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Sunday and other Media Stupid Statements from this week… December 8, 2019

Posted by guestposter in Uncategorized.

Stephen Collins in the opening paragraph of his latest IT column manages to emphasise one party that didn’t win a by-election seat over another that did! Nice work.

Contrary to immediate impressions the outcome of last week’s byelections showed very little change in the level of support for the three biggest parties in the Dáil since the last general election. What it did show was a dramatic increase in support for the Greens and a significant recovery by the Labour Party.

Today, there’s no end of wailing and gnashing of teeth over a great man of the media by another great man of the media, that being Kevin Myers and EH, no less. But it’s kind of amusing to see this written in the latter’s column with a straight face.

Like Joe, I believe RTE’s obsessive refusal to issue an immediate apology to [Kevin] Myers, even after it knew he had been wronged, had nothing to do with a cock-up and everything to do with the political culture of Montrose.

Historically, RTE has been reflexively hostile to the pluralist and anti-Provo politics represented by me and Kevin Myers.

So reflexively hostile somehow he managed to work in RTÉ for decades and was able to shape a very idiosyncratic worldview in current affairs programming at a time when it had a certain impact? Some of us would think from his perspective he’d be getting down on his knees and thanking them for that sort of ‘reflexive hostility’.

Meanwhile, Fintan O’Toole, not one to skimp on cultural references, takes an entertainingly pretentious approach to the departure of the last UK member of the EU Commission for the moment.

On Friday, a very ordinary thing happened. A man packed up his stuff, closed the door and left his office for good. There was no ceremony to mark the big moment. It was like Bruegel’s great painting of the fall of Icarus where, in the foreground, people are going about their mundane business and you have to look very hard to see the boy just about to disappear beneath the waves. As the poet William Carlos Williams has it, “unsignificantly/ off the coast/ there was/ a splash quite unnoticed/this was/ Icarus drowning”. The man is called Julian King. Unless something dramatic happens in the UK election, he will be the last British member of the EU Commission. And from an Irish perspective, his departure has a peculiar poignancy.

Oh yes, just like Bruegel’s great painting.


1. roddy - December 8, 2019

I see O’Tool launched an attack on Corbyn recently.Dont know the details as its behind a pay wall.

Liked by 2 people

oliverbohs - December 8, 2019

It was just more proof that O’Tool should get his own place in the GAA Hall of Fame as the absolute ultimate Hurler On The Ditch. Corbyn’s “lack of ambition” his defining flaw apparently. Pots, kettles


WorldbyStorm - December 8, 2019

Isn’t it that a ridiculous claim by O’Toole.


oliverbohs - December 8, 2019

WbS, it seems a case of looking for an excuse, any will do, for why O’Tool’s shrivelled, wrinkled, useless principles are not up to endorsing a better way for wealth redistribution and environmental policies, ones that ought to be around much longer than one party leader. This is what he’s like once he sees a politician who is indeed far from perfect but has immeasurably more integrity than an op-ed narcissist like himself.


WorldbyStorm - December 8, 2019

The one good thing is he has next to zero influence in the UK!


2. Paddy Healy - December 8, 2019

This is what I posted on what you want to say re Stephen Collins Article
My recollection is that the heading to the article was kinder to FG in another version in Irish Times which suggested that the damage to Fine Gael in the Bye-Elections was exaggerated by many commentators.
The text of the article remained the same. In the body of the article he did draw attention to the weak performance by FG on transfers which I amplified below.

There is evidence of POLARISATION against FG among the electorate. Under the PR system, it is possible to lead the first preference poll nationally and to lose the election.

I’ve just heard Brother Kevin (Merchants Quay) criticizing Government failure to build sufficient local authority houses on Miriam O’Callaghan

The demonstration to the Dáil, organised by the homeless themselves last Thursday(a working day) was bigger than most expected
Now Minister Paul Phelan is criticising Musicians and Artists for “jumping on the housing bandwagon” in the Sunday Papers.

There are leaks from the FG parliamentary party of criticism of Minister for housing!!!!

The Bye-Election outcomes is not the only warning sign for FG!!!!!

—————————————————————————————–Fine Gael Losing Out on Transfers from Lower Candidates
Warning signs for Fine Gael in byelection results-Stephen Collins, Irish Times https://wp.me/pKzXa-jh
Comparison of Vote in 4 same Constituencies Combined
Combined 4 Bye-Elections 2019 % FG 20.2 FF 24.1 SF13.7 Lab14.2 Gn 10.3 Others 17.5
General Election 2016 % FG 21.2 FF 23.7 SF 14.2 Lab 9.2 GN 2.3 Others 29.4
(Labour did well on transfers) “There is a very different message on transfers for Fine Gael. The party’s candidates in Wexford and Cork North Central were in second place on the first count but their lead over the third-placed candidate in each constituency was steadily eroded and they ended up being overtaken in the final stages of the count.”-Stephen Collins. (Fine Gael came second on first count in 3 of 4 constituencies but lost out on transfers. Fine Gael was also second in Dublin Mid-West on first count-PH)
Stephen Collins Friday, December 6, 2019,

Liked by 1 person

3. CL - December 8, 2019

” China has not become more like Singapore, and it is exercising its growing global power in ways that are more consistent with its own ideology than the rules-based logic underpinning the US-led multilateral order of the past 70 years. If and when sides have to be taken, it is clear whose side Ireland will choose.”

The US-led multilateral order is also based on ideology; O’Brien’s suggestion that it is not is an ideology-driven propagandist ploy.


4. Paddy Healy - December 8, 2019

CL, you are correct. Paul Gillespie should know better.China is pouring investment into Africa through Foreign Direct investment in new industry, mergers and acquisitions of existing businesses and loans to governments to purchase Chinese goods and installation of roads, railways and other infrastructure. This is giving China leverage over African governments. Similarly, American multinationals and the Washington government have leverage over the Irish government. USA is allowed to use Shannon Airport as an aircraft carrier in flagrant denial of Irish Neutrality. Inevitably, Chinese influence in Africa will have military implications also.


CL - December 8, 2019

“Finance Minister Michael Noonan revealed after the Budget last month that Labour plans for a 3pc increase in the Universal Social Charge for those earning more than €100,000 were scrapped amid approaches from the multinational sector.”

International capital determines fiscal policy,- not the Irish people.

But, says David McWilliams:

“Without multinationals, Ireland is a bad-weather Albania….
Multinationals have transformed Ireland for the better, plugging us into the globe…
Before the multinationals: from 1921 to 1991 the Irish economy was the worst performer in western Europe…
It’s easy to be a little perplexed by attitudes towards multinationals, given their transformative impact on our economy, their complete upgrading of our industrial base and the enormous capital and technological transfer their presence in Ireland has facilitated.
Economically, without multinational investment, Ireland would be Albania with brutal weather”


baalthor - December 8, 2019

There were no multinationals before 1991 ??


5. Paddy Healy - December 8, 2019

Growing Chinese Investment in Africa an Element of Developing EU Economic and Politicl Crisis https://wp.me/pKzXa-QL
Table 1: M&A and Greenfield FDI into Africa
M&A (mn USD) Greenfield FDI Inflow (mn USD)
2016 2017 2018 2016 2017 2018
U. S -3,085 5,674 -1,405 3,640 3,347 10,275
China 2,932 1,248 554 36,144 8,705 11,930
EU 1,016 -7,227 1,483 11,864 21,674 25,462
Source: UNCTAD M&A =Mergers and Acquisitions
Debt-trap Diplomacy and Africa’s Economy
China’s lending to African countries is part of a large-scale overseas investment boom forming part of the country’s quest to become an economic superpower.


6. tafkaGW - December 8, 2019

Lexiteer strokes chin and asks “Economic conditions favour the left, so why is Labour not expected to win with ease?

Fuckwit of the week that’s in it?


WorldbyStorm - December 9, 2019

I’ve been thinking a lot about this before reading his piece – the sort of blinkered analysis that didn’t realise Brexit was an absolute gift to the reactionary right. It was on their turf, it allowed for people to be persuaded to rally to the flag, so to speak, it cut across class and socioeconomic categories, it divided opposition. I mean, Christ, it’s the whole package. I’m looking at the polls and I’m deeply sceptical that there will be a 2017 redux – not least because a) BJ is not TM, TM’s appalling character and ineptness wasn’t appreciated fully prior to then, whereas BJ’s is baked in b) Brexit has cut into and divided a coherent opposition c) there’s a fatigue with the process of Brexit (even though as we know it is a process not an event) and the idea of someone who can ‘deliver’ it is very attractive to many. There’s many more reasons, but those are the primary ones. Sure, maybe the polls will tick upwards this week, or perhaps there’ll be a hung parliament (in which case matters will continue chaotically) but… there’s Larry Elliott unable to understand all this?


Joe - December 9, 2019

Down, down, down with pessimism and defeatism.


7. EWI - December 8, 2019

Anyone hear any word on exactly how ‘Kevan’ has been financing these lawsuits, or will we need to wait on the Phoenix?


8. EWI - December 9, 2019

An unusual ‘Sunday statement’ entry. Ronan McGreevy has been an enthusiastic advocate in the Irish Times’ campaign against Irish reunification. Here a supposed threat of loyalist violence is both bigged up and soft-soaped in ways which would certainly not extend to their enemies:



9. deiseach - December 9, 2019

I found out I have something in common with Kevin Myers thanks to that article. Neither of us are paid to punch down in a newspaper once or twice a week, therefore we are both silenced.


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