I’ve too much time on my hands since I was put out to grass by the Indo.
So I end up thinking. And that’s not good for you.
For example, I watched and listened to election coverage. I even listened to some of the stuff listeners and viewers (or people in political offices pretending to be listeners and viewers) were saying.
And I came to the conclusion that it’s no wonder we’re in trouble.
Fine Gael? Sure everything that’s wrong is their fault. Homelessness, waiting lists, people on trolleys, the state of the FAI and, probably doing badly in the Rugby World Cup.
Fianna Fáil? They wrecked the economy before and can’t wait to do it again.
Labour? They’re kind of caught in between. Neither proven to be utterly useless or proven to be complete nutters. In other words, not that interesting.
The Greens? They want to ban cars and cows.
Sinn Féin? They’re going to miracle up a few billion and build 100,000 hospitals or was it houses? Same difference. It’s not going to happen.
Solidarity People Before Profit Rise and various other lefties? They’ll be too busy organising the split to do anything positive.
The Social Democrats? See Labour.
Aontu. If they get two TDs elected, will they be called Tutu?
But, people keep saying, everything is better everywhere else.
We have, they say, a Third World health service.
Actually, no. Somalia has a Third World health service and the people there and in most of the world would give anything to have a service like ours, problems and all.
Ah, but the NHS is better. Is it? It’s 42,000 nurses short and literally hundreds of patients have died due to incompetence and neglect. The total is just short of 10,000 avoidable deaths in NHS hospitals every year.
Every country seems to have problems.
Germany? Even allowing for Germany’s size, it’s rough sleepers problem is far worse than Ireland’s. Just short of 50,000 sleep rough in Germany every night.
Finland may have solved its homelessness problems – but the country has been shocked by two scandals – one involving the mass grooming of children for sexual abuse and another about the treatment of the elderly and sick in care homes.
Sweden saw more than 100 bombings last year in crime gang wars. And of course its much admired Nobel Academy has been tarnished by sex abuse and financial scandals.
And we haven’t even gone near Italy, Spain, Greece, Hungary, Turkey and other European countries with big problems.
Nor have we mentioned the rest of the world.
So what’s the solution?
I’m going to stop thinking.