What a week. So limited were the parameters of Tuesday night's TV3 Future Taoiseach debate, it's a wonder the papers succeeded in eking more than a tweet's worth of commentary out of it. CrisisJam felt the Empty Chair put on an excellent show. Student nurses and midwives took to the streets to protest against government plans to gradually eliminate their pay and an Independent candidate in Dublin South East returned to his hip-hop roots. Meanwhile, a dictator remained 99% uninstalled in Egypt. Curated by Eadaoin O'Sullivan, CrisisJam refuses to button its lip even as we are told that the slightest flapping might sink the good ship Éireann; succumbs to the inevitable and analyses the leaders' debate; shines a light on public funding for private schools; takes a look at Donal O'Connor's glittering career; and finds that, whatever the mistakes of social partnership, unions are as essential as they ever were.
- Cowards of the country - Hugh Green
- Boxed in, boxed out - Harry Browne
- Fee-paying schools and education cutbacks: Every little helps? - Alison Spillane
- Guess who's having a good recession? - Colin Coulter
- Divided, conquered? - Aidan Regan
(Image left: Tadhg O'Sullivan)
Electioneering and its inherent mud-slinging dominated the airwaves this week, as the 30th Dáil was dissolved making way for an election on 25 February. On the same day Brian Cowen stood down as Taoiseach and retired from politics with a severance package in excess of €300,000, 300,000 workers on the minimum wage saw their pay cut by €1 per hour to €7.65. The previous day Ivor Callely was awarded €17,000 by the High Court for 'loss of earnings' during his 20-day suspension from the Seanad. Curated by Gavan Titley, CrisisJam looks at the Age of Austerity, the 'use them and lose them' attitude to migrants, Harney's neoliberal health legacy, nodding dog syndrome, and Tom O'Connor sets out a plan for dealing with our debt, challenging the idea that THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE.
- Austerity, mon amour – Nyder O'Leary
- Yes, there is an alternative – Tom O'Connor
- Love Life? Love Enda – Eadaoin O'Sullivan
- Migrant workers must not be used as a political football – Siobhán O'Donoghue
- The health myths that have outlasted Mary Harney – Sara Burke
As Fianna Fáil elected a new leader in an effort to resuscitate their electoral chances (and Bertie did his best to swiftly kill them with a stellar show of textbook Fianna Fáilery on Thursday's News at One), the election campaign got underway. Terror gripped the Opposition as Independents threatened the passage of the Finance Bill, but concerns were allayed and the Bill has moved on to the Seanad for consideration. Curated by Harry Browne, CrisisJam offers its take on migration, Mary Harney, election 2011, management of the debt crisis and accidental forgetting by the Irish Times...
- They make a desert and they call it peace – Andy Storey
- Values added: bland – Patrick Barry
- Still dodging the abortion issue – Harry Browne
- The politics of counting and the myths of migration – Mary Gilmartin
- Closer to Boston than Berlin – Justin Frewen
(Image left: Marko Buckik)
ESRI forecasts have a notoriously wide margin of error, so their prediction this week that 50,000 people would leave Ireland this year may be way off the mark. Not least because of one of those 'unforeseeable events' that can throw statisticians' forecasts off - this time the unforeseen was a series of absurd political meltdowns that, whatever their effects on economic stability, will surely have had hundreds thinking about escape from the lunatic morass that has become Irish public and political discourse.
Curated by Patrick Barry, this week's CrisisJam humbly hopes to offer some respite. Read on...
- The Emperor is a fighter, not a golfer - - Gavan Titley
- Shadowboxing in the halls of power - - Patrick Barry
- Singeing the bondholders -- Malachy Browne
- We still can't all live on a small island? -- Piaras Mac Éinrí
- The socio-economic realities of ill health, Part II -- Justin Frewen & Anna Datta
- How the Irish economy became addicted to cheap money -- Aidan Regan
Crisisjam: exposing and challenging the myths, the half-truths and the occasional outright lies disseminated by a largely uncritical and frequently complicit media; providing a space for new alternative and radical ways of talking and thinking about the crisis, as well as a forum for original research and reporting.
This edition is curated by Colin Coulter.
- How the Hunt Report is compromised
- Naming the Shameless
- Health is Wealth: What Ireland needs - by Justin Frewen and Anna Datta
- Guess who's having a good recession? The Bank of Ireland Art auction. By Michael Cronin
- Exploiting young workers
(Image left: Tadhg O'Sullivan)
BudgetJam is an intervention and a resource for people opposing the bankrupting of Ireland. Through budget week in 2010 this forum brings together challenges to the key myths of the political-economic crisis, an ongoing engagement with media coverage and information on the growing resistance. Read more here.
Recent public discourse has featured a remarkable set of supposed truths, factoids and invitations to passivity. Comprising analysis from a network of civil society groups, activists, bloggers, journalists and academics, BudgetJam contests as ferociously as possible the 5 key myths put forward in this discourse::
- The country is broke;
- We're all in this together;
- There is no alternative;
- We have to move on, going forward;
- The tough love of the IMF is going to set us on the straight and narrow.