A long post: you might want a cup of tea with this one.
When the Taoiseach was told the news by the British Prime Minister, they say that his heart actually tightened and he was short of breath. He could have been forgiven if it had been true. England, the PM announced, was pulling out of the United Kingdom. After Scotland’s withdrawal the previous year a wave of introspection had swept south of the border, and suddenly English taxpayers were asking why they were paying billions to a bunch of ungrateful paddies. Enough was enough.
The truth, the PM said, is that we would have pulled out decades ago if it hadn’t been for the IRA. There’s nothing in Ulster for us, but we just couldn’t be seen to give in to the Provos. You know, spirit of the Blitz and all that. But now most English people don’t give a toss. It’ll be like Hong Kong: flag lowered, soldiers in big hats saluting, and that’ll be that. You’ll be the man who united Ireland, the PM said. You can thank me later.
The Taoiseach actually vomited when he was alone. His first reaction had been to beg the Brits not to leave. Where the hell was he going to find €10 billion a year extra to fund the north? Increase USC by two and a half times? But he couldn’t beg, because he knew that both MI5 and the dark shades brigade in Harcourt Street were both recording the conversation, and a leak of the prime minister of Ireland begging the Brits not to leave would get him killed. In Boston, quite literally.
“30 Rock” is like one of those tiny, cheap little neighbourhood restaurants you accidentally stumble across that turn out to be magnificent, and leaves you wondering why everybody isn’t raving about it. It was an NBC comedy show which ran for seven seasons about the comings and goings on a Saturday Night Live style comedy show filmed in the NBC New York studio at 30 Rockefeller Centre (Geddit?). As it ran, it got progressively more surreal but always funny.
The show got a much deserved boost thanks to its writer, creator and star Tina Fey’s very funny performance as Sarah Palin during the 2008 campaign, but the fact is, the show can stand on its own. Fey is, in my opinion, quite possibly the funniest female comedian around, and went on after the show to write create Netflix’s equally whacky “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”.
Aside from Fey’s superbly self-mocking performance, the show boasted a brilliant ensemble cast including Alec Baldwin’s career-defining performance as the slightly mad conservative Republican Jack Donaghey, head of NBC’s television and microwave division. It’s up there with William Shatner in Boston Legal. Jack McBrayer as the mysterious page Kenneth, and extraordinarily versatile singing, dancing Jane Krakowski (Elaine in Ally McBeal) also steal scenes, as does Tracy Morgan as the unhinged star of the show.
The show was never a huge hit. It opened in the same season as Aaron Sorkin’s criminally underrated “Studio 60″ which covered very similar territory, and many pundits assumed that there was only room for one SNL-inspired show. They were right, although most of them guessed the wrong one.
“30 Rock” is one of those shows that people either love and rewatch, or turn off after 15 minutes. Me? I put it up there with “Frasier”, and that’s saying something. Netflix UK and Ireland: pay attention!
I was talking to someone recently about what short message each party will be pushing in next year’s election, going on what we know as of today. This is what we came up with.
Fine Gael: Stability, business, cut taxes, keep the Shinners out. Political reform is the exact same system FF had but with us in it.
Labour: We have absolutely no idea why you people aren’t cheering us from the rafters. As I said to Jennings, my under-butler, yesterday…
Fianna Fail: We’re much nicer than we used to be. Look, we have gays and Averil Power and everything. We’re not Fine Gael. We’ll give you money! Please! (sob!) We’ll do anything. (Unbuckles belt). For Jesus sake I’ve a mortgage!
Sinn Fein: We’ll take money off people you don’t know and give it to you. Brits Out? Lock up your daughters, eh! (tone turns menacing, glint in eye freezes over)
Greens: Polar bears?
Renua: So far, words like enterprise and dignity. And abortion hangs about in the background.
Alphabet Left: Slogan! Anger! Fury! Slogan! Indignation, etc.
Independents: Amazingly, I realised the party system was corrupt on the exact same night I lost a selection convention for FF/FG. What were the chances?
I love this so much. It’s just wonderful. Imagine an entire party accidentally reading its own spin as fact when it sees it beamed back to itself on Fox News. A professional election expert actually picking facts to suit the result he wants. Extraordinary.
A blazing row has broken out in the GOP over the issue of whether the prime minister of Israel, Binyamin Nethanyahu, can be nominated as the Republican presidential nominee in 2016.
Rep. Jefferson Davis Cottonking (R-Alabama 3) has attacked party colleagues who suggested that Nethanyahu not being an American citizen, being born in a foreign country and being the actual prime minister of that foreign country might “not be ideal”.
“This is a disgrace. I yield to no man in my support for the state of Israel, and the idea that Bibi is not fit to be president of these god fearin’ united states, hell, you might as well be Osama Bin Laden to be sayin’ such things! Are you honestly telling me that Bibi Nethanyahu is less of an American than that pretender in the White House, Barack Hussein Obama? Aren’t we effectively equating Bibi with the same equal status as, say, a goddamn Frenchman? They can’t run either! Thank you Barack Hussein Obama and your “Constitution”!”
The GOP leadership, after humbly beseeching the Israeli prime minister’s forgiveness, proposed to make amends by legislating to allow the Knesset to nominate the next secretary of state.
The Mayor of 9/11(tm), Rudy Giuliani, has called on Israel to be allowed vote in the next US election, and called anyone who opposed the idea a Nazi terrorist.