Gavan Reilly

thinking out loud

Archive for the ‘Brian Cowen’ tag

If you’re annoyed at how RTÉ cut off Vincent Browne’s questions:

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  • Watch TV3’s special edition of Tonight with Vincent Browne at 10:30pm, instead of The Week in Politics. They’ll be airing the video, including the censored questions.
  • Email
  • Contact the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (which has incorporated the function of the Broadcasting Complaints Commission):
    • /
    • Write to:
      • The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland
        2 – 5 Warrington Place
        Dublin 2
    • Telephone: (+353) (0)1 644 1200

Update: From RTÉ’s own website:

RTÉ is obliged under Section 39 (1) of the Broadcasting Act 2009 to ensure that

(a) all news broadcast . is reported and presented in an objective and impartial manner and without any expression of the broadcaster’s own views

(b) the broadcast treatment of current affairs, including matters which are either of public controversy or the subject of current public debate is fair to all interests concerned and that the broadcast matter is presented in an objective and impartial manner and without any expression of his or her own views, except that should it prove impracticable in relation to a single broadcast to apply this paragraph, two or more related broadcasts may be considered as a whole, if the broadcasts are transmitted within a reasonable period of each other

Written by Gav

November 21st, 2010 at 10:56 pm

On Cowen and potentially being drunk

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The discussions today about Brian Cowen and whether he was drunk or not during his Morning Ireland interview seem to be missing one point.

Simon Coveney, tweeting about the idea, is not the thing that has set this story off. It was the fact that Coveney were merely one of dozens of people who all had the medium to record similar observations at the same time.

Written by Gav

September 14th, 2010 at 1:20 pm

Q&A’s Final Show

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A very quick thought… last night, Questions and Answers wrapped up with a one-on-one interview with Brian Cowen by John Bowman, bringing the curtain down on an Irish political institution.

An Spailpín Fánach says a lot of what needs to be said quite brilliantly, but one thing that I thought went softly laden was the fact that although the show was filmed with a studio audience, those in attendance weren’t given the chance to, you know, ask questions.

Surely the best way to make the final show memorable – instead of rolling out clip after clip of Sinn Féin reps refusing to condemn murders – would have been to celebrate the only ever visit by a sitting Taoiseach by allowing the audience the chance to question him the way they no doubt would have wanted?

The premise of the show was about getting public figures into a room and essentially holding them accountable. It will forever be a shame that the final guest, the most powerful the show could ever get hold of, was allowed to break that mould.

Written by Gav

June 30th, 2009 at 9:45 pm

“And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger”

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So “the powers that be want action taken” on Conor Casby’s nude portraits of the Taoiseach that appeared in the National Gallery and the Royal Hibernian Academy.

For anyone who didn’t catch it, RTE were asked to remove the online footage of Monday’s news report from their website, and to broadcast an on-air apology for the piece.

Today on his radio show, Ray D’Arcy (who happily and freely named the artist on the show, incidentally) said that the Gardaí had been in touch wanting to speak to Casby and to charge him with three crimes: “Incitement, indecency and criminal damage.”

On the show (kudos to Cian of Irish Election who grabbed the audio, which you can listen to here) D’Arcy explains the reasoning behind the three charges. At about the same time, meanwhile (about 10.35am for fifteen minutes), FF backbencher Michael Kennedy went on Today with Pat Kenny and tried to defend the apology request.

Kennedy’s major point was that while he had no problem with the Sunday Tribune (who first broke the story, let it be noted) publishing a piece, RTE featuring it was another matter, partially because it’s taxpayer funded, but mostly because it was disrespectful to the position and office of Taoiseach.

God forbid Michael Kennedy should ever be Taoiseach. If he does, we’ll never have anything to continue the Scrap Saturday / Bull Island / Nob Nation tradition that RTE has forged for itself. Even The Panel will probably be pulled for the guff it offers.

When the audio goes up later today (it’ll be here when it does) skip forward to about 50 minutes in. You’ll hear endless dialogue such as:

“I’ve just been handed a picture here of President Obama sitting naked on a toilet.”
“Is that broadcast on national airwaves?”
“I assume so. It’s part of their proud national tradition of toilet humour.”
“But it’s not on a national broadcaster.”

The fact that the United States doesn’t have a public broadcaster apparently being void here. Finally, though, he gets his comeuppance.

“I have a picture here, from the BBC Politics Show, of Gordon Brown in a compromising position” [Note these aren’t direct quotes, I’m working from memory here].
“Is that on a public broadcaster though?”
“Yes, it’s the BBC’s Politics Show [presumably the Daily Politics on BBC Two] for the world to see.”
“Right.” And there’s a stunned silence.

Kennedy has already been calling for Cathal Goan, RTE’s Director-General, to resign over his decision to air the piece. Too right he should resign: he should have had the balls to take on the Government who, let it be reminded, don’t pay for the service themselves.

Mulley says it best in his outright disgust:

Let’s set a date and start a protest, let’s bring all the world’s press together and have them record caricatures of a naked man from the sticks. Let’s keep the momentum going. Let’s send naked pics of Cowen via MMS to each other and wave our phones, let’s encourage the opposition parties to wave these phones in the Dáil. Have them wear t-shirts under their shirts/blouses. Let’s walk up and down outside RTE news broadcasts. Please please please don’t roll over on this because next time we won’t know what else the news is hiding from us.

Get this caricature by Alan Cavanagh, print it on an A3, and put it in your window. Let’s see them stifle that. Let’s make the freedom of our press an election issue for June. Let’s print this poster onto backing boards and put it on lampposts alongside party candidates.

Brian Cowen naked

Edit: You can also buy this caricature on a T-Shirt with proceeds going to the Rape Crisis Centre.

Suzy has a take too.

Edit 2: Apparently the artist’s name is “Caspy”, mistakes fixed.

Written by Gav

March 25th, 2009 at 12:53 pm

A Society without Satire

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…is a society without soul.

And, distressingly, it seems we’re getting dangerously close to it. First the BCI uphold complaints against Nightlive, and now RTE are made apologise for this.

Sad day. Sad, sad day.

Where’s the feelgood factor from being the sporting kings of the world if our leaders seem to be going out of their way to bring the mood down?

Written by Gav

March 24th, 2009 at 11:59 pm

Posted in Ireland

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