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SOAPBOX – Couldn’t Organise Piss Up In A Brewery

by Jimmy Rhatigan

Suggesting that somebody or bodies could not organise a piss up in a brewery certainly means that you have no confidence in them.
When such a damning remark is fired in the direction of our Government it should have no doubt about the kind of trust, or lack of it, that big numbers of our people have in it.
There has been so much bungling and incompetence since the start of the Coronavirus Pandemic that one would be forgiven for likening our trinity of power to a second-hand Lada with ministers and TDs packed into the back seat and no one in the driver’s seat.
Human beings will make mistakes, but when errors are repeated and repeated again, it would be time to ring alarm bells and, as would happen in the private sector, somebody or bodies should be sacked.
Whether or not you get the bullet in the public sector depends on how ‘important’ you are or if somebody has had your name on a bullet for some time.
Former EU Commissioner Phil Hogan should be able to testify to that after the mess that became Golfgate.

The son of Tullaroan had his nose rubbed in the mud while others escaped with a few cuts and bruises but with no mention of any P45s.
We started with incompetence, not shortage of fair play, so let’s not stray.
Since those supposed to be protecting us as tax-paying citizens from the time Covid.19 raised its ugly head, there has been a litany of dodgy decisions that led to a spread of the disease and god only knows how many deaths.
We remind of the dangers of allowing thousands to head to Cheltenham this time last year and the Italian rugby supporters who were welcomed to Dublin even though a game against Ireland had fallen to the invisible enemy.
Some politicians may have hidden talents but making astute decisions is certainly not one.
As if to remind us that it is under the influence of the Patron Saint of Bunglers, whoever he or she is, arrogant Government then courted popularity last Christmas by opening up our country.
That was playing Russian Roulette with the lives of our people.
Okay, thousands fell into a trap of boozing and boogeying.

But to be fair, when a caged animal gets a sniff of freedom, the world is its oyster.
Whether it likes it or not, the buck stops with Government and as we know well by now after a year of lockdowns and some off-the-rocker health and safety rules, a majority of our people simply do what they are told.
Again big numbers, aged and not so old, ended on what we might call death row as some politicians admitted the error following a debacle which NPHET, our National Public Health Emergency Team, had warned would likely happen.
More family funerals followed, more grieving for sons and daughters and all in the name of neglect and stupidity by FF, FG and their Green buddies.
It is one thing making rules, silly or otherwise, in a bid to halt a killer.
It is another to invite a savage to a party, giving him, her or it the opportunity to caress and cuddle our people before administering the kiss of death.
At a time when fewer people have any confidence in our Government’s ability to do the right thing to protect us, we still find ourselves between a rock and a hard place.

Now you see me, now you don’t could well be the battle cry of Coronavirus as numbers of people getting positive test results fluctuates; one day there is positivity and the next red flags may fly.
Sadly, deaths from Covid.19 continue in plague-like proportions despite the Herculean efforts of our courageous frontline workers.
We would suggest that while NPHET appears to be doing its best for us, a change of tactics would be welcome as the same prescription time and time again is not curing the patient.
Politicians are doing us no favours as they unashamedly play party politics and front-liners are putting their own lives on the line to protect us.

What is troubling our people is that the anthem which torments lukewarm soccer referees, ie ‘You don’t know what you’re doing’ has become a best-selling single.
As cabin fever rages and mental health edges towards crisis, the fear has to be that thousands may throw in the towel.
Then what?
Conspiracy theories are again getting legs, fuelled by talk across Europe of banning peaceful protest.
Reckless anti-vaxers should have no place in our fight for survival in what must now be officially World War 3.

Nor should peripheral groups be tolerated in any peaceful protest groups that, some may agree, include decent people with different views.
We should remember that not everyone who holds an alternative view is an enemy.
To be fair, our people have mainly been as good as gold during what is a terrifying time for all of us.
But we all know what happens in a class of dedicated students if a teacher turns out to be a gobshite.
In this case our students are our near five million population and our teacher is our Government.
Sadly, with a few notable exceptions, our journalists are weak, or living in comfort zones, failing us badly by not asking the questions that people want answered.
For instance, if someone wants to know more about a vaccine, he or she is often branded an anti-vaxer.
Anyone with an ounce of common sense will know that a vaccine vouched for by independent experts could be our Manna from Heaven.
Vaccines, heroics and incompetency apart, our people are still behaving honourably and staff in hospitals are the knights in shining armour of a raging war.

A Sunday Independent page one story then reveals that over 34,000 people arrived into our State including 1,200 from the high-risk countries of Brazil and South Africa, in the three-week period after Government signed off on hotel quarantine plans.
The Indo explained that plans to confine overseas arrivals from 33 high-risk countries in hotels are still not operational.
The latter is a month after Government signed off on them and two weeks after being signed into law.
No need to rush, it’s only a pandemic!
This is proof positive that the lunatics are running the asylum.
That our hospital warriors do not run out of patience is a tribute to their resilience and passion for their series of life-threatening mercy missions.
Hopefully, the fight with a guerrilla-like killer will eventually be won.
We should then ensure that dedicated professionals like Professor Gary Courtney, Consultant Cardiologist Dr Michael Conway, their colleagues and super teams of medical and non-medical allies at St Luke’s General Hospital receive the recognition they deserve.
Not, we stress, the round of applause that politicians may deem to be apt for their sacrifices.

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