The Dog-Licence People

Everything that’s wrong with Ireland. A failure in the administration, a failure in the legislature and a failure in the executive.

The government announced that the drink-driving limit was going to be reduced, and there was a huge backbench revolt.  Local representatives raised hell about some old bachelor farmers not being able to drive home drunk any more and then what?

Well guess what?  It turns out that the breath-testing machines in the police stations can’t handle the thing anyway. It will be 2011 before they can enforce the new rules because they have to replace all the machines.

So why didn’t they ask someone before they made the announcement?  Is it because they’re a crowd of incompetent gobshites?

Wait one minute while I check in the ether …

… checking  …

… checking …

Yep! Confirmed.  They’re a crowd of incompetent gobshites.

The government made a decision before asking if it would work.  They made an announcement with no facts because it’s all about appearances and nothing whatever to do with substance.

How quintessentially Irish. How closely it defines the problem with this country and how accurately it mirrors the malaise now afflicting us.

This is a country full of highly competent people, and yet we allow bullshitters to run the place.  We permit absolute fools to take control of power even though they have no substance whatever, while the genuinely capable people take a back seat.

Why is this?

I was very impressed with cancer-specialist Professor John Crown last year as he railed against the administrators in the Health Service Executive.  Crown, in a passionate outburst of frustration and rage, pointed out that the HSE is controlled by people who have only one skill: the ability to do well at interviews.

Instead of professionals with clinical experience running the health service, we have people who never did anything more complex than processing a dog licence, and these are the people we call managers.

Why?  I don’t know.  It’s a disaster, and it isn’t confined to health.  It invades every corner of our country.

We have no public management in this country –  just administrators –  even though the public service is full of capable professionals, but unfortunately, it seems the culture in Ireland doesn’t value professional skills as highly as it values time-serving file-jockeys.

And therefore we have now arrived at a situation where the people think a fireman or a surgeon or a nurse or a street cleaner are in the same category as some gobshite with no discernible skills apart from wearing a straight tie.

These are the people advising government, not those who understand the front line.  These are who who make the big policy decisions.

The dog-licence people.

On top of that, we have politicians drawn from a pool of complete idiots, due to a defective electoral system that elects glorified county councillors instead of mature legislators.

If Ireland is to survive the disaster we currently face, we have to make radical changes in the structure of our public service and in the structure of our political leadership.

We have to actively promote to the very top people with discernible, verifiable skills in business and technology.  We have to return the current civil service leaders to their appropriate place: processing dog licences.  And we have to revise our electoral system so that our parliament is no longer populated by gobshites looking over their shoulders in case some irate family in south Kerry vote against them for missing a funeral.

This means getting rid of the single transferable vote as soon as possible so that we get some semblance of leadership, instead of the tyranny of the ignorant, and it means replacing the dog-licence people with professionals who know how things should be done.

It’s not that complicated.



Breast Cancer Scandal

27 thoughts on “The Dog-Licence People

  1. “glorified county councillors instead of mature legislators” – that’s praising them a bit and therin lies the problem. Every one of our politicians started off from some town/city council. As if deciding the fix a road gives you the power to make legislative decisions but this is what people vote for especially down in South Kerry!

  2. Limerick city council ‘posted out’ documents belonging to me – birth cert, bills, bank account statements. Never turned up. Rang up. We sent them out. me – I never got them. LCC – we sent them out. Me – can you check around? LCC – we sent them out. Me. – Could you just check for me – things can go missing – maybe check with your post room or around the desk. LCC we sent them out – ring the post office. Me AAAAAgggggggh (hang up).
    Rang post office and as I suspected, LCC have to fill in a form as they sent it. They should fire that lot of incompetent gobshites, and put the people on the dole in – people who will appreciate having a job, and have no doubt recently been on the receiving end of rude govt ignorant, lazy staff, who think customers are just an annoyance between tea breaks.

  3. elle. you have to shake them up, your documents would be a coup for those interested in identity theft, your personal documents should have been courieried or at very least reg post, calling them or even going down here will only net you the response you already recieved, this is very serious stuff, and you need to exercise your rights to protect your rights.
    you might have to send them a legal reminder and then have them reimburse the costs to you.

  4. What galls me Norma is not even was there a feigned, oh God, that’s terrible, I’ll have a look around and get back to you. Common decent empathy. Once there was a whiff of extra work to be done, that was it – f off. Sort it out yourself, nothing to do with us. I mentioned the fact that those documents should have been sent by registered post, or they should have asked me to collect them. They just don’t give a fig about anyone but themselves.

  5. elle; what has happened to your documents is very serious, not too au fait with Data Protection Act and privacy policies etc but maybe you could look them up.
    years ago the title deeds to my home were lost by a solicitor, it cost me a fortune in bank charges but i had to apply for duplicates, it took a full year, one day in utter fraustration calling the dept that dealt with same i insisted on being given a logical reason for delay, i was told that everyone dealing with duplicated deeds in land registry was out sick ! that was about 20 yrs ago, yes its a fucking joke and disgrace but try not to get derailed by fraustration, easy to say i know, just take names and hold people responsible for how you are being treated. and good luck.
    As an aside, i don’t know if its similiar to yours but i do know someone whose private info was lost by gov dept and after creating a rumpus they got their documents and a type of compensation.

  6. Elle, i’d agree with Norma there. Identity fraud is massive business these days. Wikipedia has some interesting info on it. Annual figures are– Uk over a billion, Australia 4billion, USA 16.5billion. All figures are a few years old though, so it could be less or more now.
    Anyway, the ‘i dont know what happened it’ attitude from a public servant is not good enough in these times, especially with the Possibility of you becoming a crime statistic because of their actions or incompetence.
    Well written post Bock.

  7. Jeez Norma don’t tempt me to put in the auld claim. My grant was refused as they wanted my parents income (both pensioners) from 2006. Like what my parents pension three years. i told them I did have not lived with my parents since 2007 and I would not insult my parents by asking them especially considering they do not support me financially, as they should not have to!. The whole thing is a big farce. The loss of my identification details is just the icing on the cake. i will be onto them this week to see if anything was done about my docs, but I doubt it. Responsibility is a dirty word when it comes to these incompetent imbeciles.

  8. Well thats a coincidence ! person i knew the situation also related to a grant, after losing all the data and the person involved insisting they take responsibility for their job description and the demand and resultant responsibility for very private protected personal information, They strangely, recieved their full grant for their final year which had been very curtailed the previous years.
    You go girl, its your life, your rights, your data, As things stand we will all have to stand up and make sure the people pissing about with our lives better do their job.Don’t take no for an answer.
    Good luck Elle, “Illigitimi non carborundum ” ( don’t let the bastards get you down ! )

  9. Does anyone here not feel that iit is only public office were documents go missing. I have dealt with many other companies both by internet and snail mail and nothing has hardly ever gone missing. However the few dealings I have had with public offices and the rate of missing documents is ridiculous.[I am waiting 3 years to get my prsi contributions from abroad sorted out – nobody knows where my original data is and had to send them a second copy). I am guessing there is a large shed somewhere (rented by some minister’ss/td’s cousin) where all the missing mail is!!!

  10. I don’t think poor service is confined to government though. I co9uld give you half a dozen examples of incompetence in commercial companies over the last year.

  11. elle; hope you got your documents back; if they have gone missing though retain a solicitor and call RTE/TV3/TG4/Independant/any other mdeia outlet you can think of. Someone will want the story.Also, sue them.

  12. “How quintessentially Irish. How closely it defines the problem with this country and how accurately it mirrors the malaise now afflicting us.

    This is a country full of highly competent people, and yet we allow bullshitters to run the place. We permit absolute fools to take control of power even though they have no substance whatever, while the genuinely capable people take a back seat.”

    I agree whole heartedly with the first paragraph, but I have a little problem with the second one.
    One of the biggest problem I see in Irish politics (at least anecdotely) is that the Irish people are prepareed to beieve that everytime some goes wrong, it is due to incompetent idiots. Has it never occurred that perhaps they are doing exactly what the set out to do. While Cowen might not like the label “fat incompetent gobshite”, I’m sure it’s largley preferable to “fat criminal traitor”. When we assume or accept incompetence at every occasion, we are giving them a way out.
    Now, being the cyanical bastard I am, I reckon that the whole blood alcohol thing was an uimportant distraction to get some heat off the real issues the government are trying to push through. I’d also ask
    1) How much does a breathliser cost, and how much will it cost to replace all the ones we have (and what do we do with them afterwards, is there space in with the e-voting machines?)
    2) Who makes them and who sells them to the Irish government
    3) What are the details of the contract
    4) Are the company who make/sell the breathalisers involved with any lobby groups or lobbyists (à la Pat Cox)

  13. Do I have to state the obvious here ! The above-mentioned bureaucratic incompetents are the same bunch of overpaid wasters that the public service unions were marching to protect last Friday.

  14. GOM-“Do you need a licence for a cat?”

    That only counts as a qualification to work in Local Authority. A position in the likes of the HSE requires that you have at least filled out an apllication for Sky as well.

  15. The problem is, that they claim they have sent it out. They sent me a copy of a letter dated 27th October which states that the documents are enclosed. So as far as they’re concerned, it is sent out. Perhaps it was, I presume it was, but the fact is they never turned up! My anger is not so much that important documents went missing, it was the lack of professionalism and quite frankly rudeness that I had to put up with when making the application and now with my documents going missing. I worked in an office, and I understand that things go missing, or people receive letters and perhaps forgot about them etc. but one can never assume. I think most public servants are good workers, but some of the admin staff are seriously lacking in customer service skills. My friends working hours were recently cut, and she had to go to the social welfare office. She has never claimed anything in her life and has been working full time for the past 12 years. She got wrong info – just due to the person at the desk not bothering to check out people’s entitlements.

  16. How do you think Cowen got where he is today. Not to mention his innumerous RTE Guide competition entry forms which he rarely boasts about. If anything, he’s over qualified for the position.

  17. Apart from wasters, the unions were also marching to protect the people who might cut me out of my car, keep me alive on the way to hospital, stitch me back together and teach me to walk again. And the people who might risk their lives to take our children out of a burning bedroom.

  18. The problem is that the wasters hide behind those people, often holding them to randsom. “If you cut our bloated salaries then you have to cut theirs”.
    I think we should make a distinction between normal bureaucratic civil servents and essential services like hospitals, fire brigades and god help us, even the gardai.

  19. What about the people who run the water-purification plants? Or the people who operate the sewage works? Don’t forget the guys who chase illegal dumpers, or the workers who keep the public parks clean. What about the Coastguard, or the people who hang on cables from rescue helicopters? The guys who round up dangerous dogs? The home help who cleans up for your sick relative? The physiotherapist who gets them back on their feet after a trip or a fall? The army?

    Are they all wasters?

  20. Good post Bock, Hope you sort out your documents Elle, they are a shower of gobshites no doubt about it, (apart from the ones mentioned by Bock in above comments) Some are of actual service to us and we need them, its the ones we don’t necessarily need are the ones i’d like to see be given the boot.
    The same thing happened me a few years ago, and after all the “What did ye do with my passport and bank info?” I had to reapply for it again, luckily getting it the day before I was to fly out on hols.

  21. That list isn’t exhaustive. I could think of a lot more. For example, I could mention the committed and professional teachers I know who care deeply about their students. And I could mention the good ones in the police who put up with endless shit in a filthy job. Or the prison officers who live under threat from horrible skobes every working day of their lives.

    I could mention the social workers who try to band-aid our crumbling society.

    I could mention people in gentler areas, such as the librarians who will order that book for you, or the lifeguards who’ll watch out for you, and I could mention many more.

    This post wasn’t just about the public service in Ireland. It was about the bullshit that invades every corner of the country, both public and private. If people would like to replace public service with private enterprise, they’d better be ready for the consequences.

  22. I don’t think it’s about public or private sectors and the persistent chanting of same only serves to make the divide bigger, Its all about the people, the workers, from both sectors, it’s a sad and frightening reality that the social welfare costs are at app 21 billion and the healthcare budget is app 14.9 bil, does it make any sense ?
    Its the strategy that counts now, cuts where they can be productive, everyone is making cuts, everyone i know is in survival mode, public and private.
    ” there is a limit at which forebearance ceases to be a virtue ” Edmund Burke.

  23. I don’t think so either. I think it’s about rich and poor. It’s about privilege and wealth being protected, and it’s about the fact that the government has deliberately engineered a split between workers to distract from the gigantic theft of NAMA.

  24. elle; I hope you’ve made some progress in the meantime but I still recommend you at least speak with a solicitor and find out what your rights and options are; it shouldn’t cost you anything to get their advice.

    I agree with you Bock that there are civil servants out there doing a good job; but unfotunately they’re the few; case in point, elle’s situation. I’m sure the retards responsible for this cock-up aren’t particularly well-paid but it’s a symptom of the overall problem; do you think any of these muppets will ever get fired for their gross incompetence? Of course not. Do you think they deserve to have their jobs with an attitude like they have? I don’t. What about the person running the office – will they ever be taken to task for allowing their staff to consistently fuck up? I doubt it. I can’t ever recall knowing anyone who knew anyone who got fired from their Civil Service job, no matter how bad they were at it. That’s the big problem at the moment. They are too entrenched to touch.

    They should be getting rid of people who are incompetent, extraneous wastes of money instead of the lower paid ranks who (invariably) are doing the brunt of the work. But whilst the Unions have a strangle-hold , and whilst we private sector workers continue to applaud their “good fight” that will never happen. We need to break them down, tear them apart, sort the wheat from the chaff and then put them back together again so that they can do what they were originally designed to do; protect worker’s rights, not line their pockets.

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