The Mick Clifford Podcast
DAN TROY: From here to Wuhan
Dan Troy began his working life as a civil engineer but soon found that he had a calling to the Catholic church, and specifically what used to be known as the Missions. After completing his studies in the Columban order, he was dispatched to Wuhan in China, where he has now lived for over twenty years. He talks about what it is like to be a missionary priest in a nominally communist country, how Wuhan managed the covid pandemic which originated in the city and why China now feels like home.
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SECOND CHANCE: Damien Quinn and Saoirse Brady38:23People who have served a prison sentence for a criminal offence are entitled to believe that once the sentence is completed they have paid their debt to society. That does not appear to be the case. New research shows that there are huge barriers to ex-prisoners finding employment and that the past simply won’t leave them alone. Damien Quinn was one such person, who had to fight hard to rebuild his life once he finished his sentence. He and Irish Penal Reform Trust Executive Director Saoirse Brady are this week’s guests on the podcast.
DRAWING FROM THE WELL: Mike O’Donnell45:40Mike O’Donnell is one of the only if not the only court artists currently plying his trade in this country. He covers high profile trials and draws defendants, lawyers, judges, the public, all to give an insight and flavour of the environment of a court where serious, and usually tragic, drama takes place. He currently has an exhibition in which one of the main subjects is Gerry ‘the Monk’ Hutch whose trial Mike covered. Afterwards, Hutch invited the artist to his home in Dublin where he “sat” for Mike. This week’s guest on the podcast gives a fascinating insight into his trade and those he has encountered along the way.
LOSING THEIR RELIGION: Roy Donovan36:23Last week the Bishop of Kerry announced that the church in the diocese was facing further challenges this year with more retirements of priests scheduled. So where stands the Catholic church in this country now in terms of serving its community? Will, for example, congregations be expected to travel further to attend mass and confession? Will there be a greater role for laity in the church? And is there willingness within the current hierarchy for creative solutions? Roy Donovan, a priest and member of the Association of Catholics Priests is this week’s guest on the podcast.
NICK FOSTER: Should Ian Bailey have been put on trial?50:35Ian Bailey’s death this week has reawakened debate on whether or not he should have been put on trial for the murder of Sophie Toscan du Plantier. He was the chief suspect and was arrested twice but never charged. In 2019 he was convicted of murder in abstentia in Paris. But should he have been charged with murder in this jurisdiction. Nick Foster has written a book about the case, Murder At Roaring Bay. He and Mick disagree as to whether the evidence was sufficient to put him on trial. They debate the issue on this week’s podcast.
COLD TIME FOR FOOD BUSINESS: Ross Lewis32:28Since Christmas there has been a number of restaurant closures throughout the country, including the high profile Nash 19 in Cork city. These were predicted due to a variety of cost related issues, most particularly labour and fall-out from the pandemic in areas like the warehousing of debt. So what will this mean for the future and is there anything that can be done to ensure that small businesses in general can survive in the current climate. Restauranteur Ross Lewis is this week’s guest on the podcast.
THE HEALY RAES – A FAMILY OR A POLITICAL PARTY? : Ciara Phelan53:47Brothers Michael and Danny Healy Rae are among the most high profile of the Dail’s independent TDs and both come with a serious political pedigree, courtesy of their late father Jackie. Recently, Irish Examiner political correspondent Ciara Phelan spent a few days in their company in and around the family bailiwick of Kilgarvan in Co Kerry. In this week’s podcast Ciara tells us about what she saw and heard, both from within the family and without and what impact their success is having on politics, both local and national.
WHAT RUNS FREE IN OUR RIVERS: John Murphy37:51Ireland’s wild salmon stocks are disappearing. Over the last thirty years the stocks have plummeted due to a range of factors from fish farming to water quality to the ravages of climate change. There has already been a major impact on tourism, but beyond that lies the prospect of the complete disappearance of wild salmon. What can be done to arrest this slide before it is too late. John Murphy, chair of Salmon Watch Ireland, is this week’s guest on the podcast.
WAS STAKEKNIFE WORTH THE TROUBLES: Richard O’Rawe.47:56When is it alright for a democratic state to let one of its citizens go to their death and not prevent it? A new book by former IRA man and H block prisoner Richard O’Rawe covers the activities of the highest level informer that the British security services had in the Provisional IRA, Freddie Scappaticci. Scap was the man who tortured and shot spies on behalf of the Provos while operating as one himself. And evidence has emerged that he informed his handlers of most of the killings before they occurred. Richard O’Rawe is this week’s guest on the podcast. [Recorded - October 2022]
A JUDGE’S ACCOUNT: Bernard Barton [Long Version]01:05:05Bernard Barton retired as a High Court Judge in 2021 but has maintained a keen interest in his former career. He is active in writing and researching in both the law and history and he has a special interest in proposals around changes to defamation laws, specifically a proposal to abolish juries. He passionately believes in the role of juries in our courts. As this week’s guest on the podcast he discuss this as well as changes he observed over the years in relations between judges and politicians and why retirees like himself could be of further use to the administration of the law today. [Long Version].