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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: October 4, 2010 @ 3:30 pm

    Common Sense

    Deaglán de Bréadún

    “I met with John Curran and asked him to write to all Government Ministers to ascertain what foreign trips were taking place this session. I told him that anything to do with a trade mission will be looked at on an individual basis and if they are important enough, a pair will be granted.”

    The above is a quote from Fine Gael Chief Whip Paul Kehoe in a piece by Harry McGee for  today’s Irish Times print edition (John Curran is the Government Chief Whip.) Kehoe’s approach is just sound common sense, so often strangely lacking in politics these days.

    • miNxie says:

      Surely with the kind of technology we have today there should be no need for Dáil pairing. Couldn’t the travelling TD hook up live to the Dail debate and vote from wherever – even mid-air. Just a suggestion..

    • Surely there is too much potential for fraud there . . ? Not to mention common-or-garden screw-ups. Remember the electronic voting debacle? Although the most iimportant political decision of recent times was made by an “incorporeal” cabinet meeting, viz., the bank guarantee.

    • Sue d O'Nym says:

      A pair of what…?

    • A pairing arrangement whereby a Fine Gael TD would refrain from voting in the Dail during the absence of a minister on a trade mission.

    • miNxie says:

      Oh well, I suppose it’s very tweet (sorry lisp/typo) of FG Chief Whip Paul Kehoe to be so obliging………but I doubt whether a minister was ever prevented from going on an important trade mission because of not having a pair……

    • Sue d O'Nym says:

      Honestly!…I was just codding you…Tch! Men are so literal …!

    • robespierre says:

      Did you see that the Deputy for Dublin SE has echoed calls for a Tallaght II notwithstanding Empty Kenny sniffily dismissing it as bad for FG. More evidence of malcontent chez les chemises bleues.

    • There may have to be some sort of consensus . . .

    • miNxie says:

      Little bit giddy but I’m imagining all the TD’s in the Dáil Chamber breaking into a tune from the Gondoliers….
      Take a pair of sparkling eyes………
      Having passed the Rubicon………..
      Take a pair of rosy lips…….

      Actually, I’ve spent the past while reading some of the historical Dáil debates (was searching for some ‘ancient’ reference to problems re pairing – couldn’t find any). I love, particularly, the very early debates from the beginning of the State (great website). Every time I read these I am struck by how cynical and poor in spirit we have become as a people. It is as though some dark spectre has been overshadowing us – which is not something new under the sun.
      Just came across an interesting one re “aliens” in the Saorstát 1937 –
      There was just one “alien” violinist and altogether 329 “aliens” in the State at that time..!!

    • Sue d O'Nym says:

      @9 What has political pairing got to do with that particular line from the Gondoliers…? or is subliminal allusion to an entirely different kind of pairing …?
      Btw I read your comment about the Insanity defence…I think the lawyers will have a good snigger about that one…
      Deaglan…we covered Parliamentary privilege procedure cabinet responsibility etcetcetc in Constitutional Law…you really need to learn how to read between the lines…ibid…!

    • paul m says:

      There’s a few senior ministers in government (and opposition) who, never mind pairing off with their opposite counterpart, actually need to grow a pair, admit responsibility for what they did and get this country on its feet again.

      the Dail might also consider enforcing pairing in the county councils. I’ve heard of several underhanded tactics to get motions through by waiting for councillors opposed to a plan to be out of the office (even after hours) to then go to vote so as to steamroll the issue through. I’d like to hope that the relevant councillors with sense were duped in this fashion when floodlands and farmlands rezoning went through for housing estates back in boomtime. I have my doubts though.

    • barbera says:

      The next election is not far away. Then we vote. It’s what we do in a democracy. But in the meantime could we have a break from the Bollinger Bolshevik rhetoric. The following, for example, is what needs to be WRIT LARGE in our national newspapers at this critical time:

      TIGERS OUT..!!

    • Sue d O'Nym says:

      Barbzzz et al…I mentioned your suggestion that temporary Insanity was a possible defence to minor Criminal Damage…they were agog…Of course now they want to run it…Can you tell me exactly how YOU would run it…It’s such a original idea I might even get a mention in the Law Reports…could you also give me the exact Wikipedia reference so I can cite it on the list of authorities…Such old fuddy duddies these wiggy types…Tch!

    • Sue d O'Nym says:

      Of course that’s when you’re through reading Jaws Virginia Woolf Anton Chekhov and Samuel Beckettt…!

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