning […]

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