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Tag Archives: Mary Harney

Natural Causes

Christopher O’Driscoll was seventeen. The HSE knew about him since he was ten. Since then, he had been in and out of care facilities, an when they were full, bed and breakfasts, or hotels. On May Day weekend last year, he had nowhere to go. The administrators had shut down their computers, closed their offices, […]

News Of The News

What a busy news day it’s been. The PDs are no more, so Mary Harney finds herself… well, exactly where she was before her party disbanded, at the heart of power in the cabinet as minster for health. The annual hand wringing over the meaning of Armistic Day continues, a bit louder this year thanks […]

Acceptable Losses

It was almost as a throwaway item during the 9pm RTÉ News. As part of budget cutbacks, the government has decided not to go ahead as planned with a programme to vaccinate teenage girls, saving ten million euros. The human pappiloma virus (HPV) vaccine protects young girls against a form of cervical cancer. Last June, […]

Climbdown

Biffo blinked. As I write, I’m watching live coverage of the Taoiseach’s press conference to announce the government is backing down from the decision to remove free medical cards from all citizens over the age of seventy. By increasing the income limit for a medical card to €700, the government has ensured that all but […]

The End Of History

Lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas, goes the conventional wisdom. As with many things though, the conventional wisdom is mistaken. Lie down with dogs and, as the Progressive Democrats found to their cost, the dog will most likely eat you. It’s easy to point to the last election as the moment when […]

Experience

Consider the following: Biffo and Dermot Ahern were solicitors. Micheál Martin, Mary Harney, Mary Hanafin and Noel Dempsey were secondary school teachers. Mary Coughlan was a social worker. Brian Lenihan was a lecturer and qualified barrister. Willie O’Dea was a qualified barrister and accountant. Batt O’Keeffe was a lecturer. Brendan Smith was a political handler. […]

Ich bin ein Hamburger

Finance Minister Brian Lenihan has outlined a package of measures aimed at saving €440m in public spending this year. In an unexpected move, the Cabinet announced it would set an example for other state agencies by curbing its own excesses. Taoiseach Brian Cowen will lead the way, restricting himself to traditional ballads during late night […]