Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Slavery and Racism
A Review of 'Munich'
Visiting Friends in Palestine.
Monday, January 30, 2006
Dossing Times gives into evil.
Irish blog debate podcast.
Devs Constitution for a 21st century Ireland.
Sunday, January 29, 2006
When Blogs Attack
Saturday, January 28, 2006
Enda Kenny announces new education policy "sex should be made available for every student studying Irish"
Friday, January 27, 2006
Democracy: Is it really all that great?
TOP 6 FRIDAY My Deepest fears
Thursday, January 26, 2006
Google censoring in China
What will Google's search engine logo look like tomorrow? Here's my suggestion:
Mr Eluhanla's recent plea of guilty in court to charges of driving without insurance or tax, along with the fact that he already has a previous conviction for a road traffic offence.Good riddance he gives the rest of asylum seekers a bad name. Watch all the bigots now getting to use this against every Nigerian.If someone comes here they should respect our laws. He has also broken the law not once but twice. This guy was given a chance to make something of his life here. But didn't. He threw back all the support people gave him back in there face when he steped behind that wheel and has set his fellow Nigerians back in this country. I hope all the do gooders have enough sense to let this one go, there is far more worthy cases out there. Edit: 27/01/2006 I think my hope was invain. In the Dail yesterday from Mr. J. Higgins:
I seek the adjournment of the Dáil to raise a matter of urgent public importance and interest, the new deportation order issued against student Olunkunle Eluhanla in defiance of the clear wish of his classmates and the community in Palmerstown and of the Irish people generally who prevailed upon the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform to have him returned from his initial ill-judged deportation.
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Canadian Election Results
Does Rabbitte go around the Sun?
Anecdotal evidence suggests that the sun goes around the earth. I mean if you walk out the door at 9 O’ Clock and see the sun to your left and then you walk out the door at 4 and it is on your right. You haven’t moved house so you presume that the sun most have moved. However facts don’t lie and the earth goes around the sun.
Much of the recent talk about worker displacement and wage deflation starts with the sentence “anecdotal evidence suggests”. Yet if we look at the facts wage deflation is a not supported. The CSO's current (Q3 2005) Quarterly National Household Survey reports that approximately 25% of the 40,000 immigrants who joined the labour force found work in the construction industry. Yet wages in construction have experienced inflation of 6%. So to say that foreign workers are bringing down wages is on the whole wrong. (Article here from Freedom Institute)
But what about the anecdotal evidence. It has to be based in fact doesn’t it? Well yes of course there are people losing jobs because of migrants and unscrupulous employers are employing them at lower wages. But that is due to lack of enforcement of labour laws more then anything. Also the unemployment in Ireland is dropping in Ireland so it seems to suggest that these people losing jobs are gaining other jobs. But if Pat Rabbitte’s restrictions come into place they will only put the workers in a less secure situation. Leading to more exploitation.
Every country has its glory days France had the Belle Epoch Italy had the Roman Empire, Britain had its Victorian era but what was Irelands. Many would say when we were the isle of saints and scholars but is a few monks copying the bible really anything to Ireland taking its place as one of the leading countries in the world. We have never been as free and peaceful. Now we are a world leader in economic thought. Eastern European countries and many around the world do not look at France America or Sweden to inspire their political direction they look to us. They see low unemployment, high minimum wage, high social welfare payments, high productivity and amongst the highest rate of life satisfaction and want to emulate it in their countries. However the price paid for this our economy is a hungry beast it needs to be feed the things it needs. Houses, spending and workers. Now the houses are going to stay going for a while the demand is high and demographics suggest there is another few years in it yet. Watch Eddie Hobbs any night and you will see the Irish have no trouble spending. So the one factor challenging Irelands golden age is workers. We just don’t have enough.
I bet jobs created in this country over the next 2 years will be greater then the available unemployed. Anecdotal evidence suggests that this would mean every unemployed person would get a job. But if you look at the facts a pharmaceutical company is going to employ someone qualified in the same way that a plastering company is going to employ a plaster. Put simply the unemployed pool simply do not have the skills we need. This means we have to retrain and import the talent. So what happens if we decide what we have is enough and should stop importing labour like about 70% of the people polled want. Firstly companies will stop investing in Ireland. Two the companies here already here will not expand but setup operations in other countries and eventually leave increasing unemployment. House price will increase as there will be less people to build houses increasing cost. Slowing the sector and eventually crippling the economy. This is one of many scenarios that will happen. I can’t think of any good ones for sending them home or blocking entry.
One of the arguments is what happens when are country goes bust. Well that is a presumption that many people have. They have lived through the 80s and expect it to go like that again. I am no economist but I don’t think this will happen. True our economy will decline but unemployment will be no where near the 20% of the 80s. But the question is then how will we handle these people in social welfare. Firstly they can’t claim social welfare unless they have been working for 2 years. This means they have been paying taxes for 2 years. Which frankly is a lot more then some on unemployment at the moment. So are they not entitled to something at that stage? Also we hear the figures for immerigrants every year coming to this country. But how about the figures for leaving. Like many Irish going to oz now immerigrants come to Ireland for a year or two to make a bit of money, have a good time and learn English. The figures support this, the Department of Social and Family Affairs say that the majority of the workers stay only 10 months. They want to go back home and do go back. Ireland’s economy is booming Sweden’s is not and more people from Eastern Europe take the longer trip to Ireland. They come to work and make some money. So on a scale from 1 to yogurt the likelihood of many staying on in a 1980sesque Ireland getting social welfare is just not that creamy.
But then what about Irishness. Some say that they are going to dilute Ireland and eventually turn the Irish into a minority race in Ireland. This really is crap. Look at America some of the most proud Americans are Irish-Americans. They say they are Irish but are utterly dedicated to America. In 30 years time the 19 year old Polish-Irish Tipperary full forward is going to drill the ball past the legendary Nigerian born Kilkenny goal keeper to bring Liam McCarthy cup back to its rightful place. If these immigrants kids are given equal education opportunities and this anti-Immigrant sentiment that Pat Rabbitte is tapping is done away with these people are going to fit into to Irish life with out much hassle.
Political correctness people throw out the word racist for anyone that disagrees with them no matter what the facts are. The reason I called Pat Rabbitte’s comments racial scaremongering was because in my opinion the facts do not back up any call for restricting the movement of labour. So why are politicians coming out in favour of restrictions? Well if 78% of people are in favour of it do you not think they are seeing a big pile of votes in the next election. The Labour party was for the Nice referendum the very referendum that brought in unrestrictive access from Eastern Europe. Now they are against it. Who ever said politics was about principles.
Sunday, January 22, 2006
While construction absorbed the highest percentage of immigrant workers, wage inflation in this area stood at 6.0% in the 12 months to September 2005.With Inflation between 2-3% Construction wages grew. Compared to
Earnings in the Financial Services sector were up just 1.7% in the 12 months to September, below the rate of consumer price inflation.Edit: A survey in the Irish Times tomorrow says that about 78% of the population polled want eastern Europeans subject to Work Permits. Also according to politics.ie the PD supporters are the ones most against work permits. But comparing the figures from the Freedom Institute and the poll makes scary reading. Pat Rabbitte type scare tactics could lay the basis for an Irish BNP. Scary times indeed. Edit again: Minister for Social and Family Affairs Seamus Brennan weighs in:
"These people deserve to be treated properly in Ireland, they deserve to be welcome here," he said. "They're young people who come here for fairly short periods to do work and that's what Irish people have done all over the world for generations. "It wouldn't be right for us to start with any kind of serious restrictions."SIPTU leader:
“It is now absolutely clear that, if we are to go into new national pay talks, and that has still to be decided, these issues must be addressed,” Mr O’Connor said. “Even if we wanted to, neither the trade union movement, nor the Government, nor probably employers, could emerge with an acceptable proposal from those talks that does not comprehensively address these issues.”Edit 3. Michael McDowell
No one is really suggesting that the people who are here now working in our economy should be sent home." He conceded that it would be difficult to implement work permits asking: "Who would be eligible for them and if there was excessive demand for them who would actually decide that this person gets one of those permits and that person doesn't? "The interests of Ireland depend on there being migration into the country at this stage. It can't be uncontrolled migration and I take that poll as saying to the Government, remember you have a power to control it and if needs be you should control it,"Ned O'Keefe
"The situation has to be looked at in some orderly way. But at the end of day we have to have some protection in place for Irish people who are seeking employment in their own land," Mr O'Keeffe said. "It's a matter for the legislature to put systems in place where we can maybe work on a quota system," he added.
Friday, January 20, 2006
Fianna Fail is now on 37pc (+3), Fine Gael 24 (-1), Labour 16 (+2), SF 9 (-1), Greens 4 (-1), PDs 3 (-1), and others 8pc, unchanged. That suggests the Government parties have jumped 2pc since the previous corresponding poll in September.From Sluggerotoole comment by Henry94
Fianna Fail's core vote sits now at 37%, which is below the 41.49% it achieved in the general election of 2002. Fine Gael's core vote sits now at 18%, which is below the 22.49% it achieved in the general election of 2002. The PDs's core vote sits now at 3%, which is below the 3.75% it achieved in the general election of 2002. The Greens's core vote sits now at 3%, which is below the 3.85% it achieved in the general election of 2002. Besides Sinn Fein the only party to make a gain was Labour at 12% up from the 10.77% it achieved in the general election of 2002. It is suggested by commentators that Labour's gain was caused by itÂs playing of the anti-immigrant card.I have to agree, Pat Rabbitee playing the race card is certainly going to increase their vote. His own rating has gone up 4%. Sinn Fein's support is also falling. What I said about a Sunday Business Post Poll back in September.
Limerick Gears up for Munster Match
Top 6 Friday Barn Yard Animals
Ireland and anti-Zionism
"The Land of Israel was the birthplace of the Jewish people." This was a self serving and untruthful Zionist myth.Bertie refused to condemn the comments and Ariel Sharon aide Raanan Gissin said
"I am very sorry that Ireland takes this position because in doing that they support [Iranian President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad," he said.The full story from the Jewish Telegraph can be read here. Does this mean anything. I'm don't think so.
Thursday, January 19, 2006
Is Iran the death nail in the U.N.
In the film Wag the Dog America invented a war with
Oil burning is still amongst the cheapest ways of making electricity far cheaper then nuclear. Now add into that equation no need to import oil and you begin to wonder why
David “I think nicknames like Kells Angels are cool” McWilliams in an excellent piece in the Sunday Business Post Outlined the three ways that this situation could pan out.
In order of preference, there are only three ways out of this conundrum. First, and most preferable, is that the UN imposes sanctions on Iran and that this works. The second is that the US air force, launched from Iraq, attacks the Iranian instalments, neutralising the Iranian nuclear programme. The third is that the Israeli air force destroys the Iranian plant as it did Iraq's Osirak reactor in 1981.Now the American and Israeli strategies will work in the objective of stopping nuclear production for now. But it is doubtful that they will bring real change to the country and could indeed make the region even more unstable. To truly stabilise the region multiple nation support is needed.
The Irish government White Paper on Defence of February 2000 says of the UN that it ‘has the primary role to play in the maintenance of international peace and security’.
The UN’s inability to act in the most dangerous cases such as
But surely if the UN cannot act on issues such as
The Maastricht treaty says:
Member States shall coordinate their action in international organizations and at international conferences. They shall uphold the common positions in such fora. In international organizations and at international conferences where not all the Member States participate, those which do shall take part shall uphold the common position.
The EU sees itself as a more important entity then the UN and other organisations.
Thus what is needed to truly affect decisions is coalitions of the agreeing. But does that not just regionalise the world again? The aim of the U.N was to create a world devoid of blocs. But the world is in Blocs
One thing the
So what is the future for the U.N. If divisions over
By ending global poverty and promoting globalisation greed will dictate that the countries will act peacefully for their mutual benefit. But then the cultural differences will pop up. But then maybe one of the U.N’s publicity stunts, goodwill ambassadors, is the solution to world peace. Western Culture and music in particular had a massive effect on the fall of the Iron curtain (and their cultural will effect western culture in years to come) this could be applied to the rest of the world including
Why I am a Liberal Hating Liberal
Legislating against speech is a bad idea - for the most part it's subjective and the test of reasonableness is hard found. Crimes are crimes regardless of who they're committed against or why - the thug who beats up a homosexual person commits the same crime as the thug who beats up a heterosexual. Why do we need laws to protect minorities when the main priniciple that they're protected under, namely the right to be treated equally, stands on it own?In response to people who say that people against gay marriage should not be allowed to air their views, at all. She says.
I think it's censorship rooted in a smug superiority that's afraid, or unwilling to engage opponents in a meaningful discourse. If you are so adamant that those who do not agree with you are so fundamentally wrong, why shy away from the public forums where you can competently and convincingly dismantle their arguments? Why resort to name calling and excessive labelling?I could not agree more. This is why I am a liberal hating liberal. While I disagree with people against Gay Marriage I am totally supportive of their right to air there views in a discussion. And before anyone says what about Nazi Sympathiers. A few years ago a radio presenter had the leader of the BNP on. Many people protested the fact that he was on and wanted to pull the man of the show. But the presenter let him on, let him say his views and then ripped his views apart in debate. If he had censored him the BNP would have gain sympathy and a propaganda victory(like Gerry Adams on the Late Late years ago when Gay Byrne refused to shake his hand). However because his views were turn apart many of their supporters may have thought twice about continuing to support them. Ignoring Bigots does not make them go away. Confronting them does.
Division in the Rainbow.
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
Iran what is to be done.
Tuesday, January 17, 2006
Easy peasy Chocolate orange and rum cheesecake.
Then melt about 50g of butter in a saucepan at a low heat. Next put the crushed cookies in to the saucepan. Keep stirring until the chocolate in them is kind of melting and the mixture is getting darker and a wee bit moist. Then put contents of the sauce pan into a cake tin. (or any thing suitable.) And flatten it out until fairly even.To make the filling
Next put a packet of orange jelly ( if you are American this is not what you put on toast. I think it is jello to you. But don't quote me on that) into a mug of boiling water and allow to melt. Once it is melted place inside a blender. Add half a carton of cream (not sure of the volume but half the standard Irish carton) Add a tub of Philadelphia Cream cheese. Add about a breakfast serving of fresh squeezed orange juice not concentrate . Then add a shot or two of rum. Blend this . Then melt some chocolate about 125g. add this into the blender and blend. Taste the mixture and add more orange, chocolate or rum if you think it needs it.The finish
Pour the blended mixture on to the base in the cake tin. If you want to be fancy. Melt some more chocolate. Using a spoon carefully let the liquid chocolate trickle on to the surface of the Cake. And make swrilly shapes. Then carefully place into the fridge. Should be ready in a few hours.This recipe can be adapted to many flavors. Enjoy.
CIA flights in Baldonell
Why the media should not praise Governments
Refusal to ever praise the west: For the media, a story does not exist unless it can cast some skeptical look over western policy. The idea of them saying: "Government and military doing well, given that they are humans. Not much to criticise." seems absurd. A story must criticise the authorities. It must be negative, and slyly skeptical. It must compare the government and military to an imaginary utopia where everything runs perfectly (actually this is very much the left-wing mindset).But that is the point of good governments if they get rid of tyrants they are doing their job. When we get richer they are doing their job, when we get freer they are doing their job. We should expect that from them. That is their purpose. If you drive a car and drive at the correct speed do you get praised no that is what your have to do. When you speed then you are in trouble . When government don't do their job that is when we need the media.
This is all good and healthy, and essential to democracy. But the point is, it can distort the news. Governments do achieve good things. Over the past 200 years, we have got richer. We have got freer. Tyrants have been destroyed and threats have been ended forever. But the media can never celebrate these things. It must find things to be negative about. And it will highlight these, even if they are trivial, while ignoring the real story of success.As I say, this is good and healthy. Non-stop criticism is what makes democracy strong, just as it does science. My point is just that it distorts the news. When government has a massive success, the media simply do not cover it.
Sunday, January 15, 2006
Sinn Fein's Scandinavian love affair.
Sinn Fein released their tax plan there last week. As expected from Sinn Fein it is a million miles away from what they said the year before. One policy was that
Friday, January 13, 2006
Home Grown Islamic Extremism in the West
On the other hand look at
In Iraq while Islamic extremism is quiet high much of the war isn’t fought on religions grounds but is comparable to the early 20th century Irish “get the Brits out and we will be better off” ideal. What ever American right wingers like to think Anti-Americanism in the Muslim world isn’t always based on Islam it is often based simply on a desire for independence. But I digress.
The normal argument lefties like to throw out is that it is our fault for not integrating them into our society. Yet there is no Muslim party in the British parliament. Muslims live in tight-nit community Yet how come if 60% of Muslims support Shariah Law how come there isn’t a Shariah Law party in the Parliament they are not voting for there political beliefs. This shows to me even if this 60% are been pushed out of society they are not trying to integrate with the society either. While the Muslims that do participate in society do so like any other British person would like the Birmingham Labour MP Khalid Mahmood. Nor is it a case of social deprivation. There are many people poor of all races yet they don’t all rise up in rebellion. One of the 7/7 bombers in
The PIRA received most of their financial support from Irish-Americans. Irish-Americans still clung to the physical force tradition of
So why do we have Muslims in Britain wanting Shariah law and supporting Al-Qaeda and Muslims in the Islamic world increasingly wanting rid of Shariah and anti Al-Qaeda? I really don’t know why. Is it similar to the Irish-Americans? Is Islamic extremism in western countries not so much about jihad against Islam’s enemies but merely a yearning for identity? And if this is so how can we prevent another 7/7 attack in
Thursday, January 12, 2006
Top 6 Friday My favourite songs of all time. (this week)
2007 Election North Tipp
Wednesday, January 11, 2006
What the love Ulster parade means for Ireland.
So Willie Frazier is coming down to march in Dublin for victims of Violence. This is a noble cause and does deserve our full support. However Willy Frazier’s organisation is not for victims of Violence.
The organisation is a sectarian organisation. The march is going to be headed by a Union Jack with Orange Bands. And of the 1000 marchers about 5 will be Catholic this is not about victims it is about IRA victims. If it was a victim’s organisation it would not have Orange Bands and it would have both Union Jacks and Tri-Colours. What we need is true a victims group one who represents all victims North, South and in Britain. Not a sectarian organisation masquerading as one. This is basically a Love Ulster parade. An organisation with suspected links to Loyalist paramilitaries.
First of all. The Orange Order under the constitution are Irish Citizens. So they are as entitled to march down O’Connell Street as anyone. I totally agree that they should be allowed to and welcome them. However why do they want to march in Dublin?
On the Big bite on RTE Willie Frazier said that the march was the first test for people down south. This struck me as very strange. Why were we being tested, and if this is the first what is the next test?
The North is struggling. Where once Unionist prided themselves that they were the hard workers and the true economic power house of the Island (which was utterly true). The north is now an economic basket case and the south is not just the economic power house on the Island it is one of the strongest in the World. Where down South ministers open massive IT and pharmaceutical plants, Northern ministers open Tesco’s.
The next leader of the U.K will be Gordon Browne while many unionist are happy about this thinking he will be more pro-Union then Tony. However he is if anything a fiscally conservative guy. Will he see as justifiable the £5 billion the British treasury gives to Northern Ireland ever year? Which is more then the EU gave to Ireland. Where the EU’s money in Ireland help build an economy which will soon be a net contributor to the EU economy. Northern Ireland is unlikely to contribute to the British exchequer any time soon.
Unionists see that Britain doesn’t want them any more. Unionism is realising this especial in the young. The Portadown News parodied the Ulster Unionist poster Decent people vote Ulster Unionist saying decent people leave Ulster. This is increasingly true. Young people now by and large don’t care for sectarian policy. They worry about education, economy, environment, child care everything that Southern and British people worry about. But they don’t have any option in the political spectrum. They can’t vote left they can’t vote right yet. The question is how long before this happens how long till the disenfranchised youth start creating and voting Northern Labour, Northern Conservatives, Northern Green parties (not connected to either British or Irish parties). Parties with no sectarian policy. They see the South has moved away from the United Ireland politics and has boomed. They too want to be well off. The first aim of the Love Ulster campaign is "LoveUlster is a campaign for Unionist unity ". This suggests to me the campaign is all about stopping people moving away from sectarian voting. The love Ulster Web site has also been linked to the organisation of the rioting last summer.
So what is the point of this Love Ulster parade. Is it an attempt to get a response out of us? Do they want a violent response to go back to the North and say they are all bigots still down there. You must vote to preserve the union less you be destroyed. This could cut any possibility of normal politics in the North. With the Southern booming economy they have lost their greatest argument that the South can’t run a country. And the booming economy has strengthened the Union many down South don't want to pay the cost of the North. So they need another argument to bolster the unionist cause. An attack or a massive protest against this march would be just what the doctor ordered. They could go back and say see they haven’t changed they are still intolerant to Unionists. Maybe that is the first test. A test to see how much pressure is needed to rise Irish sectarian hatred.
On the other hand Sinn Fein is on the rise in the South. It is feasible to suggest they might be in power in the South. This may really increase anti-Unionist sentiment in this country. Many people down here think that Bloody Sunday was diabolical yet the Enniskillen bombing was less so. They readily accept British Army collusion in the Dublin and Monahan bombings but dismiss as ludicrous Garda collusion in IRA violence. Even amongst does who despise the IRA some see the crimes against Protestants as less legitimate some how. In this country Unionist get the least fair hearing in the media and in pubs. Anything Ian Paisley says is immediately deemed wrong. This attitude needs to change we have to be as sympathetic to the plight of ordinary unionist as we are to ordinary nationalists. Some people keep going on about how Orange culture is represented in the Irish Flag and Protestants should realise it is inclusive of them. And they should but those people should also realise it is a two way thing we have to include them to truly embrace the Irish flag's meaning.
So what is the point of this organisation and parade. Is it an attempt to solidify Unionist support by getting a bad response in Dublin or is it to show us that Unionist were victims to or some show of strength of support against a United Ireland. We in Ireland are coming more and more accepting of multiculturalism the majority of us are proud how we are easily (and most are) accepting them into our society. But maybe what Willie Frazier meant by test was that. The biggest and hardest test for Irish society is not seeing can we accept Poles or Nigerians but can we accept Unionists.
Update: The aftermath of the riots that stopped the parade. riots and consequences
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
Ireland in NATO.
Monday, January 09, 2006
Canadian Elections an uninformed view.
Senator Mary O'Rourke's gaf
Sunday, January 08, 2006
Does Ayman al Zawahiri want America in Iraq longer?
"Bush, you must admit that you have been defeated in Iraq as you have been defeated in Afghanistan and will be shortly defeated in Palestine if Allah's willing."and
"Oh my Muslim brothers, I told you more than a year ago that the pullout of America's troops from Iraq would be a matter of time and Americans are now begging to leave and negotiate with the mujahidin."Either Ayman al-Zawahiri is an idiot or wants the war to continue or votes republican. Because goading America like that will only serve to keep them in Iraq longer. This article by Daniel McCarthy explains some of my thinking
Friday, January 06, 2006
Unnoticed Racial Scare Mongering
During the citizenship referendum the media was very vocal in its criticism of the government. Using the racism word frequently. Now they are largely quiet. However I think I know why. By the second last paragraph of this post many people will be utterly shocked at these quotes and wondering why this has been so quiet in the media and be baying for blood.
In an interview with the Irish Times Michael McDowell mentioned
“The time may be coming when we will have to sit down and examine whether we would have to look at whether a works permit regime ought to be implemented in terms of some of this non-national labour, even for countries in the EU.”
Now I have no problem with a non-EU countries work permit scheme at all as long as the workers get the permits not the employers. However if you ask anyone what is the main principle of the EU it is the free movement of goods and LABOUR. So basically Michael McDowell is saying that a time may come when we will have to renegotiate Ireland membership of the EU. I sincerely doubt that the rest of the EU countries would allow us to even think of this. Yet a man who I guess wants to the deputy leader of this country is considering suggesting changing the EU’s founding rules. Without the free movement of goods services and labour what is the EU.
So Michael McDowell wants to consider restricting legitimate non-national workers entering Ireland.
But that is not the worst thing he said in the interview. Now if you ever wondered what racial scare mongering is. Here is a classic example.
“There are many positive spin-offs from the diversity of labour here now but to say that that should for all time go unregulated I think has been thrown into question by the Irish Ferries dispute. There are 40 million or so Poles after all, so it is an issue we have to have a look at.”
The sentence “There are 40 million or so Poles after all” is a very vindictive line. This is formed purely to pry on the racist beliefs of people that believe we are been infested by Poles.
So why you asked has this been fairly quiet. Any ideas? I’m not entirely sure but if I pointed out that the above quotes were in fact were said by Pat Rabbitte on Tuesday and not Michael McDowell would it perhaps help explain the lack of baying for blood in the media. The only blog I could find mentioning this is ceadaoin and Indymedia have statement from Joe Higgins but no editorials.I seen haven't any condemnation from any columnists in the papers. (haven't read every paper though.)
Or am I becomeing a cynic in my old age and turning into a bit of a McDowell cheerleader.
Edit: I must say sorry to Vincent Browne as he did write about the topic in the Sunday Business Post. All though not as strongly worded I think if it had been McDowell. Still fair play.
Irish Blog Awards Nominations
Top 6 Friday Things I would like to see the government do.
I looked at a Vincent Browne article in the Village recently about his view of the future and what needs to be done. So here is my views.
6. The planning laws in this country need to change. The climate that created the planning tribunals has not changed much. Much reform needs to be taken. Planers need to be no longer in fear of high rise buildings. Also these rules where councils can specify who can live where need serious debate. I think it is true to say a government has no right to specify where someone can live under EU law but does someone with money from D4 and no link to the area have the right to deny someone from the area from living there just because the D4 person fancies a scenic holiday home for a few days a year.
5. The government needs to fund or restart the Centre of Public Inquiry. The centre is very important and needs to be in place. The management of the centre has to be carefully selected this time to make sure nobody with possible ulterior motives will head it up. The Atlantic Philanthropies had offered to continue funding if Connolly and Fergus Flood resigned the board refused. The government should campaign to bring this back even if it requires the creation of a new agency called Public Inquiry Centre.
4. Help needs to be given to help long term unemployed people gain employment. The situation where people who take up employment lose their housing benefit and then can no longer afford their rent needs to be changed. This acts as a real deterrent to people. What does the government expect people to do? They are not going to do something that is going to adversely effect them.
3. While the health services is improving a lot more needs to be done. We invest more per head in health then the British yet it is not a patch on the NHS. We have amongst the highest paid consultants in the world. Their wages need to be brought in line with the rest of Europe and their private practices need reduced. They should either be fully private or working for the state. The management structures of the hospitals need to be over hauled. Increases in the health budget no longer the main issue.
2. Ireland needs to become more self-sufficient in energy. We can not be continually dependent on foreign imports as much. We need to invest in renewable sources heavily and be less wasteful. We need to build incinerators and the government has to help people recycle and reduce waste. My local recycling centre was taken away how is that promoting recycling. We also have to reduce emissions.
1. The early education system in the country needs to be radically reformed. The reason that many people from disadvantages areas struggle to get the University has got little to do with the university system. It has to do with the fact that at that stage students already do not want to go to collage. This attitude needs to be altered. It happens at the early stages of schooling. More resources are needed at primary level. Not just in school but more importantly in my opinion at homework clubs. Also a new approach to Irish needs to be taken. We can learn from the Welsh example and introduce Irish speaking (not grammar) at an earlier age.
Wednesday, January 04, 2006
Double Standards my pet peeve
Ah, come on, I hear you say, that’s a bit over the top. The State is not going to target innocent citizens in order to protect itself against possible revelations of corruption. Really? Ask Frank Connolly.Then they say
"The most corrupt politician in Irish history, Charlie Haughey"Yet Haughey has never been convicted of anything so why are they not being consistent about the whole innocent until proven guilty thing. Is it because Haughey is Haughey or McDowell is McDowell. I accept that Irish Corruption is solely about Corruption and is wee bit partial to the odd bit of sensationalism. ( "AIB, the most corrupt bank in Ireland" I mean how does one know that for sure. Its like saying Roy Keane the Greatest Irish Player there ever will be.). But double standards are in my eyes one of the worst things in the world whether it is in media or life.
When Sharon quit Likud to form a center left coalition committed to pullout and peace, I was very happy. I actually was. Sharon, a war criminal, who was responsible for all sorts of things while he served in the military, was also the head of the hardlined, right wing nationalist Likud Party. He has been seen as one of the road blocks to the resolution of the Palestinian problem for years now. But then, one morning, he quit Likud. I seriously felt like crying. At last, someone seemed committed to change over there. Even someone like Ariel Sharon. The new party he formed was center left, and included the socialists in Israel. He declared that he was committed to peace there in Israel, and demonstrated the commitment by quitting the Party that opposed it. All the talking and even the troubled withdrawal from Gaza earlier in this year were not enough to convince me of a commitment, but this action, what could be seen almost as political suicide, (except for the fact that most of the people of Israel support peace), was enough to convince me, and finally I saw that perhaps this would really move ahead. Not quite ready to see Sharon as a good person, but at least I was ready to see him as one who supported peace, and I was certainly willing to believe that he indeed had discovered that he may have supported the wrong policies and was at least trying to turn over a new leaf.The fortunes of his new party may well indeed suffer now. Which is a shame. However maybe people will rally around his memory and vote to keep peace on track. His current replacement Ehud Olmert will probably try to maintain Sharons wishes how ever Binyamin Netanyahu may try to use this to his advantage.
Tuesday, January 03, 2006
Russian Gas Influence Part 2 – European Union and Us
This is a follow up of Russian Gas Influence Part 1 - Ukraine
I don’t think I have ever learned as much about gas then I have in the last few days. What I have learned has scared me. When ever I look upon those hippies in the Friends of the Earth and people who decided to live in Hobbit type huts I looked upon them with a kind of smugness. But now I am nearly ready to go on the street protesting with them. Not because of any great belief in being friends with polar bears but because I realise how vital self-sufficiency in energy is. We should be investing heavily in off-shore oil and gas, wind farms, wave power,
solar rain power, tidal power, biomass, hamster power whatever we need to cut down on imports. Because those who have the energy have the power and
Already One quarter of European gas comes from
However as gas is piped
However they have started construction on a project to counter this. Although it is more expensive to build they are building a direct pipeline to
It is expected that by 2020 the EU will import 75% of it natural gas needs. This puts
This and the
So how will Russian Gas effect
If the Corrib Field does eventually get tapped successfully whether on or off shore it may increase companies coming into Irish waters searching for oil and gas. If they do and find more, this can help stabilise
Europe needs to learn from this
Poster came from here