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Stupidity on tap when it comes to water

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The samples of the water were taken by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on February 9

The samples of the water were taken by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on February 9

The samples of the water were taken by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on February 9

Between leaks, boil notices and a series of botched efforts to hit on a billing system, the Government has had little success in selling Irish Water to the public. But when it comes to stupidity, it seems to have an endless supply on tap, and is determined to deliver it to every household in the country.

The latest manifestation of the ineptitude has led to bickering within the ranks of Fine Gael concerning the paying of the €100 conservation grant to those who are actively boycotting water charges.

This is flying in the face of reason and fairness and is a gross insult to all those who dutifully pay up.

It is bad enough that the householder and compliant taxpayer is footing the bill for those who deliberately won't pay. However, the Government is insisting that the same householder must dig back into their pocket and reward those who boycott the charge by handing them a €100 bonus.

This is arrant nonsense and is taking foolishness to the levels of the surreal.

In Monty Python's Flying Circus there was a Ministry of Funny Walks. The Government is making a glaring case for the creation of a Commissioner for Common Sense. It is leaking credibility faster than the pipes of Irish Water are leaking our most precious resource.

TDs are rightly insisting that the payment be linked to the payment of bills. Hardly a revolutionary thought.

But the ramparts of ignorance mounted by the Government on the water issue seem as invincible as ever, and just as impervious to rational thought.

One is supposed to learn from one's mistakes, but a combination of obduracy and arrogance seems to have taken hold, which is generally a precursor to self-destruction.

When asked lately about the uptake on payment of water charges, Environment Minister Alan Kelly said he was "hugely satisfied" and "very happy" with the rate of collection.

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Those who don't pay their bill and get their €100 should also be "hugely satisfied".


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