Friday, 22 October 2010

"Lucky to be leaving" - an Irish emigrant's lament (Metro Herald)

I read this in the Herald Metro yesterday on the way to work and did enjoy it.  It's not often you see a coherent, sensible, letter in that organ, so I do think it's worth running on Gombeen Nation, as it may strike a chord with some of you - as it did with me.  And I'm not being lazy, as I had to type it in.

Now I would differ with the author, Jack, on some points.  One being his contention that Ireland is a land with no "patriots".  In my experience, there are far too many of the bastards -  prepared to overlook any genre of shafting, scheming, shystering, ill-doing and outright robbery as long as it is perpetrated on them by "one of our own".

And then you have the kind of lumpen nationalist whose estimation of the most corrupt FF gombeen shoots up if said sleazeball is capable of belting out a few Wolfe Tones numbers after a feed of pints.  

I'm also a little unsure about him lamenting what he sees as the disappearance of Irish "democracy".  I mean, isn't it the great Irish public who have been voting for these slippery chancers all along?  And what does that say about them?

Anyway.  Here it is.  Enjoy.

I've got my old job back in Australia and will shortly be re-emigrating. I'm overjoyed to be leaving this cesspit of corruption and cronyism.

I hate Ireland - a country where it's who you know, not what you know - with one rule for the elite and another for everyone else. Where someone who doesn't pay a TV licence goes to jail, but the corrupt bankers can transfer their assets to their wives. A country with no patriots, and that doesn't even pretend to be a democracy any more. A country full of moaning whingers, who now want their house for free because the banks "forced" them into paying the highest prices in the world.

I hope everyone enjoys the next 25 years paying off the debts you all incurred. The people who falsified their income to take on an excessive mortgage, who rang their TD to skip the queue or get something sorted in return for a vote, who did work for cash to avoid tax. The "as long as I'm alright Jack" brigade. I hope you look forward to Ireland becoming the first Third World member of the EU.

On a positive note, I leave behind a good "knowledge economy" job for one of the unfortunate victims of this regime, who are unemployed and aren't lucky enough to be able to leave.


Well said, Jack, and good luck.  The blog can't afford to lose people like you!

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Tim Johnston said...

That's very good! While I'd be less, er, abrupt about it, the sentiments are similar to my own. I fled Ireland during the boom, recognising in timely fashion what sh*t lay further up the track.

While I don't "hate" Ireland, I have little sympathy for those who elected crooks to rule over them because they were thrown some small change on budget day, those who bought fancy cars from the 'earnings' from their 'careers' selling second homes in Bolgrovia.
None for the dodgy 'hospitality industry' who charged over the odds for terrible service, shafting any tourist in sight and destroying foreigners' perception of friendly Ireland. None for homebuyers who borrowed, lied and cheated their way onto the property ladder in a desperate scrap to throw an offer together for a shack of a house miles from the city. And none at all for those in the media and political sphere who convinced enough of us that, even though we had little in the way of industry, we had the Midas touch and could wile our lives away between lapdancing clubs and cocktail bars, with our shiny made-up jobs, shinier cars and sh*t-eating grins.

But not bitter at all :)

Anonymous said...

yes indeed GM probably the only country in the world that has half the population it had 150yrs ago, most have at least doubled in that period no matter how wretched, i know iknow its because the irish so smart and so popular around the world,no dogs or irish etc dont mention that,but somehow this is brilliant sucess story in irish terms just like ff managment of the economy if you ask clown COWEN,or the little SPIV BERTIE,what agreat little country GM but i am so glad the rest of the western hemisphere doesnt follow the OIRISH model there would no escape CHEERIO- BH

Ponyboy said...

A word of advice to Jack and his anticipation of returning to some kind of whiter than white paradise on earth in Australia once he extracts himself from what he describes as the "cesspit" of Ireland - don't be so naive. Australia has its share of gombeens too, its share of overpriced housing awaiting the bubble to burst, and a very healthy share of hungry wolf banks baying for their next interest rate rise despite high profitability. It even has catholic Archbishop Pell who would give any of Ireland's bishops a run for their money when it comes to dodging responsibility over the Australian clergy's history of child abuse by its members. Did I mention the corrupt logging industry and the state govt support they receiive - I wonder why that happens at all at all. Police corruption is a big issue too across the biggest states. Recently, police prosecution files were found in the home of one of the member's of one of Australia's many outlaw motorcycle gangs. Heaven it ain't The "I'm all right Jack" brigade is alive and well in Australia too, believe me but probably not to the same extent.Let's see what happens though when the iron ore boom ends and house prices are corrected. Oh and by the way - Australia is at war too. As GM says "I could go on.." but I won't, other than to say Fair Play to the people who see the problems of a country and address them on the blogosphere rather than buying a one way ticket to "Utopia" and taking a dump on the auld sod on the way out.

Dakota said...

Some good points there but also completely agree PB. Gombeens everywhere, and Australia has its own share of serious problems. No doubt. But is there an over abundance of Gombeens on this island? Oh I think so).

The Gombeen Man said...

Deffo. They're in the majority here.

Ponyboy said...

Alright Dakota/GM - sure I was only trying to soften the blow about what you're up against. You're right of course about the level of gombeenism in Ireland as opposed...

Ella said...

Utopia doesn't exist. But some places are more corrupt and rotten than others. I lived in London for 8 years, where politicans can and do get imprisoned for wrong doing, think Jeffrey Archer (found guilty of perjury and perverting the course of justice - sentenced to 4 years) and Jonathan Aiken (convicted of perjury, sentenced to 18 months). I also lived in Luxembourg for 3 and a half years, Belgium 18 months, Bahrain 2 years. Of my European tour, Ireland is by far the most corrupt and rotten society, where dishonest politicans get voted in with a larger majority next time round (instead of being imprisoned). Think Michael Lowry (corruption) Beverly Flynn (imagine that FF actually expelled her, although since readmitted to party). The list is endless really....

The electorate get what they deserve, by voting in dishonest gombeens. It's more than just unfortunate for the rest of us that we have to put up with it.

@PB, I might take up knitting yet!

Poney said...

@Ella or should that read @Therese - I'll supply you with the wool and that's not a petit offer cos you're going to need a lot of it.

The Gombeen Man said...

Don't worry, PB... nowhere's perfect, but we've long accepted what we're up against here. The lastest being that the Nama builders are to get a salary of 200 grand, and get to keep their "trophy homes" while they "work our their property assets over the next 5 to 10 years", if today's Sunday Times front page is to believed.

Maybe Bolivia or Zimbabwe might be worse ;-)

But yeah, a healthy critical attitude of wherever you might live or be going to is a good thing.

Dakota said...

Its a BOG. Jack is sensible and lucky.