There's no time for Christmas goodwill - we are already at war
Christmas brought an unofficial truce to the World War One trenches - but Christmas at Leinster House brought nothing of the sort.
After several bouts of raucous but indecipherable ranting, roaring, and shouting of general abuse, Tánaiste Joan Burton (pictured right) managed to deliver a withering verdict on one of the main protagonists, Pádraig Mac Lochlainn of Sinn Féin. The usually genial Donegal TD was trading non-stop invective with another TD not known for political brawls, Dinny McGinley of Fine Gael. "We want to see more women in this Dáil precisely to avoid the kind of behaviour you've just indulged in. A bar-room brawler, a bar-room brawler, you're a disgrace," the Labour leader launched at Deputy MacLochlainn.
The last session of Leaders' Questions before the Christmas break had begun with a business-like, if non-festive, tone. Fianna Fáil's Michael McGrath was fighting the good fight for motorists being soaked for car insurance which was about €400 last year - and likely to be €700 by next year.