Scotland and Ireland the Road to Independence (part III)

Introduction In part I the common heritage of the Scots and Irish was explored. Part II explored the comparative performance of the two economies over the past few hundred years. In part III the current situation is examined. Has independence been a success for Ireland? Should Scotland look at Ireland with envy or pity? Ireland… Read more

Scotland and Ireland the Road to Independence (part II)

Introduction As discussed in Part I, Scotland and Ireland are very similar countries with a largely shared people: the Scots. Ireland is now independent apart from the NE corner. Many in Scotland hope to follow Ireland’s example. Are there lessons that might be learned from Ireland? The countries have had contrasting fortunes over the past… Read more

Northern Irish Futures pt 1 (The Current State)

Introduction As of a few days ago (28/08/18) Northern Ireland surpassed Belgium as the country/region which has been without a functioning government for the longest period of time. How well is Northern Ireland doing? Is this a major worry? The present deadlock seems unbreakable. There was a deal in February generally considered a 5:1 win… Read more

Land of the rising sun compared with the land of the setting sun…

How interesting that not only India but now Japan wants easier visa access as a condition of any new trade deal. I am referring to this FT article (intermittent paywall) for the story (as well as a comment for suggesting the headline). So the ‘hostile environment’ seems to be equally counterproductive towards nations whose lower… Read more

British government to host summit on why other countries should join the EU

I am grateful to the ‘Independent’ for this piece of toe curling news. “London will in July play host to Western Balkans governments including Serbia and Albania, as well as existing EU member states, to discuss reforms to pave the way to future EU enlargement.” Apparently the Foreign Office said “We remain of the view… Read more

On Ypres and Poppies

I was fortunate to be able to take part in the Great peace run and walk in Ypres recently. I have no relatives who fought in the first world war, they thought it a war between Imperial powers, but I thought it was immensely valuable for my 13 year old son in particular to take… Read more

Disgust with the Guardian

I had a pretty idyllic childhood and one major influence was my father, Kevin Danaher, (Guardian obituary here) who was a major figure on the Irish cultural scene with interests in folklore, vernacular architecture and military history. I grew up valuing the indigenous cultures and languages, not just of my native Ireland, but also these… Read more