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Joe McDonagh, 1953-2016 May 21, 2016

Posted by Tomboktu in racism, Sport.
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I was saddened last night to learn of the death of Joe McDonagh, former president of the GAA.

An important contribution to Irish life that is missing from the news reports I have seen this morning is his leadership in combating racism in Ireland. He was chairman of the Government’s Know Racism campaign for three years from 2001. Know Racism’s work inspired, and people still look for the ogham badge that John Rocha designed. But across the entire Know Racism campaign, Joe’s message was simple: the changing ethnic profile of Ireland meant that we need to recognise and stop racism. That was a message that didn’t sit well with senior civil servants with responsibility in the area, and after 2008, the State’s message changed to ‘integration’, shifting from ‘we’ need to combat racism to ‘they’ need to integrate.

(It is only in the last year that the first signs of a change emerged in that line, with Nóirín O’Sullivan ordering an overhaul of Garda systems for recording racist crime.)

I hope that the obituaries that follow last night’s hastily written news reports recognise Joe’s important work on fighting racism

Sports Special! – What you want to say… 7th July 2014 July 7, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Sport.

Back Room in the SBP recently argued the following in relation to the Summer and the seeming hiatus in political activity…

Secondly, and, for many, far more importantly, there is the tidal wave of sport which washes over us.
The All-Ireland is under way, county championships are ongoing, there’s always some major tournament on the television, which this year is the big kahuna, the World Cup. There’s even something for the ‘I don’t like tennis but I do like Wimbledon’ brigade.
This is what people are talking about. It’s what they’re reading in the papers and it’s what they tune into the news to catch up on.

We are with the class, so, here’s what is intended to be a weekly thread for people to talk, sound off, discuss, give out, or whatever they want about sport… and by the way, if anyone has posts they think would be appropriate for the site on sport send them in…

Who is Going to Win the World Cup? June 28, 2014

Posted by Garibaldy in Sport.

Despite the massive waste of billions of dollars, the militarised policing of the favelas and eviction of people, the violent responses to protests, and all the accusations of corruption that always go with FIFA, that have rightly enraged many in Brazil, in football terms, this has been an outstanding World Cup, easily the best I remember.

The fact that after the first round of group games, the teams have scored nearly as many goals as in the entire last World Cup says a lot. There have been awesome goals, with Tim Cahill’s volley the pick of the bunch in my opinion, closely followed by Van Persie’s header. Spain bored me rigid at Euro 2012, and I was delighted to see them perform so miserably, while the humiliation of other European powers (well, one power and one that thinks it is) by Costa Rica has been something to see. Messi doing the business, Neymar being outstanding, Robben rampaging, Muller scoring for fun, Klose equalling the record, Rodriguez and the rest of the Chile team and their duracell-bunny manager, the Mexican goalkeeper, and all the rest have made this a great footballing spectacle. Even the ITV coverage has been good, although the absence of Roy Keane has been a shame.

So with the round of 16 about to start today, who is going to win? I reckon Brazil will do it, though wouldn’t be surprised to see Holland win. What do people think (or is it only LoI that gets the football juices really flowing here?)

Sport, culture, history June 27, 2014

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Culture, Sport.

We don’t do much on sport here and that’s a pity – but after IEL’s post here expect more on the World Cup…

This made me smile.

And this may well be of interest to some of you, a newsletter from Dick Fields of Naomh Barróg GAA club which gives a history of the Club (founded in Scoil Lorcáin in Kilbarrack where I went to school myself) from 1974 to date.

Even if you’re not into GAA it’s a great social history. There’s an aerial photograph in the first issue (viewable here) of the area which shows a pre-urban Kilbarrack/Foxfield, probably from the 1960s. By the time I was in the school in 1969/70 the estates were already built or in the process of being built and just looking at it they would have surrounded the farm and stretched northwards (towards the top of the photograph).


The Irish Under 16 team that won the Euros in 1998… Pen Pics from Then and what happened them. January 23, 2013

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Sport.

In May 1998 Brian Kerrs Irish Under 16 side created history as they won the European Championship when beating Italy 2- 1 in the final with goals from David McMahon and Keith Foy.
These pics are from a souvenir booklet produced by Pennys that I have at home.  Below I’ve posted the Squad pic as well as player profiles from the booklet.
So how have the players fared since

Brian O’Callaghan made over 70 appearances for Barnsley before finishing his career at Limerick via spells in Iceland and Notts County
David McMahon had spells in Scotland and Darlington on loan from Newcastle, but I can find nothing about him since 2002.
Joe Murphy is currently playing for Coventry after spells with Tranmere, Sunderland, West Brom and Scunthorpe. He has also won 2 senior caps for Ireland.
John O’Shea Playing for Sunderland after 12 years at Manchester United. Holder of 83 Irish Senior caps to date.
Jim Goodwin is currently playing for St Mirren, having had spells at Celtic, Scunthorpe, Stockport, Huddersfield and Hamilton. He won a senior cap in 2002.
David Madden , the sub goalkeeper, gave up soccer and played for Nemo Rangers for a few years.
John Thompson Is currently with Mansfield having previously played for Nottm Forest, Notts County, Oldham and Tranmere. He also has a senior cap for Ireland.
Jonathon Douglas. having began with Monaghan United, played for Blackburn ,Leeds, Swindon and is currently lining out for Brentford. He won 8 senior caps.
Shaun Byrne was the captain of the team and had a spell where he made a few appearnces for West Ham before ending up at Dublin City under Roddy Collins and ended up in Non League in the UK.
Ian Rossiter had spells with Galway United, Newry Town, Athlone Town, Sligo  and Finn Harps.
Dessie Byrne having been released by Stockport made his name with St Pats before joining Wimbledon. From there he joined Roddy Collins at Carlisle before returning home to play for Pats and Bohs.
Graham Barrett played for Arsenal, Coventry , Falkirk and St Johnstone as well as some teams on loan before returning home to join Shamrock Rovers. He retired due to injury in 2010. He won 6 caps for the Senior team.
Keith Foy after playing for Nottm Forest, Doncaster and St Pats was last seen at Monaghan United in 2010
Liam Miller currently with Perth Glory having previously played with QPR, Hibernian, Celtic, Manchester United and Sunderland. Won 21 senior caps.
David Warren had a spell with Wrexham before heading home to play for Cork City, had spells at Waterford and Cobh and was released by Cork in 2010
Brendan McGill was with Sunderland but never made the first team, he joined Roddy Collins at Carlisle before joining Gretna, Barrow,Drogheda, Bohs and Shels. Currently without a club.
Andy Reid is still playing for Nottingham Forest, the team he initially made his name with. He later had spells with Spurs, Charlton, Sunderland and Blackpool. Has won 27senior caps.
Kevin Grogan A really talented player whos career was blighted and cut short by injury. Was on the books of Manchester United, played for UCD, had spells at Millwall , St Pats and Glentoran. Now coaching full time.

Click on Images to Enlarge



Shamrock Rovers XI V Brazil 1973 January 15, 2013

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Ireland, Irish History, Sport.

Forty years ago ,  Brazil, the 1970 World Cup winners visit Dublin for a historic friendly match against a team composed of players from both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Unable to officially call themselves an “All-Ireland” team, the Irish side takes on the moniker of “Shamrock Rovers XI” All Ireland selection lined out in Shamrock Rovers colours to play the then world champions Brazil in Lansdowne Road.

Brazil won 4-3

“A lot is happening in our country with regard to stamping out racism”. October 17, 2012

Posted by Garibaldy in racism, Sport.

Disgraceful scenes in Serbia, where the U21 game with England ended in chaos following racist abuse of some of the English players. The English manager, Stuart Pearce (quoted in the thread title), the players, and supporters, as well as the media, are rightly outraged. This has come up in comments on another thread a while ago but I don’t know about everybody else, but I’m finding this very hard to take in the aftermath of the whole John Terry thing. Rio Ferdinand dropped because his brother was on the receiving end of racial abuse from the England captain, who was then taken to the European championships by a manager who played in apartheid South Africa. Terry was then given a short and less harsh ban than a foreign player. Ferdinand then finds out he’s definitely not in the next squad because Roy Hodgson told some guy on the tube. England player after England player then comes out to say what a great guy Terry is. Respect indeed.

The idea of the English FA as the champion of anti-racism in football is now blatantly a ridiculous idea but you’d think the whole incident had never happened. Somebody in the English media and the football world needs to stand up and point out the emperor has no clothes.

Bits and pieces: Culture (including the true meaning of Science Fiction according to the FBI) September 8, 2012

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Culture, Sport, The Left.

I know I’m going on and on about this in comments elsewhere, but The Damned United is a film that has stuck with me subsequently. It’s not simply Sheen and Meaney’s central performances where they seem to effectively channel Clough and Revie, but the underlying story itself is fascinating, As is this piece of footage of their famous television appearance (with an incredibly youthful Austin Mitchell of all people as the interviewer) subsequent to Clough’s disastrous forty odd day tenure at Leeds.

Here’s the first part of that interview.

I’d not realised how left wing Clough was as well. Interesting person.

One small thing about the film. The Deep Purple song “Flight of the Rat” was used for the first meeting (or non-meeting) of Clough and Revie at a match between Derby and Leeds. But that took place in 67 or 68 and the song wasn’t released until 1970 and with Ian Gillan on vocals whereas previously it had been… who fronted the group. It’s not a mistake exactly, after all it could have been used purely for the lyrical conceit but it was slightly anachronistic – though not at all so when used briefly later in the film.

Actually, while talking about Deep Purple it’s interesting how they, unlike Black Sabbath (and of course Led Zeppelin) have never quite managed to be critically rehabilitated after the years of Zonk. Lars Von Trier used Child in Time for Breaking the Waves in the late 1990s and … is such a fan that they played for him some years back at his birthday. I wonder what it is about Purple – a band who I still rate. The lyrics? The music itself? Too heavy?

Talking about music, check this out, Adweeks overview of the 10 ads that killed Dubstep. Dubstep has its moments but as Adweek notes for a genre the better part of a decade old it’s interesting to see how long it took for the advertising agencies to get in on the act (and it also notes the sheer weirdness of some of the juxtapositions on view here, not least as it says with no small irony “Nothing says “two great-tasting Louisiana classic [whiskey]” quite like the musical stylings of south London”). But the problem is, as with all other genres, advertising agencies do sooner or later get in on the act.

Best one? The parody which is number 5 or 6.

Still the piece raises an interesting question as to how much advertising destroys popular music. The excerpts from genuine classics, and soon to be classics, seem to somehow excise the good out of songs and instrumentals.

Meanwhile, the Guardian politics podcast which seems to appear every week or so is well worth a listen, not least for Michael White’s interventions. White strikes me as being slightly at odds with the overall leftish tone of the Guardian.

Talking of podcasts, the NPR Science Podcast had an excellent short piece on how the Voyager probes, launched 35 years ago, are now a substantial part of a light day away from Earth and are drawing close to the boundaries of the Solar System. The instrumentation and electronics on board is also 35 years old, and includes an 8 track tape. Here is a remarkable photograph taken by Voyager of the ‘pale blue dot’ which is Earth as seen from it in the 1990s when it took a shot of what was behind it.

As Carl Sagan noted at the time, all human history took place within that pixel (bar the moon landings).

And moving from science to science fiction while author Ray Bradbury was no man of the left… one has to applaud some of his positions when one reads the information unearthed from his FBI file. It appears that:

A named source in the file, Martin A Berkeley, told the agents investigating Bradbury that the author “was probably sympathetic with certain pro-communist elements”, and that during a discussion about whether Communist party members should be allowed to join the Screen Writers Guild, Bradbury “rose to his feet and shouted ‘Cowards and McCarthyites’ when the resolution was discussed”.


Another informant agreed about the dangerous effects of science fiction, advising “that individuals such as Ray Bradbury are in a position to spread poison concerning political institutions in general and American institutions in particular”, and that “Communists have found fertile opportunities for development; for spreading distrust and lack of confidence in America [sic] institutions in the area of science fiction writing”. Even worse, “the general aim of these science fiction writers is to frighten the people into a state of paralysis or psychological incompetence bordering on hysteria which would make it very possible to conduct a Third World War which the American people would seriously believe could not be won since their morals had been seriously destroyed”.

Wow! So that’s what SF is about. Good to know…

Racism, English Football and the British Media May 17, 2012

Posted by Garibaldy in Sport.

Just heard that Theo Walcott’s family are considering not going to the European Championships because they are worried about racist attacks. The English media, especially the Murdoch group, has been reportin on neo-nazi hooligans in the Ukraine especially for some time. For example, this from the Sun and this from Sky Sports News. This is of course all good stuff, letting people know the reality of the far right in the Ukraine. Roy Hodgson is quoted in today’s Times commenting on the problem of racism and danger of racist violence in the Ukraine. The English FA and media have also quite rightly complained bitterly in recent years when English players have been subjected to racial abuse.

Which all makes a strange contrast with the media commentary – or lack thereof – on the fact that a manager who played in apartheid South Africa has picked a player stripped of the England captaincy and facing criminal charges for his use of racist language while dropping the alleged victim’s brother. When it came to a choice between sending out a strong anti-racism message or doing picking John Terry, Hodgson – and his masters at the FA – picked John Terry. And hardly a peep of complaint from the media themselves, although the Guardian reports Sol Campbell’s shock from CNN. While others defend the decision.

The English media and FA in the run-up to a tournament are always hard to take, but once again, they have outdone themselves. Racism is a problem foreigners have.

Euro 2012 January 9, 2012

Posted by Garibaldy in Sport.

Regular commenter Joe has something he wants to say. I noticed Jim Beglin talking about the Sunderland player McClean as a potential for Euro 2012. Anyway, back to Joe.

I’ve been waiting for the What you want to say thread. But I can’t wait any longer. So this one fits, sort of.
Who will Trapp bring to Poland? There will be 23 players on the panel. I suggest that the following are certs, barring injury:
Goalkeepers: Given, Westwood, Murphy
Defenders: Kelly, O’Shea, St.Ledger, Dunne, Ward, O’Dea
Midfielders: Duff, Whelan, Andrews, Fahey, Hunt, McGeady, McCarthy
Strikers: Keane, Doyle, Long, Walters, Cox
Which by my count leaves 2 more places. Suggestions anyone? I’m talking about who Trapp will bring not who you would like him to bring, if you follow. O’Dea and McCarthy above might be in the probable rather than certs. Have I left anyone obvious out?

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