Cowen was centrally responsible for crises in economy

Brian Cowen’s 50th birthday on Sunday must have been marked with less than euphoric celebration of his life achievements to date, although the achievements are substantial. To become prime minister of one’s country is a significant accomplishment and he has many qualities of a fine person and, I am sure, a good father, husband and friend.

Government deceives public on social welfare cuts

A coalition of charities, community organisations and trade unions has asked the Taoiseach to assure immediately that no further cuts to social welfare payments or the minimum wage will be made. 'The Poor Can't Pay' coalition advocates the rights of the poor in Ireland and comprises groups such as Age Action, Barnardos, Social Justice Ireland and Focus Ireland. Today, the group published ‘How the Poor Were Made to Pay’, a detailed analysis of the effects of budget 2010 on those living in poverty.

Matters amiss in Robinson affair

The most extraordinary revelation of last Thursday night’s BBC Spotlight programme on Iris and Peter Robinson was the conduct of Peter Robinson hours after, according to him, his wife threatened to kill herself.

On the morning of March 1, 2008,he left his wife at home, without medical attention, and in a condition that required her immediate hospitalisation once doctors arrived. He went into the chamber at Stormont and was jocular and relaxed.

Inadequate labour and immigration laws increase exploitation, racism and damage business

Fine Gael Immigration & Integration Spokesman Denis Naughten yesterday called on Government to properly address the exploitation of migrant workers within Ireland. Naughten contends that many migrant workers are being exploited both in relation to pay and working conditions, a situation which is in turn undercutting Irish jobs, fuelling racism and hurting legitimate employers.

Full statement by Brian Lenihan T.D., Minister for Finance

Statement by Brian Lenihan T.D., Minister for Finance

During the week before Christmas, I underwent tests in hospital which identified a blockage at the entrance to my pancreas. A stent was inserted and the pancreas is now functioning normally. Cancerous tissue has been identified in the material that has caused the blockage. My medical advice is that chemotherapeutic and radiotherapeutic treatment are required. I will begin the treatment later this week.

Dublin City Council proposals will deliver more Dubliners into poverty

The 52 member Dublin City Council (DCC) will vote this evening on its 2010 budget which, combined with last week’s budget cuts, will worsen living standards for Dubliners already living in poverty and threaten to take thousands more into poverty. The People Before Profit Alliance (PPA) is urging Independent and Labour councillors to oppose the measures which will be introduced tonight at the DCC estimates meeting. With 10 and 18 councillors each respectively, Fine Gael and Labour together hold a majority in the council.

Unions sound warning cry

The public sector unions signalled their commitment to opposing Budget 2010 at an protest outside Dáil Eireann yesterday evening. Union leaders were highly critical of the recent Budget and of the government's recent attempts to, in their view, demonise the public service.