May, 2013

Ian Óg on ‘Question Time’

It’s important not to let a book’s cover put you off  but Ian Óg Paisley has a way of sitting in a chair that I find…peculiar. It involves hooking one arm around the back of his chair and positioning the rest of him in a forward-thrusting way. Lolling, you might say. Odd. Either he has […]

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Ian Óg on ‘Question Time’

It’s important not to let a book’s cover put you off  but Ian Óg Paisley has a way of sitting in a chair that I find…peculiar. It involves hooking one arm around the back of his chair and positioning the rest of him in a forward-thrusting way. Lolling, you might say. Odd. Either he has […]

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So – are you Irish or what?

I recently watched The History Boys on TV. It’s a fascinating play, set in a 1980s Sheffield grammar school, raising questions about history, education, sexual abuse and more, all in that laconic and sometimes hilarious style that Alan Bennett has perfected. Bennett is part of a gritty, provincial-England tradition of writing that I’ve always enjoyed. I got […]

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So – are you Irish or what?

I recently watched The History Boys on TV. It’s a fascinating play, set in a 1980s Sheffield grammar school, raising questions about history, education, sexual abuse and more, all in that laconic and sometimes hilarious style that Alan Bennett has perfected. Bennett is part of a gritty, provincial-England tradition of writing that I’ve always enjoyed. I got […]

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Alex Attwood and Ann Travers: judgement and compassion

Compassion – that’s what Alex Attwood stressed in that rather stressful encounter with the BBC’s Gareth Gordon yesterday. Alex was feeling more than a little tetchy at the time. He’d come from a  meeting with Ann Travers, the woman whose sister was shot dead by the IRA  29 years ago as it attempted to kill […]

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Alex Attwood and Ann Travers: judgement and compassion

Compassion – that’s what Alex Attwood stressed in that rather stressful encounter with the BBC’s Gareth Gordon yesterday. Alex was feeling more than a little tetchy at the time. He’d come from a  meeting with Ann Travers, the woman whose sister was shot dead by the IRA  29 years ago as it attempted to kill […]

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Mike Nesbitt and how not to swim

I’m sure Mike Nesbitt isn’t drowning and I’m sure if he were, he would swim his way to safety, but at present he’s making wild lungeing movements that suggest a politically-drowning man. His latest grab is in the direction of the English curriculum here.  In yesterday’s Irish Times  he’s reported as calling for the withdrawal […]

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Mike Nesbitt and how not to swim

I’m sure Mike Nesbitt isn’t drowning and I’m sure if he were, he would swim his way to safety, but at present he’s making wild lungeing movements that suggest a politically-drowning man. His latest grab is in the direction of the English curriculum here.  In yesterday’s Irish Times  he’s reported as calling for the withdrawal […]

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The Irish government, abortion and suicidal women

My daughter (crosses fingers) will qualify as a doctor next month. At the moment she’s not sure what she’ll specialize in but she’s leaning towards psychiatry. If she does choose to do so, I’m praying she doesn’t opt to practice in the south of Ireland. Because there the government is intent on using psychiatrists as […]

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The Irish government, abortion and suicidal women

My daughter (crosses fingers) will qualify as a doctor next month. At the moment she’s not sure what she’ll specialize in but she’s leaning towards psychiatry. If she does choose to do so, I’m praying she doesn’t opt to practice in the south of Ireland. Because there the government is intent on using psychiatrists as […]

Continue Reading