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Showing posts from September, 2016

Abuse based on ignorance

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In the early 1990s, a friend of mine got a job building a new Tube line in London.
At the interview, the rather gruff employer told him that he only employed men from Connemara, Kerry, and Donegal. “So, where are you from?” he asked the young man from Galway.
“Connemara,” he replied, and it was only really a white lie as Bearna, on the western fringes of Galway City, is right on the edge of the Connemara Gaeltacht.
On the following Monday morning, when he turned up for work, he realised the reason behind the employer’s unusual stipulation.
To a man, every single person working in the tunnel deep under the bowels of the British capital spoke Irish. From 7am until the close of business each day, he never heard a word of English, as the ‘hard’ men on the site worked valiantly to extend the London Underground.
My friend became extremely fit, thanks to the back-breaking work, and perfected the Irish he had honed in an all-Irish school.���������������������������������…

An uncomfortable truth for Culture Night

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It was a gorgeous evening in Galway.
The giddy excitement which usually greets the start of a weekend was magnified by the magnificent range of cultural events taking place for free all across the city centre and Salthill.
Down by the Claddagh, three musicians called Shiftwork were conjuring up beautiful songs from the deck of an historic boat.
A seal popped his head above the water to share in the general merriment. Later, traditional Galway hookers sailed around the perfectly still waters at the mouth of Galway Bay.

There were musicians, artists, and entertainers providing wonderful free entertainment throughout the city as Galway really got into the spirit of Culture Night.

Over in Eyre Square, however, passers-by were being reminded of an aspect of modern Irish “culture” which many of us would prefer to ignore.
The Direct Provision system is not something we celebrate, not something we would prefer to highlight in the European Capital of Culture 2020.
But the …

They don't want you to wake up!

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In my country, they don’t want you to wake up right now.
They don’t want you to ask why a single mother can be sent to jail for not paying her €160 TV licence while one of the biggest corporations in the world, Apple Inc, can get away with not paying over €13 billion in unpaid taxes.
Not only that, our Government is fighting for Apple's right not to pay tax which is owed to the very same Government – and is prepared to take on the European Commission to do so.
They don’t want you to ask why the hard-pressed Irish taxpayer was forced to take on 42% of Europe’s banking debt.                                                                
When pressed about this gross injustice, our Government told us that we had to do it because the European authorities said so.

These are the same European authorities we are now fighting tooth and nail to make sure we don’t get the €13 billion-plus windfall.

They don’t want you to ask why we kept getting so many threatening…

An awful shower!

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They are an awful shower, those Europeans.

Imagine, the cheek of them! Telling us Irish that poor oul’ Apple owe us €13 billion plus interest in taxes, at a time when we’re doing our best to lure in the multinationals and bring our young people home from the four corners of the earth.

Over €13 billion in unwelcome taxes? No wonder the country is up in arms. People must be enraged.

They must be ringing their TDs all the way from Cork to Donegal to tell them to fight it all the way to the top Court in Europe.

Have those pesky Europeans no idea how we do things in the land of the stroke, the hand-shake, the wink, and the banana?

Have they no idea how important it is for us to provide "sweeteners" to keep the big boys on board in the greatest little country in the world to do business in?

Some eejits are wondering what €13 billion might do to help us tackle our homelessness crisis or our hospital waiting lists, or a…