An Occasional Guide to Irish Politics: The Sloganist.

“Reclaim our country!” “Dignity for all!” “Social Justice does not have a price!” “People first!” When you first hear them, you assume they’re from a demonstration against something, declarations nestled in with the obligatory “Careful now!” and “Down with this sort of thing!”

But then you realise that the entire article our hero has written is just a collection of these slogans. In the same article, which seems to travel from one left wing social journal to another, he describes himself as a community activist, whatever that is. For the most part it seems to involve using someone else’s money to complain that Cause X is not getting more of someone else’s money.

He’s a perennial at public meetings and “workshops” and “People’s Assemblies” where he speaks for a good 45 minutes, full of passion and vigour, but leaves you wondering as to whether you are the only person in the audience who notices that he hasn’t actually said anything. Then it dawns on you that the audience is full of people who speak exactly like him, who regard things such as “self esteem” and “respect” as tangibles. They know more “fascists” than Martin Bormann did.

Throughout his career, as a result, he’s never wrong. How can he be? He’s in favour of people getting whatever they want, and against unhappiness. It’s all fluffy and warm and untouchable.

Except for his specific budget, that pays his salary and funds his platform for demanding more funds. He’s up and down that spread sheet with more fluidity than Ajai Chopra, and 20 years from now he’ll be on the Goldman Sachs Social Justice Fund panel.

Working to change them from the inside, obviously.

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