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Dublin: 14 °C Saturday 20 July, 2019

#Whistleblowers

From TheJournal.ie Callinan has “no difficulty” in providing information to PAC Whistleblowers

Callinan has “no difficulty” in providing information to PAC

The Commissioner said that he would not discuss the issue of serving sergeant Maurice McCabe appearing before the PAC.

From TheJournal.ie The 5 at 5: Thursday Take 5

The 5 at 5: Thursday

Five minutes, five stories, five o’clock…

From TheJournal.ie Snowden insists Russia has no access to NSA files SNOWDEN

Snowden insists Russia has no access to NSA files

In an interview with The New York Times, NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden says that he did not take any documents with him to Moscow.

From TheJournal.ie Whistleblowers could get up to five years' pay if dismissed unfairly Whistleblowers

Whistleblowers could get up to five years' pay if dismissed unfairly

Newly-published bill concerning employees who report wrongdoing outlines extra measures to protect them.

From TheJournal.ie Greater protections for whistleblowers after penalty points furore Whistleblowers

Greater protections for whistleblowers after penalty points furore

Eamon Gilmore said that legislation is currently being drawn up which will be put before government shortly.

From TheJournal.ie Column: Secrecy has led to shameful practices in Ireland - whistle-blower law is needed now Opinion

Column: Secrecy has led to shameful practices in Ireland - whistle-blower law is needed now

If the economic downturn has taught us anything, it is the importance of exposing systemic wrong doing, writes Louise Bayliss.

From TheJournal.ie Shatter: Allegations on penalty points concern only 'small minority' of cases Penalty Points

Shatter: Allegations on penalty points concern only 'small minority' of cases

The justice minister says fewer than 300 alleged driving offences are being questioned, out of a total of almost 1.5 million.

From TheJournal.ie Garda Commissioner: Investigation into penalty points cancellations will be 'rigorous' Penalty Points

Garda Commissioner: Investigation into penalty points cancellations will be 'rigorous'

Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan said there was “no question” that a culture of non-enforcement of penalties was being tolerated by the Gardaí.

From TheJournal.ie Government publishes draft legislation aimed at protecting whistleblowers Whistleblowers

Government publishes draft legislation aimed at protecting whistleblowers

The final legislation is expected to be published by Minister Brendan Howlin later this year.

From TheJournal.ie The 5 at 5: Monday Take 5

The 5 at 5: Monday

5 minutes, 5 stories, 5 o’clock…

From TheJournal.ie Draft legislation to protect whistleblowers to be published Whistleblowers

Draft legislation to protect whistleblowers to be published

The proposed legislation would extend protection to public and private sector workers seeking to expose wrongdoing.

From TheJournal.ie The 9 at 9: Monday 9 At 9

The 9 at 9: Monday

Nine things to know by 9am, including: Final day of Xi visit, Greece set for €130bn loan, Bank of Ireland cuts its losses, and are you hungry enough for a test tube hamburger?

From TheJournal.ie Cabinet to discuss protection for whistleblowers Whistleblowers

Cabinet to discuss protection for whistleblowers

The issue of whistleblowers, which is contained in the Programme for Government, has been highlighted in recent weeks following the dismissal of Louise Bayliss.

From TheJournal.ie Column: Whistleblowers in banking are doing the right thing - but not for themselves Opinion

Column: Whistleblowers in banking are doing the right thing - but not for themselves

Former trader Nick Leeson finds that those who try to expose problems in the banking sector and would be heroes anywhere else are made pariahs in their world.

From TheJournal.ie Former Wikileaks spokesman claims he deleted thousands of files Whistleblowers

Former Wikileaks spokesman claims he deleted thousands of files

Daniel Domscheit-Berg says he destroyed about 3,500 unpublished documents that had been forwarded to the whistleblowing website in order to protect sources.

From TheJournal.ie IFSC whistleblowers reporting financial firms to Cental Bank Whistleblowers

IFSC whistleblowers reporting financial firms to Cental Bank

The allegations centre on certain banks’ funding falling below minimum levels of liquidity that they are required to have in order to operate.

From TheJournal.ie Labour launches reform policy for parliament and laws Election 2011

Labour launches reform policy for parliament and laws

Labour’s ‘New Government, Better Government’ policy outlines plans for whistleblowers’ legislation and Seanad abolition.

With whistleblowing website WikiLeaks posting over 92,000 Afghan military logs, we dust off the history books and come up with five famous leaks and whistleblowers of our own.

Jim Duffy (1990)
We’ll start close to home. In 1982, Garret Fitzgerald’s government lost a Dáil vote on its budget, forcing the Taoiseach to go to Áras an Úachtaran and ask President Patrick Hillery to dissolve the Dáil.

The Fianna Fáil opposition, led by  Charles Haughey, had just won the budget vote and fancied their chances at forming a government without needing an election. So they called the Áras eight times and tried to get Hillery – himself a Fianna Fáil man – to decline the request.

FitzGerald, who was in the Áras when the opposition had been making their calls, felt the opposition’s attempts to bully the President were out of order and wasn’t happy – and held a grudge that would come back to haunt Fianna Fáil.

Eight years later, the then-Táiniste Brian Lenihan was running for the Áras himself, and appeared on RTÉ’s Questions and Answers alongside, among others, FitzGerald, who decided to raise the issue once more.

Lenihan completely denied having any part in the phone calls (he hadn’t “any hand, act or part”) – but a UCD postgraduate student, Jim Duffy, had interviewed Lenihan on the record only a few months previously as part of an interview thesis.

The Irish Times had published details of his thesis, including Lenihan’s admission that he himself had called the Áras, and when Duffy ultimately released the tapes of his interview, Lenihan’s campaign disintegrated. He lost 18 points overnight, and a sure thing because an also-ran when Mary Robinson won the presidency.

Hans-Peter Martin (2004)
The headstrong Martin, an Austrian journalist, turned his hand to politics in 1999 when he ran – successfully – for the European Parliament, but his relationship with the Social Democratic Party went sour quickly and he became a maverick independent.

In 2004 Martin noticed that some of his MEP colleagues were showing up to work, signing the register of attendance, and then promptly turning around and leaving the buildings. Suspecting a rat, he started to investigate what they were up to.

Eventually he went to German TV and proved that the MEPs had been showing up to sign the register merely to claim parliamentary expenses. There was uproar – and rumours abounded, in response, that Martin was over-claiming for his meal expenses.

The rumours were later proven untrue, and Martin’s revelations led to the expenses system being totally reformed. Martin himself re-ran for parliament under his own list – and won two seats. In 2009, having opted to decline Libertas’s invitation to join them, he won three.

Lil Wayne’s The Leak (2007)
In a completely different sphere, rapper Lil Wayne was pretty annoyed when most of his album Tha Carter III was leaked on the internet long before it was even finished.

But recognising the clear appetite for his material and sensing a way to turn the leak to his advantage, the sly Wayne (real name Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr) decided to collect the songs floating around the internet and make his own mixtape. He called it (ingeniously): The Leak.

The leaked Leak ultimately resulted in Tha Carter III – in its completed form - selling a million copies in its first week and going three-times platinum in the US after topping the Billboard album chart. Nice work.

Deep Throat (1970s)
In 1972, offices belonging to the Democratic Party’s National Committee headquarters in the Watergate Hotel complex were broken into. The five men convicted of it, on investigation, were all discovered to be linked to Richard Nixon’s re-election campaign as US President.

Naturally, the FBI began to investigate – as did the press. But people began to notice that two Washington Post reporters covering the story had a lot of the same details that that the FBI were uncovering. Ultimately the two reporters broke information that led to the full scandal being disclosed and with President Nixon having to resign.

When they wrote a book on the subject afterwards, the reporters – Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein – said their information came from an anonymous FBI agent who they called ‘Deep Throat’.

Ultimately in 2005 Deep Throat was on his deathbed and wanted to clear his conscience. He revealed himself as William Mark Felt, then aged 91, who had been the Associate Director of the FBI.

Felt knew that the Republican party had been playing dirty in its tactics to get Nixon re-elected – and caused what to date is the only Presidential resignation.

Daniel Ellsberg’s Pentagon Papers (1971)
Remarkably, Watergate broke only a couple of years after what had then been the most substantial leak of modern American times.

In 1969, a military analyst named Daniel Ellsberg began to photocopy a classified study of the American involvement in Vietnam, as had been prepared by the Department of Defence. Two years later, when he was done, he handed it over to the New York Times who published it in nine parts. They became known as the ‘Pentagon Papers’.

The papers showed that the US had – without ever admitting it – been bombing Cambodia and raiding the coast of North Vietnam, and that the administrations of four American presidents – from Harry S Truman, right after World War 2, up to Lyndon Johnson in the 1960′s – had lied to the public about its military affairs.

In 1996 the New York Times said the papers Ellsberg had supplied “”demonstrated, among other things, that the Johnson Administration had systematically lied, not only to the public but also to Congress, about a subject of transcendent national interest and significance.”

ENGLAND’S WORLD CUP final referee Howard Webb and GAA whistleblower Martin Sludden have both received death threats after less-than-satisfactory performances at the weekend.

Webb was roundly booed by fans from all sides when collecting his medal after the World Cup final, having booked 14 players and sent off the Netherlands’ Johnny Heitinga – a record card tally for a final.

Webb has since received poison pen letters from angered Dutch fans who blame Webb for their team’s defeat – prompting the British Referee’s Association to leap to his defence.

“We all want to see matches that are freeflowing and entertaining,” said a spokesman. “It was not Howard’s fault that this one was tempestuous and ugly.”

Webb has admitted to friends that Sunday night was “the most difficult two hours of my career,” according to the Daily Mail.

Sludden, meanwhile, has repeated faced the ire of Louth supporters on Facebook who have issued threats of their own over Facebook.

“Martin Sludden. What a guy! The punches yesterday were well deserved, you fat ****”, wrote one fan.