Water and other political issues.

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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Tue May 01, 2018 5:33 pm

Here we can discuss how my little test is going and you can read this

http://www.thejournal.ie/state-surveill ... 7-May2015/

Comment away ... :D
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Rocker » Tue May 01, 2018 10:26 pm

Gosh that is scary stuff Toss. I always knew that they had some device on phones which is activated by key words and then recording is done! but, the other methods!! scary. It will be interesting to see if we have actual lurkers or if they are machines. Pity though as I like to think of many people in the Boro looking in here....like the Valley of the squinting windows!!
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Mon May 07, 2018 1:12 pm

Toss wrote:Here we can discuss how my little test is going and you can read this

http://www.thejournal.ie/state-surveill ... 7-May2015/

Comment away ... :D


40 views in 4 days and its eased off now.

I would say that's about 3 lurkers to one member, any lurker care to say hello or are you just there to keep an eye on us in case we hit the nail on the head politically speaking :P
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby bugrock » Mon May 07, 2018 2:32 pm

hellllo hellllo wuu wuu
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Mon May 07, 2018 10:56 pm

bugrock wrote:hellllo hellllo wuu wuu


Good man Bugs :lol:
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby bugrock » Mon May 07, 2018 11:55 pm

dnc1
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Tue Sep 25, 2018 11:53 pm

From the Buses topic .....
Toss wrote:
Micheál wrote:Given the financial constraints of the State, public networks cannot be limitless.

M.


I do not buy into the financial constraints idea ........ from what I can see, there is plenty of money put into the state coffers each year from the people and all that is wrong is that is not being used for the right purposes. Do we need so many quangos ? do we need all the tribunals ? do we need all the advisors / consultants / spin doctors ? do we need all the Councillors and Councils ? Do we need to fund RTE with their sky high wages ? Do we need to fund Universities that are hoarding money ? Do we need to have foreign companies run our NCT / Luas etc on guaranteed long term contracts ? the list goes on and on.

There's a reason for the homelessness, there's a reason for crime, there's a reason we have people on trolley's in Hospitals and there's a reason we can't organise our public transport etc etc .......... the state budgets are out of control and nobody seems willing to make the tough decisions. Whats wrong with redirecting our spending from vanity projects to mainline services ? Whats wrong with paying the Doctors and Nurses before the management teams ? whats wrong with bringing back bus conductors and helping people whilst creating employment ? Can we not employ carpenters / bricklayers etc instead of funding some consultant to tell us the obvious for a fortune?

The money is there, its just a question of priorities and I don't see Joe public getting a look in .... until its time for the election promises of course and suddenly even the dumbest politician has a solution to spin for a vote.


Its funny how I mentioned that the money is out there and cited a few examples, then suddenly we hear our Universities have stashed so much money they are outbidding each other at auctions and raising the price by €300,000 https://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/cit-paid-extra-300k-to-buy-city-property-471086.html and then later on I was listening to RTE radio doing its best to explain how the President has an UNBUDGETED extra €317,000 expense kitty to spend on entertaining guests ... you really couldn't make it up as it was revealed that 'an internal audit committee established in 2014 to monitor spending at the Áras did not meet until this year' https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/editorial/the-irish-times-view-on-%C3%A1ras-an-uachtar%C3%A1in-s-finances-transparency-is-required-1.3641206. Dare anyone in the media ask if this Internal Audit Committee have been remunerated annually for work not carried out ?

The reality is having a President is costing us €8.2 Million at the very least ..... is that value for money ?
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby gingertom » Sat Sep 29, 2018 8:12 pm

Well Toss, I suppose the problem here is that this problem has been there for decades....Quelle surprise! Controversial even in 1945!

https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/debates/de ... 5-04-20/5/

I am surprised though that some investigating journalist hasn't found this before now.
The next link I think shows the reticence for the payments of financial aspects of the Áras in terms of who is responsible to fund it and how.

https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/debates/de ... =president

But some TD'S felt restraint should be applied.

https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/debates/de ... =president

Just a snippet of this statement by Mr Patrick Cogan TD for Wicklow, elected in 1938 and he stated'

"We think that it is ridiculous that this small country should be spending so much on two figure-heads, one in the north of the country and one in the south. Between them they have a personal salary of £18,000, £3,000 more than the President of the United States gets. The United States have about 117,000,000 of the richest people in the world. Their head is not a figure-head. He is an active President and does his work as actively as any Prime Minister would do it and he is only getting from this huge population £15,000. Look at this country with less than four and a half millions of people where you are paying two figure-heads the sum of £18,000. I say it is wrong. It does not induce the ordinary taxpayer to pay taxes. I put it to the Labour Party. They will admit if they want social services carried out it will depend on the willingness of the ordinary taxpayer to pay his taxes to the State. Do you think it is going to make for willingness in that respect for them to see £3,000 more than is paid to the President of the United States paid to two figure-heads in this country?"

Now costs have increased since then for sure but concerns are constant regarding the financial liability that is the Office of the President here.
€317,000 is a huge sum but the issue is why is it only coming to light publicly now or is it hidden away in these Dáil Debates somewhere....Im sure its in the debates. The problem is the text is time consuming to find........might have a look!!!!!
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:13 pm

gingertom wrote:€317,000 is a huge sum but the issue is why is it only coming to light publicly now or is it hidden away in these Dáil Debates somewhere....Im sure its in the debates. The problem is the text is time consuming to find........might have a look!!!!!


Great research as always GT, but I think part of the problem is that its everywhere throughout the state system .... lets not forget it wasn't that long ago that the SIPTU Union and the HSE were missing around €2.3 Million https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/fraud-squad-probes-hse-missing-millions-26663014.html and the list is endless ... this is from the Indo in 2015 : In Ireland, as in other developed societies, we pay taxes in order to run the country. They pay for doctors, nurses, teachers, social workers, ministers, civil servants and all those involved in managing the State's affairs.

The higher their cost, the higher taxes have to be. Despite ever-increasing pressure on government spending since the 2008 crash, countless examples of shocking failures of competence, greed and waste across all departments and State agencies have come to light.

Today, we examine just some of the more outrageous examples to emerge and which have come before the Dail's spending watchdog, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC).

We begin with the much-maligned Planning Tribunal.

It now lies deeply wounded, after having to quash a host of adverse findings against former minister Ray Burke, leading developers and former public officials.

Third-party costs are likely to top €63m, while the overall cost of the tribunal is set to top €159m. It too has created 17 legal tribunal millionaires.

The Health Service Executive is the greatest ongoing waste of taxpayers' money in Irish history.

Created on foot of a merger of the old health boards in 2005, it has been a black hole which now accounts for more than €13bn a year. The doomed PPARS (personnel, payroll and related systems) computer system, unused hospital wards despite millions being spent, pay to senior managers in breach of public rules... the list of waste goes on and on and on.

Amid much criticism, the HSE was eventually forced to disclose to the PAC a €266m bonanza in pay increases, top-ups, on-call and overtime payments including to middle and senior HSE staff, which it previously failed to disclose.

Elsewhere, most of the €40m spent on developing the new national children's hospital at the Mater site in Dublin has been written off. The Government moved the project to St James's Hospital after An Bord Pleanala refused planning permission at the Mater, but by then significant costs had been incurred in drawing up plans for the hospital.

Financial statements for the board developing the project at the Mater, say it is likely assets valued at €40 million "are now impaired".

Moving on, Irish Water has more than 2,000 staff it doesn't need, because the Government was afraid of the political backlash if they were sacked. It has spent €80m on consultants to help it set up and a further €500m on water meters that look set to last just 15 years. One holy mess.

Last year, the Irish Greyhound Board was called before the PAC to discuss the Comptroller and Auditor General's critical report into the building of the new stadium in Limerick, which proved a fiasco with a high price tag.

The final cost of the stadium was around €21m, and the most alarming aspect was that it led to a doubling of the IGB's debt to €22m, a debt which it cannot afford to pay and so is only servicing the interest.

PAC chairman John McGuinness gave voice to the outrage at the "waste of money".

Elsewhere, Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) came under fire over the spending of a reported €22,000 on portraits of its president and chairman at a time budget cuts were being implemented.

The college spend of "millions of euro" on external consultants was also examined.

The commissioning of paintings at the height of the recession in 2009 is one of a number of matters examined by the PAC and the Comptroller & Auditor General (C&AG).

The PAC also heard how Wexford VEC "wasted" €420,500 of taxpayers' money to pay rent over an eight-year period on a building that it no longer used.

Last year, the then-Environment Minister Phil Hogan blew the whistle about the funding of "rural quangos" after it emerged that, in some cases, up to one-third of their public funding was being spent on salaries and administration.

These organisations received over €50m in State funding last year in order to assist small businesses and community groups in the form of grants.

But it emerged that more than €11m handed to these companies is being spent on salaries and administration.

Eleven CEOs of the non-profit companies are earning in excess of €92,000, the salary of an average TD.

The PAC is still attempting to conclude its investigations into how €4.4m of taxpayers' money went on a Siptu/HSE Training fund which was overseen by union official Matt Merrigan.

Merrigan has repeatedly refused to appear before the PAC to explain his role in the "slush fund."

In total, the fund was given €4.4m, but actually spent €3.85m before it was shut down in 2010.

Some €1.1m of the total spend, including €348,000 on marketing and promotions, €598,000 on travel and €99,000 on hospitality were "outside the scope of the fund's original objective".

One of the greatest State calamities to emerge in recent times came before the PAC in June. The head of the Dublin Docklands Development Authority (DDDA) was forced to deliver a humiliating public apology over the bungled €431m purchase of the Irish Glass Bottle site.

Of the €431m, the DDDA spent €52.1m of taxpayers' money on buying the land at the height of the boom, which is now valued at less than €45m.

Then DDDA CEO Loretta Lambkin apologised for the wasteful spending. "A serious error of judgment," she told the PAC.

IDA Ireland - the State agency charged with bringing foreign direct investment into Ireland - has written off almost €200m from the value of its property portfolio.

In an indication of the scale of the losses being "nursed by the taxpayer", it has emerged that the IDA spent €68.5m on a 134-acre site in Carrigtwohill, Co Cork, which is lying idle and is "being used to graze sheep".

The agency has a portfolio of 136 properties - many bought during the boom - which cost €463m to buy. Due to the economic crash, the IDA has been forced to write down their value by more than 41pc.

Just last week it emerged almost €9m of taxpayers' money was squandered on two rural airstrips - on Inishbofin island and the village of Cleggan, both Co Galway - which have not been used and will now be sold or given away.

Department of Gaeltacht officials were criticised at a PAC hearing over the airstrips, which are still being maintained.

Joe Hamill, department secretary-general, said the project was "a product of the time" but a decision had now been reached to scrap the project. The two runways lie derelict.

The tarmac runways were finished by 2009, but no terminal buildings were added. Labour TD Joe Costello asked: "So no plane has ever flown between Cleggan and 'boffin?" Mr Hamill replied: "Not officially." Mr Costello said: "I see. So you didn't construct terminal buildings, the airstrips are lying idle, derelict, probably grass growing." Mr Hamill said the tarmac runways were being maintained, at a cost of €300,000 cumulatively last year. Mr Costello said: "It does seem like it was a total waste of taxpayers' money."

The Western Rail Corridor was the ultimate Celtic Tiger pipe dream with a business case that never stacked up. The massively underused €200m Limerick-to-Galway line remains one of the staggering examples of hubris by the previous Government.


There are plenty more examples and its ongoing .... but nothing seems to happen to change the behaviour.
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby gingertom » Sat Sep 29, 2018 10:29 pm

Toss, well I think its a simple as this.....if the money that was spent on all of the white elephants to which you refer, was the personal allowance or property of the grantors of these projects, careful attention to detail would be the natural by-product. I suppose thats obvious, so then this poses the question of the provision of oversight surrounding government funded projects and also over those who vote for them, or even those acquiesce to them by silence, I mean the public who are actually in the majority.

For example, the roaring silence and capitulation by most of our local politicians relating to the diminution of Dublin Bus services within the Borough should be noted and at election time....and well remembered when 'X' marks the spot......they must be subject to democratic, electoral oversight.

By the same token we, the public, must stop tolerating wastage from central funds to these exercises following from Dáil decision-making. The problem there is that some of the projects you mention, are motivated by the parish pump mentality from local gombeenism.
So how do we give oversight to prohibit meaningless wasteful state fiscal decisions? We should indepently audit such projects with the use of outside auditors and I mean from outside the state, combined with an appropriate judicial penalty for malfeasance if it occurs but this would need a radical overhaul of legislation to clinically enforce for proper and effective deterrence of such activity. Such oversight costs, providing it was properly undertaken, would displace the cost of project wastage and financial misappropriation.
But the Attorney General is a political appointment by the Government of the day and it is this office which drafts our legislation, when if ever, its voted in, to be put into legislation by the Dáil...........maybe a root and branch dismantling and re-building of our democracy is needed.

Local councils are just talking shops and their biggest concern in my view is the provision and procurement of their employees salaries and the enforcement of parking laws! As an example, right under their locational nose they acquiesed to a planning travesty at Carlisle Pier by permitting its demolition and created a parking lot with an area for amusements, for which they saw fit to utilise to command rental income to harvest funds. I must point out that a similar situation arose where Archers Garage was ordered to be rebuilt.

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/archer- ... -1.1152577

Im saying in the main, that the acquisition of personal gain seems to be the driver of politicians political thought, this done by observing a narrow part of Irish society that supports them and not the service to the wider general public, to which they primarily owe a duty to assist, in providing say, proper housing in particular, This I think is because we have given our politicians too much power by public acquiesance and therefore permitting the creation of this dysfunctional democratic political system in our Republic.
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby gingertom » Sat Sep 29, 2018 11:18 pm

One must wonder what Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council will do on foot of this event.

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland ... rship-of-dún-laoghaire-harbour-to-be-transferred-on-wednesday-1.3645069?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Micheál » Sun Sep 30, 2018 12:48 pm

Hmmm . . . .

" . . . Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company, would “no longer exist” and staff and undertakings would immediately transfer to the council . . ."

I wonder does that include the "P" word that (typically in these-types of transactions) dares not speak its name.

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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Rocker » Sun Sep 30, 2018 1:54 pm

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland ... rship-of-dún-laoghaire-harbour-to-be-transferred-on-wednesday-1.3645069

for some reason gingertoms link wouldn't open for me so I've copied it again.

The more I look at happenings the more I realise that all my life I have assumed that some abled bodied peoples were running everything!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: How dopey am I :?: :?: :?:

It would be interesting to get to the bottom of the decision to cease Stena sailings! did Stena decide because of high fuel costs? Did the Harbour Company demand big fees to land ?? did the trade just die off??

Do the small crafts pay berthing fees??
Do the yacht clubs pay fees for the harbour front??

I know nothing??
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby gingertom » Sun Sep 30, 2018 6:56 pm

Micheál wrote:Hmmm . . . .

" . . . Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company, would “no longer exist” and staff and undertakings would immediately transfer to the council . . ."

I wonder does that include the "P" word that (typically in these-types of transactions) dares not speak its name.

M.


The word 'insolvency,' is to be one that should be highlighted. This proposal will, if it happens, means that all employees of The Dun Laoghaire Company will now be employed by DLRCC, thus creating a bigger wages bill, onto its budget for current liabilities. Now how will the Council satisfy this? I propose we cut the number of Councillors, audit the organisation by an independent external auditor and ring fence current expenditure for social and community needs.
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby keeper » Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:08 pm

Good proposal Gingertom ! but not a chance in hell of it ever working, :cry: too many snouts at the gravy junket lot for a start, and, it would also mean the buzz word "transparency" and that wouldn't appeal to them either !!!
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Tue Oct 02, 2018 12:32 pm

gingertom wrote: For example, the roaring silence and capitulation by most of our local politicians relating to the diminution of Dublin Bus services within the Borough should be noted and at election time....and well remembered when 'X' marks the spot......they must be subject to democratic, electoral oversight

Im saying in the main, that the acquisition of personal gain seems to be the driver of politicians political thought, this done by observing a narrow part of Irish society that supports them and not the service to the wider general public, to which they primarily owe a duty to assist, in providing say, proper housing in particular, This I think is because we have given our politicians too much power by public acquiesance and therefore permitting the creation of this dysfunctional democratic political system in our Republic.

wuu
All you have to do is think of one of the best definitions of madness ...... 'doing the same think over and over again and expecting a different result' and then look at how FF and FG are constantly voted into office. The voters have created this mess and until such time as enough of them decide to change the pattern, we will continue our downward spiral of marginalising people whilst offering global corporations huge incentives without any long term gains for us.

keeper wrote:Good proposal Gingertom ! but not a chance in hell of it ever working, :cry: too many snouts at the gravy junket lot for a start, and, it would also mean the buzz word "transparency" and that wouldn't appeal to them either !!!
:lol: :lol: I wonder how many of the failed Harbour Board are also on other boards ? and if they are not, I wonder will they be invited ? lets face it .... they were on VERY good money for the duration of their tenure as discussed on here in the past.

Accountability is not welcome and failure is not dealt with, unless its at the lower end of the spectrum where you fail to pay your rent or TV licence .... otherwise the road goes on forever and the party never ends :P
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Sinead » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:20 pm

Gingertom/Toss

Would either or both of you consider standing for local or national election? Both of you would make
great representatives.

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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Sinead » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:20 pm

Gingertom/Toss

Would either or both of you consider standing for local or national election? Both of you would make
great representatives.

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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:04 am

Sinead wrote:Gingertom/Toss

Would either or both of you consider standing for local or national election? Both of you would make
great representatives.

Sinéad


Honoured as I am that you would consider me, I am at a stage where my patience and energy would be drained knocking on doors and canvassing for any election (local or national). The reality is that unless you join a political 'party', you are going to struggle to promote yourself and none of the existing parties appeal to me. I do think that there is a huge gap for a new party with no connections to the old brigades ... a Peoples Party that is not beholden to commercial interests and one that is willing to shame the money grabbers by leading by example (no mercs & perks, just the basics). Politics in Ireland has always been a closed shop with dynasties established through the years, if there was a threat they simply moved the boundaries and split the vote in order to maintain control.

You would hardly wish this on us .....
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Sinead » Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:43 am

Toss, you could ask him to be your campaign manager!!!! He has lots of political experience, his father, uncle, grandfather er al did well in politics. He has the anti establishment edge which would probably suit your ideals - see there is the nucleus of your new party, I'll do the typing for you.

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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby gingertom » Fri Oct 05, 2018 8:47 am

Sinead, many thanks for the vote of confidence but not for me at the moment.
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Fri Oct 05, 2018 2:24 pm

Sinead wrote:Toss, you could ask him to be your campaign manager!!!! He has lots of political experience, his father, uncle, grandfather er al did well in politics. He has the anti establishment edge which would probably suit your ideals - see there is the nucleus of your new party, I'll do the typing for you.

Sinéad


:lol: :lol: i doubt if i am as anti establishment as people suspect ..... I believe in strong leadership and rewarding effort. My points about the current state of Irish leadership is that it has allowed itself to become less independent year on year. Those in positions of power have so many vested interests, they are unable to make any serious changes without fear of upsetting someone. Strong leadership should see tough decisions being made for the good of the majority and not giving lip service whilst wasting millions trying to please everyone.

Reward those who are contributing to society, give respect and demand it in return .... increase childrens allowance and bring it up to the age of 21, but make it payable on the basis of attendance in places of education and on good behaviour. Build council houses and involve the families in the process ..... they can have choices along the way and have them commit to the long term upkeep of their estate (especially those unable to find work). Do not reward anti social behaviour by increasing supports, it just creates a dependency and leads to what can be described as an unrealistic sense of entitlement. Scrap the retirement age altogether, allow people make their own minds up after 60/65 years of age and incentivise the use of the older generations experience in the current environment. If a 70 yr old person would like to continue to work on a part time basis by helping out in the community, then bring them in and reward them for sharing their knowledge. These are positive changes in my opinion, but I doubt if we will ever see them happen as it would rattle a few cages and possibly change the jobs structure within the civil service. For example, during a discussion on RTE radio one the other day it was stated that we are spending the same amount on unemployment today as we did at the height of unemployment in 2012 .... the only difference is that the unemployed numbers have dropped by over 66% from 16% to just over 5% today ! even allowing for inflation, I'm not sure how you can square that circle.
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Sinead » Mon Oct 15, 2018 3:44 pm

Toss, I agree with everything in your post, but, you can only change the system from within, hence my suggestion that you and Gingertom should consider putting your hats in the ring next time around. I do not truly consider either of you cynical rather you are both analytical, observant, precise and incisive. Just think about it - your mail shot would get your ideas/ideals into every home in the constituency where there is a voter.

Sinéad

p.s. I will still do the typing if you go for it.
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Rocker » Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:26 am

I am luke warm about the upcoming Presidential vote . The candidates leave me cool! But when I read this morning what Peter Casey said it got my blood boiling!

https://www.msn.com/en-ie/news/newsirel ... spartandhp

Irish Travellers have won an uphill battle for recognition in their own land and last year the Dáil gave formal recognition to Travellers as a distinct ethnic group within the State.
An eminent professor at the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland, Professor Gianpiero Cavalleri, did a study a number of years ago and discovered that the Travellers were the original settlers in Ireland!!
https://www.ed.ac.uk/usher/news-events/ ... s-ancestry

How stupid is Casey to think that gypsies only are Romany!
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Re: Water and other political issues.

Postby Toss » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:13 am

Rocker wrote:I am luke warm about the upcoming Presidential vote . The candidates leave me cool! But when I read this morning what Peter Casey said it got my blood boiling!

https://www.msn.com/en-ie/news/newsirel ... spartandhp

Irish Travellers have won an uphill battle for recognition in their own land and last year the Dáil gave formal recognition to Travellers as a distinct ethnic group within the State.
An eminent professor at the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland, Professor Gianpiero Cavalleri, did a study a number of years ago and discovered that the Travellers were the original settlers in Ireland!!
https://www.ed.ac.uk/usher/news-events/ ... s-ancestry

How stupid is Casey to think that gypsies only are Romany!


Interesting issue that Rocker, we have a section / group of Irish people now recognised as an ethnic group .... but how do you know someone is a traveller ? what identifies them other then their own word ? if I went into the local social welfare office and identified myself as a traveller returning from England, how would they know ? all I have to do is say I have never been to school (as per my cultural right) and that I can't read or write and immediately it becomes a grey area. This is why the decision to establish any ethnic group needs to be thought out far better than has happened here.

Traveller right's is a huge issue and we now have a situation where the state builds six new 'traveller' homes at a cost of €1.7million and they are lying empty, refused because there was no stables ! this at a time when young families would crawl over hot coal for such a luxury.... some is wrong here, either the tail is wagging the dog the media are lying. Mr Casey knows his comments will spark debate and it will be interesting to see if he is taking the 'Trump' approach and stirring the pot in order to get the diseffected vote (and there's plenty of them out there as witnessed in the USA).
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