21st June, 2001

Only another week or two and the traffic jams will cease for the summer (excluding killer whales in the vicinity). Everybody I meet from the Donnybrook/Scart area has the same complaint … traffic in the morning. Hundreds of more house are presently being built in our area, so we can look forward to longer queues in September. One reader suggested that Douglas West become one way inbound (with only buses aloowed through). Another suggestion was no parking in Douglas West Village from 8.00am to 6.00pm. Do any of our readers have any suggestions to our traffic problems? If you do, drop us a line at the usual address.

RTE want a 50 increase in their TV licence. What does a politician do in this situation? An election might happen at any moment and the electorate might remember which politician cost them 50. So what does the politician do? Tell the people, “Hey, I’m not going to get involved, I’ll get a team of expert to examine their application, I’ll look at the experts recommendations, I’ll act upon that and nobody will blame me!!”

I presume these consultations are paid, so obviously they are not going to come back and say, “RTE are top heavy, nobody watched the Beckett plays”. They should pay viewers to watch RTE!! So, at the end of the day RTE want 50, the consultants recommend 25, the minister had no say in the matter, the public are thrilled because the spin doctors tell us that it could have been 50. The consultants are paid, and like a good fairy story, everybody lives happily ever after!

Are tribunals any use? Do they serve any purposes? Is there a two tier justice system? Did I read somewhere that seven people went to prison last year for social welfare fraud, while financial institutions rob millions from the state. Politicians who are thrown out of their party, top the polls in our constituencies, and people say, “He’s one of our own, he bought me a pint once.” Who pays for the tribunals, you’re right, you! Let’s go back to the era of the wink, nod, the brown envelope, because the present system is not making a damn bit of difference, except that the lawyers are buying bigger yachts.

I read somewhere that the average age of a British Conservative voter is 65!! Some of them still believe they have an empire and that they are the bastion of civilization. Now they are looking for a new leader. One candidate has the support of Margaret Thatcher. That’s him finished!!

Here in Ireland, Noel Dempsey had big plans to change the political system. T.D.’s could not stand for council elections. This was to be introduced this year, but the gang of four had other plans. Jackie and friends decided to let us know who runs this country of ours, and Noel was forced to take to the sick bed. Jackie, who has been known to play the saxophone, together with the other three Independent’s should form a pop group to record the 60’s classic, “Leader of the Pack”. The B-side could be, “From a Jackie, To a King”.

It’s time for a joke… Three old sisters, aged 96, 94 and 92 lived together. The 96 year old decides to have a bath, she filled it, took off her cloths and put one foot in, then she stopped because she couldn’t remember is she was getting into the bath or getting out. So, she called down to the 94 year old to come up and help. She proceeded up the stairs, but half way up she stopped and turned around. She couldn’t remember if she was going up the stairs or coming down. She called down to the 92 year old to come and help. She was in the kitchen, sitting at the table having a cup of tea. “God,” she said, “I hope I never become addled like those two, touch wood”, tapping the table. She shouted up, “I’ll be there when I answer the knock at the door”.

Congratulations to Jerry and Caroline Breen on the birth of their little girl, Emma, a sister for Mark and David.

Finally, good luck to Jennifer O’Regan from Donnybrook, who is in the final of the Miss Cork competition this weekend.

Bye for now,
Michael O’Hanlon.

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