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What you want to say – 15th September 2021 September 15, 2021

Posted by guestposter in Uncategorized.
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As always, following on Dr. X’s suggestion, it’s all yours, “announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose”, feel free.

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1. Tomboktu - September 15, 2021

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2. EWI - September 15, 2021

The Irish Times winding up for its latest campaign against Miggledee:

Michael D Higgins will not attend Armagh church service with queen
President turns down invitation to event marking NI centenary and island’s partition

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/michael-d-higgins-will-not-attend-armagh-church-service-with-queen-1.4674122

Pass the smelling salts!

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Tomboktu - September 16, 2021

Actually, has anybody told the British how utterly inappropriate it was to invite the President of Ireland to the event in the first place?

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WorldbyStorm - September 16, 2021

I can’t get my head around the complaints that he would not turn up. I wouldn’t expect a Unionist or Loyalist to have to attend a 1916/1921 event or even a commemoration of the Republic of Ireland. It wouldn’t be appropriate. In the event of an agreed UI I would hope that any future commemorations wouldn’t insist that those from those communities had to attend, and indeed it would be more appropriate to have them at shared events signifying a new agreed state (and just going back I can’t see a problem with attendance by anyone at say events commemorating the GFA/BA – again, an agreed dispensation).

There’s something very contrived about this supposed controversy.

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Wes Ferry - September 16, 2021

Hat tip to one-time People’s Democracy Belfast City Councillor Fergus O’Hare for this reminder:

“Unionists standing firm in refusal to attend 1916 celebration events.
“The DUP and UUP are maintaining a frosty attitude to attending any Easter Rising commemoration events ‘“ with a particular aversion to anything which smacks of celebrating the insurrection, they confirmed last night.”

https://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/unionists-standing-firm-refusal-attend-1916-celebration-events-1256609?fbclid=IwAR3iTqSCNo4Gkvf0heDZiAE4OGVMQMYPMldQb-uwj-eJb0UQ-z9cG8tayxE

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WorldbyStorm - September 17, 2021

As is their right, nice if they’d extend the same courtesy the other way.

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WorldbyStorm - September 17, 2021

Good on Fergus O’Hare!

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EWI - September 17, 2021

John Bruton (of course) on the BBC this morning, insisting the Higgins should attend.

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crocodileshoes - September 17, 2021

Regina Doherty flatly contradicting Bruton on the Claire Byrne Show.

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WorldbyStorm - September 17, 2021

What did she say?

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3. LMS - September 15, 2021

Spotted and removed an election-style poster in Dublin 5 last weekend saying “IRISH LIVES MATTER” in green text with a green border. White sign with no other markings on it front or back. Curious to know if anyone has seen similar or knows what entity might be responsible?

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WorldbyStorm - September 15, 2021

That’s a good question.

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eoghan - September 15, 2021

Had seen reports of posters for the Housing demo outside the Dáil today being taken down and replaced with this which is a particularly baffling one. Would’ve thought that access to housing would be an issue that particularly matters to Irish lives

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4. benmadigan - September 15, 2021

Ireland’s Future, the pro-Irish unity civic group, is organising an “in person” panel discussion at 1PM on Saturday 25th September in the Clayton Hotel, Cork

It will discuss constitutional change and the ever-increasing likelihood of a border poll and Irish unity.


There is momentum building towards a unity referendum taking place in the not-too-distant future. Increasingly people are recognising that Irish unity is the outcome that holds most appeal and there is a growing demand for an in-depth conversation on where this all leads to. Unionism in the north is now a minority and growing numbers of people across the island are asking the Irish Government to take the lead and prepare for a new, agreed and united Ireland.”
http://cork-preparing-for-a-new-ireland.eventbrite.ie/

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5. crocodileshoes - September 15, 2021

At least three current tv ads, on heavy rotation, derive their ‘humour’ from showing an older man dancing. Imagine! So cute! ( snigger the adolescent ‘creatives’ who think up this stuff).

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alanmyler - September 15, 2021

I was looking, not very deeply, at events for Culture Night this coming Friday, one of which is a silent disco at the Goethe Institut which might be somewhere that older men could be seen to be dancing, if that’s one’s thing.

https://culturenight.ie/event/goethe-institut-irland-6/

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WorldbyStorm - September 15, 2021

All younger men dancing turn into older men dancing – if they’re lucky and they like dancing.

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alanmyler - September 15, 2021

I don’t particularly like it myself. I do it at weddings after copious consumption of alcohol, and occasionally in the dark in the kitchen, after copious amounts…you get the idea. I came across a word recently, baltering, which describes perfectly my dancing approach. Great word, to balter.

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roddy - September 15, 2021

Speaking of humour.A few weeks back I saw where a pub advertised its beer garden during the hot weather with a catchy slogan – “Come out the back and tan”!

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6. Jim Monaghan - September 15, 2021

Maybe something for everyone here. https://culturenight.ie/ Culture Night
The sixteenth edition of Culture Night will take place on Friday 17 September 2021.

Culture Night / Oíche Chultúir is brought to you by the Arts Council; it is a national moment, celebrating all that makes up the richness and diversity of culture in Ireland today, connecting people to cultural activities locally and nationally and aims to open up pathways to ongoing engagement.

This Galway event looks interesing. https://culturenight.ie/event/galway-city-museum-history-memorialisation-and-the-struggle-for-irish-independence-in-galway/
Maybe others might make recommendations.

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7. Wes Ferry - September 15, 2021

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EWI - September 21, 2021

Susan McKay sensible as ever. The other one, though, has already essentially called McKay a rotten prod, believes that the ROI will leave the EU, wants to enshrine a ‘reverse vote’ in the six counties to resurrect NI and claims that the North must remain apart from the ROI to ‘protect abortion’ (has she met the DUP?).

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8. Tomboktu - September 16, 2021

It was interesting to see that Sinn Féin managed to user the no-confidence debate to broaden the attack beyond Coveney (cronyism) and Martin (powerlessness), to have a swipe at Simon Harris, alleging he was the leaker.

It’ll be interesting to see if this point in the debate gets any ongoing attention or damages him.

(FG people wanting a change of party leader must be wondering if they need to skip a political generation and go to the likes of Helen McEntee to take them out of the mess.)

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WorldbyStorm - September 16, 2021

Funny isn’t it. Varadkar is still youngish (42) but if we’re moving on another political generation to McEntee (35) I am reminded of Cameron’s put-down to Tony Blair, ‘he was the future once’.

https://www.bbc.com/news/av/uk-politics-36781883

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crocodileshoes - September 16, 2021

Interesting too that SF are so sure it was Harris. If he (Harris) could prove it wasn’t, Matt Carthy would be fairly embarrassed. ‘Not true’ says Harris – one of them’s wrong.

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Alibaba - September 16, 2021

Rumour has it that Harris allegedly sent the accusations about Coveney to a newspaper during the actual Cabinet meeting that appointed Zappone as a special envoy. It seems the journalist who got them didn’t have the cop-on to block the revelation of the leaker’s name. Quite telling surely about several career self-destructions.

And now Varadkar says SF’s Carthy abused parliamentary privilege by making an accusation against another member of the Dáil. No matter that it could be done in the public interest. Oh how the plot thickens. This will run on and on for quite some time.

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crocodileshoes - September 16, 2021

If that’s so, a newspaper has the power to do serious damage to either Harris or Carthy (I nearly wrote ‘end the career’ there, but of course it’s a long time since blatant lying in the Dail ended a career).

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Wes Ferry - September 16, 2021

Not sure how Harris could prove it wasn’t him — unless he named the culprit.

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crocodileshoes - September 16, 2021

If it was texted from the meeting?

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9. sonofstan - September 16, 2021

Is everyone in FG briefing against everyone else? It’s like FF in the ’80s all over again.

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10. sonofstan - September 16, 2021

My young one said before Matt Carthy said it that ‘everyone knows’ it was Harris: when I say I didn’t she says ‘well you’re in England’. But did everyone know?

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Fergal - September 17, 2021

This only struck me this morning… I’m fairly slow to put it mildly… give me slow and happy over quick and miserable any day!
When the yanks high-tailed it out of Afghanistan along with their lackeys… why didn’t they bang on about elections, democracy and the legitimacy of the Kabul government?
The way they do when Venezuela crops up?
(Or maybe they did but I’d fallen asleep watching the ultimate rerun of an old and tragic late night film)

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Fergal - September 17, 2021

Umpteenth… not ultimate

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WorldbyStorm - September 17, 2021

Very interesting thought. I guess it was a fair accompli, and they simply weren’t going to put any more resources in or feet on the ground. I don’t think it’s utterly cynical because Biden had been against involvement since being VP if not before. But it does point up certain realities not least that nation building and spheres of influence are contingent on multiple factors. Just on their ‘allies’, the hypocrisy from many of those who had long since wound down their involvement is so,egging to behold. It’s fascinating to see how they expected the US to fight to its ver6 last soldier so they could sleep at night (not letting the US off the hook here btw, just think it says a lot about self perceptions of say the UK etc).

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WorldbyStorm - September 17, 2021

I’d heard it too and it had been mentioned obliquely in the media.

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banjoagbeanjoe - September 17, 2021

I thought it was mentioned more than obliquely. Didn’t the Indo or Sindo run the story. The story of how a junior FG cabinet minister organised a media sting on a senior FG cabinet minister to ‘prove’ that it was the senior minister who did the leak. I can’t find the story now but I thought it was clear who the two ministers were, certainly that Harris was the senior one.
But whether any of that ‘proves’ anything is moot.

But anyway, disarray and distrust among FG’s top team and then FG trying to point the finger at FF ministers, causing further disarray and distrust in the Cabinet – what’s not to like?

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WorldbyStorm - September 17, 2021

+1 Yeah I think you’re right actually – certainly the media mention was clear enough to indicate who it was.

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6to5against - September 17, 2021

I’m usually crap at the ‘everybody knows’ stuff and wonder what I’ve missed. But this was so obvious it was unmissable once you were following the story. RTE had a long report on the confidence vote on Tuesday which included a discussion of the fact that S Harris wasn’t due to speak and wasn’t there. The whole tone only made sense in the light of the leak story – though it was never mentioned.

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6to5against - September 17, 2021

On the broader argument about Dail privilege, FG are pushing hard on the line that it was a misuse of privilege because Carthy had no ‘proof’ – and I haven’t seen that premise challenged.
But if you have proof, you can make your statements any where you like. The purpose of Dail privilege is surely to allow honest and full conversations to take place – without having to produce proof.
And the whole scene whereby everybody in the Dail and the traditional media can be aware of an issue and discuss it openly amongst themselves – but only make veiled reference to it on the airwaves – is really unhealthy.
If FG believe false information is spread in this way, it can argue the point in public. When they choose to not do so and attack the principle itself, I think it tells its own story.

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11. Tomboktu - September 17, 2021

Oh, it’s Ireland’s aging population that will make the State’s finances unsustainable, according to a report from the Department of Finance.

Silly me thought it was Ireland’s tax regime.

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EWI - September 18, 2021

Gotta squeeze every cent out of the PAYE workers to continue to subsidise Intel and bail out those middle-class bankers and insurance agents

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12. Tomboktu - September 17, 2021

I love it. By not snubbing the UK (by recalling its ambassador), France has most effectively snubbed the UK.

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13. gregtimo - September 18, 2021

The best free account of Monday’s Norwegian election in English I can find as yet. Peripheral and preserved by it’s oil wealth from the turbulence which hit the rest of Europe including it’s Swedish neighbour and from Covid by strict lockdowns (also unlike Sweden) .
A Ray of hope though signifying the end of neo-liberalism Norwegian style (or so I hope). After 8 years of right wing Conservative led rule during which unnecessary social welfare cuts were carried out for ideological reasons, there was a significant swing left overall, but the biggest gainer was the odd rural interest Centre Party, reminiscent of old style Fianna Fail (and hardly neo-liberalised as with it’s Swedish counterpart it seems, it usually coalesces with Labour) . The Populist Far Left Red Party about doubled it’s support, and the older Hard Left Socialist Left (SV) also gained . A coalition of Labour, Centre and SV is widely expected
https://www.newsinenglish.no/2021/09/14/norway-turns-left-greens-sidelined/
Full results (and links to the 9 significant parties, 3 to the left of centre, the odd centre party and 5 on the right) can be found on the wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2021_Norwegian_parliamentary_election
Rudimentary explanations on a site with very limited views. Labour seem your typical old style Social Democrat party and though buoyed up by the oil money it couldnt withstand the wave that swept it away 8 years ago . It is now back as a government leader but in fact even weaker than before. I did not spend a lot of time figuring them out as I don’t think they are that different to their sister parties. Over the years they lost a lot of support to the now well established Socialist Left and the emergent ‘Red’ party
https://www.thelocal.no/20210908/explained-whos-who-in-norways-2021-election-race/

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gregtimo - September 18, 2021

Subject of most interest is what is the difference between Socialist Left and Red parties ?. Socialist Left (SV) came out of a coalition of Labour’s Left and the old main Communist party back in the 60s, now a long time Democratic Socialist and Green party in it’s own right . Though there is now a specific (centre-left) Green party, Socialist Left seem to fill that space more effectively (similar to the Socialist People’s Party in Denmark but harder left I think)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialist_Left_Party_(Norway)
Below is SV’s own explanation as to how it differs. Policies are broadly similar, but it defines pragmatist where Red is perhaps shoutier and more determined where Labour are wavery. My favorite party overall https://www.sv.no/blog/a-aa/sv-og-rodt/

Red is a fish with a Maoist origin but now wider and more populist.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Party_(Norway)
For instance, The Cliffite organization which split from Socialist Left is now part of Red according to Wiki gossip (the given link triggers a virus warning and is possibly a compromised website)
https://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internasjonale_Sosialister
Norway’s state broadcaster profile of Red’s new voters . It has attracted a working class base it seems, where it once was a narrower party dominated by academics .
https://www.nrk.no/norge/xl/det-rode-skiftet-1.15629783

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14. gregtimo - September 18, 2021

The Hard Left paper ‘Class Struggle’ somewhere between Red and SV . Interesting to look at headlines but it’s Pay-Walled . Reminds me of the Italian ‘libertarian Communist’ ‘Il Manifesto’ paper in it’s style
https://klassekampen.no/
The Norwegian wikis are of course more detailed
https://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liste_over_norske_politiske_partier

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15. Tomboktu - September 19, 2021

When did the name of the RTE Radio1 programme change from Risin’ Time to Rising Time?

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16. Paul Culloty - September 20, 2021

Interesting analysis of the foreign policy positions of the German parties ahead of Sunday’s election:

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/E_tsVeMWYAItN-s?format=jpg&name=medium

Greater consensus on individual issues may perhaps be required to react to Russia, China et al, but certainly defence should remain a national concern, with more militaristic members forming their own separate projects if they wish to do so.

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17. terrymdunne - September 20, 2021

Doubtless of interest to folk here, Brian Hanley review of Dan Finn book on political history of I.R.A.:
https://www.theirishstory.com/2021/09/20/book-review-one-mans-terrorist-a-political-history-of-the-ira/#.YUiQc6Qo_IV

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WorldbyStorm - September 20, 2021

Excellent review.

“Finn shows how political support for republicans grew after the hunger-strikes but then stagnated and declined. South of the border Sinn Féin’s hopes for expansion were dashed in successive elections in 1987, 1989 and 1992. There, and not in the world of conspiracy, lies the explanation for the IRA’s ultimate destination.”

Very true, and not just political popularity at polls, but a broader acceptance of the legitimacy of the struggle, something that outside of specific events tended to be conspicuous by its absence. As well, I’d argue the profile of those in it ageing was a factor.

And this:

“In the south, at least, [sfs popularity] this has less to do with the IRA then with the last recession, the housing crisis and the abject failures of the political establishment. However as Sinn Féin’s support has increased so has a largely rhetorical identification with the iconography of the armed struggle (probably more popular now than when it was actually taking place).”

That popularity is much more now than it was in the 1980s. Incomparably more. Indeed it’s a bit bizarre having lived through it all to see this phenomenon because I’m not sure it’s earned whereas the shift from armed struggle does deserve credit to the Republican Movement.

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roddy - September 20, 2021

Up here within a short time of the ceasefire,the most unlikely people began to legitimise the “war” retrospectively.The number of people who claimed to have given refuge to an “on the run” Francis Hughes now competes with the impossibly high number in a previous generation who claimed to be in the GPO in 1916! Irish people prefer “war” when it’s all over and a sanitised version can be sung about. Believe me “war” is never nice and I never want to see it again.

Liked by 3 people

WorldbyStorm - September 21, 2021

+1 roddy. Seen it myself numerous times, the old whiff of cordite is irrisistable to some – when it’s fading away.

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alanmyler - September 21, 2021

Or as I heard someone say, the whiff of graphite, suggesting perhaps that the pen(cil) is mightier than the sword?

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EWI - September 21, 2021

Up here within a short time of the ceasefire,the most unlikely people began to legitimise the “war” retrospectively.

The same phenomenon identifiable after the 1867 rebellion, the Fenian bombing campaign and (of course) after 1916. The IRB’s success in forestalling the Irish Party’s Janus efforts to saddle that horse once more (inadvertently aided by John Redmond – lucky in their enemies) played no small part in the eventual success of 1918.

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terrymdunne - September 21, 2021
WorldbyStorm - September 21, 2021

Interesting. I hadn’t realised he was from Tyrone.

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terrymdunne - September 21, 2021

You might be thinking of another Brendan Hughes?

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WorldbyStorm - September 21, 2021

You know, it’s in the text of that Irish News report and I think you’re right, that he’s not from Tyrone. They’re mixing him up with the other Brendan Hughes.

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terrymdunne - September 21, 2021

There was a Brendan Hughes from Antrim, deceased in 2008, contributed to the book ‘Voices from the Grave’, occasionally appeared in documentaries, and this Brendan Hughes from Tyrone, author of ‘Up Like a Bird’. Similar life stories judging from the newspaper interview.

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WorldbyStorm - September 21, 2021

Yeah, that’s the one I was thinking of as the second Brendan Hughes. But I’m interested that this one in Up Like A Bird appears to be from the North as well.

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banjoagbeanjoe - September 21, 2021

I’m confused now. Is either of these “the Dark/Darkie”?

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GearóidGaillimh - September 22, 2021

Brendan ‘The Dark/Darkie’ Hughes died in 2008 and was from Belfast. This Brendan Hughes is a different guy from Tyrone

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EWI - September 22, 2021

So, wait, there’s… three? One each from Belfast, Antrim and Tyrone?

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Tomboktu - September 22, 2021

So, wait, there’s… three?

UL had two professors named Pat O’Connor. (Not to be confused with Fianna Fáil’s Pat O’Connor Pat O’Connor, who was just the one person who was issued with two ballot papers in an election, but acquited of the electoral offence of double voting because ballot papers are marked in secret so you couldn’t prove he actually voted twice. (Because of this, the law was changed to make it an offence to ask for a second ballot paper.)

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Dr Nightdub - September 22, 2021

In 1921, the Glenariffe (Co. Antrim) company of the IRA had three members named Patrick McAuley. Roll call must’ve been fun.

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Tomboktu - September 22, 2021

So, wait, there’s… three?

At least they had the courtesy to be in different places. The next general election in Dublin Mid West could be interesting if a certain Clondalkin independent councillor runs. Then there’d be two Eoin Ó Broins on the ballot paper.

(Also: I love the way my text predictor ALWAYS thinks I meant ‘general ejection’.)

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banjoagbeanjoe - September 22, 2021

Mervyn Taylor was a minister and prominent member of the Labour Party in the seventies and eighties. And Mervyn Taylor was a member of the WP in the eighties. I think they were different people.

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GearóidGaillimh - September 22, 2021

EWI: Well, there’s the Tyrone Brendan Hughes who’s the author of the book discussed above, and there was the better known Brendan ‘The Dark’ or ‘Darkie’ Hughes who hailed from Belfast.

The ‘Brendan Hughes from Antrim’ mentioned by Terry Dunne who died in 2008 was also referring to the latter who was from west Belfast, the Falls Road being in Co. Antrim.

So there were two Provisional IRA members called Brendan Hughes being discussed above, not three.

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terrymdunne - September 22, 2021

Here is a recent case in an election in India – K Sundara of the BSP supposedly bribed by K Surendran of the BJP to withdraw his nomination papers – K Surendran allegedly feared their names were too similar –
https://thewire.in/government/kerala-crime-branch-quizzes-bjp-leader-surendran-in-election-bribery-case

Liked by 1 person

18. Fergal - September 22, 2021

Writer from Belfast called Robert McLiam Wilson… that’s like being called Wilson Wilson?!

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