May you live in interesting times

Thu, Dec 01, 2016

Do you remember the late 1990s and early 2000s, that hubris filled era of post-Communism, new Labour and Blairism, the Celtic Tiger, and the free reign of unregulated, laissez faire capitalism, in short 'The End of History', and the seeming utter triumph of the Centre-right?

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Trump's election - the aftermath and the challenges

Thu, Nov 17, 2016

When Insider agreed to write a post-mortem on the US presidential election, he thought it would provide an opportunity to reflect on the many shortcomings of electoral politics in the second-largest democracy on earth, and that it would also offer some catharsis, some closure, at the end of a gruelling 18-month campaign.

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Ireland - a country its rulers think should not exist

Thu, Nov 10, 2016

Insider thought she lived on an island called Ireland and in a state called the Republic of Ireland. However, Insider recently realised she is wrong. According to The Marian Finucane Show, His Excellency John Bruton, and sundry officially sanctioned happenings - from Enda Kenny's Brexit gas-passing shop to events celebrating Irish classical composers - Insider now realises she in fact lives on an island called Island.

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Good politics, bad politics - you decide

Thu, Nov 03, 2016

Insider has been observing developments in the US Presidential election with increasing alarm, and is concerned our own political system is vulnerable to a significant shift in light of what is happening in other countries.

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Brexit could be the Republic’s chance to bale out of the EU

Thu, Oct 27, 2016

Sinn Féin’s Pearse Doherty was in fine form during the Budget debate. Particularly enjoyable was his contrasting the Cabinet ‘s bellyaching over when to pay the miserly €5 extra to pensioners with the carefree approach to dishing out another €4,000+ per annum to ministers.

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Too soon to say how ‘Brexit-proof’ this Budget is

Thu, Oct 20, 2016

In what has been a tumultuous year to date – an inconclusive general election result in February, the shock of Brexit in June, and then the judgment in the Apple case at the end of August – last week’s Budget arguably posed the biggest challenge to date to the minority Government and the much vaunted ‘new politics’.

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We deserve the local politicians we get

Thu, Oct 13, 2016

INSIDER HAS observed the workings of many Galway city councils over the decades. It is an interesting, if not enlightening experience, to visit City Hall and sit in the public gallery to watch the mechanics of a council meeting.

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Repealing the Eighth and the right to autonomy over ones' own body

Thu, Oct 06, 2016

This week Insider is going to address one of the most contentious issues in society. For 33 years, the Eighth amendment has been an issue which has split the people right down the middle - which is why most mainstream politicians have shied away from outlining their position on it.

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The Budget will pass but that is the least of the Government's worries

Thu, Sep 29, 2016

As the Dáil and Seanad return after a long summer break, Insider has been mulling over the state of Irish politics. Not that it has been a quiet summer of course, with a number of issues disturbing the peace.

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Trump, Truthiness, and 'race-baiting populism'

Thu, Sep 22, 2016

There is a certain temptation these days to treat the US presidential election as some form of over-the-top reality TV show. Bring out the popcorn, bring out a buzzword bingo card, and sit back. There is certainly something of the fantastic in the air: "He couldn't! Could he?"

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Rural Galway declines - and no one is shouting stop

Thu, Sep 15, 2016

It only seems like yesterday that rural Ireland was standing up to the Dublin 4 diktat. Luke 'Ming' Flanagan was in the Dáil and the Turf Cutters and Contractors Association was waging a crusade which took rural areas by storm. Ming and Michael Fitzmaurice, backed by an able backroom team, were uniting people against the over-centralised Irish State and its masters in Brussels and Berlin.

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Trade union president co-opted to Galway City Council

Thu, Sep 08, 2016

Mark Lohan, the president of the Galway Council of Trade Unions, and chair of the Galway People's Resource Centre, has been co-opted for Sinn Féin on to Galway City Council, replacing Cllr Anna Marley, who recently announced she was standing down.

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Does the Government really have what it takes to handle the Brexit fallout?

Thu, Aug 04, 2016

As the Dáil rose for the summer recess last week, there was an almost audible sigh of relief in Leinster House - and not only on the Government side.

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Big demands, wasteful spending, and what about Salthill?

Thu, Jul 21, 2016

AS WE move into Galway's version of the ‘Silly Season’, where the commentariat find it difficult to talk about anything other than the Races or the arts festival, it was an opportunity that simply could not be missed for a couple of our more industrious city councillors.

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Public meeting on impact of Brexit this evening

Thu, Jul 07, 2016

One of Ireland's leading left-wing economists, Brian O'Boyle, will address a public meeting in Galway this evening, on the new situation facing Ireland in the aftermath of Brexit.

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Social Democrats to hold Connacht Regional Conference in Galway

Thu, Jul 07, 2016

The Social Democrats will host the party's Connacht Regional Conference in The Galway Bay Hotel, Salthill, tomorrrow evening from 6.30pm.

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Brexit - How? Why? and what happens next?

Thu, Jun 30, 2016

Even the most sceptical observer cannot accuse those who describe last week’s Brexit referendum result as 'seismic' or 'a political earthquake' of engaging in hyperbole. From an Irish perspective, it is potentially the most significant thing to happen in peace-time British politics since the abdication of King Edward VIII in 1936.

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Galway has Hildegarde to thank for putting a new hospital on the agenda

Thu, Jun 23, 2016

The extent to which we are resigned to politicians making promises they do not intend to keep was laid bare during the last Dáil term when Pat Rabbitte famously asked: “Isn’t that what you tend to during an election?”

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Ireland has nothing to fear from a Brexit

Thu, Jun 16, 2016

"We must sow terror in the hearts of the Irish people," a senior Irish politician told Irish Independent journalist James Downey in 2001, explaining how the Republic's Government would reverse the people's No vote to the EU's Nice Treaty that year, and turn it into a Yes vote for the same treaty the year after.

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Brexit - be afraid, be VERY afraid

Thu, Jun 09, 2016

It has been a busy 12 months at the ballot boxes – General Elections in Ireland and Britain, a landmark vote to introduce same-sex marriage in the Republic. Each has been noteworthy, historic, and in some cases seismic but, as Insider has noted for some time, the biggest electoral event facing Ireland in 2016 is Britain's upcoming EU membership referendum on June 23.

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