Politics

ANGRY COMMONERS

Despite a century of republican independence, the common ownership of Ireland’s wealth promised by the first Dáil continued to find its way into the hands of privileged private interests. Public rights and welfare are now subordinate to property rights, citizens are taxpayers, and workers are human resources. 15-min read.

A VERY IRISH COUP

Shaw said it’s past time to see things as they are and ask ‘Why?’; it’s time to dream of what never was and ask, ‘Why not?’ Why not a first-class, single-tier healthcare system, a first-class single-tier education system, housing for everybody, and a taxation system that makes the rich pay their share? 12-minute read.

BROKEN DEMOCRACY

Self-governing republican freedom is shared among equal citizens, and so is the responsibility for maintaining it. That requires active participation from us all, individually and collectively, taking responsibility for the state we’re in. Our democracy is broken. It’s time we did something about it. 10-minute read.

THE NOT-SO-QUIET REVOLUTIONARIES

In 1983, the Supreme Court ruled that laws criminalising homosexuality supported the ‘Christian nature of the Irish State’ and a two-to-one majority voted for the Eighth Amendment. But by 2018, we had legalised same-sex marriage and repealed the Eighth. 12-min read.

CLASS IN THE CLASSROOM

All other things being equal—Leaving Cert results, for instance—students who attend schools in working-class areas are less likely to graduate to third-level study than those from more affluent areas. Why is that? Two classic studies partially explain the disparity, but it took a pandemic to break it open.

THE ESSENCE OF HUMANITY

Drunken, brawling, criminal, lazy, as thick as two short planks nailed together, and not wanted over here—that’s what ‘everybody knew’ about the average Mick when I was growing up in England. Creating a racist stereotype doesn’t need any basis in fact, just an ugly image repeated often enough. (10 minute read.)