menu_open
Fintan O&x27Toole

Fintan O&x27Toole

The Irish Times

We use cookies to provide some features and experiences in QOSHE

More information  .  Close

Have we ditched the Stardust-era stereotype that the working classes are wild and reckless?

Once might be carelessness; twice begins to look like unconscious bias. To come to terms with the full import of last week’s inquest verdicts of...

latest 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Biden and the West have been sleepwalking into a Middle East war. Now it is becoming a reality

What happened on Saturday night was something the world has not seen before: it was the first time Iran directly attacked Israel from its own...

15.04.2024 40

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

If Israel succeeds in Gaza, it will drag the West down with it

In 1991, the Israeli writer Ari Shavit, who was then 34, reported for his annual stint as a reserve soldier. When told that he was to serve as a...

09.04.2024 60

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Fine Gael’s choice to replace a property-owning democracy with a rent-paying one has unsettled a generation

It is no great insult to Simon Harris to say that he is very unlikely to be up to the job of rescuing Irish political conservatism. It’s not clear...

02.04.2024 30

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Simon Harris has risen without trace, another case of survival of the smoothest

On Thursday, in the prime slot on Morning Ireland, Neale Richmond drove the first big tank on to the succession lawn. He started the logroll of Fine...

26.03.2024 9

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Leo Varadkar, the populist uncomfortable with people

In May 2002, just after Fine Gael under Michael Noonan had suffered its worst defeat in a general election since 1948, a young party activist gave his...

23.03.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Lidl wants MetroLink redesigned so it can build apartments. And can you pay the bill please?

Things in Ireland that merit the adjective “breath-taking”. The Cliffs of Moher on a wild Atlantic day. The light radiating from a snow-covered...

19.03.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Invited to replace a potent 1930s vision with a wishy-washy 2020s gesture, voters said no

To understand why the Government suffered such humiliating defeats in last week’s referendums, we have to look at both the close-up and the wide...

11.03.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

If the care referendum is such a progressive change, why was the process such a travesty?

Easy listening is music for people who don’t like music. And the wording of the referendum on care is social democracy for people who don’t like...

05.03.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Catherine Martin can save her political career and do something big for Irish democracy

Instructions for the governance of RTÉ: 1. Procure a goblet-like liturgical vessel. 2. Obtain a toxic substance. 3. Place poison in chalice. 4. Offer...

27.02.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Absent RTÉ witnesses make Oireachtas committee hearings a cross between Waiting for Godot and Where’s Wally?

The tribunes of the people are not too proud to beg. Last week, Niamh Smyth, the impressive chair of the Oireachtas Joint Committee looking into the...

20.02.2024 30

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Government’s plan for people like me is bizarre and self-sabotaging

I’m well aware that on the spectrum of interesting things, sex is at one end and pensions at the other. But since I reach pensionable age this week,...

13.02.2024 70

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Fintan O’Toole: Dee Forbes’s illness has implications that radiate far beyond Montrose

Dee Forbes is unwell. In normal circumstances, respect for her privacy would oblige us to leave it at that. But these are not normal circumstances....

06.02.2024 30

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Idea that article 41.2 had no real-life consequences is rubbish. Just ask the Aer Lingus ‘girls’

In 1968, everything was groovy. Hey Jude and Jumpin’ Jack Flash were on the radio and 2001: A Space Odyssey was blowing everyone’s mind. Meanwhile...

30.01.2024 100

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Fintan O’Toole: We trusted Ivor Browne with our darkest secrets. He was one of Ireland’s great liberators

In June 1966, the chairman of what was then called the Dublin Health Authority, Joseph Connolly, ceremonially toppled one of the big grey stones that...

25.01.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

It is absurd to claim ‘Roscrea is full’. The town’s real problem is depopulation

“Roscrea Is Full” says the sign held up by residents of the North Tipperary town protesting against the housing of asylum seekers in Racket Hall...

23.01.2024 50

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

We know all about the fear of ‘unvetted’ single male migrants. We were their chief exporter

“Unvetted“, unattached single male migrants are a terror to their host society. Especially when they are gathered together in hostels with no...

16.01.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

It’s striking how brazen and open the incitement against Irish Jews has become

A widely distributed freesheet newspaper called The Irish Light comes unbidden through my letterbox. It is edited by former Irish Independent...

09.01.2024 6

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Ireland was a country of secrets, but have we become a nation of oversharers?

I have very few unpublished thoughts. If you write newspaper columns once or even twice a week for over 30 years, almost everything that happens to...

02.01.2024 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

We have two Christmases: the one we experience and the one we remember

I have a theory that when Irish writers describe Christmas in prose it is in general quite glum but when they evoke it in poetry it is rather magical....

25.12.2023 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Slaughter of innocents cannot be easy for the perpetrators, but their tears are for themselves

Why do men kill children? Because it’s hard. Men who kill children prove to themselves and their superiors that they are hard men. Hamas murdered...

19.12.2023 50

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Referendum wording does not remove conservative 1930s doctrine. It reinforces it

In my Catholic childhood I noted that there were some ostentatiously holy people who would genuflect properly in church, bending down on the right...

12.12.2023 9

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Could Conor McGregor be Ireland’s Donald Trump? Absolutely

Long before he entered politics, Donald Trump climbed into another sweaty ring: the world of pro wrestling. As the host of WWE’s huge WrestleMania...

05.12.2023 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Irish fascism is not a reaction to immigration or poverty. It’s not even new

As the physical debris of a shameful night in Dublin is cleared from the streets of the inner city, perhaps we can also begin to clear the mental...

28.11.2023 4

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

These pitiful thugs are not us. They do not act for us, speak for us or burn buses for us

It is after midnight and I am writing in the dark. A few hours after the dreadful events in Dublin, nobody really knows anything. Except that there...

24.11.2023 100

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Two US hotels should have plaques reading ‘Conservative Ireland died here’

There is something both surreal and entirely apt about the way, thirty-odd years ago, Irish history happened in liminal spaces in American hotels. The...

21.11.2023 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

In Ireland we barely talk about immigration. It’s easy to see why

If we think of what large-scale immigration looks like, I suppose most of us would refer back to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th...

14.11.2023 20

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Ireland is taking a risk with its stance on Gaza, but someone has to

At the United Nations general assembly, countries are seated in alphabetical order, which means that Ireland usually finds itself stuck between Iran...

07.11.2023 6

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Israel can take Gaza. But it cannot leave it

In his history of a Roman invasion of northern Britain, Tacitus gives the Caledonian chieftain Calgacus a famous speech. Of the Romans, he says...

31.10.2023 20

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Ireland is weirdly entwined with the idea of a Jewish homeland, but not in the way many imagine

In a parallel universe, James Joyce wrote a sequel to Ulysses that ends with the hero Leopold Bloom’s death as a citizen of the new state of Israel....

24.10.2023 20

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Humanity is insufficient in Israel-Hamas war because, too often, it only means ‘people like us’

The great political philosopher Hannah Arendt told us that the worst thing to be in the modern world is stateless. She knew what she was talking...

17.10.2023 8

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Refusing to address someone by their preferred pronouns may not be unlawful, but it is rude

Is it, as the South East Technological University (SETU) claims, “unlawful” to refuse to address someone by their preferred name or use their...

10.10.2023 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

For years, Ireland has been doing something just as economically stupid as Brexit

In the run-up to next week’s budget, we will be blinded with billions. There’s one big number we really should be thinking about, though: €20...

03.10.2023 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

This column is not what the mainstream media want you to hear

We need a new name for what you and I are involved in now – writing or reading articles on The Irish Times website or in the printed newspaper. For...

26.09.2023 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

By playing the part of a predator, Russell Brand convinced us he couldn’t be one

Last July, on his YouTube and Rumble shows Stay Free, Russell Brand interviewed the far-right governor of Florida Ron DeSantis. It is a crossover...

18.09.2023 40

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

Varadkar could yet leave a mark of decency and justice. Here’s how

Ignore the political kites that always darken the sky at this time of the year. Don’t get distracted by all the leaks, spins, special pleading and...

12.09.2023 10

The Irish Times

Fintan O&x27Toole

6be5693876037b351522b7a411abc886