It’s not very fair is it… thrashing your political career and your party’s future.... but is it worth the sacrifice?
While I cannot see the benefits of people having to sign away their political careers just to please Fine Gael and Pat Leahy, nonetheless, I thought I’d outline what kind of deal I’d be willing to sign away my Dail seat for:
1. Sustainable housing
A sustainable housing process is essential – delivery of low energy use homes
I like the Hugh Brennan model – and I like how Emma Osmundsen delivered passive house at Exeter Council in the UK. We need that type of stuff.
An excellent retrofit programme for existing housing stock is also essential.
2. Sustainable Agriculture
How much longer are we going to skirt around the issue of the size of the national herd. Yes that question has got to be addressed. With all the talk of “hard decisions” the future of our Agri Sector is being brushed under the carpet.
Despite of all the rhetoric Fine Gael doesn’t want to upset farmers. Unfortunately we have to look hard at the herd size to reduce emissions.
This needs to be done in a way that’s fair for farmers – looking at alternative land use. Something like Agroforestry is a potential option – you are looking at trees and cattle etc sharing the same space. Trees/forestry planted for things like carbon sequestration – but the farm still has cattle on it – so you retain the social aspect of having cattle on your farm.
3. A Just Transition
We will be moving to a world of lower emissions – so it’s important to ensure that we don’t shaft people in the process. People will lose jobs, the way we live may well change. People’s lives still need to be valued and planned for.
We need to visualise how communities will work in the new lower carbon world. Where does Rural Ireland fit in – where is the dialog going to happen or come from. We need to be looking towards community and people led solutions. People need to plan their lives and future with as much confidence as possible.
4. Helicopters & Ambulances
In a deal that limits my political career to 5 years – the first item on my shopping list is developing a top of the range system of EMS – that’s brilliantly resourced and fit for the 21st century.
Key to this is the development of a network of HEMS helicopters – and to facilitate 24/7 operations – I’d like accessible helipads/landing spots nationwide. I would require a well resourced Land Ambulance service too. I’m aiming for the best possible response to serious emergency calls even in rural areas.
I would also want to see development of the pre hospital doctor set up – plus study of the potential of Critical Care Paramedics.
5. Domestic Direct Investment
We obviously will be continuing with foreign direct investment but it’s hardly the best strategy to rely on US boardroom decisions going our way. We should strive to develop domestically based companies. We need diversity of opportunity to create a more resilient economy over time.
We need to develop strategies to encourage start ups in Ireland – and to look at how to develop existing domestic companies.
Post by @olddiesel (http://olddieselblog.blogspot.com/)
Pic Soul Traders by Gordon Harris (http://artistgordonharris.com/)