They have an expression down in Co Tipperary when asked to do something of great complexity: “You might as well be looking into a hedge.”
The Lisbon Treaty referendum thoroughly dominated press coverage in both the lead-up to the poll and in its aftermath. The most striking thing about this coverage was that every single newspaper, bar none, adopted its proprietor's opinions as their editorial line. So, for example, Rupert Murdoch is a critic of the EU's ambitions to become an independent strategic player.
Susan McKay's new book, about victims from Northern Ireland's Troubles, their families and communities, is sensitive and comprehensive.
Israeli anthropologist Jeff Halper believes Ireland should make a stand against the Israeli occupation and destruction of Palestinian territories and homes. Interview by David Shanks
An Israeli activist, recently visiting Ireland, has been critical of the Irish government's refusal to support the Palestinian cause and alleges that two companies in Ireland have been involved in projects for the Israelis.
Eamon Dunphy's interview with Gabriel Byrme exemplified the best of both men as interviewer and interviewee, a high point before the dreary summer schedule of RTÉ began in earnest.
Bertie Ahern indeed has done some service to his country and done some service to Fianna Fail. His departure now was not the least of that service.
By Vincent Browne
The Federal Bureau of Investigation in the US has published its Top Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list since the 1950's on the initiative of J. Edgar Hoover, as a way of promoting capture of the desperados. Those on the list are not ranked, possibly as a way of avoiding competition between criminals for the number one spot, and explaining the position of Usama bin Laden.
More than a dozen species of willows grow in the wild in Ireland, although not all are native. However, as willows need water for survival and given the possibility of drier conditions due to climate change, some species could be endangered, e.g. Salix phylicifolia (formerly Salix hibernica) the tea-leaved willow or Irish willow. It is found in Ireland only on the cliffs of Ben Bulben, Co. Sligo and is a relic from the latest Ice Age.
Eanna Ni Lamhna queries the provenance of some “Irish” small mammals.
If you really want to see just how much the Irish Government has adapted to the 21stcentury, log on to www.contrast.ie. The blog is IT guy, Eoghan McCabe's, extended rant on the web industry in Ireland, and in one particularly funny post, he takes a look at how bad some of the governmental web sites are, providing links for your amusement while providing a forum where you can add your own comment or simply just laugh at the ones already left there.