Irish doctor with too many thoughts, too little time and a blog that's supposed to check in on reality.

Monday, January 31, 2005

A great example of RTE bias. The Iraqi elections appear to have been a marked success, with the insurgents being defied to a large extent by ordinary Iraqis. The RTE story?

"Despite unprecedented security measures, insurgents who declared war on the election carried out a wave of attacks on polling stations.
The Iraqi Interior Ministry said that 30 civilians and six policemen were killed."
Read the whole thing to get a good flavour of the negative spin. Pathetic.

My Social Life

Unlike toddyunct, I have a social life and a fascinating personal hygenie regime. My active social life is really hopping this evening as I watch TV3's "The Political Party". I haven't made up my mind whether or not I like this show yet - I am consumed with a desire to have David MacWilliam's Agenda back on screen so maybe I'm just subconsciously trying to dislike Ursula Halligan. There's something about her which I don't like personally but she's an alright interviewer. I just saw her interview Dick Roche, who was good on the need for planning permission reform and called the electronic voting machine scandal a "slippery banana skin I inherited" (which I think is a little odd) ....then Shane Ross (Ind Sen) and Arthur Morgan (SF TD).....Sinn Fein are obviously scraping the bottom of the barrell when Morgan can say that Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin had the performance of his life in the Dail last week against Bertie...Bertie was on fire and rightly so - C O'C was a little like Mitchell McLaughlin on last week's Q&A - placed under the kind of scrutiny that political parties are rightly subjected to, they stutter, mumble about the British Government and blink furiously. Perhaps I'm being too harsh but 'twas good to know that Arthur Morgan is against punishment beatings...pity Sinn Fein don't take their committment to human rights to the next level and actually start doing something about changing the culture that allows such thuggery to survive in.


Sunday, January 30, 2005

New Blog

Welcome to our new blog, realitycheckdotie. We've started it because of the appalling bias in Irish news media. The extent of the problem was brought home when we discovered we knew what the outcome of the US election was about 3 hours ahead of RTE, merely because we used the internet intelligently. Anyone logging on to C-Span's internet site could see how the crucial votes in Ohio and Florida were going long before major media outlets were prepared to call them.

Therefore we propose to add our voices to the maelstrom of media comment, and exposing the most glaring examples of broadcast and print bias.

Hopefully the site will be kept clear of pointless chit chat about personal hygiene and social lives. I haven't got a social life, and if you have the time to read this site, the chances are neither have you. We'll try and keep informative, opinionated and snappy.

Will NI head back to conflict?

The headline on today's Sindo certainly seems to suggest it's a possibility. The notion that the Provos have been recently recruiting suggests that the northern bank job was intended to actually raise capital for a new campaign, not to pay the IRA Godfathers to wind up their criminal enterprises.

Fionnuala O'Connor, in Friday's Irish Times, suggested that any notion that the IRA could be "wound up" constituted a fundamental misunderstanding of the Republican movement. She points out that the "Army" has always been the essential part, with the political wing being subsidiary. "How can you wind up your core?" she asks.

How indeed?

Will there be the kind of support for a return to the kind of sectarian violence of the past? Can the Republican movement really mobilise the same kind of sympathy which sustained them through the 70's and 80's?

Personally, I doubt it. Conservatives used to talk about "the Socialist Rachet". The idea was that once you gave people any Government benefit, such as free health care, you could never take it back off them. We can see this with the current administration's failed attempt to re-introduce fees for Third Level education.

It's the same with peace. Call it the Peace Rachet. Once you call a ceasefire and reap a whole series of political benfits for "bringing peace", you can't recommence conflict. People from both sides of the divide are benfitting too much.

The Sindo piece suggests that "bombing are off the agenda for the moment". One suspects that they are off the agenda permanently. I very much doubt whether the Nationalist community in the North has the stomach for the kind of carnage which the IRA would unleash after such a long interlude of peace, and the Provisional movement would struggle to justify such a move.

Good headline though. Wonder how Gerry and Martin will react.


Thursday, January 27, 2005

Test Blog

TEST test test TEST