Saturday 25 February 2017

Ideas on a postcard, please

As the debt-ridden economy flounders, there is at least one growth industry -- political spin, writes Joseph O'Connor

Joseph O'Connor

Joseph O'Connor's Wednesday radio diary is broadcast on RTE Radio One's 'Drivetime with Mary Wilson'. His novel 'Ghost Light' is now available in paperback, published by Vintage Books. See www.josephoconnorauthor.comThe hand of recession

All over the nation,

There's people in depression

At the scale of emigration

And as though it wasn't bad

enough,

Into the bargain,

There's a whole load of

nothing

Called Political Jargon.

Empty-headed platitude

Flying like the birds.

It's hard to feel gratitude

At meaningless words.

The English language gave us

Shakespeare,

Joyce and Deuteronomy.

Ireland's leaders want to give

us...

THE SMART ECONOMY.

Yes, the SMART ECONOMY.

What does it mean?

If you know, then leave a

message

on me answering machine

Which I'm thinking of

renaming

"a response-led solution"

Then send the bill to Leinster

House

And ask a contribution.

They can't talk plain.

They don't say what they

mean.

Never use a simple word,

When you might use

seventeen.

I don't know about you

But I'm smarting all right

When I hear our politicians

Talking such... nonsense.

Yes, the SMART ECONOMY

Just the way they planned it

So bloody smart

That you can't understand it.

We're out of the envelope.

We're back to the roots.

Come and run it up the

flagpole

See if anyone salutes.

Come and kick around ideas

Come and brainstorm for a

while

Come and teambuild, we're

upskilled,

We're completely off the dial,

Yes, our skillset is expanding

And our feedback is immense,

And we're all going forward,

In a forward-going sense.

As we're saying goodbye

to the Thirtieth Dail.

They're still thinking up

phrases

that mean feck all

And I'm sick of the spin,

I don't know where it's bin,

Say what you mean,

or don't say it at all,

For here in the real world,

we're feeling frustration,

We can't afford your bullshit

and your clever evasion.

The taxes getting higher,

The economy's busted,

But no, no, you tell us.

We're just getting "readjusted".

You're in favour of peace!

You're in favour of jobs?

You agree with McWilliams,

You admire Eddie Hobbs.

And you want to save the

country

at this tough time in our

history

But how you're going to do

it?

That's a matter of mystery.

And they're tweeting on the

Twitter

And there's parents getting

vexed,

'Cos the babysitter's having

A pre-marital text.

Election time's approaching,

Don't you come to my door,

Spouting silly cliches

When you dunno what they're

for.

We "internalise" the crisis

And the "putative solutions"

And the "scale of

readjustment"

And the "debt distributions".

And you're only making fun of

me

With verbal diarrhoea.

Forget the Smart Economy.

Give us an idea!

You never like to mention

That we're paying for your

pension

And we're paying for your limo

And we're paying for the banks

And we're paying for your

errors

And we're feeling daily

terrors

And all we get is soundbites by way of your thanks.

There's fear in the homes

And worry in the nation

More of the waffle and the

miscommunication

And the poor getting

punished,

And there's scandal in the

church,

Got a dead parrot government,

Nailed to its perch,

And political leaders with

nothing clear to say.

I'm saying: Give me a plan --

or get out of the way.

Sunday Independent

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