The Digest – Dec 6 2009

Starting now, a Sunday night weekly round-up type thing.

The Digest will contain links to sources and stories worth reading – usually on topics kinda relevant to our terms of reference – from the week that was…

There’ll be about five links under each of three headings, Home, World and Other.


Keiran Walsh, lecturer in UCC, writes about The Murphy Report and intra-agency co-operation on the excellent new Human Rights in Ireland blog. Walsh is currently pursuing a PhD examining the role of risk analysis and preventative measures in child protection. He’s also a former advisor to the Special Rapporteur on Child Protection and Barnardos. Subscribe to that blog.

Chief Cedar, union member and now union critic, WorldByStorm, eviscerates the union leadership for their negotiation failures

That we are, as it were, being forced by orthodoxy to look at only one side of the equation of tax and spend, that being spend.

Indeed one could argue the the strategic goal of the unions should have been to act to put that argument front and centre before the Irish people, ahead of public sector wages, ahead of everything. Because once you accept the parameters of orthodoxy you’re lost, since then it comes down to how much is cut and not why there are cuts. And since the eschatological approach of those arguing for cuts leaves no wiggle room (look at the actuality of unpaid leave, effective 5 – 7% wage cuts, as against… er… 5 – 6% wage cuts sought by Cowen today from pay cuts). Truth is pay cuts may be less penurious than unpaid leave. But that won’t get through the filter.

Despite the impression held by many, just 16% of families traveled north of the border to shop in Quarter 2 (PDF link) this year, says the CSO.

The Sunday BizPost has an interesting one inside today. FYI – The Mail on Sunday have been doing great work covering the movements of assets by certain individuals as of late…

Informed sources said that the banks were using accountancy firms to act as intermediaries to inform family members who might also be held responsible for large loans. The banks are currently making the move with high-net worth individuals whose family members may have cosigned loans and given personal guarantees over the borrowings.


In the UK; a group of doctors have demanded a reopening of the investigation (aka The Hutton Inquiry) into the death of Dr David Kelly. Kelly was the source of a BBC story on the grounds for the Iraq war…

Lord Hutton concluded he bled to death as a result of cutting his wrist and taking an overdose of painkillers.

But Dr Powers, a former assistant coroner, said the cuts would not have caused him to bleed to death and the dose of co-proxamol in Dr Kelly’s body was normal.

Also from the BBC, Blackwater taking bribes?

UKIP leader’s company at centre of international scandal, according to The Observer.

Journalist Jason Walsh of the interesting new Irish website,, on class politics and leftyism, partially through the prism of Labour and the Conservatives.

Elsewhere; the president of Equatorial Guinea extends his 30 year rule with an “improbably overwhelming [election] victory”, reports The Financial Times. Human Rights Watch US said they were prevented from doing their work in the country “where coup plots are annual events”.

Here’s a nice quote from a Reuters story from earlier this week;

… [A] “culture of corruption” contributed to the crisis which led to a $4 billion bank bailout earlier this year, with bank chiefs too cosy with powerful politicians…

… nope, not where you’re thinking – Nigeria.


A short piece by Paul Bradshaw of Birmingham City University on crowdsourcing, pulling from his experience with

Boing Boing have an interesting map representing Wikipedia by the numbers of articles relating to each country. Ireland is a little less covered than Antartica, it appears.

The Scoop on the future of training for investigative journalists.

Lastly, one of my favourite bloggers, Matthew Yglesias, on the persistence of poverty.

One thought on “The Digest – Dec 6 2009”

Comments are closed.