Former Finance Minister and deputy leader of Fianna Fail Brian Lenihan passed away this morning at the age of 52. The Fianna Fáil TD had been battling pancreatic cancer for some time. Mr Lenihan was first elected to Dáil Eireann in the Dublin West by-election of April 1996, caused by the death of his father Brian Lenihan Senior. He retained the seat in the general election the following year. In the 2011 general election he was the only member of Fianna Fáil to win a seat in Dublin.
The use of Irish airspace by foreign military aircraft has cost the State €25 million in the last ten years. By Harry Browne.
The State has spent more than €25 million in the last 10 years to cover the costs of foreign military aircraft using Irish-administered airspace, most of which are US planes en route to Europe and war-zones in the Middle East and southwest Asia.
The Social Welfare and Pensions Bill passed its first stage yesterday in the Dáil. The Bill, which, amongst other things, restores the minimum wage to €8.65 an hour, also fulfills the commitment in the EU-IMF memorandum to increase the qualifying age for a State pension to 67 years in 2021 and to 68 in 2028.
A new Wikileaks cable reveals further evidence of Irish officials at pains to help the US in its use of Shannon Airport for military purposes. By Harry Browne.
Dermot Ahern assured the US ambassador in Dublin in 2006 that the Irish government was prepared to change the law that had allowed the acquittal of five anti-war activists for damaging a US Navy plane.
Vincent Browne traces the different trajectories of two Fine Gael figures who have died within weeks of each other
Declan Costello and Garret FitzGerald were very different. This was even though both were Fine Gael, the fathers of both were Fine Gael, both were perceived as being on the liberal wing of Fine Gael in the 1960s, both were very much of the well-off Dublin middle class, both were born in 1926, both died aged 85 within weeks of each other.
Lies, concealment and contempt for the people are the hallmarks of much political behaviour in Ireland. By Vincent Browne.
Amid all the bluster about the health of our democracy, accountability to the electorate, the sanctity of the ballot box, there is at the heart of our political culture a contempt for the people, a conviction that parties can say anything to get elected and then do what they like.
There's the odd lie to the people here and there - sometimes whopping lies but, more regularly, concealment.
Not an easy week. Many people would say that I wouldn’t be content if it wasn’t complicated. I beg to differ. My financial problems with the banks have been well aired long before now – I was on Prime Time nearly three years ago explaining that I couldn’t pay the interest on development land loans and claimed that most builders were in the same boat, despite protestations to the contrary.