Pledge Request: Fax Your TD
John Handelaar is looking for some people to support his efforts to develop an Irish equivalent of the hugely successful UK site WriteToThem.com for contacting UK politicians. The Irish version of the site would allow people to contact their councillors, TDs and MEPs for free. If you are interested in helping out, visit www.pledgebank.com/faxyourtd BEFORE 1ST FEBRUARY.
Tuppenceworth.ie blogAutomatic Number Plate Recognition PQ (7.2.2006, 11:10 UTC)
A little while ago, I said that if the Irish Times wasn’t going to ask follow up questions on the announced-over-Christmas plan to bring in an Automatic Number Plate Recognition system for use by the Gardai, then tiresome obsessives would have to do it for them. Sure enough, here are the questions put down by the Labour Party on the topic, along with the Minister’s answer. 20. Ms O’Sullivan asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the status of the propos...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogDNA Databases (3.2.2006, 13:30 UTC)
I see the Minister has said formally what alert readers will know already- that he intends to implement the Law Reform Commission’s recommendation to introduce a DNA database, but that he won’t be implementing their safeguards to protect citizen’s privacy.
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogI’m Still Standing (3.2.2006, 00:30 UTC)
Kiesha Poiro has a new piece on Tuppenceworth. It is an open letter to Michael Stipe, who has sorted out all her life’s problems in a single song. And assisted her in buying a pretzel. Please don’t misunderstand, Mr. Stipe. I’m not going home to play your record backwards or look for clues in the album art. This is simply a message of thanks. And thanks to you, Mike (Can I call you Mike?), the clouds of confusion have slid apart, beaming light at my forehead. It was in the...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogO2 Row (2.2.2006, 11:36 UTC)
O2 Row Intrum Justitia Phone Call Memo 2nd February 2006 I received two letters dated 30th Jan requesting I telephone Intrum Justitia. Spoke to Paula. She told me that Annette Hutton wasn’t available. 17th January- Client Update: Accept €79 as settlement to be paid within 21 days and close settled in full when payment received. (As per client, balance is due, please pursue.) Credit Management, Customer Services O2 S: Intrum Justicia Act as 02 agent? Paula: they act on their behal...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogSit Down and Be Counted (31.1.2006, 18:22 UTC)
Irish Seal It isn’t often you’re thinking about podcasting and stumble on a reference to your own grandfather. But that’s what happened today when I was bumped towards Richard Develan’s site to listen to his trial “Saturday View“-style podcast, Sunday Brunch. I’d listened to it, and thought it a little too slow, a little too safe and not focused enough on Ireland, but not a bad start. So I subscribed to get the rest of them as they came...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogCourts Service justification for Access Restrictions (28.1.2006, 19:43 UTC)
Back in October, I wrote to the Courts Service asking for them to justify the decision to restrict access to the Four Courts buildings. Mostly this kind of request is filed in the folder for the letters written in purple crayon. But I cited Section 18 of the FOI Acts, which has the happy effect of placing a statutory duty on the state body to respond to my request. And, for a S. 18 request, you don’t have to pay them. So, in early November, I got my reply back. This is the relevant secti...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogTuppenceworth Meet-Up- More To Come (27.1.2006, 00:30 UTC)
Hello all, A cheery change from grumbling about the Four Courts broke through last week when Tuppenceworth, at close to no notice, had its first get together in real life. Special thanks to Fergal, Mary, Emma and their friends for turning up and making sure that I didn’t stare out the window in the Library Bar all by myself. And we also had a chance to say hello to Fergal Breen who turned up to meet us. We were pleased that he felt that we made sense. Emma also brought along a little s...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogFour Courts Portico to be Shut Off? (21.1.2006, 00:01 UTC)
See here and here for the story so far Received today: Dear Mr. McGarr I write to you and your co-signatories further to Mr. X’s letter to you dated the 24th November 2005. I wish to advise that pursuant to Part 9 of S.I. No. 600 of 2001, Local Government (Planning and Development) Regulations 2001, the Commissioners of Public Works in Ireland following compliance with paragraph 90 sub-article (1) of this Act, considers it appropriate that the proposed Development will be carried out w...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogHugh Exodus (18.1.2006, 11:27 UTC)
Last time, I posted the link to my script for an animated hardboiled, Raymond Chandler-style detective story, aimed at children- Hugh PI. This time, I decided to push the boat out and go for a full sized Biblical Epic. Hugh Exodus is now available through a Creative Commons licence. It is a Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 License. This means that people can use it and/or change it, so long as they both credit me as the creator and their use isn’t commercial. But they have to di...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogCiaran Cuffe Asleep at the Handlebars? (16.1.2006, 20:54 UTC)
Ciaran Cuffe is the Green Party’s spokesman on Justice and a TD for Dun Laoghaire. He has a blog. Taking a look, the only recent Justice related posting is on a visit to Templemore on Minority Recruitment Day. Now, I’m interested to hear that they have a Minority Recruitment Day, don’t get me wrong. All in favour of it. And he also mentions at the end of his post that perhaps the trainee Gardai might benefit from spending a bit of time away from their blue ghetto, mixing with...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogTuppenceworth Meet-Up (15.1.2006, 22:03 UTC)
Do you know, in the five years that Tuppenceworth has been running, I never once thought of a meet-up? So, I suggest I remedy this error. What say people (in comments, for preference, but email will be ok too) to a meeting next Friday the 20th at 8ish?. I’ll suggest the Library Bar in the Central Hotel in Wicklow St in Dublin, but it might be packed. If anyone has any better ideas for a venue then let us know. I hope some of the people in this eerie, shifting spider-web of connections...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogHugh’s Adventures: Hugh PI (14.1.2006, 10:17 UTC)
Now, this is an experiment. I’ve got a few scripts I wrote years ago stashed away in the computer here. And a few days ago TCAL reminded me that some of them might be good. I’m not all griping about privacy and harassing public servants, you know. They are stories from an animation/live action children’s series called Hugh’s Adventures. You’ve never heard of it because it doesn’t exist. But perhaps someone might want it to when they read the stories. Or ...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogCyber-Bullying in Alex’s (11.1.2006, 22:41 UTC)
I’ve written before on the topic of online libel, so my interest was piqued by word of mass suspensions from private girls’ school Alexandra College for online bullying. There are two stories on the topic in today’s Independent (registration required, but bugmenot may be able to help you out in that regard). The bullying took the form of comments on the hateboard site, and the sheer venom has to be seen to be believed. Have teenage girls become more evil since I was in school? ...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogA Model Exchange (11.1.2006, 18:25 UTC)
From the Comments to Liz McManus Blog [To preface my comments, I’m the Mayor of Letterkenny and have been blogging actively since June ‘05] On my website, I try to include everything I can that is of relevance in the post. It’s vital; people don’t like following links. I’d also consider it important to try to keep the information together. Most people who visit my website are looking for a specific issue (eg planning, housing, the Fleadh Cheoil) and are coming in...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogData Retention: Proinsias De Rossa responds to email (11.1.2006, 12:02 UTC)
There was some discussion of my previous post on Proinsias De Rossa’s vote, making him the only Irish MEP to vote in favour of the Data Retention Directive passed in December of last year. (More comments here and here) I posted his statement following the vote. Now I thought I’d post his response to my email, which landed with me today. And under that you can read what he said before the European Election. (cf The Sunday Business Post) Dear Simon, Thank you for your recent email...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogLiz McManus Blog (6.1.2006, 19:29 UTC)
I noticed a new blog appear on Planet of the Blogs today- Liz McManus, the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party. She’s clearly writing it herself. I’m in favour of Ms. McManus, as she appeared to wish my Grandmother a happy birthday a few years ago at her house party. And now I’m glad to see that she’s writing in a place that potential voters (both for herself personally, and the Labour Party) can read her stuff. More politicians ought to be at this. (And the Labour Party ...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogTechnolotics (6.1.2006, 15:09 UTC)
If I were Gareth Stack, of the Pod-and-videocast Technolotics, I would contact Bernie Goldbach and ask him if he knew any way of getting a 2-5 min segment from Digital Rights Ireland for his show. I would also read the Digital Rights Ireland pamphlet on Libel Laws in Ireland. And give a copy to his other contributors.
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogAmazing Grace (5.1.2006, 10:37 UTC)
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me Have you ever felt a moment of grace? Some call it enlightenment, some call it muse, some call it inspiration, some call it spirit, and some call it the collective unconscious. But have you ever felt it? A man, a slave trader all his life, in the middle of a terrible storm at sea, wakes up and realizes how wretched his actions have been. There is a deep sense of overwhelming sorrow and pain. Then a pinhole of light opens on a new p...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogGarda Traffic Monitoring Plan Raises Questions (4.1.2006, 12:12 UTC)
The sleepy days between Christmas and New Year are traditionally a time to release news you don’t want anyone to ask questions about. This year two stories found their way into the public domain which, now that we’re all trying to shake off the coma of Roses and tinsel, deserve a closer look. First, we have Conor Lally’s story on the front page of the Irish Times that there will be a “€6 million Garda camera and computer system” introduced ‘in the comin...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogThe Danger of Power in the Hands of an Idiot (3.1.2006, 14:01 UTC)
I’m afraid that in the course of installing and tweaking two new spam-combating plugins, I managed to wipe out all of December’s comments. This is particularly galling, as it included the sequence of comments which attended the Data Retention votes. Unless somebody knows how to bring back these comments (perhaps Tom or Justin?), moderated into the void by the unbending (read, it doesn’t have an obvious undo button) Spam Karma 2 plugin, I’m afraid we’ll all just ...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogData Retention: Brian Crowley’s Explanation (29.12.2005, 10:18 UTC)
As before, my thanks to The Dossing Times for permission to reprint the below. Thank you for your email regarding the voting on the ALVARO Report on Data Retention. As you may be aware the two largest political groups in the Parliament, the EPP and PSE, agreed a deal on a compromise package of amendments which forced the Rapporteur, Mr Alvaro to withdraw his name from the report. The main points with regard to the amendments which were adopted relate to the type of data to be retained and thi...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogData Retention: Simon Coveney’s Explanation (23.12.2005, 09:28 UTC)
I thought I’d collect up some of the other responses from MEPs to constituants who asked why they voted the way they did. My thanks to The Dossing Times, who gave me permission to repost the letters from here. (You can also see the letter he sent at the end of that link as well). Thank you for writing to me and expressing your views in relation to the vote on data retention. I am very much aware of the concern surrounding this proposed Directive. I would like to briefly outline my views ...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogData Retention: De Rossa’s Explanation (19.12.2005, 12:22 UTC)
I haven’t seen this anywhere else and a number of the comments in the earlier post voiced a specific disappointment with Proinsias De Rossa’s decision, alone amongst Irish MEPs, to vote in favour of the Data Retention Directive. So in the interests of fairness, I reproduce below his statement on the matter. Statement by PROINSIAS DE ROSSA, MEP Labour Party MEP for Dublin 14 December 2005 McDowell should now adopt European Parliament’s Data Retention legislation Speaking ...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogSilicon Republic kills Mac Mail (18.12.2005, 14:30 UTC)
Well, it did last Monday the 12th December anyway, when it sent me out its eMonday newsletter. Whenever the Mac Mail programme tried to open the email, or even show it in the preview window, it crashed totally. When it came back it said that Mail had new settings, and did I want to use these new ones, or go back to my original ones. I went back to my original ones, and threw eMonday, unread, into the bin. Was this just a personal quirk, or did other people, perhaps with different mail appl...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogData Retention: Ireland, Freedom’s Odd Champion (16.12.2005, 11:55 UTC)
Data Retention Hits the Front Page Originally uploaded by Editor_Tupp. The Data Retention vote in the European Parliament is today the front page story in Dublin’s Metro Newspaper. ‘Stop the Net Spies’ it gratifyingly says. It leads with a spokesman for the minister for justice saying that he intends to fight this law hard, and then carries on with paragraphs of helpful quotes from Digital Rights Ireland Chairman, TJ McIntyre. But as you can see in this ...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogData Retention: How Your MEPs voted (15.12.2005, 11:39 UTC)
Now, after a little help from Europe Direct I can bring you the votes of Irish MEPs in relation to the final Data Retention Directive vote yesterday. (via the unworkable europarl website) Dublin Proinsias De Rossa (Lab- ESP)- For Mary Lou McDonald (SF- GUE/NLG)- Against Gay Mitchell (FG-EPP)- Against Eoin Ryan (FF-UEN)- Abstained East Liam Aylward (FF-UEN)- Abstained Avril Doyle (FG-EPP)- Abstained Mairead McGuinness (FG-EPP)- Abstained South Simon Coveney (FG-EPP)- Abstained Brian Crowley (F...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogData Retention Debate Live! (13.12.2005, 15:59 UTC)
Rubbish debate. Watching the stream of the Debate on the introduction of Data Retention Directive. The live stream is all the excitement of the European Parliament on your very own screen. http://europa.eu.int/comm/avservices/ebs/welcome_en.cfm To get hold of the stream just click on the green EBS Live button on the right. Then click on the EN button on the player, or you’l get them all talking in their own languages. Nonetheless, watching them, the quality of yap is very variable. C...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogMEPs Need You To Fill Their Brains With Info (9.12.2005, 15:06 UTC)
A defining point in the EU Data Retention saga (what an alluring set of words) will come next Tuesday/Wednesday, when the EU Parliament will vote on the latest version of the planned European law to force data retention on every member state. The last we heard of this matter, the parliament had produced a minimalist version of the Commission’s Directive. It was to endorse a maximum of 1 year’s storage of voice and mobile location data, and 6 months of IP (internet) data. You can rea...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogGeorge Best (3.12.2005, 12:00 UTC)
George Best is being buried today in Belfast. He has been granted, if not a state funeral, then certainly a public one. He was a genius- footage of him playing shows the impossible. I was told an, almost certainly apocryphal, story that reflects just how great his talent was, and how important football fans felt that talent was to them. It is also a story I think is brilliantly Irish in tone, even though I have no idea of its provenance. George Best is in a luxury five star hotel, on the to...
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Tuppenceworth.ie blogA Cry for help (29.11.2005, 22:43 UTC)
The law is an ass, some say. That may be the case sometimes. But it is safe to add that legal websites are always arsey to work around. So it is with this page from the courts service: http://www.courts.ie/legaldiary.nsf/download/1?opendocument This is the legal diary. I want a way of automatically checking the Legal Diary Part 2, without having to go to the bother of downloading it in word .doc or .pdf format and doing a manual search every single day, for a particular phrase. I then want t...
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