I was driving past the Mater hospital on Saturday and spotted two chaps with placards complaing about hospital trolleys…‘beds not trolleys’ the placards said. But the placards had the Labour Party symbol on the top corner. Now I believe this is part of a protest instigated by Joe Costello TD some years back. But lads…really…yis are in government now…so who exactly are you protesting against?
Similarly, on RTE radio this morning there was a chap called Aodhan something or other, a Labour TD, who was talking about proposed or expected govt cuts to child welfare benefit, and potentially to social welfare benefit. The chap was saying, as far as I could make out, that the Labour party had opposed cuts in Child Welfare and Social Welfare in its election manifesto…and that this remains the case…and that the people he was in touch with in cabinet were opposed to this…but that he himself is not in cabinet so he couldnt say what the govt will do (which begs the question why he came on the radio to talk about it).
Now maybe I heard him wrong…but surely this is a case of having your cake and eating it too.
You cant at the one time oppose a policy, and also implement that policy.
The crux of what I’m getting at…is the disrespect it shows the electorate…that they want to get credit from the oublic for opposing it, when at the same time they are implementing it… they think if some guy gets on a the radio and tells us this stuff, that we will be all dumb enough to believe it…in other words, it goes back to the way FF operated.
I’m so sick of this line being trotted out. No one deserves these guys end of story. We have a system we did not choose and it serves what it wants to us. Stop demonising yourself through your fellow human. We all have a right live here we all have a right to peace within the bounds of freedom. Do not relinquish your humanity or else you have nothing and deserve nothing.
Tyler…I’d actually disagree with, con permiso, on two issues.
our elected representatives are focussed on local issues because our constituencies are too small and we have too many TDs…that system was suited to an inward looking model pursued by Dev in the 1930s. We need electoral reform; so that constituencies are much larger and so that TDs don’t have to be worrying about the local whatever residents committee are going to say…For example…if instead of a Longford Westmeath constituency, we had a Longford Westmeath Cavan Monaghan Meath Louth constituency…then we’d be much less likely to have a TD who resigns because the government has does something that hurts Mullingar. So the system screws us up…but thats not your fault or my fault.
Second…the issues I brought up are national issues. Hospital beds; social welfare cuts. They are not local issues.
My point is …we all know this stuff has to be done. Lets be grown up about it. And don’t insult us by saying “we at labour are opposed to social welfare cuts”; when you are a member of government that is cutting social welfare.
All politics is local is a cliché but Ireland’s system of small multi seat constituencies in a very small country is bonkers, leads to fights about inconsequential issues but it serves career politicians very well.
Ming Flanagan (even though he is as capable as the rest of them in going after local issues) articulated the point quite well after he was elected when he said that Healy Rae getting roads for Kerry doesn’t insulate Kerry from the worst affects of the recession and people needed to take a national view of things as if the country is doing well then all places will benefit
I hope i’m not going off the point here, but i have a rant to make.
We elect 166 or so members to the Dail,
yet the Cabinet of 15 Ministers, maybe we can include the Junior Ministers,
so 22 odd members make the decisions - the exception being the Bank Guarantee obviously.
that leaves 140 odd people in the Dail that have little or no say on what decisions are made,
yet we pay them €100,000 or so.
Now i find it difficult justifying a Minister’s salary, but really why do we pay the 140 odd people such a high salary if they have no power.
This is where RTE commentator should have questioned the TD,
does he as a backbencher have an influence on the decision making on cuts in Social Welfare for the country,
and if not how does he justify his salary, if he has no influence/responsibility?
He does in the sense that if all of them clubbed together (the backbenchers) they could embarass the government, however it is easier to say “I have no influence” and cry crocodile tears for your constituents when you realise that despite the local promises you made the country is so totally up the swanny that there is nothing else that can be done.
its like Tyler said; the biggest achievement for most politicians is getting elected; and four years later getting re-elected. In between, they show up for things…go to meetings…do the odd interview…but there is no single piece of work that they give anything like the attention they give their own election campaigns.
It - electoral reform - is the one area where I do think the public really needs to protest, get out on the streets.
Its quite clear, like in Greece, that we can protest all we want about spending cuts and it will make no difference if the money isnt there.
But electoral reform is another matter. Its a non-financial issue that has a huge bearing on how in the country is run in the long term. To be fair to the politicians, its perfectly obvious why they don’t want it, and who could blame them. But we need to see it, in my view.
WTF ? Seriously ? WTF does that mean ? Would you really come out with that in a pub to someone as a conversation piece.
We elected the current rabble and the last one.
" A system we didn’t choose " ? Get off the horse will ya. Is there some kind of space inhabited that’s not the same one the rest of us live in ?
The main reason there’s a field of 166 and a cabinet executive of 22 ( 15 really IIRC ) is to allow a semi intelligent choice of people for said executive. Imagine for example a Healy-Rae as a minister just because he is one of Ireland’s 15 TDs. Now I may be wrong about it, but it’s one thing in the mix for definite.
And to return to the OP, what is wrong with opposing bed closures ? Sure didn’t Charlie Flanagan (FG) yesterday disagree with closing Abbeyleix ? ( Yes I know it’s a sop and we’ll see no Naughten-style resignations there cos Laois aint Roscommon boyo and they do things different )
Ha ha good point but not quite! Its a lazy quip that really point the fingers bacj at ourselves more than the politicians. Most peopel don’t get past the “yea it human nature its way things are” logical landing pad.
Fullers observation is correct and he speaks more clearly of process and system. Which is what I also pointed out. I see Duisigh didn’t figure that from my post.
Fuller argued, by design and through example which is the same points I continue to make that we can all co exist. There is enough for us all. I would like to think I have taken some of the ideas a little further as many others have and been part of that future world he imagined. It wasn’t my own rational choice to coincide with his ideas. I feel they are nothing more than an expression of the whole. If we allow the problem solvers and the not the problem creators some more reign than just working for the R&D of the latest greatest Corporation (he referred to as Obnoxico) then there would be great change.
However this involves becoming aware of our innate playfulness and inner creativity so we can engage the outer creativity. Its take trust in ourselves and then some more.
The thing is we all benefit form the ingenuity of the few and yet mistakenly reward the politicians and their great adventures the profit. How do we stop this?
We need to transcend BANKings, we need to transcend money.
I said it before and I’ll say it again I’m all for a cashless society but not the current form we seem to be pursuing
Labour muppets do my head in. They defend to death the croke park deal which keeps Irish public sector average pay highest in Europe and 40% ahead of private sector average while that gap is only 10% in UK , but fail to grasp(or deal with) the logical outcome of such a high average wage when faced with a finite budget(less than optimum levels of people can be employed than if the average was closer to private sector average). Supposed socialists keeping superfluos HSEadmin staf on 60-120k while cutting numbers of care assistants,carers allowance,non permanent medical staff etc etc.
It might also help if all the staff in HSE all did a 39 hour week for their salary and not just junior doctors.