| 7.8°C Dublin

Ian O'Doherty: Um, a slight over reaction, perhaps?

Let's face it, we've all been on package holidays.

So, you know the drill -- you queue for ages for your flight, then when you get to arrivals you queue some more at the carousel and then the best part of the package arrives -- you look around at the people on the coach bringing all of you to your various hotels and you spend the entire journey thinking: "Please not them, please not them, please not them."

We once had a particularly long coach journey -- it was longer than the flight -- and a couple started to have sex down the back.

As if that wasn't bad enough, they were old, ugly and wrinkly. And the holiday just went downhill from there.

The other thing you can guarantee about package holidays is that there will be booze -- lots and lots of cheap potent liquor -- in Irish and British pubs.

But local authorities are now clamping down on them in what the managers of these establishments say is a deliberate attempt to help Spanish bars at their expense.

As one of the irate bar managers said over the weekend: "It's like living in Nazi Germany."

Yup, I'm sure those who lived in the Lodz ghetto, enduring mass beatings, executions and faced with a growing knowledge of the fate that awaited them could at least console themselves that their pub wasn't being shut down an hour earlier than normal ...

Really -- this is just too good

Who wudda thunk it? After effectively leaving this once-proud country a scarred, smoking husk, at least Fianna Fáil are giving us the grim amusement of completely imploding.

It only seems fair, of course; after all, as well as destroying this country they also destroyed two other political parties that had the naivety to get into bed with them, so it's about time they got theirs.

In the run-up to last night's TV3 documentary about the Party (you may have heard mention of it), party leaders turned on each with all the zeal of a bunch of pit bulls in a fighting ring.

And now they have decided that they want to recreate the iconic final scene of The Wicker Man -- with Bertie Ahern playing the role of Edward Woodward.

To be perfectly truthful, few of us would complain, particularly after his remarks the other day that we never had it so good under his regime and in fact this whole mess is our fault because we all lost the run of ourselves.

It's a pretty low thing to say to people who bought a house during those days and now struggle to pay the mortgage but it shows how the levels of Ahern's denial are now pathologically delusional.

In fact, if Ahern was a burglar caught by the cops he'd try to convince them that it was actually the fault of the homeowners for leaving that window unlocked.

She hasn't gone away, you know

She remains one of the most pernicious, unelected influences in recent British history.

Yes, I'm talking about Cherie Blair aka The Wicked Witch whose insane obsession with human rights has led to authorities in that country being forced to concentrate more on the best interests of criminals and illegal aliens and branding anyone who questions them a fascist and a racist, while at the same time ignoring the law-abiding, indigenous population.

Blair is now a Crown Court judge but she had her nose rightly rubbed in the doo-doo by an appeals court last week.

She was presiding over a case involving a drug smuggler who had been caught with nearly 200 grand of coke.

She shocked court officials by chastising the prosecutor for being 'unpleasant' during cross-examination and then said that, while she should send the defendant to prison, she was going to make him stay with his mother instead because of his ill health and the fact that he "doesn't like prison".

The CPS immediately appealed and he was sentenced to three and half years inside. So, the next time you're busted in Britain with a load of coke, pray to the Gods that you end up in front of her -- just tell her that you have a case of the sniffles and, anyway, the food is nasty and you'd much prefer to stay with your mammy instead, if that's alright.

Okay -- take your pick

It's always riotously funny to see those who are professionally self- righteous turning on each other in an attempt to see who is the one who cares the most.

And the latest example comes from two regulars in this column -- PETA's Ingrid Newkirk and Al Gore.

Al Gore has recently declared war on the agricultural industry, and says that: "Industrial agriculture is a major problem with global warming."

In fact, so concerned is he about this issue that he wants us all to give up meat.

There's just one slight problem -- he still eats meat.

And, according to PETA: "Mr Gore likes to be thought of as an environmentalist steak-and-potatoes kind of guy, but there's no such thing as a meat-eating environmentalist. Meat production is the main culprit in global warming."

Using the phrase "There's no such thing as a meat-eating environmentalist" certainly shows just how dogmatic these people are but they then ask: "We all have to ask ourselves -- a steak or the earth?"

Um, make mine a medium-rare rib eye, please ...

Well, that hardly seems fair

Forget racism, fascism and any other 'ism', there's a new 'ism' in town -- 'lookism'.

Doing exactly what it says on the tin, 'lookism' is the reason for at least seven lawsuits being carried out in America at the moment where people are suing their employers because they feel they have been discriminated against simply because they're mingers.

Now, as you can see by my byline pic I am the picture of male perfection, so this obviously doesn't apply to me, but according to one of lawyers involved: "Logically there's no less reason to protect the ugly than the disabled or racial and ethnic minorities. We could even have affirmative action for the ugly."

Affirmative action for uggos?

That would make for an interesting Miss World -- Miss Kazakhstan may be a hunchback with eyes that constantly roll in different directions, a beard that would make a man proud and suffer from a case of chronic flatulence, but don't you dare judge her, you lookist bastard.

Irish Independent