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Category: Affairs

EIR OF CAUTION

IT HAS been a bruising week for Carolan Lennon as the Eir chief executive faced scrutiny in the media and at the Oireachtas. The company has been the subject of sustained negative comment in the Dáil in recent years. TDs across all parties regularly express... Read more »

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MORAL GUARDIANS

Róisín Ingle

TOUCHING TO see some Irish hacks express solidarity with their colleagues across the Irish Sea. The departure of long standing Guardian columnist Suzanne Moore has generated plenty of controversy, and raised eyebrows. Over 7000 words for the conservative website Unherd this week, Moore has finally... Read more »

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LATE LOBBYISTS

Michael D'Arcy

AS DEBATE on reform of the Lobbying Act commenced in Dáil Éireann this week, the careers of some former politicians are in renewed focus. Amendments tabled by Pearse Doherty and Máiréad Farrell on Tuesday were countered by Public Expenditure Minister Michael McGrath to the effect... Read more »

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SIZING UP ROZ PURCELL’S CONTROVERSIAL CLOBBER

FROM BEING the hottest commercial model in the country and a place in the Top 10 in the Donald Trump-owned Miss Universe in 2010, Roz Purcell’s career has pivoted in recent years to espouse a wholesale promotion of inclusivity and body positivity. While the slender... Read more »

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MUNDY SINGING THE BLUES

THE ANNOUNCEMENT of the beneficiaries of the Government’s €1.7m Music Industry Stimulus Package was less harmoniously received than Minister Catherine Martin might have hoped. Much of the discord centres around the fact that while some musicians won’t be given a red cent, other artists are... Read more »

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HELEN’S HISTORY

WHILE HER name echoes around Dáil Eireann, Helen McEntee was instead holding a press conference. Following Tuesday’s cabinet meeting, the Justice Minister has gained approval for new measures to amend the Harassment, Harmful Communications and other Related Offences Bill. Back in the Dáil, Alan Kelly... Read more »

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WOULFE PACK

Micheál Martin announced that sharing the island of Ireland, rather than reuniting it, was his goal.

THE WOULFE saga continues as another week kicks off in Dáil Eireann.  Tuesday afternoon was again dominated by the absence of Justice Minister Helen McEntee. The entire opposition have only one issue on their minds and Micheál Martin faced question after question about it.  The... Read more »

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LIAM LYNCH’S MAGAZINE STORY

HAVING ANNOUNCED himself on the Irish publishing scene in 2017 when picking up a bunch of magazine titles, including women’s glossy Irish Tatler, things haven’t quite worked out according to plan for Irish American investor Liam Lynch. Irish Studio Media Ltd (ISM) was set up... Read more »

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IS PIPPA ON THE UP? OR OUT?

Model-turned entrepreneur Pippa O’Connor was breathless with excitement announcing the launch of her new cosmetics brand this week, but it has elicited a surprisingly muted response on social media. O’Connor has managed to build a very nice empire for herself since jacking in the St... Read more »

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HACKED OFF AT THE JOURNALISM AWARDS

THE NEWSBRANDS Journalism Awards were conducted virtually this year, which allowed hacks who failed to bring home a gong the opportunity to present their best loser face via Zoom. While the annual back-slapping event has become famous for its post-ceremony tiffs over the origin of... Read more »

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GOVERNMENT’S DOCTOR DEFLECTION

Tony Holohan

THE RESUMPTION of attacks on public health advice indicate that certain figures in government and business understand the weakness of their own position. Those who complained bitterly about ‘yo-yo lockdowns’ just weeks ago now seek a return to the lowest level possible, whatever the consequences.... Read more »

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FINN MCREDMOND’S ‘NUANCE’

Finn McRedmond

IRISH TIMES readers are fortunate that the paper’s resident young Tory is on hand to keep the nation’s passions in check. In the latest dispatch from her Westminster townhouse, Finn McRedmond calls for greater nuance against an alleged tide of “anti-Englishness”. The columnist points to... Read more »

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CÉAD MÍLE FAILURES

CHRISTMAS SEASON can only be around the corner when Government Buildings roll out a tokenistic nod to the diaspora. This week, An Taoiseach welcomed a new strategy for the Irish abroad, “central to which”, he says, “is a deep appreciation of the profound importance of... Read more »

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SIMON’S SUBSCRIPTIONS

THAT EMINENTLY relatable social media influencer Simon Harris turned the wrong page this week while sharing some of his reading habits. Irish libraries will have been flummoxed to see the Minister for Further and Higher Education cheerily promoting the competition. On Tuesday night, Harris announced... Read more »

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PANTO WARS: OH YES THEY DID

PANTO MAY be for the kids, but there were lots of grown up people throwing their toys out of the pram over it in recent days. First up were Alan Hughes and Karl Broderick, who took umbrage at their company, Anthem Productions, being left off... Read more »

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DANISH SECRETS

HushHush-def

IRISH READERS are by now used to a steady diet of cyber security coverage. Business, technology and military interests have all found an open door at most newspapers, whose audience can on any given day expect to be told either that Ireland is a cyber... Read more »

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TV REVIEW: THE DEN (RTE ONE)  

RTE HAS spent considerable time recently hyping a turkey – and for once, it isn’t a new sitcom. Rather, they have built anticipation for the return of Dustin and Zig & Zag on The Den, the staple of Gen X childhoods now given a fresh... Read more »

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RTÉ DIGITAL FUTURE?

FRUSTRATED VIEWERS of the beloved RTÉ Player will not have found much comfort at recent Oireachtas hearings. Adrian Lynch, Director of Audience, Channels and Marketing at RTÉ, was among contributors at the Communications Committee on Wednesday. The executive was ebullient about the national broadcaster’s response... Read more »

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MORE REVOLVING DOORS

Kate O'Connell

PLANS TO amend the Lobbying Act will be watched with interest by a number of former politicians.  The outrage at Golfgate and early retirements of Brian Hayes, Michael D’Arcy and Dara Murphy have brought renewed attention on the appropriateness of some post-Leinster House careers. In... Read more »

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TOP STORY?

VIEWERS of RTÉ’s main evening news on Wednesday were treated to a curious take on events in Belfast.  The North continues to record some the world’s highest infection rates and occupies an unfamiliar place at the top of RTE bulletins. Anchor Sharon Ní Bheoláin introduced... Read more »

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VLAD’S VIDEO NASTIES

A CHASTENED Leo Varadkar was almost contrite following the no confidence motion on Tuesday night when Dáil business returned to the plight of online moderators.  During priority questions, Sinn Féin’s Louise O’Reilly outlined for the Tánaiste and Enterprise Minister the “serious psychological damage and injury”... Read more »

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WOULFE’S FIGHT BACK

Seamus Woulfe

WHILE JUSTICE Woulfe struggles to comprehend the place he finds himself at least someone is providing belated image management on his behalf. The former Attorney General has been short on allies in recent months but Woulfe was fortunate to receive some well timed positive coverage... Read more »

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VLAD’S ‘FAKE NEWS’

leo Varadkar

DONALD TRUMP’S influence is set to endure if Leo Varadkar’s defence is any indication. More curious is an apparent reluctance to question his recent attacks on the media. The former Taoiseach famously stunned fellow dinner guests at an event in New York when he was... Read more »

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STEFANIE PREISSNER’S NEWS

Stefanie Preissner

THE UBIQUITOUS Stefanie Preissner is among the most prominent of those who have shrewdly made the jump from entertainment to current affairs in 2020. With publishing deals, broadcasting slots, theatre shows and a Sunday Independent column to her name, the world of news has become... Read more »

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FF CONFIDENCE

Michael Martin

IT SEEMS that there is never a good time for a no confidence motion as far as Fianna Fail is concerned. The party, which was once upon a time capable of unrivalled truculence, has become very adverse to the rough and tumble of politics.  As... Read more »

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KNOTTY BATTLE OF THE HAIR QUEENS

POPULAR Instagrammer-turned-hair-queen Claire Fullam, aka Claire Balding, has gotten herself into a tangle with her new hair products site, Trua. Eagle-eyed fans spotted some of the products she’s selling on Ali Express at a fraction of the price, and when called out on it, Fullam... Read more »

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SINDO REBRANDING NEEDS A RETHINK

THERE’S MORE upheaval at the Sindo, with the axe falling on several columnists as part of the imminent rebranding of Living section to People & Culture. Those culled under new features editor Fran Power’s scythe include Eleanor Goggin, best mate of Living’s former editor, Mary... Read more »

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BIDEN’S BREXIT

Trump

NEWSPAPERS in Brexit Britain received the US election results with characteristic restraint.  The old phrase “special relationship” took on a different and decidedly green hue over fears the balance of power is tilting toward Ireland. The Daily Telegraph warned that “Biden will now wage war... Read more »

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COVENEY’S COMFORT

Simon Coveney

THE RETURN of more “moderate” figures to power in Washington will buy some breathing room for EU foreign policymakers, and not least for minister Simon Coveney in Dublin. When in search of a seat on the UN Security Council seat, Dublin was prepared to talk... Read more »

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POLLING PROBLEMS

IRISH TIMES Washington hack Suzanne Lynch had something of an epiphany as the votes were counted this week. America’s Election 2020 is the latest political event to confound predictions. Not long after the first results arrived on Tuesday night, Lynch on social media suggested that... Read more »

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BOOK REVIEW: LOVE (RODDY DOYLE)

LIKE MUCH of Roddy Doyle’s fiction, his 13th novel for adults is made up largely of dialogue. Since the success of The Commitments (published 33 years ago), the author has honed his pared-down prose style to tell stories primarily of working-class people from the northside... Read more »

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DR ZERO TRANSPARENCY

Simon Harris

FINE GAEL minister Simon Harris was quick to his feet in the Dáil on Tuesday to account for his own interactions with Dr Maitiú Ó Tuathail. Further messages released by Chay Bowes show the former president of the National Association of General Practitioners (NAGP) contacting... Read more »

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TV REVIEW: DEAD STILL

The premiere of Dead Still on Halloween weekend proved appropriate, given that there are few scarier prospects than a new RTE drama series. The brainchild of Kilkenny writer John Morton, the show proved reasonably diverting and had some nice comedic flourishes, though it will take... Read more »

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JIM’S FF VALUES

Jim O'Callaghan

AFTER A STALLED bid for the party leadership, the Leo Varadkar controversy has handed an enormous gift to Jim O’Callagan. The ambitious barrister declined a junior ministry in July, pledging instead to focus on Fianna Fáil’s need for “strong voices outside Government who can ensure... Read more »

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VLAD’S FRINGE MEDIA

VILLAGE PUBLISHER Michael Smith will have been pleased to hear Leo Varadkar describe the magazine as “fringe” on Tuesday. The fact that such a lowly entity had caused the Tánaiste to account for himself on the floor of Dáil Éireann would suggest differently but this... Read more »

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FITZGERALD’S FEARS

John FitzGerald

WHAT AN INTRIGUING contest is forming around the final shape of the Climate Action Bill. Goldhawk watched with interest the Committee on Climate Action last week where Prof John Fitzgerald expressed some of his own concerns. The Chair of the Climate Change Advisory Council (CCAG)... Read more »

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