Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

Which TDs are on drugs? Sign a petition to find out

Monday, February 5th, 2007

Drug test your TD. Enda Kenny wants to drug test schoolkids. Enda should be tested too and all the rest. I’d love to know what kind of weed some Ministers seem to be smoking.

Update: John in the comments points to what happened in Italy.

Govt Websites lack basic accessibility standards – Red Cardinal

Sunday, December 10th, 2006

From a press release from Red Cardinal and report on their blog, it seems that the Irish Government websites aren’t really that good for accessibility. The exceptions being Dept. of Arts, Sports and Tourism, Dept. Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Dept. of Finance, Dept. of Social and Family Affairs.

Some key findings:

Government Department sites
25% Failed the minimum standard for accessibility
75% Failed both minimum accessibility and basic coding standards

Public body sites
33% Failed the minimum standard for accessibility
100% Failed both minimum accessibility and basic coding standards

Political Party sites
57% Failed the minimum standard for accessibility
100% Failed both minimum accessibility and basic coding standards

Interesting RSS stats:
25% of Government Department websites use RSS
11% of Public Body Websites use RSS
43% of Political Party Websites use RSS

I hear Richard might be on some radio news bulletins in the morning. 🙂


Monday, December 4th, 2006

Tony Blair

Anti-ID Card Ad. Regulator rules it is not offensive.

Harry McGee joins the blogging world

Wednesday, November 29th, 2006

Harry McGee, Political Editor for the Irish Examiner has now started his own blog.

A very brief introduction. I am the political editor of the Irish Examiner.
A very brief brief for this blog: Running commentary on politics.
A very brief summary of the choice of day to start it: inauspicious.
It will improve though. There is, despite the general sense of indolence here, an election in six month’s time. And next week’s Budget will provide – as we hacks love to write – the opening volleys etc etc

Politics in Ireland – Competition Winner

Sunday, November 26th, 2006

The winner of the Barack Obama book is David Doran. Thanks also to Simon and Ken for their very constructive suggestions. Only 3 people gave feedback so the odds were quite good for winning and it was David’s name I picked out of the jiffy bag.

Now it is time for me to shut off the computer and get ready for my trip to Aberdeen in a few hours. Blog is on auto-pilot once again. Back on Thursday evening.

Irish Politics Blogs – Who are they all?

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2006

There used to be a list (oh no the L word!) on some site that listed the various Irish political bloggers but I can’t find it now. I seem to recall last year that there didn’t seem to be that many Irish political blogs represented at the blog awards so I’ve thrown together the below list from submissions to the last blog awards as well as from the Irish Blog Directory and It’d be nice if we could could tag such blogs so we could stream the likes of and into sections. Are there any blogs I haven’t on the below list?

(Also don’t forget the Politics in Ireland competition. Only a few days left.)

At least the Brits are doing something about online engagement

Tuesday, November 21st, 2006

Tony Blair’s advisor gets all “sky is falling” with blogs and the web. As a result, UK bloggers were not amused.

“We have a citizenry which can be caricatured as being increasingly unwilling to be governed but not yet capable of self-government,” Mr Taylor told the audience.

Maybe then you create systems that allow self-governance? “unwilling to be governed” , er maybe unwilling to be governed by you I would think? I’m sure the people want more input into what their tax money is being spent on and where their country is being steered to. It almost sounds like a civil servant from Yes, Minister in the old boys club giving out about the public wanting to live in a democracy. Something Sir Humphrey would say to a colleague.

“The internet is being used as a tool of mobilisation, which is fantastic, but it only adds to the growing, incommensurate nature of the demands being made on government.”

And….? It is the Government’s job to address the needs of the population and to also communicate to them why decisions are made which both satisy and do not satisfy the demands of the population. This guy is digging a hole for himself and the Government.

“At a time at which we need a richer relationship between politicians and citizens than we have ever had, to confront the shared challenges we face, arguably we have a more impoverished relationship between politicians and citizens than we have ever had.”

How about the notion that the web has highlighted the fact that people are pissed off with the current system be it left or right inclined? That finally those slightly or wholly disillusioned have found a voice and have found others who feel the same?

But at least in the UK they have the Hansard Society, WriteToThem, TheyWorkForYou and so many more organisations, many funded by the Government. The Government itself has e-democracy initiatives and not just press releases about winning numerous e-Government awards.

What is our e-Minister doing?

Politics in Ireland Competition – Win Barack Obama’s latest book

Saturday, November 11th, 2006

In an effort to make Politics in Ireland more useful I’m running a bloggers only competition to seek suggestions on how to improve the service. Sorry but this competition is only available to bloggers. Anyone that blogs ways to improve the site will be entered into a draw to win the new book from Barack Obama called The Audacity of Hope. (I listened to the audio version of his first book and was quite impressed.)

In case you are unaware of what Politics In Ireland does, it is an Irish Politics aggregator. It monitors the net for any blog posts or webpages that mention a TD’s name and then displays it on the main page as well as individual pages for the TD, their constituency and their party.


  1. Any and all suggestions on how to improve will be entered into the draw.
  2. Suggestions are to be posted in public on your own blog. Suggestions via email or phone or carrier pigeon are most welcome but will not be entered into the draw.
  3. Every entrants name will be put into a hat (possibly a baseball hat I own) and the first one taken out is the winner.
  4. Post the link to your blog post in the comments here.
  5. If you don’t want the book I’ll send you a €15 euro voucher for Waterstones.
  6. Competition is open for two weeks.

Party Political Blogcasts – Competition to make your own political ad

Monday, October 30th, 2006

Simon McGarr is running a video competition for people to create political ads.


30 second or less video.
Address a political issue- in the widest sense. Could include voter registration, or a pitch for a certain party, policy or area

Suzy mentioned on her Newstalk stint the other evening that we don’t have any political advertising beyond the party political broadcasts. Probably a good thing but there are no rules for the Internet and what can and cannot be done. Simon’s idea could be the push onto the web that Irish politics needs. It’d be great to see style ads created “by the people, for the people”. A url on the screen would get people to visit political websites with the American style ads.

What would you have in a 30 second ad if you had no restrictions whatsoever?

In the run-up to the UK elections in 2005, Channel4 commissioned the boys that made the fake Volkswagen suicide bomber ad to create fake ads for the main parties. The idea was these are ads the parties would release if they could get away with it. By far the best ad has to be the one for the conservatives showing no-go areas in cities, kids rolling spliffs in dedicated smoking areas in school yards and teachers putting on riot gear in order to teach. Absolutely fantastic ad that preyed on the fears of a liberal government. You can watch the ad streaming from here or here is my attempt to put it on YouTube:

Via Kevin Burton is an attack ad lashing out at George Allen.

If you had the resources, what would you do? Anyone want to make one on road deaths?

Fianna Fail at 39% – FG down 2% Labour down 4%

Saturday, October 28th, 2006

6% jump. Jaysus. So says the Sunday Business Post. Bertiegate does this?