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    Dumb greens and unions

    One of the things historians may dwell on is how the key December 2017 and February 2018 eu drafts of the Brexit agreement came to take the forms they did. It is all the more important since the inept UK Government of Theresa May failed to produce its own draft, though it might have been expected […]

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    IR FU(EU)

    The nineteenth Six Nations tournament begins on February 3 but one man who won’t feature is Simon Zebo. It was announced in October that Zebo will be leaving Munster at the end of this season and moving to Paris to play for Racing 92 in the French Top 14 league. The announcement of his planned move […]

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    Nati(on) off

    In 1985, the Irish-Australian writer Vincent Buckley, after spending some time in Ireland, wrote in his book ‘Memory Ireland: “Ireland has been asked to lose its national memory by a kind of policy, in which politicians of almost all parties, ecclesiastics of all religions, media operators, and revisionist historians co-operate to create (and let us […]

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    If not zeal then logic

    It could not be clearer. The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission Act 2014 says that public bodies must, when they are preparing strategic plans, assess and identify the human rights and equality issues that are relevant to their functions as policy maker, employer and service provider. Public bodies must also identify the policies and practices […]

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    How maths will destroy capitalism

    The consumerism-generating-capitalism- it usefully loyal, generating-consumerism cycle that characterises the developed or ‘Northern’ world depends on inequality, even as it purveys certain equalities, and is the main obstacle to tackling climate change, the most serious long-term problem facing humanity. Capitalism is struggling to maintain itself. In one formal sense this is good for equality. A crucial weakness […]

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    When shall we three meet again?

    This is a saga of sadness, a tragic tale of three ‘whiches’, a fairy ‘which’, a whichsoever ‘which’ and a wicked ‘which’. In initiating each of three referendums, David Cameron said, “You have a choice, ‘this’ or ‘that’, which do you want?”. So all three ballots were binary, and while the first two delivered what he […]

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    Irexit

    Since the Brexit referendum in June I have been rapporteur of a Private Study Group of Irish economists and constitutional lawyers who have been examining what we should do when and if the UK leaves the EU. In August their report was sent to the Taoiseach, his Ministers and the Secretary-Generals of all Government Departments. It […]

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    Oxford, Britain

    North Oxford is a heartland of academia where leafy halls of residence mingle with stately homes and rarefied hostelries. Situated in almost the very centre of Britain a windless calm favours scholarly reflection removed from modernity’s fugue. Even the traffic is orderly with bicycles sensibly preferred. It is one of the most attractive places in the […]

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