We are poorly represented by over paid TDs with very little accountability, heck even the media fail to call foul when they see it. This is part two of my response to Daniel McConnell’s (@McConnellDaniel) propaganda in The Irish Examiner.
Shane Ross (Transport)
You know someone is pulling the wool over your eyes when they tell you Shane Ross was one of the highest performers of 2017. The journalist scoring the former columnist a 7/10. It’s often said some people make better pundits than players, Shane Ross fits into this category, proving to be a professional commentator but amateur politician.
Shane Ross crawled into 2017 as Minister for Sport, followed by the stench of the Rio Olympics ticket scandal, which like all good Irish scandals remains unresolved but completely forgotten about. So to begin with Shane started his 2017 journey with a weight around his neck in a failed position. Luckily a cabinet reshuffle came about in time to see Shane pick up a position as Minister for Transport.
Only in Ireland could you leave one position in controversy to be awarded a more sought after position in a different department.
In any other country with a working government the Minister for Sport would be forced to resign his position and step down from Public Life for overseeing a ticket touting scandal that shamed the country at the world Olympics. Instead our reputation for being the most corrupt country in the Western World was fuelled by small players taking their cut from the games. It feeds the stereotype of Ireland being a country of cowboys not fit to rule ourselves.
So what did Shane Ross do to avoid being fired and redeem his reputation to earn a 7/10. For a start he proved a master of parish pump politics making the news for putting political pressure on Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council to reopen a swimming pool in Stillorgan. This isn’t simply political interfering, it is corruption and Healy Rae style politicking to gander local support.
Not quite content with local relations Shane offered to lead a band of merry men to North Korea to instigate peace negotiations with their bitter foes in the West, a military feud that has been ongoing since 1950. Who better than the Rio giant Shane Ross to resolve one of the world’s oldest and most dangerous conflicts.
Meanwhile Irish Rail go on strike and bring the capital to a standstill two weeks before a world cup qualifying match for the Irish football team. Only significant in that technically Shane Ross was the most qualified person to deal with the strike, with both an invested interest as current Minister for Transport and also as former Minister for Sport. Big Shane however proved to be more focused on acting matchmaker between the King of Twitter and a known assassin than doing his day job. I’m just surprised he didn’t pop off to resolve matters in Palestine instead of opening the new Luas line.
Inevitably Shane was either made feel foolish or realised he was being foolish and called off his peace trip to North Korea, but that’s not the only time the Boy Taoiseach felt as if his Minister was a complete loose cannon. In October big Shane completely forgot what team he was playing for and called for a Garda probe into the tracker mortgage scandal. What happened next is the party had to pull Shane to the side and explain the entire game plan to him, citing that such a probe would result in a complete lack of faith in the Irish banking system, a run on the Banks, and a total collapse of the Irish economy, such is the scale of the fraud it would appear.
Did Shane stick to his principles and expose the corruption he’s written and published about three times, or did he stick with his chums and take the gravy train to a Ministerial pension as appears to be custom with the Fine Gael government. Well you can bet there has been no further talk of a Garda probe into the Banks. Shane Ross has talked a big talk when selling books but has proved to be a fraud in his actions in government.
All this aside as Minister for Transport Shane Ross has not secured any funding to alleviate pressure on the M50, the rail network, or investing in safer cycling tracks for the country’s capital. The rest of the country cries out for infrastructure also but on the eve of Brexit when so many companies are looking at Dublin all they see is chaotic infrastructure with no plans for improvement.
I don’t know how you could rate someone who began the year in a failed position and proved to be the biggest hypocrite in government with a 7/10, I don’t know how someone responsible for public transport can be part of the biggest peace keeping joke of the year and get joint second place in the fake news cabinet performance scale.
What I do know is that Shane Ross has propped up this government, become embroiled in a corruption scandal, failed to take action on the Banks the way he spoke about, and made a complete show of himself as an ego inflated diplomatic envoy who answered the Fine Gael dog whistle as soon as he was called.
If anyone would like to give Shane Ross anything over a 1.5 please leave a comment with a valid reason. Rating may be adjusted with public support, but for now it’s hard to see him as anything more than a posh Healy Rae.
This concludes part two of my 2017 cabinet review. Part three coming shortly. Picture by @Martincareyart