The government is changing the TV licence. Instead of charging you for having a television, they’re going to charge you for reading the internet, but only because they think you’re using what they regard as public-service websites.
Think about that now. The government is going to charge you for using RTE’s website even if you never touch the thing, and in truth, I can’t imagine why you might. I looked at the RTE website this evening after the Munster-Northampton match and I discovered that their report on the games was word-for-word identical to the report on the Daily Mail website.
Public service broadcasting.
Later, I switched on the television to find a comedian interviewing a celebrity solicitor and his girlfriend on the Saturday Night Show. Neither the comedian, the solicitor nor the girlfriend had two ideas to rub together, but worse than that, they all looked awful and they came across as absolute empty-headed fools who were getting their kicks from talking utter shit on the television. I got the impression that these half-wits spent their entire lives massaging each other’s egos, and I wondered why my licence money was being used to prop up their ridiculous delusions of adequacy.
The comedian looked like a man who had spent two weeks on the bottle, even though he might be a paragon of sobriety. The solicitor, Gerald Kean, is a middle-aged pudgy bore who seems to have no personality, and his girlfriend, Lisa Murphy, looks like the answer to James Bond producers’ greatest problem: how will we find a female replacement for Jaws?
The boring solicitor and his airhead girlfriend had barely departed when they wheeled on a cook. Neven Maguire. Wait a minute! Didn’t I see this guy on RTE the other day? Certainly, because Neven has friends in the national broadcaster, paid for by you and me. They want to make sure that Neven gets exposure, and that’s public service broadcasting too, right?
If these people turned up in my home, I’d call the police, and yet RTE considers them suitable to inflict on the licence-paying public, at our expense.
Why does the national broadcaster think that our money should be used to promote the career of a woman with no discernible talents apart from the ability to dye her hair, a dime-a-dozen solicitor with no interesting characteristics, a weak ex-comedian or an average cook?
When they finally revise the legislation, I’ll be hoping they have a new definition of public service, and I hope it won’t include a provision to make sure that RTE executives look after their friends as they have done ever since the station was founded.
Furthermore, if the government is serious about redefining public-service broadcasting to include websites, maybe they might consider handing out some of the money to people who really do provide a public service, as opposed to RTE people whose only plan is to look after their pals.
And if you don’t like what I’m saying, why not talk to Joe?
When they change the TV licence and ask you to pay for the internet, maybe you should ask yourself if you’re happy to pay for these people getting a free ego-wank at your expense.