This isn’t a revolution. It’s a mess.

Richard Boyd-Barrett says it’s a political earthquake.

He made the claim having just been elected to the new Dáil in the Dun Laoghaire constituency, a constituency which saw the combined vote for centre-right parties rise from 28,223 in 2011 to 34,261 in 2016 and the combined vote for left-wing parties fall from 25,579 to 21,612 over the same timeframe.

Continue reading “This isn’t a revolution. It’s a mess.”

The sad tale of Roberto Mussi and the Labour Party

In his hometown of Massa, Roberto Mussi is still viewed with hatred and derision. People spit on him when he walks by. Shopkeepers refuse to serve him, and little children cry when his name is mentioned.

Mussi played right-back for Italy in the 1994 World Cup Final. Although he had a solid career, he wasn’t celebrated and few people would have selected him for a starting position.

Mussi will always be remembered for Roberto Baggio missing a penalty kick, thus handing the World Cup to Brazil. From his position at the bottom right of the pitch, Mussi spectacularly failed to prevent Baggio from missing the penalty.

Continue reading “The sad tale of Roberto Mussi and the Labour Party”

Let’s not pretend the 1916 Rising was about water charges or smashing the patriarchy

Which moment of the 1916 Rising will you most celebrate: the bit when The O’Rahilly charged down Moore Street shouting about Irish Water, or the bit when Padraig Pearse used his last breath to berate the British for the lack of gender balance on the firing squad?

As we get closer to the centenary of the 1916 Rising, the list of causes the Rising leaders stood for will steadily grow.

We got a taster of this last year when it was claimed that the passing of same-sex marriage would be a fitting way to pay tribute to the Rising. The passing of the referendum was a hugely important moment in Irish social history but it does seem questionable to claim it as the legacy of former Ancient Order of Hibernians member Sean MacDermott.

Continue reading “Let’s not pretend the 1916 Rising was about water charges or smashing the patriarchy”

Let’s stay together: Why can’t Irish people just get along?

Jeremy Corbyn’s election as leader of the Labour party has led to sniping between the ‘New’ and ‘Old’ wings of the party. While this has been a touch unedifying, the remarkable thing is that both wings exist under one umbrella in the first place.

It is inconceivable that two groupings with such an ideological gulf and intense personal dislike of one another would stay together in Ireland. They would have long since exploded into 16 parties, 12 alliances, 11 working groups, 45 independents and six armies.

Continue reading “Let’s stay together: Why can’t Irish people just get along?”

Turning vegetarian to save the humans

I’ve come to realise that the reason why vegetarians take energy supplements has nothing to do with the absence of meat from their diet, it is to allow them spend 16 hours a day answering the “why did you become vegetarian?” question.

After almost 34 years of devouring every animal my supermarket could get its hands on, I turned vegetarian in March. Since then have been asked the “but why?” question more times than I’d had hot steak dinners.

Continue reading “Turning vegetarian to save the humans”

The sport that dare not speak its name: The curious history of the League of Ireland

This weekend sees the resumption of one of Ireland’s most curious seasonal events. Across the country people will gather at various locations to scream and shout at institutions whose foundations pre-date the State.

If the kick-off of the 2015 League of Ireland season isn’t in your diary, you are far from alone. In a country where hurling and Gaelic football are the mammy and daddy of sport and rugby is the over-achieving favourite son, domestic football is the estranged cousin who turns up drunk to family occasions, starts a fight and then falls down the stairs with their trousers around their ankles.

Continue reading “The sport that dare not speak its name: The curious history of the League of Ireland”

A mistaken coincidence: the curious case of the would-be politician and the modern art museum

Not since a sculptor forgot a key part of Claudius’ anatomy has the art world so seriously threatened the reputation of a political leader.

The scandal began – and this is the first time in the history of written language these words have been written together – with the by-election for the Seanad’s Education and Cultural Committee, a grouping with such a low profile it makes the Freemasons look like the Kardashians.

Continue reading “A mistaken coincidence: the curious case of the would-be politician and the modern art museum”

UEFA’s political football – what’s the worst that could happen?

Every two years UEFA is handed a near-impossible task: conduct an open draw of 53 European countries, trying to keep apart nations with political tensions.

Historically, Europe loves war. The last six decades have been the most peaceful in the history of the continent, and even they saw a handful of low-level wars, several revolutions, a few dictatorships, and one major regional war that involved ethnic cleansing.

Continue reading “UEFA’s political football – what’s the worst that could happen?”

Retaining the Seanad: Ireland’s love of second houses

How times change: the last government tried to convince us all to buy second houses in Bulgaria, this one seems to think we can’t even afford two on Kildare Street.

The defeat of the referendum to abolish the Seanad has left the government with redder faces than the audience at a Miley Cyrus concert. Continue reading “Retaining the Seanad: Ireland’s love of second houses”

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: