Dawn Foster #WhereWillWeLive Ep.112


While Ireland is suffering the worst crises in the history of our State in housing, homelessness and widening income inequality, we are, sadly, far from unique. Our guest in the tortoise shack, staff writer with Jacobin Magazine, columnist with the Guardian and Author of Lean Out and the forthcoming book Where Will We Live, Dawn Foster, talks to us about the globalisation of these issues, the economic and ideological origins and what hope there is for change.

Dawn has written brilliantly about inequality, the need for radical feminism and how the housing crisis, that was exacerbated by the financialisation of the human right to housing, is the best example of markets profiting from human misery.
Dawn was in town to speak at Thresholds Housing conference and we were very grateful to them for arranging this opportunity to sit down with one of the best voices for change anywhere in the media today.

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Jack Power #MediaClapback Ep.108


The media has come in for a lot of criticism in the wake of the Presidential election results. While some of the criticism is undoubtedly fair, some of it is a knee-jerk reaction to what can only be described as a few uncomfortable home truths.
Our guest in the tortoise shack is recent nominee for the young journalist of the year and news reporter with the Irish Times, Jack Power. His work on the housing, homelessness and Take Back The City protests has shown the force for good journalism still is in Ireland.

In this wide ranging conversation we discuss journalism as a vocation, the health of the industry and more. We can accept that trust in the media is at all time lows, or we can ask why that is so and what needs to be done to reverse this.

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Emer O’Siochrú #SocialCommons Ep.102


We are constantly told that the cost of land is prohibitive to building. But in Ireland it wasn’t always thus. Our guest in the tortoise shack is Architect, Surveyor and a founder of the Foundation for the Economics of Sustainability (FEASTA), Emer O’Siochrú.
She argues that by reclaiming the Commons, or the land beneath our homes, we could make building profitable, housing genuinely affordable and begin to tackle climate change.
This seems a revolutionary idea, but it is something we have done in our not too distant past. Emer’s work has been supported by Economists as varied as Colm McCarthy and Constantin Gurdgiev. Indeed, the book she contributed to, Fleeing Vesuvius, is often referenced as a starting point for Naomi Kelin’s international best seller, This Changes Everything.
There is no question that the governments housing and climate change strategies have failed, perhaps we need to look to the past to secure our future.

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Paddy Cosgrave & Prof. P.J Drudy #TortoiseShackLive Ep.105


The tortoise shack went to a sold out Sound House on Eden Quay, as part of the Dublin Podcast Festival. It was as chaotic as you’d expect from us, but luckily we had Rory Hearne of the Reboot Republic podcast along for company.

Not only that, but we were lucky enough to be joined on stage by Web Summit co-founder and chief executive Paddy Cosgrave AND Emeritus Professor of Economics P.J Drudy. We talked housing (what else!), the cost to us as a society, the costs we don’t see in businesses that we can’t attract and we opened the pod up to questions from the best informed audience you could ever hope to find.

We want to thank the Sound House for their hospitality, the listeners for coming along, Rory for his help and our great guests for their time. Professor Drudy gets a special mention because, as you’ll hear, he stole the show!

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The Axis #Echo100


Recorded live @ the Axis, Ballymun, the tortoise shack’s 100th Episode brought together some of our favourite previous guests and a few new ones. We discuss #RaiseTheRoof, #MeToo and how the “gone too far” BS is going too far, as well as going around the room and asking what one thing we’d change/tackle if we could.
Voices you’ll hear include Simon McGarr, Linda Hayden, Glenn Fitzpatrick, Hazel Katherine Larkin and many more.

Thanks to the Axis for their hospitality and everyone who came along (to the Diggers afterwards as well) for a great night and cheers to the next 100!

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Fred Logue #RightToKnow Ep. 96

We have a deficit of accountability and a lack of transparency in Ireland. But it doesn’t have to stay that way. Our guest in the tortoise shack, principal at FP Logue Solicitors and specialist in technology, intellectual property, information law and commercial law, Fred Logue, knows all about trying to get to the facts.
Through his work as a solicitor, and with @RightToKnowIE, he has helped break down bureaucratic barriers to transparency and to shed some light on the aspects of the system that governs us.

From litigating against banks and vulture funds, to trying to find out what went on in emails that the Dept of Justice said didn’t exist, Fred and his colleagues are doing terrific work. Our FOI Hero, Ken Foxe told us that Fred was the “ultimate guru” on FOI and information access, we’d have to agree.

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Una Power #GreenWeek Ep.90


This week the Spin Doctors and “Climate Laggards” of Fine Gael decided to pay lip-service to climate change with their #GreenWeek. The hypocrisy of the Party that fought almost every piece of climate change legislation in the Dáil wasn’t lost on our guest in the tortoise shack, Green Party Equality Spokesperson, Una Power.
She explained to us how while using a reusable coffee cup is good personal practice, unless we tackle the big polluters of agriculture, transport and corporate, it won’t make any difference.

And YOU really should care; we are facing EU fines of potentially €1.6m per day for continuing on the path of drill baby, drill. There’s also the small matter of saving the planet…

Aidan Regan #ZombieCapitalism Ep.89

We live in an era where we are celebrating surpassing the Celtic Tiger records in Tax Take, Numbers Employed and Rent. But are just repeating the mistakes of the past? Our guest in the tortoise shack, UCD Assistant Professor at the School of Politics and International Relations has written extensively about markets, the European Union and the imbalance in the Capitalist System.
He talks us through the Boom and Bust cycle and why without putting the citizen at the heart of our economy we aren’t going to correct this economic model.

Mike McGrath-Bryan #CorkLovesMusic Ep. 76

The recession hit young people disproportionately, but young artists and musicians channeled that into their work. Journalist with Corks Evening Echo, Village Magazine and Podcast host of Red FM’s ‘Red on Red’, Mike McGrath-Bryan works his ass off trying to promote and help these acts. Sitting down in a cafe in Cork City, he explains how it’s all for the love of the music and its creators.

Paul Murphy #JobstownNotGuilty Ep.43


Events at the Lidl in Fortunestown Lane, Jobstown, Tallaght gave a green light to the hard right(government TD’s included) to come out and smear an entire working class community over the actions of a few. So we were delighted to be joined in the tortoise shack by Solidarity TD for Dublin South West Paul Murphy, to discuss tackling class warfare, where to next for the Water Charges movement and what a real Left alternative might look like.

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