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Author Archives: Edward McGarr

One Year Plus One Month

There is a revolution coming; in fact it has arrived. The revolution is favourable to persons, to individuals. A person is, in principle, entitled to control of her data. If government or commercial interests wish to use that data they must comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The GDPR is current law and comes into effect on 25th May 2018. That date represents a cliff-edge. That edge has been made more severe due to Brexit. Brexit, as the […]

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Brexit

“Brexit” is a neologism and a portmanteau word. It is one we have become familiar with in recent months. I doubt it is in any dictionary, being too new. Nevertheless, looking things up in dictionaries can be useful, even though you can’t find the word you are searching for. In connection with Brexit, “nominalism” is worth a look, about which my dictionary commences – “… a denial of the existence of abstract entities of any kind…”. Brexit is surely an […]

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Mass deportation is a mass breach of EU law

It is in Ireland’s interest (and the interest of the people of the EU) that the European Union endure. It is possible that the European Council http://europa.eu/about-eu/institutions-bodies/european-council/index_en.htm (including Enda Kenny) made a major error on 18th March 2016 (two days ago), undermining the EU. Reputedly, the European Council agreed the terms of a Joint Action Plan with Turkey. Currently, the exact terms of the Joint Action Plan have not been released to the public. Instead, the public has been issued […]

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Leviathan and greasy tills

Credit; tcd.ie In May 2011, Queen Elizabeth II, the Sovereign of the United Kingdom, was driven past our office. We saw her. Like other citizens of Dublin, we waved respectfully. We understand David Cameron, the UK prime minister, is also respectful of her. Nonetheless, she has to watch her step with him; he can politely direct her on important matters. Albeit he must be polite, he is not amenable to being curbed by her because she lacks the institutional capacity […]

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“I meant only the best”

“Humpty Dumpty” by Tenniel Some things endure. Lewis Carroll could write in 1872: “I don’t know what you mean by ‘glory,’ ” Alice said. Humpty Dumpty smiled contemptuously. “Of course you don’t—till I tell you. I meant ‘there’s a nice knock-down argument for you!’ ” “But ‘glory’ doesn’t mean ‘a nice knock-down argument’,” Alice objected. “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.” “The question […]

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Shut up!

The Broadcasting Act 2009 contains an impractical idea; that nothing that causes “offence” should be broadcast. Section 39 reads: “Every broadcaster shallensure that- …anything which may reasonably be regarded as causing harm or offence, or as being likely to promote, or incite to, crime or as tending to undermine the authority of the State, is not broadcast by the broadcaster…” It is impractical to limit public broadcasting to anodyne subject matter. A nation which gets anodyne broadcasting is unlikely to […]

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European Arrest Warrant Act 2003: Procedures and Problems. “A Serious Trivial Problem”

In the EU, “extradition” is by means of the European Arrest Warrant (EAW). Any member state may issue an EAW and request its execution in any other member state. Very serious problems can arise in the system. The EAW system is professedly based on the high regard that the national judiciaries have for each other. In fact, they do not have such a high regard for each other. Notwithstanding, like characters in a Samuel Beckett play, they “go on” with […]

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Back to School

Photo credit; Creative Commons Donald Trump is living proof that the relevant issue in the US presidential election race is education. His slogan “Make America Great” is a (double) solecism. It is great because of the Constitution of the United States. Article VI of the Constitution of the United States of America (the correct name of the country) provides; The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both […]

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Ideas and “aul pencils”

“The life of the law has not been logic; it has been experience.” So claimed Oliver Wendell Holmes. In fact this statement contains its own contradiction; it is an idea, and the life of the law is in ideas. It is impossible to understand the world, or even a part of it, without having an idea. An idea is an abstract concept. Take any word as an example; now put it in a sentence. Invariably, the meaning of the word […]

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Lawful War

France has done the world a favour by going to the United Nations Security Council on Friday the 20th November 2015. That it got sanction for military action against ISIS (DAESH) is a sign of moving tectonic plates by the standards of the UN. At the moment it is not important that France’s military response is in fact incompetent or ineffective from a military point of view. (That’s a common failing in military affairs). It is important because France chose […]

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