Snapshots, moving pictures, and unknowns

A poll is a snapshot, capturing a moment in time. A still image, and a blurry one at that. The margin of error (usually around three percent) means the picture isn’t always crystal clear. The margin of error can also tempt newspapers, hungry for exciting headlines, to pump up a statistically insignificant gain or loss in […]

RTÉ and the political lobby

“Labour want US style political advertising” It wasn’t the biggest ever story, but the Sunday Times liked it enough to pay me for it. It even got a bit of social media traction at the time. And it was based on three lines at the end of an internal RTÉ memo. In May 2010, a […]

Grassroots

On the day Irish newspapers led with a historic first placing for Labour, James Lawless blogged a not-bad analysis of Fianna Fáil’s current woes from the perspective of an ordinary cumann member. James believes his party is no longer corrupt, but distinguishes corruption from graft. He criticises ‘Carpetbaggers’ loading up on expenses, or jostling for […]

Willie Woes

Green party senator Dan Boyle used his twitter account to express his frustration after the government won a Dáil vote of confidence in Defence minister Willie O’Dea earlier today. The Cork-based politician said he was “not happy with what happened today” using the online messaging service. “As regards to Minister O’Dea I don’t have confidence […]

Rock Bottom

Anyone seeking for a metaphor for all that is wrong with Ireland at the moment need look no farther than the Dublin docklands. There, you will find the proposed new headquarters for Anglo Irish Bank, a building planned in happier days, before the bank imploded and was nationalised. A government strapped for cash as tax […]

Home Thoughts While Abroad

I spent most of the week in London. From what I saw in newspapers and on television while there, Gordon Brown seemed preoccupied by the ongoing row over MPs expenses. He lost another minister on Wednesday, though Kitty Ussher was keen to say in her resignation letter that she had done nothing wrong, and was […]

Two Hundred Words to John Gormley

Dear John, Right now, you’re probably wondering where to begin. Half your membership wants you to pull out of coalition on Tuesday, the rest want you to stick the course. The wiser course is probably to knuckle down and get on with it. But to make that work, you need to change some things. First. […]

What Dan Boyle really meant in Tralee

Dan Boyle went down to Tralee last week to say ‘something controversial’. Boyle must have been aware of poll findings, and told his Kerry audience it was time to review the programme for government. ‘Most of the Green Party elements of it have now been implemented,’ Boyle said. ‘It is a document that is in […]