Home » SOAPBOX: We Are Sacrificial Lambs Of World War 3

SOAPBOX: We Are Sacrificial Lambs Of World War 3

by Jimmy Rhatigan

Jimmy Rhatigan

SITTING in a lonely room, cocooning, dodging the killer that is Coronavirus is not a recipe for positive thinking.

The effect could be the very opposite as us elder lemons in particular dare to look to the future.

We crave a return of simple pleasures, a stroll, a cuppa with friends.

Will our world return to normal?

We gaze into a metaphorical crystal ball that doesn’t make us any wiser?

That all ages are in the same boat is no consolation. It is terrifying.

We love our children and grandchildren.

It is normal that young people want to sow their wild oats; that families want to cherish love; that pensioners’ desires include camaraderie, a pain killer for loneliness.

That we generally abide by rules brings hope that war with an invisible enemy can be won.

There are those who break health and safety rules, congregating in crazy numbers, encouraging the grim reaper, aka Covid-19.


House parties, shebeen drinking, speakeasy-like pubs combine for Russian Roulette with people’s lives.

The latter is selfishness at its cruellest. It is akin to the sheer stupidity of our Government in its refusal to shutdown ports and airports just like a previous Government did at a time of foot and mouth disease in animals.

We know what happens when some crew members of a boat row one way and the rest paddle the opposite.

As lockdown continues and fear grips, we look helplessly to others for leadership and pray that those supposedly steering us to a Promised Land know their onions.

We have a catastrophe to rival the Mothers and Babies and Cervical Cancer Scandals.

There are mixed and oft agitated views on how the National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) and Government are performing.

Dáil Chamber, empty house, bad tenant and all that


A cocktail of angst and stress sums up public mood.

At another time, talented souls may cobble the story of Hell on Earth.

As we write, our Republic’s death toll is edging towards 4,000.

It is a horrific reminder of mistakes and miscalculations by power brokers.

Some may praise Chief Medical Officer, Dr Tony Holohan and his team.

Big question is how Health HQ can expect different results by repeating failed recovery plans.

Lockdowns are under a microscope.

Re-opening is under severe scrutiny.

The pandemic has thrown up a gargantuan conundrum.

Is there a saviour in the house?

Nphet has detractors. Government is under fire. Could hundreds, maybe thousands of deaths have been avoided?

Will more people perish due to incompetence and cowardice?


Awful decisions include Cheltenham Festival 2020 and Italian rugby supporters partying here.

Our Hari Kari has to be opening up for Christmas?

It was inviting a killer to party.

Nphet warned of potential carnage.

Government turned a deaf ear.

Undertakers had to work overtime.

Appeasing corporate Ireland, buddies of FG and FF, with an ‘eat, drink and be merry’ spell fed the appetite for human flesh of a marauder that sang and danced with us and then posted us to a Boot Hill address.

There was anger when Dr Holohan sympathised with but failed to apologise to victims of Cervical Cancer Bungling.

Yet another victim was put through courtroom rigors that An Tanáiste, Dr Varadkar promised would not happen.

Yule’s knees’ up was rubber stamped by Martin, Varadkar and Ryan, with their minions in tow.

Big screen darling Marilyn


Was the move populist or god damn reckless?

Politicians may ease consciences by pointing to other countries where thousands are also dying.

Cynically, they compare us to places performing poorly, ignoring New Zealand that has a leader of vision.

Vaccine is being heralded as Superman or Captain Marvel, a lifesaver maybe, a game changer?

But, procuring and distribution brought yet more Government ineptness.

A loaves and fishes-like miracle would be a godsend.

A majority seem happy to get the jab.

There are doubting Thomases.

They remind that the average time to bring a vaccine from lab to community is 15 years.


An antidote to Covid-19 took scientists a mere 9 months to make.

People want to know exactly what is being pumped into their bodies.

Being wary is normal.

With most pharma products comes a list of possible side effects, including death.

Successful vaccinating may hopefully save millions of lives.

Curing the world’s greatest killers, cancer and heart disease would be a terrific encore.

Keeping an open mind, it is worth reading a recently published book by Professor Seamus O’Mahony, a Cork gastroenterologist who has written the most devastating critique of modern medicine since Ivan lllich in Medical Nemesis in 1975.

The book is titled Can Medicine Be Cured?

He doesn’t give a yes or no answer, but he is pessimistic about the profession’s capacity for reform.

‘Leadership’ has become the standard solution to reform of medicine and healthcare.


He goes along with the idea but says the leadership must not be ’limp-wristed virtue signalling’ and he cannot see where it will come from.

“Too many have a vested interest in unreformed medicine,” the professor said.

O’Mahony does not, as do many doctors, blame politicians, managers, journalists and lawyers for medicine’s woes.

“Our complacency and collective cowardice have placed us where we are now.

“Doctors are so divided by factional fighting and ‘boosterism’ for our diseases and services that we no longer function as a cohesive profession pursuing a common good.

“We have poisoned the well of our craft and tradition.”

Reform in medicine is one thing; respect from Government is another.

Frontline workers and their allies have been thrown under the bus.

Top table ruthlessness is exceeded only by its arrogance and lust to keep its own snout in a trough of reward.


All medics, including young nurses, must be respected and must get the financial reward they richly deserve for putting their lives at risk to save others.

It is a safe bet that Government leaders will not emerge from a pandemic as knights in shining armour.

Proper leadership is as scarce as hens’ teeth and it is obvious that there is continuous internal bitching and shadow boxing during what amounts to World War 3.

Shameless leaders continue to put party first as warriors who pay their wages are massacred.

Ministers and TDs regularly queue to gut our people in vital Dáil votes that could ease citizen pain.

They drive daggers into our hearts.

Rank and file, minions and lackeys at national and provincial level are just as guilty as the dons.

They even latch on to a Covid-19 bandwagon to keep their names in the public domain.

Politicians spin one message at home and do U-turns in Leinster House.

Being part of political life means you are swimming in filthy water.

Politics is dirty business where you are as likely to be stabbed in the back by a colleague as you are to be bladed by an opponent.

This spawn self-preservation and greed. Politicians may sleep soundly as they abuse frontline workers and cut the financial nails of ordinary people to the quick.

A majority of those we elect are devoid of scruples.

They smother us in bull manure and amble casually to mollycoddle their cash cows.

May god forgive their woeful modus operandi.

Nobody else will.

Except those who continue to worship at the shine of false gods, FG and FF.

Greens just don’t count, except in prop-up Dáil votes.

Related Articles