Author Archives: Bodger

Marc Power

Last night.

Near the Odeon Cinema on the Malahide Road in Coolock, Co Dublin.

Marc Power was the victim of a pre-planned homophobic attack.

Gardai are currently investigating.

Last night, Marc wrote on Facebook:

I’ve just been the victim of a premeditated homophobic attack here in Dublin. Went to meet someone off Grindr. Was met with a group of teenage boys with weapons. They tried to kill me with these weapons. They were trying to hit me on the head with hammers.

They didn’t manage but I’m in the emergency room in hospital with facial injuries and my car was destroyed. I’m ok but fu**ing angry. I need to find out why Grindr allows violent scum to open accounts.

Gardai investigating after homophobic thugs lure gay man to cinema before beating him with hammer in North Dublin (Dublin Live)

Gay man victim of horrific homophobic attack in Dublin (GCN)

Thanks Frillybiscuits

This afternoon.

Members and supporters of the Mental Health Warriors demonstrated outside the gates of Leinster House.

The group, which is calling for 24/7 mental health services and more funding for mental health services, included Fiona Twomey (red coat) whose 11-year-old daughter Milly from Templeogue, Dublin, took her life in 2016.

Kathy Maguire (third picture), from Newbridge, Co Kildare, also took part in the protest.

Kathy’s daughter Maxine, aged 25, died by suicide in February 2017.


Taoiseach Leo Varadkar; Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald

Earlier today, during Leaders’ Questions, Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald told Taoiseach Leo Varadkar that the protest would be taking place today.

She also recalled the death, by suicide of Grainne Gault’s daughter Elisha on St Patrick’s Day last year, and told him Grainne would be taking part in the protest.

Ms McDonald told Mr Varadkar that, over the past two years, 744 people in Ireland died by suicide.

She added:

“The Government’s failure is most evident in the child and adolescent mental health service, CAMHS, which is on its knees.

“It is crumbling while families and communities cry out for help, which the Government is not providing. Staffing shortages have led to CAMHS beds lying empty and children waiting months for mental healthcare.

“In August, 2,440 children were waiting for mental health services. Half of those children were waiting at least 12 weeks to be seen, while 748 were waiting six months. That is far too long to wait when a young person’s health, and possibly life, hangs in the balance.”

In his response, Mr Varadkar told Ms McDonald:

“Since 2012, the budget for mental health services has increased by 44%.

“I doubt one could find such a large increase in mental health funding in any seven-year period in Irish history.

An additional €40 million for mental health was announced in the budget last week, which brings the mental health budget to over €1billion for the first time.”

He added:

“The Deputy will be aware that the rate of suicide in Ireland has fallen by about 30% in recent years.

“Of course, any suicide is one too many, but we all welcome the fact that suicide rates in Ireland are dropping. It also reminds us that there is more to do.

“The Minister of State, Deputy Jim Daly, who has responsibility for mental health, informed me last week that the CAMHS waiting list is down 25% and still falling.

“That is a very positive development, on which we need to build. We have also invested in improving psychological services in primary care, by hiring an additional 114 assistant psychologists, for example.”

The Taoiseach added that, last week, a 24-hour mental health helpline was established for the first time.

He said:

“People often do not know how to access the 1,000 or so different mental health services out of hours, whether in the evening, at nighttime or on weekends. That helpline, which is based in the National Ambulance Service, is making a real difference.”

Ms McDonald, during her response, said:

“The death of Elisha Gault, the child I mentioned, was not captured in the official statistics.

“She is not officially recorded as a death by suicide. Instead of claiming – I believe erroneously – that deaths by suicide are falling, the Taoiseach would be better served by looking at those real live statistics and understanding that they do not represent the full picture.

“The Taoiseach rattled off figures to me, citing a figure of €40 million. However, only €14 million of that is new money. That is a fact.”

Transcript via

Leah Farrell/Rollingnews and Mental Health Warriors (second pic)

From top: Google Map from Westport to Turlough in Co Mayo; Google Streetview image of N5 between Castlebar and Turlough; Leo Varadkar with Minister for Rural & Community Development Michael Ring at yesterday’s announcement of a €240m Mayo road upgrade


Rural and Community Development Minister and Mayo TD Michael Ring confirmed that the Government will spend €240million on upgrading the N5 Westport to Turlough road in Co Mayo.

The upgrade is planned to include 20km of dual carriageway and a 2.5km link to the N59, while Mr Ring said it will be the largest ever Government investment in Mayo.

He also reportedly said people in the area have been waiting for the road project for 25 years.

Further to this…

Green Party’s Saoirse McHugh last night tweeted about the news, saying:

“This will take a journey of 20mins down to one of 15 mins.

What a phenomenal waste of money.

Who is this even for!?

Perhaps, instead of spending years ploughing up the countryside for a road nobody has ever mentioned wanting, we could start local energy projects?

Rural Ireland isn’t emptying out because of lack of roads.

Farmers can’t sustain themselves, markets and small shops are gone because of big supermarkets, there are no fish left and even if there were the piers are falling into total decay.

We need a proper vision for rural Ireland where small producers and processors can survive.

We need intervention in the housing market so people can find somewhere to live.

We need agricultural reform, fisheries reform, public transport, etc.

I’ve lived in Achill most of my life and have never ever heard anybody talk about needing a dual carriageway.

And all this in the middle of a CLIMATE AND BIODIVERSITY EMERGENCY.”

Minister Michael Ring dismisses suggestion €241m road project for Mayo is ‘parish pump’ politics ahead of an election (


This afternoon.

At Whitehall in London.

The UK’s Green Party co-leader Jon Bartley, who turns 48 today, and Guardian columnist George Monibot (top centre) were arrested during an Extinction Rebellion demonstration.

A video of Mr Bartley’s arrest can be watched here while the arrest of Mr Monibot can be watched here

Extinction Rebellion protests: Green Party co-leader Jonathan Bartley and climate activist George Monbiot arrested on Whitehall (Evening Standard)

Related: Today, I aim to get arrested. It is the only real power climate protesters have (George Monibot, The Guardian)

Young Dublin.

A short film shot in Ringsend, Dublin 4, by Conor Clinch who writez:

I recently shot this video featuring some of Dublin’s youth and their thoughts on Ireland’s recent developments. The video was published this afternoon exclusively on Wonderland magazine.

Young Dublin (Wonderland)

Conor Clinch


On TG4 at 9.30pm.

RTÉ’s Legal Affairs Correspondent Orla O’Donnell will present the story of Amy Dunne on Finné.

Amy became pregnant when she was 16 and took the State to court as she wanted to travel to the United Kingdom for an abortion after learning her foetus had anencephaly.

Amy spoke to Seán O’Rourke on RTÉ Radio One this morning (top) and her interview can be watched back in full here.

Finné: The Story of Amy Dunne aka Miss D (RTÉ)

Cormac Bourke

Cormac Bourke tweetz:

After five incredible years as editor of the Sunday Independent it is time for a new challenge. I am pleased to say I am now editor of the Irish Independent and editor of (with all the great journalism of the Irish Independent and Sunday Independent).


This morning.

In Helsinki, Finland.

Members and supporters of Amnesty Finland hold a demonstration in support of Princess Latifa who has not been seen in public for 18 months, since she reportedly attempted to flee Dubai.

Her best friend Tiina Jauhiainen, who was part of the escape bid, recently told BBC that the princess told armed men she would prefer to be shot than to be taken back home.

Former Irish president Mary Robinson appeared in a ‘family video’ before Christmas 2018 intended to assure the public of Princess Latifah’s safety. In it, Mrs Robinson described the princess as ‘troubled’.

This morning Amnesty Finland tweetz:

Almost 17 000 people signed our petition that demands freedom for Princess Latifa. Huge thanks to each and everyone of you. We won’t give up until Latifa is free!

Related: Sheikha Latifa ‘preferred to be shot than go back home’ (BBC News, October 1, 2019)

Previously: Latifa, Haya And Rescuing Mary

Oh Mary

All That You Can’t Leave Behind

In Denial

Stop that!

This morning.

Helix Theatre, DCU, Dublin.

Irish Tenor, Paul Byrom as Lord Beautface (above left with Chris Corroon as Dame Lola] at the launch of The Helix 2019 Pantomime, The Three Musketeers.

Paul  will play the role of Lord Beautface a new production of the Dumas classic which runs from Friday, November 22 until  January 19, 2020 in the Helix.

Tickets are priced from €17.50 (booking fees apply) and are on sale (at link below).

Oh, yes they are.

Three Muskateers (Helix)

Leon Farrell/Photocall ireland