Well, at least one of them, Bob Geldof, has matured into something of an interesting adult and appears to be a man who can say what needs to be said. And here is something that he said about ‘Ebola.’
He maintained that Médecins Sans Frontières had warned of the threat of the fatal pandemic six months ago. The virus has now killed over 4,000 people.
“They don’t have the doctors, hospitals, nurses, state systems that they have in Madrid and Texas," he explained. "And so, once again, through no fault of their own, this virus is out of control in states where there are no systems - because there is no money."
He said that the country now faced "state collapse" and that world leaders must act "immediately" if the virus to be stopped.
"It’s beyond the point of getting together and having a summit," he said. "It’s now about calling up the various leaders and saying, 'Now, do it now.'"
I wonder when we shall start to take the Ebola crisis seriously. Perhaps when a few whites begin to die in America and Europe the world will waken up and decide to do something.
The thing that amazes me is that we can’t use the ‘N’ word because it is not socially acceptable and yet we can let them die in squalor and do nothing serious to help them. The same politicians who would shoot a man for making a statement with the ‘N’ word in it, talk of cost when it comes to helping people in desperate need: “We won’t insult you but we’ll let you die.”
But sure we are in worse shape…we have no speaker. Let’s talk about something really important; Peter broke his word.
Ah, what a pity, Mitchel is not going to be speaker.
What do we expect of politicians, the truth! Surely we all know by now that the truth to any politician is what works best for him on the day. Truth has no place in politics and the longer we expect truth the longer we are going to be let down.
Do we expect fairness from the banks? No.
Do we expect justice from the court system? No.
Then why do we expect truth from politicians. Politicians have one object in mind, to get elected. By definition, a politician who is not elected is not a politician.
“However, there must be a danger that the Democratic Unionist Party's decision to hold back on their very public commitment to replace Willie Hay with a Sinn Féin speaker will further debase the shaky currency at future Stormont negotiations.
When the parties convene on Thursday 16 October (assuming talks go ahead as envisaged by Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers) there will no doubt be recriminations over previous broken deals regarding the speaker, welfare reform and the Maze peace centre.” (Mark Davenport, BBC News)
Mark Davenport is not slow; he has forgotten more about politics than most of us will ever know, and yet he feels free to talk of broken promises and broken deals.
And he mentions something else…..the Villiers talks. Did they take place, did anyone turn up?
To be honest I had to look up the internet to see if the talks had happened at all. If they did take place there was certainly no fanfare about them, they were not the ground shaking, earth moving confrontation that we had all thought they would be.
When I went to look up the Villiers talks I could find nothing about it. Certainly there were reports about talks but nothing about the actual talks themselves.
Who cares? Did you lose any sleep over the speaker debacle or were you sitting up all night on Wednesday last waiting on the great Villiers talks spectacle to begin?
We have reached saturation point with politics and the antics of the politicians in Northern Ireland. The truth is, we have no meaningful commitment to self-rule. I would venture to say that if they brought in direct rule tomorrow no one would notice and no one would mind.
The Villiers talks did take place and Peter didn’t turn up. The Irish government was represented, the British government was represented, even the Americans came along for a con fab but, Uncle Peter thought it best to stay away.
And to be honest, ‘what odds.’
All the chat about the talks did reveal one thing—David Cameron is losing touch with reality. On Thursday, the day the inaudible talks took place, David gave out a great speal:
“Political talks in Northern Ireland must "lift the blockages" preventing its power-sharing executive from delivering effective government, Prime Minister David Cameron has said.
Talks aimed at resolving difficulties among the five parties in the devolved government have begun in Belfast. Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers chaired the first session.”
Now here’s the bit that shows that David is beginning to live a short way removed from the real world:
“Mr Cameron said he and Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny were expecting a progress report by the end of November.”
There will be no progress. We neither need nor want progress. Northern Ireland is very rapidly becoming a two tier society with a firmly entrenched middle class and an underclass that the politicians use for their own ends.
Pre 1969 this was the way that the Unionist parties treated the Protestant population. There was the nice middle class Prods who had the jobs and benefits and who were in the know with the party and the Orange Order. Beneath this there was the working class Prod who was left to fend for himself; they were used by the unionists only at election time to come out and vote.
It is exactly the same today, only now Sinn Fein and the DUP presume to treat the underclass (they are not working class because there is no work) in the same way; they have become experts at playing the game and the game is, ‘pretend to be doing so much for the big important things such as flags, the past and marching.’
Sinn Fein want the flags down and the DUP want them up: Sinn Fein says we were all victims, the DUP say only the Protestant population were: Sinn Fein says no marching and the DUP want to march everywhere; and all the while the sick can’t get a hospital bed and our young are without hope.
But when you see how bitter the words of the politicians are becoming you begin to understand that they are playing to the worst instincts of their supporters:
“Ulster Unionist leader Mike Nesbitt drove into the talks without making any comment.
However, in a statement he said he had been given assurances by the Irish prime minister that the Irish government would respect the three-stranded approach, under which they would not negotiate on internal Northern Ireland affairs. He criticised the DUP for staying away from the opening session.
The DUP has defended its decision not to attend the opening session, saying "no self-respecting unionist" would discuss the internal affairs of Northern Ireland with the Irish government at the table.”
The attitude of the unionists is self-defeating. The whole premise of Irish republicanism is that the Northern state is untenable. It is not the IRA that is showing the place to be ungovernable, it is the unionists themselves; they will agree to nothing that gives the Catholic people any equality at all.
On the other hand, Sinn Fein, who are supposed to be promoting Irish unity are doing nothing to promote unity of the people; they are more interested in rubbing the unionist people’s nose in it anywhere they have a majority.
If Sinn Fein were serious about building one people in one country they would be using every opportunity they could to show the unionists that they have nothing to fear in a United Ireland. Could any unionist from Northern Ireland believe that he would get fair play in an Ireland run by Sinn Fein?
What it all boils down to is, politicians use people; it is the nature of their profession. We delude ourselves when we think that change will come about because of some altruistic idea from on high; they will fix Ebola when enough whites die, the politicians here shall sort out the marching, the past and the flags when England tells them too.
And to do so they need to use some real threat such as the cutting off of the block grant.
But then again politics has its lighter side and I did get a laugh last week.
For me the funny scene of the week ending October 19th was the photo of Sammy Wilson pointing the finger that appeared in a lot of papers.
Seemingly Sammy had overstepped the mark and called Jim Allister a thug. In case you didn’t know it, such talk is not appropriate among the nice people of Northern Ireland.
“Mr Wilson accused Mr Allister of "bullying" a witness, special advisor Stephen Brimstone, during the committee's inquiry into alleged political interference in the Housing Executive. Mr Allister said he objected to the comments. He added: I have been called many things but I take great offence to being called a thug.” (U.TV News)
I don’t know, with the money these men earn you would think they would either learn manners or get a bit of a thick skin. Seems like a storm in a tea cup to me.
You see, that’s the problem with politics in Northern Ireland, there is no real politics; we have a society based on an interminable series of hatreds and bigotry.
Within the unionist community we have the undercurrents of all the various wee differences that exist there and within the nationalist community we have forty shades of green.
Unfortunately our politicians have no real power and so they have to invent ways of showing that they are important. Hence flags and the past take on an importance that far exceeds what they have in reality, but they are convenient for showing how tough our so called leaders can talk and how little way we shall give to the other side.
Forgiveness, (that quality which is the certain sign of any Christian) must never be shown, integrity is playing to the base instincts of the electorate and your word has no value unless there is an appeal to the bigotry of the voters; such is the mentality of the typical northern politician.
Into the middle of all this we must throw the fact that our society has lost its Christian base. Both main Catholic parties now promote policies that are anti-Catholic and anti-life and anti-family. They have moved from promoting community into a position of promoting individualism and secularism.
These policy changes are designed to garner votes and not to promote anything good. But in Rome there is some real talk going on about serious issues facing the world and the family.
I spent the weekend reading the full text of the synod document. Those who expect big changes from the church are going to be sadly mistaken. Already it has been made clear that there shall be no major changes to Catholic teaching, the sanctity of marriage and the ban on contraception will stay.
That is the difference between politicians and the church. The church takes her time and thinks things through, it does not act in haste and for her certain things cannot be changed no matter what the mentality of modern people thinks: life is sacred from conception til natural death, and even if it loses you votes this truth is still valid: sacramental Catholic marriage is between a man and a woman, if society wants to give people the legal right to same sex marriage, then so be it, but such marriage is never valid in the eyes of God.
‘The church is so old fashioned, it doesn’t change with the times.’ The Church does not try to ‘please men, but proclaims the truth of God, the same God who tests men’s motives’.
This is the cry of the modernists and the politicians who are desperate for votes. But the dignity of the person and the sanctity of God’s law is not up for grabs: these things do not change with time, they are immortal because they are given by an immortal God.
So many in our society have turned against the Church and there have been many scandals to make them feel justified. Yet the Church is still a safe place for a child to be. Do you not believe me—then I will ask you a question.
Imagine you are a perfectly healthy twenty three week old child in the womb of your mother. You are just about ready to survive on your own, be that with help from a doctor, and you are ready to be born and to take on a whole new life.
Where would you, a perfectly healthy child in the womb prefer to be; with your mother at Mass on a Sunday morning or taken to the Marie Stopes clinic on a Monday?
When our leaders lose their way and prefer death with votes over life and truth, Marie Stopes is where our children end up.
The views expressed are not necessarily those of
the editor but are the views of the writer.
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