Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics
 
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President Obama, to avoid making political capital on a tragedy, condemns the next mass shooting in the US before it occurs.

Posted by Jason O on Jun 29, 2015 in Not quite serious., US Politics

Obama speakingPresident Obama, aware of not wanting to impinge on the personal suffering of American families who are not yet suffering from losing friends and/or loved ones in a mass shooting that hasn’t happened yet, has issued a statement condemning the as yet not occurred gun attack.

“Today, as we listen to news coming from wherever it will be that this awful thing happens, our prayers are with the families of people who will soon be senselessly gunned down by someone with a legally held firearm.”

The National Rifle Association has condemned the President for making remarks about a hypothetical mass killing involving yet another weapon being used by a person who really shouldn’t be allowed own a mobile phone, never mind a firearm comparable to those used by most other countries military forces.

“We expect this sort of liberal scaremongering from this President, going around stirring up anti-gun feeling on the ridiculous basis of an event that has not even happened and will statistically not happen in exactly the format that he’s talking about. Why, he didn’t even have the guts to predict where such an event might happen, how many people might die,     and what sort of firearm was used!”

When asked about the fact that the NRA actually has established media procedure to deal with mass shootings, the spokesperson pointed out that plenty of people enjoy wargaming, and that if NRA employees just happen to enjoy such a social event, that’s their business.

“But the idea that the NRA prepares for mass shootings in the belief that it is a near certainty that they will happen under our current gun laws is outrageous,” the spokesman said, before jumping under a table when a nearby car backfired, and screaming “Lockdown Alpha! Lockdown Alpha!”

 
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So, who to vote for?

Posted by Jason O on Jun 21, 2015 in Irish Politics, Not quite serious.

2016 Voter Guide flowchart

 
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DUP to contest Roscommon-South Leitrim in Election 2016

Posted by Jason O on May 31, 2015 in Irish Politics, Not quite serious.

The Democratic Unionist Party, emboldened by No vote in the constituency in the Marriage Equality referendum, has announced that it is to seek a Dail seat in the forthcoming general election. A spokesperson said: “Given that the Brits are getting brassed off sending us cash, and if the Scots go we’re totally snookered, we thought we’d better start putting out feelers down south to see if there are any good God fearing people. We’re delighted to find that at least half of the constituency aren’t having any truck with, you know, fishers of the Brown Trout.”

The news comes despite protests from the other half of the constituency which objects strenuously to the label Alabama-on-the-Shannon. Local Yes voters pointed out that they had made up just under half the vote, and pointed to local former TD Ming Flanagan as proof of their broadmindness. “Didn’t we elect him twice? admittedly the second time to make him live in Brussels, but it’s the thought that counts!”

The county tourist board has expressed concern at losing the lucrative gay marriage market. “I mean, we’ve lovely counties here. We’re saving up to send someone to Hollywood to get Sarah Jessica Parker over to endorse us with The Gays. Sure they love her, and she seems to be in Donegal every second week and they’re against everything. Now that, that was a real blow, pardon the pun. When Donegal is peering over the top of The Irish Times at you, ye know you’re in trouble.”

 
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An Occasional Guide to Irish Politics: The No to Marriage Equality voter.

no posterHe (and it does tend to be he) comes in all sorts of forms:

1. The Religious one. Probably the most honest of No voters, because he is often genuinely conflicted between his sense of compassion and his religious beliefs, including the guidance from his spiritual advisor. Yes, that’s right, the guy with the poster quoting scripture is the honest one.

2. The I Can’t Believe We’re Having This Debate one. The fella who suddenly realises The Gays are everywhere, and not apologising either. He just can’t understand why The Gays insist upon walking around in public everywhere being all gay. He knows he can’t call them “faggots” anymore, which he believes is a restriction of his freedom of speech. Where’s his referendum, he wonders. Most likely to use air quotes when saying “Marriage” and “Equality”. Got very excited when he heard/met a gay who was voting No. This gay fella is now the opening line in every conversation on the subject. Would be very upset if he thought that someone else thought he was gay. Believes that children can be “turned” gay, that gays are flighty and regard children as fashion accessories, that gays are out to “convert”, by force if necessary, and that there is a conspiracy to hide “the proven link” between gays and kiddie fiddlers.

3. The Needs A Technicality one. His gut has decided he’s voting No. Now he’s looking for a respectable reason to attach to it. Something about families, childen, stability, respect for the constitution, yeah, that’ll do. Most likely to start his position with “I’ve nothing against gays…”:

4. The Bastard. A tiny minority, in fairness. The guy who doesn’t actually care about religion, surrogacy, family units, any of that stuff. Knows that he will cause actual pain to other people by voting No, but does it all the same. Other people’s unhappiness? Not my problem.

 
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Govt to appoint Marriage Consummation Inspectors.

Posted by Jason O on May 12, 2015 in Irish Politics, Not quite serious.

In an attempt to reach out to Irish conservatives, the government has announced that it will legislate to ensure that marriages are sexually “consummated” as per the definition of the Iona Institute and others.

A government spokesperson said: “We’re very aware that elements of the No campaign spend an awful lot of time obsessing expressing concern about the sexual activities of married people, gay or straight. So we’ve decided to address this concern by appointing state inspectors to ensure proper consummation occurs.”

Sources in the No campaign expressed great enthusiasm at the idea: “We congratulate the government for meeting us halfway on this, and can provide a list of suitable people who take a very, very, eh, healthy interest in watching other people engaged in, you know, that sort of thing with the gentleman’s excuse me and a lady’s front bottom and, you know…we also are willing to send inspectors to make sure that the gays, if this thing equality thing passes, are consummating their marriages too. In fact we think there should be two or three inspectors in the room, from this list here, standing in the darkness, silently watching, mouth going dry, rosary shaking in my damp sweating palms…sorry I have to go now…excuse me…Bridget, do you have the central heating on, I’m sweltering here…will you ask that young American chap, no, the slim blonde one in the teeshirt I accidentally shrunk in the wash, to bring a new shirt to my office…No, I didn’t! I’m a man, sure what would I know about washing machines!”

 
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Why Canada, Australia and New Zealand should join the European Union.

Posted by Jason O on Apr 26, 2015 in European Union, Not quite serious.
Europe: not as much a place as a way of life.

Europe: not as much a place as a way of life.

For some reason, this is one of my most popular posts. Have no idea why.

As debate currently rages (why do debates always rage, and never, say, saunter?)  over Britain’s future in the EU, some UK eurosceptics are quick to point to the Commonwealth as a potential alternative. This got me thinking: never mind the Brits, why are we in the EU not trying to get Australia, New Zealand and Canada to join up? Now, before you go off shouting, hear me out.

There are good reasons:

1. Firstly, it’s true, None of them are actually in Europe. Meh. A minor detail at best. French Guyana is in the EU, and it’s not even in the same hemisphere. That’s the thing about Europeans: we’re very bendy. All three have European histories, and large sections of their population have direct links to the Old Continent. So we might have to change the name from the European Union to, say, the Democratic Union. Big deal.

2. Their head of state is half-German (and lives in Europe), and her husband is Greek. Australia’s prime minister was actually born in England. The previous one but one was Welsh. Seriously? They’re probably entitled to an EU passport already.

3. Admittedly, it would mean being in a political union with France, who exploded the odd atomic bomb near two of them. But the Brits exploded them IN Australia, and they were forgiven. And don’t say the Brits didn’t know what they were doing at the time. They didn’t explode them in Scotland, and hardly anyone lives there. Anyway, it’s not like Canada has no experience in dealing with stroppy French people anyway. Might even calm Quebec down.

4. Every single Aussie, Kiwi and Canadian would be entitled to live, work, study and vote in the EU. No visas, no nothing. They’d also get free emergency healthcare, and of course, tariff free access to the single European market and the upcoming EU-US free trade area. Europe would get access to Canada’s oil, Australia’s uranium, and New Zealand’s dwarves.

5. Australia and Canada would be the seventh largest countries of the 27 countries of the EU. They’d be big cheeses. New Zealand would be like Ireland without kiddie fiddling priests and banker-terrorists.

6. They wouldn’t be negotiating with the Chinese, a couple of million to one billion, but over 500 million to one billion. And with the US one-to-one. When George Bush threatened to put a tariff on European steel before the 2004 election, the EU threatened a tariff on Florida oranges. He backed down. That’s what having a single market of 500 million gets you.

7. All three share our values on everything from gun control to the death penalty to gay rights to social healthcare to democracy, human rights, the rule of law, stability, and a solid economy. And they are not run by people who are mad. Or at least no more mad than our ones.

8. Every fourteen years, they’d get to run the whole of Europe for six months. Including Britain. Assuming they stay.

9. They’d be entitled to a European commissioner, seats on the European Council of Ministers and the European Court, and about 80 seats in the European Parliament between them. Think about that: they could make 80 of their pols live in Belgium for months at a time. Offer that up front and they start drawing up the list in their heads.

10. No reason why an Australian, Canadian or Kiwi could not end up as President of Europe. After all, Canada has cultural and liguistic links with Ireland, the UK, France and Belgium. Australia and New Zealand with Ireland and the UK. And here’s the thing: no natural enemies. Europe is full of countries with grudges going back years: No one has a grudge against Canada, New Zealand or Australia, which makes them ideal for appointment to the top jobs.

11. Finally, and this is the best reason of all: imagine the fury amongst British eurosceptics if the three started negotiating to join, against the wishes of their betters.

Is it plausible? Who knows? I’m just saying, don’t be too hasty. At least have a browse through the brochure.

 
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An Occasional Guide to Irish Politics: The Internal Party Election.

Posted by Jason O on Apr 23, 2015 in Not quite serious., Occasional Guide to Irish Politics

There’s a weirdness to internal party elections, caused by the fact that it is wannabe politicians canvassing other wannabe politicians. That and the odd mix between inoffensive “I have to write something on the canvass card” blandness mixed with surreal claims of worthiness.

“I am passionately committed to this party (really?) and to serving the best interests of the party members. And my great grandfather shot an Englishman in 1919.”

The sheer terror of saying anything that might offend anyone who might not give you a 15th preference is palpable. If the canvass cards were scratch n’ sniff (remember them) it would be the odour of pure sweaty fear. It’s either stand by your cronies or your man is from the same county. Unless of course he’s contesting the same ward as you. Then he’s got “stories going around about him. You know. One of those fellas.” For the women it’s worse, trying to look attractive but not too attractive, putting up with the too-close talkers with porter on their breath and busy hands.

The younger candidates, desperately trying to look mature, turn up in suits and and constantly trying to get pictures of themselves with party luminaries to show they are moving in serious circles and are therefore serious themselves.

Unlike in other countries, where different factions fight it out based on their viewpoint of where they want society to go, this isn’t about direction of the party. This is about winning elections because they’re elections. The day after the election? Never you mind, that’s none of your business.

 
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Nation rejoices, crowds dance in streets as 15th Seanad reform report unveiled.

Posted by Jason O on Apr 14, 2015 in Irish Politics, Not quite serious., Seanad Referendum

An-Taoiseach-Enda-Kenny4Towns and cities across Ireland were brought to a halt yesterday as spontaneous crowds blocked roads cheering the release of the Working Group on Seanad Reform’s report. One woman, openly sobbing, told our cameras: “This is truly a great nation, and I’m so proud to be Irish. You can keep your Nobel prizes and your Olympic gold medals: who else in the world can generate so many reports on legislative upper house reform? Who? This is what the men and women of 1916 died for!”

Tee-shirt manufacturers reported  a sharp increase in tee-shirts bearing Seanad reform slogans. “Indirect election by local authority members! That’s the big one! I can’t keep them on the shelves. That and Reserved Seats for Parliamentary Nominated Candidates! Jaysus they’re flying off the shelves! Flyin’!”

The 1916 Commemoration Committee has confirmed that as part of the celebration next year Galway based arts group Macnas have been commissioned to create giant papier mache versions of each of the 15 Seanad reports for the parade. The committee has also confirmed that toy and card versions of the reports will be available, so that schoolchildren can collect their favourites or play swapsies. “I can’t wait to get my hands on the O’Rourke report!” one excited ten year old said.

The Taoiseach was cheered as he took his morning stroll to Government Buildings on Merrion Square. Speaking to the media at the entrance, he said: “I’m very proud to be contributing to the long tradition in this country of endlessly guffing on about reforming things and then doing nothing. And can I just say this: I believe in the Irish people, and Irish democracy, and I believe that by working together, through a process of endless presentations and our old friend “consultation”, I am confident that we may see a 16th report on Seanad reform yet!”

 
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An Occasional Guide to Irish Politics: The Political Elitist.

Because of her political history, where she was once very active with one particular party, she wrongly gets called biased. It’s not true. If anything, it’s worse than that. She’s no longer loyal to the party she was once a member of, but is, in fact, now a member of The Establishment Party, and a fiercely protective member of it.

She’ll happily speak in defence of any member of the establishment parties. TD salaries? Hours worked? Expenses? She’ll happily go on Prime Time and The Right Hook and Morning Ireland to defend TDs when they’re terrified of their shite to do so themselves. She never has to put her hand in her handbag when she’s in the Dail bar.

She’ll oppose any real political reform which is unpopular with the parties,  although will always be careful to publicly support the concept of reform once “consensus” can be found. She’s popular across all establishment parties because she defends “politics”, that is, the status quo where they get paid for doing stuff, going on RTE panels to defend politics as a noble pursuit to the solemn nod of actual officeholders. Summer schools? Sure it’s practically the law that she either chairs or speaks on every panel.

What really irritates her are the outsiders. If you’re not a newspaper columnist with a national newspaper, a pol corr, an elected official or a party officer you’ve no real right speaking about her political system? Blogger? Twitter? Who are these people?

The dream used to be a seat in cabinet, but she knows that’s no longer on the agenda. But a seat on the RTE Authority? Or the Council of State? Or maybe the holy grail of a Taoiseach’s nominee to the Seanad. She’s a big fan of senators keeping the title after they leave office. Especially on their passports for holidays in the US later.

That’s all still to play for, and the main party leaders know whose side she’s on.

 
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10 ways you know you’re becoming permanently single.

Posted by Jason O on Mar 13, 2015 in An Occasional Guide to Modern Life, Not quite serious.

1. Your friends admit that they’ve stopped learning your boyfriend/girlfriends’ names because they won’t be around long.

2. You start going to movies on your own, and surprise yourself by actually enjoying it.

3. You have one of those slipping getting out of the shower and thinking This Is How I’ll Be Found moments.

4. You don’t do a Big Shop but buy stuff as you need it.

5. You regard the words bachelor and spinster as both archaic and offensive, and secretly meaning “closet homosexual” and “on the shelf”.

6. Life insurance is something other people buy.

7. You really have your home the way you want it.

8. You start dressing primarily for comfort.

9. You either start talking to yourself, or buy a cat to pretend to talk to but keep asking him questions about you.

10. You start either writing a blog or recounting great details of your life on Facebook.

Copyright © 2015 Jason O Mahony All rights reserved. Email: Jason@JasonOMahony.ie.