The Inexorable Rise of the Pandemic State? Second-Guessing the long-term political repercussions of COVID 19

(all images from Wikipedia/open source unless otherwise attributed)   By Dr. Brendan Flynn (NUI Galway)* When COVID-19 ends as a pandemic, what will be the political repercussions? Will there be lasting consequences for states and their relationships with citizens, markets or societies more generally? How about the following as suggestions? Western states will for the…

TDs, Parties, and the 33rd Dáil

By Ken Carty University of British Columbia In a recent post I suggested that the evolution of the party system, and the dynamics of local constituency competition, had deprived Irish voters of any realistic capacity to choose their governments. Recent Dála have been full of politically insecure TDs, many at electoral odds with fellow partisans in…

…but how come no one saw it coming?

The likely sharp uptick in support for Sinn Féin and the possible decline in support for both Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael should pose a few questions for Irish political scientists, not least… Why did no one see the Sinn Féin rise come? The bad answer is that we’re not in the business of prediction.…

Early 2020 election predictions

Election 2020 has been called for February 8th. It’s a winter election, and called to preempt what would have been a likely government defeat in a confidence motion on minister for health, Simon Harris. The Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, hardly wanted to do his ‘Let’s take our case to the country!’ speech in the aftermath of…

A timely critique of Majority Voting system (by way of Book and Road Trip!)

(above book launch in Sarajevo) By Peter Emerson Just published, Majority Voting as a Catalyst of Populism (Springer, Heidelberg)  —  https://www.springer.com/gb/book/9783030202187  —  is a critique of binary decision-making.  Binary politics are everywhere: in the Dáil although there are better methodologies; in referendums as in Brexit, which was crazy; in Northern Ireland, where the very cause…