Time to let our hair down! Let's celebrate Senate result. Tonite, Friday, April 29th from 8.30ish in the Outback, Portlaoise. Everyone welcome.

Word From Whelan

Last hurrah for the Seanad

It could be the final Seanad election, but for now it's Irish politics as usual. Candidates for the upper house are lobbying hard for the votes that can help rebuild parties and save careers, writes KATHY SHERIDAN [...more]

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The Naked Election

We were certainly so fortunate to have such a hard working and committed team of campaigners and we certainly know in our hearts that we could have done no more in our bid to win a seat for Labour in Laois-Offaly on this occasion. [...more]

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Why I want to run for Labour

I love politics but I don't want to be another career politician. However, I desperately want to do something about the mess we are in. I want to stop complaining and take positive action instead. I believe that the Labour Party led by Eamon Gilmore is the best way to achieve this. [...more]

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‘The Buddha of Ballyhuppahaun’- takes a leaf from the Rainbow Travellers’Book

Inspired by the arrival of the Rainbow Travellers to the Slieve Bloom Mountains in the summer of 1993, The Buddha of Ballyhuppahaun by Johnny Renko (aka journalist, John Whelan) is strongly influenced by the satirical classics Gulliver's Travels and Animal Farm and also draws on the parables and philosophy of Zen Flesh, Zen Bones. [...more]

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Over the Moon about the Rainbow

It's like a scene from Dances with Wolves. A young woman with braided blonde hair rides a pony, bare-back across the camp, chased by screeching barefoot children and skinny black and white barking dogs. Smoke wafts in the damp morning air, drifting out across the heather, the forest and mountains that surround and shelter this secluded site. [...more]

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Texts, lies and video tapes - how John Gilligan has turned the courts into a circus

Two pairs of ladies panties, prison officers accused of lying and a video tape which John Gilligan has never viewed as he maintains the Governor of the prison has refused to give him a video player. [...more]

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In Washington, Charlie don’t surf

A bird brained documentary from RTE's legendary chief news reporter simply doesn't fly, but it's the best comedy the station has done since Hall's Pictorial Weekly. [...more]

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Prostitution is now rampant in rural Ireland

Prostitution is rampant in rural Ireland and it's getting worse. That's the stark message this week from support group Ruhama who contend that pimps and criminals behind the sordid business are getting harder to track down due their use of technology. Trafficking of foreign women for the sex industry is now endemic throughout the country they claim, while shockingly Irish women are being forced back on the game, due to the recession. [...more]

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Cookery book is surprise best seller

A cookery book completely produced as a local enterprise in Laois is proving a surprise best seller in the run up to Christmas. 'Jim's Kitchen' the brainchild of Mountrath chef, Jim Tynan has already sold two thousand copies just three weeks after its launch and is on its way to selling out. [...more]

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Lifes a beach and then you go to sunbathe, swim or surf on one…

We've been fighting them on the streets, now we're fighting them on the beaches. Ireland's dreaded litter louts have been out in force this summer and we have the beer cans, broken bottles, dirty nappies, coke cans, plastic cartons, and cigarette butts strewn in the sand to prove it. Blue flag beaches are dropping like flies. [...more]

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My Pictures