Selling our ‘neutral’ souls

My latest blog examines the concept of Irish ‘neutrality’ while US troops continue to pass through Shannon Airport without any inspections by the authorities.

Last week we had the ludicrous situation in which two Irish TDs spent a total of three and a half hours in prison between them, for the ‘crime’ of trying to inspect US military aircraft at Shannon.

The monthly protest at Shannon Airport Photo: Ciaran Tierney

It may have been dangerous for them to enter the runway, but it seems astounding that the authorities have no knowledge about what’s realy going on with the US warplanes.

Some people claim that Ireland could be a target for terrorists because of the use of Shannon Airport by the US military on a regular basis.

Older than Ireland




A remarkable new film called ‘Older Than Ireland’ has gone on limited release throughout Ireland.

It features interviews with 30 Irish people aged over 100, who were born before the Irish Free State came into being.

It’s a wonderful, warm tribute to the spirit of the Irish people and included in the cast of characters is my own grandmother, Mary Kilroy (101).

Granny Kilroy tells some amazing stories about falling in love, her opinions on gay marriage, and the phenomenal response to her 100th birthday in 2013.

It’s a wonderful film, currently on show at the Eye Cinema in Galway as well as a number of venues throughout the country.

The film is the subject of my latest blog, following an enjoyable Q&A session with the director Alex Fegan at the Eye last week.

Link to my latest blog

Another heartbreaker for Galway fans

Following the Galway hurlers has never been an easy task. They have reached six All-Ireland finals since last winning one in 1988 – seven if you include the drawn game in 2012 – and somehow managed to lose them all.

It’s been a heartbreaking famine over the past 27 years and yet the followers turned up in their thousands to support them at Croke Park on Sunday. My latest blog is about the pain of following the Galway hurlers, but also the wonders of an All-Ireland weekend when people go to so much trouble to attend the game.

Ciaran’s blog – The gathering of the Tribe

The legacy of the Easter Rising 1916

Next April, Ireland will grind to a halt to remember the men and women who fought for Irish freedom in 1916.

Yet, for many people, the proposed commemorations have caused great unease.

Should we really celebrate the centenary of the Easter Rising?

Has Ireland lived up to the expectations of the rebels who fought the British Empire a century ago? If they were alive today, would they be wining and dining with the elite – or demonised with the Irish Water protesters?

That’s the subject of my latest blog:

Ciaran’s blog

Demonising the downtrodden – blog

Taking voluntary redundancy was not an easy decision, but I figured I needed a change after 22 years with the same newspaper.

In recent weeks, I completed a 12-week Build Your Own Online Business course which alllowed me to construct this Word Press website from scratch.

The enthusiasm, talent, and desire make a ‘go’ of things in that room was phenomenal, and yet we had a Government Minister talk about unemployed people who were “allergic” to work recently.

That’s why I wrote my latest blog:

At least I’ve woken up … !

Attending the ‘funeral’ of Irish Water in Galway city centre

A lot of people seem to be amazed that Irish Water has caused so much controversy in a country in which the bailout of the bondholders, new taxes, and a property tax went through with a minimum of fuss.

And, in many ways, it seems strange that a tax on water has caused the biggest mass protests Ireland has seen in decacdes.

In this week’s personal blog, though, I argue that many people have just had enough. They didn’t speak out before about the imposition of austerity measures, but that did not mean they believed they were right.

The blog is written from the perspective of someone who has seen so many cuts over the past seven years, and yet has only begun to speak out.

With water meters being installed in estates throughout Ireland, and the first bills arriving through the letter-boxes, this controversy is far from finished.

You can read the blog here

Shining lights in the darkness

My latest blog is about Galway’s wonderful sporting heroes, who made inspirational speeches at the launch of Darkness Into Light at the Galway Bay Hotel.

Connacht Rugby manager Pat Lam, Galway United manager Tommy Dunne, and Galway GAA star David Collins spoke movingly about losing friends and team-mates to suicide.

#DIL2015 takes place in the early hours of Saturday, May 9

Here’s the link

Darkness Into Light

The annual fundraising walk for Pieta House will take place in the early hours of Saturday, May 9. It begins at 4.15am and walkers enjoy the sight of the sun rising over Galway Bay as they make their way around the scenic 5km route.

Last year’s walk attracted over 4,000 people and the organisers are expecting to at least match that figure this year. Suicide prevention is a huge issue in the West of Ireland right now and taking part in the Darkness Into Light walk is a fantastic way to ensure free counselling is available to people in distress at Pieta House West, in Tuam.