The Daily Wire

What's happening in and to the Seanad, Freedom of Information isn't free and Ireland's top exporter

David Cochrane Wed, Jul 17
 
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  • 09:19
    By far our most popular article on IrishTimes.com this morning is Miriam Lord's account of Senator Jim Walsh's comments during the abortion debate yesterday.
    • Look carefully today at the women around you. All those damaged, drug-addled, alcoholic, self-harming, depressed, sex-addicted, suicidal women. Because they are among us. In great numbers, apparently.

      There’s a lot of them about in the world, according to Fianna Fáil’s Jim Walsh, who told the Seanad about the suffering of women who have had terminations.
    > The air froze in the chamber: Walsh’s input was disgusting

  • 09:23
    It's David Cochrane here, and I'll be liveblogging throughout the day here on IrishTimes.com
  • 09:35
    Staying with the Seanad (for now anyways) the debate about how much the Seanad actually costs rumbles on.

    Irish Times' Political News Editor Arthur Beesley reports this morning that the Government is insisting that the aboltion of the Seanad would save €20 million, or €100m over a parliamentary term (Dáil term of course, if the Seanad was abolished). Arthur's piece goes somewhat towards giving a breakdown of what the costs actually are.

     > Seanad savings claim of €20m ‘not exaggerated’
  • 09:42
    Microsoft has become the top exporter in Ireland, increasing its export turnover by 37 per cent in the past year and beating competition from fellow tech firms Google and Dell, writes Ciara O'Brien.
    • The technology giant, which has been operating in Ireland for more than 25 years, increased export turnover to €13.7 billion, the 2013 edition of Top 250 Exporters in Ireland and Northern Ireland showed today. Microsoft employs more than 1,200 people directly, and has 700 contract staff on its books.

    > Microsoft tops Irish exporters list

    Staying with Microsoft, Bloomberg reports that the firm have moved to address concerns that they've helped the US government collect customer information. The company insists that they don't provide access to emails, IMs or Skype calls.

  • 10:04
    Following on from Harry McGee's report yesterday that nuns will not pay Magdalene compensation, Justice Minister Alan Shatter told RTÉ's Morning Ireland this morning that he's not considering revoking the charitable status of the four religous orders, and that there was no legal recourse against the Orders' decision
    • The Mercy Sisters, the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity, the Sisters of Charity and the Good Shepherd Sisters have informed Minister for Justice Alan Shatter in recent days that they will not pay into the fund.

    > Shatter rules out stripping orders of charitable status

  • 10:34
    Sky are reporting that Manchester United have rejected a bid from Chelsea for Wayne Rooney.

  • 11:03
    Cabinet papers from as recently as five years ago are to become available under FoI, writes Mary Minihan
    • Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin obtained approval at yesterday’s lengthy Cabinet meeting for the text of a new FoI Bill and he is expected to announce details of the changes today.

    Mary writes that the upfront application fee of €15 will remain, but appeal fees will be reduced. 

  • 11:05
    Californian TV station KTVU's broadcast of four made-up names for the pilots of the Asiana plane that crashed at San Francisco airport has been well aired by now. US comedian Stephen Colbert's take on it last night is worth a moment of your time this morning.
  • 11:05
  • 12:07
    The Vatican announced yesterday evening that it's to grant 'indulgences' to follows of Pope Francis on twitter.

    The indulgences reduce the amount of time that Catholics will have to spend in purgatory after they've confessed their sins. 

    From the Guardian
    • ... the Vatican's sacred apostolic penitentiary, a court which handles the forgiveness of sins, has also extended the privilege to those following the "rites and pious exercises" of the event on television, radio and through social media. "That includes following Twitter," 
  • 12:34
    Vincent Browne's column in today's Irish Times is now online, where he calls the plan to abolish the Seanad a 'political stunt'.
    • The proposal to abolish the Seanad was a political stunt, the framing of the question to the people is another political stunt, and the timing of the referendum is yet another political stunt..... 
  • 12:54
    This just in...
    • The Department of Finance and Central Bank conspired with Anglo Irish Bank in its advancing more than €2 billion in loans to Quinn companies for the unlawful purpose of propping up its share price, it has been alleged at the Commercial Court, writes Mary Carolan

      That conspiracy involved the department arranging for documents from Anglo to be “significantly amended” to disguise the true extent of its knowledge about what was happening in relation to the loans, the Quinn family claims.

    Regulators ‘conspired with Anglo’ to prop up share price

  • 13:50
    An injunction is being sought by a man to prevent his pregnant girlfriend from travelling to the UK for an abortion.

    >  Man seeks to stop partner travelling to UK for abortion
  • 14:17
  • 14:34
  • 15:43
    A High Court jury has failed to reach a verdict in a defamation action brought over an article by Sunday Times columnist Brenda Power, writes Mary Carolan at the Four Courts...
    • The jury was discharged today after deliberations lasting almost eight hours resulted in no agreement. The case will be relisted for another hearing before a new High Court jury unless a settlement is reached in the meantime. 

    Jury fails to reach verdict in Sunday Times defamation case

  • 15:54
    Here's the Martyn Turner cartoon from today's Irish Times....
    Here's the Martyn Turner cartoon from today's Irish Times....
  • 17:10
    Laura Slattery reports that the Government are looking at the possibility of increasing the amount of public money that RTÉ following a recommendation from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.

    The report also recommends allowing further minutes of airtime for commerical adverts. 

    > RTÉ may receive more public money
  • 17:13
    Irish Times' Food and Farming Correspondent Alison Healy has a superb feature on how a rooftop farm is showcasing a growing movement. The Urban Farm, a not-for-profit showcase set up to encourage people to consider growing their own food in small spaces is a hive of activity...

    Dublin rooftop Urban Farm showcases a growing movement

  • 17:49
    That's it for Wednesday's live blog, we'll be back tomorrow same bat-time, same bat-channel (er, IrishTimes.com).