We are strange political animals. Pictures in some of this morning’s newspapers have two images alongside each other. One is of people standing outside the Mahon Tribunal into Planning and Payments (apparently there isn’t much of either) clapping and cheering on our PM as he enters the chamber; the other is of a small group of people booing his entry and / or exit. Quite apart from going all the way to Dublin Castle to stand outside and do one of these things, why would you boo or cheer the PM of a country as he enters a public hearing? This isn’t American Idol you know! You have a vote, use it, it happens every couple of years or so.
Like a 5th year student two weeks into the new term, I’m sick of the lies and the arrogance of this play actor, Bertie Ahern. Accounts of the man turning on the Tribunal’s lawyers, the arrogant thumbs up to the apparatchiks as he exits and the lack of recollection of large sums of money he received in the 1990s. He received large sums of money to do up a house not yet owned by the man who gave him the money. If you are not following all of this from this island, does this sound a bit bonkers? It is not that he received this amount or that amount. He received money for himself as a loan / gift / a digout when he was the country’s Minister for Finance! If I have rich friends, I neither expect or demand money from them.
I am tired of it all. Not the Tribunal per because it is doing a job that needs to be done. When you see the way the man swaggers around as if he is untouchable and not a public servant, it makes me sick to my stomach. I’m 34 years old, I’ve been listening to this for over 15 years in one form or another – Goodman, export refunds, up trees on the northside of Dublin, Redmond, Telecom property, Ballsbridge sites. when do I get some real politics to vote on and get worked up about? You know things like health, education, the provision of decent lives for voluntary carers, do we want to be good at green energy, do we need incinerators, should non-Catholic children be allowed to go to Catholic schools, what about assisted suicide, what about the work rights of non-EU migrants who came here since 1999? Maybe I just listen too much to RTE coverage and reading too much Irish Times commentary.
As I type, there’s a piece on the radio about why Steve Staunton should resign as manager of the Irish soccer team. Can we not hear some vox pop on why Bertie should be retained as Taoiseach of ‘Europe’s most successful economy’?