Blustering on bank debt shows desperation

The hissy fit engendered by Angela Merkel’s comments on 19 October arose entirely from the ludicrous spin placed on the 29 June communique. By Vincent Browne.

After the EU summit on 29 June last a statement was issued stating it was “imperative” to break the “vicious” circle between banks and sovereign states.

County Manager salary unchanged for two years

Despite swingeing cuts affecting the poorest in Irish society, austerity has not been imposed on Ireland's 33 County Managers whose high salaries  are unchanged since 2010. County Managers are paid an average salary of €143,054.48 per annum, a total spend of €4,720,798.00 each year. The highest paid paid County Manager is Dublin City Council's John Tierney (pictured) with a salary of €189,301. We are seeking salary details for previous years before 2010. County Managers are entitled to additional allowances (outlined below). By Malachy Browne.

This coalition is starting to make FF look good

One of the more substantial achievements of this government has been to burnish the reputation of Fianna Fáil which, we had believed, had been consigned to well-deserved oblivion by the outcome of the 2011 election. By Vincent Browne.

As the coalition resolutely persists in its ineptitude, Fianna Fáil doesn't seem that bad in retrospect.

Kenny's 'recovery' is a grandiose PR exercise

The claim that Enda Kenny and his governemnt have inspired some kind of recovery is just plain wrong. By Vincent Browne.

The cover story in the European edition of Time magazine on Ireland's "Celtic comeback" pioneered by Enda Kenny was a public relations triumph, for which Kenny himself deserves credit.

The good, the bad, and the state's bank guarantee scheme

The Labour Party didn't vote against the 2008 Credit Institutions (Financial Support) Bill, which legislated for the bank guarantee, because it opposed the guarantee or even its scope. By Vincent Browne.

Four years ago this month, the Dáil debated and then endorsed the bank guarantee scheme, which has cost this society at least €64 billion.

The current government is spending a large part of its time trying to persuade our EU partners to help us undo the damage the guarantee did to us.

Gilmore has sold out more than just Shortall

When it's eventually all over, of what exactly will Labour's leading lights be proud? By Vincent Browne.

Eamon Gilmore's excruciation during his interview on 27 September with Richard Crowley of RTÉ betrayed a realisation that his failure to stand by Róisín Shortall was not just an act of personal disloyalty, but of disloyalty to what Labour supposedly stands for, and of disloyalty to the constituency which the party supposedly represents.

Gilmore unable "to publicly articulate another context" on Shorthall resignation

In a leaked email to Labour Party colleagues, Party Chairman and Galway East TD Colm Keaveney said "there is another context to the [Roisin Shorthall] story that [Eamon Gilmore] has not been able to publicly articulate, given the media atmosphere at this time". Keaveney wrote that this context "needs to be discussed with the party's members" and that he is "working with the Party Leader on convening a meeting of the Central Council for early November".

Shortall may be gone, but big questions remain for Fine Gael and Labour

How the Government handles the James Reilly affair will be a litmus test of its promise to break from the corruption and dishonesty of Fianna Fail. By Eoin Ó Broin.

The James Reilly affair is nowhere near from over. Róisín Shortall may have gone, but big questions remain. How they are answered will have significant consequences for the Government, the two men at its helm and the parties they lead.

Reilly/Shortall rift exposes contradiction at heart of Government

If Roisín Shortall stands her ground it will create a political problem for Labour of far greater significance than the issues relating to health service reform. By Eoin Ó Broin.

The very public row between Minister for Health James Reilly and Minister of State with responsibility for Primary Care Roisín Shortall is about more than personalities. It is also about more than decision-making processes and policy choices within the Department of Health.