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Cúchonnacht Ó Dálaigh

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  1. Cúchonnacht Ó Dálaigh

    Free Facilities for Learners on the Net

    Another usefull and interesting link to PIE, Celtic Languages and other Indo-european Language ressources: http://titus.uni-fra...t.de/indexd.htm
  2. Cúchonnacht Ó Dálaigh

    Free Facilities for Learners on the Net

    A massive resource containing all the Early Irish language texts which have been rendered in electronic format, along with some texts in Latin and Norman French - many with English translations. Here is the list of Irish texts: http://www.ucc.ie/celt/irllist.html
  3. Cúchonnacht Ó Dálaigh

    Free Facilities for Learners on the Net

    Foclóirí maithe: Useful dictionaries: http://www.englishir....com/dictionary http://www.potafocal.../AdvSearch.aspx http://focal.ie/Home.aspx http://www.csis.ul.ie/focloir/ http://www.dil.ie/ Agus dóibh siúd ar spéis leo Gaeilge na hAlban a fhoghlam: http://www.savegaelic.org/
  4. The lesson of the railways: private is not always best By Ben Chu Eagle Eye - Breaking views from Independent commentators -, Econoblog Wednesday, 4 January 2012 at 11:55 am In my Indy column today I mention that the public subsidy to the railways has increased in real terms since the days of British Rail. For those who are interested, this chart from Sir Roy McNulty’s report on the railways from last year shows in greater detail how the public cost has exploded: The orange bars are the subsidy. As the McNulty report points out, one of the main objectives of rail privatisation in 1993 under John Major’s government was to reduce the level of public subsidy. That particular train is not just late, it’s heading in the wrong direction. What we have here is a lesson for those tempted to assume that wholesale privatisation of public services always produces greater efficiency and reduces public expenditure. McNulty says the British railway system is around 30 per cent less efficient than publicly controlled European peers. And why are our railways so inefficient? This passage from McNulty (p28) suggests an explanation: “Differences in performance gains between Great Britain and these European examples may result from differences in the approach taken to franchising. While Great Britain has franchised all services, franchising in Europe has tended to focus largely on subsidised regional services, with main-line services continuing to be operated by the former state monopoly. This has allowed new franchised operators some flexibility over staffing, with staff given the opportunity to transfer to the new operators or remain with the state incumbent…It has allowed new operators to improve labour productivity and therefore reduce overall costs.” In other words, while a modicum of privatisation can be a public benefit, there can also be large public benefits from keeping key services in the hands of the state.
  5. The Irish village that said 'no' to austerity The usually placid people in the Irish hamlet of Ballyhea have been so enraged by the government's austerity measures that they have taken to marching in the streets every Sunday. But has anyone noticed? guardian.co.uk, Thursday 5 January 2012 20.30 GM Ballyhea villagers march against the bond-holder bailout As the bus pulls up on the empty road to let me off, the driver smiles at me. "This is rush hour," he jokes. "This is the most exciting thing to happen here all day." If there is one thing people know about Ballyhea, it seems, it's that it is in the middle of nowhere and nothing much happens. The taxi driver who drove me to Cork warned me of its sleepiness, and the woman sitting next to me can't understand why I am here. But the reason is simple: Ballyhea may be quiet, but it's angry. Residents have started marching in the hamlet – a smattering of farms and a small housing estate, pulled together by a church, petrol pump and school. The demonstration isn't long – starting from the church they walk along the main road, which connects Cork to Limerick, for a little over 10 minutes, turning back when they reach the speed-limit sign. Yet it has happened every Sunday, through rain and sun, with rising then dwindling numbers, for 43 weeks. The march's organiser, Diarmuid O'Flynn, says he was inspired by the Arab spring, but it's hard to think of a place further from the heat and turmoil of the Middle East than the misty fields of County Cork. Which isn't to say the inhabitants' fury isn't real. Dubbed the "Celtic tiger" in the 1990s, Ireland is struggling under savage austerity measures. The property boom, fuelled by banks' massive lending and foreign investment, collapsed spectacularly when the financial crises plunged the country into devastating recession in 2008. "Personal wealth has been destroyed, thousands of people are sinking into poverty, emigration has returned and unemployment is far too high," finance minister Michael Noonan admitted in December as he announced £1.4bn in tax and charge rises in a bid to drive down the country's debt from a shocking 10.1% of the country's GDP to 8.6% this year. Unemployment has risen to 14.4%, with those unable to find work leaving the country in droves; next year, the Economic and Social Research Institute predicts, 40,000 people will emigrate. But the part that has got the blood of the mild Ballyhea marchers boiling is the bond-holder bailout. In 2008, fearing a run on the banks, the country's former finance minister Brian Lenihan agreed to give an unlimited guarantee covering most of the bonds issued by Irish banks. At the time, it seems, he was unaware how much this could cost. The IMF, on the other hand, believed the bondholders should be "burned" and made to pay for their own mistakes, but pressure from the European Central Bank ensured this guarantee was retained. Morgan Kelly, professor of economics at University College, Dublin, has said the true cost of the bank debt could amount to €100bn and warned: "Ireland is facing economic ruin." Since O'Flynn, a sports reporter at the Irish Examiner, realised the scale of the problem, he has been posting on his blog the ominous amounts the banks must pay out as bonds mature – this month the total will be €3bn. "Where is the money going to come from?" he asks. "Our banks are bust. So it's going to come from us." Yet while the motives may be close to the Occupy movement, whose anger has swept through the US, UK and now arrived in Ireland (Cork's Occupy camp proudly displays one of Ballyhea's two banners), that's where the comparison ends. While the Occupy camps have been criticised for being too unfocused, and characterised as anti-capitalist, Ballyhea's campaign is determinedly single issue and non partisan. "We are not trying to save the world," O'Flynn tells me. "And it is not about the left and right. It is about right and wrong." Denis McNamara agrees. Aged 64, he had never been on a march. A farmer and businessman, from one of the parish's well known families, his concrete business felt the full effects when the the construction market collapsed. Yet it is not this that angers him. "I don't object to the fiscal adjustments in the economy; we can't spend more than we earn. What I do totally object to is repaying the bond-holders – who we had no responsibility for. We object to the government, without any consultation with the people, securing the money owed to those people [the bond-holders]." McNamara agrees many people in the traditionally wealthy "Golden Vale" that Ballyhea sits in are "very conservative". The timing of the march is dictated by the end of mass and attendance numbers by the fixtures of the Gaelic Athletics Association; hurling, a traditional Gaelic ball and stick game, is hugely important in the area and gives the parishes their strong identity. Which is why there are no chants, whistles or drums on the protests. "We are a pretty dignified people," says O'Flynn, "so I thought, 'Have it dignified and quiet'; just the fact we are marching – just let our feet do the talking." So far the event's biggest controversy was a recent decision to march on a Friday afternoon, to increase the impact. "You can see how quiet it is on a Sunday, sometimes we were only holding up one car," says O'Flynn. But causing a disruption made too many of the protestors feel uncomfortable, and after a few weeks normal times were resumed. Yet the mild, almost polite, nature of the protest, and the comfortable backgrounds of many of the marchers, does not mean the community has avoided the impact of the recession. O'Flynn points out that until a few years ago his brother and his family all lived in Ballyhea. "He is an engineer in the Philippines now, his son is in Poland and his two daughters are in England – there's no work around here." Eithne Keating, 55, who has been marching every week since June, lost her job distributing meals on wheels. Her 29-year-old son, a former groundsman, and her husband are also both unemployed. "The banks and big business were the ones making money and now we are the ones paying for it," she says. "It's so hard right now." O'Flynn says at first he was sure that once people knew of the marches they would take off across the country. Instead, despite a few neighbouring towns starting their own and numbers in Ballyhea swelling to 70, people have lost heart. O'Flynn says the Irish media have more or less ignored them. "People are angry, no doubt about it. On the sidewalk they shout: 'Well done! Good stuff! Keep it going,' and we would say: 'Fall in with us, we are only walking up as far as the church and down to the library.' But no. People almost universally support what I am doing, but they think it is a waste of time. People feel powerless. "I worked in Libya for three years and I know that what people were doing in Benghazi, well, they were taking their life into their hands. So, I say to the people here: 'You are not going to be shot, or gassed. You are not going to be torn apart – you just have to go out and walk.'" It's an attitude that has been noted across the country. Despite the drastic cuts, house repossessions and job losses, there have been none of the explosive, violent protests of Greece. A year ago there was a march of 100,000 people in Dublin, but since then protests have been muted – leading commentators to ask why the Irish are taking it so quietly. Many say it's because they know it's payback for living beyond their means during the boom. But O'Flynn dismisses this. "Around here people didn't go mad. This propaganda that we all partied through the good times is complete bullshit." Instead he blames the lack of civil disobedience on "bystander syndrome". "The more witnesses you have to a crime the less likely people are to intervene – I think that's what happening. This is the biggest bank robbery in history. The difference is it's the banks robbing us." McNamara says many people are worried about being seen protesting, fearing it may affect their jobs, or their ability to borrow money from the banks. And both men agree that many Irish people just feel too despairing to believe they can make a difference. The day I join them a cold rain is beginning to fall. Some weeks ago as numbers dropped, the Ballyhea marchers decided to join with the demonstration they sparked in neighbouring Charleville and alternate their protest location. There are only around 30 marchers when I meet them outside Charleville church, but it's a cheerful, determined group. Warehouse manager Pat Maloney, 45, started the Charleville marches and is out today with his 12-year-old son, Alex. "I thought I would check out the Ballyhea march and I realised it makes sense. It's not our debt. I was never given any money from the banks when things were going well, but now they want us to pay their debts? People here are marching to save local hospitals, and police stations, but they should make the connection." Frances O'Brien, 73, has been marching since the first day, and says she will continue because she is so worried for her grandchildren's future. As the march starts down the high street, the demonstrators chat quietly about local sport and shopping. The shops are shut and the streets are quiet apart from people hurrying to mass, but a car toots as it goes by and a lorry is forced to slow to a crawl by the cluster of protestors. Outside the church, Thomas Nelligan is collecting money for a youth group. He says he wouldn't consider joining a march on a Sunday morning. "A lot of people might agree with the issue but they wouldn't walk. I think a lot of people are angry, but don't like to show their feelings or be singled out ... it's just not Irish." Accounting student Barry McCarthy, 19, thinks it is a waste of time. He too is angry with the banks, but the march is too local to make a difference and is just a nuisance, he insists. Yet as the Ballyhea marchers disperse, dismantling their two signs, they refuse to give into lethargy and despair. "You definitely go through some terrible lows," says O'Flynn. "I thought a lot of these people were coming down because I was asking. So, I said to the group: 'Should we just pack it in?' But, 'No, no,' [they said]; they were determined." Instead, he says, they will continue to quietly register their anger, for the weeks and months to come. "At this stage it's not about how many – it's about how long." http://www.infowars.com/the-irish-village-that-said-no-to-austerity/
  6. Cúchonnacht Ó Dálaigh

    George Carlin - We Like War

  7. A great interview with the Serbian cook who provided meals to the Gaddafi family and their guests, including world leaders, for 20 years:
  8. Hillary Clinton aide at the helm of Amnesty International USA. Suzanne Nossel, former assistant to Richard Holbrooke in his capacity as UN Ambassador and currently Hillary Clinton’s Deputy Assistant for International Organization Affairs, has been selected as the new Executive Director of Amnesty International USA. In the discharge of her duties at the State Department, she diligently exploited human rights to benefit imperial ambitions. Ms. Nossel had previously worked for Human Rights Watch, as well as for Bertelsmann Media Worldwide and the Wall Street Journal as Vice President of Strategy and Operations. The AI-USA Board of Directors deemed that Suzanne Nossel’s commitment to the Clinton and Obama administrations was sufficient proof of her competence and decided not to hold a grudge against her for the crimes committed in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, etc. Ms. Nossel has launched several campaigns against Iran, Libya and Syria. In recent months she made a name for herself by misinforming the Human Rights Council in Geneva with a view to getting the resolution authorizing the war on Libya adopted by the Security Council. Ms. Nossel’s allegations have since been debunked. Amnesty International receives funding from George Soros' Open Society Institute , as well as the UK Department for International Development and the European Commission. http://www.amnesty.o...400122010en.pdf
  9. In the wake of the "Arab Spring" and NATO interventions, both official and secret, Qatar seeks to impose Islamist leaders wherever possible. This strategy has led it not only to fund the Muslim Brotherhood and to hand Al-Jazeera over to them, but also to support Al Qaeda mercenaries, who will henceforth oversee the Free Syrian Army. However, this new scenario raises serious concerns in Israel and among the supporters of the "clash of civilizations." he UN Security Council members are at loggerheads over the interpretation of the events that are rocking Syria. On one hand, France, the United Kingdom and the United States claim that a revolution has swept the country, in the aftermath of the "Arab Spring", and suffering a bloody crackdown. On the other hand, Russia’s and China’s take is that Syria is having to cope with armed gangs from abroad, which it is fighting awkwardly thereby causing collateral victims among the civilian population it seeks to protect. The on-the-spot investigation undertaken by Voltaire Network validated the latter interpretation [1]. We have collected eyewitness testimonies from those who survived an armed attack by a foreign gangs. They describe them as being Iraqis, Jordanians or Libyans, recognizable by their accent, as well as Pashtun. In recent months, a certain number of Arab newspapers, favorable to the Al-Assad administration, discussed the infiltration into Syria of 600 to 1,500 fighters from the Islamic Fighting Group in Libya (IFGL), rebranded Al Qaeda in Libya since November 2007. In late November 2011, the Libyan press reported the attempt by the Zintan militia to detain Abdel Hakim Belhaj, companion of Osama Bin Laden [2] and historic leader of Al Qaeda in Libya, who became military governor of Tripoli by the grace of NATO [3]. The scene took place at Tripoli airport, as he was leaving for Turkey. Finally, Turkish newspapers mentioned Mr. Belhaj’s presence at the Turkish-Syrian. Such reports have been met with disbelief on the part of all those who regard Al Qaeda and NATO are irreconcilable enemies between whom no cooperation is possible. Instead, they reinforce the thesis which I have defended since the attacks of September 11, 2001, that Al Qaeda fighters are mercenaries of the service of the CIA [4]. Who is telling the truth? For the past week, the Spanish royalist newspaper ABC has published a daily report by photographer Daniel Iriarte. This journalist is with the Free Syrian Army (FSA) in the north of the country, right on the Turkish border. Iriarte champions the cause of the "revolution" and can never find words harsh enough against "Al-Assad regime." The Free Syrian Army is made up of more than 20 00 people, according to its political chief Colonel Riyadh al-Asaad, but of only a few hundred when listening to the Syrian authorities [5]. However, in the Saturday edition dated 17 December 2011, Daniel Iriarte describes an encounter that shocked him. While his FSA friends were taking him to a new hideout, he came across some foreign insurgents: three Libyans [6]. The first one among them was al-Mahdi Hatari, a Libyan who lived in Ireland before joining Al Qaeda. At the end of the Libyan war, he was named commander of the Tripoli Brigade, then number 2 of the Tripoli Military Council headed by Abdel Hakim Belhaj. He resigned from this function, according to some because of a dispute with the Transitional National Council, according to others because he wanted to go back to Ireland to join his Irish wife [7] The truth is that he headed for Syria. Even stranger: a member of Al Qaeda was among the pro-Palestinian activists, in June of last year, on board the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara. Numerous secret service agents, especially US, had infiltrated the "Freedom Flotilla" [8]. He was wounded and held prisoner for nine days in Israel. Finally, during the Battle of Tripoli, al-Mahdi Harati commanded the Al Qaeda group that besieged and attacked the Rixos hotel, where I was staying with my Voltaire Network companions and the international press, and whose basement served as a shelter for the leaders of the Jamahiriya under the protection of the custody of Khamis Gaddafi [9]. According to the latter, Mahdi al-Harati was being briefed by the French officers on the ground. The second Libyan that the Spanish photographer in the Syrian army is none other than Kikli Adem, a lieutenant of Abdel Hakim Belhaj. As for the third Libyan, nicknamed Fouad, Daniel Iriarte was not in a position to identify him. Iriarte’s testimony dovetails with what the Arab anti-Syrian press has been claiming for weeks: the Free Syrian Army is overseen by at least 600 "volunteers" from Al Qaeda in Libya [10]. The entire operation is run by Abdel Hakim Belhaj in person with the help of the Erdogan government. How can it be explained that a daily newspaper as anti-Assad as ABC has decided to publish the testimony of its special envoy, who sheds light on the nauseating methods employed by NATO and confirms the Syrian government’s thesis of armed destabilization? The fact is that for a week, certain advocates of the clash of civilizations have been riling against a set-up which includes Islamic extremists in a "free world" strategy. Writing on CNBC Guest Blog [11], former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar revealed on 9 December 2011 that Abdel Hakim Belhaj was suspected of complicity in the attacks of 11 March 2004 in Madrid [12], an event that put an end to Aznar’s political career. http://www.voltairenet.org/Free-Syrian-Army-commanded-by
  10. Cúchonnacht Ó Dálaigh

    Enjoy Your Xmas Home Brew sensibly!

    Save me a few bottles for after Christmas, a chara.
  11. Cúchonnacht Ó Dálaigh

    Libyan Commemoration - Baile Átha Cliath, December 2011.

    Laying of a wreath and flowers.