Journalist and political scientist, Elaine Byrne, had her work cut out for her on last night’s Late Debate.
Lined up against her were three moronic dinosaurs representing the current corrupt political system that has destroyed this country.
George Lee’s resignation was the topic of discussion but the underlying discussion was about the Irish political system and the need for reform of that system.
Elaine Byrne was saying the system is broken and, of course, she’s absolutely right but the dinosaurs are so far stuck up their own political rectums that they hadn’t the slightest inkling of what she was trying to tell them.
The political dinosaurs were Senator Regan of Fine Gael, Niall Collins TD of Fianna Fail and Joe Costello TD of Labour.
But before I deal with these morons I want to first quote the daddy of all political morons, Eoghan Harris where he rants on about the need for politicians to serve a political apprenticeship before they get too opinionated.
When reading this quote keep in mind that Harris never did a days political work in his life, he was appointed to the Senate solely for his unassailable ability of licking Bertie Ahern’s rear end
What’s been really concerning and worrying in the last few days is the way the discourse on the George Lee issue has become a general rejection of the notion that there should be no apprenticeship of any sort in politics.
The apprenticeship in politics is a very important preparation in terms of character. Listening to people who are annoying you, boring you, actually cranky people is a test of character and stamina and teaches people how to deal with the public.
I mean at the end of the day politics is about the rule of states and peoples and it starts with human beings, it’s not an abstract issue. I know there’s a delusion among college students and certain sections of the younger sections of the pol course (?) not the old guard I notice.
There is this delusion that all you have to do is assemble people with first class honours degrees and put them into politics and the country will be a land flowing with milk and honey. That is not how the real world works.
Incredibly, this idiot, who pontificates from the benches of that useless organisation, Seanad Eireann, claims to know how the real world works.
This moronic talk about political apprenticeships reminds me of Martin Mansergh’s (a prime example of an intellectual fool) idiotic idea that newly elected TDs shouldn’t address or criticise a Taoiseach until they’ve served for a number of years.
Not surprisingly, the political morons on the panel all agreed with Harris.
I agree with Harris in terms of apprenticeship. I thinks it’s very important that people have to spend some time there learning…Elaine is missing the point she says the system is broken. We all agree that reforms have to take place…it’s not the political system that has failed the country, it’s the government that has failed the country and the two are totally different.
There’s an attempted circling of the wagons by the establishment around all the political parties and anyone who’s associated with politics saying the system is wrong. The system needs tweeking in particular areas, nobody’s disputing that, we all accept we have to try and better ourselves but this notion that Dail TDs and senators shouldn’t be available to the public who elects us on any level I think it’s farcical and the people who are making those comments don’t understand the work of public representatives in this country as far as I’m concerned.
Collins went on to give an example of how Irish political representatives work which sounded like a sketch straight out of Ballymagash.
We had a debate in our parliamentary party this evening about the dog breeding legislation. I met three groups of my constituents who are involved in dog breeding, that’s all part of it, we get out and about.
Byrne was completely stumped.
Dog breeding, you talk to them about dog breeding?
At this stage I lost the run of the discussion after falling to the floor in convulsions of contemptible laughter.
Collins wasn’t laughing though, he was, again, attacking Byrne because she’s an academic, what would her type know about the plain people of Ireland?
But Byrne is more tuned into the brutal reality of Irish politics than any of these morons.
It’s about politics, it’s about Ireland. We should have citizen assemblies where the citizens take ownership of the reform process where people can go into a room and say what needs reform.
I agree completely but would go much further. These political dinosaurs and all their fellow representatives from all parties have lost their right to govern or represent the people of Ireland.
The system they represent and defend so strongly is corrupt and beyond redemption, beyond reform.
We should indeed have citizen assemblies, the people should indeed take ownership, not of the reform process, but of the political system itself. The first step in taking that ownership is to destroy the current rotten system.
One thought on “Elaine Byrne and the thee political morons”
Back in the bad old days circa 1988 when Evil stalked the land, a well-got businessman of my acquaintance imported in his briefcase a floppy disc of business software for which he had paid £100. Being a man of integrity, he approached the customs officials at Cork airport seeking to pay the proper excise duty and/or VAT.
The man to whom he spoke was very taken aback – “£100 for that ?” – and clearly had never seen a diskette or heard of imported software. He said “Yerra, go on, we’ll let you off this time”, but my friend was insistent. He tried to explain that he intended to use it in his business and it would cause all sorts of accounting problems, as well as awkwardness with the tax and VAT Inspectors if it wasn’t all “above board”.
The official looked at him as if he had just tried to persuade him that Charlie Haughey was the Son of God, but agreed to see what he could do. He then walked down to the other end of the office, and made a phone call. The official was one of those endearing characters with a naturally clear voice which carried all the way down to where my friend waited.
This is how it went:
“Listen, Mick, I have this fella here with a piece of plastic that he says he wants to declare…no,no, he’s from Cork, yeah, I know … looks useless to me…£100…looseware or sumpthin’…no, that’s it, soft, yeah…I dunno…is there a code ?…no, I already told him that but he don’t wantta…”
“… the people should indeed take ownership, not of the reform process, but of the political system itself”
I say that I already tried to get them to do that: they “don’t wantta”.
It’s not some kind of accident that we have a Fianna Fáil dominated government, or that we have had one so often: it is the result of a functioning electoral process that is not “rotten”, and produces political leadership which is the genuine free choice of the voters. Like it or not – and I don’t – we have to live with it.
(That does not mean that many elements of the super-structure put in place by FF – and other parties – are not in need of reform or worse.)
Destroying “the current rotten system” is the politics of tantrum. There is no reason to believe that Elaine Byrne, or those who share her views, is capable of putting into place one that works better. It just might be otherwise – though I doubt it – if everyone was like Elaine, or like you, or even like me, but everyone isn’t, and they are never going to be.
And don’t fool yourself that it is otherwise anywhere else.
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