November, 2011

Peter and the prisons: commitment or intolerance?

“It’s not about the Boyne in 1690 or Dublin in Easter 1916. It’s about dragging a small minority of folk in our country into the twenty-first century”. Sounds like something by a politician or other worthy in this part of Ireland, doesn’t it? But it’s not – it’s Scottish National Party’s justice minister Kenny MacAskill, […]

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Peter and the prisons: commitment or intolerance?

“It’s not about the Boyne in 1690 or Dublin in Easter 1916. It’s about dragging a small minority of folk in our country into the twenty-first century”. Sounds like something by a politician or other worthy in this part of Ireland, doesn’t it? But it’s not – it’s Scottish National Party’s justice minister Kenny MacAskill, […]

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Sam and Miriam – being dropped and being fair

Sam Smyth Miriam O’Callaghan Two big media stories reported in The Irish Times  this morning. In the first, Denis O’Brien, who owns the two radio stations Today FM  and Newstalk , has rejected claims by Eamon Dunphy that he interfered in the editorial workings of Newstalk  and that he “hated journalism”.  O’Brien says he’s being […]

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Sam and Miriam – being dropped and being fair

Sam Smyth Miriam O’Callaghan Two big media stories reported in The Irish Times  this morning. In the first, Denis O’Brien, who owns the two radio stations Today FM  and Newstalk , has rejected claims by Eamon Dunphy that he interfered in the editorial workings of Newstalk  and that he “hated journalism”.  O’Brien says he’s being […]

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C S Lewis – the pride of East Belfast

I’ve spent the last week or so reading and re-reading the writer C S Lewis, because last night I had to take part in a radio panel discussion about him on  Newstalk . Given that Lewis was a good East Belfast Protestant, they’ve erected a statue to him somewhere on the Newtownards Road, complete with […]

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C S Lewis – the pride of East Belfast

I’ve spent the last week or so reading and re-reading the writer C S Lewis, because last night I had to take part in a radio panel discussion about him on  Newstalk . Given that Lewis was a good East Belfast Protestant, they’ve erected a statue to him somewhere on the Newtownards Road, complete with […]

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The day partition died

Sometimes it’s easy to believe that the partition of Ireland has worked. In the north for fifty years, it allowed unionists to discriminate and gerrymander at will;  in the south,  Fianna Fail became so used to power, cronyism and corruption, they rotted the state.  And as if that weren’t bad enough, there were nominal nationalists […]

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The day partition died

Sometimes it’s easy to believe that the partition of Ireland has worked. In the north for fifty years, it allowed unionists to discriminate and gerrymander at will;  in the south,  Fianna Fail became so used to power, cronyism and corruption, they rotted the state.  And as if that weren’t bad enough, there were nominal nationalists […]

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The past – it’s difficult, mainly because it’s over

I’ve been asked to meet with some visitors to Belfast later this morning. They’re here to gather material for a drama production relating to our ways of dealing with the past, so I’m trying to pull together my thoughts, such as they are,  on the subject. The most important thing, I think, is to admit […]

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The past – it’s difficult, mainly because it’s over

I’ve been asked to meet with some visitors to Belfast later this morning. They’re here to gather material for a drama production relating to our ways of dealing with the past, so I’m trying to pull together my thoughts, such as they are,  on the subject. The most important thing, I think, is to admit […]

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