The Right To Talk – The Right To Teach

Talking of indigenous languages and education, while in Ireland our political parties make the right noises while purposely doing none of the right things, in Scotland they have their priorities straight. Following on from the long campaign to get a dedicated school in Edinburgh teaching through the medium of the Scottish language, the capital’s city … Continue reading

The Truth About Irish

The policies of all political parties in Ireland on the issue of the Irish language are bullshit. Complete and utter. There, I’ve said it. There is not a single political party on the island of Ireland that has a real, substantive or detailed program to implement full equality between the nation’s Irish and English speaking … Continue reading

Dissecting Empire – Richard Gott

In the Guardian journalist and writer Richard Gott examines the revived nationalist ideology of the British Empire as the world’s only “good empire” and how it is gaining ground in modern Britain. “In his speech to the Conservative party conference this month, David Cameron looked back with Tory nostalgia to the days of empire: “Britannia didn’t rule the waves … Continue reading

Hear No Evil, See No Evil, Speak No Evil – The Irish News Media And The Sam Smyth Scandal

As many regular readers may know (you are there, aren’t you?) I frequently bang on about the inequities of the “media establishment” in Ireland. In general I pretty much loathe ‘em, the whole right-wing, faux liberal, elitist Anglo shower. Bah! But for those of you who ask, “A Shionnach, but why?”, here, in several easily digestible paragraphs, … Continue reading

One Race But Three Victors

Well its all over bar the shouting (or gnashing of teeth) and three clear victors have emerged from the election for the next President of Ireland. First and foremost of course is Labour’s Michael D. Higgins who managed to expand on his party’s core vote to almost certainly win through to the Áras. From RTÉ’s report yesterday evening: “2115 National FIRST … Continue reading

Enter Bagman

The damage delivered to Seán Gallagher’s presidential ambitions as a result of the revelations on RTÉ’s Frontline Presidential Debate is continuing to send disruptive ripples across the media and bloggosphere but it remains to be seen if the outcome will prove fatal. Gallagher was accused by Martin McGuinness of personally receiving a five thousand euro cheque from a local businessman … Continue reading

Irish Pigs In The Daily Mail

British journo Ian Birrell carries a lengthy rant against Martin McGuinness in the “Right Minds” section of the Daily Mail, a suitably right-wing British newspaper. It is replete with plenty of hackneyed phrases and stock stereotypes from the “Big British Book Of War In Ireland” (which is also popular reading amongst the Irish media establishment) but the most fun … Continue reading

From The People Who Brought You The IMF And The ECB – President Gallagher

Well, we’re in the final stretch of the race for Áras in Uachtaráin and it is claimed that the great Irish public, or at least a sizeable minority of it, may have decided to plump for the “Independent” candidate Seán Gallagher. No amount of revelations about his decades old allegiance to Fianna Fáil, his receipt of government largesse through investments in his companies or membership of cushy quango boards, … Continue reading

Not One Small Victory But Three

  Some days it is nice to be reminded that the Gaelic languages are not just national languages, but international ones too. So to three stories that highlight those who embrace our native tongues in far distance lands, as well as closer to home, and for whom it represents much more than a mere form … Continue reading

An Chatalóin – Catalonia, That Other Iberian Struggle

 With all the focus on the Basque Country over the last week it has been easy to forget that other separatist struggle on the Iberian Peninsula, in Catalonia. The Guardian carries a timely reminder of the progressive nationalist forces that have captured public imagination in the autonomous region:  “It is an unlikely age to step … Continue reading

Fine Gael, “No Irish Here!” – A Flashback From 1938

The wonderful Irish Election Literature blog does it again with this Fine Gael election poster from 1938 protesting against “Migrants” in County Meath. That’s Irish-speaking migrants, as FG opposes the breaking up of large estates held by absentee landlords to create the Ráth Chairn Gaeltacht or Irish speaking community in Meath.  Good to see that … Continue reading

ETA Declares “Cessation Of Its Armed Activity”

The headlines carry the news of the much anticipated declaration of a permanent end to all military operations by ETA, the Basque guerrilla organisation. From a report in the Irish Times:  “EUSKADI TA Askatasuna (Eta or Basque Country and Liberty) last night made a long-awaited announcement, which it describes as “historic”: its “armed activity” has … Continue reading

  • blog awards ireland Nominated 2013: Best Politics, Personal Blog Categories; Best Blog Post
  • blog awards ireland

    Nominated 2014: Best News, Current Affairs, Politics, Mobile Blog Categories; Best Blog Post


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