Ireland – A great little car in which to do business
It’s a great little country is Ireland. Rather like a perky small car that punches above its weight. It trundles along nicely but when you hit a rough bit of road or some bad conditions you are reminded very quickly that it is still a small car that didn’t set you back a lot. It is of course driven by politicians, who are not always the best drivers. The Media observe how the car is going and rather like a mechanic they see it as their task to keep it on the road. RTE is one of those big chain garages, if we leave the car in there everything is done but it costs us a fair whack every time. They don’t like doing things on the cheap and that means it hits us in the pocket. TV3 are like the local garage, they cost us a lot less but we are never sure if we fully trust them to have checked everything. We drive by the UTV garage with ‘opening soon signs’ and we can only wonder……
Fine Gael is firmly in the driving seat. We let them drive because they told us that they were very careful and had a full licence. Since then they have managed to hit every pot hole in the road. They do seem however to be confident that they are on the right road and that counts for something. They tell us they can see far less bumps in the road ahead. They don’t make for great travelling companions though. They are about as interesting as a long Mass and as they drive along they love patting us on the head and telling us what great drivers they are. Then they hold out their hand and ask us for more petrol money.
Labour ably assists in the driving. Fine Gael tells them that they are valued even if everyone else in the car can see the opposite. Labour have no input into the direction of the car, although they are allowed to read the map…Fine Gael just doesn’t listen. Now, they are given other tasks. When we need the fresh air of constitutional reform, Labour are allowed to open the window and take the credit even if Fine Gael finds it a tad breezy. Its ok if it keeps Labour happy. Labour are not allowed comment on the Fine Gael driving talents unless it is to praise them. They can choose the music on the radio, operate the heaters and every once in a while can shift the gear lever under Fine Gaels approving parental eye.
Fianna Fail is now in the back seat. Pint in hand and muttering about the woeful bumps from the Fine Gael driving. Fianna Fail were the last drivers and for a long time they gave us some of the smoothest drives we ever had. It was mighty craic. We souped up the car along the way and sang our hearts out. However Fianna Fail was having such great craic with us, they took their eyes off the road and when the weather turned bad we got lost. Not just lost, they drove right into the middle of a field until we were all knee deep in muck pushing the car out, while FF revved the engine and spattered us all. We said we would never let them drive again, but we know we probably would if only they would clean up their act. They were better company but right now they are just bitter and annoying and in absolutely no state to drive.
The Progressive Democrats used to be in the car. Like a hitchhiker we picked up for 20 years. They got in the car, told everyone how to do everything and then eventually offended so many people in the car that we stopped, opened the door and asked them to leave.
The Green party were fun while they were a passenger. Always telling us we needed to change to one of those Eco cars. Then we let them go up front with Fianna Fail and help drive. We know what happened. Once the car was stuck in the field we told the Greens to please get out now too. We planned on leaving them in the field, where they might be happy but like a kid on a skateboard they are following the car desperately hanging on.
That knocking sound you hear in the boot? That’s the Independents and People before Profit and Socialist Party. We don’t normally let them out, we are just happy to have them shout their views from the boot. Sometimes the driver might listen to a suggestion for where to pull over for something to eat but that’s about it. Funny thing is they have become such a jolly lot lately, and we are so fed up with everyone else we are starting to think we might let them into the car properly next time. We know it won’t make for an easy decision making process and it will be a car full of people talking over one another but hey, at least it would not be boring.
Sinn Fein are sitting on the roof of the car. They have secrets they don’t want anyone to know. They also claim the car smells. They are determined that they won’t get into the car or drive unless absolutely everybody else gets out. They, like Fianna Fail, are not impressed with the driving of Fine Gael and Labour. However, Sinn Fein don’t want to be seen anywhere near Fianna Fail so nobody really hears either of their complaints. Sinn Fein is not convinced that the road we are on is the right one at all. They want the car turned around immediately. Fine Gael tries to tell them it wouldn’t be so cold and wet if they got into the car but they won’t listen. They want a new car, a new road and all in a new country. Everyone else says we can’t afford it but Sinn Fein simply tells them to leave the car to them and they will make it all happen. Problem is we are not too sure that if we hop out and let them in the driver seat they won’t speed off without us and smash it into a tree.