Sunday, 24 May 2015


Paddy’s self-respect washed away in drool of royal visit
Friday, 22 May 2015 6:00

Written by: Dara BradleyPrince Charles meets Minister Simon Coveney; John Killeen, Chairman the Marine Institute; and Dr Peter Heffernan, CEO the Marine Institute, at the Maraine Institute in Oranmore on Tuesday. Photo: Colm Mahady/Fennells.

bradley bytes,britain, dara bradley, galway city tribune,Prince Charles, royal visit
Dara Bradley

Bradley Bytes – A sort of political column by Dara Bradley

It’s official – we’re a nation of arse-lickers. West-Brit arse-lickers. We’ve always suspected it but the Royal visit confirmed it. The arrival in Galway of Britain’s Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, brought out the collective arse-licker.

The fawning over the duo at NUI Galway, Marine Institute and Druid Theatre was quite spectacular. The collective drool that dripped from the mouths of Galway’s star-struck dignitaries and officialdom was so great, the Council could have issued a flood warning.

It was embarrassing stuff.

They couldn’t help themselves; the drool just gushed at the very sight of an unelected, future king of a foreign land.

Most of you – those who aren’t ‘into’ curtseys or doffing caps – couldn’t care less about Charles or Camilla. But officials and hangers-on and media fawned at the feet of the Royal couple.

Politicians led the fawning: they posted nauseating selfies and updates on social media telling how they stood beside/saw/shook-hands-with/licked-the-backside-of the next King of England.

Was it for this, etcetera, that the men of 1916 died? Independence to drool over our neighbours’ elite?

Pull yourselves together, people.

NUIG was beside itself, too. It ‘live streamed’ the visit and even changed its Twitter profile to a photograph of the Royals smiling on campus. At least it used to be known as Queen’s college. Others had no such excuse.

RTÉ, for example, went berserk with its blanket coverage. And whoever writes press releases for the Marine Institute went into overdrive with the phrase “His Royal Highness”. We counted nine references to “HRH” or “His Royal Highness” in their despatch to media.

Seriously lads, even Charles would be mortified.

But at every turn during the visit there was a snout itching to get as close to the Royals’ bottoms as possible. Falling over each-other, they were.

It’s an historic visit. And it’s very welcome. Let bygones be bygones.

But there was no need to be slobbering over them.

We engaged in the favourite pastime of a nation with an inferiority complex: lapped up Johnny Foreigner patting us on the head and telling us how great we are.

Maybe you could understand it, say, if the Queen was here; or if they sent over Prince Harry – at least he’d be a bit of craic – or his older brother, Prince William and his wife, Kate Middleton.

Anyway, let’s hope Charles and Camilla had a good time and go back to England and Wales and tell all their subjects to come visit us. We’re all for welcoming visitors, and certainly the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall are deserving of a ‘ceád míle fáilte’.

But do you really need to flush away your self-respect in the process?

Maybe we could regain some of that dignity by sending Clarence House the inevitable Garda over-time bill for the hundreds of additional Gardaí on security duty.

When Daniel met Charles

One man who certainly wasn’t slobbering over Prince Charles at NUIG was Daniel Higgins, son of Michael D. Maybe it’s because he’s used to meeting VIPs, but Daniel played it cool.

In the Aula Maxima, student Daniel, who was introduced to Charles as the president’s son, explained his research project.

“It was all very nice,” Daniel told his Facebook friends. “But just before he goes I say, ‘I recently saw Prince Harry on the television playing soccer. He’s doing great things for red haired people!’”

The Prince replied, “Yes. Did you find inspiration?”

Daniel’s response? “I tap my head and go, ‘I like Harry but I’m actually golden blonde sir, golden blonde’”.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.


It's not so much what you have left on your media device, it is what British Intelligene plant on it, you should be concerned about.

GCHQ Intelligence officers given immunity from hacking laws, tribunal told

Legislative changes exempting law enforcement officers from ban on breaking into people’s digital devices were never debated by parliament, tribunal hears
Hacking into private computers, laptops or tablets appears to fall under a general class permission for such activity, Privacy International said. Photograph: Graeme Robertson for the Guardian

Owen Bowcott Legal affairs correspondent

Friday 15 May 2015 18.52 BSTLast modified on Saturday 16 May

GCHQ staff, intelligence officers and police have been given immunity from prosecution for hacking into computers, laptops and mobile phones under legislative changes that were never fully debated by parliament, a tribunal has been told.

The unnoticed rewriting of a key clause of the Computer Misuse Act has exempted law enforcement officials from the prohibition on breaking into other people’s laptops, databases, mobile phones or digital systems. It came into force in May.

The amended clause 10, entitled somewhat misleadingly “Savings”, is designed to prevent officers from committing a crime when they remotely access computers of suspected criminals. It is not known what category of offences are covered.

The act is primarily deployed to provide legal cover for domestic investigations. It is thought that individual warrants are not being obtained to justify each inquiry. Different legislation – section 7 of the Intelligence Services Act, nicknamed the “James Bond clause” – is believed to permit activities abroad that would otherwise be illegal.

Addressing the Investigatory Powers Tribunal, which deals with complaints about the intelligence services and surveillance, lawyers for Privacy International said they had only been informed of the alteration earlier this week.

The effect of this amendment has passed everyone by … It was hidden in plain sight.Ben Jaffey, Privacy International

“We had previously thought [hacking] in this country to be unlawful,” said Ben Jaffey, a lawyer representing Privacy International. “The effect of this amendment has passed everyone by. Attention was not called to it during the parliamentary process, which may not have been accidental. It was hidden in plain sight.”

Hacking is more damaging than mere interception of messages, Jaffey told the tribunal, because it involves unlocking a backdoor into someone else’s computer system which was meant to be secure. It is not clear whether the damage done is always made good following a hacking attack.

Hacking into someone’s computer appears to take place under a general class permission for such activity, Jaffey said. “There’s something profoundly objectionable in bugging and burglary of computers without any [individual] authoritisation from the secretary of state,” he told the IPT.

Changes to the Computer Misuse Act were introduced by the Serious Crime Act 2015 which received royal assent on 3 March 2015. No reference to the true impact of the changes was made in the parliamentary explanatory notes that accompanied the bill, according to Privacy International.

Nor was there any public debate, the organisation claimed. “No NGOs, regulators, RIPA commissioners, the Information Commissioners Office, industry, or the public were notified or consulted about the proposed legislative changes,” it added.

“The underhand and undemocratic manner in which the government is seeking to make lawful GCHQ’s hacking operations is disgraceful,” Eric King, the organisation’s deputy director said after the hearing. “Hacking is one of the most intrusive surveillance capabilities available to any intelligence agency, and its use and safeguards surrounding it should be the subject of proper debate.

“Instead, the government is continuing to neither confirm nor deny the existence of a capability it is clear they have, while changing the law under the radar, without proper parliamentary debate.”

Professor Peter Sommer, one of the UK’s leading experts in the Computer Misuse Act, said he had also only belatedly discovered the changes to the legislation. Altering the law without proper public debate, he said, risked “building up unnecessary mistrust”.

“I wasn’t aware of it until recently,” he said. The previous clause dated from a time when police officers physically seized computers and examined them in a police station.

Security services capable of bypassing encryption, draft code reveals

“Now if you have remote access,” he said, “you can hack into a computer and put in a Trojan horse program. I have looked at the government notes covering the changes and it was extremely obscure guidance. But they are giving highly intrusive powers to go into someone else’s computer.

“If this had been done properly, people would have said we want a principled debate about this. There’s a danger now that [lawyers] will say that the police or spooks have put things into their clients’ computers.”

In February, the Home Office did publish a “draft equipment interference code of practice” which explained how law enforcement officials could track down serious criminals and terrorists by hacking into their computers.

It did not, however, at that stage explain that the Computer Misuse Act was being altered.

Last May, Privacy International, along with seven internet and communications service providers, filed complaints with the IPT challenging GCHQ’s hacking activities. The full complaint is due to be heard in the autumn.

The claim asserts that GCHQ’s actions were both unlawful under the Computer Misuse Act, which criminalises hacking, and that there was not sufficiently detailed legal authority to make GCHQ’s hacking “in accordance with law” as required by Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

The removal of criminal liability for enforcement officers also, it is alleged, opens the way for the intelligence agencies to conduct cyber-attacks within the UK.

In a separate development, the Home Office has published guidance on the acquisition of communications data relating to privileged information held by lawyers, journalists, doctors and others.

A Home Office spokesperson said: “There have been no changes made to the Computer Misuse Act 1990 by the Serious Crime Act 2015 that increase or expand the ability of the intelligence agencies to carry out lawful cyber crime investigation. It would be inappropriate to comment further while proceedings are ongoing.”



Precisely as the right-wing Institute for Fiscal studies predicted before the Election, George Osborne is now under pressure (from the Institute of Directors) to “slash spending”. The IoD has gone one on from “cut”: perhaps next time the verb will be “decimate”. And then “obliterate”.
Note that few if any of the IoD’s members will suffer a jot from the cuts. Also note that the IoD is specifically ruling out tax rises….which would, of course, hit most of their members very hard indeed.
The Chancellor has promised yet another budget in the summer (we might just as well make them quarterly and have done with it) and has said it will be “a budget for working people”. This is another little weasel phrase invented by the Aussie spin doctor Lynton Crosby; what it means is “people in a full-time contractual private sector job”. As only 22% of us are these days, it isn’t going to be terribly good news for the unemployed, the State retired, or indeed the NHS: get out of that, Jeremy Hunt.
I think a few more people need to take time out here and study what exactly is going on rather more fully. In a nutshell, it is this: because the ConDem coalition spectacularly failed over the last five years to (a) wipe out the UK deficit (b) diversify the UK economy out of financial services and (c) gain new export contracts beyond the EU, those people out of jobs as a result of that failure, or on benefits, or ill will be asked to cough up. The business organisation members who aided in this abject failure, however, won’t be asked to cough up. They’ll just see their salaries and bonuses continuing to go up.
So, Government screws up and business acts as its accomplice; labour force, the ill and the poor foot the bill.
Sorry to repeat the question for the 50th time, but you see so far I haven’t had an answer. As a neoliberal economy is based on eternal consumption and a ready supply of credit, how are lower incomes and dried-up banks going to produce more consumption?
They can’t, period. But still the financial press calls the UK’s Q1 slowdown ‘disappointing’ (to whom – idiots?) and still the talk of China being ‘back on course’ gets blown off course every time data emerges from Beijing….a deceleration rate of 5.2% YOY being the latest one last Friday.
Look around at the overall situation and think: until very recently we had a situation where people were paying governments to borrow money off them. Banks are still offering ‘savers’ virtually no interest on their savings. There isn’t a Western economy booming anywhere: not one. But not a single Western bourse is reflecting that fact: not one. Every week another lunatic (usually German) insists that the eurozone is turning the corner. No it isn’t: it’s in the ER room with severe brain damage being kept alive by experimental drugs.
A 2% rise in interest rates – just 2% people – would move US debt management expenditure from 2 in 5 of all tax dollars to $2.50. In 1976, the UK’s deficit to gdp ratio was 6%…but we had to call in the IMF to avoid insolvency – because interest rates were a staggering 14.25% average during the year.
The latest UK projected deficit in 2015 is 4.8%. BUT that’s with near-zero interest rates. Just a rise of 1.5% would would take our deficit higher than it was when we nearly went bust under Labour. An even remotely normal level at 4% would double it. At that point, bond yields would go into orbit around Saturn.
When the Conservatives came to power in 2010, the national debt was £900bn. It’s closer to £1.6trillion today…80% higher in five years.
No matter what any politician tries to tell you, our current woefully negative trading account means that the UK National Debt is as unrepayable as that of Greece. The big difference being that we have far, far more to lose than they do.
There is no way further spending cuts can have any effect on that, because the welfare and health bills for government aren’t the real problem. The real problem is an unreformed economy ludicrously overdependent on financial services, and a Conservative administration with almost no commercial experience in its ranks to switch to high-margin manufacturing and retraining of the workforce to make stuff.
The money saved by Osborne was a minute part of even the deficit reduction. In relation to the debt, the best analogy I can offer you is that more expenditure cuts now would be like putting one pipette into the Pacific in an effort to stem rising sea levels. The idea that austerity on the one hand is part of the cure for long-term British commercial and business failure is obscenely infantile.
The Conservatives know this, but don’t know what to do except take away our right to resist. The Labour Party doesn’t even understand it in the first place. Nigel Farage probably gave up on this piece after paragraph six. And Nicola Sturgeon cares not for any of it just so long as she gets independence for the Scots.
That is the depth of our political crisis in 2015. Only a drastic change in socio-economic culture, education and our Constitutional processes can even begin to change it.

Saturday, 23 May 2015


One of the lessons I am learning about life, as I get older, is that in reality, nothing is written in stone, and that the Dialectics of Materialism,  is an evolutionary process. Irish politics, in many respects, is often tragi-comedy. For the victims of it's history, it is pure tragedy but for the survivors, the balance of humour, is a necessity, to escape the insanity of day to day reality, without resorting to alcohol or drugs. It has been apparent to many, for quite sometime, that the illusionary Peace Process of the last twenty years, is a dishonest concept, used as a stepping stone by both the British and Irish political establishment, to please their paymasters of the City of London. This includes bringing the whole island of Ireland, back into the British Commonwealth, something highly likely, in the event of Britain leaving the EU, with the resulting material consequence to all of the island of Ireland. The current Tory government, is in the process of leaving the European Human Rights Commision and coupled with it's refusal to accept standards of International Law, as desiganted by the International Criminal Court, this bodes ill for any human rights activist, be the Scottish or Irish or indeed any citizen, aside from the exploitation of human resources of any people within the Commonwealth.

As someone who regards myself as an Irish Republican and a citizen of the World, with a vision of an Ireland of equals, neither hindered by class, creed or external interference in our Island, I certainly would have serious issues, joining a British Commonwealth, with a Royal Queen as it's symbolic leader. Nevertheless, in the interests of a genuine peace with justice, that would include a Federal Republic, that unites the people of the island, it may have some progressive elements in the interm, if it can be achieved in a genuinely inclusive manner, rather than the usual diet, of it forced on Irish people, with extremely bloody concequence. For principled Irish Republicans and Socialists, a Royal Commonwealth is simply beyond the Pale as we Irish put it, in this our 21st Century. The other issue for ordinary Irish people currently, is that the Irish political establishment, that now includes British Sinn Fein, can neither be trusted or have the ability, to negotiate the best possible compromise, that protects both the material and human rights of Irish people. The evidence is there, for any honest analyist of the terms and conditions of our current, Pseudo Peace Process. The British are past masters, at negotiating the best possible terms of self-interest, with all of their neo-colonies, which include Ireland, with individuals and parties, which are often compromised by their intelligence services and Foriegn Office, prior to serious negotiation. The evidence and bloody consequence, is also there, for all to see, in their neo-colonies.

Having lived on the Continent of Europe for several years and living in Asia for close to twenty years now, I can clearly see as an Irish person, that our neighbours of the adjacent Island, both culturally and economically, being our primary trading partners, have far more in common, including general language, that can be shared to our mutual benefit, above what already exists. It is not my business to say, how English, Scottish,Welsh and Cornish people determine their Government, whose primacy is the Queen of England. On the same basis, I passionately believe, that it is exclusively the right, of all of the people, of all of the island of Ireland, to determne without outside interference, our own political and material arrangements, within the island , which belongs to all of the people in Ireland. On such a self-determined basis, I can see many advantages, from my own experience, that are more beneficial to Irish people, above the present arrangement and the dictats, of a more distant, centralized, corporate . To make this a reality of equals, in the interests of everyone, requires assertive leadership, that is neither corrupted by short term, populist politics or corrupted by global corporations, of purely, exploitative, self-interest, of both the human and natural resources of our Ireland. All of this requires an assertive people, who neither fear transparency or bullying, who can act in terms of the interests of all Irish people, above exclusive, short term, self-interest, who realize the importance of community, above the destructive extremes, of self-will, selfishness and self centredness. In the meantime, the Commonwealth Coup envisoned in the picture above, is a possible short term solution, with the Primacy of the infallible, semi-retired, Pope Bennydick.

Friday, 22 May 2015


The National Crime Agency (NCA) became fully operational in Northern Ireland today.
Officers working for the organisation dubbed the British FBI will be able to use the powers of a police constable and recover criminal assets from gangsters.
Sinn Fein opposed the extension of its remit because of concerns about accountability, which led to a long delay.
Director general Keith Bristow said: "We have consistently said the NCA is committed to protecting the people of Northern Ireland against serious and organised criminals as we do in the rest of the UK.
"Now, with the legislative process complete in Northern Ireland, we will work with our PSNI and law enforcement colleagues and get on with doing our duty."
It will not be involved in counter-terrorism operations in Northern Ireland but its remit includes organised criminality committed by paramilitaries, like smuggling, drug-dealing and counterfeiting.
The agency was established in October 2013 to tackle serious and organised crime across the UK.
Previously, its responsibilities in Northern Ireland were restricted to areas like customs, tax and immigration.
But under legislation passed at Westminster the covert agency took on responsibilities for fighting cross-border crime, child exploitation, people trafficking, money laundering and internet abuse.
It also has civil recovery powers and could be used to "follow the money" in cases like a massive illegal dump recently discovered near Londonderry.
Changes mean the new agency will have to adhere to the same Code of Ethics as the PSNI and co-operate with the Northern Ireland Police Ombudsman Dr Michael Maguire.
The Policing Board - which was set up under the Good Friday peace agreement to oversee the PSNI - will also have full scrutiny powers while the chief constable will have primacy over NCA operations.
The Home Secretary would not have veto powers, it was revealed.
PSNI chief constable George Hamilton said the additional capacity and expertise will help his officers keep people safe.
"As the NCA becomes fully operational, we will be working closely with our new colleagues to ensure opportunities are maximised to tackle serious and organised crime and apprehend offenders.
"At the same time, I will ensure that the accountability arrangements being agreed with the Policing Board are factored into every aspect of operational activity to deliver both public confidence and community safety."
David Ford, justice minister at Stormont's devolved assembly, said it would have a significant impact in the fight against organised crime.
He added: "It is important, of course, that it has appropriate accountability within our local framework and it has that with significant roles for the Board and the Police Ombudsman.
"As a UK-wide organisation, the NCA has a level of resources and specialisation that cannot be achieved at regional level.
"There is no doubt that additional pressure has been put on the PSNI because they have not been able to use the NCA's considerable expertise. That will no longer be the case."
Ombudsman Dr Michael Maguire said confidence in local accountability arrangements was key to the extension of the NCA's role.
"My office will now investigate all complaints about the conduct of NCA officers operating in Northern Ireland, from allegations of misconduct through to alleged criminality."


Another bank crash is on it's way to Ireland, far more severe than the last one. The US dollar is a fiat currency, as is pound sterling, the euro and most other major currencies, which in reality, means they are all monopoly money. There are no gold reserves anymore, which their values are pegged to. They simply make it up as they go along. Private, for profit central bank prints it and lend it to governments or other banks at an interest rate. So the Central Bank prints $100, and gives it to the government on the basis that it returns $101. The additional $1 can only ever come from the Central Bank. There is never enough money resulting in the second issue, that all money is debt.

This used to be the way, all of the money in circulation came to exist, until Investment and Retail Banks got tired of this monopoly on debt based currency, and started a commercial money supply. When you take out a loan or other form of credit, a bank gives you that money from its reserves, the Bank simply creates that loan on a computer screen. For example you are given a loan for $100,000. The loan of $100k is entered on the computer and that promise from you to the bank, creates $100k for the bank, in that moment. Their ledger entry, creates the $100k, from nothing. Over 97% of all money is made this way.

This is what drove the dodgy lending, that created the last crisis in ireland. However nothing has changed since then and the failure to regulate the market, means that Irish bailout is paid from public services and the economy, with Irish banks free to continue with the same behaviour, which till bring an even bigger crash, very soon again. Warren Buffet the world's second richest man, warned us back in 2003, that the derivatives market was ‘devised by madmen’ and a ‘weapon of mass destruction’ and Ireland has only seen the first blast in this debt apocalypse. The reality that should have every Irish person worried, is that the derivatives market contains $700 trillionn of debt, that is about to implode, any day now..

Global GDP is at 70 trillion a year, which means that Wall Street and the City of London have run up paper debts, more than ten times the annual earnings of the whole planet. Not alone, can the Bankers not pay it back, the combined earning power of the earth, could not pay it back, in less than ten years, even if every Euro of productive power, went solely to pay off this debt. This why Irish debt is an absurdity of madmen.
This is why the issue of Irish banking practices and and Ireland's corrupt politcal/economic system are leading  the Irish people, to a moment very soon, where it will be matter of the very survival of our people. Both the Irish Corporate media and political estalishment are complicit in hiding and distracting 
ordinary people, from this reality. Other than Iceland,with some South American countries, the West is totally unprepared for this crash, while Asia is quietly making arranegments and preparations for its economies, to handle the looming,terminal crash. 

The Irish Media with the distraction of a Neo-liberal themes, in reality, facilitate a set of economic policies, that are in essence corporate and fascists. The corporate media, by distraction and subtle censorship, have massaged public discourse daily, like the Nazis in Germany, leading up to the Second World War, enabling a corporartist  ideology, that has become widespread, during the last 25 years or so. In the rare instance thst this monopoly is challenged, as in the High Court in Dublin yesterday regarding Siteserv, the result is gauranteed to be the same, as the rich grow richer and the poor grow poorer.

"Neo" means we are talking about a new kind of liberalism. So what was the old kind? The liberal school of economics became famous in Europe when Adam Smith, a Scottish economist, published a book in 1776 called THE WEALTH OF NATIONS. He and others advocated the abolition of government intervention in economic matters. No restrictions on manufacturing, no barriers to commerce, no tariffs, he said; free trade was the best way for a nation's economy to develop. Such ideas were "liberal" in the sense of no controls. This application of individualism encouraged "free" enterprise," "free" competition -- which came to mean, free for the capitalists to make huge profits as they wished.

Economic liberalism prevailed in the United States through the 1800s and early 1900s. Then the Great Depression of the 1930s led an economist named John Maynard Keynes to a theory that challenged liberalism as the best policy for capitalists. He said, in essence, that full employment is necessary for capitalism to grow and it can be achieved only if governments and central banks intervene to increase employment. These ideas had much influence on President Roosevelt's New Deal -- which did improve life for many people. The belief that government should advance the common good became widely accepted.

But the capitalist crisis over the last 25 years, with its shrinking profit rates, inspired the corporate elite to revive economic liberalism. That's what makes it "neo" or new. Now, with the rapid globalization of the capitalist economy, with neo-liberla politcs to to boot, we are seeing neo-liberalism with allit's former destruction of the Great depression in Ireland all over again. The Corporate media in Ireland deny this reality and groom the Irish electorate, to keep electing, corrupt government, that serve the interests of Banks and Corporations.This must be opposed and exposed on both alocal and national basis at every instance. It is both a social and and national issue, that requires the unity of both traditions against attacks, that would seek to divide socialists, from the aspirations of a genuine Republic. The genuine interests of both, are one and the same, that will only be realized with unity and solidarity.The last election in Britain, particularly in Scotland, carry the lessons for Ireland, to realize the interests of it's people, as opposed to the corporate elites, with their army of presstitutes and political perverts. Have another read of the "Grapes of Wrath" by John Steinbeck, if you want see, what is on the immediate horizon for Ireland.