Noel Dempsey Flies to the MacGill Summer School

Ireland – a banana republic without the bananas

Noel Dempsey, Minister for Transport, takes his job seriously.  He wasn’t going to the MacGill Summer School just to fill a seat.  He was there to set them thinking, and that’s exactly what he did.

According to the event’s official website, The Summer School will analyse the political, economic and administrative systems that have allowed our economy to be brought to its knees and will propose solutions. The blurb warns that The nature and structures of our parliamentary democracy and our political culture will come under particular scrutiny.

For his session — Our Electoral System and Political Culture Have to be Changed — Dempsey thoughtfully provided a case study by sending his empty ministerial Mercedes all the way from Dublin to Derry and flying there separately in the government jet where he rejoined his chauffeur.  The following morning, his driver returned him to Derry for a flight to London, and the empty Mercedes then returned to Dublin.

Dempsey, it seems, had a big problem.  He needed to attend a vitally-important trade meeting in London, but at the same time he simply had to take part in the MacGill Summer School discussion. Nobody else would do — not even his cabinet colleague, Micheál Martin, who was scheduled to take part in the 8:30 pm session entitled  We need higher standards of leadership and of governance.

Plainly, Minister Martin couldn’t be expected to talk in two sessions the same day.  It would be too demanding.  History, however, doesn’t record whether he and Minister Dempsey shared the jet on the way up from Dublin or if yet another lonely ministerial Merc made the journey to Glenties and back.  It’s also not revealed why Dempsey couldn’t have flown to Derry and taken a taxi to Glenties, or why he couldn’t have stayed in Dublin and simply explained to the MacGill organisers that it was too expensive on the taxpayer.  Micheál Martin is an amiable individual, and it’s not beyond imagining that he would have agreed to stand in for his colleague, presuming he too didn’t have a dawn meeting in London.

Luckily, the summer school had no shortage of great minds to ponder these conundrums.

One or two stood out.

Paddy Kelly, described as Developer/Entrepreneur, addressed the lower orders on Doing business in the global village.

Forced by developer-grade poverty to move from his palatial home  in Dublin’s swanky Shrewsbury Road to a hovel on nearby Morehampton Road, Paddy recently featured in an Irish Times article by Fintan O’Toole where he made light of the huge debts he owes to Nama and boasted about his 7-series BMW and the high life he continues to live.  Sadly for Paddy, the car was repossessed by ACC yesterday morning, but at least he had the use of it going to Donegal.

If anyone is going to make sense of  it all, my money is on the two boys involved in a morning session on the challenge of institutional reform.

Ed Walsh, founder of the University of Limerick, is known for his rapier insights, his multiple gifts as academic, scientist and silversmith and his startling resemblance to Monty Burns, but the man who’ll crack the mystery has to be Dr Eddie Molloy, director of something called the Advanced Organisation. With a title like that, he’s probably also a Fellow of the Clever Society, head of the Smart Group and CEO of the Very Bright Indeed Company.

It isn’t surprising that Dempsey wanted to get nattering with these ultra-brainy chaps. No doubt he was keen to tell them about his role as the man who forced a motorway through Tara — Ireland’s Valley of the Kings.  This road was designed to cater for the now-jobless commuters who bought “town” houses in County Meath, where his brother runs an auctionering business.

Dempsey himself rarely sees his new radial motorway system that springs from Dublin like bicycle spokes.   There is no motorway to Donegal and anyway, why drive when you can fly?  The military operation delivering the minister to his two vital engagements is conservatively estimated to have cost about €13,000, but at least Glenties had the good fortune to hear his unique insights into change in our political culture.

If anyone knows about the Irish political culture it’s Dempsey, the man who dug up Royal Tara’s halls to build a road to the ghost estates.

15 thoughts on “Noel Dempsey Flies to the MacGill Summer School

  1. Ironically the meeeting in London is reported as being sensitive government business relating to aviation – I’ll show you mine if you show me yours!?

  2. “analyse the political, economic and administrative systems that have allowed our economy to be brought to its knees and will propose solutions”. HaHa. The Fianna Fail Party must be what he had to lecture the idiots on! In particular Bertie, Cowen and Mc Creavy. They brought us to hell on a handcart and are now making us pay for the ride. And the solutions..Cuts, Taxes more cuts and more Taxes. Holy Fuck. I can’t wait for the bastards to come knocking on my door for votes.

  3. Does anybody know if Dempsey got an extra 1000 Euros mileage allowance (Callely style Euros) in expenses, for his chauffeur driving through the night in his empty vehicle to get to Donegal to bring him to Derry.?

    On Saturday (May 15) the true nature of the Twenty-Six County state was once again exposed as the Garda violently attacked those who dare to oppose NAMA, the bank bailouts and the savage programme of cutbacks.

    The Garda response to éirígí’s protest was not the result of an operational blunder or lack of experience. The decision to attack peaceful protesters was both premeditated and well planned. And more importantly is was highly political. The Dublin government have clearly decided that the emerging resistance to their right wing economic policies must be crushed before it grows stronger.

    Ursula Ní Shionnain, Daithi Ó Riain, Robbie Fox, Eoin Ó Se, John McCusker, Pádraig Ó Meiscill and Daithí Mac An Mháistír – will now be tried in Court 18 of the Dublin District Court on October 14.
    “The treatment meted out to these seven republicans stands in stark contrast to how the state has chosen to deal with Seán Fitzpatrick, Michael Fingelton, Bertie Ahern and the rest of the golden circle who have brought us to the point of economic ruin. It is now quite possible that some, or all, of these seven activists will be the first and only people to go to jail as a result of the collapse of the private banking sector. Was there ever a clearer case of their being one law for the rich and another law for the rest of us?

    Be there to support these courageous activists on October 14th..

  4. Audi A6 not a mercedes if the news is right! Fair play for a thourough article, where you get the info I don’t know but for the sake of our country don’t stop!
    Should we now demand that FF stop being called a Party cos it isn’t fun at all!!!

  5. The Dept. of Finance has asserted that the article in the Daily Mail detailing that Disaster Dempseys trip cost E100,000 was wildly inaccurate. It said the cost was around E13,000, and the logistics of the trip was “the most viable option”, in a shameless attempt to justify this profligacy. As if any evidence was needed,this bankrupt response is indicative of the prevailing “let them eat cake” mentality pervasive in the Dept. of Finance. Earlier this week “The Fringe” Dempsey criticised his compadre Mr. Callely for the latters financial gymnastics. Three words spring to mind: People,Glasshouses,Stones.

  6. When Minister Dempsey was Minister for Education, he decided that “common” learning disabilities did not need specialist teaching. He called them “High Incidence” Learning Disabilities. Prior to his taking on the job, children with dyslexia got two and a half hours per week (that’s half a measly hour a day, lads!), children with an intellectual disability also got that measly two and a half hours per week. What did money-saving Mr. Dempsey do? Cut it down to two hours per week? No! He cut it right down to zero hours per week!! He said that these were commonly occuring learning disabilities and they didn’t need any special allocation! I will never forget him or forgive him for doing that to those children.

  7. What has the M3 got to do with this debate, as a resident of Navan I am a very happy chappie indeed with the new motor way system and as a freqent visitor to the still peaceful Hill of Tara i never noticed any halls be they royal or otherwise. But maybe you are right and new infrastructure should be reserved for the thriving metropolis that is limerick. Anyway keep up the good work.
    p.s
    I aint no Noel Dempsey fan either

  8. If we had something as important as Tara in Limerick, I’d be against some gobshite politician forcing a motorway through it for the sake of a few local votes.

  9. Whats more important living in the past or providing fast safe transport corridors that dont meander around every fairy ring or old hawtorn bush that Fionn McCool supposedly took a kip under. Meanwhile i think the few local voters were probably thinking about the countless lives that will not be lost to archaic national roads. Anyway Bock sure dont they have you in Limerick, and some would consider you a national tresure! , The Hill of Tara does’nt even have its own T-Shirts.

  10. There are three parallel motorways in that region within a few miles of each other, when one would do if laid out correctly. Now that’s meandering. It would have been possible to select a route that preserved the archaeology but it didn’t suit the parish-pump politics. And it didn’t suit Dempsey.

  11. if one motorway was placesd instead of the three the most logical placement would have been in the middle, (approx along the current m3 route) but I myself could not see someone traveling from Dublin to Belfast via the outskirts of cavan then across to link up to the A1 to our northerly cousins, or we could place one huge 12 lane carriage way smack down the middle of the island running north to south with access on from every major town from piss poor national and local roads, but i am sure you are right and the boffins at transport 21 got vetoed because of dempsey’s sunday aftermass negotiations with the locals

  12. At the rate we are using fossil fuels all this will be acedemic, but the motorways will be fantastic places for our horses and donkeys YEEE HAWWWW

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