Well the European Court of Justice has ruled within the last hour on the pensions of 1,500 former employees at Waterford Crystal.
The court has decided that the state was indeed responsible for protecting the pensions of the staff under EU law and joining Pat was Jimmy Kelly a former Waterford Crystal worker and Unite’s regional secretary. Pat was also by Gary Byrne, Solicitor for the workers and by Sean Maher one of the Waterford workers.
The Government launched the personal insolvency service last week with much fun fare. The aim is to have new arrangements put in place to help struggling mortgage holders who find themselves unable to cope with their debts. As more and more people read through the guidelines more questions are being asked about how it’s going to work in practice. Joining Pat in studio was the man in charge of the whole operation Lorcan O’Connor, Director of the Insolvency Service of Ireland.
Is it time for our Government to take the foot of the austerity pedal and stimulate the economy?
Some economic gurus including Ashoka Mody, former IMF chief of mission to Ireland, have claimed that austerity is not working. The European Commission President Jose Manuel Barosso said the EU should place a greater emphasis on policies that stimulate growth and less on so called austerity measures – “ I think this policy (austerity) is working on Ireland- it is a painful programme but it is working”.
Perhaps it’s a shift in EU policy, an acknowledgement that austerity has failed, or a maybe a reminder to the Government to keep cutting. The austerity road has also been questioned by Minister Joan Burton and the President Michael D. Higgins.
Joining Pat was Economist Michael Taft of UNITE, Chief Economist of IBEC, Feargal O’Brien the group that represents business and by Richard Bruton, Minister of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.
It was Christmas Day, 1952, Frank Sinatra sang White Christmas to an exclusively white audience at Government House in Nairobi, the seat of British colonial rule in Kenya. Clark Gable, Ava Gardner and Grace Kelly were in the audience — they were in Kenya to film Mogambo. Presiding over the occasion was the Governor of Kenya, the aristocratic Sir Evelyn Baring, accompanied by his wife Lady Molly, a woman so grand that, when she boarded the ship for Africa, mistaking the Admiral for a porter, she handed her handbag. This is one of the many insightful and comic stories in Small Wars, Far Away Places a new book by my next guest the Historian Michael Burleigh and he joined Pat on the line.
It is reported in many of today’s newspapers that the main suspect in the murder of Detective Adrian Donohoe has fled the country. The father of two was shot dead in a botched robbery at Lordship Credit Union in Co. Louth on 25th January this year. Despite the huge publicity the murder received and numerous public appeals for information by an Garda Siochana, the case remains unsolved.
Joining Pat was Michael O’Toole, crime correspondent of the Irish Daily Star and former detective garda and now Drogheda Borough Councillor, Richie Culhane.
Every year, more than 10,000 people in Ireland have a stroke. It is the biggest cause of acquired disability and the third biggest cause of death in this country – and it’s not just among older people - one third of strokes happen in people under sixty-five years of age. Recently, we heard BBC presenter, Andrew Marr’s story as he came on his own programme to talk about how his stroke occurred.
This Friday is Stroke Survivor’s Day and Pat was joined in studio by a survivor of stroke, David Bowe and by Dr Ronán Collins, Stroke Consultant on the Irish Heart Foundation Council on Stroke who works in Tallaght Hospital.
Find out more information on their website www.stroke.ie
If llisteners would like to talk to someone, they can speak one to one with an Irish Heart Foundation nurse on 1890 432 787.
Birds of Chicago, is a collective based around JT Nero and Allison Russell. Whether touring as a duo or with the full family band, Nero and Russell have emerged as two of the most compelling new voices in North American Roots music. They have been spending a few days in Dublin before their gig tonight in Whelan’s –They are with their full band over in Studio 8.
As we’ve been hearing in the news headlines SIPTU President Jack O’Connor has come up with what he considers to be a workable formula to make up the €1 billion required in savings from the public sector pay bill. Mr O’Connor says the government could use some of the proceeds from the promissory note deal and could hike taxes on the wealthy. So is there anything new in this? How will the private sector react? And how likely is the government to listen?
Joining Pat in studio were Sean Murphy, deputy Chief Executive of Chambers Ireland and Eoin Ronayne, general secretary of the CPSU.