Friday, October 24, 2008 1:08:00 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Maybe you didn't hear Michael Ring TD (FG) of Mayo last night on the 'Last Word' ( Today FM ) ranting on about BER certification. It was about as scientific, logical and knowledgeable a viewpoint on that subject as the one above is to global warming. Only this guy might be part of some future government ( hopefully not ). He even did a U-turn on Lisbon live on radio!. Utter rubbish populism - have a listen tomorrow morning it might be on the highlights.

Are you not trying to join the likes of him in the county council and ultimately the Dail? Where is that at now, please tell us?

And will 'Killaloe man' be initiating the celebratory 'whooping' if you do get in?
Joe Rourke
Friday, October 24, 2008 4:57:40 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)
Hi Joe,

The state of play on the possible FG nomination for the local elections is that three candidates have been put forward by their own branches. I wasn't nominated by my local branch (they'd already promised the nomination to another); however, the party executive can - if they so choose - add my name to the ticket. I'm waiting to hear if they're prepared to allow four people to run in a six seat constituency.

I didn't hear Michael Ring on The Last Word. I'm on my holidays, so I'll see if I can download it.

Regarding the broader question, I find that there are decent, serious minded people in all parties. In recent months I've had the good fortune to cross paths with the likes of Seamie Morris (SF), PJ Kelly (FF) and Tom Byrne (former PD). At the demo in Carrick on Suir last week, Mattie McGrath TD (FF, and someone I'm developing a respect for in relation to other issues) shared a platform with Sen Paudie Coffey (FG) while other elected officials from FF, FG and Lab hadn't the courage to attend. There are good and bad in all parties: it's the nature of Irish politics.

I'm only putting my name forward for election because I wan't to make more of a contribution on planning and local government organisation than punditry will allow. I'll be doing my best to win over the Michael Rings of FG to what I have to say; if they discover they have a problem they'll - I mean we'll - just have to deal with it.

I don't know who Killaloe Man is. First I thought it was Mike Maher, but I suspect it might be a (female) neighbour of mine (am I right, female neighbour?)
Friday, November 07, 2008 7:38:01 PM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)

It just sounds like you have no real political convictions to me. FG seems like the easiest route to power for you. (Maybe this is just what you need be sucessful as a politician!) I don't understand what people would be expected to see in you. A slightly leftie almost pseudo-'green' Fine-Galler of some kind perhaps? A modern intellectual-type as a foil to the stock rich farmer type candidate. Why would you be jumping on board with this crowd given you didn't (very visibly) agree with Lisbon?

Politics has been described both as the "art of the possible" and as "show business for ugly people". Which is it for you might I ask?

Its a serious contradiction if on one hand you are solicting "in confidence" mails on sensitive or potentially illegal topics - as might be sent unsolicted to a reputable journalist - and on the other hand you are joining a political party where lying BS is the norm? Character - do you know LEGALLY what this is? (I think you don't) Who should trust you? Your fellow politicians? Even they who look the other way and talk out of their rear ends for a living could be not be comfortable this contradiction. You might end up telling on them! Frankly you just sound confused.

Its like that 'portugese barn full of cars' thing you put up here a while back. Is this entertainment on here or are you of any real intent? Minimum you should have done with jokes/satire is opted to do the entertainment under a pseudomyn or on a different site. You have to establish credibility. You have to show you know the difference between the two. You just look like a clown otherwise.

You can't possibly have anything different to offer politically. You will have to appeal to the lowest common denominators to get votes - which will be your main business. This true for all politicians no matter what the ilk. You would have to vote with the FG block in the County Council.You WILL have to give in to that deal-making thicko consensus. No choice. No different voice. And particularly so in the west. Remember your main competition is FF!

(Take a look at last weeks Connaght Tribune p.16 for a FG TD's idea of how to gain popularity with the old folks...and theres a prominent Fine-galler like this out there every week)

If you want to to hear a little about joining a political party that you are not in agreement or in step with (AKA Lisbon and I'm guessing on sustainability) as a vehicle to gain power then can I suggest Shane Ross's radio interview with Eamonn Dunphy from Jan 2008. ( itunes podcast or RTE website ). It might illuminate the potential mistake a little.

PS - Was that Mattie McGrath who is up in court for assault? Is that 'respect' Ali-G style by any chance?

PPS - You are not the only one who has experience of politicans. Or FG front benchers for that matter.Or backstabbing FG councillors!

PPPS - If you are going to reply back by individual mail do it to the email supplied not the IP address please!
Joe Rourke
Saturday, November 08, 2008 11:33:48 AM (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)

I'm interested in hearing the opinions of people - like yourself - for whom a character like mine is not an easy read. But I can assure you that, at the very bottom of it all, I'm very serious about what I'm doing. Yes, I'm not a dyed in the wool FGer, and yes, getting involved with them involves a calculation on my part - I make absolutely no bones about it. But its not a cyncial calculation: it's a calculation based on an evaluation of the options available to me to allow me to make a contribution to the wider community. And, yes, I'm occasionally a bit of a clown (I make no bones about that either)

If I'm to succeed in changing anything in the planning/local government system in this country I need to be able win people over, if not to my way of thinking, then at least to the realisation that I have a different set of proposals to put on the table which people are free to accept or not.

Therefore, I suggest you meet me for a coffee. Give me the opportunity to explain what I'm trying to do. Then send me your impressions of our conversation by email and I'll post them as an item (as opposed to a 'comment' which don't get read that often).

Do we have a date?

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