Ball of smoke fails to fumigate bugs from Dáil chamber

Matter of huge national concern that someone didn’t inform someone that something didn’t happen


Alan
Shatter called  GSOC boss in and, after a long meeting, he said there was no evidence of any bugging and he didn’t want the finger of suspicion pointing in the direction of the Garda

Alan Shatter called GSOC boss in and, after a long meeting, he said there was no evidence of any bugging and he didn’t want the finger of suspicion pointing in the direction of the Garda

Wed, Feb 12, 2014, 01:00

Something didn’t happen and it is a matter of huge national concern that somebody didn’t inform someone that something didn’t happen.

See what happens when you don’t tell somebody that something didn’t happen? At the very least, somebody should have informed the Minister.

Now, the Taoiseach is very concerned, the Minister is greatly concerned, the Garda Commissioner is utterly concerned and the Garda representative bodies are apoplectic.

All because of something which didn’t happen. You can understand why they are all so upset. We need “absolute clarity” on this, said Enda yesterday.

Alan Shatter wanted to “underscore” the importance of the prompt reporting of “issues of concern” to him. He told the Dáil that failure to do so is “a matter of substantial concern” to him.

It seems when there is nothing to report, it should be promptly reported to Alan that there is nothing to report. After all, he is the Minister for Justice.

The Taoiseach fully agrees.

If nothing else comes of this confusing episode about seemingly imaginary bugs infesting the woodwork of the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission, at least we have now found a Government Minister with a unique talent.

For it appears that Alan Shatter, unlike his Cabinet colleagues, is a man who likes to micro-manage.

Imagine if the head of Irish Water, for example, were to phone up Phil Hogan and say: “Minister, I must see you at once. Something very important hasn’t happened.

“You see, we thought we had a big leak in the water mains leading into Government Buildings, but we investigated thoroughly, and, guess what? There wasn’t any leak at all. Turns out when the fountain below in the courtyard is left on all night the wind blows sideways and makes a puddle over by the door. It cost us a few bob to bring the engineers over from England to do the survey. But it was worth it to find out there isn’t any leak.”


Micro-manage
Doubtless Big Phil, who says he doesn’t micro-manage, would thank him profusely for the information and immediately bring the issue to Cabinet. Not.

The phrase of the day from politicians and handlers on the Government side in Leinster House yesterday was “ball of smoke”.

When asked what they thought of this very odd tale about the GSOC offices being bugged – or not, which seems to be the case as of now, it was always the same reply: “It’s nothing but a ball of smoke.”

A newspaper story on Sunday had it that the offices were found to have been under electronic surveillance following a sweep of the premises.

People wondered who might be behind this. They put two and two together and came up with the force – An Garda Síochána. The GSOC, meanwhile, said nothing. Then Shatter hauled, sorry, called their boss in and, after a long meeting, he said there was no evidence of any bugging and he didn’t want the finger of suspicion pointing in the direction of the Garda.

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