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    Today With Sean O Rourke Friday 21 February 2014

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    Today with Sean O'Rourke

    The mid-morning current affairs magazine with the stories of the day, sharp analysis, sports coverage, in-depth features and consumer interest.

    Alan Shatter and GSOC

    The political heat is on Minister Justice Alan Shatter over his handling of the Garda whistle-blower affair and claims that he ignored serious claims of Garda malpractice.  Fianna Fail has claimed the whistle-blower, Garda Maurice McCabe had raised his concerns two years ago but these “ran into the sand”. The dossier of claims relate to cases of murder, abduction and assault. Minister Shatter told the Dail in October that the two Gardai Maurice McCabe and John Wilson had refused to co-operate with an internal Garda inquiry into the cancellation of penalty points. FF leader Micheal Martin says McCabe is owed an apology.

    And then there is the ongoing controversy over the alleged bugging of the Garda Ombudsman’s office. The Minister for Communications Pat Rabbitte joined Sean in studio.

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    Post Offices

    A report commissioned by the Irish Postmasters’ Union from Grant Thornton has found that if the social welfare contract is lost to An Post some 557 Post Offices nationwide would close down. Post Master in Ballymun in Dublin and Executive Member for the Dublin Branch of the Irish Postmasters Union, Dermot Higgins.  Paddy O'Gorman also talked to Post Office clients in Monaghan.

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    Loneliness Study

    While recent years have witnessed greater public awareness and discourse surrounding mental health issues, the impact of loneliness on individuals is still relatively unacknowledged. Recent research has identified a link between loneliness and a range of mental health problems including shorter life expectancy and poor nutrition.

    Dr Joanna McHugh joined  Sean in studio to discuss she is post-doctoral research on the RelAte Project in the Neil programme at Trinity College Dublin.

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    Health Insurance

    A draft White Paper on Universal Health Insurance, revealed in today’s Irish Times, proposes dramatic changes to health cover in this country and would transform the health system. In essence everyone would become a private patient and health insurance would be mandatory. Community rating where everyone pays the same regardless of age would be abolished. Instead supplementary health insurance for private facilities and other items outside the standard package would be risk rated – meaning that the cost could increase as the subscriber got older.Dermot Goode from the healthmarket division of Cornmarket Insurance joined  and Brian Turner a health economist in UCC and  Mark Murphy a researcher in the department of General Practice in the Royal College of Surgeons and a GP in Dublin spoke about the changes.

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    Rugby World Cup 2023

    Former Irish rugby international Hugo MacNeill has been announced as chair of a new working group focused on the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

    This all Ireland body is tasked with looking at the issues involved with potentially bidding for the games. Hugo talked to Sean.

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    Dan Boyle

    Green Party Senator Dan Boyle talks about his recent health problems.

     

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    Callan's Kicks

    A new spy movie, Tinker, Traitor, Shatter, Spy, Callan Kicks gives a sneak preview.

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    The Gathering

    It was a week where the plot grew ever thicker when it comes to the Gardai, the Minister, the Confidential Recipient and GSOC…Michael Noonan provided more reasons to be optimistic that income tax cuts are on the way…and the salary of Rehab boss, Angela Flannery was finally revealed.

    For a look back at these and one or two other stories, joining Sean  in studio were Claire Grady, Editor of The Irish Independent…Mick Clifford, Journalist with The Irish Examiner….and Paul Drury, Columnist with The Irish Daily Mail.

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    Ukraine Unrest

    Ukraine's president says he has reached a deal with the opposition to end the crisis, after all-night talks mediated by three EU foreign ministers.  RTE’s Paul Cunningham and Pat Cox European Union’s Envoy to the Ukraine...joined Sean.

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