Tag: Ireland

E

Eurovison 2016: Ireland

https://youtu.be/NpNGjmhH-p4 So we're just under 100 days until this year's Eurovision spectacular. Time to review the songs selected so far. And why not start with Ireland? Why, it's Westlife's Nicky Byrne with 'Sunlight'. It's not bad. Not bad at all. Definitely Ireland's best entry for a few years. (But remember, I'm wrong on Eurovision predictions ...

G

Getting a passport with your iPhone?

Amazingly, yesterday afternoon I used my iPhone to order a passport card from the Irish Passport Office. Amazingly? Well, I used the iPhone app Irish Passport Card from the Department of Foreign Affairs, filled in some basic details, then took an appropriately grim-looking selfie and I was all done. It took a total of about six ...

No big deal

So Ireland's Minister for Health came out on the radio this morning. The government didn't collapse. The country didn't sink into the Atlantic and the people didn't take to the streets with pitchforks. Leo Varadkar is gay, end of story. While I occasionally comment on the sexual orientation of people in the public eye, I ...

I

It’s that time of year…

Yep. There’s something in the air. You can see it all over Europe, as people across the continent look up with a sense of anticipation and optimism for the future. Exercising their democratic right, they vote in their millions and select… Their entry for the Eurovision Song Contest. Now, I won’t hear a word against the ...

A

A very noble call

I just watched this video. And you should too. Yes, there’s a very local Dublin story that sits behind this speech. But it’s also a universal story. A story about every gay man and woman who has wondered what it is - what precisely it is - about them that bigots hate. I could be flippant and make ...

A

A Eurovision post-mortem

So that's that. Eurovision over for another year. And what a show. Sweden did an excellent job demonstrating that you put can on a fantastic Eurovision without breaking the bank. You just need some style, humour, lashing of irony and avoid the need to sell your country like a commodity. Take note, Azerbaijan. I really ...

E

Eurovision 2013: Ireland

Wow. Now this is different, for Ireland. After a series of epic wins in the 90's, Ireland disappeared without trace. Probably after the Eurovision wiped out RTE's entertainment budget for the best part of a decade. We had to put up with several years of absolute dross. Including a turkey. I like this. It has ...

H

How not to run a country

I’m Irish, but haven’t lived there since 1998. I’ve observed the enormous changes the country has experienced since then, both through the lens of international media and during my own visits “home”. The recent economic collapse – for that is what it is – has left me feeling very conflicted. I would never wish IMF ...

H

He must resign

The scandal of clerical child abuse in Ireland has shown the Catholic Church up for what it really is - a self-serving organisation that views its own laws and members as being above the laws of the countries in which it operates. The fact that bishops, archbishops and cardinals actively hid instances of child abuse ...