Tag Archives: Ireland

You report that the United Nations has found that Ireland is one of the best places to live. According to the UN’s Human Development Programme Index, we sit behind only Norway, Switzerland and Australia.

This is very strange because, based on a lifetime of reading The Irish Times and listening to RTÉ, I had assumed I lived in a backward, misogynistic, capitalist hellhole.

Karl Martin,
Dublin 13.

Ireland and living conditions (Irish Times letters page)

The European Union’s statistical organisation Eurostat has published its regional yearbook for 2018.

In relation to the GDP of countries within the EU, Eurostat has found:

One of the most striking details of the map [top] is the presence of pockets of relatively high wealth creation that are apparent for almost every capital city region.

“Nowhere was this more apparent than in one of the two capital city regions of the United Kingdom, Inner London – West, where GDP per capita was more than six times as high as the EU-28 average in 2016 (611 %).

“The next highest ratios were recorded in Luxembourg (a single region at this level of detail; 258 %), Southern and Eastern (the Irish capital city region; 217%) and Région de Bruxelles-Capitale / Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest (the Belgian capital city region; 200%).

These were the only four regions across the EU where GDP per capita was at least twice as high as the EU-28 average, although Hamburg (Germany) had a ratio that was only slightly lower and was atypical insofar as its GDP per capita was above that recorded for the German capital region of Berlin.”

The report can be read in full here

This evening.

The Office of the Press Secretary of The White House announced that, along with taking part in a commemoration for the 100th anniversary of the armistice which ended the fighting in World War I in Paris, France, US President Donald Trump will visit Ireland in November.




Our thoughts exactly.


Statement from the Press Secretary (The White House)

Via Richard Chambers


John Braine tweetz:

Spilt summer beer on my shorts that look like Ireland but only the 26 countries.

One for the buke.

Ireland’s real coast, mapped

Via Coast Monkey:

Our marine territory extends far beyond our coastline encompassing 880,000 km2 and this huge area is more than 10 times our land mass. The map above shows this enormous area.

This map was developed by a joint venture by the Geological Survey of Ireland and the Marine Institute, and it shows Ireland’s current designated Irish Continental Shelf, which is one of the largest seabed territories in Europe.

The continental shelf is the extension of a State’s territorial waters, where the natural land extends under the sea to the outer edge of the continental margin beyond 200 nautical miles from the coastline baseline.

Well, there goes plans for a second edition of the buke.

Damn you, Coast Monkey.

Ireland’s coast: Through the eyes of the map maker (CoastMonkey)

Earlier: Gas Man, Altogether

Thanks Spaghetti Hoop

Dredg – Ireland

You have created a falsehood
A focused yet close-minded view
There’s no telling where we’ll be at this same time next year
But I do know one thing it won’t be far from here

Flash Barry writes:

Does anyone know more about this song (above)?  Ireland was from an album called The Pariah, The Parrot and The Delusion (2009) by [alt rock/prog band] Dredg and based on a Salman Rushdie essay.

It’s a cracking tune (lovely break @.34) and the sarcastic lyrics seem to be from the view a person reveling in small town parochial life. There is very little on google about its origins. The singer is called Hayes so that might be a link but they are a born and bred Californian band. Anyone?


2018 World Press Freedom Index

This morning.

The 2018 World Press Freedom Index has been announced.

Ireland has dropped from its ranking of 14th last year to 16th this year.

Reporters without Borders – which is behind the index – explains:

The highly concentrated nature of media ownership in Ireland continues to pose a major threat to press freedom, and contributed to Ireland’s two-place fall in the 2018 World Press Freedom Index.

Independent News and Media (INM) controls much of the daily and Sunday newspaper market, while broadcasting is dominated by the semi-state company RTE.

The 1937 constitution guarantees media freedom, but defamation suits are common.

The high damages awarded by Irish courts in defamation cases have prompted calls for a review of Ireland’s defamation legislation.

The general scheme of the Communications (Retention of Data) Bill, published in October 2017, has been criticized for failing to provide specific protections for journalists.

In November 2017, the Standards in Public Office Commission tried to force a journalist to provide confidential information related to his investigations into alleged planning irregularities.

Interviewing police sources has been virtually impossible since the Garda Siochana Act of 2005, which bans police officers from talking to journalists without prior authorisation. Officers contravening the ban risk dismissal, a fine, or up to seven years in prison.

2018 World Press Freedom Index

H/T: Tom Lyons

This morning.

In Switzerland…

Ahead of the  International Wheelchair Rugby Federation World Championships in Sydney, Australia, from August 5 to 10…

Irish Wheelchair Association Sport tweetz:

Ireland have recorded a sensational 55-47 victory over Brazil at the World Championship Qualification Tournament in Switzerland this morning.



Pic: Brian O’Donovan