Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics

Having some fun with the American Right!

Posted by Jason O on May 13, 2009 in Just stuff

The United States: Nearly as free as we are!

The United States: Nearly as free as we are!

As many of you know, I’m very pro American, and would regard myself as a centre-right liberal. Every now and again I decide to go and pick a fight with someone to the right of me, just to salve my liberal conscience.

The Young America’s Foundation is an ultra-conservative youth movement in the US, and I started a row with one of their people. Have a look, and feel free to jump in here. All good knockabout schools debate stuff!


€1.06 billion reasons why the EU is not in the pocket of big business.

Posted by Jason O on May 13, 2009 in Irish Politics, Lisbon Treaty

Soft on big business? Not on your Neelie!

Soft on big business? Not on your Neelie!

With the scribble of a pen, the EU puts more manners on errant big business than Richard Boyd Barrett, Joe Higgins and Mary Lou could do in their whole life of putting up posters with exclamation points.

The European Union: How d’ya like THEM apples?


European Commission Press Release

13 May 2009

EU Commission imposes fine of €1.06 billion on Intel for abuse of dominant position in the market for computer chips; orders Intel to cease illegal practices

The European Commission has imposed a fine of €1,060,000,000 on Intel Corporation for violating EC Treaty antitrust rules on the abuse of a dominant market position (Article 82) by engaging in illegal anticompetitive practices to exclude competitors from the market for computer chips called x86 central processing units (CPUs), the main hardware component of a computer. The Commission has also ordered Intel to cease the illegal practices immediately to the extent that they are still ongoing.

Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said: “Intel has harmed millions of European consumers by deliberately acting to keep competitors out of the market for computer chips for many years. Such a serious and sustained violation of the EU’s antitrust rules cannot be tolerated”.

For more information, please contact
Babis C. Metaxas
Press Officer
European Commission Representation in Ireland
18 Dawson St.
Dublin 2
Tel: (01) 634 1131, 0877 901 501
E-mail: charalampos.metaxas@ec.europa.eu






Elected Mayors: Does John Gormley have the bottle?

Posted by Jason O on May 13, 2009 in Irish Politics

John Gormley: Balls of steel?

John Gormley: Balls of steel?

We will know the size of John Gormley’s cojones soon when he gives details on what powers Dublin much ballyhooed (Love that word.) directly elected mayor will have.

Sure, we’ll have the usual “powers of consultancy” and the “right” to sit on or even chair committees, but let us be clear: Only one power will matter. If the mayor cannot overrule the city manager, and direct the city manager to do something, then the job is not worth having.

This is where Gormley is going to have his work cut out, because senior civil servants and their Fianna Fail playthings do not want an elected mayor with power, for two reasons. The first is quite noble: They believe that some counties will elect yahoos who will thrash the gaff, and will overrule professional city and county managers for spurious political reasons, and make dumb short term decisions. They’re probably right, and that’s the point. We can’t keep trying to protect the Irish people from their own stupidity. Let them elect a few clowns, and when the people of county X discover that the fella they elected mayor because he was great at the hurlin’ is a spanner, then maybe they’ll pay more attention at the next election.

Fianna Fail isn’t too hot on it because it reckons, especially in the current climate, that nearly all the elected mayors will be won by opposition candidates, giving them real power in their counties and turning them into automatic star candidates for the next general election. This is also probably true, but it misses a point. If you are elected to a 5 year term as Mayor of Galway or Cork, it might actually be a bit of a comedown to become a backbencher. Secondly, there are a lot of political types who might rather be Mayor of Kerry (Jackie Healy-Rae) or South Dublin (Charlie O’Connor) instead of  traipsing into the Dail all the time. And don’t forget that Fianna Failers are most terrified not by the opposition but by their own people. Most FF TDs spend their time sweating about some young FF bucko coming up the ranks behind them, and a shiny new mayor in the home county is just the sort of thing to fill their trousers.

For me, this is a make or break issue for the Greens. If they agree to the FF watered down “elected figurehead” model, then f**k them. They’ll have gone native and deserve a good electoral kicking. As Labour and the PDs (May cherubs carry them to their resting place in heaven) discovered, getting on with FF in government is not always a recipe for reward at election time. Sometimes, you have to do a Des O’Malley, and stand up to the bastards.      

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