Thursday, September 16, 2010

Congestion charges

No, not the central London traffic reduction measure. More the accusation that the Taoiseach was suffering from congestion when giving a radio interview on Morning Ireland on Tuesday. Now I'm all on for having a bit of a session even on a school night. I'm pretty sure there have been times when I've been somewhere between hungover and drunk going to work, probably closer to the latter than the former. But I make sure of three things:
  • I plan my work so as the morning after the night before I do all the easy tasks that I have been putting off for ages like cleaning the office or returning the stack of overdue library books.
  • I am not Taoiseach
  • I do not have an interview with national media

Now obviously the last two are unlikely to crop up in my life, but Brian Cowen could have taken a leaf from my book and arranged his schedule to not do media until Pat Kenny or even Sean O'Rourke at lunchtime. As the great Falstaff said, the better part of valour is discretion and missing one interview would have saved an awful lot of uproar about essentially nothing.

Having made the initial error, FF then went into overdrive trying to spin the story by claiming various medical excuses, blaming Simon Coveney and eventually the Taoiseach apologizing to the public on TV news. All these action have just compounded the problem. Like an itch, they couldn't just leave it alone and their actions, and especially Noel Whelan's performance on Pat Kenny the following day, haven't helped at all.

Finally a special award to Batt O'Keefe in the "that doesn't necessarily mean what you think it does" category. Fulsome has several negative connotations with definitions like "offensive to good taste" and "insincerely lavish". Now I'm sure the Deputy didn't mean to stick the knife in, but sometimes you have to wonder.

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