Piss up in a Brewery.


‘You couldn’t organise the abolition of the Seanad in a toxic environment of austerity and outright hostility towards the political class!’ Alright, so it’s not as snappy as the standard ‘piss up in a brewery’ crack, but the effect is the same. On the surface of it, getting the Irish people, who are by this stage fed up of politicians austerity and just want to go have a big brandy and a nap, to vote to sack sixty politicians and put the money back into far more important things like PR advisors to the Department of the Taoiseach, buying kegs for the Dail Bar or sending a Super Junior Minister to Bahrain for St. Patricks day. (It’s not a cushy junket mind you; it’s a vitally important business trip) should have been straightforward. This however proved a bridge too far for the Government.


You have to laugh, I mean you literally have to laugh as the alternative is to realise that the people who were elected to run the country through its hour of greatest need would need a telescopic sight, a tripod and a good bit of luck to shoot a fish in a barrel, and upon realising this you would weep instantly at the whole wretched unfairness of being stuck living on a rock with bad weather, a fatalistic media and an incompetent government. So yes, you have to laugh.


The intention of this piece is not solely to sneer at our illustrious and masterful government for being useless; I mean it’s not their fault that they’re awful. We are not overly burdened with a wealth of political talent. This government won power by not being Fianna Fail. We were sick and tired of Fianna Fail. We didn’t want austerity, hardship, recession or Europe telling us what to do! We just wanted our Bulgarian holiday villas with mahogany decking back! In our anger the electorate became elemental. Our vote was electricity; jumping from one point to the next…it was just our misfortune that the next nearest point was Enda Kenny, a man with the personality of a large tree in an otherwise empty field.


But let’s take a look at the people who we could pick to ‘lead’ us in place of Enda Kenny should an election be called tomorrow. First up we have Michael Martin, king of the brass necks. The man who literally things we are all morons. The man who rails against this government with righteous indignation for not cleaning up the mess his party made quickly enough. They seem to know exactly what should be done now that they don’t have to do it. Micheal Martin has all the airs about him of the type of person who breaks his toilet, calls a plumber then stands over the plumbers shoulder telling him how to do his job despite having no training in plumbing.


Eamonn Gilmore is the Tánaiste. Michael Martin has more chance of being Taoiseach than Eamonn Gilmore. That is a fact (well, it’s not, it’s my opinion but whatever). Eamonn Gilmore reminds me of Dwight Schrute or Garrett Keenan, depending on which version of ‘The Office’ you’re familiar with. I would imagine that Eamonn introduces himself as ‘assistant Taoiseach’ for which he is quickly rebuked and reintroduced by Enda as ‘assistant to the Taoiseach’. I wouldn’t follow Eamonn Gilmore into a lift, let alone give him a crack at shaping the future of my country. Gerry Adams…I cannot stress how great a man Gerry Adams is. He is a wonderful man who has never done anything wrong in his life; he invented Christmas and gives two Euro to every charity box he sees, his beard is where swans and cute squirrels come from. Yes, there is no reason to be afraid of Gerry Adams and I say this of my own free will. There is no one else in the room intimidating me in any way (send help). Seriously though, Gerry Adams will never be Taoiseach. He’s a one issue guy with no broad appeal.


Those were our options. Enda, Eamonn, Micheal and Gerry, we were asked to pick our poison and we did. Then of course we realised that we didn’t like poison at all and would rather have cola or Country Spring Cream Soda, tough luck. There is no Coca Cola in Irish politics, there is no Country Spring Cream soda either, our political class, and I use the word ‘class’ loosely in this context, are at worst KVI value lemon and lime drink and at their best they are Cadet and lets be honest, no ones first choice was Cadet.


You see the distinct lack in value for money found in the Irish political system has lead to a situation where an unpopular government cannot entice people to vote to sack a part of the unpopular government. That is the level of apathy which recent times have generated. Such is the depth of our contempt for politicians that a vast swathe of us wouldn’t cross the road to sack them. It’s almost the political equivalent of telling people ‘I wouldn’t piss on you if you were on fire’.


I mean, sure, there is a possibility that the electorate decided that a bicameral system where legislative power was not (in theory) monopolised by a single house was preferable to giving some politicians their marching papers…but it’s unlikely. Apathy carried the day. The winner of this referendum was neither the Yes side nor the No side it was the ‘Meh’ side. There is a creeping widening of the democratic deficit in Irish society. People do not care anymore. No matter what your political belief or opinion I think I am on reasonably steady ground by asserting that a 39% turnout in a referendum is pathetic, albeit referenda are the equivalent of the League of Ireland, where unless you really care then you won’t care at all, but unlike League of Ireland this stuff matters, it’s important, it is essential to the future of the country…which makes it an even better illustration of how pathetic the situation is. I for one wont be signing up to any parties which the government hold in the Guinness storehouse, gathering be damned.


Many thanks to Declan for submitting this post all the way from Canada!


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