Saturday 27 December 2014

Ian O'Doherty: Fight the power!

Published 30/11/2012 | 06:00

A mate of mine of rang me just after lunchtime on Tuesday and simply said: "Liveline. Now."

And on the show – which veers from the insane to the brilliant with each passing minute – actor Rory Cowen was defending his support for the state of Israel.

The Mrs Brown's Boys star goes to the country several times a year and has no truck with the ludicrous boycott against it.

This enraged his opponent, Raymond Deane of the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

Deane is also a composer and a leading member of The Loser's Dressing Room, otherwise known as Aosdána.

He defended the boycott, which is undoubtedly his democratic right, no matter how deluded.

But he stole the show when he said that he was extremely disappointed with Leonard Cohen (pictured) for playing Tel Aviv.

Now, I don't want to be guilty of racial profiling here, but would you not think that there might be a clue in Mr Cohen's surname as to why he might play there?

When asked if he had ever been to a Cohen gig, Deane replied: "No. But I have protested outside one of them."

Ah bless, that's almost sweet.

Ah, the heart bleeds

There was a time when prison was seen as being a punishment – a time to reflect on your bad behaviour. It was also seen as a handy way of simply keeping the bad guys off the streets and away from the rest of us.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not some hang 'em, flog 'em merchant. I just reckon that if you get sent down, then you should do the time without moaning.

And I was thinking about this yesterday when it emerged that the charming John Gilligan (pictured) is to spend Christmas in solitary confinement after he was found drunk in his cell.

He had managed to get his hands on some cell-made hooch and was blotto when found by prison officers.

I was going to make some sort of joke about prisoners having a human right to drink booze but then something else struck me – my Da used to make home brew when I was a kid and that tasted vile (I admit to stealing the odd sip).

But can you imagine just how truly disgusting prison hooch must be?

Ugh.

More Gore bore

Like most blokes of my age, I have many fond memories of Depeche Mode. They morphed from frothy synth-pop into some weird, drug-crazed mutant outfit that filled stadia (stadiums? I'm always getting caught on that one).

But they're back in the news after the Mode's Martin Gore condemned Simon Cowell and the negative influence he has had on music.

Now that's fair enough, I doubt that anyone who is a) male and b) over the age of 15 will think that Cowell is anything but a force for evil.

But then Gore went on to say that "Cowell should be shot."

Now, I know he was only joking – well, I presume he was only joking, but Gore is a strange fish.

But in a climate where kids are being arrested simply for putting up a racist tweet, I wouldn't be surprised if Mr Gore gets a call from the local constabulary any day now.

Tally-ho chaps!

Really, some people just love to be offended.

And in a society of finks, where people ring the cops because of something they see on a televised football match, it would appear that we have all become Big Brother.

And the latest case comes from outraged Ryanair passengers who took offence on a flight from Dublin to Manchester.

The pilot referred to Manchester as being "the mainland."

This incensed numerous patriotic Irish passengers who duly complained to the airline.

Their response was swift and categorical: "Ryanair has better things to be doing than wasting time with silly queries."

Frankly I'm just surprised that Michael O'Leary hasn't introduced a hidden charge for anyone who wants to make a complaint.

Because given their customer relations history, that would be his biggest money spinner.

Well, there's a silver lining

Well, we're all skint and that ain't going to change any time soon.

But there are reasons for optimism.

Portugal and Poland have pulled out of next year's Eurovision and there are calls for us to follow suit.

The bigwigs have denied this, but it is already beginning to look like an unsustainable expense.

So the absence of this appalling competition would be much welcomed.

Or would it?

After all, the sight of Marty Whelan freaking out as some made-up country whose name ends in 'Stan' and is actually Asian not European picks up more points than we do is always amusing.

I guess I'm just easily pleased . . .

Irish Independent

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